Over the years, I’ve seen plenty of ‘where we stand’ lists from left-leaning organisations. Many of which amount to little more than a list of slogans, and few seem to have much idea of how the objectives set out might realistically be achieved. And as times have changed, many of those wish lists have stayed uninspiringly familiar, often standing as little more than articles of faith to be hoped for with little confidence that they will ever be achieved. What’s been needed for some time is a well-argued, rounded attempt to provide a complete view not only of what is needed to achieve a more progressive society, but why it is needed and how we might achieve it.
Richard Murphy’s new book The Courageous State more than adequately fills that gap.
I first came across Murphy’s work on his Tax Research UKblog while I was covering financial news for AOL Money. He writes clearly, argues directly and has a prodigious work rate. When he announced he’d been asked to draw his thoughts together in a book, I knew it would be a must read, and I haven’t been disappointed. It is a vital book for our troubled times.
Where Murphy immediately achieves more substance than such vacuous notions as The Third Way is by clearly setting out what the state should do.
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