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Posts Tagged ‘Johnson’

The four faces of Boris Johnson

Posted by hkarner - 4. November 2019

Date: 01-11-2019
Source: The Economist: Bagehot

Player, gambler, Machiavelli or piglet?

Boris johnson at last has his rendezvous with the great British public. Mr Johnson was installed in Downing Street in July by an electorate of just 160,000 Conservative Party members. Now he has to prove himself before a larger and more critical audience. This audience will be bombarded with promises and propaganda over the next six weeks. But Mr Johnson’s unusual probationary period in Downing Street gives them a chance to judge him by his record. What have we learned about the prime minister’s political character and leadership style so far?

One thing is certain: he has defied expectations, both positive and negative. Mr Johnson was frequently presented as a jovial figure—a clown or Bertie Wooster-style buffoon. He liked to make people laugh. He laced his language with eccentric phrases. He created an impression of affable disorganisation. But though he can still make people smile, he is much more focused and disciplined than anyone expected. The iron has entered his soul.

A more appropriate image than a clown is that of a rugby captain. A fan of the game, who played for his college at Oxford, the stockily built Mr Johnson has brought many of the techniques of the sport to the political field. He has demonstrated a single-mindedness: everything he does is about getting the ball over the line. He has shown no hesitation about altering the composition of his team according to his changing game plan, kicking 21 Tories out of the party when they defied him and then re-admitting ten of them when the general election knocked. And he has kept his eye on the clock, using timetables and deadlines to keep the game moving—though he must regret installing “Brexit clocks” in both Downing Street and Conservative Party headquarters set to hit zero on October 31st, a deadline that he has now missed. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Trump says Johnson’s Brexit could rule out US trade deal

Posted by hkarner - 2. November 2019

Date: 01-11-2019
Source: The Guardian

US president uses LBC Radio interview with Nigel Farage to promote co-operation between Brexit party and Tories

Donald Trump has intervened in the UK’s nascent election campaign, calling on Boris Johnson to team up with Nigel Farage to form an “unstoppable force” and claiming Jeremy Corbyn would be “so bad for your country”.

Speaking to Farage on LBC Radio, the US president also said Johnson’s Brexit deal could prevent the UK from agreeing a trade deal with the US.

Trump said the US “can’t make a trade deal with the UK” under “certain aspects of the deal”, despite Johnson’s claims it would allow the UK to have an independent trade policy.

One of Labour’s main attacks against Johnson has been that the prime minister would be too close to Trump and allow a sell-off of public services to US companies as the price of a trade deal, with the NHS potentially on the line. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Boris Johnson’s Brexit Election

Posted by hkarner - 31. Oktober 2019

Date: 30-10-2019

Source: The Wall Street Journal By The Editorial Board

Corbyn could win if the Tories fail to offer a vision of Greater Britain.

Boris Johnson on Tuesday finally cajoled Britain’s reluctant Parliament to call a December general election to try to settle Brexit. It’s a brave and desperate gamble—and one that will work only if he runs a campaign persuading voters to embrace a Brexit vision bigger than the divorce deal he needs a new Parliament to pass.

Britain’s recent Brexit miseries have arisen from the hung Parliament elected after Theresa May’s disastrous 2017 bid for a larger majority. Mrs.

May’s big-government-conservative campaign left voters confused about what improvements either Brexit or a Conservative government could bring.

She barely held on in tenuous alliance with a Northern Ireland unionist party that caused her to adopt impractical red lines on trade policy in Brexit talks with the European Union, and her Brexit deal failed in Parliament. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Boris Johnson’s shabby treatment of Ulster unionists is foolish

Posted by hkarner - 27. Oktober 2019

Date: 26-10-2019
Source: The Economist

Don’t feel sorry for politicians—but do worry about loyalist thugs

For a few minutes, it seemed like old times. On October 21st the Democratic Unionist Party walked back into the Northern Ireland Assembly, which had been closed for three years. The party, which insists on Northern Ireland remaining part of the United Kingdom and is socially conservative, was trying to block the legalisation of abortion and gay marriage—both of which had been imposed on Ulster by Westminster. But other assembly members did not turn up at the session, or left quickly, so the dup’s bid failed. It is not the most humiliating thing that has happened to the party this month.

The dup enjoyed two years in the sun. In June 2017 Theresa May, then the Conservative Party’s leader, lost her majority in the House of Commons and turned to the dup’s ten mps to make up the numbers. A party that most Britons probably thought of as cranky and obsessive (if they thought about it at all) was suddenly powerful. Conservatives praised the union and promised more cash for Northern Ireland. The dup was just as keen on Boris Johnson, Mrs May’s successor, who assured the party that no British prime minister could countenance a separation between Northern Ireland and mainland Britain. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Rebel amendment defeat is yet another painful bellyflop for Boris Johnson

Posted by hkarner - 21. Oktober 2019

Date: 20-10-2019
Source: The Guardian by Polly Toynbee

Prime minister was stopped dead in his tracks from bulldozing deal through parliament with no scrutiny

‘Boris Johnson richly deserves to become the next Tory leader to fail over Europe.’

