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liberals against neo-liberalism (also known as Reaganomics...)

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bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 08:19 PM
Original message
liberals against neo-liberalism (also known as Reaganomics...)
"Critics of neoliberalism associate it with globalization, and with the rise of multinational corporations, as well as monetary and fiscal austerity at the expense of social programs."

I hate that anyone calls this anything with the word "liberal" in it. Someone failed marketing 101 who came up with these terms - because they don't make sense. Just like a lot of conservatives would find neo-con views outrageous. Yet Rush Limbaugh - who HATES liberals - no doubt is 100% neo-liberal. It's nuts.


"Critics of neoliberalism in both theory and practice are numerous. This is particularly true in developing nations whose assets have been sold off to foreigners and whose domestic political and economic institutions had been undermined by the effects of being exposed to trade and rapid flows of capital. Even within the neoliberal movement there is intense criticism of how many developed nations have demanded that others liberalize their markets for manufactured goods, while protecting their own domestic agricultural markets.

Anti-globalization advocates are the most vociferous opponents of neoliberalism, particularly its implementation as "free capital flows" but not free labor flows. They argue that neoliberal policies encourage a "race to the bottom" as capital flows to the lowest environmental and labor standards, and is merely updated "beggar thy neighbor" imperialism, dating back 200 years. In this they are in fundamental agreement with many of neoliberalism's supporters who argue that neoliberalism represents an updated version of classical liberalism.

Some economists argue that neoliberal policies can create "moral hazard": governments and international financial institutions must bail out developing nations and their creditors because they are "too big to fail." This simply encourages further risk-taking and crises. They point to the string of currency melt-downs in the Mexico, Russia, Eastern Europe, East Asia and Argentina as proof that there is a danger to allowing risk-taking without sufficient penalty or regulation."
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stepnw1f Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 08:22 PM
Response to Original message
1. More Like Neo-Fascism
Edited on Thu Jul-07-05 08:23 PM by stepnw1f
Nice try though. Was Neo-Liberal a term Frank Luntz created? Just wondering because it's got that Orwellian feel to it.
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bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 08:30 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. I was pretty much ignoring the term
and then it came up in this article that was posted:

"In the 1990s the Clinton Administration embarked on a revolutionary agenda to liberalize the world's financial and trading system, an effort that continued until the world financial crisis of 1997-98. As seen by the Clintonites, it was thinkable to change decades of economic practice in East Asia in a few short years, but not at all thinkable to design economic policies that would insure rising wages and economic security in both developed and emerging economies. Globalization, we were told, was a natural and immutable force, and domestic society must bend to the demands of globalization, not vice versa.

Put together, this mix of neoliberal activism abroad and inaction at home has created a very unhealthy Democratic Party agenda, offering rank-and-file Democrats fantasies about American greatness and nobility while forcing them to accept ever more economic insecurity and lower wages. But what if middle-class prosperity--jobs, rising wages, economic security--is intimately connected to global stability, as Franklin Roosevelt and John Maynard Keynes believed? Then what happens to the great liberal project globally? It gets overrun by rising disaffection at home and greater extremism abroad--which is exactly what is beginning to occur today.

...The lessons that Roosevelt and other progressives drew from the twenty-year crisis suggests a role for the United States much different from the one being pursued by the Bush Administration and proposed by the neoliberals: less one of warrior and preacher/proselytizer and more one of architect and builder, less one of imperial cop and more one of community leader or board chairperson."


It's possible that it is mostly used by people who consider themselves independent of either Democrats or Republicans - like anarchists/greens, etc.

Though I have heard of various people/publications refer to classical liberalism. I didn't realize until I looked it up that people were using neo-liberal for basically what I would consider to be neo-Conservatives. Maybe they should just be called "neos".
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John Q. Citizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 08:25 PM
Response to Original message
2. Yep, that the definition of neoliberalism alright. It's experienced
major setbacks recently in Latin America and elsewhere as people wise up to the fact that it's infact corporatism and privitazation without much of an upside for the peasants.
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rudeboy666 Donating Member (959 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 08:37 PM
Response to Original message
4. classical liberalism
whether you like it or not, the word 'liberalism' had a long tradition before the rise of modern liberalism.

Do your research.
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bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 08:52 PM
Response to Reply #4
7. OK- here is some research for you
I am discussing the general usage of the term - you can or not - it is not clear cut - and the term neo-liberalism does not have a long history and that is what I'm talking about:

"The term neoliberalism was coined by Conservative Republicans to describe a political-economic philosophy that had major implications for government policies beginning in the 1970s and increasingly prominent since 1980..."

