Brevenge is my new word..
The last week has been horrible ..
We watched as the ‘leave‘ campaigners for Brexit celebrated their unexpected “win” – there was cockiness, arrogance and a big dose of “F##k You Europe” that was delivered with a huge lack of finesse and zero respect.
We heard the speeches in Europe and we listened to the laughing by the Brexiteers and we then heard European officials reacting to this with their own dose of bitterness and recrimination.
“If you want out, get out now”
On the ground non-UK residents working and living in the UK feel unwelcome in a place that many considered was their home and this hasn’t been helped by yobs who claim they “want them out“. Of course, not everyone is like this.
Stopping immigration was a big emotive message by the ‘leave‘ campaign and this effectively was directed at anyone living and working in the UK who is not from there and those who might consider living there in the future – a big penny dropped with young people from the UK that their ‘explore the world‘ ambitions have now been shackled by the consequences of the referendum.
Scotland are regretting their lack of independence and are passionately making noises about staying in Europe. Northern Ireland wants the same and it is clear that London certainly wants the same. Those from the UK living across Europe are wondering what their position is as they walk along their sandy beaches every day in Spain and beyond and contemplating how much further their income will drop due to currency changes.
When the results were analysed and the exit polls were conducted it was clear that the working class and the poor communities in the UK felt left behind and abandoned by politicians and big business and a way of registering this anger was by voting for a change and against the establishment.
Companies were dictating to their employees how they wanted them to vote (Nissan in Sunderland was a prime example) and once again this was an opportunity to deliver a big “F##k You” …I work for you but don’t you dare tell me what to do!! (the same happened in Ireland during the recent General Elections – is there a big trend?)
It now seems that many were quite unclear about what they were voting for and many of the ‘selling points‘ that were presented by the leave campaign were proven false and this has left a very poor taste in people’s mouths.
Sterling has weakened and stock markets have shuddered with colossal amounts being wiped off company values everywhere, which in turn will affect pension funds. Companies who operate in the UK are reconsidering their positions and already we are hearing that plans to expand have been cancelled. The big, bold and brave Richard Branson is claiming that he has cancelled a project in the UK that would have resulted in 1,000 jobs – not good!
The Irish aren’t happy because we do lots of business with the UK – will Europe allow small little Ireland special flexibility to deal with the UK? If they are in the angry mood that we are currently witnessing they are more likely to give the UK a kicking than a special deal. We are worried and angry about their questionable decision.
At a time when the UK needs strong leadership and stability we are seeing resignations, backstabbing and jockeying for position by those only too willing to enjoy the spoils of power as a result of this debacle.
The young, the old, people from the UK, Europeans working and living there, the Scots, Northern Ireland, the expats on sunny beaches, the Irish and the Europeans – everyone is angry!
At this time it is more important than ever that we stay calm, that we show respect, that our decision making and key next steps are all made with cool, clear heads.
Tony Blair in an article in the Daily Telegraph delivers a special message and a stark warning:
“Our nation is in peril. To allow us to come safely through this we need to be adult in our politics, to proceed with calm, maturity and without bitterness; because our future as a nation in the world and as the UK itself is at stake.”
He is right!
A second referendum might be a very good idea to ensure that this huge change of direction has been properly thought out and made with all of the information and a clear understanding of the consequences, which will be felt for a long time.
The EU also needs to take a good, long hard look in the mirror and figure out why a key partner and an important and influential global force such as the UK has decided to walk away – please listen and learn from this!
The EU must also be adult in their politics and act with “calm, maturity and without bitterness”
All parties in this complex mess need to do what is best and not what is motivated by anger and the quest for…
Greg Canty is a Partner of Fuzion who offer Marketing, PR and Graphic Design services from our offices in Dublin and Cork