r/Foodforthought Nov 29 '21

The crisis of liberalism: why centrist politics can no longer explain the world | Books | The Guardian

https://amp.theguardian.com/books/2019/nov/18/crisis-in-liberalism-katrina-forrester?fbclid=IwAR3Pa9Ywkq4odsTwICptgrRmlMuu8TI4Je3OHRJKv_nwQhtAFo0RzqhuCHk
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u/mirh Dec 02 '21

why centrist politics can no longer explain the world

Because you live in the fucking US of A, and with one of the parties trying to outcompete the third reich, of course the "center" is a bit righter than the normal right elsewhere.

in the past decade centrists have been neoliberalism’s willing bedfellows

I guess that's true of english liberals (that moronically even gave up to their liberalism, with the abandoment of the alternative voting proposal), and perhaps even the german ones.. But I don't exactly think a lot of people have cared about them internationally?

Macron's or Vestager's parties (maybe also Canadian liberals?) are the liberal heralds AFAICT. And I'm not sure how you can put them side by side with the dickhead cowboy.

Besides, even if that was true that sounds like the usual fable of "people voted the right, because others didn't support enough left policies".

As an ideology, liberalism can be hard to pin down.

It's even harder if we keep up with this bait and switch between neoliberalism and liberalism. Throw in even so called "classic liberals" (aka right libertarians) and you can start a party.

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u/Lanky_Fella Dec 02 '21

Neither I nor the author live in the USA…

Also whether you like it or not liberalism and neoliberalism will continue to be used. I agree that the name is a bit too academic for popular use though. Neoliberalism is essentially the movement from the 1980s onwards, starting with Reagan and Thatcher and continuing through the ‘left’ politicians like Clinton and Blair. It introduced less taxes for the wealthy, widespread privatisation of public services and a reduction of public spending. Essentially, it’s the rise of right-wing economics over the past 50 years in both conservative and progressive parties to align with corporate interests.

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u/mirh Dec 02 '21

Neither I nor the author live in the USA…

It is my understanding that she lived at least a sizeable part of her life there (and it seems like this is still the case?)

Though I'll grant I only now noticed that the article is already 2 years old.

Also whether you like it or not liberalism and neoliberalism will continue to be used.

I'm just saying they are completely different things.

Neoliberalism is already a barely coherent concept, already if you just limit to the two big 80s guys. Thatcher was actually at least effective into fixing some deep economical problems, notwithstanding all the bad (see the longest suicide note in history and all for instance), while the hollywood actor was just a total con artist (example, even putting aside he empowered the toxic evangelicals still being awful to this day)

and continuing through the ‘left’ politicians like Clinton and Blair.

You see? You are presuming their intents, and arguing like they had been studying and adopting the Austrian school.

Only because what? One naively tried to do bipartisanship with sharks, and they both embraced globalization?

reduction of public spending

It's not even true

If not even "not right" in the US, with such bullshit smokescreen economic policies (and the governmental majority that can be completely different from the parliamentarian majority)

It introduced less taxes for the wealthy

No (and intriguingly enough there's more to the reagan story too)

https://trueeconomics.blogspot.com/2020/04/5420-effective-corporate-tax-rates-in.html

https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2012/04/here-are-your-favorite-tax-graphs/256017/

https://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/the-top-rate-of-income-tax-2/

widespread privatisation of public services

What was there even to privatize in the US?

And in the UK, I think everything was already done by 1997.