Book picks similar to
Brexit: How Britain Left Europe by Denis MacShane
Three Years in Hell: The Brexit Chronicles
Fintan O'Toole - 2020
In 2011 Queen Elizabeth made her first ever state visit to the Irish Republic. It was a great, moving occasion. 'In settling once and for all its relationship with Ireland,' Fintan O'Toole writes, 'Britain was also settling its relationship with the rest of the world taking its place as a normal, equal democracy.' It was not to last. Three Years in Hell is the fiercely intelligent, funny and sorrowful record of a slow-motion catastrophe. At its heart is the enigma of English nationalism. On the morning after the 2016 referendum O'Toole wrote: 'It is a question the English used to ask about their subject peoples: are they ready for self-government? But it is now one that has to be asked about the English themselves... England seems to be stumbling towards a national independence it has scarcely even discussed, let alone prepared for. It is on the brink of one of history's strangest nationalist revolutions.' The story culminates in the election of Boris Johnson, running against a weak, accidental Labour leader who promised to remain 'neutral' on the most important question of our time.
The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam
Douglas Murray - 2017
Douglas Murray takes a step back and explores the deeper issues behind the continent's possible demise, from an atmosphere of mass terror attacks and a global refugee crisis to the steady erosion of our freedoms. He addresses the disappointing failure of multiculturalism, Angela Merkel’s U-turn on migration, and the Western fixation on guilt. Murray travels to Berlin, Paris, Scandinavia, and Greece to uncover the malaise at the very heart of the European culture, and to hear the stories of those who have arrived in Europe from far away.Declining birth rates, mass immigration, and cultivated self-distrust and self-hatred have come together to make Europeans unable to argue for themselves and incapable of resisting their own comprehensive alteration as a society and an eventual end. This sharp and incisive book ends up with two visions for a new Europe--one hopeful, one pessimistic--which paint a picture of Europe in crisis and offer a choice as to what, if anything, we can do next. But perhaps Spengler was right: "civilizations like humans are born, briefly flourish, decay, and die."
How To Be Right… in a World Gone Wrong
James O'Brien - 2018
But what makes James’s daily LBC show such essential listening – and has made James a standout social media star – is the careful way he punctures their assumptions and dismantles their arguments live on air, every single morning.In How To Be Right, James provides a hilarious and invigorating guide to talking to people with faulty opinions. With chapters on every lightning-rod issue, James shows how people have been fooled into thinking the way they do, and in each case outlines the key questions to ask to reveal fallacies, inconsistencies and double standards.If you ever get cornered by ardent Brexiteers, Daily Mail disciples or little England patriots, this book is your conversation survival guide.‘I have had a ringside seat as a significant swathe of the British population was persuaded that their failures were the fault of foreigners, that unisex lavatories threatened their peace of mind and that ‘all Muslims’ must somehow apologise for terror attacks by extremists. I have tried to dissuade them and sometimes succeeded… The challenge is to distinguish sharply between the people who told lies and the people whose only offence was to believe them.’James O’Brien
The Almost Nearly Perfect People: Behind the Myth of the Scandinavian Utopia
Michael Booth - 2014
In this timely book, he leaves his adopted home of Denmark and embarks on a journey through all five of the Nordic countries to discover who these curious tribes are, the secrets of their success, and, most intriguing of all, what they think of one another.Why are the Danes so happy despite having the highest taxes? Do the Finns really have the best education system? Are the Icelanders as feral as they sometimes appear? How are the Norwegians spending their fantastic oil wealth? And why do all of them hate the Swedes? In The Almost Nearly Perfect People, Booth explains who the Scandinavians are, how they differ and why, and what their quirks and foibles are, and he explores why these societies have become so successful and models for the world. Along the way, a more nuanced, often darker picture emerges of a region plagued by taboos, characterized by suffocating parochialism, and populated by extremists of various shades.
