Weekend Links 30-31 May 2015

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…and furthermore…

Comments

      • In 3d1k’s world, the rights of a minority don’t matter if he doesn’t personally care about them.

        Says a lot about the person.

      • @bobalot – Isn’t it important to respect everyone’s values and ideas ?? Or are you saying that his opinion and right to his opinion should be discarded as it doesn’t suit you and your ideas ??

      • bobalot – what are you talking about. I said let anyone marry anyone. I simply don’t care. It is not a big issue (except for family law practitioners). Sure the Irish got excited by it, any rainbow will make ’em happy, next I predict an overhaul of Ireland’s comparatively onerous divorce laws. I agree with Hector’s ‘contemporary marriage’ point below – why all the excitement is a mystery to me.

      • “I’m just not getting all the hype over same sex marriage. Such a non issue, a diversion.”

        You don’t get it because you’re a wilfully-ignorant narcissist who worships power. You’re essentially the same as Abbott, which is why you supported him.

        It’s important because marriage is a legal status and we’re preventing a substantial percentage of the population from attaining it.

        It’s more than symbolic; most countries don’t have de-facto laws, so preventing gay marriage affects things like inheritances, hospital visitation, and many other things. Those affect Australians, because even though Australia has defacto laws, Australians travel a lot.

        Bah! Why am I explaining this to a self-obsessed wilfully ignorant narcissist. I know you couldn’t give two shits about anyone but your precious little self, and you repeatedly and demonstrably lie in order to push your agenda.

        Say hi to Gina for me; ask her how the family’s going.

      • Matt,
        So if I had an opinion that would restrict your rights, would that be okay with you, would my opinion deserve equal consideration? Maybe right handed, black haired people shouldn’t be entitled to get married?

        Btw Matt, if you read 3d’s piece he thinks gay peoples rights are of little importance, they don’t matter, you don’t find that odd?

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Isn’t it important to respect everyone’s values and ideas ??

        No.

        Or are you saying that his opinion and right to his opinion should be discarded as it doesn’t suit you and your ideas ??

        Firstly, this is a false dichotomy.
        Secondly, you are conflating two very different things .
        Thirdly, the minebot’s opinion is not being “discarded” because it doesn’t suit someone’s ideas, it’s being discarded because it trivialises one of the most fundamental principles of law: equality.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        You don’t get it because you’re a wilfully-ignorant narcissist who worships power.

        The minebot appears to exhibit all the classic signs of psychopathy.

        Do not make the mistake of thinking him ignorant.

      • The problem with gay ‘marriage’ is that the gaynazi’s intend it to demean traditional marriage, as part of their jihad against the traditional family. Along with SSM will come the usual state enforced laws that will impose penalties on people who , offended by gay marriage, don’t comply with the demands of gay nazis to make them a cake or provide them a venue. By all means gays should be entitled to full protection under law for their union and property etc, exactly the same rights as anyone. But to change current traditional marriage law to accommodate SSM is simply wrong. And to be clear, I don’t give a rats what 2 blokes get up to but let them do what they want WITHOUT any effect whatsoever on my freedoms.

      • “gaynazi”

        Dingdingdingdinding. GSM, everyone’s old school internet imbecile is back. Leith and co: this is bordering on slanderous hate speech. Warn this moron and if it does it again, ban it. You don’t need muck like this soiling the site.

      • 3d1k is right, this is just a diversion by fake left and radical right, non-issue, it should have been resolved long time ago in 5 minutes without any media hype.
        real issues like who creates money, how pays tax and how much, what government role is and the most importantly what happened to our democracy are not even mentioned either by right, fake left, media, church, minorities, majority, … anyone …

      • I’m with 3d1k SSM is a complete non issue for most of the population leaving only two radically opposed sides to fight an issue the rest of us simply dont care about. Good news for the SSM activists is that their opponents are dying off quickly….hmmm maybe that’s the issue: no radical religious right means no issue and political irrelevance for those that have built their lives campaigning for rights they’ll just have.

      • CB: “political irrelevance for those that have built their lives campaigning for rights they’ll just have”

        Get your hand off it. Implying that the current push for gay marriage is so that those pushing for it can be politically relevant is pretty lame; you’re generally much smarter than that.

        How about the crazy theory that they just want the legal rights and protections afforded to everyone else, but not them? Is it so hard to understand that people don’t like being treated differently before the law, and will fight to remove those inequalities?

