Why the European Union should be Even More Worried about Brexit C.P. Chandrasekhar and Jayati Ghosh

The economic pressures that may have driven the Brexit vote are also evident in other big European nations. So to survive, the EU must rethink its template for economic policies.   European_Union_Worried (Download the full text in PDF format) (This article was originally published in the Business Line on July 18, 2016.)

What Next for the EU? Jayati Ghosh

Even before the results of the UK referendum, the European Union was facing a crisis of popular legitimacy. The result, especially in England and Wales, was certainly driven by the fear of more immigration, irresponsibly whipped up by xenophobic right-wing leaders who now appear uncertain themselves of what to do with the outcome. But it was as much a cry of pain and protest from working communities that have been damaged and hollowed out by three decades of neoliberal economic policies. And this is why the concerns of greater popular resonance across other countries in the EU – and the…

After Brexit C.P. Chandrasekhar

Britain has voted to leave the European Union (EU). And the managers of global capitalism have their hands full addressing the fall-out of ‘Brexit’, even as their efforts to manage the after-shocks of the crisis of 2008 remain unsuccessful. It does not help that Brexit immediately affects the EU where the legacy of the earlier crisis has been the worst. In fact, the churning within the EU is partly the result of the persisting crisis in parts of the region. And it is there that the next crisis is likely to first unfold. But as recent history has repeatedly made…

Brexit Earthquake has Many Ruptures Radhika Desai

The Brexit vote was a momentous political earthquake and the seismic shifts that caused it have been long in the making. It has ruptured so many political structures — decades and even centuries old, national and international — so deeply it could be decades before its damage can be fully reckoned. The damage reveals the fragility of Britain’s, and the West’s, political and economic structures caused by three-and-a-half decades of neoliberalism and austerity. The Bremainers’ entirely laudable cosmopolitanism and anti-racism were tragically mixed up with a blindness to how fast and how far formerly social-democratic Europe had become neoliberal. The…

Brexit: A revolt against the hegemony of globalized finance Prabhat Patnaik

Almost all commentators on the British electorate’s vote to leave the European Union, whether from the Right or the Left, have missed the main point of it, namely that it is a massive revolt against the hegemony of globalized finance. Indeed, the fact that they have missed this point is itself indicative of the ubiquity of this hegemony among the literati, from which the British electorate, interestingly, appears substantially to have freed itself. No doubt, some, including President Barack Obama, have been prescient enough to see the Brexit vote as a rejection of globalization, but they have attributed it to…

Societal Involution in the North Jayati Ghosh

The term “involution” – which means to turn into oneself, or to shrink, or to reverse a process of evolving – may seem like a strange one to apply to societies. Yet that is the term that increasingly comes to mind when considering recent social and political trends in the United States and in some parts of Europe. Consider the United Kingdom, currently in the throes of a heated debate before the referendum that will be held about whether or not Britain should stay in the European Union. Many issues and concerns have been raised on both sides, and politicians…

Can the US continue to rule the World Economy? Jayati Ghosh

Historically, international capitalism has tended to thrive more when one clear power has established its hegemony over the world economy. There have been at least two major phases when this was indisputably true: the period of the Gold Standard in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when Britain was the economic superpower; and the two decades after the Second World War in the mid-20th century of the Bretton Woods-dollar standard, when the United States ruled the roost. In both of these periods, the ability of the major power to control the broad pattern of international trade and capital flows…

Return to Public Control, even if it’s not yet Renationalisation

There is growing evidence that the part-privatisation or sale of public utilities in the 1990s by governments that said they could no longer afford to put down money, neither ensured a cheap or efficient service for customers nor did it free governments of the burden of subsidy. The bluntest admission of the growing disenchantment with private-control of utilities and services has been voiced by New Zealand's Deputy Prime Minister Jim Anderton. Taxpayers in New Zealand, the United States and Britain have bailed out flopped companies or those teetering on the brink of bankruptcy. New Zealand's flag carrier, Britain's partly-privatised air traffic…