The Unfinished Business of Thatcherism: The Value of the Enterprise Culture

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The Unfinished Business of Thatcherism: The Values of the Enterprise Culture is a book about the impact of cultural values on economic performance. Using survey research, interviews, journalistic accounts, novels, and historical data, this book examines the extent to which Thatcherism succeeded in transforming British values in directions supportive of a robust, modern capitalist economy. The author argues that Thatcherism accomplished more with respect to enhancing support for capitalist values, such as profit-making and private ownership, than for values of modernization such as technical expertise and the Protestant ethic. Ultimately, the author contends that Thatcherism failed at its cultural revolution because it did not provide a liberal political ideology to buttress its liberal economic ideology.
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Editorial Reviews

Uses survey research, interviews, journalistic accounts, novels, and historical data to examine the extent to which Thatcherism succeeded in transforming British values in directions supportive of a modern capitalist economy. Contends that Thatcherism accomplished more with respect to enhancing support for capitalist values, such as profit making and private ownership, than for values of modernization such as technical expertise. Proves that ultimately Thatcherism failed at its cultural revolution because it did not provide a liberal political ideology to buttress its economic ideology. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

Table of Contents

List of Tables xiii
List of Abbreviations xv
Preface and Acknowledgments xvii
Introduction xix
Part I The Enterprise Culture and British Cultures
Chapter 1 Decline and Ideology: Thatcherite Analysis and Prescription 1
Introduction 1
Ideology and Culture 2
Decline 6
Thatcherite Analysis 9
A Very Important Sub-Theme 14
Chapter 2 Hegemony and Consensus 23
Introduction 23
Characteristics of the Gentlemanly Culture 24
Way of Life 25
Ideology 30
Effects on Parties and Political Actors 31
Conservative Party 32
Labour Party 41
Consensus 47
Corporatism 47
The Civil Service 50
Secrecy 52
Chapter 3 Manufacturing Tradition: Prostrate at the Feet of Feudalism 61
Introduction 61
The Rise of the Business Classes 62
Gentlemanly Transition 64
Education and the Practical Man 66
Resistance to Competitive Capitalism 69
Conservatism 72
Style, Authority, and Organizational Culture 74
Comparison with the United States 76
Chapter 4 The Community of Practical Men 85
Introduction 85
Ideological Development 86
Culture and Community 89
Practical Men, Education, and Automation 90
Unions and Management 95
Fragmentation and Competition 95
Strikes and the Work Ethic 97
Joint Participation 102
Individualism, Community, and Laissez-Faire 106
Part II Thatcherism and the Values of Capitalism and Modernity
Chapter 5 Belief and Facticity 115
Introduction 115
Problems of Evaluating Micro-Economic Agenda 118
The Contemporary Conventional Wisdom 121
Another Analysis 130
Chapter 6 State Geese are not Great Layers: Policies Increasing Private Ownership 133
Introduction 133
Privatization and Ownership Policies 135
Rationale 135
Long-Standing Opposition to Nationalization 137
Privatization of State-Owned Firms 142
Extending Ownership 145
Reducing Governmental Intrusion 150
Social Welfare 153
Chapter 7 The New Economic Landscape: Opinion, Property, and Pocketbooks 161
Introduction 161
Privatization of Industry 162
Privatization of Public Housing 165
Removing the State 167
Regulation 167
Wage and Price Control 169
Job Creation 171
Subsidization 172
Social Welfare and Redistribution 174
Increased Spending 174
Use Other Peoples' Taxes 177
Chapter 8 Knowing the Value of Everything and the Price of Nothing: Attitudes to profit and Consumption 189
Introduction 189
Devaluing Money 191
Valuing Money 197
Thatcherism, Prosperity and Consumption 202
Chapter 9 The Love That Dares not Speak its Name: Money-Lust and the British
Introduction 211
Commerce and Consumption 212
Roman Empire to Middle Ages 212
Tudor Era to Restoration 215
House of Hanover to Victorian Era 220
Twentieth Century 230
Chapter 10 Rivulets of Change and the Riptide of Tradition 239
Introduction 239
Deficiencies in Schools 241
General Achievement 241
Vocational Training 241
Deficiencies in Professional Expertise 242
Science and Engineering 242
Business Management 244
Civil Service 246
Schools Reform 247
General Achievement 247
Vocational Training 251
Reforms for Professional Proficiency 257
Science and Engineering 258
Business Management 262
Civil Service 266
Chapter 11 Thatcherism at Work 279
Introduction 279
The Hardworking British 281
Survey Evidence 281
The Not So Hardworking British 286
Non-Survey Evidence 286
Survey Evidence 290
Workplace Relations and Productivity 295
A Common Purpose 301
Chapter 12 Conclusion: The Lady was not A Gentleman 313
Introduction 313
The Barbs of Social Class 314
The Thatcherite Response 318
The Gentlemen Remain 320
A Political Traditionalist and Economic Radical 324
A Cavalier with Roundhead Sympathies 329
Select Bibliography 335
Index 347
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