Populism, Law and Order and the Crimes of the 1%

  • Queensland University of Technology


The article examines the evidence of endemic financial crime in the global financial crisis (GFC), the legal impunity surrounding these crimes and the popular revolt against these abuses in the financial, political and legal systems. This is set against a consideration of the development since the 1970s of a conservative politics championing de-regulation, unfettered markets, welfare cuts and harsh law and order policies. On the one hand, this led to massively increased inequality and concentrations of wealth and political power in the hands of the super-rich, effectively placing them above the law, as the GFC revealed. On the other, a greatly enlarged, more punitive criminal justice system was directed at poor and minority communities. Explanations in terms of the rise of penal populism are helpful in explaining these developments, but it is argued they adopt a limited and reductionist view of populism, failing to see the prospects for a progressive populist politics to re-direct political attention to issues of inequality and corporate and white collar criminality.
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Published: 2013-04-30
Pages:113 to 131
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How to Cite
Hogg, R. (2013) “Populism, Law and Order and the Crimes of the 1%”, International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy, 2(1), pp. 113-131. doi: 10.5204/ijcjsd.v2i1.96.

Author Biography

Queensland University of Technology

Professor Russell Hogg has published widely in the areas of criminology and criminal justice studies, including Policing the Rural Crisis (Federation Press, 2006, co-authored with Kerry Carrington) and Critical Criminology: Issues, Debates, Challenges (Willan, 2002, co-edited with Kerry Carrington). He is also co-editor of a forthcoming collection of essays on crime in rural Australia.