The Dim-Post

June 24, 2016

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Filed under: Uncategorized — danylmc @ 7:50 am

I have no opinion about Brexit

55 Comments »

  1. I find that surprising.

    Comment by Gregor W — June 24, 2016 @ 7:56 am

  2. Is this an actual “no opinion”, or the same as the flag one?

    (Incidentally, it’s totally disappeared, hasn’t it? The Lockwood flag, I mean. It’s as if nobody really cared).

    Comment by sammy 3.0 — June 24, 2016 @ 9:10 am

  3. Here’s a thing about Brexit: the main argument being made by UKIP and its fellow travelers in the pro-Brexit campaign (apart from immigration, obvs) is the sovereignty issue: that under the EU, Britain has surrendered its sovereignty to sinister foreign powers, which is bad and must be stopped. Which appears to be exactly the same argument being mounted in NZ by Jane Kelsey, the Greens and their fellow travelers as reasons to oppose the TPPA. I don’t quite know what to make of that. On the one hand you could argue that if UKIP and the Greens agree on something it must have substance. On the other – who wants to agree with UKIP about anything? Anyway, I guess strange times make for strange bedfellows.

    Comment by Nick R — June 24, 2016 @ 9:33 am

  4. At first I thought that this was one of those cases where the author knows the issue’s important but feels uninformed enough that they don’t want to weigh in for fear of seeming uninformed.

    But I have a sinking feeling it’s one of those “false equivalence” situations where the fact that neither side is flawless means they’re “as bad as each other”.

    Comment by Ortvin Sarapuu — June 24, 2016 @ 9:34 am

  5. Danyl’s trying to break the Internet

    Comment by NeilM — June 24, 2016 @ 9:40 am

  6. The UK Greens were firmly in favour of a Remain vote: http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/mar/14/green-party-loud-proud-backing-britain-europe-brexit-lucas

    I think if the TPPA involved a Pacific parliament that wasn’t dominated by any one country, all members were obliged to be democracies and accept an external process for supervising human rights, included binding environmental legislation enforced on all members and required free movement of people, I’d be hugely in favour of it.

    Comment by richdrich — June 24, 2016 @ 9:59 am

  7. Here’s a thing about Brexit: the main argument being made by UKIP and its fellow travelers in the pro-Brexit campaign (apart from immigration, obvs) is the sovereignty issue: that under the EU, Britain has surrendered its sovereignty to sinister foreign powers, which is bad and must be stopped. Which appears to be exactly the same argument being mounted in NZ by Jane Kelsey, the Greens and their fellow travelers as reasons to oppose the TPPA.

    Bi Nick, Monbiot addresses your point almost exactly: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/jun/15/european-union-eu-britain-sovereignty

    Comment by Paul Rau — June 24, 2016 @ 10:03 am

  8. dang. Hi,Nick. fat fingers

    Comment by Paul Rau — June 24, 2016 @ 10:04 am

  9. Give it a day or so and something will come. You know it … we all know it.

    Comment by Andrew Geddis — June 24, 2016 @ 10:35 am

  10. That’s easy for you to say. Some of us foolishly told our kids they’d be able to work in Europe because they’re entitled to British passports, and now a bunch of Tories and wogs-start-at-Calais types are trying to make us liars.

    Comment by Psycho Milt — June 24, 2016 @ 11:50 am

  11. I hope England had a chat with Mick Taylor.

    Comment by NeilM — June 24, 2016 @ 1:03 pm

  12. Neil – Comment o’ the day!

    Comment by Nick R — June 24, 2016 @ 1:09 pm

  13. I find that surprising

    I’ve been too busy to form an informed opinion and I’m off twitter, so I don’t have a tribal snarky gestalt to tell me what to think about everything.

