A question of trust

I do not have a vote or a voice in the US election, and am not on anyone’s side. The contest is, however, more than usually interesting and important as Presidential elections go, because the US faces a choice between two such very different candidates. This result will have a measurable impact on our economy and on the state of world politics. My comments are by way of independent analysis, not partisan intervention.

Both candidates are divisive and each are unpopular with around half the electorate. Polls to date have shown Mrs Clinton in a winning position, but recently they have narrowed and a win by Mr Trump cannot be ruled out.

Mrs Clinton has a major problem of trust. The email controversy which has dogged her throughout gnaws away at the wider question of can she be trusted? Mr Trump has also questioned her stamina and health. Her recent collapse at an important national event is therefore a double blow. Not only does it give image to exactly what Mr Trump has been saying about her health. It also undermines the line of her campaign team that her cough is unimportant. It turns out it was pneumonia, not some minor irritation of the voice box. It becomes another issue of trust.

Mr Trump has an equally difficult dilemma. He rose to fame by making comments about migrants, borders and the rest that many thought were dreadful, making him unsuited for public office. He now wishes to show he understands the need to be more mellow and statesmanlike, but does not want to lose the aggressive down to earth image that won him so many friends amongst the angry voters he spoke for. His trip to Mexico worked quite well, allowing him to appear side by side with an elected country leader, and stick to his view that he wants a wall or fence on the border. It was a good enough performance to lead directly to the resignation of the Mexican Finance Minister who had invited him! The aim had been for him not to come or for Mexico to portray him and his policy as unacceptable.

The liberals of the west on both sides of the Atlantic have no trouble in condemning Trump’s wall as barbaric, yet these same people seem to accept the policy of building ever more walls and fences around eastern and southern Europe. The Republicans and conservatives unite to condemn Mrs Clinton’s economy with the truth and refusal to reveal all her documents and emails, yet they seem happy that Mr Trump refuses to reveal all his business and tax documentation in the same election.

Beneath these personality probes, health scares and aggressive rhetoric lies some fundamental political issues. Would Mr Trump talk more and bomb less in his world order? Will Mrs Clinton continue with the aggressive military interventions in the Middle East that she initiated or supported as Secretary of State? Will Mr Trump’s tax cutting agenda allied to making US corporations bring their money back onshore yields more growth and a tax bonanza as he hopes? Or will Mrs Clinton’s beefed up public programmes and higher tax rates for the rich create a more prosperous and more equal society?

The US people have a rich choice, even if they do not like either candidate. We will feel the washback from this decision.

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83 Comments

  1. Lifelogic
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 5:49 am | Permalink

    Well it is a pretty dire choice, but I could certainly never bring myself to vote for Hillary Clinton, with her endless politics of envy, you are all victims, tax the rich and other lefty drivel. Her policies simply will not work.

    Do the USA want a leader who aspires to make the country “whole” or would they prefer “great”.

    I suspect that should Trump win, then the dafter and and rather unpleasant agenda that he used to win the nomination will largely vanish. I have not placed my bet yet but I suspect he will win. Clinton is too tedious, boring and bossy. She does not even talk using the normal language of the people. She has spent too long talking only with her daft democrat supporters, minority pressure groups and magic money tree economists.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 6:00 am | Permalink

      Yet more entirely justified criticism of Cameron over his disastrous intervention in Libya.

      He has been a complete disaster in almost every respect, but at least he lost the referendum despite his slanted pitch and endless scare attempts.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-37356873

      Also it is good to see that it was hotter in September 1911 than it was yesterday, this before nearly all the atmospheric CO2 increases.

      How much longer can the climate alarmist industry keep their agenda going in the face of the evidence from real measurements?

      • stred
        Posted September 14, 2016 at 10:47 am | Permalink

        Note that, according to the article, the HJS also believes the EU should have an army- but lead by Britain! Presumably Gove and Boles have backtracked on this, since trying so hard to help Boris, prior to the Boricide.

      • Mitchel
        Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

        Reading the front pages of The i and The Times today,it is clear that Cameron’s rapid departure is not due to Brexit or grammar schools but Libya – how could he possibly stay in public view after what is being reported today?

        Despite Afghanistan and Iraq and whilst Chilcott was in progress we get a situation where he ignores the advice of his generals and International Development secetary over Libya.He then uses every effort to try to get us involved in Syria,fails,tells us “he gets it” and at the first opportunity brings the matter back to parliament.

        It is disgraceful that he is being allowed to slink away,probably to join the Blairocracy;he should be called to account and asked just who he was acting on behalf of,because it certainly wasn’t the British people.

        • eeyore
          Posted September 14, 2016 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

          I doubt it, Mitchel. Look at it from Mr Cameron’s point of view. He’s not yet 50. Prime Ministers are paid peanuts. Time to go elsewhere and make some proper money.

