• L1 S2

    Civilisation Britannique


     Cours de Mr.Leishman, trouvés sur AlfrescoShare:

    « David Leishman personal notes civi GB L1S2 part 1.pdf »

    « David Leishman personal notes civi GB L1S2 part 2.pdf »


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  •  [21/01 CM 01]


    • THEME/TOPIC “Social policy” / “Welfare” policies / “Socio-economic adjustment measures”

    These 2 first expressions were adopted because of their positive means. It's like “look, it's good, it's “social””. It's about what the Government has done to resolve the problem of poverty. It's not to help the poor, it's to fight the effect of poverty (like strikes, rebellion,...).

    Council housing (= houses for the poorest of the population, “logements municipaux”).

    The “welfare state”: to help people, to present a certain level of welfare, of well-being.


    • During the 18th C., the UK was the one single country where the system is urban-industrial, dominated by a capitalist form of organisation. The country was mainly industrial. In Spain too the industrialization was developping but it's only in Catalonia, and in Italy too but only on the North. The UK is the only country entirely industrialized.


    • The need for welfare policies prove that this development wasn't positive for the population. The first industrialised place was Budapest, in Hongrie, but it was only a city. In UK the problem were that it was a national problem, the response of the issue had to be a national one.


    • What successives Governments did in response for the problem of poverty ?

    Two important figures in the 19th c.:

    • J. Bentham: principle of utility/the utility principle; utilitarianism

      By adopting a specific measure, government is going to produce the greatest good for the greatest number. Then that measure is useful. Government should adopt a measure only if they think that this is going to produce a better situation for a maximum number of people. What isn't said is that you do nothing for the smallest category of people. That philosophy gives a principle for the government to do nothing for the minorities. Politically speaking, not everybody has a voice. They only care about the ones who have the right to vote: so not the poor (because the right of vote was based on social position).

    • E. Chadwich: “Workhouse policy”: the “new poor law” (1834)

      * A poor law was providing assistance to the poor. This principle change with the new poor law. The old system has no organisation, so the new one was designed to organise these things. A new kind of institution is created: the workhouses. People had to work in these workhouses, which were like prisons: the food was awful, the work difficult and not really useful. They were meant to be less eligible that the conditions which could be obtain than anything you could get with the lowest pay outside. If able-body workers were feeling comfortable in the workhouses, they would stay too long. If they can do the work in the workhouses, they have to go out and look for another job.

      * “Sanitation policies”: deals with the excrements in cities. If you have a few families in a large area, and there is not toilet, it's okay. If there is a lot of people in flats and there is no toilet: it's noooot okay. So people die of cholera, dysenterie,... So these sanitations policies were developed because the Government didn't want to lose workers, and so lose a profit potential. Man Hours = Profit potential. This is utilitarian philosophy.


    • The period of the Liberal Governments: 1906-1914.

    • H.H. ASQUITH

    • David LLOYD GEORGE

    • Winston CHURCHILL


    • 1939-45-50-51: the Post-War Labour Government

    • Cl. ATTLEE

    • A. BEVAN


    • Neo-liberalism

    • Conservative:

      M. THATCHER: 79-90

      MAJOR: 90-92-97

    • New Labour:

      BLAIR 97-2007

      G. BROWN 2007-10

      CAMERON & CLEGG 2010


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  •  [28/01 CM 02]

    The situation of the working class over the 19th C.
    Britain find itself with a certain number of problems: which generate possible disturbances of the economic system. How to regulate the situation of unemployed workers ?

    The institutionnal arrangement for these sanitations policies: local policies could decide to create a new tax and to allocate the revenue from that taxe to (créer les égoûts). Locally the municipal council voted in favour.

    Parliament recognize that something must be done, but at the same time they don't force the local authorities to do it. It means in particular that when conservatives are in power, that won't be done because the conservatives represent the richs, they don't want to pay more taxes. In some places things are done, in others they aren't.

