Brexit remorse

Written By: - Date published: 10:18 am, June 26th, 2016 - 250 comments
Categories: Europe, uk politics - Tags: , , ,

Brexit leaders seem strangely reluctant to act on their rhetoric, see e.g. Boris Johnson says ‘no need for haste’ to start EU exit negotiations. Europe, however, citing the need for “certainty” (and perhaps with a little bit of schadenfreude on the side) is pressing for speedy action: UK faces Brexit crisis after Europe’s leaders demand: ‘Get out now’.

England’s dilemma is neatly summed up in this one headline: Cornwall votes for Brexit then pleads to keep EU funding. Ooops. As Brits frantically Google ‘what is EU? a lot of people who voted for Brexit are going to be badly impacted by the consequences. They aren’t going to get what they were promised, see Leave campaign rows back on key immigration and NHS pledges and There are liars and then there’s Boris Johnson and Michael Gove.

Should a referendum be binding when the promises that secured the result are immediately dumped?

A petition to hold a second referendum has quickly reached over 2m signatures. Londoners in particular want a do over…

second brexit
(I confess that the whole post was just an excuse to use that image.)

250 comments on “Brexit remorse ”

  1. Greg 1

    Its called, post coital regret.

    What happens next is when the toothless EU Parliament rushes through a Brexit on fast track, breaking their own regulations.
    It will cause a Barbara Streisand effect.
    The EU is run by an appointed near autocratic commission.

    European leaders are calling for reform, so which will happen first?

  2. Colonial Viper 2

    Brit financial elites and their pet corporate MSM are working against this democratic election result hard with scare stories and treating the English outside of London as hicks and morons.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 2.1


      Faced with evidence of Johnson & Gove’s mendacity, you resort to their tactics.

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        The City of London and their 0.1% constituency is pissed off with the BREXIT result.

        • Peter Swift

          London’s not really a 0.1% constituency, is it?
          From the recent Mayoral race.

          Sadiq Khan: Labour
          1st Round vote 1,148,716
          Percentage 44.2%
          2nd Round vote 1,310,143
          Percentage 56.9%


          • Colonial Viper

            You do know that The City is just one borough of London, right?

            • Peter Swift

              Sure, and Haringey, that well known 0.1% hide away, labour-run since 1971, where labour increased their majority to 11 at the May 2010 local elections, winning 34 seats to the Liberal Democrats’ 23. They went on to make significant gains, particularly in the West of the borough, in the May 2014 local elections, winning 48 seats to the Liberal Democrats’ 9… They voted to remain with a greater percentage. 75.6%


              • Peter Swift

                Or Hackney, the constituency which has always elected Labour MPs since its creation in 1950, last time out in 2015 with a +7% increased majority taking it to 62.9% of the total vote.

                Those 0.1% voters ticked remain to the tune of 75.8%


                • Colonial Viper

                  cant be arsed arguing with your disingenuous BS. I was speaking of The City of London.

                  • Peter Swift

                    Facts and figures always weed out the pretenders.
                    Thanks for playing. You were great up to a point.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Hey fuckwit, I was talking about the City of London and the Masters of Finance being strongly pro-REMAIN. You want to raise a strawman about the rest of London – which clearly understands how much of their immediate economy is reliant on the big banks and the London property price bubble and the 0.1% – go ahead.

                      But don’t think that I do not know what you are doing.

                      And don’t think that the rest of England outside London doesn’t get it either. That’s why they voted BREXIT much to the annoyance of the 0.1%.

                    • Peter Swift

                      “But don’t think that I do not know what you are doing.”

                      You don’t even know what you’re doing. With me, you’ll have no chance.

                      “Hey fuckwit”

                      CV, the Turkish delight of the political commentary world. It looks fine until prodded, then you get all the yucky fake red soft centred bit in the middle creeping out.


                    • Colonial Viper

                      Pfffft. Stuck up Tory prick.

                      My original point stands, nonetheless. The City of London, the Banksters and the Financiers, the 0.1% are the ones most pissed off with BREXIT, and they are pulling all their levers, fear, finance and MSM, to make it known to the world.

                    • Peter Swift

                      “Pfffft. Stuck up Tory prick.”

                      Writes the wealthy BMW owner/driver lol

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I like the propeller symbol.

                • Sabine

                  Look at all the scottish 0.1% and the Irish 0.1%…..they obviously don’t know whats good for them.

                  Lol. indeed.

            • Anno1701

              “The City is just one borough of London, right?”

              thats underselling it a bit….

              its one of the financial worlds most important places, has its own mayor .its own flag and crest if arms ,and still has that odd guild system


        • One Anonymous Bloke

          Thank you for illustrating my point.

    • stunned mullet 2.2

      Not sure you can accuse r0b of being a financial elite or corporate MSM?

      Amazing the bedfellows one finds them self cuddling up to when you combine an almost pathological hatred of someone’s political leanings and background and one’s own rank hypocrisy.

      • Colonial Viper 2.2.1

        You a pro-Brussels, pro-globalisation elitist?

        It never surprises me how many on the Left think they know better than the English outside of London who overwhelmingly voted to BREXIT.

    • Chooky 2.3

      +100 CV…too late , too late!…and now other countries in the EU are having to face their own discontented peoples that are not satisfied with the EU and want their own exits

      (the EU is used by NATO controlled by the Americans and their warmongering agenda in the Middle East and elsewhere , which created the mass refugee problem in the first place and deprived poor Syrians, Libyans and Iraqis of their sovereign nations and their lands)

      Interesting analysis and discussion from RT

      ‘Brexit: Goal!’

      “Well it’s happened! Citizens of the UK have decided to call it quits. The decades-long debate whether to remain part of the Europe Union has been settled. Brexit is a reality. What’s next?”

      CrossTalking with Xavier Moreau, John Laughland, and Alexander Mercouris.

      ‘Keiser Report on Brexit’

      “Max and Stacy are joined from New York City by Mitch Feierstein of to dissect the economic, monetary and financial consequences of the ‘shocking’ Brexit vote – Britain votes to leave the European Union.

      The Keiser Report team look closer at the market sell off and ask if it’s part of a wider market weakness set in motion months ago, then examine the role of the media, much as in the rise of Donald Trump, in simply failing to understand the ‘disposable’ voters left behind by globalization. Mitch shows a chart proving that the biggest pound sterling sell-off was actually in 2008 and the currency has never really recovered since then. Finally, they look at the opportunities presented by panic selling.”

      • Colonial Viper 2.3.1

        Both Cross Talk with Peter Lavelle and the Keiser Report are definitely good value watching, Chooky.

    • Brit financial elites and their pet corporate MSM are working against this democratic election result hard with scare stories…

      Well, sure. How much value is the British finance industry going to lose by no longer being part of Europe? The answer is “Lots.”

      But, and it’s a big but, do you really imagine Boris Johnson and the other right-wing Tories who are responsible for this clusterfuck have it in mind to build an England (the UK probably won’t exist much longer) that features greater financial regulation, increased protections for English workers and continuity for the human rights protections the EU provided? If you do, stop taking whatever that shit is, it’s rotting your brain.

      • Colonial Viper 2.4.1


        I don’t expect much from the Tories. I did expect the Know It All Establishment Left to not run around making excuses to annul the democratic voice of the people however.

        • corokia

          The “democratic voice of the people” just voted for something they are NOT going to get. They were fucking lied to. You fine with that then?

        • Psycho Milt

          Funnily enough, many don’t share your view that making big constitutional changes that will cause massive upheaval and can’t easily be undone, on a 52% majority of a 75% turnout, is a good idea.

          • RedLogix

            Exactly. Cameron made a terrible error in failing to frame this as a Constitutional issue that demanded a higher threshold for change than a simple majority.

            And he made this error because the Tories were always ambivalent about the EU, they never took it all that seriously. Rather they liked to think of it a bit like membership of a gold club, a nice to have they could ditch if necessary.

            Only they were deluding themselves with post-Britannia echoes of faded self-importance.

            • mikesh

              Was it a mistake? Or was it that that option was not available to him? Had I been a British voter favouring an exit, I’d have considered a 66% requirement, or something of that sort, grossly unfair. I would imagine the reason for having such a requirement as part of constitutional law would be to prevent a party with a small majority using a ‘constitutional change’ claim to further it’s own ends.

