The nasty Referendum and the basic dilemma

The EU Referendum debate on the day before the vote is as even as you can make it. That’s what the opinion polls in the last week or so have said with the faintest suggestion that there has been a slight surge in favour of Leaving. On the other hand, those who put their money on it at the bookmakers are saying that we’ll be Remaining.

This has been the most complex — and the nastiest — national vote there has been in this country. Above all, whatever the verdict tomorrow, it will have exacerbated the main dilemma that faces all aspirational governments.

It is the dilemma of the gap between a meritocratic civil service and populist politicians when the need for state welfare is growing faster than the ability of the present sort of centralised nation-state governments to supply it.

4 thoughts on “The nasty Referendum and the basic dilemma

  1. I don’t know about the outcome of the referendum. I do think, however, that we have reached the high point with the public fascination and acceptance of globalization. The perceived costs are now seen to outweigh the benefits. The rise of nationalism just about everywhere is evidence of this. Lack of good jobs, immigration problems, hollowing out of manufacturing, etc. (of course automation has been a factor) but the lustre is of the globalization “project”.

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