January, 2018

2017 in review

, Jan 02, 2018

A review of the big elections of the last year and the current state of the "populist" threat.

Always wait for the postals

, Oct 17, 2017

Austria's far right does badly on postal votes, shifting the atmospherics a bit from the way they looked on election night.

Catalonia’s descent into madness

, Oct 03, 2017

By forcibly attempting to prevent a vote on Catalan independence, the Spanish government plays into the nationalists' hands.

Merkel winner or Merkel loser?

, Sep 26, 2017

Why I think Angela Merkel's performance on Sunday was rather better than you'd think from the newspaper headlines.

The war against Arab democracy

, Jul 03, 2017

The conflict with Qatar is fundamentally about the possibility of democracy in the Arab world. That's why Saudi and Trumpian autocrats are on the same side.

Two follow-up notes about France

, Apr 21, 2017

Two additional comments to make following this morning's post on France: one on betting odds and the other on the dilemma of the Australian right.

And still there were four …

, Apr 21, 2017

France goes to the polls on Sunday, in an election in which Emmanuel Macron looks set to become the first centrist president since Valéry Giscard d'Estaing.

Tribalism trumps policy at News Corp

, Apr 17, 2017

A News Corp writer endorses the National Front. How many more will follow him?

Field set in France

, Mar 20, 2017

The candidates are all official now for the French presidential election. Emmanuel Macron, the luckiest man in Europe, is yet to slip up.

Election preview: Netherlands

, Mar 15, 2017

Tonight's Dutch election is a test of the far right's support, but a much less significant one than media hype would suggest.

Update on fake news

, Jan 13, 2017

Three points to make as a supplement to Monday's post on fake news and free speech.

Fake news and free speech

, Jan 09, 2017

Peter Singer suggests a partial remedy for the "fake news" epidemic, but it raises some deep problems.

The continuing struggle for Senate democracy

, Feb 17, 2016

Don't depend on the media to explain what's at stake with Senate voting reform, or even to point out the biases of their sources.

Holiday reading

, Dec 31, 2015

As usual, news is a bit thin at this time of the year, but for those who are looking for holiday reading in the political sphere I've put together some links to interesting stuff that I've come across recently.

Canada’s opposition needs to beat the system

, Aug 06, 2015

Canadians keep voting for a centre-left government, but they're having an inordinate amount of trouble getting one.

Fascism and the royals

, Jul 20, 2015

No-one actually thinks the queen was a Nazi at age seven, but that's not what this particular controversy is about.

Update on freedom of speech

, Jan 23, 2015

Fairfax publishes a prime example of how not to engage in the debate about racial vilification.

Lessons from Victoria

, Nov 21, 2014

Some recent stories on the Victorian election contain lessons of more general relevance.

Joko’s victory to be made official

, Jul 22, 2014

Joko Widodo will be the new president of Indonesia, but his rival – with the media's help – has succeeded in sowing doubts about his victory.

More about the European right

, May 28, 2014

Europe's neo-fascists had a pretty good run in the European parliament elections, but not as good as some reports would have it.