political hypocrisy the mask of power from hobbes to orwell and beyond

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Political Hypocrisy

Author : David Runciman
ISBN : 9780691148151
Genre : History
File Size : 24. 84 MB
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A critical assessement of the problems of sincerity and truth in politics argues that we should accept hypocrisy as a fact of politics without resigning ourselves to it or embracing it, drawing on the lessons of such thinkers as Hobbes, Mandeville, Jefferson, Bentham, Sigwick, and Orwell.

Political Hypocrisy

Author : David Runciman
ISBN : 1400828198
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 60. 96 MB
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What kind of hypocrite should voters choose as their next leader? The question seems utterly cynical. But, as David Runciman suggests, it is actually much more cynical to pretend that politics can ever be completely sincere. The most dangerous form of political hypocrisy is to claim to have a politics without hypocrisy. Political Hypocrisy is a timely, and timeless, book on the problems of sincerity and truth in politics, and how we can deal with them without slipping into hypocrisy ourselves. Runciman tackles the problems through lessons drawn from some of the great truth-tellers in modern political thought--Hobbes, Mandeville, Jefferson, Bentham, Sidgwick, and Orwell--and applies his ideas to different kinds of hypocritical politicians from Oliver Cromwell to Hillary Clinton. Runciman argues that we should accept hypocrisy as a fact of politics, but without resigning ourselves to it, let alone cynically embracing it. We should stop trying to eliminate every form of hypocrisy, and we should stop vainly searching for ideally authentic politicians. Instead, we should try to distinguish between harmless and harmful hypocrisies and should worry only about its most damaging varieties. Written in a lively style, this book will change how we look at political hypocrisy and how we answer some basic questions about politics: What are the limits of truthfulness in politics? And when, where, and how should we expect our politicians to be honest with us, and about what?

The End Of The West

Author : David Marquand
ISBN : 9781400845019
Genre : History
File Size : 63. 93 MB
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Has Europe's extraordinary postwar recovery limped to an end? It would seem so. The United Kingdom, Belgium, France, Italy, and former Soviet Bloc countries have experienced ethnic or religious disturbances, sometimes violent. Greece, Ireland, and Spain are menaced by financial crises. And the euro is in trouble. In The End of the West, David Marquand, a former member of the British Parliament, argues that Europe's problems stem from outdated perceptions of global power, and calls for a drastic change in European governance to halt the continent's slide into irrelevance. Taking a searching look at the continent's governing institutions, history, and current challenges, Marquand offers a disturbing diagnosis of Europe's ills to point the way toward a better future. Exploring the baffling contrast between postwar success and current failures, Marquand examines the rebirth of ethnic communities from Catalonia to Flanders, the rise of xenophobic populism, the democratic deficit that stymies EU governance, and the thorny questions of where Europe's borders end and what it means to be European. Marquand contends that as China, India, and other nations rise, Europe must abandon ancient notions of an enlightened West and a backward East. He calls for Europe's leaders and citizens to confront the painful issues of ethnicity, integration, and economic cohesion, and to build a democratic and federal structure. A wake-up call to those who cling to ideas of a triumphalist Europe, The End of the West shows that the continent must draw on all its reserves of intellectual and political creativity to thrive in an increasingly turbulent world, where the very language of "East" and "West" has been emptied of meaning. In a new preface, Marquand analyzes the current Eurozone crisis--arguing that it was inevitable due to the absurdity of combining monetary union with fiscal disunion--and raises some of the questions Europe will have to face in its recovery.

The Confidence Trap

Author : David Runciman
ISBN : 9781400888757
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 57. 1 MB
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Why do democracies keep lurching from success to failure? The current financial crisis is just the latest example of how things continue to go wrong, just when it looked like they were going right. In this wide-ranging, original, and compelling book, David Runciman tells the story of modern democracy through the history of moments of crisis, from the First World War to the economic crash of 2008. A global history with a special focus on the United States, The Confidence Trap examines how democracy survived threats ranging from the Great Depression to the Cuban missile crisis, and from Watergate to the collapse of Lehman Brothers. It also looks at the confusion and uncertainty created by unexpected victories, from the defeat of German autocracy in 1918 to the defeat of communism in 1989. Throughout, the book pays close attention to the politicians and thinkers who grappled with these crises: from Woodrow Wilson, Nehru, and Adenauer to Fukuyama and Obama. In The Confidence Trap, David Runciman shows that democracies are good at recovering from emergencies but bad at avoiding them. The lesson democracies tend to learn from their mistakes is that they can survive them—and that no crisis is as bad as it seems. Breeding complacency rather than wisdom, crises lead to the dangerous belief that democracies can muddle through anything—a confidence trap that may lead to a crisis that is just too big to escape, if it hasn't already. The most serious challenges confronting democracy today are debt, the war on terror, the rise of China, and climate change. If democracy is to survive them, it must figure out a way to break the confidence trap.

The Politics Of Good Intentions

Author : David Runciman
ISBN : 1400827124
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 25. 87 MB
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Tony Blair has often said that he wishes history to judge the great political controversies of the early twenty-first century--above all, the actions he has undertaken in alliance with George W. Bush. This book is the first attempt to fulfill that wish, using the long history of the modern state to put the events of recent years--the war on terror, the war in Iraq, the falling out between Europe and the United States--in their proper perspective. It also dissects the way that politicians like Blair and Bush have used and abused history to justify the new world order they are creating. Many books about international politics since 9/11 contend that either everything changed or nothing changed on that fateful day. This book identifies what is new about contemporary politics but also how what is new has been exploited in ways that are all too familiar. It compares recent political events with other crises in the history of modern politics--political and intellectual, ranging from seventeenth-century England to Weimar Germany--to argue that the risks of the present crisis have been exaggerated, manipulated, and misunderstood. David Runciman argues that there are three kinds of time at work in contemporary politics: news time, election time, and historical time. It is all too easy to get caught up in news time and election time, he writes. This book is about viewing the threats and challenges we face in real historical time.

