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15 December 2009

The mutualism solution

Or the John Lewis model for rethinking the state

By Jonathan Derbyshire

By way of an addenudm to my previous post on Tony Judt’s recommendation that the centre left set about rethinking the state, let me point you in the direction of Sunder Katwala’s post at Next Left on the recent fashion, on both left and right (the “Red Tory” right, at least), for mutualism. Sunder sees in the mutualist tradition a possible alternative to centralised command-and-control conceptions of the state. He also suggests that it offers the left an excuse to look back to thinkers such as G D H Cole “in search of a more empowering, participatory and decentralised idea of how society and state interact”.

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