    Comment by danylmc — June 24, 2016 @ 1:11 pm

  14. Brexit will make it more expensive for ex-pat NZers in the UK to buy your book.

    Comment by MeToo — June 24, 2016 @ 1:22 pm

  15. Looks like my UK passport is heading to the same place as the careers of Cameron and Corbyn – into the bin.

    Comment by NeilM — June 24, 2016 @ 3:40 pm

  16. The United Kingdom is now an historical artifact and Britain will be great no more. England wanted out. The Scots will now become independent and stay in the EU. God knows what will happen to Northern Island. Queen Elizabeth, she lived long enoughnto become Queen of England.

    Comment by Sanctuary — June 24, 2016 @ 4:10 pm

  17. I’d imagine that Scotland and NI might hang on to the monarch as a sop to win over waverers. They’d just appear on the stamps and wouldn’t participate in any way. NI could be governed from Dublin but a nominal part of a vestigial United Kingdom (like the Channel Islands are part of something called the British Islands now).

    Comment by richdrich — June 24, 2016 @ 4:21 pm

  18. Scots i know who voted to remain in the UK are all feeling betrayed by the English vote to leave the EU.

    Comment by Sanctuary — June 24, 2016 @ 4:29 pm

  19. Trump visit to Scotland imminent. What a day! #Brexit.

    Comment by OECD rank 22 kiwi — June 24, 2016 @ 4:37 pm

  20. I find the result horrifying but with a 72% turnout and a slim but still convincing win for exit it would be hard to argue the question shouldn’t have been asked. It was democracy in action.

    It certainly raises some very important issues about the nation state in the modern age. Some exiters are deeply racist and abhorrent but not all by far. And similar tensions are popping up in other European countries.

    Corbyn’s Labour hasn’t responded in any way that suggests he has a vision for how to reclaim Labour’s base now lost to UKIP. Personally I think stopping turning Labour into a student union debating club banging on about Israel and other topics only of interest to activists would be a start.

    Comment by NeilM — June 24, 2016 @ 4:53 pm

  21. As an Englishman I feel fortunate that my Kiwi partner is getting a Irish passport, so I may yet be able to live in southern Europe after selling off my over priced shed in Island Bay.

    Comment by Nanook Polar — June 24, 2016 @ 4:58 pm

  22. So, reading around I get that ‘the left’ was generally for Remain, because Farage is a racist, etc, and that the people who voted to leave are held to be morons, but I can’t really see a coherent left-wing argument for Remain that isn’t largely reactionary. Like, is supporting free trade and labour markets really that left-wing, nowadays? The currency markets are freaking out in the wake of the decision, but that’s not really an argument. Financial markets are highly prone to panic and have been for decades. What was the substantive left-wing argument to remain in the EU?

    Comment by danylmc — June 24, 2016 @ 5:24 pm

  23. What was the substantive left-wing argument to remain in the EU?

    I think one argument was that Britain benefitted culturally from the freer movement of people within the EU.

    And that the integration of Europe on the whole furthered liberal causes and stifled nationalistic conflict.

    Comment by NeilM — June 24, 2016 @ 5:38 pm

  24. “.. What was the substantive left-wing argument to remain in the EU?…”

    The general level of understanding of this debate in NZ is poor, not surprising given the terrible state of the NZ media and the distance from the event. Another brick in the wall of our closing mind.

    The Europe of today is utterly transformed from the one I first visiited in the mid 1980s. Back in May I did a battlefield tour of WW1 sites with an old friend, a German married to an Irishwoman living in Holland. We both found that in 2016 the idea of Frenchmen and Englishmen and Germans slaughtering each incomprehensible. Young Scots teach in Spain, I can fly from Poland in a Irish jet via Brussels to Madrid and not even show my passport. That is the new Europe. That is the cosmopolitan place, where people celebrate and are genuinely interested in each others cultures and languages, the the British are turning their backs on. That is why the left supported remain, out of an old school internationalism that isn’t just about free flows of money.

    Comment by Sanctuary — June 24, 2016 @ 6:07 pm

  25. Yeah, I wouldn’t have wanted to be a Labour MP trying to get my constituents in an economically depressed region like, say, the Midlands to vote Remain on the grounds that it was completely brilliant to be able to fly from Brussels to Madrid without a passport.

