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Book review: Captivating journey in the history of ideas

In his newly published book, ”the Globalists – The end of empire and the birth of neoliberalism” takes Quinn Slobodian us on a captivating journey in the histor

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Book review: Captivating journey in the history of ideas

In his newly published book, ”the Globalists – The end of empire and the birth of neoliberalism” takes Quinn Slobodian us on a captivating journey in the history of ideas from the habsburg empire case and up to the present day. Slobodian is a young German-american historian of ideas, lecturer at harvard university and Wellesley College in the two suburbs to Boston.

A common misconception is the notion that the ideas would primarily be a particular focus of the economic policy. Slobodian argues that the core, in particular in the ordoliberala branch of neoliberalism, instead it is a statutory order which stipulates the capital rights and the limits folkmajoritetens influence over the economy. Ordoliberalerna seeks to make capitalism superior to democracy.

grew up in Germany and Austria during the 1920s and 30s. Särpräglande was the perception that it required a strong state to maintain konkurrensekonomin and protect private property rights. The state would create markets, but not on the conjunctural policy or distribution policy. If folkmajoriteten got the space for such intervention in the economy threatened chaos, warned the man. In the 1920s German Weimarrepublik.

How could a strong but limited state to be ensured? Ordoliberalernas response was an economic constitution. The state's important but limited role would be unshakable. In this way, capitalism is protected from democracy.

After the second world war took place keynesianismens and the welfare state ideas prevail. The world economy came during the few decades that is characterized by a relatively stable order built on the dollar's domination as a world currency; limited free trade between the industrialised countries and the imperialist exploitation of the colonies. Capitalism seemed – as seen from our limited perspective in the ”western world” – able to thrive in co-existence with democracy and the welfare state.

and eventually gave rise to ordoliberalismens rebirth was, according to Slobodian empires decay, and the suppressed peoples liberation. The newly independent countries demanded fördelningspolitisk justice. They sought compensation for colonial abuses. They demanded the stabilisation of prices of raw materials and the right to regulate the transnational companies. They claimed the sovereignty of the countries over their own natural resources.

the Requirements on the transfer of wealth and democracy challenged the existing international order at precisely the points which the neo-liberals feared the most. The tip was directed at capitalism's heart; privategendomens power. Furthermore, the new leaders guiding principles the values that ”the west” had thought that the man himself stood for: human rights and human equality.

Slobodian releases in its history two parallel processes and a common shift. ”Vänstervågen” that swept across the western world in the 1960s and 70s, we had a contemporary parallel in the avkoloniseringens national wave of emancipation. Democracy and keynesianismens supporting ideas radicalised rapidly, at the same time as idékonflikten were brought up to the world level.

”vänstervågen” would not, however, allow wait. Already around 1980 breaks a cover through. Keynesianismen abandoned in the western world and a neoliberal hegemony are emerging. At the same time carried out a corresponding shift in the world economy. The two parcels means a similar change of direction of travel.

Deregulated capital markets and a fast-moving speculative finanskapital now pushes back democracy. Global protection for the movement of capital and the investors ' rights built up, first through the GATT, later the WTO. The focus is to protect private investments from government interference. After the WTO setback in Seattle in 1999, replacing the multilateral approach of a bulging bouquet of bilateral trade agreements. Procedures against foreign investors in the form of the consideration, state ownership or state control over the country's natural resources shall be prevented.

It is this global idéskifte which is the main theme in the Slobodians book. A specific form of globalised unemployment insurance programs were added – by Slobodian-called Geneva-school – becomes the new leading ideology.

a fragmented approach to colonialism. In their quest to protect private property was some long left on the white settlers in racist south Africa and (then) Rhodesia. Some argued for a right to vote who graded after the economic assets. In the tankemiljön built bridges to the racist forces within the north american right, the direction which is now called the alt-right.

Most of the new deal, however, saw the process of decolonization as both reasonable and inevitable. With an orthodox application of neoliberal ideas would also be a world without empires go to manage. Idégrunden for how it would be done came to be Geneva-the school's intellectual contributions to the ordoliberalismens globalization.

From 1980 and onwards are ordoliberalerna – Slobodians book title indicates – globalists. The task is to protect the capital's freedom and the investor's rights against the popularly based demands. The solution is, they say, in a trade regime in which nations have formal political sovereignty but limited autonomy over the economy.

Ordoglobalisterna had an analogy to start with. The 1930s leading ordoliberaler Walter Euken and Franz Böhm had charted the way towards a national order where democracy was refused entry into the economy rooms.

limit the states ' discretion was the movement of capital. The constant threat of capital flight would be the surest protection against the policy focused on building national welfare states.

The globalist neoliberal tankeskolan, led by the longtime (1967-1985) utredningschefen at the GATT Jan Tumlir, peeled, and therefore the original ordoliberalernas thoughts to a global level. The scheme was not financial, but legal. Countries would be forced to lock up capital, the rights of national statutory schemes applied by its own courts. International law would apply not only between countries but within countries.

the basic Idea, which came to be developed further after Tumlirs death in 1985 of the GATT-the lawyer Petersmann, was ordoliberalernas ”double regulation”, applied at the global level. Slobodian denotes the shift of the focus to legislation as the major post-war innovation in the German-speaking world's neoliberalism.

in Conclusion, according to Slobodian the ordoliberala tankeskolan through the decades, consistently endeavoured to in the binding rules of the law to lay down the absolute defense of capital right. In Freiburg in the 1930s was the regulation meant that national. In Geneva in the 1970s and ' 80s developed in place – in line with the globalisation of the economy – the school of thought that Slobodian call ordoglobalismen.

the nation-state can, however, maintain their distinctiveness in the ”cultural” sphere. National characteristics and symbols are welcome to be maintained. Decisive is only that the economy is based on private ownership and free movement of capital.

reading is to the tankefiguren in the day can also make it easier to understand how our time, right-wing populists reasoning when it strongly highlights the nation state and at the same time affirms the capitalist world order. Högerpopulisterna and the värdekonservativa in the traditional right-wing parties can in this way find each other in paying tribute to the nation and at the same time keep democracy away from the economy.

Slobodians analysis is exciting and fruitful. The stops, however, deliberately just before the turn of the millennium. The recent decades of turmoil in the relationship between capitalism and democracy – the global management of the financial crisis in 2008 and the EU's guardianship over Greece and Italy to name two key events – left to go in-depth with. One can only hope that Slobodian in part two to bring the reasoning forward to our time.

the Book: ”the Globalists – The end of empire and the birth of neoliberalism” by Quinn Slobodian published by Harvard University Press

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