By Tony Fitzpatrick
Social democracy has made a political comeback in recent times, in particular below the impression of the 3rd means. despite the fact that, no longer each person in convinces that 3rd means social democracy is the simplest technique of reviving the Left's venture. This booklet explains why and provides another method. Bringing jointly a variety of social and political theories this ebook engages with probably the most very important modern debates in regards to the current path and way forward for the Left.
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Additional info for After the new social democracy: social welfare for the twenty-first century
As noted in the introduction, the NSD therefore appeals to a TINA logic (‘There Is No Alternative’) which represents the intolerant closure of the social imagination, what I have elsewhere called the ‘extremist Centre’ (Fitzpatrick, 2002a), in stark contrast to the pioneering self-image that it likes to project. If, then, the NSD simplifies both itself and its predecessors, and if it overlooks the extent to which there are multiple Centres and multiple forms of social democracy, why is this and what are the potential implications?
In fact, because social harmony has not followed the harmonies they construct within discourse, new social democrats frequently adopt a patronising attitude towards those who disagree with them, distinguishing sharply between allies, those whose ‘therapy’ is not yet complete and those who are allegedly ‘incurable’ (Giddens, 2001: Ch. 2; 2002a: 10–28). TZP1 4/25/2005 4:49 PM Page 27 The long march back 27 This explains why the ‘Third Way’ debate was ultimately a non-starter. By setting up a crude contrast between the Centre and what they took to be either the far Left or Right, Third Wayers have neglected the simple fact that there are multiple Centres and many different forms of social democracy (see Chapter 4).
Meritocracy is too weak a principle (Young, 1958). Genuine equality requires the removal of the structures that distribute power, wealth and capital unevenly. To graft a few ‘meritocratic’ policies onto a class TZP1 4/25/2005 22 • • • • • 4:49 PM Page 22 After the new social democracy society means that (1) existing structural inequalities are justified, because inequalities are now wrongly held to result from individual efforts, and (2) those at the social bottom are held responsible for their disadvantages because they obviously did not make proper use of the opportunities provided for them.
After the new social democracy: social welfare for the twenty-first century by Tony Fitzpatrick