Monday, 10 December 2018

Decline and fall

The political settlement we have - what I describe as the social democratic liberal consensus (for want of a better term) is one derived from the aftermath of WW2 building on interwar ideas. The EU and global order has grown up around what was established in 1948. It's dying.

This is what we are seeing in the USA and sweeping through Europe. Every administration that has stood since the war has been built on the authority and gravitas established at the birth of the UN on the back of America's moral victory in WW2.

Through old age, corruption and hypocrisy and wit the internet shining a torch on their frailties, we have pulled back the curtain and what is seen cannot be unseen. They now stand without gravitas and they themselves have robbed high office of dignity and prestige. The West, therefore no longer has moral foundation from which to project and promote its own values. Along with the decline in economic power, the West no longer calls the shots which is why we see Turkey turning away from the western alliance.

Russia is able to probe the weaknesses of Western society largely because we lack a moral centre and will do all that we can to avoid any war even if it means peacemeal capitulation to its peripheral military and political aggression. We will roll over. Increasingly we find our own political establishments are unable to exert their authority not least because their metropolitan values are alien to the people they govern - which is partly why the Visegrad states are in conflict with the EU executive.

Resistance to the EU's moral imperialism is commonly described as populism and nationalism, but ultimately it is an upsurge of national democratic sentiment against an alien value system that many see as an occupying force.

With the EU being a collaboration of political elites with authoritarian, paternalistic "progressive" values it seeks to impose their morality and their rule of law on peoples who are largely powerless to oppose them. There is nothing we can do to stop the creeping technocracy

The more visible encroachments are things like the tobacco products directive - relatively unimportant in their nature, but hugely significant in terms of where political authority resides. We now have a bad an unreformable piece of law. For euro members, though, this authority extends over entire budgets and essentially removes political authority from the people in the running of their financial affairs. What's more, the EU wants more power and more control. More Europe! is always the answer.

Consequently we increasingly ruled and micromanaged from afar by an unresponsive government with aliens values whose morality is imposed upon us - right through to demanding that member states take their quota of immigrants. This is not government by the people for the people. This is pure technocratic managerialism, designed to keep democracy in check, designed to control our decision making and place constraints on our government at all levels right down to bin collections.

The emerging chaos we see is the conflict between democratic will and the system imposed upon us. It extends far beyond trade governance and creeps into every area of life - where nation states and even councils can only work within the confines of what is still allowed.

The prestige and authority of this system is entirely borrowed from its founders based on their political and moral accomplishments - and has nothing of its own to stand on. As history fades, so does their authority. We are witnessing the end of the twentieth century order.

The europhiles, therefore, are the ones in fear of losing their empire - they are the dinosaurs clinging on to the past, they are the ones most afraid of democracy because the end of the EU means the end of their means to control the narrative and our choices on every level.

The EU system is top down governance which no longer commands legitimacy or respect. The only thing it has is authority by way of the collusion of political elites whose own legitimacy is in question. That is the Brexit flashpoint. For all that remainers tell us that our problems are not caused by the EU, our problems are caused by our system of government and the EU pretty much IS our system of government. Behind most major domestic acts are a raft of EU diktats.

We are told that the 2008 energy act was a piece of domestic law. Superically it was but it implements measures demanded by Brussels in order to liberalise energy services across the EU and to create a single market in generation. Whether that is good or bad is neither here nor there. It is not without merit but the point is that our parliaments are puppet parliaments doing as they are instructed, implementing the will of the Commission to an integrationist agenda - without consent.

We therefore have no clear line of accountability - nobody really knows who is responsible for what and even our own polity doesn't understand how any of it works - from fishing through to energy generation. We're on autopilot with nobody in the cockpit.

Now that we have voted to leave we see how debased our politics has become - devoid of knowledge and ensconced in their own warped little bubble, oblivious to the concerns of real people - chasing after their own narcissistic delusions. In effect the levers of power are no longer attached to anything. This clueless rabble is no longer in control of anything and things only work because they run on long established systems. But soon they will break down because the institutional knowledge is gone.

The EU, therefore, serves as a life support machine for a decaying and spent political system at the fag end of its useful political life, with no idea how to revive itself and incapable of generating ideas. Our party system is broken and our politics is not fit for purpose. The top-down centralised rule of elites no longer works. It's been decaying for decades. All of our policies are sticking plasters for structural problems they lack the courage or imagination to address. It's all falling apart and we all know it can't go on like this.

This is ultimately why remainers are wasting their time. They could, through acts of chicanery prevent us from leaving the EU - but they cannot fight the tide of history and those sticking plasters will come unstuck eventually. There has to be a democratic correction.

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