Managing the Corporate-Communal Alliance

THE corporate-communal alliance that came to power after the 2014 elections needs careful management by its promoters, because within each of the partners of the alliance there are elements that are not altogether comfortable with the other.Within the Hindutva fold there are some trade unions, and outfits like the Swadeshi Jagaran Manch which experience a degree of disquiet over the fact that their parivar is promoting a corporate agenda. Likewise within the corporate fold, there are some honchos who find communalism difficult to swallow.

The Goods and Services Tax

FOR pushing through the Goods and Services Tax (GST), the NDA government is resorting to an enormous amount of untruth. The most blatant of these is the utterly bogus claim that the GST would increase India’s GDP growth rate by 2 percent per year. If the GST had such a miraculous effect, then the world capitalist crisis would have vanished long ago, since the US, which does not have a GST, would simply have moved to a GST regime, adding to its GDP growth rate and that of the world economy as a whole.

Modi’s Two Years

NEO-LIBERALISM is usually portrayed in terms of a “State versus Market” dichotomy, as entailing greater recourse to the market in lieu of State regulation, and hence constituting a “retreat of the State”.

A Right-Wing Coup in Brazil

NOAM Chomsky has called it a “soft coup”, presumably because no guns or tanks have been involved as yet; but the forced resignation of Dilma Rousseff, the democratically elected  president of Brazil belonging to the Left-wing Workers’ Party, and her replacement by a Right-wing politician Michel Temer, who has lost no time in constituting an all white and all male conservative cabinet, is nothing short of a coup.Dilma Rousseff is to be impeached on charges of “corruption”, but this “corruption”, contrary to the impression conveyed both at home and abroad by a powerful segment of the Brazilia

World Poverty

THE International Labour Organisation (ILO) brings out every year a publication called World Employment and Social Outlook. The current year’s report, released on May 18, is sub-titled “Transforming Jobs to End Poverty”. It provides estimates of the level of world poverty and of the amount of income transfers to the poor required for ending world poverty.Before getting to these estimates, it is worth discussing how poverty is defined by the ILO.

India’s Industrial Stagnation

THE index of industrial production for 2015-16 which has recently been released shows that the growth rate of the industrial sector for the financial year (over the previous year) comes to a meagre 2.4 percent. This virtual stagnation in industrial output is not just some sporadic occurrence. In fact the industrial growth rates for the last four financial years have been as follows: 2012-13: 1.1 percent2013-14: -0.1 percent2014-15: 2.8 percent2015-16: 2.4 percent This constitutes industrial stagnation with a vengeance.