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Let Them Howl, Boris!

Patrick Buchanan on

Facing a Parliamentary majority opposed to a hard Brexit -- a crashing out of the EU if Britain is not offered a deal she can live with -- Boris Johnson took matters into his own hands.

He went to the Queen at Balmoral and got Parliament "prorogued," suspended, from Sept. 12 to Oct. 14. That's two weeks before the Oct. 31 deadline Johnson has set for Britain's departure.

The time his opposition in Parliament has to prevent a crash out of the European Union has just been sliced in half. His adversaries are incensed.

The speaker of the House of Commons called Johnson's action "a constitutional outrage." Johnson's Tory Party leader in Scotland resigned. Labor Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn said Parliament will start legislating Tuesday to block Johnson. There is talk of a no-confidence vote in the Tory government.

One recalls the counsel Benjamin Jowett, Master of Balliol, gave his students: Never retract, never explain, just do it and let them howl! For Johnson has done what he was chosen, and pledged, to do.

Though he lacks a majority for a "no-deal Brexit," his suspension of Parliament keeps faith with the hardline Tories who put their trust in him -- that he would honor his commitment to get done by October's end what the British people voted to do in 2016.

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Whatever may be said of him, Johnson has shown himself as a man of action, a risk-taker, a doer, like Trump, who has hailed Johnson for the suspension. And leaders like Johnson are today shouldering aside the cookie-cutter politicians to dominate the world stage.

Matteo Salvini, interior minister, leader of the League party, and the most popular political figure in Italy, brought down his own government to force new elections he felt he would win. His ambition is to take the leadership not only of Italy but of the European populist right.

Salvini's boldness backfired when the League's ex-partner in the government, the leftist Five Star Movement, joined the Democratic Party to form a new government from which the League is excluded.

Yet Salvini, too, is in the mold of Trump and Vladimir Putin, who, when he saw a U.S.-backed coup take down the pro-Russian president in Ukraine, seized Crimea, home port of Russia's Black Sea fleet since the 18th century.

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Copyright 2019 Creators Syndicate Inc.

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