Opinion by Zachar Laskewicz
14 June 2016


When this short article was written, only a few weeks remained until the British would hold a referendum on a subject which truly makes clear some of the deficiencies inherent in the system we call democracy: should the United Kingdom go to the enormous economic risk of removing itself from the common market making itself a non-member state of the European Union. 

When a government has been elected, they’ve been elected to make decisions for its citizens; and considering the enormously negative economic implications for the whole of the European Union, this is one area that should remain a government decision and be based on what is best for both the voters, the economy and the countries in trading relationships.  Holding a referendum, especially at this time when feelings are running high about the imposition on Europe of the hundreds of thousands attempting to escape the results of a violent civil conflict in Syria, is particularly damaging to the reputation of the success of democracy.

It is clearly being used as a political tool for some to get into power. Boris Johnson – the previous mayor of London who now has far higher political ambitions – was one of the first to jump on the band wagon.  He’s always seemed to me despite his fame a blatant populist prone to spouting fantasy when it suited his agenda; a beloved moron with a chronic hair problem.  Michael Gove, an intelligent conservative politician, has no such excuse and some of his recent attempts to unite the nation in an ultranationalist fervor are a desperate and despicable manipulation, including comments like “we don’t need the opinion of experts” as if he wouldn’t be pouncing upon their opinions if there were experts willing to bet on the stability of the economy after such an economic calamity.  Gove is an expert: should we ignore his opinions too?

I’m sure there are also extremists who actually believe in ultranationalism; UKIP is a prime example of the new face of racism with at its figurehead a neo-conservative racist known as Michael Farrage.  In Belgium he’s primarily remembered for turning up at the European Commission in Brussels and yelling particularly inappropriate insults.  If you want to be reminded of what he said to Herman Von Rompuy, the current EU president and basically a quiet spoken Belgian politician, you could always click this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?gl=BE&v=bypLwI5AQvY

It gives you a clear idea about what this man represents; a new class of people who are painting racism and ultranationalism into an acceptable frame.  It’s the sort of people who say “I love foreigners as long as they don’t risk the value of my property by moving in next door.”  It may seem yards apart from the violent racism of soccer hooliganism, but in actual fact it’s preying on the same fears for particular political ends.  Isn’t that obvious to everyone?

To many of us on the continent the idea of a ‘Brexit’ seems as ludicrous as the United States holding a similar referendum: should one of its states be able to disengage from centralized control because of their wish to ban not only foreigners (i.e. non-Americans) from crossing their borders into their state but people from other surrounding states as well who could potentially put the work prospects of those born and bred in the region (as if that actually means anything). in jeopardy.  Considering the extreme economic and financial instability this would bring about, succession of states hasn’t been considered since the civil war that united the country.

Similarly, although there are some nations unhappy with the way the United Nations work, there are very few that would want to disengage themselves from it completely let alone hold a referendum on that happening.
Many of us still don’t quite understand what all the fuss is about: who exactly is responsible and why? What follows is an incredibly reductive and probably not entirely well-informed summary of how I’ve interpreted it all.  The Tories – a conveniently reductive name for the conservative party inhabited primarily by exclusively and privately educated rich people who believe money should stay where it belongs, with the rich – were able to seize power from Tony Blair’s ‘new labour’. No one can blame British voters for becoming dissatisfied with the new left which was actually a convenient euphemism for contemporary conservatism. What other choice did they have? When the head of the party (Blair), himself an exclusively educated old boy with links to oil investments of his own, involves himself in an illegal war for the purpose of attaining the sole rights to Iraq’s rich bounty for his American buddy (ultra-conservative AND stupid George W. Bush) and then lies about it again and again.  Any chance labour may have had of being reelected farted itself into non-existence as the United Kingdom demanded answers for the deaths of so many of their innocent young. 

As a result the British have returned to their rather traditional wariness towards the outside world and listen more attentively to whatever the current politically sanctioned propaganda is manufacturing.  And since the first world war propaganda has been the hallmark of British politics; after the first world war Hitler was highly impressed with what he viewed in Britain, i.e. poor ignorant young fools being enthused by false advertisements on the joy of fighting and the glory of defending one’s fatherland blah blah blah. In the Second World War he adopted many techniques he’d learnt from the British, and hence a another nation willing to believe the lies they were told which led to the death of an uncountable amount of innocent people. But propaganda doesn’t interest us here: we’re concerned about the real nefarious agenda behind the ultranationalism.

As far as I see it, bickering within the members of the even more extremely right-wing of the already Conservative Party brought about a quandary.  The so-called ‘back benchers’, representing this difficult to stifle core belief in where money belongs and who should have it, forced the calling of this referendum.  David Cameron promised it and as a result is now obliged to let it happen. 
Immigration and ultranationalism are, as mentioned, the smoke-screens for the true fears of the ultraconservative who didn’t actually give a flucking fuck about such banal notions as nationalism and immigration.  The important matter here is the best way their money can be funneled away from the fear of regulation and taxes, preferably into private accounts in the many tax havens spread around the world.  The rich like being rich; but they want to get richer at whatever cost.  Since staying in a Europe could mean more regulation of banks, more necessity to reveal the immensity of their assets and worse still possible criminal charges for the years of tax evasion the rich have allowed themselves.

We shouldn’t forget that the Tories still look back to the Thatcher era with a nostalgic glaze in their eyes, as if she represented some kind of paragon of political excellence when her anti-society policies of privatization and anti-regulation have led to the ultimate financial ruin the tax payers of the world have had to finance during the recent depression.  A Brexit would allow the Conservative Party to take the United Kingdom further down this road and further widen the gap between the rich and the poor.
Other reasons for the wealthy to encourage a ‘Brexit’ include allowing the criminal white-washing of of Russian dirty money in London Real-Estate, which occurred ad infinitum and without question under Boris Johnson’s questionable leadership.  Another group to fear are those who make money investing on the inevitable negative results as the economy crumbles, earning them millions of Euros; if ‘Brexit’ happens of course this sort of criminal activity of both types can continue on without question as the United Kingdom (and the rest of the World for the Matter) battle to make new alliances.  It’s the perfect environment for devious criminality.

 For me, the recent leaking of the Panama Papers was particularly shocking and got me thinking about the elitists who were calling for a ‘Brexit’ and why.  Isn’t it for everyone painfully clear that the Conservative Party whose ideals believe that the money should stay with the rich, would be happier the further away they were from the regulatory rules that would force them to reveal all their funds. The people crying ultranationalism as the basis for the creation of an unstable economic environment for not only Europe but Britain itself, are precisely that set of old boy, landed gentry or simply immensely wealthy individuals who are able to siphon off even more of their funds into conveniently British conservative style deregulated offshore accounts, forever safe from European scrutiny and the British tax system.  But they’ll only be able to do this without drawing attention to themselves if the world is otherwise diverted with far greater financial and economic problems.  And so the divided Tories are fighting bitterly on a matter which clearly means so much to them but for reasons most people would never consider.

- Zachar Laskewicz, 14 June 2016







May 2008 Nachtschimmen Music-Theatre-Language Nightshades, Ghent (Belgium)
Send mail to zachar@nachtschimmen.eu with questions or comments about this website.

Last modified:
May 30, 2013