BREXIT MEETS CRASH2: EU apathy, global market fears, and Gideon Rachman old rope.


Waking the Dead is quite a challenge

The piece in yesterday’s Daily Mail about the launch of ‘GO’ (Grassroots Out) quoted people as politically disparate as Kate Hoey and Nigel Farage on the subject of “standing as one force” in order to maximise the Vote Leave franchise. During last Autumn I did take a major swipe at the Brexit Campaign for not doing that, but still – late is better than never.

However, there were some rather muddled – and at times content-free – rationales behind the move in Dacre the Mad’s organ. Conservative MP Tom Pursglove, for example, was quoted as saying, “I know that all those out there in our country who want the United Kingdom to leave the European Union, have a simple message: get together and make it happen”.

It could well be that the avian-brained Mail hack who took down this meaningless observation got it wrong….it wouldn’t surprise me. But assuming Tom did say that, I’m left asking why – if all those out there have a simple message: get together and make it happen – they need to be, um, gotten together.

It set me to thinking. And it left me with a question: why does Vote Leave need yet another brand called Go when it already has UKip under its wing?

“They have a problem at the lower end of the social scale,” said a source in UK market research, “called apathy. The lower the turnout, the worse the Leave campaign will do”.

In truth, this doesn’t just apply to Brexit: exhaustion among those who now accept that their fate is to be ignored, blamed and then pauperised is what will hold back the WASPI campaign this week, and a united Opposition to the corporatisation of Britain thereafter. There is a sea-change victory in UK politics for anyone who can get the serial abstainers back into the system.

I wonder if perhaps it’s time for the ‘if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em’ strategy. The one thing we know for sure about the politically disaffected is that fame obsession and celebrities are their biggest distraction. Albeit late in the day, is it time to start trawling X-Factor and the Soaps in order to look for evidence of personalities and actors with anti-EU sympathies?

Just a thought.


The global economic and fiscal situation is dire, but despite this one can’t help but laugh. The US Fed was pumping out Good News vibes over the weekend and promising yet more rate rises. I asked if Yellen was on the same planet (beyond America) as the rest of. The next day, another Shanghai plunge sent the world’s markets reeling. Overnight, two dollops of Yuan-slush from the PBOC kept it steady – just. Each time, the manipulators waded in as the correction tested 3,000. Well I never.

The markets will regroup again….for a while. But the corrections will continue, and the Bric debts will get bigger. “Volatility is the new normal,” said a manic talking head on CNN. How fine it would be to be a fly on the wall inside that head.

But if you thought there was no foresight being peddled, then think again. Rachman of the FT (who sounds – and writes with all the engagement of – a pulp-novelist diplomat) contributed another empty column yesterday about his ‘contrarian’ predictions for 2016. These included ‘Britain might Brexit after all’, ‘things are not looking good in China’ and ‘Trump may get the GOP nomination but he won’t be elected’. Hold me upright, I’m fainting.

I suppose one needs a brass neck to get paid money in return for writing this kind of stuff, but if so you’d think the bloke might stick his neck out just a bit more than that. But no, it continues: ‘One strong possibility is that Isis will suffer serious military setbacks over the course of the next 12 months, at least in Iraq and Syria’. What, even with half the planet bombing the crap out of them you mean? Hold the front page, Lois.

Clearly, Giddy got where he is by having an anorexic definition of the word contrarian. Certainly, he didn’t do it by opening his mind:

‘The Iraqi army, backed by western air strikes, has just succeeded in retaking Ramadi.’

Oh right, backed by Western air strikes. Move oudda the way Con Coughlin, there’s a new kiddology on the block.

Yesterday at The Slog: Science finally catches up with neolib claptrap