Cutting Public Debt: Economic science or class war?

We must reject the lies and misrepresentations in this phoniest of elections, says HUGO RADICE This week’s major intervention in the election campaign has surely been the call by the Institute for Fiscal Studies for the major parties to ‘come clean’ about their strategies for reducing the public sector debt, if elected. The IFS report...

How to let a good crisis go to waste

Last year’s financial crisis presented an opportunity for fundamental reform, argues Will Brown. It’s one that’s already gone to waste. It’s now over a year since the world’s financial system went into meltdown in the wake of the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September 2008. At the time, there was much talk of a...

The Good Society Debate

Across the continent, the left’s response to the recent economic crisis has been poor, verging on non-existent, just when the situation demanded a credible alternative to the dominant political and economic orthodoxy. That’s the starting point for a Europe-wide online debate on the future of social democracy hosted by the Soundings and Social Europe...

Time for the Tobin Tax

Gary Kent argues that the global financial crisis makes the case for a Tobin Tax even more compelling. Some ideas are nurtured for decades before they shoot to prominence usually to the surprise of those who have long advocated them. This could be the fate of the Tobin Tax, originally devised by the American...

Politics After the Crash

The annual conference in June of the journal Soundings, Politics after the Crash, provided a valuable and unostentatious forum for the left to discuss some of the key issues of our time. This short report by Barry Winter focuses on the contribution made by the opening speaker, Paul Mason, the economics editor of BBC...

Lies, hubris and neo-liberalism

Barry Winter examines how capitalism went from boom to bust and where it leaves us Introduction I begin this introduction with what may seem like a diversion. I want to take us briefly back to the horrors of the First World War in which often enthusiastic, armies of young men across Europe were sent...

Crunch Times

“There is a sense of uncertainty and flux, a feeling that we’re coming to the end of an era in politics. It’s one that we’ve never much liked, yet we know what’s coming could be so much worse.” With those unsettling words David Connolly, chair of Independent Labour Publications, opened the ILP’s weekend seminar...

The Seeds of Radicalism

Steve Thompson traces the history of the co-operative movement and argues that this is a decisive moment in its renaissance. There is an alternative to capitalism, it’s called the co-operative commonwealth. It’s a way of living and trading with business which is run democratically for the benefit of the members and communities who use...

ILP Weekend 2009

—- Crunch Times: Politics And The Crisis   “You can only be flabbergasted … at how Labour kowtowed to wealth, glorified the City and put all the nation’s economic eggs into one dangerous basket.” Polly Toynbee, The Guardian   ILP Round Table Seminar  Esplanade Hotel, Scarborough  13th-14th June 2009 Saturday   13th June   2.00 pm start...

ILP Weekend

  Crunch Times: Politics And The Crisis   ILP Round Table Seminar  Esplanade Hotel, Scarborough  13th-14th June 2009 Saturday   13th June   2.00 – 5.00pm Sunday     14th June   9.30am – 12.30pm   Session 1: The economic crisis • What just happened?  • What does it tell us about capitalism? Session 2: The mess we’re in...

Is there a song for solidarity?

SARAH BRACKING unpicks the liberal agenda behind Live8 and the G8 summit. The majority of the people attending Live8, and the demonstrations surrounding the G8, wanted no more nor less than to reduce poverty. But helping poor people in other countries raises problems, particularly when the language of benevolence doesn’t explain the structural issues...

Picking at the pensions pickle

JONATHAN TIMBERS appreciates a useful contribution to the left’s developing approach to the pensions debate Anyone who believes that we can continue to exist as we do now with our current pension system is living in a dream world. In 2002, there were 3.35 working people for every person of pensionable age. By 2050...