Dopo la Brexit, le riflessioni di Gianni Riotta sulla fine dell'Europa. Di seguito la traduzione in lingua inglese a cura di Andrea Cairone.
Europe died at dawn on June 24th, the most momentous date for the continent since the end of World War II.
Many will now tell you how fault for Britain's goodbye to the EU lies with the vacuous Premier Cameron, with the inane bureaucrats in Junkers' Brussels, with the populists, with London's ex-mayor Johnson or the conservative Gove, with Berlin's infatuation with austerity, with Labourist Corbyn's dreams of picketing miners.
Each of these mediocre leaders have their own faults and History will judge them harshly, but what persuaded a majority of Britons, old verses young, high school diplomas verses college degrees, country verses city, to vote Yes to #Brexit was resentment of the present. An acrid mix of anxiety about work that is disappearing and growing immigration, frosted with a glossy coat of nostalgia for a romantic past of pubs, jobs for life, Queen and Country pride.
Donald Trump calls this populist wave "globalism" ( Don't get offended, "populism" is the scientific definition for who mobilize fear and unreason in citizens) and he wants to make his run for the White House into an "antiglobalist" referendum, against Clinton champion of the Status Quo, like Merkel and Hollande in Europe.
"Defeating Globalism" gives inflamed voters the illusion they will punish bankers and immigrants but will impose taxes and tariffs inhibiting free trade, walls and fences against immigration, a distrust of culture and science (Gove ridiculed "experts") offering the masses a totem of ignorance to idolize: The distrust technology and refusal of the concept of dialogue and tolerance. The toxic concept of "Us against Them" has won in Britain and has won the Republican party in the USA, it is winning in France with Marine LePen, has mobilized the electorate in local elections in Italy.
Leaders, intellectual, economists, technocrats and entrepreneurs who have for years supported a global outlook can be faulted for elitism and arrogance, for not being able to predict how the 2008 financial crisis and automation would have consumed the standard of living of the middle class and factory workers, now bitter over the ever increasing wealth gap. Satisfied of the hundred of million of poor the Global Market has lifted out of famine in Asia and Latin America (the biggest progress in the history of humanity, in only 30 years, now extending to Africa), the "elites" have missed what was brewing in their back yard and their suburbs.
But #Brexit, Trump, Le Pen and their traveling companions are not the right answer to correct the errors of the ideology offree exchange of ideas, peoples, work, wealth. Country and suburbs, elderly and those who don't have higher education voted for Brexit en masse, Vibrant City centers, the young, college graduates voted for Europe. On Social media, that cauldron where "Globalism" is a straw man to be burned with every click, these cold hard numbers are disputed arguing that in a Democracy each vote has the same weight, no matter from country, city, old, young. No difference.
True in theory, in practice, the Great Britain that produces wealth and jobs, lost and the one which looks back to the 20th Century won. Google Trend marked an explosion of "now what?" searches from the many who voted with their stomach rather than with their head.
Stocks tremble, the Pound is suffering, there's a run on gold. Leaders of #Brexit have now become champions of diplomacy, touting the Norwegian model, deals with Merkel and Obama. There will be mediation and deals, but Brussels' blindness, austere to the end to defend German industries, with no backbone for innovation and digital, convinced it's more important to invest in Camembert subsidies while fighting Google and Facebook, blind to the need to prepare for future military conflicts, has effectively closed that route. British Populists and European Bureaucrats are accomplices in the #Brexit crime.
"Our darkest hour" writes Martin Wolf, eminence at the Financial Times, son of Jewish refugees escaping Hitler. A bitter prophecy which might, in the future, sound rather optimistic because if we give in to the depressing anti-globalist crusade, nationalism, xenophobia and authoritarianism will spread throughout Europe. Yesterday those who celebrated Brexit were Putin, Iran, Le Pen and Trump.
Resentment against the establishment has deep roots but readers should mistrust those who, in the name of a false return to past glory, guide towards hate, isolationism, ignorance and economic and moral decline.
(Traduzione a cura di Andrea Cairone, pubblicata su Facebook il 25 giugno 2016)