I can’t believe it’s nearly over.
After weeks and weeks of bitching and backstabbing and argument and counterargument, the Referendum Hokey,Cokey is nearly over.
And I can’t wait.
I know which way I will be voting and I have known this for weeks but does it actually matter?
What many people have not really understood is the fact that, whatever way we all vote tomorrow, the result is not actually legally binding. Tomorrow’s vote is, in reality, no more than a glorified nationwide opinion poll. Whatever way we all vote the Government doesn’t actually have to do anything at all. There are far more important, far more worrying things happening all over the world that we really ought to be worrying about and we are being distracted by something which doesn’t really matter and will change nothing. It’s a smokescreen.
And, people are being mislead about the timescales involved with the In/Out issue as well. I am currently watching a TV programme where Alan Johnson MP has just been asked ‘What will you do if you wake up on Friday and we are no longer part of Europe.’ What a stupid question! Nothing is going to change suddenly at the stroke of midnight like a Cinderella type fairy-story, it can’t
Firstly, there is the pure geography of the thing. We will always be part of Europe, it’s the continent our country is part of. Unless we manage to separate ourselves from the seabed and float off towards sunnier climes, we will not be leaving Europe. It’s not going to happen. Secondly, whatever the vote is, we will still be part of the EU on Friday and will still be part of it for another ten years or so at least, even if we vote to leave, because that is how long it would take to do so, even if that is what the Government decides it wants to do. The TV news is trying to make it sound as if what we all vote is actually going to make a difference but it won’t. A Referendum is not the same as a By-election or General Election, it doesn’t actually change anything. It’s a gauge of public feeling and that’s all it is. It’s not going to mean there will be a change at the top or at Number Ten or in the House of Commons. If the Government doesn’t like it, it can ignore the result and absolutely nothing will happen. There will be no Monty Pythonesque foot stomping in David Cameron and George Osborne. There will be no big broom sweeping Boris and Nigel out into the political wilderness no matter how much we all want either of those scenarios to take place. Granted, this is the cynic in me talking, and I know that we all like to feel that our politicians listen to us but, in reality, unless they are actually going to be kicked out of office, they don’t have to do anything at all. They can just go on doing whatever it is they are doing and we just get to sit back and watch. As far as I am concerned, the only elections that really matter are the ones where the vote can change things. Where we get to say which political party will lead our country for the next few years. This is a Referendum and it doesn’t have to change anything at all if our current set of noble leaders don’t want it to. They can look at the result, nod and say “That’s nice dear” and then go on doing what they want, even if we have shown by our vote that we don’t want them to.
What I am trying to say is, the Referendum Hokey Cokey may be nearly over but it doesn’t actually matter and nothing has to change at all because of it. The world as it is on Thursday will very much be the same as the world as it will be on Friday. Sure, we will all have put our ‘X’ on a bit of paper, indicating our opinion, but that is all it is – an opinion. All the politicians are trying to say that what we think really matters but it doesn’t. In my opinion, this Referendum isn’t as important as everyone wants us to think it is. Go and exercise your democratic right, I certainly will be doing so, but don’t expect anything to change because it might not. Nothing needs to happen at all. Don’t believe it can actually change anything because it doesn’t have to. It binds noone into doing anything at all. The Government can go on doing whatever it likes and, until the next General Election, we can do little more than jump up and down and scream about the unfairness of it all. We really are just giving our opinion in a very expensive nationwide Opinion Poll and that is all.