Shelagh Fogarty is Leading Britain's Conversation.
5 September 2017, 11:47
James O'Brien said that "talking the country down" amounted to truthfully reporting the facts of Brexit.
James O'Brien encouraged listeners to talk the country down this morning, arguing that doing the opposite involved ignoring reality.
His remarks follow a weekend which saw Damian Green assert that the UK needs to get behind Brexit, in spite of him thinking leaving the EU will be bad for Britain.
"We should stop talking the country down, that's the nonsense that's coming out of UKIP-y corners," James said.
"I'm not quite ready yet to close my eyes and put my fingers in my ears. But what advice could you give to someone who remains increasingly convinced that the evidence is, now mounting on an unbelievable scale, that at the very best we are facing a prolonged period of uncertainty and decline?
"At this point in time you would struggle to find anyone to come forward and give you a list of reasons to be cheerful.
"What does 'stop talking the country' down mean?
"Very much a Remain voter, Damian Green wrote a piece in the Telegraph at the weekend in which he explained why it was very important that everybody gets behind a project that he believes to be bad for Britain.
"That seems to m to be emblematic of pretty much everything at the moment.
"A senior cabinet minister writing an article in a newspaper, owned by two reclusive brothers, who own their own Channel Island, explaining why the rest of us should get behind a project they like but most of us don't. On the grounds that if you don't get behind it, it might not go very well.
"Relatively serious people, grown up people, intelligent people keep saying it. Stop talking the country down. As if facts and news and evidence changes the negotiating position.
"Maybe it does."
Watch the full clip above.