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<Actually, things are related in many ways:>
Yes and no. And many ways doesn't mean in all ways.

 >Blair followed Clinton as Reagan followed Thatcher.
Merkel's economics theories are very much Chicago School - not in tune with the traditional economics of the German right.<

Once upon a time I thought the same, But now I think she doesn't have an economic theory at all.

>The collapse of the Social Democratic state in Sweden shows many similarities to the collapse of the FDR democrats in the US.>

So the solid south of Sweden did what? More to the point: The social democrats in Sweden collapsed, but their state lives happily on. Of course you could argue that there are still in the Nixon phase.

Also, the whole thing happened thirty years later. So can it really be the same process?

>Similarities in social structure produce similar (although far from identical) results - and of course these nations are all influencing each other.<

Yes, but. That isn't actually true, if you look e. g. at the party system. In western Europe, Australia and Canada the main center-left party is a socialist/social democratic party. That isn't true in Canada, where the space is (or was) filled by the Liberals, and not true in the US, where the democrats are supposed to fill that space. So somewhat similar societies can get very different party systems.

< The long reign of Bush helped Merkel to power and helped Blair move far to the right and so on.>
Don't know about Blair; but he wasn't already that much of a left-winger in 1997. Merkel or rather her party actually did lose the election in 2002 because of their lack of distance to Bush. I don't think the eight years of Bush did help the german right one bit.

The academics you mention - I think you overestimate their influence on the european or american left a lot.

by IM on Sun Nov 20th, 2011 at 02:51:09 PM EST
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