My Mazamet

Life at № 42

Brexit: The carnage has begun

The FTSE saw losses yesterday worth a few hundred billion. Australia followed suit with losses of 50 billion in shares (AUD). The GBP is at a 40 year low. Moody’s has already downgraded the UK credit rating to negative. In total, 2 trillion were wiped off the markets worldwide. And this is just the beginning. The really ugly part is yet to come.

One of the issues the leave campaign hasn’t addressed and which Boris Johnson is already trying to skate around, is the practical side of a EU departure. Johnson is saying there’s no need to invoke article 50… that there’s no rush to leave. The problem is the leave campaign can’t have it both ways. No rush to leave means borders remain open- if borders remain open, that means their principal campaign promise on immigration was meaningless. On the other hand if they do try to close borders, that will trigger a response from the EU. In any event, they’re already admitting the “control the borders” slogan was more a slogan than an actual goal.


Economically, voting to leave has also backed the UK into a corner. The most obvious and immediate result is that London can no longer be the EU’s capital of finance. For the same reasons the Cayman Islands or Belize can’t be the EU’s capital of finance. They’re not part of Europe and are not subject to EU law.

I’m curious as to how the British public will react as they realize that nothing the leave campaign promised is viable, and that in fact all of the negative predictions on the economy were reasonably accurate.

In the end it’s a terrible price for a whole country to pay- but on the other hand it’s also an opportunity for the remaining EU members. The UK repeatedly blocked closer ties for EU countries and was staunchly opposed to any sort of fiscal union. They also opposed things like the Tobin tax (supported by almost every other EU country.) And they’re obviously a gateway to shady tax havens… So this is a chance to redesign Europe according to shared European principles.


41 comments on “Brexit: The carnage has begun

  1. Hariod Brawn
    June 25, 2016

    Don’t a majority in France want out? BHL: “If there was a referendum in France, they would probably vote to exit . . . One of the problems of Europe – which is the explanation for this populist reaction like a Brexit – is that this Europe is not desired any longer. And it does not create desire. This is because the pattern it shows is so sad, so grey, so technical and so technocratic . . . And why is it as such? Because it does not make enough space for dreams and ideas and values, and so on.”


    • BHL likes the sound of his own voice. When push comes to shove, French people are pragmatists. Neither the PS nor the UMP would dream of putting membership at risk. The only voices for exit are the FN and Melenchon.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. David J
    June 25, 2016

    Watch the interview on Newsnight between the Eurosceptic Conservative MEP Daniel Hannahn and interviewer Evan Davis.

    It is quite incredible, as the MEP admits that all the Brexit rhetoric in the last few months, and the winning “Take back control” message will not apply in the way that those who voted for Brexit think it will – ie we will probably still have free movement of labour.

    It’s all a nightmare, and all on the narrow vote of 48-52. That does not show a decisive decision – it indicates a country divided and ultimately undecided.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I saw it! What really shocks me is that it didn’t occur to anyone to really question and scrutinize their claims and promises beforehand. The media very much let them get away with repeating slogans ad nauseum.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Hariod Brawn
      June 25, 2016

      [Vote in England: 53.2% for leave vs. 46.8% for remain]


  3. Clare Flourish
    June 25, 2016

    No-one believed it would happen. Farridge would not have called for a re-run if Remain won by a small majority, had he thought his side might win.

    The referendum is not binding, and Article 50, being a treaty provision, is within the Crown Prerogative: the Prime Minister only can invoke it, and if s/he wishes without any consultation.

    I may go back to Scotland. England leaving the UK, and therefore the EU, leaving the rest of us with our membership might be the solution.

    All of the Leave campaign was lies. “Take back control”. £350m for the NHS. No more funny foreign accents. One comment- Friday was almost as horrid a day as the Fall of the Berlin Wall was wonderful.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. tildeb
    June 25, 2016

    It’s always easier to say ‘No’ than ‘Yes’, easier to leave than stay. Patriotism is helpful for that. But now that Britain is out of the EU and must face the reality of what that means rather than imagine the easy rhetorical fiction, let’s watch the incredible shrinking country continue down this path as Scotland and then Ireland do the same. Very patriotic and all that jazz..Can Boris now convince London to secede from England and appoint him head Pooh Bah? Imagine ‘taking back’ all that control. A wet dream for the dull-witted and patriotic alike.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Did you see their “roadmap”? It’s hilarious:
      It looks like it was written by two spoilt, angry and entirely deluded teenagers. The gist is “we’re going to get everything we want, the way we want it and there’s nothing anyone can do about it.”

