The political economy of Europe’s refugee crisis

A postscript to ‘Where is the Diplomacy?’ – perhaps the answer lies, as might be expected, in that less-than-effective responses to insecurity, conflict and other crises are, in fact, effective in meeting other goals (such as creating conditions in which the general public may be more amenable to further cut-backs in public spending and, possibly, strengthened social control mechanisms).


There has been quite a bit of commentary lately on post-capitalism, or the massive contradictions and unsustainability of predatory casino capitalism. Certainly the evidence of the dysfunctions of capitalism are there for all to see: massive and growing inequality, environmental degradation, the entrenchment of undemocratic regimes, the undercutting of social contracts so that the very purpose of life is reconceptualised into being a consumer, producer, worker, customer and general servant of the market.

Yet we should never underestimate the shape-shifting ability of capitalism. Like the state, another entity whose demise has been erroneously predicted many times, capitalism has been able to adapt to survive. Surely the private sector carried out the ultimate confidence trick in 2008 by having its indebted banks bailed out by public monies? Now, with Europe’s refugee crisis gathering pace, it is possible to see how capitalism will benefit in two quite significant ways.

The first is…

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