        Sheesh. One litmus test is to take everything you say, and replace ‘gay marriage’ with ‘civil rights for black people’. If you come out sounding like a fruit-cake who would get beaten up in Oakland or Harlem (like GSM, for example; ‘teh gay marriage reduces my FREEDOM hurr durrr’), then it’s probably time to reappraise your opinion.

      • 3D – the majority of Australians favour marriage equality and have done so for a long time. However this quiet majority has been spoken for by powerful and well organised lobby groups well entrenched within the political system.

        It’s not just about marriage; it’s also a rebuttal to the unchallenged and anti-democratic dominance of the religious right in Australian politics ushered in by Bushy Eyebrows of Bennelong – and is very much overdue.

      • LD that’s a bit over the top, as far as I’m concerned gays can marry their boyfriends or girlfriends or both, heck I dont care if they marry their pets, their farm animals and/or their blowup dolls (Japanese thing). Honestly I dont care, I wont fight against it, I’d even vote for it if it came to a ballot, but it’s just not my battle. wrt your racial rights comparisons I’d just say that in many ways the affirmative actions “results” of the 60’s/70’s formed many of the US’s 80’s and 90’s ghettos, Black’s won equal rights and “busing” yet in those parts of the country where the win was most significant, Whites simply fled these districts and were replaced by minority owned’n’operated dysfunction, the legal win became a hollow victory. Form where I sit you’re asking for a legal right but expecting a social victory, you’re the one that is ignoring the process by which such radical change really occurs:

    • It will be interesting watching wealthy Lesbians encountering the Divorce/settlements laws. Only a fool would enter contemporary marriage.

      • Sorry Hector, no escaping them laws whether married or not, just defacto for 2 yrs and you’re toast. From what I understand it doesn’t matter what the sex of the couple is either, same result.

      • +1, as Schopenhauer said on Marriage, it is to halve ones rights and double ones responsibilities.
        I would love to see how the family court deals with two mothers.

      • true, and i have to add that that’s especially the case in most of anglophone countries where “dark age” divorce laws with alimony and weird division of property are still actual …

        … alimony in 21st century … wtf?

  1. http://www.afr.com/personal-finance/superannuation-and-smsfs/85-billion-inheritance-bonanza-funded-by-super-20150529-ghci82

    “This year an estimated $8.5 billion will be bequeathed by the estates of Australians who die before using up their retirement savings, according to superannuation advisory firm Rice Warner.”

    Mmmmm… so what, approx $28,000 from super per death as deaths are 300k pa at the moment….. and that is assumming they have no spouse…. dear me….
    And this is from a cohort who did not have compulsory super.
    Nope, I call complete bullshit.

    • Maybe/maybe not. It would only take a handful of people dying within a year or two of retirement or before to skew the results. Ahold the people who die are less than eighty.

    • In respect to superannuation, death and tax, there remains an interesting law that Costello never changed, – anti detriment , the refund of contribution tax, 279d is the actual part of the act which enables a death benefit to be increased. It is a bit of a mystery given that super is tax free after 60 and not producing an assessable income and was a measure to allay double taxation when super was assessable after 60

  2. http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/comment/sydneys-skyrocketing-house-prices-are-worrying-but-chinese-buyers-arent-to-blame-20150529-ghcgjt.html

    Haha Finally. Just need someone crazy enough to go outside the norm and make such a message. Of course, it’s already being ridiculed by the vested interests as a racist message and should be silent and put to jail.

    Wonder how many ppls will actually attend this protest rally at noon? Just wish some of them are actually Chinese ppls (Hong Kongers like me) to ease the “racist” intention. They surely can’t arrest Chinese people being racist of their own ppls!

    • Wow keep us updated! It was only a matter of time until someone went “postal” for the extreme unaffordabililty & inequality issue in a place to call home.

    • Isn’t it indeed racism and xenophobia when one blames an ethnic group for a problem that is induced by own country regime(s) and their shortcomings?
      But i do agree about vested interest abusing the endemic consent.

      • I agree it’s not fair to target Asians.

        They should hold the protests out the front of bank CEO’s and politicians’ houses all over the country.

    • chredwarMEMBER

      I just had a knock on the door 15mins ago. A chinese lady was at the door and said that she was representing overseas investors and wanted to know if I was interested in selling. I asked if it is illegal to sell an existing house to a foreign investor and she ‘reassured’ me that it wasn’t. I said that I wasn’t interested and then she asked me of if I knew anyone who would be interested, to which I replied that I don’t know. She was very pushy about it. I am in Glen Iris in Vic and have noticed the past year an aggressive move into the area by Chinese investors and the open way they are going about it, today just confirmed how bad it has become.

