ideology

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Ideology ain’t dead

It might be fashionable to say otherwise, but the big ideas are still at play in modern Australia. Brody Viney finds them hiding in plain sight, and reflects on their importance for economists as well as voters.

Replacing Bernanke: who should be next head of the Federal Reserve?

Note: This article was written before the recent changes in candidacy. Nevertheless, it provides a valuable analysis of important factors to consider when evaluating candidates’ credentials.

On September 15 Lawrence Summers unexpectedly withdrew as a candidate for the next Federal Reserve chairman. His letter to Barack Obama stated, ‘I have reluctantly concluded that any possible confirmation process for me would be acrimonious and would not serve the interests of the Federal Reserve, the Administration, or ultimately, the interests of the nation’s ongoing economic recovery.’ Janet Yellen now faces competition from new candidate Donald Kohn or, some have speculated, an as-yet unnamed economist.

Whether you love or loathe him, there is no question that Ben Bernanke in his last eight years as chairman of the United States Federal Reserve has had his work cut out for him.

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A ‘rational’ guide to voting at an election

This article forms part of an ongoing series looking at economic issues as Australia heads into the Federal Election. More coverage can be found on the Election 2013 page of ESSA’s website.

The application of economic principles to election voting is a relatively simple process. A completely rational individual would simply vote for the political party that would best enhance their personal utility. If everyone did this, in theory at least, the party whose vision and policies best represented the country would win at an election.

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