No Excuses

The Brexit Thread

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And if more vote to leave the EU?

the fulcrum is mobile

 

I can't think any of the anti-centralization movements in the EU are looking at what's happened so far with the UK and thinking bailing is a good idea, at this time.  Maybe later, but at this time, the markets are taking a hit, Scotland and Northern Island have one foot out of the door, and the place looks in total shambles as pockets of violence against minorities erupt and people are resigning/being sacked at a record pace.

 

And all of this is happening even before Article 50 has been triggered and the actual work begins.

 

Sure, 5, maybe 10 years down the road, once they've figured out all the issues, things will look rosy and stable and an argument can be made that leaving the EU is the right choice.  It might be even earlier if the EU gives in on a bunch of issues.  But at this moment, I can't imagine any anti-EU movement is watching Britain and thinking "This is our time to strike."

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I'm seeing a lot of talk about "experts." In general, I recommend a bit of caution with that. Of course we should listen to people who know stuff. If I need my car fixed I go to a mechanic. On the other hand, experts can be wrong. Experts denied the Big Bang and continental drift for example.

Not only are experts sometimes wrong, but there is a real danger in giving too much deference to any authority. Consider the Milgram experiment. A guy in a lab coat has a stupifying effect on most people. It's not enough to say, "well he's a scientist, so he must know." You have to remember that people have agendas. Let's not forget what tobacco company experts said.

If you want to know the truth, then you have to be vigilant. Consider the source, examine the evidence, look at the arguments, consider counterarguments, etc. Otherwise it's best to say you don't know.

 

 

This is a particularly useful habit to have if you don't like what the experts are saying because it clashes with your preconceived political views or personal philosophy.  

 

Global warming denialists, anti-vaxxers, and Brexit voters all employ it to great advantage.   :)  

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http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-06-27/world-s-top-fortunes-fall-196-2-billion-since-brexit-bombshell

World’s Top Fortunes Fall $196.2 Billion Since Brexit Bombshell

Global markets erased another $69.2 billion from the combined net worth of the world’s 400 richest people Monday, bringing the total since the U.K. shocked investors with a vote to leave the European Union to $196.2 billion in the last two trading days.

. . .

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Not only are experts sometimes wrong, but there is a real danger in giving too much deference to any authority. Consider the Milgram experiment. A guy in a lab coat has a stupifying effect on most people. It's not enough to say, "well he's a scientist, so he must know." You have to remember that people have agendas. Let's not forget what tobacco company experts said.

 

LOL, imagine a version of the Milgram experiment where the guy in the coat tells you that shocking the patient will likely cause significant damage and it'll take ~10 years to recover from the effects. Then you push the button anyways and the first signs of those things start happening. 

 

If anything, the Milgram experiment is a great example of why the pro-Brexit voters should be questioning the 'experts' they trusted.

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http://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/stop-ordering-irish-passports-irelands-plea-to-britons-after-brexit-vote-a3282466.html

'Stop ordering Irish passports': Ireland's plea to Britons after Brexit vote

 

Britons have been asked to stop applying for Irish passports after the UK’s vote to leave the EU triggered a surge in demand.

 

Foreign affairs minister Charlie Flanagan urged British citizens with the right to an Irish passport to apply only if it was necessary as the service was struggling to cope.

 

The UK’s shock decision to walk out on the European Union sparked a surge of interest from Britons seeking to ensure their long-term right to free movement after Brexit.

 

Large queues formed outside the country’s passport office and post offices ran out of application forms after the result of the EU referendum was announced.

 

Mr Flanagan reminded British citizens they would have access to EU rights for the foreseeable future while the British government negotiated the formal exit from the union.

 

"Following the UK referendum, there has been a spike in interest in Irish passports in Northern Ireland, Great Britain and elsewhere, although there has been some exaggeration of demand," he told the Times.

Edited by visionary

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https://theintercept.com/2016/06/25/brexit-is-only-the-latest-proof-of-the-insularity-and-failure-of-western-establishment-institutions/

Brexit is only the Latest Proof of the Insularity and Failure of Western Establishment Institutions

THE DECISION BY U.K. voters to leave the EU is such a glaring repudiation of the wisdom and relevance of elite political and media institutions that — for once — their failures have become a prominent part of the storyline. Media reaction to the Brexit vote falls into two general categories: (1) earnest, candid attempts to understand what motivated voters to make this choice, even if that means indicting their own establishment circles, and (2) petulant, self-serving, simple-minded attacks on disobedient pro-Leave voters for being primitive, xenophobic bigots (and stupid to boot), all to evade any reckoning with their own responsibility. Virtually every reaction that falls into the former category emphasizes the profound failures of Western establishment factions; these institutions have spawned pervasive misery and inequality, only to spew condescending scorn at their victims when they object.

