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Brexit exposed the Westminster elite Fifty years after entering the EC, Britain has become a global irrelevance

Our potential was not unleashed. Credit: Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty

Our potential was not unleashed. Credit: Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty


December 31, 2022   6 mins

On New Year’s Day, this year a liminal moment between a bad 2022 and what is sure to be a worse 2023, how are we to mark the 50th anniversary of Britain’s ill-starred entry into the European Community? Perhaps some insight can be gleaned from the contemporary historiography of the British state itself. For the great historian J.G.A. Pocock, writing at the time of Britain’s entry to the EC, the “obvious absurdity” of the momentous decision that “neither empire nor commonwealth ever meant much in their consciousness, and that they were at heart Europeans all the time” came as a great psychic shock.

A New Zealander, previously secure in his oceanic British identity, Pocock worked through the implications of the moment in his 1973 lecture, “British History: a Plea for a New Subject”, composed, he would later note, immediately “after the great divorce which occurred when you told us that you were now Europeans, which we, as New Zealanders, were not”. It was a conceptual reordering which meant “you cared as little for our past as for our future”.

Yet, Pocock observed, the implications for Britain were just as great as for the home archipelago’s imperial cast-offs. For after all: “if it has been psychologically possible for them to annihilate the idea of the Commonwealth
it is not altogether beyond the bounds of possibility that ‘United Kingdom’ and even ‘Britain’ may some day become similarly inconvenient and be annihilated, or annihilate themselves, in their turn.”

Without a grand overseas project with which to occupy itself, the centre itself, focused on Westminster, may not hold. Future historians may find themselves writing of “a ‘Unionist’ or even a ‘British’ period in the history of the peoples inhabiting the Atlantic Archipelago, and locating it between a date in the 13th, the 17th or the 19th centuries and a date in the 20th or the 21st.”

What evidence for this prediction can we find, a half-century later, in the collapsing British state of 2023? It is self-evident that the act of leaving the EU was an act of self-definition, a great inward turn to force the questions of what Britain is and what it should be back to the heart of national politics. Support for Brexit was closely aligned in the minds of its voters with a return to an economy of domestic industrial production, and to a drastic reduction in the historically unprecedented levels of inward migration to which the British political class had committed itself.

Yet the Brexit we got was another Brexit entirely: a vision of Britain as a global trading power entirely unmoored from the realities of its position, a product of the fact that our politicians, for all that effective governance of the UK remains beyond them, find our islands too small a stage for their talents. Johnson, Truss, and Sunak are each in their own ways exemplars of how the ideology of global Britain has made the British governing class incapable of running a small northwest European archipelago, prisoners of a delusion that Britain must always strive to be world-beating, even as it struggles to maintain parity with its closest neighbours.

For the Welsh political philosopher and former Labour MP David Marquand, writing in 1995 in a collection of essays engaging with Pocock’s grand conceptual reordering of our island story, such global pretensions were baked into Britishness from the start. As he observed, “for most of its history, the identity embodied by the British state was quintessentially global, oceanic, imperial and, by virtue of this, non- or at least extra-European”. The new British state’s justification was the consolidation of the various kingdoms of these islands in a grand imperial project, with the result being a vision of the British state and people which Marquand termed “whig imperialist”. And at its heart, he said, “lay the twin themes of globalism and constitutionalism. The British state was, by definition, a global state; and the British people, by definition, was a global people.”

As Marquand observed, “the Whig imperialist vision of the British state helped to shape the mentality of the entire political class, left as well as right”. Whig imperialist Britain was Britain. “The British state was the child as well as the parent of empire. Its iconography, its operational codes, the instinctive reflexes of its rulers and managers were stamped through and through with the presuppositions of empire.” Even as the empire fell away, its ghosts still haunt Westminster, in inverted form, as a needy internationalism and an aesthetic distaste for the homely and familiar. Unlike our European neighbours, whose revolutions and wars of national independence helped clarify a secure sense of nationhood, Britain’s relentless focus on the periphery left a hollow void at the centre, at least for its rulers. As Marquand, now a convert to Welsh nationalism, observes, “shorn of empire, ‘Britain’ had no meaning”.

This interpretation does much to explain the strange pathologies of the 21st-century Westminster class, and elucidates the strange mystery of why Britain, more or less uniquely in Europe, possesses a markedly anti-national commenting class (intelligentsia is not quite the right word), whose European pretensions, like the continental affectations of a Hyacinth Bucket, are simply those of the provincial petit bourgeois, repelled by the drab simplicities of home. It explains why Britain, for a European country, is uniquely at risk of self-dissolution by global economic forces, and why its governing class’s sense of national identity, as far as can be judged from its citizenship tests, is such thin gruel, entirely indistinguishable from vague internationalist norms of liberal tolerance. It explains the compulsion towards mass immigration, entirely inconsistent with the demands of British voters: for as the empire folded in on itself, sucking the empire’s global children in along with it like a collapsing star, it became easier to remake Britain in the image of the world than to shape the world in a way congenial to British desires.

Such an interpretation also explains the extraordinary ease with which Britain’s governing class has reduced the country to a powerless factotum of America’s global empire, and the degree to which such total self-abnegation of sovereignty is presented and experienced, not as a humiliation fetish but as the natural order of things, and the bedrock of Britain’s security. To maintain its global pretensions, the Westminster class has been forced into a posture of what Perry Anderson termed “hyper-subalternity to the US in an era when America had become the sole super-power”. It explains why our Right-wing populists are enamoured of globalised free markets even as they rail against “globalism”, why our state broadcaster functions as a vector of America’s new ideological fixations, and why our royals as well as our politicians look longingly at the better opportunities to be found in California. It explains, too, why our sole national institution, the NHS, sucks both staff and patients from around the world, finding its merely national mission too paltry for its dignity, and the humanitarian obligations of the British taxpayer too bountiful to be shared only among the British people.

For the British governing class, and its taste-making hangers on, Britain as a small European country is simply too small a stage to bother with. Yet instead of addressing these tensions, surely the underlying cause of the failures of British governance which drove Brexit in the first place, the result of Brexit has only been to heighten them: more immigration, the Indo-Pacific tilt, the endless attempt to summon a Global Britain into being in a post-imperial world. The contradictions between Britain’s world-leading pretensions and shabby material realities are now becoming too sharp for the state to effectively manage. If Brexit has foregrounded one essential fact of British politics it is that the problems facing the country are rooted in its governing class: a class which swooped together with organic solidarity after Brexit to prevent any democratic attempt to redirect its course, and frittered away the country’s economic sovereignty on dreams of global relevance.

As Pocock observed, the Wars of the Three Kingdoms which accelerated the consolidation of the British state in Westminster were the result of England’s governing class attempting to resolve their own political divisions through the incorporation of their neighbours in a greater, shared project. For “the English did not want such a war, but found that they had to fight it with each other; and they hated it so much that they imposed it on Scotland and Ireland in the attempt to resolve it. The imperial sovereignty they imposed on other nations was an effect of the imperial sovereignty they had imposed on themselves.”

Britain’s entry into the EC was itself, likewise, a failed attempt to recapture a greater stage on which Britain could play a global role, and foundered on the same tensions, the inward-looking domesticity of the British electorate rebelling against the outward-facing cosmopolitanism of its governing caste. Always the foil of other nations’ acts of self-definition — a process now continuing, with Scotland, even in the home islands — Britain never saw the need or found the occasion to do so for itself. In the collapse of Britain’s empire, then, the only anti-imperial project that failed was that of liberating Britain from its own rulers.

But is it possible to liberate Britain from Westminster while maintaining the Union? The Union’s collapse would surely only leave us stuck with the same governing elite on a smaller and more claustrophobic scale, just as the cosmopolitan pretensions of the various Celtic nationalisms are, if anything, even more hysterical and absurd than those of the Union as a whole. Yet any attempt at a British Meiji restoration similarly falters on the unavoidable fact that the British governing class has very little interest in the governance of Britain itself — instead it recoils from it, as a distraction from the glittering possibilities of the wider world.

Such an elite makes a shaky foundation for a project of national renewal, yet without a total overhaul of Britain’s governing class, the remaining time in which to advance such a project is rapidly slipping away, before the nation dissolves itself with an affected smirk of enlightened tolerance. The revolt against Brussels then, was always just the opening salvo, on a continental front, of a far more difficult campaign: to become a prosperous European country, Britain must still liberate itself from the self-defeating foibles and global aspirations of the Westminster class.


Aris Roussinos is an UnHerd columnist and a former war reporter.

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Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago

“the British governing class has very little interest in the governance of Britain itself”
I feel like that’s the state of most countries now. Worse still, they’re blocking the way for others who might have a genuine interest and capability to do it. 

Alan Thorpe
Alan Thorpe
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

They are just following instructions from the financial-technical elites.

