The Perils of Populism

Brexit and Trump were no accident. Both campaigns invested heavily in “Big Data” to predict human behaviour. Their leaders then used populist tactics to convince voters they should reject new-age politics and embrace protectionism.

Those same tactics are now on the rise in Australia. Minor parties and independents are ratcheting up anti-government feeling and dissatisfaction with the political establishment by shouting simple slogans to complex problems.

That’s because populism is more a political logic than a policy program; a thin ideology which calls for kicking out the political establishment, but doesn’t specify the replacement.

On the latest political battleground – housing affordability – mainstream politicians are now trying to catch that same wave of populism. Across the country, both Labor and Liberal governments are in a race to the bottom on populist taxes that do nothing to fix housing supply or improve affordability.

It is the great peril of populism – dodging the critical reforms needed for prosperity, jobs and strong communities.


Feyi Akindoyeni gives the Keynote Address at Hunter Lunch on Thursday 6 April

THE RISE OF THE POPULIST: How Trump won and is Australia Next?


Media contact:  Andrew Fletcher  | M  0407 410 017  |  E  [email protected]