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Brexit Brings Power Back to U.K

Henri Erti
July 7, 2016

By a narrow margin, the Britons decided to choose liberty over a statist bureaucratic apparatus, potentially igniting a mass exodus from the European Union. Despite the short-term pain, Brexit concerns are overblown.

EU bureaucrats should have known that the day of reckoning was approaching. The second-largest economy and fourth-biggest “sponsor” of the EU simply said no to endless bureaucratic, top-down, supranational governance dictated by unelected officials sitting in Brussels and Strasbourg.

These bureaucrats’ purpose was to create as much senseless red tape as possible for European citizens and businesses.

Such centralized planning has never worked for any economy. EU leaders — many of whom had a past romance with Marxism — thought this time would be different. But it wasn’t. At all.

For David Cameron — soon to be the former prime minister of Britain — Brexit was a gambit designed to be exploited in future EU-UK negotiations. Thus, by losing his playing hand, Cameron may have become the European Gorbachev, who, by accident, dissolved a supranational socialist group of neo-apparatchiks.

We shouldn’t mourn this. EU’s original idea of liberalized movement of people, ideas and capital are all highly admirable, yet once power began to concentrate in Brussels against the founding idea of subsidiarity, EU stepped on a slippery slope from which it was never able to return. Power tends to corrupt.

Don’t let doomsday oracles fool you. The United Kingdom has a relatively strong economy, which can withstand market panic. This panic will be halted once markets recoup from the shock and start corrections. Reforms will be drawn based on power over, not submission to Brussels.

Will EU expansion continue among poorer Eastern European/Balkan countries? Will France take on the UK’s role as balancing Germany, which is de facto leader of EU? Most importantly, will EU technocrats learn from the ongoing democratic deficit and leadership sclerosis?

Probably not. The United States should extend her hand toward the UK and not condemn the decision to honor democratic principles.

As Nobel Prize winning economist Friedrich van Hayek once said, “The more the state plans, the more difficult planning becomes for the individual.” Let Brexit be a painful reminder of what happens when unelected officials feed the Leviathan with our liberties.