Success stories!

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Success stories!. Groups recognising importance of reducing inequality now include (for example):- UNICEF, Children’s Society, Environmentalists & Green Party, Howard League for Penal Reform, UK Drugs Policy Commission, Health promotion etc.. Fairness Commissions Living Wage commission - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Successes stories

Success stories!Groups recognising importance of reducing inequality now include (for example):- UNICEF, Childrens Society, Environmentalists & Green Party, Howard League for Penal Reform, UK Drugs Policy Commission, Health promotion etc..Fairness CommissionsLiving Wage commissionInvitations to lecture: c.700 lectures, including at: UN, EU, WHO, ILO, CSJ, LibDems Policy Committee, ETUI, various European Social Democratic parties annual conferences, TU Annual conferences, US Civil Rights, Increasing media attention internationally to inequality and issues like pay ratios1

Political pendulum: public opinion has now started to move in a more progressive direction

2Failure of 1960s radicalism

Why Thatcher put the clocks back3Transforming society

What is the potential?Social deficitIntellectual vacuum

4Social deficit

Material life no longer critical GNPpc, LE, GPI But social life has become criticalSocial Status, Friendship, Early life150 studies of friendship, community life. Babies weight gain, like death rates and adult social needs Dickerson & Kemeny: social evaluative threat Social contact: an ordeal for some?Use of drink and drugs to socialiseLoss of settled communities and great inequality increases vulnerability to status seeking restaurants, VIPs, fast track, 1st classLess inequality strengthens community life etc..10% on antidepresents, 23% some mental illnessConsumerism and status seeking about self-worth 1/3%5Popular mix of resentment, cynicism,anger, apathy & disgust towards politicians and many social institutions

Russell Brand & Paxman: 9.3 million hits in one month - dont vote, stop pretending. shouldnt destroy the planet, shouldnt create massive economic disparities, shouldnt ignore the needs of the people

But, like Occupy, short on solutions intellectual vacuum? Danger of repeat of 1960s

Spirit Level partly popular because of psychosocial and status interpretations, society better for all? 6Extending democracy into economic life

A key to next stage of human emancipation 7TUC pamphlet, Workers on Board, on employee representation.

In 1960s most shares were owned by individuals with a longer term interest in a few companies. But

Introduction from TUC Gen Sec Frances OGrady: UK institutional investors spread their investments across hundreds, if not thousands of companies, increasingly relying on short-term share trading to generated gains. Pamphlet author Janet Williamson: the shareholders of a large listed company will number in the thousands (or) tens of thousands. it can be difficult for a company even to get full information on who owns their shares.8To prevent a repeat of 1960s failure to make real change, democratising economic life has to be our central objective.

Companies make goods and services but must cease to be systems for creating huge undemocratic concentrations of wealth and power. Those are independent functions!

Economic democracy turns companies from being pieces of property into communitiesMore democratic companies have much smaller pay differencesThey transform the experience of work sense of purpose, self-worth, valued contributionEmployee buyouts redistribute wealth and reduce unearned income Boards can include community and consumer representative as well as employeesPartnership increases productivity9


Failures to reach international agreement - partly because sustainability is seen as about belt tighteningIt is, instead, about improving the real quality of life by improving social relationsDiminishing returns to economic growthTackle the social deficitRescue from status competition (& consumerism)More democratic companies do better ethically11Summary

The rich world has reached the end of the real benefits of economic growth.Greater equality is now the best way to improve QoL.Sustainability is not a belt tightening sacrifice but involves raising the real QoL.Increase equality by extending democracy into economic sphere.12Transformation

We can:-Transform social relations, Transform experience of workRaise real QoL by meeting social needs,Exchange consumerism for more time with friends, family, communityAchieve Sustainability