Category Real politics

Why calling out ‘post-truth’ might be a bad idea

Of all the habits I developed in five years studying philosophy, internalising the principle of charity is among the most important. Few other ideas are as valuable and relevant outside the seminar room. The principle is simple: when considering an argument, we should try to construct it in its strongest and most persuasive form. Indeed, […]

Trump, Brexit and the Imp of the Perverse

I grew up in a period when politics was boring: the era of the ‘great moderation’ and the ‘end of history’. A time when all the politicians looked and sounded the same, and had a similar acceptance of capitalism, globalisation and the welfare state. With Donald Trump settling into the White House and the UK […]

Another way 2016 revealed democracy’s fallibility

2016, I think it’s fair to say, has not been a good year for confidence in democracy. Brexit, Trump and the various ructions to come have reawakened some of the oldest arguments in political theory: that democracy doesn’t work. David Van Reybrouck ruminates on the poor quality of debate in democracy. Arguments abound that the […]

Is there evidence of immigration putting pressure on British communities?

A couple of weeks ago, Daniel Korski, an aide to David Cameron, wrote a fascinating insider’s account of Britain’s renegotiation of terms with the European Union, prior to June’s referendum. Particularly eye-catching was his claim that Britain had was incapable to make a strong case for restricting welfare payments to EU migrants. When EU counterparts […]

The contradictions of Tory ideology: immigration and red tape

In the past few weeks, I moved house for the first time since 2012 and registered as a university student for the first time since 2007. Both were significantly more painful processes than the last time round. In both cases, this was in large part down to Theresa May’s immigration regulations, which are set to […]

The Trumpification of foreign aid

Donald Trump’s charitable activities have received long-overdue scrutiny in recent weeks, with the focus largely on their legality – for example, his foundation made political contributions, which contravenes tax regulations – and the fact that he personally contributed relatively little to charity. But as Ezra Klein recently pointed out, the Trump Foundation’s activities reveal a […]

We’ll miss him now he’s gone: in defence of David Cameron

I thought I had longer to write this – that’s why it is a little late. But politics moves too quickly for all of us these days. Last Monday morning David Cameron believed he had another two months as British Prime Minister; in fact he had barely two days. It seems unlikely he will be […]