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UK Brexit from EU June 23rd


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The headlines go from bad to worse for the UK and EU establishment
Zero Hedge - JUNE 13, 2016 35 Comments

The headlines go from bad to worse for the UK and EU establishment as yet another new poll this weekend, by Opinium, shows“Brexit” leading by a remarkable 19 points (52% chose to leave the EU against 33% choosing to keep the status quo). This result comes after 2 polls Friday night showing a 10-point lead for “leave” which sparked anxiety across markets.

This surge in “leave” probability comes despite an additional 1.5 million voters having registered this week (which many expected to increase “remain” support). Further anger towards EU was exposed when former cabinet minister Iain Duncan Smith warned thatseven new prisons will need to be built in the UK by 2030 to cope with the rising number of migrant criminals (presumedly due to ‘staying’ in the EU). With market anxiety rising, as One River’s CIO notes, if Brexit happens, gold will soar.

A NEW poll has given those wishing to leave the EU a remarkable 19-POINT lead over Remain. As The Express reports,

if that happens, it might spell the end of EU
and so far, muslim refugees is the single main issue driving the poll


Legendary Member
It is probably better for those in the UK to leave the EU, at least in the long-run.

While the EU has been able to achieve some very good policies and rulings relating to human rights, justice and dignity, it is a twin-headed organism that also houses a most-non-democratic bureaucracy that is creeping in policies that are far more business-friendly than citizen-friendly. The refugee crisis, or blowback from playing war in their middle eastern backyard, was just the cherry on the top, or the straw that will break the camel's back.

I do not like the fear-the-other and demonizing attitude the leave campaign or many anti-EU persons have, and that is a danger in itself...having xenophobic extreme right parties collecting and cashing in the fear of the masses who want 'anything' to soothe their emotions. People warned of this long ago...the extreme right is very skilled at appealing to the human limbic system, and hate+fear>compassion. That itself can create the worst monsters.

For now, a small step away for the other bureaucratic monster might be a good thing. The next step will be taming the extreme-right that will want to get a prize for getting the prize.

It is a lost opportunity for what is known as traditional europe to develop a more positive player in the world today, for its people and everyone else. Maybe we'll live long enough to see a second go, there or somewhere else.


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Opinion polling for the United Kingdom European Union membership referendum - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


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June 16, 2016
Why Global Capital Fears ‘Brexit’

by Helena Norberg-Hodge Rupert Read and Thomas Wallgren

Trade treaties were a hot button issue during the recent US presidential primary campaigns. This represents an important victory for the people – for the grassroots – whose voice is finally being heard. While it’s hard to know what really lies behind Donald Trump’s opposition to the trade agreements, it’s very significant that Bernie Sanders put Hillary Clinton on the defensive about NAFTA and led her to take a stand against the TransPacific Partnership (TPP). In rejecting these trade deals, political leaders are going against the top-down pressure from global corporations and banks. We must of course be alert to the fact that politicians pander to voters while seeking election, but once in power they only seem to hear the voice of big money. Nevertheless, the fact that awareness about the trade treaties has become so widespread is itself a huge victory. Now that these corporate-friendly deals are seeing the light of day, it is unlikely that future trade agreements will be easy, automatic victories for global capital.

In the UK, meanwhile, another fierce debate is underway: voters in Britain will soon decide whether or not to remain in the European Union. Although this issue parallels – and is in fact linked to – the debate around trade treaties, most voices in favor of Brexit seem to offer little more than narrow nationalism, xenophobia and racism. Such associations make it feel impossible for most Greens and progressive thinkers on the left to vote ‘Leave’ in the upcoming UK referendum.

And that settles it in the minds of some: one ‘has’ to vote ‘Remain’. Anything else feels ‘unprogressive’, reactionary, even downright dangerous.

However, there are powerful arguments against the European Economic Union. In all five Nordic countries – Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark – there has been a very powerful critique of the EU from an ecological, cultural, global solidarity and democratic perspective. A large proportion of the population in those countries realized that the impetus to link countries together was primarily based on a misguided notion of economic growth. However, these arguments didn’t reach the English-speaking world, and today on both sides of the debate in Britain this misguided notion continues to prevail.

In order to make sense of misleading pro and con arguments in the media, we need to go behind the scenes to examine the issues holistically. We need to look carefully at the process of economic ‘integration’ that has been going on for several generations now around the world.

