Monday, June 27, 2016 5.29 PM /
This is as spooky as a prediction will ever get. Nick Clegg, a British Liberal Democrat politician who was the Deputy Prime Minister of the United Kingdomwrote this eerie prediction on June 22, 2016 and was published in the Ipaper on June 23, 2016.
It seeming predicted the post brexit chaos now unfolding. Read on
Are you still undecided? Are you someone who – pummelled by weeks of claim and counter-claim – has been left exhausted and annoyed? Have you been looking for answers, yet all you’ve encountered are insults and exaggeration?
Maybe you’re so fed up you think to hell with it, let’s throw caution to the wind and vote Brexit. Imagine, however, what happens next. Imagine how you will feel on 24 June?
Having woken on Friday to the news we’re quitting the EU, you will assume that those who persuaded you to take that leap of faith have a plan about what to do next.
So imagine how dismayed you will feel when you discover, instead, that Nigel Farage, Michael Gove and Boris Johnson can’t agree among themselves what life outside the EU looks like? They may be united by a ferocious loathing of the EU, but they have no shared plan for the future.
So you will look towards our leaders in Westminster to sort out the mess. Instead, they argue among themselves: the Conservatives descend into a bloody leadership election; Parliament enters years of constitutional gridlock trying to extricate itself from the intricate legal stitching which binds us to the EU and gives us access to world markets.
Then you discover just how unprepared the Government is – that there simply aren’t enough trade negotiators in Whitehall, for instance, with the expertise to renegotiate 50 or so international trade accords.
As politicians bicker, you become increasingly unnerved by what’s happening in the economy, too: overseas investors take fright; money flows out of the country; our credit rating is slashed; the interest on our borrowing goes up; unemployment rises; sterling tanks; prices in the shops go up.
Nicola Sturgeon soon announces that preparations have started for a second independence referendum, claiming it is the only way to keep Scotland in the EU. And this time most commentators think that she will win.
Still, at least they will finally sort out our borders, right? After all, ending mass immigration was the Brexiteers biggest claim of all.
So imagine how you’ll feel when you discover that they don’t have a plan for that either? Some argue for a new land border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to stop EU immigrants coming in through the “back door”. Others that a new border would harm the peace in Northern Ireland. The Australian points system which they advocate is no solution either – it has led to immigration levels twice as high as in the UK.
Panic starts to spread among the 1.3 million Brits who live, study and retire elsewhere in the EU. Spanish politicians start to complain about paying for public services used by British pensioners. If we start excluding Spanish doctors and nurses, why should they keep paying for our pensioners?
And then there’s that faintly queasy feeling you get when you see Donald Trump on the TV, visiting the UK on Friday, declaring his joy at the Brexit vote.
Meanwhile Angela Merkel invites President Obama to an emergency summit to discuss the fallout – the UK is, of course, excluded from what soon emerges as the new “special relationship” between the US and Germany.
The Brexiteers say you will “regain control”. But it won’t feel like that. Instead, the economy lurches to recession; there’s upheaval in Westminster; no plan to allay concerns about immigration; another referendum in Scotland; a steep slide in Britain’s standing in the world.
Our wonderful country adrift – not in control. And for what? Nigel, Michael and Boris still won’t be able to tell you why.