Aug 27th 2015

Jeremy Who? The Bernie Sanders phenomenon at home and abroad

by David Coates

David Coates holds the Worrell Chair in Anglo-American Studies

If you watch virtually any major American news channel right now, you could be forgiven for thinking that the only political development worthy of note was the on-going presidential campaign of Donald Trump. But you would be wrong.

Key sections of the American press are currently playing Trump’s main calling-card for him by giving excessive amounts of coverage to his bombastic rejection of the intelligence and policies of the rest of the political class. By doing so, they are helping him to frame the national political conversation in a frightening and reactionary way, for which one day I hope they will be held accountable. But they are doing more than simply trumpeting Trump. They are also failing to recognize and report on the fact that it is not just ultra-conservative voters who are mobilizing behind new and unexpected candidates. That kind of unexpected and unprecedented mobilization is currently happening on both sides of the political divide. It is happening not just among the Tea Party right but also among the Progressive left; and in the case of the left at least, it is happening not just here at home but in the United Kingdom as well.

For Donald Trump is not alone in drawing substantial crowds to each of his election rallies. So too, in the United States, is Bernie Sanders; and so too, in the United Kingdom, is Jeremy Corbyn.

That last name probably means nothing to most Americans. Indeed my computer’s spell-checker doesn’t even recognize the surname. But it will need to soon, because Jeremy Corbyn will likely win the leadership election for the British Labour Party when results are declared in mid-September; and even if he does not, his politics will inevitably figure large in any Labour political program to come. Jeremy Corbyn is having that impact because, as with Bernie Sanders, his radicalism is galvanizing a new generation of potential voters. These are potential voters who – like those supporting Donald Trump – are tired of “politics as usual.” But for them, the tiredness rests, not in the stupidity or incompetence of those who govern us, as Trump would have it. The crowds drawn to both Bernie Sanders1 and Jeremy Corbyn2 are tired of “politics as usual” because for far too long those politics have been too right-wing, and too lacking in both progressive impulses and equalitarian outcomes.

In other words and at long last, the Democratic Left is stirring again in ways that we have not seen in more than a generation. It is a stirring that we should welcome, and it is one that we should support.

I

Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn share many things in common, in addition to their considerable age, their ethnicity and their gender. They share the fact that they are both unexpected candidates for high office, not least because of their long-established reputations as political mavericks; and they share the way in which their rise to prominence has been not simply surprising but also rapid. Their new-found prominence has been surprising to commentators used to a political class high on platitudes and low on stridency – that was perhaps to be expected – but it has also been surprising to the men themselves. Certainly, “Feel the Bern” is something that took the Sanders’ campaign team initially entirely by surprise; and Jeremy Corbyn for his part was an entirely last-minute recruit to the leadership race triggered by the British Labour Party’s election defeat in May. On his own admission, he only ran to keep a left-wing voice alive in a campaign that was likely to be dominated – we all thought – by protégés of either Tony Blair or Gordon Brown, Labour’s heavy-weights in the years of New Labour rule.

But we – and no doubt, he – got that one entirely wrong. For his campaign quickly revealed the existence of a previously untapped hunger in key sections of the UK electorate for a new tone, a new honesty and a new radicalism in British politics.3 Since his campaign, and his alone, offered that new tone and that new radicalism, the hitherto little-known Member of Parliament for Islington North has been unexpectedly filling stadiums and halls with huge numbers of enthusiastic supporters – and attracting huge numbers of new party members4 – ever since he decided to run.

II

Likewise, Bernie Sanders. Standing as a self-proclaimed democratic socialist in a political system long used to equating socialism with Soviet tyranny, the Sanders’ platform has unexpectedly resonated strongly with a wide range of American progressives. His attack on income and wealth inequality, and on the impact of that inequality on the behavior and policies of most candidates for public office, has struck a deep chord of unease with the political role of the Koch brothers and their kind. His advocacy of policies to eliminate poverty, protect basic welfare services, and raise the wages of American workers has been equally popular;5 and has its equivalent in Jeremy Corbyn’s critique of excessive CEO pay,6 and in the Corbyn call for “shared economic growth”7 built on “a National Investment Bank, to be capitalized by canceling private-sector tax relief and subsidies, and [on] what he calls ‘people’s quantitative easing’ – an infrastructure program that the government finances by borrowing money from the Bank of England.”8

