Robert Skidelsky
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Conferences

Globalisation and International Relations
Robert Skidelsky
Buckingham University | Wednesday, November 26, 2003

 
 
Ever since the end of the Cold War, people have been trying to picture what a ‘world after communism’would look like. The first attempts to discern the post-communist future revolved round the ideas of ‘globalisation’ and ‘democracy’. Underlying both was the view that the main barrier to the spread of markets and democracy had fallen away, and that a ‘new world order’ was shaping up, or could be made to shape up, according to these two precepts. A crucial corollary of this was that war and the threat of war would become residual factors in the ordering of international relations because we had found a ‘better way’. Free trade promised gains to all; and ‘democracies do not go to war with each other’. Markets and politics would for the

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Democracy and Globalisation
Robert Skidelsky
Moscow School for Political Studies | Tuesday, July 29, 2003

 
 
1. In Russia there is no tradition of democracy. The rule of the tsars was autocratic.This was followed by seventy years of communism. Democracy, as we understand it, only started with Gorbachev and Yeltsin. Yeltsin was the first freely elected ruler of Russia. This was less than 10 years ago. In no other European country has democracy come so late.
 
2. Today it seems almost inconceivable that the clock will be turned back all the way. At the same time, there has not been enough time for democracy to strike deep roots. According to opinion surveys produced by Richard Pipes at the seminar last week, 50% of Russians thought multiparty elections were a waste of time. Only 8% said they would actively fight a Bolshevik coup, and 50% said

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Exchange Rate System for ‘Mature’ Economies in a Global Economy
Robert Skidelsky
Madrid Convention | Wednesday, May 14, 2003

 
Abstract:
 
The main purpose of this paper is to take issue with Bordo's claim that targeting inflation is the efficient 'modern' way to secure stable exchange rates. It argues that the Bretton Woods system of fixed, but adjustable exchange rates, gave the best all-round performance of all the exchange-rate regimes we have had, and that this constitutes a prima facie case for trying to recreate something like it. It further argues that the causes of the collapse of the fixed-exchange rate systems of the last century have been misinterpreted to support the current near consensus in favour of floating. It argues that the advocates of 'autonomous' monetary policy make exaggerated claims on its behalf. The thrust of the paper is that a

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Asset Based Welfare
Robert Skidelsky
Hansard | Saturday, November 10, 2001

 
Introduction
 
 
Capital endowment proposals of the type of Ackerman and Alstott come from the same stable as proposals for a Basic or Citizens’ Income. They can be called Asset-Based theories of welfare (ABW) to work-based theories.
 
The main idea is that every citizen should receive an unconditional grant of resources. This might take the form of a capital endowment or a basic income. Its main purpose is that of enablement: to give people a degree of freedom from immediate economic necessity to shape their own lives. It reflects the view that ‘the only thing wrong with an unearned income is that too few have it’. It would extend to the whole population the inherited modest competence currently enjoyed by a minority, unencumbered by

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Keynes and Canada
Robert Skidelsky
Toronto Seminar | Tuesday, November 06, 2001

 
 
i.
 
When I started to think about what to say this morning I had quite a limited story in mind, which is about how Keynes impinged on Canada and on how Canada impinged on Keynes. But the more I thought about it the more I realised that this might be a way into a larger set of questions concerning the value of the Canadian connection to Britain and the value of the British connection to Canada.
 
The answer to the first question is clear enough, and was written in both blood and money. Canada –and more generally the British Empire –enabled Britain to fight both world wars as a Great Power. Historians of the second world war, in particular –and I am as guilty of this as any –have, by focussing on the Anglo-American relationship,

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