Like America’s president, Brexiteers resent the very idea of governing as complex and based in facts.A common thread linking “hard” Brexiteers to nationalists across the globe is that they resent the very idea of governing as a complex, modern, fact-based set of activities that requires technical expertise and permanent officials.
Soon after entering the White House as President Trump’s chief strategist, Steve Bannon expressed hope that the newly appointed cabinet would achieve the “deconstruction of the administrative state.” In Europe, the European Commission — which has copious governmental capacity, but scant sovereignty — is an obvious target for nationalists such as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán of Hungary.
The more extreme fringes of British conservatism have now reached the point that American conservatives first arrived at during the Clinton administration: They are seeking to undermine the very possibility of workable government. For hard-liners such as Jacob Rees-Mogg, it is an article of faith that Britain’s Treasury Department, the Bank of England and Downing Street itself are now conspiring to deny Britain its sovereignty.
It is thought that Mr. Davis’s real grudge was with the unelected official, Olly Robbins, who had usurped him in his influence over the Brexit process. The problem was that Mr. Robbins is willing and able to do the laborious and intellectually demanding policy work that Brexit will require, while Mr. Davis is famously not... But another byproduct of the anti-government attitude is a constant wave of exits. Britain leaves the European Union, Mr. Johnson resigns from the cabinet. The Trump White House has been defined by the constant churn of sackings and resignations. With astonishing hypocrisy, wealthy Brexiteers such as Mr. Rees-Mogg, John Redwood, Lord Lawson and Lord Ashcroft have all been discovered either preparing to move their own assets into European Union jurisdictions or advising clients on how to do so. No doubt when Britain does finally leave the European Union in March 2019, they will distance themselves from reality once more, allowing the sense of victimhood and the dream of “sovereignty” to live another day. Meanwhile, someone has to keep governing.
The World Is Evolving and Ricky Gervais Isn’t
20 percent of trans people report having been homeless at some point because of their gender identity, 55 percent report being harassed by homeless shelter residents and staff, and 29 percent have been turned away from shelters for being trans.
.. Gervais graphically speculated about Caitlyn Jenner’s gender confirmation surgery, repeatedly referred to her as a big strong man, relentlessly called her by her pre-transition name and compared gender dysphoria to a human choosing to identify as a chimpanzee.
.. presenting your spasms of discomfort as something relatable — makes it harder for trans people to find a safe place to sleep.
.. The Trump/Brexit era is a rich, famous, white, middle-aged man declaring the world to be in decline the moment he stops understanding it.
.. What they’re actually reacting to is the message deep at the heart of the March for Our Lives, of Black Lives Matter, of the Women’s March: The world is bigger than you, and it belongs to us too.
.. Gervais and his co-host, Stephen Merchant, did a recurring segment called “Do We Need ’Em?” in which the producer, Karl Pilkington, chose an animal he found strange or useless (jellyfish, for instance) and interviewed a scientist about whether or not we should “keep” them.
“What are they adding to the world?” he once asked Gervais and Merchant about giraffes. “What are they doing?”
.. It’s baffling that Gervais can have so much reverence for physical evolution and so little for intellectual evolution. He might find trans people silly, but you know who doesn’t? Teenagers.
.. It is frightening, I assume, when you are accustomed to being not just a voice of authority in your field but the archetype of authority in your civilization, to be challenged and feel those challenges stick.