Understanding Globalization, Financialization, Competition and Crisis
Chapter 10: Core Industries, Coercive Competition and the Structural Contradictions of Global Neoliberalism
A central lesson drawn from the experience of the decades between the World Wars was that the economic and political fate of the world could not safely be entrusted to unregulated, free market national and global economic systems. History warned that this was a path to economic instability, global depression and political chaos. In the aftermath of World War II, national economies, even those in which markets played a very powerful role, would be placed under the ultimate control of governments, while international economic relations would be consciously managed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank. Trade was expected to rise in importance, but it was thought at the time that the degree of global financial integration would remain modest, with cross border money flows under tight government control. The global prosperity that characterised the quarter century following the war — the “Golden Age” of modern capitalism — reinforced belief in the wisdom of social regulation of economic affairs.
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