Marx predicted the rise of Tommy Robinson and his rabble of far-right thugs

Notorious far-right figure Stephen Yaxley-Lennon (better known by his pseudonym ‘Tommy Robinson’) has just been given another banning order from attending football matches – both at home and abroad. The development is far from a shock. Yaxley-Lennon has an illustrious criminal past with convictions for crimes spanning from assault to contempt of court. But it would be too easy to simply revel in his latest disgrace or dwell on his and his followers’ penchant for the violent loutishness they borrow from their own football hooligan origins.

Because perhaps there is something more sinister going on. Could it be that far-right protest movements are being manipulated by much larger and more sinister forces? Marx, in his own day, identified social phenomena that bear striking parallels to those taking place today. And perhaps his analysis was far more prescient than even he could have ever realized.

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