              • Colonial Viper

                I agree Cameron could not have gotten away with trying to load the referendum more than he already did. Too many Conservatives were pro-BREXIT for him to gerrymander the game further.

                Also – IIRC the 1975 UK referendum on staying in the EEC was based on a 50% pass mark, even though it eventually gained a 2/3 pro EEC vote.

                • It’s not “gerrymandering” to require that major constitutional change should involve a bit more than a simple majority vote. If previous referenda were carried out with equally stupid criteria, that doesn’t mean this one had to be.

                  • Grant

                    Did that work in the other direction when Britain entered the EU?

                    The British Parliament passed the European Communities Act 1972 without putting the question to a referendum,and it can undo that decision just as easily.

    • maninthemiddle 2.5

      Agreed. And ad the political elites as well. Remain lost. Brexit won. The Remainers should suck on that!!

  3. Pat 3

    Merkel has offered them the opportunity to make it all go away in any case.

    • Chooky 3.1

      Merkel has never looked at or criticised the origins of the refugee crisis

      …it suits the German growth capitalist economy to have well educated Syrian engineers and doctors and other worker refugees in Germany which has a static and aging population

      …but did Merkel consult her own people?

      … and has she consulted other EU countries on this flood of refugees?

      …you NEVER hear Merkel criticising NATO ( run by the USA) or the USA Middle East agenda (along with Saudi Arabia and Israel) for de-stabilising and bombing the shit out sovereign Middle Eastern countries and creating the mass of poor refugees in the first place

      … imo it is sanctioned theft of land and assets …most of these refugees want to go back home

      …and there is a real backlash of discontent in the EU against the EU…people in other EU countries may demand referendums and choose to follow Brexit…that is why Merkel is softly softly (no panicky)

      …this is a crisis of capitalism ( and interesting that privileged so called lefties are more concerned about their own investments and assets and are trying to undermine Brexit with the help of the mainstream media)

    • OneTrack 3.2

      What is she planning to do now (with her it could be anything)? Assemble an EU army and take back the British Isles by conquest? That will show those stupid Englanders that they cannot escape the Fourth Reich. Oops, I mean the loving embraces of the Big State. Clop.

      • Pat 3.2.1

        what is she planning to do now?…what the EU always does…fudge. She is offering an extended opportunity to let Brexit and all the associated problems stretch out into the never never……the voters can be satisfied with Camerons scalp (and probably Osbournes) but the actual exit may never take place…certainly not while Merkel is Chancellor….that is the offer.

  4. dukeofurl 4

    Brexit leaders reluctant to act on their rhetoric ? It took 11 years to get in , does it all unravel in 9 months ?
    Cameron has given a maximum time ( party conference) to elect a new leader, that doesnt make it the minimum time. I cant see him staying longer than 4-6 weeks.

    Hopefully the EU elites will see the stupidity of their harsh austerity measures which has done a far more damage to their own economies than the small change of a Brexit.

  5. AmaKiwi 5

    The mood of society is shifting from positive (optimistic, accepting, forgiving) to negative (angry, pessimistic, exclusionary).

    The mood shift caused revolutions in countries bordering Europe and the USA (Latin America). It is spreading. We are entering an era of revolutions.

    What will replace the old order? Some countries will become more dictatorial. Others more egalitarian. My goal is to prevent the rise of dictatorship here. It will be a struggle.

    P.S. Why they voted Brexit? For revolutionary reasons having little to do with the EU.

    • KJT 5.1

      I am pushing for more democratic and egalitarian, but given the attitude of some on the “left” against giving us, the people, a say in our own destiny, I don’t have high hopes.

      • AmaKiwi 5.1.1

        Keep pushing.

        Dictatorship is lethal.

        • Colonial Viper

          Are you sure that democracy is going to be able to deal with the climate emergency of the next 10-15 years? Or will elected officials keep playing their games of pretend and extend, keeping voters happy, looking like they are doing something about it while we commit the world to 3+ deg C warming.

          • AmaKiwi

            Politicians are the last ones to know what is happening.

            I am not confident anyone or any particular form of government can cope with climate change. Are you? Pray, tell. Inquiring minds want to know.

            • Colonial Viper

              In times of strife human nature looks towards strong certain leadership – fertile ground for a charismatic dictator to take the reins.

              I think the only way to counter this tendency is a much more responsive democracy than we have today – certainly not what we have now which is a little bit like elected dictatorships that are given 3 years of carte blanche in between General Elections.

    • OneTrack 5.2

      The 52% Leave side now seem to be pretty positive (optimistic, accepting, forgiving) but the 48% Remain side were always pretty negative (angry, pessimistic, exclusionary, butt-hurt, unable to accept that some didn’t vote the way they did so democracy is broken, throwing puerile tantrums, ….)

  6. BM 7

    England’s dilemma is neatly summed up in this one headline: Cornwall votes for Brexit then pleads to keep EU funding. Ooops

    EU funding, what a laugh, the UK paid the EU 13 billion a year.

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      thanks for pointing this out. That and the UK is a currency sovereign. They dont need Euros for their money supply.

      • BM 7.1.1

        The graph that shows what the different counties put in and what they get back is interesting.

        The UK gets only half their money back so already the UK is 6 billion better off by leaving the EU.

    • stunned mullet 7.2

      I believe the common vernacular is that the Eu, Britain and their respective inhabitants have ‘gone full retard’, and as we all know you never go full retard !

      • Colonial Viper 7.3.1

        the Telegraph article says:

        Taking account of the money that comes back and the aid spending, Britain last year gave almost £6.5 billion to the EU that would otherwise not have been paid out if we were not members of the club. That’s almost £18 million a day.

        Yep, the UK is a big net funder of the EU.

        To the tune of £120M per week.

        • r0b

          13 /= 6.5.

          It has long been supposed that the benefits that Britain gets back from the EU in terms of trade exceed the net cost of its payment. We’re about to see that theory tested.

          • BM

            Basically what you’re saying is the UK people have to stump up 6 billion a year to be allowed to trade with Europe.

            You’re happy with businesses being subsidized by the poor and working class?

            Not very socialist of you, r0b

            • KJT

              That was the big surprise when Britain joined the EU.
              How could they be better off than they were when they got cheap quality agricultural products from NZ, Australia, Kenya, Argentina etc, in return for cheap shoddy British manufactured goods?

              At least it made for high employment.

              • KJT

                Britain was never going to have a trade surplus with Europe, which produces every thing that Britain can, but better quality.

            • r0b

              Oh bollocks. The EU takes that money and distributes it to the poor regions (like Cornwall and bits of Wales). Good socialist stuff. You think the new Brit government is going to put money into its depressed regions? Good luck!

              What Brexit does is turn its back on free trade with Europe. Not very capitalist of you BM.

              • BM

                Cornwall’s fishing industry has been devastated by the Common Fisheries Policy. In places like St Ives – which used to have the largest fishing fleet on the north coast – there are now estimated to be only 30 to 35 fishermen left. A look at the EU quota system for the nearby Celtic Sea suggests why, with the UK being given 834 tonnes of cod to land compared to France’s 5,500.


                So the EU takes away the fishing quota so then Cornwall needs handouts to survive, great socialist thinking going on there.

                No wonder they wanted out.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Incomes of bureaucrats in both Brussels and London were not affected by the fishing quota decision, so no problem.

              • infused

                This clearly shows you have no idea what is going on, and has been going on with the EU and the UK.

                The EU caused Cornwall to become poor, and many other places.

          • Poission

            It has long been supposed that the benefits that Britain gets back from the EU in terms of trade exceed the net cost of its payment. We’re about to see that theory tested.

            The trade deficit with europe is around 60 billion,so the uk is paying club fees of 1 pound to import 10 pound of surplus goods, hardly good economic policy.

        • RedLogix


          Sorry but that is just the ‘all tax is theft’ argument written less plainly.

          And to be blunt, the whole point of the EU was that the member states would give up a portion of their sovereignty.

          • Colonial Viper

            Scotland want their sovereignty back, AND want to be part of the EU.

            Also check out Grumpy’s remarks about his Danish employer.

