by Frank Schnittger
Wed Jun 5th, 2019 at 10:25:29 AM EST
I have a policy on not writing on stuff I have already seen better portrayed elsewhere, which makes Kathy Sheridan's piece on Trump's visit to England a hard act to follow... Coming from a small country well used to humiliations by the greater powers around us, there is not a small amount of schadenfreude associated with seeing the UK similarly abused. One wonders where exactly "taking back control" morphed into becoming a Trump vassal state, with Buckingham Palace used as a helipad for the US embassy and venue for a Trump family Downton Abbey themed holiday adventure.
The policy content of the visit seems to have been confined to telling the Brits who should become their next Prime Minister (Boris Johnson), who should lead their next Brexit negotiations (Nigel Farage), insulting his host, London Mayor, Sadiq Khan, as a "stone cold loser", and telling the British that the promised terrific trade deal with the US would require opening up the NHS to US private venture capital takeover, and the UK food chain to US chlorinated chickens. Can you imagine the Brexiteer outrage had Juncker even hinted at such things?
Even Sky's Promo for the visit (20 seconds) depicts an alien spaceship as a hostile invader casting a dark shadow over Britain, even over the Queen, and then turns out to be nothing more than Trump's blimp. Someone in Murdoch's empire is sure to get sacked. The Brits are very good at laughing at themselves but many won't know whether to laugh or cry at what Brexit Britain has become. Still, with Trump also due to visit Ireland, they may be laughing at others soon enough. Apparently Leo Varadker refused to meet Trump at his Doonbeg golf resort where a dinner in Trump's honour was held last night attended by the Irish Ambassador to the US, Dan Mulhall, and the government's special envoy to the US, Fine Gael back bench TD John Deasy.
A State Banquet it was not. President Michael D. Higgins was otherwise engaged criticising Trump's "regressive and pernicious decision to leave the global Paris Agreement" and stating that those at risk of exclusion from society were "being abandoned to become the prey of xenophobes, homophobes and racists." Could there have been a message for Trump in there somewhere?