Economic Theory

Capitalist Restructuring, Globalization and the Third Way: by J. Magnus Ryner

By J. Magnus Ryner

This e-book addresses the modern debate concerning the 'Third means' in eu social democracy, by way of analysing the exemplar case of social democracy-'the Swedish model'. the writer argues strongly opposed to the commonly held trust that the character of latest capitalist restructuring and globalization has rendered conventional social democracy out of date.

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Extra resources for Capitalist Restructuring, Globalization and the Third Way: Lessons from the Swedish Model

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Lindbeck 1995). This is held to undermine economic competitiveness, and by extension, the economic preconditions of the welfare state. Pluralism, democracy and the welfare state When it comes to legitimation constraints, however, Giddens argument is not neo-liberal. It is rather reminiscent of the arguments of some neo-Marxists in the 1970s, especially Habermas (1976) and O¡e (1985). 5 According to 14 Recent discourse on the Third Way this argument, the neo-conservative ambition to totally dismantle the welfare state fails to recognise that the golden epoch of laissez faire in the nineteenth century rested upon a particular substructure of tradition that is now gone.

Rather, they tend to be drawn to single-issue politics (ibid: 49^53). These developments, Giddens continues, pose a threat to social solidarity as organised through present institutions and policies ^ especially as the conditions of the homogeneous working-class community have been undermined. But at the same time the developments in question suggest that new forms of solidarity are possible, and a politics of the Third Way should seek to devise the appropriate institutions and policies to foster this (ibid: p.

This indicates the severe ¢scal strain that secular demographic trend exerts on welfare states (Esping-Andersen 1996a: 7, cf. European Community 1993: 24 and OECD 1988a). Given the imperatives of global competition, increased taxation hardly constitutes a feasible route towards raising the required additional resources, according to Esping-Andersen. Increased rates of productivity growth could, however, provide the basis for the required additional expenditure. 2 per cent of real taxable earnings on top of what current rates of productivity growth allows.

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