What’s the opposite of these PPE/Énarque/Beltway weirdos?

On Populism and ‘Honest Politicians’ Corbyn has been praised for being an honest man, that rarity — an authentic politician. Yet his lack of success has brought criticism (and not just from the right of his own party and other centrists) for not ‘playing the game’. So which is it? Neither. The surprise upsurge – Continue reading What’s the opposite of these PPE/Énarque/Beltway weirdos?

The List Lands: Who can reconstitute democracy after this bombshell?

By 6 PM on the night of Tuesday 11 April, the plenaries of Brazil’s house and senate were empty. A long-promised political holocaust had arrived. Supreme Court Justice Edson Fachin had just authorised corruption investigations into nearly a third of interim president Temer’s cabinet, and a similar proportion of senators. The list to be investigated Continue reading The List Lands: Who can reconstitute democracy after this bombshell?

In Defence of Abominations and Peversion

It is one year to the day since ISIS claimed responsibility for the Paris attacks, in which they “targeted the capital of abominations and perversion.” What followed was the predictable Je Suis Charlie-style demonstrations of ‘solidarity’ – so patently a charade when voiced by authoritarian, militarist, and censorious European leaders. Others repeated the French Republican Continue reading In Defence of Abominations and Peversion

Dirty hands, broken car wash: anti-corruption and the Brazilian crisis

As I’ve argued since the beginning of the year, the Lava Jato investigation is one of two things: either a limited initiative that stops after ensnaring its primary targets, or a thoroughgoing campaign-cum-crusade that ends up eviscerating the whole political class. It’s hard to decide which would be preferable. The one would be, effectively, a highly Continue reading Dirty hands, broken car wash: anti-corruption and the Brazilian crisis

Democracy, Corruption and Trust

On the municipal election results… Brazil’s first elections since Dilma’s impeachment are already being reported as a ‘slap‘ to the Workers’ Party (PT). This was always going to be the case. The governing party bore the brunt of anti-corruption protests, the Lava Jato investigations, and responsibility for recession. More interesting is the rise of another force Continue reading Democracy, Corruption and Trust