    Because of these problems, working class people wanted to get organised. The people charter (la charte du peuple), they want the right to vote. After that trade-unions (usually trade-unions are for most qualified workers) were not authorized for low-skill workers. Mostly the 19th c was without trade-unions. Then late in the 19th c people were authorized to have trade-unions. But the upper class of course didn't want the workers to be organized.

     Central government reflected and represented the basics interests of the rulling classes: employers, capitalists, entrepreneurs, and the aristocracy. The right to vote for male voters was a really slow process. By the time we get to 1906, the UK find itself with a number of serious problems: Slums houses (taudis, habitat insalubre), which meant in particular it could be a lack of sanitations: lack of ventilation (cook and heat up the food with coal, and sometimes the ventilations wasn't enough, the smoke and the dust made people suffer); people threw their excrements in the street. People lived in really bad conditions, and they worked a lot in unsafe and unhygienic conditions. That is why the working people wanted to get organized.

     By the end of the 19th C things are getting better. The Social Democratic Federation and the Independent Labour Party (social party). Fabian Society (group of intellectual scientists, philosophes, university lecturers...). They believe in gradual change, they hope for a political representation, a parliamentary represent, and government which actually cares about the lowest classes. 3 parties now: the Cons, the Lib-Dem, and the Labour funded in 1906. The Cons didn't want to hear about a Labour party, it was the party of tradition and stability. The Lib-Dem represented mostly the entrepreneurs, the capitalists, it was a party for change: policy of liberalism, doctrine of non-interventionism (“laissez-faire”), key of the liberals. They were facing this threat coming from the Labour party. The Liberal party seeing that Labour people who wanted to be represented in parliament, offered to take a deal: the Liberal-Labour pact: In general election the local liberal party will offer a seat to a Labour candidate, because they know (more or less) that the labour candidate in industrial area will get a lot of vote. So they are trying to incorporate the labour candidates in the Liberal party, in order to survive as the liberal party. The Labour party could use the Liberal party as a vehicule to be represented on the Parliament. After that the Labour party would now see representation for itself.

     But the Labour party pursued an independent politicial career. In the long run it was a serious threat for the liberal party. In the 1920~30, the liberal party almost disappeared. The Labour party was now the 2nd party.

     The first period 1906-1908 the first PM of the period was a man named Campbell-Bannerman (died in 1908). He wasn't a charismatic character, but still a few things were done: acts of Parliament which all deal with children. Children's conditions was something which attract a lot of sympathy from more classes. It's a sensitive topic. Was also the problem that many countries in Europe was making effort to improve children's conditions. In the 20th c, in Prussia, Germany, were educating their children better, in France they were trying to do the same. Not that everybody knew that war was going to happen, but they knew something was going on. This is a part of the reasons why the situation of the children was a problem.

     The Education Act (provision/supply of meals) 1906: enable some school to provide food to the poorest children, they were developping malnutrition (lack of calories, lactose,...) which bring deseases. A lot of children were suffering of a bad diet. A labour mp drafts a bill by himself and proposed it as a individual MP. Because the condition of children was such a sensitive topic agreed to the proposal of that indiviudal MP to appear sensitive, to have a better image. However the way this act worked was typical of the ambiguity of cohabitation of the liberalism and non-interventionism and utilitarism. Because the majority was now liberal the education acts passed. It provided the opportunity for local authorities to create a new tax locally and to allocate the revenue from that tax to financing school dinners. That act gives the right, but not the obligation, to finance the school dinners for poor children. Mostly Conservatives locallities didn't want to take advantage of this new possibility. By 1914 150,000 children (bénéficièrent) from this act. The food they had from the school was probably the only real meal they had for the whole day. But because the lack of obligation, they was still a lot of children who suffered of malnutrition. It was a gesture to be seen doing something, without really solve the problem. The problem of malnutrition in schools remained a big problem. If you let things be applied or not in local levels, you don't have the assurance it will be done...