Robert Eagle
Robert Eagle
1 year ago
Reply to  Alan Thorpe

Whenever I read the word “elite’ these days I assume the words are coming from a conspiracy theorist.

Deb Grant
Deb Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Eagle

There’s always an ‘elite’ because brains, looks and talent aren’t distributed equally. The elite today is more about those attributes rather than aristocracy. That has to be an improvement.

Vici C
Vici C
1 year ago
Reply to  Deb Grant

Not an improvement. Brains are dangerous. Either way all that”talent” is morally worthless when it comes with ever increasing arrogance and a neurotic need for power. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

David Batlle
David Batlle
1 year ago
Reply to  Deb Grant

Mengele had brains, so not sure what point you think you’re making.

Vici C
Vici C
1 year ago
Reply to  Deb Grant

Not an improvement. Brains are dangerous. Either way all that”talent” is morally worthless when it comes with ever increasing arrogance and a neurotic need for power. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

David Batlle
David Batlle
1 year ago
Reply to  Deb Grant

Mengele had brains, so not sure what point you think you’re making.

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Eagle

And that “Globalist” is an anti semitic slur?

David Batlle
David Batlle
1 year ago
Reply to  Mike Michaels

Yes, and the slur is always in quotes, “globalist”, because it’s just a “conspiracy theory”.

David Batlle
David Batlle
1 year ago
Reply to  Mike Michaels

Yes, and the slur is always in quotes, “globalist”, because it’s just a “conspiracy theory”.

Vici C
Vici C
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Eagle

The world is full of sheep and copy cats (we are a social animal). It ends up a case of chinese whispers when words lose their meaning through overuse. Words like elite, woke, Nazi, offence, abuse, problematic, privilege, etc. Which isn’t to say a lot of people don’t still understand the core, original meaning. Banks and techie billionaires do have global power, do have the ultimate say, cannot be unelected. They are elite.

David Batlle
David Batlle
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Eagle

Congratulations, you just invented a new conspiracy theory.

Deb Grant
Deb Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Eagle

There’s always an ‘elite’ because brains, looks and talent aren’t distributed equally. The elite today is more about those attributes rather than aristocracy. That has to be an improvement.

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Eagle

And that “Globalist” is an anti semitic slur?

Vici C
Vici C
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Eagle

The world is full of sheep and copy cats (we are a social animal). It ends up a case of chinese whispers when words lose their meaning through overuse. Words like elite, woke, Nazi, offence, abuse, problematic, privilege, etc. Which isn’t to say a lot of people don’t still understand the core, original meaning. Banks and techie billionaires do have global power, do have the ultimate say, cannot be unelected. They are elite.

David Batlle
David Batlle
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Eagle

Congratulations, you just invented a new conspiracy theory.

Robert Eagle
Robert Eagle
1 year ago
Reply to  Alan Thorpe

Whenever I read the word “elite’ these days I assume the words are coming from a conspiracy theorist.

David Owsley
David Owsley
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

“Worse still, they’re blocking the way for others who might have a genuine interest and capability to do it.”
VERY good point: they’re pulling up the ladder. Currently I doubt 10% of the politicians (total from all parties) are worth keeping.
“How Brexit exposed the Westminster elite…”
Indeed, ‘the enemy’ showed their faces. I mean enemy in a literal sense.
Same is true on a global scale with the rage against Trump; agree with him or not, the ‘Left’s’ rage continues.

Last edited 1 year ago by David Owsley
Deb Grant
Deb Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  David Owsley

No one really good, probably except Rishi Sunak, wants to be a politician- it’s like putting one’s head on the stocks.

Jeanie K
Jeanie K
1 year ago
Reply to  Deb Grant

Sunak is not really good, except perhaps for himself and his wife. Anyone who wants to be a politician is probably not really cut out for it.

Jeanie K
Jeanie K
1 year ago
Reply to  Deb Grant

Sunak is not really good, except perhaps for himself and his wife. Anyone who wants to be a politician is probably not really cut out for it.

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  David Owsley

Well said David , we elect them and pay them to do one thing and they commit treason and do quite the opposite and this is fairly typical of many of today’s politicians , completely self serving and deliberately disobedient .It takes far too long to get rid of them !

Deb Grant
Deb Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  David Owsley

No one really good, probably except Rishi Sunak, wants to be a politician- it’s like putting one’s head on the stocks.

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  David Owsley

Well said David , we elect them and pay them to do one thing and they commit treason and do quite the opposite and this is fairly typical of many of today’s politicians , completely self serving and deliberately disobedient .It takes far too long to get rid of them !

Paul Devlin
Paul Devlin
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

So true. Our politicians in Ireland are just viziers for the EU and vulture funds. Our media is just a Euro-stalinist propaganda ministry. Its a terrible state of affairs

Phineas Bury
Phineas Bury
1 year ago
Reply to  Paul Devlin

And both media and politicians rejoice in decline of UK because it left EU. Anglophobia being the foundation stone of the Irish state now in hands of USA multinationals

Paul Devlin
Paul Devlin
1 year ago
Reply to  Phineas Bury

Irish nationalism was the foundation stone of the state, not ‘anglophobia’ whatever that means

Paul Devlin
Paul Devlin
1 year ago
Reply to  Phineas Bury

Irish nationalism was the foundation stone of the state, not ‘anglophobia’ whatever that means

Phineas Bury
Phineas Bury
1 year ago
Reply to  Paul Devlin

And both media and politicians rejoice in decline of UK because it left EU. Anglophobia being the foundation stone of the Irish state now in hands of USA multinationals

Vici C
Vici C
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Those with a genuine interest and capability are up against it. Cancel culture is a mere whisper of the real thing. If we don’t toe the line we are out in the cold. Short and curlies springs to mind. However if a would be politician can write out a manifesto describing how we can go it alone I would be 100% behind him (O.K. or her).

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Vici C

”if a would be politician can write out a manifesto describing how we can go it alone I would be 100% behind him (O.K. or her).”
Politician, or anyone else?

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Vici C

Take a good look at apartheid -era South Africa.

With an effective population of only about 7 million it made itself the world leader in a number of technologies, eg:

1. Deep level mining – and associated refrigeration

2. Petrochemicals (e.g. Sasol)

3. Uranium enrichment

4. Artillery

and many others. If South Africa could do it – starting pretty much as an agricultural economy – then so can Britain.

Never forget that we indigenous Britons carry within us the same genes as the people who started the Industrial Revolution.

David Fawcett
David Fawcett
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

South Africa in the 60s, 70s and 80s was not encumbered with the Left-wing Luddites that infest our land these days. If we can restart the fracking plants, a British industrial Renaissance is much more possible.

David Fawcett
David Fawcett
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

South Africa in the 60s, 70s and 80s was not encumbered with the Left-wing Luddites that infest our land these days. If we can restart the fracking plants, a British industrial Renaissance is much more possible.

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  Vici C

Yes, the politicians we elect and pay to do our bidding are a teasonous bunch and they work against us , trouble is it takes so long to rid ourselves of them .

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Vici C

”if a would be politician can write out a manifesto describing how we can go it alone I would be 100% behind him (O.K. or her).”
Politician, or anyone else?

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Vici C

Take a good look at apartheid -era South Africa.

With an effective population of only about 7 million it made itself the world leader in a number of technologies, eg:

1. Deep level mining – and associated refrigeration

2. Petrochemicals (e.g. Sasol)

3. Uranium enrichment

4. Artillery

and many others. If South Africa could do it – starting pretty much as an agricultural economy – then so can Britain.

Never forget that we indigenous Britons carry within us the same genes as the people who started the Industrial Revolution.

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  Vici C

Yes, the politicians we elect and pay to do our bidding are a teasonous bunch and they work against us , trouble is it takes so long to rid ourselves of them .

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Over the past forty years the government has become more and more centralised so that now it’s in the hands of no more than fifty people. They control the media, the Civil Service and both political parties. They all know each other because they were together at Oxford. What passes for elections is a pantomime put on to persuade the rest of us that there is still something democratic about this. There isn’t. We need both PR and massive devolution. Brexit was just the first step.

Martin Terrell
Martin Terrell
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

Brexit may have been the only step!

Jeanie K
Jeanie K
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

I’m all for PR. You do mean a Pitchfork Revolution don’t you?

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeanie K

Ideally , yes. But failing that I’ll settle for proportional representation and a right of recall.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeanie K

Ideally , yes. But failing that I’ll settle for proportional representation and a right of recall.

Martin Terrell
Martin Terrell
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

Brexit may have been the only step!

Jeanie K
Jeanie K
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

I’m all for PR. You do mean a Pitchfork Revolution don’t you?

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

They are anti Brexit and we elect and pay for them to do our bidding but they are working against us . They are our servants but behave like they are the masters and it must not go on .

