Friday, June 24, 2016
"Brexit a great thing"
Donald Trump just happened to be in Scotland when the Brexit vote took place, using the morning to gloat in the English secession from the EU and show off his remodeled golf course. I guess with David Cameron out of the way he no longer has to worry about being barred from Great Britain. He's got Boris Johnson as the Conservative PM in waiting and Nigel Farage of the UK Independent Party as his second. The interesting thing is that he spoke before either of these two Brexit champions did and then mostly about himself.
David Cameron was forced to eat crow after fulfilling perhaps the only promise of his campaign by allowing a referendum on Britain's place in the EU when just about everyone advised him against it. Back when David was struggling to put together a coalition to rule Parliament he promised UKIP, as the Independent Party calls itself, that he would let the people decide whether they wanted to stay in the EU or not. When the Tories won re-election by a resounding margin no longer needing a coalition, David felt he could give Nigel and his boys what they wanted because he had the UK in his hand.
David didn't count on Boris and other breakaway Tories joining Nigel and UKIP in a secessionist bid, pummeling the airwaves with distortions, half-truths and downright lies about how the EU was eroding the fabric of British life with its inane regulations and immigration policies. It didn't matter that UK's relation to the EU could be described as distant at best, not taking part in the Euro zone or Schengen Agreement, not to mention a number of other sweet deals Cameron struck with the EU to bolster the "Remain" campaign.
UKIP, which is kind of the like the Tea Party of England, stirred up a hornets' nest of anxieties over immigration, not so much the hairy Muslim type, but the hairy Eastern European type. They didn't like all these Poles and Lithuanians and Croats and whatever else comes from that region settling into dear old England and taking their jobs. It didn't matter that the Eastern Europeans were subject to British immigration policies, and for the most part contributed to the British economy, they were seen as scofflaws degrading the English way of life. Trump could understand, although two of his wives came from Eastern Europe. It was like the love-hate relationship we have with Mexico and Central America. When called on their overtly racist rhetoric during the "Leave" campaign these boys said in unison, "who me?" just like Donald would say.
You figure Donald has Boris and Nigel come join him on the links of his Scottish resort. The irony is that Scots overwhelmingly voted to stay in the EU, as did the Northern Irish. A veritable sea of blue in the north as opposed to all that red in the South, just like in America. If the Scots had their way they would kick Donald out of their homeland, as they are pretty upset at how he turned the little community of Turnberry upside down. As it was, a lot of protesters pitched up to make fun of him. One comedian, Simon Brodkin, even offered a pair of red golf balls with swastikas painted on them to Donald. Needless to say, Donald was none too pleased and had Simon kicked off his property.
This was a purely English and Welsh decision. The vote literally split the kingdom in half, and while most Brits appear willing to live with it, the Scots are so pissed with Brexit they might just have another referendum themselves to decide whether they still want to stay in the UK. But, Donald would probably say it's a great thing too.
Of course, Donald blames Obama for all this. If the President hadn't made a nasty reference to Brexit the last time he was in London none of this would have happened. Members of UKIP and the breakaway Tories also picked up on Obama's slanderous comment of going to the back of the queue. It doesn't matter that he went onto say that America's special relationship with Britain "will continue, hopefully eternally."
David Cameron, to his credit, took the blame for the referendum and has offered his resignation. The scary part is that Boris Johnson, a British version of Trump or Brump as you might call him, is being considered as the next in line for PM, unless a new vote is called. Boris spent the past two months tootling around Britain in a big red bus telling everyone how much money the UK pours into the EU each week and how little it gets back. Most of what he said was pure nonsense, as fellow Brit John Oliver pointed out, but nothing like a big red bus to capture people's attention.
The odd part is Boris dodged the press today for the most part, as did his partner in crime, Nigel Farage. It seems they were as shocked as the rest of the world that they won. There seems to be no real plan in place as to what to do next and Boris even went so far as to offer his support of David Cameron, happy to see him take the fall for this decision.
After early selloffs on the pound and stock markets, things seem to have leveled off a little. Still, this vote cost Britain a ton of money. At a minimum, it will take two years for Britain to fully extradite itself from the EU only to have to renegotiate new trade deals that will still have the same nefarious regulations attached to them.
It looks like the EU will survive this Brexit, much to the chagrin of Sarah Palin, who believes it is a UN "mini-me." It's the UK that has to worry about holding itself together. Meanwhile, the Donald enjoys another round of golf.