Brexit: Heading for a Cliff with a Parcel of Rogues at the Wheel
Ignorant, inept, dishonest …
Back in December, Andy a friend from the USA sent me a question (this is a slight update):
“Seeing your post reminded me that you haven’t commented on Brexit. Do you support it, hate it, fear it, neutral about it?”
Tough ask, Andy.
Believe it or not?
Do I believe in Brexit? No.
Do I believe in Bremain? No.
The trap is believing in either. In other words, we need factual, clear and objective information and thinking before we opt for any course of action.
Is there a problem?
Does something need fixing? YES.
The Brexit problem is a Frankenstein-like creation of our Westminster politicians? If only because the initial impetus for Brexit came from political self-interest rather than a genuine national concern. Not to mention a spectacular lack of clear thinking.
Moreover, many accept the Brexit referendum arose from fear, in our Tory party, that Nigel Farage’s UKIP and the right wing might hijack control. Now, Mrs May and her cohorts say “take back” control (a jingoistic assertion?) from Europe, only to attempt to deny control to our Parliament.
Life of its own
The UK government created a monster. Then, as the beast gained a life of its own: spin, mendacity, greed and stunning incompetence took over. As a result, even today, a year and some months later, there is no clear truth, there are no sound goals … only hot, divisive, air.
Can we look at our top political leaders and believe they can run anything more than a political fantasy? In spite of such concerns, and widespread cynicism, citizens are enraged and defensive of their (our) positions, however non-founded.
Strong feelings distort reality
The fantasy and conflict, which hurtles on unchecked, is driven by strong feelings rather than powerful facts. For example, one need only discuss Brexit with people of pro or anti persuasion and a defensive/aggressive energy may quickly overwhelm a conversation or a friendship. Flying abuse never solved a problem or enabled clear thinking.
What’s truth got to do with it?
If the Brexit concept is mis-founded and illusory, where might our solutions lie?
Specifically, on the run-up to the referendum, both sides of the Brexit argument didn’t, in the main, base their arguments on facts. Our leaders’ dishonesty is shameful and, I’d say, criminal and fraudulent.
I have no spur
To prick the sides of my intent, but only
Vaulting ambition … Wm Shakespeare – Macbeth
In the absence of clear information and facts, both sides made up their own truths. In fact, by early November 2016, the Crown Prosecution Service began considering a complaint about Leave campaigners misleading voters. I’m not sure of the outcome.
Then, of course (royalty or what?), there as a Judicial Review of government powers … and. with that came a sense of the autocratic powers invested in the Prime Minister – and her wish to avoid democratic oversight if she can. For this reason, the EU withdrawal bill is a rich source of conflict and maintains an underpinning avoidance of scrutiny for government law-making.
Back to the cliff-edge
Broadly speaking both sides of the political debate agree that the British people “have spoken” and so they will implement Brexit. There seems to be agreement that there is a huge economic downside coming up … the cliff-edge our leaders talk about. Not to mention the tragic situation where ever more children fall into poverty.
What have UK politicians done so far?
- Conned and divided the citizens of the UK. They can’t and don’t deny it.
- Generated an upsurge of anger about immigration, the EU’s workings, lack of UK sovereignty, bloody foreigners, and so on … with questionable veracity.
- Fanned divisive angry flames, fuelled by their own self-righteous dishonesty as we walk backwards, in an enraged emotional fog, towards what everyone calls the “cliff edge”, even if nobody knows where, or exactly what it is.
- Ignored significant and growing evidence that the UK faces catastrophe by Brexiting, so much so it seems almost suicidal.
- Presented Brexit as a duty, even if it is, admittedly, based on lies and spin; even with little or no coherence to their plans or thinking. Remember Iraq?
- Carried on as if this self-generated crisis is the most important thing ever. I’d say 3.9 million children in poverty (expected to increase by 50% by 2020) is more pressing – our government has just had to admit it abolished the Child Poverty Unit.
Lunacy either way
The UK is divided on Brexit and our politicians lack the competence to call a halt, establish the facts and be clear about what’s in it for our children and grandchildren. And they want us to push the leave button right now – nobody seems to know the goal, never mind the fallout – big risk …
The Columbus factor
We mustn’t forget the Columbus factor and its relationship to Brexit:
- When Columbus set off he didn’t know where he was going.
- When Columbus got there, he didn’t know where he was.
- When he got back, hold on, Columbus did get back. In our case, we won’t be getting back … what if it’s a mistake.
Pious hypocrisy and all that
The best part of being a hypocrite is you can still denounce hypocrisy.
The piety with which both sides of the Westminster bubble say ‘the people have spoken …’ is tainted with hypocrisy. I’d add these words ‘… in good faith.’
My faith is broken. My fellow citizens and I entrust our well-being and prosperity to unworthy people who betray us at every turn with their cupidity and corruption.
I say, wake-up fellow citizens, we’re about to be mugged again but many times worse than 2008. The people who voted for or against Brexit, in fear, anger and indignation, are in the process of being let down and betrayed.
I don’t know who said: a company is known by the people it keeps. It’s a thousand times more relevant for countries, governments and politicians.
What would I do?
Me, I’d reset the dials. I want facts and information. I want politicians who speak to and for me … and tell the truth. Because of this, I want clear, measurable future goals/outcomes on the EU and other major issues. What do we need?
- An EU that is incorruptible and operates in simple, clear ways. All citizens benefit and/or see a route to improvement and know why.
- UK politicians are credible/capable and provide honest fact-based, understandable information which citizens use to select politicians and direct major decisions … including leave the EU if that’s the best way forward.
- No region of the UK feels disenfranchised.
- Political ideology (expediency) and whim is no longer the driver of change – facts are.
- Politicians who lie and deceive citizens face criminal prosecution.
- There are no children in poverty in the UK.
- There are excellent educational opportunities, available to all, throughout the UK.
so, Andy …
Until we know better, I think we should stay, maybe even fix Europe because please do fact checks everybody:
- I do not know why, beyond party politics and crazy thinking, we’re doing this.
- Where is the clear, compelling, all UK citizen-benefitting reason for going or staying?
- Strong feelings distort reality. Can we trust aggressive emotions and unfounded beliefs as brightening our future? Or is this just another political bun fight for which we’ll continue to pay the price for generations to come.
- We need to be a United Kingdom and we’re not. This isn’t about one side or the other winning, it’s about us all winning … Europe as well.
- How reliable is the competence, insight and capability of politicians and senior civil servants in this unique situation?
- Money will be made, but not by the bulk of our citizens. Have a look under slimy sewage-coated corporate and governmental stones to see where the profits of deceit go. The Brexit dividend has started … for some.
- Nobody really knows what to do.
Regarding Brexit, I believe there’s a high risk my children, grandchildren and successive generations will pay a high price for this stupidity. We need clear thinking. Sometimes the best course of action is to do nothing.
Are we at a cross-roads or what?
© Mac Logan