It is not that either of these men, or the programs they espouse, are particularly radical when measured against the best of the Left over the last century or more. It is rather that the center of political gravity in both the US and the UK these days has moved so far to the right that you have to be a radical merely to be a decent human being. As 40 of the UK’s leading economists put it in an open letter published in the London Observer last Sunday, “it is the current government’s policy and its objectives that are extreme, not the Labour leadership candidate’s….His opposition to austerity is actually mainstream economics, even backed by the conservative IMF.”9

What both men’s campaigns are making crystal clear is that there is a vast constituency of support, on both sides of the Atlantic, for a fundamental rejection of austerity politics and of its associated claim: namely that high levels of income and wealth inequality automatically raise all ships, and that accordingly economies flourish best when taxed and regulated least. What both campaigns are also making clear is that the articulation of a radical program of economic and social egalitarianism can and does make mainstream politicians and commentators uncomfortable. But then it should: because normal politics in both Washington and London these days survives only by ignoring the fundamental causes of income inequality and social injustice, or by addressing those causes in at best only a superficial manner. Given the current state of the United States and the United Kingdom as both troubled economies and divided societies, comfortable superficiality is the last thing that our politicians should now be offering. When electorates are more radical than those who seek their votes, it is not the electorates that need to change.

III

Such a dramatic redefinition of the policy priorities of the Democratic Left is not, of course, without its dangers. It will inevitably invite backlash: backlash not just from political conservatives threatened by the exposure of the hypocrisy of their politics, but backlash too from more moderate Democrats and Laborites whose role and record is now fully under challenge.10 Indeed that backlash is already well under way: with the legitimacy of Jeremy Corbyn’s likely victory already being questioned by former Blairite luminaries,11 and with moderate Democrats in Washington quietly regrouping around Joe Biden as the Clinton campaign begins to look ever more vulnerable.12

The main argument currently being deployed here is that the Anglo-American electorate in general is too conservative to ever generate a Sanders’ presidency or a Corbyn-led Labour Party victory.13 Critics of the new radicalism point to the resilience of the Republican vote in the American heartland, and to the four million votes won by the anti-immigration United Kingdom Independence Party in the May General Election. They then use both as evidence that the US and British electorates are more open to conservative rhetoric than to its radical equivalent, and as justifications for outflanking that conservatism on its right by renewed promises of center-left moderation in office.

But the more faint-hearted members of the current center-left coalitions on both sides of the Atlantic would do well to remember that electorates that are truly conservative invariably prefer to vote for genuine conservatives on election-day, rather than for their paler, electorally-motivated moderate opponents. They would also do well to remember that neither the US or UK electorates are currently as conservative as the moderate critics of Corbyn and Sanders imply. The UK Conservative Party won the last general election because of the vagaries of the UK electoral system, rather than because of overwhelming popular support for Conservative policies. Only 37.5% of those who voted in May voted Conservative. Almost two voters in three did not! In the two-horse US presidential election in 2012, electoral support for Mitt Romney was higher: but at 206 electoral votes in an electoral college of 538, support for the Republican Party and its leading candidate was well short of the national sweep that a successful presidential campaign requires. There are plenty of conservative voters out there, it is true: but there are also millions of frustrated progressive ones.

IV

So progressive supporters of Bernie Sanders or Jeremy Corbyn should take heart from the fact that the outcome of elections is not something fixed in stone, years in advance. They should gather strength from the fact that elections are rather political battles won long in advance, and won by sustained campaigning around progressive agendas that alone can pull the center of political gravity back from the conservative settlement point now so effectively articulated by the likes of Donald Trump.

The fact that such a political repositioning is possible is already clear from the enthusiastic response to the campaigns of Sanders14 and Corbyn15 by wide social groupings in both countries: by old and young voters alike, by long-term activists and the newly mobilized, and by workers in manufacturing industries, in public service sectors and even in the professions. That enthusiasm does more than suggest a lack of support for the old politics of the Clinton-Blair era, though it certainly does suggest that.16 It also points to the emergence of a new electorate: one that is keen to see public policies put in place that genuinely enhance social justice – one that is available to be shaped and energized by principled political leadership, but also one that is likely to be quickly disillusioned and alienated by anything less.