      Liked by 1 person

    • Colin
      June 25, 2016

      That’s my hubby not getting a research grant for his masters projects.

      That’s him being locked out of Erasmus and Horizon20.

      That’s his dream of working at CERN dead.

      Unless I can scrabble something together quickly in Sweden, or tell him to skip a year and apply for Uppsala or Lund instead. But then we’ll have to split up for a whole year: him in Sweden, me here in England as I finish my degree.

      We didn’t vote Leave.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Mike’s decided he’s going to take French citizenship- as its his right through marriage. It might be a good idea for Mark to take EU citizenship through you as well.


      • acflory
        June 26, 2016

        Ugh, the repercussions are nasty, and just beginning. 😦


  5. acflory
    June 25, 2016

    I suspect that half the people who voted to leave probably did so out of pique…but never expected their vote to carry. For me, the truly amazing thing was how the markets reacted. Nothing has actually happened yet. Nevertheless shares worldwide went into a nosedive. Why? Emotion on the part of professional gamblers. Share traders are a joke.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Well, the exit vote means a seismic shift in the financial world. London was basically the EU’s financial hub (by a mile.) Now there has to be a whole restructuring of financial companies to other EU areas. It will also mean they’ll have to operate under considerably more restrictive rules and regulations…

      Liked by 2 people

      • acflory
        June 25, 2016

        lol – I know there /will/ be major disruptions, but none of them have actually happened yet. They’re still in the future. The stock market panicked in anticipation.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. foolsmusings
    June 25, 2016

    As a Canadian, I just want my government to stop all those damn British refugees who said they were moving here. :p

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Arkenaten
    June 25, 2016

    Living down here one tends to feel somewhat cut off and not quite British any more, dontcha know,what?

    However, I have been reading in some blogging quarters that leaving would help protect British jobs. Meaning keep the wogs out! Enoch Powell would piss himself laughing!
    I’ll be honest, when I first read this about British Jobs I took it with a pinch of salt.
    I grew up in the UK hearing the same banal nonsense from people even before we were ever in the EU.
    I lived in the UK when there was industrial action from coal miners, British Leyland car workers ( who turned out utterly shit cars compared to many competitors) the steel industry all but collapsed, bus driver strikes, teacher strikes, lorry driver strikes etc etc. There often seemed to be industrial action and I am sure there was lots more but I was too young and busy with other things to be overly concerned with politics at that stage.

    Yet, 30 plus years down the line and it’s the same whinging whining so-called class war going on.

    The workers are being screwed. and it’s ”all right for you middle class”. To me, working class simply meant in many cases a fucking ignorant slob who thought beating up people who supported another soccer team was cool. Such trash was often encountered at school and deserved the snot kicking out of them. And some got just that! These ”grew up” and simply went on to become larger versions of what they were at school. Yogurt has more culture than these jerks.

    No matter what my ”class” I was a worker then and am a worker now.

    As for ”Great” Britain. yeah, the Brits are brilliant at loads of stuff and have produced some real gems, like every country, but you can’t ”rule the waves”, try to colonize and control half the ”known world”, shoot natives, drink tea and call everyone ”wogs”, and then expect them to play by your rules for ever more.
    It doesn’t work that way.

    All this ra-ra God save the fucking Queen nationalist bullshit makes me want to gag.

    What next? A fucking fly bye from a couple of Lancaster Bombers and a few Spitfires?

    I’ll be interested to see if anything transpires with the Football supporters over the weekend!

    As someone I just read wrote, ”…in the space of fours hours I’ve been stripped of my European citizenship.”

    Great Britain? I dunno. It seems that sometimes people just behave like a bunch of wankers.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Arkenaten
    June 25, 2016

    “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” — Helen Keller

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Well Goldman Sachs just announced they were pulling out 200 jobs out of London. Paris will probably be the new banking capitol of Europe.

