A toast to Paul Ryan -- or to Mitt Romney who made him his teammate in the U.S. presidential race -- for putting a grand old argument back on the front burner. "The fight we are in here, make no mistake about it," Ryan has said with spunk, "is a fight of individualism versus collectivism." That was once a great debate but it's drifted almost out of view. First the Berlin Wall came down 23 years ago, then the Soviet Union imploded, the "individualism" side declared total victory and if that wasn't enough, the End of History too. The collectivism side, which had been largely hiding behind communist and socialist parties, grew mousy, except for relics like the socialist "caucus" in the NDP.
How do we reform the international political system? One new radical solution that has emerged as a response to traditional Keynesianism is a multipolar anti-imperialist framework. Keynesians believe that the global governance institutions -- the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the World Trade Organization (WTO) -- can function as regulatory bodies that exhibit greater accountability, transparency and access to decision-making by developing country governments. Thus, if the global governance institutions operate according to guidelines that are rational, rather than ideological or power-driven, then they can become key, responsible actors on the global stage and we can build a world of peacefully interacting national capitalisms.
Amidst the engulfing impacts of the economic crisis on workers’ lives, a national conference aims to spark up vital discussions towards generating a wave of resistance for genuine social change. The Congress of Progressive Filipino Canadians (CPFC), its member organizations and allies invite all to participate in “Workers Struggles Amidst Neoliberal Globalization,” to be held on August 11th and 12th at the United Steel Workers Hall in Toronto. As workers’ lives and conditions are being edged onto the precipice of society by the crisis of neoliberal globalization, the conference hopes to meet this critical moment by underscoring the important role that all workers have to play in addressing the challenges and opportunities at hand.