Brexit blues for remain and for leave – we are all losers and why I can’t shut up about it

Brexit – the hardest fence to sit on in history I think and certainly not silently which is what some are asking us to do. This is too huge a bitter pill to just swallow and is based on lies. In the US there would have to be a 66% majority to bring about a change this momentus and one The Irish Times described as ‘a bewildering act of self-harm”.

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If we can talk to our dead relatives on facebook why can’t we create a miracle of undoing? At the very least we need the cathartic expression of our immense frustration, anger, sadness, displeasure and multi-layered intense disappointment.

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We do need to question the validity/accuracy of the referendum as Richard Branson and very many others are doing, ready to lie down in front of the bull dozer in a vocal type of riot, but not without addressing the issues that got us here including clamping down on welfare handouts and the culture of them – I am not just talking about welfare system abuse by non-British either. Other EU countries are able to run systems which pay out based on minimum contributions paid in first for example.

Let us also look at what led us (including the sociology) to here, so we can deal with it because it will not go away. Brexit Is Only the Latest Proof of the Insularity and Failure of Western Establishment Institutions. The leave party extremists gave the poor and disenfranchised someone to blame i.e. the immigrants, and now undoing Brexit has become like stopping Hitler. Too many synergies for comfort.

I look at this picture below of world leaders and think why do we even bother? With so many people in the world is this the best we can do? Is it because some politicians are such game-playing power-hungry self-serving people and we are constantly being lied to / misguided. How can we trust them at all with the track record they have including at PM and war level.

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It is no wonder many in the UK want to fuck the establishment over. Let’s face it – if you are on benefits you won’t care that the arse just fell out of Barclays shares. If you don’t own a house you won’t care about property values going down. If you weren’t working your butt off and saving all your life to buy a house to retire to in sunny Europe, you won’t care that your money suddenly doesn’t stretch very far in Europe. I do feel particularly for those who retired to the South of Spain say, not just for the lifestyle but for better health/less pain and a lower cost of living that suddenly your pension is not worth as much. At least younger people could work more to supplement their income but why should you have to have this concern anyway.

Actually there is one politician on the scene who I think is speaking with credible sense and I would back her all the way. I have got a crush on Nicola Sturgeon – here she describes the referendum process accurately IMHO and outlines how she will do everything possible to honour the Scottish vote and stay in the EU. I am giving serious thought to relocating to Scotland because it is more the kind of place I would like to live. I was already impressed with how forward it is in ensuring its young can pursue sports and hobbies through their grants scheme.

“We voted to renew our reputation as an outward looking, open and inclusive country”- Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland

In the sunny light of a new day I actually feel so very sorry for both the remain (see end) and the leave voters (just 36% of the eligible UK voters which should not be enough to Brexit). We are in fact all losers apart from an elite few.

Image from facebook page of Ed Gym Brown of near Eastbourne, UK.

“I think the saddest thing about the EU referendum is that it wasn’t about the EU at all. It was a farcical contest between 2 completely irresponsible groups, based on fear, half truths, outright lies and hatred. If countries want out, that is fine but the decision should be based on factual information with clear lists of what is gained/lost and a clear outline of plans on how to proceed after depending on the outcome. It shouldn’t be a campaign at all. A document sent to each household for study prior to voting would have been far more useful. Obligatory reading if you wanted to vote.”

Charlotte Cumberbirch

The leave voters are now widely vehemently disliked and will be held accountable for what happens in Britain and further afield for decades to come, regardless of how ill-informed yet well-warned of doom the vote was. Worse the cold hard reality is that in the end they were not even voting for what they thought they were voting for. That’s really so utterly tragically sad and I put it in second place of Brexit Hall of Horrors after the licence it has given for people to be openly racist to strangers in the street, to their colleagues or to speak on TV and to be too ignorant to even know they are being racist.

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The EU must have seemed like a good idea once upon a time.

“The British economy was declining relative to France’s and Germany’s until it joined the EU in 1973. Margaret Thatcher became prime minister in 1979 and began loosening the state’s grip on the economy. Since then, Britain’s per capita income has grown as fast, or faster, than France’s and Germany’s.”

