To a certain section of the global political thinkers, the election of Mr. Donald Trump as the president of United States of America was not unprecedented. They were the same people who happened to know of Brexit once the referendum was called for.

What and where are we missing?


Democracy and Nationalism- these are  the two similar contemporary cause-effect couple. The very element of eventual acknowledgement of a common higher identity after a millennium of mass chaos and anarchy is what led to the rise of the utopian concept of Democracy. But the definitions and individual perceptions kept evolving over the time, giving rise to Nazism in Germany in 1933 and that of Trumpism, as political scientists describe the phenomenon,  in 2016.

A renowned political science professor from University of Sydney opined in his blog post after the U.S. elections, “Voters globally wanted a change. They were fed up of the prevailing hypocrisy in the mainstream politics. They had been angry over the establishment and the politicians. They did no more want to caste the namesake votes and let the ball  bounce from the court of the Leftists to the Rightists and sometimes the Centre, something which they had been doing for centuries to no avail. Poor remained poor and the Rich got richer. Disappointment, Dissatisfaction and Unemployment- remained undressed. So the middle class finally got a change, a substitute to the conventional,  in Trump. They didn’t care about his being racist, misogynist or anything lest he was different.”

We step into a world where the people, for some decades, shall either choose their version of Donald Trump, a leader who has promised changes which have ironically appealed some masses, over a conventional politician who has done them no good. Essentially, the rise of Narendra Modi in India can also be viewed on the same lines. We can also assess the success of Theresa May in Post-Brexit England, Marine Le Pen in France and Malcolm Turnbull in Australia on similar lines.

A “want for change” describes it all in a nutshell. The “Top-Lobby” shall be chosen for many years to come not because it has quality, but because it is the only choice to the left-right-centre.

Image Credit- today.com

Nikhil Kumar

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Three months ago I wrote an article entitled “Brexit: The Possibility Of Britain Leaving The European Union” (you can read it here), which I ended on a rather equivocal note stating that there need not be a “right” answer to whether or not a Brexit should take place. If I were to tell you that this is indeed how I felt and I was not merely adhering to those tacit norms of journalism that encourage unbiased and factual reporting, I would be lying. Truth be told, I could not even comprehend the possibility of Boris Johnson’s ‘Leave’ campaign emerging victorious in this referendum until the day it actually happened. Nonetheless it is time for the world to embrace the words of Lady Macbeth and realise that “what’s done is done,” and look towards the future.

The British people should stop hoping for a second referendum and hope that their government acts sensibly and responsibly not only in electing Cameron’s successor but also in the triggering of Article 50 and the negotiations that accompany it. What they should not do is blindly follow politicians who deem it fit to tell the EU parliament that virtually none of them have ever done their proper jobs, but that is easier said than done considering the second most ‘googled’ question in Britain following the referendum was, “What is the EU?”

So what happens now? Well, David Cameron decided to leave no survivors when he sank his own ship. In his speech at 10 Downing Street on the 24th of June, Cameron announced his resignation and stated that he would not be the one responsible for the invoking of Article 50. British media house Independent published a fantastic article the very same day addressing the implications of his announcement. The gist of it is that Cameron’s successor has a lot more to worry about than simply taking a place in the history books as the PM who made Britain leave the EU; if he or she wins and doesn’t invoke Article 50 there will be a myriad of consequences which will not be well received by the British public. If he or she does invoke it and is unable to negotiate a fair deal then Scotland will probably carry out its threat of breaking away from the UK, there will most likely be a recession, a possible currency war and the British economy could be up to 7.5 percent smaller by 2030. Those who dismiss this as mere speculation should ask themselves if Boris Johnson’s decision to not run for PM, which came a week after the referendum, is indeed due to some so-called act of betrayal or because of a realisation that Britain currently finds itself between a rock and a hard place.

As far as the EU is concerned, they seemingly have no interest in holding any talks with Britain until the triggering of Article 50- something they believe should be done at the earliest.  The best alternative at the moment is to emulate the ‘Norway Option.’ This will not only be beneficial for the British, European and world economy as a whole but it will also reduce the costs that Britain will incur in the two-year process of exit, prevent British companies from having to leave Europe and keep Scotland from having another referendum. If you think this model is too good to be true, it is. The catch is that Britain will not be allowed to curtail free movement of labour from the EU and will still have to pay into the EU budget, the two things that were given primacy over everything else by the Leave campaigners. If Cameron’s successor decides to uphold these promises, he or she will have to negotiate a bilateral trade agreement instead which could lead to the adverse consequences mentioned above.

In conclusion, the British need to act and they need to act fast. Every day that they put this unavoidable process on hold creates more uncertainty in financial markets and the global economy. The British government has a difficult task ahead of it but has the option of playing its cards right and ensuring that this messy divorce is carried out with minimal damage to itself, Europe and the world as a whole.


Shraman Ghosh

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The results of the momentous British referendum on whether or not the country must remain in the European Union was announced on Friday morning, with 51.9% of the populace voting in favour of Brexit: Britain’s exit from the EU. The victory was close, with 48.1% voting to remain in the EU. The majority in England voted for an exit, whereas Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to remain. The turnout at the referendum reached 72% with approximately 30 million voters.