     The Education Act (administrative provisions/measures) 1907: this act provided for an annual medical inspections at school. The education minister: if we think that it's important for the nation to have a good education system, it's equally important that children actually benefit from their education, so they have to be fed. The Cons and some Liberals reacted to this very negatively. This was the role of charitable richs, to be seen as kind and charitable. It's a scandal that the state was going to tax them to have someone do their job.

     The Children's 1908 Act (also known as the Children's Charter): introduced a several measures designed for the protection of children. Juvenile courts were introduced for children (before that they were judged as adult criminals). Creation of borstal(s) (maisons de correction) instead of sending them to jails with adults. Shop keepers were officially forbidden to sell alcohol and tobacco to children. Set a limit to the number of hours a child can work out of school. The parents are legally responsible of their children, they can be judged for negligence.


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  •  [04/02 CM 03]


    > Three acts: 1906, 1907, 1908. Asquith allowed to make socio-economic policies.

    > How liberals came to power ? They came to power in January 1906 with UK General Elections. The Liberals won a “landslide” victory (victoire écrasante). For the first time Labour got a pretty good result, but the Liberals got an overall majority. Liberals 377 seats, Irish Nat. 83 seats, Labour 53 seats, Cons 157 seats. The Liberals were able to do exactly what they wanted to do because of their very comfortable majority. It's a very agitated period in politics. They wanted to be prepared for war.

    > For example the Liberals adopted a law which made possible the right to vote for women. The people who critized this law called it the cat & mouse act. The Liberals were suddenly philantropist, people who love people. The measures they adopted after 1908 were about coal mining. The situation of the poorest workers, what is called the over-exploited industry or Sweated industry: there is a lot of competition between the workers, the wages were very low. For these categories (the poorest of the poor, the worst category of workers in the most dangerous situation): a certain degree of health insurance.

    > The social reforms of the liberal government: they had to and they had the power to do it.

    > Very serious political consquencies: it's going to eventually suscitate a constitutionnal crisis. So the first thing that the lib wanted to do was to adopt the Old Age Pension Act in 1908. Very sensitive subject because very poor old people stop working only when they could no longer work. The family or if they didn't have one: work house; had to take care of them, but it was hard for the poorest. Politically the Liberals needed to do that because of the emergence of Labour, so if the Liberals wanted to compete to attract the workers voters, they had to be seen doing something significant for the population. They needed to do things that would make the Liberals look better that the Conservatives and the Labour. For people (very poor old people) earning less than 12 shillings a week, over the age of 70, could receive help from the state of 5 shillings a week. This was the first socio-economic measure of giving money to people for nothing. People didn't have to contribute. If central government is giving money the money has to come from somewhere: general taxations → income tax. That was conter-productive to tax even the category of workers. The only solution was to tax the richs to finance social measures for the very poor.

    > They also had to tax people to be prepared for the war (like boats: DREADNOUGHT (peur de rien) = name for battleship). They wanted to finance the building of 8 of these battleship. But obviously the publicity of the government were centralized on the poor.

    More money for battleship than for the poor.

    The problem of the People's Budget was that the richs were more taxed. And of course they were not agree with that. Traditionnaly the Liberals didn't represent the poorest, or the aristocracy. So what they needed to do was to decide to tax the richs in general: you cannot distinguish people, you have to go threw universal measures, or it will be called discrimination, so they taxed richs people and very richs people. David Lloyd George was in charge to design the People's Budget, as he was the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

    > “Laissez-faire”

    > Socio-logical, socio-political spirit of this project: tax on alcohol and tobacco. The income tax was going to be increased by 2% for those earning more than 3 000 pounds a year. Another supertax of 2.5% for the super richs (like “impôt sur la fortune”). And additionnaly to that an increase in death duties: if death duties incrased, they might have to sell some of the land to pay for the taxations. And the profits made from the sale of lands would be taxed: capital-gains. Together all these new measures, included the People's Budget, were enough to finance the battleship and the poor measures.

