“It’s a shitshow,” the senior Wall Street executive tells me. “I have a thousand balls in the air, trying to manage this, which is not easy.” His biggest concern? “A worry of the unknown.”
Westpac forecasts unemployment will climb by 200,000, and the nature of the virus being able to re-infect means businesses must be prepared to shut down again if new quarantine measures are required.
The hegemonic structure of neoliberalism will be destroyed beyond repair.
This Pandemic is a direct symptom of the climate crisis. As more habitats are destroyed with cheek to jowl over population, viruses that can spread between different species will increase not dissipate.
A vast reimagining of the economy with self sufficiency at its heart will replace globalised free market dogma as an economic philosophy.
A UBI replacing all benefits with fully funded public services designed to help and not punish will be required with enormous investment into a self sufficient economic Tino rangatiratanga.
The realisation that we need economic sovereignty to empower a functioning State that has the resources to protect us from external shocks in a world being defined by external shocks can have powerful consequences politically, culturally and economically.
- Capitalist monopolies in energy, transport and finance have to be brought into public ownership and control. They should be subject to democratic plans drawn up by the whole community. Workers should have much stronger decision making powers within them.
- All economic sectors to be made take steps needed to decarbonise the economy as much as is needed to reach zero net emissions by 2030.
- Free and frequent public transport on electric buses and/or trains in all main cities.
- Health care and education for life should be free and universally accessible.
- Welfare, pensions, child allowances, should be universal wherever possible.
- Taxation should be on wealth before income.
- Public housing at fixed and affordable rents should be a right of all not just the desperately poor.
- All workers should have a right to a job and the workweek reduced with no loss of pay to make that possible.
- Local communes should be supported for control and delivery of as many functions of the centralised state as possible – including housing, education, health care.
- Local communes to support cooperative forms of production of food, solar and wind energy, electric transport, and media.
The Left have an opportunity in front of them to reshape the neoliberal structure, the question is do we have the courage and intellect to be able to do it? Ever since Labour betrayed us in the 1980s, the Left have refused to reengage with the free market debate because they are fearful of the vicious idealogical war it inspired, this crisis demands those fears are pushed aside for serious reconsideration.
Increasingly having independent opinion in a mainstream media environment which mostly echo one another has become more important than ever, so if you value having an independent voice going into this pandemic and 2020 election – please donate here.
If you can’t contribute but want to help, please always feel free to share our blogs on social media.
TDB Team 2020.