John Kampfner's book Freedom for Sale: How We Made Money and Lost Our Liberty challenges the assumption that economic progress and political freedom go hand in hand. He argues that, across the world, democratic governments and repressive regimes alike are willingly sacrificing civil liberties in exchange for greater wealth and security, creating a new kind of global authoritarianism. His book examines Russia and China among its cases, but also restrictions on individual liberty in Italy and the United Kingdom.
Does Kampfner's theory apply to the EU too? Is the Union a friend or an enemy of civil liberties? And what changes will the Lisbon treaty, with its legally binding charter of rights, make to the delicate balance between liberty and security in Europe?
Chaired by Paul Adamson, The Centre