As global capitalism flounders, the world's governments are scrambling to use state action to try to stop the rot and bail out the system. After two decades of being told that the market works best, the state is back.
The reason for this is not some grand theory. It is pragmatic. The crisis is showing that states not only need to set the rules for capitalism to work but must also be major players. For socialists this creates a dilemma. If the choice is between bankruptcy and state support we obviously call for state support and nationalisation. No firm should go under, no job be lost because of the lunacy of the system. But we need more than this. And we should be under no illusion that the state is a socialist force.