Party Before Country

Actually, not even that, to my eyes. To me, it looks more like personal arrogance and hubris, as it has for more than a year.

In June 2017, after what may have been one of the silliest elections in British history, my friend and coauthor both here and at his blog, Chalcedon, wrote of The Hubris of Theresa May, saying this:

The background is that 7 weeks ago the Prime Minister, Theresa May, having a 20 point lead in the opinion polls, decided to call a General Election. She had no need to, with a majority of 17 in the Commons, and another 3 years before law would require one. The media was agreed on only one thing, she would win a crushing victory, perhaps over 100 more seats, and the Labour Party, under the Bernie Sanders sound-alike, Jeremy Corbyn, would be crushed. She asked for a mandate and a majority, she got neither. In normal circumstances such a leader would go, and it seems as though her first instinct was to do just that, but as so often, she let her advisers overrule her. Since then her advisers have ‘resigned’ – it is said before members of the Cabinet insisted on their resignation. Having wanted a strong and stable government, she has given us a weak and wobbly one. In a few days negotiations over Britain’s leaving the EU will start, and we are no closer to knowing what sort of deal she wants. The only thing for certain is she is a weakened and diminished figure whose authority dwindles daily.

The only way she can now secure a majority for crucial legislation is via a deal with Ian Paisley’s Democratic Unionist Party from Northern Ireland. As Churchill put it in his memoirs of the Great War, writing about 1922:
“The whole map of Europe has been changed … but as the deluge subsides and the waters fall short we see the dreary steeples of Fermanagh and Tyrone emerging once again.”

Leading to this conclusion

The Conservatives took the electorate for granted. Confident to the point of arrogance, they thought that could offer an uncosted manifesto with some unpopular policies, and make up for that by personal attacks on Corbyn. To his credit, he did not respond in kind, and whilst his own manifesto was full of dubious economics, it at least looked as though there was a message of hope there. The electorate have punished the hubris of Theresa May, and one thing is for certain, she will never be allowed to lead her party into another General Election. Can she carry on? Well, as long as there is no obvious successor, she can survive, but the Tory party has always been good at poleaxing failed leaders and finding new ones, so it will not be long, I suspect.

Do not take the electorate for granted or for fools.

That was good advice, which fell on ears of stone, and so now, here we are.

Where is here? David Kurten at The Conservative Woman tells us.

The whole country will remain in the single market until the end of the transition period, and then the integrity of the country will be broken as Great Britain leaves the single market, but Northern Ireland remains in it, subject to EU regulations on goods, agriculture, VAT, excise duty and state aid.

We will leave the customs union, but remain in a ‘Single Customs Territory’, which is identical in effect to the customs union.

Despite provision in the treaty for negotiating a free trade agreement, there is now no reason for the European Union ever to agree to one. Mrs May has given away £39,000,000,000 of British taxpayers’ money for absolutely nothing in return. There is thus no incentive for the EU to agree a free trade deal, as the transition period may be extended by mutual agreement, on payment of extra financial contributions from the UK for the ‘privilege’.

As a concession for a ‘backstop to the backstop’ where the whole UK remains in the customs union, rather than just Northern Ireland, she has given away control of our 200-mile exclusive economic zone, so that EU fishing fleets will continue to have access to our fishing waters in perpetuity and UK fisherman will have to obey jointly agreed quotas.

We will remain shackled to the EU Common Foreign and Security Policy but will have no say in decision-making. Thus our foreign policy and armed forces have been ceded to Brussels, and we will remain entangled in the EU’s defence architecture including the European Defence Agency, European Defence Funding, Permanent Structured Cooperation, EU Procurement and EU Battle Groups.

The UK is required to implement all the measures of the Paris Climate Agreement including carbon pricing, and to participate in the EU’s Emission Trading Scheme. There will be no escape from the scam of climate change alarmism and in the process we will have to continue to implement measures which are actively destructive of primary forests, such as burning wood pellets from North and South America in place of coal in power stations and raising the percentage of biofuel such as palm oil in petrol and diesel. Insane EU rules say that burning biomass is ‘carbon neutral’, even if whole forests are cut down as fodder for power stations.

Here is a link to the full agreement.

Essentially what it does, as near as I can tell, is turn the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland into a colony of the European Union, with no way out. And the British Armed Forces turn into cannon fodder for the Fourth Reich. Mind you with no control. Not to mention their soldiers conduct in batte=le subject to review and punishment by European courts. This is what selling your sovereignty looks like, only worse, they are paying for the privilege of becoming a colony.

