Calm down, there probably won’t be a Brexit
This last few days I have been getting carried away with the enormity of Brexit. I have been filled with a mixture of anxiety and excitement. Anxiety at the consequences of the UK taking such a reckless gamble and excitement at the now very real prospect of an independent Scotland within the EU.
However as the shock is setting in and I have had time to think, I realise there probably wont be a Brexit.
It all boils down to the concepts of sovereignty and democracy, the words the Brexiteers bring up when they try to delude themselves that they made a sensible decision that wasn’t based primarily on fear and bigotry. They wanted sovereignty to be held at Westminster because they saw Westminster as a democratic system that was accountable to them. They didn’t understand the UK parliament was already sovereign and they failed to see that the UK is barely a democracy.
However, as they voted for all democratic decisions to be made in Westminster they can’t really argue if the UK parliament refuses to pass a motion that would set in place article 50. I understand this would be a tad unfair given the referendum result but it is exactly the type of unfairness the system that they voted for was designed to dish out. We have a majoritan parliament so we get governed by parties that only get a small percentage of the popular vote. We have an unelected second chamber. We have a monarch as a head of state. The only good thing about the system is that it’s sovereign, which was the one thing the Brexiteers thought it wasn’t.
Almost every MP in the country is going to be receiving thousands of letters from constituents asking them to not allow a Brexit. The majority of MPs were against the idea in the first place. The referendum was not binding. So the new Tory leader could just put the concept to a vote and let it fail. Brexiteers can have no issue if their beloved sovereign democratic parliament overrules them; after all their problems are caused by Hungarians not the UK system which they see as the answer.
That said, the Brexiteers will have an issue with the sovereign UK parliament they voted for making decisions on their behalf – and so they should because the system stinks. I just wish they had had the same issue at some point in the last few decades. Maybe then we could have had voting reform and avoided this clusterfuck of a referendum result.
Due to Brexiteer pressure the above scenario will not happen. What is more likely is that the politicians will allow the same people to make the decision again hoping that the fact that Britain is burning around them nudges them in a slightly less reactionary direction.
What is more likely to happen in the next few months given current events is this: the chaos inflicting the country gets worse, political parties are hamstrung by infighting and parliament grinds to a halt, businesses announce they are leaving the country, the markets and the value of the pound continues to plummet, Scotland and Northern Ireland will start agitating to leave and the mood of the populace begins to turn.
Parliament will call a snap general election which they can do if two thirds of MPs agree to it, which is around the same proportion of MPs who were against Brexit. In the general election campaign several parties will stand with the ticket of holding a second referendum. While this is going on the EU will announce a better deal (Vow) for the UK within the EU, perhaps with the UK being able to have tighter border controls. The parties promising a second referendum will win a clear majority. The referendum will be held and Remain will be victorious due to the public being spooked by all of the turmoil.
I may be completely wrong but this is the course of action I would be trying to engineer if I had any power in Westminster. If they choose not to go down this route then more fool them. At least we have the prospect of Scottish Independence within the EU to fall back on.
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