Whatever the outcome of today's vote, something has changed in Britain and perhaps also in Europe. In Margaret Thatcher's day, it really looked like a new politics had arrived. There were more state-educated members of her Cabinets than any before or since. She had ex-Trade Union officials and railwaymen's sons around the coffin-shaped table in Downing Street. They were Grammar School boys from ordinary Britain just as she was a Grammar School girl. Politics was suddenly about ideas not class. Indeed most of the class politics of her era consisted of rabid trade unionists and entitled aristos uniting to denounce her, incongruously as irredeemably vulgar. A nasty little woman from "trade".
Someone who knew what work was and how business worked. Eugh.
This is even more apparent at the European level. Opinion polls on voter satisfaction with the EU show Brits as only middling in our disapproval of our masters in Brussels. We are not particularly Europe's bad boys and trouble-makers. We have simply been given a chance, by an out-of-touch Etonian who assumed he could play us for fools, to express a view. Europe's elites are either more snooty even than ours or less adept at concealing it. They have openly expressed their contempt for Cameron's stupidity in giving us a voice. They have no intention of giving their voters an in/out referendum. The "democratic deficit" of the EU is not a bug to them, it's a feature.
If the EU were more democratic, it would instantly break up derailing the gravy train on which they ride in first class with much hauteur.
So now the the dividing lines in our society and Europe's have been exposed by our referendum, where do we go from here? In or out, the voters have learned just how much they are despised by the political elite and its slavering hangers on in the media and big business. They have learned that the concerns of ordinary working people and small businesses, the core of Britain's society if correctly viewed, are – by virtue of their contemptible origin – to be dismissed.
A contemptuous sneering self-serving elite looking down on the little people and ignoring their concerns always leads to a bad place. One reason I try so hard in my humble way to participate in civic discourse is that I desperately don't want to go to that place. The rise of Marine Le Pen is terrifying. But it's not the fault of people voting for her. It's the fault of the French elite for consistently ignoring them. The same, frankly, could be said of Donald Trump in America. He's no-one's first choice for US President. But he's an effective way of telling the out of touch Republican Party to stop being RINOs, get their heads out of their asses and LISTEN to their conservative electorate. Likewise Jeremy Corbyn. The ordinary Labour voter is sick of the likes of Blair, Mandelson and their Islingtonian mafia sneering at them. They want people who represent properly their views. I may think their views wrong, but I also want them to be a respected part of a functioning democracy because I don't want our own version of Le Pen. My problem with Corbyn is that he isn't what they think. They are falling for a Goebbels-standard lie. If anything he's posher and more detached than Blair and at least twice as stupid.
So how do we move from acknowledging that ordinary decent Brits and Europeans feel neglected and despised, to creating a new politics in which their voices are genuinely heard and respected? How do we get to talk about the real issues that ordinary people face without silencing them with SJW abuse? How to we avoid the massive injustices caused by political correctness in such places as Rotherham without allowing a demagogue to arise? Because the only reason the sneering elites of Britain and Europe are not dealing with dangerous demagogues already is that none with the charisma of history's notable and terrifying examples have yet come on the scene.