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Was Brexit Just Populism

(115 Posts)
RBeer Thu 26-Jan-17 12:33:30

Is that what is was? Take away the mantras and slogans.

Was the UK caught up in this Populism wave and just by mere coincidence did it happen to cross the Ref.

It could have crossed paths with any other arc.

The US Populism crossed with Trump and insofar that is very damaging, it's not fatal.

Brexit , however, is for ever.

palebluedotty Thu 26-Jan-17 12:49:12


1[mass noun] Support for the concerns of ordinary people:
‘it is clear that your populism identifies with the folks on the bottom of the ladder’
‘the Finance Minister performed a commendable balancing act, combining populism with prudence’
More example sentences
1.1 The quality of appealing to or being aimed at ordinary people:

I just thought a definition would be helpful.

I suppose Brexit being populist depends on who, of Leave and Remain voters, you think are the 'ordinary people'.

RortyCrankle Thu 26-Jan-17 13:38:32

For me, no. I had been waiting years, well decades to be given the opportunity to vote us out. I am still happy I voted Leave, have no problem with it going to a vote in Parliament as confident the vote will support the will of the people.

engineersthumb Thu 26-Jan-17 13:48:38

I think Brexit is an example of foolish people wanting to find something to blame for their woes and being lead by truly evil people. Call it popularise if you will. In truth it was a movement to popularise xtreme views.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Thu 26-Jan-17 13:54:01

I have no woes, so just the foolish bit for me then.

My feeling is that anti eu feeling was on the rise, and UKIP would have become more and more popular as dissatisfaction increased.

RortyCrankle Thu 26-Jan-17 13:55:45

I think Brexit is an example of foolish people wanting to find something to blame for their woes and being lead by truly evil people. Call it popularise if you will. In truth it was a movement to popularise xtreme views

That's bullshit but it's you're right to believe in it smile

engineersthumb Thu 26-Jan-17 14:22:56

Ah must be right thenhmm
Never mind Britain will have fewer experts in the future...those that can having emigrated or returned to the their respective countries!

RortyCrankle Thu 26-Jan-17 14:59:08

Oh a sensitive soul - would crap offend you? Yes it probably would - let's say utter bilge then smile

MephistophelesApprentice Thu 26-Jan-17 15:02:51

I still can't see a difference between populism and a functional democracy.

I mean, I'm not a believer in democracy (Plato was right) but the whole 'populism' label just seems to be a way of saying 'democratic outcome I disagree with'.

ExitPursuedBySpartacus Thu 26-Jan-17 15:05:59

Is there something wrong with 'populism'?

Kaija Thu 26-Jan-17 17:02:03

The point about populism is that it relies on politicians cynically making very appealing and wholly unrealistic promises - "sunny uplands", "make America/Germany great again", "£350 million for the NHS". These promises usually exclude one or more segments of the population to act as scapegoats.

A functioning democracy rests on there being a degree of trust between the population and its representatives, and some reasonable basis for those representatives to believe that what is on offer is at least partly achievable, without excluding or scapegoating.

JamieXeed74 Thu 26-Jan-17 17:53:21

A functioning democracy rests on there being a degree of trust between the population and its representatives. You mean the kind of trust that when a population votes to leave a club their representatives actually leave the club and not just say they have left it but with nothing actually changing? confused Hey presto!

Kaija Thu 26-Jan-17 18:23:25

Or the sort of trust where our representatives implement an advisory vote with reference to the best interests of all of their constituents, rather than acquiescing to the most extreme interpretation possible of the result, despite all indications of the severe damage it will cause.

IamWendy Thu 26-Jan-17 18:36:52

I think that the idea of leaving the Eu was a pipe dream for some for a long time, then others simply never considered the idea on account of the vice like grip the eu had on its members and the governments total dedication to the project meant it wasn't on their radar. People have suddenly been given a choice, the ones like me who have held a dislike for the eu for decades were thrilled, others realised that this time, it was up to them.....just them, if they wanted in or out (not a government who wouldn't deliver even some control). They either believed project fear, and bent under the pressure of the doom merchants, or grasped the opportunity for freedom.

Kaija Thu 26-Jan-17 18:51:45

What are you most looking forward to doing that you've been held back from, Wendy?

Mistigri Thu 26-Jan-17 19:39:36

I think Brexit - bad as it may turn out to be - is a far less damaging form of populism than Trumpism. It will most likely only hurt the economy, and then the perpetrators will get voted out. And it may, still, never happen or happen in name only (just wait till brexiters realise how the WTO works; yet to meet one who has the foggiest clue. Once they work it out - give them a year or two, it's complicated - they won't like it).

OTOH Trump unless impeached or otherwise removed fairly early in his presidency may cause permanent damage to an already fragile US democracy and to the rule of law (by limiting civil rights, legalising voter suppression, running roughshod over the constitution and installing partisans in the judiciary).

JamieXeed74 Thu 26-Jan-17 20:21:04

acquiescing to the most extreme interpretation possible of the result

Kaija - What extreme interpretation, its either stay or leave and we voted to leave. There is no interpretation involved.

Kaija Thu 26-Jan-17 20:28:48

A little reminder.

GhostofFrankGrimes Thu 26-Jan-17 20:32:09

There is no interpretation involved.

That's an odd and worrying way to look at the most seismic event in British politics since WW2.

JamieXeed74 Thu 26-Jan-17 20:55:59

Kaija, nice meme but how about the full quote in context!

Ghost, why is it worrying? Of course its important, hence MP's asked the country to decide.

Kaija Thu 26-Jan-17 21:04:55

Hannon wasn't the only one giving out assurances that we could stay in the single market/be like Norway/Switzerland etc

palebluedotty Thu 26-Jan-17 21:07:47

Kaija, Andrew Neil would rip you to shreds for putting that little picture and quote up like that, much as he did James McGrory and the Open Britain campaign on the Sunday Politics when they clipped quotes in apallingly misleading fashion to completely distort the meaning of what Leave campaigners had said about the single market.

From the beginning but the analysis of actual clipped video quotes starts at 4 min 25s.

Blatant distortion from the Remain campaign.

David Cameron himself said on Andrew Marr that he would pull the UK out of the single market: “What the British public will be voting for is to leave the EU and leave the single market.”

Just a little reminder.

JamieXeed74 Thu 26-Jan-17 21:09:02

Kaija, ok who, when and give the full quote in context. Because having access to the single market is very different to being in the internal market and customs union, governed by the ECJ, with free movement of people and paying massive budget contributions.

VikingVolva Thu 26-Jan-17 21:10:04

Is populism the term when you don't like something?

Zeitgeist being the one for when you do.

JamieXeed74 Thu 26-Jan-17 21:10:41

Thank you palebluedotty, xpost. You covered it better than me, Andrew Neil rips it apart.

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