Are Brexit voters really less intelligent than Remainers?

Since last year’s EU referendum, the 52% of Britons who voted Leave have faced a concerted attempt by many commentators to belittle their intelligence. Time and time again, it is asserted that they, alone amongst British voters, were misled during the referendum campaign, by “promises” made by the Vote Leave campaign – such as the infamous £350 million a week that could be spent on the NHS.

Perhaps none have so consistently pushed this line as Chuka Umunna, who has described Vote Leave as “the most cynical, opportunistic and dishonest political operation of my lifetime… [A] sickly concoction of invented statistics, warped facts and impossible promises.

The MP for Streatham has even gone so far as to set up his own watchdog, ‘Vote Leave Watch’, designed to monitor the ‘pledges’ made by proponents of Brexit during the referendum. What this overlooks, of course, is the fact that Vote Leave were not in a position to make promises, only recommendations. They are a campaign, not a government. And by positioning Brexit as little more than a con trick played on voters, Umunna’s narrative serves to doubt the intelligence of those who voted Leave – and, by extension, the validity of the referendum result.

It also neglects some of the more outlandish claims made by the Remain campaign, ranging from the extremely dubious Treasury prediction that Brexit would leave each household “£4,300 worse off” by 2030 (brilliantly debunked by the Spectator’s Fraser Nelson here), to predictions of an emergency ‘Brexit budget’ and an immediate recession. Yet there is no ‘Treasury Watch’ or a ‘Britain Stronger in Europe Watch’ to monitor such claims.

Last week, MP Barry Sheerman added to this narrative during a discussion about MP Chris Heaton-Harris’s controversial letter to universities asking for details of Brexit courses.

“The truth is that when you look at who voted Remain, most of them are the better educated people in our country”, he told the BBC on Sunday.

Of Heaton-Harris himself, he said, “This man, who went to Wolverhampton Polytechnic, who does he think he is trying to frighten my university in Huddersfield?” (Huddersfield University was itself a polytechnic until 1992.)

Sheerman took the connection between Brexit and ignorance even further when he tweeted: “Crystal clear Tory party no longer the nasty party Brexit has transformed it into the stupid party.”

You could argue that it doesn’t really matter. A vote is a vote; votes are not weighed by IQ or degree or academic title. But even on its own terms, this statement is a bit dubious. As YouGov’s Peter Kellner pointed out yesterday, the facts do, technically, support Sheerman’s initial statement. It is true that Brexit voters are less likely to have attended university, with graduates voting two to one to remain in the EU. Nearly all of Britain’s university towns voted remain, while, overall, those who left school at 15 or 16 voted around two to one for Brexit.

But these figures fail to account for the all-important fact that Leavers are, on average, much older than Remainers. According to YouGov, 75% of 18 to 24 year-olds voted to remain in the European Union, while 64% of over-65s voted to Leave. The elderly (and, indeed, the middle-aged) were young at a time when a far lower percentage of people attended university.

For decades, the proportion of university graduates as a percentage of the population has been rising – with the biggest escalation happening during the New Labour years. Today, 16 years after Tony Blair first set out Labour’s goal for half of all school leavers to reach university, this aim is within a whisker of becoming reality.

So, yes, the young are more likely to hold educational qualifications than the old, but taking these figures at face value – or using them as a marker of intelligence – is a flawed approach, which fails to control for rates of university attendance and the impact of grade inflation on educational outcomes.

Since the phasing out of O-Levels and the introduction of GCSEs in the 1980s, the proportion of entries being awarded A* to C grades has dramatically increased – from 42.5% in 1988 to almost 70% by 2011. Recent research from Ofqual, the body that regulates qualifications, exams and tests, found that exams had become progressively easier over the last ten years, with exam boards competing for business by making it easier for pupils to obtain higher grades.

Less academic pupils who would, prior to these decisive shifts in government policy and cultural outlook, have been leaving school at sixteen, are now more likely to continue to Sixth Form and university. But this fact is glossed over by some Remainers, who uncritically align intelligence with university attendance/educational attainment (and, by extension, with voting Remain).

Given the sad reality behind their figures – that more than half of UK graduates are currently working in jobs that do not require a degree, while an astonishing three-quarters of UK university leavers will never repay their student loans in full – one could equally argue that Brexiteers were not under-educated, but rather that Remainers were over-educated and miseducated, clustered heavily amongst ‘beneficiaries’ of grade inflation, and the holders of degrees that they now cannot use (or at least not fully).

