‘How can it be pleasurable, if it’s guilty?’

Is how Justice Antonin Scalia of the US Supreme Court responded when asked if he had any guilty pleasures.

Scalia (recently demised) was a US Constitutional fundamentalist. Not in any religious sense but when it came to the words in that much used and abused document.

Described in The Economist as a “…committed textualist…” his creed was simple: words mean what they say, not what might, or might not, lie behind them. Or, in the case of law, what some half-witted politician might have meant when framing some particular statute or other.

He was a hard man, a proper conservative with a small ‘c’ who wasted no time on constitutional nuances. What he really wanted to do, in many difficult cases, was to mark his opinion with a rubber stamp bearing the words ‘Stupid but Constitutional’.

In this blog, which is largely concerned with all communication across all media, men like Scalia are as refreshing as mountain streams. In his world, words mean what they mean and if the ones that you use fail to reflect what you are trying to say, find different ones and use those instead.

Moving to us now, we are about to endure an assault by gobbledygook concerning the in/out EU referendum.

In common with most voters I am no economist or financial expert and the issues are about economics and finance. I am, though, something of an expert on lunch and lunching and therefore profoundly concerned that when the music stops, the restaurants of Britain will suddenly be without staff.

Lunch is a complicated and intricate production in which each and every participant has a vital role to play.

The person who washes the pots provides crucial equipment for the person who cooks the food that the person who serves it places in front of the person who eats it and pays. And that’s just in the restaurant. Factor in the folk who plant and rear the food, pick it, pack it, butcher and deliver it and you can suddenly see that it’s not just the porky bloke relishing the steak and kidney pudding who is involved.

When any one of these links is absent, the chain is broken and there is no lunch.

So I make this simple plea to the Ins and Outs alike. Please answer two questions, clearly and in words we can all understand and that mean what they say: if we leave the EU or we stay in, who will provide our lunch and will it cost more or less?

This article was originally published on LinkedIn on 1 March