Now that we’ve had a few days to enjoy our new status as non-Europeans and Glastonbury is over, we should be getting back to business.
But … wait … oh dear … our trading partners are putting their dealings with us on hold because there are years of uncertainty ahead.
According to last Thursday’s vote, the majority of Britons believe we’re opening the door to trading with the world. Really?
No matter, according to the Leave campaign, in the short term things might be depressed but we’ll experience a surge sometime around 2020. So that’s how many years …
In the meantime the State will deal with the economic problems faced by its people.
The State will give them benefits when their jobs have gone, the State will look after their health when stress over falling incomes kicks in, the State will pay their pensions when big corporates decide to sell up and the pension pot is found wanting, the State will protect them from the harm that upheavals across the Channel might cause. That’s what we expect from the State.
Because money doesn’t grow on trees but is paid in the form of taxes, most of which come from trade, the State might start to find itself short of cash.
It will have to borrow money, but because of Britain’s non-European status, it will have to pay dearly for that money; much more than before.
And so the great British State, of which so much has been said, might find itself unable to fulfil its commitments to its people.
It will ask us to work harder, trade smarter, export more, so it can take our taxes to pay for all the stuff that keeps a country running.
But what if business can’t find buyers for their goods and services; particularly if those buyers start to look to other countries inside their tariff-free, trading block to work with?
What happened to Britain on Thursday 23rd June 2016 changed the course of the country’s history.
The narrative of a modern, integrated, European nation stopped on that day.
As a result the country has entered a post-modern, fragmented, fractious period, in which trade and economics are subordinated to politics.
This will cause businesses to falter and inevitably jobs to be lost.
The entrepreneurial spirit which has taken decades to foster will be snubbed out for years to come, and everyone, but everyone, will be affected.
And the State will not be able to cope because its new leaders, with the ties to Europe cut, don’t know how to take forward a rudderless British project.
We were warned.