Wednesday 14 November 2018
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.theguardian - 5 days ago

How to explain Jacob Rees-Mogg? Start with his father s books

William Rees-Mogg wrote the prophetic The Sovereign Individual and had views on capitalism and chaos that have fascinating links to his son’s enthusiasm for BrexitIn the spring of 1997, shortly before Tony Blair took power, William Rees-Mogg, ex-editor of the Times, leading Eurosceptic, pinstriped self-publicist and father of Jacob, published a book that claimed to see the future of the world. The Sovereign Individual: The Coming Economic Revolution and How to Survive and Prosper in It opened with a quote from Tom Stoppard’s play Arcadia: “The future is disorder.”For 380 breathless pages, Lord Rees-Mogg and a co-author, James Dale Davidson, an American investment guru and conservative propagandist, predicted that digital technology would make the world hugely more competitive, unequal and unstable. Societies would splinter. Taxes would be evaded. Government would gradually wither away. “By 2010 or thereabouts,” they wrote, welfare states “will simply become unfinanceable”. In such a harsh world, only the most talented, self-reliant, technologically adept person – “the sovereign individual” – would thrive. Continue reading...

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