At 10pm last night I heard the poll forecasts of 52:48 for Remain and that the pound was hitting $1.50. This just seemed odd, the mood of the country didn't seem to be towards Remain, but maybe Project Fear had worked, after all even I had nearly cracked. However it felt wrong, so I tweeted...
I slept and awoke at 4ish thinking that being a gracious loser was important and that at least Sterling was up so holidays would be a little cheaper. Then I heard the news... Leave had won!
Of course the BBC are all doom and gloom and 'told you so' re the financial markets. Sterling down 9% they are saying, will yes against a figure that was illusory, a figure whose value was decided on wrong information. I was buying dollars not that long ago at just under 1.40, so the drop is about 5%, painful but not unprecedented.
But why did the Brexit campaign win? The blame can be laid in four main places:
1. The EU itself - By taking away democratic control from the people, the people felt powerless. This referendum gave the people some power and they exercised it. Also when David Cameron asked for a few scraps from the table to allow him to present his EU renegotiation as a success, they couldn't even allow that. So David Cameron had to pretend that he'd got a good deal but it was obvious that he hadn't.
2. Tony Blair and the Labour Party - Tony Blair was an EU supporter and an ally of the EU fanatic Peter Mandelson. But Tony Blair's culpability in this regard actually lies elsewhere. By opening the UK up to unprecedented immigration from both within and outside of the EU, Tony Blair and the Labour Party hoped to 'rub the right's noses in diversity'. Immigration into the UK increased to unprecedented levels and the people that were affected the most were those working class people, historically Labour voters, who saw their wages drop, their jobs disappear, their schools get more crowded, their roads fill up, their hospitals at breaking point and their ability to buy or rent a house recede as demand for housing and other public services outstripped supply.
3. The British media - The BBC dominate the British mediasphere and they have been very pro EU, pro unlimited immigration and frankly insulting of anyone who dared to hold a contrary view. A large proportion of the British people were tired of being called 'racist' when they pointed out that their hospitals, schools, roads etc were being adversely affected by immigration. If the BBC had allowed their voices to be heard, if the government had listened to their legitimate concerns, then maybe the people wouldn't have become so angry. But the media and the establishment always know better, know what's good for the people and left the people voiceless, until...
4. David Cameron - I really believe that David Cameron didn't believe that he win the 2015 general election with a majority Conservative government. So a promise of an EU referendum was safe, he could say that the price of having another Conservative lead coalition with the Lib Dems was that there could be no EU referendum and he would probably have got away with that. Unfortunately for David Cameron the mood in the country was such that Labour voters fled the Labour Party for UKIP in sufficient numbers for the Conservatives to win a majority government. Now what was David Cameron to do? He went to the EU (actually see 1. for what happened)
5. Angela Merkel - Her decision to open the floodgates to Middle East and North African immigration and the resulting images of, mainly, young ,men walking into Europe helped to decide the views of many who don't benefit from cheap cleaners, gardeners and builders but who can no longer get work in thise jobs because they've been undercut by immigrants.
What do you think? Am I right? Have I missed something?