Time to go home hen….
The left may not like it, and the Democrats deride him, but Trump has both a global reach and following.
A year ago, (November 14th) we discussed how the upheavals in the USA might affect politics in Europe, and I did a blog on the chances of effective change during the 2017 season of European elections. You can catch it here.
My concern was that European electorates were every bit as concerned with their jobs, money, immigration, education, globalisation and corruption as their American siblings. All this “better together” guff wasn’t working for anyone and they too would be giving their liberal elites the bums rush as soon as the first opportunity presented itself. The European “Project” was being seen by more and more as just a great trough for the snouts of a European elite. 40% of Europeans would be voting and I predicted a sharp swing to the right.
Sure, it started a bit slow and the likes of the Guardian and the other left leaning media outlets crowed that the structure still stood, the storm that had brought Trump was blown over and that doom-mongers such as my piece were wrong. But as the year wears out, my predictions seem to be coming right.
December 2016 started it off with Italy’s Matteo Renzi off to a referendum on his plans to strip the powers of Italy’s upper house to bring down the government (especially his own). To the gaiety of nations Matteo lost and of our run of leaders this year he was first out the door on December 7th replaced by Paulo Gentilioni Italy’s fifth Prime Minister in as many years. Gentilioni has no personal mandate and little power. Europe is filling with weak leaders and chaotic governments.
Also back in December, Austria had a re-run of the election for her Head of State. To the abject relief of the Europhiles Norbert Hofer lost. But not by as much as he should have done if their exultation was deserved.
Now, I did make rude remarks about the validity of Liechtenstein’s parliamentary election in February 2017 saying that frankly it could not be seen as important. Which of course she isn’t. But even here the “populist” “fringe” parties of the DV and FL did particularly well at the expense of the ruling elite.
Next out the gates was Holland, with a general election in March. Things appeared to stabilise as Geer Wilders did not win. Deep breaths all round, until you looked at the figures. The PVV did well on a wave of anti-Islamism and reached 2nd place and all but equal in terms of districts. This resulted in a four way coalition to keep PVV out of the game and the failure of Holland to have a functioning government until late October. Hardly a ringing endorsement and pretty much bound to fall apart any time shortly.
May saw the start of the big-ticket efforts. France got rid of the woeful Francois Holland, and Madam Le Pen “Madam Frexit” to her friends did not win through the second round. Phew! The euro left were jubilant, as they felt their pound-shop-Trudeau like Macron was guaranteed the new saviour of France and the Euro project. But it’s a case of Macron in le merde as he has signally failed to deliver his promised reforms and is in deep shit fighting the unions who seem to be out on the streets burning tractor tyres every other week.
We got a surprise guest feature in June, with Theresa May dragging Britain off for an entirely un-necessary general Election where she lost a twenty-point lead over Labour, her parliamentary majority and any control she might have had before. Indeed, so shambolic is her position now she has needed to go into coalition with the Ulster Onanists to keep in power. Appalling. Now never being one to blow my own trumpet but here at The Oligarch Kings it was predicted that Chairman May was going to to call that election!
September brought us the big one, the German Parliamentary, where I suggested the AfD (Adolf for Germany) party might do rather well and that it would be the end of Angela Merkel. OK it has taken a few weeks, well from September 24th to today to be precise, but Merkel has not been able to form a government and will now be going back to the polls and her own retirement. That the single most important country in Europe should be left rudderless in such times is an indictment on the entire system.
Finally, in October the Czechs saw us out with a General Election where, as I predicted, Andrej Babis a local billionaire business man capitalised on older blue collar voter’s discontent for the traditional parties. Sound familiar? Babis will need to cement his hold by way of coalition, and will do that by cosying up to more right-wing groups. Democracy here is now in real danger.
October 18 saw the Austrian far right secure second place with 26% of the vote and the left forced back to third.
And just to top off a year of woes, Spain has decided to inflict an entirely unnecessary wound on itself (and Europe) by picking a fight with the Catalan nationalists. Thereby firing up nationalism from Flanders to Venice.
The Trump phenomena is not just American. And it weakens everyone.
Copyright David Macadam 2017