Strangely, what may yet save Britain is the hubris of May (or her advisors) in calling that election 18 months ago. Why is that? Because the one group solidly against this plan is the DUP, the Northern Irish party that Chalcedon spoke of.

Jacob Rees Mogg explains

We’ll see if the Conservative Party has enough spine to vote no confidence in the Prime Minister. Frankly, I doubt it, and their cowardice will hurt the population of  Britain.

But, in the last analysis, it is their country, if they want to sell it and their people out, and pay for it besides, well I guess it’s not really any of our business

Hubris, meet Nemesis.

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Little Boys Dream of Empire

So, last weekend a severe thunderstorm prevented the President from joining Macron and Merkel to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Great War. OK, if you say so!

Earlier the President of France had said that Europe needs to form a joint army to be able to resist Russia, China or even the US. That’s actually risible, Russia is a declining power, with an economy about the size of Italy, it punches above its weight, mostly because it reminds every one of the Soviet Union. China? Really, China’s halfway around the world, how are you and they gonna get your armies together, M le President? And why? And the US, huh? Ambitious little boy, aren’t you. Does that European Army you’re speaking of include the Luftwaffe’s 4 operational Typhoons? Does it depend on the French infantry that took a month to get to the Baltics?

In other words, it’s basically bullshit. It’s a little boy telling everyone how tough he is, how he can take on the world. France used to be like that, before 1805, since then it has been in decline. Germany too once was like that, When it was Europe had never-ending wars, in 1866, in 1870, in 1914, and in 1940.

Since 1945 there have been no wars in western Europe. Why? Because the United States is in charge. As an outside hegemon the US can keep control without it all flying apart, the day the last US trooper leaves, it’ll all start over again. Nobody at all in Europe wants to follow France, or Germany, perhaps not even Britain.

That of course, was planned, mostly by Britain, who ever since Napoleon had realized that a single European country dominating Europe, couldn’t be controlled from upsetting the world order by the maritime powers (first Britain, then Britain and America, now mostly America). Britain and America are basically free traders, we always have been, what wakes us up is when you start screwing with trade routes.

In fact, Lord Ismay, the first Secretary General of NATO is quoted as saying the purpose of NATO is to keep the Germans down, the Russians out and the Americans in.

The Europeans increasing like to play games, especially in the EU, and are indeed trying to transform that trading block into an Empire, and by no means a democratic one either. Worse really than Kaiser Wilhelm’s Second Reich.

They are trying to do it peacefully for a change, probably because the largest army in Europe (by quite a lot) is the US Army. Not only that but it is a highly experienced combat army that would likely take any European force apart in time for lunch. Exception: the British, who while painfully small these days, are the equal, in every way, of American troops. And a partial exception are the Eastern European forces, especially Poland’s who have been out seeing the elephant as well.

So while Macron, Merkel, and Drunker dream dreams of Empire, in the real world, they can perhaps, make some trouble, and get a bunch of people killed, but their dream of being Napoleon. Well, Sir Walter Raleigh said it as well as anyone,

For whosoever commands the sea commands the trade; whosoever commands the trade of the world commands the riches of the world, and consequently the world itself.

From Drake to Trump, that is the reality that Macron doesn’t want to deal with.

There were a couple of quite good Articles on this yesterday at The Federalist, they are:

Macron’s Call For A European Army Is An Obvious Bluff

and

Macron Is Picking A Fight With Trump Out Of Empty Arrogance

Aussie breasts spoil Deutsche fest

You guys ready for something a bit lighter? Yeah me too. What we talk about is important, but doom and gloom make Neo a dull boy. It seems that our Aussie cousins (the female ones) don’t wear the German national costume to some Germans’ satisfaction. From The Spectator (Australia).

Franz Thalhammer, 70, a former chairman of Munich’s Georgenstoana Baierbrunn folk group, called out Australian and Italian tourists specifically for sexualizing the uniform.

“A dirndl is something nice, it can make almost anyone pretty. But some of the dresses you see these days are crazy,” he said, Daily Mail reports. “You go in a tent and it’s full of paralytic Australians and Italians and they’ve forked out €250 ($290) for a complete Bavarian outfit and think they’re Bavarians. It’s as if I’d walk around half-naked and say I’m Australian.”

Now, now! Herr Thalhammer, that’s some terrible national stereotyping. Plus, no one wants to see a 70-year old Bavarian folk musician half-naked.