If progressives fear, as many do,17 that too radical a program will let in its ultra-conservative alternative, such fear should not lead them to abandon radicalism and its leading advocates. It should instead inspire Americans with progressive values to join the Sanders campaign, and their UK equivalents to support Jeremy Corbyn – the better in both countries to help strengthen their message and their programs. Neither of those programs is yet complete or perfect. On the contrary, there is much work to do on both. But each constitutes an important launch-pad for the regeneration of a strong center-left; and each needs to be honored (and supported) as such.

For there is no avoiding the fact that only by articulating a coherent alternative vision, of the kind for which Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn are now striving, can we hope to ultimately keep conservatism at bay and radical politics in the ascendancy. Progressives cannot duck the left-right battle for ideological dominance in the era of Fox News and Murdoch papers, in the hope that if we remain quiet the center of political gravity will remain largely unchanged. That center of gravity is already being dragged ever further to the right in the US by the antics of Donald Trump and his media acolytes, and in the UK by the steady erosion of welfare rights through one Tory legislative move after another. To hold the current political center of gravity where it is, or better still to pull it back in a progressive direction, necessarily requires therefore an equivalent pull from each and every one of us.

As R.H. Tawney once sensibly reminded an earlier generation of Labour Party leaders, the first thing you need to do – if you want to win a political fight – is to get off your knees. And he was right: we don’t win unavoidable battles of ideas by choosing not to fight. So if there was ever a time for courage on the Left, that time is now. The center-left politics of the 1990s, heavy as it was with triangulation and class accommodation – collapsed in the financial crisis of 2008. Its day is done, as is the credibility of anyone associated with it. The Democratic Left needs a new message, a new vision and new leadership. All three are beginning to emerge – and in the end we will all be better for that.

1 Jason Horowitz, “Bernie Sanders Draws Big Crowds to His ‘Political Revolution’,” The New York Times, August 20, 2015: available at http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/21/us/politics/bernie-sanders-evokes-obama-of-08-but-with-less-hope.html

2 Helen Pidd North, “Jez we can! Corby draws thunderous support on rainy day in Middlesbrough,”The Guardian, August 18, 2015: available at http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/aug/18/jez-we-can-corbyn-middlesbrough

3 Rafael Barr, “Whatever Labour’s new leader does, it will have to be done with conviction,” The Guardian, June 17, 2015: available at http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/jun/17/whatever-labours-new-leader-does-it-will-have-to-be-done-with-conviction

4 400,000 new members in just two months, taking the total up to 600,000. Some no doubt, as critics claim, are spoilers: people joining to support the most radical candidate in the hope of making Labour unelectable. But the overwhelming majority of new members are not of that kind. They are progressives excited by the prospect of helping to pull the Labour Party firmly to the left For more general data on UK political party membership, see Richard Keen, Membership of UK Political Parties, Briefing Paper SN05125, House of Commons Library, August 11, 2015.

5 Steven Rosenfeld, “20 Big Ideas From Bernie Sanders to Reverse Inequality, Expand Safety Nets and Stop America’s Plutocrats,” posted on Aternet.org May 27, 2015: available athttp://www.alternet.org/election-2016/20-big-ideas-bernie-sanders-reverse-inequality-expand-safety-nets-and-stop-americas

6 Jim Pickard, “Jeremy Corbyn targets ‘ludicrous’ pay and Murdoch’s media empire,” The Financial Times, August 23, 2015: available at http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/89a31210-4976-11e5-9b5d-89a026fda5c9.html#axzz3jsG0qAQi

7 Jeremy Corbyn, “Investment, growth and tax justice”, posted August 13, 2015: available athttp://www.jeremyforlabour.com/investment_growth_and_tax_justice

8 Robert Skidelsky, “Taking Corbynomics seriously,” posted on socialeurope.eu, August 21, 2015: available at http://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/jeremy-corbyn-uk-economy-by-robert-skidelsky-2015-08

9 “Jeremy Corbyn’s opposition to austerity is actually mainstream economics,” The Observer, August 23, 2015: available at http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/aug/23/jeremy-corbyns-opposition-to-austerity-is-actually-mainstream-economics

10 Owen Jones, “The Right are mocking Jeremy Corbyn because they fear him,” The New Statesman,August 4, 2015: available athttp://genius.it/7500374/www.newstatesman.com/politics/2015/08/owen-jones-right-are-mocking-jeremy-corbyn-because-secretly-they-fear-him

11 PA, “Lord Mandelson offers bleak warning over Labour leadership contest,” The Daily Telegraph,August 26, 2015: available at http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/labour/11757247/Lord-Mandelson-offers-bleak-warning-over-Labour-leadership-contest.html