          It is a sad commentary on British national life that, with the pay at present levels, being Prime Minister cannot be the climax of an ambitious and able person’s career. A PM up to the job is worth many millions a year. A PM not up to it can hardly be said to be worth anything. In either case the £143,000 they get now is absurd.

          • Hope
            Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

            His salary is not peanuts. He is simply not worth paying in washers or the huge pension and expenses and use of ambassadors residents ever more together wi police security. What proper job has he done before politics?

            We read the leaked emails between Straw and Powell over Chilcott and how the criticism faded away due to Brexit, or the silver lining as Straw puts it. He really is a horrible person, as we saw with his scandal last year. The double standards how MPs/ ministers are not investigated and treated are truly appalling. This is not about making a poor decision this is a chain of calculated actions. While he is having his silver lining service men are having to cope with life changing injuries, millions suffered because of the likes of him and Blaire. Cameron knew this, ignored all professional advice and did the same! The consequences continue, thousands each day travel in dingy death traps. Let us see May what does for her one nation, fair nation babble. Start at Westminster it is rotten to its core. No freebies when they leave office, strict rules and laws what information and contacts they are allowed to use from office.

        • Ken Moore
          Posted September 14, 2016 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

          Indeed, it is scandalous that Mr Cameron’s actions on foreign policy have not come under greater scrutiny.
          Is/was their a pact with Blair to continue his policy of interference in the affairs of the middle East.
          Those Conservative Mp’s that foolishly stood to applaud Blair on his departure from the HOC by Mr Mr Cameron’s command…well I hope they feel a little ashamed now.

          • Hope
            Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

            JR, off but about trust. A sixth of the overseas aid budget is spent by the EU without defence to any UK politician. Can this now be stopped. It is not an insignificant sum and is not part of our contribution. Junker has banned May from the Eau meeting this week. As the auK has no say then I am unclear what legal authority he has to ban May, alternatively why is she not imposing sanctions in the form of stopping some of the Eau contributions our country make. etc ed

        • Lifelogic
          Posted September 14, 2016 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

          His record is indeed getting worse and worse by the day. A capable presenter, with open goal elections but with a compass that was nearly always 180 degrees out. He needed someone like JR behind the scenes to steer him. But they why did he not joint the Libdems?

      • Ken Moore
        Posted September 14, 2016 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

        Cameron aided by the BBC with their ridiculous ‘Arab Spring’ rhetoric deserves fierce criticism. There were plenty of voices warning that it is impossible to neatly divide the region into the ‘good’ and ‘bad’ or victims and ‘oppressors’ or ‘loyalists and ‘rebels’.

        In the end Cameron went as mad as his hero Blair – both thought they could inpose political correctness upon the middle east…both failed miserably and cost thousands of life and left the region in ruins.
        That is Mr Cameron’s legacy.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 6:04 am | Permalink

      The more we hear about HS2 the more it looks like it is not going to be cancelled. It certainly should be cancelled when is May going to finally make up her mind on this? And indeed on Heathwick, Hinkley and the rest.

      Grammar schools (which I fully support) seems to be rather a pointless distraction as she will struggle to get it past her (40+?) rebels and the Lords anyway.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:32 am | Permalink

        How much money is being wasted everyday by these delays in the decisions on leaving the EU, cancelling HS2 & Hinkley & all the daft grants for “renewables” and getting on with Heathwicks new runways.

        It is probably costing the each family about £15 for each day of dithering. The right decisions are so blindingly obvious too, just get on with it.

        • hefner
          Posted September 14, 2016 at 10:38 am | Permalink

          “£15 for everyday of dithering”: As one always so prone to call on science and mathematics, may you condescend to provide us with the details of the calculations allowing you to give this estimate. Thanks a lot in advance.

      • Mitchel
        Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

        “The more we hear about HS2 the more it looks like it is not going to be cancelled”

        It looks like Hinckley Point is going ahead too.

        The Foreign Aid budget is going to be maintained too(just spent “more carefully”)

        Grammar Schools?

        Brexit?

        What was it The Who sang all those years ago?:

        “Meet the new boss,
        same as the old boss,

        won’t get fooled again”

        You just did!

  2. Lifelogic
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 6:20 am | Permalink

    I am not sure it is such a “rich” choice, unless you just mean they are both rich that is.

    • rose
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 9:26 am | Permalink

      And one was a donor to the other.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 11:49 am | Permalink

      Quite an impressive performance by Theresa at PM questions today but fair words butter no parsnips . Even Cameron was quite impressive in this arena too. The problem was that he tended to do the opposite of what he said he was doing, with his duff lefty compass.

