Neoliberalism is no philosophy but simply another pressure group

I quote from the New Economics Foundation (NEF) “deepen the inequalities and inefficiencies of neoliberalism.” This suggests neoliberalism is a philosophy. I profoundly disagree. It is rather a pressure group that was smart enough to endeavour to create an idea. I think the NEF should know better. We must beware – neoliberalism is NOT a… Read more

Business Rates or bust?

There is, or was: Maplin, Betterware, Kleeneaze, Bargain Booze, Toys’r us, Jones the Bootmakers, Brantano Shoes, Store 21, Jaeger and BHS. Homebase was sold for £1 and Poundworld is also, it now appears, likely to be on the way out. Mothercare and House of Frazer are closing stores and even M&S has announced it is… Read more

Fresh Goods and The UK

Introduction This article provides data on the volume of imports of perishable goods into the UK from the EU. The issue is a hot topic at the moment in terms of imports into and exports out of the UK and the impact new customs clearance systems might have on how quickly such goods might be… Read more

EU rules are rules

I draw attention to a marvelous and illuminating quote from an EU official quoted in the Independent: “There is not an issue of general distrust towards the UK. That’s not the issue, but the EU is a rules-based system. Why is that? It’s because 28 member states do not trust each other spontaneously; they trust… Read more

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The magic multiplier effect

When you plant a tree in the ground, it grows, producing seeds which become the source of new trees. But remember, trees can only grow where there are resources – water, sunlight and nutrients in the soil. We can think about government investment in the same way. In a democracy, government spend happens because society… Read more

Hegemony 2: the rise of the wreckers

One of the hallmarks of any hegemonic system such as we have in the UK, is a common world-view that acts to unify the bloc (i.e. all the various entities, actors and agents in the system). This world-view includes ideological elements from varying sources, but its unity stems from an articulating principle which always comes… Read more

Ideas ready for a crisis

On Thursday last the ‘Guardian’s economic correspondent suggested that the left should be ready for a crisis suggesting that ‘The right sees opportunity in a crisis. Why can’t the left?’ This is so very true. The left (in effect Gordon Brown assisted by Alistair Darling) diffused the General Financial Crisis in the UK, and probably… Read more