Saturday, April 16, 2016

Quick thoughts on Brexit

Got this in the mail from Seeking Alpha,

Ahead of a visit to the U.K. next week by Barack Obama, the White House is insisting that a Brexit decision should be determined by U.K. voters and the U.S. president would only offer his views as a "friend" if asked during his two days in London. The administration has so far backed David Cameron's position on the matter, stating "the British economy will be weaker, its international influence will be reduced and the EU will be damaged if the U.K. votes to leave the bloc in June."

That is the problem everywhere including Singapore isn't it? Leaders only make a case for why this or that decision is good for the country but then in recent history they have difficulty ensuring that the benefits are widely scattered among the people. Instead bitter experience suggest that only the elites benefited and they masses are worse off. To win support for staying in the EU David Cameron has to successfully sell to enough voters why most of them would be better off. There is not much time or much faith for the PM to convince the Brits.

It hasn't worked for the man in the street, so why would he want to keep going in this direction eh?

So there is only one trick to convince the voters or leave your fate to capricious lady luck.


  1. Revolution is the inevitable effect of " rich getting richer". Singapore prospered and remained united in the early days because benefits were shared by all. The turning point was the introduction of high ministerial and public service salaries in a protected political market. The perception is that there was a shift from an allegiance to people to an allegiance to money.

    1. Tax fairly before revolution and we have a much better outcome. Current trends are not sustainable and looking like getting fairly close to the limits of tolerance.

      The SG response is more nuanced and complex. We are price takers not just on what is on the price tags but also the practices and norms from elsewhere. Oversimplifying, they pay high CEO salaries elsewhere and we are pressured into doing the same etc., and we only hope this trend ameliorates or even reverse before our society fractures since we can only bear with such norms replicated here for so long. Therefore I welcome what is happening to the Panama's files. Even if Sanders fail to win the nomination his influence will remain.

      I am not making myself as clear as I am happy with as I am trying to keep this very short for a topic that is complex and I feel not well understood by many. Additionally how to you explain these things to angry people?