So how do you quit a contract?
There have been things happening around us that make me think that the people in charge of negotiating a BRexit have never negotiated in their life.
If we grossly over-simplify the idea of BRexit we can say that in some ways it will be like quitting say a cable contract. You pay to receive Cable TV, Bradband, WiFi on the go etc. but with all this you get to pay for a landline too which you hardly use and sometimes your Internet is slow because some dude has latched on to your communal part of the WiFi and is downloading the Internet.
So one day the cable company goes and raises the monthly price and as the head of the household you go "You know what? We're paying too much for this. I never get to watch my shows on TV anymore and if we go Freeview, we'll be free to get contracts with whoever we want, get broadband from whoever we want and that pesky guy from 3 doors down wont be blagging our WiFi. AND we will save £50 a month that will pay for our vacation!" So you hold a family meeting and offer a vote. Some of them are saying "Well they don't show GOT on Freeview do they?"
"We'll stream it don't worry"
"But that costs money"
"Yeah but only a like £8 a month"
"...OK... but still not convinced"
"What about broadband?"
"We can get it from another company"
"What about WiFi on the go?"
"We don't need that"
"But I use it all the time"
"Well you'll have to use mobile broadband then"
"But it will eat my data plan"
"It'll be fine don't worry! Think about how much better things will be with those extra £50 a month we don't pay the cable company!"
A vote is cast and it is nearly 50/50 but it is more like 51/49, so you go for the quitting scenario.
This is the point at which you could go:
A. Call customer services and tell them you quit and you shall not be paying till the end of the contract and all your direct debits are cancelled. (They will probably send someone to collect though and your credit score will plummet)
B. Call customer support after you've told them you quit and demand a better deal. (You have quit. We don't care about you. Just pay us what you owe us till the end of the contract and get on yer bike)
C. Check other companies. Get a deal in principle then call customer support with the clear understanding that if they don't meet your demands you have an alternative and it will kick in the moment this contract ends.
Reasonable people usually go for C. They either get a better deal with the current supplier or move on to a different cable company at a better deal. Everyone that has cable has done this at least once. If you haven't i highly recommend it.
Being unreasonable, and never having had to do this before, you go for B. And threaten with A. The customer support rep says "Thanks for your business and we're sorry to see you go" as the script says.
The contract is now running out. You are still paying the cable company but people are starting to panic. Where's the £50 you promised? Where's the contract for the streaming service for GOT? Why are we still paying for the landline?
Then you go and say "Well.. I haven't sorted this yet, so I'll ask for an extension of the contract". And you reluctantly do. You try to get a better contract but suddenly it seems that all cable providers charge for a landline even if they advertise that you are getting fibre. It is fibre but to the exchange (which is 3 miles away) and you'll be getting the same speeds as before but at a higher price and you still need the landline but these other providers don't have GOT and you'll have to buy it and you don't have WiFi on the go now, but get a discount for switching to a different phone contract and everything is different and the £50 a month saved slowly turns into a -£3 saved ... Bummer .. But we have committed we will get out of this contract if it is the last thing we do!
Meanwhile the kids are panicking because "Like OMG! We can't stream over mobile WiFi and we won't be as connected as the other kids.." etc. and the GOT fan is giving you the look of disapproval and you panic more but they've all ganged up on you and some of them only want GOT some only want the Broadband but you have always wanted to save the £50 so that you can buy yourself that shiny gadget that will make things look much nicer and your friends will envy you. So they've now agreed that if you haven't got a better contract till the end of the month, you'l have to go back to the cable company and ask for an extension yet again. Humiliating. You go and look around some more but now all the other companies are offering worse contracts. The vote is in you WILL have to ask for an extension... You do. You fill the form, but also send the customer service rep a message in the chat window that reads "I don't want this! Can you make it so that it LOOKS like i asked for an extension but you decline to give it. PRetty please it will make my day and I F***ING hate your service anyway!!!!"
And this is where we are with BRexit...
Think about how much easier it would have been for Cameron to go "OK we the public wants to exit the EU. Lets see how we can accomplish that. Then a few months later comes back with 3 plans. 1. We leave without a deal which will cause this impact on everyone in the country OR we leave with a deal, which will have this impact OR we stay and make things better for the UK by being a proactive member of the EU" Put that to a second referendum so people can decide (after all it will affect people the most, right?)
If at this point people say "We still want to leave and we are OK with the consequences of leaving without a deal if it comes to that", you start the negotiations with a full-on support of the country.
Otherwise if people go "Oh, didn't expect it would damage us that much... we'd like to stay please." You can go and try to push your interests further or continue with life.
Instead this has dragged on for so long that some of the people have changed sides, some of the people have gotten even more polarised. Some of the people that voted one way or the other have died and some of the people that were denied a vote can now vote because they are either of age or have since acquired British nationality...
And seriously, What is the end goal here? Be a better country or keep a stiff upper lip and jump off a cliff because we said so.