Excellent piece David, given the EU’s track record for overturning or simply ignoring the results of referenda held in member states, I’m surprised anyone expected an outcome any different from the one we have.
When Ireland held a referendum on the Lisbon treaty and the people voted it down (in 2009 I think) the EU simply said, “Wrong decision, do it again.”
And then they put the economic squeeze on little Ireland to bring them to heel as a second vote was arranged.
The Lisbon treaty was of course the European consitution represented as a new treaty rather than a handover of national sovereignty to Brussels, which is why it was rejected in Netherlands and France and was set to be dumped by German voters before the EU pulled it to avoid further embarrassment.
All that is typical of how the EU deals with its democratic member states, it is not just that Brussels is not democratic, the EU bureaucrats despise democracy. So as it is a little more difficult to push Britain around the way they pushed Ireland around, their handling of brexit negotiations is par for the course.