The woke tipping point

Among the reasons that Britain’s vote to leave the European Union upset people was the realisation of many that morning that even if you aren’t interested in politics, it is interested in you.

The irony won’t have been lost on journalists, politicians, and activists, most of whom live like an obscure, ambitious musician in the pained knowledge that nobody is paying them much heed. Campaigners largely live and die on the sidelines of public life, but at least people thought the referendum mattered.

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Dominic Cummings is still anti-establishment

One less acknowledged irony of the musical Hamilton is that the eponymous hero Alexander takes pains to obscure his origins as a poor bastard who spent his early years struggling in the Caribbean. Had he been born 200 years later his humble background would have been a political asset that money couldn’t buy, even if his whiteness is a sin that could not be atoned for.

That the founding father is also the discarded son of landed gentry, and that this element is not dwelt on in Hamilton at any length, could form many an unread undergraduate thesis. But it is enough for this piece to note that if a Briton had written the musical it would have dwelt on little else, as evinced by the response to one political advisor exposed last weekend for breaking lockdown rules.

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Podcast Ep. 157: Dominic Cummings Non-Resignation Special

Following chief advisor Dominic Cummings unprecedented press conference we organise our own press conference, albeit without a garden, fold-out barbecue table or the, er, press.

We will be doing a livestream at 8pm UK time on Sunday 31 March. Keep an eye on our Twitter feeds for more information.

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Even posh boy conspiracies have limits

It is rare for writers to declare all their interests when putting finger to keyboard, but as we are talking private education I feel obliged to confess that I attended a middling private school in South London for the sons of the capital’s better paid white collars.

No such declaration appears in Robert Verkaik’s Posh Boys: How English Public Schools Ruin Britain, and Google can’t tell me where the author went to school either. Although it does not undermine what he says, the question lingers over whether this is the broadside of an angry former pupil or envious outsider.

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