The Establishment: And How They Get Away with It
Owen Jones - 2014
In exposing this shadowy and complex system that dominates our lives, Owen Jones sets out on a journey into the heart of our Establishment, from the lobbies of Westminster to the newsrooms, boardrooms and trading rooms of Fleet Street and the City. Exposing the revolving doors that link these worlds, and the vested interests that bind them together, Jones shows how, in claiming to work on our behalf, the people at the top are doing precisely the opposite. In fact, they represent the biggest threat to our democracy today - and it is time they were challenged.Owen Jones may have the face of a baby and the voice of George Formby but he is our generation's Orwell and we must cherish him (Russell Brand)This is the most important book on the real politics of the UK in my lifetime, and the only one you will ever need to read. You will be enlightened and angry (Irvine Welsh)Owen Jones displays a powerful combination of cool analysis and fiery anger in this dissection of the profoundly and sickeningly corrupt state that is present-day Britain. He is a fine writer, and this is a truly necessary book (Philip Pullman)
Justice: What's the Right Thing to Do?
Michael J. Sandel - 2009
In his acclaimed book―based on his legendary Harvard course―Sandel offers a rare education in thinking through the complicated issues and controversies we face in public life today. It has emerged as a most lucid and engaging guide for those who yearn for a more robust and thoughtful public discourse. "In terms we can all understand," wrote Jonathan Rauch in The New York Times, Justice "confronts us with the concepts that lurk . . . beneath our conflicts."Affirmative action, same-sex marriage, physician-assisted suicide, abortion, national service, the moral limits of markets―Sandel relates the big questions of political philosophy to the most vexing issues of the day, and shows how a surer grasp of philosophy can help us make sense of politics, morality, and our own convictions as well.Justice is lively, thought-provoking, and wise―an essential new addition to the small shelf of books that speak convincingly to the hard questions of our civic life.
Berlin Rules: Europe and the German Way
Paul Lever - 2017
Yet Germany's leadership of the EU is geared principally to the defence of German national interests. Germany exercises power in order to protect the German economy and to enable it to play an influential role in the wider world. Beyond that there is no underlying vision or purpose.In this book, former British ambassador in Berlin Paul Lever provides a unique insight into modern Germany. He shows how the country's history has influenced its current economic and political structures and provides important perspectives on its likely future challenges and choices, especially in the context of the 2015 refugee crisis which saw over 1 million immigrants offered a home in Germany.As Britain prepares to leave the European Union, this book will be essential reading and suggests the future shape of a Germany dominated Europe.
Libertarianism in One Lesson: Why Libertarianism Is the Best Hope for America's Future
David Bergland - 2005
With insight and candor, Bergland answers the most common questions about the freedom philosophy: What exactly is libertarianism? Does libertarianism work in the "real world"? The book lays out the central premise of libertarianism -- "you own yourself" -- and reveals how that deceptively simple statement has an enormous impact on the relationship between government and individuals. Bergland explains where libertarians stand on Social Security, gun rights, the War on Drugs, poverty, the environment, taxes, terrorism, and more. In a fast-paced Q&A chapter, he contrasts the conservative, liberal, and libertarian positions on major issues. Finally, he punctures the muddled thinking that encourages people to turn to government to solve problems. "The best brief introduction to libertarianism available. Bergland is anxious to provide as persuasive and comprehensive a case as he can, and wastes no time getting to the point... He has even adapted it so it can be readily used in classrooms, and sprinkles the book with short sections differentiating among liberal, conservative, and libertarian positions on current issues."--Brian Wilson, radio talk show host
Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Tell You Everything You Need to Know About Global Politics
Tim Marshall - 2015
Their choices are limited by mountains, rivers, seas, and concrete. To understand world events, news organizations and other authorities often focus on people, ideas, and political movements, but without geography, we never have the full picture. Now, in the relevant and timely Prisoners of Geography, seasoned journalist Tim Marshall examines Russia, China, the USA, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Japan and Korea, and Greenland and the Arctic—their weather, seas, mountains, rivers, deserts, and borders—to provide a context often missing from our political reportage: how the physical characteristics of these countries affect their strengths and vulnerabilities and the decisions made by their leaders.In ten, up-to-date maps of each region, Marshall explains in clear and engaging prose the complex geo-political strategies of these key parts of the globe. What does it mean that Russia must have a navy, but also has frozen ports six months a year? How does this affect Putin’s treatment of Ukraine? How is China’s future constrained by its geography? Why will Europe never be united? Why will America never be invaded? Shining a light on the unavoidable physical realities that shape all of our aspirations and endeavors, Prisoners of Geography is the critical guide to one of the major (and most often overlooked) determining factors in world history.