The truth of the matter is that no one can quarantine their culture and protect it from being borrowed, blended, kitsched and misused. And no one should, whether that culture is Indian or German, African or Chinese.

But Oktoberfest is more fun than most, and who can blame the Aussies. In fact, seems like a good reason to go. Beer and half-naked beautiful women, what’s not to like, and even better, they speak English. And the beer is better than that stuff that comes in oil cans. 🙂

The NATO Scam

Joe Sylvester over at The Federalist has an article yesterday about the welfare state called NATO. It’s rather interesting.

It has been 27 years since the collapse of the Soviet Union, but American foreign policy has not evolved to fit the new world. We have more military bases in Europe than we did post-World War II. There seems to be no coherent answer as to the necessity of such bases and, worse, no justification of the burgeoning costs.

Who are these bases designed to protect? Which European countries have an actual or even a perceived threat of foreign invasion, and by whom? Why can’t economic powerhouses such as Germany provide for their own defense?

In short, Germany can, but won’t. Agreements among North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) nations stipulate that if one member is attacked, the others must come to their aid. This agreement acts as a one-way insurance policy for Europe. The United States pays the premiums—the costs of maintaining bases across Europe. If a member nation is attacked, however, the United States, in practice, will end up shouldering a majority of the burden of defense.

That is not an alliance, it is at best a protectorate, at worst a colony. But it’s a misshapen colony, colonies are supposed to exist for the benefit of the mother country, not the mother country exist for the benefit of the colony. What is really amounts to is welfare. The Europeans subsidize their citizens, and all those Muslim ‘asylum seekers’ on the backs of the taxpayers – the American taxpayers. And like all welfare systems, it has bred dependence on the state, in this case, Europe’s dependence on the United States.

[…] This agreement not only forfeits the rights of the United States to decline participation if it is not in American interests, it is not and cannot physically be reciprocal. Germany and a majority of the rest of the member nations cannot aid the United States in times of conflict. Even if they wanted to, they are not capable of aiding in any meaningful way. This is a contractual obligation that these countries are in default of, which should render it unenforceable and void.

In January, the German Parliamentary armed forces commissioner, Hans-Peter Bartels, issued a shocking report that stunned the German parliament, the Bundestag. In it, he wrote that Germany’s military personnel are at an all-time low of a 170,000-man army. To put this in perspective, if this were hand-to-hand conflict, Germany would be evenly matched against the militaries of Bangladesh and Afghanistan.

It takes new German recruits approximately 45 weeks to get uniforms, and many are trained with broom handles instead of guns and passenger vans in place of armored vehicles. Only one-third of their jet-fighters and a staggering five of their 60 transport helicopters were operational. To make matters worse, after a slight increase in spending in 2018, defense spending will again regress to an all-time low in the following year.

In June of last year, news of a German withdrawal from NATO exercises after less than two weeks into a four-week exercise caused international embarrassment. Rules limiting overtime by German military officials highlight their attitudes about meeting their commitments to the European Union to bolster their defense forces to appropriate levels and see to their own well-being. German attitudes on defense can be summed up by saying, “American pays for our defense, so why should we?”

A couple of things about that last link, the Bundeswehr is only allowed to work 41 hours a week, and there is no provision for overtime. Does that sound as imbecilic to you as it does me? Overtime for the army! And a forty-one hour work week maximum. Any of you civilian Americans ever had it that good? Yeah, usually I got overtime unless I owned the joint, in which case my normal week was 60-80 hours, but 48-60 hours was a normal week most of my career. I’d guess our army is higher than that.

Then there is this part…

Germany is the largest economy in Europe by a long-shot, the fifth-largest economy in the world, and the number one exporter of goods around the world. Forty-six percent of the German economy lives on exports, compared to China at 20 percent. Nine percent of German exports are bought directly by U.S. markets. In 2016, the United States had a trade deficit of $65 billion with Germany, which was only America’s third-largest deficit after China and Japan.

We acquiesced to this type of deal, long ago, when we had ~80% of gross world product, shortly after World War II to help Europe recover from the war. The time for that has passed, as has the Soviet Union.

When you think of Russia, think of Italy with a lot of (mostly) old nukes. That’s about the size of its economy. And it is dependent on one product: Oil. And the corrupt German government is its best customer, while we spend our money defending them. Quite the scam isn’t it.

