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Episode summary: David talks to the writer Anne Applebaum about her highly personal new book, which charts the last twenty years of broken friendships and democratic failure. We start in Poland with the story of what happened to the high hopes for Polish democracy, including what we’ve learned from this week’s presidential election. But we also take in Trump and Brexit, Hungary and Spain. What explains the prevalence of conspiracy theories in contemporary politics? Why are so many conservatives drawn to the politics of despair? Is history really circular? And is democracy doomed? Talking Points: Yesterday, Poland’s incumbent president Andrzej Duda narrowly won re-election. - Anne thinks that this shows divisive politics can succeed. - A central issue was LGBT rights: Duda said that LGBT was an ideology worse than communism. - The ruling party now has 3 more years to continue undermining the press and the judiciary and putting pressure on anyone the party sees as a threat. The new illiberal way of thinking is not a totalizing…

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