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Clive Crook

Advice for the New Old Left

A modern party of the left doesn't need to be anti-capitalist.
Corbyn's people, circa 1984.

Corbyn's people, circa 1984.

Photographer: Steve Eason/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Left-wing economics needn't be stupid, says Chris Giles of the Financial Times in a recent column. A left-of-center program could be both practical and coherent. You might still disagree with such a program -- but not because it's economically illiterate or bound to fail on its own terms.

That's the problem with Corbynomics, according to Giles. The policies of Jeremy Corbyn, the old-fashioned socialist on course to be elected leader of the U.K.'s Labour Party, are wrong not because they're left-wing, but because they're delusional. Corbyn assumes "vast untapped pools of free money," says Giles. There aren't enough rich people willing to stay put and pay punitive taxes; they can't be made to pay for all the good things Corbyn wants to do.