Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Thanks to all who commented.

I remained undecided to the very end.

I walked to the polling station, at a local public library, still wrestling with it. I sat down in the library still going over the points. After more than twenty minutes, my wife arrived from dropping the children at school and was surprised to see I still hadn't voted. She hustled me into the booth.

I stood there, looking at the ballot, and lifted my pencil to the Remain box....but then suddenly crossed the X by leave.

And I still wonder if I did the right thing. I may never know for sure.

by tyronen on Thu Jun 23rd, 2016 at 10:35:14 AM EST
In the Swedish Euro-referendum (the one on wheter to adopt the Euro as currency) I listed the pros and cons, ignored the irrelevant arguments (mostly about the bills and coins as such) and came up with two systems of not directly elected central bankers running NAIRU policies on either a national or European scale.

In the end, I flipped a coin and voted. I don't remember which way the coin landed.

It was a very important referendum, but not for any arguments that were presented. Ok, yeah, the left against euro did say that we would give power to unelected European central bankers, but I don't remember hearing about the scenario that actually happened.

It will probably not turn on your single vote anyway.

by fjallstrom on Thu Jun 23rd, 2016 at 10:58:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I don't have to make a choice, as the UK doesn't let expats vote anyway. So I'll have to decide how to vote in the referendum on Renzi in the autumn instead.
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Jun 23rd, 2016 at 11:04:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
What referendum is that?
by fjallstrom on Thu Jun 23rd, 2016 at 11:15:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A reform to the constitution, mainly to reduce the power of the Senate, while the Chamber will give a guaranteed 340 seats to one of the parties (the latter is a law that has already been passed). The reform passed parliament, but without the required supermajority, so a referendum is needed (but without a minimum participation, so the usual problem that voting No could mean Yes is eliminated).

Renzi had said that in case of a No he would resign, but he may be backtracking on that promise.

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Jun 23rd, 2016 at 11:28:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]
If the referendum does not pass and if Renzi resigns, is there a new election? And will it be under the old election law or the new?
by fjallstrom on Thu Jun 23rd, 2016 at 12:33:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Why should there be a new election? Renzi was never elected in the first place.
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Jun 23rd, 2016 at 01:04:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The reform is co-written with Denis Verdini, arch mob villain from Berlusconiville, and that shuffling of the Senate will extend parliamentary immunity to the most corrupt layer of the state bureaucracy, the regional governments.
Renzi was installed to change the (unconstitutional) electoral law, which if left as is or with the modifications in the reform referendum will hand semi-dictatorial powers to any leader with a dominant 30% of the vote.
Ironically if the 5* went to elections with this system they would have a huge opportunity to ram through major changes with much less bicameral delay.
They on principle oppose the electoral law reform  even though it could advantage them, another sign of their fair-mindedness.

Renzi first made the mistake of vover-personalising the referendum, by promising to leave of it fails, then the even bigger one of announcing he might break his promise.
He is a cocky bantaM with delusions of grandeur, a legend is his own mind, and a puppet of the bank and fossil fuel lobbies. A gift of the gab got him the gig, but Italians are tiring of his corporate optimism and facile, glib chirpings. The serial lying and boasting powerpoint cockerell is running on fumes.
These elections have bloodied his beak, but the final reckoning... roll on autumn.

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Fri Jun 24th, 2016 at 12:23:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You're the kind of guy who gives the pollsters heartaches! No doubt some psychologist here will be able to divine your subconscious motivation for leave after your rational processes still left you undecided.  I suspect v. view voters actually go through those rational processes in the first place - except at a very superficial level.  

That is why we live in an era of post truth politics in the first place - political psychologists have figured out that what motivates most people is not some worked out rational position, but their gut fears and anxieties, who they spoke to last, the personal feelings they have about the main protagonists, and their family history of voting which often goes back generations and is rooted in some long forgotten trauma  - war, national health service, unemployment, first job, and maybe, sometimes, current perceptions of personal economic self-interest.

Do you prefer Cameron over Boris, do you reflexively support establishment institutions like the Bank of England or do you feel the establishment has betrayed you and you want to give them one in the eye?  What are your friends and neighbours saying and doing. Who do you trust even slightly more.  Corbyn doesn't seem to inspire confidence on either side, and so Labour risks being shunted into irrelevance.  Lots of people like Boris for all the wrong reasons, but does that matter. Farage seams to have tapped into a widespread feeling of betrayal; that Briton doesn't look after its own any more, as in the days of empire, but would you buy a second hand car off him?

My guess is that this is not like an election where "if in doubt, vote them out" might apply.  Constitutional change is too scary.  The Brexit side too shrill. In the end, something as emotive as the killing of Jo Cox may have been the deciding factor, insofar she embodied how a lot of Brits like to see themselves.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Jun 23rd, 2016 at 11:47:16 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Congratulations. You've just bitten into the biggest con job of the 21st century.
by Bernard on Fri Jun 24th, 2016 at 08:41:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well until an election victory for Drumpf.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sat Jun 25th, 2016 at 08:09:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]


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