Nicely written piece of journalism. Regarding the statement: “neoliberalism destroyed the labour movement’s cultural hold on ex-industrial communities, allowing the politics of racial/national identity to take over from class solidarity.”: Whilst I agree with the analysis, I also believe that if Labour is to become a transformational “social movement” for bettering the world, then it also needs to ditch the “divide and rule” dynamic inherent in the party political system. This means that Labour would instead stand for a transition to non-partisan direct economic democracy, that includes all people of good will, irrespective of their perceived “class”, who want themselves and their children to live in “a state of humanity”, rather than as economic slaves of a despotic State apparatus that serves the rentier agenda of a financial market dictatorship.
The historical materialism of class warfare only perpetuates the power of the incumbent status quo. We need an exodus from the financial market controlled global monetary system; and to establish an articulated threefold social mobilisation system comprising: (1) financing real economic production, (2) a separate payment system, and (3) a system for the redistribution of accumulated stagnant purchasing power (representing the economic surplus) from the commercial circuit of the economy, to finance the non-commercial circuit of public and not-for-profit goods and services.
This vital social infrastructures must be established independently of financial markets, through a social accounting approach, where money functions only as a unit of account, which comes into existence as purchasing rights (interest-free credit), securitized by real economy production obligations. A non-inflationary and non-deflationary social (double entry) accounting system, where the sum of debits (production obligations) and credits (purchasing rights) is always zero. In this paradigm, money would only represent a “fictitious value” (similar to Marx’s notion of fictitious capital); i.e. it would not be treated as a commodity, to be traded in financial markets, and rented out at the socially and ecologically disastrous exponential rate of compounding interest.
Such a monetary system, for and by the People, would imply a parallel radical transformation of the political system, so that democratic economic power would be transferred from centralised political elites (who subscribe cross-party to the neoliberal agenda), and distributed to the people, in a way that they could themselves decide where the economic surplus they produce should be invested, i.e. not in speculation and war profiteering, but in the non-commercial circuit of public services, provided by the Third Sector, with the State limited to legitimate monopoly regarding “the protection of human rights”, through the Police Service (interior deployment) and Military (exterior deployment).