Owen Jones: The Politics of Hope

In Owen Jones: The Politics of Hope, Jones proves himself to be an engaging and eloquent speaker without any airs of pretension. In fact he’s quick to mock himself and the Right’s image of him as the “princeling of the Far Left elite” which imbues his words and message with a sense of real honesty.

Jones proves himself to be an engaging and eloquent speaker without any airs of pretension.

He’s also quick to outline the recent failures of the Left, namely: its overly defensive and passive attitude and its lack of any clear alternative to the Conservative manifesto. However Jones wisely chooses not to dwell on the past, citing Einstein’s assertion that madness is doing the same thing and expecting a different outcome, and so moves on to look at the future and how we can take effective action against the status quo.

Jones then discusses Milton Friedman’s economics and the Shock Doctrine, explaining that the most effective way to enact radical change is for a crisis to emerge that will shock everyone into action (bear in mind that it’s a bit more complicated than that but that’s the basic idea). With this in mind, Jones points out that radical change in our society is indeed possible if we take action but he is also clear that it needs to come from a grassroots groundswell. Here Jones draws striking parallels between the YES campaign in Scotland and the rise in support for Jeremy Corbyn, with their clear political and ethical standpoints as well as their desire to engage with the disenfranchised who wouldn’t normally engage with politics.

The talk ends with Jones stating that he’s hopeful for the future as young people and those who were once called apathetic become excited and inspired by politics before moving on to a Q&A session which he approaches with intelligence, passion and good humour. What more could you ask for?

Reviews by Liam Rees

Pleasance Courtyard

UNCONDITIONAL

★★★
Pleasance Courtyard

Signals

★★★
Summerhall

Everything Not Saved

★★★
CanadaHub @ King's Hall in association with Summerhall

Daughter

★★★
Pleasance Dome

Lights Over Tesco Car Park

★★★★
CanadaHub @ King's Hall in association with Summerhall

Chase Scenes

★★★

Performances

Location

The Blurb

How we can build societies run in the interests of working people, not run as a racket for the mean and the greedy at the top? By looking at some alternatives across the world, we can end the inevitability of injustice. The Guardian columnist and author of The Establishment brings this new talk to Edinburgh to shine some light on a positive way forward.