      All Mrs May needs to do now is to stop all the dithering, cancel HS2, all the bonkers green subsidies, Hinkley C, the gender pay reporting rules, workers/customers on boards and undo nearly everything the dire Osborne inflicted on the country.

      Then announce new runways at both Heathrow and Gatwick, a large cut in the size of government, the £1M IHT promise finally kept and get out of the EU now.

      Is she up to it?

  3. Ex-expat Colin
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 6:30 am | Permalink

    Not forgetting the useless Obama and who many in the US resent. The Clinton Foundation is the real worry that props the awful US Establishment..its a real feeder!

    Trump doesn’t appear to be bothered by the opposition one jot as far as I can tell. Think he is after cutting the debt big time…but little is said about that and he often repeats it. I hope Trump gets to teach the fools of this world a lesson or two…I really do!

    O/T – Mrs May and the BBC..oh and Jeremy Hunt.Interesting stuff.

  4. Elliot Kane
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 6:30 am | Permalink

    As a Brit myself, I am only, of course, an interested (If frequently horrified) spectator in the US elections. Like yourself, John, I do not have a side. I’m a floating voter here in the UK, and would doubtless be the same if I lived in the US.

    It’s not unusual in the US, as seen from this side of the Pond, for one side or the other to put up a candidate who I do not think is really up to the job. This is the first time I can recall, however, when I find the candidates from both sides to be truly worrying.

    Hillary has always struck me as too cold, and her seemingly instinctive secrecy does not bode well for the transparency of her administration if she wins. I’d prefer her to Donald Trump, who seems to challenge himself to come out with a new outrage every day, but I think I will be more than a bit worried by whoever wins.

    If I were an American right now, though, I might find myself wondering just how the USA could end up with two such totally unpromising Presidential candidates as Donald Trump & Hillary Clinton.

    What the US needs most, I think, is a President who can start the long process of bringing America together and healing the many social and political divisions that currently scar it. I do not think either Clinton or Trump is capable of doing that.

    I wish Ivanka Trump was standing instead of Donald, honestly. She’s always struck me as very smart, very capable, and entirely lacking in her father’s bombast or desire to shock. I think she’d make a fine President.

    • graham1946
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

      How can the Americans come up with two such unpromising candidates?

      Its what happens when money rules the roost. Politics or ability has nothing to do with it, to win in America you have to have two ‘attributes’

      1) Have more money to waste than anyone else
      2) Pretend that you believe in God and attend church (this one is obligatory) and preferably believe in the theory of creationism.

      With Hilary, you get a ‘buy one get one free’ with Bill in the background – If they vote Hilary, they will get Billary.

      With our system, again, ability has little to do with it, you need to join a major party, get to the top with the right amount of boot licking or be friends with someone who has.

      • Elliot Kane
        Posted September 15, 2016 at 7:24 am | Permalink

        Sadly, I think you are right, Graham.

      • Mitchel
        Posted September 15, 2016 at 9:18 am | Permalink

        “With Hilary,you get a ‘buy one get one free’ with Bill in the background…..”

        Like Bonnie & Clyde but without the folk hero status.

  5. @Jerontius
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 6:32 am | Permalink

    “I do not have a vote or a voice in the US election, and am not on anyone’s side. ”

    That’s sooo detached. The US has got itself and us into a lot of trouble recently and looking at the candidates it’s not hard to tell which one is most likely to get us into more – even without our consent.

    “The US people have a rich choice”

    I take that to mean they both stink to high heaven. I say hold your nose and root for Hilary.

  6. Ian Wragg
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 6:57 am | Permalink

    Barry has been the catylist that spawned Trump. (words left out ed)Obama has turned a blind eye to the terrorist threat posed by globalisation and the mass movement of Islam to the west.
    Clinton is a machine politician who thinks she has a right to rule.
    We had the referendum they have Trump.
    Same symptoms similar results.

  7. Leslie Singleton
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:03 am | Permalink

    Clinton would be like Denis being made PM by reason that Maggie had been

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 10:26 am | Permalink

      Postscript–I hope it was obvious which Denis I meant!

    • Lifelogic
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 11:51 am | Permalink

      Denis Thatcher would, I suspect, have made an excellent PM, in the Ronald Reagan mode perhaps.

  8. Gary C
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:05 am | Permalink

    It is indeed an interesting election with many twists and turns and the results after will make good fodder for the media either way . . . . . . . I have the popcorn ready 😉

  9. Sean
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:20 am | Permalink

    If I were allowed to vote in the USA election, I would vote Mr Trump in a heat beat. Like you I don’t agree with all the says, but still I like his attitude on the economy, his business sense, his energy to get things done in his time frame.

