A draft Economic Democracy Directive for the European Union
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Ewan McGaughey: King's College, London
No x3nq6, LawArXiv from Center for Open Science
The chasm between our political democracy and our economic absolutism is the single most important issue of our time. Today, in the European Union, a tiny group of asset managers and banks control most of the votes in the economy. They control shares in corporations, which control our workplaces, our pay, our security in retirement and our environment. These asset managers and banks oppose trade unions and fair wages. They support escalating pay for billionaire CEOs. They oppose action to stop discrimination at work and the gender pay gap. They oppose meaningful action to end climate damage. They are tearing our society and our planet apart. The voting power asset managers and banks control comes from other people’s money. It doesn’t belong to them. It belongs to us. It comes from Europeans saving for retirement, in pension plans, in life insurance, or mutual funds. But the share of workers’ capital in the stock market has been shrinking since the 1980s. Inequality has skyrocketed as workplace democracy and collective bargaining have been attacked. This has meant a declining share of income for labour, and growing share for the City, Frankfurt, La Défense or Milan. This is why we need a new Economic Democracy Plan for Europe. This paper contains a draft Economic Democracy Directive for the European Union that would democratise the economy, through votes at work, in capital, in public services, and secure public control of enterprises that drive climate damage.
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