Refers to today's dominant global economic system. Unfettered global capitalism.
It is based on 19th Century ideas that Laissez-Faire economic liberalisation or 'free markets' will enable the private sector to "deliver the goods" to the general population.
This is in stark contrast to the post war (1945-1980) Keynesian consensus that the economy should be highly regulated, favouring government intervention, increased spending on social welfare programs and publicly owned institutions such as public schools, hospitals and government transport. This Keynesian model has also been referred to as "the welfare state". Contemporary Neoliberal ideology has been largely associated with 20th Century economists Friedrich Von Hayek, Milton Friedman, and James M. Buchanan. In the late 1970's & 1980's Neoliberal policies were pushed by such politicians as Margaret Thatcher, Ronald Reagan, and Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet during their terms in power. These policies included deregulation of financial markets, the opening up of borders to international markets, increased privatisation of the public sector, austerity, reductions in government spending, and significant tax cuts to large corporations.
The concept of free markets has been heavily sold to the public on the basis that competition is good, and will weed out those unable to compete. This will in turn deliver the best goods and services to consumers at the right market price.
However, what has occurred is increased capital accumulation amongst monopolised industries. Increasing levels of inequality as unprecedented wealth is funnelled upwards. The rise of the banking and financial sector, and our consumer debt culture. Offshore wealth hoarding. Transnational corporations becoming more powerful than many countries. High levels of financial speculation. Continued exploitation of cheap labour. Environmental disasters and ecological degradation. The destruction of labour unions, wage stagnation, and the increased dependence of the lower classes on the Third sector (voluntary and community organisations). Rp @lowkeyonline