What do you do in a deeply divided country like ours? They say perception is all. Spend just 5 minutes reading Hard Remain Tweets and then 5 minutes reading Hard Leave Tweets. These two communities will NOT reconcile in anyone’s lifetime. We have Internationalist English and the Nationalist English. They live in different worlds and their beliefs are poles apart. They delight in insulting each other in ever more creative ways. Both believe the other one is sabotaging their dreams. Strong deals, good deals, bad deals, weak deals or no deal, whatever the final deal a large proportion of the English population will object to it even if they haven’t a clue what it means. We all know the status-quo is not tenable but where do we go from here? The traditional “bell curve” of politics is taking a holiday. That’s where once many politicians looked to position themseleves with the central moderate majority.
Let’s be clear that at a time of such troubles we need to get back to fundamentals.
“The first duty of the Government is to afford protection to its citizens.” My interpretation of the word “protection” takes in: safety, security, justice, economic wellbeing, social solidarity and environmental protection.
This is where the two camps are NOT equal. Wherever you are, you do need to pick a side. Appeasement has a poor history in all nations.
A quick look at the Brexiters priorities leave no doubt, in my mind that they are authoritarian and unscrupulous. Here’s a range of thing they want to do: One Party rule. In Parliament, shut down the House of Lords, as they say; no second house needed. More popular referendums to keep politicians on a leash. Returning capital punishment. Pulling up the draw-bridge to all but the wealthy. Privatisation of the BBC, NHS and other public bodies. Wholesale deregulation. Drastic cuts in welfare to let people sink or swim. Making dissent and protest crimes of treason. This list is a sample from Brexiters current on-line discussions.
Public safety, security, justice, economic wellbeing, social solidarity and environmental protection, will all be in jeopardy if they succeed. An outcome that “will be regretted for generations” is on the cards right now.
Let’s be clear the opinion to remain as an EU Member State is no longer the status-quo. The world has moved in the last two-years. A new dynamic exists in Europe as we face the challenges of Trump, Russia, China and the huge tech giants who dominate our lives. Nationalist voices will continue to make noise but that should on a level playing field with moderate voices.
If democratic States are to thrive and ordinary people not lose out, Government and its institutions must listen to their people. There is a growing demand and support for a #PeoplesVote. Let’s have that vote and show that the real deal is the one people want.