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In the Aftermath Of Brexit, Brits Google About Irish Passport, Meaning Of EU, and Why it All Happened 693

As the world makes peace with the news that the United Kingdom has voted to leave the European Union, people in the UK are increasingly trying to figure out what this means. Google noted on Twitter late Thursday that "What is the EU?" was the second top UK question on the EU since the news broke, with "Why did Britain leave the EU?" being the first. The questions also speak volume about the awareness of the issue among them. Understandably, some people also resorted to the search engine to look for Irish passports. "Getting an Irish passport" keywords saw a 100% surge.
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In the Aftermath Of Brexit, Brits Google About Irish Passport, Meaning Of EU, and Why it All Happened

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  • So.. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 24, 2016 @01:27PM (#52382909)

    Since Britain left Europe... does that mean it's a continent now?

    • Re:So.. (Score:5, Funny)

      by itsdapead ( 734413 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @01:34PM (#52382985)

      Since Britain left Europe... does that mean it's a continent now?

      No, just incontinent.

    • by sjames ( 1099 )

      They're working on it [youtube.com].

    • Re:So.. (Score:5, Funny)

      by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @03:01PM (#52383837) Journal

      Since Britain left Europe... does that mean it's a continent now?

      It's a planet now, replacing Pluto.

  • Scotland and...? (Score:5, Informative)

    by mah! ( 121197 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @01:30PM (#52382943) Homepage
    Scotland seems to want to stay in the EU:
    https://twitter.com/jk_rowling... [twitter.com]

    Will the Kingdoms become Ununited, as Jasper Fforde shows:
    http://www.jasperfforde.com/dr... [jasperfforde.com]
    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      I've noticed that job sites and housing/rental sites covering Scotland and the EU are getting pretty slow now everyone is home from work.

    • It would be interesting to see scotland leave the UK and rejoin the EU
      • While it wouldn't happen it would be fun to see the EU say to an independent Scotland that they wouldn't have to re-apply as they voted to stay in and they only left because England made them so they would be fast tracked in under the current agreement. Just a big middle finger to London.

  • Control (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Tablizer ( 95088 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @01:31PM (#52382951) Journal

    Voters rightfully want to control their country's own destiny without having to cater to some international rule-making body a thousand miles away. I feel the same about the World Trade Organization. Why are THEY making decisions for Americans?

    True, voters are not always rational (Iraq cough), but people naturally want control and would rather make their own mistakes than let some world body far away make them instead.

    • Re:Control (Score:5, Informative)

      by Feral Nerd ( 3929873 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @01:43PM (#52383087)

      Voters rightfully want to control their country's own destiny without having to cater to some international rule-making body a thousand miles away....

      Actually it's 199.26 miles [distance.to] genius ... now go get a snickers and stop being such a drama queen.

      • by balbeir ( 557475 )
        Good riddance. The British have been sabotaging the EU since they joined.
        • Good riddance. The British have been sabotaging the EU since they joined.

          Well, maybe Charles de Gaulle knew something the rest didn't when he said NON! (twice)

      • You're using a non-English map. That's where lies your problem. On English maps, British Isles are about fifty miles East and South of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland.

    • by mah! ( 121197 )
      What about wanting to control a country's destiny without having to cater to some other country a thousand miles away [wikipedia.org]?

      Or the same people wanting control half of the world [wikipedia.org], as many other imperial powers have done through millennia?

      Or, looking at some other random place, having the continent where you live taken over by invaders (such as it happened to natives in the Americas [wikipedia.org]), and those same invaders subsequently claim that it was "destiny" for that to happen?

      It's a sad, sad world where human egoism pr
    • Re:Control (Score:5, Insightful)

      by angel'o'sphere ( 80593 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @01:48PM (#52383153) Journal

      rule-making body a thousand miles away
      Cough cough ... look on a Map? Bruessels and Strassbourg are not thousands of miles away from London.

      same about the World Trade Organization. Why are THEY making decisions for Americans?
      Erm? Because they are basically run by American Mega Corporations and their cronies?

    • Re:Control (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Jzanu ( 668651 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @01:52PM (#52383179)
      Except Switzerland and Norway are in the EEA for trade advantages, are subject to all the freedom of movement rules and other policies of the EU absorbed into it (5000+), pay significant fees to Brussels anyway, and simply have no representation. EU membership is better.
      • Switzerland is not in the EEA. They have a lot of bilateral agreements with the EU, though, and they pay for them, too - so the situation is not that different from the non-EU EEA members Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein.
    • True, voters are not always rational (Iraq cough),

      You had to look at Iraq to give an example of irrationality? You couldn't look at our remaining candidates here in the US?

    • Re:Control (Score:5, Insightful)

      by fiannaFailMan ( 702447 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @02:32PM (#52383569) Journal

      I feel the same about the World Trade Organization. Why are THEY making decisions for Americans?

