So, obviously, I’m no expert on this, but I find it damn depressing.  I’m sure I’ll find lots of good takes that resonate with me in the coming days, but for the immediate take, I think Drum sounds about right (I know, I pretty much always think Drum sounds about right):

British voters have voted to leave the EU. What a waste. I’m skeptical that this will cause economic Armageddon, but I doubt that it will do Britain any good either. So now they’ll spend the next three or four years up to their gills in rancorous negotiations on the terms for exit, and all to accomplish next to nothing…

I am sick and tired of watching folks like Boris Johnson, Marine Le Pen, Donald Trump and others appeal to the worst racial instincts of our species, only to be shushed by folks telling me that it’s not really racism driving their popularity. It’s economic angst. It’s regular folks tired of being spurned by out-of-touch elites. It’s a natural anxiety over rapid cultural change.

 Maybe it’s all those things. But at its core, it’s the last stand of old people who have been frightened to death by cynical right-wing media empires and the demagogues who enable them—all of whom have based their appeals on racism as overt as anything we’ve seen in decades. It’s loathsome beyond belief [emphasis mine], and not something I thought I’d ever see in my lifetime. But that’s where we are.
That.  :-(.

About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State

4 Responses to Brexit

  1. ohwilleke says:

    Scotland will almost surely vigorously seek independence again now (62% remain), and Northern Ireland (55% remain) may now seriously consider it. Spain will make a strong push with local support to gain sovereignty or dual sovereignty over Gibraltar (92% remain). A smaller, poorer U.K. consisting only of England and Wales may be the end result.

    And, in a classic British move. The PM has resigned and presumably there will be new elections as a result, in three months. The notion of snap elections is a fascinating one that I don’t know would ever fly in American political culture.

  2. rgbact says:

    Last stand for old people? Liberals really need to get in touch with the increasing demographic that votes religiously and that they insult daily. Else, they’ll likely keep getting surprised by election results. Its not surprising that liberals are dismissive though. 52% of Britons are now officially racists, per the Left

    • Steve Greene says:

      The increasing demographic of old white people? Probably not even a majority of that 52% voted for truly racist or xenophobic reasons. But you take away the racism and xenophobia and I’m guessing Brexit doesn’t clear 40% if not 35.

  3. R. Jenrette says:

    I think the American people want the kind of immigrants that many of our immigrant forefathers were. When mine came in the 1890s, they vigorously adopted American cultural values (for better or worse) and wanted their children to be Americans. Only a minority tried to live with the culture they had in the old country. Many spread out through the country, following economic opportunity to open their own businesses. They sent their children to American schools.
    They respected women even though they had patriarchal views about them.. They believed in democracy and had in many cases tried to encourage it in their old countries. Most of them believed in separation of church and state, having seen in the old countries how dangerous and even corrupting to religion having the power of the state behind it had been.
    I’m with Bill Maher and others who think Islam could come to grips with the 21st century. It’s a mistake to think that it’s all racial bias.

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