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You Can't Always Get What You Want: Populism and the Power Inquiry
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-08, 07:01 authored by Tim Bale, Paul TaggartPaul Taggart, Paul WebbPaul Webb
The Power Report was published in the spring of 2006 as 'an independent inquiry into Britain's democracy', funded by Joseph Rowntree and carried out by a Commission headed up by Helena Kennedy, QC. The Report is essentially a reaction to what its authors believe is a crisis in British governance. At the heart of this crisis, it suggests, lies a sclerotic system which has failed to keep pace with social change and which is run by elites disconnected from rhose they are supposed to serve, many of whom are therefore turning away from conventional politics altogether. It attempts to be evidence based, even-handed and, above all, accessible. We believe, however, that it is fundamentally flawed. The Report overdoes the seriousness of the symptoms that so concern it. It underplays important elements in its diagnosis. And many of its suggested cures - even those which do seem to follow from that diagnosis - are unconvincing and highly problematic.
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