Sore Losers: “Remainers” and the EU Referendum
By Duncan Whitmore
In spite of the fact that we are now more than two years after the event, the sore losers on the “Remain” side of the Brexit vote persist in their efforts to deny the legitimacy of the referendum result in favour of “Leave”. The most strenuous effort, in accordance with the propensity of the EU to require repetitive voting until they receive the right answer, is the push for a second referendum – either on the so-called “deal” that our government is trying its best to fashion into a resemblance of EU membership in all but name, or a rerun of the entire process.
In the first place, it must be nothing short of astonishing that every single argument that is advanced in order to discredit the outcome of the referendum is exactly the same as every argument that was made against democracy itself prior to its ascension as the unquestionable holy grail: that the voters are too uneducated; that people didn’t know what they were voting for; that the majority is not a real majority; and so on.
Particularly following Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s polemic, it is true that libertarians are at least suspicious of democracy, and are likely to view it more as an enabler of state growth rather than a straightjacket. However, such suspicion applies only to representative democracy or the kind where we are, essentially, voting on how tax loot should be divvied up. It can scarcely apply to a referendum the very purpose of which is to determine the sovereignty of a nation, and where there is a chance to move that sovereignty closer towards the individual through a rejection of state centralisation and consolidation into ever larger behemoths governing wider territories.
Although the efforts from the “Leave” side to defend the legitimacy of the result are all cogent enough, they are usually content to address the “Remainers’” objections on their own terms instead of challenging the underlying assumptions. This short essay will attempt to provide some additional, more fundamental ammunition in order to refute the most typical arguments. Continue reading
Now some of the dust has settled after the Brexit vote, I thought it might be useful to take a look at who voted which way, and why what happened might have happened.
The following is an opinion piece and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Committee of the Libertarian Alliance
When, about 2pm on Thursday June 16th, I first heard of an attack on Jo Cox MP, I thought: Is this a deliberate attempt by the political class to fabricate a story with the purpose of distracting the people from the forthcoming Brexit referendum? With Leave in the lead, and starting to accelerate away?
About an hour later, the media reported that the perpetrator had shouted “Britain First!” before shooting, or kniving, or whatever else it did. I smiled to myself. Yes, this was a set-up, I thought, and they’re going to use it as an excuse to blame the Brexit campaign. This was parts 2 and 3 of their strategy. Part 2: If you want to suppress an issue, make something happen that will eclipse it in the news. And part 3: try to make your opponents look bad in the process. Continue reading
A Reply to Sean Gabb on the EU Referendum
(In response to this essay)
First, let me apologize for being late to this particular party. I was in Morocco for almost a week, with both much going on, and a slow Internet connection.
Let me say where I stand on the referendum. I do intend to vote, and I will vote Leave. Continue reading
<Hungarian sneeze, as at the beginning of Kodaly’s “Hary Janos”>
Look, friends, all this crap about Brexit has got out of hand.
There are those that want to keep the UK as part of the EU. And there are those that want the UK to leave the EU. With me so far?
The cumbersome mechanics of a referendum (even an honest one – which it isn’t and won’t be) mean that only one side can win.
Whichever side wins, the Remains or the Leaves, everyone else will be disappointed and angry.
Myself, I can see both sides of the coin. There have been both good and bad aspects of the European project. So, I’m going to put forward a way that both sides can win.
It’s simple. So simple, you’ll think I’m a genius.
It’s been an eventful few days in the EU. After the Greek referendum, which was their government’s last ditch attempt to stall the inevitable, there came the “marathon summit”. From this the Syriza representatives emerged sliced, diced and fried up with garlic. According to reports, they agreed to terms worse than the ones their people had just rejected. (I’m not following the details, because once you know the cookie is crumbling, it’s a waste of time to see exactly how it is crumbling.) They did so because they knew that more than anything, their people want to keep the euro. More importantly, the EU powerful want Greece to remain in the euro. “There is no way you are leaving this room”, president of the European Council Donald Tusk reportedly told the Greeks during the “negotiations”.
Lew Rockwell said, after the failed paleo alliance in the United States, that the main lesson he learned was to “[n]ever trust a politician to represent, much less speak for, an intellectual movement.” He was referring to the former Republican presidential candidate Pat Buchanan. Rothbard and Rockwell had originally supported Buchanan as the only plausible anti-war candidate along with the paleoconservatives, including people like Paul Gottfried. However, during the presidential race, Buchanan began to pontificate on economics, a subject he knew – and still knows – next to nothing about, arguing for tariffs and an expanded welfare state. The paleconservatives were thus given a huge incentive not to learn their economics and instead to fall back on the familiar: the tried and tested policies of import duties to ‘support the workers’ and welfare to ‘support families’.