But this, too, would be a gross simplification. As is becoming increasingly clear, both the Remain and Leave sides consisted of broad, often unexpected, coalitions of people who voted for a range of different motives – not least, for their own self-interest. There is no one type of Remainer or Brexiteer.

In other words, it is a far more complex picture than the smart/stupid divide proposed by Barry Sheerman and his fellow intellectual snobs.


Further reading:

Madeline is the IEA’s Editorial Manager, responsible for commissioning and running the IEA blog, and creating content for the IEA podcast channel and other media outlets. Prior to joining the Institute, she worked as a Parliamentary researcher and speechwriter, and as a reporter for Newsweek Magazine. Madeline graduated from St Hilda’s College, Oxford in 2014, with a degree in English. As an undergraduate, Madeline was actively involved in university politics, and was elected to Standing Committee of the Oxford Union during her studies.

40 thoughts on “Are Brexit voters really less intelligent than Remainers?”

  1. Posted 01/11/2017 at 15:43 | Permalink

    Nice job, Madeline.

    Indeed, Huddersfield University converted from being a polytechnic in the same year as Wolverhampton Polytechnic became Wolverhampton University.

    I have often worked with people who I had assumed had gone to university, on account of them being obviously intelligent, only to find out later that they hadn’t. It is easy to forget that when I went, less than 10% of the population did. There were plenty of bright people in those days who didn’t go, just because there wasn’t the same expectation. Similarly, many of the polytechnics in those days were of equivalent (or higher than) university standards now.

  2. Posted 02/11/2017 at 13:10 | Permalink

    Even if you were to take being at a university as a proxy for intelligence, the assumption that this intelligence was applied to the problem of understanding the arguments on Brexit is wishful thinking. I annoyed many of my academic colleagues by asking them if they had read the Five Presidents’ Report and suggesting to them that if they hadn’t then they didn’t really know what they were voting for.

  3. Posted 02/11/2017 at 17:07 | Permalink

    I was expecting to get to some numbers in this piece, but there weren’t any, so I went out and found this:

    It suggests that the association of Voting Remain with level of education really isn’t just an artifact of the correlation with age in the way here proposed (subject to the caveats on the ecological fallacy included there by the Stats Guy).

  4. Posted 03/11/2017 at 16:06 | Permalink

    leavers have neen accused by our super duper high IQ brilliant intelligentsia as racist, Islamophobic, homophobic, stupid, populist, uneducated, influenced by the Russians, Flat earthers inward looking, small minded xenophobes. Finally a research carried out by the LSE concluded Leavers didn’t change their knickers every day like Remainers did.
    Uni students have been bullied, and fear rejection because they voted to leave. People like AC Graylng, Brian Cox, Actors, Writers, Citizens of nowhere, Clarke, Clegg, Hestletine, Branson, Blair, Miller, Obams, now the Clintons, and many more including the BBC are all guilty of this abuse of the people who voted to leave the EU. Their intervention is intended to undermine democracy in this country. If these are the so called intelligentsia then we are seriously in a sorry state and so are our Universities. Our children have been brainwashed to believe that being in the EU means being European. They haven’t had it explained to them that the EU is a political construct and therefore not Europe.
    These people lack judgement, wisdom, clarity of mind, and basic intelligence. On the one hand we are accused of being extremely right wing and on the other influenced by Russia.
    They are angry because they were so complacent and didn’t have a clue what was happening outside their tiny little self congratulatory bubble. Is that a sign of perception and intelligence. I put it to them that they must have been blind not to have realised that these stupid people could not be bought by remain lies and intimidation and were intelligent enough to realise just what the EU actually means. The fact that our intelligentsia want to be part of a supranational state with all that that entails just shows how out of touch they are.
    Another thing, if they are so intelligent why do they not correlate vast immigration with pressure on schools, housing and the NHS. Wasn’t that a problem which would have been put in a mathematics lesson in Junior school?
    Their ignorance only means one thing and that is that one way or another leaving the EU will affect them personally. Losing vast pensions, freedom to swan around Europe, or worried about their EU investments.
    It’s about time they shut up and put up and used their so called intellect.
    Being an intellectual doesn’t necessarily mean you are intelligent.
    In addition isn’t this treasonable behaviour.

