in the so called former "Weimar Republic".
Except turnout was pretty good
Not exactly how I meant it. Want of understanding of popular opinion on the part of our elected representatives would be closer, but doesn't quite scan so well....
There's an interesting article here comparing and contrasting the differences between the Scottish Independence referendum and the Brexit referendum. The main difference being that all of the issues were worked out and discussed in advance....
It's hard to see how nutting out an exit plan and then putting it to the people is ignoring their will. But then I don't live in under Westminster democracy any more so perhaps I have forgotten what a pale shade of democracy it is, how little experience they have with such simple ideas. How ironic that this is the very system that Brexit is a vote to make supreme again.
It's probably the most pragmatic solution, but I don't think it's the Westminster democracy that the main problem here (although they've shown themselves utterly incapable of organising a gang of small boys to piss up a wall). It's that Farridge (rhymes with garage) and his ilk will be whipping up populist outrage at anything that they can make to look like an attempt to outflank the stated will of the people. The referendum has laid bare some deep faultlines in UK society that have been 40+ years in the making. Someone quoted 'eton rifles' earlier. I commented to a friend a day or two ago that even taking Thatcher, the Cold War and the imminent threat of thermonuclear annihilation out of the equation, it's funny how many protest and political songs from the late '70's and '80's are still relevant, with a word or two of updating here and there. You could add even more Paul Weller (Going Underground, Time for Truth, Down in the tube station at midnight), Billy Bragg ((New England), The Specials (Ghost Town), The Clash (White Riot), New Model Army (Smalltown England, Vengeance, more or less any track from 1985's 'no rest for the wicked'), Chumbawumba's entire discography.....
One might be forgiven for thinking it's almost as if we never properly addressed the underlying socioeconomic causes at all.
In [a 2015] interview with Mojo, Paul Weller struck out against Prime Minister David Cameron who claimed his liking for The Jam classic 'Eton Rifles': "The whole thing with Cameron saying it was one of his favourite songs... I just think, 'Which bit didn't you get?'" People say, 'Why don't you write any more political songs?' But I would just write exactly the same fucking things I wrote thirty-odd years ago
don't know how Bosworth Field lodged itself in my head.
For want of a nail the shoe was lost....
The proverb of course ending with: "For the failure of battle the kingdom was lost".
For want of caring the voters were lost;
For want of the voters the referendum was lost.....
I’m not sure I buy Monbiot’s ability to see the future on this. Not do I buy that it’s “bad democracy”. It’s way worse democracy to roll over and accept disaster just because of a single poll result. AFAIK it’s still a representative democracy, and the referendum is non binding. The representatives are the ones democratically elected to make choices on behalf of the people, that is how their system works. One of those choices can certainly be to enter into a better plebescite process than this balls-up, in which there is a real concrete plan that people are voting on. This can quite righteously be seen as a strong message that such a process be entered into. Democracy is meant to take time. It’s meant to be a process of public engagement. I can accept that the British government has been pretty shit at that for ages, but that doesn’t mean they can never learn. This could be that time.
Problem is, although you're absolutely correct, this potato is beyond red-hot. Whatever the actuality of the EU, this referendum was very much an avatar onto which whatever social discontent one liked could be projected - immigration, control, jobs, distant and out-of-touch elitist leaders, the fact your local council got rid of the public loos in town*.
You know and I know that what you've outlined is how democracy works. But a lot of people who are very disengaged from the political process just re-engaged with a vengeance (both in the leave and remain camps). Keeping them all happy**, while plotting a path out of this that doesn't end in isolationist ecomomic and social disaster is going to be a nightmare.
*this actually happened.
**happy here meaning 'not massive civil unrest', which I do think is a possibility if there is a general perception of actions that could easily be (mis)interpreted as 'ignoring the will of the people', whatever the fuck that is - see 'avatar' above.
core deep-green ideology (that we should give up all modern advances and live in darkened caves eating kale)
To a point. Although he did publish a book a couple of years back which argued for the re-wilding large tracts of the UK (wolves and otters and bears, oh my). Which....um... yeah.
The saddest part about Brexit to me is how easily people seem to have given up. The fight is not yet over and Remain seems worth fighting for. Take it to the bitter end if you ever had the courage of your convictions. This thing could still be rescued. I mean FFS you practically have the entire political establishment on your side. For once. Use the damned thing, make it easy for them to at least have another poll.
I don't always agree with George Monbiot, but I think these two paragraphs sum it up:
Let’s sack the electorate and appoint a new one: this is the demand made by MPs, lawyers and the 4 million people who have signed the petition calling for a second referendum. It’s a cry of pain, and therefore understandable, but it’s also bad politics and bad democracy. Reduced to its essence, it amounts to graduates telling nongraduates: “We reject your democratic choice.”
Were this vote to be annulled (it won’t be), the result would be a full-scale class and culture war, riots and perhaps worse, pitching middle-class progressives against those on whose behalf they have claimed to speak, and permanently alienating people who have spent their lives feeling voiceless and powerless.
I think you'll find that Caleb said the first paragraph.
Well, yeah, but it wouldnt have made any sense if I hadn't included it to give it context.
And within the context, my (I argue not unreasonable) assumption was that you were referring to the tories. Them being notorious cat-chuckers an' all, and, to an outside observer, having the most to gain from this.
But if you're right, I appear to have underestimated the current Labour party's appetite for self-immolation.
To quote you in full, with added emphasis
The Tories have just presided over the greatest disaster in the country's history since WWII and we're talking about Corbyn?
I do not believe that is accidental, myself.
You have now clarified thusly...
I'm not saying Benn et al are being advised by CrosbyTextor
...but you can see why an obvious assumption might be made on my part, no?