David French of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America applaud new developments in the Middle East as ISIS loses its grip on Mosul and its defeat appears increasingly likely. They condemn the appalling Charlie Gard decision in which a London court decided that a terminally ill child will be removed from life support — against the wishes of his parents — and reflect on the implications of single-payer healthcare. They criticize President Trump’s latest Twitter barrage against Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, claiming Trump’s language debases the culture. Plus, a follow-up revelation in the McEnroe-Williams tennis controversy.More
If you’re like many Ricochet folks, you get “The Daily Shot” in your inbox every day. (No, I’m not going to scold you if you don’t.)
Wednesday morning’s edition caught my eye because of some talk about Queen Elizabeth II getting a pay raise. As Americans, we’ve occasionally made comparisons between the Royal Family’s expenditures versus our own First Family. This was a relative sport for some, until earlier this year.More
As Donald Trump’s presidency passes the five-month mark, Hoover senior fellows Dave Brady and Doug Rivers share their polling on Trump’s support from Republicans and independents, plus his policy strengths and weaknesses. We also take a further look at the significance of the United Kingdom’s “snap” election, which Doug Rivers correctly forecasted (words not often said about pollsters these days!).
New episodes of Area 45 are released each week. Please rate, review, and subscribe on iTunes, SoundCloud, or RSS on your favorite podcast platform.More
Jim Geraghty of National Review and Rich McFadden of Radio America react to news of yet another terror attack in the UK which targeted British Muslims outside of a London mosque after their evening prayers for Ramadan. They also discuss the Supreme Court’s announcement that they will take up the partisan gerrymandering case in the state of Wisconsin to determine whether or not the act is unconstitutional. And they respond to Erick Erickson’s sensationalist comments as he refers to the left as “America’s ISIS” and advocates for state secession.More
As the London terror attacks were announced late Saturday, the city’s Metropolitan Police Service issued a warning for Londoners to “run, hide, and tell.” (Hence, my Neville Chamberlain Photoshop above.)More
Welcome to the Special Bonus Euro-edition of the Harvard Lunch Club Political Podcast for May 26, 2017, introducing our European correspondent William Campbell.
We’ve decided that we don’t sound sophisticated enough (why did it take so long to reach *that* conclusion??) and we have attempted to remedy that situation by finding a new HLC contributor who has an Irish accent (although he sounds British to me). Mr. William Campbell is an author, podcaster and entrepreneur. Although he has spent most of his life in Ireland, he was also educated in the UK and the US and has lived in Italy, Germany and Thailand. He is the host of his own podcast: Challenging Opinions on which Todd has appeared (although I haven’t been invited yet).More
I’m late coming to this, but as the first anniversary of the vote on Brexit approaches — June 23 is the date — I see that the actor Sir Michael Caine caused a furor a few weeks ago. Caine’s crime? Admitting that he had voted for Brexit. “For me,” Caine said, “it was about freedom. I’d rather be a poor master than a rich servant.”
In a single sentence, Caine summed up the entire case for Brexit — and several centuries of the sheer groundedness and common sense of the ordinary Briton.More
Let me start by saying that I am not a fan of giving huge amounts of government welfare to other countries. I want to be clear on that. So now I begin:
What the UK did by exiting the EU was the single bravest move against the Socialists in world history, so far. Our own electoral decision to choose Trump against the combined might of the Socialists in the USA is a close second.More
On June 23rd, 2016, the people of the United Kingdom, against the advice of most politicians, big business, organised labour, corporate media, academia, and their self-styled “betters”, narrowly voted to re-assert their sovereignty and reclaim the independence of their proud nation, slowly being dissolved in an “ever closer union” with the anti-democratic, protectionist, corrupt, bankrupt, and increasingly authoritarian European Union (EU). The day of the referendum, bookmakers gave odds which implied less than a 20% chance of a Leave vote, and yet the morning after the common sense and perception of right and wrong of the British people, which had caused them to prevail in the face of wars, economic and social crises, and a changing international environment re-asserted itself, and caused them to say, “No more, thank you. We prefer our thousand year tradition of self-rule to being dictated to by unelected foreign oligarchic technocrats.”
The author, Conservative Member of the European Parliament for South East England since 1999, has been one of the most vociferous and eloquent partisans of Britain’s reclaiming its independence and campaigners for a Leave vote in the referendum; the vote was a personal triumph for him. In the introduction, he writes, “After forty-three years, we have pushed the door ajar. A rectangle of light dazzles us and, as our eyes adjust, we see a summer meadow. Swallows swoop against the blue sky. We hear the gurgling of a little brook. Now to stride into the sunlight.” What next, indeed?More
I’m putting this in my too-good-to-be-true file: kids of post-millennial “Generation Z” are the most conservative generation in decades. They’re financially prudent and they’re even socially conservative. Okay, I can think of a few caveats: More
One motivation for Brexit which I hadn’t read before: the UK had recently overtaken France as the fifth-largest economy in the world, and is expected to surpass Germany within the next two decades.: But until Brexit, Canada [and other non-EU nations] was shut off from this economic powerhouse, our only path to profitable U.K. trade wending […]
New Prime Minister Theresa May had an early test of her leadership abilities yesterday when handling her first Prime Minister’s Questions before British Parliament. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn attempted to knock her down with leading several leading queries, the most notable of which focused on job insecurity and terrible bosses who lack self-awareness.