  5. Posted 03/11/2017 at 17:00 | Permalink

    I would assume many people voted the way they did for personal and perhaps selfish reasons. I imagine one reason for voting to remain might be because you felt you might benefit or have benefitted from free movement of labour. Such people are more likely to have better academic qualifications. Those people who have not benefitted and might indeed have suffered from free movement would be more likely to have fewer qualifications and might vote to leave. In both cases people are voting according to their own circumstances. Nothing to do with intelligence, merely self interest.

  6. Posted 03/11/2017 at 18:34 | Permalink

    Another point that has been missed – stats often appear to prove one thing while in fact are proving another: if university educated people, by and large, earn more and are therefore richer than others, as is often stated, they are more likely to travel, have holiday homes in Europe, go skiing, etc. They therefore would vote in their own self interest and not in the interest of the “common people”. Richer=self interest = Remain. Whereas the “average” Leave voter is aware of what is happening at the front line because it is happening to them, and suffering from it in a way that the richer are protected from by their money.

  7. Posted 03/11/2017 at 19:55 | Permalink

    Fantastic article.
    Well written and exactly right.

  8. Posted 03/11/2017 at 20:48 | Permalink

    You realise your first sentence starts with an inaccuracy right? 52% of those who voted, voted to leave, that doesn’t equate to 52% of the population or indeed 52% of the electorate.
    It’s fine to argue one way or another on the issue at hand; I would find it difficult to believe that 17.4m people were lacking in intelligence or conversely that 16.1m were all above average in intelligence, so for me the intelligence argument holds little weight.
    However starting off with an error does little to aid your article’s credibility.

  9. Posted 03/11/2017 at 21:02 | Permalink

    I see you failed to post my comment but instead simply the corrected the statistic at the beginning which initially read “52% of Britons” without acknowledgement of the mistake or crediting the correction.
    I assume you won’t post this either, that’s fine though I’m always willing to help out the less gifted.

  10. Posted 04/11/2017 at 10:53 | Permalink

    Nmnt we all knew the article was talking about those who voted, they are the ones who count not those who couldn’t be bothered. Surely a litll intelligence should be used when reading articles.

  11. Posted 18/11/2017 at 19:17 | Permalink

    As others have pointed out, the hypothesis that age explains the strong correlation between education and the way people voted in the referendum has been convincingly debunked. However, we could have drawn on other data to come to the same conclusion that, on average, those who voted Remain were more intelligent than those who voted Leave.

    For example, the Online Privacy Foundation found that those who voted Remain outperformed those who voted Leave when it came to logical and abstract reasoning, and in tests of numeracy.

    Furthermore, a study by academics at the University of Edinburgh, led by Professor Ian Deary, found that those who support the Liberal Democrats and the Greens – the two parties whose supporters and whose platforms most strongly supported remaining in the EU – have the highest average IQs. Those who support parties such as UKIP and the BNP had the lowest IQs. Meanwhile, the Conservatives and Labour – whose supporters were split between remaining and leaving – were intermediate.

  12. Posted 11/12/2017 at 19:29 | Permalink

    The higher the education, the more likely to think altruistically ; not selfishly as alluded to by a previous poster.

  13. Posted 20/12/2017 at 23:43 | Permalink

    “Being an intellectual doesn’t necessarily mean you are intelligent”
    Hold on, I think all the dictionaries in my house are wrong!

  14. Posted 07/02/2018 at 20:24 | Permalink

    “Leave” a reply. I like it!

    The point early in the article about a vote being a vote is all that counts. That’s all. The only way to stop people voting to leave the EU is not to insult their intelligence but to physically stop them in the event of a second referendum. However, I see no-one has yet carried out a study to determine whether Leave voters are more likely, on average, than Remainers to put you to the ground and smash you in the face with a half-brick if you try to stop the democratic process. Might be worth checking, but I think I know the answer to that one.

