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The Strange Non-death of Neo-liberalism download epub

by Colin Crouch


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Only 7 left in stock (more on the way). Only 10 left in stock (more on the way). Colin Crouch's analysis of the continuing dominance of neoliberalism starts with a definition and history of his terms, showing how the word 'liberal' in particular has gone through some almost total reversals since the repeal of the Corn Laws. The ascendency of 'neo-liberalism', however, began in the 1980s, after the perceived failure of Keynsian economics.

Start by marking The Strange Non-Death of Neo-Liberalism as Want to. .Colin Crouch argues in this book that it will shrug off this challenge. A wide-ranging assessment of neoliberalism, this book offers a useful overview of how that force came to dominate civilization.

Start by marking The Strange Non-Death of Neo-Liberalism as Want to Read: Want to Read savin. ant to Read. The reason is that while neo-liberalism seems to be about free Winner of the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung prize The financial crisis seemed to present a fundamental challenge to neo-liberalism, the body of ideas that have constituted the political orthodoxy of most advanced economies in recent decades.

Request PDF On Dec 6, 2012, Danijel Baturina and others published Colin Crouch: The strange non-death of.

If we wish to move beyond the global economic crisis, we should borrow ideas from Mauss, Polanyi and Keynes; but the political level for an appropriate response is not obvious.

Prof Colin Crouch, Governance & Public Management Fellow, Warwick Business School, talks at The University of Warwick's Critical Governance conference about his forthcoming book 'The Strange Non-Death of Neoliberalism'. Originally published Nov 22, 2011). com/watch?v R3oZaDFXeIc. ----- Videos on this channel are presented for educational and entertainment purposes only. No ownership is claimed. Views expressed in content on this channel do not necessarily reflect those of the channel's owner.

Colin Crouch's new book, The Strange Non-Death of Neoliberalism, is a welcome departure.

Given the difficulty in finding analyses of neoliberalism that don't contain a generous hint of polemicism, Colin Crouch's new book, The Strange Non-Death of Neoliberalism, is a welcome departure. How, then, has neoliberalism emerged relatively unscathed by the financial crisis? Crouch goes on to provide a number of persuasive reasons why neoliberalism has shown such enduring strength as a doctrine and as a set of practices.

Colin Crouch argues in this book that it will shrug off this challenge. The reason is that while neo liberalism seems to be about free markets, in practice it is concerned with the dominance over public life of the giant corporation. This has been intensified, not checked, by the recent financial crisis and acceptance that certain financial corporations are ‘too big to fail'. Although much political debate remains preoccupied with conflicts between the market and the state, the impact of the corporation on both these is today far more important.

The financial crisis seemed to present a fundamental challenge to neo-liberalism, the body of ideas that have constituted the political .

The financial crisis seemed to present a fundamental challenge to neo-liberalism, the body of ideas that have constituted the political orthodoxy of most advanced economies in recent decades.

Colin Crouch Colin Crouchs book is deliberately aimed at a non-specialist audience, and seeks to explain the yawning gap in neoliberalism between the simplistic ideology of freedom an.

The Strange Non-Death of Neoliberalism, Polity, Cambridge, 2011; 199 pp; 97807456052214 15 (pbk). Colin Crouchs book is deliberately aimed at a non-specialist audience, and seeks to explain the yawning gap in neoliberalism between the simplistic ideology of freedom and enterprise, and the reality of giant corporations that dominate markets and states alike. The opening chapter provides a concise history of neoliberalism, focusing on how it came to the fore with the crisis of Keynesianism and social democracy in the 1970s.

Winner of the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung prize

The financial crisis seemed to present a fundamental challengeto neo-liberalism, the body of ideas that have constituted thepolitical orthodoxy of most advanced economies in recent decades.Colin Crouch argues in this book that it will shrug off thischallenge. The reason is that while neo-liberalism seems to beabout free markets, in practice it is concerned with the dominanceover public life of the giant corporation. This has beenintensified, not checked, by the recent financial crisis andacceptance that certain financial corporations are ‘too bigto fail'. Although much political debate remains preoccupied withconflicts between the market and the state, the impact of thecorporation on both these is today far more important.

Several factors have brought us to this situation:

Most obviously, the lobbying power of firms whose donations areof growing importance to cash-hungry politicians and parties;The weakening of competitive forces by firms large enough toshape and dominate their markets;The power over public policy exercised by corporations enjoyingspecial relationships with government as they contract to deliverpublic services;The moral initiative that is grasped by enterprises that devisetheir own agendas of corporate social responsibility.

Both democratic politics and the free market are weakened bythese processes, but they are largely inevitable and not alwaysmalign. Hope for the future, therefore, cannot lie in suppressingthem in order to attain either an economy of pure markets or asocialist society. Rather it lies in dragging the giant corporationfully into political controversy. Here a key role is played by thesmall, cash-strapped campaigning groups who, with precious littlehelp from established parties, seek to achieve corporate socialaccountability.


