Monday, 24 April 2017

Brexit - mistake, enemy action, or delusion?

When Nigel Farage tripped down the steps of the Ecuadorian embassy – a visit that he did not expect to be photographed or documented – a beam of light was shone on a previously hidden world: a political alignment between WikiLeaks’ ideology, Ukip’s ideology and Trump’s ideology that is not necessarily just an affinity. It is also, potentially, a channel of communication.

David Golumbia, an associate professor at Virginia Commonwealth University in the US who has studied WikiLeaks, describes it as “the moment when the lines suddenly become visible”. He says: “It was like the picture suddenly came into focus. There is this worldwide, rightwing, nationalistic movement that is counter to the EU, and this is present in the US and Europe and Russia, and we are just starting to understand how they do all seem to be in communication and co-ordination with each other.”
Carole Cadwalladr, writing in the Graun.

If you were an agent for a hostile power actively trying to inflict massive damage on the UK and the EU, then covertly promoting Brexit would certainly have helped you to do just that. The idea that Brexit was a foreign conspiracy has a vague plausibility, but it's not that probable, at least if you calm down a bit and apply Hanlon's razor to the dramatic idea that the Brexit omnishambles is the result of active subversion, rather than just a catastrophically bad decision.

But the idea of subversion by foreign powers still looks more likely than the official government delusion that, if we all just shut up, get behind Brexit and wish hard enough, we'll magically find ourselves in a wonderful land of freedom and opportunity where foreigners will fall over themselves in their rush to capitulate to our every demand.

If you still believe that one, just keep your head still while I measure you up for a stylish tinfoil hat.