petej + livingstandards   118

How to Be an Anticapitalist Today
Give up the fantasy of smashing capitalism. Capitalism is not smashable, at least if you really want to construct an emancipatory future. You may personally be able to escape capitalism by moving off the grid and minimizing your involvement with the money economy and the market, but this is hardly an attractive option for most people, especially those with children, and certainly has little potential to foster a broader process of social emancipation.

If you are concerned about the lives of others, in one way or another you have to deal with capitalist structures and institutions. Taming and eroding capitalism are the only viable options. You need to participate both in political movements for taming capitalism through public policies and in socioeconomic projects of eroding capitalism through the expansion of emancipatory forms of economic activity.

We must renew an energetic progressive social democracy that not only neutralizes the harms of capitalism but also facilitates initiatives to build real utopias with the potential to erode the dominance of capitalism.
anti-capitalism  capitalism  politics  livingStandards  inequality  poverty  growth  productivity  environment  crisis  revolution  socialDemocracy  reform  regulation  redistribution  globalisation  neoliberalism  anarchism  utopias  cooperatives  libraries  P2P  wikipedia  UniversalBasicIncome  dctagged  dc:creator=WrightErikOlin 
9 weeks ago by petej
A no-deal Brexit won’t result in a siege. The EU will be more clinical than that | Tom Kibasi | Opinion | The Guardian
Instead, the EU’s response to a no deal will be strategic: opening up advantage, sector by sector, calmly and patiently dismantling the UK’s leading industries over the course of a decade. They will eat the elephant one bite at a time. The problem with abandoning the rules of the international order is that you no longer enjoy their protection.

A no-deal Brexit would hand the EU enormous power: it would decide how and when to introduce new frictions between the UK and the single market, giving sufficient time for firms like Airbus, Nissan or AstraZeneca to relocate production. As recent decisions have demonstrated, even seemingly fixed capital investment is more mobile than many Brexiters imagine.

The EU would set out a timeline over which it would introduce compliance and rules of origin checks on the UK’s most competitive exporting sectors. It is not hard to imagine checks on automotive parts from 2021, pharmaceuticals from 2022 and aerospace from 2023, alongside constantly shifting sands of equivalence for financial services. This would allow firms an orderly departure from the UK to the single market. It will be a steady drift away from the UK, not an avalanche. Moreover, the absence of any agreement would mean lasting uncertainty that would deter future investment. The UK is particularly exposed in this regard: our serious lack of competitiveness is demonstrated by persistently large trade deficits. This means the UK is heavily reliant on foreign investment – the “kindness of strangers” – which would likely collapse. It is not hard to imagine a future government going cap in hand to the IMF for a bailout.
UK  EU  Brexit  noDeal  delay  shortage  food  prices  imports  livingStandards  competition  industry  trade  regulation  compliance  investment  Nissan  dctagged  dc:creator=KibasiTom 
10 weeks ago by petej
Inflation rises to 3.1%, adding to UK cost of living squeeze | Business | The Guardian
A breakdown of the ONS data showed food prices up by 4.1% on a year ago, with transport costs rising by 4.5% and clothing and footwear up by 3%.
UK  economy  inflation  livingStandards  food  prices  ONS  statistics  costOfLiving 
december 2017 by petej
No Dunkirk Spirit Can Save Britain From Brexit Defeat - The New York Times
Britain is not an economic powerhouse waiting to be liberated. We are a country of mediocre education and limited skills, whose preening vanity has prevented us from seeing our failings. Our membership in the European Union is not a set of restraints; it is what has been propping us up. If we insist on cutting ourselves off, parts of our economy will start to die.

Dunkirk is remembered so fondly only because, in the end, Britain was on the winning side. That wasn’t down to our plucky spirit. It was because America, with its overwhelming resources, entered the war. There is no such ally waiting to rescue us now, as we start down the dangerous path of methodically shredding our links with our neighbors and friends.
UK  EU  Brexit  economy  education  skills  agriculture  manufacturing  healthcare  trade  investment  CBI  delusion  nostalgia  immigration  employment  austerity  livingStandards  debt  politics 
july 2017 by petej
The end of the Long 90s | Flip Chart Fairy Tales
The campaign for Brexit was, for the most part, led and financed by the libertarian free-market right; people who want more deregulation, less tax and a smaller state. It is beginning to dawn on some of them that Brexit may deliver the exact opposite. For Andrew Lilico, one of the relatively few economists to support Brexit, all that matters now is stopping Corbyn.

Everything else is secondary now to stopping him. Austerity, Brexit, public services reform, trade deals with the US, foibles about doing deals with Irish politicians or Lib Dems – even new anti-terror laws. Everything else is secondary and expendable for the moment.

It was their own fault. The Brexiters fanned the flames of populism and re-introduced people to the notion that voting might change things. They thought that the new post-Brexit Britain would be theirs. Now they realise it probably won’t.

When historians and political scientists look back, in a decade or so, one image will define the Summer of ’17. It won’t be a distraught Theresa May or a waving Jeremy Corbyn. It will be the burning Grenfell Tower. It is still way too early to be clear about what went wrong and who’s fault it might have been but, regardless of the causes of the fire, as the Guido Fawkes blog complains, the political fallout is already damaging the Conservatives. It doesn’t really matter how much of a role austerity, a scrimping Tory council, outsourcing and deregulation had in making the catastrophic blaze more likely, the story fits the spirit of the times. Grenfell was a tower block housing the poor in the middle of one of the country’s richest constituencies, the one in which, less than a week earlier, Labour had overturned decades of solid Tory majorities. It may, in time, become a symbol of the point at which British politics turned.
UK  politics  economics  economy  liberalism  privatisation  deregulation  diversity  Blairism  livingStandards  immigration  Brexit  ToryParty  UKIP  LabourParty 
june 2017 by petej
Repowering Europe: How To Combat Austerity, Alienation and Brexit
"The decisive cause is: 15 or 20 years ago the European Union was associated in the heads of the majority of its citizens with prosperity, progress and modernisation. The EU held out a promise that everybody or at least most people would be better off in future.

Today we can see – certainly since the outbreak of the financial and economic crisis – a stagnant economy, disappointingly weak levels of investment as well as a dramatic decline in the labour market. In the crisis-ridden countries of the south, especially, youth unemployment has soared to 40 to 50 per cent for some time now. The outcome: there’s an increasing competitive pressure on the employment market, public budgets are constrained. Neoliberal apologists and conservative politicians are trying to reframe the financial and economic crisis as a crisis of the European welfare state. Insecurity spreads far and wide."
Europe  EU  nationalism  populism  UK  Brexit  crisis  economy  unemployment  globalisation  taxAvoidance  growth  livingStandards  inequality  refugees  asylum  politics 
october 2016 by petej
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