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This chapter situates Montesquieu’s economic writing within broader political and economic developments that favored the emergence, in France and all over Europe, of political economy. For Montesquieu, the rise of international trade; the increasing dominance of mobile forms of wealth; and transformed expectations for material well-being in modern societies undermined traditional social structures and the forms of political authority that went with them. In this context, Montesquieu’s political thought can be read as a kind of political economy insofar as it employed a moral psychology of other-directedness and self-interest that was better adapted to an emerging commercial society than traditional models of duty and virtue. But Montesquieu, unlike the more straightforwardly economic writers of his time, did not organize his inquiry around questions of plenty so much as he sought, through his comparative method, to explore the diverse ways in which statecraft in the age of commerce could contribute to his ideal of moderate government.
This critical essay explores the work of István Hont. Members of the Cambridge school eschewed the term “capitalism” as an anachronistic description of the contexts that informed early modern politico-economic thought, preferring instead the ostensibly more neutral “commercial society.” But Hont's understanding of the latter was nevertheless quite present-minded and politically charged. Hont drove nineteenth- and twentieth-century economic theory back into eighteenth-century models, and his view of the economy that gave rise to them was informed by concerns in the 1980s and 1990s over the competitiveness of advanced capitalist nations in the face of low-cost insurgents such as China. More deliberate choices of recent economic theory can produce more accurate alternatives to the supposedly neutral “commercial society” depicted by Hont. World systems and dependency theory may help us to better understand the economic thought produced in and about the specifically capitalist world economy of the early modern period.
The political economy of colonization was not always the full-throated criticism of Europe's colonial-mercantile enterprise that it became during the second half of the eighteenth century. And yet, while allowing for a large dose of contingency in the development of political economy from the sixteenth century onward, this social science seems to have been destined to accord a great deal of critical attention to the problem of colonization. From its origins in the early modern period, political economy resembled the critical analysis of the relationship between state and society that it became during the age of Enlightenment. Even when economic writers internalized a strictly statist logic, a relentless focus on social development as the source of state power could have unintentionally subversive effects. In the first part of the following essay, I argue that colonization was not a subject that economists simply turned to from time to time when economic or political conjuncture pointed overseas. Rather, the problems of sovereignty among the composite monarchies and empires of early modern Europe were such that the colonial question was present in political economy ab ovo. In the second, I discuss the critical, sometimes anti-imperial turn that colonial political economy took after Seven Years’ War, mainly in the French case. Comparison with Spain shows that the relative maturity of the enlightened public sphere, as well as its relationship to a reform-minded state, shaped the colonial political economy that developed in these places after the mideighteenth century.
What follows is necessarily a sketch rather than a fully realized tableau, with some details filled in here and there to suggest the plausibility of the broader outline. Further work on this subject should depart from the premise established below: the orienting concepts of—and historical problems confronted by—early modern political economy derived from the widespread and durable phenomenon of the composite monarchy. When the problem of sovereignty is placed at the center of analysis, the novelty of the post-Seven Years’ War period becomes clearer, as does the play of similarity and difference between anti-imperial and reformist colonial political economy.
Public safety at mass gatherings is the responsibility of multi-ple agencies. Injury surveillance and inter-agency communication are pivotal to ensure continued public safety.
The principal objective of this pilot study was to improve the identification of trends and patterns of injury presentations at mass gather-ings. This was achieved through an electronic process for data gathering to support timely reporting of injury data. In addition, what evolved was the devel-opment of an inter-agency communication model to support information transfer.
An Electronic Injury Surveillance System was created and piloted at two mass gatherings in South Australia. Live, real-time data were collect-ed via customized software supported by electronic report generation.
The Injury Surveillance System captured data on 181 injured patients and assisted in the identification of trends and patterns of presenta-tions. The relevant injuries and patterns of injuries were reported to the appropriate organizations based on pre-defined communication models.
The pilot study demonstrated that it was possible to perform “live”, portable injury surveillance during patient presentations at two mass gatherings. The Injury Surveillance System ensured immediate data capture. Well-defined communication systems established for this pilot also enabled early action to rectify hazards. Further development of electronic injury sur-veillance should be considered as an essential tool for managing public safety at mass gatherings.