I think it’s another of those situations where the law is lagging severely behind reality and they’re trying to paper over the cracks using whatever inappropriate material they find lying around because politicians have very little understanding of how broken our economy is.
I don’t see anyone in the major political parties who gets that consumerism-driven capitalism based on leveraged debt has crashed into a wall and the ensuing fireball ate the future of work. If manufacturing growth caused the problem, it is unlikely to be the way out.
The information revolution has reached the end of the stage where we all seemed to be reaping the benefits, just as mechanisation forced agricultural and domestic workers into the cities to survive and crashed the price of labour. We need a fundamentally different economic model that uses the technological advances we’ve made, to have good lives while consuming less. I think free culture may turn out to have accelerated the demise of capitalism .
We seem to be facing a stark choice of forcing the wealthy to share or the poor to starve. The 0 hour workers and Uber drivers have gone first this time. The political offerings are tending towards facism or socialism because they’ve almost run out of foreigners to blame while they’ve waited for a miracle. Once the better off start to share the pain there is a chance of them funding work towards a solution.