Posts Tagged ‘Milton Freidman’

Will the right face its 1989 moment?

04/08/2011, 02:00:36 PM

by James Watkins

1989 was a bombshell for many people on the left. Any hopes that a communist utopia would flourish went up in a puff of smoke when the peoples of eastern Europe turned against their governments.

In Britain, the impact of 1989 was profound. The Communist party went into freefall, various factions split into further factions, Marxism Today went off the shelves and a further spur was given to the changes in the Labour party.

So why has there not been a “1989 moment” for the right? For in 2008, the confidence in laissez-faire markets should have gone up in a puff of smoke when the markets failed – and the only thing that held economies together was the intervention of the nation states.

The 2008 moment went against everything that Friedman, Hayek and other free market thinkers had been advocating. This was clear, conclusive evidence that rolling back the state and giving free rein to markets does not lead to a natural equilibrium in the economy. Former US federal reserve chairman, Alan Greenspan, said he was “surprised” by this. One former Tory Parliamentary candidate told me at the time that if free markets led to the collapse of all the banks and the mess that this would lead to, then so be it. This was the confused and muddled state the right was in back in 2008. (more…)

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