This chapter argues that the ideas of duty and responsibility defended by communitarianism were used by New Labour to water down the party's commitment to equality. It begins with a brief explanation of communitarian ideas, and focuses on the works of 'prescriptive communitarians', given that it was these thinkers who had an influence on New Labour's thinking. The chapter deals with the link between ideas on community and socialism. The idea of community was present in Tony Blair's Third Way pamphlet, in which he defended a 'politics of "us" rather than "me"', one that would be based on 'an ethic of responsibility as well as rights'. The chapter is concerned with the narrative on social exclusion-social inclusion, which sheds light on New Labour's approach to poverty and social inequalities. It ends with a discussion of the implications of those deviations for the party's ideology.
Dimitris N. Chryssochoou, Michael J. Tsinisizelis, Stelios Stavridis, and Kostas Ifantis
This chapter focuses on the politics of the Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) 2000, which led to the signing of the highly debated and controversial Treaty of Nice (NIT), and shows the way the final agreement was reached and the increasing dissonance between larger and smaller EU states during the final steps of the negotiations. It recalls other important issues that were addressed in the IGC, such as the simplification of the Treaties and the hierarchy of Community Acts. The chapter also discusses the views of the Commission and other institutions on the Nice Process, takes note of the changes that were made to the weighting system and the NIT, and studies the concept of enhanced cooperation.
In liberal democracies there is a belief that citizens ought to take an active interest in what is happening in the political world. Political debate in modern Western democracies is a complex and often rowdy affair. There are three fundamental political issues: 'politics', 'power' and 'justice', which feature in almost all political discussions and conflicts. The book assesses the degree to which the state and state sovereignty are disappearing in the modern world of 'globalised' politics, economics and culture and new international institutions. The main features of the nation and the problems of defining it are outlined: population, culture, history, language, religion, and race. Different types of democracy and their most important features are discussed. 'Freedom' is usually claimed to be the prime objective of political activity. The book discusses equality of human rights, distributional equality, equality before the law, the claims for group equality on the grounds of race, gender, class. Rights, obligations and citizenship are closely associated. Ideology is the driving force of political discourse. The book also discusses nationalism's growth and development over the last two centuries with particular reference to its main features and assumptions. It outlines the development of conservatism as a political ideology and movement in Britain during the last two centuries. An overview of liberalism, socialism, Marxism, anarchism, and Fascism follows. Environmentalism and feminism are also discussed. Finally, the book talks about how ideological change occurs and stresses the importance of rationality in politics.
Virtuousness, virtuality and virtuosity in NATO’s representation of the Kosovo campaign
Jean Baudrillard's diagnosis of the Gulf War applies to the expression of organised violence in contemporary politics. This chapter describes that Kosovo campaign lends evidence to the suspicion that war as such no longer 'takes place', but that it has transmogrified into a different game with a different logic. As Paul Patton argues in his Introduction to Baudrillard's The Gulf War, virtual war, the war over truth rather than territory, is an integral part of modern warfare. North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) has conducted an epistemic war to secure its privileged moral status, fighting against the systemic anarchy of the international system, the inherent ambivalence and undecidability that necessitates and demands the political designation of identity. The chapter analyses NATO's virtuoso campaign to virtualise Operation Allied Force in order to represent itself as the virtuous actor in the messy reality of war.
War is never civilised', British Prime Minister Tony Blair declared on 10 June 1999, 'but war can be necessary to uphold civilisation.' In the context of the debate on the futures of European order, Blair's construction of the Kosovo war may be seen as an illustration of Samuel Huntington's scenario of some forthcoming 'clash of civilisations'. Adam Ferguson coined the term 'civil society' in An Essay on the History of Civil Society. Ferguson suggested that civil society was the vehicle of civilisation, being the result of what Norbert Elias was to term the 'civilising process'. Like other constitutive texts of the post-Cold War world, Huntington suggests that the end of the Cold War has been a moment of becoming. The West will have to realise, Huntington argues, that 'its Europe' is fundamentally different from 'Orthodox Europe', the Europe of Russia and, indeed, of Serbia.
Political theory has responded to the central questions about redistributive welfare systems, their justification, and the institutional means for implementing them, raised by the political economy. This chapter traces the transition from welfare to social exclusion, and the various theoretical responses it has elicited. The idea that political justice should deal in issues about the distribution of roles and resources, presupposes a political community which corresponds to an economic system for production and exchange. The libertarian challenge to liberal and communitarian political theorists over welfare and social exclusion is to reconstruct a convincing version of social justice, one which retains the appealing aspects of individual autonomy, but deals with its undesirable social consequences. The liberal response attacks the libertarian account of justice by pointing out that it is not only when rights are violated that freedom is restricted.
The Third Way and the case of the Private Finance Initiative
This chapter outlines the Private Finance Initiative (PFI), and highlights its political and ideological importance. It reviews research findings on the operation of the PFI in the health service. The chapter explores that there is little substance to the Government's claim that the PFI is on strictly pragmatic grounds the most effective way of renewing the capital infrastructure of the National Health Service (NHS). It also explores the reasons for its adoption and focuses on the character and contours of the Third Way as New Labour's operational code. To New Labour a defining feature of the Third Way is its pragmatism, its commitment to evidence-based policy-making: in the pithy precept so often reiterated, 'What matters is what works'. The Third Way prescribes for the State a major role in social life, but less as a direct provider than as purchaser and regulator.
The volume explores a question that sheds light on the contested, but largely cooperative, nature of Arctic governance in the post-Cold War period: How do power relations matter – and how have they mattered – in shaping cross-border cooperation and diplomacy in the Arctic? Through carefully selected case studies – from Russia’s role in the Arctic Council to the diplomacy of indigenous peoples’ organisations – this book seeks to shed light on how power performances are enacted constantly to shore up Arctic cooperation in key ways. The conceptually driven nature of the enquiry makes the book appropriate reading for courses in international relations and political geography, while the carefully selected case studies lend themselves to courses on Arctic politics.
This book is designed to give us insight into how power relations have been important to structuring and sustaining cross-border Arctic cooperation and cooperative governance of the region. Taking a close look at power relations necessitates jostling and unpacking established narratives about regional history and key actors. Chapter 1, however, aims to provide readers less familiar with Arctic settings with important background and, therefore, draws upon established narratives and classifications that later chapters may re-examine. We begin with an introduction to various Arctic actor groups in a brief historical context. The difficulty of keeping these actor groups separate from one another underlines the complexity and interconnectedness of Arctic governance today, and it is on this topic of Arctic multilateralism and cross-border innovation that the chapter concludes.
This concluding chapter revisits the main findings of previous chapters and brings them into conversation. In particular, the conclusion discusses how dedicated day-to-day diplomacy and many forms of leadership and ‘quiet’ policy work are needed in meeting the challenges and opportunities faced in the Arctic, but argues that the continued constructive engagement of Russia and the United States remains of vital importance. The chapter also discusses avenues for further research on the concepts of findings of previous chapters.