Where Did Britain's Racists Go?
Publisher: Counter Punch
Date Written: 03/07/2017
Year Published: 2017
Resource Type: Article
Cx Number: CX21188
A year ago Britain voted to exit the European Union. Anyone who wanted to leave the EU was deemed to be a racist, a caveman, an irrational nationalist and even a drunk fool. However today exactly one year later, some are talking about a "soft" Brexit or even no Brexit. Has Britain changed so much in a year?
Britain didn't change itself in the last year. The recent election which unexpectedly halted the march of the Tories complemented rather than contradicted the vote to leave the European Union. Corbyn's success was based upon an anti-austerity argument. He was giving the British an alternative not just to the Tory vision of society but also to the EU vision of Europe. He was explicitly trying to end the neoliberal nonsense which has traumatised the many and enriched the few. And by doing so he was moving Britain further away from the EU rather than closer to it.
If the British grasped the horror of austerity this year, isn't it possible that they grasped the horror of austerity last year when they voted for Brexit? Considering the fact that "the EU" is short hand for "fanatical austerity", it's reasonable to assume that the British rejection of the EU last year was based on the fear of austerity rather than on the fear of immigrants.