During his previous office, Cameron has quite cheerfully joined the despicable chorus of buffoons – Nigel Farage conductor – in chanting that Brussels does this and that to the UK: we can’t do business, we’re being chained by an undemocratic structure, immigration is out of control, Justice back to the courts of this country, etc. Back then, Cameron was thinking that it all played very nicely with the electorate.
Not long after though, he saw himself more or less forced to announce a referendum: the public, poisoned by Farage’s paranoid foaming and his hateful and distorted character, would not want it any other way.
By entering Farage’s world of word and thought, Cameron has managed to steer the referendum’s scope towards the cul-de-sac of the fear of invasion: suddenly everybody started talking only about skills-based visas, about bringing into this country only the highly skilled people, about the foreign benefit scroungers, refugees that should go back home… invaders, crusaders, borders, fences…
The EU Referendum theme has quickly transformed into how ‘we’ hate the ones coming here and what things could ‘we’ do to scare the shit out of them: isn’t the ‘become great again’ phrase all about that? And Cameron has had a big part to play in the unfolding of this surreal scenario of blunder and self-delusion.
Were he a leader, he would have kept well away from Farage’s poisoning whirlwinds of hate and positioned himself as an authoritative prime minister, explaining very clearly and firmly to the wider public what are the benefits and downsides of being in the EU. Due to his inability of embracing a fair but decisive approach to the entire problematic of the EU, he devised the episode of marching into Brussels, where he cut the ‘deal’. Does the deal mean anything? Nothing more than the usual Brussels sordid symbolism.
Obviously, the electorate did see very clearly past such pale subterfuge.
So well did the electorate see how things really stand, that David Cameron has been transformed into a piece of furniture: whatever argument he brings to the EU debate is not being listened to, nor trusted.
He has managed to practically annihilate his (and the) potential to lead a credible EU campaign: firstly by speaking the devil’s tongue (Farage & Co.’s) and secondly, when a panicked and weak kid, he mimed an EU reform proposal, which was (not at all surprisingly) stillborn.
Cameron, though his overall approach, has managed to neutralise the possibility of a campaign based on arguments of reason.
We are therefore left with the terrible noises of a band of hungry clowns, led by Farage, on one side and on the Remain side, with a disarming cacophony of silences and half-uttering in various tones.
The referendum is now fully in the hands of the British electorate. And most surely for the better! My view is that the balanced, reasonable (some would say not inclined toward the revolutionary route) nature of the British electorate will prevail this time around too.
UK most probably will remain in the EU. But because of Cameron’s ‘weak, weak, weak’ (I quote Thatcher here, when she talked about continental Europe) leadership, the real chances that this referendum offered are lost. No serious talk about how to democratise Brussels, nothing about reforming the economic model of the bloc, nothing about a Eurozone that amputates nations (see Greece)… nothing about all these.
This referendum – the chance of a lifetime, as it has been dubbed – has been painfully narrowed down to the issue of the ‘foreign’. Such a lost chance!
In the meantime, Britain’s position in the EU emerges weakened (add that to the very apathetic last few years of Conservative Britain in the EU), given Cameron’s childish approach.
There is another possibility: Cameron is indeed a very cunning little leader and he played all this charade with the Brussels deal and with being on the EU side only for façade purposes. He is actually a Brexit-er at heart, as someone was saying the other day. If he did that (which is unlikely) then he is not so very much a leader but a rat.
In any case, things remain equally bad.
In the meantime, the Franco-German flank (and their sometimes very noir liaison) will regroup much stronger, whilst Britain’s (once) meaningful voice for democracy and accountability will very certainly appear diminished, if not lost. A frail balance is about to be broken.
Junker apparently likes to slap (he also likes alcohol a little bit, but that’s another thing). Yes, it’s true, now and again, he offers a very friendly slap on the face/neck region to all the male European leaders when they congregate for the official photo. The slap on Hungarian premier Viktor Orban’s face has become quite famous, assorted with the gracious appellation ‘Dictator!’.
Junker doesn’t need to slap Cameron: being the well-behaved boy that he is, Cameron is behaving after the now-classic ‘hi-five’.
Cameron’s lack of leadership (or his ‘lightweight’ as Obama put it) might very well lead to the flourishing of the undemocratic side of the EU. Or indeed to the cancerisation of the entire Union, with its fatidic excrescences reminding us of the luminous Soviet era! The UK seems to want to abandon its role of global leader! But who’s going to take that role then? And what will the UK change into?
A peaceful, serene, flower-power, neutral Britzerland?
We do not live in a time of great leaders, by the looks of it!
Or maybe it’s just that we don’t actually need leaders at this moment in history! Maybe democracy is not so much a priority these days!!!