Alan Thorpe
Alan Thorpe
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

They are just following instructions from the financial-technical elites.

David Owsley
David Owsley
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

“Worse still, they’re blocking the way for others who might have a genuine interest and capability to do it.”
VERY good point: they’re pulling up the ladder. Currently I doubt 10% of the politicians (total from all parties) are worth keeping.
“How Brexit exposed the Westminster elite…”
Indeed, ‘the enemy’ showed their faces. I mean enemy in a literal sense.
Same is true on a global scale with the rage against Trump; agree with him or not, the ‘Left’s’ rage continues.

Last edited 1 year ago by David Owsley
Paul Devlin
Paul Devlin
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

So true. Our politicians in Ireland are just viziers for the EU and vulture funds. Our media is just a Euro-stalinist propaganda ministry. Its a terrible state of affairs

Vici C
Vici C
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Those with a genuine interest and capability are up against it. Cancel culture is a mere whisper of the real thing. If we don’t toe the line we are out in the cold. Short and curlies springs to mind. However if a would be politician can write out a manifesto describing how we can go it alone I would be 100% behind him (O.K. or her).

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Over the past forty years the government has become more and more centralised so that now it’s in the hands of no more than fifty people. They control the media, the Civil Service and both political parties. They all know each other because they were together at Oxford. What passes for elections is a pantomime put on to persuade the rest of us that there is still something democratic about this. There isn’t. We need both PR and massive devolution. Brexit was just the first step.

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

They are anti Brexit and we elect and pay for them to do our bidding but they are working against us . They are our servants but behave like they are the masters and it must not go on .

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago

“the British governing class has very little interest in the governance of Britain itself”
I feel like that’s the state of most countries now. Worse still, they’re blocking the way for others who might have a genuine interest and capability to do it. 

Jim Jam
Jim Jam
1 year ago

Seems pretty much on the money, unfortunately.

When it becomes inconceivable that any member of the ruling class would dare or have the slightest inclination to utter the words “Britain first” then what follows can only be terminal decline.

Its not just that our leaders and commenting class have lost faith in Britain – seeing, as they have, that our only chance for success relies on outsourcing large sections of governance to technocrats in Brussels or otherwise merging into a globalist nothing-state – but it seems that they consider the entire concept of self determination & independence distasteful; problematic and xenophobic even.

Needless to say, when it has become a requirement for all members of the ‘intelligentsia’ to attend what has become a sprawling leftist indoctrination centre for years on end, what we have ended up with should come as no suprise whatsoever.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jim Jam
Andrew Buckley
Andrew Buckley
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

True Jim Jam – but outsourcing all the difficult decisions and hard work means that people can maintain their life positions without worrying about actually doing the hard lifting.

Rhys Jaggar
Rhys Jaggar
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

I must say I would trade the ‘nothing states of Norway and Switzerland’ for the UK pretty darn quick. What matters in a nation is the general prosperity and happiness, not the irrelevant super-egos of overgrown children who like to call themselves politicians.

Jim Jam
Jim Jam
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

I certainly wouldn’t describe Norway as a nothing-state. Though – much like much of Europe and the UK – if progressivism and the ‘citizens of nowhere’ mentality continues unopposed it will soon become one. It won’t have escaped your notice that the Norwegian (and Swedish, Italian, Polish, Danish etc) citizenry are aware of this fact – that without a strong, autonomous nation state, to be ‘Norwegian’ means next to nothing. Any Tom d**k or Harry from anywhere in the world is on an equal footing, which means the steady dilution of identity, comfort, security and happiness. This is precisely the reason support for right leaning parties is on the steady ascendancy there and elsewhere. Its a tragedy there is not a credible rightwing profelactic here in the UK.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jim Jam
Phil Rees
Phil Rees
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

I find it heartening that at least one person has understood the article and the situation we are now in. If only we were able to become the small off-shore island country and get on with the business of governing ourselves for the benefit of our people. But the article makes clear why this can never be unless there is a complete revolution; but there won’t be.

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

Yes we haven’t got a conservative party any longer but we have a party to replace them led by Richard Tice , REFORM !

Phil Rees
Phil Rees
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

I find it heartening that at least one person has understood the article and the situation we are now in. If only we were able to become the small off-shore island country and get on with the business of governing ourselves for the benefit of our people. But the article makes clear why this can never be unless there is a complete revolution; but there won’t be.

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

Yes we haven’t got a conservative party any longer but we have a party to replace them led by Richard Tice , REFORM !

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

Well, Switzerland, anyway.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

Yes indeed, I second that.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

Yes indeed, I second that.

mike otter
mike otter
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

In some ways yes BUT they are both highly conservative societies with an almost iron rule of law. The traditional British individualism that you see with the “rules don’t apply to me” politicos and the yob culture couldn’t exist there. Then neither could the inventors and entrepreneurs that UK still produces, albeit now they are often sold out to globalists. The solution to that problem is IMO a regulatory-legal issue.

Last edited 1 year ago by mike otter
L Walker
L Walker
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

I have really fond memories of two Norwegian women I met in 1970. So I’m fond of Norway. Switzerland, not as much. I live in the ex colonies in Florida. I also have VERY fond memories of a Canadian girl.

Roger Sandilands
Roger Sandilands
1 year ago
Reply to  L Walker

so what??

Roger Sandilands
Roger Sandilands
1 year ago
Reply to  L Walker

so what??

Roger Sandilands
Roger Sandilands
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

superficial cynicism…

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

Yes we have had any good ethos squashed by people we pay to work for us and to do as they are told but who arrogantly work against us .

Jim Jam
Jim Jam
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

I certainly wouldn’t describe Norway as a nothing-state. Though – much like much of Europe and the UK – if progressivism and the ‘citizens of nowhere’ mentality continues unopposed it will soon become one. It won’t have escaped your notice that the Norwegian (and Swedish, Italian, Polish, Danish etc) citizenry are aware of this fact – that without a strong, autonomous nation state, to be ‘Norwegian’ means next to nothing. Any Tom d**k or Harry from anywhere in the world is on an equal footing, which means the steady dilution of identity, comfort, security and happiness. This is precisely the reason support for right leaning parties is on the steady ascendancy there and elsewhere. Its a tragedy there is not a credible rightwing profelactic here in the UK.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jim Jam
Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

Well, Switzerland, anyway.

mike otter
mike otter
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

In some ways yes BUT they are both highly conservative societies with an almost iron rule of law. The traditional British individualism that you see with the “rules don’t apply to me” politicos and the yob culture couldn’t exist there. Then neither could the inventors and entrepreneurs that UK still produces, albeit now they are often sold out to globalists. The solution to that problem is IMO a regulatory-legal issue.

Last edited 1 year ago by mike otter
L Walker
L Walker
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

I have really fond memories of two Norwegian women I met in 1970. So I’m fond of Norway. Switzerland, not as much. I live in the ex colonies in Florida. I also have VERY fond memories of a Canadian girl.

Roger Sandilands
Roger Sandilands
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

superficial cynicism…

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

Yes we have had any good ethos squashed by people we pay to work for us and to do as they are told but who arrogantly work against us .

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

Lost faith ? NO they will just not do as they are told and there is a big difference .

Andrew Buckley
Andrew Buckley
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

True Jim Jam – but outsourcing all the difficult decisions and hard work means that people can maintain their life positions without worrying about actually doing the hard lifting.

Rhys Jaggar
Rhys Jaggar
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

I must say I would trade the ‘nothing states of Norway and Switzerland’ for the UK pretty darn quick. What matters in a nation is the general prosperity and happiness, not the irrelevant super-egos of overgrown children who like to call themselves politicians.

paul castle
paul castle
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

Lost faith ? NO they will just not do as they are told and there is a big difference .

Jim Jam
Jim Jam
1 year ago

Seems pretty much on the money, unfortunately.

When it becomes inconceivable that any member of the ruling class would dare or have the slightest inclination to utter the words “Britain first” then what follows can only be terminal decline.

Its not just that our leaders and commenting class have lost faith in Britain – seeing, as they have, that our only chance for success relies on outsourcing large sections of governance to technocrats in Brussels or otherwise merging into a globalist nothing-state – but it seems that they consider the entire concept of self determination & independence distasteful; problematic and xenophobic even.

Needless to say, when it has become a requirement for all members of the ‘intelligentsia’ to attend what has become a sprawling leftist indoctrination centre for years on end, what we have ended up with should come as no suprise whatsoever.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jim Jam
Kate Heusser
Kate Heusser
1 year ago

After 50 years of divesting itself of any real power, shovelling ever-greater chunks of responsibility through the Channel Tunnel to Brussels, Westminster has been handed the task of actually governing a country again. Our own country. And, from top to bottom, Westminster is trying to dodge the job, for which it knows itself to be now totally unqualified.
The distractions of a pandemic and a global energy crisis have obscured the fact for a while, but the truth is that, if we want a competent government for Britain (a fortiori for its constituent countries) we need to advertise the post. Because there’s little sign that the current crop in Parliament or the Civil Service is qualified to do it.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

That’s only part if the story. They are nothing loth to simply stroll away whistling, provided only that their privileges and sinecures are preserved. That’s the problem; they were coming to the uncomfortable realisation that they are simply not good enough to make it in the USA and excluded from the inner elites of Europe.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

I quite agree. Very well put.