    • Yeah I read that article yesterday, talk about misdirection and glossing over reality by pointing the finger everywhere else. Same with the Domain reporter in the accompanying interview. Instead of admitting there is a problem they play the race card.

      Are they oblivious to what is happening around the world? UK, Canada, USA, Hong Kong, Europe and New Zealand? Is Australia some magical land free of rampant Chinese speculation and property hoarding?

      No matter what nationality you are, no countrymen likes to see their homes being bought up by foreigners.

      • What a terrible article. Written by a ten year old.

        That redneck should have controlled the interview far more. She was carrying on with garbage.

      • Mangled logic ….. if Chinese are not highlighted then media are playing the race card against people who do… paranoid?

        It’s not simply a political or media stunt, though often it is viewed as such by Australia’s monocultural ‘gatekeepers’ and ‘media classes’ (led by Singleton, Packer, Murdoch, Gyngell, Rhinehart et al). ‘Chinese’ have been highlighted and demonised (by the usual suspects) too much in Oz.

        Meanwhile in ‘Europe’, like Oz, you will find that property buyers, generally inner cities or resort areas, are a mixed up bunch of ‘foreigners’, and not dominated by ‘Chinese’ (as maybe prices are not as out of whack as they are in Melb/Sydney inner cities, thus more spread). This includes buyers from US, Israel, Russia, Greece, Mid East, Iran, Turkey etc., in addition to EU, and for medium sized apartments (in one central European city giving 10%+ return of $60k investment).

        If ‘Chinese’ property buyers were truly dominating the market negatively, why are they not doing it everywhere, including inner western Melbourne where many residents complain that ‘Chinese’ pay no attention to their local market?

        Is it not impossible for educated Australians, whether in media or elsewhere, to apply some basic critical thinking and analysis? When you view the ’empirical field’ one has to be aware of personal biases (it’s not just inner eastern Syd/Mel), gaps in data and culture that may highlight only a part of that empirical field, or preclude most of it.

        This limited outlook sets the scene for demonisation and dog whistling from opinionmakers and influencers to spruik their one dimensional outlook on the world.

        A great example of where commissioners, influencers, ‘nativists’ and media got it wrong due to being out of touch with the societal zeitgeist, was the gay marriage vote in Ireland. In addition to LGBT rights, this was a large index finger from the more urbane, tolerant and globalised Irish youth and working ages.

        Meanwhile Australia still follows our ‘medium’, sorry ‘media’ who are more worried about enforcing their authority and ‘their’ ‘Oz identity’ on all things vs reflecting on and speaking for society, especially younger generations as opposed to our expanding baby boomer and oldie cohort…. has Oz media ever encouraged young people to vote or to be empowered? They seem to be viewed as the enemy along with football, free media, multiculturism, globalism, equality, environmental concern, ‘immigrants’ and any talk of curtailing middle class welfare…..

    • National investor housing finance commitments, excluding refinancing, stood at $140 billion per year.

      http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2015/05/investor-mortgage-fire-rages/

      Meanwhile, China’s real estate investment in Australia in 2013-2014 which, I assume, refers to the financial year, was $12.4 billion.

      http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2015/05/chinese-investment-aussie-housing-explodes/

      On the one hand, this latter data could understate the true level of foreign investment into Australian real estate. On the other hand, it is not clear how much of the total real estate investment is in the residential real estate, let alone the existing dwellings. So, let’s take the official figure.

      Can the 9% tail wag the 91% dog?

      • The $12.4b figure quoted is very large, but that number must contain investments in commercial real estate (e.g., Chinese restaurants, hotels, etc.) and agribusiness. So the question is; how much of the $12.4b went into the residential real estate?

    • I just saw the first episode.

      A rough description is ‘Fight Club’ crossed with Zero Hedge using computers.
      It looks good but I initially thought the same thing about another computer show, ‘Halt and Catch Fire’. That one ended up becoming a bit too silly for my liking after a few episodes with the characters slipping into stereotypes. I hope that ‘Mr Robot’ does hold up. It does seem to be a bit more ambitious.

  3. jaybe1001MEMBER

    Can non-free content links be marked as such. Perhaps with a $ sign next to the link?

