Trump and the PN
This American election has at least confirmed one prediction; that the candidate who wins the State of Ohio gets to be president. In fact, after winning this State, it was clear that Donald Trump was going to be the next American president, even though th
Dr Simon Mercieca is senior lecturer, Department of History
Possibly, I am one of those who had no problem in expressing my pro-Trump sympathies. Yet, in this blog I shall not speak about the fact that Trump has won because he represents the antiestablishment. The reasons lie somewhere else and I intend to tackle them some other time.
In America, you need a billionaire to defeat the system. Only billionaires can make it to the presidency. As correctly stated in the Daily Mail, American elections have brought about the downfall of a number of family dynasties in the USA. This is one of the positive aspects of the American system.
What I am interested in is the implication of Trump’s election on local politics. This election went to show how wrong and ill-advised the Leader of the Opposition is. He fears the negative reactions of the media. Instead of following Trump’s model and leading the media, he is letting the media guide him. For the past three years, the political strategists in Pietà were basing their models on the Liberal American diktat. This model is now in total disarray.
For the last three years, those individuals who were pocketing thousands thought that being liberal is the raciest thing to occur in local politics. Genuine confessional politicians have been, and are continually being side-lined by the Tal-Pieta’ gurus. At the same time, pseudo-Catholics are being promoted. This is going to have disastrous political consequences when the next election campaign is announced.
It is an open secret that the PN is desperately seeking to please the local media, in particular a section of that media that I am convinced has been receiving funds from abroad to promulgate a liberal and antiChristian agenda. The party that fought colonialism has become the greatest colonial lackey of all times.
The truth is that Labour too was pro-Clinton, and as stated in one of my previous blogs, Hillary Clinton preferred Labour to the PN. The obvious political strategy should have been either to keep your mouth shut or else for the PN to support the Republicans. Now Labour has the field by branding Simon Busuttil as the supporter of Clinton while at the same time Muscat is already starting to equate himself with Trump. In a tweet, he told his supporters that like Trump he is the anti-establishment. I cannot understand how any responsible Prime Minister can be his own enemy.
The team that Dr Busuttil has around him explains why the PN is destined to lose the next election. It is now very clear that Labour is not worried about Trump’s victory. I agree with Mark A Sammut’s political analysis that Labour will gravitate towards Trump. Muscat’s tweet confirms this. In a few months, Malta will cease hearing about gay rights and queer agendas. These are clearly, so far, not going to be on Trump’s agenda. Labour needs American investment. Without its support, Labour ‘goons’ cannot make money out of the new American generating dollar factory.
When I was gathering the research material regarding the PN’s electoral defeat, there was a lot of information about what type of party the Nationalist elector wanted or was expecting from the new leadership. As I did with the rest of the report, I formulated these ideas into a chapter, which I included in the report. This in-depth analysis ran to over 16,000 words.
When it was presented to the Commission, I had just become a father and therefore had to absent myself from some meetings. When I returned, I was told that this chapter about ideology was not going to be included in the report. However, I was given permission to present it separately as my own work. In fact, I intend to publish this work soon.
Most of those who responded to the Commission’s questionnaire did not want their party to embrace the policies, which had brought to victory the Democrats in America in 2012.
Obama’s electoral campaign was repeated with success by Labour in 2013. But strategy should not be based on what happened in 2012 in America. The best strategist is he or she who can to some extent foresee the future.
The party had already the Zapatero model to look at. Zapatero pushed the same policies of Obama and both lost their elections to the Right. For sure, the hard core Nationalist electorate does not appreciate the current PN ideological position and this explains the lukewarm climate in the rank and file of the party. What I can state is that if the PN continues with its liberal drive, it will reduce itself to 10% of the national electoral vote. What has happened in the USA is vindicating my analysis.
While my feelings about Mario de Marco are well known, when the report was presented to the Party’s Executive Committee, he was the one who made the most sane and correct observation. He stated that the report lacked an ideological element. This is true. The ideological part was there but the commission felt that it should not be included – presumably because not all the members were in agreement with the conclusions.
Yet, the idea propagated then was that this defeat was due to the position that the Nationalist Party had taken towards divorce. This was not true. Many of those who replied to our questionnaire showed their appreciation towards Lawrence Gonzi and stated that they still voted for the PN despite all the injustices that they had experienced because they admired his integrity. In fact, after this defeat, Gonzi withdrew from politics, and the PN continued to lose votes. In the European Parliament elections, in terms of raw votes, the PN failed to get the same number of votes that it obtained in the 2013 General Elections. Had the PN succeeded in keeping those votes, it would already have shown that Labour was foundering a year after its great victory.
I bet that in the next election, the PN will still not get the same number of votes that it got in 2013 when Gonzi was at the helm of the party. It will obtain less.
This is not a question of whether you like Conservative principles or not. This is an issue of political strategies and political sentiments. Conservativism has won in America. The current administration in the PN is so blind that it did not envisage that this could have happened. In Malta there was a party that had these winning values at its core but it has literally thrown them all to the four winds to embrace democratic Clinton’s values of imperialism and political guile.
The truth is that, in these last years, the PN has become more and more “Strickland prone” in values and attitudes without realizing that its historical achievements were obtained because of its staunch opposition to these values and attitudes.
The PN won in 1932 and after WWII, despite having embraced fascist ideology. It survived the election while the totally pro-British Strickland Party was annihilated.
The reason for all this is to be found in the deliberations made by Charles Bonham Carter, who was Malta’s Governor in the 1930s. He admitted that British policies failed in Malta because the British “lived an insulated isolated existence, quite detached from the Maltese towards whom they frequently behaved in an indefensibly offhand and arrogant manner – that silent arrogance peculiar to Britons, which is even more effective than Prussian bullying and brutality in the hostility it arouses.”
In post Independence period, the Prussian bullying was exercised by Mintoff on his opponents. Bonham Carter’s analysis explains why, despite all Mintoff’s defects and violent tactics, still Labour never stooped so low with the electorate, because Mintoff was intelligent enough not to embrace those British attitudes so particular to Strickland and his followers.
With sorrow, I notice that the “silent arrogance” that killed British culture in Malta has became the PN’s hallmark and it is only when this trait is killed, can this party walk to victory and hold its head high again.
The Malta Independent Monday 14 November 2016