IN recent weeks, the speed with which the Brexiters’ veil has been slipping off, revealing what many people already knew this was all about, has accelerated dramatically.

The veil is more or less completely gone and we can see the true face of Brexit in high definition.

Strikingly, the (wildly spurious) claims of a bright new future and big trade deals have dissipated. For the arch-Brexiters, this has become all about “victory” for their ideology.

It has been left to Remain-minded individuals, as well as economists and the likes of the business lobby and healthcare experts, to shine a light on the economic and societal truths of Brexit. Among these truths is the sad reality that those struggling financially and the young will be among those harmed most by leaving the European Union. The effects of a disorderly or otherwise hard Brexit would be particularly grim for these people in terms of lost opportunities and jobs and a grinding decline in living standards.

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Former prime minister Sir John Major received a rousing endorsement of an impassioned speech at the Confederation of British Industry’s annual Scottish dinner last week, after setting out the costs of Brexit and the impact on people’s lives. Sir John also made plain his dismay about the approach of Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his adviser, Dominic Cummings.

All the while, Messrs Johnson and Cummings appear to have been focusing pretty much entirely on how they might thwart the will of Parliament, in terms of its ardent opposition to a no-deal Brexit, and achieve what they believe would be a victory. A victory for them would seem to be achievement of Mr Johnson’s aim of the UK leaving the EU by October 31, “no matter what”, “do or die”. Seldom would the phrase “Pyrrhic victory” be so apposite if they were somehow to get there, in the face of brave and commendable opposition in Parliament and thankfully major legal hurdles.

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For Messrs Johnson and Cummings and other arch-Brexiters, this appears to have become all about winning whatever the cost. The cost, of course, will be of little if any consequence to many of them. Rather, it will be borne by the public.

The impact of a no-deal Brexit remains the same as it always was – disastrous for the UK economy and living standards over years and decades. And damaging to society.

CBI president John Allan put it well last week, observing that a no-deal Brexit would take the UK into a “swamp”.

German car giant BMW is among those continuing to set out, calmly and rationally, the obvious consequences of a no-deal Brexit for its manufacturing operations in the UK. It continues to urge Mr Johnson to avoid a no-deal departure. For BMW and other overseas investors, as well as huge numbers of UK-based companies, the consequences of a no-deal Brexit are simple arithmetic.

Asked about the danger of a no-deal Brexit, BMW finance chief Nicolas Peter told the BBC at the Frankfurt Motor Show this week: “Of course, this would impact our business. The impact is explained in a very simple way. No-deal would mean that most likely WTO (World Trade Organisation) tariffs would be imposed from November 1 onwards.

“This would mean that we most likely would have to raise our prices for the products produced in the UK and shipped to other markets. Increase of price means an impact on the volume you sell and would eventually lead to a reduction of produced cars in Oxford.”

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Surely even Brexiters cannot argue this is anything but simple arithmetic.

Staying with arithmetic, it is worth noting that staying in the single market, with free movement of people, has been cited even in the UK Government’s own forecasts under Theresa May as the least-damaging form of Brexit. Thereafter, the analysis shows it is a case of the harder the Brexit, the greater the cost, with no-deal the most damaging outcome, even if it holds no fear for Messrs Johnson and Cummings.

The degree to which Mr Peter’s simple arithmetical analysis contrasts with the wild spin of Mr Cummings, imparted in the adviser’s latest comments this week, underlines the hidebound ideology behind Brexit.

The “elites” nonsense remains a tool of the arch-Brexiters. It continues to beggar belief that we have Mr Johnson and US President Donald Trump railing against “elites”, given their backgrounds and means and their powerful supporters.

Sadly, large portions of their respective electorates are still buying the “elites” drivel. Often, when some arch-Brexiters attack “elites”, it is difficult to shake the uneasy feeling that what they are actually railing against is tolerance, social conscience and intellectualism. Given the wealth of some of the actors attacking “elites”, this meaningless categorisation surely cannot be a reference to financial resources.

Mr Cummings has been in predictable form, with his “trust the people” rhetoric in response to Sir John Major’s scathing criticism of him. Asked what his next move would be on Brexit, Mr Cummings told Reuters: “You guys should get outside London and go to talk to people who are not rich Remainers.”

It is outrageous that Mr Cummings should portray Remainers as “rich” given the vast wealth of some of those pulling the strings on Brexit. And presumably, when urging journalists to get out of London, he was not suggesting they come to Scotland, with its huge Remain majority.

What remains infuriating about many arch-Brexiters is they seem not to care a jot about the impact on ordinary people – those who voted Leave and Remain alike – of their reckless drive to leave the EU. Of course, many of them are on the right of the Conservative Party, and would also be advocates of the savage austerity that is actually at the root of the woes of those people who feel they have been left behind.

Mere fear of a difficult Brexit has already brought the UK economy to a standstill.

Maybe the economy might seem a bit esoteric to some of those who have been encouraged by right-wing Tories and British nationalists to talk about the people having spoken and wanting to get Brexit “done”. But this is all about living standards.

It will be interesting to see how many arch-Brexiters, if they do take us into a no-deal nightmare, will in coming years and decades be heading out of London to see the damage they have done to the lives of ordinary people. Of course, as Mr Cummings should know, the widespread damage will be just as plain in London.