[Marxism] [Pen-l] Michael Hudson: The game is over

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Sat Jun 21 14:09:14 MDT 2008


At 02:41 PM 6/21/2008, you wrote:
>Would love to read it.  Is it available electronically>

Only on Proquest, the title is "Financial crisis and hegemony: An 
investigation into the declinist paradigm".

Here's the abstract:

This comparative case study explores the relationship between 
hegemony and international financial stability. In particular, it 
examines how the U.S. exercises power through financial crisis 
management and whether hegemony is a necessary and sufficient 
precondition for stability. This study's purpose is to contribute to 
the debate surrounding the U.S.'s role in international financial 
system maintenance by comparing one Bretton Woods with two 
post-Bretton Woods crises. The study examines data in order to 
evaluate the four major theories of hegemony positing that the U.S. 
was responsible for the relatively smooth operation of the postwar 
financial order. When the 1950s and 1960s were idealized as the 
golden age of stability, events such as the financial crises of the 
1970s and 1990s were then seen as a retreat from hegemonic 
responsibilities and surrender to multi-polar, unstable and crisis 
prone systems.

Are periods of hegemony more conducive to crisis prevention, 
financial openness and system maintenance? Is the conventional 
literature correct in characterizing the post-Bretton Woods system as 
one "crisis," "disorder" or "post-hegemonic"? Our findings affirm the 
main thesis of this study that there is no "sufficient" correlation 
between the concentration of financial power (hegemony) in the 
international system and the degree of stability (absence or presence 
of crises) in the system. The U.S. intervention in 1966 through the 
imposition of higher reserve requirements conflicted with the need to 
provide continued stability during a period of growing international 
liquidity. Against the assumption of international instability as a 
result of U.S. decline, the 1974 and 1998 crises further confirmed 
that post-Bretton Woods paradoxically reinforced the same goals as 
Bretton Woods: (1) promotion of free trade and open finance, (2) 
intervention in international financial crises to maintain a liberal 
international order.

There is a gap in the prevailing paradigms precisely because they 
can't anticipate the kinds of expressions of renewed power and 
contradictions of crisis management that are present in our three 
cases. Conventional literature makes broad statements yet cannot 
account for the specific instances of "contradictions" of state 
power. This is where this study can make its contribution to the 
debate on hegemony and global finance. 





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