12 Jonathan Martin and Maggie Haberman, “Hillary Clinton’s Woes Pushing Joe Biden to Reach Out to Those Who Would Back a Campaign,” The New York Times, August 21, 2015: available at XXXX

13 Janan Ganesh, “It’s as simple as it seems: Corbyn spells disaster for Labour,” The Financial Times,August 25, 20215: available at http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/85d51748-4a41-11e5-9b5d-89a026fda5c9.htmljQuery111109100316802393387_1440668104883ftcamp=crm/email/_DATEYEARFULLNUM___DATEMONTHNUM___DATEDAYNUM__/nbe/UKPolitics/product#axzz3jgMhxWRg

14 Molly Ball, “There’s Something About Bernie,” The Atlantic, July 29, 2015: available athttp://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/07/theres-something-about-bernie/399740/

15 Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett, “Who’s backing Jeremy Corbyn? The young,” New Statesman, July 23, 2015: available at http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2015/07/whos-backing-jeremy-corbyn-young

16 Benedict Cooper, “The triumph of Corbynism is the death rattle of New Labour,” New Statesman,August 18, 2015: available at http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2015/08/triumph-corbynism-death-rattle-new-labour

17 Polly Toynbee, “Free to dream, I’d be left of Jeremy Corbyn. But we can’t gamble the future on him,” The Guardian, August 4, 2015: available athttp://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/aug/04/jeremy-corbyn-gamble-labour-future-yvette-cooper-best-chance

Tags: Bernie Sanders, Democratic Left, democratic party, Donald Trump, hegemonic politics, Jeremy Corbyn, Labour Party, progressives




Dr. David Coates holds the Worrell Chair in Anglo-American Studies. Born in the United Kingdom and educated at the universities of York and Oxford, he came to Wake Forest University in 1999, having previously held personal chairs at the universities of Leeds (in contemporary political economy) and Manchester (in labor studies). He has written extensively on UK labor politics, contemporary political economy and US public policy. For further details, www.davidcoates.net.

He writes here in a personal capacity.

For David Coates' books, please see below

TO FOLLOW WHAT'S NEW ON FACTS & ARTS, PLEASE CLICK HERE!




  

 


This article is brought to you by Project Syndicate that is a not for profit organization.

Project Syndicate brings original, engaging, and thought-provoking commentaries by esteemed leaders and thinkers from around the world to readers everywhere. By offering incisive perspectives on our changing world from those who are shaping its economics, politics, science, and culture, Project Syndicate has created an unrivalled venue for informed public debate. Please see: www.project-syndicate.org.

Should you want to support Project Syndicate you can do it by using the PayPal icon below. Your donation is paid to Project Syndicate in full after PayPal has deducted its transaction fee. Facts & Arts neither receives information about your donation nor a commission.

 

 

Browse articles by author

More Current Affairs

Sep 27th 2020

NEW HAVEN – The US dollar has now entered the early stages of what looks to be a sharp descent. The dollar’s real effective exchange rate (REER) fell 4.3% in the four months ending in August.