Eleanor Barlow
Eleanor Barlow
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

The reason I voted Remain in the 2016 referendum is not because I hold any sentimental views about the EU, but because I didn’t trust any of the current generation of politicians to be able to successfully deliver a project as massive and complex as Brexit. So it seemed to me less disruptive to stay put. It now seems that my scepticism about the abilities of our politicians was not misplaced.

Charles Gordon
Charles Gordon
1 year ago
Reply to  Eleanor Barlow

Unfortunately, I’m utterly unconvinced that any EU politicians/administrators are any mor competent than our own sorry crop, and they’re almost certainly more corrupt into the bargain

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Eleanor Barlow

That seems not to make sense. You either think the country is better in the EU or out, but you surely wouldn’t make the wrong choice out of a fear the right choice might be executed badly?

Tim C Taylor
Tim C Taylor
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

I’m like Eleanor on this, and we’re far from alone. I could see many positive arguments for Brexit, but had no confidence in our ruling class to implement it competently so we could realise the benefits. Nothing has changed that view.

Jeanie K
Jeanie K
1 year ago
Reply to  Tim C Taylor

In less than 2 years you can vote to change our current incompetents. When are you going to vote for the leaders/commissioners (eg Von der Leyon) etc. of the EU?

Last edited 1 year ago by Jeanie K
John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Tim C Taylor

It is certainly true that we have not yet gained substantial benefits from leaving, but that is almost completely the result of an Establishment refusal to take the opportunities available.

There is also, of course, the counterfactual position: you cannot compare the UK of 2023 to the UK of 2016 prior to the referendum, because EU membership involves the ongoing surrender of power to Brussels. The status quo is not an option. So the comparison has to be with the UK that we’d have by 2023 if we’d voted to Remain, after 7 years of probably-accelerated integration.

This can only ever be speculation of course, but it is pretty hard to avoid the prospect that we would now be harnessed into a European defence arrangement of some sort that would be the Single European Army with only the name changed, and prominent Europhiles would now by walking around with their pants permanently on fire because they’re trying to get us to believe that joining the Euro will make us all richer.

You are right to be sceptical of the ability of our political class to do anything right, but the problem is that this applies even more so if we were in the EU and had those same people responsible for protecting what’s left of our democratic rights. It would be a worse situation than now no matter which way you cut it.

Jeanie K
Jeanie K
1 year ago
Reply to  Tim C Taylor

In less than 2 years you can vote to change our current incompetents. When are you going to vote for the leaders/commissioners (eg Von der Leyon) etc. of the EU?

Last edited 1 year ago by Jeanie K
John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Tim C Taylor

It is certainly true that we have not yet gained substantial benefits from leaving, but that is almost completely the result of an Establishment refusal to take the opportunities available.

There is also, of course, the counterfactual position: you cannot compare the UK of 2023 to the UK of 2016 prior to the referendum, because EU membership involves the ongoing surrender of power to Brussels. The status quo is not an option. So the comparison has to be with the UK that we’d have by 2023 if we’d voted to Remain, after 7 years of probably-accelerated integration.

This can only ever be speculation of course, but it is pretty hard to avoid the prospect that we would now be harnessed into a European defence arrangement of some sort that would be the Single European Army with only the name changed, and prominent Europhiles would now by walking around with their pants permanently on fire because they’re trying to get us to believe that joining the Euro will make us all richer.

You are right to be sceptical of the ability of our political class to do anything right, but the problem is that this applies even more so if we were in the EU and had those same people responsible for protecting what’s left of our democratic rights. It would be a worse situation than now no matter which way you cut it.

Tim C Taylor
Tim C Taylor
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

I’m like Eleanor on this, and we’re far from alone. I could see many positive arguments for Brexit, but had no confidence in our ruling class to implement it competently so we could realise the benefits. Nothing has changed that view.

Paul Curtin
Paul Curtin
1 year ago
Reply to  Eleanor Barlow

Hmmmm. Was it 1.6 million euros in a suitcase of a EU vice president or 1.7? I can’t remember. Corruption on this scale neatly sidelined by the pro-EU press. It makes cash for questions look like amateur night

Charles Gordon
Charles Gordon
1 year ago
Reply to  Eleanor Barlow

Unfortunately, I’m utterly unconvinced that any EU politicians/administrators are any mor competent than our own sorry crop, and they’re almost certainly more corrupt into the bargain

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Eleanor Barlow

That seems not to make sense. You either think the country is better in the EU or out, but you surely wouldn’t make the wrong choice out of a fear the right choice might be executed badly?

Paul Curtin
Paul Curtin
1 year ago
Reply to  Eleanor Barlow

Hmmmm. Was it 1.6 million euros in a suitcase of a EU vice president or 1.7? I can’t remember. Corruption on this scale neatly sidelined by the pro-EU press. It makes cash for questions look like amateur night

Patrick Heren
Patrick Heren
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

I remember 30 years ago a senior civil servant friend who had just been posted to some Euro-quango remarking: “Well, after all, one doesn’t want to spend all one’s time in local government.”

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

That’s only part if the story. They are nothing loth to simply stroll away whistling, provided only that their privileges and sinecures are preserved. That’s the problem; they were coming to the uncomfortable realisation that they are simply not good enough to make it in the USA and excluded from the inner elites of Europe.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

I quite agree. Very well put.

Eleanor Barlow
Eleanor Barlow
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

The reason I voted Remain in the 2016 referendum is not because I hold any sentimental views about the EU, but because I didn’t trust any of the current generation of politicians to be able to successfully deliver a project as massive and complex as Brexit. So it seemed to me less disruptive to stay put. It now seems that my scepticism about the abilities of our politicians was not misplaced.

Patrick Heren
Patrick Heren
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

I remember 30 years ago a senior civil servant friend who had just been posted to some Euro-quango remarking: “Well, after all, one doesn’t want to spend all one’s time in local government.”

Kate Heusser
Kate Heusser
1 year ago

After 50 years of divesting itself of any real power, shovelling ever-greater chunks of responsibility through the Channel Tunnel to Brussels, Westminster has been handed the task of actually governing a country again. Our own country. And, from top to bottom, Westminster is trying to dodge the job, for which it knows itself to be now totally unqualified.
The distractions of a pandemic and a global energy crisis have obscured the fact for a while, but the truth is that, if we want a competent government for Britain (a fortiori for its constituent countries) we need to advertise the post. Because there’s little sign that the current crop in Parliament or the Civil Service is qualified to do it.

Regan Best
Regan Best
1 year ago

“Look longingly at the better opportunities to be found in California”? LMAO. People and businesses are leaving CA for states like TX.

nigel roberts
nigel roberts
1 year ago
Reply to  Regan Best

But the author’s comment is correct in the sense that these people have bought into the mystique of California, which is in fact bow-locks — as the reality that you cite amply illustrates.

L Walker
L Walker
1 year ago
Reply to  nigel roberts

Yeah, California will be disappointing for sure.

L Walker
L Walker
1 year ago
Reply to  nigel roberts

Yeah, California will be disappointing for sure.

Lesley van Reenen
Lesley van Reenen
1 year ago
Reply to  Regan Best

Yes, California is a hot mess and for some years now big cities in Cali (and the Pacific NW) have looked third world.

Jonathan Nash
Jonathan Nash
1 year ago

I saw some footage ofastreet in San Francisco on YouTube yesterday: covered in drug paraphernalia (including needles), tents, random clothing and insensate bodies who may or may not have been breathing. Shocking.

Bo Harrison
Bo Harrison
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

That’s what passes for “compassion” in the Bay Area and other left coast cities unfortunately; Seattle and San Francisco now have the highest property crime rates in the entire country.

Dr. G Marzanna
Dr. G Marzanna
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

It’s not all like that (basically just the Tenderloin area) but you’ll find this in all the west coast cities in the US and pretty much every city in Canada. Fentanyl and mental illness.

Bo Harrison
Bo Harrison
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

That’s what passes for “compassion” in the Bay Area and other left coast cities unfortunately; Seattle and San Francisco now have the highest property crime rates in the entire country.

Dr. G Marzanna
Dr. G Marzanna
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

It’s not all like that (basically just the Tenderloin area) but you’ll find this in all the west coast cities in the US and pretty much every city in Canada. Fentanyl and mental illness.

