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Jan Winiecki

coming to the rescue of greedy bankers in order to save the general public, it is worthwhile to make a few general comments. If one prefers to portray profit making as greed, so be it. But whatever the ­­terminological preference, one may safely assume that in a private-­ownership-­based, profit-­oriented, competitive economy, profit making or greed is a constant. Montesquieu stressed in the eighteenth century that enlightened self-­ interest is in social science an equivalent of gravitation in natural science. Nothing in particular changed the level of greed in the

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Jan Winiecki

the lesson of humility and continued with his false prophecies. In the same decade (the 1970s) he also prophesied that our civilization would disappear due to the end of oxygen. I do not need to add that it did not. He continued to foretell the end of just about everything, including – of major interest in this chapter – mineral resources. It was these prophecies that tempted the late Professor Julian Simon, a noted expert on natural resources from the University of Maryland, to challenge Professor Ehrlich in 1975 to put his money where his mouth was and bet $10 000

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Jan Winiecki

environment and strongly guarded property rights. In the contemporary Russia it is just the opposite: a heavy-­handed, if not downright ham-­fisted, regulatory regime and very weakly guarded private property. Besides, in the case of Russian large firms ‘private until further orders from the government’ there is one additional disincentive, characteristic of all despotic regimes through the ages. If a given firm succeeds in markedly improving its performance, increases sharply the level of profitability and so on, it may attract an (unwanted!) interest from the state and

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Jan Winiecki

Jan Winiecki explores the various problems that the West must deal with in order to remain an efficient competitor in the world economy. These, he argues, are primarily consequences of the ever-expanding welfare state; consequences that are not only economic but also socio-psychological and, therefore, political. The author also considers the evolution of Western Europe and the USA from a new perspective, noting the ‘Europeanization’ of US economic policies and regulation and the ‘Americanization’ of polices and regulation in some European countries. The book concludes that the main challengers to the West – Brazil, Russia, India and China (the so-called BRIC group of countries) – are unlikely to gain economic supremacy over the West any time soon, given that they have to contend with their own difficulties.
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Jan Winiecki

similarly high economic growth rates in the decades ahead, predict that China will surpass the USA in terms of aggregate GDP somewhere between 2020 and 2030 or later, say between 2030 and 2050. They conclude on the basis of these predictions that China will not only surpass the USA in aggregate product (GDP), but its economy and economic policies will influence the rest of the world to a similar extent that the USA does at present. I regard these forecasts, especially the latter type concerning policies and their influence on the outside world, as doubtful at a minimum

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Jan Winiecki

years later. They outlined how the collapse of the system could take place and when. Three scenarios concerning the West – which then (understandably) evoked less interest of the readership than those about the East – concentrated, in my view, on, by and large, the most important trends and patterns in the West. And, I think, they continue to maintain their relevance today and will probably do so in the future. The middle-­of-­the-­road scenario I called ‘Halting and Hesitant Movement in the Same Direction’, that is, in the direction of liberty-­ based, free

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Michael Regan

heavily weighted in favour of lowest cost. Around 65 per cent of FARRAR PRINT.indd 173 29/01/2013 15:39 174 Globalisation, the global financial crisis and the state economic and social infrastructure in Australia is owned and operated by government. In the years immediately following the global recession of 1989–90, Western countries were facing a number of systemic economic problems. Inflation and unemployment rates were rising, the oil shocks of the 1980s were fuelling inflation and high interest rates, public debt and deficits were at their highest for 50 years

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Mohamed Ariff and John H. Farrar

elsewhere. In the meantime SWF activities when combined with exchange rate manipulation and a highly unbalanced trade position raise serious problems of unfair competition in both trade and investment. Globalisation was not supposed to work like this. Globalisation is not an inexorable natural force but complex human activity, and to control it needs strong leadership and a collective act of will. We have not seen this since 1944. NOTE * The authors wish to thank David Mayes for constructive criticism of earlier drafts of this chapter. REFERENCES Avendano, R. and J

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Edited by John Farrar and David G. Mayes

The recent global financial crisis has challenged conventional wisdom, and our conception of globalisation has been called into question. This challenging and timely book revisits the relationship between globalisation, the crisis and the state from an interdisciplinary perspective, with law, economics and political science underpinning the analysis.
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Tahnee Booth and Adrian Noon

Ports Limited and Mackay Ports Limited – both GOCs, while the Brisbane Airport interest was held through another GOC, the Port of Brisbane Corporation Limited, as a 12.4 per cent stake in BAC Holdings. As the aviation markets at all three airports were well developed, the government decided there was no longer a justification for government ownership of airports which were generating commercial returns. Brisbane Airport had experienced high growth rates since its privatisation by the Australian Government in the late 1990s. At the time of the sale, Cairns Airport was