At the regional, national and global level, societies and ecosystems have been transformed in order to accelerate economic growth. The emphasis has been on increasing international trade and benefits to international traders, at great cost to ecosystems, livelihoods, and democracy. It is important to understand the formation of the EU in this context, but by no means do the points we make here apply to the EU alone.

The EU is dedicated to corporate interests and economic globalization

The European Union is an extension of the Bretton Woods institutions – The World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT).

It is widely assumed that the European Union was formed in order to prevent conflict and in order to avoid another depression. In the aftermath of the Second World War, political elites and business leaders promoted the notion that economic integration was a path to peace and harmony.

But the result was a form of economic development – based on debt, global trade and consumerism – that systematically undermined democracy and favored corporate interests while hollowing out local economies worldwide. In country after country, transnational corporations (TNCs) have been able to evade taxes by ‘offshoring’ their activities, and to bargain for lower tax rates and higher subsidies by threatening to move where even less in taxes will be demanded, and more in subsidies provided.

Today, interlinked multinational banks and corporations constitute a de facto European government, determining economic activity through the ‘European market’. Their vast lobbying power has an overwhelming influence on the EU Commission and the secretive Council. In other words, corporations run Europe.

Economic integration imposes human and ecological monoculture

Europe is home to a great variety of cultures, languages and customs. The economic union is based on an economic model that is eroding this diversity, which was born of human adaptation to different climates and ecological realities. A fabric consisting of mutually enriching and different cultural traditions is being replaced by the uniform culture of consumerist ‘individualism’.

Previously, the many borders, currencies, and differing regulations made trade difficult for big business, while the diversity of languages and traditions put limits on mass marketing. None of these were obstacles to businesses operating within their own countries – in fact, the borders and cultural diversity helped protect the markets of domestic producers from the predations of mobile capital, helping to ensure their survival.

But for big corporations and financial institutions, diversity is an impediment, whereas monoculture – in all aspects of life, from seeds, fast food and clothing, to architecture – is ‘efficient’. For them, a single Europe-wide market of 500 million people was an essential step to further growth: their growth.

Meeting that goal required a single currency, ‘harmonized’ regulations, the elimination of borders, and centralized management of the European economy.

The EU Economy Increases Pollution and CO2 Emissions

The global economic model promoted in the EU increases pollution and fossil fuel use in a multitude of ways.

First of all, economic policies are responsible for a concentration of jobs in ever-larger high-rise urban centers. When people move into urban areas, net resource and energy consumption tends to rise, massively increasing CO2 emissions and toxic pollution.

Secondly, the EU subsidies system not only wipes out family farms but paves the way for agribusinesses that destroy soils and ecosystems, or employ cruel factory farming methods.

Thirdly, investments in infrastructure and fossil fuel subsidies help to prop up the energy-intensive system of mass production for mass consumption. Moreover, most energy subsidies tend to support highly centralized power systems, rather than more decentralized renewable energy.

Even worse is ‘redundant trade’: in a typical year, Britain exports millions of liters of milk and thousand of tonnes of wheat and lamb, while importing nearly identical amounts. The cod caught off the coast of Scotland is shipped 5,000 miles to be turned into fillets in China, then shipped back again.

This kind of wasteful trade – which greatly overshadows the efforts of well-meaning individuals to reduce their personal carbon footprints – actually benefits no one but massive corporations. And it is not efficiency but a wide range of subsidies and ignored costs that make it all possible.

National Governments Stripped of Political Power

At the same time as governments subsidise big business, they must pay from their depleted treasuries to retrain displaced workers, to mend the unraveling social fabric, and to clean up the despoiled environments left behind by deregulated, mobile corporations.

Forced to go hat-in-hand to banks, countries can easily find themselves on a downward spiral, with interest payments consuming an increasing proportion of national output. It’s no wonder that so many governments today are struggling to stay afloat, while global corporations and banks are flush with cash.

This has left nation-states increasingly powerless to deliver what people need. They have lost the power to protect their citizens from the impacts of international capital and financial speculation. As a result, many people have lost confidence in governments and democracy itself. They feel disenfranchised and angered by the escalation of inequality-driven by international market forces and rootless, profit-hungry corporations, with the full complicity of the EU.

This is a dangerous situation, ripe for exploitation by extremist forces, including those of atavism and of outright fascism.

