This is an historic day. The stunning outcome of the British referendum was that in two years time Britain will be severed from the European Union.
I do not use the word “historic” lightly. Nor do I use the word “revolution” lightly. But this vote is an indicator of change that is revolutionary, not evolutionary. Which is why it is historic. The old, existing order is dead, and in its place is something new. Driven by impulses variously described as nationalist and populist, driven by sentiments strongly anti authority, the British electorate has made its preference clear. On the assumption that the future will somehow, in some undetermined way, be better than the present, what was goes.
- This vote means that the United Kingdom will never be the same. Among other likelihoods is that in the not distant future the Scots will vote to exit.
- This vote means that Europe will never be the same. Among other likelihoods is that referendums similar to Brexit will be in other countries in Europe.
- This vote means that the global order will never be the same. Among other likelihoods is that Russia will create a wedge between Britain on the one hand, and the European Union on the other.
- This vote means that the “special relationship” between Britain and the United States will never be the same. Among other likelihoods is that the US will discover it has no choice but to find another European partner.
- This vote means that the present resident at 10 Downing Street will go. We know for sure that in short order David Cameron will be replaced as prime minister.
- This vote means that anger against people in positions of authority – both in Europe and in the United States – is unlikely anytime soon to dissipate. Among other likelihoods is that just as Donald Trump’s candidacy was seeming seriously to weaken,, what’s happened in Britain will give him a shot in the arm.
I said before and will say again. As a result of Brexit the short term occupation is with markets. But as a result of Brexit the long term preoccupation will be with politics. As of today they have changed completely and irrevocably.