The Los Angeles Times’s Vincent Bevins, in an outstanding and concise analysis, wrote that “both Brexit and Trumpism are the very, very wrong answers to legitimate questions that urban elites have refused to ask for 30 years”; in particular, “since the 1980s the elites in rich countries have overplayed their hand, taking all the gains for themselves and just covering their ears when anyone else talks, and now they are watching in horror as voters revolt.” The British journalist Tom Ewing, in a comprehensive Brexit explanation, said the same dynamic driving the U.K. vote prevails in Europe and North America as well: “the arrogance of neoliberal elites in constructing a politics designed to sideline and work around democracy while leaving democracy formally intact.”

. . .

The article is a bit long, but highly recommended reading. As usual, Glenn Greenwald nails it.

Edited by s0crates

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This is a particularly useful habit to have if you don't like what the experts are saying because it clashes with your preconceived political views or personal philosophy.

Global warming denialists, anti-vaxxers, and Brexit voters all employ it to great advantage. :)

Fair enough. As I said, we need to rely on experts. That's why I go to doctors when I'm sick and mechanics when my car breaks down. And I agree that dogmatic people sometimes ignore experts to their own detriment. My point is only that we should not uncritically believe the pronouncements of authority figures.

Just as people with agendas exploit public distrust of authority to great advantage, so too do people with agendas exploit people's trust in authority to great advantage. For example, intelligence experts assured us that invading Iraq was necessary for national security, and medical experts assured us many dangerous drugs (thalidomide, fen-phen, etc.) were safe, and financial experts assured us we had no choice but to bail out Wall St.

I would suggest that the public distrust in authority, which is certainly being exploited by dangerous ideologues as you suggest, is largely the product of the repeated dishonesty of those authority figures.

Edited by s0crates

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Greenwald has makes good points at times, but is something of an extremist on the left and a very biased one at that.

I think your characterization of Greenwald as a leftist is simplistic at best. He is critical of both parties and in some ways quite conservative. You might call him anti-establishment, but I think he's ideologically independent.

I'm not all that persuaded by ad hominem arguments anyway. What I'd really like to know is whether or not you think he has a good argument on this point.

Edited by s0crates

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https://theintercept.com/2016/06/25/brexit-is-only-the-latest-proof-of-the-insularity-and-failure-of-western-establishment-institutions/

The article is a bit long, but highly recommended reading. As usual, Glenn Greenwald nails it.

 

Interperting Brexit in any sort of larger statement, I think is a mistake.  England is significantly different than continental Europe, which is one reason why they never took on the Euro.

 

This was always going to be an issue.  As long as the UK did not embrace the Euro, there were always going to be issues.

 

On the larger, context, I think much of it is nonsense.  Why start in the 1980s?

 

Does he really want to claim that the Vietnam war made sense?

 

That the deflation during the Great Depression was a good idea?

 

I also think it ignores the positives of globalization in terms of the economic growth of many poor countries, and the growth in middle class in those countries.

Edited by PeterMP

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I also think it ignores the positives of globalization in terms of the economic growth of many poor countries, and the growth in middle class in those countries.

 

Are those positives in this context?

 

Why are the lower classes of the UK supposed to care about the growth in poor countries? Especially when it comes at their expense?

 

How many years are they supposed to watch the trend go before they decide to go against the current policy in whatever means they have? That doesn't mean they're doing the right/best/smart thing, but I definitely understand why they might.

 

This quote was great, because it represents 95% of this thread as well:

“a section of the London-based commentariat [that] anthropologized the British working class as though they were a lesser evolved breed from distant parts, all too often portraying them as bigots who did not know what was good for them.”

 

We see the same thing going on over here. The elites are just lucky it was a dumb ass by the name of Trump that sought to take advantage of it. They might not be so lucky in 2020.

 

Or maybe they'll actually figure out a way to protect themselves over here by then.

 

I say this as someone who's not really affected negatively by globalism and free trade. I just get why they're pissed.

Edited by tshile

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Are those positives in this context?

 

Why are the lower classes of the UK supposed to care about the growth in poor countries? Especially when it comes at their expense?

 

I like to think that everybody cares about morality and ethics, and that people consider how their lives affect others and that acquiring a few pieces of junk might not be worth leaving people to live in real poverty.

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Much of the anti-EU nationalist bs floating around in UK/Europe the last few years is involving migrants and fueled by far right-wing parties who have used them as a bogieman. So yes bigotry is a huge part of it.

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I like to think that everybody cares about morality and ethics, and that people consider how their lives affect others and that acquiring a few pieces of junk might not be worth leaving people to live in real poverty.

 

well, then i think you're sadly mistaken.

 

morality and ethics are great until it's your family that is falling behind and you see the business owners and politicians getting richer.  of course, then it really isn't morality and ethics for that person, now is it? It's feel good stuff until it's "inconvenient" for them.

 

i don't really know what it is the UK people who are so angry lost, I can only look at it through what I know about our country. people are inherently selfish, that being a bad quality doesn't do much to change it.

