The Holy EU Empire

“So the story of man runs in a dreary circle, because he is not yet master of the earth that holds him”

– Will Durant, American writer, historian and philosopher

History’s a broken record because the forces that drive it never change. Always in affinity with what went before, everything in existence, material or immaterial, is the progeny of something else. Which is to say that there is never a clean break from the past. It’s always present. This is true of ideas and beliefs as it is the winds of political change.

Henry VIII

Recently Professor David Starkey drew a comparison between Henry VIII’s break with the Roman Church and Brexit. It’s fought over the same territory. It’s fought over jurisdiction. And it’s fought over the meaning and significance of sovereignty. You could go further and say that Brexit is analogous to the Reformation itself, which was the desire to practice one’s religion free from the restraints of a despotic regime naturally craving the fundamental characteristic of despotism: control.

In order to get his divorce from Catharine of Aragon, Henry is forced to sever religious and political ties with Rome. Because England is subordinate to a European court, to which it pays hefty subsides, which has already refused to grant him his request. The Roman Church’s hold over English affairs isn’t a forceful one, but a moral, political and economic one. In Tudor England there are Catholics whose loyalty remains with the ancient regime and attempt to thwart partition. Henry purges them and this purge continues right up until the English Civil War.

To do all of this, Henry, a formerly staunch Catholic, jumps on the coattails of an already established seditious movement, and uses it to seize power from the despotic Church.

If you replace Henry VIII with Boris Johnson, the Church with the European Union, ‘Remainers’ with Catholics and the seditious movement with Brexit, you will see close parallels with the political landscape of today.

The Reformation started with the subversive infiltration of Protestantism, but Brexit has been triggered as a result of the angry backlash to the apparent infiltration of the nation’s socio-economic-political structure with huge combinations of transnational capital and agents loyal to its bureaucratic institution, namely the European Union.

It should always be repeated that the country never voted to join the EU. In 1975 the country voted to join the European Economic Community (EEC), a vote which merely ratified the country having already entered in 1973. Since then more powers have been ceded in an ever closer political and economic union, with the EU in its current guise being established in 1993 after the signing of the Maastricht Treaty, which was followed by the Treaty of Amsterdam, Treaty of Nice and Treaty of Lisbon.

This transfer of more and more power through the backdoor represents a major, mostly silent reordering of the bonds that bind us. Of the social contract itself. The reason for this silence is that established power is asking the public to accept in practice what they know perfectly well they wouldn’t accept in theory. And though the conscious manipulation of the masses is an indispensable element of societal control, the current schism exposes the failure of silence and contrivance to steer public opinion away from an outdated belief system: the love of country.

This failure is responsible for the widening chasm between the beliefs of the liberal establishment and the bulk of the population, and between popular sovereignty and parliamentary sovereignty. And this is despite the current liberal establishment not daring to admit to what it believes. As a class they are non-literal Mohammedans who continue to wear the garb of Christ, observing the Eucharist while facing Mecca.

Taken as a whole (and considering the signing into soft law in December last year of the UN’s Global Compact for Migration, which creates an international structure of resettlement, with migrants having the right to settle where they please, national governments being encumbered to ensure they are safely housed and provided for and to enact legislation to criminalise as hate speech anyone who criticises mass immigration) you would have to conclude that the liberal establishment believes in the disintegration of the nation state. Of most nation states, for that matter. Which, by inference, points to a largely invisible, hegemonic global power, of which the EU is one head of the Hydra.

This isn’t democratic, how could it be? The centralisation of power over a vast area is to democracy what the Vatican is to religious self-determination.

Mutual ideas and beliefs are the pillars that hold up the edifice of a healthy society. They are the glass in which the social cocktail is housed. When they start to breakdown, society itself starts to breakdown. And presently in Britain, as in the rest of the Western world, we are seeing cracks, major fault lines in the very structures that hold it together. The reason is that because the fabric of power has changed, its accompanying beliefs have changed.

In the past, attempts to make radical changes to belief systems have invariably met with bloody resistance. Since WWII the global establishment has tried to avoid this by implementing its grand vison by slow degrees, of which the EU is but one manifestation. Other trading blocks, and global institutions, such as the IMF and UN are others. They are proxies of a transnational power that seeks to dissolve national boundaries and establish a global control grid, which conceals its power by leaving the various forms of nationhood largely intact.

