What just happened?

June 17, 2017

So a week after the election what to make of it all? Here are a few bits of analysis I found interesting. If anyone has found any other interesting alaysis of the election please feel free to post links in the comment section.

From the BBC the day after the election there was this useful examination of how the Tories ended up campaigning in the wrong places: Election 2017: How the Tory campaign went so wrong.

The main thing we have learned is that past performance is a poor guide to the future. The Tories were largely using much of the same team as in 2015 and, once again, they were very well funded. But this evidence implies that the Conservative party campaign in England was an absolute catastrophe, and appalling data and analysis drove them to use their resources poorly.

Osborne’s Evening Standard had a wonderfully poisonous insider account of what went wrong with the Tory campaign: Revealed: How Theresa May’s two aides seized control of the Tory election campaign to calamitous effect

The Flip Chart Fairy Tales website has an interesting analysis entitled “The end of the Long 90s

That article also has a link to an interesting short paper by the cultural theorist Jeremy Gilbert from a couple of years ago which looks at the broader cultural context. Its entitled “Captive creativity: breaking free from the long ‘90s’. Here is an excerpt:

If I were to show you photographs of every seminar group I’ve taught since 2000 or so…the only differences you’d notice, that you’d be able date the photos from would be me getting older. This sense of cultural stasis isn’t mine alone. My students have been telling for years now that no very formally new music has emerged since around the beginning of the millennium, while the music critic Simon Reynolds had a worldwide success a couple of years ago with his book Retromania, reflecting on the absence of real novelty across many fields of contemporary culture. Now before you reflexively dismiss this as just old-man grumpiness, consider for a moment. This isn’t the cliché you might think it is. Middle aged people are supposed to be alienated from and suspicious of, the culture – and especially the music – of the young. But they’re supposed to find it frighteningly new and therefore beyond aesthetic comprehension. They’re not supposed to bemoan its lack of novelty. But here we are.

That’s not to say that there isn’t lots of great music being made. But for arguably the first time since the beginning of recorded music, there isn’t any that you couldn’t have quite easily imagined being made 20 years previously. Everything has changed, but nothing has changed.”

Gilbert has a short piece on the election on his blog called “Quick first thoughts on the June 2017 UK General Election result”

There there is Frankie Boyle’s take on the whole thing.

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