Very sad to leave

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I was wrong. The result was not 60:40 to one side or the other. Instead, the result was 52:48. I think that this is the worst possible result. If we had a clear remain/leave outcome then I think that the Kingdom could have united with the result, and gone from there. However, we are almost as divided as it is possible to be.

I was shocked to read the result this morning. I have felt sad all morning, and truly worry about the next 10 years as we (UK) adjust to being outside of the EU. There are a huge number of potential risks associated with leaving the EU, but for me the biggest one is dividing the nation (most notably with Scotland almost certainly asking for a new referendum to leave the UK).

My hope is that the UK negotiates a free trade deal with EU, which (in return) the UK gives some sensible rights back to the EU. However, I worry that this may not be possible.

It’s a mess right now. Let us hope that in 10 years time we can look back and think that it was worth it.

 

The Referendum Blues

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I woke up this morning feeling blue. The UK is making a monumental decision today, and I am not sure that my decision is correct. I voted in the EU referendum (3 hours ago) feeling sick in my stomach. I cast my vote without the usual smile and joke that I normally give the people working in my local polling station. This time it was serious, and there would not be the usual chance to change my mind a few years later (in a future election). I was committing myself to something that I would have to remember for the rest of my life.

In every election vote in the past, I have passionately believed in the party that I was voting for. I could make long and detailed arguments about why I truly believed in that party. This time, I can see both sides of the argument (“Brexit” or “Remain”) and I simply cannot defend either side for some of their views.

So instead I voted with my ‘gut instinct’. It’s not a vote I made after poring over all the EU policies over a period of months. Instead, it was made after living in the EU all my life, and seeing the benefits/drawbacks that it gives.

If my choice wins tomorrow, I will not be celebrating. I simply cannot tell for sure if my gut feeling was correct. More importantly, I know that the ‘United’ Kingdom is unbelievably divided. It will take years to get over the divide that this referendum has caused. Some people will never get over it. It is a sad day, and I am in a melancholic mood.

I think that the mood of Britain is best summed up by this video: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/video/2016/jun/22/eu-referendum-welcome-to-the-divided-angry-kingdom-video

It is made by the fabulous duo John Harris and John Domokos. They have made a series of videos called ‘Anywhere but Westminster’. Their premise is (essentially) that people have put too much weight on the views of Londoners, and not enough of the views of people all across the rest of the United Kingdom. This is a mistake that I believe so many politicians have made, assuming that what they hear in London (especially at the middle-class BBC) is replicated across the UK.  Rightly or wrongly, ‘ordinary’ non-London people tend to have different views. Their documentaries are fascinating and illuminating.

John Harris’ interview style is reminiscent of the fantastic Simon Reeve (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simon_Reeve_(British_TV_presenter)) who interviews people from all walks of life, and does not judge, condone or preach to them. He simply listens.  It is a rare gift.

I hope I voted wisely.

I wish for peace and healing in both the United Kingdom, Europe and around the world.

You heard it here first – the result of the EU referendum

Europe_resultProbably the most important vote in my (adult) lifetime is about to happen – will Britain choose to leave or remain in the European Union (EU)?

I will not divulge which way I shall vote, but I can tell you what the result will be.

I genuinely do think that most politicians and broadcasters (most influentially “the BBC”) originally (for example 1+ year ago) thought that the result of the referendum would be a fairly easy victory for the ‘remain’ campaign. However, it has not surprised me to find out that the opinion polls are so close.

As I type this, the current approximate figures are:

  • 40% remain in EU
  • 40% leave EU
  • 20% undecided.

I personally do not think that the vote directly equates to a referendum on immigration, but I certainly believe that a huge proportion of this country do. I personally do not think that immigration directly relates to Islamic terrorism, but I certainly believe that a huge proportion of this country do.

  • Therefore, I believe that the result of the vote will be completely decided by whether-or-not there is a terrorist incident on Europe before 23rd June 2016.

Approximately 6 months ago, I started telling my friends and family that:

  • If there is no major terrorist incident (in the 2 weeks before the vote), then the result will be 60:40% remain in EU.
  • If there is a major terrorist incident (in the 2 weeks before the vote), then the result will be 60:40% leave the EU.

I really do think it is that simple. Only time will tell whether or not I will be correct.