By Dick Leonard
How a lot does Tony Blair owe to Anthony Crosland? the writer of "The way forward for Socialism", who died as international Secretary in 1977, continues to be a big philosophical concept and reference element for the left. To what quantity is New Labour formed in Crosland's photo? What can the Blair govt study from his writings and ministerial achievements? during this textual content sixteen authors learn Crosland's legacy in political conception and political perform and element to various ways that his message is still suitable to coverage makers this day. The members comprise Gordon Brown, Roy Hattersley, Michael younger, Raymond Plant, David Lipsey, Brian Brivati and Tony Wright. Susan Crosland contributes a postscript.
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Extra resources for Crosland and New Labour
The important thing against this background conception of equality was to ensure the fairest degree of equality of opportunity to achieve what one could within a society marked by such a conception of equality. There is no doubt that New Labour is committed to equality of opportunity as an ideal and this indeed underpins their approach to employability skills and education; what is not so clear is the extent to which the government is interested in the relative as opposed to the absolute position of the poor.
We are applying it, however, in the new circumstances we face. That means never being diverted from our egalitarian ends, but being aware that policies may change to take account of changed times. So our policies are credible because we build from a platform of stability on tax, spending and borrowing. 48 Equality - Then and Now There is no alternative to this iron commitment. But it is socialist because we are talking about toughness for a purpose - an egalitarian purpose: • Giving unemployed people opportunities currently denied to them.
There have been those who have presented themselves as credible by abandoning socialism. The real challenge of left-of-centre politics is to be socialist and at the same time credible, a challenge which Crosland met triumphantly, rejecting all sorts of gesture politics along the way. It is the challenge Gordon Brown 37 which we in the Labour Party, inspired by Anthony Crosland, fully understand and fully intend to meet. I want to look at the way the world has changed since Crosland wrote and I want to suggest that far from marginalising the issue of equality, these changes mean that the case for equality is even stronger.