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By Tony Morrison
May 13th 2019
Congressional Representatives have an unfortunate habit of travelling around the world with their families “finding out stuff” usually in places that coincidentally are where they would spend vacations. But things are changing, and on a recent trip of Democrat House Representatives to the British Isles, a dose of politics was served up along with the champagne dinners.
And those politics revealed the new Democrat majority in the House has a cunning plan to sabotage Brexit. Or to put it another way, to stick their noses in a policy decided by the majority vote of the people of a sovereign nation.
It is a little strange of course, as generally, US folks didn’t think about Brexit up until recently. This is to do with the fact that over here we don’t really think much about other countries at all, at least not like other countries think about the US all the time. The one exception, though, has been the elites in the centres of power such as Finance, Military, Government, and of course Hollywood.
This is not surprising as elites worldwide like to keep the certainty of the status quo, being as it reinforces the fact the right people are elites. And so, faced with a tumultuous disturbance in the Force, we had folks like Jaime Dimon, CEO of Chase, opining in 2015 that Brexit would be “a terrible deal for the British economy and jobs.” Dimon’s forecasting abilities are exactly what we would expect from someone with his record. This is the guy who nearly destroyed his company in 2008 by selling fraudulent bonds based on underperforming mortgage loans.
President Obama was not far behind, popping over the ocean before the Brexit vote in 2016 to do his friend Cameron a solid saying the UK would be last in the queue for the US to do a free trade deal if the British people dared to ignore his advice. A laughable claim, of course, suggesting that the US would only spend their time with an EU with the mouth-watering additions of powerhouses such as Macedonia, as opposed to the fifth largest economy in the World.
As most folks around the world did at the time, the British people took his words under advisement. Meanwhile, Americans noticed the jarring use of the ultra-British word “queue,” instead of American speak “line,” and realized that Obama was, somewhat strangely, reading a British script.
There was one politician, however, that went against the elites party line in 2016. For all his faults on the campaign trail, candidate Trump spent the year seemingly acting as a medium for the thoughts of the Yanks. And those thoughts ran more on the traditional lines of the instinctive American fondness for the underdog and the Brits. When asked about Brexit, he said “Hmm? Oh yeah, I think they should leave.”
As revealed later, though, Trump’s views were considerably more nuanced than a vague populist instinct. It was very much guided by his own thoughts on countries taking liberties with the Land Of The Free, and in the process ignoring the needs of Americans. Unlike the Obamas, the Clintons and pretty much all major political leaders, he was appalled by the fact that Americans pay an unweighted average of 5.2% tariffs on EU goods, while the EU pays only 3.5% in return. And don’t get him started on the 10% EU tariffs on American autos matched by the US 2.5% tariffs on EU (well, German) autos. And this for an area where peace was guaranteed by the power and money of the US and where countries could not be bothered to even pay their miniscule NATO payments.
So it was not surprising that when candidate Trump became President in 2017 one of his first visits was from Prime Minister May.
He made it clear that there would be a big beautiful free trade deal with the UK once Brexit was consummated, while at the same time sorting out tariff inequities with the EU. Unfortunately, as we now know, May didn’t share his enthusiasm as her heart was still with her first love, the EU.
By this time, Brexit had become a lot more interesting to real Americans – the ones that tend not to live in Washington or New York. The referendum victory in 2016 had begun to resonate, particularly with those whose jobs and lifestyles had been damaged severely by the actions of their own uncaring elites. And the Trump victory over Elite Extraordinaire Clinton showed a solid foundation existed for populist resentment. Brexit became a motivating symbol for a movement, and first out of the box was Candace Owens and her Blexit in early 2017.
Ms Owens is a charismatic young woman who founded Blexit as an aspirational populist revolt against the Democrat Party that has turned its back on African-Americans, a group that has traditionally given the Dems 90% support.
“Blexit is a Renaissance. Blexit is the black exit from the Democratic Party. It’s the black exit from permanent victimhood, the black exit from the false idea that we are somehow separate from the rest of America.”
She came up with the name when hearing noted Brexit warrior Nigel Farage speak at the US conservative conference, CPAC, in 2017. Kanye West designed the T-shirt and hats, which has given him at least one seller in his foray into the rag trade.
Another such group is focused on young millennials, #WalkAway.
This was founded by a liberal gay Democrat (now ex-) New Yorker, Brandon Straka, who is fed up with the divisive identity politics and universal socialist schemes that now characterize much of the Democrat party. Their FB page has 130,000 followers. Recent newcomers include Lexit which is not the Left-Exit group in Europe, but a group to persuade Latinos (Hispanic Americans) to walk away from the Dems. This year there was Jexit, who held their first rally at the US Capitol last week.
This is a group formed to persuade Jews to leave the increasingly anti-semitic Democrat Party (the influence of Corbynism, and its toxic mix of socialism and anti-semitism, has a long reach).