    > It was a direct threat to the lifestyle of richs people. The richs of course, aristocrats in particular, were against this. Money bill every year: when this bill went to the Lords, the Lords refused to adopt it. Now in theory it's the House of Commons who has the legitimacy to decide on laws. But the UK doesn't have a written constitution, so in this case the Lords blocked the People's Budget. This provoqued a Constitutionnal Crisis, which clearly was the expression of class conflict. In January 1910, the Liberal government decided to call for a general election to confirm their legitimacy in front of the Lords, the Lords should respect the convention and be second. Second general election in december 2010, and the second victory of the Liberals, and the Lords still didn't want to adopt the People's Budget. The monarch and the government decided that if the Lords would persist, they would lose all influence and power. After that threat the Lords gave in, after 2 years refusing that law.



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  •  [18/02 CM 04]


    Constitutionnal crisis 1911: expression of a social class conflict. Important to remember both aspect: constitutionnal crisis and origin / causes of that constitutionnal crisis. The social classes were working class, entrepreneurs, and the aristocratic class.

     The origin of the Parliament Act 1911:
    The refusal by the conservative majority in the House of Lords about the People's Budget (called that way by the Liberals to seem likable). The aristocrates didn't want to be taxed more, the richest of them were going to be taxed more with the Money Bill, so they disagreed. 1910: the House of Lords would still not give in → opposed the passing of the Money Bill. In December 1910 something changed: intervention of the King, who had threaten the Lords, by appointing a certain number of Liberals peers in the H of L. The cons majority in the House of Lords had to accept a new law which reduced the legislative power of the Lords: Parliament Act 1911: actually specified in written that the House of Lords could not delay the passing of a law. In the case of ordinary law, the Lords could delay it for 2 consecutives parliamentory sessions. At the end of the 2nd one, they would have to accept the bill. In the case of Money Bills (finance bill), the Lords could only delay a passing of such law for 1 parliamentory session. → This parliament act was the first step of the reforms in the House of Lords. It was completed later in 1949.

    This is the conclusion of the constitutionnal and institutionnal conflict within the UK Government institutions. The Liberals at the center of the power wanted to be seen doing something for the poor, by taxing the richest ones.

     Measures adopted in the beginning of the 20e century
    The liberals adopted a number of measures in 1906-1908, and more after that. The Liberals did that not because they were a benevolant party but because they were representing this powerful class of entrepreneurs, employers. So the Liberals, under the influence of the New Liberals (Churchill, Lloyd George), had to accept that they had to do something. In the 19e century, it was a government of non-intervention: “laissez-faire”, in favour of the aristocracy. That's why in the beginning of the 20e century, with the capitalism starting to grow, they started to stop non-interventionism and do something in favour of the capitalists.
    Only the poorest section of the working class would receive help (otherwise they would not be able to work → less workers is bad for capitalism). One profession in particular, miners, was a matter of concern. The Coal Mines (Eight Hours) Act 1908 reduced the number of work's hours. But this did not include the time to go to the mine, only the working hours. The government did that because they were afraid of miners: in a lot of contries, they have been a threat, when they decide to revolt (they are strong, numerous, with tools that could be potential weapons). In 1912 the miners proposed a national strike for all industrial workers, which represented a serious threat if workers can mobalize to a point that they would stop the economics. The Government decided to do something at the base of the problem: the miners. So they proposed The Coal Mine (Minimum Wages) Act 1912. Very typical government flexible approach: a neutral committee would represent the miners workers and establish a level of minimum wage, different from a district to another. If workers were not really motivated, when Government would maintain the minimum wage to a minimum. If the miners were ready to revolt, the minimum wage were a little bit higher. It wasn't a national miners minimum wages: it was a local one, based on local negocations.
    Other professions that receive a lot of attention under the Liberals because they were very difficult professions, and most of the time they did activities that anyone was able to do. The sweated industry was over-exploited. There was public knowledge that certain industries was over-exploited: very long hours, low pays, etc. It has been a regular concern in the second half of the 19e century. The sweated work took place in small work shop, several people (dozen people), not very big factories. Nothing very much happens until the Liberals did something about it: in 1906 a daily newspaper talked about an Anti-Sweating Exhibition. But it was only in 1909 that the Liberal Government proposed the Trade Boards Act, under the influence of Churchill. They wanted to target the most serious problem areas: only those industries which were susceptibles of rebellion. So this act was only for 4 professions. For each of these industries a Board was established, and these Boards were supposed to be representatives of workers, employers, and Parliament. And these Boards was giving the responsibility of establishing a minimum wage. This measure again targeted the most difficult conditions only. In 1913, 6 more trades (professions) were added to this Trade Board Act, and included a few more workers. Need to remember: it concerned a very limited number of workers. If you look at the history of different measures adopted over the 19e century, there is sometime a vision of progress: it's only a vision. The Liberals' intention was to limit the systemic risk of rebellion by specific working class category (industry in particular): it would help secure the system, and would perhaps discourage workers of voting for Labour. If they wanted to represent the interest of everyone, they would for examples giving a minimum wage to everyone. But they just adopted a certain number of measures for the security of the system.
    nother difficult profession they were targeted were shop assistance: typically there were long days, with very short breaks or not it all, 7 days a week, and very low pays. This was the beginning of the chain store system. In 1911, the Government proposed and adopted the Shops Act, which stating the following: shop assistance should have one half day a week of rest; and they should have regular meal time. The Liberals had intended to reduce the number of hours, but lack of time pushed them to abandon this idea (geeeeeeeeenre): but the fact was that shop keepers owners did not want it.

