Category: age of austerity

05 Oct


What’s left after the Greek debacle? (Part 3 of an obituary)


Radical Left and chauvinist Right leaders celebrate their return to power

Following on from Part 1 and Part 2 of my analysis — which were first published in abridged form as a single article at Jacobin Magazine — I bring the Greek tragedy up to date with why the Syriza breakaway Popular Unity failed its first electoral test, as well as delving deeper into the dead-end of trying […]

31 Mar

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Greece two months on: where is the hope?



“Hope is coming. Europe is changing. Greece is going forward.” Two months into Syriza taking office after the historic victory of the Left at the polls on 25 January, dare we hope for a breach in the iron cage of austerity? Is hope even alive? My answer is an unequivocal “yes”. That’s not down to […]

08 Dec


‘Abolishing the present state of things’


Paris Commune: the ‘reabsorption of the State power by society’

Communism is for us not a state of affairs which is to be established, an ideal to which reality [will] have to adjust itself. We call communism the real movement which abolishes the present state of things. The conditions of this movement result from the premises now in existence. —Marx & Engels (1845), The German […]

14 Nov


Understanding Podemos (2/3): Radical populism


Monedero, Iglesias, Errejón

The first part of Left Flank’s series exploring the rise of Podemos looked at the positive incorporation in the project of the “Indignados” (15-M) movement’s participatory democracy and radical opposition towards “politics”. Here Luke Stobart looks more critically at the “radical populism” that has shaped the approach of its dominant grouping (and now formal leadership) […]

05 Nov


Understanding Podemos (1/3): 15-M & counter-politics



What Podemos’s present success reveals is the breakdown, the crisis or the collapse (choose the term you prefer) of the Spanish party system. Because in reality the Transition regime is sinking like the Titanic and Podemos is merely the iceberg that caused this. So as soon as the cock crowed on 25-M, all the captains […]

08 Jun


Europe: Political decay, Right fractures & Left strategy



KEVIN OVENDEN looks at the implications of the European Parliament elections. *** Q. The recent elections across Europe for the European Parliament have been described as a “political earthquake”. What happened and what does it mean for the Left? The results indicated a very significant fall in support for the traditional parties of government across […]

18 May


Dazed & confused: The Left, Palmer & Budget 2014



We are very concerned about the risk that savings are falling too heavily on some families and young people trying to find work. —Jennifer Westacott, Chief Executive of the Business Council of Australia I don’t think even the colleagues realise the extent to which Tony has locked in a strategy from which he cannot turn […]