    Comment by danylmc — June 24, 2016 @ 6:28 pm

  26. The blame for this vote can be widely shared. The disaster of the single currency. The Troikas treatment of Greece genuinely horrified liberal British opinion, where Byronesque philhellenism still whispers. Above all, Greece made Brexit OK for polite conversation. So Merkel owns that. Cameron is a small man and a fool and he totally misjudged the politics of his foolishness in casually tossing the Brexiters their referendum. He is gone, and Tory party might as well merge with UKIP. The establishment Remain campaign was warned not to run the sort of negative campaign it ran in Scotland, but it ignored that advice and proceeded to threaten, fear monger and bully the voters. Then, when it panicked, it rolled out Tony Blair and John Major. Jesus wept. I guess the result is a kick in the goolies for the out of touch Oxbridge elites. Now Boris will be PM, and he will be free to run Britain exactly like people like him and Farage want it to be run.

    Comment by Sanctuary — June 24, 2016 @ 6:28 pm

  27. “..Yeah, I wouldn’t have wanted to be a Labour MP trying to get my constituents in an economically depressed region like, say, the Midlands to vote Remain on the grounds that it was completely brilliant to be able to fly from Brussels to Madrid without a passport…”

    Wow, just wow. With thinking like that no wonder John Key is PM of NZ.

    Comment by Sanctuary — June 24, 2016 @ 6:33 pm

  28. @Danyl

    Here’s the Green Party’s MP’s (Caroline Lucas) argument for Lemaining (geddit?): http://www.writeyou.co.uk/on_the_left_and_still_thinking_about_voting_to_leave_it_s_time_to_get_real

    Vice Magazine has a comprehensive round-up of the Left arguments for and against change: https://www.vice.com/en_uk/read/he-left-wing-arguments-on-the-eu-referendum-brexit-for-against

    For all that, the fact Nigel Farage is a fuckwit would probably have been enough for me to vote to stay in.

    Comment by Andrew Geddis — June 24, 2016 @ 6:38 pm

  29. Actually, the concluding para of that Vice article is worth reposting:

    So basically either you can vote Leave, removing Britain for the lock of the economic austerity that is orthodoxy in the EU and hope that a left-wing Labour government gets elected with a huge mandate and then is untempered by the neoliberals in Brussels. Or you can vote Remain for fear of Britain becoming Boris and Nigel’s Little England island, a place where xenophobia and Thatcherism run free, untempered by EU safeguards on workers’ rights. On the left, this is in essence, a battle between idealism and pragmatism.

    Comment by Andrew Geddis — June 24, 2016 @ 6:40 pm

  30. With thinking like that no wonder John Key is PM of NZ.

    Goddam it, Danyl – now look what your thinking has gone and got us!

    Comment by Andrew Geddis — June 24, 2016 @ 6:41 pm

  31. I think Sanc has inadvertently highlighted the demographic complexity of this.

    Most likely people who can gad about sans passport hiting the clubs in Ibiza will favour remain but might actually be very conservative whereas others stuck in at home with obligations might not be so convinced.

    Comment by NeilM — June 24, 2016 @ 6:45 pm

  32. Well, Cameron is gone. Corbyn is still there. Some loser that Corbyn. This has added some spice to Sunday’s elections in Spain. If PODEMOS come out on top like the polls are saying. Then Pablo Iglesias will have a big stick to beat the EU with by threatening a domino Spexit. And the Spanish are tough hombres, they be pushed around like the Greeks.

    Comment by Sanctuary — June 24, 2016 @ 7:28 pm

  33. Cameron resigning is the honourable thing to do.

    Corbyn failed to deliver Labour’s base. Did he actually try.