    Today many politicians think that they are celebraties and want that life style. We see they hate the term civil servants, especially the EU politicians.

    Trump loves America, the people, he is a proud man that cares and hates what stupid career politicians. He often states that he isn’t and doesn’t want to be a politician, he does this because he sees his nation going down the toilet, much in the same way as we have suck inside the Eu hell hole and money pit.

    I hope and pray Trump wins, what a earthquake that would be. That would wake up our politicians for sure.

    • turboterrier
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:51 pm | Permalink

      @ Sean

      That would wake up our politicians for sure.

      If Mr Trump wins which I hope he does for no other reason other than:

      I just want to see the looks on Empress Nick and the wee eck Salmonds faces and hope that Trump is a believer in old Joe Kennedy battle cry “Don’t get angry get even”.

      The times that they and other UK politicians have slagged him off they all could do well to remember old granny when she said “least said soonest mended”

      Wise person is old granny especially when it came to some areas of politics

    • APL
      Posted September 18, 2016 at 6:41 am | Permalink

      Sean: “Like you I don’t agree with all the says, ”

      When ever has anyone managed to agree with everything any politician says? It’s always a choice of the ‘least worst’.

      The choice between Trump and Clinton, happens to coincide with the least worst candidate actually being the best too.

  10. Antisthenes
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    Normally the choice would have to be any president as long as he/she is not a Democrat and as Hillary Clinton is such a dreadful person that is doubly the case. However the alternative Donald Trump according to the establishment is a dreadful person as well and so the choice appears stark.

    To me Trump is the lesser of the two evils and the one less likely to do damage to the USA and the rest of us his mercantilist stance is worrying and if he does go down that road it will have bad economic consequences for all of us.

    Obama has been an awful president who has brought in left wing policies and practices that has increased racial tensions, a healthcare that is unsustainable and on the verge of collapse, increased the US debt burden and made the world less nuclear safe along with other equally bad socialist/progressive enactments. Clinton would follow the same path . I do not believe the USA can survive two such presidents without dire consequences. So it must be Trump at least the leftward march would be curtailed somewhat and that alone is worth a lot in protecting our well being.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

      Few people can want to be bored to death for four more years by Hillary can they? Surely they have had enough already. She always addresses the crowd as if she is a school teacher lecturing rather dim children.

      Trump despite him very many faults would at least be rather more colourful and entertaining. He would also have more sensible back up too.

      For that reason I think he will scrap home.

  11. Roy Grainger
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    There are some parallels with the Brexit campaign. The other day Mrs Clinton dismissed “50%” of Trump’s supporters as a “basket of deplorables” with “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic” views. Similar to the way some of the Remainiacs characterised Leavers. This is counter-productive as she needs to persuade some of those people to vote for her or abstain. I think another parallel is that as a result of rhetoric like this the polls are underestimating Trump support by a few percent because people simply don’t want to admit they’ll be voting for him. So he might actually be just in the lead in the swing states. If Trump wins it will be like Brexit winning too – the liberal elite in the media, and in both political parties, and in the majority of big companies who support Clinton will be horrified and there will be an immediate impact on the stock market which, over the next few weeks, will be corrected as it turns out that not much has changed at all.

    • lojolondon
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

      Or, as in Britain, the stock market will surge, as companies realise that the old regime was bad for business and the new situation is far better??

  12. Bert Young
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:47 am | Permalink

    Both candidates leave a lot to be desired . I consider Clinton to be a “slippery” character who is too imbued in the White House antics and the hopeless record of overseas policy ; she claims to be allied to the Obama regime – nothing could be worse !.Trump believes the world is his and nothing else counts ; his saving grace is his outspokeness and not being afraid to put himself at criticism – traits not common with politicians .

    The USA has lost itself under Obama and it now needs to re-establish credibility with the rest of the world . It calls for very strong leadership qualities of determination and drive . Obviously there must be someone who can fulfil this role ; it is definitely not Clinton . Trump leaves a big question mark over his egocentricity and morality . What happens next ?.

  13. agricola
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    The choice is not easy for the US voter. I know neither candidate, but my instinct pushes me to go with someone who has demonstrated that he can turn sixpence into half a crown. The alternative would seem to be someone who is more inclined to spend the half crown and more. My prayer is that despite all the rhetoric and bluster Donald Trump could be another Ronald Reagan. Like making prefects out of some of the doubtful cases at school, I hope it brings out the best in the man.

  14. Mark B
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    For the people of the USA, I guess it is a case of choosing the lesser of two evils. But one of the candidates at least cannot, as yet, be accused of having blood of innocents on their hands.

