Yesterday, the Brexit Tories finally produced their â€˜planâ€™ for handling the Irish border after the UK leaves the single market and the customs union. As I read it, there are four elements to the plan:
1. There will be a hard border, but weâ€™ll pretend that there isnâ€™t by doing all the border checks somewhere that isnâ€™t at the border at all.
2. We will use technology which hasnâ€™t yet been devised to control the border.
3. The government in Dublin and the one in Belfast that doesnâ€™t currently exist and to which the relevant powers have not been devolved will work together to come up with a more detailed plan.
4. There shall be a good sprinkling of pixie dust, generously applied, to ensure that 1-3 above can work in practice.
Actually, I made up the fourth – which is a great pity because itâ€™s just about the only thing that would make the other three into feasible propositions. The only reason that this is being given any credibility at all is because of the strange notion that â€˜balanceâ€™ requires fantasy to be treated as the equal of hard analysis.