Why I support Brexit?
To be honest, I have dearly hoped that the British voters would decide to remain in the European Union. For a person from EU who wishes to study in the UK, a lot of uncertainty has come as a result of the decision to leave and it may as well happen that I will have to pay thousands of pounds of tuition fees that I otherwise wouldn’t have to. However, if I try to put these “special interests” aside — and I believe that any intellectually honest person should do his best to do that — there has been little question for me as to which option on the referendum I would support.
The European Project is failing and it has been failing for years. There are many problems with the EU, but the one I am most concerned about is a huge democratic deficit. Like we hadn’t had enough bureaucrats in our home countries, EU has created a new political class of thousands and thousands of unelected officials that are shaping our lives in ways we cannot even imagine. What bothers me even more than their spectacular wages and countless other privileges is the inability of the people to hold these officials accountable. Namely, the more local the government is, the easier it is to control what the politicians are doing. Eurocrats, on the other hand, are hidden in some complex scheme in Brussels, way beyond the scope of an average citizen. There, they are free to switch between seats, earn handsome amounts of money, and govern Europe. In addition, there is one more way in which the EU has brought about a democratic deficit. Local politicians now have a scapegoat they can blame for every mistake they make. All in all, the European Union is presented as a champion of democracy, but it is one of the least democratic institutions in the recent history.
Another important problem is the suppression of nation states. EU has this project to make us all Europeans. We shouldn’t be British or French or Slovenians, we should be Europeans. Does that ring a bell? Regardless of wishes to eliminate nationality and live in the multicultural wonderland, this simply isn’t working. Especially not in Europe. Not that we haven’t tried, though. For someone who comes from an ex-Yugoslav republic, it seems blatantly absurd that roughly 25 years after the bloodiest wars in the recent history of Europe (which were fought between “brother Yugoslavs”), we are trying something like this again. This idea of United States of Europe is unbelievably dangerous. People all across Europe are already saying that they don’t want the European flag, that they don’t want the European anthem, and that they don’t want European armed forces. If we fail to listen, there is not a certain, but definitely a worrying threat that things will go badly wrong once again. We cannot ignore the national identities of the people, but the EU is doing exactly that.
Now, what kind of Europe do I want then? I want a Europe of sovereign, democratic nation states that cooperate with each other. We should freely trade with each other, we should be friends with each other, we should agree about some minimal standards. But I don’t buy into the idea that thousands of unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats in Brussels are responsible for peace in Europe and are absolutely needed to do the above-listed things. So, to finally answer the question: I support Brexit because the British voters have taken their democracy back and because I hope it will teach us all a lesson that we need deep structural changes. Brexit may as well be the first step to Europe that I want to see.