THE EU will not bend. It has to be seen by its members and by third-party countries that it is consistent and fair in its application of the rules. I think the UK will crash out, causing lasting serious damage to itself, to this innocent country and to the world economy.

I was amused to hear Sammy Wilson of the DUP on Channel 4 News saying that May needs to go back to Brussels and tell them what they should do and that the UK will not be a footstool of Brussels.

Mairead McGuinness, the Irish MEP and European Parliament vice president, expressed her sadness on Wednesday night and her bewilderment. She wanted to know how does the EU negotiate with a country that does not know what it wants.

Rees-Mogg’s personal wealth is assessed at £100 million so he will not be affected. Individuals will. For example, my pensions from the UK have dropped by 20% since the Brexit vote. If they crash out it is expected that the pound could drop by another 25%, which would mean my pension will have been reduced by at least 50%. For the pound to have dropped by that ammount would be catastrophic for the UK. If you couple that with customs duties of up to 40% on food under WTO rules, can you imagine how that will hit the poor in particular.

Watch how Ulster will be rewarded by Westminster after Brexit. Currently some 60% of those employed are in some form of government service. There is no way that level of subsidy and the overall costs of Northern Ireland to the general UK exchequer will be sustained.

The DUP may be enjoying its day in the sun at the moment, but I would suggest they should practice what it is like to be under the bus, as that is where they will be thrown.

Graham Noble
Address supplied

IT does seem more and more inevitable that the outcome will be a no deal and walk away, due to the following facts of the matter.

Going through the motions by aiming to reach out to other parties to ascertain views, one wonders what Theresa May can actually achieve. Her address to the nation late on Wednesday evening to say she was still in charge of Brexit was ironic to say the least. She only got what the EU were prepared to offer given the parameters of her Lancaster House speech, and the same would apply again. So how can anything go forward?

The same political polarities would resurface across the spectrum and given that a no deal has not been ruled out, there is not one fixed agreement at the outset.

Theresa May has said one must avoid a no deal, the scare-mongering pointing out a no deal has been going on from the government side, yet the PM does not give the assurance of no deal because her party would split on it, as it would on a custom union.

The impasse has become a wall and although walls can crumble, the delusional mindset of the arch Brexiteers within her party and elements of the Labour party is fixed.

Taking back unilateral control can only mean no deal, as everything else is still subject to agreement and negotiation within Westminster and across the EU.

In the end a no deal will lead to the dissolving of the Union in due course. But that will not concern the Conservatives at all, as the English vote (for Brexit) is given precedence even if the Union breaks up.

The working out of EVEL first initiated by Cameron underpins that and has nothing to do with the decision of the “British” people.

The points are already set in motion for no deal, and “reaching out” is a smokescreen to lay the blame on the other parties when they reject May’s still-fixed red lines. Irrespective of what MayHem May initiates, she will not have to face the effects or the consequences when she shimmies off into political exile before the next election.

John Edgar

WHILE we clearly have a mandate for indyref2, before kicking off the campaign we had better have clear answers for the No side’s inevitable counter arguments. We’re assuming that the chaos of Brexit will lead people to throw off the yoke of the UK, but they will argue that even more uncertainty is worse.

We can see that Brexit Scotland would be heading for economic disaster and certain decline, but they will point to GERs figures and the Growth Commission report. We can see that the free movement of people and continued trade with the EU is of vital importance to Scotland, but they always retort that our trade with England is far greater, as if it would be cut off. We have heard so much about the Irish border question, but are we prepared for customs and passports checks at Berwick and Gretna? Can we answer the currency question this time? Are we clear about whether we want to rejoin the EU or EFTA? Are the nuclear stockpiles to be banished immediately, or might they be a vital bargaining chip?

It’s fine for Keith Brown to tell demonstrators to go off and start the campaign themselves, but the SNP and Greens need to flesh out the arguments for their supporters, so that we can put them quietly and convincingly to our family, friends and neighbours. Scots might want to leave the Titanic, but they need to know that the lifeboat will float.

Robert Fraser

MIKE Herd (Letters, January 17) wonders if leaving with a no deal is sheer incompetence or planned. Despite the fact that my father used to say that “they couldn’t run a sweetie shop with everything marked three pence”, I am sure this is planned. If your plan is to wait and wait till every grain of sand has trickled through the timer doing nothing but pretend to be doing something, then you will have done what has been expected of you. To take his Sherlock Holmes allusion a bit further, perhaps this devious, EVEL and duplicitous behaviour actually betrays the hand of Mayriarty.

Richard Easson