  15. Posted 21/05/2018 at 15:25 | Permalink

    I cannot agree more with the Synopsis. I applied for degrees as an over 25 student in the 1980s because it was easier to get on a degree course than get a job in Thatcher-land. I declined an offer of a degree in Business Studies at Wolvo Poly in favour of a degree in Economics at North Staffs Poly and am forever thankful that I did. At Stoke I met teenagers straight from sixth forms in the South East of England who were aghast at the level of deprivation in the Potteries, a third world country less than 100 miles from their homes! What was their response? Start a crusade to help? No! Crawl into a little middle-class bubble! Over-25 students met with hostility form teenage students and from lecturers, despite which the ‘old gits’ were proportionally more successful than the bright young things. As for the intelligence of students today, I know of one lecturer who twenty years ago told me that they received students with Economics degrees for M.A. courses who could not write concise English [text-speak and ‘cool’ English.] When I last saw him about ten years ago he said that the situation was even worse. Most University professors have gone from being middle-class students to Lecturers to Professors without ever encountering the dark side of life, they are theorists teaching theory. I voted Leave to ensure that Britain remains an independent nation-state, making its own decisions and charting its own course in the world, for better, not worse.
    B. A. [Hons] Economics
    M.Sc. I. T.

  16. Posted 11/06/2018 at 17:14 | Permalink

    One skill you learn in higher education, and not taught at school level, is how to research a subject. The overwhelming majority of leave voters I’ve spoken to did little or no research.

  17. Posted 24/06/2018 at 18:39 | Permalink

    Oh dear. An article based on assertions but sadly devoid of factual accuracy. Even the very first assertion is incorrect. 52% of Britons did not vote for Brexit. The actual turnout was 72.21% of eligible voters, of whom 51. 89% voted in favor of Leave. That means 37.47% of Britons voted for Brexit.

    When you get basic facts wrong and then rely on unsubstantiated assertions for the rest of your article, you’re not really making a very good case for your opinions. There has been far too much fuzziness throughout the entire Brexit process and this article doesn’t help at all.

  18. Posted 16/10/2018 at 15:20 | Permalink

    I find it hilarious how many people are on here congratulating themselves for voting “Leave” and therefore not being ignorant according to this article – whilst at the same time repeating the same patently – provably – false assertions.

    It’s not so much wilful ignorance as an abject inability to string two coherent thoughts together.

    But this article says they’re not really ignorant. So it’s fine.

  19. Posted 10/12/2018 at 19:57 | Permalink

    This is old but I will post anyway. My brother in law voted leave and he is definitely not thick, he was an auditor at a multinational industrial electronics company before retiring.
    Most of the people I met before and after the referendum who voted out were indeed thick. One woman I met having a smoke outside a company whose existence pivots on having fast logistics access to Holland (bulbs and plants) said she had not yet made her mind up. That was on the day of the referendum.
    A group of men in a warehouse facility canteen discussing the outcome on a table near me, “if it gets rid of the paki’s then job done” was their consensus.
    A clerk at my old employers, “I’m for out because I cannot get on the housing ladder”. So for him trying to afford a house was nothing to do with bubble inflation on UK property and his pitifully poor salary it was Poles pricing him out.
    I hear what i hear and the reasons given by generally poor and poorly educated people appear as nihilistic social spite to me, i am old enough to know and recognise it.

  20. Posted 16/01/2019 at 16:06 | Permalink

    There are plenty of leave voters who believed the scapegoating of the EU as the reason for all the problems our own government created… Austerity? Blame the EU. Rising house prices? Blame the EU. You’re poor? Blame the EU. Migrants from non-EU countries? Blame the EU.

    So yes, I do think they’re stupid if they’re unable to realise that these things were never under the control of the EU in the first place. And equally stupid if they wanted to have a “protest vote” over something irreversible and long-term. It wouldn’t surprise me if half of them don’t even vote in general elections.

  21. Posted 04/04/2019 at 00:07 | Permalink

    The elephant in the room, the brexit idiocy was delivered by exciting and exploiting jingoistic prejudice and hatred. The result was carried on a wave of gullibility, ignorance and nationalistic fervour.

    You can call the people who wave union flags and get excited and exploited by millionaire demagogue spivs ranting politically vacuous, loaded slogans and occasionally using words that sound intelligent to those less so, stupid. They’re not all stupid but they are all hateful.

    People scapegoating the EU and above all ethnic minorities, for all the problems in a society created by all of that that society need to be called what they are, fascists.

    A toxic legacy of Empire, whatever, much of the so called tolerance in this country is a veneer, a national cleansing exercise but there is a very strong, ugly undercurrent running through the indigenous population as they would no doubt prefer themselves to be called.

    Brexit was for many a step towards a much uglier future.

