Sunday, 26 June 2016

Where to from here?

In the UK, we are now in a strange kind of vacuum in leadership. Why has this occurred? On the conservative side, I don't believe David Cameron and George Osborne expected to lose the referendum so they put no plans in place, and I suspect that Boris Johnson and Michael Gove didn't expect to win so they didn't have a plan of action either. To add to the confusion Cameron has resigned and said he won't invoke the leave process. I suspect as well that the leave campaigners don't feel they have a big enough mandate and have no idea how to handle a situation that could easily swing against them and probably will once the lies of their campaign become apparent.

What about the labour party? They were effectively sidelined by the news media during the campaign and are now generating their own internal wrangles over leadership to have any input. During the campaign and now, they should be acting like the SNP and formulating a course of action to ensure the best outcome for Britain. I don't see that happening within the parliamentary labour party. Instead, I see them shooting themselves in the foot and ensuring that they become even more irrelevant in the future. How can going against the majority vote of their members help their aspirations to lead the government but then that is the problem, it is all about power and not about being the voice of the people. Maybe the labour party is dead and now the conservatives are joining the race to self destruction. As for the EU, there response in my view is farcical. A 48/52 split is hardly a clear indication that the UK really wants to leave so why try an invoke an immediate departure and ensure that their own people who want to split up the EU have more ammunition. Why not take a more conciliatory approach and talk of reform that ensures individual nations sovereignty but addresses the issues of working together. Instead, it is play by our rules or get out so a small majority support in favour of exit in the UK now means the UK must initiate the exit process. This will not resolve the uncertainty and it certainly will not address the real issues facing the EU and world economics.

I voted to remain purely on the grounds that as a commonwealth and EU citizen, it would be less hassle if the UK remained in the EU. This vote was not about the UK leaving Europe. That would require some major seismic disturbance. This was about political arrangements and leadership of the conservative party. Economic issues and immigration where the side shows for the debate. Effectively, the vote has made Cameron and Osborne ineffective although if they went to the EU and said help us build a relationship to keep us in, I suspect they could still win the day. Instead, they are allowing the outcome to destroy the UK economy because they like so many politicians are actually clueless when things do not fit their particular framing story.

The vote was a distraction from the main issues of how to organise ourselves economically and in relation to others.

From what I understand of the required processes to leave the EU, nothing happens until article 50 is invoked by the UK government. Surely the path forward to unity within the UK and with the EU is to address the issues that concern the UK population while retaining a working relationship with Europe. Look for those positive messages about UK security, incomes, and health that the people seek by addressing the real issues of a failed neoliberal based economic system. Playing with political alliances is not going to address the ills of a free market, corporate dominated economic infrastructure that will increasingly treat people as little more than slaves in a production system that can no longer deliver the job opportunities required. Address the issues that really caused the economic collapse and not the symptoms. Deep structural changes are needed to return the voice to the people and to deliver a stable peaceful world but no party is standing up clearly for such reform. Instead they shuffle the deck chairs while the boat sinks.

We need policies that will help build the potential of all nations while building a sustainable economy that ensures the environment is not destroyed. A set of policies that ensure that all benefit from the wealth of the world's natural resources and ensures all can participate according to their abilities and potentials. I would contend that money should be less of the focus and that the emphasis should shift to relationships and ensuring that there is equity for all. The more prosperous nations should be working with the less prosperous nations to ensure that the less prosperous nations have equitable access to the advances achieved while not destroying the indigenous infrastructure. We should seek to learn from each other building sustainable communities that work cooperatively for the benefit of the planet and all living species. We have to lose much of our self interest and begin to look more at meeting the needs of others if we are to see real advance.

Change is possible but not while we are squabbling over who should lead or what relationships should be in place. In or out of the EU, this change of focus is required so where are the leaders that will step forward and champion this change of framing story and build peaceful relationships for all?