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Criticisms, futures, alternatives

In the late 1990s Third Way governments were in power across Europe - and beyond, in the USA and Brazil, for instance. The Third Way experiment was one that attracted attention worldwide. The changes made by Left parties in Scandinavia, Holland, France or Italy since the late 1980s are as much part of Third Way politics as those developed in Anglo-Saxon countries. Since the early 1990s welfare reform has been at the heart of the Centre-Left's search for a new political middle way between post-war social democracy and Thatcherite Conservatism. For Tony Blair, welfare reform was key to establishing his New Labour credentials - just as it was for Bill Clinton and the New Democrats in the USA. Equality has been 'the polestar of the Left', and the redefinition of this concept by Giddens and New Labour marks a significant departure from post-war social democratic goals. The most useful way of approaching the problem of the Blair Government's 'Third Way' is to apply the term to its 'operational code': the precepts, assumptions and ideas that actually inform policy choice. The choice would be the strategy of public-private partnership (PPP) or the Private Finance Initiative (PFI), as applied to health policy. New Labour is deeply influenced by the thoughts and sentiments of Amitai Etzioni and the new communitarian movement. Repoliticisation is what stands out from all the contributions of reconstructing the Third Way along more progressive lines.

‘a socialist nightmare’). In the Anglo-Saxon countries it implies that, redistributive systems should focus on ‘hardworking families with children’ through tax credits, 32 targeted on the working poor, and leave them to work their own way out of poverty and exclusion. However, this addresses only one part of the dynamic by which citizens are relegated to the margins of society or the care of the state. A fundamental tenet of

in Political concepts

tributaries. The changes made by Left parties in Scandinavia, Holland, France or Italy since the late 1980s are as much part of Third Way politics as those developed in Anglo-Saxon countries. 17 This converse approach seems to suggest that a government is Third Way if a third party says that it is! For ‘old’ social democracy, Pierson 18 points out that at times social democratic

in The Third Way and beyond
The restructuring of work in Britain

diminution of union influence has not squeezed out the political space for contest and dissent. There is little evidence to support the deregulationists’ assumption that deunionisation creates a more peaceful and stable mode of industrial relations (see Table 3.2). In terms of institutionalised industrial relations the numbers of workers involved in industrial action have declined at similar rates in neo-liberal and corporatist state-societies, with the Anglo-Saxon countries demonstrating no particular tendency to a benign industrial relations climate. If we look to less

in Globalisation contested

that was in harmony both with the political and cultural demands of the time and with the older tradition.106 Richter’s contention was that one had to listen to criticism of German science and scholarship coming from the Anglo-Saxon countries. This criticism, he said, could be summarised in four points. The first had to do with a tendency on the part of Germans towards pedantry, and the second with their inclination towards the absolute and the abstract. The third critical point had to do with German education being focused so exclusively on preparing students for

in Humboldt and the modern German university