Comments: (7)

Eigeni
Excellent analysis of neoliberalism and its transition in to "privatized Keynesianism. A must read for anyone interested in how we got into the current sociopolitical mess.
Mamuro
This a must read to put the political landscape both historically and at present into perspective. The book is is honest and detailed yet easily accessible regardless of your political acumen.
RUL
Excellent analysis.
superstar
Mr. Crouch defines neo-liberalism as the theory of pure markets with minimal government intervention, as espoused by Chicago school economists since around the 1970s. It differs from classical free market theory in being more tolerant of monopolies and giant firms. And he maintains it has been how western economies, the US and UK in particular, have been managed since around 1980.

He criticizes neo-liberalism on theoretical grounds, citing familiar concerns about externalities and firms' predatory behavior. And on empirical grounds, he holds neo-liberalism responsible for developments since 1980: the growth of giant transnational corporations unaccountable to any government, the income distribution skew, and the 2008 financial market crash.

I appreciated that although rather plainly disapproving of neo-liberalism, Mr. Crouch made an attempt to address its proponents' arguments. Yet while I'm not a Chicago school economist, it's hard to imagine them accepting his premises. US government spending has risen from 30% of the economy in 1980 to about 40% today, which suggests that whatever Milton Friedman, Reagan and Thatcher might have preferred, governments have been pursuing the opposite of laissez-faire policies.

The book's title alludes to Mr. Crouch's star witness: the financial crash. Since neo-liberalism created big Wall Street firms, and they took too many risks, the resulting crash provided such clear testimony of neo-liberalism's guilt that it should by rights be headed for the gallows. Unfortunately he lets his star witness go without any cross-examination. The financial crash was fundamentally a housing market crash, made more severe by the hyperactive secondary markets in mortgage-backed securities. New York firms spread the contagion, but the original disease was incubated in Washington, in a housing market bubble inflated by decades of government pro-homeownership policy. Ill-advised though the secondary mortgage markets might have been, they too were a government creation.

Ultimately Mr. Crouch doesn't nominate a new champion to replace neo-liberalism. He criticizes its shortcomings without comparing it to a practical alternative, and doesn't seem to see one, given the entrenchment of large firms and their ability to influence government.

In fact, he even comes full circle to conclude that perhaps large firms aren't so bad, which I found quite puzzling. He dings neo-liberalism for tolerating large firms, because their oligopoly power keeps them treating customers poorly, and their global presence keeps them from being responsible to governments. But by the end of the book he acknowledges that firms have a commercial interest in being perceived as socially responsible, and are therefore influenced not just by customers and shareholders and governments but directly by citizens' interest groups advocating for social or environmental causes. This rather undermines his earlier criticism, and it left me scratching my head about what point he was trying to make.
Gann
Colin Crouch's analysis of the continuing dominance of neoliberalism starts with a definition and history of his terms, showing how the word 'liberal' in particular has gone through some almost total reversals since the repeal of the Corn Laws. The ascendency of 'neo-liberalism', however, began in the 1980s, after the perceived failure of Keynsian economics.

The original 'Hayekian' or 'Ordoliberalismus' anti-totalitarian formulation whereby competition is seen as 'a process that would maintain in existence large numbers of firms, near-perfect markets and widespread consumer choice' was replaced by the Chicago School's view that competition should be seen:

'in terms of its 'outcome' as the destruction of small firms and medium-sized enterprises, the dominance of giant corporations and the replacement of the demotic idea of consumer choice by a paternalistic concern for 'consumer welfare' (P16-17)

This concept of 'consumer welfare' is crucial. Unlike Hayek, this formulation accepts, even welcomes, the idea that competition will eliminate competition:

'If there would be efficiency gains from a number of smaller firms being bought out by a larger one, then that would be the outcome that would maximise what they called consumer 'welfare', even if it led to reduced competition and left consumers with a reduced choice of goods. What should therefore be the concern of the law courts in deciding antitrust cases is what outcome would be most conducive to the maximisation of consumer 'welfare', not 'choice' as such.' (P55)

By 'welfare', the Chicago economists considered the overall wealth of the society. The fact that the wealth may become increasingly concentrated in the hands of a small and diminishing number of transnational corporations (or TNCs) and a stateless elite is neither here nor there. Any redistribution of wealth should be undertaken by governments and is not the concern of the corporation.