Russia fails at our will, all we have to do is glut the oil market, which is exactly how we destroyed the Soviet Union, we drove them to their grave economically, while outproducing them militarily. Remember when they put their entire missile fleet on the negotiating table to stop SDI? They did, at Keflavik. Think they might be a bit worried about the US Space Force? I don’t know how well planned it is either, but I like being stronger than the rest of the world put together. It’s a feeling Putin will never know.

But the real problem for the US (actually what passes these days for the free world) isn’t Rusia, it is China. And as long as we’re spending all this money in Europe, we are ignoring the real problem to focus on a  minor annoyance.

Time to get our eye on the ball, before we strike out.

Mütti and the CSU

Have you been paying attention to Germany? You (and I) should be. It appears that Merkel’s immigrants are causing her problems with the Germans. About time, but perhaps better late than never. From Vijeta Uniyal writing on Legal Insurrection.

Just three months into her fourth term, Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel faces the biggest crisis of her career. Her Catholic conservative Bavarian ally, the CSU, has threatened to abandon the coalition government over immigration policy.

Germany’s Interior Minister and long-time CSU leader, Horst Seehofer, wants to push for tougher immigration laws, which will include refusing entry to illegal immigrants at the border. According to German newspaper reports, if the country’s Interior Minister goes ahead with the new restrictions without Merkel’s consent, she will be forced to fire him, putting an end to her freshly-baked coalition government. Her political future hangs in the balance, as CSU leaders meet on Monday to decide the future course of action.

The standoff threatens to end the 60-year-old alliance between Merkel-led Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and Bavaria-based CSU.

Catholic conservative CSU party’s new-found zeal to curb migration may have lot to do with the upcoming state elections in Bavaria, where the party faces stiff challenge from the right-wing Alternative for Germany, or AfD party. “I can’t work with this woman,” Seehofer said referring to Merkel, German newspaper Die Welt reported.

Frustrated with Merkel’s refusal to compromise on her policy of open doors for illegal immigrants, CSU’s Seehofer is seeking to create a European alliance against unregulated migration. As German business daily Handelblatt reported on Wednesday: “In a dangerous swipe at Chancellor Angela Merkel, her own interior minister is siding with the Austrian and Italian governments to forge a right-wing “axis of the willing” to curb immigration.”

“Is Merkel’s reign nearing a frustrated end?,” asked the left-wing UK newspaper The Guardian.

“Chancellor [Merkel] Needs to Turn Around,” demanded the editorial published in the German mass-circulation daily Bild‘s Sunday edition. Explaining the severity of the standoff, the newspaper wrote:

On Monday, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer will present measures to turn away asylum seekers to a safe third-country.

Chancellor, so far, has been strictly against such a move. If Seehofer goes ahead with it, Merkel will have to fire her Interior Minister. That will be the end of the government.

This is pure madness.

Angela Merkel is thereby risking the political stability of the country, the elected government, the unity of her proud party, and a new election with further rise of the radical forces. And all this for a policy that vast majority of people in Germany and her party don’t want anymore.

These are drastic words, coming from a newspaper that ran a #RefugeesWelcome campaign in the autumn of 2016, rising money and public support for Merkel’s open borders policy.

Do read it all. And yes, Merkel is a competent politician, who has been around the block a time of three but I think she let this one get out of control. I also think it is going to cost her (and her party dearly). It could blow up today, it could take a few months, or she might weather it, but I don’t think so.

The tide has turned, the migrants have been too obvious, and especially, too lawless, for an orderly country like Germany to accept.

I welcome Herr Seehofer’s initiative but would caution him that they need a different name, Germany, Austria, and Italy should not be involved with anything having Axis in its title. Just doesn’t have a good sound in these parts, however laudable.

What does this all mean? Maybe nothing, maybe anything. It could easily mark the beginning of the end for the EU, thus backhandedly solving the UK’s Brexit problem, it could easily mean the end of NATO, since a lot of British and American opinion thinks that overdue, anyway. Always remember that NATO is above all a pledge (by the victors, US and UK) to defend western Europe. And mind, NATO needs to not be quite as aggressive, Ukraine was a step too far likely.

It cannot but help but to encourage the Balts, Poland, the Visegrad countries, and yes, Italy, to further distance themselves from the Berlin-Brussels axis, which is hurting Europe in much the same ways as Obama’s presidency damaged the American heartland in favor of the coastal bubbles.

Not much for us to do here, really, except watch and see what happens, but it will affect us.

