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Brexit: The Movement for Entrepreneurship and Sovereignty (Self Determination)
"Funny, isn't it. You know, when I came here 17 years ago, and I said that I wanted to lead a campaign to get Britain to leave the European Union, you all laughed at me. Well I have to say, you're not laughing now are you?"….. Nigel Farage
So, the democratic process triumphed once more and Britain achieved its own independence from the European Union through a nationwide referendum on 24 June 2016…. Hallelujah! The Leave Campaign won by 52% to 48% which is close; however, the divorce isn’t final and no doubt the jilted wife (EU) like 99% of women (bloody misogynist I am) will make it a very expensive and painful process over the next 2-years. No amicable separation here because like most marriages it’s a “blood sport” and in the immortal words of H.L., Mencken, “whenever a husband and wife begin to discuss their marriage they’re giving evidence at a coroner’s inquest”. Indeed, “you have two dead corpses propping up each other with their respective rigormortis”. Yes, when you “Tie the Noose”, I mean knot, in Holy Matrimony you are bound to have great regrets because it’s only later, you find out what your partner is really like and you’ve come to realize “the longest sentence you can form with two words is “I, do”. Needless to say, Britain came to its senses and recognized the love affair with the EU was over for good, thank-god.
Now, the real fun begins with negotiating the terms of leaving the EU through a clause known as Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty; however, let’s look at the impact Brexit will have on entrepreneurship, sovereignty (self-determination). Historically, entrepreneurs have been known to be innovators, who thought outside the box and took risks to create a new process or technology to enhance business and/or solve a problem. Unfortunately, the term is now synonymous with more established status-quo corporations that went into apoplectic shock immediately after Britain’s Leave campaign won the referendum on 24 June 2016. So much, for that renegade entrepreneurial spirit to overcome fear and challenges that are inevitable with change. Yes, significant logistical adjustments maybe involved for doing business with Britain and the EU as two independent trading partners; however, the “single market” is about profit and in the jungle of Economic Darwinism those who refuse to adjust will perish.
Guess what, entrepreneurs or at least, the ones that embrace the true spirit of entrepreneurship will do what they do best, “problem-solve”. After all, when a business gets paid for a product/service that was designed to solve problems for its customers, while bringing value to the market then, it’s expected the same business can find a solution to sustain its own existence…I hope. Yes, the initial shock of the EU’s biggest member leaving the family fold was unnerving as indicated by the economic reverberation that sent global markets into cardiac arrest; however, when you’re sending 35 million pounds daily to sustain a partnership where you’re not being satisfied despite perks (subsidies & grants) in agriculture, technology and other industries then, it’s time to end the marriage and renegotiate the relationship.
Yes, FEAR is at the heart of the matter for entrepreneurs. Yes, being theoretically locked out from access to 500 million individuals or other collateral issues (skills, funding, technology innovation, immigration, government regulations, bank licensing, etc.,) shouldn’t be ignored nor dismissed when entrepreneurship creates incredible wealth, employment and countless benefits for all countries globally. However, competing interests are always working to achieve the best deal they can get and like “No Fault Divorce” when the love-affair is over and one party wants out then, you cannot hold a gun to their head and force them to stay in an unhappy European Union. After all, business relationships are like marriage but, they’re high risk because one partner (Britain) has more passion for its entrepreneurial child (the country) than its marriage to the EU, which makes dissolution inevitable. Hey, “If, you’re not a risk taker, you should get the hell out of business” …. Ray Kroc, founder of Mc Donalds.
As Nigel Farage proclaimed on 24 June 2016, Independence Day for Britain from the EU. Yes, British sovereignty was reclaimed and key to its future success as a nation that prefers to trade as a “partner” and not a “member” with the EU. Imagine being a member of 28 nations that have formulated a “single market” of trade with its own currency (Euro), parliament, president and laws written in its central capitol Brussels. With 10 centuries as a unified state that dominated the World for much of its existence and then, 43-years with the EU, Britain recognized the need to depart from a failing relationship.
Let me end with an important quote about British Sovereignty, “I believe it’s better to be free than not be free, even when the former is dangerous and the latter safe. I believe the finest qualities of man can only flourish in free air – that progress made under the shadow of the policeman’s club is false progress, and of no permanent value. I believe that any man who takes the liberty of another into his keeping is bound to become a tyrant, and that any man who yields up his liberty, in however slight the measure, is bound to become a slave” ….H. L, Mencken. No, Mencken isn’t British but, his quote speaks volumes about how freedom is more important than the so-called riches to be found by remaining in the EU.