The Ties that Unwind? Social Democratic Parties and Unions in Australia and Britain

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Title The Ties that Unwind? Social Democratic Parties and Unions in Australia and Britain
Author Lavelle, Ashley David
Journal Name Labour History
Editor Greg Patmore
Year Published 2010
Place of publication Australia
Publisher Australian Society for the Study of Labour History
Abstract The ties between social democratic parties and trade unions in recent years have been stretched almost to breaking point. Drawing on evidence from the experience of Australia and Britain, this article argues that a turning point in the deterioration of the relationship was the collapse of the post-war economic boom. This event was important because it ruptured the economic foundations of the policy base of social democracy and led to the adoption by social democratic parties of a pro-business neo-liberal policy framework aimed at restoring rates of investment and profitability. In turn, this new policy emphasis necessarily threatened the interests of organised labour. The current tension in relations is therefore not merely a reflection of the pressures associated with social democrats being in government. Rather, it is rooted in the gradual decline of the health of capitalism since the 1970s – a trend unlikely to be reversed in the near future.
Peer Reviewed Yes
Published Yes
Publisher URI
Copyright Statement Copyright 2010 Australian Society for the Study of Labour History. The attached file is reproduced here in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.
Volume 98
Issue Number 1
Page from 55
Page to 75
ISSN 0023-6942
Date Accessioned 2010-07-22
Language en_AU
Faculty Griffith Business School
Subject Business and Labour History; Political Science
Publication Type Journal Articles (Refereed Article)
Publication Type Code c1

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