AN ACCIDENTAL REVOLUTION HAS CHANGED ALL OUR FUTURES

JOHN McGURK

Suddenly everything is clear: we are facing the most profound economic, political and diplomat crisis since 1939. The Government has been toppled and its opposition has imploded.

The nation is divided. Scotland is again demanding independence and, this time, will probably get it. The fragile peace in Northern Ireland is back at risk. Those continental countries who were our friends are out for revenge.

And at the centre of it all is a man who is a known philanderer, liar and opportunist. He has put the lives and welfare of millions of families into a melting pot.

Thousands of jobs may be lost. Big businesses may well flee elsewhere. Border checkpoints may have to be erected between Scotland and England to stop illegal immigration north to south.

And all because he wants to be the leader of the Tory party and therefore the next Prime Minister.

The biggest irony of all is that he didn’t really mean to cause all this trouble. All he wanted was to narrowly lose a brave fight and end up as the hero of the obnoxious Conservative Right.

Then he would be in pole position to challenge a Prime Minister who had already signalled his intention to quit at the next general election after letting his intentions slip during an unthinking moment in his kitchen with a reporter.

Instead, this plot for power triggered what we now realise has been the first civil war in Britain since Oliver Cromwell faced up to the monarchy between 1642 and 1651.

Never in his wildest dreams did Boris Johnson think that his burning ambition would result in such a monumental crisis. It wasn’t supposed to be like this. It was an accident.

The dishonesty of the Brexit campaign, supported by the madness of UKIP and Nigel Farage, has consequences which surely cannot be exaggerated. We are all likely to pay a huge price in savings and pensions. Young people will no longer have an unrestricted future to study or work in Europe

This was a war of words which inadvertently tapped into, and finally laid bare, the prejudices and hatreds of a nation which were much misunderstood and which have been lurking under the surface for decades. Finally, the fury erupted.

The battlegrounds were the once thriving communities which are now industrial wastelands; which have bred unemployment and resentment; where families live on the poverty line with little hope for the future; which are a world away from the establishment and the elite.

The masses finally clashed with the classes and it’s the masses who have won. This was not a referendum. This was a revolution.

Already we are hearing ugly stories of racist street bullies, without the intelligence to understand reality, abusing immigrants and threatening them with deportation. The lynch mob is out for a hangin’.

The settled will of the British people has not produced a constructive result. Instead, it has created bitterness and hatred demonstrated by those endless BBC vox-pops with punch-drunk Brexiteers who make idiotic statements such as: “At last I’ve got my country back”.

David Cameron is already being compared to Neville Chamberlain. His appeasement towards the eurosceptics, or “bastards” as his predecessor John Major described them, by agreeing to stage an In/Out vote on Europe must now be seen as a disastrous mistake.

He made the same misjudgement over the Scottish independence referendum when the nationalists would  happily have accepted Devo-Max.

Cameron thought he could win the EU referendum outright and settle the matter for once and for all.

Perhaps he forgot one of the most elementary lesson in politics: Don’t ask the electorate unless you know the answer.

And what now for Boris Johnson and Michael Gove, the two amigos who were hardly seen over the weekend as the country clamoured to know their plan for the future prosperity of the United Kingdom. Yesterday they remained AWOL as Parliament debated Britain’s future place in Europe.

Boris chose the newspaper he writes for, The Daily Telegraph, to make his first announcement to the nation. This was an essay which read and sounded nothing like the confident proclamations he was making just days ago.

Despite his battle bus claim that £350 million a week could go to the NHS, he now says EU money “could” be used on the health service.

There was hardly any mention of the biggest issue of the campaign, his promise to take back control of immigration. Other statements such as “nothing will change” were meaningless because, even if he does become Prime Minister, the EU may well take a different view. 

* We will be able to work, travel, study and continue to buy homes in Europe. Let’s see what the French and Germans say about that.

* We will be “intensifying cooperation and partnership” in areas like the arts, sciences and universities. Let’s see what the French and Germans say about that.

* EU citizens here will be fully protected as will Brits living in Europe. There’s nothing to worry about. Let’s see what the French and Germans say about that.

* Crucially, there should be no “great rush” to leave the EU. Both the French and Germans are already in disagreement.

Yesterday, despite the claim from Boris Johnson that the markets had stabilised, the Pound hit a 31 year low; some £6.5 billion was wiped off RBS, Barclays and Lloyds; shares in the FTSE 250 dropped by 7% and the UK lost its triple credit rating as volatility and uncertainty reigned across the world.

Apparently, the most googled questions in Britain on referendum day were “What is the EU?” and “What is Brexit?”

Nicola Sturgeon is to be commended for announcing her intention to fight for Scotland to stay inside the EU no matter what the rest of the UK says.  Last night she was attempting to build an alliance with doomed Gibraltar.

As for Boris Johnson, we must hope that he who wields the dagger never wears the crown.

 

jcmcgurk@blueyonder.co.uk

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  Comments: 2

  1. robert mcdowell


    yes – every tragic and farcical sinew of the above is true. He we stand, pragmatic phlemagtic British cutting noses to spite faces – and now re-ordering our political economy that in coming days, months, years will evoke words as worms, can. herding, cats, bag, frogs, wheelbarrow. rats, ships, revolution, Democracy, joke, riots, cynical, Recession, Depression, world crisis, EU… ? If this was supposedly all about restoring sovereignty to the House of Commons let’s hope they find an uncommon urgency and intelligence to reform themselves fast in a new political order and reverse this lemmings, cliff.

    Odd that what started out as attempt to salve internal party division rent it wholly asunder, what was argued for a more free economy decimates it, cuttting immigration for more jobs will cause mass unemployment. reform of the EU turns into a revolution in UK, to unite UK disunites it, to enthrone Conservatism dethroned it. to secure economic sovereignty made a victim of international forces.

    Was there ever a set of political policy decisions and actions based on intuitive logic that in every aspect had a direct opposite effect of that intended. Capitalism may think it thrives on animal spirits – another 180 degree wrong-headed notion.

    In our modern world, treating voters like children to be told fairy tales, talk left when walking right and vice versa, are so ingrained that politicians often can’t know what lies they tell. One good thing that may come out of this, if at a cost of many billions and a generation of progress and lives lost, may be a revived belief in fully tested-policies, in practical truth before political rhetoric. A vain hope maybe. The next recession starting now will be blamed on politicians and not on bankers.


  2. Dear John,

    Great article, thank you.

    As far as I am concerned the only party Boris should be in charge of is the Tories Christmas one.

    Excluding a brief diversion with the Lib Dems, I have voted Conservative for almost 50 years. But if Boris becomes our new P.M. I’ll be finished with them. How can the electorate, or the international community, take someone who acts and talks as if a cross between Worzel Gummidge and a reject from a Goon Show casting session, in any way seriously?

    He is a joke, in very bad taste.

    Yours,

    Ian Hamilton, Crieff

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