 

of course, the elites could have sucked up less money and spread things around more, then they probably could have kept things the way that benefited them. at least for a bit longer. but they didn't, and as is usually the case they're outnumbered by the people who got screwed.

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well, then i think you're sadly mistaken.

 

morality and ethics are great until it's your family that is falling behind and you see the business owners and politicians getting richer.  of course, then it really isn't morality and ethics for that person, now is it? It's feel good stuff until it's "inconvenient" for them.

 

i don't really know what it is the UK people who are so angry lost, I can only look at it through what I know about our country. people are inherently selfish, that being a bad quality doesn't do much to change it.

 

of course, the elites could have sucked up less money and spread things around more, then they probably could have kept things the way that benefited them. at least for a bit longer. but they didn't, and as is usually the case they're outnumbered by the people who got screwed.

 

We seem to be painting with a broad brush here in terms of elites.

 

I've written about US income inequality here quite a bit.  I think we can all consider Obama elite, and the piece eludes to him being elite in the context of Libya (where it was his administration that made the decisions so mistakes there by the "elite" would realistically be his), and he's certainly pro-free trade and globalization.

 

But his answer to US income inequality is not the same as George Bush's, Trump's, or Paul Ryan's.

 

When it comes to putting all "elites" in the same basket with respect to inter-national income inequality, I think you've made a mistake.

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But his answer to US income inequality is not the same as George Bush's, Trump's, or Paul Ryan's.

 

When it comes to putting all "elites" in the same basket with respect to inter-national income inequality, I think you've made a mistake.

 

Right, I get that.

 

I don't think the majority of the lower class gets that. Maybe I'm selling them short. They did just vote to do something that everyone who claims to know better said is devastating for them, so maybe not?

 

Obama may have a different policy from Bush, but decades of hearing politicians (from both sides) say they're going to make it better and things get worse eventually becomes the only thing that matters.

 

Of course, according to many, the UK vote is all about racism, xenophobia, and general bigotry so maybe it has nothing to do with it.

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We seem to be painting with a broad brush here in terms of elites.

 

I've written about US income inequality here quite a bit.  I think we can all consider Obama elite, and the piece eludes to him being elite in the context of Libya (where it was his administration that made the decisions so mistakes there by the "elite" would realistically be his), and he's certainly pro-free trade and globalization.

 

But his answer to US income inequality is not the same as George Bush's, Trump's, or Paul Ryan's.

 

When it comes to putting all "elites" in the same basket with respect to inter-national income inequality, I think you've made a mistake.

 

 

Yeah , bread and circus ....and then the fall

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Say what you want about the whole situation...

 

But Nigel Farage went in there yesterday like a straight up gangster :lol:  


Edited by DC9
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Right, I get that.

 

I don't think the majority of the lower class gets that. Maybe I'm selling them short. They did just vote to do something that everyone who claims to know better said is devastating for them, so maybe not?

 

Obama may have a different policy from Bush, but decades of hearing politicians (from both sides) say they're going to make it better and things get worse eventually becomes the only thing that matters.

 

Of course, according to many, the UK vote is all about racism, xenophobia, and general bigotry so maybe it has nothing to do with it.

 

You seem to be implying that the masses are to stupid to remember or understand that before Trump/Sanders that the Republican economics and Democratic economics were different- that policies that include tax cuts for the wealthy and tax breaks that largely benefit the wealthy and tax policies that allow for large inter-generational passing of wealth might affect the amount wealth the wealthy are able to accumulate.

 

And they are dumb enough to not have realized this or remember it.

 

I guess, at least at some level, I'm willing to give them more credit than that.

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I like how he says this needs to be dealt with going forward with grown up attitudes. And then proceeded to insult childishly those he wants to negotiate with.

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Farage just has a face you want to punch. And punch. And punch. And punch. 

 

And that's before the bigoted, racist, Nationalistic POS opens he's mouth. 

 

In his ideal World, and that of his party, England would stand alone and be full of white English people. 

 

How ANYONE can listen to that low life without a gun to their head, much less do what he suggests and follow, is utterly beyond me. 

 

He encompasses all that is wrong with this Country. But he plays to that. And his ilk is growing. 

 

Hail. 

Edited by Gibbs Hog Heaven
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Straight up gangster?  Or gloating, insulting prick?

 

Well, he obviously wanted to make it a memorable break up.

I like how he says this needs to be dealt with going forward with grown up attitudes. And then proceeded to insult childishly those he wants to negotiate with.

 

Reference this video when we win the league next year... cause that's exactly how I'm coming into the soccer thread.

Farage just has a face you want to punch. And punch. And punch. And punch. 

 

And that's before the bigoted, racist, Nationalistic POS opens he's mouth. 

 

In his ideal World, and that of his party, England would stand alone and be full of white English people. 

 

I'm not trying to sound like I support the guy, but I am saying that it took an absolute brass pair or an empty head (in this case it's a mixture of both) to go in there and do that.

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