@PCollinsTimes on British Gaullism

Mr.Collins, in your latest essay, present yourself as the ‘voice of reason’, the usual gambit of the propagandist/apologist, as opposed to the ‘political irrationalism’, indeed the Radical Political Romanticism of the Brexiteers i.e. British Gaullists!

That last word really is the mot juste, because the leading advocates and chief architects of Britain’s departure from the EU—Gove, Boris Johnson, David Davis, Jacob Rees-Mogg and Daniel Hannan—between them are drawing on a conception of the nation in which the dormant spirit of liberty is being reborn. This is not the chauvinistic nationalism of the BNP or the less appetising parts of Ukip. This is a nostalgic yearning for a Britain of recovered glory. It is British Gaullism.

The Nation State is superseded by the political/historical delusion that the EU is the culmination of The Enlightenment.

Your summation of the Brexiteers position is worthy of the tabloid:

You can tell yourself you are voting for freedom, sovereignty and independence, but you can’t even bank on taking back control of your own dead chickens.

Or your maladroit, veiled attack on the unsavory potential of Gaullism:

De Gaulle’s almost excessive patriotism was the thread that tied together his career, and this is the thread that brings together the most prominent Brexiteers too. It is always something that has a darker shadow, and there were occasional hints at where the feeling might head if it were to be deployed by a less savoury movement, such as the later Front National. But, so long as de Gaulle was in situ, he was able to express a faith in the efficacy and nobility of France, which was crucial after the humiliations of the war.

Your position is that the Brexiteers are all of a piece, not so! J.G.A. Pocock wrote one of the most succinct,valuable and sensible comments on the Brexit Vote in the London Review of Books :

J.G.A. Pocock

Profoundly anti-democratic and anti-constitutional, the EU obliges you to leave by the only act it recognises: the referendum, which can be ignored as a snap decision you didn’t really mean. If you are to go ahead, it must be by your own constitutional machinery: crown, parliament and people; election, debate and statute. This will take time and deliberation, which is the way decisions of any magnitude should be taken.

The Scots will come along, or not, deciding to live in their own history, which is not what the global market wants us to do. Avoid further referendums and act for yourselves as you know how to act and be.


The EU and its precursor the Common Market, was the brainchild of Jean Monnet, the Technocrat Supreme, he midwived a coal and steel cartel, that morphed into the ersatz democracy of the EU. See Francois Duchene’ hagiography ‘Jean Monnet:The First Statesman of Interdependence’ for the particulars on this ‘coalition builder’. See also the 1997 collection of essay titled ‘The Question of Europe’ edited by Peter Gowan & Perry Anderson.

Consider the fact that the EU leadership will now be shared by Merkel and Jupertarian/Authoritarian Macron. While ‘tens of thousands’ gather in the streets of Paris to vent their anger at the Neo-Liberal Golden Boy, just four months after his ascent to power! The willful forgetting of the near 37% of abstentions,spoiled or otherwise uncountable ballots, marks the necessary political amnesia of the Neo-Liberals ! Read Anne-Sylvaine Chassany’s Financial Times report here on the festivities, led by that shopworn Marxist Jean-Luc Mélenchon. Another Political Romantic?


What do you defend? Your status as ‘Expert’! How many ‘speech writers‘ can claim that status? And your near interminable, one man Bill of Attainder, lacks two important components of effective propaganda: brevity and an easily recalled slogan: British Gaullism?





About stephenkmacksd

Rootless cosmopolitan,down at heels intellectual;would be writer. 'Polemic is a discourse of conflict, whose effect depends on a delicate balance between the requirements of truth and the enticements of anger, the duty to argue and the zest to inflame. Its rhetoric allows, even enforces, a certain figurative licence. Like epitaphs in Johnson’s adage, it is not under oath.' https://www.lrb.co.uk/v15/n20/perry-anderson/diary
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