Jonathan Nash
Jonathan Nash
1 year ago

I saw some footage ofastreet in San Francisco on YouTube yesterday: covered in drug paraphernalia (including needles), tents, random clothing and insensate bodies who may or may not have been breathing. Shocking.

Bo Harrison
Bo Harrison
1 year ago
Reply to  Regan Best

I think that was a swipe at erstwhile royals?

L Walker
L Walker
1 year ago
Reply to  Bo Harrison

That’s how I took it, but the comments are right on.

JP Martin
JP Martin
1 year ago
Reply to  Bo Harrison

Or Clegg and Sunak, yes.

L Walker
L Walker
1 year ago
Reply to  Bo Harrison

That’s how I took it, but the comments are right on.

JP Martin
JP Martin
1 year ago
Reply to  Bo Harrison

Or Clegg and Sunak, yes.

mike otter
mike otter
1 year ago
Reply to  Regan Best

Perhaps they are looking from the perspective of “soon to be homeless” – we can but hope eh?.

Last edited 1 year ago by mike otter
nigel roberts
nigel roberts
1 year ago
Reply to  Regan Best

But the author’s comment is correct in the sense that these people have bought into the mystique of California, which is in fact bow-locks — as the reality that you cite amply illustrates.

Lesley van Reenen
Lesley van Reenen
1 year ago
Reply to  Regan Best

Yes, California is a hot mess and for some years now big cities in Cali (and the Pacific NW) have looked third world.

Bo Harrison
Bo Harrison
1 year ago
Reply to  Regan Best

I think that was a swipe at erstwhile royals?

mike otter
mike otter
1 year ago
Reply to  Regan Best

Perhaps they are looking from the perspective of “soon to be homeless” – we can but hope eh?.

Last edited 1 year ago by mike otter
Regan Best
Regan Best
1 year ago

“Look longingly at the better opportunities to be found in California”? LMAO. People and businesses are leaving CA for states like TX.

Andy Iddon
Andy Iddon
1 year ago

The mass immigration has made all of this a moot point, unfortunately. The Nation is already abolished, thie article is nostalgia, however valid its story – a history lesson.

Last edited 1 year ago by Andy Iddon
Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy Iddon

Immigrants can be ferociously patriotic – if they are led by patriots, and if what the new homeland gives them is success and pride. Like USA, the elites teach the immigrants that they are in a nation of shameful oppressors……That is the most heinous thing the UK and USA are doing to their selves, and the most destructive. All, immigrant and native, lose.

Rhys Jaggar
Rhys Jaggar
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

They can also be pretty racist – over the past 50 years, you often find the racist ones to be the ones who came 20 years ago and they now blame the problems of the UK onto ‘the immigrants’!!
It’s a fine example of showing that those of darker skin colours are capable of irrational discrimination against other societal groupings.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

You are ignoring the possibility that they may have a point

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  Rhys Jaggar

You are ignoring the possibility that they may have a point

Andy Iddon
Andy Iddon
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

Firstly, the USA and UK are massively different, with the UK having been a homogenous nation state and cohesive culture for a millenium, and yes agreed, negative messaging about the host, but the real issues are identity for the individuals involved. Heritage is real, pledgi g allegiance to the flag is a construct. There was no requirement to allow immigration.

Last edited 1 year ago by Andy Iddon
mike otter
mike otter
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy Iddon

I wonder if the lefty anti-British and ABB (Anyone but Branson Britain) attitudes are simply youthful rebellion or resentement and envy at a society that doesn’t reward their virtue signals. So the issue is a psychological one rather than political. Similar to the Hippies supporting the Viet Cong in USA and the toy-town Trots in Thatcher era supporting Brezhnev, the IRA or PLO?

mike otter
mike otter
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy Iddon

I wonder if the lefty anti-British and ABB (Anyone but Branson Britain) attitudes are simply youthful rebellion or resentement and envy at a society that doesn’t reward their virtue signals. So the issue is a psychological one rather than political. Similar to the Hippies supporting the Viet Cong in USA and the toy-town Trots in Thatcher era supporting Brezhnev, the IRA or PLO?

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

They ARE patriotic; they will lay down their lives for the Umma, in the expectation of their pick of the Virgins of Rotherham et .

mike otter
mike otter
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

Tempting to be flippant and ask: “Ever been to Rotherham?” Seriously i know a lot of 60s/70s immigrants from Pakistan and their kids/grandkids.All complain they came 5000 miles to get away from stone age religious practices and now the nutcases are following them! They are of course aware the tribal fruitloops are being brought in by leftists, and also aware that these imports simply do not have the skills to function in our economy. Sadly the few educated imports from places like Lahore & Port Qasim, often ex military, oil or merchant marine workers, are lumped in with and therefore discriminated against along with the herdsmen and (poppy) share croppers.

odd taff
odd taff
1 year ago
Reply to  mike otter

My Dad came here in 1948 as a seventeen year old. I innocently asked him when I was a teenager why he had no Indian friends he more or less echoed your phrase “ I came here to get away from those nutters”.

odd taff
odd taff
1 year ago
Reply to  mike otter

My Dad came here in 1948 as a seventeen year old. I innocently asked him when I was a teenager why he had no Indian friends he more or less echoed your phrase “ I came here to get away from those nutters”.

mike otter
mike otter
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

Tempting to be flippant and ask: “Ever been to Rotherham?” Seriously i know a lot of 60s/70s immigrants from Pakistan and their kids/grandkids.All complain they came 5000 miles to get away from stone age religious practices and now the nutcases are following them! They are of course aware the tribal fruitloops are being brought in by leftists, and also aware that these imports simply do not have the skills to function in our economy. Sadly the few educated imports from places like Lahore & Port Qasim, often ex military, oil or merchant marine workers, are lumped in with and therefore discriminated against along with the herdsmen and (poppy) share croppers.

Dr. G Marzanna
Dr. G Marzanna
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

Yes I’m in Canada at the moment and it’s expected that everyone constantly grovel and self flagellate for being “settlers”. If you’re white you get to use the even more contemptuous term “white settler.”
People love it, lap it up like coprophiles clinging to the toilet bowl.
None of this actually helps the tiny % of the population who are indigenous.

Rhys Jaggar
Rhys Jaggar
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

They can also be pretty racist – over the past 50 years, you often find the racist ones to be the ones who came 20 years ago and they now blame the problems of the UK onto ‘the immigrants’!!
It’s a fine example of showing that those of darker skin colours are capable of irrational discrimination against other societal groupings.

Andy Iddon
Andy Iddon
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

Firstly, the USA and UK are massively different, with the UK having been a homogenous nation state and cohesive culture for a millenium, and yes agreed, negative messaging about the host, but the real issues are identity for the individuals involved. Heritage is real, pledgi g allegiance to the flag is a construct. There was no requirement to allow immigration.

Last edited 1 year ago by Andy Iddon
ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

They ARE patriotic; they will lay down their lives for the Umma, in the expectation of their pick of the Virgins of Rotherham et .

Dr. G Marzanna
Dr. G Marzanna
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

Yes I’m in Canada at the moment and it’s expected that everyone constantly grovel and self flagellate for being “settlers”. If you’re white you get to use the even more contemptuous term “white settler.”
People love it, lap it up like coprophiles clinging to the toilet bowl.
None of this actually helps the tiny % of the population who are indigenous.

Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy Iddon

I discovered a few years ago, to even mention the term ‘indigenous Brit’ was wrong-speak. I was quickly reprimanded and instructed there was no such thing as an indigenous Brit. It was made clear the topic is verboten. I later learnt the belief is commonplace. I do wonder who decided this was the case and when it was decided. Are we the only nation on earth without an indigenous population or are there others? Why is a discussion of the suggestion considered so dangerous?

Last edited 1 year ago by Aphrodite Rises
L Walker
L Walker
1 year ago

The USA.

andrew.iddon
andrew.iddon
1 year ago

Agreed, definitely seen it and the immediate inference it’s racist and hateful to be british – but they’re pursuing a coercive grab of another’s birthright ( even if it is given away most probably for the purposes of the upper class winning their disgusting class war). don’t expect honesty from any of those folk, they don’t care for your best interests – its about diminishing the threat posed by democracy to the excessive wealth of the oligocracy and just plain appropriation of Britain by the migrant masses.

Last edited 1 year ago by andrew.iddon
ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

Oh, that’s easy. It dates from the post-WW2 period, when the fabric of Empire was rapidly disintegrating and the self-described “intelligentsia” were buying into the principles of “open borders” and “the Great Replacement”.

