Roger Scruton

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Roger Scruton is a British philosopher who was caught taking payments from the tobacco industry in exchange for writing pro-smoking articles in the Wall Street Journal. Presently he serves as the external editor for OpenDemocracy.

After The Guardian's disclosure in 2002 that Scruton had 'asked Japan Tobacco for a £1,000 a month rise to an annual £66,000 to help place articles defending the right to smoke in newspapers, including the WSJ, the Financial Times, The Times, the Daily Telegraph, and the Independent,' he was dropped by both the Financial Times and Wall Street Journal. [1]


According to a profile in the Times Higher Education, Scruton

came from a Labour-voting family, his experiences of Paris in May 1968 shifted him sharply to the Right. It also gave him a lifelong aversion to the "satanic mendacity" of thinkers such as Michel Foucault, who seemed to provide a rationale for the violence and transgression of the soixante-huitards. [2]



  1. Rebecca Allison, Wall Street Journal drops Scruton over tobacco cash, The Guardian, 5 February 2002
  2. Matthew Reisz, 'Right-thinking aesthetic', Times Higher Education, 25 June 2009.