Tea Across the Pond
“A warning from someone whose present resembles your future.”


LOPEZ: How do you view Obama, Harry Reid, and Nancy Pelosi today?

HANNAN: Hang on: I was never for Reid or Pelosi. I urged all my American friends to vote Republican in the 2008 congressional elections, and I’m doing the same today. I’ll give them this, though: When they pushed through the health-care reforms, they understood that it might well cost them their majority. Several Democrats knew that, in supporting the legislation, they were putting themselves out of a job. Obviously, I was against Obamacare; but I wish I could say with confidence that there would be as many principled Republican congressmen if it were the other way around.

LOPEZ: What might Hayek say about The New Road?

HANNAN: Once he’d got over his shock at the level of spending and state intervention in the modern world, I hope he’d see it as a timely warning to — as he put it — “socialists in all parties.”

LOPEZ: Did you learn anything you didn’t know — or fully appreciate — about America during the course of writing the book?

HANNAN: Yes: Most of you have no idea of how lucky you are.

LOPEZ: How do you ultimately view your book? An affirmation of the Tea Party movement? A love letter to America? A desperate plea? What would be the ideal impact of it?

HANNAN: It’s a warning: a warning from someone whose present resembles your future. As Ayn Rand said of Atlas Shrugged, it will have worked if the future it describes doesn’t come to pass.

LOPEZ: What kind of career move is it for a European politician to write such a thing?

HANNAN: I’m not European, I’m British. There is a market for anti-Americanism on the left in most countries, including the U.S. itself. In parts of Europe, the market isn’t confined to the Left. But my constituents, in the southern counties of England, feel far more affinity with the Anglosphere than with Europe. They see the U.S., and the other free, English-speaking democracies, as our obvious and permanent allies. They understand that we have a stake in your success.

Kathryn Jean Lopez is an editor-at-large of National Review Online.