It's been almost three years since the referendum. I'm just making this note for myself to remember my thoughts.
In short, I have to say without any false modesty, that I was 100% right about how it all would go after the referendum. I am not talking about small details, but rather about the general picture. Even the fact that after three years and many eyeopening developments and revelation the country is still divided more or less 50:50.
I can hardly find anything positive about B, but I think in one respect it has been creating a sort of momentum in the right direction. That is a direction where the society and the country's politics are moving away from a false (IMO) notion of achieving some sort of national unity. But how is it possible if 50% of the country want to destroy something that another 50% relay upon and does not offer anything in return. And there are class differences big way. Not a popular subject nowadays, but they do exist and govern the country as much as ever.
When I first heard about him some comments about his views made me suspicious . I do not know what it was exactly. Perhaps just how he looked did not much the opinions. I decided to give it a go and spent some time listening to his interviews on YouTube. I started from just short clips, but ended up listening to much longer versions. In total they all add up to several hours of video and some of his podcasts as well.
Well, I have to say, that I have not found anything that can possible justify opinions like in the links above. I find the man to be extremely intelligent and rational in his views. But most importantly in what he says I have not heard anything that in my book qualifies as extremist, offensive, dangerous etc. What I have found though, is that many of his interviews were conducted by people who do not really want to hear what exactly he has to say. Here is just an example:
Perhaps I am getting old and there is something wrong with my head.
I am re-reading the Mars trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson. To be correct I am listening to an audio version, which is many respects even better than reading. To date it is probably the most impressive and detailed effort to imagine the future on Mars. I was really impressed 15 years ago and the feeling is the same now.
The most interesting aspect of Brexit for me is how exactly the divide between two halves of the country goes. In two years there is virtually no change in public opinion. Ok, to be fare, the may be a little change depending on one’s reading preferences. But as such the scale of the change is soo small that it is not possible to say that one side has been winning decisively.
It is also difficult to find strong correlations between support for Brexit and factors like education, income, social status, party support etc. In a particular area there may be such correlations, but they breaks apart elsewhere in the country.
My “theory” is that the separation line is defined not by the current state of some aspect of life, but rather by the change of the state. In the past 30...35 years there has been a monumental shift in the relationship between one’s status in the traditional socio-political structure and the actual quality of one’s life. To live a truly comfortable life now does not require to be a part of the elite. To be able to give your children a good education does not require to be rich. And so on. Your status in the traditional British imperial hierarchy is still something you can either inherit by birth or have to pay huge money for. However, there is a parallel reality, the other Britain, where one can achieve all necessary attributes purely based on personal merits and without been educated in Eton.
That “parallel” Britain does not have a strong political representation, but it does not give a damm about it as long as the other Britain leave them alone. The problem is that the “others” do not want to do so. And that unwillingness to share the space and the time is the core of Brexit.