Source: Wall Street Journal

Some of the leave voters now regret their decision or admit they thought they were voting for something quite different:

“Someone who works in electoral services reported that they had “people phone up today asking if they could change their vote…because they don’t want to leave”.

I’ve seen people saying they’re upset with the outcome and voted leave just because they were “fed up” or “fancied a change”. You should have got a haircut then!

I’ve read reports of people saying they thought they were voting for the removal of David Cameron or against the Euro or even to leave Europe itself…as in, the continent of Europe!

And these are far from isolated incidents. Like I say: astounding.”

Source: Paul Sutton blog post

From start to finish it was one vague shit-storm with potentially disastrous far-reaching consequences. That EU chap who says he wants us out as fast as possible got it right when he said what it was really about was in-fighting within the Tories. And what carnage (no wonder Cameron resigned) it has created, after the smoke and mirrors:
– UK: Stay with us Scotland, because that way you stay in the EU. Scotland: We’ll be off now then thanks. This is exactly why we don’t want to be lumped in with you and have to live with the consequences of your decisions achieved by the narrowest of margins (echoed by London and Northern Ireland and the youngest generation of voters).

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– Leave: We’ll give the NHS all that money we save which erm won’t be that much. Things on buses are truer than things on the tinternet. If you see an expert close your ears and run because he is trying to scare you unlike our tabloid headlines about immigrants. Reality check: falsifying figures and misleading the public (like that bollocks about 150 EU regulations pertaining to a pillow that was a random search of the word in pillow within EU law by the looks of it and directives published were often nothing to do with that kin ), especially after the EU’s experience with Greece, is going to make the EU suspicious of negotiating deals with the clowns of the leave campaign.

“Even immigration is, on balance, probably a plus. The Center for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics finds that EU immigrants to Britain are better educated and more likely to work than UK-born nationals, and to pay more in taxes than they collect in benefits.”

Source: Wall Street Journal

– Leave: They are scaring you about the economy – it will be fine because we’ll make Britain great again. And we can always play with China. Reality check: But not for ten years probably and how the Chinese laughed at your cockeyed optimism to negotiate a deal quickly. And the city being the beneficiary of massive Chinese investment just flopped and UK is no longer a sound base to have operations in to have a foot in the EU. It will not just be Chinese investment that pulls out of Britain. Great job Britains!

“This Brexit vote will push Chinese companies to refocus on continental Europe. China will be forced to rethink the idea to have the City of London as a platform for the internationalisation of the RMB,” said David Gosset, the founder of the Euro-China Forum. “The biggest loser would be the City [of London]. The biggest winner could be Germany, already China’s number one trade partner in Europe”.

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– Leave: EU free movement will be stopped. Pawel the Polish plumber and his children can bloody well go home. Reality dawns: We don’t need the EU to be great – um we have to make a deal with them as we cannot live without them it turns out, and nobody in any kind of position of power is going to let us ‘leave leave’. We can’t play unless we pay shitloads AND Pawel gets to choose whether he wants to live amongst an unseemly percentage (not all leave voters) of racist twats or not. We also don’t get a say in whether more countries can join the EU or not, but they will likely make an example out of the UK to stop anyone else leaving, so they will probably crucify our financial sector. That is okay though as geezers will rejoice in bankers losing their jobs because of course they won’t be adding to the people claiming unemployment benefit/housing benefit and they don’t spend their silly high earnings in UK businesses that create more jobs. China lost interest in their investment in us the moment the results came out.

“Post-Brexit falls in EU immigration would be likely to lead to lower UK incomes”
“EU immigration has not harmed the job and wage prospects”

– Leave: We will invoke article 50 right away. Cameron’s dust: oh no we won’t because apart from Farage and everyone who doesn’t realise what they just contributed to, there are not many big smiles around and we need to have a plan. Shit. Did we not have a plan for after winning?