            • RedLogix

              No … they understand better the trade off that all members of a federal system make; give up part of our ‘independence’ and gain far more in return.

              Put simply … on a daily basis we all ‘give up’ the independence to choose which side of the road you want to drive on. In return you obtain a much larger freedom to use the road safely.

              This applies to each of us as citizens, it applies to local government as part of a nation, and it equally applies to a nation as part of a federation. It baffles me a little that I should have to type out something so obvious.

              • Colonial Viper

                Firstly, it seems that the English voter outside of London realised they were not the main beneficiaries of the increased “return” and increased “freedom” that you talk about, while they were definitely the ones who suffered the brunt of the erosion of “sovereignty” that you mention.

                Secondly, the argument you propose fits in real nice making the case for the TPP and for TTIP. They are a good deal are they not, so we are told, simply give up a tiny bit of your independence and sovereignty as a nation for all these great benefits, freedoms and free markets.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Wow, by a massive coincidence, English voters outside London completely agree with English demographics expert CV’s pre-existing beliefs.

                How does he do it?

            • Instauration

              Maybe Scotland and Northern Ireland could be “Annexed” by Europe – it worked for the Autonomous Republic of Crimea.
              The UK and Ukraine now have similar consequences of turning their back on a big brother to the East.

              • Colonial Viper

                The west promised Ukraine a huge economic boost should they cut off their ties with Russia. Problem being that trade with Russia was well over half the Ukraniain economy.

                Russia got not just agricultural goods from Ukraine, but also aerospace products, turbines, advanced military exports, and more.

                That has all died now. And a huge number of Ukraniain engineers, technical experts and professionals have all fled.

                To Russia.

                TL/DR the EU has not delivered on its economic promises to the Ukraine, never let Ukranian farmers gain real access to EU markets, and has simply watched as the Ukranian economy has gone down the toilet and is turning into a failed state troubling Russia’s doorstep.

              • mikesh

                The Crimea was never part of Ukraine in the same way that Ireland and Scotland have been part of the UK.

                • Instauration

                  Yep mikesh
                  Hence the reference to ‘The Autonomous Republic of Crimea” a 1991 (and preceding) anomaly whereby the Crimean Autonomous Republic committed analogy with the Ukrainian constitution – but reserved the option of Referendum – as exercised in 2014. ( Scotland – anyone ?)
                  Yep never “part The of Ukraine” and certainly not after The Coup – when spoken Russian was deprecated as a national language by the incumbent Fascists.
                  And yet the prevailing narrative is “Russia Annexed Crimea”
                  Let us hear “Europe Annexed Scotland”

                  • Instauration

                    And the Russian response to the Crimea provocation – Soft and clever !
                    Annual Leave is owing – what you do in you holidays could credit or discredit our interests.
                    Hey you – at the least we will pay you monthly.
                    A Bloodless and Astute transition,
                    The stuff of imminent textbooks.

  7. Sabine 8

    just came across this 🙂

    i do miss this tv programme

    • stunned mullet 8.1

      Best reality tv series ever made.

    • Colonial Viper 8.2

      brilliant stuff.

      • RedLogix 8.2.1

        Actually it is the stuff of politics. Yes Minister is absolutely hilarious because it unveils a process most of us prefer not to look at. This is how it has played at Court for all time.

        But then again, for all the shenanigans, back-flips and circular logic … when it comes to resolving conflicting ideas and agendas, how better to do it?

        Or to re-work the well-known line; this Europe we have is the worst of all Europe’s, except all the Europe’s that have been tried before.

        As a bunch of hopeless idealists I know we all have a vision of how politics should be done better. I think even most politicians could give you an impassioned and detailed ideas of how the system can be improved.

        But never forget that at heart politics IS about the art of compromise. Finding the solution everyone is least unhappy with is about as good as it gets.

        • Colonial Viper

          I have no problem with politics as the art of compromise. What I have an issue with is when some sections of society don’t even get a seat at the table. And are subsequently the ones who are made to suffer all the “compromise” in this politics.

          • RedLogix

            And neither do I.

            But do you imagine that it helps those excluded from a seat, to walk away from the table altogether?

            To be plain, it is blatantly obvious that the EU needed reform. No-one denies this; but as I said earlier you don’t usually make anything better by taking a cricket bat to it.

            Yanas Varoufakis campaigned actively in Britain on this radical remain platform. But the opportunity for UK Labour to express it was closed out, pincered between a UKIP party blatantly playing the race-card for the Leave, and Cameron framing Remain as more of the status-quo … there was little space left for nuance.

            And everytime Corbyn attempted to articulate the argument to Remain but at the same time recognise and address the very real concerns of working class Labour voters … the traitors in his party would undermine him with cries of ‘mixed messages’.

            • OneTrack

              And Cameron (supposedly) campaigned for “reform” and basically got laughed out of the building. The EU had forty years to reform and now they will enjoy the consequences.

              • RedLogix

                From what I’ve read Cameron’s ideas were such a fudge that laughter was probably the best response.

                Nonetheless it is also true that anyone seriously standing up for the EU was going to be on the wrong-end of a shit-storm of lies and mockery.

                But of all people here is Varoufakis making the case seriously:

                I campaigned for a radical remain vote reflecting the values of our pan-European Democracy in Europe Movement (DiEM25). I visited towns in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, seeking to convince progressives that dissolving the EU was not the solution. I argued that its disintegration would unleash deflationary forces of the type that predictably tighten the screws of austerity everywhere and end up favouring the establishment and its xenophobic sidekicks.

                Alongside John McDonnell, Caroline Lucas, Owen Jones, Paul Mason and others, I argued for a strategy of remaining in but against Europe’s established order and institutions.

                Against us was an alliance of David Cameron (whose Brussels’ fudge reminded Britons of what they despise about the EU), the Treasury (and its ludicrous pseudo-econometric scare-mongering), the City (whose insufferable self-absorbed arrogance put millions of voters off the EU), Brussels (busily applying its latest treatment of fiscal waterboarding to the European periphery), Germany’s finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble (whose threats against British voters galvanised anti-German sentiment), France’s pitiable socialist government, Hillary Clinton and her merry Atlanticists (portraying the EU as part of another dangerous “coalition of the willing”) and the Greek government (whose permanent surrender to punitive EU austerity made it so hard to convince the British working class that their rights were protected by Brussels).


      • Halfcrown 8.2.2

        “brilliant stuff.”

        An understatement.

  8. ianmac 9

    The petition reads:
    “We the undersigned call upon HM Government to implement a rule that if the Remain or Leave vote is less than 60 per cent based a turnout less than 75 per cent there should be another referendum.”
    Horse has bolted?

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      wanting to change the rules of the game retroactively when youve already lost.

      • infused 9.1.1

        yeah, it’s a fucking joke.

      • corokia 9.1.2

        The leave campaign lied about funding the NHS.

        That is changing the rules of the game retroactively CV

        • AmaKiwi

          Show me a politician who doesn’t lie and I’ll show you a unicorn.

          • Richardrawshark

            Gareth Hughes, the adorable Julie ann Genter,

            I would like it delivered to Paula Bennett, in recognition of her services to prejudice and hatred.

          • corokia

            Thats no answer Amakiwi. Just more dirty politics bullshit.

            • AmaKiwi

              No, it’s cynicism about those who believe people vote rationally.

              Voting is emotional, not rational. Politicians know it. Example: Donald Trump.

        • Colonial Viper

          ” The leave campaign lied about funding the NHS.”

          And the pro EU elite have lied to the English about the benefits of the EU for three decades. If they hadn’t lied and ordinary people had got the promised benefits there wouldn’t even have been a vote.

          • corokia

            As is happening here and all over the planet, the ordinary people didn’t get the benefits because of the neoliberal ideology that has massively increased inequality. Not specifically because of the EU.

            Millions of people angry about austerity measures that are destroying (amongst other things) their public health system. Angry that immigrants are taking their jobs. Told to vote leave. 2 days later, massive back pedalling.

            Well I just hope that it results in a big drop in support for the far-right amongst the ‘ordinary’ people.

            • Colonial Viper

              Well there are a bunch of Lefties running around keen to annul the voice of the English people outside of London, so I think the far right will do fine from this.

