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Thursday, 26 September 2019

Cavaliers and Roundheads

In this post, I want to write about a basic divide which Brexit has exposed between authoritarian and liberal views of our constitution.  Let's call it the divide between Cavaliers and Roundheads: supporters of strong executive power versus supporters of strong Parliamentary control of the executive.

Hardline Brexiteers are Cavaliers because we have a hardline Brexit government, and they are reverse-engineering their views backwards from that - but it's worth bearing in mind that it didn't have to be this way.  The authoritarian and liberal views of the British constitution are much older than Brexit, and it is only chance that has put the Brexiteers on the Cavalier side.

Saturday, 7 September 2019

Brexit and World War II

The UK's national identity is intimately bound up with its victory in World War II.  This is largely because that was the last time that we won anything important, even though the victory also belonged to the rest of what was then the British Empire, the USA, the Soviet Union and the Free French forces.

References to World War II have accordingly become a cliché of the Brexit debate.  This post rounds up some of the occasions on which the cliché has been deployed by supporters of the Leave side.