Video: Mark Engler on Global Economics
By Mark Engler, Nation Books. Posted September 1, 2008.
All over the world, alternative approaches to capitalist greed are bubbling up from the grassroots.
Editor’s Note: This article is adapted from Mark Engler’s new book How to Rule the World: The Coming Battle Over the Global Economy (Nation Books, 2008).
One of the remarkable features of modern political life is how consistently global elites deny that viable alternatives to the current global order exist, even as the terrain of international politics rapidly shifts. The “imperial globalists” that rose to power in the Bush years contend that without U.S. military strength decisively projected abroad, the forces of evil will sweep the globe. Meanwhile, “corporate globalists” of Wall Street persist in their belief that, in the post-Cold War world, we have no choice but to embrace the continual advance of the “free” market.
Neither idea is credible. The disastrous war in Iraq has firmly contradicted the neocons’ argument that preemptive war can create security. Meanwhile, mainstream pundits continue to proclaim neoliberalism — the radical free market doctrine that has defined the “Washington Consensus” in international economics in recent decades — to be inevitable and irreplaceable. Yet as that ideology falls into disrepute across the globe, their contention is revealed as ever more deeply disingenuous. Today, there exist scores of books and hundreds of reports that offer new directions for the global order — plus innumerable initiatives at local, national, and international levels to create political and economic systems that uphold human rights and defend the environment.
In truth, a lack of viable ideas is hardly the problem for those who reject both corporate and imperial models of globalization. Whether they are part of boisterous national uprisings or quiet, persistent community efforts to fuel a truly democratic globalization — a globalization from below — members of grassroots networks are now engaged in a debate about the proper balance of vision, program, political strategy, and tactics needed to move forward. Continue reading ‘There Is an Alternative to Corporate Rule’