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The past increases, the future recedes

Posted on June 26th, 2016

I am surprised at how upset I am over the Brexit vote. Angry yet very sad. Which is strange because I have not lived in England for nearly forty years. But I still care. I’m angry at the betrayal of voters by self-serving politicians evading culpability for decades of British government inertia, mismanagement and neglect. The Tory party must shoulder most blame for this catastrophe. In seeking to obscure the real impact of conservative-imposed austerity, the political right has allowed and often encouraged the idea that Europe and migrants are to blame for Britain’s ills. And aggrieved voters bought this fabrication. Britain’s future gambled away by a powerful few. I’m angry too because this failure to tackle anti-immigrant and anti-European prejudice has cultivated a…

The old ladies of Clacton have spoken

Posted on June 24th, 2016

Sadly, the Brexit campaign soon became less about the future and all about the past. Older people in rural England have felt increasingly marginalised and neglected for decades, dumped on during every financial crisis, always hit hardest by austerity. Cleverly exploited by the Leave campaign, this became payback time. Here was a chance to stick it to the elites in London and Brussels. And so they did. Never mind that the future belongs mostly to 18-29 year-olds, 70% of whom supported Remain. This was a mutiny by older, white, poorly educated, English manual workers who read the Daily Mail and vote Conservative or UKIP. You might expect such malcontents to realise it is they who suffer most from Cameron’s valiant efforts to entrench privilege and widen…