  15. Denis Cooper
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    Totally, willfully, brazenly, off-topic: it seems that we sent the wrong person to negotiate Britain’s “New Deal in Europe”; if we had sent either Clegg or May then they could have got vital concessions which eluded Cameron:

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/brexit-latest-theresa-may-single-market-deal-eu-tory-mps-conservative-a7249821.html

    “Theresa May could strike a deal to both keep the UK in the Single Market and control immigration if her party would let her, Nick Clegg has claimed.

    The former deputy prime minister said he was convinced the rest of the EU would accept some form of “emergency brake” on migrants if Britain agreed to “play by the rules” of that market.

    But, he said, pro-Brexit Tory MPs were more obsessed by restoring sovereignty than they were about immigration – which left the prime minister in an “impossible position”.

    If only Cameron had delegated the negotiations to Clegg then it could all have been very different; no doubt Clegg could have talked the other EU leaders into seeing sense and abandoning their ideological insistence that the EU Single Market must be based on four freedoms, not just three, trade and immigration must go hand in hand.

    But all is not lost, because apparently May could still succeed where Cameron failed.

    Oddly enough if one wished to dish out blame for the UK leaving the EU then Clegg could be near the front of the queue, or line as the Americans say, because there can be little doubt that as Deputy Prime Minister in the coalition government he held Cameron back from taking two “golden opportunities” to negotiate with the other EU leaders from a position of strength, at least to some extent.

  16. Liz
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    Perhaps it is time for the US to modernise their whole Presidential election process which seems to take a whole year? Going back to the horse and carriage era when it would take candidates a long time to traverse the country to canvass votes it has not adapted to the modern day of air travel and TV? It also costs a huge amount of money which is surely not what the founding fathers wanted.

  17. William Long
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    I had quite a discussion about this the other evening with my sister who lives in Oregon, admittedly quite a backwoods, place. She said that Trump has a much better chance than is apparent from the polls because while very few people will admit in public to supporting him, you get a very different impression in private conversations. His tax proposals are certainly very interesting.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 9:24 am | Permalink

      Indeed this is often the case with polls. People like to give answers that make them sound “nice” rather than a bit “nasty”. The result is thus often an exaggeration of the lefty, green, luvvy, “BBC think”, environmental and remain poll predictions (and an underestimated result for the Tories, UKIP and the likes).

      I made quite a lot of money from taking financial positions on thinks like the leave vote, Cameron getting an overall majority at the last election and the UKIP vote in MEP elections. They were fairly predictable.

      Would you like to pay more tax to help the poor, the NHS or the environment? “Oh yes of course” they say to usually young and poor pollster, but then in the privacy of the ballot box where the vote matters?

      Cameron got this very wrong too, he believed all the polls and went for a wet, lefty greencrap, NHS in three letters, soft left agenda. He would have had far better majorities had he offered a sensible, low tax, efficient, small government and leave the EU agenda.

      The road to hell is paved with people who want to be nice (using other peoples money to do it usually).

    • Ex-expat Colin
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

      The only one event thats going to stop my friends in Oregon (Murphy – in the woods) buying more guns is Trump winning.

      They are fuming about both Obama and Clintons gang. Not a good thing to be fuming near those woods either.

  18. Iain Moore
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    I am not sure these ‘liberals’ accept all the walls and fences that have been put up in Europe to control their borders, its just that their polices have completely utterly failed , while the likes of Orban has been proven correct in that fences do work, but it is not something the liberals are willing to admit, but neither can they take them down if they want to continue to have a political career, so they content themselves with harrumphing about Trump.

    Reply Mr Hollande who would regard himself as a liberal on these matters support the Calais fences for example.

  19. Cliff. Wokingham.
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    I always have the same kind of thoughts when the US have the run up to the presidential elections namely, if these are the two best candidates from a population of almost 260,000,000, then God help America.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 9:28 am | Permalink

      Well it is from perhaps only one or two hundred people who have sufficient money, party support and are daft/brave/determined/arrogant enough to actually want the (unpleasant, private life destroying & rather dangerous) job.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted September 14, 2016 at 9:32 am | Permalink

        You would probably get a better outcome by selecting someone (from a collection of people who had a respectable science degree) in a random lottery. Certainly it would be far cheaper and they would surely be rather more in touch with normal life.

      • Ed Mahony
        Posted September 14, 2016 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

        – How many really good (as opposed to just good) leaders are there in general? In the UK, for example, we only get about two per century: Thatcher, Churchill, Gladstone and Disraeli. And I mention this because right now we need a really good leader to pull off Brexit (it’s incredibly complicated plus we have a huge national debt to pay off) – whatever you think of Brexit, for or against.
        The problem with the UK is that we don’t have a really good leader to pull off Brexit (Mrs May is good but she’s not really good although certainly better than Mr Fox, Johnson and Davis and Mrs Leadsom). If we did, we’d at least have a plan by now. We don’t. And everybody knows it.
        Until we have a detailed plan, this whole Brexit thing is one of the worst things to strike British politics since the South Sea Bubble (but potentially worse than the South Sea Bubble).
        I’m willing to change my tune but only when we begin to get a proper plan. Until then, Brexiteers in the government are like, in the words of Michael O’Leary, ‘Headless chickens.’

