Why Johnson needs to stand up to Trump – Conservative Article
November 4th, 2020, one day after the US presidential election, one of the worst things that can occur to our planet will happen. You might think I am talking about Trump; unfortunately, you’re right but it has nothing to do with the election. I am talking about a political move Trump has already set in motion.
It is the issue of the USA pulling out of the Paris agreement. While many consider this to be a matter of domestic American politics, they are wrong. This is a global issue thus there should be a global effort to attempt to resolve it.
The Paris agreement was an international set of accords signed by 196 state parties. The primary goal being to limit temperature increase by 1.5°C. It is vital that major countries like the UK place pressure on the US to stay in the agreement.
However, I have no faith at all that Johnson will actually stand up to Trump. He has only once ever criticised the man in 2015, noting Trump’s “quite stupefying ignorance that makes him frankly unfit” to be president.
Boris’s failure to say anything has led to an increasing amount of scrutiny, especially from Keir Starmer. He failed to condemn the killing of George Floyd and has continued to supply tear gas and riot gear to America. It is only the actions of the UK’s high court that has suspended selling equipment to America in possibly one of the most bizarre cases I have ever heard.
It may not be the norm for British prime ministers to ‘call out’ foreign leaders, especially Americans. However, these are hardly normal times.
It is not as though Trump has refrained from interfering in British politics. He backed Brexit and Johnson for power. Then he slammed Jeremy Corbyn and mocked Theresa May’s negotiating policy. He even called Sadiq Khan a “stone cold loser”. It is time Johnson stood up for Britain and refrained from copying Trump’s embarrassing behaviour.
I am not asking him to embarrassingly call a politician a ‘stone cold loser’. This is the Paris agreement, an issue that does not just effect Britain, but the whole world.
Johnson must make use of the “special relationship” we hold with the Americans. He must bring them back into the fold to help save the planet. The issue is not that of USA’s emissions, it is the message it sends to the rest of the world.
Since the US announced to leave the agreement, China has been recklessly emitting Co2. China is the leading culprit for increasing global emissions in 2019. It saw a rise of 0.26GtCo2 (gigatons of equivalent carbon dioxide) while the rest of the world cut emissions by -0.02GtCo2. China has seen that the US are not serious about the deal and as a result have continued as before the Paris agreement.
Developing countries also will suffer. As part of the Paris agreement, a Green Climate Fund of $10bn was set up to help developing countries cut emissions. As expected, the US were vital players in financing this fund. The Americans having contributed $1bn under Obama yet under Trump, have pulled out a further $2bn.
As can be expected, developing countries have no hope to fight climate change. Their failure is on America’s hands.
I wish Johnson would take a leaf from Huge Grant’s book in Love Actually, gain some backbone, and declare “We may be a small country, but we are a great one too”. Stand up to the USA, stand up to Trump, represent our country, represent our planet and do the right thing.
Written by Guest Conservative Writer, Thomas Fuller
Point of Information
A Wonderfully Red shade of Blue – A Labour Response
Thomas writes a great article. He denounces Trump, supports the Paris agreement, recognises that Boris is unlikely to do anything about Trump or even position himself against the murder of George Floyd. Further, he notes the asymmetry of interference: Trump has interfered a lot with our political narrative so Johnson should respond in a way that raises the quality of discourse. Finally, Thomas sounds an important note of caution about diplomacy and the environment and the damage that Trump’s politics has done to it.
I can’t wait for Thomas to give over and join the Labour team. I hope to speed this up by reminding him what it actually means to be Conservative.
YouGov polled a representative sample of Conservative party members and here’s what they thought.
It gets worse, the balance between people who responded ‘very good’ and ‘fairly good’ was almost even – 24% and 30% respectively.
Let that sink in. Most Conservative party members support Donald Trump and many highly approve.
This is a problem for Conservatives because a lot of moderate Conservative arguments rely on being able to draw a line between American and English Conservatism. Life is certainly less stressful when you believe that British Conservatives are more moderate, rational and reasonable than American conservatives.
I wish I too could still believe this. Unfortunately, I kept on reading the survey…
…46% believe that “concerns about climate change … Have been exaggerated – the threat is not as real as many scientists have said”. Also only 8% of Boris supporters put the environment as their first priority issue as opposed to 34% who put ‘immigration and asylum’. I ask you: which is a threat to humanity’s very existence?
Yes, you read that correctly. Go to a group of Conservatives, close your eyes, spin around and point at one, there’s a good chance that you are pointing at someone who is pro caning.
Even before considering the wanton and needless cruelty of this verdict on the matter, I’m just as astonished that anyone actually still spends time thinking politically about the matter of bending over and whipping children.
To carry his just convictions through with pride of place, Thomas should and is welcome to leave the Flagellant party of the dark ages and join his comrades in Labour.
Written by Junior Labour Writer, Joseph Cradick
Johnson and the Conservatives do not care about Climate Change – A Liberal Response
Thomas writes an article that is completely correct. It is true that Donald Trump has been a disaster for action on climate change. It is also true that Boris Johnson occasional whispered reproaches do not cut the mustard. The climate crisis is the greatest challenge facing the planet. And, on both sides of the Atlantic not enough has been done. However, the article leaves unanswered one critical question; why on earth is Thomas a Conservative?
Inaction on climate change is not an accident of Johnson; it is integral to his and his governments’ character. It will not be solved by Johnson suddenly growing a backbone after four years of bending backwards and standing up to a president who is hopefully about to be electorally annihilated within twenty days. Would this be bravery or more the gesture politics that the Conservatives ritually gripe about?
Simply put, it is just not in the nature of the modern Conservative party to be strong on climate. Johnson and his team are hobbled by three inherent flaws: incompetence, cowardice and shallowness.
After the culling of the least mediocre minds of the Conservatives following Brexit, Johnson’s sorry lot are the remains. They are a group of Sunday League substitutes allowed to play after the first team are all injured. Eager maybe, but not skilled. There is no serious record of governmental competence amongst the whole Cabinet. Any Londoner can attest that Johnson is a leader that promises big, takes the credit and then does not deliver. Garden Bridge anyone?
The modern Conservative party has fallen out of love with the steady, practical and long-term statecraft that will be so vital in confronting climate change.
Cowardice and shallowness run hand in hand. Johnson cannot bring himself to take climate change seriously and is too scared to do anything serious about it. With the classic public-school glibness that we have come to expect, Johnson wrote in 2013 that perhaps the Atlantic would cool due to the ice caps melting “like a Martini refrigerated by ice cubes.” Even if his conversion to the cause is Damascene, his party still is reticent about talking truth to its base. The Conservative base is old and unworried about the climate and no Conservative politician is brave enough to challenge their views.
In short, Britain is being governed by a party that does not take climate change seriously, does not truly care, and is too incompetent to actually do anything about it. We are well off meeting even the modest target of a carbon-neutral 2050. Anyone who genuinely is aware of the scope of climate change should look first to home.
Written by Guest Liberal Writer, Nathaniel Amos
I am a graduate of the University of Exeter where I studied politics, philosophy and economics. I used this fantastic opportunity to pursue my deepest interests in the subjects of moral philosophy and political psychology.