Instant Opinion

‘Johnson is not Trump’s transatlantic twin’

Your digest of analysis and commentary from the British and international press

1

James Forsyth in The Times

Johnson is not Trump’s transatlantic twin

on an ill-fitting comparison

“He craves harmony in a way that Trump does not. He is an optimist, not a pessimist. He wants to reform institutions, not destroy them. He believes in evolution, not revolution. On both sides of the Atlantic, Johnson’s critics like nothing more than lumping him in with Trump — an ever-more toxic association. Trump’s dubbing of Johnson as ‘Britain Trump’, their shared ability to flout convention and communicate directly with voters in their own distinct ways, their understanding of post-industrial discontent, their unusual hairstyles: all of these things are cited as resemblances. But the differences are more important than the similarities.”

2

Andy Beckett in The Guardian

Brexit may spell the end of the tabloid version of Englishness. Can Labour redefine it?

on national identity

“During the best moments of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, there was again a sense that Labour was taking energy from alternative forms of Englishness – not just the old dissenting tradition that Corbyn embodied, but the modern lives of many young people and minorities. In the crowd at a Corbyn rally, you saw a different England to the one idealised by the tabloids. Yet this England wasn’t big enough for Labour to win. And the other England is resilient: a large minority of voters still crave Boris Johnson’s English nationalism, despite all the disappointments and disasters it brings.”

3

Fraser Nelson in The Daily Telegraph

Trump’s final act was a betrayal of the people who voted for him

on presidential cannon fodder

“He could, even now, concede defeat and say how he came to power by representing people who feel angry and alienated – so whoever comes next ought to look after these people. But the way he treats his supporters – as fodder for his deranged campaign about election fraud – suggests that no longer cares about their interests – if he ever really did. It’s all about him. They believed in Trump, they saw some benefit from his policies – but they ended up misled, maligned and betrayed.”

4

Liz Johnson in The i

As someone with a disability I was relieved when lockdown was announced

on prioritising the vulnerable

“As perverse as it may sound, when the news of yet another lockdown broke, I breathed a huge sigh of relief. As someone with a disability, I know that the tiered system of Covid restrictions has left many with different needs feeling ostracised and endangered. A full lockdown, despite its many hardships will help those with disabilities feel safe again. More than 14 million people in the UK have a disability yet we are often forgotten about. The very fact that people with disabilities are more likely to have underlying health conditions should deem them more of a priority during a health crisis. Yet labelling a group as vulnerable only to cast them aside when the official advice to shield came to an end has achieved the opposite.”

5

James Moore in The Independent

The NHS, pushed to breaking point by Covid, is being privatised by stealth – we had better be ready to fight for it

on the future our health service

“The increased involvement of private providers in the NHS, combined with the growing use of private provision by people who can pay, could quickly start to look like privatisation by stealth. It might not be all that stealthy either. This isn’t preordained. If the NHS gets enough money, and love, from the government, it can be built back up. It can even, dare I say it, be built back better. But given what several leading figures in the governing party have written in the past, do they have the appetite to do that? We’re about to find out.”

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