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michaelhartford

michaelhartford

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Shelter Half
Carol Bly
The Bee-Loud Glade
Steve Himmer

Ill Fares the Land

Ill Fares the Land - Tony Judt Judt tells the history of Anglo-American political economy from the Great Depression to the present, as the story of the rise and fall of Keynesianism and social democracy. In his version, social democracy–in which a regulated market is guided by broad political consensus to provide material comfort for the majority of citizens, while also subsidizing culture (he devotes quite a bit of space to entities like the BBC, PBS, and public-private initiatives to support the arts)–was done in by its success. Over-confident planning created a drab and fettered world for too many–the council flats and public housing of the working class, the conformist suburbs of the middle class–and in the rebellion against conformity, the baby of the public good was tossed out with the dreary bathwater. The ideology of individualism, with the radical economics of the Austrian and Chicago theorists, threw the whole social democratic project into question; and with the fall of Communism, of which social democrats were far too uncritical, it became almost impossible to make a convincing case for the government’s role in building a just society.full review