By now, you will all be aware of my hoarding of secrets about Brexit’s impact on the economy, lest Brussels should know that we are weak and use it against us at the negotiating table.
Now, you may argue that this very public display of fear itself weakens our position. That Juncker will think, ‘My God. He’s so afraid of handing those reports to the Brexit select committee that he’d rather face contempt of parliament. They must say that Britain is fucked. They will do anything we want.’
But you would be wrong, and I will tell you why. Consider stumbling upon a bear in a forest. It’s hungry but may not have knowledge of humans and how easy we are to kill. So, do you stand where you are, showing it yourself, as if you have nothing to fear? Will that make the animal cautious? Will its survival instincts tell it that your confidence could be a sign you are able to defend yourself?
No. It will think, ‘That animal cannot run. I am going to eat it.’
Now consider you instead run in abject terror, as fast your two legs will carry you. Will it think, ‘That animal is shitting itself and not even going very fast. I am going to catch it and eat it and it will be easy’?
No. It will think, ‘That animal is running. It must be very confident in its running ability. There is no way I am going to catch that. Looks like it’s going to be hare for tea again.’
So run. Hide behind a tree, even though it can see that is what you are doing. If it comes for you, move around the tree. Round and round.
That is my strategy.
Am I thinking of a crocodile? I may be thinking of a crocodile. The crocodile will eat you whatever you do, so may as well leg it. I seem to remember something about running in a zigzag. That’s okay. I’m doing that too.