It remains to be seen if these Brexit-inspired movements re-align politics in the US. This happened in the Reagan era back in the 1980s. Many Democrats left their Party and became Republicans as they identified more with policies that focused on the economy, their economic welfare, winning the Cold War and a respect for the country’s achievements and its traditions of rewarding hard work. And more recently, albeit on a smaller scale, many Obama voters, who did want hope and change, switched over to Trump as a more solid model for their aspirations. These days the Republican Party is still the party that tends not to care about your race or whatever, as it focuses only on Americans as a whole, and the constitutional protections that make us wealthy and free. But it is not immune from the siren song of the elites (looking at you, Mitt Romney and various Bushes), and so there is not as clear a choice as you might think any more.
But one thing remains constant – the Dems remain the party of the elites with a strategy of remaining in power by pitching the deplorables against each other. Whether you are rich, male, white or even older than 30, the Dems have mobilized entire armies of folks to resent you. As it takes one to know one, the troops are being led by elitist millionaire caucasian patriarchs like Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders. So it was as natural as breathing for our Congressional Representatives to use taxpayer dollars to fly away in April to Perfidious Albion to help foster divisions within the British people.
These flights by the Air Force have just been resumed after being grounded by Trump during the recent Government shutdown over border security issues. The Congress folks can’t fly commercial of course (heaven forfend they would have to share the same space as their voters), so they were all relieved to have their taxpayer jets back and get in the air. The Congressional delegation of Democrats was headed up by Speaker Nancy Pelosi and contained such luminaries as Connecticut Reps John Larson and Joe Courtney (sorry, American joke here). Chairman Of House Ways and Means committee, Richard Neal, was also long for the ride, although he was probably distracted by his committee’s view of the all-consuming threat to the Home Of The Brave “We must see Trump’s tax returns otherwise … er …”
Off they all went to the UK then to Ireland, both north and south.
The delegation’s main point in going was to make it clear to all that, in Pelosi’s words, “if the Brexit deal undermines the Good Friday Accords, there will be no chance of a U.S.-U.K. trade agreement.” She said this over and over again, in London, Belfast and Dublin. And for the home audience, the CT Representatives on the trip, Larson and Courtney, expressed this in a lot more detail when they got back in a May 5 Op-Ed in a major newspaper. This is not an idle threat.
The House now has a Democrat majority which can vote against any and all of the President’s trade deals.
A quick primer for American readers here. In short, our delegation is cleverly, without appearing to, arguing for the ultimate Remain view.
The EU strategy is for the UK to Remain, as UK money is propping up the whole rapidly-decaying edifice. They have now negotiated the British Government into a Hotel California Brexit (you can check out, but you can never leave).
To do this they are pretending the Irish border is a problem for leaving on the spurious grounds that it will somehow upset the 1998 Good Friday peace agreement (which barely mentions the border). So they are insisting that the UK stay in a customs union indefinitely, with no border controls between Northern Ireland (British) and the Republic Of Ireland (EU), while a new agreement on trade is reached. A customs union will see all trade restrictions apply with no ability for the Brits to change. And a trade agreement that will enable leaving the customs union (and so the EU) is contingent only on the EU say-so, which will never happen. PM May has signed off on this nonsense.
A suspicious person would say that she (along with pretty much all of the British Establishment) has always wanted to stay in and believes that eventually, the UK will be tired of its servile status in the customs union and demand to be let back in. Meanwhile, the British people majority referendum vote to actually leave is quietly consigned to the trashcan.
Now the nosey noisy neighbours in our US delegation are going even beyond the EU’s devious plans and are arguing for a complete renunciation of Brexit with not even a half-way stop like a customs union. The Democrats say that no free trade agreement is possible without the UK staying in the customs union because of the border issue. And they know a free trade agreement is not possible as long as the UK remains in the customs union (which will be forever or until the UK rejoins the EU). So, the UK will have to remain in the EU period. QED.
We can all understand why British and EU politicians would work to undermine their own people as they do it all the time. But you are probably wondering why American politicians have to get involved in all this. So did the ever-polite MP Jacob Rees-Mogg, who met with these, what he must have considered rather curious individuals, on their London trip, and said archly “It was, in its way, flattering that American politicians should take such an interest in our affairs.”
The ostensible view of said American politicians is they see the US as having ownership of the Good Friday Agreement because President Clinton, along with First Lady Hillary, visited Ireland in 1995 and so caused the process to happen (???). Even then Super Hillary was weaving her magic. But there are two real reasons.
The first is routine mischief – it’s just what they do whenever they see a chance to big up the elites and screw around with the people’s wishes. The second is because of Trump, and like Groucho, they’re all “whatever it is I’m against it.”
Trump called for a free trade deal with the UK once Brexit was done. They are determined to try and negate that despite the benefits to their country.
The elites are still working hard 24/7 against Brexit. But the rest of us are gradually realizing that somehow this is all working against our own needs as surely as favouring other countries’ workers over our own. Brexit has become a resistance symbol for populism in the US, and if there is to be the “globalism” that the elites are always banging on about, maybe it is in the linkage of these movements across countries in the interest of the regular people. That does not mean we in the US will be running around in yellow vests anytime soon. But a milder resistance is possible with votes by folks in the US pushed by our various “Brexits” against the Democrats.
This will have the concomitant effect of eliminating the threat for the Brits to enjoy their liberties and give us a free trade deal with our greatest ally.