  22. Posted 03/06/2019 at 17:40 | Permalink

    There is a a large group of hardline remoaners to be found on Twitter & elsewhere who are anything but intelligent. They blurt out slogans written by others and seem immune to anything but their adoration of a trading bloc called the EU. I don’t recall anyone painting their little faces bright blue before June 2016…And their habit of not accepting the result and demanding a rerun immediately is the behaviour of a spoiled toddler, not an intelligent adult. Many of them also seem bereft of any sense of humour. No, I can definitely conclude that remainers are NOT more intelligent!

  23. Posted 03/06/2019 at 17:46 | Permalink

    Allan Lees doesn’t seem to know that only those who have a vote and who actually vote count. You can’t count the votes of toddlers or cats or those who stayed home. Allan is clearly not very bright…

  24. Posted 01/07/2019 at 23:43 | Permalink

    The only option I had when I left my Secondary Modern in the 70s was the shipyard or the Armed Forces in order to get a trade. That was decided when I was 11. I chose to go into the RAF.
    Incidentally, I think remainers are more likely to be Civil Servants than Servicemen.

  25. Posted 02/07/2019 at 13:09 | Permalink

    The irony of the “left behind” voting leave is that while they were intelligent enough to see competition from EU migrants was likely to drive down their wages. They failed to understand that the real agenda of Brexiteers is to offshore the last remnants of UK industry through free trade deals with poverty wage competitor economies outside the EU.
    The financiers will be free to move their capital around the globe in search of labour willing to work for less and less. The leave voters won’t see the competition for jobs that have left the EU.

  26. Posted 09/09/2019 at 00:21 | Permalink

    As an unintelligent old git, surely it is time that governmental ballots regard all non voters will be assumed to be voting for the status quo (in this case remain)?

  27. Posted 09/09/2019 at 00:43 | Permalink

    I voted Leave after researching many sources via internet sites and coming to what I hoped was a balanced and reasoned conclusion.

    I left school in the 70s and instead of going to university as some of my teachers and my parents urged I took a different route and studied for 5 years to become a qualified electrician or “tradesman”. I later returned to college and added to my qualification by studying electronics and computer design and programming and reached technician level.

    This educational route I took has meant in 45 years I have never been unemployed for one day and have worked myself up the ladder in an international company and hold the position of “Global Technical applications manager” .

    But as I have no degree I suspect I, like many other leave voters who followed practical rather than paper studies, would be classed as less intelligent according to the narrow remit that seems to have been applied in determining the intellectual level of voting groups

  28. Posted 31/10/2019 at 19:49 | Permalink

    I voted remain and have no qualifications. However from the speaking to people over the last three or fours years about this issue, I would say that people who voted Brexit are more stupid than remain voters.

    I am not saying all Brexit voters are idiots. I know and have spoken to many who are clearly very intelligent. However I would say exclusively every idiot I know or have discussed Brexit with voted leave. I think anyone who says “We just need to leave quickly” or similar statements, has no understanding of what Brexit even is. These people are idiots.

    Next time you are talking to someone and you think to yourself “what a moron” and I don’t mean someone like me who you just totally disagree with my opinion, I mean someone who is clearly stupid. Get the discussion on to Brexit and they will probably say “we need to get out now!”

  29. Posted 17/11/2019 at 19:09 | Permalink

    I mean, conservatism has been shown to correlate with low IQ and a lack of holistic thinking, so there may be merit to the idea that Brexiters are thick as hell. Bring back the British Empire! and all that. I mean, you’ve got to be pretty thick to think that “taking control away from the EU” and “giving it to London bankers!” is any kind of meaningful difference.

  30. Posted 16/01/2020 at 22:30 | Permalink

    First of all you need to define what you mean by intelligence. Then you need to define what you mean by educated. This is not a question as easy at it first appears. When people say, educated, are we sure they do not mean indoctrinated into the orthodoxy? People may decide things for all sorts of reasons. Do we know all of their reasons ? Highly unlikely. Is is educated to know what those around you think? And, is it educated to decide with you clan group[? Or are you intelligent, aware of, or knowing, the needs of your group? I believe, rightly or wrongly, that people voted for the best interest of their clan group.

