There will be a long term prize for those admitting Brexit is not viable but Labour don’t want to claim it

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It's still silly season and news is sparse but in many ways that makes it easier to spot trends. Even over recent days if the continuing Trump saga is ignored one issue stands out, and that is the obvious fact that the case for Brexit is collapsing.

Today's instalment is the collapse of claims on the abuse of student visas, which hardly exists at all as it turns out. This has just been bogus hype for no reason.

The collapse in net migration to the UK is more telling: this is a country  facing a labour shortage as a result. Expect a skills crisis very soon.

No wonder GDP is moribund; there is nothing to drive it. Most worrying there is the continued absence of business investment: the decline in the value of the pound is not stimulating long term investment because business is very obviously not thinking that Brexit has created long term economic advantage. The building blocks for the post Brexit economy are failing to materialise in other words.

That is hardly surprising when the government almost daily makes clear that Brexit will be in name only.

We will beg for a transitional deal.

We will not control migration, if anyone still wants to come, for years to come.

We will leave the Customs Union but then seek to mirror it in a new deal.

Leaving the ECJ behind looks like conceding that the ECJ will continue to have significant influence over UK law.

If ever there was a vision for Brexit the reality is turning into a scramble to cling to any lifeboat the EU will launch for us as the UK economy shrinks.

That all of this was predictable makes no difference, of course. It is happening and the harm is very real, not least because the situation in Ireland remains unresolved and millions still have no idea about their right to reside. That makes this very personal for them.

I have said it before and I will say it again now. At some time it is going to be appreciated that Brexit is not just not technically possible, which is why so many of the proposals made look so cosmetic as cover for keeping the only viable option, which is the status quo; but it's not desirable either. There will be a long term prize for those admitting it. It bemuses me that Labour don't want to claim it.