Friday, 24 June 2016

UK Referendum results are in

Artwork from

This time, the people didn't let the fear of economic chaos and destabilization get in the way of voting in the Brexit/EU referendum. Inspite of Westminster government and Prime Minister David Cameroon's quest to praise the benefits of staying in the EU, Britain or it should be said the UK has voted to leave the European Union. 52% of the public voted to leave. While 48% chose to stay. This is counting each county and the home countries. Terrorism, the security state and migration policy and border control were the rally cry for the British exit. It will take a full two years for Britain to be completely separated from European Union, politically, socially, economically.

A Domino Effect across the EU? 

The repercussions of this is monumental. Upon hearing the news, financial markets have tanked while the pound dropped to a thirty year low. It's not a surprise. Financial markets tend to panic over large referendums especially if an economic system's future is tied to it. The market will be freaking out for a while. The EU will now be 27 instead of 28. James Cameron resigned not long after the vote to avoid the headache and conflict of full Brexit. Cameron will not leave office until October later this year following the Conservative Conference. So a new Prime Minister will have the joyful yet stressful job of steering Britain through its new future. The Brexit will definitely give other struggling EU member states looking at Greece, Portugal and France a good justification for the respective countries to also vote on rather to stay of leave the European Union. Future countries seeking to join the EU enlargement will also be thinking twice. It has given Scotland a big boost in reviving it's own independence referendum. Scotland, unlike the England and half of Wales wants to stay in the European Union. The Scottish Independent Party is currently in power in the Scottish parliament and occasionally harps the benefits of Scotland being part of the EU. The majority of Northern Ireland voted to stay in. Sinn Fein, who rarely comments on regional referendums has suggested that Northern Ireland could try to reunite with the rest of Ireland. Even Donald Trump as silly as he has become commented on the Brexit as being an understandable necessity that could inspire the United States. He made the remarks while visiting his golf course in Scotland. While there are no immediate effects, for the majority of British people, the long terms of affect will be felt for years to come. Next steps will be to go to the negotiation table with the EU.

Generational Gap 

Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Independence Party has campaigned for 20 years to get rid of Britain's membership in the European Union. He thought he was at a lost cause until June 23rd vote.

Some journalists have tried to blame the Leave vote on Millennial or the current Generation Y born between 1990 and onwards for not going out in droves to make their case. Most of the younger generation preferred that Britain stay within the EU. Many youth and Remain supporters campaigned to make their case. However, it was the older generation that proved to put their foot down. The older generation voters choose to leave the EU with some support from the younger generation. Britain first joined the European Union in 1973, some 43 years ago during the age of social movements and worker's fight for better rights. At the time today's baby boomer generation was coming of age followed by the flower power children ie hippies and revolutionary left who saw the world as needing genuine justice, economic and political unity. No matter if it came in the form of the European Union. Or in the form of alternative economic systems ie socialism that benefited all of society not just a few. As conservative and anti-union the late British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher had been, she was surprisingly pro-European Union. Thatcher represented the British elite and often catered to the well being of the wealthy while punishing the union workers and the poor throughout her administration. Her TINA policy is still despied inside and outside Britain to this day. Yet, the EU in the 1970s-80s was seen as a benefit economically. Politically, the EU was seen as coming short on delivering a supranational, revolutionary political systems and services that benefit half a million people.The older generation who had lived before the EU's creation, won't be panicking over Britain's lost membership.

Eurosceptics having a field day

Eurosceptics have been gaining followers and media attention in Germany, Netherlands, France and Sweden and Czech Republic. Far right political parties Front Nationale (France), Alternative for Germany, Freedom Party (Netherlands), Golden Dawn and . Critics of the European Union have existed since the EU came into existence and since many member states adapted the Euro at the expense of their local currencies. The EU criticism ranging from reviving individual state sovereignty over international issues ie neoliberal policies and capitalism to the EU's failure to readily address security issues, border controls, migration and state rights vs regional rights. Disagreements with Brussels abound in nearly every capital. Greece has the economic justification to break away from the EU. There was talk of a Grexit years before the Brexit came along. The Greek people have had it with the Troika twisting and trying to reconfigure the shattered Greek economy and destroyed society with more long standing debt.

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