It seems to me, that in the weeks and months since the Brexit vote, the British Establishment has become increasingly delusional. We are expected to believe that the United Kingdom, or Britain, which is a medium sized country, is going to lead the world, on level terms with the EU, the USA, and China. It just isn't credible. Outside of the EU, it is surely more likely that Britain's standing in the world will be diminished, not enhanced, as the Brexiteers would have it.
Having Theresa May jet off to meet the new President of the United States, just days after his inauguration reeked of desperation. It is also indicative of the British craving for status. Granted, whenever a new POTUS takes office, there is a degree of hand-wringing by the British Government as they fret over the implications for the mythical special relationship, and where the Prime Minister is in the pecking order of international leaders queuing up to speak to, or meet with, the new incumbent of the White House.
On this occasion, however, it can hardly have been considered a coup to have gotten in first, since I, and countless others, suspect that the world's leaders were hardly falling over themselves to do so. Some, well, the Mexican President, at any rate, decided he wasn't so keen to meet President Trump at all.
Perhaps I am biased, but seeing Trump and May standing together, or walking hand-in-hand (however awkwardly), did not evoke memories of Reagan and Thatcher, or Bush and Blair. With those relationships, there was at least mutual respect and/or common purpose. Of Trump and May, the only common cause I could detect, was for each to make the other look good in the eyes of the world. Oh, and let's not forget, the UK is desperate to strike a trade deal with the US, just as soon as it can after formally exiting the EU.
Some British commentators went as far as to describe the PM's visit as a triumph, something that made them proud to be British. Now, I haven't taken any pride in the fact that my passport insists that I am British for quite some time, but this unfortunate episode only served to increase my embarrassment. Hastily handing President Trump an invitation to make a state visit to the UK was at best ill-advised: in the wake of the Trump administration's unwarranted and inhumane immigration ban, it seems downright daft.
Alas, soon to be outwith the EU, Great "Billy-no-mates" Britain is all too eager to cozy up to anyone who's willing, even if that happens to be an offensive orangutan with an overly simplistic worldview. Theresa May can talk all she likes of America and Britain leading "together" again, but the reality is, as was the case with Bush and Blair, Britain isn't in a position to lead anything, anywhere. It really is a case of the long dead empire hanging on to the declining superpower's coattails. And it is pathetic.
After all this time, the British Establishment cannot accept that the UK is no longer one of the big boys. They like to convince themselves that they are respected and revered across the globe, yet everything they do invites ridicule.
The obsession with status a big part of why they don't want to let Scotland go. If Scotland breaks away, Britain will be economically, geographically, and numerically diminished further still. Status is also why they won't lift a finger to get a bespoke deal for Scotland in the Brexit negotiations. They couldn't bear it if Scotland were to end up with better arrangements than the rest of the UK.
In 2014, Scotland decided to remain within the UK. A sad, sorry choice in my view. Two and a half years later, all but the most intransigent BritNat must see that the British Establishment holds Scotland in contempt, and regards Scots as second class citizens. Brexit could have been (at a stretch) a brave new world for Britain, but instead, the Government looks backward, hankering after glory days that never really were. How much longer are we to saddle ourselves with such short-sighted, status-seeking stupidity?