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The subtle art of waving goodbye

One could be forgiven for thinking that, given where we have now reached with the Brexit crisis, the smart money should be on the likelihood of it all ending badly and with no winners.

A worrying phenomenon in the whole mess are those commentators like myself who for the past one hundred and fifty years and more have been bleating from the side-lines (sorry, ‘wilderness’) about the absurdities, hypocrisies – and de facto realpolitik nitty-gritty – of the various ways in which human beings have chosen to structure and operate their different societies and cultures around the world and (since we’re here and discussing it) not least in the UK.

For here’s the thing.

As a direct result of the manner in which the UK Establishment has conducted itself since the 2016 EU Referendum was first called, not only have the ‘gullibility’ scales been gradually been removed from the eyes of tens of millions of the electorate but (separately) a few proverbial chickens at last have come home to roost – a combination that ultimately, for good or ill, has turned us into a nation of cynics.

Let’s face it, in whatever circumstances anybody – indeed any individual of any species – arrives in this world, we just have to get on with it.

An eight-week old puppy dog may find itself either in the household of an emperor or that of a starving nomadic tribe in the Gobi Desert and what else can it do?

For humans, it’s the fundamental trouble with Western-style democracy. Its seductive conceits kid us into believing that we are all equal and count for something. Whereas the hard-to-accept truth is that we don’t – that is, if we bother to spend too much time thinking about it.

Because, save for those who choose it as a career (or find themselves operating within it), the murky world of politics is what goes on whilst the rest of us are busy living our lives.

Knowing – or coming to realise – this is one of the accompanying burdens we have to carry through life. As is that small but significant gap between ideals and reality in which most of us struggle each day to survive.

Have we at last reached the point where the UK Establishment has been ‘caught out’ and exposed for what it is?

Or is where we’ve now reached in April 2019 just another temporary hiatus upon which – in another twenty years or so – those of us then still alive will look back in amused (and quite possible bemused) disbelief?

When one pauses to consider some of the increasingly existential threats facing the world in these extraordinary times – many of which require near-immediate and concerted action by those who rule the kingdom of Man if catastrophe is to be avoided – maybe none of this actually matters.

It’s probably too late anyway and so what we’d all be best advised to do at this juncture is sit back, relax … and enjoy the ride if we can.











About Simon Campion-Brown

A former lecturer in politics at Keele University, Simon now lives in Oxfordshire. Married with two children, in 2007 he decided to monitor the Westminster village via newspaper and television and has never looked back. More Posts