Prediction: Will Britian Exit? No.

EU So tomorrow (I am writing this on Wednesday at 4 PM Pacific), Thursday, British voters would choose to remain or leave the European Union. I think it should leave. I don’t think it will.

The reason I think it should leave is summed up in this piece over at Britain’s Democracy is a Sham. Reason I think that it will remain is that I don’t hold voters (all voters, not just British) in very high regard. They are generally ignorant, myopic and gullible.

Ignorance, like mortality, is universal. All of us are mortal, all of us are ignorant. We are necessarily ignorant because the amount that is collectively known exceeds the capacity of any individual to know by several orders of magnitude. Each of us probably knows about 10 billionth of what there is to be known. My claim about voters being ignorant, though, has a different emphasis.

I think voters are ignorant about the specific issues that they are usually asked to indicate their preferences through their votes. Some of the smarter voters understand that they don’t understand the issues. That is they are not ignorant of their ignorance.

Richard Dawkins falls into that group. He confessed that he is not qualified to vote on the EU matter: “I don’t have a degree in economics. I’ll try to make up the deficiency by reading. But in a representative democracy we pay MPs to do such detailed homework for us. There may be simple issues for which a plebiscite is appropriate (fox hunting, perhaps). But why does anyone think an issue as complex as membership of EU is one of them?”

So there.

Author: Atanu Dey


7 thoughts on “Prediction: Will Britian Exit? No.”

  1. seems a relatively more reliable way of predicting election results. At least there people are putting their own money on predictions.


  2. It is 1:00 AM in the eastern U.S. And according to Rediff India BBC calls for Bexit to win in the poll. This is contrary to general expectations. The U.S. markets are expected to sink today for that reason. Momentous things happen despite good intentions and forecasts to the contrary.


  3. Well, I was wrong in my prediction that Britain will remain. The popular vote is that Britain will exit. Good for them. And the fallout will be good all around. Cheers!


  4. Mr. Dey, Appreciate your prompt response. I want to share a little something else. As a native of east coast of India I feel affinity with Bengal and its people. You probably sensed this all along. We are on Bay of Bengal and it binds us somehow. It is beyond science. For example there are likely more persons named for Rabindranath Tagore in the southern east coast (Andhra Pradesh) than there are in West Bengal. Our geographical proximity engulfs us. But, we are argumentative alright!


    1. Mr Rao,

      You figured out from my name that I’m a Bengali. However, I have never lived in Bengal since I was born and brought up in Maharashtra.

      In any case, I am a thoroughgoing individualist by nature. By that I mean that I am by nature disinclined to identify myself with any group — ethnic, national, race, etc etc. One of these days I will write a blog post detailing why.


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