European Government is Not the Answer

Many idealists see the EU as a political bloc that has raised environmental and human rights standards continentally and globally, and acted as a buffer to the United States. There is much truth in this. And to greatly strengthen pan-European collaboration with the aim of solving our global ecological and human rights problems is clearly highly desirable.

However, this type of collaboration does not need to – ought not to be allowed to – erode the rights of smaller nation states to run their own affairs under clearly negotiated agreements of environmental protection. We hold that the relatively high standards in the EU have been a consequence of the integrity of the democracies in many of the constituent countries, not a consequence of creating a single market that benefits big business.

We would also argue that to assess the overall contribution by the EU to global environment and human rights affairs we must not look exclusively at the relatively benign EU policies in these areas themselves but also at the consequences for ecological justice of EU policies in trade and military policy.

In fact, the main impetus behind the European Economic Union was the desire of big business to compete with the US. And to a great extent, what we have today is a nascent United States of Europe, competing with the US about market shares but also working closely together with the US in preserving the hegemony of the global North over the global South.

European Democracy? If Only…

Meanwhile, within the EU, the public has very little power and ability to affect decisions. There is no common public sphere where European citizens can get together to muster democratic control of the European economy and the administrative power concentrated in Brussels.

The European Parliament is weak, and, more importantly, elections to it work mostly on a national-level basis. There are no real European political parties and movements. Thus the situation is even worse than it is at the national level: for at least at the national level there is a public, a citizenry, a demos, a press, a political debate.

It might appear that the solution is to remove power from national governments and give it to a democratically-controlled European government. There is something completely understandable about this impulse. After all, there is a real need for international co-operation around the political and ecological crises gripping our planet.

But scaling up government means increasing the distance between civic society and their representatives. It would be a step backward to create a federal superstate of Europe. Such a government would be virtually incapable of responding to the diverse needs of half a billion people.

Democratic institutions need to operate at a level that is comprehensible and accessible to people: at a human scale. We must take seriously the possibility that global democracy – people’s urge to care for the globe and for all its citizens – can only be real if most functions are local and people’s dependence on global trade and institutions is limited.

When presented by continent- and global-level problems caused by businesses and untrammeled markets, let’s increase international collaboration with the goal of scaling down businesses and markets. This form of collaboration is fundamentally different from scaling up government. It points in the opposite direction!

The following point is then at the heart of the very challenging position we find ourselves in: there is a profound mismatch between politics at the national level, and economics at the international level. Many well-intentioned ‘progressive’ / green / ‘Left’ people and organizations across the continent believe the best response to this problem is to create a true (rather than a merely de facto) European government. Yet this is likely to merely amplify the control already exerted by corporations over the European economy.

The answer, instead, is to decentralize the European economy. This will enable us to shape economic activity to reduce waste and resource consumption while providing meaningful livelihoods and restoring the environment. Through decentralization and relocalization we also reassert democratic control over our own destinies.

The Way Forward: Localization

There is an alternative to undermining our own people in order to enrich foreign corporations and banks. It’s called ‘localization’ and it involves moving away from ever more specialized production for export, towards prioritizing diversified production to meet people’s genuine needs; away from centralized, corporate control, towards more decentralized, local and national economies.

This means encouraging greater regional self-reliance, and using our taxes, subsidies and regulations to support enterprises embedded in society, rather than transnational monopolies.

A shift away from the global towards the local is the most strategic way to tackle our escalating social and ecological crises. Localization shortens the distance between producers and consumers by encouraging diversified production for domestic needs, instead of specialized production for export.

Localization does not mean eliminating international trade, or reducing all economic activity to a village level. It’s about shifting the power from transnational corporations to democratically accountable entities, including nation states. At the same time we need to build up regional and local self-reliance. It’s about reclaiming power over our lives while simultaneously shrinking our ecological footprint.

Localization: the Benefits

In contrast with the make-believe of derivatives and debt-based money, localization is founded in real productivity for genuine human needs, with respect for the rich diversity of cultures and ecosystems worldwide.

By shortening the distance between production and consumption, localization minimizes transport, packaging, and processing – thereby cutting down on waste, pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions. This simultaneously increases resilience, which will be needed to cope with the inevitable crises coming our way.

Localized economies rely more on human labor and creativity and less on energy-intensive technological systems. This increases the number of jobs while reducing the use of natural resources.

