Listen free for 30 days

£7.99/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime

Summary

The Sunday Times top 10 best seller.

When Peter Oborne wrote The Rise of Political Lying, looking at the growth of political falsehood during the governments of John Major and Tony Blair, he believed things had got as bad as they could be. But then on 23rd July 2019, with the arrival of Boris Johnson at No 10, a new and unprecedented epidemic of deceit began.

In The Death of Truth, a short and powerful new polemic, Oborne shows how Boris Johnson lied again and again in order to secure victory so he could force through Brexit in the face of parliamentary opposition. Johnson and his ministers then lied repeatedly to win the general election in December 2019. The government’s woeful response to the coronavirus pandemic has generated another wave of falsehoods, misrepresentations and fabrications.

The scale and shamelessness of the lying of the Johnson administration far exceeds the lying about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction and other issues under Tony Blair. This book argues that the ruthless use of political deceit under the Johnson government is part of a wider attack on civilised values and traditional institutions across the Western world, especially by Donald Trump in the USA. The Johnson and Trump methodology of deceit is about securing power for its own ends - even when they get exposed for lying, they shrug it off as a matter of no consequence. 

It matters because all Western institutions are built around the idea of integrity and accountability. This means that an assault on truth is an assault on the rule of law, state institutions and the fundamental idea of fairness, and even democracy itself. 

©2021 Peter Oborne (P)2021 Simon & Schuster UK

More from the same

What listeners say about The Assault on Truth

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    179
  • 4 Stars
    23
  • 3 Stars
    5
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    0
Performance
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    145
  • 4 Stars
    27
  • 3 Stars
    2
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    2
Story
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    151
  • 4 Stars
    21
  • 3 Stars
    2
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Solid book

I’m a Marxist - one of the “progressives” excoriated by Peter Oborne’s very reductive views on political philosophy for privileging ends over means, in the vein of Rousseau, the French Revolution and, it turns out (at least according to Mr Oborne’s rather eclectic views), Dominic Cummings and Boris Johnson. So it’s safe to say I have little in common with the author, although I too voted for Brexit and loathe the myriad hypocrisies of Remainers. Moving on from political philosophy, I disagree with the author’s attack on the dishonesty that permeates his profession of journalism as stemming from the 1960s and the endemic dishonesty in politics as stemming from Tony Blair. I think this is a selective and superficial explanation at best.

But. I heartily recommend this book. It’s a damning indictment of the rot at the top of the British political class and an important record of events including the clearance of the top of the civil service by the government. I could wish for more structural commentary on some of the causes, such as why politics has hollowed out from the mass engagement and collective identities of “trade union, party, regiment” that Mr Oborne describes, as I’d be interested in hearing the views of a conservative thinker who isn’t frothing at the mouth. So enjoyable did I find this erudite rant that I can’t even hold against it the invocation of god or the almost-naive view that by simply leaning on our MPs we’ll push back against lying, when it is a structural feature of a political democracy attempting to maintain its legitimacy amidst the contradiction of democratic political institutions with a mass franchise being used to rain down endless attacks on the vast majority of working class people.

I was sorry to learn that for a brave stand against lying Peter Oborne had lost his perch amidst the media. There seems to be an uptick in this kind of thing, cf Ronan Farrow’s ouster from NBC for pursuing Weinstein.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A stark reminder Bojo is a liar and cheat

The story is narrated with gusto, passion and no small amount of bitterness by the author, J Oborne. It's a clinical dissection of our Prime Minister's character lest we forge the man we've elected. Oborne only focuses on politics, with no mention of his private life, and it's quite enough to leave the listener feeling queasy.

The driving force behind Johnson is made clear; namely what's best for himself. This is hardly Churchillian. One is left feeling we have truly left Kansas and entered another world of politics, and the only other leader to have stepped through the same looking glass (sorry for switching fantasies) has been recently been seen to have no clothes.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

I like the content but the narration makes me feel anxious.

I think the content is great and needs exposing but the narration is so bad I can’t listen anymore. Apple started a strange speech pattern of putting massive and artificial emphasis on the bingo words they want to sink in and the tori’s BJ especially have copied this voice pattern. Months ago I stopped being able to watch BJ as this strange emphasis seemed all the more sick for the lies it carried and the death toll as a consequence. I still can’t watch Boris because of the speech pattern I associate with dishonesty and propagandistic content so to find the same content on a book opposing BJ and supporting my beliefs about what BJ has done to our country is just too much to take. I really want to listen but can’t get past that pattern of speech because of its associations. Try it yourself though, I’m blind so put much more emphasis on tone, intonation and patterns. You may not have the same problem and I think the content is good.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Essential reading for those wanting integrity and truth from politicians

Very well documented account of the many distortions and lies from this Conservative-government- I appreciated someone identifying these with the sense of moral outrage we should all feel, highlighting the insipidness and obsequiousness of our press and weak interviewing or ignoring lies from our broadcast media- owned by those press owners who are so inextricably linked with the Tories and who promote the many lies told to the public- especially during the Brexit campaign, 2019 general election and towards Parliament and the judiciary.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A Very Timely and Sobering Warning For Everyone

This book is both opportune and in many many ways vital reading. It fills the gap by reporting the facts that the press have not been allowed to report. It is amazing to hear a main stream eminent politics reporter of long standing like Peter Oborne come clean about the complicity of editors and their newspaper owners, in both reporting false government propaganda as well as not challenging government lies. Like Peter Oborne I have long wondered how Tony Blair got away with lying to Parliament and why Boris Johnson's reward for well substantiated lies during the Brexit campaign was to be made Prime Minister. Peters well written and well research book has gone a long way to help me understand both phenomena. The fact that I cannot get this information as part of everyday news discussions shows what a dangerous position we are in as a so called modern democracy with a supposed free press. To avoid a catastrophic loss of rights we really have to put our vote to good use rather than throwing it away of celebrity politicians who openly lie to us. Thanks Peter a very timely and very well written book

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

An important and absorbing account of our times

Peter Oborne is not a left wing firebrand. His account of Johnson’s ignominious rise to power is detailed and shocking even to someone who already had a low opinion of our PM.
Osborne’ s patrician tone make’s his analysis even more powerful. He has worked with Johnson and noted his methods.
He even mentions the grudging regard he once had for Johnson as a comic journalist with the popular touch.
He has written for all the established conservative papers but retained a respect for the importance of honesty and truthful journalism.
He pays close attention to events and writes with the dignity and outrage of a moral philosopher about the damage wrought by narcissistic populists with no respect for the truth.
This book is not long but it is a valuable analysis that deserves a lot of attention.
It is very well read by the author. He does a creditable impersonation of Johsonian bombast when required.
It is a lethal book.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Shockingly good...

I knew how shockingly bad Johnson was, this confirmed that and more. Proper journalism. Great listen/read.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Very good

Peter Oborne is an unlikely author for such a devastating critique of Boris Johnson. The content and sentiment expressed deserves to be more mainstream than it is at present. But it’s not mainstream precisely because of people who should known better either aiding and abetting or choosing to look the other way.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent!

One of the best recent books on British politics. Cannot recommend highly enough! Thoroughly enjoyed.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Sinister & Deliberate

This makes for essential reading and is a sad indictment on politics today and what we are being told.by politicians and the mainstream media.

If you on the left of politics this book will cement your view of the current state of US and UK politics.

If, however you think Johnson et al are jolly good fellows and doing the best they can or even worse, doing a good job, then this book will hopefully open your eyes.

Only wish it could have be longer to sustain the wave after wave of incredulity this book offers!

1 person found this helpful