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The front page of German newspaper Die Welt after Theresa May’s Brexit speech. The cover blurb, translated, says: “Prime Minister Theresa May leads Great Britain into isolation”.

Confession time: On Tuesday afternoon I had a brilliant idea to contrast the reaction to Theresa May’s Brexit speech – as provided by her supporters in the right-wing press – with the response from real people on the social media, and from the press and politicians in other countries, inside and outside the EU.

I would have published comments about different parts of her speech next to each other, with a ‘pro’ comment following an ‘anti’ remark, to demonstrate the strengths – or weaknesses – of each view. Good idea, right?

There’s only one problem: It’s impossible.

The amount of commentary coming in is like an avalanche, and with new stories happening all the time – plus real-life pressures here at Vox Towers – there simply isn’t enough time in the day.

So, with apologies, I’ll just have to settle for publishing the comments I’ve collected against Mrs May below – all in a jumble – and ask you to pick your own choices from the right-wing gibberish we’ve seen in the likes of the Daily Mail.

Shall we begin?

“From professing a tepid and bashful Europeanism when she was Home Secretary under David Cameron, [Theresa May] now supports a shameful, xenophobic nationalism… The nub of her 12-point programme is this exclusion of the UK from the market of 500 million consumers, which will fall to 65 million, plus those Britain can add through new trade deals – something hypothetical and difficult for a country which after four decades has lost experience in this arena outside the Union. Everything in May’s speech grated. The promise of a “positive” accord is fallacious. It is not positive to spurn European citizens, nor to discriminate against residents. Nor does it make sense to threaten the Europeans with whom she will have to negotiate over the next two years.” Spanish newspaper El Pais.

“Theresa May is ready to turn the UK into a low-tax, low-regulation haven after Brexit, her spokesperson confirmed today”. There was more. “Asked whether the prime minister backed comments made by the Chancellor Philip Hammond that the UK could be forced to abandon its ‘European economy with European style taxation’ her spokesperson said she ‘stands ready to do so’”.  UK Business Insider

“May will make clear that the UK will default to slashing taxes and regulation if we don’t agree an acceptable trade deal with the EU – in other words she will say ‘be nice or it’s commercial war’”. Robert Peston

Any Trades Union that backed Brexit must now know they have been had for mugs. Their members are set to be royally shafted. As to all those working class voters UKIP has been targeting – they will feel the full force of being made even more flexible, even more disposable, even less protected than before. Tim Fenton

Leaving the single market and turning the UK into a low-tax, low-regulation island off the coast of continental Europe may be how many Tory Brexiteers see our future — but for anyone who relies on the protections at work, who relies on public services or who provides those services, that would be a disaster. No-one voted to leave the EU to weaken their rights at work. Dave Prentis, Unison

Announcing that Britain will inevitably leave the single market, before the negotiations have even begun, is a disaster for the British economy. Accepting that immigration must trump all other concerns, whatever the cost, is a political failure. Suggesting that Britain may walk away from negotiations with no deal at all — as May has done — shows an astonishing lack of ambition. Niamh Ni Mhaoileoin, Left Foot Forward

For months, May has promised ‘the best deal for the United Kingdom’, but instead she’s delivered this. It’s a plan that — by her own admission https://www.theguardian.com/politics/video/2016/oct/25/theresa-may-private-brexit-warning-speech-to-goldman-sachs-audio — will leave the country materially worse off. We have to assume that some of her ambitions — like associate membership of the customs union — will never actually be achieved. Niamh Ni Mhaoileoin

“I did not really get it out of this speech that she wants to give up something. It was a little bit like cherry picking. So to speak: you can’t eat a cake without paying for it.” Michael Fuchs, senior advisor to German Chancellor Angela Merkel

“A hardline approach to Brexit may hold the Conservative party together, but it could rip Britain apart. And if we continue on this path – towards a hard Brexit – we risk having to explain to future generations why we knowingly put their economy, their prosperity and their place on the world stage in such peril.” Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London

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