On Good Winners and Bad Losers

There’s been lots on social media about being a sore loser over the last few days.  Usually it’s a sort of ‘you lost, now let’s get on with it’ sort of thing.  Quite often though it gets personal: taunts of ‘bad loser’ and it becomes insulting.

There’s certainly such a thing as been a good loser after all most of us encourage our kids to be a good loser for the times when that skill is needed.  But we also encourage our kids to be good winners too and not lord it over others when we come out on top.  It’s not seen to be very polite or very British is it?

What I haven’t seen after the referendum result has been much ‘good winning’.  It may just be that the good winners are less vocal and if that is the case we all need those good winners to speak up to balance things out.

A good winner would not be looking to force through a major change to this country on the basis of a slender and unstable majority. A good winner would be embarrassed by the scale of the lies told by the Leave campaign (you know those claims that were denied almost as soon as the ballot closed) and worried about the validity of a result that could be associated with those lies. By the way I am aware that both sides could have cleaned up their campaigning, but I think the Leave claims were particularly blatant. Also, I think a good winner would be dismayed at the prospect of our country splitting up as a result of referendum and I think they’d be wanting to slam on the brakes. A good winner would be dismayed and ashamed by the upsurge of racist incidents since the vote and would wholeheartedly condemn them , without feeling the need to make defensive comments about not all Leave supporters being racist.

I am not expecting a sainted, entirely self-sacrificing winner of course.  It is right that they should expect to make some political mileage out of the victory.  But, I don’t see a good winner as someone who is willing to push forward quickly in the current circumstances. Maybe they should be pushing for a second referendum or a General Election, maybe negotiate with the EU (although I think that door may not be very open).  Come on good winners, where are you?  Are you going to make yourselves heard?

Boo To Referendums

I’ve had enough of them.  I used to like the idea of more people being involved in politics.  I liked the idea of chosing citizens at random and asking them to serve in parliament for some years.  Now it all seems so stupid.  Referendums have caused nothing, but pain.

We have had two recently.  The Scottish one that very nearly meant that Scotland left us and this one about the EU, which ironically will probably achieve what the first one didn’t. Both have been tight decisions and haven’t really meant a clear outcome.  Can you really make such major changes to a country with such a small majority?  I’m not sure that you should.  But not to is against the will of the majority.

Then there’s the question of age.  Most younger people, the economically active if you like, are for staying in the EU.  They are the ones who will suffer most if the economy goes into recession and they will be the ones who have to get us out of it too.  But, they won’t be the ones that caused the recession.  Is that fair?  It doesn’t feel like it.  On the other hand I wouldn’t want to suggest that your vote shouldn’t count if you are older.  I feel torn.

There are the lies that have been told too.  I guess there has been a bit of this on both sides.  Mostly there has been scaremongering from Remain, although who knows they might be right about most of it (I guess we will find out soon enough). From Leave there have been downright lies.  Sadly it seems some really believed that they really would spend all that money on the NHS – like the right-wing have ever been keen to spend money on that scale on public services. And now someone has said immigration will remain the same – ditto, we need them to come to do the jobs we don’t want to.

I haven’t yet heard a reasonable argument for leaving: it’s all either bigoted stuff or nonsense that can be torn apart.  I’m sick of hearing about Switzerland (a country that I know a little about as I used to live there) and I can say it’s not all sweetness and light.  They might have high wages, but they need to because of their high prices. That stuff about the pencils was just ridiculous too. – can’t believe anyone really believed that.