            • weka

              As is happening here and all over the planet, the ordinary people didn’t get the benefits because of the neoliberal ideology that has massively increased inequality. Not specifically because of the EU.

              Inevitably because of the EU. Once you get that size, and that kind of bureaucracy, and both those things happening within neoliberalism/globalisation, I can’t see how it could be any different. I don’t think you can separate them out. EU IS neoliberalism and it depends entirely on the model of globalisation that is killing everything.

              There is this idea that the EU could be made fair somehow. I just don’t see it. It’s very existence is predicated upon models that rely on having poor people to function.

              Millions of people angry about austerity measures that are destroying (amongst other things) their public health system.

              There is no way that a country as wealthy as the UK cannot afford to run a public health system. The only way your argument works is if you think the only choices are EU or austerity (as if austerity wouldn’t eventually hit the UK under the EU anyway).

              Angry that immigrants are taking their jobs. Told to vote leave. 2 days later, massive back pedalling.

              Well I just hope that it results in a big drop in support for the far-right amongst the ‘ordinary’ people.

              When there is a real alternative people will look to that.

  9. Ad 10

    This Boris version of weak and unplanned leadership is good rehearsal for a Trump leadership. All steam, no hangi.

    • RedLogix 10.1

      The lasting anger will come from the younger generation who’ve grown up thinking of themselves as “British Europeans”. I do not think they will let go of this identity easily. When the Chunnel opened in a very real psychological sense Britain was no longer an island.

      The Leave campaign was based on the dolts premise that the only way to fix a problem is to smash up the furniture. Don’t like the colour of the couch? Dump it, burn it. And Boris Johnson has no plan to replace it. Maybe we can scrounge up a few beer crates to crouch on eh?

      Nor will the thousand practical problems of a Brexit vanish, and the Leave campaign offers absolutely nothing towards untangling these realities either. Indeed they don’t even want to hear about them.

      Life is not tidily symmetric, getting into a relationship is always a lot easier than leaving it. And the men who have precipitated this break-up appear singularly ill-equipped to deal with the consequences.

      • infused 10.1.1

        If you watched the news and watch TV, you will see the only thing the young seem to care about is their easy travel.

        • Sabine

          easy travel
          easy working in 27 countries
          easy creating businesses in 27 countries
          easy study in 27 countries
          easy retiring in 27 countries on full benefits
          easy getting sick and receiving health care in 27 countries

          damn those lazy young ones that only vote for their convenience ey?

          • infused

            Vote for convenience. You said it. No shits given about the UK.

            • Colonial Viper

              funny how some lefties are suddenly all for globalisation and liberalisation of regulations.

              • GregJ

                Well Socialists generally believe in globalisation through International Solidarity which is very much a good thing, but Globalism in the Neo-Liberal context is simply just a nice word for Economic Imperialism.

                Globalisation as spoken of now is a privilege of capital to move it’s money, machines and factories to whatever nation or region they can get the best return. The same rule generally does not apply to labour. However within the EU it does to a certain extent – hence why you are seeing movement of, particularly young, people around the EU to take up employment & education opportunities.

                Notice though the immigration debate as it applies to the US (or even about those from outside Europe trying to get in). Then immigrants trying to benefit themselves by getting higher wages are abused, made illegal and deported. Meanwhile, a foreign company even gives a whiff of building a factory and public officials are falling over themselves in the rush to hand out tax credits and subsidies.

                • GregJ

                  I should add – one of the limitations to this freedom of movement for both jobs and education is language although increasingly English is becoming the lingua franca of the EU (much to the chagrin of the French I may add). It will be interesting to see if that trend continues post Brexit.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Nice for the young UK professional white collar types to be able to move around to get top jobs in Brussels, Berlin, Rome or Paris.

                    But where does that leave the less educated working class/blue collar workers? With floods of cheap labour coming in from Poland and Romania?

                    Well, I think from the result of the referendum, they have figured that out.

                    • corokia

                      They were lied to by Farage and the rest. They will be figuring that out now.
                      Leaves them pretty pissed off, I expect.

                    • Colonial Viper


                      Please get serious. I don’t think the working class English have faith in the establishment any more (do you believe otherwise?). That’s a major reason why, IMO, they voted a big FUCK YOU to London and to the establishment elites and to the MSM.

                    • GregJ

                      How much time have you spent in Europe lately? There are younger working class/blue collar workers English in France, Spain, Italy, Germany – even some making it further east into central Europe. I was in Istanbul about 6 weeks ago and had a conversation in a cafe with a young Brit from Manchester who is working as a chippie in Bulgaria (along with some of his mates).

                      I’d agree that for the older blue collar English that is a perception (and even a reality for some) that “Johnny foreigner” is coming in and taking “their” jobs but the situation is more complex than that.

                • RedLogix

                  Well Socialists generally believe in globalisation through International Solidarity which is very much a good thing, but Globalism in the Neo-Liberal context is simply just a nice word for Economic Imperialism.

                  Thank you; finally at last some else here who is making the distinction. And very concisely put.

                • Rae

                  And you have just, very ably, described exactly why the world is not ready for globalization, under whichever doctrine it happens, it will not please all, and will be done undemocratically and held in place with an amount of force.
                  Back to the drawing board for us

                  • RedLogix

                    Well it’s a bit like being half-way over a bridge; we have a choice of pushing forward to the other side, or retreating back to where we started.

                    The first round of globalisation from the 1840’s ended in the maelstrom of WW1&2. The second round began with the formation of the UN from those ashes.

                    Retreating back into political isolationism and unfettered nationalism when the practical reality is that we live in an intensely globalised world is a fools choice. Our modern lives are built on a freedom of travel, trade, communication and whole rafts of international institutions and standards.

                    But politically the left, once a strong advocate of a sane internationalism, has been lured into withdrawing; abdicating the global domain to the power of money, and unfettered capital.

                    We face a choice of retreating back to isolationist political settings from which two horrendous world wars sprung, or forging new left-wing global partnerships to confront the capitalists death-grip on trans-national power.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Retreating back into political isolationism and unfettered nationalism when the practical reality is that we live in an intensely globalised world is a fools choice.

                      Globalisation (in its current incarnation) is over within 30 years anyway due to energy constraints.

                      (Either we voluntarily chop our carbon emissions to almost zero; or we keep burning and run out of most easily accessible fossil fuels by then).

                      Our modern lives are built on a freedom of travel, trade, communication and whole rafts of international institutions and standards.

                      Should we mention this economic and travel freedom to the Syrian boat people drowning a few kilometres off the shores of Italy and Greece?

                      It seems to me that these privileges you mention are specifically for the global top 10%. And especially the global top 1%.

                    • Ad

                      Nicely said there Red.
                      That’s getting closer to the original purposes for which the EU was formed in the first place. And the UN.

                    • Rae

                      Except while lovely pictures of international harmony are being painted, the reality is that all these open borders and ftas with conditions in favour of them, are cementing into place, forever, the power of the corporates, so yes, back to the drawing board for us, we will all need to learn to get along, way, way better before we can all have the key to the world.

                    • mikesh

                      Freedom of travel, trade, communication, etc are pretty peripheral when we don’t have freedom to migrate to wherever we want, nor similar pay rates, for similar work, between countries.

                    • RedLogix


                      Freedom of travel, trade, communication, etc are pretty peripheral when we don’t have freedom to migrate to wherever we want, nor similar pay rates, for similar work, between countries.

                      Which of course is a fair point.

                      Considering that most people prefer to live in their communities and countries they grew up in, why then is migration such a flash-point issue?

                      Refugees risk their lives in tiny boats in the Mediterranean, or the waters off northern Australia, not so much because the EU or Australia are so very attractive, but because life in their home countries has become so utterly intolerable, offering no hope for them or their children.

                      Yet the privileges of the global world are at present only accessible to the top 10%. That is fair comment. But where to from here? I’m not pretending to answers; but the questions need framing correctly first.

              • OneTrack

                Obviously if it is so great, New Zealand should join the EU.

                • Ad

                  We are currently in negotiations with the EU for a trade pact.

                  We are also a whole bunch smarter than Britain’s long-term buyer’s remorse, having chosen very close relations with Australia through CER for forty years, while retaining full sovereignty throughout.

