KZ: The full cultural and political implications of the neoliberal critique would not be felt until the demise of the Keynesian system of macroeconomic management, which emerged around 1968, and gathered pace with the end of the Bretton Woods system of fixed exchange rates in 1973. That model had included an ample role for public investment and planning, which combined comfortably with post-war modernist visions of social housing, expanded higher education, public service broadcasting, publicly funded arts, and so on. This may not have been driven by modernism in an avant-garde sense, but it represented what Mark Fisher has called ‘popular modernism’, as represented by mass literary culture and rising social mobility. Keynesianism cultivated a sense of progress as a collective temporal experience, most explicitly and coarsely represented by that symbol of macroeconomics, GDP growth. For Franco Berardi, neoliberalism involves the retreat of individuals into virtual and imaginary spheres of political transformation, combined with a terrible sense that dominant political institutions are now permanent. As a symptom of powerlessness, depression is the consummate neoliberal disease. Getting high and tuning out becomes a necessary techno-political fix in a society that has lost its capacity for collective reinvention but has rendered individual ‘creativity’ an economic obligation. It is living people in a dead society. And its many other symptoms fill our media daily. Inequality, exceptional and routine cruelty, hatreds by the dozens, failed families, governments, religions, schools, etc.
We need to kill this monster we’ve created before it destroys our species. We do this by first wiping out the price system, then neoliberal markets, and finally money. Since economics as practiced today is built around sustaining these institutions, with their end there is no more need for this economics. Then we could look to building anew.
Me: I would say we need to innovate/evolve the price and money systems first with the new paradigm of monetary grace as in gifting because it resolves the deepest flaws of finance capitalism (individual monetary scarcity, systemic monetary austerity and chronic price and aset inflation) while, with the 50% discount/rebate policies at retail sale and at note signing for green and big ticket items, also enables us to proceed directly and forthrightly toward a much saner industrial and ecological policy.
As the concept behind both the new monetary and financial paradigm and the next zeitgeist is the natural philosophical and epistemological concept of grace as in love in action, and active love/graciousness is recognized as both the highest ethical and spiritual value and hence the most evolutionary concept of self actualization…the further evolution you’d like to see ought logically proceed within that new infrastructure.