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February 17th 2009 print

Responding to the financial crisis

A Quadrant Online forum

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd thinks the blame for the global financial crisis lies in the “neo-liberalism” of “free market fundamentalism”. His solution is a return to the politics of social democracy.

Rudd wants a system where “government is the regulator”, “government is the funder or provider of public goods”, and “government offsets the inevitable inequalities of the market” (his emphases).

For those with short memories, social democracy in the 1970s came close to turning Australia into a banana republic.

Quadrant Online here presents four more perceptive analyses of the causes of the present crisis and the proper role of government in response.

How to think about economic policy: Peter Smith

How to re-regulate financial services: Lord Adair Turner

Why the securitization market collapsed: Nicole Gelinas

How the subprime crisis originated: Howard Husock