By spreading economic and political power among millions of individuals and small businesses rather than a handful of corporate monopolies, localization provides the potential for revitalizing the democratic process. Political power is no longer some distant impersonal force, but is instead rooted in community.

As the scale and pace of economic activity are reduced, anonymity gives way to face-to-face relationships, and to a closer connection to Nature. This in turn leads to a more secure sense of personal and cultural identity.

Localization is a remarkable solution-multiplier, but it should not be mistaken for a complete panacea. It offers no guarantee for peace and ecological wellbeing. Going local needs to be pursued in full awareness of the need for environmental and human rights protection that goes beyond local, regional and national borders. It’s a prerequisite, a necessity in order to build the accountable structures we need that respect and renew diversity.

Localization, or decentralization, was central to the thinking of the people’s movements in the Nordic countries that have resisted full integration into the EU. In Norway, the economic and political elites twice tried to achieve EU-membership and were defeated, thanks to the campaigns for democracy and global responsibility for environment and justice.

In Denmark and Sweden, membership in the Eurozone has been rejected in several referenda after historic grassroots campaigns. In Iceland, the popular support for EU membership has always been weak. The first application for membership in the EU was submitted in 2009 but suspended in 2013 when the pro-membership government lost elections.

–UK voters: think before you vote!–

We are facing huge crises: the frightening specter of climate change; the threat of nuclear annihilation; the enormous problems of hypermobility and large-scale migration …

These are all consequences of a fixation on growth and technological ‘progress’. The leadership in both Brexit and Remain are committed to promising more ‘economic growth’ to the millions of people who are struggling to hold on to a job, struggling to keep a roof over their heads.

The ‘growth’ that is being discussed is actually supporting excessive global trade and global businesses and banks. The very same process is handing over more wealth and power to the 1%, to the detriment of the 99%.
And this type of growth demands ever-more energy for global infrastructures, including bigger airports, ports and super-highways.

So we have a system that destroys livelihoods while driving up CO2 emissions and other forms of pollution. More and more people, including Nobel laureate economists, are questioning this path.

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More articles by:Helena Norberg-Hodge Rupert Read and Thomas Wallgren


Legendary Member
Any business-oriented folks to share their thoughts on what a brexit will mean for the euro and pound?

Dreaming in Red

Active Member
Just a tip. Having the "leave" polling better now means nothing unless its a big difference which it's not. Once the day of voting comes, conservative nature of any human will lean to remain for the simple reason that leaving means there is no way back really, whilst remaining could still be debated in the future even if far future. So seeing how close the polls are, unless something drastic happens the remain vote will win. Some factors interestingly could push for the "leave" such as the "terror" attacks happening and remarkably the anti-english sentiment in the eurocup. Some Europeans even were defending russians against the english fans. That says something knowing the weak russian-european relations. Because this is a popular vote, such popular sentiment of pride among english even those against hooliganism could be the reason the leave is gaining momentum but as I said its still for the "remain" camp to lose this.


Legendary Member
Just a tip. Having the "leave" polling better now means nothing unless its a big difference which it's not. Once the day of voting comes, conservative nature of any human will lean to remain for the simple reason that leaving means there is no way back really, whilst remaining could still be debated in the future even if far future. So seeing how close the polls are, unless something drastic happens the remain vote will win. Some factors interestingly could push for the "leave" such as the "terror" attacks happening and remarkably the anti-english sentiment in the eurocup. Some Europeans even were defending russians against the english fans. That says something knowing the weak russian-european relations. Because this is a popular vote, such popular sentiment of pride among english even those against hooliganism could be the reason the leave is gaining momentum but as I said its still for the "remain" camp to lose this.
I recall that the status quo preference was also blamed to some extent on the outcome of the Scottish referendum. I don't have an idea as to what magnitude such an effect has, but it is possible as you said that on the actual day it is what tips the scale. So much for the excitement.