    In my opinion the EU should treat the UK as “Friends WithOUT Benefits”

    The other thing i do not understand is how this can happen on a simple majority vote. IN the USA in order to amend our US Constitution it takes a 3/4 majority of ALL the States. A big decision like joining or breaking off of the EU should be a consensus vote, not a simple majority vote. An overwhelming majority indicates consensus. I can see on simple laws a simple majority, but not on something that involves your very Statehood. That should require a consensus vote.

    I feel sorry for the educated young people who have lost an employment pool of 27 other countries. This is a pretty indelible change, I guess they (the majority of the public) will have to live with what they asked for.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s much worse than just Goldman. Deutsche Bank, Santander, Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan- they all have to rethink their positions. As the Financial Times was pointing out today, the only thing that could partially save the city would be Mifid II (regulation), but that doesn’t go anywhere near to giving them the leeway they have today.


  10. violetwisp
    June 25, 2016

    Str8tGrandmother makes good points about the lack of consensus. There’s an online petition that’s got 2 million signatures in 24 hours saying pretty much the same thing. Loads of people who voted to leave are claiming it was simply a government protest vote, or they hadn’t considered the consequences, or the now obvious lies of the Leave campaign make them change their minds. And, of course, there’s nothing legally binding about the referendum itself – MPs still have to vote. There’s definitely wriggle room within the UK at least to go for another referendum. Unfortunately I don’t think the rest of Europe would be helpful. Like you, people are probably beginning to think of it as a potentially positive change for the EU.

    If Scotland could vote for independence tomorrow, it would definitely be a Yes vote. People are furious – 62% of us voted to remain in the EU (75% in Edinburgh). But I suspect that once the dust has settled, fear will kick in and it won’t be plain sailing.

    Liked by 2 people

    • It’s sad. All very, very sad. I suppose I’m privileged in that the Britain I know is open and has a deep sense of fairness. In fact I’d say the same of the America I knew as a schoolboy. I refuse to believe that Farage small-mindedness represents the majority. I refuse.

      As for Scotland, after tomorrow the left will be in power in Spain- and that means the only impediment to Scotland joining the EU will have been removed 😉 We’ve got to make the best of what we’ve got, and if that means alternative routes, then alternative routes it is. Re-Welcome to the EU.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Helen Devries
        June 26, 2016

        Anecdotal evidence only, but visiting my mother just before the referendum I found people talking about their decision to vote: Leave was in the vast majority and seemed to be based on the very lack of fairness that you point to as part of British society. People resented the wholesale stripping out of real jobs since the 80s, resented in particular being told what they should think by those who profited from the Thatcher/Blair revolution – which included the ‘leaders’ of the Leave campaign – resented being thought of as stupid and worthless and thought that the EU had done nothing to give hope to their children.
        No racism, no ignorance; a protest vote on the one opportunity to vote when not strangled by the main political parties.

        Liked by 1 person

      • It was the perfect storm. When people are angry or resentful enough, they’re much more inclined to believe things that reinforce those feelings.
        The problem is, though, that Brexit doesn’t address any of their needs or concerns.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. docatheist
    June 25, 2016

    Granted I’m not following Brexit as closely as someone with television and a home within the affected geography, but I haven’t heard a peep out of The Queen of England over any of this. What have I missed, there?


  12. docatheist
    June 25, 2016

    BTW, if England goes through with all this, its best bet, I think, is to use its smaller drag to become a nimbler market — of anything. They could learn ways to flourish as an outsider in their geographic neighborhood from Israel — that is, if the antisemites among them can stomach the thought.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Highly doubtful. The Brexit leader (Farage) was the one who used to whisper to his Jewish classmates that “Hitler was right”. Brexit-ism is the pseudo-soft Anglo-saxon version of nazism.

      Liked by 1 person

      • docatheist
        June 26, 2016

        Is it true that Nigel Farage is married to Ayaan Hirsi Ali? I read that, somewhere recently, and it just didn’t make sense!

        Liked by 1 person

  13. A year in Périgord
    June 26, 2016

    Terrible times ahead. I don’t think people quite realise yet what they voted for.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. On issues of Statehood, never should decisions on Statehood be made on a simple majority vote. And that is basically what Britexit was, it was a decision to remain a Nation State in the European Community. You need a consensus vote of the people some kind of a super majority. Whichever way the vote turns out either stay or leave it should require a consensus via some type of super majority. Otherwise you are going to have the mess that England is in right now.

