While we’re talking about Philip Pullman, you might want to view his commentary from the Guardian, June 2016:
There is our country’s post-imperial reluctance to let go of the idea that we are a great nation, combined with our post-second-world-war delusion that we were still a great power. That was why we refused the chance to join the European Coal and Steel Community in 1951, and our infatuation with our own greatness was sufficiently undamaged by Suez in 1956 to make us refuse to join the EEC when that got going with the Treaty of Rome in 1958. If we’d committed ourselves to Europe early, with everyone else, we’d now have a much deeper understanding of our real relationship to the continent, namely that we belong there.
He also has some scathing things to say about Australian media moguls, the British Labour Party and the British Constitution. Worth a read.