With negotiations to secure Britain's future in Europe due to conclude Any. Day. Now. No. Honestly. This. Time. We Mean. It. and flush from out unimpeachably correct predictions about what life in Scotland will be like following the Independence Referendum of
Next Year the Shortbread Institute for the Study of Scotology offers this handy primer for the conduct of the upcoming EU Referendum.
1. The Yes / Remain / Stay / Be In campaign will be named "Stay! in Europe for Britain in Europe Not Out of Europe.vote." The three campaigns for the United Kingdom to leave the European Union will be named "Brexit - True Patriots for England", "Leave.NotSureHowTheInternetWorks.EU" and "Farage. Nigel Farage!” The respective leaders of the campaigns will be Angela Merkel, Boris Johnson, Jeremy Clarkson and Donald Carswell.
2. The theme tune for the Yes / Remain / Stay / Be In campaign will be a mash up of Ode to Joy, Whatever You Want by Status Quo and 500 Miles by the Proclaimers sung (i) by a reformed Smiths. The three Remain / Out / Go / Breville Toasted Sandwich Maker campaigns opt for respectively, the Dam Busters March, the Great Escape and Two World Wars and One World Cup Do Dah, Do Dah. The actual theme tune for the referendum will be the Hokey Cokey (ii) sung by the ghost of David Bowie. Is that what you want? Because that’s what’s going to happen!
3. Upon conclusion of the negotiations in [insert name of second tier European city] the outcome will be simultaneously hailed as a triumph and a Victory in Europe for Britain in Europe Not Out of Europe and denounced as a near treasonous capitulation to the dastardly Huns by each of the Out / Go /No / Don't Stay / Exit / Leave campaigns. One week after the document is agreed not one single person other than William Rees-Mogg will know or care what the content is and the referendum campaign will continue to be fought on the grounds of immigration, jobs, free movement of goods, Britain’s failed relationship with its own post-imperial past and whether that nice David Cameron performed a sex act too disgusting to mention in a family blog with That Pig . Do Dah. Do Dah. (iii)
4. Ex pat gangsters on the Costa de Colombo concerned at the impact of a leave vote on hard working British pensioners living in tax exile in Spain will make the East End of London an offer it can't refuse to vote In / Stay / Status Quo. Barbara Windsor will declare them to be wonderful people really, the salt of the earth.
5. The referendum will in no way be fought on the grounds of whether Britain won the Second World War or the brilliance of Russian linesmen. Clarkson and Corbyn will clash over whether Hurst’s second goal crossed the line or not.
6. Donald "the Evidence" Trump will tweet "Britain" alongside a picture of a German Panzer III and Jeb Bush looking mystified. The actual relevance of this to anything will be hotly disputed by media commentators, the Literati, the Twitterati and He, Himself, The Donald for decades to come.
7. The real reasons that Ola Jordan and Christina Rhianoff left Strictly Come Dancing will be discovered to be concerns that they will be affected by the revocation of the free movement of workers and replaced by British Dancers for British Jobs and both Ola and Christina are dirty, dirty, dirty foreigners. Dirty. Oh, so dirty.
8. Farage! Nigel Farage will be the main loser. If the vote goes against the EU his entire political raison d'etre will be extinguished in a Phyric victory of Ozymandian proportions. If the vote is for the Stay-tus Quo a career founded upon the promise but not the delivery of a decisive EU referendum will flounder. In either case he will be revealed to be an utter cock.
9. The EU flag will be revealed to be #blackandblue and #whiteandgold
10. Following his Defeat-Victory Nigel Farage will lock himself in an Edinburgh pub and issue a Unilateral Declaration of Independence and lead the pub out the EU. The saloon bar, citing a material change in circumstances, will issue its own declaration of independence from the pub. (iv)
11. Polish workers in the UK will stage a 48 hour strike in support of the EU, recognition of their crucial contribution to the UK economy and their rights under Article 45 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. The strike will be 100% effective. So effective in fact that the entire economic activity of the UK will be shut down for a two day period, including all media outlets attempting to report on the referendum, the strike or Nigel! Nigel Farage! The period will become known as the Lost Weekend or Stracony Weekend.
12. Millions of Europeans will “Love Bomb” South East England with a flood of phone calls begging them not to Leave. Baffled residents of the Home Counties will be unable to cope with being loved by an actual human being who is not being paid. Enterprising Indian call centres will adopt unconvincing French or German accents in an attempt to connect with British citizens to ask them a few market research questions. (v)
13. Gordon Brown will be rolled out at the last minute with a Vow on the front page of the Daily Mail. By 2030, Vow still undelivered, the readers of the Daily Mail will begin to realise that Gordon Brown as former Prime Minister, former Leader of the Labour Party and former MP for Central Belt North and The Town Nick Robinson Can’t Pronounce actually has no constitutional status whatsoever. IndyRef Zoomers will chant “We Told You So” in George Square. This will be blamed on BritNats and skinheads.
