Caribbean Political Economy at the Crossroads: NAFTA and by D. Marshall

By D. Marshall

There are a number of quandary indicators confronting the Commonwealth Caribbean because the twenty first century dawns. worldwide alterations are quick rendering the region's conventional fiscal platform out of date. This ebook indicates despite the fact that that the increasing NAFTA or the hemispheric flip in the direction of bloc formation can supply a fashion out for the Caribbean. Politics needs to be introduced again into the regionalisation strategy, for every island executive is witnessing the narrowing of the variety of its country strength through robust TNCs, foreign monetary associations, Washington pursuits, and corporate-backed WTO commissions.

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Kay (1975) and Taylor (1979) suggest that this bourgeois-type has been shaped by the colonial experience. They argue that 18th century European merchant capital did not have a beneficial impact on peripheral countries. As they see it, European merchant capital tended to underdevelop the periphery by perpetuating 'pre-capitalist' forms of production, by guaranteeing the continued political-economic survival of the traditional elite, and by extracting surplus product. Reading Baran, one can argue that if powerful social groups within a ruling coalition are not 'bearers of capitalist interests' this will present crucial obstacles to industrial transformation.

Merchants, landed interests, petitbourgeois professionals, and an influential Anglican/Catholic lobby. Beckles (1989) draws on Kay's analysis of the unproductive nature of all-out merchant capitalism, but focuses squarely on domestic factors to explain the Caribbean economic malaise. Referring to Barbados especially, he argues that its economic retardation is the outcome of the dominance of a merchant capitalist class, largely phenotypically white, who either own, control, or sit on all major corporate boards in the country and influence policy.

But apart from the role of the state, some other modernization proponents like Rostow and Eisenstadt stress that without an aggressive entrepreneurial sub-stratum, no real economic transformation can oc19 CUr. Accordingly, Rostow argues that in post-colonial societies the new political class ought to centralize political power and thereafter mobilize capital by encouraging new ideas. This was necessary, he points out, in order that the 'forces of modernization' might overcome the 'forces of tradition'.

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