United Kingdom

'Brexit' Vote Trending Toward 'Leave' Side

Remain still favored to win


Sheffield Tiger/flickr

Next week, voters in Great Britain will go to the polls to vote on whether to remain in the European Union or whether to leave the 28-member state supra-governmental organization. The British last voted on the issue in 1975, when the EU was known as the European Economic Community (EEC) and when membership in the organization became a topic of the 1974 parliamentary elections. The Labour party hung on to the issue of leaving the EEC until it was crushed by Margaret Thatcher's Conservative Party in 1983.

Then, as now, the ruling Conservative party, while supporting remaining in the European political project allowed its members to campaign against it. While Prime Minister David Cameron has campaign for the Remain side, other prominent Conservatives like the former London mayor, Boris Johnson, are campaigning for Leave.

Polls show public opinion trending toward Leave, with a significant portion of voters still undecided. While a member of the EU, the United Kingdom does not use the euro nor is it in the EU's passport-free Schengen area. Betting odds still favor Remain, but Leave is gaining ground there too.

In February, Glenn Reynolds framed the Brexit vote as a "revenge of plebes" moment similar in some ways to the rise of Donald Trump in the U.S. Trump is scheduled to visit one of his golf courses in Scotland shortly after the Brexit vote. President Barack Obama visited the United Kingdom recently as well, urging voters to support the "Remain" campaign in an op-ed, arguing that the EU "magnified" Britain's influence. Boris Johnson chalked up Obama's support for an "ancestral dislike" of the United Kingdom, which earned him a disinvitation from students at King's College for allegedly "disrespecting" the president of the United States.

The Leave campaign has focused on the outsized contributions the United Kingdom makes to the EU, based in Brussels, and the relatively minor influence it wields in exchange. Immigration from poorer EU countries like Poland has also been an issue, with the anti-immigration United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP), a Euroskeptic party founded in 1991 that won its first seat in the House of Commons in 2015 and received the most votes in elections for the European parliament in 2014.

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  1. someone help confirm (or not) my vague understanding of calculus: trending is the derivative of popularity/time, yeah?

    1. something like that, yes

      1. the credit goes to Calculus For Dummies.

  2. Two things:

    The assassination of Labour MP Jo Cox is going to raise the number of people voting to stay in as I think it will energize some number of people leaning towards voting “In” but might have otherwise considered themselves too busy to make it to the polls.

    The self-imposed post assassination moratorium on campaigning will undoubtedly hurt the Leave people more than the In people, because the “In” campaign will get free advertising in the memorial service and news reports related to the MP’s death and burial.

    Last but not least, a large number of people who will tell a pollster that they want dramatic change will, when the moment comes to cast a ballot, will chicken out.

    Pity: Britain seceding from the EU would, I think, be a good thing for everyone in the long run.

    1. It was not an assassination. And the attempt to capitalize on this random killing could easily backfire with disgust from the very people they’re propagandizing at.

      1. If the comment about “BRITAIN FIRST” is true I don’t see how this isn’t an assassination…other than the fact that the assassin was not from Persia.

        1. That has repeatedly been repudiated, even by the person who was claimed to be the witness to it.

          1. It’s too late, the Big Lie is already firmly in public consciousness and the damage has been done.

            1. Yup. Its part of the Narrative now.



      2. It was an assassination. The guy lay in wait for her. There was nothing random about the killing. He killed her, and once satisfied that she was dead, walked away. He injured people who tried to prevent him, but didn’t kill anyone else.

        It’s as much an assassination as the killing of James Garfield by a nutjob who thought Garfield owed him a diplomatic posting.

        1. Can you link to the report that he was lying in wait specifically for her?

          1. The Guardian and CNN are reporting it. The Guardian (yes I know, they suck), has a more complete account.

            Sources say that the suspected killer was lucid when first questioned. A picture is now emerging of a deliberately targeted attack in which Mair lay in wait for the MP as she emerged from her constituency meeting on Thursday. Witnesses have confirmed that he shouted “Britain first” or “Put Britain first” as he attacked Cox, who was 41 and had two children. Britain First is the name of a far-right political party.

            in (sic it’s the Grauniad, after all – tarran) the US, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) published receipts that appeared to show Mair bought, among other books, a manual on how to make a homemade pistol from the National Alliance.