        • Lifelogic
          Posted September 14, 2016 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

          A huge national debt to pay off surely not. I thought Cameron and Osborne had been “repaying the debt” surely they were not telling porky pies again were they?

          • Ed Mahony
            Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

            Mr Cameron and Mr Osborne did a great job at v. difficult time. But our national debt is still at 90% or something. Compared to Germany’s 80% and Sweden’s 40%. When Sweden and Germany don’t have the big economic risk on their hands of Brexit (except how it might impact on the European economy in general).

    • rose
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 9:34 am | Permalink

      When you have a vulgar, trivialising, and intrusive media, as we have here too, decent, sensitive, educated people aren’t going too put themselves and their families through the mill.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted September 14, 2016 at 10:04 am | Permalink

        Indeed if you actually want the position then you are probably unsuitable.

      • Mitchel
        Posted September 14, 2016 at 10:20 am | Permalink

        Precisely.It strikes me it is increasingly becoming a contest that only those types who crave to be on a reality-type show would want to enter.

        That old saying about politics being show business for ugly people never seemed truer!

  20. James Munroe
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 9:20 am | Permalink

    I have followed the US road to Presidency, with some interest.

    With the whole Clinton/email issue I am still intrigued.

    In my career I worked for 3 organisations and was responsible for issues of IT Governance.

    The first organisation was a very secure Company.
    It did not matter who you were, everyone had to sign a document agreeing to rules of IT behaviour. Breaches were dealt with harshly.
    Private email accounts were never to be used for business.
    The idea of someone setting up a private email server, outside of the protected structure, was unthinkable. Anyone supporting and assisting that would be sacked, without question.

    The second organisation was the NHS, which despite some bad press, does work hard on IT Governance. Where I worked, there was annual training and testing of staff taking place, and strong efforts were made to try to ensure good IT practice.
    Again, the use of private emails for business was forbidden, and there was no question about setting up private email servers.

    The third organisation, was a Swiss owned company that had very strong IT Governance.

    So, about Clinton.

    Were there any IT Governance procedures, where she worked in Government?
    Did the procedures clarify and ban the use of private email accounts?
    Was she given training and did she sign documents to say she understood her obligations, before being granted access to IT systems.
    Who gave permission to set up a private email service? Why did that person allow it?

    At the moment, the US Press is reporting non-attendance of those involved and “pleading the 5th”.

    What an absolute mess!

    • lojolondon
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

      Absolutely, James, she broke all the rules and she endangered lives, and she has lied repeatedly ever since. If she worked for McDonalds and tried to use a private email address for corporate work she would have been fired. She can never be president.

  21. Kevin
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    JR writes (emphasis added): “Mr Trump…rose to fame by making comments about migrants, borders and the rest that many thought were dreadful, making him unsuited for public office.”

    The Democratic Party are considered permanently unsuited for public office by many in America because of their “dreadful” policy on abortion. An impartial analysis would not ignore this fact while highlighting moral opposition to the Republican platform.

    Reply I took my material from the Trump and Clinton websites, where the anti trump material appeared but your anti Clinton material did not.

  22. fedupsoutherner
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    I’d vote for anyone that promised to get rid of this stupid green energy crap!! If America led the way on this we just may get other politicians talking sense about energy instead of trying to be like Dave with his Huskys!

    Trump is more likely to go for traditional means of providing energy. Shame our lot can’t be world leaders in this. My instinct tells me Trump will win.

  23. fedupsoutherner
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    I also think Trump could be keen to do business with the UK after Brexit. He is on our side there and thinks the UK did the right thing to vote out. What a sensible man.

  24. Gary
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 10:41 am | Permalink

    Unrelated(or maybe not ?)

    I see the BBC reporting that the BoE is going to buy Apple Inc’s bonds.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/business-37348889

    Communism through the front door. Bolshevism was previously used to kick the door down and take over. That failed. Now they come with communism via the back door via the central banks.
    Eventually one central bank will own everything(maybe the BIS) and the rest of us will all be equal in our communist paradise. ie we’ll all be flat broke serfs.

    If people are not alarmed , they are asleep.

    • Mitchel
      Posted September 15, 2016 at 9:34 am | Permalink

      Not just Apple I think Macdonalds and other major US corporations with interests in the UK too.Japan has been buying corporate bonds and ,I believe, equities for quite a while too.

