streek
  • Jürgen Habermas 1 July 2013
    In his book on the deferred crisis of democratic capitalism[1] Wolfgang Streeck develops an unsparing analysis of the origins of the present banking and debt crisis that is spilling over into the real economy. This bold, empirically based study developed out of Adorno Lectures at the Institute of Social Research in Frankfurt. At its best—that is, whenever it combines political passion with the eye-opening force of critical factual analysis and telling arguments—it is reminiscent of The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Napoleon. It takes as its starting point a justified critique of the crisis theory developed by Claus Offe and me in the early 1970s. The Keynesian optimism concerning governance prevalent at the time had inspired our assumption that the economic crisis potential mastered at the political level would be diverted into conflicting demands on an overstrained governmental apparatus and into “cultural contradictions of capitalism” (as Daniel Bell put it a couple of years later) and would find expression in a legitimation crisis. Today we are not (yet?) experiencing a legitimation crisis but we are witnessing a palpable economic crisis.
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