My prediction for 2019.

This is the year of the #Awakening. A redo of 1968, only now we are  calling for care of our own citizens first. A re-balancing of Rabbi Hillel. “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? But if I am only for myself, who am I? If not now, when?”  Globalism is failing. The EU is failing. The UN is failing. The Paris Accords are falling apart and the latest UN pronouncement on immigration, Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, is under attack.

Citizens want their governments to be close to them; more like Socrates and the Agora than a group of un-elected people running the lives of people many miles away with a one-size fits all approach. Citizens want leaders who talk to their needs first, not the needs of others, first. This is 21st Century populism-much maligned by pundits, professors and left wing politicians. This will shock you: Trump responds to the needs of his citizens first and his behaviour is now being replicated around the world. The more pundits that lambaste him, the more courage they give to conservative citizens around the globe. Because America, under President Trump is reshaping the world.

Canada’s former PM Stephen Harper wrote in his book Right Here Right Now that “Trump, Brexit and the European populist movements are exposing a fault line in modern Western societies.”  And “Populist nationalist and anti-establishment movements are continuing to grow.”  This shift to the right, to Conservatism seems to be founded on the concept of loyalty. To whom is the leadership of the country loyal? Is it to the citizens or to ideologies like globalism?

It appears the election of Donald Trump has given citizens world-wide the courage to speak up and demand that their leaders put their concerns first. Not the nationalism of the early 20th century but a balance between the rights of citizens to be first on the minds of their politicians while at the same time recognizing the gift of living in the west and helping others.

While the Progressives, the Left, the Globalists, to whom PM Stephen Harper refers as the Anywheres: comfortable anywhere with no loyalty to one place, talk about open borders and free trade everywhere; the facts on the ground suggest that the Somewheres: the people who live in small cities, who have a sense of community; want their government to be responsive to them because they depend on the nation state. They are the people most affected by government policy.

Harper writes:

“…the so-called “deplorables” who have voted establishment figures out of office deserve a careful hearing. Their concerns point to deep problems with globalization — and they aren’t going away. So here is my re-examination in a nutshell. A large proportion of Americans, including many American conservatives, voted for Trump because they are really not doing very well. In short, the world of globalization is not working for many of our own people. We can pretend that this is a false perception, but it is not. We now have a choice. We can keep trying to convince people that they misunderstand their own lives, or we can try to understand what they are saying.”

Did Trump bring politics back to responsibility and loyalty to the citizens of his country rather than catering to the citizens of the world?  John Robson, a columnist for the National Post referred to loyalty  in his article. He referred to psychologist Jonathan Haidt  who wrote that “liberals value openness more than conservatives while conservatives place more emphasis on three other dimensions: purity, authority/respect and loyalty.” Robson went on to say,”I urge left-wing parties and thinkers to recognize that their visceral dislike of their own culture, civilization and history is politically harmful because it’s morally wrong. Which in turn requires recognition that loyalty is a virtue.”

Rabbi Sacks wrote “Always be loyal to the people you lead. Is leadership a set of skills, the ability to summon and command power? Or does it have an essentially moral dimension also? Can a bad man be a good leader, or does his badness compromise his leadership?  Leadership without loyalty is not leadership.

The election of Trump has validated the views of citizens around the world who are now questioning their government leaders about loyalty.

In  France, Austria, Brazil, Italy, and Britain, where leaders including British Home Secretary Sajid Javid, are attempting to close borders. “Asylum seekers in Britain are entitled to free accommodation, cash support at £37.75 per person per week, free healthcare, free dental care, free eyesight tests, free glasses, maternity grants and free schooling — much to the chagrin of many British nationals and former service personnel who do not have access to many of these benefits.”

In Hungary,  Austria, Germany,  Poland, and Sweden.

All of these countries are now faced with citizens who want a better life at home.

The courage of the American people to vote for a leader who put their interests first, to rise above the vitriol of the progressives, the pundits and professors derisively referring to Trump supporters as Deplorables and populists with the audacity to question the changes to their western culture, has given rise to courage in the EU to take back their countries, their culture, their values, their economy.

The late Charles Krauthammer wrote:

If we don’t get politics right, everything else risks extinction.

PM Harper wrote:

If a policy “is not working out well for the public, in a democracy you fix the policy; you do not denounce the public.”

 The West is #Awakening2019


From the Ethics of the Fathers: “Rabbi Tarfon used to say, it is not incumbent upon you to complete the task, but you are not exempt from undertaking it.”