- js reader version
- view hidden posts
- tags and related articles
by Gustav Horn and Thomas Meyer
Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2010 at 6:23 AM
Neoliberalism is the political-economic experiment of individualizing social risks and claiming growth and employment will be higher. This claim is refuted convincingly by the global financial crisis destroying enormous assets and causing growth and employment to crash.
THE NEOLIBERAL AGENDA IS OVER
Does Everyone Know This?
By Gustav Horn
[This article published 1/19/2010 is translated from the German on the Internet, http://www.boeckler.de/94074_102360.html.]
What is neoliberalism? Neoliberalism is the political-economic experiment of individualizing social risks and claiming growth and employment will be higher. This claim is refuted convincingly by the global financial crisis destroying enormous assets and causing growth and employment to crash.
The crisis has made this clear. In a market economy, there are inevitable social risks that increase more than decrease through deregulation. No one can seriously argue that those now unemployed are responsible themselves for being unemployed. They are victims of those mistakes that led to the global financial and economic crisis. The absurd or cynical nature of official government campaigns that in the middle of the decade tried to stylize unemployment as largely self-indebted is now unmistakable. Nevertheless the recent German labor market reforms are based on this way of looking at things. Therefore a reform of the reform and turning away from neoliberal ideas are very sensible.
But there are even more reasons for the great upheaval and the great refusal (cf. Paul Krugman). A political economy with a developed social system can cope with social risks better than one without such a system. From an individual economic perspective, unemp0loyment insurance ensures the income for an unemployed person by covering livelihood costs. From an aggregate economic perspective, the stabilization of income also leads to stabilization of consumer demand in times of crisis so the crisis turns out weaker than without social security. Social insurance only becomes problematic when it gives a strong incentive for remaining unemployed when there are acceptable alternatives. In this context, carrying out a reform of the reforms would be rewarding.
Very different projects are astonishingly proposed alongside these sensible reform efforts. In all seriousness, politicians and economists even urge intensifying the Hartz IV rules (German “reform” that combines unemployment insurance and income support and drastically reduces the duration of benefits). The demands for a temporary wage freeze for employees go in the same direction. Obviously not everyone has understood that this crisis is not the result of lax social systems and excessive wage demands. Perhaps they only want to divert from the real causes in order not to notice truths about the dangers of deregulated market systems that are uncomfortable to them.
THE DESPISED SOCIAL STATE
By Thomas Meyer
[This article published 2/8/2010 is translated from the German on the Internet, http://www.dradio.de.]
In German features sections, the question is suddenly raised whether our social state suits the status of free citizens and whether it can still be justified. People pretend to tackle it at its roots. The question is debated as though it has no history.
A warning reaches us from New York in a land that laboriously wrestles over a first health care insurance for its citizens. Tony Judt, a renowned historian, draws an admonishing lesson from Europe’s history that comes at the right moment for us.
Tony Judt summarizes it in the surprising term “a social democracy of fear.” He turns a central idea from the future ethic of the philosopher Hans Jonas to the social-political. If we do not deal sparingly with natural resources out of responsibility and a sense of justice, we should at least have the survival cleverness to imagine the consequences of neglecting what is necessary. Judt recommends that we support the social state. The shock that triggers this could bring us to consciousness. This counsel is imperative now.
In Europe, we are beginning to forget the social state did not arise as a great donor whim of the kindly and well-to-do. Rather it was a hard-as-nails interest compromise between the economically strong and the weak. In Germany, Bismarck reconciled the strengthened labor movement with the state. The labor movement should not imagine finding its own salvation beyond this state. Sooner or later the social state was adopted everywhere in Europe. German state constitutions are based on this historical compromise: constitutional democracy plus capitalist market economy plus the social state supporting basic rights. Whoever shakes the social pillars shocks the whole structure.
Why should the socially weak be good citizens of a state?, the German legal scholar Hermann Heller asked in view of the crisis-shaken Weimar Republic if that state is not concerned about their interests. Only the social constitutional state can demand and expect everyone’s approval. The basic law of Germany first drew this lesson that has become the dilemma of German history. Whoever carelessly shook the social foundation of democracy even in a little features slapstick cut the republic to the marrow.
Inner peace in Europe is based on this historical compromise. The social state is one of the great European cultural achievements.
Today the social state is a legal claim of all German citizens, not a mere matter of alms for the wealthy according to their desire and mood. The social state has proven to be the condition for the freedom of all. The legitimation of modern democracy rests on the social state.
Without the guarantees of its positive prerequisites – education, freedom from distress, social protection, work and income - freedom for too many citizens remains an empty promise, a mere privilege of the strong. Therefore the 1966 Human Rights pacts of the United Nations give universal authority to basic social and economic rights like freedom itself. The post-modern arsonists at the foundations of the social state have forgotten this. But our societies may not forget this.
Dean Baker on the Recovery on GritTV, February 2010
Report this post as:
More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena
"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena
Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles
Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert!
Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California
Change Links June 2018 posted
The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years
Unity Archive Project
Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi
CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police
Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies
California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings)
Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico
Change Links May 2018
Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed
GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE
lausd whistle blower
Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images
UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light
Change Links April 2018
Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018
Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018!
Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert!
Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A.
Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released
Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups
After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video
More Local News...
Paraphysique de martyrologie
[NEW HOT] World Soccer King Hack Coins and Gems
Asian Countries:Cambodia, Vietnam, N. Korea do not permit unlawful immigration
Children Incorporated Earns 4-Star Rating on Charity Navigator
Democratic Socialists of America
Leonard Peltier Non Violent Native American Political Prisoner since 1970's
Paraphysique miscellanées de l'aggiornamento
Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Cleanup
FBI Investigated LA County Sheriff Baca,Why Not Hank Skinner's Persecution?
Updated Partial List Of Famous Vegetarians, Vegans, & Fruitarians
The Shortwave Report 07136/18 Listen Globally!
Social Policy as Social Infrastructure
Vol I: 84 Varieties Of GOP Election Fraud
Texas Can Call it An Execution,But It is A State Sponsored Murder of Hank Skinner..
June 2018 Honduras coup update
Maria Estrada doubles down on racist support
New York Women in Film & Television Announces 2018 NYWIFT Ha Phuong Scholarship Recipients
Trapps de la domination, trapps de l'aliénation
Please Work For The Defeat Of Brett Kavanaugh And Why
Change Links 2018 July posted
Transinhumanisme ( transe inhumanisme )
Google, World's Biggest Censor, Was Founded By The CIA
For a World Free of Nuclear Risks
Corrupt CDC Ignores Meat Fish Recalls
The (Temporary) End of Globalization
Aternatives to Abortions such as Plan B the pill, condoms and IUD
U.S Congressional Legal Minds Know Better Than Allowing Texas To Murder Hank Skinner
ACLU in many US states defends in court KKK and American Nazis Sometimes for Money
More Breaking News...