If the British, and particularly the English were recognised as an “indigenous people” then the “Great Replacement” would be genocide

Since this cannot be, since the intrinsic virtue of the Great Replacement cannot be questioned, there CANNOT BE any such thing as the “indigenous English people” – and this thinking remains in force to this day

Last edited 1 year ago by ben arnulfssen
Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

I guess an indigenous population is generally recognised to have the right to object to having their land controlled and governed by the non-indigenous. If there are no indigenous Brits then the white working class who object to mass immigration and rule by the EU are just a bunch of ignorant racists, and encouraging everyone to go to university regardless of academic ability for indoctrination ensures stability. Those who are indoctrinated at the top universities can then obtain jobs in which their role is to sneer at and denigrate non-believers. Think MSM in general and Cathy Newman in particular.

Last edited 1 year ago by Aphrodite Rises
Dr. G Marzanna
Dr. G Marzanna
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

British history demonstrates how much the upper classes despise the people.

Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

I guess an indigenous population is generally recognised to have the right to object to having their land controlled and governed by the non-indigenous. If there are no indigenous Brits then the white working class who object to mass immigration and rule by the EU are just a bunch of ignorant racists, and encouraging everyone to go to university regardless of academic ability for indoctrination ensures stability. Those who are indoctrinated at the top universities can then obtain jobs in which their role is to sneer at and denigrate non-believers. Think MSM in general and Cathy Newman in particular.

Last edited 1 year ago by Aphrodite Rises
Dr. G Marzanna
Dr. G Marzanna
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

British history demonstrates how much the upper classes despise the people.

Dr. G Marzanna
Dr. G Marzanna
1 year ago

Yes, incredible. Yet aside from the monarchy, the evidence for indigenous Britons is everywhere

Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
1 year ago
Reply to  Dr. G Marzanna

I grew up in the country, an area which was very cut off. The furthest people travelled was about 11 miles to the seaside in the summer for a day out and 7 miles to a nearby town, but mostly they stayed close to home. It was very Cider with Rosie and Thomas Hardy. There was no industry. There was the docks and the farms. Men (and women) worked in the fields. Mothers went apple picking taking pre-school children with them. I loved exploring the orchards, especially early on foggy mornings, and looking for mushrooms. Babies were left in prams outside the shops whilst mothers went inside. There was no crime, just a woman who stole bicycles, she would ride them and then leave them somewhere else. It was known she wasn’t quite ‘all there’. If a bicycle went missing people just looked until it was found. The police told young people off. Children played in the streets. Mothers kept an eye on other mothers’ children. When my father bought my mother a bicycle, everyone in the road came out to watch her ride it. Pretty much everyone went to church. The church organised outings: A yearly trip to the seaside with a cream tea in a posh hotel and spending money for the funfair, a pilgrimage. There was a sense life had always been like this with a few interruptions, the war for one, and would continue to be so. The train lines were electrified and a major road built placing it within the commuter belt for the city. Within thirty or forty years the past had gone forever. A place most of the country never knew existed is now frequently mentioned by the M SM.

Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
1 year ago
Reply to  Dr. G Marzanna

I grew up in the country, an area which was very cut off. The furthest people travelled was about 11 miles to the seaside in the summer for a day out and 7 miles to a nearby town, but mostly they stayed close to home. It was very Cider with Rosie and Thomas Hardy. There was no industry. There was the docks and the farms. Men (and women) worked in the fields. Mothers went apple picking taking pre-school children with them. I loved exploring the orchards, especially early on foggy mornings, and looking for mushrooms. Babies were left in prams outside the shops whilst mothers went inside. There was no crime, just a woman who stole bicycles, she would ride them and then leave them somewhere else. It was known she wasn’t quite ‘all there’. If a bicycle went missing people just looked until it was found. The police told young people off. Children played in the streets. Mothers kept an eye on other mothers’ children. When my father bought my mother a bicycle, everyone in the road came out to watch her ride it. Pretty much everyone went to church. The church organised outings: A yearly trip to the seaside with a cream tea in a posh hotel and spending money for the funfair, a pilgrimage. There was a sense life had always been like this with a few interruptions, the war for one, and would continue to be so. The train lines were electrified and a major road built placing it within the commuter belt for the city. Within thirty or forty years the past had gone forever. A place most of the country never knew existed is now frequently mentioned by the M SM.

L Walker
L Walker
1 year ago

The USA.

andrew.iddon
andrew.iddon
1 year ago

Agreed, definitely seen it and the immediate inference it’s racist and hateful to be british – but they’re pursuing a coercive grab of another’s birthright ( even if it is given away most probably for the purposes of the upper class winning their disgusting class war). don’t expect honesty from any of those folk, they don’t care for your best interests – its about diminishing the threat posed by democracy to the excessive wealth of the oligocracy and just plain appropriation of Britain by the migrant masses.

Last edited 1 year ago by andrew.iddon
ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

Oh, that’s easy. It dates from the post-WW2 period, when the fabric of Empire was rapidly disintegrating and the self-described “intelligentsia” were buying into the principles of “open borders” and “the Great Replacement”.

If the British, and particularly the English were recognised as an “indigenous people” then the “Great Replacement” would be genocide

Since this cannot be, since the intrinsic virtue of the Great Replacement cannot be questioned, there CANNOT BE any such thing as the “indigenous English people” – and this thinking remains in force to this day

Last edited 1 year ago by ben arnulfssen
Dr. G Marzanna
Dr. G Marzanna
1 year ago

Yes, incredible. Yet aside from the monarchy, the evidence for indigenous Britons is everywhere

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy Iddon

Immigrants can be ferociously patriotic – if they are led by patriots, and if what the new homeland gives them is success and pride. Like USA, the elites teach the immigrants that they are in a nation of shameful oppressors……That is the most heinous thing the UK and USA are doing to their selves, and the most destructive. All, immigrant and native, lose.

Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy Iddon

I discovered a few years ago, to even mention the term ‘indigenous Brit’ was wrong-speak. I was quickly reprimanded and instructed there was no such thing as an indigenous Brit. It was made clear the topic is verboten. I later learnt the belief is commonplace. I do wonder who decided this was the case and when it was decided. Are we the only nation on earth without an indigenous population or are there others? Why is a discussion of the suggestion considered so dangerous?

Last edited 1 year ago by Aphrodite Rises
Andy Iddon
Andy Iddon
1 year ago

The mass immigration has made all of this a moot point, unfortunately. The Nation is already abolished, thie article is nostalgia, however valid its story – a history lesson.

Last edited 1 year ago by Andy Iddon
Andrew Wise
Andrew Wise
1 year ago

The author’s obfuscation with flowery and obtuse language, not to mention invective renders the article unreadable.
I’m quite prepared to believe our political leaders are failing us – but I don’t buy what I understood of the rest of the article
And would those who are pro the EU please desist from telling me why I voted to leave – on that point I can say the author is categorically wrong.

Peter Gardner
Peter Gardner
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

It’s New Year’s Eve. I thought it was just me and the Champagne. One read though is enough. It is gobbledy gook. Better things to do and enjoy!

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

“They would not listen, they did not know how. Perhaps they’ll listen now” (Don McLean).
They’re still not listening (about why people voted for Brexit). I guess they just don’t know how. Perhaps doing research and listening simply isn’t required in journalism these days ?

Frank McCusker
Frank McCusker
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

Hear hear

Peter Gardner
Peter Gardner
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

It’s New Year’s Eve. I thought it was just me and the Champagne. One read though is enough. It is gobbledy gook. Better things to do and enjoy!

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

“They would not listen, they did not know how. Perhaps they’ll listen now” (Don McLean).
They’re still not listening (about why people voted for Brexit). I guess they just don’t know how. Perhaps doing research and listening simply isn’t required in journalism these days ?

Frank McCusker
Frank McCusker
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

Hear hear

Andrew Wise
Andrew Wise
1 year ago

The author’s obfuscation with flowery and obtuse language, not to mention invective renders the article unreadable.
I’m quite prepared to believe our political leaders are failing us – but I don’t buy what I understood of the rest of the article
And would those who are pro the EU please desist from telling me why I voted to leave – on that point I can say the author is categorically wrong.

Chris Stapleton
Chris Stapleton
1 year ago

“….a great inward turn“. No, a great outward looking. Nice try at slipping that one in, before more fully revealing yourself.
It was not the “ideology of global Britain [that] made the British governing class incapable of running a small northwest European archipelago“, as you insultingly put it. It was the lazy surrender of governance to the EU by the British political and cultural establishment and their post Brexit refusal to accept the will of the electorate and step up to the plate that is the problem.

Chris Stapleton
Chris Stapleton
1 year ago

“….a great inward turn“. No, a great outward looking. Nice try at slipping that one in, before more fully revealing yourself.
It was not the “ideology of global Britain [that] made the British governing class incapable of running a small northwest European archipelago“, as you insultingly put it. It was the lazy surrender of governance to the EU by the British political and cultural establishment and their post Brexit refusal to accept the will of the electorate and step up to the plate that is the problem.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago

There’s almost too many false assumptions in this essay to know where to start. A couple have already been dealt with in other comments, so i’ll refer to just two.

