By Peter Hain
• What’s long past unsuitable with capitalism, and the way may still governments reply?
• Did massive govt or huge banking reason the worldwide monetary challenge?
• Is the reply austerity or funding in progress; untrammelled marketplace forces or law for the typical stable?
Anthony Crosland’s The way forward for Socialism supplied a creed for governments of the guts left till the worldwide banking trouble.
Now Peter Hain, drawing on over fifty years of expertise in politics, revisits this vintage textual content and provides a stimulating political prospectus for this present day. Hain argues that capitalism is now extra financially volatile and unfair, efficient yet liable to paralysis, dynamic yet discriminatory. A rousing substitute to the neoliberal, right-wing orthodoxy of our period, Hain’s new booklet may be learn by means of all people drawn to the way forward for the left.
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Additional info for Back to the Future of Socialism
By October 2007 banks all over the world were admitting to huge financial losses linked to mortgage-backed securities. In the US initial reports of losses by the big banks amounting to $20 billion were quickly revised up to $45 billion. Equally shocking losses were reported by the Royal Bank of Scotland in the UK, Nomura in Japan, Deutsche Bank in Germany and Credit Suisse in Switzerland. Some banks sought safety by agreeing to be taken over by bigger rivals, like Bear Stearns in the US. Others frantically sought massive injections of fresh capital – sometimes as investments by billionaires or by foreign state-owned sovereign wealth funds, sometimes as bailouts by their own governments, but hardly ever by abandoning bonus payments or cancelling dividend payments and using the money saved to strengthen their balance sheets.
12 However, there was one area where New Labour went a long way to deliver Crosland’s ideas. That was in cooperation at the workplace. Crosland felt that, while working in Britain had become less of a competitive rat race, more should be done to improve equality of opportunity and to raise the status of workers. In particular he contrasted class resentment and trench warfare attitudes in British employment relations with more harmonious patterns abroad, notably in Sweden. Unions provide a vital voice for people at work, a place where millions spend a large part of their lives.
New Labour’s faith in market forces over state action also led to a short-sighted reliance on the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) and on outsourcing the supply of public services. Labour went for immediate benefits – like new hospitals – at the cost of being locked into 20 to 30 year PFI contractual commitments to pay massive capital charges that made the PFI option more expensive in the long term than if the project had been funded through conventional means. New Labour found itself dependent on PFI because it was not prepared to borrow to invest.