Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Get Out and Schadenfreude

In recent conversations with Germans, I get the feeling that Brexit brings about what seems to be some Schadenfreude, this wonderful German term for which there is no English equivalent. According to the Oxford dictionary, Schadenfreude is the malicious enjoyment of another’s misfortune.  

Under no circumstances would it be right – I was told – for the British government or parliament to seek ways of staying in the EU. No, it does not matter that the referendum was only a consultative instrument, it does not matter that the majority of the pro voters was so slim, it does not matter that the majority of MPs seems to be against Brexit.  

Therefore the new prime minister of Britain who claimed to have been against Brexit should now do what she considers to be bad for her country.

Would those Germans, who believe that the British government must “respect the will of the people”, have said the same had the British referendum decided to wage war against Germany?  


  1. No, I don`t believe anybody in Germany is gloating about Britain`s decision to exit the EU. Deep down many are probably envious, at least amongst those who don`t belong to the establishment (they prefer to call themselves "the elites", of course).

    No, the majority in England wasn`t so slim: 52% wanted to get out, 48% preferred to stay in. Many a presidential election in the USA has been decided on much smaller majorities.

    And no, it doesn`t matter at all what the MPs thought,. The whole point of the exercise was to ask the sovereign - and not parliament - what they felt.
    If only they had asked the British People back in 1914 whether they wanted to enter a war! Certainly Britain and probably the rest of the world would have been spared World War 1.

    The Referendum was "government of the people, by the people, for the People". Theresa May is well advised to adhere to it.

  2. Was die UK betrifft , ich weiss nicht, ich weiss nicht....... Vielleicht urteilen wir anders in 4-5 Jahren..... Aber Schadenfreude ist auf keinen Fall an gebracht!!!! That is mean!!!!!