Self-governance, viewed from Manhattan

When Britain flummoxed and flabbergasted the world by voting in 2016 to leave the European Union, it seemed like a one-off: An unexpected gamble by a normally prudent country, but nothing that signified a profound shift beyond the United Kingdom and Europe.

Donald Trump’s election a few months later proved otherwise. Brexit was a portent, not a fluke. The British electorate may have been incautious, but it was ahead of the trend. The desire, however misplaced or ugly, to take back” control of a country from supercilious political elites was a global phenomenon, not a local event.

Bret Stephens (emphasis added), who may be tipping his hand a bit in suggesting that it could be misplaced or ugly to desire self-governance.

I’m going to assume that this was a clumsy gesture to his elite and supercilious colleagues. The rest of his column is quite good.

December 14, 2019

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