Politics

Boris Johnson’s naked ambition blinds him to the dangers of Brexit | Martin Kettle

The foreign secretary’s vision of a ‘liberal’ future outside the EU is a triumph of self-delusion

Boris Johnson has made his career out of creating myths about Europe. With Theresa May’s job again within his ever-ambitious grasp, he’s not going to stop doing it now.

The foreign secretary’s speech this week will conjure the prospect of a “liberal” post-Brexit free trading order. In this Johnsonian vision, Britain will be freed from politically driven European regulatory systems whose true purpose is only to create a unified Europe. Instead, he says, Britain will be able to create its own regulatory regimes to align issues such as social rights, the environment and energy with the country’s post-Brexit global free trade aspirations.

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