It is interesting; there is evidence of a definite shift in public opinion away from Brexit since the referendum. Obviously, there is still a core of hard-line anti-EU sentiment, but there has never been a pro-Brexit overall majority and it is now very doubtful that, were the referendum repeated, leave would come close to winning. So, why the determination to push ahead with Brexit?
I think we have to ask ourselves what the real agenda behind Brexit is. For some people, there is no doubt that it is a combination of nationalism, Euro-scepticism and even a substantial element of racism or neo-Fascism. But I really don’t think that that explains the years of drip feeding anti-EU poison in our media, or why some very wealthy people and others, many of whom are not even based in the UK have funded UKIP and other Euro-sceptics.
I think the real key to understanding the real political agenda behind the forces that have been truly driving the Brexit campaign has to do with the clear distinction between the EU as a political union, and the EEA, or economic union. Now, what has been being exploited to get Brexit going are concerns about
immigration, but I am going to suggest that this has just been a ploy on the part of the puppet masters. Their real target is not immigration, which they actually want, their true target is the political union. What they want is the free market created by the EEA, what they don’t want is the possibility of regulation of that market created by the political union, the EU.
So the real purpose never has been a hard Brexit, it has been a soft-Brexit which will suit the true neo-liberal agenda of a free market for goods and labour, with no effective international regulation. If I am right, and I see clear evidence of this happening, what we are going to see is a soft Brexit being brokered as a compromise between remaining and leaving, when in reality it is not a compromise at all but a total victory for a neo-liberal manipulation of the electorate. Indeed, rather ironically, the amendments that Jeremy Corbyn is trying to put in place on the A50 bill will actually be playing the very tune the neo-Liberals he so complains about want, and I am rather afraid from the comments I am hearing from some Lib-Dems that a substantial part of their leadership is also quietly sympathetic to the neo-liberal agenda.
As a true liberal, rather than a neo-liberal (or laissez-faire capitalist, as they used to be known), that is as someone who recognises that markets need to be properly regulated in line with an updated version of Keynesian interventionism, both for the sake of social justice, and to allow business to properly flourish for the good of us all, I am completely opposed to this agenda.
I can’t emphasise enough how important it is to distinguish between the two different forms of liberalism, because if those of us who value the political union do not recognise that those neo-liberals who want to keep the EEA, but destroy the political union, are our real enemies, far more so than the racists and bigots whose fears they have been exploiting, then we will lose the EU.
To Labour, I say please recognise, by siding with a soft Brexit what you are really doing is siding with the neo-Liberals you profess to oppose. To actually get the kinds of changes in the EU that you really want, proper protection for workers’ rights, and so forth, then you need the political union, the EU, even more than you need the EEA.
To the Lib-Dems, I say that if you really believe in the political union, in social justice, and in the proper regulation of markets, then you really do have to clearly commit to the political union and not just the EEA. Otherwise, you will find that, once again, the neo-liberals in your midst hand you over to be the handmaidens of a Conservative, soft-Brexit, free market, agenda.