Some British politicians suffer from an imperial reflex, however. For them, Britain lies at the centre of the world. We only have to state our aims and other countries will be generous enough to help us achieve them.
The British have never really accepted the fact that their Empire is gone and that they are now just another European nation, neither particularly rich nor powerful when compared to France and Germany.
True, Britain does outperform its Western European neighbours on several fronts: it is a uniquely miserable, unjust and unequal place thanks to the radical neoliberal experiment of the past 40 years.
Modern Britain is a corrupt, undemocratic financial centre in the Eurozone, burdened with an impoverished, unhappy, overtaxed and unneeded surplus population. And now they're leaving the Eurozone.
The only glimmer of light I can see in this Brexit business is that the consequences are likely to be so bad that it may effect some kind of political change for the better in the long run.