How Not To Be Wrong by James O'Brien

James O'BrienJames O’Brien is billed on the cover on this follow-up to his best-selling How To Be Right as ‘the conscience of liberal Britain’. Whether that’s true or not, he certainly is one of the most prominent voices on the liberal side of the our current Cultural Cold War. It is the LBC phone-in host O’Brien who tackles right wing controversialists head-on, fighting fire with fire, and that was what made How to Be Right such a popular read.

In this book, though, he takes a slightly different tack. He talks about deciding to go into therapy, a process which has led him to examine his own prejudices and beliefs. Why had he taken the mickey out of fat people? Why did he think it was right to tell people to ‘pull their socks up’? Why did he always have to defend his position whenever someone disagreed with him? The techniques he learned in therapy helped him identify what he now sees as stumbling blocks. “One of the surest ways to change things around you is to begin by changing what’s inside you,” he writes.

But lest anyone should think that O’Brien is going to find consensus with Faragists, paving the way for a new era of peace, think again. He is *so* decent, *so* prepared to examine his own motives, that he comes out of the book even more James O’Brien than he went into it. For folk of a liberal mindset, already bolstered by the moral victory of President Biden, this is like balm for the mendacity they see all around them.

Posted by GILES WILSON on

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