According to Michel Pireu there are at least three lessons to be learnt from Brexit:
- experts make bad predictions;
- how easily ordinary folks can be confused by nonsense; and
- if you can’t stomach volatility reduce exposure to the market.
As Nicholas Barrett wrote on the Financial Times website: “We now live in a postfactual democracy. When the facts met the myths they were as useless as bullets bouncing off the bodies of aliens in an HG Wells novel. When (British Conservative pro-Brexit politician) Michael Gove said ‘the British people are sick of experts’ he was right.” This sounds a lot like Keynes’s warning that markets can stay irrational a lot longer than you can stay solvent.
Ghost of Trump mars US triumphalism: Michael Pireu in BDlive today published by Business Day.
Lincoln Michel probably summed up the mood in the US best when he tweeted: “It’s official: no one in the UK is allowed to make fun of America again (unless Trump wins).”
That is something that’s now worrying even the cynics. “At least Americans will never vote for some weird nativist nightmare, in defiance of both major party establishments!” tweeted Ken Jennings.
But that’s precisely the concern. Bloomberg again: “Yes, Donald Trump is ecstatic — for now. But there are two lines of thoughts on this: the first is to note this data point, reported by Politico — 66% of people who left school at 16 voted for Leave, 71% of those with university degrees voted Remain.”
Hence, if the US has a similar proportion of more educated versus less educated, and they vote in similar ways as the Brits just did, it could benefit Trump.
The second involves a bit of reflexivity.
If Brexit turns out to be the disaster it looks like it will be, and people come to understand that foolish actions have consequences, the result could be a move against someone who is seen as a chaos candidate (to quote Jeb Bush).