Lessons from the Anti-Globalists

Denne artikkelen fra superøkonomen Joseph E. Stiglitz er vel verdt å få med seg! Selvom Le Pen og Wilders ikke vant valgene i Frankrike og Nederland betyr ikke det at the age of anger, høyrepopulismen og proteksjonismen er over.

Stieglitz sier følgende:

[…] it would be a mistake to conclude that discontent with the global economy – at least how it treats large numbers of those in (or formerly in) the middle class – has crested. If the developed liberal democracies maintain status quo policies, displaced workers will continue to be alienated. Many will feel that at least Trump, Le Pen, and their like profess to feel their pain. The idea that voters will turn against protectionism and populism of their own accord may be no more than cosmopolitan wishful thinking.

Advocates of liberal market economies need to grasp that many reforms and technological advances may leave some groups – possibly large groups – worse off. In principle, these changes increase economic efficiency, enabling the winners to compensate the losers. But if the losers remain worse off, why should they support globalization and pro-market policies? Indeed, it is in their self-interest to turn to politicians who oppose these changes.

So the lesson should be obvious: In the absence of progressive policies, including strong social-welfare programs, job retraining, and other forms of assistance for individuals and communities left behind by globalization, Trumpian politicians may become a permanent feature of the landscape.

The costs imposed by such politicians are high for all of us, even if they do not fully achieve their protectionist and nativist ambitions, because they prey on fear, inflame bigotry, and thrive on a dangerously polarized us-versus-them approach to governance.

Les resten av artikkelen på Project Syndicate

Picture on frontpage is from José Garcia Y Más (2005): Die Welt in der Klemme

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