global economy: What really controls our global economy

After decades of giddy globalisation, the pendulum is swinging back to the nation.

These days, all the talk is about bringing the supply chains home. Congress just passed a nearly $400 billion bill intended to increase domestic production, aid in a green energy transition and reduce foreign dependence. Pundits have declared the dawn of a new era — the age of economic nationalism.

But what if globalisation has progressed so far that it exists even within national borders, and we just haven’t had the right lenses to see it?

We are mistaken if we see the world only in the jigsaw map of nations, or take globalism and nationalism as binaries. The modern world is pockmarked, perforated, tattered and jagged, ripped up and pinpricked. Inside the containers of nations are unusual legal spaces, anomalous territories and peculiar jurisdictions. There are city-states, havens, enclaves, free ports, high-tech parks,…

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