Author Archives: thefifthwave

The future of freedom

[In 2002, after years of intermittent research, I wrote a book-length essay titled “Freedom: A Question.”  The question in the title concerned the very possibility of individual freedom, and the essay considered the latest data and analysis on the human … Continue reading

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My most excellent cable news adventure

Five days ago I received an email from a person who turned out to be a young woman, I’ll call her “Karma,” inviting me to a television interview on a famous cable news network – let’s call them “Fox.”  I … Continue reading

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Pandemic politics, QAnon, and a note on the elections

[The following is the original English text of my interview with Jeff Yates of Quebec’s ICI Radio-Canada. The French-language translation can be accessed at https://ici.radio-canada.ca/nouvelle/1745790/martin-gurri-revolt-public-entrevue.%5D The COVID-19 pandemic has made clear that the traditional information ecosystem is gone. People have … Continue reading

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France, the pandemic, and the crisis of authority

[The following conversation, recorded May 19 of this year, was hosted by Laurent de St. Martin, member of the French General Assembly for the government party, En Marche, and included David Goodhart, author of The Road to Somewhere, and myself.]

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Fact-checking the president:  A study in post-truth

“What is truth?” Pontius Pilate asked, and famously did not hang around for an answer.  Lately I have been asking, Pilate-like, about “post-truth” – and the answers, if they exist, are also hard to get at. Post-truth is an old … Continue reading

Posted in democracy, new media | 6 Comments

The revolt of the public in 10 minutes

The following video was my participation in the virtual class “Politics and Populism,” taught by one of my favorite contemporary thinkers, Yascha Mounk, at Johns Hopkins University.  

Posted in democracy, elites, the public | 4 Comments

The pandemic crisis and its consequences: An interview

[The following is the original English version of my recent interview with the French online publication, atlantico.fr.  It has been lightly edited.  Those who wish to read the French translation can find it here:  https://www.atlantico.fr/decryptage/3589116/martin-gurri–pour-les-francais-a-qui-l-on-apprend-a-venerer-l-autorite-etablie-la-revelation-des-failles-de-leurs-elites-politiques-et-scientifiques-a-ete-traumatisante-emmanuel-macron-coronavirus-covid-19-analyste-cia-peuple ]  In recent years, we’ve … Continue reading

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2019: The year revolt went global

Revolt as Consumer Backlash Beyond Washington DC, Donald Trump, and impeachment, there lies a great big world – and that world, at the moment, is being convulsed by a remarkable number of revolts against political authority.  I will let Tyler … Continue reading

Posted in cataclysm, the public | 39 Comments

Who is an elite?

“So, who’s an elite?”  “Am I an elite?”  “Are you an elite?”  “Isn’t Trump an elite?”  “Don’t you just call ‘elite’ anyone you don’t like?” Fair questions all, which I am I often asked. If I write a lot about … Continue reading

Posted in democracy, elites | Tagged | 11 Comments

A tale of two elites

The Great Reaction America’s elites are a house divided.  Ranged on one side are the people who rule the mighty institutions of modern life:  I mean government, politics, bureaucracy, media, the university, the scientific establishment.  They represent the forces of … Continue reading

Posted in democracy, web | 10 Comments