Book of the week


The End of Politics: New Labour and the folly of managerialism, by Chris Dillow (£10.19 + postage, a 40% saving)

New Labour's distinctive idea is that equality and efficiency are partners, not enemies. But that's just managerialist ideology - the belief that trade-offs between conflicting values can be managed away. They can't. New Labour's main economic policies - tax credits, the minimum wage, expanding higher education and macroeconomic stability - have not removed the trade-off between equality and efficiency. But the managerialists have deeper flaws. They fail to recognize the multiple and conflicting meanings of equality and efficiency. And they assume that governments have knowledge and rationality that in fact nobody has.

So, says 'mumblling and stumbling' blogger Chris Dillow, let's scrap managerialism and replace it with genuine policies: ditch the idea that politicians can manage away social problems, and instead have a proper debate about conflicting ideals.