In 1945 Karl Polanyi outlined a vision of a peacetime global state system with a political economy in which small countries could be both sovereign and democratic. The present essay reviews developments between then and now in the light of Polanyi’s analytical framework. Particular attention is paid to the history of the European Union, which after the end of Communism turned into a mainstay of the neoliberal project, culminating in its restoration of an international gold standard under Monetary Union. In the crisis of 2008 the advance of neoliberalism got stuck due to “populist” resistance to austerity and the shift of governance from the national to a supranational level. The paper explores the prospects of current attempts to replace the “Social Europe” and “trickle-down” narratives of European superstate formation, which have lost all credit, with a story about a European army as a necessary condition of a successful defence of “the European way of life”.
Working people shouldn’t have to rely on benefits to get by. This is simply a subvention from the UK government. The Nanny State coddling international corporations. Read here
Data centres eat up more than 2 percent of the world’s electricity and emit roughly as much CO2 as the airline industry. This is a fact that is conveniently being ignored. Read here
On Tuesday Jeremy Corbyn gave a speech announcing plans to change the way the British government spends if he is to be elected: the government would prioritise British producers. Here is Bill Mitchell´s take on […]