Sunday , June 16 2019
Home / Tony Yates: Long and Variable / ‘Bollocks to Brexit’ critiques are bollocks

‘Bollocks to Brexit’ critiques are bollocks

Summary:
The Liberal Democrat campaign slogan has come under fire.  I think it’s a great slogan. It weaves together different feelings of those against the project:  ‘oh for God’s sake make it stop this is turning out really badly’ [recall Jolyon Maugham’s ‘make it stop’];  and also ‘this is really a bad idea and I am not ashamed to say so and I am not backing away from it just because of the 2016 referendum.’  Leave initally won the referendum by coalition building.  Of course it turned out that the coalition was false.  Leavers wanted different things from each other [this is why Brexit has not already happend] and some of which turned out to be undeliverable.  The Lib Dem slogan does not commit the same error. It also swerves the classic Leave smear of Remainers that they are elitists who

Topics:
Tony Yates considers the following as important:

This could be interesting, too:

FRED Blog writes Fixing the “Textbook Lag” with FRED (Part II) : Monetary policy in a world of ample reserves

Tony Yates writes Not entirely negative about Positive Money

FRED Blog writes Fixing the “Textbook Lag” with FRED (Part I) : Monetary policy in a world of ample reserves

Tony Yates writes FT Alphaville post on what the new Governor should and should not do.

The Liberal Democrat campaign slogan has come under fire.  I think it’s a great slogan.

It weaves together different feelings of those against the project:  ‘oh for God’s sake make it stop this is turning out really badly’ [recall Jolyon Maugham’s ‘make it stop’];  and also ‘this is really a bad idea and I am not ashamed to say so and I am not backing away from it just because of the 2016 referendum.’  Leave initally won the referendum by coalition building.  Of course it turned out that the coalition was false.  Leavers wanted different things from each other [this is why Brexit has not already happend] and some of which turned out to be undeliverable.  The Lib Dem slogan does not commit the same error.

It also swerves the classic Leave smear of Remainers that they are elitists who live and speak differently from normal people.  Almost everyone has moved past the stage where we pretend we are prudish and do not swear when we are fed up with things not going our way.

Bollocks to Brexit also crisply and boldly counters The Brexit Party on the issue of the day.  It therefore thus skewers Labour, which can’t come out against Brexit so clearly in its detailed policy approach, and so obviously could not sloganize so unambiguously against Brexit.  Jeremy Corbyn wants us to try to drop the labels of Leave and Remain, but this is a tough sell when we still have not resolved how, when and perhaps even if we will Leave.

‘Bollocks’ is probably a word still offensive to some.  But those people are probably not the target market anyway and not very numerous.  Despite referring to male genitalia originally, it no longer has any real connection to actual testacles and is probably the mildest of swear words.

One responder commented on my thread – which this post recaps – that the slogan ‘cheapens political discourse’.   I find this baffling.  It’s an honest slogan.  There is no deceit there.  Contrast that with ‘breaking point’;  ‘Labour’s tax bombshell’;  ‘chaos with Ed Milliband’;  ‘long term economic plan’.  These things were all deceitful in different ways.  There was no literal obscenity, but the analytical obscenity, the falsehood, was far more cheapening than just swearing.

Another responded that since ‘bollocks’ wasn’t actually really a swear word now, didn’t that undermine the Lib Dem’s claim to getting down with the kids and sloganizing?  Not really.  It’s just trying to use words that a lot of people would say about it.

Advertisements
Tony Yates
Economist. Consulting, lecturing, a book. Ex Prof at Bham, Ex BoE staffer. Macro, policy, monetary econ, occasional nonsense.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *