Monday 16 January 2017

The Big Bad Trump and Little Red Riding Gove

re Gove and Trump.

Folk stories are full of images of the weak meeting the strong in moments of apparent goodwill and good feeling, the most famous being Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf.
Underlying these meetings is usually the idea that the strong can eat the weak one and so in the midst of the goodwill there is the underlying sense that the powerful one is eyeing up the weaker one on the basis that what it can give to the powerful one.

Leaving aside the sexual element in Little Red Riding Hood, it seems to me that now more than ever, in all encounters with Trump, the UK will be eyed up for what it can deliver to the US. People will remember that the post-war loans to the US (only finally paid off in around 2006 I think) were, we were told, something we were supposed to be immensely grateful for, but on the other hand were simply a means for some US fund-holders to make a profit out of cash-strapped post-war Britain. We were Little Red Riding Hood, the US was indeed the Wolf.

Now, Trump has made it 100% clear that he is going to try to lead a regime that will be as ruthless as it can on its relationships with the rest of the world. All that supposed mutuality crap is going to be swept aside. (1. nb most of the mutuality was phoney anyway 2. US power is far, far, far from limitless)

On that last point (2.), we should remember that USA 2017 is a far cry from USA 1946. The US's room for manoeuvre is much less now. Whole chunks of its debt are held by the Chinese, for a start. Perhaps this may make the Trump-ites that more desperate to drive hard trade bargains.

Whatever happens next, we can assume that UK politicians in their craven attachment to US politics, economics and warfare, will keep trying to portray any deals they make as victories and win-win agreements. We can be sure that they won't be.