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Robert Skidelsky

Robert Skidelsky

Writing for PS since 2003
218 commentaries

Robert Skidelsky is a member of the British House of Lords, Professor Emeritus of Political Economy at Warwick University, and the author of a prize-winning three-volume biography of John Maynard Keynes. He began his political career in the Labour party, was a founding member of the Social Democratic Party, and served as the Conservative Party’s spokesman for Treasury affairs in the House of Lords until he was sacked for his opposition to NATO’s 1999 bombing of Kosovo. Since 2001, he has sat in the House of Lords as an independent. He has also served as a non-executive director of the American mutual fund Janus (2001-11) and the private Russian oil company PJSC Russneft (2016-21). He is the author of The Machine Age: An Idea, a History, a Warning (Allen Lane, 2023).

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  1. D-Day and the Threat of Total War
    skidelsky202_BettmannGetty Images_d-day Bettmann/Getty Images

    D-Day and the Threat of Total War

    Jun 17, 2024 Robert Skidelsky thinks understanding the causes and consequences of past global conflicts is crucial to preventing another one.

  2. The Myth of Central-Bank Independence
    skidelsky201_Leon NealGetty Images_BOE Leon Neal/Getty Images

    The Myth of Central-Bank Independence

    May 20, 2024 Robert Skidelsky thinks the time has come to transfer power from technocrats back to elected officials.

  3. The Language of Political Control
    skidelsky200_Getty Images_speech Getty Images

    The Language of Political Control

    Apr 19, 2024 Robert Skidelsky views recent linguistic innovations as manipulative efforts to compel “correct” thought and perception.

  4. Post-Capitalist Pessimism
    skidelsky199_In Pictures Ltd.Corbis via Getty Images_capitalismprotest In Pictures Ltd./Corbis via Getty Images

    Post-Capitalist Pessimism

    Mar 21, 2024 Robert Skidelsky laments the absence of a redemptive political vision adequate to the public's growing economic disillusionment.

  5. The UK Labour Party’s Green-Energy Debacle
    skidelsky197_Leon NealGetty Images_UKgreen Leon Neal/Getty Images

    The UK Labour Party’s Green-Energy Debacle

    Feb 19, 2024 Robert Skidelsky explains why the threat of climate change outweighs the risks of increased public spending.

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  1. watkins29_Luis AlvarengaGetty Images_brazilfoodprogram Luis Alvarenga/Getty Images

    How the G20 Could Help Eliminate Hunger and Extreme Poverty

    Kevin Watkins urges the group’s members to harness their economic and political power to advance shared development targets.
  2. bildt125_SERGEI SUPINSKYAFP via Getty Images_ukraine Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

    A Hillbilly Elegy for Ukraine and the West

    Carl Bildt considers the disastrous implications of US vice-presidential nominee J.D. Vance’s worldview.
  3. zizek33_CRISTINA ALDEHUELAAFP via Getty Images_agbogbloshie Cristina Aldehuela/AFP via Getty Images

    We Are All Biomass

    Slavoj Žižek sees our shared environmental predicament as a stronger basis for solidarity than appeals to compassion.
  4. Kurz_Say-More_NanoStockk-via-GettyRF Kurz_Say-More_NanoStockk-via-GettyRF

    Mordecai Kurz on market power, Big Tech, antitrust, and more

    Mordecai Kurz explains how technology firms abuse patent law to establish and preserve monopolies, criticizes the US Supreme Court’s approach to market power, sheds light on the relationship between innovation and inequality, and more.
  5. khrushcheva183_Andrew HarnikGetty Images_biden Andrew Harnik/Getty Images

    Biden Rejects the Drug of Power

    Nina L. Khrushcheva

    Joe Biden's decision to drop out of the presidential race reflects a humility that is far more likely to be found among democratic leaders than authoritarians. But as Donald Trump has shown – with his efforts to overturn the 2020 election and his vow to be a dictator “on day one” – such humility is never guaranteed.

    praises the US president for stepping aside to let a younger candidate take over.
  6. kisilowski11_ BRENDAN SMIALOWSKIAFP via Getty Images)_trump BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images

    Impunity for Authoritarians Fuels Political Violence

    Maciej Kisilowski explains why allowing corrupt leaders to evade justice can stoke public fear and discontent.
  7. lalwani2_SAID KHATIBAFP via Getty Images_journalism SAID KHATIB/AFP via Getty Images

    As Disinformation Thrives, Democracy Dies

    Nishant Lalwani, et al. argue that increased aid for independent media is necessary to defend press freedom in the developing world.
  8. lcarvalho1_Ton MolinaNurPhoto via Getty Images_lulaclimatechange Ton Molina/NurPhoto via Getty Images

    The Dead Hand of Neoliberalism Is Blocking Green Growth

    Laura Carvalho sees rich countries pursuing industrial strategies while poorer countries are prevented from following suit.
  9. haass169_Brandon BellGetty Images_harris Brandon Bell/Getty Images

    Will the Democrats Win After Biden’s Withdrawal?

    Richard Haass

    US President Joe Biden’s decision to drop out of the 2024 presidential race has revived the Democrats’ chances of victory. Given the profound differences between the two parties, it is difficult to exaggerate just how much is at stake when Americans vote this November.

    explains how the new Democratic nominee could get out from under the shadow of an unpopular president.

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