New Labour, Old Labour: The Wilson and Callaghan Governments 1974-1979
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We are constantly told that New Labour forms an historic departure from the traditions of the Labour Party. This book, written by a distinguished selection of academics and commentators, provides the most detailed comparison yet of old and new Labour in power. It is also the first to offer a comprehensive analysis of the last Labour Government before the rise of Thatcher and the re-emergence of the Labour Party under Tony Blair's leadership. It reveals much about the history of the Labour Party as well as providing a much-needed context from which to judge the current government.
The latter recorded that he had made the decision as a consequence of the equivocal responses he had drawn from both the British and German Governments, but eyewitness accounts indicate that Callaghan, like Schmidt, would have risked the political unpopularity of accepting ERW had the Americans pressed ahead. It is likely that the decisive factor in Carter’s decision was concern lest adoption of the ERW offer up to the Russians a propaganda coup which, in the light of the adverse publicity the
arguments to which justice cannot really be done here but I will outline them very briefly. First of all a distributive state is obviously concerned with social justice and egalitarians focus upon one conception of social justice, namely greater equality. The economic liberal typically rejects the distributive state for reasons best set out by Hayek in The Constitution of Liberty and in Law Legislation and Liberty whose three volumes were published in the 1970s.15 The first reason is that market
chapter asks to what extent the Labour Government of 1974–9 embraced the economic theories advanced by those sympathetic to the New Right. Non-Keynesian ideas had been developed in the universities in Britain and the United States since at least the late 1950s. However, it was in the 1970s that these ideas were popularised in Britain in the media, in the output of think tanks such as the Institute of Economic Affairs and later the Adam Smith Institute and by Conservative politicians such as Keith
the Social Contract 103 practical arrangement to guarantee the democratic advance of the centre–left. By the end of the decade its demise amidst the wreckage of the ‘Winter of Discontent’ suggested that no future Social Contract was really possible without a fundamental and often painful transformation in the labour market institutions and industrial culture of post-war Britain. However, it seemed sadly that only a determined and ruthless centre–right government could carry through such radical
chair the Supplementary Benefits Commission and the arrival with her at the Department of Health and Social Security of Professor Brian Abel-Smith personified the close connexion between the social policy community and policy itself. An unnamed senior civil servant at the DHSS declared that resources reallocation ‘showed a clear political initiative, whose ideas had been stimulated by the social sciences’.20 Here was a British version of the conjunction of ‘faith, intelligence and good works’