UK European Parliament Elections 2019 – Brexit analysis

It’s hard not to see the UK Euro elections as a Brexit Poll, Round 2. Perhaps some voters didn’t see it that way, but presumably Brexit party voters did (what else did Brexit Party mean?); and presumably the LibDem & Green swingers did too.

These are the England, Wales, Scotland results (Northern Ireland results not yet available) analysed as if it were a Brexit poll and on the assumption that 100% of Conservative voters were Pro-Brexit and that Labour is split 50/50:

Pro-Brexit          7,349,304 44%
Pro-Remain          6,791,094 41%
Split          2,398,097 14%
N/A                88,759 1%
Total        16,627,254 

“Split” covers primarily the Labour Party. Evidently there is a large part of the Labour Party that supports a People’s Vote; the YouGov poll survey (fieldwork between Dec 2018 and Jan 2019) puts the Labour Split as 71%/21%. Although I have treated a vote for Conservative as a vote for Brexit, the YouGov poll suggests that is only 69% true of Conservative voters.

Taking those two factors into account brings us closer to the picture described in the Jan 2019 YouGov survey, which has Brexit support at 40%, and Remain support at 46%.

If there were a referendum today on whether or not the UK should remain a member of the European Union, how would you vote?TotalConLabLib Dem
Remain a member of the EU46%2671%84
Leave the EU39%6921%11
Would not vote6%221
Don’t know7%453
Refused2%010


Most other parties have an explicit stated position:

Party%ageVotesBrexit
Position
The Brexit Party31.6%5,248,533->Brexit
Liberal Democrat20.3%3,367,284Remain
Labour14.1%2,347,255 Split
Green12.1%2,010,909Remain
Conservative9.1%1,511,485->Brexit
Scottish National Party3.60 594,553Remain
Plaid Cymru1.0% 163,928Remain
Change UK3.4% 571,846Remain
UKIP3.3% 549,348->Brexit
The Yorkshire Party0.3% 50,842Split
English Democrats0.2% 39,938->Brexit
UK European Union Party0.2% 33,576Remain
Animal Welfare Party0.2% 25,232Remain
Women’s Equality Party0.1% 23,766Remain
Independent Network0.1% 7,641
Socialist Party of Great Britain0% 3,505
Independents0.5% 77,613

Can a Contract Cope with Changing Requirements?

It’s been decades since software people started to think about how to cope with requirements changing during the course of an engagement, though other areas of endeavour have surely been doing it since the stone age. Literally.

The state of the art for software, and increasingly for other areas of IT, is Agile. Yet the recognition of agile in contractual relationships has lagged behind, which is odd given that a large part of IT is done by contracting someone.

When all is sunshine and daises this doesn’t matter. The time you really really want your written agreements to be right is when things go awry. If you’re doing business even with friends & family, it can help to have something in writing.

But how to write a contract for something when you know it’s going to change?

This problem came up in a linked-in architects’ discussion and I immediately reached for google to find my notes from Susan Atkinson’s presentation on Agile Contracts (I saw her present at a Rational User Group conference a couple of years ago). I reduced it to bullet points in /p1201/susan-atkinson-features-of-an-agile-contract, and she was good enough to drop by to correct & update it. She’s been developing an Evolve Contract Model with Gabrielle Benefield and the website should be up soon. Meanwhile there is a recent presentation on slide-share at Contract Metrics For Agile.

For those not yet convinced that there’s anything wrong with a waterfall-style contract and project, you can read the IEEE 2013 conference paper at http://www.slideshare.net/SusanAtkinson2/ieee-2013-the-flaws-in-the-traditional-contract-for-software-development. nb Open it full-page mode for easy reading.

The Christmas of Politics

The Christmas story is all about politics. Look:

‘Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born.’

Let’s translate that a little for the benefit of those of us who don’t live in the 1st century Roman empire:

Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea during the lifetime term of office of Herod, president and chief justice, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born the legitimate ruler of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to submit to his goverment.” When president Herod heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the government ministers, chief judges, and lawyers, he inquired of them where the real president was to be born.

Or, from the other end of the political scene, Mary the pregnant teenager proclaims Christmas is about this: “God has sacked the proud and brought down the powerful from their places in the government and the lawcourts, and has exalted the humble; he has given food and more to the starving, and he has sent the rich packing.”

Forgive the loss of poetry but the Good News of Christmas, according to the angel Gabriel, is the coming of a government, a ruler, a judge, who will do it Right. Jesus, rightful ruler of the world. Laws will be just, courts will not cost the earth, and the rich will not shaft the poor.

And so the church that follows Jesus attempts to demonstrate a new society, in which the starving are indeed fed, the poor protected and the weak defended in court.

It is apparent that Jesus’ government doesn’t favour the usual tools of government — armies, lawyers, yearly reams of new legislation, police enforcement. It is more a person-by-person “if you’re following Jesus, then do what he would do” method. Which may sound small and slow but like the mustard seed turns into something surprisingly big. Bigger than the Roman empire. And a lot lot nicer.

It’s a government you could believe in.