How Boris Tried To Hijack Parliament

Trevor K. McNeil and D.S. Mitchell

Mr. Johnson

Prime Minister Boris Johnson. A name resonating as strangely in British ears as President Rupert Murdoch would to Americans. While his may seem a particularly lofty and unexpected feat, it did not come out of nowhere. To really get a handle on what happened and how the former London mayor got where he is now, it is important to keep in mind his earlier career as a journalist.

Laying the Groundwork

Lord Acton once said that absolute power corrupts absolutely. An adage from which came the idea that the people who are best suited to govern are those who do not want to. Something that assisted Johnson no end as he slowly built up a name in the political arena long before entering it. Particularly as the Brussels Correspondent for the Spectator Newspaper where he wrote about the goings-on at the European Union. A platform which he used to gain influence in the growing Euro-skeptic community.

Renounces U.S. Citizenship

Apparently, trying to counteract the Acton effect. Everything Boris Johnson has done since his early 30’s has indirectly assisted, or was intended to serve his ambition to be Prime Minister. From his journalism career and two term stint as Mayor of London, both used to bolster his profile and popularity. In 2016 he dropped his American citizenship. He was born in New York. He has spent a unrewarded amount of time in efforts to keep his middle name, the vaguely French-sounding de Pfeffel, from becoming public knowledge.

A Small But Vocal Minority

The Euro-skeptics are a quadrant of the European Right Wing that would blow up in later years leading to the small but influential UK Independence Party which engineered the Brexit vote. France’s far-right Front Nationanale (National Front) which came in second in the last French national election are a segment of such philosophy. Johnson got in on the ground floor of the movement in the mid-1990’s and worked it so that by the time he first ran for parliament in 2001 he was already a well-known and popular figure in conservative circles.

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Understanding Brexit, (Or Maybe Not)



By Trevor K. McNeil & D.S. Mitchell

A Bit Of History

If Americans are to understand Brexit we need to fill in a bit of history. So, here we go. The European Union is made up of 28 countries, including the UK. It covers over 1,800,000 square miles with a population of over 515,000,000.

Alternative To War

The EU was originally developed as a means to thwart war. As a reminder, the continent had been the powder keg that launched two world wars within 25 years in the early part of the twentieth century. After WWII a consensus developed that if countries worked together and were inter-dependent trading partners there would be less chance of another world war.

From A Small Start

You’re doing great, just hang in there. Because, understanding Brexit will take at least a couple more paragraphs. The European Union (EU) can directly trace its origins to the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) and the European Economic Community (EEC/Common Market) formed in 1951 by Belgium, France, West Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.  It was another 22 years before the UK joined the then European Economic Community on January 1, 1973 with Denmark and Ireland. Since then the European Union has nearly tripled in size, and for the most part flourished.

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