The Not So Special Relationship: How Trump Has Bewildered the United Kingdom
There is a long article in "Foreign Affairs" under the above heading. It makes clear that the UK bureaucracy and elite generally are regularly flummoxed by Trump. They seem unaware that Trump also regularly flummoxes the American bureaucracy and elite.
But the question the article raises is whether Trump has eroded the "special relationship' that has long existed between the USA and the UK? It's an odd question to ask when you note that Mr Trump is in fact half British by birth, has significant investments in Britain and has often made positive comments about Britain. And there is an undoubted warmth between Prime Minister Johnson and President Trump. Each clearly sees the other as similar to himself. That all sounds special to me. And I don't mind predicting that the longevity of the Johnson Prime Ministership will be considerable.
What is undoubted however is that Mr Trump upsets the British bureaucracy. They suddenly find that their customary policies and positions no longer work reliably. Good! one might be inclined to exclaim. Perhaps their customary policies and positions are in need of a spring cleaning!
Clearly, however, Trump is a "one off". It's unimaginable that we will ever see another President like him. Though subsequent Presidents will undoubtedly learn from him.
But Trump has revealed important truths: That culltivating personal relationship with heads of opponent governments can lead to important advances towards peace: That patroitism is a powerful force for conservatives to draw upon and that deregulation is as poweful a force for prosperity as regulation is a force for economic stagnation. Nobody foresaw 3.5% unemployment or Mr Kim's clear eagerness for a rapprochement. So the plain truth is that both the American and British establishments need to stop whining and instead learn from Mr Trump that his overturning of established customs and pieties is something to learn from.
Like Ronald Reagan before him, he is a very radical conservative. The Left, by contrast have learned nothing since the 19th century. "Let the government do it" must be just about the most moronic policy ever devised.
Perhaps the most amusing thing about this whole matter is that Obama and his cohorts really did disrespect the special relationship. His critics are accusing Trump of what Obama did. But Obama was the spearhead of the steady Leftist advance through society so everything he did could be understood.