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Jul 13, 2019

Steve is joined by Thomas Fazi, co-author of Reclaiming the State: A Progressive Vision of Sovereignty for a Post-Neoliberal World. 
Fazi believes there’s an undeniable connection between the historic defeat of the left over the past thirty years and the dissolving of national sovereign power as we’ve transferred the tools of economic policy to supranational organizations which are outside the control of citizens. 
 
The first part of the 20th century saw the gradual integration of the masses into the democratic processes of western political systems. This posed a great threat to capital, auguring the possibility of its power being curtailed. 
 
Universal suffrage had been hard won in these nations, so the neoliberal solution was to hollow out the power of the ballot box. Formal political rights could be kept in place but by separating the mechanisms for democratic policy making from economic policy, they were able to render worthless traditional means of affecting change.
 
The Eurozone is the most extreme example, but other western democracies were similarly disemboweled through the shifting role of so-called independent central banks as well as bilateral and multilateral trade treaties which increasingly prohibit progressive government intervention in the economy.
 
Fazi maintains there is nothing free about the free market, which continues to need state intervention in the economy to forward the interests of capital, which could still make it vulnerable to mass democracy. He believes the left should acknowledge that our political, economic and social rights were all won within the context of the nation-state. And that is where power must be reclaimed.
 
https://www.plutobooks.com/9780745337326/reclaiming-the-state/
 
Follow Thomas Fazi on Twitter @battleforeurope and Facebook https://www.facebook.com/thomasfazi