Posted by Jake on Sunday, June 26, 2016 with 2 comments | Labels: Article, Austerity, Big Society, budget cuts, elections, Graphs, immigration, inequality, protests
Those still puzzling why Britons voted to leave the European Union (EU) in June 2016 should look to what's wrong in Britain and not to Europe.
Naturally there will be many different individual reasons, but the dog whistles blown by both BREXIT (xenophobia) and BREMAIN (punishment) were not the decisive cause of the result.
Britons voted to protest that even if the European Project made Britain richer, if the riches the went to the few and they didn't get a share, then they didn't want to stay anymore. A protest that "the few" were surprisingly oblivious to.
Britons voted for BREXIT because of chronic Inequality and Inequity in Britain, not because of immigration. Data from the Electoral Commission shows that out of 382 regions, 263 had a majority for BREXIT. London, which has by far the highest proportion of immigrants, voted strongly for BREMAIN.
For evidence, look to the data:
a) Office for National Statistics migration data shows the areas that voted for BREXIT in England have lower levels of immigration than those that voted for BREMAIN. London, which came out strongly to BREMAIN has the greatest percentage of non-British population:
b) On the other hand, the areas that voted from BREXIT are, apart from Northern Ireland, significantly poorer than those that voted for BREMAIN
c) Other ONS data shows the extraordinary degree London has taken the lion's share of the UK's economic success.
d) A report by Inequality Briefing showed for Northern Europe London is the richest region, but 9 out of the 10 poorest regions were also in the UK.
Jeremy Corbyn has to be admired for his insouciant "rope a dope" strategy to deal with Labour MPs calling for his resignation. MPs whose slithering up the greasy pole has resulted in it slipping their minds who they are supposed to be representing.
Inspite of all his opponents' trash talking Corbyn should be confident the crowds of ordinary party members are behind him.
Perhaps Corbyn doesn't really want to be, or is not suited to be, Prime Minister. But for Labour to avoid returning to "Tory-Lite" mode, he needs to hold fast. Eventually it will dawn on an ambitious and capable Labour politician the path to Number 10 is to the left.
Corbynistas should take heart:
a) 24 hours after two Labour MPs tabled a vote of no confidence, a petition on 38 Degrees had more than 140,000 members of the public voting their Confidence in the man:
b) The EU referendum turnout was higher than any General Election since 1992. This was because a clear alternative was offered: In or Out. Something that hasn't happened since 1997 from when the electorate has been offered Tory-Lite (New Labour) or Tory-Tory (Tories).
Corbyn needs to offer a clear alternative, then the usual non-voters will come.
Farage, Gove and Johnson may actually believe their "Once more unto the BREXIT" rhetoric caused Britons to head for the Exit. The real impetus came from decades of chronic inequality regardless of Labour or Tory governments:
Farage, Gove and Johnson may believe themselves cast in the Churchillian mould. But going in the same direction doesn't mean being led. The idea the economically disadvantaged were led by rightwing Tory luminaries Gove and Johnson is risible. BREXITEERs were punishing the political class, especially rightwing Tory luminaries.
Just because Britain voted to BREXIT didn't mean they believed what the BREXIT camp told them. Remember, a chap being followed closely by a bull is more likely to be being chased by it than to be leading it.