In ‘Status quo fatigue yields new radicals', September 15, you point to Greece’s Syriza, France’s National Front and Spain’s Podemos among others to suggest that ‘the question remains whether [radicalism] is a temporary phenomenon or the younger generation will continue to demand fundamental change.'*
Radicalism is with us because ‘the younger generation’ is. The benefits of the views and values of youth may be arguable, but every generation has to live with them.
However, as you also note, radicalism definitely waxes and wanes according to levels of ‘social stress’. And, inevitably, every younger generation grows up.
So when times turn bad and foster radicalism, there is always a generation that has either been there and done that or, if it hasn't, simply does not understand what today's youth are on about. On the other hand, when times are good, why would any darn fool want to change things?
There are exceptions. The
’s newly elected Labour Party
leader Jeremy Corbyn is one. Mr Corbyn is a permanent radical. Thirty years ago
he was ahead of the times. Today he is thirty years behind. UK
From the Business Day article September 15 to which this is a reply