Just a tip. Having the "leave" polling better now means nothing unless its a big difference which it's not. Once the day of voting comes, conservative nature of any human will lean to remain for the simple reason that leaving means there is no way back really, whilst remaining could still be debated in the future even if far future. So seeing how close the polls are, unless something drastic happens the remain vote will win. Some factors interestingly could push for the "leave" such as the "terror" attacks happening and remarkably the anti-english sentiment in the eurocup. Some Europeans even were defending russians against the english fans. That says something knowing the weak russian-european relations. Because this is a popular vote, such popular sentiment of pride among english even those against hooliganism could be the reason the leave is gaining momentum but as I said its still for the "remain" camp to lose this.
So you guessed it right!
In light of Jo Cox assassination, the reaction would be to postpone "Brexit" in sympathy for her wishes.
If I was to consider conspiracy theories, the objective of her assassination might have been in desperation to avoid "Brexit" which is considered an a serious blow for the US and EU economies. Might have been good for Russia and the BRIC's

Iron Maiden

Paragon of Bacon
Orange Room Supporter
back is in the 70s when GB entered the EEC (b4 it became th EU) the same economical and sovereign debates that are going on today happened (minus the immigration part), and the speech of this MP rings as true today as it did 40 years ago, enjoy:



Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
It's funny to see leftists still attempting to justify a vote that puts them on the same side as transnational banks, massive corporations & the political establishment by pretending its some kind of progressive and humanitarian act. ‪#‎Brexit‬.


Legendary Member
June 22, 2016
Brexit—Cameron’s Faustian Bargain
by Jack Rasmus

Global financial markets are churning and growing more volatile in expectation of a possible ‘Brexit’—a United Kingdom referendum to vote on leaving the European Union scheduled for June 23, 2016. Brexit has literally become the big financial blockbuster event of summer 2016! But it may very well prove a ‘non-event’—even if the vote on the 23rd is to leave the European Union (EU).

Over recent weeks global financial markets and investors have become increasingly focused, even obsessed, with the outcome of the Brexit vote and its potential, but still largely unknown, effects on the global economy that continues to slow.

In anticipation of a possible exit vote, global stock markets have been growing more volatile, alternately collapsing and recovering. Government yields on bonds have been plummeting, driving deeper into negative rate territory. Currency exchange rates—the pound, the euro, the yen—have been fluctuating wildly. Professional and institutional investors have, for weeks now, been moving their money to the sidelines, awaiting the outcome. Meanwhile, central banks in Europe and Japan stand primed, ready to jump in with still more money injection in the hope of stabilizing what might prove to be a major upheaval in their financial markets—while the US central bank, the Federal Reserve, at the same time has begun back-peddling on raising interest rates in the US.

Global financial speculators have reaped trillions of dollars in profits and capital gains since 2009. In the US alone, more than $5 trillion has been distributed to investors and wealthy households by corporations in the form of stock buybacks and dividend payouts. Add in the rest of the global economy, and markets for derivatives, foreign exchange, real estate speculation, and the like, and the total is easily more than $15 trillion. Trillions more remain tied up in financial assets as investors await the Brexit—prepared to quickly cash in the rest if there’s a ‘leave the EU’ vote or to double down in financial speculation if the vote is to ‘remain’. In the worse scenario, June 23 could augur in a worldwide major correction in financial asset prices, with dire consequences for a global economy already in retreat along a number of economic fronts.

But then again, maybe not. Maybe nothing happens. Because a Brexit vote on the 23rd is just the start of a process, not the final event.

The Potential Consequences of Brexit

Should a vote to leave on June 23rd occur, the worst case scenario is that the current volatility in stock, currency, and bond prices would shift to a general more rapid decline in all the above. The British pound would drop precipitously, as would the Euro. Stock markets in the UK and Europe would likely experience a major selloff, and the contagion spreads to the US, Japan and emerging markets. Negative rates on government bonds in Europe and Japan would fall further, and rates in the US and UK would decline, approaching zero and eventually negative levels. To the extent that it is occurring, bank lending to businesses would thereafter tighten significantly and the collapse of financial assets would thereby transmit to the real economy, resulting in less real investment, production cutbacks, and eventually layoffs and wage decline.

With the global economy already slowing, with global trade volumes nearly flat, with productivity collapsing and prices trending toward deflation, with more than $10 trillion non-performing loans to non-bank businesses, with global oil and commodity prices declining once again, it’s almost certain the consequences would quickly translate into another recession in the UK and Europe, and in the US no later than 2017. Current recessions in Japan and emerging markets would deepen, and China growth would slow even more rapidly than it has been.

Europe and Japan central banks would respond to this scenario with further massive money injections into their economies. Global currency wars would re-ignite. The US would back off raising short term interest rates for the next two years, at minimum, as US long term rates and the dollar rose. China would be hard pressed not to officially devalue its own currency in response—sending further shock waves throughout the global economy.

