The Referendum and Educated Voters

Posted By on June 24, 2016

Since I was asked, what I was doing during the Referendum? I believe in an educated electorate, and I was upholding my principles.

This meant running a site that actually called both sides out on their rubbish and scaremongering.

For Leave – focusing on Immigration when there are a whole host of other issues, and getting surprised you were called racist? Really? And for Remain, when people have raised reasonable issues like the tampon tax, VAT Place of Supply, Animal welfare, overdevelopment, no affordable housing being built… ignoring all these and insisting they could only object because of racism? Insulting people and refusing to debate issues never gets them round to your point of view.

As for young voters, most of them seemed to be speaking from the same playbook taught in schools or colleges. Once it got beyond immigration and the claim of preserving peace (and a few didn’t know there had been a Cold War for heaven’s sake) they were lost. Raise the issues I mentioned above that Remain was ignoring and, well, they didn’t only not know about them, but most were horrified.

No one on Twitter seemed to realise that no one had a problem with EFTA – the European Free Trade Association – or that the EC and EFTA were not the same things as the EU, and that Leave was objecting when integration went beyond trade.

So I answered a few of those questions, with links and neutral cites. £15 turned into three solid days of Q/A.
  • 78,730 confirmed unique visitors  
  • 643 direct click outs    
  • 590 sign-ups to ask more questions    
And if it meant a few electors were persuaded one way or another, or simply persuaded to vote, then it was worth it. Now I need sleep.

And as for Twitter now, Leave seems to be asleep or celebrating, and Remain is not putting their best foot forward:

Saying that because they lost the referendum, “it was never a good idea to hold one.”
Is it better to keep over half the country run by overseas officials they can’t change and do not want to represent them?

“This is what you reap for putting a complex, nuanced, economically critical decision in the hands of cretins with a yes/no vote.” or perhaps the inevitable result of months of intelligent people being ignored over every concern raised, by the same EU officials who think someone’s email address tells you what country they live in.

“I’m saddened to live in a country that favours bigotry and isolationism to co-operation and prosperity” And not ashamed, for many years that you lived in a country that favoured European majority-white immigrants over Indian, African, and others?

“Just heard this referendum is NOT legally binding and parliament don’t have to act on it!” And would you be celebrating that if your side had won?

I am assuming that this is the first shock of the result (it certainly had me reeling), but I am sincerely hoping that common sense and manners will eventually prevail. Right now we need pressure on Cameron to act and act sensibly – just remember one of the more cheerful comments I’ve read from Lexit.

“In 2016 we just got rid of one set of conservative politicians. In 2020 we can get rid of the rest.”

and on a parting note from a B5 fan:

“Until now I felt like Londo Mollari: ‘My shoes are too tight and I have forgotten how to dance’. This morning I kicked them off.'”

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