Tony Blair’s political instinct typically is to associate himself only with the future. As such, his explicit appeal to ‘the past’ in his references to New Labour’s desire to establish a “new Bretton Woods” is sufficient in itself to arouse some degree of analytical curiosity (see Blair 1998a). The fact that this appeal was made specifically in relation to Bretton Woods is even more interesting. The resonant image of the international economic context established by the original Bretton Woods agreements invokes a style and content of policy-making which Tony Blair typically dismisses as neither economically nor politically consistent with his preferred vision of the future (see Blair 2000c, 2001b)
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