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What the Economist doesn’t tell you

The publication has a sublime—even smug—self-confidence in its elite liberal worldview. So how is it coping with our populist moment?

By Adam Tooze   May 2020

Vox Dei: James Wilson, founder of the Economist

What is liberalism? It means and has meant many different things. We speak of market liberalism, social liberalism and cultural liberalism. Anti-clerical atheists have been liberals, as have reformist archbishops. In the US today, the “L-word” refers to anyone to the left of the Republican Party. John Maynard Keynes, Friedrich Hayek, John Rawls and Margaret Thatcher are all reasonably identified as liberals. This polysemy has given liberalism great sway and it has also made it a convenient straw man. Conservatives, social…

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