                  A stronger step would have been to go like the Cook Islands relationship to New Zealand. The equivalent would be that New Zealand remained independent of Australia except for international affairs and defence.

                  On reflection, New Zealand was smarter than Britain: we have the right balance of arrangements for us.

        • KJT

          Again, those wealthy and privileged enough to take advantage of it.

          I doubt if being able to travel figures in the calculations of a young mum from Birmingham.

          The fact that her carpenter partner is now on less than 3 pound an hour due to EU immigration policies does.

          • RedLogix

            So if I was to mention all the immigrants in NZ happy to work for our minimum wage or less … I’d be a racist right?

            • KJT

              Realising that excessive immigration is used as a tool by unscrupulous Governments and employers is not “racism”.

              • RedLogix

                Which is what frustrates the hell out of me, that it is almost impossible to hold a rational debate on the topic without someone playing that card.

                Witness for example the almost total lack of response to John Key floating the idea that large Chinese businesses should be given all the work to build Auckland infrastructure.

                Apart from the fact that it is completely corrupt to announce the likely winners of any tendering process before it is even begun; suddenly we have reached a place where our PM is complicit in the the sell-out not only of our property, but our jobs and businesses as well … and no-one is allowed to say boo in case we mention anything with a “chinese sounding name”.

                • KJT

                  Of course.

                  Am I “racist” for disagreeing with the public services contract from the Whangarei council being given to Armourguard, a foreign firm, (Not Chinese) even though the lowest tender was by the local firm that had been doing it for a decade.

                  • Ad

                    No, you’re just coarse and unsophisticated for not understanding Non-Priced Attributes in procurement.

                    • Incognito

                      @ Ad 26 June 2016 at 5:13 pm:

                      Non-Priced Attributes in procurement

                      Is that a euphemism for donations to a political party, personal favours, free pandas, kick-backs, or bribes, for example?

                    • Ad

                      Ingognito: nope, give it up.

                • KJT

                  Of course.

                  Am I “racist” for disagreeing with the public services contract from the Whangarei council being given to Armourguard, a foreign firm, (Not Chinese) even though the lowest tender was by the local firm that had been doing it for a decade.

                  Of course, giving contracts to a local firm over a foreign one could cause the council to be sued for millions when the TPPA is in force.
                  Something the local business people who support National seem to be totally unaware of.

                  • RedLogix

                    The balance between global and local interests is something we are still grappling with. The problem at the moment is that the economic imperialism we currently call ‘globalisation’ has no concern whatsoever with local identity and concerns.

                    And yet trying to have that discussion is almost always shutdown with the ‘racist/xenophobic’ card.

                    And you have to wonder exactly whose interests this really serves.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      And note that it is the supposedly Left Wing PC brigade who does the shutting down. And who have subsequently given the RIght Wing a licence to use the same excuses to shut down things they don’t like.

                      The Archdruid has just written a piece on how today’s intellectual elite are systematically erasing the past via what is effectively censorship.

                      And apparently it is now everyone’s right to demand to not be offended. By anything. And if something is deemed offensive, that it can be put down the memory hole.

                    • Ad


                      It’s worth reminding ourselves again that people from all over the world are begging to get into the EU. There are no boatloads of Polish in lifeboats paddling their way to any part of Africa. It’s the reverse: they beg to get in.

                      Similarly, apart from Britain, the flow of countries as member states of the E.U. has all been one way. Countries have begged to come in, and they have been welcomed, with all the problems that they were going to bring and have brought. Willingly. And those prior member states all became the stronger for it.

                      The winning of the world is not to those who draw their hands into the fist of control, but to those who offer the greatest and most generous opportunity to new citizens.

                      Who oh why did Hawaii freely join the United States fifty years ago as the 50th state? Why would Turkey want to join the EU, rather than say align with Russia? Why would the rump Yugoslav states not join in a flash if they could but qualify? One (quite important one) left. Others will replace them in a flash.

                      It’s the natural impulse to look at what happened at Brexit, as if it was a fault of something. Horseshit. That amounts to the usual Left Melancholy that leads to breastfeeding oneself on bitterness; to prefer virtuous failure rather than stand up and figure out why the EU has been the most successful non-nation in history.

                      Britain will become less and less important to our actual political discourse. We lefties may have some remaining attachment to the UK Labour Party, to Corbyn, and their micro-dramas.
                      In the words of St Ailsa; “Let it go”.

                      The EU is the new game for the left to compete in its proper old internationalist confidence. Taken the right way, this is the perfect revival for both the E.U. and the internationalist left.

                    • And yet red, that doesn’t appear to be happening here – wonder why.

                    • Nic the NZer

                      Seriously AD? The EU is an inherently neo-liberal and right wing institution. It is in practice anti-democratic where national parliaments must accept rule from higher institutions such as the ECB, IMF and EU itself (meaning the leaders of other member states). It has previously replaced the elected leaders of countries. It has overseen the worst response to the financial crisis with massive unemployment and the impoverishment of millions of Europeans (and against the democratic wishes of their citizens). It has consistently protected the interests (creditor rights) of wealthy elites over other European citizens. And it will result (as this continues) in a resurgence of the political far right across Europe.

                      This is not a left wing leading light. Its hard even to describe it as compatible with the left wing.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Ad – you have got to be bloody kidding. The Western Empire co-opts the elites of a given country, and regime changes/economically sanctions those elites who refuse to be co-opted.

                      Further re: Hawaii, I mean WTF mate.

                      Hawaii voluntarily joining the US as a state?

                      You left out the minor detail about the overthrow of the native Hawaii monarchy by US marines and the American annexation of the territory pre 1900.

                    • Ad

                      Cv and Nic, I’ve run out of Reply buttons, but you’re just going to love my next post.

      • mikesh 10.1.2

        “The Leave campaign was based on the dolts premise that the only way to fix a problem is to smash up the furniture.”

        This presupposes, as a minor premise, the proposition that ALL problems can be fixed in some other way, a proposition which is by no means self evident.

    • dukeofurl 10.2

      Trump ( and all the others) make the Presidency a personal office.
      Britain , like NZ governs as a collective cabinet model.
      Im thinking Boris wont make it.

    • ianmac 10.3

      Rod Oram reckons Johnson is UK’s Trump.

      • Colonial Viper 10.3.1

        I think Oram is wrong. Farage is UK’s Trump, by a country mile.

        • ianmac

          But Farage is not up for PM. Johnson is.

          • Colonial Viper

            That’s just weird. Johnson attributes his political philosophy to Disraeli and has been Mayor of London for 8 years, during which I didn’t think he was deliberately or provocatively sexist and racist.

            How is that like Trump’s trajectory?

            On the other hand Farage…

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              All those people booing Johnson are shills for the 1%. It’s astonishing, the way only you can see into their innermost thoughts from the other side of the planet.

            • weizguy

              You clearly never lived in London while Boris was Mayor…

    • Anno1701 10.4

      All steam, no hangi.”

      all heat, but no meat !

  10. infused 11

    The petition only has about 300-400k uk sigs on it. So no. Tough luck.

  11. Richardrawshark 12

    The whole things like double handling.

    a government running governments, there is only X amount of money why is there two governments bodies by each country to pay for. Greedy fkn polies.

    Out stay out, and proud of it. Damn the torpedo’s full steam ahead.

  12. infused 16

    Look at this idiot Good job UKLP

  13. seeker 17

    I thought this was a very telling article about how brexit had actually become reality:
    there are liars and then there are Boris Johnson and Micheal Gove.

    There is an especially good quote from Kipling given too, which like the ‘yes minister’
    clip from comment 8 above (thanks Sabine), shows little has changed. when people abuse the power they have or use it casually and irresponsibly.

    I could not dig; I dared not rob:
    Therefore I lied to please the mob
    Now all my lies have proved untrue
    And I must face the men I slew
    What tale shall serve me here among
    Mine angry and defrauded young

  14. Karen 18

    John Palethorpe has put together an interesting piece about British attitudes to the EU that is worth reading.

    Owen Jones is very well informed and has some insightful analysis if you really want to know why this happened and what is likely to happen next. Scary stuff.