Revolt on the Right: Explaining Support for the Radical Right in Britain
Robert Ford - 2012
In recent years UKIP and their charismatic leader Nigel Farage have captivated British politics, media and voters. Yet both the party and the roots of its support remain poorly understood. Where has this political revolt come from? Who is supporting them, and why? How are UKIP attempting to win over voters? And how far can their insurgency against the main parties go? Drawing on a wealth of new data from surveys of UKIP voters to extensive interviews with party insiders in this book prominent political scientists Robert Ford and Matthew Goodwin put UKIP's revolt under the microscope and show how many conventional wisdoms about the party and the radical right are wrong. Along the way they provide unprecedented insight into this new revolt, and deliver some crucial messages for those with an interest in the state of British politics, the radical right in Europe and political behaviour more generally.
Talking to My Daughter About the Economy: or, How Capitalism Works—and How It Fails
Yanis Varoufakis - 2013
Now, he faces his most important—and difficult—audience yet. Using clear language and vivid examples, Varoufakis offers a series of letters to his young daughter about the economy: how it operates, where it came from, how it benefits some while impoverishing others. Taking bankers and politicians to task, he explains the historical origins of inequality among and within nations, questions the pervasive notion that everything has its price, and shows why economic instability is a chronic risk. Finally, he discusses the inability of market-driven policies to address the rapidly declining health of the planet his daughter’s generation stands to inherit.Throughout, Varoufakis wears his expertise lightly. He writes as a parent whose aim is to instruct his daughter on the fundamental questions of our age—and through that knowledge, to equip her against the failures and obfuscations of our current system and point the way toward a more democratic alternative.
This is London: Life and Death in the World City
Ben Judah - 2016
He’s had dinner with oligarchs and meetings with foreign royalty, spent nights streetwalking and sleeping rough; he’s heard stories of heart-breaking failure, but also witnessed extraordinary acts of compassion, hope and the triumph of love.
Patronising Bastards: How the Elites Betrayed Britain
Quentin Letts - 2017
Western capitalism's elites are bemused: Brexit, Trump, and maybe more eruptions to follow. But their rulers were so good to them! Hillary Clinton called the ingrates 'a basket of deplorables', Bob Geldof flicked them a V sign, Tony Blair thought voters too thick to understand the question. Wigged judges stared down their legalistic noses at a surging, pongy populous.These people who know best, these snooterati with their faux-liberal ways, are the 'Patronising Bastards'. Their downfall is largely of their own making - their Sybaritic excesses, an obsession with political correctness, the prolonged rape of reason and rite. You'll find these self-indulgent show-ponys not just in politics and the cloistered old institutions but also in high fashion, football, among the clean-eating foodies and at the Baftas and Oscars, where celebritydom hires PR smoothies to massage reputations and mislead, distort, twist. Political columnist and bestselling author Quentin Letts identifies these condescending creeps and their networks, their methods and their dubious morals. Letts kebabs them like mutton. It's baaaahd. It's juicy.Richard Branson, Emma Thompson, Shami Chakrabarti, Jean-Claude Juncker and any head waiter who calls you 'young man' - this one's for you!