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David Goodheart’s take on postliberalism, tries to explain and solve the shortcomings of earlier liberalism forms. It is not a new political movement or mandate, rather it takes the shape of an ideology, one to guide political dialogue that accepts that people are both selfish and altruistic. 
Goodheart argues; “that the social liberalism of the 60s and economic liberalism of the 80s ignored the importance of belonging and institutions like family, local community and nation.” 
Post liberalism takes ideas from both the left and the right to form one cohesive strategy to solve economic and social challenges of today without leaving anyone behind. But it also reintroduces lost ideas and foundations such as that of the common life, mutuality, vocation, the dignity of labour and the idea that everyone has a contribution to make.

In my previous post I already tried to highlight the importance of values in a community, however, I think that Goodheart’s work explains this topic more in a pragmatic way that can be easier translated into political debate and new policy. 
Postliberalism accepts that there is a dilemma for progressives in that they want a lot of solidarity on the one hand but also diversity. In reality these two values are contrary, how can you expect solidarity –equality in wealth, equal opportunities and a social welfare system – when you also must have diversity – equal respect for people that have different lives, values and goals.
The goal of postliberalism is to have a realistic form of liberalism, one that accepts families and communities always take priority over the foreign. Setting down a definition of what the nation is, and the community within it. This definition needs to be open enough to include the influx of new people with different backgrounds and places of birth, but not so open that it loses meaning.
It does not take the erosion of historic identity as a catalyst for future damnation, but there should be a desire to preserve the good things about the past and transform these into modern concepts.
When you would apply this theory to immigration it explains that large-scale immigrations are not only about economics but also about less definite things like identity, social contract and mutual obligation. David Goodheart, just like Murray, highlights the dominate liberal universalist voice in the current political that ignores the importance of place and people. Right-populist parties deceivingly stress these absent principles, but with the wrong solutions.
Therefor postliberalism, I believe, could really be the new wave that; “is not afraid to attack the status quo in the name of conservatism; not a nostalgia of the past but a desire to preserve what was best about it, in new forms if necessary.”- David Goodheart.

David Goodheart - A Postliberal future

In a recent LSE article in response to the recent Italian elections James Newell wrote that;

“The right’s success in exploiting immigration as an issue was revealed by the results of a poll carried out by the private research institute, Tecnè, in early February.”

This sets a very interesting frame, that apparently having an anti-immigration mandate is exploiting the issue in favour of more political support. There is apparently a very small margin in which you can discuss the issues of immigration and integration, anything too critical is deemed exploiting and unethical. Solidarity, human rights, and acceptance are at the core of the European Union and when related to the immigration crisis it is only natural that as exemplar the EU should be host to those that are in aid. But being blindsided by the long-term consequences is becoming more apparent and calling cultural conservatives racists helps neither.


After reading Murray’s book on the strange death of Europe, I come to realize how much of an issue it is to debate about the consequences of immigration, since people even take offence at the word crisis these days. Murray highlights numerous examples of politicians, professors, and writers who had warned about it had either been ignored, defamed, dismissed, prosecuted or killed. Rarely, if ever, even after the facts changed, did the actual victims receive much sympathy.

Immigration itself has many repercussions for the host country, from decreasing wages in the lower labour market, housing shortages and the extra burden on the education system. All of these may be serious questions that need proper management but not impossible. An often-skipped burden is also that of integration. As a liberal society who are we to tell immigrants to adapt to our lifestyle. Traditionalist populist parties often argue for more integration since when in Rome, do as the Roman’s do. But what if those recently arrived do not adjust to the same values we live by?

It is exactly this question the social democratic parties are too afraid to try to answer, and instead, strange analogies are made to compare the current immigrant crisis to that during the second world war. Isn’t it the strangest thing that it is the liberal societies that go quiet on bigotry if it comes from a community of immigrants.

Murray; - “No one had prepared for the possibility that those arriving might not only not become integrated but might bring many social and religious views with them, and that other minorities might be the first victims of such lack of foresight.”

And it is for this reasons that we as Europeans do need not shy away from what values we treasure and expect being upheld by all residents. A big melting pot is just, for now, an unreachable utopia, and if the social democrats do not want to join the debate on this topic, Italy sadly won’t be the last country to have an EU-sceptic anti-immigration government.