       National Insurance Act 1911
    Before it there was the Workmen's Compensation Act 1906, to compensate the lost of income from the workers who could not afford an insurance for themselves.
    National Insurance Act 1911: first time that a national state finance program for compensating the lost of income due to unemployment and, mostly, health. Only concerned the poorest of the poor workers, and the second part of that act about unemployement concerned only certain categories.


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  •  [04/03 CM 05]


    > National Insurance Act 1911: First part is about sickness, second part about unemployment.

    How many workers were actually concerned by this act ? It wasn't all the workers, only the extremelly poor ones. The national insurance act 1911 was critized. Widows and orphans were not a part of it.


    > “Friendly societies” (société de secour mutuel en France), private association, not-for-profit organisation.


    > Maternity benefit


    > Doctors were traditionnaly more attracted by rich patients, because the poor could pay less (the prices were adaptable according to the level of money).


    > Otto von Bismarck: “Killing socialism by Kindness”

    → Risk of social unrest, risk of strikes, etc. Inspired by the German example, Lloyd George came back and made clear that he wanted to adopt the same sort of measures as soon as possible. The Government coming to the rescue of poor people.



    [BLACK OUT ~ Cours t-o-t-a-l-e-m-e-n-t incomplet]

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  •  [11/03 CM 06]


    > Situation between 1920s and 1930s [High unemployment. A lot of policies had to be reduced.]

    In 1922 there was a decision to reduce state spending: the economics was slowing down. Because of “booms and slumps”: the economics starting to grow and then slump. Welfare provisions in particular (supply, benefits). The unemployment insurance act in 1920 was modified.

    Similarity with the same period in France: reduced gvt spending, policy of deflation, leads to the salary of civil servants reduced or sometimes frozen.

    1926 National Strike: mass protest mouvement → not a great success for the trade-unions. Deal with the gvt to reestablish social policies, the workers back to work. Still it was a huge mouvement.

    1929: economics crisis. Severe recession. All towns, all industrial area became suddenly depressed by unemployment. In some places the rate of unemployment is to 30, 40, 50%, or even 60%. Under-developed economy.

    1940s was a period where the situation was going even worse. Poverty increase, all the problems, people were living in the street. “Down & Out in Paris and London” (book). The Conservatives and the Liberals weren't seen as adaptable to the situation.


    > During the war

    The UK enter at war against Germany. Under Churchill a coalition-war government was formed. Propaganda was supposed to boost the moral of British people.


