||In South Africa, at a time when National Health Insurance should be generously funded (7 years after its approval as public policy by the ruling party), state fiscal austerity appears certain to nip the initiative in the bud. The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund issued separate reports about South Africa in late 2014, following a new finance minister’s mid-term budget speech. In justifying austerity, they revealed 2 important conceptual blockages regarding inequality and international financial relations.
The resulting political bias in the macroeconomic debate has, in turn, given neoliberal policy advocates intellectual weaponry to impose deeper austerity. In contrast, the rise of a “united front” of labor, community-based, and social movement activists, along with a vigorous left opposition party in Parliament, ensure that one of the world’s most visible class struggles ratchets up in intensity in the years ahead.