      I’ve seen a number of “alternative” commentators suggest that Central Bank debt is now running so out of control now that ultimately they will have to bailed out by swapping their debts for SDRs.

      You are right,we are seeing a global version of the (early)Soviet Union being put in place,financially,socially and culturally.Anyone who has read a good history of the pre-Stalin Soviet Union will be able to see the parallels clear enough.

  25. sm
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Were I an American citizen, I would vote for the Independent, Gary Johnson.

    Unfortunately, while it would salve my personal conscience, it would do nothing to solve the ultimate problem – the USA is teetering between a Clinton rock (a lying narcissist) and a Trump hard place (a narcissistic liar).

    • Richard Lark
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

      I too would vote for Johnson and bearing in mind the shortcomings of the two main candidates cannot understand why he has not received more media attention. I think I read somewhere that his name will not be on the ballot paper in all States.

  26. Richard1
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    It’s an awful choice. The strange thing is that if either party had fielded almost any other candidate they would have won hands down!

  27. rose
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    It must be awful for the Republicans having suffered this hostile takeover by a New York Democrat and donor to the Clintons. He is the product of the media culture we are all ruled by now.

    But when I see Mrs Clinton she is always worse than I expect her to be, and somehow, with Mr Trump, it is the other way round.

  28. lojolondon
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    Dear John – speaking of Hillary’s perception of dishonesty and her health – she admitted to having pneumonia (which is highly contagious) and she immediately spent time with her granddaughter? Then she hugged a small girl on the street in a planned photo-op? Nope, I don’t think so!
    I suggest you ask a doctor to watch the video – on BBC 3CR yesterday a doctor said in his opinion, Hillary has a neurological problem, as she collapsed and her legs failed her entirely. She has had several episodes of fits while in front of the cameras – all available online – and Team Clinton has responded to every one with the ‘far right-wing conspiracy’ meme. She lied about allergies, she is lying right now about pneumonia, and I just hope truth will come out when she falls over again.

  29. Richard Butler
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    The Guardian recently ran a video by John Harris which reveals a broken America, whereby vast swathes of people have lost their dignity and where the American dream will remain only a dream. Huge areas of neglect, derelict industry and Human misery, once proud family Men sitting in bars day and night.

    Hilary, a classic establishment Democrat is incapable of the revolutionary vision and drive required to reverse this devastation. Her planned tax and regulation assault will do nothing to bring business back to America.

    For all his faults I do believe Trump is contrarian and driven enough to drive through the revolutionary, often counter intuitive Marshall style plan required to get lost America back in touch with its dignity and yes that will mean very sharp policies to return industry to American shores, as it is simply a council of despair to claim nothing can be done and that industry is lost to China and Mexico for good.

  30. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    It is the business only of Americans who they wish to be their leader. Same goes vis-a-vis for India, China, Russia, Mexico and many others including Iraq, Syria and Libya.

    Perhaps when the UK reinforces its concept of its own business via secure borders and meaningful controls post Brexit, it will in deed mind its own business:-
    The world will breathe a welcome sigh of relief at the most long-standing supercilious stomach-retching arrogance of this island people off the coast of the continent of Europe.

  31. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    Off Topic:
    Mrs May did not do too well against Mr Corbyn in Parliament today at PM Question Time.
    However, she pointed out that both she and Mr Corbyn had gone to grammar schools. She said that their Party leadership positions were owed to their grammar schools:-.
    A 50% success rate for a school is nothing to crow about.

  32. Wireworm
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    If Hillary wins but is subsequently incapacitated, no doubt Bill will step into the breach, like Edith Wilson, wife of Woodrow. As in her case no one need know. It would be like a House of Cards storyline.

  33. mickc
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    Hillary is more than likely to get us into a war with Russia; Trump won’t.
    Trump realises thd USA has gone down the British routa and squandered its power. He is likely to retrench… the UK may even break free of American dominance. Now that would be most welcome!

  34. Anonymous
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

    As usual it is the BBC (and the general broadcast media’s) position on Mrs Clinton.

    We already know about Mr Trump’s many failings – the BBC is at pains to remind us every day.

    Alas, to find out about Mrs Clinton’s illness one has to trawl YouTube, and I’m not talking about pneumonia here but what appears to be some kind of neurological illness. Had Mr Trump been so afflicted we can be sure it would have been all over the BBC.

    Today the BBC is on about the falling unemployment rate reported in Britain today. Their take on it ? “The Brexit result is yet to take effect, so say economists.”

    The people I no longer trust work at the BBC.

    Like Newmania (I mention him because he is the epitome of the arrogant Remainer/Leftist Borg), they seem to put themselves at the centre ground of what is right and what is good. Have they not the slightest sense of self awareness ???

