It’s been a year since the Law and Justice Party won the Polish election, on familiar-sounding promises to drain the swamp and restore Poland to its former greatness: now school textbooks are being redesigned to downplay evolution and climate change and to recount a fanciful version of Poland’s history; the government is mooting giving hoteliers the right to turn away customers based on sexual orientation or skin-color;
Even where populists don’t win power through the ballot box, they gain it through shaping policy and public debate.
Donald Tusk at last year’s December EU summit. “We are being tested on all possible fronts”, he said. Image: Flickr/European Parliament. Some rights reserved.With a few exceptions, the success of populist parties in the polls has yet to translate into control of the executive in EU states. But insurgent populist parties have made progress in provoking mainstream parties to ape their political agenda and normalise their message for fear of losing votes. The result is that even where populists don’t win power through the ballot box, they gain it through shaping policy and public debate.
Trying to talk to someone in the UK about Brexit? Don’t contradict the laws of Brexit!
- Brexit means Brexit
- The British are never to blame for Brexit or any of its consequences
- Anyone seeing any problem with Brexit is talking the country down
- Giving any detail about Brexit shall be ruled out as the government refuses a running commentary
- Anyone doubting the sense of Brexit is guilty of not seeing the opportunities Brexit presents
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