In 2016, Nigel Farage stirred up British bad humor throughout the European Union. Boris Johnson made him second.
Five years later, Farage remains in the shadows, but Johnson is prime minister.
Nigel Farage promised to invest 350 million pounds (430 million euros) a week to the UK health sector if he won the Brexit referendum and, subsequently, if he became prime minister.
The figure was used by Boris Johnson and painted in giant numbers on his pro-Brexit campaign truck. The amount of money was, supposedly, the contribution that the United Kingdom made to the EU: 17.800 million pounds (22,000 million euros) annually. But the reality is that the weekly contribution did not exceed 300 million pounds, on average, a week. Infacts estimates were at 140 million.
Boris Johnson liked the populist suit because it suited him at the time. He pressed, along with the hard part of the Conservative Party, then Prime Minister David Cameron to call the Brexit referendum in 2016 in exchange for closing ranks on his electoral intentions.
Boris bet on the miracle, and won. David Cameron resigned after the results of Brexit and, subsequently, Theresa May did not manage to get out of the labyrinth of negotiations with Brussels.
Boris arrived at 10 Downing Street promising that it would be very easy to enjoy anti-European sovereignty. The difficult thing was over. It was time to recover borders. Take back control, Boris once said.
The barrage of lies about how well Britain would fare outside of the European Union paid off, but now few want to experience the signs of chaos in the country.
Brexit has put at risk the Good Friday Agreement, with which the conflict in Northern Ireland was ended, and the cohesion of the United Kingdom due to the propensity for independence from Scotland, who voted against divorce with the European Union.
As if he were a Chavista politician, Boris Johnson has put the agreement formed with Brussels in suspense, in particular, he does not like that the border with the European Union is within the United Kingdom and leaves Northern Ireland out. In other words, if it were up to him, he wouldn’t mind putting the Good Friday deal at risk.
Migration was the leading variable in Brexit. Farage and Johnson against Polish, Hungarian or Spanish migrants. The scenes seen at the country’s gas stations over the weekend have a Brexit component. Truck drivers missing. The industry has 90,000 drivers. Of them, about 50,000 left their job for various reasons: the pandemic, retirement, change of activity, and of course, due to the new conditions imposed by Brexit on community members, that is, thousands of drivers returned to their countries of origin. or they tried their luck in another European country.
The demand for gasoline has meant that between 50% and 90% of pumps are empty in some areas of Britain, according to the Gasoline Retailers Association (PRA).
The spiral in demand for gasoline has been catapulted by the psychological effect of panic. The problem is not the gasoline shortage, there is a labor shortage in the transportation industry. Boris’s government is trying to patch the problem by granting 10,500 temporary work visas, that is, trying to amend Brexit provisions that he himself supported.
Now, Johnson threatens to remove the army from the barracks to prevent chaos from spreading.
Nationalism serves to make flags, but not to solve market problems.
Boris would have to resign as a liar.
Consultant, academic, editor
Globali … what?
He was a research professor in the Department of International Studies at ITAM, published the book Referendum Twitter and was editor and contributor to various newspapers such as 24 Horas, El Universal, Milenio. He has published in magazines such as Foreign Affairs, Le Monde Diplomatique, Life & Style, Chilango and Revuelta. He is currently an editor and columnist for El Economista.