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Brexit - Who'll Fix It?

11/07/2016 15:35 | Updated 11 July 2016

In the same way that it could take many months to place the over-arching consequences of Brexit in any meaningful context, so we'll have to wait awhile for any sensible analysis of how the Referendum 'Leave' vote will impact on UK business.

We do, of course, have our daily dose of the hyper-responsive 'markets' - the Footsie, the Dow, Nikkei, Hang Seng and the rest. Alas, these are often distorted mirrors of localised perspectives as seen through the prism of opportunistic and institutional investors.

Likewise, our eyes and ears are bent with endless shades of grey in other types of trans-national financial markets - currencies, commodities and so on. Given the complexity of all this, how does an average individual assess what is going on in the wider world and how will this affect their personal economic prospects?

In the UK, the Office for National Statistics trots out various figures pertaining to GDP, employment and other economic indices. By the nature of things, these figures usually trail reality by a good few months.

Government ministers, representatives and apologists typically seize on those figures which have the potential for party political spin. In the slipstream, British media will jump on whatever bandwagon suits their particular editorial prejudice. Where this leaves objective assessments of the consequences of Brexit is anyone's guess.

Economic Consequences

Already, as the effects of the 'Leave' vote are beginning to crystallize (to use the Bank of England's word), there is much finger-pointing. And although there were warnings about the economic consequences of a 'No' vote from respected 'experts', the massive disconnect between 'anticipating' the effects and 'planning' for them has demonstrated an alarming measure of complacency among the UK Establishment.

In the meantime, the UK populace will have to grin and bear it. Those working within big corporations will have no means of repairing and responding to the consequences of Brexit; those who run and work in small and medium-sized businesses will in many cases have had their dreams of future wealth shattered (in the short term, at least); while those who thought leaving Europe would bring the sunlit uplands of an immigrant-free Utopia can now repent at their leisure.

For the starry-eyed, no map is complete without its Utopia. In the global village of inter-dependent economies, it's difficult to see how the UK can be a beacon of enlightened democracy in a divided society where political toxicity stokes tribal confrontations between the 'haves' and 'have nots', between city and shires, London and the provinces, the educated and lumpenproletariat - or any permutations thereof.

Social Media Politics

The UK political system is in a state of flux - or meltdown - depending on where you stand on the spectrum of hope. One thing is certain: free, unregulated and readily accessible social media has ensured that we're all politicians now! In theory, this should be 'A Good Thing'. In practice, what we have is a chaotic clamour of narrow self-interest fighting for the oxygen of legitimacy.

The micro-blogging platform of Twitter is hardly ideal for reasoned debate. Neither are the inviting panels for random responses on Facebook and other social media sites. 'Power to the people' has singularly failed, with the shattering consequences of Brexit all too plain for everyone to see.

The deafening cacophony of 24-7 news media and social media contrasts strangely with the relative silence of UK politicians when it comes to demonstrating leadership and statesmanship. Perhaps they're afraid of being 'trolled' or swept away in the tsunami of cynicism that now permeates every corner of our national life.

Post-Brexit Solution?

The burning question is how will a discredited 'ruling class' establish enough credibility to harness the undoubted potential of the UK population to rise above a self-inflicted recession? It's already clear that the current political infrastructure is inadequate to cope with the groundswell of social change that threatens to overwhelm our country.

Nothing less than a new political philosophy is needed to sweep away the inadequate and irrelevant views of recent years that continue to inform (and distort) our views of 'society' as it stands in post-Brexit Britain.

The author, Mike Beeson, is a UK Financial Copywriter who blogs about financial and other issues.

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