British Politics: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short by Tony Wright

By Tony Wright

British politics, notes Tony Wright, is arguably Britain's maximum reward to the realm. during this Very brief creation, Wright bargains an excellent interpretative essay at the British political procedure.

The writer, a tutorial and up to date Member of Parliament, illuminates the foremost features and ideas of the British culture, and investigates what makes British politics special, whereas emphasizing in the course of the booklet how those features are mirrored within the manner the political process truly capabilities. each one bankruptcy is prepared round a key subject, comparable to the structure or political responsibility, that is first proven after which explored with examples and illustrations.

This in flip presents a point of view for a dialogue of the way the approach is altering, taking a look specifically at devolution and Britain's position in Europe. For the second one version, Wright considers how the method keeps to conform in gentle of the autumn of latest Labour, the arriving of David Cameron, and "big society" pondering and he explores the influence of concerns similar to immigration and terrorism, parliamentary scandal, and the monetary crash of 2008.

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Extra resources for British Politics: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (2nd Edition)

Sample text

In fact, if we look at the trajectory of populist parties in Western Europe, we find few similarities with their purported South American relatives. They have different histories and different types of public. Even if both speak of ‘the people’, they do not do so in the same manner. Indeed, when the new populist vanguard appeared in Scandinavia at the end of the 1960s, the main issue it raised − in the name of the people − was that of welfare waste in order to attract the attention of the middle classes.

Third, although it acknowledges the adaptation of these actors to democratic rules, ‘populism’ also underlines the paradoxical use they make of democracy and their clear aversion to official politics − demonstrated by their self-promotion as champions of the people against the Establishment. While, as the editors of this volume explain in the introduction, ‘populism’ has often been used, and misused, in vague ways (see also Collovald, 2004) and as a receptacle for new phenomena which are difficult to classify, the inflationary spiral affecting the term does not exclude a more sober use (for example, Canovan, 1981).

In this ideal world, only the populist leader knows more than anybody else and, hence, merits a higher status. Let us return now to the argument that populists are not just against politics as such, but against ‘representative politics’ (Taggart, 2002: 71–79). In their desire to abolish all intermediate actors, associations and institutions, there is no doubt that representative politics is the main target for populists. However, if the goal is a closer and exclusionary connection between the people and the leader, then politics − with its conflicts, collaborations and compromises − will have to be abolished, leaving space only for the direct relationship between the people and the leader who, unshackled, will personally enjoy all decision-making (and representative) powers.

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