I am a great fan of the United States of America. It is the land of the free. The customer is still king. It is a country where a citizen seeing an expensive car or a large house will think “I might have one of those one day if I work hard” whereas, in our poor jealous country, a citizen will ask “Why does he have that car/house when I do not?”
America was brave enough to cut loose from the British Empire in 1776 with the Declaration of Independence. Listening to Obama today, advising the UK to remain in the EU, I wondered whether he would have had the courage to support the US Declaration of Independence back in the 18th century when America shook off the shackles of Britain in the name of “no taxation without representation”. I don’t think he would ever be able to claim a place on Mount Rushmore among the Founding Fathers. Apart from being the first black president, I can think of nothing memorable in his presidency.
Here we have Obama, flying into our country to dine with our Queen and acting as Cameron’s puppet and lecturing British people to vote to REMAIN. What a disgrace! Look at Obama’s predecessors:
George Washington (22 February 1732 to 14 December 1799) was the first President of the United States (1789–97). He was Commander in Chief of the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War and one of the Founding Fathers. He presided over the convention that drafted the current US Constitution.
Abraham Lincoln (12 February 1809 to 15 April 1865) was the 16th President of the USA. serving from March 1861 until he was assassinated in April 1865. He led the United States through the Civil War. This was a bloody war and is considered to be its greatest moral, constitutional, and political crisis. In doing so, he preserved the Union, abolished slavery, strengthened the federal government and modernised the economy.
Franklin D Roosevelt (FDR) served as President of the USA from 1933 to 1945 – a record four terms. He dominated his party for many years as a central figure in world events during the mid-20th century, leading the United States during a time of depression and total war. His program for relief, recovery and reform, known as the New Deal, involved a huge expansion of the role of the federal government in the economy. He saved our economy with the Lend Lease programme.
John F Kennedy (JFK) (29 May 1917 to 22 November 1963), was the 35th President of the USA from January 1961 until he was assassinated in November 1963. He had to cope with the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Bay of Pigs Invasion, the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty and the building of the Berlin Wall. He also resisted escalating the US presence in Vietnam.
Ronald Reagan (6 February 1911 to 5 June 2004) was the 40th President of the USA. He was an actor before he entered public service and his acting skills served him well in developing a fireside manner when he talked to his country. Reagan’s supply-side economic policies were called “Reaganomics” and included tax rate reduction to spur economic growth, control of the money supply to curb inflation, economic deregulation and reduction in government spending. Over his two terms as President, his economic policies saw a reduction of inflation from 13% to 4%, and an average annual growth of real GDP of 3.4%. He proved to be a soul mate of Margaret Thatcher ,sharing a common political philosophy and a real admiration for one another.
Set against these giants of US history, Obama is a miserable failure in his domestic and global policies. However, we have something to learn from his presidency. He has failed to introduce many of the reforms he advocated because he has been bedevilled by a constitution that has created a hung political system. A Democrat President has found himself opposed by a Republican majority in the two Houses of Congress who not only oppose most of his political aspirations but also harbour a deep dislike of the man himself. You might have expected him to turn to foreign affairs but he has been a miserable failure here as well, lacking the courage and vision of a Founding Father or a JFK.
I think this is a real lesson for us in the UK. The European Union is not unlike the US government machine. It is horribly hung and always will be. The EU comprises nations that are large and others that are tiny both in population, scale and economic terms. It also comprises nations that are ruled by a whole spectrum of political parties from hard left to far right and everything in between. The result is what we saw when Cameron went into bat with the Brussels bureaucrats to secure reform of the EU. The result was interminable compromise and fudge. It is not the way for countries and nations to face challenges, to grow and to thrive. In fact it is likely to lead to the reverse.
That is why we need to vote LEAVE.