Sep 26th 2020
EXTRACT: "Covid-19 essentially hit the “fast forward” button on emerging trends in a variety of sectors of national economies, hastening the demise of the shopping mall, laying bare how unnecessary being physically located in commercial work spaces is, and sounding the death knell for numerous 100+ year-old brands that had failed to adapt to the blistering pace of change in the digital economy. Failure to contemplate and embrace the future is leaving carnage in its wake.......The onslaught of dramatic change that has accompanied Covid-19 reminds us that fragile systems crack when exposed to unexpected events while antifragile systems have the ability to resist shocks."
Sep 24th 2020
EXTRACT: "China’s foreign minister, Wang Yi, recently declared that aggression and expansionism have never been in the Chinese nation’s “genes.” It is almost astonishing that he managed to say it with a straight face. Aggression and expansionism obviously are not genetic traits, but they have defined President Xi Jinping’s tenure. Xi, who in some ways has taken up the expansionist mantle of Mao Zedong, is attempting to implement a modern version of the tributary system that Chinese emperors used to establish authority over vassal states: submit to the emperor, and reap the benefits of peace and trade with the empire."
Sep 16th 2020
EXTRACT: "Seventy-five years ago, the prestige of the United States and the United Kingdom could not have been higher. They had defeated imperial Japan and Nazi Germany, and they did so in the name of freedom and democracy. True, their ally, Stalin’s Soviet Union, had different ideas about these fine ideals, and did most of the fighting against Hitler’s Wehrmacht. Still, the English-speaking victors shaped the post-war order in large parts of the world. The basic principles of this order had been laid down in the Atlantic Charter, drawn up in 1941 by Winston Churchill and President Franklin D. Roosevelt on a battleship off the coast of Newfoundland."
Sep 14th 2020
EXTRACT: "After Trump’s inauguration in January of 2017, millions demonstrated their disapproval. We can expect the same, no matter how this election turns out. With both sides framing this election in “end of the world” terms; with the president calling into question the legitimacy of the vote, even before it happens; and with the president warning his supporters that they may have to take up arms to defend him – we have a recipe for disaster that may occur in the days that follow this election. This may very well be the Armageddon election of our lifetime."
Sep 8th 2020
EXTRACT: "The Huawei case is a harbinger of a world in which national security, privacy, and economics will interact in complicated ways. Global governance and multilateralism will often fail, for both good and bad reasons. The best we can expect is a regulatory patchwork, based on clear ground rules that help empower countries to pursue their core national interests without exporting their problems to others. Either we design this patchwork ourselves, or we will end up, willy-nilly, with a messy, less efficient, and more dangerous version."
Sep 7th 2020
EXTRACT: "China’s footprint in global foreign direct investment (FDI) has increased notably since the launch of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in 2013. That served to bring Chinese overseas FDI closer to a level that one would expect, based on the country’s weight in the global economy. China accounted for about 12% of global cross-border mergers and acquisitions and 9% of announced greenfield FDI projects between 2013 and 2018. Chinese overseas FDI rose from $10 billion in 2005 (0.5% of Chinese GDP) to nearly $180 billion in 2017 (1.5% of GDP). Likewise, annual construction contracts awarded to Chinese companies increased from $10 billion in 2005 to more than $100 billion in 2017."
Sep 2nd 2020
EXTRACT: "Emergence and spread of the coronavirus COVID-19 have created and still creating health issues, economic challenges, political crises and social conflicts around the world. These challenges and conflicts lead the international community to re-evaluate global governance and international structures, which is based on the second world-war and post-cold war. The pandemic will emerge a new era of international society that will not be similar to the pre-Corona world."
Aug 28th 2020
EXTRACT: "Russia has changed, and has been changing, since its beginnings in ancient Muscovy to its current condition as Putin’s realm. Some general features appear in much of Russian history. Most of its rulers have been authoritarian—but so, too, were most of England’s, France’s, and Germany’s. Many of its political and intellectual elites have considered Russia a special civilization deserving a place in the sun—but just as many have not, wanting to transform Russia into a Western state with Western values. Many Russians have been enamored of their country, but even more have probably damned it for destroying them and their children. What, then, is Russia? It is, and has always been, many, oftentimes contradictory, things—sometimes coexisting, sometimes getting the upper hand, always shifting, always eluding simplistic analysis. But, and this needs to be emphasized, the same holds true for every other country in the world."
Aug 26th 2020
EXTRACTS: "Double dips – defined simply as a decline in quarterly real GDP following a temporary rebound – have occurred in eight of the 11 recessions since the end of World War II. .............Financial markets aren’t the least bit worried about a relapse, owing largely to unprecedented monetary easing, which has evoked the time-honored maxim: “don’t fight the Fed.” Added comfort comes from equally unprecedented fiscal relief aimed at mitigating the pandemic-related shock to businesses and households.......This could be wishful thinking."
Aug 26th 2020
