2016 hasn't been as sweet as the year had promised to be. It saw the 'unexpected' severance of Britain with the European Union; it saw the world's most powerful democracy elect a politically divisive Donald Trump as their 45th President. Were these events really 'unexpected'? Perhaps not. Then how did we not see it coming? Aren't journalists, the people you watch on your television screens every single night meant to 'shape' your opinions? Aren't pollsters supposed to keep their ears to the ground? How could this majority be left unheard for so long? Did the frontrunners of this liberal democracy have ideological blinkers on? Did they miss the signs as they marched forward? Or did they get too comfortable in our little bubble of enfranchisement and entitlement? Are these mere 'events' or symptoms of a larger problem?
The repercussions are here for all of us to live through. It's not a crowd of a handful of bigots, ranting at the local town square as the 'politically correct' squirm in embarrassment. It's an entire population, that is responding to the isolating impact of globalisation, it's an entire population that still hasn't come to terms with the loss of their identity in this 'mixed' world, it's an entire population that is standing up for its voice to be heard by the elites, sitting in ivory towers, with their heads up in the clouds. This moment perhaps marks the dilution of an elitist discourse at the hands of a populist one? With this shrill a pitch, is democracy in peril? Does the world need to be subdued for capitalism to survive?