    > Situation in 1942 and the Beveridge report

    William Beveridge: task of doing a report about a possibility of establishing a system of national insurance for all the people in the UK: universal system of insurance. All the different major risks which have been identified before, had to have a social insurance coverage. Churchill was anti-socialist and didn't want to establish something like this. This report which is very technical, established that yes, it would be possible to put in place a system of universal insurance coverage. “The Report on Social Insurance and Allied Service.”

    Beveridge was a civil servant (high functionnary). He wasn't supposed to be a member of a political party: they were supposed to be independent-minded. Beveridge himself wasn't a member of the liberal party but he was a liberal. In 1906 he had been part of the new liberal ideas, he wrote a book: “Unemployement: a Problem of Industry”. He was part of the mouvement in favor of the government social intervention. Because his main idea was that unemployment was not a problem of individual laziness or inadaption, but a problem of distribution of industry in territory. All industrial places were established close to coal mines, rivers, which were adapted to the conditions of the time. So other areas did not developped in the same way. Question of geographical problem: people did not especially lived where the work was. The Labour Exchanges in 1909 was an effort to resolve it. Central government had to decentralize institutions, had to do something about the critical problem of unemployment.

    So in 1942 the same man produced the Beveridge Report. People bought thousands copies of this report. This was a proposal to organize a system of national insurance, based on general taxations and contribution. So it was something which did attract a lot of people. Some of the Lords didn't want to be taxed to pay for the poor of course. But the Labour party quickly said that if they were elected after the war they would adopt the ideas of the Beveridge report. So the Labour party for the first time in the UK won a landslide victory in the 1945 elections.


    > After the war: economic crisis

    After the war, Lloyd George was PM again. Minister of reconstruction. An extension of the policies adopted before the war. But because of the crisis the attempt to build more houses for workers in particular did not produced what was expected. The level of state intervention in social-economic matters is a continuation of what we've seen between 1906 and 1930.

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  • [18/03 CM 07]




    Si quelqu'un a des notes...




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  • [25/03 CM 08]


    One of the first things which were done: post-war rationing. There was rationing during the war but tat continue after the war, the gvt was controlling the supplies.

    New measures:

    > 1946: National Insurance Act. Deals mainly with unemployment and its provide compensation payment. It was the first that the whole work force in the UK was covered completely by the same insurance programme. Everyone who works, not just the workers: industrial work is covered by the system but also the artisans. The state now had the responsibility to covering all the working people. One of the basic idea was a policy of full-employment: only a minority of people would be unemployed. Reversal of the policy adopted in the 1930s when unemployment was seen by gvt as an answer to the recession.

    1946: National Insurance (Industrial Injuries) Act → complement. Beveridge report. Provide help to workers who have an injury which make them unable to work.

    > Still in the same direction, in 1948: National Assistance Act: provide a subsistance minimum for people who couldn't pay contribution, unable to work (handicaped, unmarried mothers,...). The elderly needed supplementary benefit to live. This act finally ended the regime of the Work Houses. Those who wanted to take advantage of this benefit had to apply to the national insurance board and by 1950 there was 1.5M people who susbsisted thanks to the national insurance act programme. Those people who benefit this system were the poorest of the population.

    Fundation of the social policy system in the UK.

    Idea of “mérite”, idea of people who deserve it: the workers, from the Beveridge report. Work being the demarcation line between different way to deserving public assistance.

    > The National Health Service (NHS)
    : The last one was a programme of insurance against the lost of income, and this one is a programme of health care. Before the WWII, health provision was a patchwork of different compenent wich developed over the years; 2 way: organized by local authorities, and additionnal voluntary concerned, by friendly societies or religion institutions. In general hospital were more interested in people who could pay. There was an element of competition between the public hospital, and the voluntary non-profit making. There were also private nursing home for rich people. […]. Doctors, General Practitioners (GPs), were concentrated in upper class area, few were in the poorest areas. Retired practitioners sell his practice to the rich. Very poor people didn't have really access to medical care: only the father and husband was covered for free medical care.

     A. BEVAN. Same idea of universality as the National Insurance Acts. Everyone, not depending of how rich they are, would have access to free care. Bevan however did an incredibly difficult task: he tried to unify … . […]. Based on this political resistance Doctors argued that they didn't want to become civil servant. Most general practitioners refused to collaborate with the proposition of Bevan national health service. Dental treatment in particular costed a lot to people, were going to be free. The state was going to pay, with the taxation. The equipment the people needed would be free, consultation, everything. If you don't have enough money, and you need treatment, it would be free.

    Between 1946 and 1948 Bevan had to try to convince the BMA and people who resisted to this plan. The National Health Service Act came into operation in 1948 (while it was decided in 1946). In order to convince the doctors to collaborate Bevan had to make a number of concessions: public system, but doctors would be able to keep private bed in public hospitals. 92% of all GPs were now working for the NHS, they had to accept to be posted in some areas. Residual 8% did not collaborate and wanted to still operate on the medical market. On the 3.000 hospital of the UK, 90% collaborated. Millions of people had now the possibility to get free medical care. In 1948 when the system was officially opened to the public a lot of people went to their local doctor. This system represent the bases of the one in place nowadays. This system meant a lot to British people. Initially there were problems: all the people wanted to see a doctor, even if they didn't have anything wrong, they wanted to profit of the system. It was incredible: you could go to the doctor and don't pay for that. So people rushed to see the doctors in the beginning. Nation of hypochondriacs.

    > The state budget mainly financed the system: the problem that would create a major crisis in 1950. After a general election where the Labour Party were victorious, Bevan (Minister of Health and Housing) was forced to accept a reduction of the health care founds, in order to rearm the nation. It was a mistake to put Housing in the same Minister of the Health. Slow progress in building affordable housing for working class people. 500 000 prefabricated building were erected to answer the housing shortage after the war. In 1951 the second Labour Gvt came to an end. Other areas in which the Labour gvt launched new programmes: environment. In 1946 the Labour gvt adopted a New Towns Act.

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  •  [08/04] CM 09


    Les grands principes du Thatchérisme

    The UK form of liberalism & globalization (= result of a process, of certain policies: liberalism). This policy in the UK is a good example of how to work for capitalist interest. Profitable to the huge commercial, the big names, the biggest industrialisation, not to the little shop.

    Thatcher was known for her stubborness, her rigidity → The Iron Lady. The acronym TINA was associated to her: There Is No Alternative. She was very tough when negociating: “I want my money back”. She became the leader of the Cons party in 1975, a party which very few positions of power have been allowed to women, she was the first woman. She wasn't a feminist of anything, but she did know what she wanted, she gave her name to the UK liberalism.

    Thatcher: 1979-83-88-90. She was so determined that her own style of governement have now become a threat, because she made herself unpopular. In the middle of her third term (1990) there was people who wanted a vote to decide if she would stay the leader of the party. She went third after the vote and John Major went first. So in 1992 Major was Prime Minister (from 92 to 97).

    She wanted to impose a new kind of agenda, a new political program. What was pre-existent was a period when labour and cons alike agreed of a number of ways of controlling the economy, regulating business, etc. That period in the 1950s-60s-70s was known as a period of “consensus politics”. Also called the period of “regulation of capitalism”. Thatcher did not accept this idea of a consensus. She wanted to change this mode of regulation. The general idea is to reinforce the position of big businesses. The big chain stores etc, were given some degree of priority. Quite on the contraty these reforms were not on the advantage of industrialisation and little shops.

    Priorities: Old gvt VS Thatcherism

    • Full employment → you support local production. <> Unemployment → new policy which create a lot of unemployment. By 1987 there was more than 3 M people unemployed. Unemployment is good for economy: people are encouraged to find a job, so there is a pressure on the level of wages.

    • Large public sector, nationalisation <> “Denationalisation”, privatisation → almost everything which was nationalized were being privatized.

