In loving memory of Scriptorius.
Another story from my Madazine Pending File.
The item below is a letter we received a day or two ago, addressed to me. Editor
Dear Mr Rider-Hawes,
While I am cognisant of the fact that you do not devote much of your organ to current affairs, I feel you might offer your readers a little something of my own devising, which I think could be of great benefit to them and perhaps to many more of our compatriots. My subject is one now receiving an enormous amount of attention, namely Brexit.
I suspect that most of us may now be weary of hearing pronouncements from self-styled experts in every aspect of the UK’s departure from the European Union. Much of the output concerned is both tiresome and unnecessary, as it is, at least in my view, impossible to be an expert on an event that has no precedent. Also, it puzzles me that people who seem to be armed with all relevant knowledge of this matter should come with such certainty to opposite conclusions. One would think that truly sensible, logical minds would, when in possession of every scrap of pertinent information, converge on a particular opinion, regardless of their genders and largely of their ages. That they fail to do so persuades me that too many of them are motivated more by socio-political dogma than analysis.
My research indicates that the deluge of information and opinion to which we have been subjected has resulted in great confusion in the minds of a large number of us, including myself. I believe there are millions of Britons who are now unsure as to whether they really went for the right option in 2016, irrespective of how they voted. The scheme I am putting forward would resolve the quandary troubling these people, as they would not need to agonise any further, having covered both in and out options.
The solution to this so-called problem is to my mind very simple. I suggest that we hold another referendum to ratify or reject the one we had in 2016. However, the second one would be different from the first. My proposal is that the remain or leave choice should be same as before, but should be preceded by a government statement that an indecisive result would mean retention of the status quo ante, i.e. the position before the first referendum.
You might ask how the outcome I envisage could be achieved. This is perfectly straightforward. Under the system I am advocating, all voters would be required to put their crosses in both boxes, leave and remain. Any ballot paper not completed in this way would be regarded as spoiled. This exercise would have huge advantages all round. The voting age could be fixed at any point, so for example those aged sixteen and seventeen would qualify.
One can imagine the relief in official quarters. The UK government would be immensely pleased by the removal of any requirement to do anything – always a welcome development to any British administration. The joy among eurocrats in Brussels would be boundless, as they would have seen the validation of their main democratic principle, namely that people who make the ‘wrong’ choice in any first referendum must keep on voting until they get the right answer. In addition, the civil servants on both sides would derive great satisfaction because a vast amount of unnecessary work will have been done, keeping many people harmlessly occupied for a long time.
I submit this plan in the hope that if adopted, it will bring an end to the current disgruntlement, regardless of who is experiencing it.
Note: At first reading this seems a strange idea but on reflection perhaps it indicates the confusion in the minds of many of us, including me. Editor
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Presented with love by the partnership of
Scriptorius and Aquarius
To live in the hearts of those who love us
shows that we are not dead.
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