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New Left Review I/12, November-December 1961


Sam Spade

Signpost of the Pause





with the “Summer Budget” and the pay pause, the Tories have abandoned their image of the affluent society. After two nasty but limited economic crises, the accumulated weight of an almost stagnant productivity, starvation of essential social services, monstrously unbalanced armaments investment, and the total failure to check speculation in land values and office building, has brought the facade of affluence crashing down about the Cabinet’s ears. Sterling is continuously under pressure; the balance of trade is continually precarious. The Cabinet is grasping at solutions of straw—the Common Market as a spur to productivity and international competitiveness; the National Planning Council as a long-range method of increasing the economic growth rate. The first straw has just landed across the nations backs: the wage pause.

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