Democracy for Jobs
Policies for Full Employment and Ecomomic Democracy

Jackson,Ted; Allen, Richie; McCarthy, Skip; Peters, Roger
Publisher:  Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, Ottawa, Canada
Year Published:  1989  
Pages:  40pp  
Resource Type:  Book
Cx Number:  CX4118

Abstract:  "Neoconservatives are noisy, self-appointed champions of democracy and freedom. However, their concept of democracy extends only to politics. After all, for them economics is the terrain, and, indeed the responsibility, of elites. Democracy in the economy is simply not on the neoconservative agenda; it can't be."
This paper presents concrete, practical policies which promote full employment and economic democracy. "Vigorous pursuit" of these policies "at this time will enable Canada to become a full and robust player in the new world economy." The thrust of the argument is that democratizing ownership and decision-making in the economy creates jobs and generates popular commitment to making a restructured, retooled and more global national economy work.
The three sections of the paper contain specific recommendations outlining short-term or medium-term action which could be taken by a department or agency of the federal government. "These recommendations can be pursued by politicians in government or in opposition, and by all citizens and workers in Canada concerned about democracy and jobs."
The first section lays out a four-task agenda for the 1990s. To be built from the ground up, a democratic economy requires expanding efforts in community economic development, expanding the co-operative sector, democratizing the large corporate sector, and finally, increasing the capacity of municipalities to serve as catalysts of local development.
The second part of the report discusses ways of raising capital for these plans. Methods include a national stock savings plan, pension fund investment in real estate and venture capital opportunities, employee investment funds, and ethical investment funds and revolving loan funds.
The last section addresses inequalities and complexities in the labour market, and suggests policies to combat them. Issues covered include the role of women in the labour market, technological change and trade unions, peace, conversion and jobs, and single-industry towns.


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