First, the citing in evidence of our supposed plight of work by two peripheral writers, one from New Zealand, the other Welsh – with their subjective perspectives – gives the essay a sense of clutching at straws. Their viewpoints may have a limited validity in terms of their own audiences but are necessarily critical in a way which seeks to justify their own agendas.

Secondly, it’s typical of most of the articles i’ve read by Roussinos that he fails to grasp the underlying nature of the national character. He inverts our strengths, for instance our ability to absorb different influences from elsewhere, a process that’s been ongoing throughout recorded history and deems it a weakness; as an attempt to escape insularity by the inevitable trope: the “ruling classes”. It’s schoolboy stuff, as if the myriad waves of incomers to these islands only happened in order to assuage some globalist fetish, from even before we knew we lived on a globe.

I’ll leave it there, and wish the author a more mature outlook for 2023, despite his conviction that, to mangle a phrase: “things can only get worse”.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Murray
Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

“our ability to absorb different influences from elsewhere”
As an outsider, peripheral and subjective in my views (what else is there?), that is one thing I find the Brits resistant to, even when they live in other countries. And do you think 2023 will be better?

Last edited 1 year ago by Brett H
Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Think longer term – much longer, which is the essence of my post.
2023? Pah!

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Murray
Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

“which is the essence of my post.”

No it’s not. The essence of your post is the “ many false assumptions in this essay”.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Due to the inability of its author to see beyond the end of his nose, as per my exposition of a different timescale. Do pay attention.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Murray
Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Due to the inability of its author to see beyond the end of his nose, as per my exposition of a different timescale. Do pay attention.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Murray
Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

“which is the essence of my post.”

No it’s not. The essence of your post is the “ many false assumptions in this essay”.

Douglas H
Douglas H
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Brits are constantly borrowing from other cultures, it’s almost a national obsession. Notably American culture for all classes, European for the self declared elite.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Douglas H

In my experience most of the European “self declared elites” seem to spend most of their time aping the British. Spaniels, Labradors, Barbour Jackets, Brogues, Twinset & Pearls, and so forth. Then the faux attendance at our ‘country pursuits’ and even our renowned’ blood sports’. At their most sycophantic they even send their revolting offspring to schools such as Eton to be ‘finished off’.

However given the paucity and frightfulness on their own ‘culture’, who can really blame them?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Douglas H

In my experience most of the European “self declared elites” seem to spend most of their time aping the British. Spaniels, Labradors, Barbour Jackets, Brogues, Twinset & Pearls, and so forth. Then the faux attendance at our ‘country pursuits’ and even our renowned’ blood sports’. At their most sycophantic they even send their revolting offspring to schools such as Eton to be ‘finished off’.

However given the paucity and frightfulness on their own ‘culture’, who can really blame them?

Tony Price
Tony Price
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Actually I think that you are mistaken here. Britain has absorbed, in approximate date order, major and sometimes overwhelming influxes from: Celts, Romans; Anglo-Saxons, Normans, French (mostly Huguenots), Eastern European Jews, assorted flotsam from the end of WWII, West Indians, East African Asians, Indian Sub-Continent, China. It takes time but they have all been absorbed.

Roger Sandilands
Roger Sandilands
1 year ago
Reply to  Tony Price

Yes, but at the same time it has tended to keep wages down (and land and house prices higher) in order to favour the employer and landowning classes. Consequently, technological innovation is discouraged and income inequality aggravated.

Dr. G Marzanna
Dr. G Marzanna
1 year ago
Reply to  Tony Price

Absorbed as in, accepted , but England at least is still clearly a country with a recognizable Celtic-Roman-Norse identity. All the others are in the end minorities, either visibly so or self identified.
But this core identity, which is strongly though inchoately felt, is ignored and openly despised by England’s “ruling class”.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Tony Price

“ It takes time but they have all been absorbed.”
Well then everything should be fine. But it doesn’t sound like it.

Roger Sandilands
Roger Sandilands
1 year ago
Reply to  Tony Price

Yes, but at the same time it has tended to keep wages down (and land and house prices higher) in order to favour the employer and landowning classes. Consequently, technological innovation is discouraged and income inequality aggravated.

Dr. G Marzanna
Dr. G Marzanna
1 year ago
Reply to  Tony Price

Absorbed as in, accepted , but England at least is still clearly a country with a recognizable Celtic-Roman-Norse identity. All the others are in the end minorities, either visibly so or self identified.
But this core identity, which is strongly though inchoately felt, is ignored and openly despised by England’s “ruling class”.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Tony Price

“ It takes time but they have all been absorbed.”
Well then everything should be fine. But it doesn’t sound like it.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Think longer term – much longer, which is the essence of my post.
2023? Pah!

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Murray
Douglas H
Douglas H
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Brits are constantly borrowing from other cultures, it’s almost a national obsession. Notably American culture for all classes, European for the self declared elite.

Tony Price
Tony Price
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Actually I think that you are mistaken here. Britain has absorbed, in approximate date order, major and sometimes overwhelming influxes from: Celts, Romans; Anglo-Saxons, Normans, French (mostly Huguenots), Eastern European Jews, assorted flotsam from the end of WWII, West Indians, East African Asians, Indian Sub-Continent, China. It takes time but they have all been absorbed.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

“he fails to grasp the underlying nature of the national character”
Is that really surprising ? Mr Roussinos is a Greek*with all that that entails. A brief stint at Durham and Oxford cannot change that however hard ones tries.

(* Turks pretending to be Italians as some might say.)

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
Kate Heusser
Kate Heusser
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

‘Peripheral’ as in – not English?
O wad some power the giftie gie us
to see oursels as others see us
But then, Burns was a Scot, and presumably just as ‘peripheral’ and irrelevant?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

Precisely.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

Peripheral – as in intellectual heft, despite the author’s attempts to big them up. Our British Isles are also peripheral, but it’s not just about geography.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Murray
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

Precisely.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Kate Heusser

Peripheral – as in intellectual heft, despite the author’s attempts to big them up. Our British Isles are also peripheral, but it’s not just about geography.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Murray
Roger Sandilands
Roger Sandilands
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Well said. Roussinos is a narrow nationalist who evidently wants Wales (and Scotland) to rejoin the EU which would involve EU-imposed tariffs and other border controls with their biggest trading partner by far. Not to mention scrapping the pound for the crazy euro.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

“our ability to absorb different influences from elsewhere”
As an outsider, peripheral and subjective in my views (what else is there?), that is one thing I find the Brits resistant to, even when they live in other countries. And do you think 2023 will be better?

Last edited 1 year ago by Brett H
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

“he fails to grasp the underlying nature of the national character”
Is that really surprising ? Mr Roussinos is a Greek*with all that that entails. A brief stint at Durham and Oxford cannot change that however hard ones tries.

(* Turks pretending to be Italians as some might say.)

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
Kate Heusser
Kate Heusser
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

‘Peripheral’ as in – not English?
O wad some power the giftie gie us
to see oursels as others see us
But then, Burns was a Scot, and presumably just as ‘peripheral’ and irrelevant?

Roger Sandilands
Roger Sandilands
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Well said. Roussinos is a narrow nationalist who evidently wants Wales (and Scotland) to rejoin the EU which would involve EU-imposed tariffs and other border controls with their biggest trading partner by far. Not to mention scrapping the pound for the crazy euro.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago

There’s almost too many false assumptions in this essay to know where to start. A couple have already been dealt with in other comments, so i’ll refer to just two.

First, the citing in evidence of our supposed plight of work by two peripheral writers, one from New Zealand, the other Welsh – with their subjective perspectives – gives the essay a sense of clutching at straws. Their viewpoints may have a limited validity in terms of their own audiences but are necessarily critical in a way which seeks to justify their own agendas.

Secondly, it’s typical of most of the articles i’ve read by Roussinos that he fails to grasp the underlying nature of the national character. He inverts our strengths, for instance our ability to absorb different influences from elsewhere, a process that’s been ongoing throughout recorded history and deems it a weakness; as an attempt to escape insularity by the inevitable trope: the “ruling classes”. It’s schoolboy stuff, as if the myriad waves of incomers to these islands only happened in order to assuage some globalist fetish, from even before we knew we lived on a globe.

I’ll leave it there, and wish the author a more mature outlook for 2023, despite his conviction that, to mangle a phrase: “things can only get worse”.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Murray
Mr Bellisarius
Mr Bellisarius
1 year ago

Yet another Brexit analysis which completely ignores the extensive research into why people voted Brexit.

Wilfred Davis
Wilfred Davis
1 year ago
Reply to  Mr Bellisarius

I rather agree. Why is it that so many of the ‘commenting class’ (as the author puts it) are so insistently fixated on projecting onto the British psyche some sort of nostalgia for Empire and longing for a place on the world stage?

