Thought British Remainers were bad? Try explaining Brexit to liberal Americans


Blackleaf
#1
Leave supporters may find the implacable self-righteousness of British Remainers trying if not exhausting. Yet that frustration cannot compare with the exasperation of talking to Americans about Brexit...

Thought British Remainers were bad? Try explaining Brexit to liberal Americans




Lionel Shriver
8 June 2019
The Telegraph
581



'The idea that you can be for Brexit and against Trump is simply not understood'


Leave supporters may find the implacable self-righteousness of British Remainers trying if not exhausting. Yet that frustration cannot compare with the exasperation of talking to Americans about Brexit. A particular type of American, too: the well-educated coastal Democrat whose views on the UK’s EU membership are as one-dimensional as they are unassailable. Brexit, according to this lot, is a hate crime.

Thus in a phone interview for a Boston National Public Radio station during the Trump visit, I found myself talking to a brick wall. I’m not sure how much of our pre-recorded chat about Brexit the programme found usable, because I clearly didn’t say what I was supposed to.

“But isn’t it important for nations to cooperate to solve global problems?” asks the interviewer.

“Sure,” I say. “But you don’t have to be in the EU to cooperate. On security, climate change — no one advocates that the UK shouldn’t continue to engage with other countries on a range of issues.”

“But isn’t it important for nations to cooperate to solve global problems?”

“Yes,” I say patiently. “But this Trump visit is a good example of two countries conferring over their common interests, and the US isn’t in the EU.”

“But isn’t it important for nations to cooperate to solve global problems?”

I attempt to maintain my equanimity. “Especially in the last year or so, the rhetoric of Brexiteers has been entirely outward-looking, to do with forging trade deals both with the EU and countries farther afield —”

“But isn’t it important for nations to cooperate to solve global problems?” I don’t exaggerate: this guy hits me with the same question at least five times.



When we finally move on, my interlocutor cannot fathom how I can possibly be anti-Trump and pro-Brexit. I say they’re completely different issues. From early on, I say, Brexit has been lumped in with Trump, the better to tarnish a liberally-minded decoupling from an anti-democratic bureaucratic behemoth as more ignorant, bigoted “populism”. I think Trump is dumb, and Brexit is smart. I don’t see the contradiction.

Thereafter, we spar over the interviewer’s knee-jerk labelling of Brexit as “rightwing”. Typically, he observes that the sole purpose of Leavers is to halt immigration. I beg to differ. Polls repeatedly confirm that the central concern for Leavers is sovereignty — which was once a big leftwing cause. Throughout the 1990s, “the right to national self-determination” was a beloved mantra for lefty human rights types. Suddenly wanting a country to control its own affairs is “rightwing”?

Look, I tried. But I was destined to get nowhere with that interviewer from the get go. On the heels of the referendum, at which time I was in the US, America’s mainstream media uniformly portrayed the Leave campaign’s victory as a triumph of racism and xenophobia.

Thus a once-civilised nation had been overcome by barbarian hordes. Brexit was the second coming of the Dark Ages. To this day I’ve seldom encountered any more nuanced a view in the States — not in the news, and not in casual conversation.

What I’ve not entirely cracked, however, is why American Democrats seem to take Brexit so personally. The only crowd more incensed, more indignant, more red-faced with fury and disgust than British Remainers are American Remainers. It never enters my compatriots’ heads that they wouldn’t have the United States join a high-handed supranational organisation whose laws override our own in a million years. The inconsistency conveys either rank hypocrisy or contemptuous condescension: “It’s all right for us to be an independent country, and even for multiple smaller nations from Vietnam to Peru, but your sad little island is too pathetic to take care of itself.”

Maybe it’s the shared history and language, but East Coast Democrats’ attitude towards Britain is so bafflingly possessive that it borders on colonial. They seem outraged that the denizens of their private little holiday camp have got uppity and bumptious, when its quaint caretakers should be baking scones for the visiting campers’ cream teas. The Brits’ job is to drive double-decker buses, repaint selfie-worthy red post boxes, and gestate royal babies — not to foment discord and anarchy. Before opting for this self-destructive mayhem at such odds with your understated stereotype, you upstarts should have requested permission from your patrons across the pond. The answer would have been no.

You may not realise it, but Americans know everything about Britain. I’ve yet to return to the States and have anyone actually ask me as someone who lives there about what’s going on with Brexit. My friends in New England are far more likely to tell me about Brexit.

