The Short Version: Brexit

The Short Version: Brexit

The point of it all is to break down the headlines, determine why an issue is important, and reveal the best arguments on each side of the story. Last week, the debate was about Orlando and the many political leaders are pushing for legislation to prevent people on “no fly” lists from buying guns. This  week the subject was a foregone conclusion: Brexit.

Note: If you have missed any of Cleo’s blogs, just go to our Home Page, type “The Short Version” into Search (magnifying glass icon) and poof, like magic, all her blogs will appear.

Cleo Constantine Abrams of the “Short Form,” offering densely packed spins on issues of national and global importance.

Cleo Constantine Abrams of the “Short Form,” offering densely packed spins on issues of national and global importance.

What happened?

On Thursday, the British voters chose to leave the European Union (“Brexit.”)

The move is causing massive upheaval in the U.K., Europe as a whole, and financial markets across the world. The Dow dropped 600 points in response to the risk of a global recession.

The internet also exploded with Brexit commentary.

The ‘leave’ side, led by Nigel Farage of the U.K. Independence Party, won with 52% of the vote. In response to the decision, pro-E.U. Prime Minister David Cameron resigned.

The vote revealed deep demographic differences. Older, white people and those from working class backgrounds were more likely to vote ‘leave’: 60% of people 65 and older voted to leave, while only 27% of young people 18 to 24 followed suit. Voter turnout was high, around 72% (for reference, U.S. voter turnout in 2012 was 54%.)

Interestingly, though immigration was a core part of the argument to leave the E.U., areas with high immigration voted to stay.

Art by Luna Adler

How does it affect you?

Removing the world’s fifth-largest economy from its biggest single market has serious economic and security risks.

The U.K.’s short-term economic future relies on exit negotiations. The process to disentangle Britain from the E.U. is outlined in Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty; the countries will need to agree on trade deals and international treaties to govern how the U.K. would interact with the E.U. moving forward.

Though it’s unlikely Brexit will trigger a global recession, it’s hard to predict what effects turmoil in Britain will have on the E.U. and the rest of the world.

Many people have connected the right-wing movement that led to Brexit to American support for Donald Trump. The differences between U.S. and U.K. demographics make the comparison fairly weak—but there’s no denying that populism and isolationism are powerful around the world.

How the U.K. voted in the E.U. referendum, via The New York Times

Debate it!

This is exactly how the question was put to voters: “Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union?”

[Then, check out the similar Short Version debate from before the vote.]

Why “The Short Version” on TIO:

Eight+ years ago, Telluride Inside…and Out began as a lifestyle webzine. Today, in the full knowledge that Telluride is a window on the world, we continue to bring the “zazz” (short for “pizzazz) of the region to a local, national, and global audience by covering everything from Telluride’s robust cultural economy – major events and festivals – to health and fitness and outdoor adventure. When Telluride travels, we write about places to go, people to meet too. (That’s part of the “Out” part of our handle, the other, obviously, Outdoors.)

And now, this new weekly column, “The Short Version,” which offers simple summaries of issues of national and global importance. (Though we won’t go political, or rather we won’t show bias in the upcoming election.)

“The Short Version” is written by Cleo Constantine Abram, the daughter of Telluride locals Eleni Constantine and Jonathan Abram (and therefore an honorary local and regular visitor) and a digital strategist at Precision Strategies, a political consulting firm.

Why “The Short Version”? Because, though we live in Shangri-La, our bubble is not impermeable and the rest of the world is only a click away. Because there is no inconsequential action; only consequential inaction. And because information is power in a moment so many of us are feeling powerless.

More about Cleo Constantine Abram:

Cleo Abram 2

Cleo grew up in Washington D.C., lives in New York City, and loves to visit her parents in Telluride. She authors “The Short Version,” a newsletter that explains each week’s most important issue and both sides of the debate around it.

Cleo is a digital strategist at Precision Strategies, a political consulting firm born of the Obama 2012 presidential campaign.

Cleo’s work focuses on ways to share, educate, and inform using online platforms. While in college at Columbia University, she guided the school’s entrance into online education through her role as the youngest elected representative to the Columbia Senate, which makes university-wide policy.

She continued her work on online education at TED-Ed, the educational branch of the nonprofit, building new programs and online tools to support high school teachers worldwide.

Continuing her work with TED, Cleo founded and led an early TEDx conference, the organization’s community-specific series.

Most importantly, Cleo loves to ski!

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