April, 2018

Two elections and an “election”, plus more Trump and Brexit

, Apr 21, 2018

This week's electoral news is from Paraguay, Turkey, Cuba, the United States and the United Kingdom.

A conservative crosses the floor

, Apr 19, 2018

In the fascinating politics of America's Supreme Court, Donald Trump's appointee shows he has an unpredictable streak.

Recommended weekly reading

, Apr 18, 2018

A new feature: links to some recent material that readers should find interesting.

Remembering My Lai

, Mar 21, 2018

One from the archive, as the Vietnam War recedes further into the past.

2017 in review

, Jan 02, 2018

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

OK, let’s talk about gun control

, Oct 09, 2017

Stop worrying about the Second Amendment, and worry about the culture that treats violence as acceptable and makes guns seem like a good thing.

Understanding tribalism

, Sep 19, 2017

Recommending a survey article on tribalism in American politics.


, Aug 18, 2017

Some further thoughts on the moral catastrophe that is Trumpism.

Oh dear, it’s North Korea again

, Aug 14, 2017

North Korea is staging its regular return to the headlines. Don't panic.

Can you get rid of presidential government?

, Aug 04, 2017

Events in Venezuela and the United States again cast doubt on the "separation of powers" constitutional model. Can it be reformed or replaced?

Yet another view of neoliberalism

, Jul 20, 2017

An American liberal's interpretation of "neoliberalism" explores the messaging strategy of the left.

Poland and populism

, Jul 17, 2017

Anti-government protests in Poland offer a window on the difference between liberals and conservatives, and also an opportunity to think about whether the authoritarian right deserves the label of "populist".

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.

Georgia on their minds

, Jun 21, 2017

Republicans win an astronomically expensive Congressional race in Georgia, and almost lose the low-profile one in neighboring South Carolina.

Cartographical fun in North Carolina

, May 25, 2017

The US Supreme Court strikes a blow against gerrymandering but also exposes the depth of its own partisan divisions.

Macron and the debate on neoliberalism

, May 18, 2017

Debate continues on what it means to be a "neoliberal", but more people seem willing to accept that it's not always a bad thing.

The Trump plan for Mid-East peace

, Feb 16, 2017

Courtesy of both President Trump and the "facts on the ground", Israel and Palestine seem to be headed for a one-state solution. Is it time to accept that outcome and focus on making it work?

Switzerland says yes to immigrants

, Feb 14, 2017

Switzerland's strict citizenship laws are relaxed slightly following a very convincing referendum victory. It's one sign that the power of xenophobia might be waning.

Mr Putin cashes in

, Feb 06, 2017

Eastern Ukraine could be the first big test of just where appeasement of Russia will lead.

Australia’s missing conscience

, Feb 02, 2017

The Australian government baulks at condemning Donald Trump's barbarism, for fear that its own barbarism should be undermined.