Brexit and all that

June 19, dosage 2016

Only slowly realizing how much flooding there has been in the past couple days.  Woodbrooke had about 6 inches or so in the basement and set up a bucket brigade to get most of it out.  Then a bunch of sweepers were needed at one entrance where the drain backed up and threatened to send water cascading through a series of offices –it apparently came within in fraction of an inch of flooding the corridor. Other parts of Birmingham had people displaced because of the water esp. in areas of new development with inadequate drainage. We just experienced some heavy downpours while driving and some buses being warned about flooded intersections.

The horrors of people thinking that somehow violence will improve the world continues. Here the latest was the assassination of Jo Cox, a young, intelligent MP in her first term who was attacked and killed.During the attack, he was said to have yelled “Britain First”, a political party against immigration and what it sees as the Islamization of the UK .  She was well known for her work for social justice and a supporter of the “remain” movement re the EU.  Her death may affect the Brexit campaign.

The Brexit campaign (Attempt to withdraw Britain from the European Union) is vigorous to say the least with lots of accusations all around regarding lies and assertions of huge costs or huge savings, none of which seem supported by much in the way of facts. Lots of jokes about whether Trump is better or worse than the various British politicians caught up in this referendum.  The sane view is that it never should have come to a vote and nothing but damage will be the result.  There is also the expectation that Scotland will renew attempts to leave Great Britain if Brexit wins as the Scots gain a lot from being in the EU.

The Quakers widely support remaining in the EU for several reasons. They note how Europe is a prime example of the rule of law and a contrast to the horribly corrupt strong men who rise up in so many circumstances.  Then there is the fact that Europe has introduced many protections for labor and environmental regulations that are enforced to at least some degree to provide an equitable economic playing field.  Finally, and most important for some is that since the creation of the EU there have been no wars among its members – a stark contrast to historical circumstances. All this gets lost in the rhetoric.

Edward  Burrough had words in 1659 that would seem appropriate here: “We are not for names, nor men, nor titles of Government, nor are we for this party nor against the other . . . but we are for justice and mercy and truth and peace and true freedom, that these may be exalted in our nation, and that goodness, righteousness, meekness, temperance, peace and unity with God, and with one another, that these things may abound.”




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