A review of Guy Standing’s latest book, Plunder of the Commons: A Manifesto for Sharing Public Wealth (Pelican, 2019) on David Bollier’s blog.
Here are two nice bookends for understanding British politics over the past eight centuries: The Charter of the Forest at one end, which from 1215 (until 1971!) guaranteed commoners the right to access to their common wealth for subsistence. And at the other end, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, who in 1981 ushered in a draconian regime of neoliberal capitalism that has eliminated those rights by stealing and privatizing common wealth.
In his recent book, Plunder of the Commons: A Manifesto for Sharing Public Wealth, Guy Standing, an economist at SOAS in London, brings together both end-points of this history. The focus is on enclosures, but the point of the book, its manifesto, is to reclaim the commons, chiefly understood, in this context, as public assets and services… more at: Guy Standing’s ‘Plunder of the Commons’ | David Bollier
There was a recent presentation of the book at LSE, with video and audio files available here.