Re: Mabe we could try for Europe Version 2 (TL;DR)
A few important details:
"Of course that means tearing down the stinking corrupt edifice that was built for the aggrandisement of failed politicians and being content with our own local stinking corrupt edifice for some time"
For decades, most measures proposed for making the EU corrupt edifice less corrupt were frontally opposed by the people in charge of your local corrupt edifice*. So, instead of acting locally first and electing a government intent on putting pressure on the EU to fix the issues, 'you'** chose to rage quit without anything remotely resembling a sane, informed debate on the consequences of the Brexit or its alternatives.
Germany and France, 2017...
That was far more probable before the Brexit referendum. Right now EU citizens -including UK citizens- can see more clearly the consequences of such a populist measure on their everyday lives. I don't think anybody is queuing up to organize a similar referendum, except those types whose contact with reality is mostly orthogonal, like Le Pen and their ilk.
When a major EU politician refers to the referendum result as a contagion...
...he/she is wrong. See the paragraph above.
But yes, the Brexit will set an example for the rest of Europe. A powerful negative example. Thanks for that!.
As for the actual notice, I'd wait until after the next general election...
The European commission has already stated that they themselves will invoke Article 50 if the British govt. drags its feet for too long, so as to minimize uncertainty and economic harm caused to the EU by the delays. So you can wait till hell freezes over, but in the end it won't matter, as others will take that decision for you.
Disclaimer: I think there is still hope for 'us'***, but lot of people will have to back-pedal and do a lot of hard work to undo the damage. It goes without saying that both British and Europeans are needed for this difficult task. And if they succeed, it may help bring about all those changes to the EU workings that most Europeans want.
Note*: Who have been blocking any proposed changes to the workings of the EU that would make it more democratic. E.g. tax havens in Europe (of which the UK owns several), a different method for electing the EC and many many more examples.
Note**: Here, when I say 'you', I mean the UK government, the UK political class, the UK media and the UK public.
Note***:'us' with a similar meaning to the above note, but replacing UK with the EU, of which the UK is still an important part.