            After decades of hoping, they finally got the neo-nazi assassin they’ve been praying for.

            1. Reports also said she was attempting to intervene in a fight that was already occurring, and the person who supposedly was the witness who heard “Britain First” has repudiated it.

        2. This is true. Political motivation, while a leading definition, is not the ONLY requirement for defining assassination.

          1. So what’s your difference between assassination and premeditated murder?

        3. The witness that was orginally quoted as saying he heard the assailant say “Britain first!” repudiated the author that attributed that quote to him, claiming that he never heard that and his eye-witness account was misquoted.

      3. The guy apparently had ties to an American Neo-Nazi organization, so even if the rumor he shouted “Britain First!” is false, I’d be surprised if this had no political motivation.

        1. “…apparently had ties to an American Neo-Nazi organization….”

          So says the SPLC. Give it as much credibility as you wish.

          1. Maybe they forged receipts, but it seems to line up with the other evidence that’s coming out.


            1. Oh shit he bought some books on free speech too.

              1. “Special police units who searched the house of the man arrested after the killing of MP Jo Cox are believed to have found samples of Nazi regalia and far-right literature.

                Thomas Mair was also known to have bought books from a US-based neo-Nazi group, including guides on how to build homemade guns and explosives, according to an anti-hate campaign group in the US. Among them was a manual on how to make a homemade pistol.”

                Yes, none of that stuff at the home of a guy who assassinated a member of Parliament no less would indicate that he might have Nazi inclinations. Not suspicious at all. This is equivalent to someone committing a terrorist act, having radical Islamist literature and regalia at their house along with manuals on building weapons, and then concluding that there’s nothing to indicate they might have been a radical Islamic terrorist.

                  1. Yes, I’m clearly insane for thinking a guy with obvious Nazi sympathies is a Nazi.

                    1. I didn’t say anything about his Nazi affiliations, in the affirmative or the negative. But your paragraphs of text give me the impression that you think I did. And they’re not insanity pills you need to take, just some run of the mill calm the hell down pills.

                    2. I interpreted your first comment as a sarcastic dismissal of that claim. My apologies if that isn’t what you intended.

                1. “according to an anti-hate campaign group in the US”

                  Wait, their sources is one from another country entirely? The SPLC isn’t reliable on a good day, but how the fuck would they know what was found in his house? Even if they did, why are they the ones being quoted as opposed to their source? Whatever happened to finding a chatty officer in the police department and asking him what they found.

          2. So says the SPLC.

            Progressive Propaganda Group.

    2. *dons tinfoil bowler*

      Perhaps she was murdered to guarantee the vote goes to STAY.

      *removes tinfoil bowler and hops into a lorry while kicking over a bin full of rubbish*

      1. My guess is the guy had been nerving himself up to do this for years.

        He ordered how to manuals on how to make weapons decades ago. He was a bona fide european right winger. And no doubt all the press his MP was getting in her campaigning against Brexit was rankling him. I’m sure he thought his moment had come after all those decades of preparation.

        1. He was a bona fide european right winger

          “right-winger bona fides” are easy to acquire in Europe. All you need to do is support one traditional right-wing issue and you can be quite nearly a communist on every other issue and yet still a member of the “far-right”. There’s a very narrow range of acceptable variability when it comes to (continental at least) European political philosophy.

          1. The guy had ties to Neo-Nazi orgs and had Nazi regalia at his house.

            1. Who reported that? I’m not finding it.

                1. Okay, I’m nitpicking, and it’s very possible these might end up being real. But since when is overseas shipping and handling only $7 and $4? I’d expect those prices for in country shipping.

    3. Tarran:
      Sadly, you are probably correct on all counts.

      It would have been a much needed blow to central planners everywhere.
      Europe is screwed anyway.

    4. Definitely

  3. Next week, voters in Great Britain will go to the polls to vote on whether to remain in the European Union or whether to stay in the 28-member state supra-governmental organization.

    I vote remain…on second thought stay sounds better.

    1. awesome

      If only Reason.com had an editor that wasn’t the tanned carcass of a bovine, perhaps then proper English lives would matter.

      1. Ed very recently took a Yale English course. He learned that sense-making and grammar are colonialist constructs meant to obscure the fact that the inventors of the English language were in reality crippled gay transgender Bantu tribesmen.

