In the campaign’s lowest moment, UK Independence party leader Nigel Farage unveiled a poster depicting a stream of dark-skinned refugees under the banner “Breaking Point,” the implication being that Britain will be swarmed with some of the roughly 1 million Middle Eastern and African migrants who have entered the continent since 2015. But while Britain enjoys the benefits of EU freedom of movement, it is not a member of the Schengen Area, the EU’s internal, border-free zone. This means it can deny admittance to any non-EU citizen attempting to enter from the continent. Far from having “lost control” over its borders, Britain actually has the best of both worlds.
Finally, nine out of 10 economists said that Brexit would hurt British growth over the next five years due to the uncertainty engendered by a departure from the EU single market, where British industry and finance have operated freely for the past four decades. More than 80% of economists, meanwhile, predicted a negative impact from Brexit on household incomes. It is rare that one ever gets this sort of unanimity from economists on any single question, let alone the whole bundle of questions implicated by something so complex as a country’s membership in a supranational economic union.
Confronted with these facts, however, Brexiteers didn’t wage much of a counter-argument. “People in this country have had enough of experts,” declared Justice Secretary Michael Gove, a leading Brexit advocate, going so far as to compare said economists to the “German authorities” who slandered Albert Einstein’s theorems on account of his being Jewish. Gove’s defiant anti-intellectualism sounds a lot like the post-modernist ramblings of Trump surrogate Jeffrey Lord, who, on CNN, recently derided the practice of fact-checking itself as an “out-of-touch, elitist media-type thing. I don’t think the people out in America care.”