    Comment by NeilM — June 24, 2016 @ 7:59 pm

  34. Long term, Europe will be much better off without the toxic Tory tosspots. Pity about the collateral damage.

    Comment by Ralph — June 24, 2016 @ 8:20 pm

  35. Aside form the general crapness of the remain campaign, it seems we have another example of how talking down to folk who disagree with you (Sanc, take a hint here) is entirely counterproductive regardless of how many retweets it gets you. Let’s hope Clinton’s campaign learns a few lessons here.

    Comment by Richard — June 24, 2016 @ 8:28 pm

  36. ” What was the substantive left-wing argument to remain in the EU?”

    The EU is better at guaranteeing worker’s rights than the UK is alone. The EU redistributes wealth efficiently on an international basis through its regional subsidies. The EU provides higher education opportunities that aren’t accessible by virtue of UK citizenship alone.

    There’s more, of course, that’s off the top of my head.

    Comment by Ortvin Sarapuu — June 24, 2016 @ 8:49 pm

  37. > “So, reading around I get that ‘the left’ was generally for Remain, because Farage is a racist, etc, and that the people who voted to leave are held to be morons, but I can’t really see a coherent left-wing argument for Remain that isn’t largely reactionary.”

    Really? I also haven’t read up on this a lot, but it seems to me that the leave campaign is reactionary.

    Also, see link at comment number 7; Monbiot seems pretty left wing, and makes a substantive argument (whether you agree with it or not).

    > “a Labour MP trying to get my constituents in an economically depressed region like, say, the Midlands.”

    But, the argument (not specifically left wing, but not purely a right wing argument either) was that the UK did quite well economically out of the EU, and this will be bad for people in economically depressed areas.

    Comment by Steve — June 24, 2016 @ 8:58 pm

  38. Watching CNN now, I like this Stanley Johnson chap a lot more than Boris Johnson. There’s a substantive argument for you.

    Comment by Steve — June 24, 2016 @ 9:07 pm

  39. “untempered by EU safeguards on workers’ rights”… “The EU is better at guaranteeing worker’s rights than the UK is alone” … would this be the same EU that has overseen unemployment of 24% in Greece and 21% in Spain? Safeguards are great if you have a job; but a bit beside the point if EU policies have made getting a job pretty hard (especially if you’re young).

    Comment by Graham Adams — June 24, 2016 @ 9:09 pm

  40. Me neither.

    Comment by David Tank — June 24, 2016 @ 9:14 pm

  41. That is why the left supported remain, out of an old school internationalism that isn’t just about free flows of money.

    Well if you do ignore the flow of money, it is entirely left wing to support remain.

    The EU officials have spent the last 6 years bailing out themselves and the banks, whilst telling Europeans to tighten their belts. This sort of monetary free flow where it always seems to freely flow towards officialdom and bankers, could be ignored of course. But if you do take notice, the flow of money might suggest that the Labour Party and Tory Party MPs were looking to their very own personal selfish futures.

    Comment by unaha-closp — June 24, 2016 @ 10:10 pm

  42. Will UKIP disband now?

    Comment by unaha-closp — June 24, 2016 @ 10:20 pm

  43. “The EU officials have spent the last 6 years bailing out themselves and the banks, whilst telling Europeans to tighten their belts.”

    Hard to imagine a Tory-ruled UK would have done differently if it had been outside the EU.

    “Will UKIP disband now?”

    The Icelandic Independence Party still exists more than 70 years after Iceland became independent.

    Comment by Ortvin Sarapuu — June 25, 2016 @ 12:32 am

  44. This about covers it.

    Gary Younge is a bloody treasure. First noticed him about 15 years ago when he described how a racist heckler eventually knelt to kiss his hand after being called out at a UK soccer match: “My large frame quivered with delight.”

    Comment by Joe W — June 25, 2016 @ 6:24 am

  45. the argument (not specifically left wing, but not purely a right wing argument either) was that the UK did quite well economically out of the EU, and this will be bad for people in economically depressed areas.

    The economy is not a rising tide that lifts all boats, though. Pretty much the whole debate seems to have been around whether the seemingly perpetual mass low-skill migration was worth it, and urban elites seemed to think it was while the rest of England just disagreed.

