Andrew Dickens: The strange politics of Britain and France

Author
Andrew Dickens,
Section
Opinion,
Publish Date
Thursday, 6 December 2018, 11:57a.m.
British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron. Photo / Getty Images

Two International issues today.

This is going to sound a bit hypocritical considering I’m a talkback host, but I’m always intrigued at the number of people who know what’s wrong with the world but they have no idea how to fix it.

We’ve been seeing that play out with Britain, who seem to know what they don’t want but have no idea what they do want.

The country is in the middle of the most remarkable five-day debate on the Brexit deal, negotiated by Theresa May and her team. The Withdrawal Agreement is a 585-page document that outlines how the U.K. will leave the EU in March.

Obviously, within those 585-pages there is something that will not go down well with everyone. Whether it’s the state of the customs union and the ability to pose tariffs or the form of the Northern Ireland border or the amount of compensation paid to the EU.

Today, Britain is torn between the hardline Brexiteers, who just want to run away, and the remainers who still hope that the last two-years will disappear and it all turns into a bad dream. Stuck in the middle is May who’s just trying to make something happen.

Sniping away are people like Mr Coffin Face, Dominic Grieve and Mr Showboater, Boris Johnson. Meanwhile, Jeremy Corbyn and Labour will say anything that causes the Tory Government to fall.

These people seem more concerned with their own prospects rather than that of their nation.

And do these people have any idea what the country should do if, in a few days time, they shoot down two-years of work. Of course, they don’t. It’s almost unbelievable.

The in France, the Yellow Vests are revolting against Macron. It started on fuel taxes designed to wean France off their diesel addiction. There are a lot of people loving the People Power that France seems to be exerting. There’s many supporting the protests because they see Emmanuel Macron as a virtue signalling socialist.

Donald Trump retweeted this tweet from an enemy of Socialism who said, “there are riots in socialist France because of radical leftist fuel taxes. The media is barely mentioning this. America is booming, Europe is burning. They want to cover up the middle-class rebellion against cultural Marxism”. Actually no.

Macron is an ex-investment banker. The people are revolting because he’s actually starting to pull apart the Socialism that has been ingrained in their economy for 40 years. He’s loosening labour laws. He’s cutting social welfare. He’s cutting subsidies and he’s pruning 120,000 jobs from the Civil Service.

Yes, he’s a liberal globalist, but he’s no cultural Marxist. He’s actually reminding me of Roger Douglas to be fair. And the riots in France would be the same as the riots in New Zealand if a government decided to dismantle Working For Families. Which I remind you John Key called communism by stealth and then did nothing about.

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