Ushuaia at ‘the end of the world’ and Puerto Vallarta striving to be ‘the world’s friendliest city’ show that even in the most challenging of circumstances places can offer positive global and local visions. As Brexit and its advocates destroy the country formerly known as UK (FKaUK) ambitious, progressive places need to apply and adopt some of the magic from Latin America to shape a better world and their place within it…
Visits to Sofia, Bucharest, Bratislava, and then Westerngrund, Spessart-Mainland in North West Bavaria – the geographical centre of the EU28 – largely confirms observations from the tour’s first stage earlier this month. A better future should comprise continental-scale, enabling political unions, of highly distinctive small and mid-size nations and regions, sharing global visions and values. The EU, warts and all, is currently the leading exemplar of this type of approach. It has enough positive work-in-progress upon which to build – if its globally pretentious larger members can shrug off exceptionalism and behave with some degree of generosity and humility. The UK is currently totally incapable of this – hence the requirement for FK(a)UK’s hara-kiri.
A short visit to Estonia, Finland and Lithuania demonstrates that mid-size places places with a sensible identity – whether Lithuania or Lombardy; Estonia or Extremadura; Greater Helsinki or Hesse – offer a type of “right” scale and potentially the right culture for being the major intermediary mediator of global and local challenges. They are likely to be far more effective than large nation states with their own exceptionalism of delusional global ambitions based on race and (in our case Etonian) entitlement.
The international success of Premier League clubs owes everything to openness and facing outwards within a European rules-based system – a lesson lost on little-England bitterness and hatred…
The local government elections 2019 tells us relatively little about Brexit – but everything about the serial liars now leading England’s two major political parties and the ongoing death of UK representative democracy.