Business/Finance

Don’t panic: a #brexplanation

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image courtesy of the guardian

First, remember that the non-binding referendum is non-binding. The United Kingdom, unequaled in terms of global power and influence, unparalleled in her commitment to justice, and unbound to this referendum, which diminishes her majesty in hideous fashion, remains loyal to the European Union. For all the bleach blond rhetoric, for all the false promises to fund the National Health with nonexistent dues paid to the European Union, a non-binding referendum REMAINS non-binding.

This is a moment of choice. A vote has been taken, largely predicated on the question of whether the love of liberty overcomes the fear of immigrants, and 52%, of the 74% of Britons who voted, chose fear over love. In real terms, 38% of Britons chose fear over love. Is that racist? Yes, undoubtedly it is. Does it require the United Kingdom to surrender to fear? Unequivocally, the answer is no.

David Cameron, whose heart is bigger than his brain, says NO, despite the fact that he precipitated this abomination by allowing the “tyranny of the majority” to determine a question of existential importance. Despite the fact that he allowed the future of all European states, including fledgling powerhouses like Estonia and Ukraine and sleeping giants like Greece and Spain, to be determined by uninformed sycophants and their victims, Mr. Cameron has valiantly refused to abandon humanity and common sense.

Like all good politicians, he has kicked the can down the road. Please ignore the French and German demands that Great Britain withdraw from the European Union this very instant. They have been insulted. It would be a further humiliation for them to grovel and beg the UK to stay. Who among us has ever met rejection with anything better than mutual rejection? Such a response requires superhuman grace. France, the eldest daughter of the church, is laughing because they knew this marriage was doomed. Germany is calling their lawyer. Both these responses are natural and right. Mr. Cameron’s response is also correct.

Considering the tactics used by the LEAVE campain, a better way to frame this referendum would be to phrase the question: “Are you racist?” Unsurprisingly, 52% of Britons who bothered to respond voted YES. And in this referendum we are finally allowed to view the invisible beauty of representative government. The people chose poorly. They chose to abandon eastern Europe to the mercies of President Putin. They chose to leave Germany holding the tab for Greece and Spain.

We should restructure the debts owed by those countries, in such a way that they decrease over time, rather than increase in proportion to the austerity measures implemented. Unless we accomplish this, the European Union has no future. However, this is a separate question. The first question is whether autocratic interlopers like Russia will be allowed to pick off European Union members one by one. 38% of Britons don’t care what happens to debtor nations, or to Estonia, which is on the verge of moving from “Eastern European” to “Scandinavian.” Estonia is proof that the system works, and the Brexit vote is a decision to allow her to be devoured by economic forces rather than to invest in her future.

David Cameron cannot allow that to happen. There is simply too much at stake. He will stall as long as he can, which is until October, and then he will allow the same voters who chose to throw Estonia to the bear to decide the future of Europe. The people will decide. This is as it should be. However, they must wait for months and then reaffirm their decisions if they truly wish to change the course of history. This is also as it should be. In the land of the free nothing is easy, least of all governing.

Here, in America, we are also facing a moment of truth. Considering the tactics used by the presumptive Republican nominee, our presidential election may also be a referendum predicated on the question: “Are you racist?” As a statesman, I am envious of the 74% turnout generated by this referendum. It is my sincere hope that we answer in the negative.

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