File spoon-archives/lyotard.archive/lyotard_2001/lyotard.0110, message 55

Date: Mon, 08 Oct 2001 19:40:02 +0100
Subject: Re: Different approach to terrorist threat

Eric and All

As the bombs and missiles fall for the second day and the deaths mount 
incrementally. I was actually heartened today as an American woman's 
voice on the radio said that she thought America was the terroist now... 
Perhaps all is not lost for the media...

There is less  anti-state rhetoric of the type mentioned below in Europe 
presumbably because of the different social and political history. There 
were and are exceptions to this but with Thatcher's demise they have 
increasingly faded from view, in the UK this may possibly be because 
with the rhetoric came increased amounts of  decision taking being made 
the central state apparatus.

Currently the UK state apparatus (The government and the Tories both) is 
still attempting to convince us that in some way or other that the 
welfare state must change because of globalisation. Indeed some of the 
left believes that the welfare state cannot survive globalisation. This 
however is not a coherent analysis and is founded on a mis-analysis of 
globalisation because its an analysis that assumes that the reason for 
the existence of globalisation is a direct relationship with the G20 
countries. I susepct however that this may not be the case and that the 
post-modern situation is completely out of their control.... There is 
not doubt that the welfare state in these post-modern days is under 
severe strain, in europe for example ageing populations, poor decisions 
on pension policy, the complexity and cost of medical technology, and 
the growing demand for enhganced/increased welfare and social services 
generally.... beyond this external superstate pressures have had an 
impact. But these things are not related to development/capital 
requiring the provisions to be shrunk - rather this is a hangover from 
the temporary ascendency of neo-liberal economics.
Any comments or thopughts on exploring Lyotard on state and anti-state 


>I was also speaking here pragmatically and strategically. Here in
>America, the trouble with anti-state rhetoric is that immediately people
>think you are in agreement with the libertarians, Rush Limbaugh and Newt
>Gingrich, even though I doubt whether most of those voices are calling
>us to reduce the size of the government right now. 
>Besides the war, there is also a huge recession going on right now and
>because of the way America has decreased its social spending over the
>past decade, a lot of poor families are going really going to be hurting
>in the months to come.  I don't have it end me to rail against the state
>right now when I think instead that more state social intervention is
>probably necessary to deal with the looming domestic crisis.
>I also recognize the militaristic side of the state is another issue and
>I will attempt to address that more in another post.


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