It ought to remind every American that no nation is immune to foolishness when we recall that Britain is home to two of the most profoundly stupid conspiracy theories of all time. I’m referring to the alien crop circles hoax and the anti-vaxxer hoax.
What’s especially instructive about these two banal swindles is both of them were begun by subsequently-exposed fraudsters. The (admittedly mostly harmless) crop circles idiocy was invented by two lads in a pub who’d had too much to drink and too much time on their hands. The dangerous vaxxer swindle was begun by defrocked Dr. Andrew Wakefield, an evil cretin who stood to make millions from a lie of his own invention, a lie that has since caused the reemergence of some particularly nasty childhood illnesses and tragically unnecessary deaths worldwide.
For my money Wakefield should receive special recognition in some kind of hall of infamy, particularly today. Many people will refuse the coming coronavirus vaccine thanks to him, because science is one thing but the bogeyman is another, and the bogeyman of ignorance about how vaccines work and why we need them is abroad throughout the world and alive in the minds of the unreachable ignorant.
All of which is to say, folly exists here in Britain just as it does everywhere else, and it is every bit as perniciously contagious as coronavirus. Fortunately the sunshine of rationality breaks through the clouds of ignorance here too, as it did so spectacularly this past week in America. Sometimes good triumphs over evil in the end, and good is contagious too.
We have Labour MP Angela Eagle to thank for speaking up about the elephant in the room when, during Wednesday’s Prime Minister’s Question Time she said to Boris Johnson, “The Prime Minister spoke for many of us when he called yesterday to congratulate President-Elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris on their emphatic win in the US Presidential election. So does the Prime Minister now have any advice for his erstwhile best friend, President Trump, whose continuing refusal to accept the result is both embarrassing for him and dangerous for American democracy?”
To his credit, Boris Johnson, spent little time on Trump, and he offered no advice for his “erstwhile friend.” Trump is a has-been, and Boris knows it. The Prime Minister only confirmed that it was his job to have good relations with the White House, and he repeated that he looked forward to working with the Biden administration on the problem of climate change — an indirect repudiation of Trump and his deliberate snub of climate science.
Johnson has long endured (or enjoyed, depending on who you ask) a reputation as Trump’s closest European ally. It’s amusing to watch him inch away by changing the subject and ignoring Trump’s baseless claim that he was cheated out of a second term.
Johnson joined the rest of Europe, Mexico and Canada in congratulating President-Elect Joe Biden on his spectacular humiliation of Trump. The list of leaders who haven’t are just the ones you’d expect: Russia’s Putin, North Korea’s Kim Jong-un, Brazil’s Bolsonaro and China’s President Xi. To round out the company, Trump hasn’t congratulated Biden either, and I don’t believe he ever will.
Meanwhile the toxic manbaby infesting the People’s House continues to deny reality as his crowd of former supporters turn their backs on him and the applause fades away. Based on my experience with humanity’s most toxic archetype, the malignant narcissist, I predict Donald Trump will never acknowledge that he was beaten by Joe Biden, and it will remain a principle narrative of the rest of his miserable life.
By refusing to admit what every sane person knows, that Joe Biden is now the 46th President of the United States, Donald Trump once again has put the American people at risk for the sake of his own diaphanous ego. Without the necessary security briefings, the President-Elect will be unable to formulate policy and put in place safeguards to ensure a smooth transition between administrations. This policy and procedure gap will put America at risk and represent a dangerous time. Trump cares nothing about this.
There are a million reasons why Donald Trump is unfit to be president of the United States. Indeed, there are soon to be up to five million reasons and more, each in the form of a vote from Americans who want him gone. Nothing Donald Trump can do or say will alter that palpable reality. He has lost, and the rest of the world knows it. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.