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The challenge for socialist analysis is to reveal both the nature of the contradictions of capitalism in the neo-liberal era of globalized finance, and their consequences in our time. Crises need to be understood as turning points that open up opportunities.
What implications does the crisis this time have in terms of capitalist economic and political restructuring? What possibilities do these open up for the revival of capital accumulation and the renewal of its political forms?
Does it portend the end of neo-liberalism? How do we understand the role of states in containing the crisis? Why have ruling class divisions been so marked by their absence? What has been the direct impact of the crisis for labour and other subordinate classes around the world? What additional costs will they be expected to bear as capitalists states prepare their ‘exit strategies’? Can working classes reverse the pattern of defeat in recent decades, build new capacities, and impose their own template for types of economic and political renewal that can put back on the agenda the need to transcend capitalism itself?
How to facilitate this is the sharpest challenge posed to socialists by the most severe global economic crisis since the 1930s.