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This was a self-portrait we painted and ingested a million times. Brexit is our destiny.

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Oh Yea Babey, It's Brexit

To discuss Brexit at all at this stage is to drown yourself in a churning sea of convoluted analogies, twee placards and photoshopped bus pledges.

The issue pulses with poisoned arteries that pump only tribalism and fatigue through a carcass of salted pork. The only people who continue to care have been transformed by the ordeal into some of the most mirthless and obsessive online scolds or coagulate outside in hi-vis jackets handing out clipart to the public.

Having a fixed perspective on such a chaotic social, economic and geo-political landscape can be incredibly tough. So much behaviour and posturing reveals all sides to be tired and reactionary, reflexively kicking back at the latest soundbites of the other. I despise Jacob Rees-Mogg, with his Where's Wally grin perched on a suit filled with Victorian gunge, but that doesn't mean I think a neoliberal continental trading block is particularly interested in protecting my rights either. Despite this, whenever I try to summon up what I want, I find most of my beliefs are directed at opposing whichever camp has wound me up most recently.

Ultimately, I don't want Brexit to happen but I fully accept that it is our destiny. The referendum was a huge upset for those willing to underestimate the proportion of the British electorate who have been absolutely destroyed by the policies of the British government, but whose party and national loyalties are strong enough to ensure they will blame it exclusively on any extranational cause presented to them.

Are there any specific EU laws these people object to? Do they have evidence that it was the EU that affected their current quality of life, instead of the UK government they want to make more sovereign? I don't think that matters. Brexit is an issue that goes straight to the brain stem. Your Pret A Manger liberal metropolitan logic doesn't have a place here.

That's not to say that people who voted to leave are intellectually deficient, but that centuries of post-Enlightenment thinking have misled us into thinking that we're fully rational computer-brains just because we're capable of doing mental maths. We're not. We're emotion pumps, and no more so than with Brexit. We're trying to usher up the ghost of King Arthur from the mists of Avalon here. You're not going to accomplish that with your ComRes statistics and policy records. We need passion. We need action. We need to have a round table discussion at the nearest Wetherspoons asap.

We're a country whose self-invented persona is our noose. The plucky island nation that did it all on its own. We slayed the demonic Nazis with nothing more than our wit, determination, assistance from foreign armies, and the harvested resources and manpower of a worldwide imperialist project. Post World War Two, England spun an act of basic self-preservation into an act of supreme altruism against a faceless evil. But where did this evil come from? Unknown. Unknowable. Under no circumstances look up the Treaty of Versailles.

This was the dawning of Modern Britain, isolated, supreme and indestructible. Devoid of any future comparable victories, this was a self-portrait we painted and ingested a million times, and with each repetition key information was misremembered or removed wholesale, like a human centipede suffering from data loss.

Brexit is our destiny. We stepped onto the world stage as a character we would maintain to the bitter end, the pluckily and determined island nation, Britannia reimagined as Hyacinth Bucket peering furtively through the fishnet blinds at the rest of the cul-de-sac. I hope they appreciate our magnificent lawn display.

Next article in issue 134

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