The cost of Brexit – a doomsday scenario or fair warning?

 

Sir, – “Hard Brexit could cost Irish households ¤1,400 a year in higher prices”, warns a sombre Irish Times on a chilly Wednesday morning (News, March 21st). It’s the conditional “could” that jumps out here. I could win Wimbledon next year but it would certainly upset the form book.

This doomsday scenario sounds familiar. In 2016, the UK’s treasury department predicted that the mere act of voting for Brexit would (no timid “could” back in those halcyon days) result in the immediate loss of half a million jobs and trigger a year-long recession – neither of which (tragically for disappointed Remainers) materialised.

Brexit means leaving the single market and no longer coming under the auspices of the European Court of Justice as was outlined in the pamphlet that was delivered to every household in the UK, prior to the June 2016 referendum.

A “soft Brexit”, as everyone knows, essentially means thwarting that referendum result by keeping the UK in these institutions.

Visiting the “funding” section of the doom-mongering “independent” ESRI’s website is rather instructive. This body, which costs €12 million a year to run, gets 22 per cent of its funding from the Department of Finance (staffed with Brexit-hating civil servants, it goes without saying) and the rest from sources such as “the sale of publications” (although I don’t remember too many dry ESRI reports troubling the best-seller lists) and “international bodies such as the European Commission”. Ah, yes.

Dig far enough (or not particularly far at all) in these Brexit scare stories and you’ll find some of that lovely EU funding somewhere. Strangely, there is no mention of this possible conflict of interest anywhere in the subsequent article.

Does The Irish Times now just take any anti-Brexit story unquestioningly at face value as long as it prescribes to the narrative that leaving the EU “could” cause pestilence, plague and devastation? – Yours, etc,

SIMON O’NEILL,

Dublin 3.

Sir, – The ESRI has estimated that the average household will be worse off to the tune of approximately €1,400 through the purchase of British goods after Brexit. Should we not be looking at some sort of branding so that we can purchase “like or same” products which are produced in other EU countries, thus supporting our EU colleagues wherever possible?

Where would this leave goods from Northern Ireland?

By purchasing goods from Northern Ireland instead of EU goods, are we not supporting Brexit? – Yours, etc,

WILLIAM

MONTGOMERY,

Dublin 4.