Populism is the new panic

Populism is the new panic-word for the broad centre of liberal-democratic politics. This is in large part because of its association with the Right and even fascism. The populism of UKIP or Trump aims to create a homogenised constituency of ‘the people’, racialised and hostile to those outside their categorical borders. This is not to […]

Read More Populism is the new panic

#TotalEvent

  A change? We entering an age of the Total Event, an age in which, occasionally but irregularly, we are sucked into political conjunctures that, for a time, envelop political discourse in a fashion that is novel and carries with it new or newish questions and issues.

Read More #TotalEvent

Meeting Corbyn

A new politics? On the 19th August I attended a Corbyn for leader rally in Sheffield city centre. It was unusual to attend such a large rally of the Left and with such a positive atmosphere. Usually it takes something awful to get left-leaning people on the streets en masse: an anti-racism event, stop the […]

Read More Meeting Corbyn

Corbyn!

I take the title of this blog from the repeated line expressed by Colonel Cathcart in regards to Yossarian in Catch-22. It is a scream of exasperation at Yossarian’s refusal to conform to his plans for order and self-promotion in a situation of insane chaos. He writes on a board ‘Yossarian!’ and then ‘Yossarian?’, neither […]

Read More Corbyn!

Middle class revolt*

It has been an interesting couple of weeks. The fall-out from the ‘No’ vote has been unpredictably turbulent and complex because no-one really expected a ‘No’ vote. One of the fairly predictable facets of ‘No’ is that it would enable an increase in openly-expressed racial hatred; this because a large part of the Leave campaign […]

Read More Middle class revolt*

On Europe

I became aware of Britain’s membership of the EU in the late 1970s. Living in a very insular and conservative part of the country the European Community, as it then was, offered an opportunity to familiarise oneself with places culturally unfamiliar but without the ‘overseas’, ‘commonwealth’ and entirely ‘foreign’ baggage that was so ingrained in […]

Read More On Europe

If its not fixed, break it.

Business as usual Mainstream understandings of capitalism share a faith that it can be stripped of its crisis tendency through the right policies, politics, and regulations. To sustain this faith, there is often a focus on moments when, it is claimed, everything was working well.

Read More If its not fixed, break it.

Fantastically corrupt?

Corruption in other countries is often represented as a political exoticism – in Cameron’s words a fantastic phenomenon. This is a familiar and analytically weak understanding of corruption. If we think of corruption as part of ordinary politics, its provincialisms appear far less convincing.

Read More Fantastically corrupt?

The Age of conspiracy

Conspiracy thinking flourishes; in fact it is in as rude health as it ever has been. This blog will explore some of the reasons for this before exploring the overlaps between conspiracy theorising and political thinking more broadly. Although conspiracy theory is commonly based in ‘leap of faith’ thinking based in shaky and circumstantial evidence […]

Read More The Age of conspiracy

A world of labour

Work and its depoliticisation Imagine a future, but a not-too-distant future. In this time, your employer has been nationalised – taken over by the government, perhaps in response to one of the economic crises that economists seem habitually shocked by. Your employer is no longer the boss you were used to but a bureaucrat from […]

Read More A world of labour