    • Welfare state” → provide assistance to people in need (illness, lost of income,...). <> “Enabler state” / roll-back of the state. The state must enable people to succeed by themselves in economy. Theorically, everyone can become a private entrepreneur. Opposed to the idea of public assistance, the new doctrin propose the idea that the assistance to the under-class would make them dependant: created a culture of dependency.

    • Regulation → regulating business, pay conditions, working conditions, etc. <> Deregulation → exact opposite: the previous regulation will no longer apply. In order to make the system more profitable for employers.

    • Negotiation with the Trade-Unions → tradition of the state working with employers, also with private employers <> Conflictual / confrontational approach → the new program in action would take a confrontational approach. Just before Thatcher went to power there were strikes in the energy sector in particular: she basically said she would crush them.

    • Global control → central gvt exercized a high level of global control over social processes and economy <> Monetarism → On the contrary Thatcherism is all about a policy of monetarism: what you do control is the value of money. The control which was preserved and reinforce what the control on the value of the pounds. It was part of the program to eliminate industry.


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  • [15/04] CM 10


    Margaret Thatcher

    > Political death: 1990. Her political demise was due to a vote of her own party. She became a threat to the new liberal project of the party. So John Major won the internal election and replaced her for a couple of years.

    > This overall objective was to reduce public spending. The main spenders of public money were local authorities, so one way to reduce it was to reduce the expenditures of local authorities. The plan was to adopt a new taxation system: the local rate, called in the media “the poll-tax”. In the law there was a “clause” which said that if you don't pay the tax you won't be able to vote. Instead of the old system of taxation which depended of personal wealth, the new tax would be indifferent and would tax everyone for the same amount per head. The tax was so unfair for poor people, that if the municipality didn't make the rate of taxation lower, the poor wouldn't be able to vote. At the occasion of this poll-tax, Thatcher was removed from her position of power.

    > John Major continued the same policies as Thatcher.

    Municipal housing: people who rented their flat for more than ~5 years could buy it very cheaply. Biggest single privatisation operation of thatcherism.

    • Neo-conservatism: revival of 19th C. atitudes, especially in the public assistance area. More and more people in the Cons party believed that people should look back to the 19th C on the “Victorian values”, the value of self-help (poor people are annoying because they need assistance: manage your budget, don't drink too much, find a job, you'll be responsible). “Self-help” was the title of a book (which gave advice to manage your life ?). If you help the poor too much, they won't be motivated to try harder.

    • (Neo-)liberalism: very little regulation in companies. Thatcher was opposed to the European Union: instead of more regulation, she wanted a deregulation. The Telecom sector was privatized. Energy, water, etc were privatized and so more easely deregulated.

    • Monetarism: abandoning a policy of full-employement and don't see unemployement as a problem.

    > Blair 1997-2002-2007 → Brown 2007-1010

    Blairism was seen as a continuation of Thatcherism. Nowadays Blair help people in country in Asia of Africa about their politics, so they appear more acceptable for western contries (rich countries).

    New Labour was all about “the third way”: the new labour and blair as the leader recognized the insurmontable legacy of Thacher. She had the right approach in economics. In a capitalism world what they wanted is to run the economics the right way. But it was neither left, nor right, just the economy. They tried to marginalized the rest of the people in the labour who didn't believe that they should follow the thatcherism economy. The New Labour people proposed to follow the Thatcher way (Mendelson proposed it in 2002).

    > Under Thatcher, unemployement was a political problem, but it wasn't a fundamental problem, it was even a part of the solution: it would motivate people. Under Labour it's slightly different, they was suppose to be Labour, taking care about the interest of working people. So people expected the Labour to look at unemployement as a problem. Under Blairism the gvt pushed people to look for a job, and they created a minimum national wage. There was a different one for young people, to encourage employers to hire young people.

    > 4 options: find a job, if you don't: find a volunteer work, if you don't: find a minion job, if you don't have any of the above you'll be forced to join a training course.

    > PFI Private Finance Initiative from Thatcher, Blair turned it into PPP Public Private Partnership. Way of reducing the authority of public, give more to private.

    > Privatize everything but not the NHS: central element of the modern British nation.

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