The prime minister nose-dives again, yet another painful bellyflop among the many in his 88 short days in power. He takes the same humiliating punishment he inflicted on his predecessor in order to snatch her seat: she was gracious, but you could see the inner smirk.

Today he was stopped dead in his tracks from bulldozing an EU deal through parliament. An act that would cement Britain’s fate for decades to come was insultingly put to parliament without time for scrutiny, with no Treasury economic impact assessment, and its 553-page legal text only handed to MPs in the morning as the debate began.

No wonder many, like Sir Oliver Letwin himself, who back the deal in principle, balked at signing up blindfold to such a pig in a poke with no time for deliberation. Will Boris Johnson refuse to send the letter asking for an extension, will he break the law? If so, the law will break him, again.

If anyone was hoping for some great historic parliamentary moment, this was no resounding debate on the nature and future of Britain to ring out through the ages. Instead you could hear the flapping of pigeons coming home to roost to this house that had created such a disastrously flawed referendum. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Support grows for a new Brexit poll amid fears over Johnson’s plan

Posted by hkarner - 14. Oktober 2019

Date: 13-10-2019
Source: The Guardian

DUP raises doubts on customs union, while Labour says it will whip MPs to support a second referendum

Pro-remain MPs predicted on Saturday that they were gaining sufficient cross-party support to secure a second Brexit referendum as fresh doubts were raised over whether Boris Johnson can secure a deal with the EU that can pass through parliament.

The push for a second vote appeared to be gaining momentum before what promises to be a dramatic “super Saturday” showdown in parliament next weekend. That emergency House of Commons sitting, called by Johnson, will be held after a critical EU summit in Brussels on Thursday and Friday. It will coincide with a pro-referendum march through London, which organisers say a million people could join.

On Saturday the chances of Johnson securing a deal that will win the crucial support of the 10 DUP MPs appeared to be in growing doubt as Nigel Dodds, the party’s leader in Westminster, questioned key elements of the proposed deal – including the idea of Northern Ireland being in some form of post-Brexit customs partnership with the EU. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Macron gives Johnson until end of week to overhaul Brexit plan

Posted by hkarner - 8. Oktober 2019

Date: 07-10-2019
Source: The Guardian

French president’s insistence that UK should give way raises chances of talks imploding

Emmanuel Macron

The French president has given Boris Johnson until the end of the week to fundamentally revise his Brexit plan, in a move that increases the chances of the negotiations imploding within days.

The UK proposals tabled last week are not regarded in Brussels as being a basis for a deal and Emmanuel Macron emphasised it was up to the UK to think again before an upcoming EU summit.

After declining to meet with the prime minister in person, Macron further insisted during a phone call on Sunday that the talks would only be advanced through Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Johnson has run out of road. Other people’s outrage is all he’s got now

Posted by hkarner - 3. Oktober 2019

Date: 02-10-2019
Source: The Guardian Tom Kibasi

The prime minister must make a deal with the EU, request an extension, or resign. The rest is bluster

‘The true fight over any no-deal Brexit will take place in the coming general election.’ Boris Johnson at the Conservative party conference.

Boris Johnson is routinely dismissed as a liar for whom the truth is just another fling. So it is all the more perplexing that his bluster about a no-deal Brexit is taken seriously. The truth is that Johnson does not want a no-deal Brexit – and certainly not one that precedes a general election.

Let’s start with the genesis of no-deal Brexit. It was an exemplar of Theresa May’s politics: a tactic invented to force her will on parliament rather than to engage in the hard graft of consensus-building political leadership. It was also an embarrassingly misguided attempt to threaten the European Union. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Boris Johnson’s ’secret Irish border plans‘ dismissed as non-starter

Posted by hkarner - 2. Oktober 2019

Date: 01-10-2019
Source: The Guardian

Report cites leaked proposals for clearance areas 5-10 miles from border and real-time tracking of goods

The Irish border has formed one of the most troublesome sticking points of the Brexit negotiations.

Boris Johnson’s secret plans to solve the Irish border Brexit challenge involve customs sites on both sides of the border and real-time tracking devices on lorries, it has been reported.

The ideas, which mark a departure from his promise not to put infrastructure on the border, are part of four unofficial papers submitted by the UK to Brussels by Johnson’s team. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Centrist politics will not defeat Boris Johnson’s rightwing populism

Posted by hkarner - 2. Oktober 2019

Date: 01-10-2019
Source: The Guardian by Chantal Mouffe

Democratic politics always involves ‘us’ against ‘them’ – so the way to fight the populist right is to build a bigger ‘us’

In his determination to deliver Brexit “do or die”, Boris Johnson is planning to launch an election campaign that will pit “the people” against “parliament”. He promises to take sovereignty back from the political elites – and return it to “the people”. The announcement of these tactics has caused alarm among those who fear democracy will be threatened by a “populist” politics of polarisation between “us” and “them”.

But this fear of populism reveals something troubling about how we currently understand democratic politics. What most people seem to find shocking about Johnson’s strategy is that it involves an “us v them” confrontation – as if democratic politics could avoid conflict between irreconcilable political projects. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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