    • Karen 18.1

      This is Owen a few days before the vote. So far he has been proved right.

      • RedLogix 18.1.1

        Thanks Karen, good links.

        Owen Jones is a smart voice. This is no coherent working class revolt. A majority of Labour voters chose Remain after all.

        But the extreme right of UKIP and divided Tories have been able to exploit the incoherent anti-elite rage of enough British to stage a coup.

        Frankly I can see no way this ends in a happy bed-time story.

        • Colonial Viper

          Owen Jones is a smart voice. This is no coherent working class revolt. A majority of Labour voters chose Remain after all.

          Not outside of London, from what I can see.

          • Karen

            Then you are not looking very hard.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              His opinion depends on him not looking at all. At anything.

              • Colonial Viper

                37% of Labour voters voted for BREXIT.

                Most Labour constituencies ***outside of London*** voted for BREXIT. That includes those in Wales, the Midlands and the North East.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Yes, and the message you took from that is that 63% of UKLP voters are shills for the 1%, and your pre-existing opinions have been completely vindicated.

                  Looking is a skill.

                  • Colonial Viper


                    I simply said that the majority of Labour voters *outside London* voted to BREXIT.

                    As you say, looking is a skill.

        • Grumpy

          Just shows that the majority of Labour voters are in it for the identity politics, not working class issues. The Labour voters from industrial regions voted to leave.

          • Colonial Viper

            To paraphrase the now hackneyed phrase…Labour left those industrial regions a long time ago.

        • Nic the NZer

          I guess its an incoherent working class revolt then. A majority of low socioeconomic persons polled to leave. These are the people Labour no longer bothers to represent and who no longer bother to vote for political parties. The problem is without a decent representative in parliament (one who doesnt seem to be regularly undermining their interests) they might well vote for parties who claim to represent them like UKIP.

          • Colonial Viper

            I guess its an incoherent working class revolt then.

            Indeed. However, practice makes perfect.

      • Paul 18.1.2

        A most perceptive talk. Thank you 🙂
        Economist Ganesh Nana is suggesting the New Zealand’s economy is in for a rough time.

        Dr Nana warned New Zealand needed to “buckle in for the coming months, they will be neither smooth, nor enjoyable. We’re in for a rough period.”

        He said while this country has experienced six years of economic growth – as measured by gross domestic product – broader measures of economic health suggest the economy is not well-prepared for global turmoil.'buckle-in'-after-brexit.

        However, Key says there’s nothing to worry about.
        I wonder who will be proved correct.

        • Ad

          If Ganesh can forecast this future, good on him.

          But this isn’t the fall of the House of Saud or the House of Lords or the House of Cards or the House of Lehman.

          Basel III is doing its job. The Pound is already recalibrating. No firm is proposing to move from the City of London, as yet. And if it did, whoop-de-doo.

          Our primary trade partners are doing just fine in China, India, the U.S., even Japan is OK.

          Net immigration is booming and will continue to for several years.

          The building boom will continue because we have a massive shortage of houses for years and years to come.

          The New Zealand economy has only slackened its pace, and unemployment not skyrocketed, despite a massive and medium-term collapse in dairy.

          Dairy substitutes in our agricultural mix are pumping along. Tourism goes from strength to strength, and I mean nuts strength.

          Absolutely, it’s a narrow, vulnerable economy, but could the black hats like Oram and Nan just shut the fuck up for a bit and breathe through their ears? Maybe just wait for a fact or two to arise?

          • KJT

            An economy that depends for growth on earthquakes, immigration and housing speculation will not be successful for long.

            At least now, we can blame National’s inevitable recession on Brexit.

          • KJT

            An economy that depends for growth on earthquakes, immigration and housing speculation will not be successful for long.

            At least now, we can blame National’s, inevitable, recession on Brexit.

          • Colonial Viper

            What’s the problem Ad? Is there a reason you are particularly nervous about the economy? Why are you ignoring massive private and public leverage levels, shadow banking derivative levels higher than 2007, and central banks which are now out of bullets, being forced to resort to negative interest rates throughout the world.

      • ianmac 18.1.3

        Thanks Karen.
        Owen says it will be a great opportunity elect a hard right government who , amongst other things, will continue to privatise NHS. Watch out NZ.

      • marty mars 18.1.4

        Thanks Karen – I really enjoyed that and learned a lot too

    • Dialey 18.2

      and the best comment on the Owen Jones article expresses much of what ex-pats like me think :
      “I’m not angry with the working class revolt because it’s not any such thing – this is a right wing coup – the window the working classes had on the issues has been owned by the right for 30 years. Their fury and resentment is justified – but it’s directed in the wrong places. On the other hand, I’m more than afraid, I’m sick with anxiety and slightly terrified.

      This is a nightmare. We’re already seeing the “it’s our turn next” comments from Marine Le Pen. This is a moment when the left need to turn around and fight. Populist votes are the tools of demagogues, referenda are deeply anti democratic. We have to fight to not allow uninformed choices to be empowered by informed choices – you are pinning your hopes on left wing victories in Europe – I’m pinning mine on fighting to resist Brexit with every fibre of my being”

      • KJT 18.2.1

        An economy that depends for growth on earthquakes, immigration and housing speculation will not be successful for long.

        At least now, we can blame National’s, inevitable, recession on Brexit.

      • KJT 18.2.2

        ” Populist votes are the tools of demagogues, referenda are deeply anti democratic”.

        Do you understand the logical dissonance of what you just wrote?

        Heaven help us that we let people have a say in their own destiny.

        • locus

          so KJT, do you think that

          having a say in your own destiny might entail fucking the 16 million who voted to remain, and the vast majority of Scots, Northern Irish, Gibraltarians, the under 30s?

          i am 100% with Owen Jones

          referenda like these in this post-factual ego and propoganda driven world are deeply divisive and imo damaging to the fabric of our democratic institutions

          • KJT

            Total bullshit.

            Democracy is “damaging to our democratic institutions”?

            Cognitive dissonance writ large.

            • locus

              ‘democracy’ as many define it means rule by the majority

              this doesn’t mean to say that the majority are right

              nor does it mean that referenda are a good way to exercise democracy

              • KJT

                How else are you going to do it?

                A minority are even less likely to be right. Especially a bunch of arrogant, power hungry nonentities in Parliament.

                “Representative Democracy” simply means a powerful self selecting political class who work for those who have the money to put them there”.
                Watch what happened to Cunliffe. And what will happen to Corbyn.

                For a very short period in History it was the trade unions, which put into place many of the rights, freedoms and universal welfare we take for granted now.
                Didn’t take long for wealthy oligarchs to again stack the deck, however.

                You have more confidence in politicians than the rest of us?

              • KJT

                How else are you going to do it?

                A minority are even less likely to be right. Especially a bunch of arrogant, power hungry nonentities in Parliament.

                “Representative Democracy” simply means a powerful self selecting political class who work for those who have the money to put them there”.
                Watch what happened to Cunliffe. And what will happen to Corbyn.
                Or Mana.

                For a very short period in History it was the trade unions, which put into place many of the rights, freedoms and universal welfare we take for granted now.
                Didn’t take long for wealthy oligarchs to again stack the deck, however.

                You have more confidence in politicians than the rest of us?

              • KJT


                “Against the left’s strategic case for exit is relentless blither and blather from the elitist liberal commentariat: the EU is a social-democratic haven that protects us from the nasty Tories is their litany and verse. This is an absurd fantasy: by design the EU is a corporatist, pro-capitalist establishment. Therefore, it strains credulity that the bulk of the Parliamentary Labour Party and a rump of the trade union movement believe in the myth of Social Europe. The late Bob Crow was bang on the money when he said: “social EU legislation, which supposedly leads to better working conditions, has not saved one job and is riddled with opt-outs for employers to largely ignore any perceived benefits they may bring to workers. But it is making zero-hour contracts and agency-working the norm while undermining collective bargaining and full-time, secure employment.”

                • Colonial Viper

                  The elite left fall hard for their own PR. Meanwhile the working class and the underclass have had enough.

