On Thursday, June 23rd, the voters of the United Kingdom will vote on whether or not to leave the European Union (EU). The possible exit of Britain has come to be known as Brexit. It is one of those terms that everyone uses now, even though they don’t know who invented it.
It wasn’t that long ago that we were talking about Grexit – a Greece exit. That was under completely different circumstances. Whereas Greece was bankrupt, the people of the UK are probably getting tired of bailing out others, such as the Greeks.
The financial markets have been more volatile lately, and many contribute this to the uncertainty of a possible Brexit. This is to be expected, as anything breaking from the status quo tends to bring volatility in the short term.
But don’t think for a minute that the sky will fall if the “leave” vote wins on Thursday. The EU, as we know it today, is a relatively new thing. If the UK leaves, it won’t be much different than it was a couple of decades ago.
If any group is going to exit the EU, it is probably the easiest for the British. Many of the other EU countries adopted the euro, while the UK held on to its currency (the British pound). Therefore, there should be no major complications with the banking system. If Greece had abandoned the EU and the euro, the banking system there really would have been in disarray, even more than it already has been.
In addition, the UK is separated from the mainland of Europe, which already makes it more isolated.
As an advocate of liberty, I hope that the “leave” camp wins. It is an act of decentralization, which tends to be good for the cause of liberty in the long run. With that said, I am not overly optimistic about the chances of a Brexit.
The establishment has been pulling out all of the stops. They had Obama over there talking about all of the horrible things that would happen if the UK leaves the EU. And then, just this week, Janet Yellen was in front on Congress. While she was supposed to be talking about the Fed’s monetary policy, she took some time to explain the importance to the financial markets of the UK remaining.
When you have all of these establishment figures going out of their way to sell their propaganda on why it would be so horrible for the British to leave, then we must be on to something good. It is a disruption of the dream of the advocates of a one-world government.
The EU is not an accident. It was sold as a way to have peace and free trade, but it was a ploy by the establishment to centralize government. It has been in the works for at least a century. Jean Monet was scheming of such a union back as early as 1919.
How to Get Free Trade
It is interesting that the biggest issue that the establishment is pulling out right now is that of free trade. They are saying that if the voters choose to leave, then it could significantly hurt the GDP growth in the UK for years to come.
The establishment keeps pointing out that the UK may not enjoy the same free trade it has enjoyed as part of the EU. Is this supposed to be a prediction or a threat?
It is rather ironic that the establishment, which favors cronyism and centralization, is using free trade as its main argument. The reason it is doing this is because what they are advocating is not free trade.
Just like NAFTA and other so-called free trade agreements that the U.S. is part of, the EU has similar agreements. But these aren’t free trade agreements. They are managed trade, where the government or governments enforce rules and regulations regarding trading.
In order to get free trade, you don’t need agreements that are hundreds or thousands of pages long. You don’t need any agreement. You simply need for government to stay out of the way. The “free” part of “free trade” means that people and businesses are free from government interference.
If the UK leaves the EU, then the government should simply abolish tariffs on all imports. This will allow the people there to do business with anyone in Europe, or anywhere else in the world, including Asia. The only threat of not having open trade is if the powers-that-be in the EU decide to retaliate by not allowing free trade to happen.
If the UK leaves, it could easily encourage other countries to do the same. The sky is probably not going to fall. If it does, it will be falling even worse in Greece, Italy, Spain, and Portugal. And the Germans aren’t going to be too happy if they are the only major country left to carry the load.
If the Brexit fails, then the political class will celebrate. But just the fact that this whole campaign has been so close gives us reason to believe that the whole system is fragile. The EU has not worked out as planned. It makes it especially hard when you have varying cultures, languages, and interests.
And in terms of economics, it has also failed. The open trade that has been allowed is a positive thing. But again, you don’t need a union and centralized government in order to have free trade.
The euro, which initially started out well, is now becoming a failure, as the European Central Bank has engaged in massive monetary stimulus like the other major central banks. Meanwhile, many of the EU countries are in massive debt and on the verge of default. While Greece has quieted down, it is still a total disaster. Perhaps only Venezuela has sunk at a faster rate. And many of the other countries in the south part of Europe are a mess too.
Advocates of liberty should hope for a Brexit. Then we can hope for the same from Germany. Then the dominoes will fall.