Brexit hasn’t properly started yet but just the sheer fact of it being decided has profoundly psychologically impacted on how we feel about ourselves and how we interact with the world. Everything feels different. There’s a feeling of being more constrained, smaller, of being culturally alone and communally detached. Being on holiday in Europe there was a real sense that all these other nationalities are part of a club that I’m now excluded from and they are planning all sorts of new co-operative shared initiatives that I can now only observe.


Marooned on this small island, governed by the most right wing ideologues in this section of the planet, doesn’t help this sense of being adrift in an interconnected world. The rest of Europe will be getting on with building shared institutions whilst isolated Tory UK will be getting down to the business of scrapping the Human Rights Act. The loss of access to the free movement of peoples across our continent is probably the most self damaging decision we have made in our island history. The access that my generation had to mix, work, learn and build relationships with our European friends will be lost to the next generation as Europe reciprocates in kind by closing down the continent to Brits. This decision has denied our young people all those opportunities and experiences that we simply took for granted. This generation of young people have every right to feel angered and aggrieved at the isolated, inward looking United Kingdom they will now be bequeathed.

And then there are the reasons that underpin why we’re doing all of this. A massive distrust, even contempt, of others who want to come and live and work amongst us. An agenda based on suspicion, insecurity and most of all fear. What a cultural basis to start this singular, self dependent journey into splendid isolation. Departing the European Union as a project is the culmination of decades of work by UKIP and right wing Conservatives. It is their agenda that has prevailed and will influence our journey into solitude.

Then there was how this was won. The biggest pack of lies ever presented to this nation. £350 million per week would to be returned to our NHS just being the most obvious example of the rubbish claimed by people no longer a feature of our national politics, and rightly returned to the obscurity where they belong. Then there is what has happened since. The sense of trauma, a feeling of ‘good god what have we done!’, a rise in racist attacks and intimidation of immigrant communities, a ‘philosophical’ approach to declining currency values, downgrading of credit ratings, stock market crashes and deep, deep uncertainty and insecurity. There is still a feeling of disbelief about all of this and the looking for someone to pick up all these shattered pieces.


I’m now told that I should look for the positives in this appalling decision. We’re back ‘in control’, our borders will ‘be secure’, powers will be ‘returned’ and we are free from ‘unelected bureaucrats’. They can frankly shove all that nonsense where the European summer sun don’t shine. There is absolutely nothing positive to be taken from this vote and it still feels like something to be mourned.

But Brexit means Brexit, we are blithely reassured, as if making it alright. What Brexit actually means is unfettered Tory rule unconstrained by the positive influence of partners. It means isolation and deep introspection. It means insecurity, uncertainty and absolutely no plan on how we deal with it. It means closing down the continent to our young people and denying tariff free trade to our businesses.

I still hope that my nation, a nation that voted for continuing partnership and inclusion, can still escape the ramifications of this vote. Scotland wanted none of this and Scotland’s view should be respected. I think you can tell I’m still struggling to be reconciled to this awful decision. Scotland should also continue to be angered and unreconciled about it too.


    1. Nigel Mace

      The real response – the only one that will maintain the world we both beive in, Pete, is Scotland’s independence and we need to make our moves for that asap – and certainly before Article 50 gets triggered in, most probablym, next spring – Easter or shortly after. There has never been a better chance of a majority but every day that goes by without the independence campaign started is another day that the Unionist establishement – especially in the MSM – has time to start recreating fear of independence and fear of its supporters, now their major potentially community damaging card.. Nicola’s careful strategy is playing well and is the right one – but it must head towards claiming our independence and our retained EU Membership fairly soon. The Unionists in government and their media friends know they will lose – as things stand. There is a time – never more than now – and we must not miss it. Please push for a second independence referendum ASAP

  1. thomaspotter2014

    I don’t accept that Westminster’s goon show will take Scotland out of Europe.

    We shouldn’t allow them to.
    Trident is another £200+ Billion too far.

    All this pandering to the Establishment buffoons is demeaning and power sapping.

    SNP need to grow a pair and say enough is enough.

    Too much time spent in the cesspool that is Westminster will turn you and fuck you up.

    Time to get all the 56 back up the road to sanity.

    Let the others wallow in their own mire.

  2. Alastair Naughton

    I too was on holiday recently – in the Canary Islands, to be exact, which is of course part of Spain. As I entered the airport and passed through the EU entrance it really did hit me that next time, should I be so lucky to get another holiday in the Canaries, I would have to pass through the “Non EU Citizens” entrance, which would involve endless passport controls etc. What we had taken as a given – free movement – would soon be removed if we didn’t do something about it fast. Personally I think the time has come. Nicola said that if there were a “material change of circumstances” such as a threat to Scotland’s place within the EU, then that would be enough to consider holding another referendum. That threat is now well and truly in evidence. If even the likes of JK Rowling are converting, there will probably never be a better time. Patience is all very well, but there comes a time when you have to say enough is enough. Given ALL the broken promises, (the EU, but also the warship orders and the pensions), and the scandals over the Panama Papers, and the widespread and now well-known pedophilia throughout the UK establishment, if we can’t win now, when will we ever?

