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Nigel Farage wants us to believe that if the 2016 referendum does not result in the complete separation of the UK from the European Union, then democracy itself – perhaps even its very self – will have been traduced and the people betrayed. This is rubbish. But even if it was true, I wouldn’t lose sleep over it.
Democracy is an evolutionary process. Until quite recently, most Britons were opposed to gay rights and same-sex marriage. Now they are fine with both. Three years ago, immigration was the most important topic in British politics and the driving force of the referendum. Now it isn’t. The fact is, the people can’t be relied on to make the right choice at any given moment anymore than a morbidly obese man can be trusted to avoid a lunch of steak and kidney pie followed by apple tart and custard. They have to be persuaded over time of what is true and what is reasonable and what isn’t.