Predictions by EU supporters in Britain and Norway that the conservative Tory government wanted to leave the EU to be freer to thin workers and lower standards after Brexit were flatly rejected by Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his people.
On the contrary, one of the first things Johnson did after taking office was to give the statutory minimum wage a historic boost.
But in Parliament on 12 October, he and the majority of the Tories still gave reason to doubt the promise to maintain British standards. Then rules for food and animal welfare were on the agenda.
Eager to reach trade agreements to replace EU membership, he secured his back free to allow American standards, chlorinated chickens and beef pumped full of hormones.
For what happened?
Will have freely rented to shop
A bill to require that trade agreements only allow the import of agricultural products that meet British requirements for food and animal welfare standards was voted down by 332 to 279 votes.
The debate over this has heated up in the British Isles. The figures show that some of the conservative parliamentarians also revolted and voted with the opposition to ensure food standards.
The farmers’ organization National Farmer’s Union has collected over 1 million signatures in support of the law change that was voted down.
The controversy is so sensitive that the website evolvepolitics.com published a list entitled “Here is a list of all MPs who voted against protecting animal welfare and food standards from trade agreements after Brexit.”.
The Brexit people are not alone in mixing facts and rhetoric
Cat out of the bag
The opposition from the government’s supporters was made clear in the debate on Monday night:
Representative John Lamon supported the government and said according to the BBC that some of the changes the minority wanted were not in the interest of food producers – and the cat out of the bag – would be detrimental to trade.
In the hall, his party colleague Anthony Mangnall characterized the fear of importing chlorinated chicken and hormone meat as intimidation propaganda.
That must be the end of it, he thought.
But the program is beautiful
Well-known chef Jamie Oliver is among the many who in an interview with the BBC are concerned about food and animal welfare legislation after Brexit.
That the conservatives could not agree to the bill shows the room for maneuver in political rhetoric.
For what did the party say in the program they adopted in 2019?
Yes, that one of the great opportunities with Brexit is the opportunity to become a world leader in food quality, agriculture and land management.
So what are we to believe? We get to take the time to help and see what happens. For Brexit, it will be too full from 1 January.
Reverse Russian scandal
The Brexit people are not alone in mixing facts and rhetoric. For a long time, it has been a “fact” in leading media and among EU supporters in both the UK and Norway, that Russia and the agency Cambridge Analytica made sure to tip the majority to Britain’s withdrawal from the EU, Brexit.
The now defunct consulting firm Cambridge Analytica was alleged to have misused millions of people’s Facebook data to influence the referendum on Britain’s EU membership.
But this week, Klassekampen was able to report that the British Data Inspectorate, after a three-year investigation, has concluded that the accusations against Russia and Cambridge Analytica in the Brexit case are not true.
This is stated by the Information Commissioner’s Office in this letter to the lower house in London.
From rhetoric to realities on New Year’s Day
Are EU supporters responsible for fake news? Will Boris Johnson break his Brexit promises? Will hell break loose when Britain’s transition agreement expires without a free trade agreement with the EU on 1 January?
The conclusion is unlikely to be as the rhetoricians on both sides like to present it.
On Thursday, another EU summit will address Brexit. According to Boris Johnson, this day, 15 October, is the last deadline for an agreement with the EU if it is to be possible to implement it before the New Year.
Next year will be exciting not only for the EU and the British, but also for Norway, whose largest trading partner is the United Kingdom.
Thomas Vermes comments regularly in ABC News. Read previous comments here.