  31. Posted 26/01/2020 at 09:27 | Permalink

    It isn’t the case that graduates are always more intelligent than none graduates though but of course there must be some correlation because it would be extremely rare to find a graduate with an IQ below 95 and the average is 110 for graduates and 100 is the overall average but of course this also includes graduates, so the overall average is skewed up. All this doesn’t matter, what is more important is cognitive decision making. Unlike non graduates, graduates are taught and require the skill of assimilating and assessing data, this applies to all disciplines. This means that yes a graduates does the ability to make better evaluations hence better decisions on complex issues than non-graduates, though is doesn’t ensure they always do.

  32. Posted 04/02/2020 at 05:08 | Permalink

    Ironic isn’t it?

    An article written to “prove” that “Brexiteers aren’t stupider”, makes basic errors. Not only does it get its percentages wrong (mixing up voters with total population numbers), but it forgets that the stats quoted regarding education levels, hold true even regardless of generational differences or age.

  33. Posted 01/11/2020 at 19:44 | Permalink

    I listened to Farage for five minutes and switched off. What an idiot, he was in it for his own gains.
    No mention of The GFA. Why not?
    I knew that for a start Brexit by its own nature would breach The GFA and cause grief for Irish Republic. Why did we go into then the EEC together?
    Also how could you undo 45 years of integration and free customs.
    Just think of the paperwork.

  34. Posted 09/10/2021 at 21:01 | Permalink

    Here we are in 2021. That £4500 pa worse off that you derided is now looking like a good deal.

  35. Posted 11/02/2022 at 12:32 | Permalink

    I am posting this in 2022.
    Nearly 6 years since the majority vote to leave the EU and a whole year since we left with a deal organised by Boris Johnson.

    I don’t believe people who voted for brexit are stupid nor do I believe people who voted to remain are more intelligent.
    What I do believe is that we are all victims of a horrible campaign of lies and misinformation that (probably) prompted some people to vote for leave.
    Perhaps if I assumed people were NOT relying on the veracity of these now infamous campaign promises but were in fact content with knowing that Brexit Could be disastrous and so long as we were self governing that would be fine then,
    Perhaps just perhaps I would feel less angry with the way the “facts” were presented to us. As they wouldn’t have mattered at all.

    We were all told we would be better off, that there would be no excessive red tape.
    That we would achieve controls over our borders in a way that we couldn’t under the EU.
    Statistics were paraded on the side of buses showing how much extra “brexit money” the NHS would get.
    We would see post brexit dividends of 135bn between 2020 and 2025.
    We were told we would feel the benefits within two years.

    So many of the statistics and promises (we know this isn’t a comprehensive list) are now proved to be brazen lies at worst and over promising at best.
    Is there any point in pointing fingers at people who believed these lies?
    The people who told and sold us these lies should be the ones under the microscope.

    In 2018 , after we voted to leave, Rhys Mogg gives us an update and said we wouldn’t know the full economic consequences for a very long time. The opportunity for Brexit is over the next 50 years.
    Not 2, 50 years!
    This was before COVID.

    We are a year after we left the EU.
    Now we have a government run by Boris Johnson.
    The man who Prorogued government illegally to “get Brexit done”. A man who has surrounded himself with a cabinet happy to enable his appalling behaviour and are loyal to him and self interest before anything else.

    I don’t think I am smart enough to join Mensa.
    But I knew this man was lying during the Brexit campaign. He has a history of lying and “making stuff up” to present as fact.
    He was fired from previous jobs for doing so.
    But as Prime Minister we can’t fire him. Only his fellow MP’s can. Not you or I can persuade our MP to organise a vote of no confidence.
    We have no choice in this matter until a general election is called.
    In the mean time.
    How easily he lied to our Monarch, how boldly he quotes false and misleading facts in our Houses of Parliament with barely a correction and he is lying to us now.
    He insists that he wasn’t at any party over lockdown while the rest of us were separated from family and loved ones and unable to say goodbyes.
    We will have to wait to hear the outcome of a police investigation to see if he is telling us the truth!
    We are in an age of complete disregard for provable, measurable fact, in an age of whitewash, suppression of truth and irresponsibility and it was ushered in by the teams that were campaigning for Brexit.
    Not by those that voted FOR Brexit.
    To be clear.
    It is all our responsibility, those with a degree and those without, young and old, to make our voices heard and boot these liars out.
    If you think Boris is doing a “good job”after all that, regardless of Brexit, I might question how you are measuring his performance?
    I wish people would not treat this guy like a “bad boyfriend” who needs to brush up and “say sorry” time and time again, so he can get on with the job and straight into another set of misdemeanours against our culture, out values, our legal systems and the codes of conduct that allow us to just, well, function.
    We don’t have a written constitution. We rely on everyone towing a line of decency.
    Personally, there were too many avoidable deaths and rule breaking for me to heap praise on him off the back of his vaccine catch up plans. Advised to him by SAGE.
    Scientists who he hasn’t consulted with when he proposed stopping CoVID isolation measures in the near future (according to the first minister of The Welsh assembly). Sage was not involved.
    The financial support plans were great for those that could access it.

