Monday, February 9, 2009
Ed Balls: minister fears rise of fascism amid economic gloom
Severe economic crises have the power to trigger extreme political movements. Ed Balls is Britain's Children and Schools Secretary. In a speech over the weekend he predicted that the economic downturn in Britain--which has become the worst in 100 years--raised the prospect of a return to the Far Right politics of the 1930s and the rise of Facism. (Read article here.)
While perhaps not facing a rise in Fascism, the United States may see other forms of extreme political movements develop. The risk is that Obama's economic recovery plan fails and from that failure a militant brand of "free market fundamentalism" emerges. This could be accompanied by a return to a gold standard, which would bring on economic and social chaos never before seen. The probability of this happening is increased by appeasing centrists and limiting the size of the stimulus.