To-date, its success has been proportional to its ability to hide its own mechanisms. A transnational power that has been marked by sly infiltration, not philosophical and religious conversion. Indeed, most of the talk of those loyal to the EU consists of sophistries and excuses invented to patch up a corrupt compromise of a transnational oligarchy. Thus, worship isn’t a social undertaking, but a private one.

But this network, of which the EU is a vital cog, is failing. The genie is out of the bottle and the troglodytes are out of the cave. The torch of nationalism the world over has caught alight. It will either be quelled by persecution or it will spread like wildfire; because until this point, the establishment’s attempts to throw cold water at it have only exacerbated the blaze.

The Brexit debacle is the white smoke billowing from the chimney of the Sistine Chapel. It’s the signal that our relationship with power has changed.

The question is, what do we do about it?

Dance the Fandango, Brexiteers!

There’s nothing more self-deceiving and underhanded than a believer masquerading as a skeptic. Skeptics always tell us the flaws of a position, but rarely the strengths of their own. Their finger is forever pointed outwards and never inwards. But in a skeptic we want to know what they do believe. Before arguing, we want to know what we need not argue about.

“They didn’t know what it would mean by voting to leave”

“I think it is absolutely fair to say that most people did not realise that the Brexit vote would trigger the chain of events that [has] happened so far”

“Populations with lower qualifications were significantly more likely to vote Leave”

“Brexit means stupid – so who voted for this?”

“They voted to TAKE BACK CONTROL. They did not vote for no-deal and its implications” 

What we observe about the discussion generally is that people do not know how to begin to think. Take the media headlines above. The conversation starts at the end of every controversy and those involved seem to know little about where it began or what it is all about. They just know how they feel about it. They state beliefs as facts, from whence all dogma seeds, then work their way backwards. All their arguments start with an assumption; that is, with something that they do not doubt. And the biggest assumption of all seems to be their intellectual and moral superiority over those they disagree with.

Almost the entire discourse is being shaped by the Brexit skeptics, who allow themselves to sit with dignity while asking those who voted Leave to dance the Fandango. Explain yourselves…you didn’t understand what you voted for, did you?! “The Leave vote didn’t understand the implications of a no-deal Brexit! And they certainly didn’t vote for a no-deal Brexit!”

This flavour of arguments is false for several reasons. Firstly, because it is caddish. It’s like telling women to know their place and to make way for the men. The Remainers know best and the Brexiters, don’t. And that’s all there is to be said about it. 

Here, everything that is said against the Leave vote can be equally applied to the Remain side of the coin; but is conspicuous by its absence. With that in mind, I say arise Remainers and kick those feet. I bet most didn’t understand the implications of voting Remain and ceding even more power to an already bloated bureaucracy. I bet they couldn’t give me a meaningful critique on Friedrich Hayek’s, ‘The Road to Serfdom’. Oh, and yes, could they tell me please about the composition of the Council of Ministers, about the measures and updated terms in the Treaty of Lisbon and the political background of Federica Mogherini?

“But more people on the Leave side were uninformed!”

This, of course, is irrelevant, even if it were true. There’s an underlying assumption that the more you discover uneducated Brexit voters the more you have diminished the credit of Brexit itself. But this argument says nothing about Truth, nor what’s the best course for the British people. And more importantly, it has nothing to do with what is a clear democratic mandate. It’s the classic argument from authority – or lack of authority, in this instance. There’s been a biblical deluge of logical fallacies in this sorry affair. Of course there has.

The inference to be made from this stampede is not that Remainers believe most British people to be stupid, that’s obvious; it’s that they believe themselves to not be stupid. Yet they dishonestly hide their pro-EU sentiments behind a curtain of Brexit skepticism, without ever taking the stage in their own right. They’re like schoolchildren who unfavourably mark their rivals’ exam papers without ever sitting for it themselves. 

Less of an assault on those who voted leave, because opinions can change; rather, this invidious discourse has been a savage attack on democratic rule itself, which I suppose is quite apposite all considered.

The Brexit Carnival

The concept of democracy is very simple, or at least it should be. It’s that citizens should be given an equal choice over their collective futures; where welfare is the social object, and normally will is the social law. Take the example of a plane crash in which 20 people are left stranded in the wilderness. Who would rule? Could the strongest and cleverest rule without the other 19 submitting to his/her authority? If their talents are used for the community, then they are the servant of the community. And the community is sovereign. If their talents are used against the community, why should the community submit to them?

