Hastings & St. Leonards on-line community newspaper
Remain supporters on Hastings pier.

Remain supporters on Hastings pier.

Brexit’s con-trick is a poorly camouflaged power-bid on behalf of the ultra right

In a hard-hitting contribution to the EU referendum debate In campaigner Rachel Lever explores the not-so-hidden agenda of the forces of Out.

“The time has come to brand the ‘Brexit’ campaign for what it is — a bid for a right-wing Tory takeover of the reins of power in the UK.” Nicola Sturgeon

The Leave section of the British establishment seems totally oblivious about the financial, trading, diplomatic, political and economic sink-hole that an Out vote would open up. Far from heeding the warnings, they blithely call them “scaremongering”.

So what is their agenda?

A top academic EU law expert has accused them of “dishonesty on an industrial scale”. Just one of the myths he destroys is that the EU “controls Britain”: in fact, Britain with France and Germany effectively controls the rest of the EU, giving Britain huge influence within the biggest trading bloc in the world.

Are Brexit supporters deluded or are they so hell-bent on grabbing power that they just don’t care about the cost? Or do they see the chaos, fear and uncertainty that would follow as being the ideal ground for their populist demagogy to take root and grow?

We’ve all seen the check-lists of what the EU has “ever done for us”. That’s the same checklist that will be on the “bonfire of rights” that the Outers have soused in petrol and are waiting to ignite.

Hastings IN poster 2The referendum itself has given the Little England fantasists a massive platform for a phoney national pride. But it’s exactly our best national qualities — tolerance, moderation, pluralism — that Ukip are gunning for.

While all eyes are on the effects of actually leaving the EU, the political aftershocks of an Out vote will be an immediate and dangerous shift in the political tectonic plates.

Already, disgracefully, the campaign has brought the ideology of backroom hate merchants, such as those that radicalised and primed Jo Cox’s killer, into the common discourse. The media has raised their ignorant claims, lies and utter moral and economic nonsense to the same status and volume as world-class expert witnesses for Remain. The BBC in the name of “balance” has seen to that.

This elevation of bar-room prejudice undermines hard-won everyday standards such as parental leave and accountable food labelling as “PC gone mad” while flattering those who falsely believe they are in revolt and somehow speaking truth to power.

Paul Mason has written that “all over Britain, people have fallen for the scam.” And he explains: “For many people involved, it feels like the first time they have had control.” With Brexit deflecting the blame for all social problems from Westminster to Brussels, those hurt by austerity and failed communities know that the London pundits are not the ones paying the price.

But as Mason says, the Brexit camp are the very people who want to finish the job Thatcher started. They talk about defying the ‘elite’. But they ARE the elite and it is they who will “take back control.

“Take a look at the people leading the Brexit movement. Nigel Farage, Neil Hamilton, Boris Johnson, Michael Gove. They have fought all their lives for one objective: to give more power to employers and less to workers.” And John Major says “The NHS will be about as safe in their hands as a pet hamster left in the care of a hungry python.”

If Out prevails, the ultra right will from next week effectively be running the country. And Ukip, with its dangerous connections behind a blokey front-man, could gain a pivotal influence that’s way out of proportion to its Westminster mandate. How democratic would that be?

Getting out of Europe will indeed have been a Very British Coup.

Posted 16:35 Wednesday, Jun 22, 2016 In: Politics

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