    I can only hope someone sitting in the house can take and make the opportunities Brexit can offer so maybe my grandchildren can take full advantage of them.
    I probably won’t be around to take advantage of them in 50 years time. Will you?
    Be they conservative, green, liberal or labour, I’m praying they can carve out something good and fine for this Kingdom and not throw any one nation under the bus (ahem Northern Ireland, I saw that one coming too).
    I don’t believe these clowns can.
    Ongoing negotiations with the EU aren’t going too well, things don’t look so “done” when you look at how Brexit really works.
    Down with party partisanship!
    Perhaps then we can build a Kingdom that is prosperous, Just and peaceful without it.

  36. Posted 27/10/2022 at 12:51 | Permalink

    Well, recent events have pretty much proved that Brexit is a project for the stupid, or at least those with the least understanding of real-world trade and economics – like the IEA. Free markets doesn’t mean free of responsibility to meet standards or legal requirements. It means free of trade barriers, and Brexit erected huge trade barriers between the UK and all of its markets. The £ has lost a third of its purchasing power since 2015, business investment has collapsed due to uncertainty, real wages have fallen and we still haven’t properly left because we’ve delayed inbound customs checks until 2024. Now the “bonfire of EU laws” is going to create even more barriers for UK businesses to overcome, the biggest of which could easily be loss of GDPR Data Adequacy which is a requirement for a huge part of the UK’s exports.

  37. Posted 31/12/2022 at 13:37 | Permalink

    I find the whole Brexit debate in almost equal parts fascinating and infuriating. The most infuriating thing for me is the contempt some/many Remain voters hold for Leavers. It is true than as an average younger, richer, qualified people voted Remain compared to older, poorer, less qualified people who voted Leave. This general overview plays into the simplistic and highly flawed assumptions that many Remainers sign up to: that stupid and ignorant people voted Leave due to their pathetic, small- minded prejudices. But the irony is that their patronising and insulting attitudes say more about their own arrogance and intellectual hubris than any pejorative characters flaws of Leave voters. The crux of the matter is we are a very divided society due to technocratic neoliberalism replacing Democratic pluralism and creating an increasingly unequal society, not just in terms of wealth but power. Our democracy is hollowed out and mainly represents the interests of the overclass (like the EU). This is the main reason many voted Leave, be they are sick of being denied democracy, opportunities and a real say in the cultural, economic and political spheres. It was in effect a ‘peasant’s revolt’. The economic arguments are moot. The clue to the greater wisdom her is that it was a supposedly Democratic loving elite who tried to block the Democratic vote, and who majorly supported Remain. When have the Establishment ever had the interests of the majority as their primary concern? The demonisation of working people also played a part, so that the new ‘middle class’ educated and mobile sector aligned their values with EU membership and any other opinion was simply stupid people thinking. It’s intellectual hubris linked with insulting arrogance. That these people fail to acknowledge this and assert their bile on Leave voters because they refused to bow down to their opinions is deeply ironic and annoying.

  38. Posted 27/01/2023 at 19:18 | Permalink

    Intellectual hubris and arrogance are not as damaging as ignorance and xenophobia. For proof look around you now, almost seven years on we are in a state of near collapse.

  39. Posted 23/05/2023 at 16:20 | Permalink

    Well this aged well. Turns out they were in fact, really, really stupid.

  40. Posted 05/07/2023 at 10:19 | Permalink

    “It also neglects some of the more outlandish claims made by the Remain campaign, ranging from the extremely dubious Treasury prediction that Brexit would leave each household “£4,300 worse off” by 2030 (brilliantly debunked by the Spectator’s Fraser Nelson ” Written in 2017

    Outlandish? I think Fraser Nelson must be embarrassed now in 2023 where households are indeed thousands worse off.
    So it seems that Brexiters are *indeed* not very intelligent…………….

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