The Life And Death Of Democracy

Author : John Keane
ISBN : 9781847377609
Genre : History
File Size : 38. 14 MB
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John Keane's The Life and Death of Democracy will inspire and shock its readers. Presenting the first grand history of democracy for well over a century, it poses along the way some tough and timely questions: can we really be sure that democracy had its origins in ancient Greece? How did democratic ideals and institutions come to have the shape they do today? Given all the recent fanfare about democracy promotion, why are many people now gripped by the feeling that a bad moon is rising over all the world's democracies? Do they indeed have a future? Or is perhaps democracy fated to melt away, along with our polar ice caps? The work of one of Britain's leading political writers, this is no mere antiquarian history. Stylishly written, this superb book confronts its readers with an entirely fresh and irreverent look at the past, present and future of democracy. It unearths the beginnings of such precious institutions and ideals as government by public assembly, votes for women, the secret ballot, trial by jury and press freedom. It tracks the changing, hotly disputed meanings of democracy and describes quite a few of the extraordinary characters, many of them long forgotten, who dedicated their lives to building or defending democracy. And it explains why democracy is still potentially the best form of government on earth -- and why democracies everywhere are sleepwalking their way into deep trouble.

A Red Boyhood

Author : Anatole Konstantin
ISBN : 9780826266385
Genre : History
File Size : 76. 10 MB
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Many children growing up in the Soviet Union before World War II knew the meaning of deprivation and dread. But for the son of an “enemy of the people,” those apprehensions were especially compounded. When the secret police came for his father in 1938, ten-year-old Anatole Konstantin saw his family plunged into a morass of fear. His memoir of growing up in Stalinist Russia re-creates in vivid detail the daily trials of people trapped in this regime before and during the repressive years of World War II—and the equally horrific struggles of refugees after that conflict. Evicted from their home, their property confiscated, and eventually forced to leave their town, Anatole’s family experienced the fate of millions of Soviet citizens whose loved ones fell victim to Stalin’s purges. His mother, Raya, resorted to digging peat, stacking bricks, and even bootlegging to support herself and her two children. How she managed to hold her family together in a rapidly deteriorating society—and how young Anatole survived the horrors of marginalization and war—form a story more compelling than any novel. Looking back on those years from adulthood, Konstantin reflects on both his formal education under harsh conditions and his growing awareness of the contradictions between propaganda and reality. He tells of life in the small Ukrainian town of Khmelnik just before World War II and of how some of its citizens collaborated with the German occupation, lending new insight into the fate of Ukrainian Jews and Nazi corruption of local officials. And in recounting his experiences as a refugee, he offers a new look at everyday life in early postwar Poland and Germany, as well as one of the few firsthand accounts of life in postwar Displaced Persons camps. A Red Boyhood takes readers inside Stalinist Russia to experience the grim realities of repression—both under a Soviet regime and German occupation. A moving story of desperate people in desperate times, it brings to life the harsh realities of the twentieth century for young and old readers alike.

The Virtues Of Mendacity

Author : Martin Jay
ISBN : 9780813929767
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 34. 35 MB
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When Michael Dukakis accused George H. W. Bush of being the "Joe Isuzu of American Politics" during the 1988 presidential campaign, he asserted in a particularly American tenor the near-ancient idea that lying and politics (and perhaps advertising, too) are inseparable, or at least intertwined. Our response to this phenomenon, writes the renowned intellectual historian Martin Jay, tends to vacillate—often impotently—between moral outrage and amoral realism. In The Virtues of Mendacity, Jay resolves to avoid this conventional framing of the debate over lying and politics by examining what has been said in support of, and opposition to, political lying from Plato and St. Augustine to Hannah Arendt and Leo Strauss. Jay proceeds to show that each philosopher’s argument corresponds to a particular conception of the political realm, which decisively shapes his or her attitude toward political mendacity. He then applies this insight to a variety of contexts and questions about lying and politics. Surprisingly, he concludes by asking if lying in politics is really all that bad. The political hypocrisy that Americans in particular periodically decry may be, in Jay’s view, the best alternative to the violence justified by those who claim to know the truth.

Politicians And Rhetoric

Author : J. Charteris-Black
ISBN : 9780230501706
Genre : Literary Criticism
File Size : 22. 16 MB
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This book analyzes the rhetoric of speeches by major British or American politicians and shows how metaphor is used systematically to create political myths of monsters, villains and heroes. Metaphors are shown to interact with other figures of speech to communicate subliminal meanings by drawing on the unconscious emotional association of words.

Politics Ideas In Profile

Author : David Runciman
ISBN : 9781782831358
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 51. 92 MB
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Ideas in Profile: Small Introductions to Big Topics In the first title of an exciting new series one of the world's leading political scientists asks the big questions about politics: what is it, why we do we need it and where, in these turbulent times, is it heading? From the gap between rich and poor to the impact of social media, via Machiavelli, Hobbes and Weber, Runciman's comprehensive short introduction is invaluable to those studying politics or those who want to know how life in Denmark became more comfortable than in Syria. The Ideas in Profile series is what introductions can and should be. Concise, clear, relevant, entertaining, original and global in scope, Politics makes essential reading for anyone, from students to the general reader.

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