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< Back to question What are the pros and cons of Populism in politics? Show more Show less

2016 established the ascendancy of Populist parties. The UK Brexit vote was soon followed by the election of former property magnate Donald Trump to the US Presidency. In the years since, this political trend has become an even more powerful force. Especially in European democracies. Newer parties are being elected on anti-establishment platforms that threaten the post-war liberal consensus. Whether right-wing or ultra-leftist, populist parties are now setting the political agenda across the continent . What does this mean for Europe's democracies, economies and political landscapes?

Populism means healthy politics Show more Show less

Populism has grown for reason. It is an ideology that people respond to, support and agree with.
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Left wing populism is based on policies for the greater good

The assumption that all Populism is based on hate is false and misleading. Politicians such as Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn are pushing politics for a fairer and more equal world.
Economics Europe Politics
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The Argument

Many policies that have historically not been part of political discussions are now mainstream. Because of the rise of populist politicians, other political groups have been forced to address these issues to stay relevant to voters. The rise of populism and populist ideals makes issues that are important to some, such as those in the populist party, come into the limelight where they had previously been ignored. This makes for more recognition of certain serious problems facing society, such as universal healthcare for the poor or disproportionate environmental problems affecting racial minorities. These problems are not dealt with until they receive the attention of populism. [1]

Counter arguments

Populist parties address issues that have traditionally been left off the political agenda because they do not have coherent views on key issues. Populism uses new issues to rally people behind them, but are not actually well equipped enough to address other issues. The fact that populism rests on one solution to multitudes of problems, shows that their policies are not complex enough to solve all the problems necessary to further the greater good. For example, presidential candidate Bernie Sanders suggests universal healthcare to help solve the issue of lower-class citizens possessing more health problems. However, by subscribing to this solution as a way to solve it, it does not account for the fact that those with less money cannot prevent health issues as easily. This shows that by providing a single simple solution to major problems, populism often ignores the underlying causes.


[P1] Populism relies on addressing previously ignored problems. [P2] Addressing previously ignored problems furthers the greater good.

Rejecting the premises




This page was last edited on Thursday, 23 Jul 2020 at 19:58 UTC


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