I suspect that this topic will roll over into a series of posts, as there are a number of topic areas to discuss and related issues that are important in their own right.
I want to explore whether or not the current economic model has reached the end of shelf life and if it is or should still be relevant to humanist and social justice objectives. Where should ownership of CSR lie and who are the best arbiters?
So first up, it is perhaps good to look at current alternatives, to try to establish if they can deliver better democratic accountability (and hence, social responsibility) from capitalist activity. To this end I want to examine how liberal capitalism performs against state capitalism as a reasonable first step for comparison.
I would readily accept that there is no absolute in this, more a number of shades of grey that relate to the starting point for any given economy (are moving from totalitarian control or looking to re nationalise?). China and Russia would seem to be the most obvious examples, however other Asian countries and Brazil could also lay claim to operating a competitive state capitalism. There are a number of pros and cons to discuss, however for me the bottom line is not shareholder return alone, its more about well being and contribution that is made to sustainable living.
Marx defined capitalism as a step in our history where, capitalism once progressive will stagnate and fail due to increasing inequality and the contradictions that this produces (is this being evidenced now?). Thus it may be reasonable to ask if operators of state capitalism are cutting out that phase of economic evolution and following a progressive agenda, as opposed to the view that they are moving towards a more conventional capitalist model.
Well there's an opening gambit, I will look at pros and cons next and hope you find it of interest and continue to follow (please feel free to comment too!).