      • locus 18.2.3

        me too

  15. RedBaronCV 19

    Given the way
    the EU is has treated Greece and that

    Portugal’s president is not allowing an elected left wing government to take power because they won’t follow the EU austerity rules and

    the EU are leaving Spain’s finances until after the election next week (likely to result in a left wing anti austerity government) so they can enforce austerity measures against a left wing which they haven’t against a more rightist government when they are also “breaking the EU austerity rules ”

    maybe the UK got out just in time (even if the decision was based on poor information).

    Should there not be more questioning of whether the EU has been captured by the hard right economic ideologues answerable to whom?

    • Chooky 19.1

      +100 RedBaronCV…some seem to think that the EU prevents fascism as in WW2 without realising that maybe the EU is captured from above by a different sort of fascism

  16. Chooky 20

    Ouch!..this is outrage for the richest

    ‘Brexit strips world’s 400 richest people of $127bn – Bloomberg’

    …”The worst losses among European billionaires were suffered by Amancio Ortega, Europe’s richest person, who hemorrhaged $6 billion. Many other mega rich individuals took a massive hit, including Bill Gates and Amazon magnate Jeff Bezos, who lost over $1 billion each.

    Britain’s wealthiest person Gerald Cavendish Grosvenor dropped more than $1 billion. However, for the UK’s wealthiest Brexit was surprisingly less devastating than for others in the billionaire class. Altogether, Britain’s 15 richest people lost “only” $5.5 billion…

    …British co-founder of stockbroker Hargreaves Lansdown, Peter Hargreaves, lost the most, seeing his fortune shrink by 19 percent to US$2.9 billion.

    In a major irony, Hargreaves was the largest donor to the Leave campaign, donating £3.2 million, according to the UK’s Electoral Commission…

    • Grumpy 20.1

      Good headline but most of the losses have been on the European market, the British Markets are doing better. Also the pound has recovered somewhat. Another scare headline like to 2million signatures for the referendum.
      The elite and MSM are milking this for all its worth, especially the Clinton News Network, formerly known as CNN

  17. For &$&^%’s sake. Can nobody read? They aren’t calling for another referendum to get back in, they are calling for…

    “We the undersigned call upon HM Government to implement a rule that if the remain or leave vote is less than 60% based a turnout less than 75% there should be another referendum.”

    …What it actually means is that if they get another vote to rejoin the EU those voting to rejoin will have to get over 60% and the turnout more than 70% making it a hell of a lot harder, if they ever did get another vote, to get back in. This isn’t a referendum to rejoin the EU (as reported), it is a referendum to stay out.

    This is being sold by the media as a call for retroactive legislation…although it never says retroactive and everybody seems to have picked it up that way. This parliamentary petition calls for it to be harder to change the present position and that position is out.

    • miravox 22.1

      Such a depressing outcome.

      One point though (and because it’s a poll associated with Lord Ashcroft, I’m looking for a bit of manipulation in the results) the question has three options for answer and only two of these are reported. The ‘mixed blessing’ option. This in itself is not really a problem if the ‘good’ and ‘evil’ percentages are reported correctly. But they’re not – they add up to 100% and we don’t know what proportion of the respondents that is. So the analysis might be showing these positions as more extreme than they really are to support a position.

      Note: It’s not the research I’m concerned about, it’s the reporting in this fashion. Divide and rule are always the tactics of a bad Tory.

      • KJT 22.1.1

        It is depressing that so many commentators are expressing variations of “the stupid working class voters of the English North voted for Brexit because they do not know what is good for them”.

        Right and left wing equally contemptuous.

        Maybe they voted for Brexit because they know an authoritarian, controlling and self interested Government, when they see one.

        • miravox

          huh? where did that come from?

          Do you have a problem with the reporting of this data? If not, fine. But it doesn’t seem like that is what your comment is about.

          Part of the problem I have with it is that it increases the likelihood of people being seen contemptuously as big one dimensional groups rather than seeing that people might actually be just a little more nuanced in their decision-making than the presentation of the data suggests.

        • locus

          and somehow Brexit is the right decision and approach to deal with their own (UK’s) “authoritarian, controlling and sel interested Government”?

          …. the same Tory Government (now to be controlled by the hard right supported by UKIP) that will negotiate the UK’s exit and that will hopefully backtrack on all the austerity measures and make britain great again??

          • KJT

            Did it ever occur to anyone that the working class Brexit voters simply discounted the total fear mongering bullshit from the “experts” on both sides and voted according to their own experience.

            The more remote the “authority” the harder it is to overturn.

            The UK may be able to vote for Cobyne. But they will never be able to remove the European bankers that control the EU.

            • locus

              bankers and the 1% do indeed control the world, but imo are challenged far more effectively by the UK being in the EU than going it alone –

              i take your point though, this was a shout to be heard – a rebellion against an external ‘authority’

              however, it’s tragic that so many people in the UK blame the European Union for the shitty impact of their own governments’ policies, and beleive that migrants, refugees and EU workers in the UK are the cause of their precarious jobs, loss of worker rights, pressures on the NHS…..

              Brexiters are naive if they think their concerns will get better attention now, or that their ‘experience’ justifies taking UK out of the EU. I doubt any who voted ‘leave’ would now admit that it was the suckful british media and politicians that created their ‘experience’ by pedalling the meme that it’s ‘loss of control’ to the EU that is the cause of all the UK’s economic and social ills

              • Colonial Viper

                Sure, let’s adopt the Brussels mindset – us experts know better than the ignorant short sighted unwashed masses and their so-called naive “democracy.”

                • locus

                  no need to be nasty CV, it’s time to recognise the complexity of this issue and what it will take to address

                  – see my reply to KJT

                  • Colonial Viper

                    I’m guessing you and your contacts are all well educated top quintile earning professionals. For you the experience of the EU sounds like it has been very beneficial.

                    For the working class and under class in the UK, Italy, Spain, Greece, Portugal, Ireland, it has been much less so.

                    A bit late for Brussels to start acting all caring about that.

                    BTW although the basis of the EU is not neoliberal, the institution is used to execute a neoliberal agenda. TTIP. Euro Zone austerity. Wage arbitrage between countries to drive down hourly pay.

                    • locus

                      CV you haven’t read my comments with an open mind or you would have commented in a much more constructive manner…

                      you have absolutely no idea of who my friends and family are or why this proposed UK exit is devastating to them

                      your sneering and denigration will win you no allies

                      try reading again what I suggested the UK Government should do first,

                      and please stop spouting anti European Union rhetoric straight off the UKIP hymnsheet

                    • Colonial Viper

                      bankers and the 1% do indeed control the world, but imo are challenged far more effectively by the UK being in the EU than going it alone –

                      Funny then how London and the bankers of the City of London and the more highly paid and the highly qualified professional were the ones who most supported REMAIN.

                      and please stop spouting anti European Union rhetoric straight off the UKIP hymnsheet

                      And do what instead? Support PR lines from a disconnected self harming Labour Party which is busy giving the Tories and UKIP all the electoral space that they need to gain momentum?

                      your sneering and denigration will win you no allies

                      First, look in the mirror:

                      Brexiters are naive if they think their concerns will get better attention now, or that their ‘experience’ justifies taking UK out of the EU. I doubt any who voted ‘leave’ would now admit that it was the suckful british media and politicians that created their ‘experience’

                      By their votes, I do believe that the English outside of London have had quite enough of being looked down on by the likes of you calling them gullible and naive.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    You are wasting your time, Locus.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Hey mate you enjoying watching UK Labour imploding like the careerist right wing infiltrated Third Way compromised irrelevancy that they are.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke


              • Nic the NZer

                Two short clips. Ralph Nader and Bernie Sanders. Open borders policies undermine the encumbent workforce. Sanders refers to open borders as a ‘Koch brothers policy’.


                • locus

                  interesting… thanks

                  I agree with Bernie…whatever the borders (county, region, country, or economic community like the EU) – setting a common minimum level of pay and conditions that provide a living wage is essential. As is the need to support areas of higher unemployment and/or disadvantage, with projects to build or renew infrastructure and create opportunities, (something that the EU has been doing in the UK).

                  Strong worker councils and unions are also key if free movement of labour is to work without employers breaking the rules and exploiting precarious local employees and desperate incoming workers

                  One of the serious problems in the UK imo is that little has been done to protect local workers. Unions in some professions are ineffectual, and successive neolib UK Governments have turned a blind eye to a rapid growth in snakeoil ripoff schemes affecting the most financially vulnerable: usurous money lending, incessant promotion by gambling businesses, unscrupulous employers ‘hiring’ workers on zero-hours contracts….