      The WTO is the successor to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). This was an attempt to set international institutions in place to regulate international trade in order to make it easier to get trade moving. It was an attempt to provide an international framework in which countries could sort out their differences on trade matters peacefully without resorting to trade wars, protectionism, and to prevent a repeat of the same economic conditions that ultimately led to two world wars.

      Does that answer your question?

    • Re:Control (Score:5, Insightful)

      by swillden ( 191260 ) <shawn-ds@willden.org> on Friday June 24, 2016 @02:32PM (#52383573) Homepage Journal

      Voters rightfully want to control their country's own destiny without having to cater to some international rule-making body a thousand miles away. I feel the same about the World Trade Organization. Why are THEY making decisions for Americans?

      People rightfully want to control their own destiny without having to cater to some rule-making body 10 miles away. Why is CITY HALL making decisions for me?

      The answer is: Because it's a good idea to give up some control in exchange for better relations with your neighbors, and a neutral third party who can adjudicate disputes and define structures that pre-emptively eliminate them.

      Obviously, it's important that you have a say in the rule-making body, but the UK did have a say in the EU's operations, and Americans do have a say in the WTO. And clearly, if the association with the rulemaking body in question is doing you more harm than good, then leave. But leaving just because you want to feel empowered is stupid, as is arbitrarily drawing the necessary boundary of control at the national level.

    • by PCM2 ( 4486 )

      Voters rightfully want to control their country's own destiny without having to cater to some international rule-making body a thousand miles away.

      Luckily, Brussels is only 200 miles away from London.

  • by thinkwaitfast ( 4150389 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @01:31PM (#52382965)
    it would be illegal.

    Maybe those in power really do know what they're doing.

    • by b0bby ( 201198 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @01:38PM (#52383029)

      Maybe those in power really do know what they're doing.

      In this case, I don't think they did. Cameron gambled that he could appease his Eurosceptic Tories with this referendum, not really believing that it would ever pass. It was a major miscalculation.

      • That and to counter the rise of UKIP. He bluffed, and it was well and truly called, with brass bells on.

        Boris seeing an opportunity for a coup and Corbyn making a very half-hearted effort on the other side may be the things wot tipped it.

  • by 93 Escort Wagon ( 326346 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @01:35PM (#52382997)

    Are you sure that's not an euphemism for for something immoral and/or illegal?

  • I remember someone talking about wanting to migrate to the US and they had a dual Irish and UK citizenship and I was like, "Wow...you gain no real advantage with those two what-so-ever."

    Well....now that person does! :-P

    There are a ton-o-british people living in the EU that will soon need to apply for immigration where they did

  • WTBH? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MiniMike ( 234881 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @02:12PM (#52383391)

    From TFA:

    "What is the EU?" and "What happens if we leave the EU?" The former was the second top UK question on the EU after the results were officially announced.

    Seriously, shouldn't they have been asking this before they voted?

    • Re:WTBH? (Score:4, Informative)

      by Zocalo ( 252965 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @02:36PM (#52383629) Homepage
      The second question, "What happens if we leave the EU?", shooting up the ratings is actually quite understandable. Around midnight UK time was when it first started to seem that the Leave campaign might actually win, something many doubted would actually happen, when the first results were announced showing much narrower margins for Remain victories (Newcastle) against much larger margins for Leave victories (Sunderland) than expected. You've going to have a lot of people who favoured Remain and were confident that would be the case starting to get nervous and wonder what might happen if Leave won, who didn't really have any reason to find out previously; it had no bearing on their vote or what most polls and just about every opinion outside the actual Leave campaign were suggesting would be the result.
    • Re:WTBH? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Jahta ( 1141213 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @07:56PM (#52385867)

      From TFA:

      "What is the EU?" and "What happens if we leave the EU?" The former was the second top UK question on the EU after the results were officially announced.

      Seriously, shouldn't they have been asking this before they voted?

      If you think that's bad, read this and weep; "Leave voter regrets voting Leave when he realises it means we're now Leaving" [independent.co.uk]

      Yes, people who voted Leave have been on British television saying how shocked and worried they are that Britain is actually leaving the EU. "I just assumed we would stay in and my vote wouldn't matter!", they said. You couldn't make it up.

  • by quantaman ( 517394 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @02:15PM (#52383411)

    It's mostly anecdotal at this point but there already seems to be a lot of buyers remorse. Thoughts on the possibility they'll have a follow-up "are you really sure?" referendum or at least an election where one of the parties campaigns on ignoring the result.

