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OK, something re Brexit negotiations that should be obvious but doesn't seem to be for all:
For the UK, May's deal is better than no deal.
For the EU, May's deal is better than no deal.
That match in benefits is why it was agreed, after a lot of wrangling, including over the backstop (remember, many in the EU don't like the backstop either, seeing it as a major concession - they see it as pre-negotiating the continuing relationship, offering a customs union for nothing).
Now, everybody is talking about removing the backstop (or amending it in such a manner that it is no longer a backstop, and is hence effectively removed).
For the UK, this would (arguably) be better than May's deal, and hence still better than no deal.
For the EU, this would be worse than no deal.
We are, therefore, never going to reach agreement on this; the EU will never agree to remove the backstop. It doesn't matter how much we run down the clock and threaten no deal instead, because they would *rather* have no deal instead. As a number of cartoonists have pointed out, we're trying to force the other side to do something by holding a gun to our own collective head.
 No deal involves some economic hit, everywhere but especially in Ireland. Ireland can be supported through this. Removing the backstop involves potentially screwing over an existing member to please a leaving member, and demonstrating to all future negotiating partners that the EU will back down if they demand the same thing often and loudly enough.
 Unless appropriate Alternative Arrangements can be found, which nobody has managed for the last two years.