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The Brexit vote is all over the news, at least it was a day or so ago, and there are no end of explanations to why the British voted the way they did. It was a fairly unique situation. The right had reasons to support an exit, given the anti-immigrant posturing of some of the proponents, but so did the left, considering the inequality enhancing policies and actions of the unelected apparatchiks who actually run the EU, and the fact that in no way, shape or form do the people of Europe have any direct control over the EU.

One explanation favored by the elites is that the unwashed masses are frustrated by the fact that they are being swept along to impoverishment by historical forces over which they feel they have no control. The New York Times quotes David Axelrod:

“There’s a fundamental issue that all developed economies have to confront, which is that globalization and technological changes have meant millions of people have seen their jobs marginalized and wages decline,” said David Axelrod, a former strategist for President Obama and an adviser to Britain’s Labour Party in last year’s general election.

via the New York Times

Underlying this sort of statement is the assertion that “globalization and technological changes” are forces of nature beyond the control of mere mortals; that these changes are inevitable, and in opposing them the British electorate might just as well be spitting into the wind. Globalization as a historical force, we are supposed to believe, is no different than the force of climate change at the time of the Ice Age. This is a comfortable position for the elites to take, because it relieves them from any responsibility for those changes, and allows them to implicitly dismiss these frustrated voters as simpletons who refuse to accept their inexorable fate.

But the masses sense what the elites prefer to obfuscate: that their present situation is the result of deliberate choices made by those very elites, from the transfer of wealth embodied in tax cuts slanted toward the rich to the international trade agreements that are intentionally designed to exert downward pressure on wages and upward pressure on corporate profits. After all, if there really was an historical inevitability to these occurrences, the .01% wouldn’t have to spend so much money to bribe legislators to facilitate the transfer of wealth that’s been occurring.

If the people of Britain made the wrong choice, at least some of them made it for the right reasons. Democracy is becoming a charade. Our institutions are being co-opted by the super rich and their minions. The TPP is just the latest example. Not only will workers be screwed yet again, but the corporations will get their own rigged legal system, in which they will get to impose their will on so called “democracies” all over the world. It might not have been intended initially, but the EU has become something of a stalking horse for the oligarchs. It’s not surprising that there’s been a reaction.

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