Must-Read: Charlie Stross: “Tomorrow Belongs to Me”

Must-Read: Brexit Edition. The very sharp Charlie Stross writes from Caledonia:

Charlie Stross: “Tomorrow Belongs to Me”: “Okay, so the idiots did it; they broke the UK…

…The Brexit referendum was initially a red herring; a proxy struggle for control of the Conservative Party, with Boris Johnson suddenly turning his coat to march in front of the Leave campaign because it offered his best–arguably his only — chance of winkling David Cameron out of Downing Street before his scheduled retirement in 2020…. But in the process of squabbling over their own party the euroskeptic Conservatives opened the door to the goose-stepping hate-filled morons of the extreme right. The results include the first assassination of an MP–unconnected with the Irish independence struggle–in nearly two centuries, an upsurge in racist attacks on minorities and the disabled, and finally a demented protest vote by the elderly (voters under 25 broke 75% for remain; the over-60s voted over 66% for leave)….

Sterling has tanked to its lowest level in 31 years, the stock market has crashed by 10% already, and we’re likely to see international repercussions as all the sovereign wealth funds that had invested in the London property market see 30% wiped off their investments in a matter of days. Longer term, this may well be the beginning of the end for the UK as a nation. (Watch who’s standing on the sidelines praising the result: Donald Trump, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, Marine le Pen — a who’s who of international fascismus.)… Scotland voted by a 62%/38% margin to remain in the EU and is being dragged out against its will…. The enabling legislation for IndyRef 2 is apparently already being drafted in Holyrood…. It’s likely that in 2-5 years Scotland will have split from the UK and applied to re-admission to the EU. As for Northern Ireland there will be urgent negotiations for some sort of federal arrangement with the Republic that allows them to retain EU access (the Republic of Ireland being an EU member and Northern Ireland having voted to remain in the EU by a significant margin).

What happens to England and Wales now? Short version: economic turmoil caused by the uncertainty. An upswing in right-wing xenophobia as the utterly odious crypto-fascist Nigel Farage makes hay while the Sun shines on his project…. The Brexiters have been selling a lie: that they’d get a no-fault divorce and keep the house. Reality is somewhat less convenient…. We’re back in the Scottish Political Singularity, with a disturbing undercurrent of violent jingoistic xenophobia down south…

June 24, 2016


Brad DeLong
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