I have managed to decipher another section of the fire-damaged New Oxford History of England: Brexit 2015- which was offered to me by Sybil, an emissary from The Future (see my post of 7 March). This is from what appears to be the section on the CPTPP.
‘After a brief attack of courage when he faced down the Brexit fanatics who wanted the UK to welch on the agreement we had made with the EU over Northern Ireland, Sunak sadly soon reverted to spineless type, and decided he had to offer the ‘head-bangers’, as they would become known, a consolation prize.
Most British people soon saw that even among the multiple absurdities of Brexit, the UK’s ludicrous decision to join a trade group on the other side of the world in preference to neighbours 20 miles away, stood out.
It was presented by Sunak as one of those highly elusive ‘Brexit benefits’, but this argument soon fell apart when it was revealed that, on the government’s own figures, it would benefit the UK's economy by about 0.08 per cent, while Brexit impoverished the country by fully 4 per cent, fifty times as much.
Instead it became clear that joining the CPTPP had only two functions: 1. As one of those endless empty gestures designed to fool people into thinking that there was some upside to Brexit, and 2. To try to put another obstacle in the way of the UK ever rejoining the EU, so imprisoning the country permanently in the Brexit disaster.’