A BRIEF EXPLANATION ON MY SUPPORT FOR BREXIT & THE TRUMPRANCE
I am British and live in Spain, I voted for Brexit and, if I’d been given the chance, I would have voted for Trump (though certainly doing the former with more enthusiasm than the latter).
So, below I set out some of my reasons for doing so, with as much brevity as possible.
WHEN I TOOK THE BREXIT VOTE
· Leadership and accountability: The EU lacked a leader or a set of leaders who were brave enough to stand up and admit the Union had problems and then take the tough decisions to reform it and its policies. Also, even with good intentions, it is difficult to make politicians at a national level to be accountable for their actions. At the level of the European Union, I considered this to be well-nigh impossible, especially as EU politicians didn’t make a great effort to publicise what they were up to. This was evident when you would ask the average voter in the UK “who represents you in the European Union” and the standard reply would be, “ummm, Farage is one isn’t he?”
I mention leadership and accountability first because I considered that the UK was being run from two different political giants; Westminster and the EU. By removing the powers of the second of course didn’t mean that the first would suddenly implement all the policies that I wanted them to. However, what it did do was open up the possibility of things changing in Westminster so that in the near future real leaders could emerge and that these vital policies could be put into action. I saw the EU as a real obstacle to leadership and efficient policy making.
· Track record: the EU’s foreign policy and immigration policy seemed to me to be a shambles:
o Foreign Policy: The EU had played a key role in distancing Russia from the negotiating table, helped cause and fuel a civil war in the Ukraine, and, in an effort to “tow-the-US-line”, had backed so-called “moderate” rebels in Syria whilst demonising Assad, the only viable leader; all policies that might seem ok in the flagrantly bias Western press but policies that have led to untold human suffering.
o Immigration Policy: at the same time that Pro-Brexiters were being neatly packaged by the core Remainers as anti-immigration racists, the EU was doing a Billion USD deal with the autocratic regime Turkey to stop the flow of desperate migrants from the war zones of the Middle East and North Africa. The same regime whose secret services had founded ISIS and whose leadership was happily buying its oil; ISIS being one of the main factors in causing the migrants to flee their homes in the first place. Many of these migrants are now crossing to Europe from other locations or stranded in deplorable conditions in Turkey itself. My view wasn’t that the borders should be closed but rather that the immigrants should be helped as much as possible by all Western nations, but that a system had to be designed and effectively implemented, on the one side to look after them and on the other to make the return to their homes possible (i.e. making their towns safe again).
· Family: the EU was financing and pushing forward policies against the family; thereby ironically and carelessly putting into jeopardy the very long-term survival of the nations it represented.
o The Gay Lobby: the EU was financing and supporting the Gay Lobby. I find their policies completely unfair and selfish. Children should be able to have a mother and a father; and any other so-called alternative is a poor substitute. In this regard, I think letting gay couples adopt is wrong, especially when given priority over a potential adoptive mother or father, and the other methods to provide them with children are cruel: meaning the use of unborn children willy-nilly and the use of women as baby factories; denying the children lucky enough to see the light-of-day a chance to grow-up with their real mother or father. The other popular policy being pushed by this group to blur lines between the genders I consider absurd and a real danger for children and vulnerable people; putting them at risk of taking decisions they will really regret in the future. (The normal response to my last comments are that you’re a homophobe, etc. I’m happy to say this is not the case and I stand by those brave gay people, such as the designers Dolce & Gabana and the actor Rupert Everett, who talked out against the unfairness of these practices.)
o Abortion: this barbaric practice was being supported by the EU, and any countries such as Poland who were showing signs of opposing it were being pressured by the Union. There’s no surer way that a nation can ensure its own downfall than by killing its own children. This is all in the context of a European population that was growing older with serious demographic problems for the future. For example, in recent months the term “apocalypse” was used by an Italian minister to describe the country’s demographic problem.
WHY I WOULD HAVE VOTED FOR TRUMP
· Track record: Hillary Clinton offered the world “a bit more of the same”. If Obama’s achievements over the last 2 presidential terms were a special restaurant dish, I think the world would be well within its rights to pay not to eat it; weak leadership, lots of rhetoric and few actual achievements. Interestingly, it seems in these elections that people have opted for the devil they don’t know.
· Democracy: It’s clear that democracy in the US is not very democratic given that you seem to need huge sums of money to run for President, but I thought that it was a bit too much that an ex-president’s wife should be in the running. As with the election of George Bush Senior’s son, for me it showed a democratic system where contacts mattered much more than merit. She’s a talented lady that Hillary Clinton but out of hundreds of millions? At least Trump’s path to power has been more in line with that expected in a meritocracy.
· Foreign policy: While Trump has been portrayed by the Western Press as a crazy guy who will have no doubts in bombing the hell out of everything that moves, instead I believe that his appointment could bring some positive changes to the US’ foreign policy and, in turn, to the lives of many people:
o Closer ties with Russia: Putin has shown to be a leader; he has done a lot of bad things but his strong leadership is unquestionable. So far the US’ foreign policy has been to confront him; not to the extent of blocking the invasion of the Crimea, which would have been honourable if the US hadn’t been largely responsible for starting the crisis in the first place, but to the extent of supporting the rebels in Syria and sanctions in the EU. Closer ties with Russia could mean:
§ Possible collaboration in Syria instead of confrontation. You can be pro Assad or pro “moderate” rebels but this war is not only a civil war but a proxy war. If the two strongest players side with each other perhaps the fighting could stop and everyone could call it a day.
§ Weakening US support for Saudi Arabia, a country that is waging a war in Yemen, largely forgotten by the world (certainly not the top priority for Western journalists given that the US, UK and France are some of the top suppliers of the arms being indiscriminately dropped on civilians and soldiers alike); and a country that is financing ISIS. If you have allies like this one who needs enemies.
§ More likelihood of a negotiated settlement in the Ukraine to put an end to the ongoing violence and blatant Russian occupation in some areas; helping to bring stability and an end to the corruption that is rife at all levels.
§ Less likelihood of a cold war.
o Advantages of a swingball candidate: A president that many consider “crazy” will be more likely to keep the Chinese at bay in the South China Sea and may combat their encroaching influence in Africa.
o Tough on drugs in Latin America: Though building a wall in Mexico is a bad idea (these times call for bridges not walls), perhaps overall Trump will make life more difficult for the Latin America drug cartels. At a time when drug use is eating away at US society this would be a popular policy.
In conclusion, I don’t agree with those who argue that Brexit is bad and Trump is bad. As described, Brexit and Trump could be good for the world; we’ll see. But they are certainly better than the other options on offer.
The EU and the US should expect more from its politicians. In my view the policies that they have been pushing are designed to please a noisy and influential select few while having serious negative consequences for the many, who often don’t have a voice.
These policies are aggressively marketed by the mainstream Western press as progressive, modern and enlightened but the reality is hidden from view and anyone who criticises them is earmarked as a bigot or reactionary.
I think people are starting to get fed up; and quite right too.