But then, the Chicago school has a major problem with the idea of government. Here, their ideas fit neatly in with those of the University of Virginia. The Virginia school considers that civil servants, politicians et al, are there purely for self-advancement - as portrayed in Margaret Thatcher's favourite sitcom 'Yes Minister' where the Machiavellian machinations of Sir Humphrey had little to do with the promotion of societal good. Governments are seen as 'at best incompetent and at worst corruptly self-seeking' (P63).

The only way to ensure any efficiency and effectiveness in government is to apply the rules of the market. In other words, governments should act like, and learn from, firms. Thus we have the endless setting of targets, the breakup of government agencies into competing bodies and, most importantly, the inclusion of firms in the running of government in Public Private Partnerships (PPP), Private Finance Initiatives et al in almost an odd sort of reversal of mercantilism.

What develops from all this is a tripartite division - firms (TNCs), national governments and, surprisingly perhaps, the market. Here, 'the market' really refers to small and medium sized enterprises (or SMEs). It is perhaps interesting to compare this with Dani Rodrik's 'trilemma' where power is negotiated between the 'nation state', 'democratic politics' and 'hyperglobalization' - here 'hyperglobalization' more or less equates with the TNCs while the 'nation state' and 'democratic politics' conflate into national government, but the market is not really considered. I find Colin Crouch's model more convincing.

Although Crouch doesn't use the term kleptocracy, he does refer to oligopolies. Quite frankly, in the case of international banking in paricular, the difference is only one of degree. The virtual merger of politics and corporations, particularly in the US, is plain to see. The revolving door between government agencies, lobbying organisations and the corporations is notorious (see Thomas Frank's excellent 'The Wrecking Crew') but, at the same time, corporations consider themselves to be only responsible to their shareholders - the maximisation of shareholder value is considered to be management's sole aim, even though they are increasingly intimately involved in the legislative process.

It is odd, then, to see the rise of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). More often than not, of course, this is simply just a marketing tool. Crouch puts it nicely in the heading of chapter 6 - 'From Corporate Political Entanglement to Corporate Social Responsibility'. Political power has become increasingly concentrated in firms, or governments acting like firms or firms working for/with governments. This is hardly surprising. As Crouch says:

'a polity in which economic resources were very unequally shared would be likely to be one in which political power was also concentrated, economic resources being so easily capable of conversion into political ones.' (P125)

Later, he seems to echo Peter Oborne's 'The Triumph of the Political Class':

'...the state, seen for so long by the left as the source of countervailing power against markets, is today likely to be the committed ally of giant corporations, whatever the ideological origins of the parties governing the state.' (P145)

It seems that CSR has, then, almost taken the role of what the French aristocracy used to refer to as 'noblesse oblige' (P150). But, suggests Crouch, the growing CSR movement might be seen as a reaction to pressure from a fourth element outside the 'firms, state and market' - 'civil society':

'Civil society includes, though extends further than, the voluntary sector. It defines all those extensions of the scope of human action beyond the private that lack recourse to the primary contemporary means of exercising power: the state and the firm...States and firms do dominate our societies, but there is a lively field of contention. Challenges to domination can be made, concepts of public goals explored and turned into practical projects, against the state's claim to monopoly of the legitimate interpretation of collective values, and against the firm's claim that the conversion of values into the maximisation of shareholders' interests is as good as life can get.' (P153-4)

Crouch considers that there are potentially five types of groups that may challenge the state and the firm. Most of these are pretty well compromised, he feels, and I would agree. Political parties (see Peter Oborne) and most organised religions - both seem unlikely contestants. Whether campaigning groups, the voluntary sector and ethically motivated professionals can make the difference and wield the 'power of the powerless' is finally what this book is about. Where Dani Rodrik calls for a 'reining in', a deliberate limitation to 'hyperglobalization' in order for nation states to again exert a moderating influence, Crouch sees the nation state as hopelessly compromised and the only moderating and humanising influence coming from civil society:

'Civil society...operates in the interstices left among the great erections of political and economic power, like little houses springing up busily and untidily, creating vitality in a street dominated by the inaccessible security-controlled doors of skyscrapers. Since it contains a vast array of competing groups, with different and sometimes opposed moral agendas, it also embodies a kind of moral relativism. But this is moral relativism only at the meta-level of the character of the system as a whole. Within it the great majority of participants act with moral purpose. In societies that contain a plurality of rival values, where no religion or set of beliefs has hegemony, that is all we can hope for.' (P161)

The question is, is it enough? Is this anything more than a 'post-modern relativist politics' or a restatement of 'pressure group politics'? I'm not convinced - but the ideas just might help fuel resistance to the neoliberal monolith. Thank-you Professor Crouch. :-)
The Strange Non-death of Neo-liberalism download epub
Humanities
Author: Colin Crouch
ISBN: 0745651208
Category: Other
Subcategory: Humanities
Language: English
Publisher: Polity; 1 edition (August 8, 2011)
Pages: 224 pages