I was at a meeting yesterday where a policy proposal that must necessarily be kept under wraps for now was under discussion. The meeting was broad based. The discussion was good and did not reflect total agreement. But what a few of us of broadly like mind agreed afterwards was that what was really interesting was that the issue was even discussed at all: five years ago we could not have imagined the topic under discussion reaching a potentially popular agenda, let alone it being taken seriously.
I then noted this comment from John Hope (who I do not think I know personally) on the blog when moderating just now, which reflected much the same sentiment:
If the neo-libs felt so comfortable and confident of their position ( and given the power they exert why the hell shouldn’t they ) why would they even consider it necessary to challenge Oxfam and its report. The answer I would have thought is obvious – they don’t. They know that their position is on the slide and so – naturally enough – they are doing all they can to bolster it up .
If we just look back a few years to the Occupy movement ; this present debate wasn’t taking place at that time ; the bankers had been bailed out, none of them had gone to jail, but the public at large weren’t motivated. Brexit and Trump have changed all that and ushered in the present discourse which is up and running and the neo-libs sense this and are unnerved by it .
So what do they do ? Like any threatened beast they lash out in all directions . And then a Grenfell disaster and a Carillion disaster come along out of the blue and yet more people start to question the narrative of ‘ the market solves everything and is the basis upon which a society should be based ‘ and another brick in the wall falls out.
That, I think, is what is happening.