This most negative scenario would of course not occur should the UK vote to ‘remain’ in the EU. In such alternative best scenario case, the response would be a surge once again in stock prices and bond rates. Central banks would hold off for a time from even more desperate actions. And the global economy would continue its otherwise slower, progressive shift toward stagnation that has been occurring since 2014. Brexit provoked financial instability would not accelerate the process of global decline as in the worst case scenario.

But what of a third scenario? A Brexit vote occurs but there’s no intensified financial instability and accelerated global economic decline?

Cameron’s Faustian Bargain

A possible Brexit only exists today because UK prime minister, David Cameron, and his conservative party injected it as a political issue in the 2015 UK national elections. Cameron hoped to appeal to British voters in the parliamentary election held last May 2015 by offering, if he were elected, to hold a referendum vote—a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’—on whether Britain should remain in the EU.

Cameron struck what might be therefore called a ‘Faustian’ bargain with UK voters. In classic literature, Faust was a professor who made a deal with the devil for something he could not otherwise obtain himself without the devil’s help. The devil gave him his wish, but demanded his soul in payment. Cameron believed he could turn the growing discontent into votes for himself in May 2015, and thereafter control the consequences of a referendum vote once elected. He got his election victory in 2015; the devil granted his wish. But he now faces the consequences; now he has to pay up. The devil on June 23rd may now demand Cameron’s political soul.

After his election in May 2015, Cameron issued a set of impossible demands to the EU for keeping Britain in the union. They included a four year wait for immigrants already in the UK before becoming eligible for UK benefits, including healthcare, and even if they already were in the UK and had a UK job; limits on how many immigrants could come from eastern European countries and how fast they could enter Britain; a formal revision of the Free Trade treaty itself; the right of the British parliament to pass legislation that would veto EU provisions; plus other preferential trade treatment for British businesses at the expense of other EU businesses.

These proposals are non-starters. They would mean all the other 29 EU member countries would have to unanimously revise the Treaty, and thus cede to Britain various economic benefits. And there’s no way the 29 other EU states can or will ever agree to do so. All it takes is one eastern European state to veto such proposed EU treaty changes and Cameron’s proposals are DOA—dead on arrival.

Brexit Is About Growing Opposition to Free Trade

Many UK voters have become ‘euroskeptic’. The EU is a ‘customs treaty’, i.e. a Free Trade zone. Many UK workers and businesses see little benefit from membership in the EU free trade zone and, in many cases, feel they have experienced significant economic harm from the free trade arrangements. In that growing skepticism of the benefits from free trade—which is what the EU in fact is—they share similar views with a growing number of voters across Europe. Free trade brings great benefits to corporations, bankers and wealthy investors, but delivers questionable results for workers, small businesses, and domestic producers. In the media debates and discussions on Brexit this fundamental connection to rising discontent with Free Trade is often overlooked, and not by accident by the media.

Free Trade deals are not just about goods and services flows, but are also fundamentally about money or capital flows. That is why the so-called ‘City of London’, the finance capitalists in the UK, are strongly opposed to Brexit. There’s much money to be made by investing in the EU, especially in eastern Europe. Should Brexit occur, these profit opportunities would be reduced for UK banks. In addition, a good deal of financial services activity now in London would migrate to Paris and Frankfurt. London as a global financial center would suffer, to the advantage of New York, Singapore, Dubai and other rising global financial centers. Money capital inflows to the UK would slow, and with it continued opportunities for real estate speculation and infrastructure financing which has kept the UK economy barely above zero growth since the last recession in 2012-13. But these money flows have not benefitted average UK workers and businesses that produce for the UK market instead of for export. While London, bankers, and speculators have enjoyed a recovery, the rest of the economy has been left behind. That is especially the case for the industrial geographic center of the country, where the most intense opposition to remaining in the EU is found. This is also the region that has been most impacted by labor migration into Britain. And where Conservative policies of austerity have hit the hardest. This is where support for Brexit—and against the free trade policies of the EU participation—is the strongest.

