When the biggest advocates for your course of action are Marine LePen and Donald Trump, you may find that you’ve made a boo boo. Trump, of course, weighed in with his customary ignorance:
Meanwhile, Scotland gets the message loud and clear and gets ready to apply to Britain what Britain just applied to the EU. And the Irish don’t see any reason why they need to belong to the dregs of an Empire either.
And the nationalist impulse is spreading to the rest of the EU. Smart. Nationalism really paid off in the 20th Century for Europe. If Trump is for it, how could it possibly be a bad idea?
For years, I have been assured that on matters of prudential judgment, conservatives should always be trusted, even when it means ignoring the guidance of the Church. Far too late did it occur to me ask, “Shouldn’t conservatives demonstrate some kind of elementary prudence before trusting their prudential judgments?” This is shaping up to be as big a dumb idea as the Iraq war. Trump’s endorsement is just the kiss of death.
Meanwhile, in the back of my mind I recall a remark Scott Hahn once made, “Nationalism is to nations what the sin of pride is to persons.” The tradition commends patriotism. It does not have kind words for nationalism.
Poor Winston Churchill. A “United States of Europe” was his idea and an honorable attempt to rein in the catastrophic nationalisms that slaughtered millions. Now these voices are rising again and using him as their mascot. Folly.