British PM David Cameron, in an address to the public, announced that he will continue as PM for the next 3 months, after which the country and the Conservative Party will require fresh leadership. “I do not think it would be right for me to try to be the captain that steers our country to its next destination. But, I will do everything I can in future to make this country great,” he said, after the UK voted in favour of Brexit, breaking over 40 years of post-war legacy.

Consequences of the Brexit poll

Within hours of the result being announced, the pound sterling has crashed to its lowest level since 1985, with bank stocks taking a deep plunge. Nigel Farage of the UK Independence Party, who was strongly in favour of Brexit, has termed the victory an ‘independence day’ for the United Kingdom. Cameron who was staunchly in favour of Britain remaining in the EU will have to resign after having been re-elected to office in 2015. He had sought a negotiation with the EU on the terms of British membership, rather than a complete exit.

Those in favour of Britain remaining within the EU believe that the common markets of the EU enable a flourishing British economy and an exit will only be harmful to British business interests since the EU’s policy of free trade will no longer be applicable to the UK. Britain’s exit may in turn weaken the European Union since the UK pays more into the EU budget that it gets out of it.

Indian politicians like Jairam Ramesh have been apprehensive of Brexit, with Ramesh calling the vote a ‘suicide.’  India’s major concern is its trade and foreign investments which may face an adverse backlash. Though financial markets across the world have fallen, Raghuram Rajan said that the RBI is prepared for any eventuality since India has a sizeable amount of foreign reserves.

Ever since Cameron announced in February this year that a referendum would be held to decide Britain’s membership to the European Union, opinion polls have been unable to clearly predict whether or not the country will vote in favour of an exit from the 28-member EU, which traces its origins to the aftermath of the Second World War. In announcing the referendum, Cameron was reacting to the demands of (mostly) Conservative MPs who claimed that the European Union’s regulations, particularly the Eurozone bailouts, were holding back the British economy through excessive control over its businesses. Those in favour of Brexit also pointed out the high levels of immigration into the UK as a reason for quitting the EU and its free movement policy. With the crippling refugee crisis at hand, Brexit propounders sought a tightening of immigration laws to reduce the inflow of workers into the UK, simultaneously seeking a greater degree of autonomy for Britain over its own borders and affairs.

On the international front, POTUS Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, have been in favour of Britain remaining within the EU.

Read on to know more about the possible consequences of Brexit: https://dubeat.com/2016/03/brexit-the-possibility-of-britain-leaving-the-european-union/#

Image credits: www.poundsterlinglive.com

Abhinaya Harigovind

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The European Union (EU) has certainly had an eventful year in 2015 dealing with the Syrian refugee crisis; the growing threat of the Islamic State; the disastrous condition of the world economy and the Greek debt crisis among other things. Having avoided a “Grexit” last year, the EU now faces the possibility of a “Brexit” after British Prime Minister David Cameron announced in late February that Britain would be holding a referendum on the country’s membership to the EU on the 23rd of June 2016.

So why exactly would the UK want to exit? The people in favour of leaving, which includes about half of Conservative MPs and (according to online polls) nearly half of the population, believe that Britain is being held back by the EU and that a Brexit would give them the chance to negotiate a new EU relationship. The primary reasons they cite involve trade and immigration. From an economic standpoint, Britain believes that exiting the EU will result in them being able to secure better deals with China, India and America and that Britain’s contribution to the EU budget can be put to better use in scientific research and development. It also believes that it can free itself from EU regulation returning control to the government over fields such as health, employment laws, etc. With the Syrian refugee crisis turning out to be a problem without an immediate solution, Britain also wishes to further strengthen its immigration laws and reduce the number of people coming there to work.

The Prime Minister however doesn’t want a Brexit, but simply wants a re-negotiation of the terms of Britain’s membership. Mr. Cameron has said that if he is able to get the reforms he wants, he will campaign for Britain to remain in the EU in the buildup to the referendum. So what does he want? Broadly speaking, he wants two things. From an economic point of view- to secure an explicit recognition that Euro isn’t the only currency of the EU and that Britain should not have to contribute to Eurozone bailouts. From an immigration point of view- to restrict those coming to the UK from claiming certain benefits until they have been a resident for at least four years. Other than these broad objectives, the UK is essentially lobbying for more sovereignty; to free business from excessive interference; remove trade barriers in the services and digital sector. He has also reiterated his standpoint that Britain would resist any move to join an “EU Army” or adopt the Euro.

So this brings us to the golden question, should Britain leave the EU or not? Well there really isn’t a right answer to it, most big businesses want Britain to stay as do a large number of Britain’s scientists and researchers (Professor Stephen Hawking has said that a Brexit will be “disastrous” for science). On the other hand some business houses and ministers recognise some of the obvious benefits a Brexit would bring and feel that it is the right course of action indeed. Whereas polls at the time show that 55% of Britain’s citizens want to stay in the EU, one can’t really predict how the numbers will change by June.
Shraman Ghosh
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