Past Imperfect, Future Unknown: Europe After Brexit and the Crisis

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A Socialist Project e-bulletin ... No. 2136 ... July 1, 2020

Past Imperfect, Future Unknown: Europe After Brexit and the Crisis

Ingo Schmidt

Better Brexit than Jeremy Corbyn. This was probably the view of well-heeled Brits who would have rather remained in the EU. It was also the tenor of German media reporting on the elections to Britain’s lower-house of Parliament last November. In the run-up to the elections, Corbyn was almost continuously portrayed as a British version of Oskar Lafontaine, who in his short-lived role as economics minister in Gerhard Schroder’s first government in 1998 incurred the wrath of German and foreign media for suggesting some form of international capital controls.

After the elections the media quickly lost interest and instead consoled itself with the reality of Brexit with some schadenfreude. Much reporting dealt with the likelihood of a new referendum on Scottish independence or even about the potential unification of Northern Ireland with the Republic. This may well come to pass, but the pro-EU media have little occasion for schadenfreude. The same number of fissures running through the United Kingdom have also long... been active in the European Union.

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