People have a tendency to put themselves first before others, their company or club before others, and their country before other countries, which is to be expected. I always felt, somewhat idealistically, that when you were a professional soccer player you should be thinking country first, club second, self third. In reality, and especially the English Premier League, it’s the exact reverse of that.

When you have major events like referenda on participation in Europe, you would think that a tight federation would prioritise the continent or ‘mega state’ for the greater good. But, of course, there are degrees of tightness within the huge area and it’s almost always undermined by national self-interest. In fact, local self-interest gets ahead of both national and regional self-interest, so it’s pretty much business as usual.

The 64-thousand dollar question that many people wrestle with is this: is a large multi-country body like the EU right to want to govern us all at the risk of themselves becoming power hungry?

I don’t have a fixed view on this, but I would like to see more people and nations put the greater good ahead of their local fiefdom and themselves, and not be quite such ‘me feiners‘. This doesn’t look like happening any time soon, if this is anything to go by. Maybe that’s the point of nationhood in the first place.

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