By Conference of Socialist Economists

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The effect was that by 1972 there was a complete reversal in Conservative policy . Acts were passed giving the government wider powers to grant aid to industry . They also brought in an incomes policy . Following the success of phase one of the policy there was a short boom during 1972-73 which subsided with no real improvement in the underlying weaknesses in the economy . To stand any real chance of being accepted the second and third phases had to give more scope for wage increases . At the same time a deflationary budget in December 1973 made cuts of 11,200 million in public expenditure .

If we look at any of the counter tendencies, for instance the pushing of wages below the value of labour power, we see that this process is nothing other than a class struggle initiated by capital and resisted by labour . Holloway and Picciotto express the relationship between accumulation and class struggle well : "Capital is a social relation of exploitation, and the accumulation of capital is the form taken by the class struggle to recreate, develop or destroy that relation" (1977, p. 86) . Every crisis poses a potential threat to the fetishised social relations of capitalist society and restructuring involves a reimposition of those relations .

IDEOLOGY, CRISIS AND THE CUTS Kevin McDonnell[l] I THE THEORY OF IDEOLOGY Ideology is one of the concepts of Marxist theory which has been developed the least . The most influential approach in recent years has been inspired by the work of Althusser who constructs a theory of ideology as a relatively autonomous level, focusing on the category of the subject (ideology constitutes individuals as subjects and subjects them to a unique Other Subject) and on Ideological State Apparatuses . This approach is an understandable reaction to the reduction of ideology to mere illusion or falsehood produced by deliberate manipulation by the ruling class, but the attempt to formulate a regional theory of ideology is misguided .

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