    California for example is organized to permit changes to it’s State Constitution via a simple majority vote and it is a MESS. One Midwestern State permits changes to the State Constitution only after the State Legislature passes it and then the people vote on it in two consecutive Statewide Elections, during a normal Election. In other words you don’t run a vote just on that one issue. Other States require approval by a 2/3 majority, and as I mentioned in my earlier comment changes to our US Constitution takes a 3/4 majority vote by all the States.

    Changes to how the people want to govern themselves should be a high hurdle. Not so high that if the people really want that that it makes it impracticable for them to achieve, but never ever by a simple referendum simple majority vote. Deciding to remain or leave the EU IS a change in how the people wish to be governed and I am shocked that this can be done in the UK based on a simple majority vote. The hurdle should be much much higher so that the ultimate decision is a consensus decision of the public.

    Correct me if I am wrong, but in the UK don’t you have to read the bills 3 times and vote three times before a law is passed? How can your Parliament vote on a simple law 3 times yet a one shot vote fundamentally changes how the people govern themselves. It makes no sense to me.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Sirius Bizinus
    June 26, 2016

    My reader is not showing me your posts, Pink. I will have the gremlins flogged for their lack of diligence posthaste.

    The Brexit vote wasn’t too surprising to me, as Fivethirtyeight had predicted that the polling ahead of the vote was rubbish (I’m stealing that word for American use; you can take credit for it happening here). I really hope that Britain realizes its mistake and takes action to correct the problem before things get really awful.

    What I’m really wondering is whether Britain would actually be able to enforce any immigration changes even if they wanted to. Couldn’t the EU simply impose such conditions as a requirement for trade?

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Pingback: Brexit, time to count to ten and think it over | BEGUILING HOLLYWOOD

  17. agrudzinsky
    June 28, 2016

    Brexit is the most perplexing political event I recall. The fall of the Soviet Union wasn’t that impressive. It was expected. Brexit appears to be an epitome of the notorious “British nonsense”. It appears that everybody acted against their own interest and, for some reason, expected different results.

    First, Cameron who is an opponent of Brexit, initiated the referendum. Why would he do that? Apparently, he did not expect Brexit would pass. Oops.

    People who voted to leave are surprised the next day that Brexit would pass. Just look at these faces. WHAT WERE THEY THINKING?? Or were they? Double oops.

    The most popular Google searches in UK the day after the referendum were “what does it mean to leave the EU” and “What is the EU”. Well, shouldn’t these searches be popular the day before the referendum? Oops again.

    Four days after the referendum, a petition to change the referendum rules gets almost 4 million signatures. That’s over 6% of British population. How many petitions are there signed by 6% of the country’s population? Just for comparison, the second most popular petition in UK gained 823,346 signatures.

    But here’s the funny part. This petition was started by William Oliver Healey who writes in his Facebook page

    Re: EU Referendum Rules triggering a 2nd EU Referendum petition
    This petition was created at a time (over a month ago) when it was looking unlikely that ‘leave’ were going to win, with the intention of making it harder for ‘remain’ to further shackle us to the EU. Due to the result, the petition has been hijacked by the remain campaign.

    This is not funny any more.

    Now, how smart is the whole idea? Half of the UK exports and imports are to and from EU. If they want to trade with EU, they have to abide by the EU regulations anyway. Brexit did not free the UK from the EU regulations. It simply made it impossible for the UK to influence these regulations. When people permanently live in a country, they usually want to obtain the citizenship of that country so that they could vote and participate in political decisions. This is the first time I see people voting themselves out of the political system in which they live. It’s the same as if I, living in the U.S. denounced my U.S. citizenship believing that then I would not have to pay taxes or abide by the U.S. law. This is just one aspect of Brexit utter stupidity.

    What an epic political fuck-up on all sides! If Trump wins in the U.S., I will probably believe that the Earth has become a test site of some alien mass psychotropic weapon and get myself a tin foil cap.

    Liked by 1 person

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This entry was posted on June 25, 2016 by in activism and tagged , , , .
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