Brexit: the British people have spoken
Will their leaders finally listen?
To be quite blunt about it, a great many people in Britain have just given a big middle finger to leaders who have ignored their concerns about national identity and autonomy, and their right to make decisions within their own country about the nature of that country. These principles used to be the bulwarks of a democracy such as Britain, with a long and proud tradition that has not yet died.
Although the EU plan was designed to weaken that tradition—and probably has to a certain extent—the tradition is still strong enough, and the provocation great enough, to cause a majority of British voters to give a big resounding “no” to an EU scheme they’ve found to be increasingly intolerable, with diminishing rewards and increasing drawbacks.
Anti-EU feeling among the people of member-states isn’t limited to Britain, although it may be strongest there because Britain was a relative latecomer to the EU and retains some of its non-continental island identity. But nationalist movements are afoot in France, and Donald Trump represents the American version (although of course we’re not in the EU and therefore have no need to vote to get out of it).
Movements often come in waves. For example, I remember the international nature of the 60s’ cultural changes wrought by my generation. Everyone thinks he or she is an individual, and that’s true. But we’re all subject to, and reacting to, universal forces that can at times sweep different countries and even different continents. The UK and the US have a closeness which means they are often in sync: for example with Roosevelt and Churchill, Reagan and Thatcher. Those are especially great examples, but being in sync doesn’t always involves greatness.
In recent years in both countries, it has been said that “elites” have ignored the voters, the common man, the working class, whatever term you prefer—ignored their protests, ignored their concerns, ignored their problems, ignored their opinions and needs about immigration and a host of other things. Perhaps it was assumed that enough people could be placated, cajoled, soothed by comforting words, and made to agree with what those leaders wanted them to think. The leaders thought they knew better, and perhaps they did; maybe leaving the EU will be a disaster for Britain as Cameron and many others have predicted, although I doubt it in the long run. At any rate, “the people” didn’t think so, and they voiced their disagreement through the ballot box.
Cameron had suggested the referendum on EU membership several years ago because he wanted to placate potential defectors within his own party who were anti-EU. He was fairly confident that eventually he would win the referendum vote and keep Britain in the EU’s grip. He thought he could persuade enough people that he was correct that remaining in the EU would be best for Britain, but he miscalculated and now he’s on his way out. Cameron had said the vote would be “a great festival of democracy,” and the people have celebrated that festival by telling him—and the EU—to get lost.
Over two million pro-EU voters are now desperate to turn back the clock and have petitioned for a do-over, suggesting that unless 60% of voters had agreed on Remain or Leave, with a turnout of 75% or more, another referendum should be held. But that’s not the way the referendum process ordinarily works. “You can’t simply invent new hurdles if you are on the losing side”—although apparently you can try.
[Neo-neocon is a writer with degrees in law and family therapy, who blogs at neo-neocon.]
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One of the few things about the Progressives which is annoying but must be respected is that they never, ever give up. No matter how many times they lose, they keep coming back until they get their way. Then, and only then, is the issue considered settled. This rare rebuke has come as a shock, but they are still using the old playbook. Hopefully this time it will fail, but so many in the Establishment want Brexit to go away that it might carry the day.
First, I agree the petition seems a bit like closing the barn door after the horse has left, but many believe if they cry loud enough they will get their way. But in looking at the vote, rural England and Wales carried the day. Everywhere else (Northern Ireland, Scotland, Gibraltar, Shetland Islands, etc) the vote was to remain.
It will be an interesting negotiation with the EU, and internally, as the UK works to keep the U in UK.
As I said in another thread, the heat map is disingenuous. It is not winner take all like an electoral college vote.
The rurals did swing the vote but they could not have done so without the very close votes in the urban areas. You look at parts of London, Liverpool, and Manchester and you see very light blues (even some reds in the greater London area.
This issue is being pawned off as “old and rural” robbing the young voters. The rural part, at the very least, is disingenuous and oversimplified to say the least.
This statement is incorrect –
“Over two million pro-EU voters are now desperate to turn back the clock and have petitioned for a do-over”
It is not 2 million “voters”
Only 350k of the 2 million sigs are British. @Sargon_of_Akkad pic.twitter.com/u4ERXdHjDl
More than that, it was a prank: http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2016/06/hah-liberal-media-pranked-4chan-poll-second-eu-referendum-totally/
Typical deviousness from the nefarious Left. “We may have lost the popular vote, so let’s move the goalposts sufficiently far back so they can’t be reached, no matter how the people feel, and have a redo.”
