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A Farage in every country

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There is now ‘a Farage in every country’. It’s a horrifying thought, isn’t it?

The EU’s Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier made that claim today, suggesting we all live on a dystopian continent full populist tinpot demagogues, threatening the existence of the European Union itself.

Which, to be honest, had not passed me by. What these populists have in common is their use of voters’ reasonable grievances to push forward an agenda that seeks to blame and denigrate institutions. Rather than reform institutions to make them work, their solution is much simpler: wreck them and start again.

This is a dangerous approach, no matter which part of the political spectrum it comes from, and that is why this month’s edition of the magazine seeks to answer how we can protect institutions – such as the EU – while still demanding change.

The problem comes in when we do the former but not the latter. Not only is this a conservative approach, to defend without reform, but it is also leads to a dangerous path itself. Jessica Asato has written an excellent feature on how we should approach this one year on from the breaking of the #MeToo scandal. Protecting institutions and organisations cannot mean turning a blind eye to the failures in their structures that can lead to abuse.

-Conor Pope, deputy editor


 

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Conor Pope

is deputy editor at Progress

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