Waiting for the other boot to drop

Some people are telling me that I was wrong about Brexit. Apparently everything is fine. The stockmarket  is up (if measured in Pounds), house prices are not falling (much, if measured in pounds) and the weather is nice. Nigel Farrage has sloped off to bother the Americans for a change. All is good. Right?


Now lets say you have a mate who, for reasons that are not specifically clear but may be due to a lifetime of heavy drinking and general poor decision making, announces to the pub that he has decided to cut his leg off. A few drinkers think it is funny to encourage him to do this but you and your friends, worried that there is a small risk that he might actually do it, try to warn him of the consequences. “You’d probably bleed to death. You might get infected. You’d almost certainly get sectioned. You wouldn’t be able to walk. It would hurt FFS!” and so on. He is unconvinced. The next week you see him walking around town with both his legs. Just as you are about to tell him that you are glad that he changed his mind, he collars you and starts berating you that you were bullshitting him in the pub. You see, he didn’t bleed to death, didn’t get infected, didn’t get sectioned , can still walk and is not in pain. Clearly you entirely overstated the risks and he is more determined than ever to cut his leg off now that he knows that it is safe. Your mate is an incurable idiot. Your mate is British.

The thing is this. Brexit hasn’t happened yet and an awful lot of people are in denial that it is going to happen. While nothing happens we won’t have to take the consequences and everyone can indulge in their preferred fantasy, either that it will happen but it will all be fine, or that it won’t happen at all. I am not sure which one is more delusional. These delusions create a space in which those who campaigned and voted for Brexit, knowing full well that it was a terrible idea, can evade responsibility for their actions. Almost every day the Daily Express puts some abject drivel on its front page about how Brexit is “boosting” Britain in some vague and implausible way*. Like most other bubbles of unreality, this is not tenable in the medium term. Eventually reality reasserts itself and people discover that you can’t argue with reality. Sooner or later the other boot is going to drop and wake everybody up with a start.

To misquote Churchill: This is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. It is not even the end of the beginning. We are still waiting for the beginning of the beginning.


* – It is noticeable that all the other Tory papers are hedging their bets in a far less bullish way and the Express headlines seem to be trying far too hard to convince themselves. If you ever wondered what cognitive dissonance stretched to breaking point looks like, just glance at (but don’t buy) the Express.


August 28, 2016. #Brexit, Politics, Sensible.


  1. Rik Howard replied:

    Absolutely agree. What’s happened so fast is a low rumble of thunder in the distance as the storm draws nearer.

  2. Well, that escalated quickly… | Daniel Rigal replied:

    […] back in 2016 when I said that we were waiting for the other boot to drop? Well, it has taken a long time but I think I can hear something heavy whistling though the air as […]

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