    Newmania described Dr Redwood as ‘far right’ and went unchallenged except for me.

    This was a sly manipulation of the truth and if it’s allowed to continue then Newmania’s politics wins by default rather than by ballot – the Redwoodian opinion becomes anathema
    before even a single vote is cast.

    • Anonymous
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

      In fact Newmania described Dr Redwood as ‘hard’ right, not ‘far’ right.

  35. fedupsoutherner
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

    Off Topic. Just been told that the tidal industry are trying to get a Contract For Difference auction price of £300 PMW!!!!!!! Yes, that is not a misprint. Compare that to £92 for Hinkley and £120 for offshore wind. Just what is happening to our energy policy? I am sure they will try to convince the public it is just what they need.

  36. English Pensioner
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    On the basis of selection the best of two evils, I’d pick Trump. But what I can’t understand is why a great country like USA has not been able to find any better candidates.

    • Chris S
      Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

      For more than 45 yrs it has always amazed me that a country of 250m cannot produce two good candidates for President every 8 years.

      The Liberal minded Left and many Cameronesque Conservatives hark back to the Kennedy era yet he was a sadistic and serial womaniser and under today’s 24/7 medial spotlight he would never even get on the ticket.

      All the recent offerings make Bill Clinton, George Bush Snr and dear old Ron look like truly great Presidents. Two out of the three were certainly the least worse !

  37. Glenn Vaughan
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

    Although I won’t have a vote on November 8th, I would be happy to be included amongst the “basket of deplorables”!

  38. mike fowle
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

    It is very difficult for anyone outside the US to get the full flavour of the Presidential election, I feel. There seem to be two Donald Trumps – the one in the liberal media, whom people ignorantly wanted to ban from coming here; and the one whom I’ve seen actual clips of who can be an inspiring speaker.

  39. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

    I like most of Mr Trump’s policies.
    – Immigration needs to be curtailed.
    – He would fight fewer wars but go in with all guns blazing when he did fight.
    – He isn’t a Russophobe like Romney was and Clinton is.

    What worries me is his promise to bring manufacturing jobs back to America while at the same time stopping the importation of cheap labour. That implies that he is prepared to be protectionist – not good in my book.

    No matter what his imperfections, I can’t see the world the way that Mrs Clinton sees it.

  40. Chris S
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

    PS

    Just starting the 3rd week of our European Tour we have finally seen an EU flag flying high !

    It was on a Carbuncle-like concrete monument of some kind, lakeside in Como.
    Mind you, there were three flagpoles and the EU flag was equal with the Swiss one and both were flown onsiderably lower than the Italian flag that was in the centre.

    So ironically the EU flag gets equal billing to the flag of a friendly neighbouring state.

    In over a week here we have found nobody over 40 who has anything good to say about the EU. The Euro is widely blamed for wrecking the economy and the whole edifice is seen to only benefit Germany. The got that right, then !

  41. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted September 14, 2016 at 11:27 pm | Permalink

    Corbyn/Owen set to : – tonight on TV

    Again it was claimed Labour Party membership is now 500,000. A figure repeated by the media.

    One can find in a monthly Labour Party Ward meeting, after prior door-to-door notification by leaflet and one-to-one personal reminder of the venue, date and time of the regular meeting that only two people on the night turn up….even when it is not raining or snowing or when “something good is on telly”

    50 million (?) adult population in the UK. Therefore 1 in a 100 falls soundly asleep at a particular date in the month and at a certain time say : 7.30pm. But only if they are Labour Party members. Astonishing. Why do they pay an annual membership fee when if does not always entitle them to vote in a leadership election and they are always asleep when anything is going on?
    Or is the 500,000 figure a tad optimistic?

  42. Adam
    Posted September 15, 2016 at 12:11 am | Permalink

    They are all liars. Mark my words. Neither us suitable.

  43. Treacle
    Posted September 15, 2016 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    It’s lucky that Cameron is gone. Earlier this year, the Labour Party suddenly declared that Trump would be banned from the UK for being racist, or non-PC, or some similar crime. Cameron jumped on the bandwagon and condemned Trump in strong terms, thereby violating the wise convention that we do not intervene in other countries’ elections. After that, and in view of the strong possibility of a Trump victory, I thought Cameron had to go. Fortunately he has, for other reasons.

  44. Margaret
    Posted September 15, 2016 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

    Hilary Clinton has and abundant amount of experience yet has stooped to slag Trump off too much. Her health isn’t an issue as we need to look at the rest of the senate and see who supports her. Donald Trump stands by his wealth and tells it bluntly like it is , perhaps too bluntly . Whoever wins we will know that it was the English who began the great America.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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