In such a simple example we can see the benefit of rule by popular consent. We also see that there’s clearly a direct relationship between the freedom of choice and results. The problem is that the directness of this approach has been corrupted in a society which is infinitely complex; in a system where nothing is straightforward; where all paths are meandering even when they are meant to be straight. The fault, therefore, isn’t with the concept of democracy per se, it’s that anti-democratic things have hidden themselves within this complexity and seek to thwart and undermine it by ingeniously presenting its own self-interest to be in the democratic interest of all.

Of course, in a system that calls itself a democracy, anti-democratic elements will only be tolerable if they mask a substantial part of themselves. It’s rather like the Carnival of Venice where masks give wearers free licence to do as they please. Occasionally, however, the mask slips, and we see the true face of power in all its ugliness; we may even see the identity of those who are committing debauched acts. And in recent times, nowhere has the Carnival’s spotlight been shone more than on Parliament’s handling of the Brexit referendum.

A referendum is perhaps the purest form of this direct method of governance, so it is perhaps unsurprising that in this most indirect of systems there’s been a failure to fit the most direct of all ideas. But the clash isn’t necessarily between simplicity and complexity, it’s between sincerity and insincerity. And the battleground, as ever, is the economy. It seems the main contention to upholding the result of the referendum is that it “would be bad for the economy”, while a no-deal Brexit “would be catastrophic for the economy”.

One MP who is a loyal slave to the economy is Hilary Benn, who has motioned the Benn Bill, which essentially aims to block a no-deal Brexit. This hastily written bill has been passed by Parliament. The official position of Labour, the opposition party of which Benn is a mutinous member, is to renegotiate a “good deal”, then put that before the public in a second referendum in a binary proposition with remain. Labour first said that they will then campaign for remain because it would be “better for jobs and economic security”. Now, after attracting a considerable amount of public ridicule for this stance, they say that they will be “neutral” in that scenario. Yes, really.

To my knowledge the media hasn’t seriously analysed this prevention of the possibility of a no-deal. Lamely repeating ad nauseam that “no-deal would be catastrophic for this country”. Nor has it adequately analysed the very deliberate attempt to thwart the result of a popular vote, as we see inferred by Labour’s official Brexit policy. It merely wheels out cherry-picked expert after cherry-picked expert with dire economic forecasts; talking point after talking point that roll off the tongue like a Bishop reading the liturgy from a holy book.

Media talking points fall upon the facts like soft snow, blurring the details and obscuring features. It’s a gentle process that accumulates over time, for if the storm was more violent, it would be more visible. But because a small clearing in the wood can be worth more to us than whole forests of mere entanglement, let’s point out the obvious. To block the possibility of a no-deal Brexit is to block Brexit itself. Because all the EU needs to do to keep the UK in the union is to offer terrible deals making remain the only viable option. At the very least, the prospect of securing a deal advantageous to remaining will be successfully negated.

The Bill therefore can be rightly described as a “Surrender Act”. Because a very rudimentary understanding of the concept of bartering is clearly missing from Hilary Benn’s motion. Rather, it’s designed to immure the pro-Brexit Government in paralysis. And attempts to prevent a snap election merely deepen that paralysis. Such disingenuous prevarication has marked parliament’s stance on this issue. In what is a very clear circumvention of a democratic vote, the largest mandate in British electoral history.

To be, on the face of it, so ignorant of basic trading principles makes one a little sceptical of the judgement of those who are keen to invoke trade as a good reason to suspend the democratic will of the people. If, as I suspect, parliament is not ignorant of trading principles and has cynically passed the bill to thwart the result it, in turn, makes one cynical of their concerns. Which seem to centre around short-term economic problems and not long-term predictions. Indeed, decisions grounded in the short-term tend to fail in the long-term. But regardless, even if they were sincere and their concerns justified, it is quite immaterial to the question at hand.

Surrendering everything to trade and commerce is not democracy. Capitalism is not democracy; and is admittedly, at various gradations, rather against democracy. Did it not occur to the purveyors of sound economic planning that the vote could have been about culture and identity, and not the God of GDP? In fact, inherent in the very notion of voting is the suggestion – and what so many journalists seem so eager to forget – that the country and its economy is the servant of the people and not that the people are servants of the country and its economy.

If parliament refuses to uphold a democratic vote it ceases to be credible. Actions signify more than words. You can’t speak the words of democracy while walking the walk of dictatorship. Because it is simply not tenable that the result that failed is the same as the realities that did succeed.