        1. How can you tell if an Englishman is gay or not?

          1. You leech him and test the humors in his blood, methinks.

            1. Interesting procedure. mine was a general rhetorical however. You certainly could make a decision by listening to them.

              1. I was awaiting the punchline of a perfectly good joke. You ams disappoint.

                1. How do Scotsmen find sheep in tall grass?

                  (I may have read this joke here.)

                    1. Rather pleasantly? Should’ve been: How do Scotsmen get the sheep to come in tall grass?

                    2. They find sheep in tall grass to be rather pleasant.

                    3. Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh I get it. I got it the whole time. I was just testing you. You passed….

          2. When you grab his todger, his stiff upper lip begins to quiver

      2. This kind of stuff never happened when she who hates the commentariat was steering the ship.

  4. Boris Johnson chalked up Obama’s support for an “ancestral dislike” of the United Kingdom

    For a guy that somewhat accepts the theory of the “historical legacy slavery/colonialism/racism et cetera”, I don’t see how Boris Johnson is out of line here. Obama sees “historical injustice” everywhere he looks, so I’m with Boris on this one.

    1. Obama sees the sun coming up as racist.

      The biggest pimp puppet fraud idiot of all time.

  5. Notice that the real threat to everyone’s lives is not that popular the news or in the commentariat.

    central banks the world over are the source of all of the world’s problems ultimately. As history has proven, manipulations of currencies, market prices, and interest rates by central banks have ultimately led to war.

    Rapidly coming to fruition.

    Yet all we hear are the constant drone of FED cheerleaders in the finance world asking “how the FED can fix” this and that.
    Central banks are a disaster and the moron Keynesian professors that operate them(and their political/cronyist enablers) are the worst people on earth.

    hopefully Brexit will be a success.

    1. Go away Santelli. You goldbugs are proven idiots.

    2. Go away Santelli. You goldbugs are proven idiots.

      1. So you think that opposing a centrally planned finance industry is the same thing as supporting a gold standard.

        1. They often have the same supporters.

          A sovereign nation should have a sovereign currency and someone has to manage it and insure that member banks keep adequate reserves.

          That and defense are the only two essential operations of government. I know the quaint term is “To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof” but they are describing the role of a central bank.

          1. Pay your bet, assnugget.

          2. A sovereign nation should have a sovereign currency and someone has to manage it and insure that member banks keep adequate reserves.

            A sovereign nation should have a sovereign tennis shoe manufacturer and someone has to manage it and insure that retailers keep adequate supply.

            1. I thought that was what the New Balance contract was for.

            2. A sovereign nation should have a sovereign currency

              Plenty of smaller nations do fine without one.

              and someone has to manage it

              “Managing” is mostly needed for fiat currencies.

              and insure that member banks keep adequate reserves.

              One of these things is not like the other.

          3. I like you butt plug. You make me feel so smart.

            You and Kenye need to get a room.

            1. Is that an amalgamation of Kanye and Keynes?

              1. Not sure. Kenye is the funniest moron on earth though.

                1. Kenye, as in that rapper with stupid sunglasses that thinks he’s the smartest man alive, which is ironic because he’s clearly of below average intelligence?

                  1. Number 1: We’ve got this guy Butt Plug. Number 2: He’s got a higher IQ than ANY MAN ALIVE. and Number 3: He’s going to fix EVERYTHING.

      2. Hey, turd, did you pay up yet?

      3. but plug:
        You never have any sort of solution or rational retort to the broken stuff.
        You are the man who knew too little preaching crazy to your co-workers.

        An understanding of market economics tells you that the purchasing power of currency is eroded without sound backing.

        The dollar is worth pennies vs. its power in about 1913. Now back to central banks, they are a proven failure and doing so quite fantastically now.

        Do you have a rational, intelligible argument against that?

        1. Who cares? Income and wealth have exploded. In 1913 the US was a poor ass nation – now we the people are wealthy beyond anything that could have been imagined in 1913 or 1984.

  6. Boris Johnson chalked up Obama’s support for an “ancestral dislike” of the United Kingdom, which earned him a disinvitation from students at King’s College for allegedly “disrespecting” the president of the United States.

    Good grief… if they’re so in love with Obama they can have him.

