And so the victory of Nigel Farage is complete. His anti-foreigner prejudice infected the Conservative Party and killed its open trade imperative once so proudly espoused by Margaret Thatcher. And now Keir Starmer’s Labour Party, once internationalist and modern, is becoming Faragist in erecting permanent barriers to trade and people.
Across Europe you will see 30 independent sovereign nations linked by their commitment to the single market and enjoying the benefits of freedom of movement of capital, labour and enterprise. But Little England, having erected a fence around its shores, stumbles on in a fantastic belief that faux-patriotic flag-waving can replace openness and common sense.
We have turned the clock back more than a hundred years to a time when Britain had thought it was a land of hope and glory and that it ruled the waves. The ships and the glory have mostly gone and the flags just look like sad relics of a distant time.
Freedom of Movement was, of course, a two way street. Across the Channel an eighteen-year-old contemplating his or her future has those 30 countries to choose from with no barriers in the way. A Brit now has far narrower horizons because a political class dominated by Farage types of his or her grandfather’s age has removed their freedom of movement. What a pathetic runt of a nation we’ve become.