New Books Network

Sir John Redwood

We Don't Believe You

Why Populists and the Establishment See the World Differently

Bite-Sized Books 2019

New Books in American StudiesNew Books in British StudiesNew Books in Eastern European StudiesNew Books in European StudiesNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in PoliticsNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books Network March 31, 2020 Kirk Meighoo

In We Don’t Believe You: Why Populists and the Establishment See the World Differently (Bite-Sized Book, 2019), Sir John Redwood gives us fresh insights...

In We Don’t Believe You: Why Populists and the Establishment See the World Differently (Bite-Sized Book, 2019), Sir John Redwood gives us fresh insights into why the populist movements and parties have been winning elections. He looks at how the experts and narrative pushed out by the established elites on both sides of the Atlantic have met with disbelief as well as with strong opposition. He shows how great parties have been all but destroyed as election winning forces as new movements and people sweep them aside.

From the establishment himself as an expert and a member of one of the traditional parties, he seeks to show how the sensible elites adjust and respond to new moods and new ideas instead of confronting or denying them. In too many cases a rigid and unhappy elite just keeps shouting back the same things people do not want to hear.

One of the worst features of what is happening is the inability of the two sides to understand each other or to work together. The establishment shows scorn for the populists and keeps reasserting the same policies and attitudes as if nothing had happened. The populists show they do not believe the analysis let alone the prescription of established institutions and governments, and seek to sweep them all away.

Can the main institutions of the western world adapt in time to the new mood?

Sir John Redwood is Conservative MP for Wokingham in the UK, first elected in 1987. He was formerly Secretary of State for Wales in John Major’s Cabinet, and twice a candidate for the leadership of the Conservative Party in the 1990s. He is also a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford and the author of 23 books on a wide range of subjects, from atheism in early modern British history, to 21st century economics, to politics and government. He always has very insightful and often bold things to say on all these topics.


Kirk Meighoo is a TV and podcast host, former university lecturer, author and former Senator in Trinidad and Tobago. He hosts his own podcast, Independent Thought & Freedom, where he interviews some of the most interesting people from around the world who are shaking up politics, economics, society and ideas. You can find it in the iTunes Store or any of your favorite podcast providers. You can also subscribe to his YouTube channel. If you are an academic who wants to get heard nationally, please check out his free training at becomeapublicintellectual.com.