Their friends in the enemy media are obviously more than eager to help. We saw them at work here in the US of A during the Democrats House of Representatives ‘Sit In’ furiously deflecting attention away from the religion crazed Muslim jihadi that killed 49 people in Orlando and trying to pin the entire blame on the gun that was robotically aiming and firing on its own.
“You can’t simply invent new hurdles if you are on the losing side.” So Neo-, to who is that quote attributed?
Certainly not George Will, Bill Krystal, Erick Erikson or others of the type? All of them are for having the participating voters have their say. Or so they’ve said ; until they’re not, or so it seems.
I have in the hopper an initiative backed by a Colorado delegate (a toady of state GOP chair Steve House) to ignite an attending delegate revolt in Cleveland, to deny the nomination to the totally unacceptable Donald Trump. It’s within the participating delegates rights & duties to so do.
Supposedly it’s gaining momentum.
And so such sentiments cross the pond. Held by a unified internationalist & corporatist oligarchy of elitist & institutional ruling classes noted for their failures.
Failures used to holding the reins of power and determined to hold on as if their lives depended on it.
One corporatist oligarch who should be noted for his record of failures is Donny Flaming Cheetos Trump.
You just can’t let it go can you J. J.
You’ll happily accept the worldwide oligarchy of the privileged over one man. One man who prevailed over an entire system stacked against him. A true American success story.
In preference you’ll run with the Eurotrash & institutional American self selected elites. The crony billionaires & media whore’s. Well at least you’re open about it. You don’t try to dress it up as something it’s not.
Oh wait a minute, that’s exactly what you’re doing.
And why shouldn’t you, you support provoking an avoidable war with Russia.
You had better catch your breath, you are getting dizzy.
Love the parakeet.
Is she real?
Henry is a parrolet.
The UK is not California. It does not have a “referendum process”, nor does it have legally binding referendums. It has had very, very few referendums in its history. They literally can make it up as they go along.
The problem is public revulsion. If 52% isn’t good enough, the real solution would be to ignore the non-binding result altogether, not have new ones until the correct side wins. The risk is losing even worse than the first time because the public’s patience has limits. Cameron is unwilling to do so. A new government would be needed regardless, and the leading opposition party just this morning tried a coup against its leader. Fun stuff.
Well its not as though we haven’t seen similar here in the US with the left … Keep re counting votes … Find votes or use the court’s
Western civilization was lucky this time.
For years, the creeping socialist/elitist strategy was a success, and would have continued to be a success … except that the globalists screwed the pooch this time, and 52% of Britain finally noticed. They noticed also that a leisurely non-response was no longer the standard comfortable option; immediate action was (and still is) vital. The problem this time is, of course, the Muslim invasion, which the EU is neither willing nor able to stem.
If not for Merkel’s incredible clumsiness, the gradual suffocation of Saxon civilization under the sea of Belgian bureaucracy would be continuing right now. We can’t count on them being so bumblingly obvious next time. And there will be a next time; they won’t give up—not when there’s an entire continent to be plundered.
If we can take some lessons from history, we see reason to believe that the English wake up and abandon their standard modus operandi of “muddling through” only when the situation becomes dire. Think 1940. As A.J.P. Taylor pointed out, the British spent most of World War 2 losing it. Despite that, when the situation became desperate, they stopped poncing about and managed to do whatever necessary to hold on long enough for Adolf to make a blunder—a blunder which saved them. But a further lesson from history is that France is not likely to match that performance; the French only set down to the serious business of not losing after the situation is already hopeless. Think Dien Bien Phu; fresh paratroops were jumping in even after it was obvious that the base was being overwhelmed by General Giap’s artillery barrage—the reinforcement effort wasn’t just unsuccessful, it was entirely quixotic. Although there are noises right now from France about bailing out of the suicide pact with the EU, to the degree that history is a guide, this effort is probably too late.
“Will their leaders listen?…”
Secondly, their “leaders” will soon not be their leaders. (We speak about these “leaders” as if their royalty, and not voted in – and soon to be voted out.)
These days, “leaders” is synonymous with “entrenched, corrupt, political hack,” Clinton the worst among them, and the GOPe hacks right behind.
I sincerely hope our own Government is taking notes.
Possibly, they might consider the Sovereign States as more than just sheep to be shorn.
What we have here has remarkable parallels.
Screw “our government” taking notes.” Who in their right mind could ever trust the corrupt clowns hogging the leadership positions of our nation.
We hire, we fire. The only note “they” need to get is either (1) you’ve been recalled, and/or (2) you’ve lost the election.
I propose a referendum in the US to either remain or leave the UN.