Social democracy at a time of crisis
I think this is a centre-left moment … But for me it’s a centre-left moment because
people think there’s something unfair and unjust about our society. You’ve got to bring
the vested interests to heel; you’ve got to change the way the economy works. That’s
Eight years have passed since the beginning of the global financial crisis but its
impact still reverberates across Europe. Levels of public debt are still high, the stability of European banks is questioned by rating agencies, economic
embedded Social Democratic norms and institutions would
lead to the eventual questioning of neutrality, which is a strong part
of the SAP ideology and value system. This rupture or
‘crisis’ of Social Democracy contained strong implications
for the reconsideration of neutrality policy. Although its sources and
causes are disputed amongst academics, as discussed below, the essential
point is that the
The modernisation of German social
democracy: towards a third way and back?
The German Social Democratic Party (SPD) has undergone a number of
revisions since its birth in the nineteenth century. This chapter will explore
the latest debate about what the SPD stands for. As a programme party,
the debate about long-term objectives, values and ideological principles
has been of particular importance to party members, its leaders and the
public. Hence the focus of this chapter: it will document and analyse the
programmatic discourse of the SPD
David Marquand and liberal social democracy
David Marquand is right. He has been right for the last forty years. Successful
capitalism rests on a subtle and complex interplay between the public and private.
Both are vital, not merely for capitalism but for a healthy civilisation. Effective
public institutions are needed to socialise risk, create the ecosystem for enterprise
and workers to flourish and perhaps more importantly, stimulate a culture of
common purpose. Equally, you need companies, who put a purpose to promote
human betterment before
Voters can be sophisticated. In 2018, a majority of the voters in Florida voted for a conservative governor, but they also voted to give prisoners the right to vote, something the Republican Governor had opposed. The voters showed that they were able to distinguish measures from men. Politics is not just about tribal partisanship. Voters demand more choice. And they are able to exercise their judgement. Florida is not unique. This is a global trend. A large majority of voters all over the world – according to opinion polls – want more referendums. But are they capable of making decisions on complex issues? And aren’t such votes an invitation to ill-considered populism? This book answers these questions and shows what the effect of referendums have on public policy, on welfare and well-being, and outlines how some of the criticisms of referendums and initiatives can be remedied.
The Obstacles to Creative Democracy
at Home and Abroad
Only sheer cynicism and defeatism will deny that it is possible to
create a workable world government. There have been times when
the moral ancestors of present day defeatists would have scornfully
declared that a rule of law over a territory anything like as large
as our present United States was impossible. They would have said
that outside of family groups and small neighbourhoods, the custom
of every man’s hand against other men could not be uprooted … If
peoples, especially their rulers, devoted
On 1 October 1989, eleven gay male couples gathered in the registry office of Copenhagen's city chambers to take part in a civil ceremony, entering into a newly established entity called a registered partnership (RP). This book examines same-sex unions (SSU) policy developments western democracies and explains why the overwhelming majority of these countries has implemented a national law to recognise gay and lesbian couples. It presents an overview of recent developments in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) politics as well as the academic literatures that seek to interpret and analyse these developments. The study discussed adds to constructivist work on the international human rights regime, which has been a prominent focus of the literature. The book also examines the processes of international policy diffusion. It traces the development of a soft-law norm for relationship recognition within the broader European polity and illustrates how dissemination of this norm taken by transnational LGBT rights activists and supportive policy elites. The book presents in-depth case studies of Germany, the Netherlands, Canada and the US to tease out the extent and causal mechanisms by which the SSU norm has influenced policy debates. It looks at the ways in which the SSU norm has shaped policy discourse about relationship recognition. The book examines why countries with broadly similar parliamentary structures, party systems, levels of religiosity and confessional heritages have adopted different models of SSU policies. Finally, it inspects how much the European SSU norm has affected policy debates in Canada and the US.
This study examines British shipbuilding and industrial relations from 1870 to 1950, addressing economic, social, and political history to provide a holistic approach to industry, trade unionism, and the early history of the Labour Party. Examining the impact of new machinery, of independent rank-and-file movements and of craft and trade unions, it provides an account of industrial action in shipyards in the period and their effect on the birth and development of the Labour Party.
The recent wave of populism resembles a ferocious worldwide tsunami, ravaging the foundations of liberal democracy – a rogue, giant wave against which, apparently, we cannot defend ourselves. But can’t we defend ourselves? Can’t we defend our liberal democracies? Are we just lame ducks, waiting passively for things to happen, hoping that the storm will pass and the worst will soon be over? Certainly not: there is a lot we can do. And we can act on different levels: on the level of the democratic institutions, on the level of political parties, on the level of
This book engages in a critical encounter with the work of Stanley Cavell on cinema, focusing skeptical attention on the claims made for the contribution of cinema to the ethical character of democratic life. In much of Cavell's writing on film he seeks to show us that the protagonists of the films he terms "remarriage comedies" live a form of perfectionism that he upholds as desirable for contemporary democratic society: moral perfectionism. Films are often viewed on television, and television shows can have "filmlike" qualities. The book addresses the nature of viewing cinematic film as a mode of experience, arguing against Cavell that it is akin to dreaming rather than lived consciousness and, crucially, cannot be shared. It mirrors the celebrated dialogue between Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Jean D'Alembert on theatre. The book articulates the implications of philosophical pessimism for addressing contemporary culture in its relationship to political life. It clarifies how The Americans resembles the remarriage films and can illuminate the issues they raise. The tragedy of remarriage, would be a better instructor of a democratic community, if such a community were prepared to listen. The book suggests that dreaming, both with and without films, is not merely a pleasurable distraction but a valuable pastime for democratic citizens. Finally, it concludes with a robust response from Dienstag to his critics.