Beyond the myth of Asian exploitation

A wave of job cuts this week reminds us how uncompetitive Australia is with its neighbours. Yet even Canberra's Asian century debate misses the need to develop fluid, creative corporate identities.

Carl Jung's theory of the collective unconscious, though not as fashionable as it once was, saw the boundary of the human 'self' as being a bit like a picket fence – we ooze out through the palings, and the collective unconscious oozes back in. Or something like that.

Australian national identity is similar. We've been oozing back and forth across regional borders for decades, developing businesses and trade ties that make thousands of Australians a bit Asian, and similar numbers of Asian nationals a bit Aussie.

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