Capitalism 4.0 and the platitude that is economic growth

People are talking about a Capitalism 4.0. Capitalism must change for the better, they say, and become more responsible. The financial crisis that started in 2008 has demonstrated that very clearly. I don’t know much about macroeconomics, but I find this whole discussion almost as disappointing as I find it interesting. Surely it doesn’t take an economics professor to see that, far from promoting Capitalism 4.0, the financial crash punched market economics right in the face? Critics of the current set-up often argue, and convincingly so, that our alleged free-market economy is far from free: rather, we’ve got full-fledged socialism and market regulation for the rich – while indeed the 99% have to put up with the harsh conditions of...

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I don’t know how he does it

“If you want to have it all, it’s your job to work out how to do it. If you can’t, give something up.” That’s David Cox’s advice to Kate, the high-flying fictitious character in the film I don’t know how she does it. I suspect we’ll read many a harsh critique of the super-woman film, but I wasn’t quite prepared to read this in the Guardian. I’m not saying that this Hollywood plot doesn’t need some ripping apart – the have-it-all approach to life indeed deserves questioning – but your way of criticising something says a lot about your outlook on life. And I guess, somehow, I keep forgetting that even the most liberal publications in the UK look at parenting as a one-woman job. Many would agree – and I’m sure I...

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Inequality and social unrest – this is politics

“Keeping people safe is the first duty of government,” said David Cameron in the House of Commons after recalling parliament. Not a particularly surprising statement coming from a true conservative. But put into context, where what the prime minister is really saying is that the government’s main task is to protect one part of society from another, it not only explains to some degree how we ended up in this situation in the first place, but also expresses the idea of an ‘us’ and a ‘them’ which could lead to further segregation and unrest. Cameron went on to say that the riots were “not about politics or protest – it was about theft,” and that “in too many cases, the parents of these children, if they’re still...

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