The politicians of Europe are working to save the EU in the aftermath of the Brexit vote and rising nationalist sentiment. Step one: punish Britain.
…say Britain were able to effect the departure from the European Union that the majority of its citizens want. In that case, the EU’s hopes for survival would rest squarely on economic catastrophe for Britain. For if it were able to prosper outside the Union, or even merely to maintain its current economic level, the value of the Union itself would be called into question by the peoples of Europe even more than is true today.