Friday, June 24, 2016

Brexit

The most astonishing thing about Brexit for me is that the northern former coal mining town in England where R hails from voted 'Stay'. R was surprised too. I looked at an map of the electorate, and I can see why. It is all about wealth, electoral boundaries and demographics.

I usually have an opinion on everything. I listen to the arguments and nod in an approving manner to both sides, as there are always convincing reasons put forward. In the case of Brexit, I was really sitting on the fence, not deciding one way or the other. What I did know is that Britain would not collapse long term because of Brexit. It is a very rich country and could certainly be self sufficient without the EU.

The voting results were fascinating as they arrived. Fen tweeted an interesting graph of the age breakdown of voting. Summed up, old people voted to leave, young people voted to stay. Old people have bitter experiences of what was essentially a vote on the free movement of Europeans coming and going into the UK and receiving benefits of being UK resident. My mantra is, once they are in your country, they deserve all rights. Whether they should be in your country, is another matter entirely, and that was more what it was about.

I do have a firm opinion on one thing, the stay campaign, the Tories in England and the EU in Brussels have only themselves to blame. They did not listen to the discontent of the people faced with increasing crowding and overloaded systems and took no significant action.  Ye shall reap what ye shall sow. Still without an opinion of whether to leave or stay, I can certainly see why leave won.

I instinctively go against what rich bastards and Tory conservatives want, but in this case, it was not so clear cut. Never mind. It is democracy and no one has come up with a better system.

20 comments:

  1. Well, there goes the balance in my retirement account - 401k in the US. Markets open within minutes here. I've already told people at work not to check their balances until next week. Let the dust settle. Thank God I have an annuity that guarantees me 6% growth/year, more if the markets are up significantly, which hasn't happened in the past couple of years.
    It does appear that reactions like this are fueled by conservative aka moneyed people who are greedy, bitter, angry, unsympathetic to other's situations, frightened of change etc. Well, with the US markets down anywhere between 2.6 to 3.6% now and they've just opened, I won't have to worry about being among the moneyed class. I just have to worry about having enough money to eat catfood when I retire. Just kidding. This will all settle down and life will go on as it has always gone on. I'm a liberal sort of socialist. You win some, you lose some. Maybe Britain will come around down the road.

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    1. Their superannuation seems to be the first thing Australians mentioned once the vote was known. As always, time will tell.

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    2. Have you seen the cost of cat food lately? And much of it appears unpalatable since even my cat won't touch it. There are only three flavours out of hundreds that he will eat.

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    3. River, as I am sure you know, as my mother does who spends plenty on her 'stray' cats, an animal will never die from starvation if food is available. I think cats get used to a certain taste, usually the most expensive cat food product, and won't eat anything else until they become very hungry.

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  2. Good advice above! I'm not game to check our super until next week either :)

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    1. Grace, yes, R has been banging on about super. Perhaps there is something wrong here if we are so badly affected by what happened.

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  3. It has been a fascinating time. I never thought the vote would be to leave although I wanted out. The EU is too big to be practical, too expensive to be accountable. I can't believe that Cameron called this referendum after one year in power (without it being a coalition) and then won't abide by the result. The whole lot of them need a good shake up.

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    1. Marie, I was wondering what you thought. Unfairly perhaps, I see you as a representative of a certain demographic. Thanks.

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  4. ANDREW I THINK IT Was the right decision

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    1. Gosia, your thought is appreciated.

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  5. I was surprised that it can change after 48-52 vote, which is neck and neck. I thought in Australia's referendums you need an absolute majority or double majority, i.e. a lot more yes votes for the change to actually take place. But then I could be completely wrong?

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    1. CM, I think ours is something like a majority of voters in a majority of states, but I am not sure. Like you, I did not think it was a resounding victory, but as R pointed out to me, it is 1 million people.

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    2. Changes to our constitution require the support of a majority of voters in a majority of states.

      I was completely fascinated by the voting count and how it swung this way and that for some hours before clearly settling in favour of leave. I had assumed that the vote would go the other way.

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    3. Ok Victor, so what I suggested does not apply to referenda. And we had the luxury of hearing or seeing the counting in the day time instead of late at night and early morning. We knew the result while most of Britain slept.

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  6. Definitely wait and see time. I would have leant the other way I think.

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    1. EC, both sides have very strong arguments. I think it is a bit of a shame, but fully lay the blame at the government and the EU.

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  7. I read some about Brexit and did not think really the vote would go the way it did, from what I'd read, but you can't trust polls, that's for sure. The people have voted, now to see the aftermath. Gladly will watch from afar and have no money to put in stocks, so it will not, immediately, affect my own ability to purchase cat food.

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    1. Strayer, our major bank put a stop to people buying pounds at such a cheap rate. The had to allow it again quickly as overseas travellers were getting into trouble. Stock markets go up and go down, but long term always up. You can sleep well at night as you don't have to worry about such things.

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  8. I am not a happy camper :(
    However the impact will possibly be greatest on England.

    Our Scottish friends think Scotland will break away from the rest of the UK and will stay in the EU.

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    1. Hels, so the EU really knew what it was doing when it pumped money into Scotland.

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