Thursday October 29, 2020

A victory against Covid will ring hollow if it costs our democracy

Comment: The pandemic has accentuated citizens’ disengagement from politics while expert advisers and committees have risen to the fore

27th September, 2020
Our model for fighting the pandemic requires the public to trust the government, a trust which has been shown in recent years to be fragile. Photo: Fergal Phillips

On RTÉ One’s Prime Time last Tuesday, Sunetra Gupta, a professor of theoretical epidemiology at the University of Oxford, lamented the lack of a conceptual framework for confronting the Covid-19 pandemic.

This problem is not limited to the pandemic: in the past decade, the conceptual frameworks through which we have traditionally viewed our politics have dissolved.

Across many of the western democracies, political loyalties have dissipated, polarisation has increased, liberalism has buckled...

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