As long term followers of my blog may recall I am a big fan of the work of economics writer Eamonn Fingleton, whom I count as well as a personal friend. Eamonn has been a keen follower of economic development in Asia. He has written several very important books that deserve even a larger readership than they have already achieved. The opinion essay he has in tomorrow’s New York Times, link below, may help.
Eamonn succinctly makes the case that the Asian economies get something right – that there is an alternative to the Washington consensus and as of yet American liberals have yet to really grasp this. Japan and now China are engaged in capital intensive investment that also pays attention to the risks of unemployment. Both countries, particularly China, achieve this in part by authoritarian forms of politics. But they do not shy away from the link between manufacturing and global economic competitiveness.
In the wake of a devastating economic crisis and the response of movements like Occupy Wall Street it is high time that the American left articulate a new approach. These days it seems that only Sarah Palin and Rick Santorum know that there is a working class in this country.