Bringing Down Goliath is a tale of a legal nature–mainly how the law can be used by the small people to bring our governments to order. To act legally, in fact. I can’t remember exactly when I started to crowdfund the Good Law Project, but it was for good reason. Supporting the move to bring greedy people who thought they were above the law yet were supposed to represent ‘the people’ to account for themselves. I bought this book (published Apr 23) to see how it all began, and to learn more.

KC after Mr Maugham’s name does not mean he’s a Knight. It stands for King’s Counsel, i.e. ‘called to the Bar’ a senior member of the judiciary in the United Kingdom. Until 8th September 2022 he was a QC – a Queen’s Counsel.

Bringing Down Goliath: How Good Law Can Topple the Powerful

by Jolyon Maugham KC

All too often our legal system feels like it only works for people who already have power and privilege, who know how to use the courts to enforce their will and defend their interests.

Jolyon Maugham QC founded The Good Law Project with the belief that the law can also put power in the hands of ordinary people. It has brought a series of landmark cases against a dishonest and increasingly autocratic government and won widespread acclaim in successfully reversing the Prime Minister’s unlawful suspension of Parliament. It is now the largest legal campaign group on the UK and has won some of the most important constitutional cases in recent memory. In this empowering book, Jolyon Maugham reveals what has driven his inspiration and purpose, and offers a bold new vision for how the law can work better for all of us in the fight against injustice. [goodreads]

My Review

Jo Maugham KC turns out to be not your average barrister. For a start, he didn’t go to Eton, Oxford and the Bar (not the pub). He grew up in New Zealand, came to England like lots of other Kiwis, then after several low-key jobs, and some dreadful living conditions, he went to University. Newcastle, I think, to study law.

This seems to be the exact sort of background you need to take a clear view of the English Justice system. And most Commonwealth countries, and former colonies, have developed their own systems from the archaic, classist, racist, one-ring-to-bind-them-all basis of the type that allowed the rich to deprive the average non-rich person of the means to live, e.g. by fencing off common land for their own exclusive use. Actually, the author does not cite that in his excellent book Bring Down Goliath.

What he does do is explain the steps he took, along with others who supported him, and in consultation with those he respected to know better than him, to address injustices in several high profile events in the UK from about 2016 onwards.


And despite the fact I lived through these events, and even supported the crowd-funded element of the court hearings, I am still completely gobsmacked at the perfidy, double dealing and bare-faced lies of the people we are stupid enough to entrust the running of our country.

If you do not live in the UK, you may find it difficult to follow the plot sometimes. Unbelievable may be a word that springs to your lips. Or, you may have got a clearer outsiders view of life in the UK than us poor inmates. Poor being the operative word, since the rich made a killing out of Covid, on a scale you simply cannot believe.

And as for Brexit… well, it becomes quite clear that the whole process was done illegally right from the start. But all the Conservatives club together, and most of the judiciary are from the same schools and colleges and playing grounds, and nannies… and it’s difficult to deliver ‘justice’ when your job depends on keeping your Prime Minister happy.

This is an important book. I’m just not sure who will read it and how much difference it will make.

If on July 4th, this country’s electorate realises the self-serving rich bastards will not look after anyone earning less than about £200,000 a year, we may have some hope for the future. And about 99% of UK taxpayers earn less than that.


Book Review | Bringing Down Goliath by Jolyan Maugham KC
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5 thoughts on “Book Review | Bringing Down Goliath by Jolyan Maugham KC

  • 29 June, 2024 at 8:31 am

    Excellent reviews on what sounds like an interesting book , thanks Jemima I shall definitely be looking this one up 💜

  • 29 June, 2024 at 1:23 pm

    On the other hand, there are also some self-serving rich bastards on the side which is going to win! We are stuffed, I believe is the technical term (I thought of a ruder word to start with). I’ve also donated to Good Law project on occasion, they do good work even when they don’t win.

  • 29 June, 2024 at 2:40 pm

    Jackie, This is what’s happening here. Only the rich get fair and sometimes NO treatment by the law. Unfortunately most of it is at the hands of George Soros funded prosecutors. He is trying to bring down this country.

  • 29 June, 2024 at 3:29 pm

    Sounds like a very timely book. Our own Supreme Court, which actually did a reasonable job of being non-partisan for over 200 years, has just handed down a bunch of “all for the rich and screw the rest of you” rulings that suck up to people they shouldn’t need to suck up to. I mean, that’s why the bastards have life appointments—to keep them from playing politics. The system is breaking down and I fear our grand experiment in democracy is teetering on the brink. Some days it’s just too hard to read the morning news.

  • 1 July, 2024 at 5:23 pm

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts, this sounds like an interesting read. I hadn’t heard about it before now, but I’ll definitely be checking it out!


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