Economics

Marxist economists analyse the crisis

Financial crisis

Author: 

Costas Lapavitsas/Leo Panitch/Fred Moseley/Michel Husson/Andrew Kliman/David Laibman/Simon Mohun/Trevor Evans/Robert Brenner/more
Andrew Kliman and David Laibman are new contributors, and Michel Husson, Fred Moseley, Leo Panitch, and Costas Lapavitsas present second thoughts, in a symposium also including Simon Mohun, Trevor Evans, Robert Brenner, and Dick Bryan.

Marxist Theory and History: 

Fair trade, free trade, and socialism

Author: 

Paul Hampton

Trade is a vital part of the neoliberal economic, political and ideological regime that now dominates the world economy and most national states.

In this pamphlet we try to grasp the essential features of the world economy, especially relating to trade issues.

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Marxist Theory and History: 

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A workers’ government will seize the banks

Author: 

Martin Thomas

It wasn’t the stars, or geology. It wasn’t ocean currents, or the weather. The world economy was brought crashing down in 2008 by the particular way we have allowed it to be organised.

It was brought down by being organised around the priority of maximum competitive greed and gain of a small exploiting minority.

From the early 1980s to 2008, world capitalism became more and more governed by the drive for quick, fluid gains, measured and coordinated through an increasingly complex and fast-flowing system of world financial markets.

From the early 1980s to 2008, world capitalism became more and more governed by the drive for quick, fluid gains, measured and coordinated through an increasingly complex and fast-flowing system of world financial markets.

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Marxist Theory and History: 

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Orthodox economists think Osborne is wrong

Author: 

Martin Thomas

The Centre for Macroeconomics asked professional economists - almost all orthodox, mainstream people - whether "the austerity policies of the coalition government have had a positive effect on employment and GDP in the UK?".

This was the result:

economist judgement on Osborne

Ignoring those who sat on the fence, 19% thought the policies had had a positive effect, and 81% disagreed.

In a survey of economic experts, almost all very orthodox, 81% said clearly that Osborne's cuts have not helped growth or employment.

Marxist Theory and History: 

Basic Income: a get-rich-quick scheme?

Author: 

Kieran Miles

The Universal Basic Income, or UBI, has become a popular demand on the left, but even among some right-wingers as well.

UBI is a proposal for the state to give everyone a set amount of money, irrespective of where you live and your employment status.

Universal Basic Income is a proposal for the state to give everyone a set amount of money, irrespective of where you live and your employment status.

Marxist Theory and History: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Publications: 

Why the banks should be confiscated

Author: 

Colin Foster

The HSBC scandal rumbles on, and it’s only the latest of many scandals about the big banks to break since 2008.

Yet the mainstream debate never considers taking the banks under public ownership and democratic control, and radically transforming them. One or two top bankers caught particularly red-handed may be eased out, with lavish pay-offs and pensions. Some banks are nationalised, and handed to the same sort of managers as before, to be run as before, and privatised as soon as state aid can make them profitable again. That’s all.

The HSBC scandal rumbles on, and it’s only the latest of many scandals about the big banks to break since 2008.

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Marxist Theory and History: 

Another Brest-Litovsk?

Author: 

Colin Foster

No small country, and in fact no country at all, can simply defy and ignore the pressures of the capitalist world market, not unless it wants to reduce itself to a pauperised, shut-off condition.

It would be wrong and demagogic to denounce the Greek government just for trying to do a deal with the eurozone leaders, the European Central Bank, and the IMF. It is even more demagogic to say that it could have an easy way out of the difficulties just by quitting the European Union.

It would be wrong and demagogic to denounce the Greek government just for trying to do a deal with the eurozone leaders, the European Central Bank, and the IMF. It is even more demagogic to say that it could have an easy way out of the difficulties just by quitting the European Union.

Around the world: 

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Greece: five questions that demand an answer

Author: 

Costas Lapavitsas

The Eurogroup agreement has not been concluded, in part because we do not yet know what “reforms” will be proposed by the Greek government today (Monday 23 February) and which ones of those will eventually be accepted.

However, those of us that have been elected based on the programme of Syriza, and see the announcements made at Thessaloniki [i.e. the “Thessaloniki Programme”] as pledges that we have promised to the Greek people, we have deep concerns. It is our duty to write them down.

The general programme of the agreement is as follows:

Costas Lapavitsas, socialist economist and Syriza MP, analyses the deal between Greece and the EU.

Around the world: 

Marxist Theory and History: 

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Confiscate the banks!

Author: 

Editorial

A thousand, a million, a billion, a trillion? Paradoxically, one of the ways the HSBC bank can hope to ride out the current storm is that the numbers are so far beyond experience for most of us that we glaze over.

HSBC is under fire because of documents which have filtered through to the Guardian which show that a Swiss subsidiary facilitated, helped, and even prompted tax avoidance and money-laundering.

The financial assets of the banks greatly exceed those totals. Banks hold around £20 trillion in financial assets — enough to buy up all the country’s physical assets three times over — or the equivalent of about £800,000 for each household in the UK.

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Marxist Theory and History: 

HSBC scandal: expropriate the banks!

Author: 

Martin Thomas

The banks and the other institutions of high finance should be taken over and run as public utilities, not profiteers. The top bankers should be sacked and replaced by accountable officials on ordinary wages.

The new scandal about HSBC which blew on 9 February confirms that conclusion.

At first sight, the bankers got off easily from the crisis in 2008. Their get-rich-quick gambits sent the whole economy into slump; but the British government laid out £1100 billion in cash, loans, and guarantees to stop Britain’s big banks going bust, and other governments did similar.

The ground is shifting under the feet of Giant Finance. Widespread resentment and discredit continues to spill over into one scandal after another.

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