    1. Seriously. Maybe he can get a job as an MEP or something when his term is over.

      It’s very disappointing to see young people consider disrespect for a politician a bad thing.

      1. Disrespecting politicians is patriotic, except when they’re an ethnic minority leader of a western country and/or if they’re of the left.

        1. “Dissent is the highest form of patriotism treason!!

    2. Why did they say “Disrespecting the president of the United States” and instead just say “disrespecting Obama”. Because no one in Europe “respects the President of the United States”.

  7. Not sure the best place to put this remark.

    An EU Commissioner tweeted that Mrs. Cox was “murdered for her dedication to European democracy and humanity”

    Wouldn’t that imply she was a Brexiteer, given how none of the actual power structures in the EU are democratic, and an EU Commissioner would know that? Oh… wait… he’s just spewing bullshit for personal and political gain, nevermind.

    1. As the pro-Brexit Spaniards would say: Correctomundo.

  8. I’m guessing an 11th hour surge in ‘stay’ sentiment will keep them in. Because Unity.

    1. Because Unity.

      Because Leave=Racism

  9. The Pointman Blog is far more optimistic:


    A wag characterised the Remain campaign as fear, sneer and smear, and that’s not far off the mark. People didn’t like it.

    There’s only one thing worse than a silent response after you’ve spent some effort trying to convince someone about something, and that’s a polite British response. It’s in a nice coded format that fanatics simply don’t understand, don’t realise is happening and most deliciously of all for a spectator on the side-lines, it’s taking the complete piss out of them to their face. It’s a form of social signalling that you have to be perceptive enough to realise someone is telling you ever so subtly to back off.
    The responses to the Remain campaign bombardment, especially to frantic polling are actually meaningless, since coded Brit is being used. That’s are very interesting numbers (what a crashing bore), I’ll certainly think about that (life is too bloody short), I’m sure you’re right (I’m sure you’re wrong), …

    The reality behind all the too close to call polling bollocks is the remark made by a reluctant Labour councillor this week doing the door to door canvassing to get the Remain vote out. “It’s just like last year, all the polls are saying it’s neck to neck but every door I knock on, they tell me to fuck off.”

  10. I think the Leavers are going to lose, for the reasons discussed. And its too bad. Britain would be better off outside the EU, and Brexit might fatally would the EU, which would be good for the rest of Europe.

    1. I think they’re going to lose because the vote will be close and the Remain camp, being the leftists they are, will employ every dirty trick in the book to push their position just over the top. Including electoral fraud.

      1. And remember that banana republics hold elections and votes all of the time.

        Everyone knows they mean nothing.

        This is tantamount to creating a crisis around tranny bathroom use.

      2. If they vote for Brexit, the powers that be will arrange for another vote. And, if necessary, another. Houston voted down subsidies for a sports stadium twice yet somehow we got one and we are paying for it anyway.

      3. The goal of the British ruling class is to please Brussels. They are suckers for a nice pat on the back. “Leave” will lose. “Remain” will win. Britain will survive, though perhaps not as Britain.

        1. The goal of the British ruling class is to rule. Those who would rule join and empower the orgs that rule.

          This is the problem for freedom. People with a lust for power over their neighbors are motivated to gain power. Those not so motivated, don’t.

  11. They are also going to lose because I’ll bet this is largely symbolic to let the people think they have a say.

    Central banks are the last bailout source for all massive banks and government sponsored institutions, car makers, shipping companies, etc… There is way too much money riding on implied bailouts to let this sort of vote actually happen.

    Brexit would be so huge if were to actually happen. i’ll bet it has already been engineered to remain in the EU by some sort of FED like scheme to keep it there.

  12. What ever happened to the original Common Market? That was a good thing, but they couldn’t stop there, had to morph it into…yuch.

    1. Charlamagne, Napoleon, Kaiser Wilhelm, Hitler. It’s always been about Empire.

      1. Merkel.

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  18. In February, Glenn Reynolds framed the Brexit vote as a “revenge of plebes” moment similar in some ways to the rise of Donald Trump in the U.S.

    Globalists versus nationalists. The Apparatchik States versus Self Government.

    It’s a big year for the Apparatchiks vs. the Plebes all through the Western world. The Plebes are finally standing up to the Apparatchiks.

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