A Big Week

So the G7 today in Canada, then on to Singapore for the Nork summit, and then the IG report drops. Quite the week coming up. We’ll talk about the G7 today, although I find Europe increasingly irrelevant.

Benny Avni has a pretty good piece up at the New York Post so we’ll base off that.

Well before his threatened steel and aluminum restrictions on European countries (as well as on Canada and Mexico), Trump slaughtered some of Europe’s most sacred cows.

He withdrew from the Paris accord on greenhouse-gas emissions and broke away from the Iran deal. Europeans strongly believe the former will save the planet. (It won’t.) They also hope the latter will tame the Islamic Republic. (Again, nope.) As important, they want their continent’s economies to have access to Iranian markets.

Then Trump offended the Euros’ collective sense of decorum by moving the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.

But on that, as on other issues, Europeans are far from united.

And strangely, America pretty much is, at least the part of America that hasn’t run screaming in terror to their safe spaces. We seem to have become far more level-headed with Trump in the White House, which I think goes with having a President that at least appears to listen to us, and take us seriously.

What I see in Trump is a man who uses all applicable tools, trade, aid, defense policy, the military itself, tariffs, even Twitter to help the US win. It’s a worldbeater, especially in a world of globalist technocrats who focus on process, not results. What we are doing now is the American way, best described by Great Satan’s Girlfriend, in my article Hyper Puissance, The American Way, and Donald Trump

Which may funnily enough hinge on a factor that is flat out tough to factor in:

Unbridled free inquiry.

“Courtney, free societies have, in general, a decided advantage when it comes to creativity and innovation, including in the military realm. However, it’s a bit more complicated than that”

All the cool kids know how Great Satan’s indispensable ally just to the east of Durand line sold access to that ditched sexed up chopper of Abottabad/Abottagood infamy. Theft of high tech and reverse engineering are the fortunes of unfree regimes and will directly impact the Diffusion of Military of Power.

Stuff that makes the West the Best — Wonderbra, BvB, individualism, scientific inquiry, rational critical thinking, democracy with it’s inherent capitalism, political freedom, dissidence and open free wheeling debate functions as kryptonite in Smallville in regards to autocrazies, despotries — and by extension — to their acquisition, development and deployment of military power.

And central to that common sense, what stops a criminal regime, like Iran, is military force, and plenty of it. Why did you think we are having a summit in Singapore next week with Whoa Fat because Trump has great hair? It’s B2s and CBGs, and Infantry in the south, and above all a President not afraid to use them. It’ll work on Iran too, or they’ll die, which is another way of saying they’ll work, just messier.

In addition, Europe is far from united, Britain would be leaving, if it had any leadership at all, Italy is tending that way, the Visegrad countries are cleaving closer and closer to the US, not the Brussels-Berlin Axis, and the Balts care more about defense than anything, and that is done by Americans and Brits.

Meanwhile German Chancellor Angela Merkel, long presiding over Europe’s largest economy, recently said the continent can no longer rely on America and should instead defend itself.

Well, good luck with that.

Germany is currently one of NATO’s worst deadbeat members, investing a mere 1.22 percent of its GDP in the military. That’s well below the alliance’s agreed-on 2 percent. America spends more than 3.5 percent of GDP on the military. The US is by far the most muscular NATO member, as it has been since the alliance’s inception.

Germans have grown fat under America’s military umbrella. They and other Europeans developed a see-no-evil, hear-no-evil attitude, which is increasingly untenable in a growingly hostile world.

Demanding more European funding for defense was one of Trump’s early mantras. Yet this year Germany is, at best, expected to up its military budget to 1.5 percent of its GDP. The only Europeans that contribute their required share are Greece, Estonia, Britain and Poland. The rest slouch toward Germany.

How will Europe, then, “defend itself” — let alone contribute to global security?

Will its carriers sail the Pacific, where Europeans hope to surpass America in exports to Asia, but where China threatens to dominate and limit freedom of navigation? And what if, God forbid, a future nuclear-armed Iran turns its ire on one of the continent’s capitals?

We’ve written about how important the control of the sea is, the main one here. What has always been true is what Sir Walter Raleigh said back in the early 17th century and remains true:

Whoever commands the sea, commands the trade;

whosoever commands the trade of the world

commands the riches of the world,

and consequently the world itself.

There’s only one answer there, and it is the United States, before that it was Great Britain, since at least the Armada. That’s why the world is as it is, and why Europe is making itself increasingly irrelevant.

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