Madam Prime Minister turned it around on the embattled leftist leader with a withering response:More
No matter what happens next, last week’s stunning “Leave” vote on Brexit has permanently disrupted the status quo ante. Both the Conservative and Labour parties are facing major leadership changes; Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron has resigned, and Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn has been besieged by his shadow cabinet for his tepid support of the Remain option. Stock markets worldwide continue to tumble and the British pound has taken a beating. The Sunday New York Times lead story took a somewhat hysterical tone when it announced that the Brexit vote “is already threatening to unravel a democratic bloc of nations that has coexisted peacefully for decades.” And the strong supporters of Remain are now determined, it seems, to predict the worst, perhaps in the hope that Great Britain will take the opportunity to “reconsider” its decision in light of the global economic hit that occurred the day the Brexit vote was announced.
As I recently argued, the Brexit vote was complicated, given the pros and cons on both sides. But now that the voting has occurred, the correct response is to put the fear-mongering aside and to think hard about the two major issues, so central to the Brexit debate, which will continue to vex Britain and the EU — trade and immigration. On this score, it is important to realize that those two issues are distinct. The argument for free trade is pretty clear — but with the much murkier issue of immigration, it is virtually impossible to come up with a knockdown argument in favor of either fully open or fully closed borders.More
With all the results in, it appears that voters in the UK have chosen Brexit. “Leave” defeated “Remain,” 51.9 percent to 48.1 percent, a lead that held most of the night. ITV, Sky, and BBC have officially declared victory for the sovereignty movement.
Scotland and Northern Ireland were the strongest regions for remaining in the European Union, while England and Wales had the lion’s share of Euroskeptics.More
Thursday’s vote on Brexit will perhaps be the most consequential decision that Europe has faced in several generations. The most recent polls suggest that the outcome is very close, with a small but uncertain majority in favor of staying. Last week’s polls taken after the senseless assassination of Labor MP Jo Cox, a strong supporter of Great Britain retaining its place in the European Union, point to a surge in favor of exiting for reasons that are hard to unpack. The issue is one on which I have previously equivocated. Now, after much unhappy reflection, I think that on balance a vote to leave the EU is the right choice—in part because the established leadership of both the Conservative and Labour parties is urging the opposite course.
A decision to leave or remain has vast ramifications for many aspects of British life: economics, energy, the environment, immigration, a system of weights and measures, and much more. Making a vote is a black and white yes/no decision in a world filled with grays, given that there are major advantages both ways. Staying in the EU assures England access to continental markets, which is why many, but by no means all, large firms and banks support remaining. But at the same time, staying in the EU subjects England to vast amounts of regulation from the powerful Brussels bureaucracy, which extends its tentacles with each new decree into every nook and cranny of British and European life, as Diana Furchtgott-Roth notes. Today, more law in Great Britain comes from Brussels than London.More
I have more than once mentioned here on Ricochet that I am very fond of Cambridge, England. If I was told that I only had one year to live, I would quit my job, sell my house, and move to Cambridge to live out my final year. More
The Henry Jackson Society, an anti-extremism pro-human rights UK think tank, has just published a curious report on the potential impact of the Muslim population in the upcoming 7 May UK elections. Despite its strong and well-researched claims, it hasn’t seemed to have picked up much traction in the media. (For some inexplicable reason the word ‘islamophobia’ […]
Sometimes we conservatives don’t appreciate the importance of “cool” in politics. McCain and Romney, different as they are, were squares, while Obama was not. As much as we mock the Hope poster, it was one of many ways that voting for Obama became the hip thing to do and got lots of people to come out who had never voted (and won’t likely be voting for the harridan they’ll be nominating next year).
Ricochetti living in Britain will set me straight if I’m wrong about this, but it seems that UKIP has figured this out to some degree. In substance, it’s the squarest of parties, rejecting everything held dear by right-thinking people, and its leader, Nigel Farage, looks like Homer Simpson with hair. But Farage is hilarious, videos of his comic mockery of EU commissars getting hundreds of thousands of views on YouTube. Their choice of a rich purple as the party color was inspired, and this image, which is on t-shirts, could give Obama’s Hope’s poster a run for its money. (“Purple Revolution” is the title of Farage’s campaign book, published last month.)More
In the newest episode of Uncommon Knowledge I sit across the table from Liam Fox, conservative member of the British Parliament and author of the book Rising Tides: Facing the Challenges of a New Era. In this excerpt I press him on whether the special relationship between the United States and Great Britain has begun an inevitable recession — and he notes that the entire concept of a unique bond between the two countries may have come to be overly sentimentalized.More
On a recent Ricochet podcast, guest James Delingpole discussed how his country, the United Kingdom, has lost its “civilizational confidence.” In welcoming all other cultures, the powers that be have forgotten what it is to be British and what makes that wonderful — and even superior to many value systems.
The Daily Signal’s Genevieve Wood interviewed Liam Fox, the UK’s former defense secretary and Conservative member of Parliament, who agrees completely:More
Today’s vote in Scotland, no matter the result, continues the trend of smaller and smaller nations. Scotland raises the question of how big a state should be. We are living through a period of the collapse of large nations into smaller, more homogenous, parts. There were 74 independent states at the end of World War II. There are about 195 today. Nation-states could be broken up into even smaller and smaller pieces, even into city-states like the ancient Greek world or Renaissance Italy.
Where does it end? Not now.More
Earlier this week David Cameron’s government announced a cabinet reshuffle, establishing the composition of the government he will take into next year’s general election. While I don’t think the reshuffled was the unmitigated disaster some have claimed (Charles Moore has said he thinks it’s the worst reshuffle since 1989.), I have to say that I’m […]