The neoliberal bait-and-switch

In These Times
by David Sirota

09/10/10

In simplistic, Lexus-and-Olive-Tree terms, the neoliberal economic argument goes like this: Tariff-free trade policies are great because they increase commerce, and we can mitigate those policies’ negative effects on the blue-collar job market by upgrading our education system to cultivate more science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) specialists for the white-collar sector. Known as the bipartisan Washington Consensus, this deceptive theory projects the illusion of logic. After all, if the domestic economy’s future is in STEM-driven innovation, then it stands to reason that trade policies shedding ‘low-tech’ work and education policies promoting high-tech skills could guarantee success. Of course, 30 years into the neoliberal experiment, the Great Recession is exposing the flaws of the Washington Consensus. But rather than admit any mistakes, neoliberals now defend themselves with yet more bait-and-switch sophistry — this time in the form of the Great Education Myth...

http://tinyurl.com/2ef7erv


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp



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