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Election 2017: Beginning to see the light?

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Kirsten Forkert discusses how to shift common sense about the public mood, and change our understanding about which voices should be listened to. Instead of an excessive focus on a conservatively imagined 'silent majority', the public needs to be understood as including a much wider range of voices, including for example the young and people of colour. Ash Ghadiali looks at some of the new voices that are making themselves heard through a shift in media power in which people are making and sharing their own news sources. Rebecca Bramall explores how ideas at one time dismissed as utopian can make their way onto the political agenda, in this case ideas for a progressive taxation policy; this began to happen during the election campaign, as Labour focused on the risk of Britain becoming a tax haven in order to promote a social-democratic tax alternative. Joe Painter debunks common sense about debt, arguing that the creation of debt is essential to the working of the economy. Ewan Gibbs argues that the election signalled a challenge to the Scottish National Party (SNP)'s hegemonic mix of social justice and nationalism: as well as a unionist revival there was also a challenge from Labour on issues of social justice. John Barry argues that the logical consequence of consociational politics is the rise of the extremes, and shows hoe the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) has benefitted from this process. He also gives some example of DUP confidence and supply within Northern Ireland, particularly in their dealings with the UDA associated community groups, and discusses the effect of Brexit on policies towards the border.
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Keywords: COMMON SENSE; CONSOCIATIONAL DEMOCRACY; DEBT; DEMOCRATIC UNIONIST PARTY (DUP); HEGEMONY; NORTHERN IRELAND; PUBLIC MOOD; RICHARD MURPHY; SCOTLAND; SCOTTISH NATIONAL PARTY (SNP); SILENT MAJORITY; SOCIAL MEDIA; TAX JUSTICE; UTOPIAN IDEAS

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 15, 2017

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