“Delivering the full package of what many people think they voted for is highly unlikely,” said Peter Paul Catterall, reader in history, sociology and criminology at the University of Westminster. “The process will be messy. Because of the inevitable mismatch between the expectations that have been raised and any likely results, it could also get ugly.”

Source: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-06-25/brexit-leaders-prepare-to-disappoint-supporters-on-migration

Friday: So here we are with City of London deathly quiet, Boris takes a long time to do his hair, meetings cancelled for the day, celebrating about being British, complaining about being British, Google searches for Irish passports soaring (even in 2015 dual nationality to cling on to EU membership on a individual basis was a hot topic), petition to ask for another referendum on the matter crashed website with so many trying to sign it, people apologising to the non-British staff in Starbucks while ordering a triple hot, pound did not bounce back from its fall against euro and falls further, projects dependent on EU grants suspended and Brits electing to go through non-EU channel at Gatwick airport arrivals.

I predict that before long someone will come forward from the leave campaign and say “we did not expect to win – it was just to scare the Brussels horses but they fell for it in droves” OR “actually yes it was about the rich elite not having the EU stop their off-shore tax free fun and we knew those that hate dirty foreigners would help, so we spun them some promises”. Whoopsie. It is getting tense already with the EU – the deal to keep us in, above the sweetheart deal of keeping the pound and not being in Schengen, is no longer on offer.

“Following the British vote to leave, European officials have said that the deal worked out with Prime Minister David Cameron to keep Britain in the EU is no longer on the table.”

Source: Bloomberg

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Nobody in the finance world thought the UK would ever make such a move. Why? Because it’s a crazy destabilising half-arse half-baked move and that is why leave voters are being called misguided. We’ve all seen plenty of them open their mouths on TV and social media to know what rubbish comes out that diminishes our respect for them – whether showing racial intolerance (I really wish they could be made to take a DNA test for a wake up call), susceptibility to believing lies, repeating tabloid rhetoric with no other quest for information to base their decision on, limited understanding of the bigger picture, disinterest in the bigger picture, belief that the economy is not something that touches their life, general ill-educated ignorance, farcical ranting or pure emotionally driven decision making. There was one guy who with every comment in a facebook discussion made me want to throw up a little. When you side with them we have to worry – a lot. It is social suicide by association. I am sure that cannot be everyone that voted leave, but they put that f’ing big grin on Nigel Farage’s face and for that they must pay with some finger pointing and “bad dog”. The two most surprise votes to leave for me personally amongst people I know, came from two women I know married to Little England racists.

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We didn’t find a convincing case to leave but for change yes. This lack of case to dismantle ourselves, to be the undoing of ourselves and possibly Europe, is why we find it a bit of a mystery that others felt there was one to boldly go into uncharted territory. It would feel like Kirk and Spock stepping on to a new planet. It is not because we are scared of change (we really rather like positive reasoned rational change), but why go live on Mars when Earth is fine. And they were so confident to stick two fingers up at Europe (let’s head for the hot inhospitable zone that may have black holes on the way – full warp speed ahead).

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Credit to Tim Hirst for the above.

And I wonder where David Cameron went to?

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Seriously we are mystified and dumbstruck that there are so many who voted leave. It should be an X-File. You are entitled to your opinion and to have your conscience left in peace, but only when it doesn’t feel like you just voted Hitler (too dramatic? – okay then) or Trump in – a bad dream that will be decades long and smacks of UKIP gaining support in droves. Choosing a Prime Minister is much less impactful. This was and is a biggie. We are entitled to scream “WTF did you just do to us, to our country, to our society, to our future?” into the abyss. To be honest, doing it on facebook generally whinging is much better than asking you to sit down in person and explain yourself. Or to yell it in your ear. We probably would not be keen to sit down with you anyway. Right now we are just too cross and too busy trying to save the ‘United’ Kingdom and there are precedents you know to ignoring referendums for the greater good.

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No wonder the New Yorker is joking how we can no longer call the Americans dumb (check out the fabulous Scottish insults hurled at Trump) and belittle them (not racist – humour). Of course it now feels entirely possible that if Brexit could be voted in then Trump could become president followed by a zombie apocalypse.

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I am not saying there are not huge issues with the EU, but I am saying the issues and holes with the leave campaign were ouch!!! gaping and thus meant better the devil you know. Only which voters actually knew the devil? Only mad men and Englishmen go out in the midday sun. Fuck. We are good at that kind of incredulous brave Britain nonsense. It’s not good for us you know. Did you listen to the expert about the midday sun?

Leap of faith? Let’s shake things up and see what happens because predictable is boring. Well done for being brave. I once did that in a corporate team away day. Coincidentally all we were doing was voting red or blue in the game. The result was angry people and division to the extent the company had to organise another team building to repair the damage. I learnt that rocking the apple cart can be devastating.

“A few weeks ago, when he was interviewed by Michael Wolff, Trump seemed not to know what the term Brexit meant, but now he seems to considering himself a part of a movement”

The New Yorker

I was a firm Brexiter to start with being emotional, hating money being wasted, immigration not being controlled and welfare handouts abused, avidly anti-bureaucracy like you would not believe (avoiding it and batting it away with a large stick in my own small UK business), but also underpinned with practicality. At some point I switched from “we can do this and it will work out for the best” to “let’s think about how this will effect everything”. I wish more people had. I also wish those that had lived abroad for over 15 years had been allowed to vote as their lives would be so deeply affected by the outcome.

Here is a top tip – please do not vote for NO PLAN/EXPERIMENT alongside Farage followers and expect applause for it or be surprised that the other camp are looking at you like you are batshit crazy and trying their damnedest to 1) stop their country from changing their EU relationship in this way and 2) stop open racism becoming accepted Britishness and the rest of the world from thinking that is how we all are.

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You can feel strongly all you like which many of us remainers do re immigration, poverty, rules and corruption, but ignore practicalities at your peril. Did you ever consider the wider benefits that peace (especially to Northern Ireland), harmony and stability bring? If you don’t really understand why we need EU trade agreements, why being in the EU creates jobs or why the pound taking a battering is bad, then perhaps you should not have voted on the future of Britain. 

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And now why remain feels sorry in the eloquent words of Huw Jones:
“Today’s been rather strange. It was really busy in the office, and I had a struggle to keep focussed on what needed to be done, while grappling with the way I was feeling about what happened yesterday. It can be surprisingly hard to know how to feel when faced with something as momentous as Brexit, but if I had to add labels, I’d say that three things have been churning away inside me:
Firstly, I am angry. In fact I am almost incandescently angry about the way that people have been so shamelessly manipulated by a bunch of sociopaths who care for nothing save their own political advancement. Angry too because the future of the young people of this country has been selfishly squandered by those too old to live to see the consequences of what they have done.

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Secondly, I am frightened. There is a rising tide of nationalist xenophobia and racism across Europe, and the way that it has been so easily exploited to stir up resentment of ‘others’ should truly frighten us all. Hatred and fear are never the solution – they are the problem. What will happen to minorities in this country over the coming months and years I do not know, but I fear that rising inequality as a result of Brexit will make targeting immigrants all too easy for some. The consequences simply do not bear consideration.

Thirdly, and strangest of all, I am grieving. I am grieving terribly for a Britain that I now think will never be. A country where tolerance and compassion for the plight of others less fortunate was something we were admired for. A country whose citizens looked out to the world and were keen to be a part of something larger. Instead, I went to bed in Great Britain, and woke up in Little England. I am sadder than I can easily express about what Britain has lost today. The narrowing of horizons, the shrinking of minds – how pathetic we must look to the rest of the world.

I don’t really know how to end this, except to say that those who are ignorant of history are doomed to repeat it.”

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May I end by highlighting that a majority in Poland voted in a right-wing xenophobic-with-bells-on government, and the protests/marches against that continue in earnest. We are not going to pipe down any time soon. Thank heavens the younger generation will stamp out the uglier fabric of society elements. We will over time calm down and try to find some compassion for those who felt it was right to leave (we feel like Huw describes above about what just happened and the tsunami of ‘leave’ made that happen, damn yas) but never ever for the dirty arse noodle leave campaign which has failed both sides of the fence beyond measure.

