Brexiteer Carswell calls for political reforms

Douglas Carswell is no longer on the side of EU-hostile UKIP, but is instead rebelling against a supposedly emerging oligarchy. (DPA / Picture Alliance / Will Oliver)

It certainly doesn’t happen very often that EU opponents in the UK claim they were the losers in the referendum a year ago. Douglas Carswell can do it. The British politician, who has already sat in parliament for both the conservatives and the anti-EU UKIP, is apparently one of the winners, after all, beating the drums louder for Brexit. Now Carswell claims to see that pro-European elites from politics, media and business are doing everything they can to discredit the majority of voters and thwart Brexit.

New radicals against old elite

Carswell called his book “Rebel”. And the subtitle reveals what is to be revolted against here: “How to Overthrow the Emerging Oligarchy”—a guide on how to overthrow a supposedly emerging oligarchy. According to the author, the “oligarchs” are actually elite politicians, managers and journalists who would bring under their control Great Britain and large parts of the Western world at large.

“In my country, in Germany, and in many Western countries, an elite has grown up that considers itself intelligent enough to plan social, humanitarian and economic matters on a large scale. But I believe it is time. ending in.”

The “new radicals” revolted against it. Carswell includes not only opponents of the British EU, but also from Donald Trump to AfD populists and their supporters in several countries. Carswell says they are on the wrong note, but he admits they really wanted the right thing.

Right-wing populist rhetoric: coup as self-defense

The real problem is that of the elite. We bring to the fore all models of Carswell right-wing populism – self-defense as a motive, against a common base of righteous against an allegedly corrupt elite.

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“The new radicals that are now elected are not the new oligarchy. They are a populist reaction against the emerging oligarchy. The danger is not that the new radicals play the role of oligarchs, but against the oligarchy of rebels, make their tyrannical alternative The end appears attractive and makes it more likely.”

This type of ornamental device will have to be worked on first. It is not the racists, aggressive nationalists and despising democracy who threaten freedom, but those who oppose it.

Carswell sometimes attempts to name his opponents more precisely: the super-rich, for example, or “Davos Man”, as the personification of those who meet annually at Swiss ski resorts for economic summits. . However, in his argument, everyone who is against populist tendencies will certainly give way to “oligarchy”.

Parties as an old model

According to Carswell, this also includes political parties. They have degenerated into great instruments of power, but modern communication will soon make them unnecessary. People could hear themselves and their culprits without the support of any party.

“In a world of Facebook, the Internet, and democratization, you may not need any party whatsoever. Without parties, we can elect legislators who truly reflect the thinking of the people.”

The author remains unclear when it comes to describing this new form of political organization. Carswell rejected the fact that a party also has the function of collectively representing interests that cannot be heard otherwise. Whatever the analysis of today’s grievances, there is no room for specifics in his angry pamphlet.

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Criticism echoes in Great Britain

A ambivalence that even critics in Great Britain insist on: The author deserves recognition for his ambition, but it comes at the cost of his credibility, writes the Guardian. Subtlety and self-doubt got out of the way. The “economists” believe that Carswell presents a strong argument for the worrying state of politics and the economy. His plea for more direct manpower is the wrong answer. The financial magazine “Moneyweek” eventually traces the famous liberal fare behind Carswell’s rebellious aspect, for example in seeking to abolish the welfare state. Such a thing only increases inequality without stimulating the economy.

Politics as a niche business

“To be modern means mass production, mass consumption and mass public supply. Today politics has to become a niche business, politics need not be about controlling and controlling everything from the centre.”

Douglas Carswell shows a sometimes selective notion of historical and political relations. The fact that the Brexit vote or the election of Donald Trump as US President was not an expression of the free will of the people, but powerful interests behind it, does not fit well with his statement. And if he brands the BBC as part of an “oligarchy” but doesn’t even mention such influential publishers and Brexit supporters as Rupert Murdoch, it doesn’t make his argument any more credible. Exposing fair facts and hiding inappropriate facts under the rug is a standard polemical repertoire.

And it’s somewhat disturbing that Carswell in particular comes across as a general critic and outsider. After all, he was instrumental in bringing about a decisive political event for the British and Europe with Brexit. However, he does not take responsibility for the consequences. This would have to be done by those whom Carswell branded as “oligarchs”.

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About the Author: Forrest Morton

Organizer. Zombie aficionado. Wannabe reader. Passionate writer. Twitter lover. Music scholar. Web expert.

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