Demoradical Regulation

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Introduction

Alex Foti analyzes a great crisis of neoliberalism, which can lead to a 'European bifurcation', i.e. two possible outcomes, either demoliberal, or demoradical regulation.

For background, I strongly recommend you read Foti's analysis of the current world crisis and the remarkable graphic it contains, at http://www.leftcurve.org/LC31WebPages/Grid&ForkTable.pdf


Description

Alex Foti:

"Europe is today facing a fundamental bifurcation for the future of its political economy. The crisis of the neoliberal agenda, unpopular in Europe everywhere, is evident also to European elites. They have responded by tracing what I call a DEMOLIBERAL regulation. Basically it's neoliberalism lite: it is a bit less pro-American, because US-EU interests are no longer coinciding in geoeconomic and geopolitical terms (for instance, Europeans have only to lose from clashing head-front with Islam) but retains a strong commitment to NATO; it invests a little more in public infrastructure and possibly spends on welfare to cushion workers from the vagaries of the labor market, but only as long as people remain under the control of workfare provisions aiming at increasing the productivity of so-called human capital and guarantee social obedience among welfare recipients. This top-down project, to which social movements and radical subjectivities must respond with a grassroots mobilization to shape political Europe as they see fit, has one only, but crucial, merit. It would constitute antibushist counterbalancing for Europe, and would put Atlantic relations on a more equal footing, should bushism be electorally defeated. And muted European neoliberalism could be still preferable to returning to the nation-state with its nationalist and militarist pretensions. Demoliberal regulation not only seeks a new business-friendly social consensus, it opposes the dangerous xenophobic forces that have become a major factor in European politics.


A political answer to European moderates which would take an explicitly multiethnic, egalitarian and ecological road is what I call DEMORADICAL regulation, i.e. a dramatic change in socioeconomic policy thanks to a progressive social bargain imposed from the bottom up (rather than top-down, as in demoliberal regulation) through labor protest, social conflict, participatory democracy. A progressive front that would link leftist/democratic organizations, unions, movements in their common opposition to technocrats, corporations, financial markets and the liberal regulation these would like to re-assert, in order to protect the unequal economic status quo they have gained so much from. But most of all, demoradicalism would be a clarion call to all emancipatory forces in Europe to mobilize against populist xenophobia, anti-immigration hysteria, clerical interference." (http://info.interactivist.net/node/5252)