EXTRACTS: "There is no question that the re-election of President Donald Trump would endanger both the US and the world. Moreover, there is ample reason to fear that a close election could drive the US into a deep, prolonged constitutional crisis, and perhaps into civil violence.........One can only hope that the election will produce a decisive winner both in the Electoral College and in the popular vote. Yet, even then, tallying the final result may take time, owing to the massive increase in mail-in voting that is expected. Every ballot that has a postmark of November 2 or 3 (depending on the state) will be considered valid, which means that the final result will not be known until after Election Day. During that window of uncertainty, either or both campaigns may try to claim victory based on the current vote count. In any case, there is no chance that Trump will wait graciously in the Oval Office for days or weeks to receive the final tally. In interviews, he has already issued vague statements suggesting that he will not leave the White House if he loses; indeed, he seems to be actively preparing for such a scenario. If he follows through, the world’s leading superpower will find itself facing a protracted – and perhaps intractable – constitutional crisis.
Aug 26th 2020
EXTRACT: "the European Union is a community of values as much as an economic and trade bloc. But the behavior of member states such as Poland and Hungary has called into question their commitment to liberal democracy. Above all, in the US, President Donald Trump is widely criticized, even by lifelong Republicans, for not respecting or understanding the US constitution and the separation of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches. Does Trump even believe in democracy? Does he want all Americans to vote in November, regardless of race or party affiliation, or only those who will support him? And will he accept the election result if it goes against him? "
Aug 25th 2020
EXTRACT: "The fundamental difference in values between the West and China will remain indefinitely, and it is here that the West must draw the line. Any concession that entails a sacrifice of fundamental principles, for example in cultural matters, must be rejected. If this values-based approach results in economic disadvantages, so be it. By the same token, the West should abandon the conceit that it can push, force, or cajole China to become a democracy wrought in its own image. "
Aug 16th 2020
EXTRACT: "China is light years ahead of most of the rest of the world in deploying digital payment technology. Alipay or WeChat Pay apps are all that is necessary to accomplish almost anything that requires a payment in China; the country is largely already making paper money obsolete. "
Aug 15th 2020
EXTRACT: "Seven hundred fifty billion euros is less than 5% of the stock of US government debt held by the public. It’s a drop in the bucket, in other words. And a drop does not a liquid market in safe assets make. Even if this really is Europe’s “Hamiltonian moment,” ramping up EU issuance by a factor of 20 will take decades. "
Aug 14th 2020
EXTRACT: "But the race is not over. In the 2016 election, prices moved the most in the two months just before the election. Trump trailed Hillary Clinton in prediction markets throughout the campaign and was seen as favourite only on election day – showing that the underdog can recover. So despite Trump’s poor position now, he might still regain some ground."
Aug 11th 2020
EXTRACT: "Last year, in the midst of the country-wide protests against corruption, I was honored by a Lebanese humanitarian organization. I began my remarks paraphrasing Kahlil Gibran’s poem “You have your Lebanon, I have my Lebanon.” Like Gibran, I love the Lebanese people, their poetry, art, song, and love of life. I love their generous and welcoming spirit. I also love what Lebanon has given to the world – especially its gifted people. And I love the sheer beauty of the country – its majestic snow-capped mountains and its pristine seascapes. And, like Gibran, I do not love Lebanon’s petty bickering politicians who lead because of an accident of birth. Nor can I embrace the country’s system of sectarian privilege and the corruption that is endemic to the political-economic regime that has squeezed Lebanon dry to the benefit of their chosen ones. And I reject the armed militias, whether they be Christian, Muslim, or secular that in the past and in the present continue to torment those who challenge their dominance. I told the audience that the Lebanon I loved was in the streets making their voices heard demanding fundamental reform – an end to sectarianism, corrupt feudal elites, and rule by force of arms."
Aug 8th 2020
EXTRACT: "It is time for the world’s governments and companies to wake up. Beijing’s reach is wide and deep. It is taking advantage of the West’s openness – and gaps and inconsistencies in our data protection protocols - to acquire information on all of us. The hacks on Anthem, Equifax, Marriott, and the US government are good examples of how they have already done so. American and Western companies need to take a hard look at the costs and benefits associated with operating in China and continuing to have Chinese partners. Those partners must comply with these Laws. American and Western companies that continue to operate with them may unwittingly well be aiding and abetting the Chinese government."
Aug 5th 2020
EXTRACT: "James Murdoch is not the most obvious candidate for editorial heroism. His route to resigning from the News Corp board because of “disagreements over certain editorial content” has been circuitous and colourful."
Aug 4th 2020
EXTRACT: "Say what you will about the slippery slope the US government has been on since Trump came to power, America has a rich history of promoting creative thought, running head-first into particularly uncomfortable subjects, and encouraging robust debate internally and among its allies and partners. Once Trump leaves the scene, America is sure to be perceived as having briefly lost its senses and will come charging back into the mainstream of global thought, debate, and engagement. China has entered the global arena crippled by its own ideology. Ultimately, the US is better equipped to lead the world. It knows that, and so does most of the rest of the world. Someone had better tell Beijing."