As the nation prepares for the next Federal election, we can expect a plethora of party politics. Standing back from hurly burly of the parties jockeying for position, however, deeper and more enduring political economic challenges also deserve attention. Indeed, there is never any shortage of important political economic issues needing analysis! That is why the Journal of Australian Political Economy exists, serving as a national and international outlet for research and writing in this field.
The new edition of JAPE reflects the range of these ongoing concerns. It begins with an article on foreign investment, examining the trends and patterns of capital coming into Australia from the Peoples’ Republic of China and questioning whether the investment processes have the coordinated character that is widely assumed.
A second article considers Australian superannuation, probing how its financialisation has shaped the way in which the huge and rapidly expanding pool of ‘workers’ capital’ is managed. Because the effect has been to increase distributional inequalities, the author proposes different strategies for the labour movement.
A third article (written by the winner of last year’s JAPE Young Scholar Award) critically assesses the authoritarian tendency that accompanies the nation’s continual reliance on industries tied to the use of fossil fuels. Important avenues for resistance are identified.
Looking at a wide array of international literature, the fourth article assesses the evidence on links between growing income inequality, higher levels of household debt, and the greater likelihood of financial crashes occurring. A missing political economic dimension of this linkage is identified and explained.
Turning to more historical issues, the next article reconsiders Australian macroeconomic policy during the two decades of impressive economic growth following World War II, using detailed archival research to refute commonly held views about the so-called’ Keynesian era’.
An historical perspective also characterises the following article that documents how neoliberalism was ‘sold’ in in Australia. Taking the wheat industry as a case study, it shows how, from the 1970s on, a discourse about the need for competition and deregulation effectively displaced the solidaristic arrangements that previously existed among the farmers.
Finally, there is a substantial review essay on the socio-ecological crisis of climate change. It considers how the crisis is presented and analysed in ten recent books on this topic and points towards a more eco-socialist approach to this fundamental challenge.
These seven articles in the latest issue of JAPE are all freely available now on this site.
Prospective readers who would prefer a hard copy of the whole journal should email firstname.lastname@example.org