Oh, and Americans also know everything about the EU — whose functions they perpetually confuse with NATO’s. So they imagine that only the EU keeps the peace. Should the UK withdraw from Brussels, German troops will instantly invade Poland. My compatriots have no familiarity with the bloc’s top-down organisation, its unconsultative meddling in the daily lives of its citizens, or its ever-centralising agenda and hunger for power. Instead, liberal Americans are wont to view the EU through envious, anachronistically rose-tinted glasses as a utopian vessel of all that is good and true in the world. With progressive Democrats, you can safely poo-poo apple pie or even insult their mothers, but one discouraging word about the European Union will invite a tirade.

So if you want any advice on the Tory leadership race, ring Boston.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics...rexit-liberal/
 
Curious Cdn
Conservative
+3
#2  Top Rated Post
Try explaining Brexit to any intelligent human being, anywhere on the planet.
 
Blackleaf
+3
#3
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

Try explaining Brexit to any intelligent human being, anywhere on the planet.

How difficult can it be just to understand that Brexit is a country regaining its independence?
 
taxslave
Free Thinker
+1
#4
Trying to explain anything to American leftys is next to impossible.
 
Blackleaf
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslave View Post

Trying to explain anything to American leftys is next to impossible.

Most Lefties are as bright as an eclipse. Look at those in the UK: Jeremy Corbyn and his ex-girlfriend, Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott, are as thick as a whale omelette.
 
Tecumsehsbones
+2
#6
I just hope we have the sense to stay the hell out of your next war.
 
Blackleaf
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by Tecumsehsbones View Post

I just hope we have the sense to stay the hell out of your next war.

I hope we have the sense to stay out of yours.
 
Curious Cdn
Conservative
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf View Post

I hope we have the sense to stay out of yours.

You don't.


Next contestant, please.
 
Blackleaf
#9
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

You don't.
Next contestant, please.

Vietnam.
 
White_Unifier
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf View Post

Vietnam.

The Dominion of Canada never fought in Vietnam. Only individual Canadians had joined the US armed forces to fight in Vietnam.
 
Curious Cdn
Conservative
#11
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf View Post

Vietnam.

We stayed out of that one, too.
 
Blackleaf
#12
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

We stayed out of that one, too.

So did we. It was our Aussie cousins who decided to join in.
 
Curious Cdn
Conservative
#13
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf View Post

So did we. It was our Aussie cousins who decided to join in.

... and the New Zealanders and they did it because the SEATO alliance compelled them to. Making a NATO claim for assistance was way too much of a stretch.
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#14
Quote: Originally Posted by Tecumsehsbones View Post

I just hope we have the sense to stay the hell out of your next war.


Not a chance inna million, no war, no America. It,s a money maker. Even the Turks bought the F400 Russsian super defence against US aircraft, Zip yer gone stuff. And the dollah problem. etc, looks like collapse to me. Heavy on snow removal equipment
 
Hoid
+1
#15
Quote: Originally Posted by Tecumsehsbones View Post

I just hope we have the sense to stay the hell out of your next war.

This might be the last thing one would expect an American to say.
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#16
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

We stayed out of that one, too.


No we didn,t. Lots of freelanceing Canadians.
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by Hoid View Post

This might be the last thing one would expect an American to say.


The most tuned economy in the world wan,ts out? Nonscence.
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#18
We will witness the end of a unipolar entity fer sure.,
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#19
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf View Post

How difficult can it be just to understand that Brexit is a country regaining its independence?


It is exactly that. And good luck to you British Patriots. The fukkin Euro rabble has no say whatever, that channel god protect you
 
Serryah
Free Thinker
#20
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf View Post

Leave supporters may find the implacable self-righteousness of British Remainers trying if not exhausting. Yet that frustration cannot compare with the exasperation of talking to Americans about Brexit...

Thought British Remainers were bad? Try explaining Brexit to liberal Americans




Lionel Shriver
8 June 2019
The Telegraph
581



'The idea that you can be for Brexit and against Trump is simply not understood'


Leave supporters may find the implacable self-righteousness of British Remainers trying if not exhausting. Yet that frustration cannot compare with the exasperation of talking to Americans about Brexit. A particular type of American, too: the well-educated coastal Democrat whose views on the UK’s EU membership are as one-dimensional as they are unassailable. Brexit, according to this lot, is a hate crime.

Thus in a phone interview for a Boston National Public Radio station during the Trump visit, I found myself talking to a brick wall. I’m not sure how much of our pre-recorded chat about Brexit the programme found usable, because I clearly didn’t say what I was supposed to.

“But isn’t it important for nations to cooperate to solve global problems?” asks the interviewer.

“Sure,” I say. “But you don’t have to be in the EU to cooperate. On security, climate change — no one advocates that the UK shouldn’t continue to engage with other countries on a range of issues.”

“But isn’t it important for nations to cooperate to solve global problems?”

“Yes,” I say patiently. “But this Trump visit is a good example of two countries conferring over their common interests, and the US isn’t in the EU.”

“But isn’t it important for nations to cooperate to solve global problems?”

I attempt to maintain my equanimity. “Especially in the last year or so, the rhetoric of Brexiteers has been entirely outward-looking, to do with forging trade deals both with the EU and countries farther afield —”

“But isn’t it important for nations to cooperate to solve global problems?” I don’t exaggerate: this guy hits me with the same question at least five times.



When we finally move on, my interlocutor cannot fathom how I can possibly be anti-Trump and pro-Brexit. I say they’re completely different issues. From early on, I say, Brexit has been lumped in with Trump, the better to tarnish a liberally-minded decoupling from an anti-democratic bureaucratic behemoth as more ignorant, bigoted “populism”. I think Trump is dumb, and Brexit is smart. I don’t see the contradiction.

Thereafter, we spar over the interviewer’s knee-jerk labelling of Brexit as “rightwing”. Typically, he observes that the sole purpose of Leavers is to halt immigration. I beg to differ. Polls repeatedly confirm that the central concern for Leavers is sovereignty — which was once a big leftwing cause. Throughout the 1990s, “the right to national self-determination” was a beloved mantra for lefty human rights types. Suddenly wanting a country to control its own affairs is “rightwing”?

Look, I tried. But I was destined to get nowhere with that interviewer from the get go. On the heels of the referendum, at which time I was in the US, America’s mainstream media uniformly portrayed the Leave campaign’s victory as a triumph of racism and xenophobia.

Thus a once-civilised nation had been overcome by barbarian hordes. Brexit was the second coming of the Dark Ages. To this day I’ve seldom encountered any more nuanced a view in the States — not in the news, and not in casual conversation.

What I’ve not entirely cracked, however, is why American Democrats seem to take Brexit so personally. The only crowd more incensed, more indignant, more red-faced with fury and disgust than British Remainers are American Remainers. It never enters my compatriots’ heads that they wouldn’t have the United States join a high-handed supranational organisation whose laws override our own in a million years. The inconsistency conveys either rank hypocrisy or contemptuous condescension: “It’s all right for us to be an independent country, and even for multiple smaller nations from Vietnam to Peru, but your sad little island is too pathetic to take care of itself.”

Maybe it’s the shared history and language, but East Coast Democrats’ attitude towards Britain is so bafflingly possessive that it borders on colonial. They seem outraged that the denizens of their private little holiday camp have got uppity and bumptious, when its quaint caretakers should be baking scones for the visiting campers’ cream teas. The Brits’ job is to drive double-decker buses, repaint selfie-worthy red post boxes, and gestate royal babies — not to foment discord and anarchy. Before opting for this self-destructive mayhem at such odds with your understated stereotype, you upstarts should have requested permission from your patrons across the pond. The answer would have been no.

You may not realise it, but Americans know everything about Britain. I’ve yet to return to the States and have anyone actually ask me as someone who lives there about what’s going on with Brexit. My friends in New England are far more likely to tell me about Brexit.

Oh, and Americans also know everything about the EU — whose functions they perpetually confuse with NATO’s. So they imagine that only the EU keeps the peace. Should the UK withdraw from Brussels, German troops will instantly invade Poland. My compatriots have no familiarity with the bloc’s top-down organisation, its unconsultative meddling in the daily lives of its citizens, or its ever-centralising agenda and hunger for power. Instead, liberal Americans are wont to view the EU through envious, anachronistically rose-tinted glasses as a utopian vessel of all that is good and true in the world. With progressive Democrats, you can safely poo-poo apple pie or even insult their mothers, but one discouraging word about the European Union will invite a tirade.

So if you want any advice on the Tory leadership race, ring Boston.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics...rexit-liberal/


Likely a right wing American wouldn't be much different.