Brexit: In the Name of Freedom, Is Britain Choosing an Increase in Regulations?

Posted by: on Oct 21, 2019 | No Comments


Is it a coincidence that Brexit is slated for Halloween? Or have they chosen the date appropriately to warn UK citizens of how scary it’s going to be? There is no simple answer anymore, to this snowballing dilemma. But here’s a look at why this was doomed to be a huge mess right from the start.

The Curious Case of Fading Logic

When talks of exiting the European Union (EU) first began, Britain seemed to be seeking freedom from EU regulations and courts. However, that’s not the real reason for the UK voting in favor of Brexit.

The British, who went across the world colonizing different countries, suddenly developed a strange case of xenophobia and wanted to put an end to immigration. Here’s a look at why this is the ONLY reason that UK voted to exit the EU, with a complete lack of understanding of how this would affect them in the long run.

According to a report by the London School of Economics, the major supporters of Brexit were the “less-educated” and “less economically successful” voters. These voters scapegoating the EU for their financial woes and blindly opposed immigration. The xenophobia was further fueled by a false sense of national identity. The voters who supported Brexit didn’t realize that exiting the EU was not in their best economic interest. After all, empirical evidence suggests the hugely negative effects of trade barriers on foreign direct investment and productivity.

Does Brexit Totally Defy Logic?

Not really. What would have made sense was if Brexit was supported for the right reasons. The EU itself is a protectionist bloc, rather than the “great trade liberalizer” as it is often thought of. So, being part of the EU is propagating the idea of protectionism, which never has favorable consequences in the long run.

On the other hand, the more informed were concerned about the statist economic policies of the UK and considered the integration with the EU as a sort of protection from this. So, it was essentially a choice between losing control to the EU to be shielded from the UK government’s significantly centralized control. It was like choosing the lesser of the two evils.

The integration of Ireland now stands as an obstacle to Britain’s arriving at a Brexit deal with the EU. But why had Ireland held out against the EU? It’s because the adoption of the European Constitution would mean giving up its low tax policy, which has proved very successful for the region. Although the EU finally did concede to assuring Ireland that its taxation policies wouldn’t be altered, the decision was merely delayed on this one.

Why is the EU out to end Ireland’s low tax regime? Why do they want to curb Ireland’s successful strategy, rather than emulating it? Remember that the European Commission is not a democratically executed body. And, the organization would do anything to not relinquish rights (power) to individual nations. That’s how governments function.

A Nation That Can’t Make Up Its Mind

UK citizens voted in favor of Brexit and now lawmakers are desperately trying to get further and further extensions to doomsday. Deal talks related to Brexit have dragged on for three long years and we’ve seen high drama on the political front. Amidst this, the economy has suffered. The situation wasn’t helped by the US-China trade tensions, and the economy contracted in the second quarter of 2019. Although signs of growth between July and September has allowed the UK to ward off recession, the nation’s labor market is in a dark place.

So, now the UK is in a total damage control mode, in a hurry to salvage its economy. Many MPs are looking at extending Brexit as a respite and are waiting on tenterhooks for a free trade agreement (FTA).

The UK heaved a sigh of relief when its lawmakers voted for a Brexit extension in the absence of a favorable deal. Will a deal really improve Britain’s economic condition?

In the next part of this article, we’ll look at different aspects of an FTA and whether Britain stands to benefit from Brexit in the event of a deal.

Read the second article of this series here: What’s the Deal with the Brexit Deal

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