    • My understanding is that once they start the EU Article 50 process, it can't be reversed (although it might take 2 years for the process to complete). They haven't started that yet, but plan on starting it soon.
    • by Zocalo ( 252965 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @03:02PM (#52383843) Homepage
      Definitely not entirely anecdotal. There was a fair bit of buyer's remorse around our (mostly pro-remain) offices in Manchester today, with only a handful prepared to stand by their "Leave" vote, even before management confirmed that one entire engineering department - about 600 employees, or 10% of our UK workforce - was going to be wound up because EU regulations require that the work be done by staff located within an EU member state, and the bulk of their work was coming from the EU. As you can imagine, the atmosphere in the office went downhill pretty sharpish after that...

      As for the do-over, despite the campaign on the UK Government's equivalent to change.org getting a huge number of votes asking for just this, the answer is "none". The guy at work (a Leave voter with buyer's remorse, as it happens) who brought this to our attention seemed to think it was asking the government to enact some provision of the official rules of the referedum concerning turnout levels and margins of victory. Turns out that was about on a par with the level of research many of the Leave voters with buyer's remorse presumably did; "none at all". A quick search with Google, a download of the actual legislation for the referendum from Parliament's website, a bit of reading (it's not a huge document) and it's pretty easy to see that this is a one-shot deal, in or out, and there is no such turnout/margin of victory clause. In fact the word "turnout" appears exactly twice, and one of those is to define the meaning of the word "turnout".

      It's done. We're out, and we're now going to have to live with the consequences of that vote. From the state of the global markets and so on it also looks like quite a few people who are not UK citizens and didn't get a say in the matter are, at least to some extent, coming along for the ride. Sorry about that.
      • by bazorg ( 911295 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @04:02PM (#52384343) Homepage

        It's done. We're out, and we're now going to have to live with the consequences of that vote.

        I'll disagree with that bit. The referendum is not legally binding and until the divorce paperwork is done, the UK is a member even if the other members decide to treat us like a cheating spouse :)
        With Cameron resigning, his successor will have 2 years before a general election, during which it may become very clear that the Conservative party is deeply fractured because of this key policy. Same with Labour.
        Some time is needed for government-capable parties to re-group and win a general election. It would surprise me if no new-new-Labour or new-Tory party presented themselves on a platform of NOT going ahead with the Brexit. Either alone, or in an alliance between Greens, LibDems and new-new-Labour.
        In the meantime, Scotland is getting ready for a break up. If the Conservative party wanted this to have England all to themselves, it's working really well, except for the sudden dip in the markets, possibly to be followed by recession.

  • I admit I lack knowledge of all this, comments from forums, FB, etc. seems to be those outside UK say it is dumb decision, those in UK say it is a smart decision.

    A friend from UK posted this:
    "Congratulations to my Brexit pals in the UK. A decision that came down to a number of factors, economy, immigration and The Big One -- the gulf between the Haves and the "Have Nots". Brexit will hopefully be a tsunami of political and social change that benefits the US. Because right now its politics as usual backed

  • by Ranger ( 1783 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @05:55PM (#52385173) Homepage
    I suspected that Putin is funding many of the nationalist right wing groups in Europe. In other words, he likes stirring the shit [independent.co.uk]. Brexit doesn't benefit the UK or Europe or even the US. It doesn't help when austerity is punishing the working class all across Europe and their voices are being ignored. It makes them easy marks for nationalist and right wing groups and con men [rollingstone.com]. As the UK begins to negotiate its exit the EU will play hardball because if they make concessions, other countries might bolt too. A disunited Europe is exactly what Putin craves for. And if the US chooses the wrong president, it won't be their to help hold Europe together.

    On a separate but related note: Texas secessionists are smart enough to understand what Brexit is and have been emboldened by it. Expect to hear more about Texit if Hillary becomes president. [nydailynews.com]
  • by knorthern knight ( 513660 ) on Friday June 24, 2016 @08:18PM (#52385963)

    During the Cold War era there was a joke about a western visitor going through Poland/Hungary/East-Germany looking at the cars and noticing something weird. There were no steering wheels. When he finally asked about it, the answer was "The steering wheels are all in Moscow".

    Similarly, the EU is now effectively run by unelected bureaucrats (aka "Euro-crats") in Brussels who were grabbing more and more power from elected governments. When people complained about local problems, they were told that no solution was possible, because they had to follow EU regulations.

    Case in point, "record breaking floods" in recent years. The "Euro-crats" blamed them on "global warming", which was a lie. The true cause...
    * before EU, British local authorities dredged local rivers and dumped the debris out to sea
    * with EU regulations, that became a no-no, and the debris had to be stored on land. I.e. it became illegal to move mud from the bottom of the river to the bottom of the English Channel.
    * England is crowded, and real-estate is insanely expensive.
    * Dredging became insanely expensive
    * Local authorities stopped dredging local rivers, because they couldn't afford the increased costs
    * After several years of not being dredged, rivers started overflowing their banks every time they got hit with a moderate rainfall... well... like... dohhh.

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