Monday, June 27, 2016
This vote snuck up on many people because there was so little official support for an exit among the uk establishment. I started to follow it after watching Brexit: The Movie, which, while one-sided, made some strong points:
- Eu regulations mimic the over-regulated post-World War II British economy that lasted until Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister in 1979.
- The eu has an opaque structure that makes it unresponsive to public feedback.
This excellent Wall Street Journal article has some amazing quotes:
- "That slender majority was probably the biggest slap in the face ever delivered to the British establishment in the history of universal suffrage."
- "Many of the Brexiteers think that Britain voted this week to follow a template set in 1776 on the other side of the Atlantic."
It also reads like a soap opera:
- "The EU took a gamble: that the Brits were bluffing and would never vote to leave."
- Cameron "rather overdid it. Instead of fear, he seemed to have stoked a mood of mass defiance."
- "Mr. Obama also overdid it …"
- "The EU has become a coalition of the unwilling, the place where the finest multilateral ambitions go to die."
- "To many voters in Britain, this referendum was about whether they want to be linked to such tragic incompetence."
This paragraph about immigration is also telling:
The economists who warned about the perils of Brexit also assure voters that immigration is a net benefit, its advantages outweighing its losses. Perhaps so, but this overlooks the human factor. Who loses, and who gains? Immigration is great if you're in the market for a nanny, a plumber or a table at a new restaurant. But to those competing with immigrants for jobs, houses or seats at schools, it looks rather different. And this, perhaps, explains the stark social divide exposed in the Brexit campaign.
David Cameron's polite and decisive resignation speech sealed the deal.