Saturday 18 June 2016

Last Brexit to Nowhere – by Patrick Brigham

This is my last and final rant about the Brexit – stay or remain – until the final vote is cast. I will not complain, diminish, demonise, belittle or demean the referendum or its various players, after publication of this article, nor will I trivialize, satirize or lampoon the events as they unfold. I am sick of it.

The British Bulldog, is a formidable creature, and bred for Bull baiting – often eulogized during the Victorian era - it has a powerful bite. Intended to hang onto its quarry - at any cost - it has become synonymous with stubbornness, fortitude and resolve. With qualities ascribed to the British character in general, the question is:-

‘Does the British Bulldog still have any teeth left, or, is it only capable of administering a nasty suck?’

The Brexit debate has revealed all sorts of people and opinions, many emerging from their silent vigil, in the very background of British politics. But it has also exposed a plethora of half truths, innuendo and downright lies. It seems that many of the groups involved in this referendum – to stay or to leave - have either been driven by extreme levels of ignorance, wishful thinking, or the political classes are now so steeped in deceit, that the truth hardly matters any more.

Perhaps a global tendency - as we can see in the current US primaries - it nevertheless implies a total lack of integrity, honesty, and perhaps even a general trend, in many of the national leaders, both in the UK and elsewhere. The question is:-

‘Is it a determination to win at any cost, has the truth only been mislaid for the time being, and is it something to do, with the fog of war?’

This referendum is not about war. It is about the preservation of democracy, involving a properly informed public, voting with their heads, and not their hearts. So, let’s move on to the motivation behind many of these Brexiteers?

There are few who can honestly say that they are WW2 brats - although I can still remember seeing the odd Supermarine Spitfire, flying overhead during my childhood in Berkshire - and most of us have not experienced WW2, except latterly on certain evocative WW2, TV programs.

But in the post war period, a lot of the thinking behind the EEC – latterly known as the EU – was not, and could never purely be about trade, and diplomacy. It was also about peace – Churchills famous iron curtain - and the Cold War. Part and parcel of securing Europe, and adding to the looming presence of NATO, the EEC was then the greatest European threat against the Soviets, a matter which Mr. Putin still acknowledges, as president of the Russian Federation. Recently, he has announced, even he is confused about Camerons referendum, and a possible Brexit outcome!

Revealing that the great majority of present day referendum voters can only see Britains membership of the EU in monetary terms, surely common sense will prevail, because - should Great Britain leave the European Union – not only will the Union itself be consequently weakened, but so will the UK. Or, is the old Bulldog being fitted with some new dentures, which I haven’t heard of?

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Something for A Quiet Time- by Patrick Brigham

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