I realised that I am getting sick of people using the word "populist" ("populism"). It is frequently trotted out in reference to things like Brexit, Trump or One Nation and is usually meant to be derogatory. I suspect, however, that most people who use it have no clue what they mean by it (except possibly in reference to the great unwashed trying to usurp someone's authority through peaceful voting). It is a vague term that is applied to a wide range of issues right across the political spectrum. A couple of weeks ago I went to a talk by one of our ex-ambassadors and he used the term liberally throughout his talk when discussing the state of European politics at the moment (sometimes in conflicting ways). In the question time I asked him what he meant by it precisely. Although he did have an answer (albeit a weak one, but having an answer did surprise me) it didn't really make much sense in the context of his narrative. I think people need to start calling it out whenever they hear the term. Ask the person - What do you mean by that? Make them state more explicitly what it is that they are railing against. Presumably it is not "populism" that they do not like but some specific consequence of a given policy position.