[Marxism] Brexit and imperial privilege

marinercarpentry at gmail.com marinercarpentry at gmail.com
Tue Jun 28 02:53:53 MDT 2016

Defensiveness and incomprehension? You either have real issues with arrogance or the sort of dull grasp on reality that comes from belonging to a group of a dozen or so deluded trots with a propensity for looking at their feet when talking to the public. 

It would be a dumb defence indeed that began by personally questioning whether I voted correctly. My messages were intended to be collegial/ anecdotal (I wish I hadn’t bothered) from somebody here rather than somebody else attempting to concoct a party line from afar. In that regard we probably inhabit different universes. I have no pretensions about leading the masses. I voted as an individual and didn’t try to convince anybody else to vote either way (indeed, my partner went the opposite way to me). 

What I am saying is your analysis is dangerously simplistic – not to defend some position that I don’t have – but because it is. For 10 of the 12 week campaign the main focus (from the remain side who made their voice louder) was the economy and not immigration. On a daily basis, ‘captains of industry’, asset managers, business leaders, celebrities and world leaders were wheeled out to tell everybody they were better in and biblical plagues would surely follow withdrawal (‘project fear’; psephology 101 – ‘it’s the economy, stupid’). The remain side consistently polled ahead of leave, and again – because I don’t follow an unbending line like a lobotomised trotbot – I intended to vote remain. It was the daily drubbing from neoliberals telling us all we couldn’t survive without them (without ever considering we’ve been lucky to last this long with them) that made me switch to leave. At that last-minute point, voting against Goldman Sachs didn’t seem to me the sort of ethical dilemma you apparently predicted with such prescience.

Your assertion that attacks on the street/ the rise of the right was always a foregone conclusion according to determinations thrown up by the referendum is complete and utter nonsense. As should be clear by now, this isn’t a defence of my vote (that wouldn’t make sense in the context of what I’ve already written) but calling bullshit on the conceit that you saw all this coming in the parameters you suggest. As you’ve rightly said, the campaign was shaped by right-wing opinion from all sides (Corbyn being a nominal remainer but largely absent). And, as I said similarly, both sides were racist to varying degrees (leave more so, particularly in the final stages) meaning this wasn’t a simple binary. Both sides tried to marginalise Farage (think: the relationship between GOP and Trump) but it was the In side that delivered Farage a default platform because Cameron preferred arguing with him to avoid debating fellow Tories and maintain some party unity. When Farage produced an obscene poster reminiscent of Nazi propaganda he was denounced by both leave and remain. What nobody considered was that large parts of the country who rightfully feel resentful at being left behind by neoliberalism didn’t give a fuck 

In short, the inter-dynamics between different sides were as distorted by Westminster politics as much as any thought of EU membership. You could argue that even if both sides were racist it is well-known here that the far-right have always favoured leave. But you could truthfully say that of the far left until the 90s. 

In short, the campaign from both sides 

Sent from Mail for Windows 10

From: MM
Sent: 28 June 2016 02:19
To: marinercarpentry at gmail.com
Cc: Activists and scholars in Marxist tradition
Subject: Re: [Marxism] Brexit and imperial privilege

> On Jun 27, 2016, at 6:46 PM, marinercarpentry at gmail.com wrote:

Defensiveness and incomprehension at basically every point. There just isn’t much in your response that it even makes sense to try to respond to.

PS: I’m not remotely important, but if even I saw what was coming, and that the only defensible position for the left was to try to defeat the referendum, then a lot of other people should have been able to see it as well. Some did. Many of those who didn’t have engaged in some of the most ridiculous, defensive bullshit I’ve seen in quite a while. Credit to you for at least being willing to admit “buyer’s remorse” (although I don’t care for the metaphor).

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