Social and Economic Policy

Marxism and autism

Author: 

Janine Booth

Can Marxism can help us to understand autistic experience in modern capitalism? How might Marxism inform our struggles for equality and liberation?

There are different approaches to understanding autism. Perhaps the dominant approach is a medical one: seeing autism as a disease or tragedy, and autistic people as being broken and needing fixing. Over recent years, a more progressive approach has developed. It stresses acceptance of autistic people rather than simply “awareness”, and demands rights, equality and support rather than abusive “treatments”.

For autistic people, modern capitalism is both developed and distressing. It brings huge advantages, but it also great distress.

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Fight Brexit all the way

Author: 

Vicki Morris

On 29 March, Theresa May will trigger Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union, starting the clock on the UK leaving the EU. Unless the UK and all the EU states agree to a special extension on negotiations, the UK will quit the EU in or before March 2019.

After the Article 50 trigger vote in Parliament, the headlines could have read that Labour opposed Brexit, a Brexit in which the Tories’ policies and approach will dominate. Instead, Labour’s amendments were a damp squib that will scarcely be noticed by most voters, including Labour supporters.

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G20 deletion signals danger

Author: 

Rhodri Evans

When twenty governments met for the G20 summit in late 2008, at the worst of the global credit crash, their agreed joint statement included just one hard commitment: to resist protectionism, to avoid new trade barriers. Not perfectly, but on the whole, that commitment held, and helped the slump level out in late 2009 rather than continuing downwards for three or four years as in the 1930s, when states spiralled into competitive tariff-raising and world trade collapsed.

The G20's deletion of a clause against protectionism signals dangers of a rise in economic nationalism.

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Rich and poor: the gap widens

Author: 

Gerry Bates

“Britain remains a nation dominated by class division”, reported the Guardian on 20 October. The division is dramatised by David Cameron’s Tory front bench, which includes no fewer than 15 men schooled at Eton. The Lib Dem leadership contest is being fought out by two men schooled at Westminster, a school almost as posh as Eton.

Thirty-two per cent of current MPs went to fee-paying schools, which educate just 7% of the population. 43% went to one of the 13 poshest universities and over a quarter (27%) to Oxford or Cambridge.

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Casino capitalism rides again!

By Bruce Robinson

Casino capitalism is coming to Manchester! The government plan to use the licensing of large scale gambling as a means of urban regeneration. Manchester, the surprise location for the first "super-casino", is frankly referred to by the chair of the independent Casino Advisory Panel as "a good place to test the social impact" of large casinos or, as the Manchester Evening News put it, "a better guinea pig" than the alternatives of Blackpool or the Dome.

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Reversing “tax liberation”

On our front page we report the huge sums pocketed by the rich through tax avoidance, tax evasion, tax fraud — and the straightforward continuation of the tax cuts for the well-off introduced by the Tories in the 1980s.

All new value is produced by labour. Some of it is recouped by the working class directly, in wages, or indirectly, in the “social wage”. The rest goes into the pockets of the rich.

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The Lies Against Socialism Answered

Author: 

Sean Matgamna

For most of the 20th century, the common image of "socialism" was the USSR and the other states modelled on it, China, Cuba, and so on.

For most of the 20th century, the common image of "socialism" was the USSR and the other states modelled on it, China, Cuba, and so on.

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Defend EU migrants’ right to stay!

Author: 

Editorial

The House of Lords has voted by a large margin of 102 in favour of guaranteeing the rights of EU citizens in the UK after Brexit. With 358 in favour to 256 against, the Lords backed an amendment to the Article 50 bill, the bill giving the Prime Minister the power to trigger the Brexit process.

We must build a movement ready to resist any expulsions, and fight the rise in xenophobia that is an inevitable consequence of the Brexit process.

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Trump and neoliberalism

Author: 

Martin Thomas

“Neoliberalism as a set of principles rules undivided across the globe: the most successful ideology in world history”, declared the left-wing historian Perry Anderson in 2000.

With Trump, we see both a strand of neoliberalism, pushed on a scale which threatens to break up neoliberalism “from the inside”, but in a reactionary way; and a strand of real revolt against neoliberalism, expressed again in a reactionary way.

With Trump, we see both a strand of neoliberalism, pushed on a scale which threatens to break up neoliberalism “from the inside”, but in a reactionary way; and a strand of real revolt against neoliberalism, expressed again in a reactionary way.

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“Blair’s babies”

Author: 

Charlotte Zalens

Is the right-wing surge represented by Trump, Brexit, and various right-wing movements across Europe part of a trend?

It’s usual to presume that the young are to the left of their elders, and in some ways this is still true. But recent studies of social attitudes appear to show that those who came of age during the period that Tony Blair was in power (people now aged between 27-40) are more right-wing than those who came of age under Thatcher (now aged between 41-58), who themselves are further to the right than the preceding generation.

Right-wing views are not inevitable. People’s ideas can be challenged and changed.

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