Relaxing whilst doing Competition Law is not an Oxymoron

On Brexit- the unthinkable and unreasonable

with 12 comments

There are risks and dangers so great that it is hard to come to terms with the idea that they exist and may materialize. The magnitude of it all makes them seem unreal. And when they finally turn into reality, they feel like a bad dream.
I never thought Brexit would happen. It’s a vote against all reason that condemns a country and its new generations, that harms the rest of the continent and that opposes the best and most successful political organization in history precisesly when we need it the most.

History is full of examples showing how we are perfectly capable of acting against our interests screwing up all that we have. When one sees something so absurd like this, when one sees Farage, Le Pen, Trump and essentially any dangerous extremist celebrate, dancing as the ship sinks, when you think that a few selfish misinformed votes can afect the future of your children, then frustration and anger tend to take the place of hope on reason.

If the EU is sometimes hard to defend to some people that is only because it is the guarantee to many of the best things we have, so much that we take for granted that they will always continue to be there no matter what. And that is fatally wrong.

This is a very sad day. I only hope other Member States would realize that there is only the way forward, and that the alternative is the abyss.

Written by Alfonso Lamadrid

24 June 2016 at 7:25 am

Posted in Uncategorized

12 Responses

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  1. Alfonso, thank you for putting into words what many of us are thinking this morning.


    24 June 2016 at 7:32 am

  2. Europe was born from its ashes. There is only a way forward as u say

    Ana Amador

    24 June 2016 at 7:44 am

  3. bravo !
    I also think that governments pay for misinforming the people about the EU for so long. Nothing great grows from ignorance…


    24 June 2016 at 8:20 am

  4. Touched by your post Alfonso. I felt exactly the same way this morning. It only gives a little bit of hope that the rest of Europe learns the lesson and that current leaders somehow blocksafe the EU from future possible populist governments. Remember, we have Podemos knocking at the door here in Spain… Feels frightening.
    “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter. Winston Churchill”


    24 June 2016 at 8:37 am

  5. I agree that Brexit is a huge mistake, and it’s sad to see the British leave. However, 51.9% is not a “few selfish misinformed voters”. Nor is the EU in its current state only sometimes hard to defend. To understand this vote, it helps to realise that both you and the readers of this blog are most likely educated lawyers, highly spezialised in european law and in some way part of the “EU-bubble”. You cannot take our level of understanding for granted in a public debate, and sometimes the experts in particular might easily lose track of big underlying issues like democratic legitimation, too.

    The EU is hard to defend as soon as institutions like the Commission or the ECB no longer strictly adhere to the rule of law but claim political leeway for themselves. A majority of voters doesn’t accept policy makers that they can’t vote out, apparently it’s as simple as that. Not only in the UK. Clearly, this will be a breaking point for the EU’s approach on governance, and this should be the way forward.


    24 June 2016 at 9:33 am

    • And who is it that voters can’t vote out?

      Martin Holterman

      24 June 2016 at 11:43 am

      • Draghi, Juncker, Italianer, Motta, to name a few. And no, elections for the EP can’t make up for it according to 51.9%, I am afraid…


        24 June 2016 at 1:31 pm

    • Who has voted for those in charge in the Bank of England? Are “chief economists” in the UK voted as well? Should high public officials be elected as well? (by the way, the idea that Italianer or Motta are “policy makers” is … very funny – let’s put it that way; they are not, and if they tried). Will they be elected in the future UK? Is “taking control” or “getting the country back” based on a proposal about having all high civil servants elected in the future? Is it somewhere in the “leave” plans? Why not electing judges as well? (surely a judge has more powers than Italianer or Motta). Let’s start first by those in the House of Lords (now Supreme Court) !! By the way, if “a majority of voters doesn’t accept policy makers that they can’t vote out”, they should have clearly got rid of the House of Lords long ago, is it in the the Brexit plans?


      26 June 2016 at 10:01 am

    • Thanks everyone for your comments.


      17 million is a hell of a lot of votes, much more than I ever thought “leave” would get. However, when seen with perspective, and measured against the number of people that will be directly affected by this decision both now and, particularly, in the future, 17 million voters are really a tiny fraction of those concerned.

      And they were indeed misinformed, both by irresponsible politicians and tabloids and by self negligence. I would not expect people to understand issues like “experts”, and I absolutely respect any reasoned non-expert opinion; what I don’t respect that much is when people vote on such a crucual issue with an absolute disregard to facts (and those were available) and, in some cases, not even knowing what they were voting on. Voting is also a responsibility.

      There certainly have been efforts made to allow citizens to better understand what goes on in the EU (even if we certainly need much more of that). There is a problem, though, when people complain about it without making an effort to understand it.

      I do nevertheless agree with you that the EU approach to governance still needs to be refined. The EU, like any political system, and like democracy itself, is not perfect, but it is the best we have, and it can and will be perfected further.

      Alfonso Lamadrid

      27 June 2016 at 10:32 am

  6. I agree. This is a sad day indeed for the EU and the UK. David Cameron was short sighted to have promised a referendum in return for electoral votes during the last election. The EU must now stand firm and united both in forthcoming negotiations with the UK and in its determination and commitmemt to continue building a strong EU.

    Chantal Lavoie

    24 June 2016 at 10:11 am

  7. […] “Chilling competition” on Brexit […]

  8. […] On Brexit- the unthinkable and unreasonable By Alfonso Lamadrid There are risks and dangers so great that it is hard to come to terms with the idea that they exist and may materialize. The magnitude of it all makes them seem unreal. And when they finally turn into reality, they feel like a bad dream… […]

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