We have not been driven into the quagmire of Brexit at the point of a gun or out of economic necessity. It is the consequence of 70 years of indecision about the closeness of our relationship with our continental neighbours and what our role should be on the world’s stage.
State of Paralysis analyses the climate of opinion in Britain since the end of World War II. These decades have witnessed revolutionary changes in power, knowledge and global politics. We have seen the rise of the Internet, space travel and the nuclear industries. The old European empires have collapsed, the Cold War has become a distant memory and global warming is posing an additional threat. Would Britain be better equipped to face these challenges on its own or as part of the EU? This was the question posed by the 2016 EU Referendum, but has it been answered?
John Elsom describes how the party political system has broken down, its constitutional implications and how it influences our sense of national identity. He brings to the debate the perspective of a political and cultural commentator who has witnessed at first hand many of the events that now shape our lives.