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New Left Review I/155, January-February 1986

Michael Rustin

Lessons of the London Industrial Strategy

In the past few difficult years for the Left in Britain, the greatest cause for hope has been the initiatives of the new ‘city socialism’ of the metropolitan county councils such as the glc. They have succeeded in demonstrating the positive value of public provision—in transport and leisure, for example—at a time when the idea of State spending has been under damaging attack. They have been able to reach out to new social constituencies, while also vigorously defending the interests of working people as both producers and consumers. They have been more adept even than this media-conscious government in the use of modern communications methods, and will end their present constitutional life in March with a substantial opionion-poll majority against their abolition.

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