Playing the Indian Card

Friday, June 24, 2016

Keep Calm and Carry On

There is no reason to be alarmed at the drop in the Pound, or in the markets, following the Brexit vote. Business never likes, and always reacts this way to, any sudden change, even if it is in the long run good for business. Most investors, as investors, want a reliable steady return on their investment, with a minimum of risk. They would rather avoid anything that might upset their established business model.

I think there is also little to worry about the EU not coming to terms with Britain on a common market. It is, of course, in everybody's best interest. Britain remains the world's fifth-largest economy. Great market for anyone. Some say the EU will want to play tough, so as not to encourage any other members to follow Britain's example. But there is Ireland. The Irish economy, I warrant, is so tied up with Britain's that, if the EU raised tariff barriers with the UK, it would probably force Ireland to leave as well. Making the precedent worse. Denmark might want to follow.

At the same time, leaving the EU frees the UK again to make its own trade deals elsewhere, forbidden under EU rules. We might see a reestablishment of the old Imperial preferences, if not a common market, among some or all the members of the Commonwealth. When they joined the EU, Britain had to discard some of this. It might be good for British morale, as well as business, if the old Imperial ties were strengthened. It would remind her of who she is. The old prestige is still there, in India, in Arabia, in Africa, in Canada, no doubt elsewhere, and it is a shame it is being squandered now. In any case, here or elsewhere, Britain can now make the deals that are best for Britain, instead of requiring a consensus with all the other members of the EU.

It is hard to believe that will not, in the long run, be better for Britain economically.

I would especially like to see Britain welcomed into NAFTA. Last I checked, it was a bigger free market than the EU, there are natural ties of language and common law that make doing business easier, and it does not demand the same sacrifices of sovereignty.

As recently as The Prisoner TV series,mid-1960s, the map on the wall showed Commonwealth countries in pink. And as recently as The Prisoner, that classic British series actually had it's world debut on CTV.

Hands across the sea, eh, wot?

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