So after a pep talk from Noah Smith Saturday night about how it is time to become kinder and gentler—to look for opportunities to praise for being smart people who in the past I have criticized for being really really really dumb—I wake up Monday morning, and I wince because Duncan Black has been reading the once-thoughtful Clive Crook again.
"People is weird... 'let's shoot ourselves in the face just to prove our gun works'..." is really four standard deviations kinder and gentler than this deserves:
Duncan Black: National Humiliation: "People is weird. [Clive Crook:]... http://www.eschatonblog.com/2017/07/national-humiliation.html
....Isn't this risk worth running for the chance to correct a historic error—if that's what it was? I doubt it. Suppose a second referendum was called and the result was Remain; suppose the EU said, "Great, glad to have you back." Reversing Britain's decision under these circumstances—out of fear, to avert looming chaos—wouldn't reconcile the country to its European future. This cringing submission would raise instinctive euro-skepticism to new extremes and divide the U.K. even more bitterly.
Gideon Rachman writes in the Financial Times that it would be a national humiliation. True. It would surpass the Suez Crisis in 1956 and the country's surrender to trade-union militancy in the 1970s—crushing setbacks with far-reaching political consequences. If there were ever a case of "be careful what you wish for," this is it...
This the thinking that leads to pointless catastrophic wars. Let's shoot ourselves in the face just to prove our gun works...
Is there any other way to understand this other than: "the wogs start at Calais"?: