Boats, Votes and Quotes

I think I have fallen down a rabbit hole, popped through the back of a wardrobe and been carried from Kansas on a hurricane. I do not know whether I am in Wonderland, Narnia or Oz but I do not recognise the landscape surrounding me any more. 

I do not know what my brave new world is going to be called. I don’t know whether it will be Remania or Leaveland. I have no idea who will be Prime Minister next week, next month, next year. Dave? Boris? Nigel?!?

But things have already changed, even before the vote. And it’s all got a little bit weird. 

Yesterday, to a predictable soundtrack of Rule Britannia, the Vote Leave campaign took to the Thames to add an aquatic element to the debate. This flotilla was met by a boat from the Remain side, with Bob Geldof on board, firing broadsides of taunts and hand gestures at Nigel Farage. 

None of this was particularly edifying. None of it moved the debate on one bit. It was the physical manifestation of how ridiculous and polarised this debate has become. The competing stunts achieved nothing in educating and assisting the electorate.

It did bring home to me how strange things have got. Nigel Farage had this to say “we (that is UKIP) used to be a party of protest against the Establishment, now the Establishment come to protest against us.”

I just had to give my head a shake again. So that is Nigel Farage, ex-stockbroker, public school educated, MEP, describing himself as anti-Establishment and complaining that the Establishment had been represented in their protest against him by Bob Geldof, an ex-punk rocker. 

Even in Wonderland, the Establishment did not sing “I don’t like Mondays”.

Just to make sure we were thoroughly confused, some of the Ukipper/Brexiteer contingent responded to Bob Geldof with taunts suggesting he needed a bath. So he is both the Great Unwashed and the Establishment. 

That Farage is the personification of the anti-Establishment and Geldof is the Establishment is remarkable. Next you will be telling me that Michael Gove thinks that decision impacting on the economy should not be based on expert knowledge, Boris Johnson wants to spend every penny he can on the NHS and that Iain Duncan-Smith has shed a tear or two over those in receipt of benefits. 

What’s that you say? No….surely not….

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