  3. Rodric Selbie

    Pete, last time the YES camp played the game to kindly, next time no more Mr Nice Guy, we have to point out the truth of staying under a corrupt regime, how much more risky it will be rather than running our own affairs, we have a good starting point…….

    They can’t on the one hand insist that the Scottish people have spoken in 2014 and then ignore what the Scottish people said in 2016. the Unionist parties do not get to demand that the result of the 2014 referendum is respected if they do not respect the promises that they made in order to win it.

    Vote NO to secure our place in Europe (LIE)
    Vote NO to save 2000 HMRC Income Tax jobs (LIE)
    Vote NO or companies like Scottish Widows will leave, now based in London (LIE)
    Vote NO to secure the building of Frigates on the Clyde, now reduced and delayed indefinitely (LIE)
    Vote NO to save British Steel jobs, it took the Scottish Government to save the plant (LIE)
    Vote NO or subsides for Scotland’s renewable energy sector will stop, now stopped (LIE)
    Vote NO because only the broad shoulders of the UK could save the OIL Industry, now mass unemployment (LIE)
    Vote NO Cameron promised a 200 Billion North Sea Oil boom with investment (LIE)
    Vote NO and lose the HS2 planned for Scotland, now we are told ‘no business case’ for taking fast train service to Scotland (LIE)
    Vote NO and lose the £1 billion to develop “carbon capture and storage” technology on power stations, now cancelled (LIE)
    Vote NO Cameron said “Scotland should lead the UK not leave” on the same day as the NO vote EVEL is introduced making it impossible for a Scot to become a Prime Minister ever again… (LIE)


  5. JinShanmu

    You sound absolutely petrified in this blog post, as if the Iron Curtain is closing down around the UK and we will all rot inside of it. You’re highly exaggerating when you speak of how the future generations will not be able to enjoy the continent as your generation has. I myself have travelled to many nations around the world outside of Europe, funnily enough, not having an open-border policy with those nations didn’t stop me from going to them and spending a considerable amount of time in them.

    I voted Brexit and my dream is to move to France, Remainers quickly tell me that this dream is now over for me. Ah bon? Vraiment? The world was still spinning before the EU and it will continue to do so after. I am extremely pro-migration but I could not condone supporting a wicked and corrupt institution like the EU. I’m no fans of the Tories either and look at the political situation now; it’s a big mess. But you know what I call this? A shake-up. All through-out history order is born out of the chaos. I’m glad the status quo has been shaken and through my line of work I will work to build STRONGER ties with the continent through real human encounters than the faceless Empire in Brussels.

    As much as I’m not keen on Boris Johnson, he hit the nail on the head when he coined the term ‘Project Fear’. Stop moaning and let’s take it upon OURSELVES to build closer ties with Europe and NOT through the German dominated EU which is so structurally in favour of the richer Western European nations that the whole thing needs scrapping and a new institution must be made if it’s ever to work that way.

    Good day to you.

    Yours sincerely

    A man with my fellow citizen’s best interest at heart like yourself.

  6. Jim

    No one gives a flying anymore about Europe. It was a UK vote – not an SNP one. Nats also voted for Brexit in a larger proportion that any other political party.

    And stop talking of things outside your competency. Education, policing & the NHS is a damn mess.

  7. Flossiemacdoodle

    Nice post, thanks. Agree overall – tragic – had hols in France and wanted to tell every last boulanger and restaurateur I was remain. Re Indy ref2, that would be another folly. Best bet is Nicola keeps pressure on about it being a poss, though actually it would be even madder than both Indy in the 1St ref and leave on 23 Jun. Sturgeon knows this which is why she is not agitating yet. Best she keeps powder dry. Can only hope Theresa has a bigger game plan and more humour (aka 3 brexit nutters given enough rope…) than first appears.

  8. Scottish Political Group

    The obsession that a minority of Scots is having with Independence is costing us dear, Pete. Investors need stability to have confidence to pump money into our economy. This stability cannot exist unless we provide a stable economy.

    On my laptop is a report from the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS).

    This notes that due to the collapsed oil price, Scottish tax revenues per capita (which include a geographical allocation of oil revenue) have fallen below those of the UK for the first time in 30 years. That makes Scotland’s effective budget deficit for 2016/17 an eye-watering 9.4 per cent of gross domestic product.

    The equivalent number for the UK as a whole is an estimated 2.9 per cent. By 2019/20 (says the IFS) Scotland will be running a deficit of 6.2 per cent of GDP and the UK a surplus of 0.5 per cent of GDP.

    It’s surely worth remembering that the EU defines a deficit as excessive when it goes over 3 per cent of GDP. Something worth considering if we were to be in a position to want to rejoin the EU at some later date.

    A second reference point is from Scotland in Union. It’s author points out that public spending per head is £12,800 in Scotland and £11,300 in the rest of the UK. He also suggests that had Scotland voted Yes to separation, it would have cost her an extraordinary £10.4bn in the first year alone, once you take into account everything from the loss of renewable subsidies to the end of the UK’s EU rebate, and the cost of having to give English students free university tuition in order to comply with EU laws.

    I await the GERS figures to be published on Wednesday (24/08/16) with trepidation. Please for once put our country’s needs before your party’s.

Comments are closed.