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From Trotsky to Trump

The challenges faced by western liberal democracy

By David Selbourne  

©Douliery Olivier/ABACA USA/ABACA/PA Images

It is a truism to argue that we are living in new times. Each day the sun rises is new, while the birth of new forces and new ideas—and resistance to them—is a commonplace of social and intellectual evolution. Current events in western democracies are also part of what Marxists, when they existed, used to call the “dialectic,” the process of action and reaction which is history’s driver.

Today’s diagnoses of the contemporary scene are much shallower, and…

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