And why are these non-existent obsessions forever foisted on Brexit voters?

Nobody I know ever even mentions ‘Empire’ or ‘global stage’.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Wilfred Davis

Coming from a small European country the British attitude to going it alone seems quite peculiar. One of the Boris’ arguments was that ‘Of course they will give us a good deal afterwards – they need us more than we need them’. In Denmark or The Netherlands everybody would have seen that was rubbish. In Britain people bought it. Maybe because the Brits still see being on top as their natural place in the world?

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

So many things you’ve missed there …
Britain is not a “small European country” – the population is expected to exceed that of Germany in a few decades.
You cannot expect an historically maritime country (the UK) to have similar instincts, culture, beliefs and sense of identity as smaller continental countries (granted, the Netherlands is probably the closest match to the UK).
Britain’s history and business and legal culture are quite separate from most continental European countries.
Britain has a history of successfully “going it alone” to draw on.
There was a sense that the EU was moving in a direction most people didn’t want to go in. Even if the status quo might have been tolerated, the future drift (and the inability to prevent this) was not.
I suggest most people who voted to leave the EU didn’t do so because they thought they would get a “good deal”. I think it was far more about identity and a national sense of purpose and direction than short term concerns about money.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

You are not the only historically maritime country with a separate history and sense of identity. Apart from the Netherlands there is Denmark, for instance. But we totally agree that Britain has a history of successfully going it alone, that surely influenced the decision. I am just pointing out that back when you were succesfully going it alone you were the world’s dominant manufacturing power, with a globe-spanning empire and the Royal and merchant navy dominating the world’s seas. I suspect that you are assuming that you will do as well in the 21st century as you did in the 19th, without really considering how much your situation has changed since then.

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

For me it was about democracy.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

You are not the only historically maritime country with a separate history and sense of identity. Apart from the Netherlands there is Denmark, for instance. But we totally agree that Britain has a history of successfully going it alone, that surely influenced the decision. I am just pointing out that back when you were succesfully going it alone you were the world’s dominant manufacturing power, with a globe-spanning empire and the Royal and merchant navy dominating the world’s seas. I suspect that you are assuming that you will do as well in the 21st century as you did in the 19th, without really considering how much your situation has changed since then.

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

For me it was about democracy.

Roger Sandilands
Roger Sandilands
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

No, It’s just that we are historically a more outward-looking nation than is the EU. And we abandoned oppressive imperialism years before some other European countries did, and our foreign aid budget has usually been far more generous than theirs. Unfortunately our foreign aid also went to undeserving EU farmers via the corrupt CAP while EU tariffs harmed more deserving, poorer CW farmers.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

This is nonsense. The people who predicted that the EU would give us a good deal understandably believed that our own side would actually use the EU27’s colossal trade surplus with the UK to the UK’s advantage – not a difficult feat given that the EU is a mercantilist bloc. That we did not was due to the refusal of the UK negotiators to actually use it, as part of their plan to sabotage the process of leaving.

And since no other EU nation had that colossal trade imbalance, they would never have made the same prediction about their own chances of negotiating with Brussels, should they have tried.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

Right. So you are saying that Brexit was a failure because Theresa May, Lord Frost, Boris Johnson deliberately sabotaged the project – presumably because they actually wanted Britain to lose the advantages of membership and gain nothing in return? Do you actually believe that? I shall continue to believe that the huge leverage that you claim Britain had simply was not there. The EU was never going to give Britain access on British terms, no matter how much prosecco and how many BMWs you used to buy.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

I am not saying Brexit “was” or even is a failure, for starters, so lets get that out of the way. It isn’t finished yet and will not be for many years.

And the people you name here do rather expose your mental confusion on the issue: Theresa May was in charge for the first two years while David Frost and Boris Johnson were not. The colossal limitations of the deal we have now were almost completely set in stone during those two years and it was only the refusal of Parliament to enact the Withdrawal Agreement three times in a row that led to Theresa May’s resignation, Boris Johnson’s leadership victory, and the subsequent tweaks to the draft WA which avoided Brexit being turned into an abject humiliation. It is important to note that Brussels did in fact lose a considerable amount of the advantage it sought here, as a result of its own arrogant overreach.

That the trade surplus advantage you say never existed, too, is close to idiotic: it is still there right now in the trade figures because it was the primary objective of the WA! My point is that during the two years in which the cretinous Theresa May refused to permit any real negotiation to be mounted against Brussels, that advantage was baked in to the draft agreement that Boris was forced to work with from June 2019.

Your understanding of the course of events is simply not up to scratch.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

The trade surplus is there. It is the idea that it could be leveraged into market access on British terms that was an illusion.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Of course it could have been leveraged. It simply wasn’t, because the dominant ideology amongst those whose job it was to negotiate a deal for the UK was pro-EU and anti-independence, so they decided instead to assist Brussels in getting the best deal for the EU.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

Sorry, but the idea that Theresa May deliberately betrayed her country and governed to sell out British interests to the EU simply does not fly. At most we are talking about a difference of strategy.

True, May did not try the ‘madman strategy’, as Johnson talked about. Refuse to make concessions, make maximum demands, be outrageous and make everybody furious, and move right towards an all-out trade war. Then when everybody is staring into the abyss stop at the brink and expect to be bought off with concessions. Personally I doubt this would have worked, though. Psychologically, all the EU negotiators would have had a strong desire to punish Britain rather than reward her. Rationally, they would have known that Britain would suffer more under a trade war than they would. Also, the EU is a very rule-bound organisation, and we (even Johnson) are talking about a long-term close trading relationship – the question is just on whose terms. You cannot make long-term deals with a reckless and irrational partner, because you cannot rely on any promises being kept. The rational choice for the EU would therefore be *not* to make a humiliating climb-down and cave in to British demands, but to prepare to weather the storm, maybe stop collaborating on keeping migrants out of the channel, and wait till Britain blinked first.

Are you really sure you would have got a better deal that way?

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

Sorry, but the idea that Theresa May deliberately betrayed her country and governed to sell out British interests to the EU simply does not fly. At most we are talking about a difference of strategy.

True, May did not try the ‘madman strategy’, as Johnson talked about. Refuse to make concessions, make maximum demands, be outrageous and make everybody furious, and move right towards an all-out trade war. Then when everybody is staring into the abyss stop at the brink and expect to be bought off with concessions. Personally I doubt this would have worked, though. Psychologically, all the EU negotiators would have had a strong desire to punish Britain rather than reward her. Rationally, they would have known that Britain would suffer more under a trade war than they would. Also, the EU is a very rule-bound organisation, and we (even Johnson) are talking about a long-term close trading relationship – the question is just on whose terms. You cannot make long-term deals with a reckless and irrational partner, because you cannot rely on any promises being kept. The rational choice for the EU would therefore be *not* to make a humiliating climb-down and cave in to British demands, but to prepare to weather the storm, maybe stop collaborating on keeping migrants out of the channel, and wait till Britain blinked first.

Are you really sure you would have got a better deal that way?

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Of course it could have been leveraged. It simply wasn’t, because the dominant ideology amongst those whose job it was to negotiate a deal for the UK was pro-EU and anti-independence, so they decided instead to assist Brussels in getting the best deal for the EU.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

The trade surplus is there. It is the idea that it could be leveraged into market access on British terms that was an illusion.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

I am not saying Brexit “was” or even is a failure, for starters, so lets get that out of the way. It isn’t finished yet and will not be for many years.

And the people you name here do rather expose your mental confusion on the issue: Theresa May was in charge for the first two years while David Frost and Boris Johnson were not. The colossal limitations of the deal we have now were almost completely set in stone during those two years and it was only the refusal of Parliament to enact the Withdrawal Agreement three times in a row that led to Theresa May’s resignation, Boris Johnson’s leadership victory, and the subsequent tweaks to the draft WA which avoided Brexit being turned into an abject humiliation. It is important to note that Brussels did in fact lose a considerable amount of the advantage it sought here, as a result of its own arrogant overreach.

That the trade surplus advantage you say never existed, too, is close to idiotic: it is still there right now in the trade figures because it was the primary objective of the WA! My point is that during the two years in which the cretinous Theresa May refused to permit any real negotiation to be mounted against Brussels, that advantage was baked in to the draft agreement that Boris was forced to work with from June 2019.

Your understanding of the course of events is simply not up to scratch.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

Right. So you are saying that Brexit was a failure because Theresa May, Lord Frost, Boris Johnson deliberately sabotaged the project – presumably because they actually wanted Britain to lose the advantages of membership and gain nothing in return? Do you actually believe that? I shall continue to believe that the huge leverage that you claim Britain had simply was not there. The EU was never going to give Britain access on British terms, no matter how much prosecco and how many BMWs you used to buy.

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago