Tuesday, 10 January 2017

The new Napoleon...

It’s a small world and it seems to be getting smaller every day. There was a time when a mad racist, politically incompetent, misogynist becoming the President of the United States of America probably wouldn’t have troubled us across the pond in the UK much at all. We would have met it with a wry, supercilious smile, secure in the fact that not much could hurt our supremely island nation and simply muttered ‘how vulgar’ as we oiled our cricket bats. Oh, it might have been inconvenient for the pound and not at all pleasant for the Americans, but here in the UK we would have carried on in our own inimitable way, probably no better than the US and at times probably a little worse, but unaffected by and large. After all, he's not Napoleon is he.

How things change though and these days what happens in the US is important to the wellbeing of all of us, just as what happens in China or Russia, Iraq, South Korea or even France is important and impactful on us all too. We are a much, much smaller planet and all nations have a bigger impact on each other than ever before. In the past you could enslave another nation without it even being heard of a thousand miles away. You could have a small war and, so long as your cannons were not too loud, nobody would even know that it was going on. It was like living in Antarctica or North Yorkshire and us Brits were really good at it.

The big change came with global war and the weapons that it spewed forth. The atomic bomb put us all under threat and of course the fact that some nations now have the power to destroy us all with the press of a nuclear button or the release of a deadly virus doesn’t help things much. America has quite a lot of these weapons and has used them in the past, in fact they are the only country to have used nuclear weapons to destroy whole cities in seconds, so when a potential madman gets the potential to destroy the planet one has to worry a little.

When the people of the US voted in Trump I wonder what they were thinking about. I doubt that they were thinking about the rest of the world and the issues that face it. I doubt that they were thinking about global warming or global famine of the world economy. My guess is that they were thinking about America and how to make it great again. My guess is that they were dazed by the celebrity of Trump and his plastic family. My guess is that the lies he speaks about immigration and the erosion of American values around gender, religion, and beer are the same lies that those voters tell themselves. The lies say America can be great again, the land of the free, a place where Mom always has an apple pie on the table and where the best cars in the world are built.

Well guess what America? The world has changed and all those tiny nations that were so backward and laughable just fifty or a hundred years ago have learned so much from you that they strive for the American dream too and some of them are doing it better than you ever did.

The American dream is long gone and America - like Great Britain - will never be at the top of the pile again, in fact the pile is fast becoming a plateau for you just like any other tribe living on it. So now you have forced this man upon the world and must accept the consequences as we all do. Look out world. 

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