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Did someone say it was not about immigration?

In any case whatever you thought you were voting for is a pipe dream and as angry as remain are that this happened we would be surprised if you are not feeling anger too that you were deceived and that one of the fights now on is not to lump you in with racists, that the world at large see Brexit as about being xenophobic and we have to find forgiveness in our hearts for you throwing fuel on that fire with your vote and turning the UK into a place which overnight many Britain wanted to disassociate themselves from. You found yourself keeping the company of the big bad wolf.

“BUT. I can’t help but feel that, even if you did vote to leave for other reasons, you were complicit in driving a xenophobic agenda that was explicit right from the start…

The Rise of the Right

Let me be clear; this is not bitterness simply about losing a vote. I’m not devastated because I was on the losing side. I’m a Tottenham Hotspur fan; I’m very well-versed in disappointment!

Neither is it specifically about the economy or the decade of financial and political upheaval we now face. It may take many, many years, but the markets will recover and the economy will stabilise eventually. Probably.

What dismays me far more than all of that is the mindset of the people I live among.

I believe this referendum has shifted what it means to be British. For the moment at least, I’m embarrassed to be a citizen of the UK.

And I never thought I’d say that. I never thought I cared enough about it, to be honest!

But I don’t want to live in a country where xenophobia and intolerance are commonplace. I don’t want my children growing among hatred and exclusivity.”

Paul Sutton in his blog How Brexit divided a nation

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Bristol sounds like the kind of Britain I would like to be part of. Even the leave voters sound nice with comments in reaction to this photo on facebook including “I am one of the out voters please still take a rose and know that not all of us voted out because of immigration” and another says “also remember that the people who voted out don’t hate you.

A system where only 36% of eligible voters, who did not know what they were voting for and were lied to, can by such a narrow margin change our lives so drastically is really what has got my goat. Of course we are going to fight it, we are fighting it and fight it we must to make all our lives better universally in the short term, plus to ensure the future of Britain’s youngsters is bright and what they wanted from this which is the same benefits we have enjoyed of a single market with free movement. There will be a better worded petition we will sign soon and 450 of our 650 Members of Parliament are pro EU membership so we hope they will help us. The referendum result is only advisory technically. If there is still a motion to leave then a vote should be had on what aspects of that we are actually voting on and what does it look like – are we Norway or Canada now? The whole leave thing has been a farce that nobody should pay attention to but we should relook at the key concerns of voters and address them.

Shall I draw up the new rules for being able to apply for benefits and follow Spain’s suit in having to have a proof of income and private health insurance for a non-OAP EU citizen to be allowed to reside there? I find it amusing that where the English (that quite often do not learn the local language) are taking over whole areas, the Spanish are not complaining with “nothing against them but too many of them” especially as our pensioners over-stretch the health system.

We should all be, within reason, taking a leaf out of Nicola’s book. Scotland you rock! Credit where glowing credit is due. I hope we can all stay in the EU together and be friends again.

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Now deep breath and let’s try this. Already been practising this with my mum and we are both just not mentioning ‘the war’ for now.

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Can you believe this simply started off as a facebook comment in response to people asking remain camp die hards like me to stop complaining, to not give them flack, to accept the result etc.

ARSE NOODLES! ARSE NOODLES! ARSE NOODLES! – ooh that feels better. I’m talking about the leave campaign and the fucktards that orchestrated this referendum. I am going to have go easier on the racists…

“The disaffected working- class voter in Sunderland, rightly angry about being economically marginalised and politically disenfranchised, will wait in vain for the magical billions that are supposedly going to be repatriated from Brussels to drop from the clear blue skies of a free England.

There is, of course, a tried and trusted way to hold this kind of rickety social coalition together. It is to turn up the volume on nationalism and xenophobia, to deflect the inevitable disappointment anger on to Them.

The English nationalists have just lost their favourite *scapegoat*, the EU. When their dream turns sour, where will they find another?”

Fintan O’Toole, The Irish Times

 

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