As Sean has referred to my position on judicious protectionism here it is.
Economic history tell this story: a strong domestic economy is necessary for sustained economic growth and stability. The freer the trade with foreign states, the less stable and secure the domestic economy. It also tells us that the most effective general strategy to promote economic development in a country is to allow competition within the domestic market (where it does not create serious social discord) whilst regulating international trade through protectionist measures sufficient to maintain the general capacity of a country to point where it can maintain itself in an emergency such as war or blockade and be sovereign in most circumstances.This would require the judicious use of embargoes, tariffs and quotas to ensure that all the vital industries remain as a presence in Britain. Continue reading
The UK is to pardon nearly 50.000 Gay men convicted under the old homophobic laws.
If the victims of this law are already dead, these pardons are of no value whatsoever to the individuals concerned or to their living families. And, there are issues of principle associated with it. The individuals concerned broke the law as it was at the time, and we are all supposed to obey the law. Continue reading
As an occasional reader and regular supporter of the LA, I notice that one of the State’s tentacles often escapes our attention: Inheritance Tax (IHT). This is a tragedy, especially since careful Estate Planning means you can do a great deal to reduce the amount paid, and so increase the sums you leave to the people and the causes most important to you. Continue reading
The subject of ‘Tariffs’ like many others, seems to have become something beyond which debate is no longer permissible. But we know from experience, that when any dogma arrives at that status of unchallengeable, the conventional wisdom is nearly always wrong. Usually because no discussion of the subject is permissible in ‘liberal’ company.
Until the early 1980s the ‘Left’ in Britain were not merely in favour of high selective tariffs, but demanded PHYSICAL import controls (but only, of course for unionised and nationalised industries). Anyone who said otherwise was a ‘Thatcherite’ bent on ‘destroying’ British Industry, or, unfashionably ‘Old’ Labour. Continue reading
And of course, ‘Mother Theresa’s new script is rather a good one. Let’s hope she sticks to it. The Republican majority in Congress loved her speech, and they see her more as ‘one of themselves’, than they do Trump himself.
And regardless of whether they like or loath one another, the relationship between Trump and Theresa, has the potential to be rather productive for both sides, without either actually having to do, let alone deliver, anything to each other. Continue reading
All in all, the Supreme Court judgement on Brexit is, politically, for the best. The Brexit legislation is now near certain to pass through both Houses of Parliament within the next three weeks, and if it doesn’t there would be a General Election in April or May and both the Labour Party and/or the House of Lords would be obliterated for good. That fall-back position in itself might be a good thing. Continue reading
Heterosexualism and the Colonial / Modern Gender System
The coloniality of power is understood by Anibal Quijano as at the constituting crux of the global capitalist system of power. What is characteristic of global, Eurocentered, capitalist power is that it is organized around two axes that Quijano terms “the coloniality of power” and “modernity.” The coloniality of power introduces the basic and universal social classification of the population of the planet in terms of the idea of race, a replacing of relations of superiority and inferiority established through domination with naturalized understandings of inferiority and superiority. In this essay, Lugones introduces a systemic understanding of gender constituted by colonial/modernity in terms of multiple relations of power. This gender system has a light and a dark side that depict relations, and beings in relation as deeply different and thus as calling for very different patterns of violent abuse. Lugones argues that gender itself is a colonial introduction, a violent introduction consistently and contemporarily used to destroy peoples, cosmologies, and communities as the building ground of the “civilized” West.