Sunday, 25 April 2010

The Green Corporate State?

An article in the current issue of Green World, the Green Party's official mag - Time for Economic Democracy - caught your editor's attention recently. Without wishing to cast aspersions, and recognising that the Greens would dispute it, Berrocscir couldn't help thinking that a significant corporatist strain is evident within current Green economic thought.

Corporatist ideas were a major ingredient in fascist Italy and were a cornerstone of the British Union of Fascists (Alexander Raven Thomson, a chief BUF philosopher and one time Communist, penned The Coming Corporate State in 1938)

Anyway the following passage from the Green World article was telling:

...the boards of all public and private enterprises with 50 or more employees to establish equal representation and joint control between management and elected staff representatives. Under an independent chairperson acceptable to both sides, these boards will have full access to all corporate information and the final say over all corporate decisions, including investment, technology, staffing, wages, pensions and so on. This system of co-determination would produce a major extension in workplace democracy. It would shift the balance of economic power; constraining the remit of capital and expanding the influence of employees.

This sounds pretty corporatist to me.

Of course the great mass of Green Party members would distance themselves from any similarity between themselves and the fascism of yesteryear, but the point must be made that, in practice, the 'Left' and 'Right' can often overlap and ending this false divide is central to a new anti-globalism for the 21st century. Those who would banish the current world set-up are often not so different.