Six centuries of vilifying the poor: Stigmatisation of welfare recipients and a lack of concern about low wages has origins in early mercantilist thought | British Politics and Policy at LSE

The original mercantilists were advocates of the “utility of poverty” thesis, believing that there was a positive side to poverty and that the State should create and maintain poverty as a way to increase the volume of exportable output. David Spencer argues that echoes of mercantilist thinking can be seen today. There is a persistent stigmatising of those on benefits who are seen as “scroungers” living a good life at the expense of tax payers, and an acceptance of low wages as a way to restore and increase economic growth.

via Six centuries of vilifying the poor: Stigmatisation of welfare recipients and a lack of concern about low wages has origins in early mercantilist thought | British Politics and Policy at LSE.

reblogged from Centre for Globalization and Cultural Studies

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