So Theresa May has said she will resign from leadership of the Conservative Party come June 7 but will stay on as UK Prime Minister until the Tories find her successor.
So it’s all still a tragic farce.
How are we faring here in Britain, you might ask.
Come down to London, all ye who live in other countries and see for yourselves. Everything’s pretty normal out here. Perhaps we’re getting used to chaos? Perhaps the chaos is at one remove from daily life, barring the points at which Brexit intrudes. (Pricier groceries; small businesses can’t/won’t expand; house sales are often put on hold.)
Britain has missed two Brexit deadlines, its radio, television and parliament can talk of nothing else but the project to leave the European Union, and everyone’s wondering if the only way to break the deadlock is to go back to the public, not in a second referendum, but in a general election.
Some in the UK are bemoaning the country’s plight.
Ahead of the April 12 missed deadline, the ‘New Statesman’, one of Britain’s most popular newsmagazines wrote the following: “A government no longer capable of governing. A country that has become a byword for chaos and dysfunction. A sundered ‘United Kingdom’. Hundreds of thousands of Britons seeking citizenship in other EU states. Industry howling in rage and frustration. MPs needing police protection. People stockpiling food and medicines. The public discourse poisoned. Families split. Friends riven. The military on standby in case of civil unrest.”
That’s a pretty frightening picture. Is it true?
Yes and no.
Indeed, Britain’s governing Conservative Party is deeply riven over Brexit. Parliament has spent a lot of time debating the issue. Civil servants are busy with contingency-planning. Brexit dominates domestic news.
But on the streets, in the shops, on the trains and almost everywhere else, it’s business as usual. There’s a little less business than usual for investments, mergers and acquisitions and company expansions. And business itself is a little more pricey than usual – groceries, for instance, have become costlier in the nearly three years since the Brexit referendum of June 23, 2016.
But it’s extraordinary how normal everything is. Just the other day, I rang my local council and ordered a replacement outside dustbin. It was delivered within 72 hours!