Wednesday, November 20, 2019

The ‘new right’ is not a reaction to neoliberalism, but its offspring

The neoliberals’ impact on the “new right” is nowhere clearer than in the British hard right’s attempt to enforce a no-deal Brexit.

The populist right-wing backlash against neoliberal austerity is just more neoliberalism. Those people who hate the present system and turn to the right will get more of the same. Life will get harsher.

The ongoing and increasingly intense conservative backlash currently taking place across Europe is often understood as a populist reaction to neoliberal policy. The neoliberal assault on the welfare state, as for instance Chantal Mouffe has argued, has eroded post-war social security even as it destroyed people’s faith in electoral politics. Coupled with a sharp increase in inequality and rapid globalisation, the technocratic nature of neoliberal government has angered electorates across the continent. Wanting to “take back control” of their political life, these electorates have turned away from traditional centrist parties and have thrown their lot in with populist parties on the fringes of the political spectrum. Although, as Mouffe is at pains to point out, this creates a space for both left-wing and right-wing populisms, today it seems that especially its inward-looking, nationalistic variants are experiencing electoral success.

Open Democracy

The ‘new right’ is not a reaction to neoliberalism, but its offspring

No comments: