It’s good to be a contrarian. Well, I only say that to make myself feel better. The truth is that I don’t have a choice, it’s the way I am.
My approach to life – that the crowd is usually wrong, and the quiet observer on the side-lines usually right – was in part formed by the first serious adult book I read when I was in my teens. Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles Mackay was first published in 1841. Time, however, has not swept its truths away. If anything, they are more relevant now than ever, describing the mental illness that occurs when the masses become swept up by absurdity.
There are plenty of examples of this happening, both through history and in daily life. None more so, in recent times, than Brexit.
Of course, your personal view of Brexit will inform which side you believe to be deluded, and which one sane. But in my own life the many, many people I know and associate with split almost 10:1 in favour of Remain.
Now, the key to any extraordinary popular delusion is the presence of emotion and the absence of thought. Not only the absence of thought, but the refusal to countenance, even for one second, that others might see the same as you, yet take a totally different meaning from it. In short, popular delusions are extraordinary because they are driven almost exclusively by feelings. And feelings can be very, very wrong. They need to be balanced by thought, distance and time. And that occurs best away from the crowd.
Naturally, it is for everyone to form their world-view in their own way, and I mean no criticism of anyone who does this in a balanced way. All that I am saying is that I know – down to the core of my bones and in the heart of my philosophy – that when every voice I hear is crying doom then the truth – for me – lays elsewhere.
It now seems to be set that Britain will formally leave the EU on 29th March 2019. In numerology, this ‘date of birth’ gives the number 8, the number of business, money and power. For sure then, there’s money to be made in the post-Brexit world, and for everyone who listens to the medias incessant ‘narrative of uncertainty’ I say this
If economists and financial forecasters knew what was going to happen they would become investors instead.
The time to buy is when others are selling.
Naturally, there is a deeper truth at work here, which is all about personal responsibility.
Poverty consciousness – that mindset which forever drags your thoughts down to that which you lack – simply loves to find any reason to reinforce its story. And the ‘narrative of uncertainty’ fits that bill perfectly, ignoring, as it does, the inherent uncertainty of daily life! The bottom line is therefore this – if success and profit are part of your nature and core to your purpose then Brexit will not stop you, Trump will not stop you, Le Pen will not stop you. Unless, of course, you believe that they will.