The coronavirus outbreak is one of the biggest stories in 2020 that could give nationalists across the globe a real-life lesson in the necessity of strong national boundaries.
Originating in the city of Wuhan in China’s Hubei province, CO-VID19 has claimed the lives of over 4,000 people worldwide. The majority of the people impacted by the virus lie in the Hubei province. However, the virus is spreading across the globe thanks to how the inter-connected the world is now.
Populist figures across the world have taken advantage of this crisis to advocate for nationalist policies that focus on strong borders and national sovereignty.
Matteo Salvini, Italy’s former interior minister and leader of the nationalist League party, has been vocal about closing the Italian border in the face of the coronavirus epidemic.
“If [Prime Minister Giuseppe] Conte is not able to defend Italy and Italians, he should step aside,” Salvini said, late in February.
“The infection is spreading. I want to know from the government who has come in and gone out. We have to seal our borders now.”
Italy recently surpassed Iran as the country with the highest number of people dying from CO-VID19 outside of China.
Free movement and open border are some of the European Union’s foundational principles.
In France, the leader of the far-right Rassemblement National (National Rally), Marine Le Pen, took President Emmanuel Macron‘s government to task for allowing Italian football fans to attend a match in Lyon last month, arguing that “a border protects populations, whatever the situation.”
Populist parties in Germany and Spain have demanded that the Shengen agreement, which permits passport-free travel among 26 member states in the European Union, be suspended.
These parties criticized European leaders for putting the “dogma” of open borders on a pedestal, while overlooking their citizens’ health.
In the U.S., the coronavirus is quickly spreading across the country, with certain high-profile events such as the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) having reported cases of attendees contracting the virus.
The U.S. stock market has taken a beating with the Dow Jones dropping by 3,500 points in the week of February 23, 2020.
Apart from the concerns of American economic health, there are more structural matters to reconsider.
The overwhelming majority of pharmaceutical production is located in China, thus leaving the U.S. vulnerable should supply chains be disrupted during “Black Swan” moments like these.
Pat Buchanan described this situation perfectly in a recent article on the coronavirus outbreak:
In recent decades, America’s economic and political elites of both parties surrendered America’s economic independence for globalism, a new interdependence of nations, where we Americans no longer rely on ourselves alone for the vital necessities of our national life.
BLP recently covered the New York Post’s editorial board’s call for bringing back pharmaceutical production to Puerto Rico.
People are starting to slowly wake up to the realities of globalism.
Globalism has been marketed as a solution to solving political problems, but it has created a whole new set of problems such as susceptibility to global pandemics and displacement levels of mass migration. Naturally, these are the consequences of completely integrating economies and migration policies with countries who possess disparate levels of economic development and health infrastructure. Not to mention, cultural differences that may turn migrant waves into destabilizing factors.
This is not a time to talk about GDP or other cliché economic concepts. The current coronavirus crisis deals with more fundamental matters of nationhood—whether or not countries can keep their citizens safe and stay functional in times of crises.
Countries like Israel have already established a 14-day quarantine for all Israelis coming from abroad. Trump must put the American people first by cancelling flights, shutting down vulnerable entry points like the Southern border, and reaffirming the necessity of borders.
Now is the time for action, and Trump must not falter.
Texas Political Establishment Attempts to Derail Shelley Luther’s Campaign
The special election for Texas’ Senate District 30 is on pace to be one of the most heated races in the Lone Star State.
At a candidate forum on September 18, 2020, Shelley Luther, the Dallas salon owner who was jailed for opening her business in defiance of Governor Greg Abbott’s shutdown order, confronted outgoing State Senator Pat Fallon.
Fallon vacated his seat and is now backing a successor in State Representative Drew Springer.
“We don’t want somebody who’s going to be at odds with our Republican governor,” Fallon said September 18 at the Grayson County Republican Women’s Club.
I didn’t support some of the things that he has done about opening up. … So, he’s made some mistakes. He’s our Republican governor, the 80/20 rule … because you’re not going to get any bills passed unless the governor signs them.
“Let me make something clear. I am accountable to my fellow citizens in Senate District 30. Not our Governor,” Luther responded on September 19 on Facebook:
This is exactly what is wrong with Austin. Our politicians are more loyal to Abbott than us, even when they disagree with him.
I will work with Governor Abbott when he is fighting to protect the liberty of Texans, and I will oppose him when he pushes unilateral dictates that shut down our local businesses.
Fallon and Luther had a tense exchange, which was caught on video.
“You want me to go all in on this race?” Fallon questioned Luther. “I have been 5 percent in on this race. You want me to go all in on it, I’m welcome to.”
“This has become a straight-up fight between Abbott and the ‘Kumbaya’ Professional Political Class vs. the grassroots and people who remember what limited government and principles should look like,” opined conservative activist Mike Openshaw.
“Respectfully, being willing to be jailed for fighting over-reaching government shows principle; that counts for something, Patrick,” Openshaw continued.
Luther has recently received endorsements from conservative Collin County Judge Chris Hill and Young Conservatives of Texas. Springer, on the other hand, received an endorsement from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, which asserted that Luther was going down a “far right” path.
A Republican is expected to carry the senate district, which may still require a runoff if the leading candidate does not get enough votes during the first round of the special election.
Election Day will be on September 29.
Luther is viewed as the truly conservative option and many believe she could help break the political status quo in Austin that has kept conservative legislation from ever being passed.
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