This morning's post is another brief round-up focused especially on recent posts on this blog.
A week back, in Complications with managerialism I said that I was writing a short history piece for the Armidale Express on the University of New England's various VCs following Jim Barber's resignation. It turned into two pieces, with the one I wrote last night focused on the turmoil of the second half of the eighties and the nineties, a turmoil that almost destroyed the place and greatly damaged its market position. It's a case study in what can go wrong and on the impact of managerialist/corporatist approaches.
I have been written a little before on this case study and will write some more soon, telling it as a story. In the meantime, here is a 2003 piece by John Quiggin that came up in the discussion. Look at the comments as well.
Since I wrote SPC Sunday and other matters, the Victorian Government has come up with a package that seems to ensure the future of the operation and the fruit growers that depend upon it. I suspect the decision was made easier by the swelling public support for SPC. Treasurer Hockey had no comment to offer.
When I first started reading Australian history, I found the Australian Agricultural Company very boring. I guess that I thought it a bit of a sideshow. I now find the AA Company popping up everywhere. In two books that I am reading at present - Eric Rolls on the Australia-China connection (Sunday Essay - musings on Eric Rolls and the Chinese experience in Australia plus a history of the Australian Miners' Union - there is lots of AA stuff. There are some stories there.
Since I wrote Chinese warships off Christmas Island, the dreaming and middle class decline, the Australian Strategic Policy institute has released a report, China's new dream: How will Australia and the world cope with the re-emergence of China as a great power, while media coverage is focusing on arms races and relative power balances. This is an example.
There are normally lags in public responses. I must admit to being a bit worried that responses will focus on the perceived threat, rather than looking objectively at the longer term dynamics.