What some other people think:

"This term neoliberalism is used FAR too much in all the articles. I have never personally heard it used outside of wikipedia. I do like the term insofar as it seems to highlight a good concept most people never use a specific word for, and in that sense is a good word. However, because of its seemingly non usage in real life, it can be really confusing. It seems that one or a few people have edited many articles to include this term, possibly with a bias. Check the "what pages link here" for a SMALL example, far more uses of the word are non linked."

"I have only seen this term used in a critical context, such as "Neoliberal policies only profit the wealthy".

"The term "neoliberalism" is not used by its supporters because they do not believe it varies from plain-old liberalism. Its critics are largely anti-capitalists, who think of themselves as being the true liberals. The term also implies a connection to neoconservatism, of which there is none."

"In refutation to that--if you bothered to read the article, you would find that the term "liberal" does cover political or social liberalism (that is, progressivism) but the liberty that the actual economic system has via Laissez-Faire capitalism. It is possible to be both neo-liberal and neo-conservative, as Neoliberal in this form only really signifies an economic system rather than the conservative social and political we usually equate with Neoconservatism. In short, it is fairly confusing--but don't get too freaked out about it."

"I think the problem here is that the term liberal has different meanings depending on the context. In the United States, the word liberal is generally used as a synonym for progressive, and is generally meant in a social context. In Europe (with the notable exception of the Liberal Democrats in Great Britain), the word tends to refer to a movement towards liberalization of markets. This is not a social, but instead an economic concept. Thus, while social liberals are trying to pull down the barriers to gay marriage, women in the workplace, abortion, etc., economic liberals are trying to pull down the barriers to business, free trade, globalization, etc. The problem is that social liberals and economic liberals tend to be entirely different people, although one might argue that, for instance, Bill Clinton represents both types of liberal. "

"This is not entirely true. The term "neo-liberal" is not used by economists to mean the same thing as "liberal" in the classical sense. In fact, many economics will say something along the lines of "economically liberal" or "classically liberal" in order to specifically differentiate this worldview, which is what you describe, from a "neo-liberal" worldview, which does include both economic and social elements. A neo-liberal is someone who believes that the typical concerns of the liberal left--economic equality, etc.--can be furthered best within a free-market system. Please view the American Heritage definition for support of this statement: <1>. It is very difficult to argue successfully that the term "neo-liberal" is misused by Americans, since the term describes an American phenomenon. Western Europe generally uses the term derisively, to refer to American policy in general. In truth, it is a very vague term describing a pattern of economic liberalisation and concurrent social liberalisation in America that has not been seen in Western Europe, where national governments have been much more suspicious of the free markets. This article gives one of the better illustrations of the difficulty inherent in effectively pinning down the "neo-liberal" ideology: <2>. Since the term is used so broadly, and so often used derisively with little justification, I do not think anything more than a short article providing a broad definition is warranted."

"Neoliberals call themselves "libertarians" in the USA, but the use has now spread a bit also in Europe. "

"Libertarian" is not the same thing as a neoliberal. Neoliberalism is an economic philosophy, whereas libertarianism is a socio-political philosophy that happens to include support for free-market economics (which is popular in many circles).
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tocqueville Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 08:46 PM
Response to Original message
5. Liberal in Europe is a dirty word
The world liberal in Europe (probably with the exception of the UK) is associated with the concepts of neo-liberalism. It is associated with Thatcher and the latinamericans experiments like Chile.

It is always opposed to the world "social". The forces in Europe calling themselves progressive and to the center say that they are "anti-liberal". Even the conservative French government says it is not "liberal" in it's policies, some members of it's majority call themselves "liberals" but defend themselves of being neo-liberals.

the fear of "liberalism" was one of the major reasons the French voted no in the referendum about the EU constitution.

This make very difficult to explain that American "liberals" "equals" to Democrats and opposed to Bush policies. Because for the majority here, Bush is the overpriest of "liberalism"...

all this because the neo fell out in daily speech...
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bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 08:56 PM
Response to Reply #5
9. People on here have debated about whether we should just go with
"progressive" for various reasons.

It does sound like it would make sense and avoid confusion. I think that is what I will do from now on.

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idlisambar Donating Member (916 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-08-05 08:02 PM
Response to Reply #5
12. Welcome to the DU
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jsamuel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 08:48 PM
Response to Original message
6. Then we will bring back "LIBERALISM-CLASSIC"
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bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 08:53 PM
Response to Reply #6
8. LOL
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bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 09:36 PM
Response to Original message
10. So I wonder what people think
Does the term "neo-liberal" ruin "liberal" and the fact that people in Europe use it totally different - does that matter?
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bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-07-05 10:02 PM
Response to Original message
11. Oh well - I guess the neo-liberal Irish
call themselves "progressive democrats" (so much for that term being untainted.)

"The Progressive Democrats economic policies are based on liberal economics. They support a free enterprise, low tax and pro-competition policy base. The Progressive Democrats are sometimes viewed as the only Irish political party that is open to the idea of privatisation."
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