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Thread: A Peek at the UK

1. While we are learning more revelations about #Spygate, and the Middle East is spinning up again, there are other parts of the world that we tend to forget.
2. Here is an update on some UK news and commentary from various open sources and intelligence reports:
3. First of all, political opinion in the UK remains split (much like the US!). The tally from the English local elections held on 2 May are in, and the only thing people can agree on is that the results confirmed whatever they believed about Brexit entering election day.
3A. [If you’re interested in learning more about local elections in the UK, this website is a good place to start:]
local.gov.uk/about/our-meet…
4. Here are the headlines: The ruling, mostly pro-Brexit Conservative Party had its worst showing in a local election since 1995. The opposition Labour Party, with its Rorschach Brexit policy, was mostly stagnant, losing almost as many seats as it had been expected to win.
5. The unambiguously anti-Brexit Liberal Democrats and the Green Party saw massive gains. The Brexit Party, whose stance on leaving the European Union you can guess, did not participate, but its forbearer, the UK Independence Party, saw massive losses.
6. The complete results can be seen here:
bbc.com/news/topics/ce…
7. It’s impossible to know how many votes were cast based on the parties’ Brexit policies, but those policies surely were a significant factor.
8. It’s also important not to exaggerate Remainers’ momentum – it is likely that the Brexit Party will do well in European Parliament elections later this month, and public opinion polls continue to show that the population is basically split down the middle.
9. What all this means at the national level is that the two main parties, the Tories and Labour, are under mounting pressure to just do something.
10. While their leaders continue to haggle over what that something is – both party leaders said the message from voters was to reach a Brexit deal and get out of the EU – voter dissatisfaction will continue to grow.
11. What does this mean for the future of the UK? Let’s look at some Brexit-related analysis to better understand the political divide in the UK:

<quote>
12. The Brexit referendum bisected Britain. The vote was designed to demonstrate that Britain did not want to leave the European Union.
13. In fact, had Britain’s political and business elite doubted that the referendum would result in a “remain” verdict, it’s unlikely the vote would ever have been called. But 52 percent of voters wanted to leave the EU; 48 percent wanted to stay
14. If 2 percent of voters had switched positions, the referendum could just as easily have gone the other way.
15. Well-credentialed, well-spoken opponents of Brexit were certain that those who voted to leave the EU were uneducated and incapable of understanding the consequences of their vote.
16. Brexit opponents attempted to delegitimize the referendum’s outcome by effectively delegitimizing the democratic process:
16A. They argued that just over half of the British public was not qualified to have an opinion – effectively saying that 52 percent of Britain’s voters should have left such serious matters to their betters.
17. The divide that has emerged in the post-Brexit world threatens to reopen centuries-old uncertainties within the British Isles. Free trade is the main problem underpinning Brexit.
18. EU supporters in the United Kingdom prospered under British membership in the bloc. But free trade did not benefit all Britons, and in denigrating Brexit voters, the EU stalwarts failed to acknowledge this.
19. Brexit’s core supporters were in the industrial areas of the United Kingdom, where people had lost jobs as British companies moved their factories to other countries or as Britain could no longer compete in certain industries.
20. Free trade posed two vital questions in Britain. First, how long does it take to see the benefits of free trade? In the long run, it might have advantages for all nations.
21. But if you’re 50 years old and have lost your job, you may not live long enough to reap the rewards. As John Maynard Keynes put it, “In the long run we are all dead.”
22. Second, who reaps the benefits of free trade? Although a country’s gross domestic product may rise, the benefits are not evenly distributed. Significant segments of society don’t share in the prosperity and may even suffer deeply while others profit.
23. This appears to have been the reality behind the Brexit vote: Many gained from free trade, and many lost ground.
24. Brexit … is institutionalizing a vast social divide, resurrecting the elites’ contempt for the poor and the poor’s hatred of the rich.
25. Even if another referendum saw one side win by a 70 percent to 30 percent margin, nearly a third of the population would still be profoundly opposed to the outcome. That’s a large slice of the population to leave steeped in anger and alienation.
26. These are extreme and unlikely evolutions, but five years ago the kind of class contempt and hatred that has emerged in post-Brexit Britain would have been unthinkable. Perhaps the most important point is that the EU issue was the trigger.
27. As the reality of a swelling class divide emerged in Britain, the EU made managing the situation much more difficult.
28. This situation is not unique to Britain. Class tension and political incoherence have become commonplace on the Continent and in the United States, as well as in Russia, ....
28A. ... where only 33 percent of people say they trust their president.

<unquote>

Read the rest here: geopoliticalfutures.com/the-instabilit…
29. STRATFOR notes that, since the official date of Brexit has been moved to 31 October, there are several options that could be pursued by UK Prime Minister Teresa May:

A. May's government and the Labour Party could reach a Brexit agreement.
29. (cont'd)

B. May's government may put the withdrawal agreement bill to a vote in Parliament.
C. May could ask for lawmakers to conduct a new round of indicative votes.
D. May could resign.
29. (cont'd)

E. The United Kingdom could hold an early general election.

Read the details here: worldview.stratfor.com/article/new-br…
30. The UK is caught up in one of the existential struggles of our time, in this case nationalism versus globalism. Although we examined that struggle in the context of the US, the issues of free trade and open borders apply equally to the UK!
31. And interestingly enough, the political divide in the UK mirrors the political divide in the US: the political class is on the side of the globalists while the rest of the people are nationalists. In fact, the US political class seems to want to copy the UK political class!
32. In the UK, the welfare state is much more advanced (thanks to fully socialized medicine), and tax rates are higher than in the US. The UK economy is more regulated than in the US and, as you would expect, the UK’s GDP growth rate at 1.6% annually was just over half the US’s!
33. And yet, our political class has been hell-bent on following in the UK’s footsteps by pushing globalist policies like socialized medicine, free trade, and open borders for years now. Thankfully, average people in both countries are pushing back on globalism – as is @POTUS!
34. We need to keep our eyes on the UK, folks. @POTUS has a state visit planned there on 6 Jun. There could be some major disclosures about the UK’s involvement in #Spygate before then that could add a lot of spice to the #Brexit discussions! ///The end.
19. Brexit’s core supporters were in the industrial areas of the United Kingdom, where people had lost jobs as British companies moved their factories to other countries or as Britain could no longer compete in certain industries.
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