    Comment by danylmc — June 25, 2016 @ 7:20 am

  46. [i]42.Will UKIP disband now?[/i]

    No. Within a year, UKIP will be burning effigies of Prime Minister Boris Johnson, as he “sells out” the English (sic) in the negotiations to leave.

    That’s the trouble with pinning all your hopes on one easy answer. When the problems don’t go away, you don’t reflect “Hmm, this might be more complicated than I realized”. You just know that the evil power elites are still refusing to make it simple.

    Comment by sammy 3.0 — June 25, 2016 @ 7:42 am

  47. Well I didn’t like the UK being in the EU I just thought it represented a part of the historic paradigm which commenced with the Zollverein in the early 19th century. I felt it represented a Trojan horse for German domination of Europe. And frankly I don’t trust them.I don;t think The United Kingdom is part of ‘Europe’.
    It’s much more special than that. However, I’d gladly send Boris and Cameron to Brussels if there is some kind of back door we can use for that sort of thing.

    Comment by leeharmanclark — June 25, 2016 @ 10:17 am

  48. ” would this be the same EU that has overseen unemployment of 24% in Greece and 21% in Spain?”

    And 4.8% unemployment in Germany and 4.5% in Denmark, yes.

    Comment by Ortvin Sarapuu — June 25, 2016 @ 11:56 am

  49. “I don;t think The United Kingdom is part of ‘Europe’.
    It’s much more special than that.”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exceptionalism

    Comment by Ortvin Sarapuu — June 25, 2016 @ 11:57 am

  50. (Laughing, euphoric, as I can’t believe they voted leave)
    Sanc “We both found that in 2016 the idea of Frenchmen and Englishmen and Germans slaughtering each incomprehensible.” But in 2008, you thought it was likely? Wow.

    “Now Boris will be PM, and he will be free to run Britain exactly like people like him and Farage want it to be run.” Unless the public vote for someone else at the next election? If the UK, French & Greek public don’t like how the Commission runs things, what do they do (other than riot, I mean)? Did your German friend vote for Tusk? Schulz? Juncker?

    Comment by Clunking Fist — June 25, 2016 @ 2:42 pm

  51. It is clear, from the comments above, and the tone of the Lemainers in the UK, that power trumps democracy: the left seem drawn to non-democratic, authoritarian forms of governance. Remind yourselves how the people of Ireland, the Netherlands and France voted “No”, yet the “European Project” rumbled on and their wishes were ignored*. Well, ladies and gentlemen, welcome to democracy. Apologies if, occasionally, it serves up the “wrong” answer.

    (*Greece i’m less sympathetic towards: they voted for free stuff, but the people they expected to pay for it, didn’t want to.)

    Comment by Clunking Fist — June 25, 2016 @ 2:49 pm

  52. > ‘” would this be the same EU that has overseen unemployment of 24% in Greece and 21% in Spain?”

    And 4.8% unemployment in Germany and 4.5% in Denmark, yes.”‘

    And 5.4% in the UK.

    Comment by Steve — June 25, 2016 @ 3:36 pm

  53. Clunking,

    Are you in favour of a Scotland exit of the UK?

    Danyl,

    But your comments were in the context of the left supposedly not having a “substantive” argument, as opposed to a “reactionary” one. It seems to me that “the immigrants are taking my jobs” is the more reactionary position, no?

    Comment by Steve — June 25, 2016 @ 5:04 pm

  54. “Are you in favour of a Scotland exit of the UK?”
    I’m all for self determination. If the Scots want to go, let them. Of course, it will be far more complex than Brexit: they share a currency, what happens to ‘their share” of debt. What about the army/navy/airforce? Do they become a Republic? What happens about the border: under Brexit, EU citz will likely continue to cross the Irish/NI border, but they aren’t then on the UK mainland. An open border with Scotland will probably present problems, a closed border even more. Who gets what passports?

    Comment by Clunking Fist — June 26, 2016 @ 9:51 am


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