New book: Can democracy survive global capitalism

New book: Can democracy survive global capitalism

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Social Europe has introduced a new book by Robert Kuttner published by W.W. Norton & Company Ltd.
Brilliantly brings together two strands of thought: explaining both the economics and politics of global capitalism and how our society has abandoned core principles of fairness and equality… Kuttner reminds us of the urgency with which we need to get back to a more just society.”—Joseph E. Stiglitz, Columbia University, winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics Robert Kuttner, a leading social critic and founder ofThe AmericanProspect, masterfully recounts managed capitalism’s finest hour and shows how it might again be achieved in Can Democracy Survive Global Capitalism? Tracing a path through the twentieth century, Kuttner lays out the events that led to the post-war miracle and charts its dissolution all the way to Trump, Brexit and the tenuous state of the EU in its present incarnation.
Incan Democracy Survive Global Capitalism? Kuttner examines the connection between the rise of ultra-nationalism and the collapse of a decent form of managed capitalism. As Kuttner explains, the postwar era was a splendid anomaly in the history of capitalism, the result of both fortuitous circumstances and deliberate design. Both the far right and the libertarian right had been discredited by depression and war. The centre and the democratic left both pursued policies of full employment and social support, to avoid a repeat of the 1930s and to compete with communism. The tight regulation of financial capital and the empowerment of labour were key to both the politics and the policies of the era.
Moving to the latter half of the twentieth century, Kuttner demonstrates how all of this unravelled in the 1970s and 1980s when a power shift occurred in which financial regulations were rolled back, taxes were cut, inequality worsened and disheartened voters turned to far-right, faux populism.
So is today’s poisonous alliance of reckless finance and ultra-nationalism inevitable? Or can democracy find a way to survive?
Kuttner writes:
“If democracy is to survive, this cycle will need to be reversed. This will require much stronger democratic institutions and a radical transformation of capitalism into a more social economy. It will require different global rules, to allow more space for national policy. Conversely, if the current brand of capitalism survives, it is likely to become even more concentrated, corrupt, and undemocratic. So the emerging system will either be more autocratic and more controlled by capital—or more democratic and less capitalist.”
Social Europe readers benefit from a 25% discount and free shipping when using the discount code WN485 at the checkout. – Social Europe

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