Thoughts from an active pensioner who is now somewhat past his Biblical "Use-by date"

"Why just be difficult, when with a little more effort you can be bloody impossible?"

Friday, 27 January 2017

President Trump and Theresa May

Those self-serving individuals who present their assessment of global politics in the form of a "Doomsday Clock" have decided that the world will be a far more dangerous place since President Trump was elected and Britain decided to leave the EU. They advanced it by 30 seconds so that it now stands at two and a half minutes to midnight (whatever that means).

This is rather strange, as for various reasons, I now feel safer.

Firstly, Brexit. This will mean that the EU will lose one of the internationally most important countries and will speak with that bit less authority. It will also lose a large chunk of its income, and unless the remaining countries are prepared to pay more,  it means that there will be less money to throw around and thus less attractive to countries like Ukraine where it was the EU's dabbling that led to the Russian intervention. Hopefully, without our support, it will not get involved in things that could lead to military intervention, making, in my view, the world a somewhat safer place.

Then comes Trump, very outspoken, whose actions so far seem to to indicate that he will actually do what he said he would do before being elected, a novel change! He wants to spend more on the military and updating weapons which is what any prudent leader should do. At the same time he says that America is no longer prepared to get into unnecessary wars, such as Iraq and Afghanistan and even that he will only support NATO if all the other members of the alliance pull their weight and spend more of their GDP on defence in line with the US.

When it comes to dealing with Russia, I don't believe Putin is stupid. He now knows that Trump means what he says and is unlikely to do anything which might trigger a forceful response. Both Russia and America have a common enemy in Islam and just as Trump wants to build a wall to keep out the Mexicans, Putin has to spend quite a lot of resources maintaining a watch on its southern borders which mainly face Islamic countries.

One of the other factors affecting the "Doomsday Clock" was Trump's decision to scrap many of the "green" requirements. He is going to allow coal mining, new oil pipelines, fracking and other activities which are frowned on by the "Greens". I believe that he is correct to do so. What is the point of closing down heavy industry in the US to reduce emissions (and create unemployment) when third world countries then start their own new industries, probably causing far more emissions and damage than previously. Countries want steel and whether it is produced in China, India or America, there will be emissions. I fail to see why bringing production "home" is a danger to the world and makes an iota of difference to the "Doomsday Clock", it will reduce US unemployment and ensure that the product is of the proper quality.

So on balance, my conclusion, which is the opposite of the "experts", is that the world will now be that little bit safer.

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