Excellent Sunday afternoon reading, this:

Adam Curtis - The Curse of TINA


The guiding idea at the heart of today's political system is freedom of choice. The belief that if you apply the ideals of the free market to all sorts of areas in society, people will be liberated from the dead hand of government. The wants and desires of individuals then become the primary motor of society.

But this has led to a very peculiar paradox. In politics today we have no choice at all. Quite simply There Is No Alternative.

That was fine when the system was working well. But since 2008 there has been a rolling economic crisis, and the system increasingly seems unable to rescue itself. You would expect that in response to such a crisis new, alternative ideas would emerge. But this hasn't happened.

Nobody - not just from the left, but from anywhere - has come forward and tried to grab the public imagination with a vision of a different way to organise and manage society.
A long and winding read, but well worth it. He pulls in Hayek, 60's UK public radio, Screaming Lord Sutch, and a number of disparate threads. Explains how the modern "think tank" evolved from origins of actually trying to come up with new solutions to various problems, to instead become a mouthpiece to champion particular pre-existing ideologies. Also a window into how some free-market advocates are unable to tolerate actual free-market competition (even if it leads to murder!).