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New Left Review I/213, September-October 1995


Peter Townsend

Persuasion and Conformity: An Assessment of the Borrie Report on Social Justice

The Labour Party is recasting its policies on the welfare state and one substantial contribution to its thinking is the Report of its Commission on Social Justice. [1] Commission on Social Justice, Social Justice: Strategies for National Renewal, Report of the Commission on Social Justice, London, Vintage 1994, isbn 0–09– 951141–X, £6.99. What informed the Commission’s approach? Without saying as much, they appear to have been governed by the belief that to win the next election the Labour Party must bow to the pressures of the international market, reduce long-standing aspirations to social equality and withdraw from the most costly commitments to the welfare state. This led them to neglect what might be done about globalization, to discount stark national evidence about current economic trends and to ignore the implications of that evidence for social policies.

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