The fundamental cause of the trouble is that in the modern world the stupid are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubt. — Bertrand Russell
1. I won’t mourn the loss of Cameron. I hope history accurately records his place as a thoroughly idiotic prime minister who managed to rip apart his reputation, his party and the country for the sake of extending his career by one year. This is the man behind the “Long term economic plan” which unexpectedly boots us out of European markets.
2. Corbyn needs to go. He was spectacularly useless. This more than anything highlights the need for a competent opposition, and highlights just how bad Corbyn is. He asserted zero influence, and that is the performance we can expect from him at a general election. It’s good to see Tim Farron sticking the knife in.
3. I have a strong desire to see the resulting fiscal deficit come out of the state pension, tax increases on private pension withdrawals, and cuts to working tax credits. Those who benefit from these things are the people who voted for it and so morally they should bear the burden. However, this would not be best for the economy overall, so let’s not mix up emotions and logic.
4. My economic outlook is pretty good. I work in software. Our major import is offshored labour, so making that more expensive is good for me (as I compete with it), and our major exports are… software, so making that more competitive is good news. Regardless, this is a bad decision overall, because it will raise unemployment in other areas, which affects us all, and yet another decade of stunted economic growth will severely damage every young person’s retirement prospects.
5. On a purely emotional level, this is a satisfactory outcome. Had we remained, we’d have to endure Farage and Boris popping up at every opportunity to say “well this wouldn’t have happened if we’d left”. Now, the boot is on the other foot, and I think we’ll get plenty of opportunities to see their reputations progressively shredded as they totally fail to deliver on what the leave campaign said was possible. No, we’re not going to see that £350m, and it’ll be interesting to see if they really manage to significantly reduce immigration without completely tanking the economy. I suspect Farage and Boris are suddenly quite worried. Boris never expected to have to follow through on any of this, and nothing we’ve seen so far suggests he’s up to the job.
6. This whole debacle demonstrates the need for effective education in the UK. Far too many people went into this referendum having no understanding, no motivation to learn, and no skills to disassemble the arguments being put forward. Within minutes of the result, Farage reneged on the “£350m to the NHS” meme, which was literally one of the slogans of the leave campaign. In short, the average voter was woefully misinformed and lacks the ability to do anything about it. This is not something we should be proud of.
7. I wonder how many of those “I’m voting with me heart, not me brain” types are feeling so confident now. I wonder how many people voted ‘leave’ because they felt it was a nice fantasy, a nice protest vote, and didn’t expect it to come true. I suspect they were numerous enough to swing it by that vital 1.9%.