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Saturday, May 05, 2012

Chris Dillow on the 1970s 'crisis' that wasn't

video: nyrainbow2

Over at Stumbling and Mumbling, there's a great blog post comparing the much over-hyped economic  ‘crisis’ of the 1970s, to the very real economic crisis of today, by the excellent Chris Dillow.

The BBC’s rediscovery of the 1970s poses a question: why has this recession not produced the sense of crisis we had in the 70s?

I ask because the numbers tell us that the economy is doing worse than it did in the 70s.......

From the point of view of the capitalist class, the answer is simple. The 70s crisis was not so much a crisis of GDP growth as a crisis of profits. By contrast, profit rates in this recession have held up much better than they did in the 70s. When people asked in the 1970s “is Britain governable?” what they really meant was: “is the working class controllable?”

You can read the whole of Chris's post here.

As I wrote here, it's very important to challenge the dominant neo-liberal myths about the 1970s- the progressive decade when ordinary working people had never had it so good- and when capital had never had it so bad.

Talking of the 1970s, above you can watch a great clip from a recent edition of Top of the Pops 1977, of O.C. Smith singing ‘Together’. Enjoy.


Martin Meenagh said...

That's a great choice of music there, very evocative.

Neil Clark said...

Cheers, Martin. It's a great track, isn't it? And so very 1977!

Douglas said...

I believe that this decade is recapitulating the 1930's (at least in America) with government assistance (food stamps on a card that is swiped like a credit card at the grocery store) replacing soup kitchens and apple stands.

Every now and then the "America is ungovernable" meme raises its ugly head. It is usually brought up by a Democrat/liberal/progressive, and it usually means that someone's idea for the expansion of government power is not being received as wise and kind and good, and is being vigorously resisted.

The last time the "America is ungovernable" meme showed up was in December of 2009, during the debate over the expansion of government power in the health insurance industry, also known as Obamacare.