When I was younger, and looked at youtube videos of financial “gurus” like Marc Faber, Jim Rogers or Peter Schiff, I was always very surprised that they considered that the EU would disintegrate at some point.
The European integration process through the European Union seemed to me like something completely natural, right and inevitable. Indeed, civilized adjacent nations seeking cooperation on many levels, sharing best practices, allowing economies of scale etc. seemed like a completely normal coherent thing which could not be impeded by anything. Fast-forward 2016, and to say the least, things didn’t work out that well…
Over time, of course, I grew and lived through the events covered by the media in Europe. Debt crisis, Greece, strikes in Belgium, the PIGS (what a disastrously insulting acronym btw), supermario, Merkozy, strikes in Belgium, Arab Spring with successive dirty work in Northern Africa (Mali, Libya), ISIL/ISIS/IS/Daesh, strikes in Belgium, Charlie Hebdo (and subsequent ridiculous debates/media exploitation), refugees, Paris attacks, Brussels attacks, everywhere attacks and finally,
Brexit UEFA Euro 2016 (and strikes in Belgium and more strikes in Belgium).
Moreover, I read Chomsky. That changes things. I went through the three phases1 of truth with his ideas: first I thought he was crazy, then I tried to find opposing arguments everywhere, and finally I now understand the guy is simply right.
All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.
- Arthur Schopenhauer
Slowly but certainly, the immense biases inherent to most of the media systems became more and more clear to me, and now I’m at the stage that I laugh at least 3-4 times on an average newscast. So the Brexit was now much less of a surprise to me as it would have been when I was younger. The rest of EU fairy tales are now limpid to me too, and the Brexit is, as Farage put it, a “remarkable” thing, but not an unexpected one.
Although I do not think Nigel Farage is much above the other babies on the play-ground: his parliament speech was not less ridiculous than Verhofstadt’s one (who brought in the Nazis), but at least, it was entertaining. On some points, he is right: the EU has completely disappointed many EU citizens, and although many politicians would like to believe that public opposition to the EU is due to sloppy propaganda from tabloids, I think that somehow, people are realizing that handing over sovereignty to a body that seems so much influenced by huge capital and lobbies and takes such absurd decisions on important topics without any care for democracy is not a good idea. They prefer their own corrupt politicians, and I think they are right: local politicians are not very “clean” either, their interest are at least slightly more aligned with the local population’s ones.
So the EU takes a large blow, Juncker has yet another nasty problem to deal with, I don’t think the people of Britain will be better off, but at least, the message to EU politicians and technocrats is clear: no. Sadly, the national policies that Britain can put in place are horribly limited by the shackles of globalisation, but maybe, Britain will be able to find some kind of intermediate/non-aligned kind of way and slighty limit to itself the negative side of policies that the EU implementing in Europe. I sincerely hope so for the British people, fortune favours the bold, they say!