« "Losing the economic argument" | Main | Jockeys, whips & market failure »

September 26, 2011

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451cbef69e2014e8bd52454970d

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Social democracy in hard times:

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Keith

Are you not taking this too seriously? Party conference is irrelevant it has no power. The whole point of "New labour" is that it is a top down managerial dictatorship of an elite who think they already know all the answers so don't need any democracy inside the Labour Party or outside it. That is the problem. As in the USSR however destroying democracy merely produces massive alienation and failure. If you want to have a viable Labour party that can transform society and economy for the masses you need to subject the "elite" to democracy. First make Labour a real popular movement rather than a jobs fare for the Oxbridge back scratchers. You cannot expect a Stalinist type elite to have imagination or creativity. It is not in the job description. Having no ideas is a requirement of the structure of party and politics.

CahalMoran

I don't really buy the 'this is a special case' arguments put forth by Cowen etcetera, mostly because every crisis seems to have people saying that.

My contribtion would be:

- LVT. Spurs production, raises revenues, can't be passed on. What's not to like?

- Low long term interest rates with another BW style stabilisation scheme. This is the best path to inducing investment.

- Writing off loans/writing them down to ability to pay. Private debt is too high.

Metatone

West German style regional business banks. Set up as non-profit type, non-governmental banks. Or maybe some kind of regional mutual structure can be created. Details according to your preference.

Anyway, finance institutions whose remit is to lend to local, Mittelstand type businesses. That's how you build an industrial base...

Metatone

As a side note, there's plenty of evidence that "enterprise" in the UK is held back by the banking infrastructure. The high street banks have no interest in understanding SME business banking - and there's no incentive for them to start. Either housing rebounds as their main trade, or they drift into international investment finance. We need institutions who are forced by regulation to look for business close to home...

George Hallam

"As a side note, there's plenty of evidence that "enterprise" in the UK is held back by the banking infrastructure. The high street banks have no interest in understanding SME business banking - and there's no incentive for them to start."

Which is why we need council-backed investment banks to finance the local economy, like the Bank of Lewisham proposed by Lewisham People Before Profit.

Keith

People Before Profit? I totally agree mate; well said! Problem is Labour have not believed that since 1982? 1989? Well for a long time. Now we have millipede sorry milliband talking more balls ( with balls ) at his conference. Time to demonise welfare claiments and council tenants just to curry favour with the daily mail: now thats a big idea! Who could do that any better? the Tories would never do it or those nice liberals! Lets all attack the poor since we really need three tory parties rather than one. Are you for real? Go back to your constituencies and prepare for... a long time in opposition.

George Hallam

"People Before Profit? I totally agree mate; well said! Problem is Labour have not believed that since 1982? 1989?"

Who is taking about the Labour Party?

In Lewisham local campaigners gave up trying to influence the Labour Party (or the Conservatives, Lib Dems or even the Greens) some time ago. We are now registered as a political party and we stand in elections (5 percent in the Lewisham Mayoral election in May 2010).

Of course we still talk to the other parties but now we stand against them we find it less frustrating when they don’t listen.

fake

So if you cap top pay, with the idea you give that it stops the chancers (being liberal with words here).

And you managers as custodians rather than controllers.

How on earth do you expect companies to expand/change/innovate etc, these seems like a recipe for stagnation.

fake

*Which is why we need council-backed investment banks to finance the local economy, like the Bank of Lewisham proposed by Lewisham People Before Profit.*

And how do these banks loan wisely, how do they choose what is a good business to loan to, and a bad one.

Will their targets be profit based, or as a "council-backed" bank, targets to loan X amount, regardless of the loaner's risk.

There are so many pitfalls to this idea, I can't find the energy to list them.

pablopatito

"This would be OK(ish) if our problem were merely a cyclical one of temporarily weak demand. But it is not."

Sure, but it's our problem to a degree, just not the whole problem. So Balls policy would improve the situation a bit, but not completely.

If Wolves were playing Barcelona and were 5-0 down, I could argue that we should have four defenders rather than two. You could rightly say that our defence isn't the only problem, our midfield will still be over-run. Wolves can't beat Barcelona, but a manager can still change tactics to limit the loss.

I'd love Balls to say his solution is to increase welfare payments to the unemployed, but a policy that will never get you elected isn't really a policy at all (for the opposition at least).

chris y

Hard to fault your four points. The practical difficulty is that they, in this time and place, effectively revolutionary demands. By which I mean they can't be realised under prevailing conditions without massive class struggle which challenges the structure of the state (and that's not going to happen next week). They are in fact much in keeping with the approach of the demands in the final chapter of the "Communist Manifesto".

Nothing wrong with that as far as it goes, just as long as we understand what we're letting ourselves in for.

George Hallam

Fake lamented:
“And how do these banks loan wisely, how do they choose what is a good business to loan to, and a bad one…[?]

There are so many pitfalls to this idea, I can't find the energy to list them.”
The proposal for a council-backed investment bank to finance the local economy arose in response to pressing problems we have here in Lewisham. Listing problems running our own investment bank is all very well if one is serious about funding such a bank. Using such problems as an argument against the whole idea won’t convince people. To do that one needs to explain how the underlying problems can be solved WITHOUT setting up a council-backed investment bank to finance the local economy.

Banks like these would also be one way of making the British banking system more modular and therefore more robust: something people talk about but stop short of putting forward concrete proposals.

TheThoughtGang

fake

"How on earth do you expect companies to expand/change/innovate etc, these seems like a recipe for stagnation."

Do we think that only the highly paid can/will innovate?

I'd suggest many organisations fail to expand/change/innovate *because* disparity of reward leads to misplaced ideas about who, within the organisation, is best placed to help it develop.

For starters, let's remember that in the real world most highly paid people are highly paid because of past achievements. I'm quite well paid.. not because I made good decisions today, or yesterday, or because I'll make them tomorrow… but because I made them last year.

On a personal level, I've become well paid because I did good things in my company in lower paid positions. Go me. I try to remember this and listen to people in lower paid positions today.. they often know better than I do (just like I might know better than those paid more than me). I consider this positive. I see exmaples elsewhere, in my organisation and others, where management are more dictatorial and things don't go to well.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Why S&M?

Blog powered by Typepad