                  The grim irony is that without EU legislation and standards the UK will probably do even less to improve working conditions, promote full-employment and shield workers from exploitative employers.

                  • RedLogix

                    The core problem of globalisation arises when you have a half-arsed regime that allows free flows of capital and labour, but permits unequal standards and conditions.

                    Here is an example. My employer can buy ex-China steel components (not complex things, but maybe several dozen welds, maybe 100 16mm holes and painted) cheaper than buying the raw steel locally from Bluescope.

                    The difference is not the labour cost, which is a tiny fraction. It is simply that industry in China can operate in an environment heavily subsidised in all sorts of ways that that Australian industry cannot. The Chinese competitive advantage is shitty environmental standards and deep state protection from commercial risk.

                    Ultimately we are going to need a rational discussion around this; where does the balance lie between local identity and rights fall with respect to the rights and interests of the global community they are a part of?

                    At some level I believe we do need a global federal government to impose minimum standards of human rights, environmental rights and economic equity across the entire planet. A standard that starts out basic and lifts over time.

                    This is the only way we are going to stop a myriad of evils, from tax theft, human trafficing, refugees, war, slavery to fossil carbon emissions. I’m sure Helen Clark could add extensively to that very short list.

                    At the same time human cultural identity is important, a sense of homeland, a place to stand, lays down the bedrock of who we are as people. Colonisation is the sense of losing this and feeling powerless to stop it; and regardless of whether it is the uncontrollable flow of money or people, the impact is the same regardless of your skin colour.

                    Retreating into cultural and economic balkanisation is not an option. Tolerating the inequality and instability of the economic colonisation of neo-liberal greed is not an option. We need to start talking about how to organise a planet and the human race on a scale never attempted before, and how to achieve this in a manner that respects the individual, community and national interests of all of us.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      At some level I believe we do need a global federal government to impose minimum standards of human rights, environmental rights and economic equity across the entire planet. A standard that starts out basic and lifts over time.

                      We need the standards but do we need an authority enforcer?

                      If an independent nation sets minimum standards for other countries to meet before they will trade with them then keeps to those standards then they themselves will not be brought down. Other nations will follow and, eventually, the standards become worldwide without the need for a central authority.

                    • RedLogix


                      This ‘self-organising’ principle doesn’t work for something as simple as deciding which side of the road to drive on, much less the complex problem we are talking of.

                      Authority is nothing more than a tool, and like all tools, it can be used or misused. Laws, Police, Courts are generally a good thing; a Police State less so.

                      The crucial element missing at present is ‘global democratic accountability’, something Jeffrey Sachs has spoken of at length. His site is fascinating:


                    • Draco T Bastard

                      This ‘self-organising’ principle doesn’t work for something as simple as deciding which side of the road to drive on, much less the complex problem we are talking of.

                      Good job I didn’t suggest it then eh?

                      Authority is nothing more than a tool, and like all tools, it can be used or misused. Laws, Police, Courts are generally a good thing; a Police State less so.

                      Authority sits at the nation state with them enforcing their own rules and standards. My belief is that those rules and standards will, eventually, come together allowing trade while also protecting countries from the rapacious capitalists that are destroying societies and environments around the world in their greed.

                      The crucial element missing at present is ‘global democratic accountability’

                      Something that I believe that you can’t get as it’s simply too large with too much diversity. Just look at the UN and their inability to hold the US to account for their wars of aggression.

          • KJT

            So. The one time in recent history that UK voters are allowed to democratically decide more then the flavour of the dictatorship, every one who didn’t like the decision are having a hissy fit.

            It never seems to occur to some people that the “great unwashed” simply ignored the hysterical fear mongering on both sides and made their own judgement.

            • Colonial Viper

              That’s clearly not allowed mate. Both the Establishment Lefties and the Establishment Righties are united in that point of view.

              • KJT

                Hence the united front to get rid of Mana.

                It may have forced them to acknowledge the poverty of their ideas, and dr4iven them out of their comfort zone of Tweedledee and Tweedledum rotating dictatorship.

  18. Incognito 23

    The stunning outcomes of Brexit so far.

    IMO this debacle has shown the (voting) people that (their) actions have consequences, decisions have sometimes far-reaching implications and that votes count and matter. The voter turnout was pretty strong, which is a sign of a functioning democracy. Let’s hope that this is a wake-up call to the electorate, and not just in the UK, to use its democratic voting right well & wisely in future.

    It is also crystal-clear IMO that in democracy, freedom of press & speech, for example, is vital but that it can be used to mis- and disinform, manipulate, spread propaganda and be used to advance just any (political) agenda imaginable. The quality of reporting before as well as after the Brexit vote has been generally atrocious as far as I can tell from an admittedly very superficial glance. And as usual, the media were being used as tools or weapons in the fight to win the vote rather than holding the politicians and their lobbyists accountable. The political opposition was largely invisible and strangely silent according to some but I cannot vouch for the veracity of these claims. If true it begs the question, why?

    The outcome is that there will be a (long?) period of instability and confusion and associated damage-control with the inevitable obfuscation and manipulation of the truth. Some people now seem to think that they have voted for the exact opposite of what they wanted; how could this happen? [rhetorical]

    People must be able to exercise their democratic rights and must therefore demand reliable and accurate information from politicians and institutions of power & control. This information must be easily and freely accessible to all and be free of jargon and political double-speak. Complex issues should be properly discussed and debated and not be overly simplified; as much information as is possible and realistic (…) should be presented, in context.

    When detail and nuance are left out or ignored, context is absent, and complex issues are polarised into a binary choice, the damage is done. Similarly, rational discourse does not rely on evoking expectations of pending doom and emotions of fear in people; these are sure-tell signs of spin & manipulation. Language is never completely free from (personal) bias and subjectivity and emotive language can be a very powerful tool to get a message across, which is o.k. as long as the message is not hidden or camouflaged behind it.

    I have yet to see an analysis of Brexit that touches on these issues but hopefully they will come, in due course.

  19. maninthemiddle 25

    “Should a referendum be binding when the promises that secured the result are immediately dumped?”

    What promises?

      • maninthemiddle 25.1.1

        How has that promise been broken? In fact, how is it even a promise?

        • Colonial Viper

          grasping at straws is what it is.

          And basically, this referendum would never have happened if the UK political elite hadn’t lied for decades to their people about the benefits of being in the EU.

    • joe90 25.2


      Sunny Hundal

      Banner in West London lying to Asian voters about EU (no campaign details). I’m still raging


      @sunny_hundal I was receiving bogus messages like this and this screenshot isn’t even half of it

      • maninthemiddle 25.2.1

        Oh so now ‘banners’ are promises made? Are you serious? Does that mean we can drag in the hysterical posturing of Cameron? His failed policy of involving Obama? Grow up, for goodness sake. Your side lost. Suck it up.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          “Your side…”

          I don’t have a dog in this fight, and of course you can drag up Cameron’s hysterical posturing, it contributed to the overall farcical nature of the vote.

          I note that you didn’t like Joe’s answer to your question, so you started throwing your shit around, and Joe didn’t say anything to indicate he’s taken a side anymore than I have.

          These English comprehension fails of yours are becoming tiresome. Are you trying to add to the impression of right wing trash being a pack of dimbulbs or something?

          • maninthemiddle

            Joe didn’t answer my question. He posted about some people making s%^t up. The claim is that promises made have been broken. That isn’t even possible as Britain is still IN the EU.

            “Are you trying to add to the impression of right wing trash being a pack of dimbulbs or something?”

            Mmmm, actually based on your responses I’m obviously touching some nerves. Rational thought does that.

            • joe90

              Farage was called on the leave campaign’s lies. He burbled.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              If rational thought makes you an apologist for Nigel Farage, you can keep it. Come to think of it, silly me, it isn’t rational thought that does that, it’s racist tendencies.

              And yes, Farage is back pedalling as fast as he can go.

    • KJT 25.4

      Well, that annuls the last New Zealand election, then!

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