A Brexit vote is therefore, in effect, a proxy protest vote against the economic conditions in the UK and a perception among British voters that those conditions have a lot to do with the EU free trade treaty. It is also a proxy vote against the unrestricted cross-border flow of immigration which the EU treaty also guarantees. The UK has been flooded in recent years with migration from eastern Europe, as the EU has added more country members from that region. In addition to the EU-related migration, the UK has experienced an influx from the middle east more recently. And the EU and middle east trends have occurred on top of long standing migration from the UK’s former colonies in Asia and elsewhere. Immigration is perceived by voters as having had negative impact on UK jobs and wages, especially in the industrial areas of the middle of the country, according to polls.

In addition to economic, immigration and cultural reactions, it has become increasingly apparent to many voters that membership in the EU has meant the loss of representational democracy. Free trade treaties always prohibit domestic elected legislatures, like Parliaments or Congresses, from pass laws that contradict the treaty. And domestic courts cannot render decisions that contradict the treaty courts’. In other words, free trade means a loss of sovereignty.

The Brexit vote is therefore a protest vote—against economic conditions and failed monetary and fiscal policies of the UK elite since 2009, gainst too rapid and unregulated immigration and cultural change, and against the loss of representation and sovereignty as un-elected supra-national institutions created by the treaty function outside voters’ control largely to the benefit of pan-European economic elites.

Brexit Does Not Mean Leaving the EU

Should an exit vote occur on the 23rd the more likely scenario is that little will change in the short term. That is because a vote by the UK electorate does not mean an actual ‘exit’ follows. An exit requires a vote by the British parliament to leave. That would activate what is called Article 50 of the EU Treaty, the treaty’s hereto unused ‘exit’ clause.

It is highly unlikely the British parliament, with a Conservative party majority, would vote to exit as a follow up to the referendum. Conservative party members in parliament favoring Brexit at the moment most likely would be ‘convinced’ by party leaders to vote to remain. If they refused, it would likely mean a vote of no confidence and a fall of the Cameron government and that’s not likely to happen.

What is likely is Cameron and his government open negotiations with the EU and seek changes to create a preferential arrangement for Britain to remain in the EU similar to that provided to Norway at the present. Article 50 provides for a two year negotiation period and automatic renewal of EU membership thereafter. Notwithstanding EU leaders in France, Belgium, and Germany wanting to avoid negotiations dragging out that long, they have no way to avoid it.

In short, Cameron will try some way to negate the will of the UK voters should they choose to Brexit. The UK may vote to exit on the 23rd but Cameron, the ‘City of London’ bankers, the UK’s multinational corporations that profit from the UK’s 47% exports to the EU, and UK economic interests who have much to lose from an exit will maneuver to ignore the Brexit referendum should it occur. The Brexit vote will prove merely a tactic for UK elites to try to extract concessions from their EU capitalist competition.

Cameron may have struck a Faustian deal with the devil, but that doesn’t mean he ever intends to pay up.

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Jack Rasmus is the author of ‘Systemic Fragility in the Global Economy’, Clarity Press, 2015. He blogs at jackrasmus.com. His website is www.kyklosproductions.com and twitter handle, @drjackrasmus.


Legendary Member
Staff member
Super Penguin
It's official: UK votes to leave EU.

It's incredible that regular people got the chance to voice their concerns and take such an important decision irrespective of all the elites and banking dinosaurs. UK democracy is in a league of its own.


Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
It's official: UK votes to leave EU.

It's incredible that regular people got the chance to voice their concerns and take such an important decision irrespective of all the elites and banking dinosaurs. UK democracy is in a league of its own.

That is the result of the failure of the European elite to connect with their populations. Too bad for the banking whales, people just want their independent decision! I am personally happy because the EU instead of being a union for prosperity turned out to be a union of power centers at the expense of the European populations! It was wrongly built, and the latest big nail in its coffin was the chaos of the immigration and the refugees... Next we will have Frexit, Spexit, etc....


Legendary Member
What a disaster.

Hopefully it will be the UK that breaks apart next. Scotland voted all firmly to remain.


Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
BBC forecasts UK vote to leave EU
Pound drops to lowest levels since 1984

Standard Chartered sank as much as 9.9 percent. HSBC fell as much as 8.7 percent

The FTSE 100 is expected to fall by more than 7.7pc, or nearly 500 points on the open.

No doubt it is a big "seismic" moment for the European economy, and maybe the international one, but that's ok they will recover. The economy has never recovered anyways since the crisis of 2008! Aslan, the Britons won't be alone, we might see a domino effect in fact.

P.S. the difference is over 1.1 million votes after 360/382 counted
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