Posted by Steve Turley ● Jul 24, 2019 7:51:06 PM


Alright, some breaking news here, Boris Johnson has in fact won the UK leadership race and will be the next prime minister of Britain. The former mayor of London won an internal vote to become the Conservative Party’s new leader and will assume the office on Wednesday afternoon. He beat his rival Jeremy Hunt by a very impressive vote margin and he received over 90 thousand votes to Hunt’s 46 or 47 thousand, so the result was an almost 2 to 1 landslide in favor of Johnson, about 66 percent of the vote, so it was not even close. President Trump has tweeted his support of Boris, he said he will be a great prime minister, and in a speech to his supporters just after the results were announced, Boris said that there goal is to deliver Brexit, unite the Kingdom and defeat Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn, a sort of ‘Make Britain Great Again’ message, and already, commentators are noting that Boris is ready to unleash what some are calling his ‘One Nation’ agenda, which seeks to enact a number of policies to try to tackle Britain’s north/south cultural and political divide. In fact, some are arguing that Boris is ready to unveil what they are calling a blitzkrieg of domestic plans to help unify the nation and reestablish the Conservatives as the primary party in British politics. And all of this will give you a sense of just what happened here with the election of Boris Johnson and its relevance to the resurgence of British populism.

I think the single most significant political development in all of this is that the Conservative Party in Britain has in fact made a very, very important choice in terms of its future and it sided with British nationalist populism. You see, the Tories under Theresa May made a monstrous, monstrous miscalculation, they tried to straddle between the David Cameron remainers on the one side and the Boris Johnson Brexiteers on the other. And I can understand why May thought this was the best course, she recognized that the Tories were going through a civil war, very similar to what we had in the GOP, the Republicans, here in the States during the 2016 election, the war was over whether they should embrace the politics of the David Cameron coalition which at one time delivered to them a solid majority government, of which Theresa May is the beneficiary. OR, should they become the Brexit party, a nationalist populist party that would shift their voting base more to the rural areas and working class led by someone like Boris Johnson. So because you had these two competing wings within the Conservative Party, many decided to opt for the center, a compromise between the two, which ended up largely leaving Northern Ireland under the control of the EU and subjected the domestic economy of Britain to EU-enforced regulations but without any British representation in the European parliament, which of course no one liked. 

And so, as a result of opting for the halfway point between these two competing stands, between the Conservative leavers and Conservative remainers, the Tories ended up getting squeezed out by a combination of a resurgent Brexit-based party like the one set up by Nigel Farage on the one side, and they got squeezed out from the center with a new well-organized, moderate center force, albeit from the center-left via the Social Democrats and Labour, although, keep in mind that Labour has its own problems. Half of its constituency voted FOR Brexit, they voted to leave, even though the vast majority of Labour mp’s are pro-remain, so they are seeing plenty of defections as well to the Brexit Party. THIS is what is so important here, the new nationalist populism that is sweeping across Europe represents a political paradigm shift that is cutting across both major centrist parties, on both the right and the left, and it is disrupting the status quo politics, and THIS is where I think Theresa May failed. She approached the Brexit negotiations, which as it turns out, were not really negotiations, but more a lot of capitulations and apologizing from Theresa May to the Bullies in Brussels. But May attempted to satisfy the demands of the voters by operating as if the status quo, the CENTER, was still the operative paradigm in British politics, but as Nigel Farage has proven, it is not. The political center has collapsed; it is been squeezed out by a resurgent nationalist populism on the one side and a resurgent political leftism on the other, both of which are their own unique reactions to the globalized political and economic status quo.

So the lesson behind Theresa May’s failure at negotiating a Brexit was that the Tories HAD to pick a side in their civil war; they either had to side with the Cameron pro-globalist forces within their party or fully embrace the pro-Brexiteer wing of the party, and with the landslide election of Boris Johnson as their new head, the Tories have made it unequivocally clear that they have now embraced the Brexit wing of their party, with the hopes of creating what we might call a new nationalist populist LIGHT party. We have talked about how nationalist populist right parties have begun turning their more mainstream center-right parties into nationalist populist LIGHT parties, given the trajectory of European and American politics, THAT seems to be the way forward rather than embracing a renewed Cameronism which would inevitably collapse under the weight of defectors to a renewed nationalist populist party, like the Brexit Party or UKIP, embrace Brexit fully, put Boris Johnson in as prime minister, stick it to Brussels, show that you are in command and that you have all the leverage, especially with President Trump’s United States behind you, enact Brexit and in the process offer a ‘One Nation’ series of domestic politics that reunites the culturally, economically, and politically divided north and south. And I am glad to see that the Conservatives have made that decision, and so overwhelmingly as well, in such a landslide.

Remember, scholars see British populism absolutely surging, in many respects, Brexit was just the beginning. All the data suggests that more and more Brits sense a widening gulf between them and the political elites in Westminster or the economic elites in London, and they are ready to blow. So, this choice of Boris Johnson as prime minister shows that the vast majority of conservatives do in fact believe that nationalist populism is the wave of the future, that globalism has been spent, it is exhausted itself, and the way forward is a One Nation populism with Boris Johnson at the helm, and with Boris Johnson leading the Conservatives in Westminster while Nigel Farage is leading the Brexit Party in Brussels, it appears that Britain has a very real chance of helping to usher in a post-globalist world order.

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