Arguments about the future are often the most heated. Take Brexit for example, there are those who predict mayhem and those who predict a brave new world with boundless opportunity. There are those of course like H.M.’s Opposition who have no discernible view at all and for once they maybe right. There is an Arabic proverb; “He who tells the future tells lies.” – so beware!
It is interesting that so far the great and the good number crunchers have been seriously wrong at every turn. The establishment, the Treasury, the Bank of England, the great accounting houses of KPMG etc all prophesied great gloom when article 50 was passed, and before that, immediately after the referendum. So far, there are problems of course but nothing catastrophic has happened either to the U.K. or the E.U.
If we analysed the foes in this conflict of interpreting the future you could broadly claim that the more conservative (small c) then the more detailed the paradigms, reams of forecasts and much gnashing of teeth. i.e. The Chancellor and his cohorts on the one side.
Whilst on the wilder less conservative more radical side we see few figures just lots of hope and glory. Rees-Mogg, Boris Johnson et al. It might be unkind to bracket Farage with the afore-mentioned.
The difference in the protagonists is a question and definition of risk. Some are more risk averse some are less. Neither side would argue that there is no risk, but one side will emphasise the rewards whilst the other will concentrate almost entirely on risk.
By and large the man in the street, (it’s him again), doesn’t give a fig for detailed forecasts but they do grasp the idea of nationalism and democracy. Some call it Sovereignty. Some call it isolationism, some yet to decide what it means, but at least it means we can look after ourselves and not have unelected busybodies calling the shots from over there.
Few are interested in the history of peaceful cooperation in Europe, collective trade values, freedom of movement, world influence, technical cooperation etc. etc. Some even see Brexit as adventure against stagnation. There are as many arguments and nuances as there are voters. The fact remains that the future is unknown. It may be an economic shock, it may even be a great new era, no one really knows.
If the conservative risk averse crew have been wrong so far, have the adventurers said anything that’s been any more accurate. I find that hard to discern. Neither side can tell the future.
If the risk averse win the UK will turn back and have a fudged Brexit or even another referendum. If the adventurers win then the Europeans will lose and that is not at all in their interest.
If I were a betting man I think a great fudge would be the best bet but who knows if that is the best outcome?