“Good Morning,” said the Electorate at last.
“Er… good morning, O Electorate,” said Cameron nervously, “do you have… er, that is…”
“An answer for you?” interrupted the Electorate majestically. “Yes, I have.”
“There really is one?” breathed Cameron.
“There really is one,” confirmed the Electorate.
“To Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union?”
“Yes, though I don’t think,” added the Electorate, that you’re going to like it.”
“Doesn’t matter!” said Cameron, “We must know it! Now!”
“All right,” said the Electorate, “The answer to Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union? Is…”
“I’m going to get lynched, aren’t I?”
“I checked it very thoroughly,” said the Electorate, “and that quite definitely is the answer. I think the problem, to be quite honest with you, is that you’ve never actually known what the question is.”
“But it was Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union?” howled Cameron.
“Yes,” said the Electorate with the air of one who suffers fools gladly, “but what does that actually mean?”
“Well, you know, enjoy the benefits of the single market without being part of it, points based immigration here but still retire to Spain, restore the sovereignty of parliament without actually letting it vote…” said Cameron weakly.
“Exactly!” said the Electorate. “So once you do know what the question actually is, you’ll know what the answer means.”
“Look, all right, all right,” said Cameron, “can you just please tell me the question?”
“But can you do it?”
“No, but I’ll tell you who can,” said the Electorate.
“Who? Tell me!”
“I speak of none but the referendum that is to come next,” intoned the Electorate, “A referendum whose merest subordinate clauses I am not worthy to comprehend. A referendum that will actually tell us what Brexit is. A referendum of such infinite and subtle complexity that understanding ATM modernization under Single Sky and the medical implications of leaving Euratom shall form part of its introductory reading material…”
(Apologies to Douglas Adams
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