14. The Apprentice will be reconfigured as a competition between In / Stay / Remain / Yes / Och Aye candidates and candidates from Out / Leave / Nay / Avaunt. Key tasks, such as the day trip to Calais to buy things, the task where different international items have to be purchased, the task where British products are sold at an international product fair and the task where London property has to be sold to foreigners will highlight what a totally and utterly insane idea it is to leave our largest export market, the largest market in the world and rely for our economic prosperity on the good will of a bunch of poor countries who don’t like us because we conquered and enslaved them 200 years ago. Jeremy Clarkson will counter this by attempting to drive a Land Rover Defender across the English Channel. He will be rescued by a Spanish fishing boat. Baroness Karren, Lady Brady will never receive so much exposure before or since. Anyone who doubts that this is a good thing will be invited to move to the EU member state of their choice forthwith. Or the member state of the European Economic Area if they are prepared to accept EU rules and standards.
15. Norway will once again become the European country most people claim to want to emulate.
16. The Tory Party In Wing will unleash on the Tory Party Out Wing exactly the same sort of post-truth evidence-free vitriolic hate campaign that they traditionally reserve for the likes of Kinnock, Miliband and Corbyn. After being on the receiving end of that the Continuity Euro-sceptics will declare “Never Again” and, crying manly tears of grief and noble despair lay wreaths annually at a memorial to Our Glorious Monstered on the 13th hour of the 13th day of the 13th month.
17. No one will see or hear from George Osbourne for the entire duration of the campaign. He will be too busy plotting to become the leader of the victorious wing of the Tory Party and praying that the wheels don’t come off his economic “plan” until he’s been Prime Minister for 18 months. This sort of behaviour has never been seen before in a British Chancellor.
18. There will be a moment in the campaign where Channel Four send Cathy Newman to fact check a claim that the Romanian shoe industry is being kept afloat by the wearing out of British EU referendum campaigners’ shoe leather.
19. The media will constantly refer to 1066, 1966, 1945 and 1688. No one with any sense will reference 409 despite it being the most useful comparator.
20. During the last week of the referendum campaign de facto acting Prime Minister Teresa May will announce the third runway at Heathrow, an extension of HS2 connecting the Lake District with Blenheim Palace, the mandatory fitting of surveillance cameras inside all social housing, the building of seventeen city centre nuclear reactors as part the Northern Power House programme, a free immigrant with every UKIP membership renewal, the handing over of Port Stanley to the Greater Argentine Co-Prosperity Sphere, the repeal of the minimum wage, the Sex Discrimination Act, the Racial Discrimination Act, the Reform Act of 1832 and the Married Women’s Property Act 1882. Rumours that Jimmy Savile is to be deified will be hotly denied.
21. After crashing the last remaining operational Sptifire in to the White Cliffs of Dover and being rescued by a Spanish trawler half owned via a Cayman Islands Holding Company for the Russian mafia, Jeremy Clarkson will marry Katie Hopkins in a small, private ceremony in Liverpool Cathedral.
22. The most widely signed petition of the referendum campaign will be a Green Party initiative to have Natalie Bennet excluded from the debates.
23. UKIP will No Platform the BNP. The BNP will No Platform George Galloway. George Galloway will No Platform his own hat. Other notable campaign low lights will include the Sun’s Tits Out for Europe campaign, Jeremy Corbyn being asked if he is for Britain or against it and answering, a crowd baying “Jump! Jump! Jump!”at Farage! Nigel Farage! after his German wife locks him out on the balcony of his four story town house in Royal Tunbridge Wells and Nick Clegg.
24. The No / Leave / Go / Out / Not In For Britain / Nigel Nigel Nigel Out! Out! Out! Campaigns will conduct an increasingly bitter social media war against each other. Policy will be ridiculed and personalities vilified on Twitter and Facebook. A cesspit of crude, foulmouthed, misogynistic, racist, homophobic abuse will be unleashed by the Leave campaign against itself (Tumblr will still largely consist of second rate Harry Potter slash fic and George Osbourne will buy Instagram and flood it with pictures of his Michelin starred lunch and a pig helixing.) CyberNats will blame JK Rowling for this.
25. After hundreds of international firms have patiently explained to their employees that if the UK leaves the EU they will all be sacked and Rupert Murdoch has patiently explained that if the UK votes to leave he will put tits back in the Times the vote will be a dead heat. Nicola Sturgeon will have the deciding vote.
In the coming weeks we will explore life After Brexit, Britain’s Currency Choices Post Brexit and What Staying In Means for Your Family.
i In Gaelic
ii W. Poza. W Poza. Trzęsą to całe o
iii Not anal.
iv Alex Salmond will be sworn in as Pub Landlord of the newly renamed People’s Dispensary for Irn Bru.
v It will turn out not to be possible to leave the India Call Centre Union no matter how many referenda we hold.