    • clone278MEMBER

      Or alternatively include a username/password beside the link!!
      My problem is I’m always hitting the free limit for wrags such as FT. Does that mean I should get a subscription? Probably.. but just can’t justify it for one or two articles. Maybe if they charged 0.50c per article I might…

    • StomperMEMBER

      Sepp makes Edie O’Beid look like a 2 bit amateur – you really have to give him credit for his absolute lack of shame.

      • I’d say it’s worth getting Collin Powell and Tony Blair back to UN Sec Council to explain the perils of corruption in FIFA… /sarc

  4. That Peter Hartcher article is truly disturbing. What is going on within the government?

    Are we working within a Westminster system or one that the PM creates to suit his own brain farts? This is going to end badly for the nation, as if the economic news yesterday wasn’t bad enough.

    • rich: 3rd article under the ‘Local’ category.

      SP: Yep, that level of leaking cabinet discussion must be unprecedented surely. It reads like a recording. The leaking of the policy to the Tele before cabinet even knew about it, and Abbott’s denial of doing so the night before, is particularly astonishing. Either Abbott was dumb enough to do it, or he’s being set up to take a fall.

      Will we see another leadership challenge before the election?

      • It appears that he was dumb enough to do it hence he is being set up for a fall. It appears increasingly that he is turning to little committees and trying to circumvent normal process by trying to put pressure on cabinet to push through what he feels is best by briefing media prior to decisions being made. It just isn’t right and I’m glad that this has been leaked, even though its intent is to destabilise him internally.

    • Dutton is a complete bozo. A man who has truly risen far beyond his abilities. Obviously being a copper didn’t fine tune his interest in the rule of law.

      No evidence? Never an impediment. Will they rent space at Gitmo?

    • bolstroodMEMBER

      What stands out in this article is the urgent need for Australia to have a Bill of Rights to protect us from the undemocratic tendencies of our elected representatives.
      We cannot rely on having ” half a dozen cabinet ministers who still believe in the rule of law.” The PM trying to hoodwink Cabinet into making basic human rights an administrative decision at the ministers whim is not adult or good government .Unusual to get such a verbatum account, someone is very concerned. Looks like a spill is still on the cards , for all our sakes I hope so.

      • What really stands out about this article is that Abbott has clearly not changed his ways and remains a danger to himself, his party and most all Australia. I really don;t give a fuck if he destroys himself and the party, I really hope he does but this ego manic will take us all out in the process.

      • The potential for abuse in such a law is incredible, no proof, just suspicion, of terrorist activity is enough to be made stateless. It makes me wonder if they have really thought it through at all, that perhaps they are willing to trash a fundamental right for the sake of a quick boost in the polls, by appearing ‘tough on terrorism’.

    • This would only be a problem if we had leadership that took a few too many hits to the head because the leader was a boxer, and not a very good one. Even a brilliant one like Muhammed Ali deteriorated. Fortunately we are completely absent the symptoms of brain damage: impulsive behaviour, explosive anger, rigid thinking, inability to handle complexity, bullying, inconsistencies in thinking. Nope, nope, nope – we’re good. It’s all upwards from here.

      • I’m just pleased that my 1 year old dual US/Australian citizenship daughter can have her Oz citizenship revoked by the minister on a whim with zero recourse.

        Conversely, it is impossible for her to have US citizenship stripped; the US supreme court decided this in the 70’s, and changing it would require a change to the US constitution.

        I’m getting closer to giving up on Oz. It is a silly place.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Conversely, it is impossible for her to have US citizenship stripped; the US supreme court decided this in the 70’s, and changing it would require a change to the US constitution.

        Despite all the bluster, it will be no easy task to legally strip natively-born Australians of their citizenship, regardless of what morons like Abbot might want to do.

      • Drsmithy: my daughter isn’t natively born; she was born in California. From the Lib cabinet leak, they’re all on board with allowing the minister to strip citizenship from dual citizens.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Drsmithy: my daughter isn’t natively born; she was born in California. From the Lib cabinet leak, they’re all on board with allowing the minister to strip citizenship from dual citizens.

        My point was more that the same situation applies as in the US – native-born citizens cannot be stripped of citizenship without significant changes to the law, but naturalised citizens can be with relatively small changes to the law.

      • drsmithy: it is not the same as the US. Denaturalization can only occur within time limits for most reasons, and in any case must go before a court. It is subject to appeals to higher courts.

        That is not what is being proposed in Australia; it will be at ministerial discretion, with judicial ‘review’ (whatever that is). No courts. No trials. No appeals.

        It’s not even apples and oranges. It’s apples and pieces of 2×4 with nails in the end.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Let me start again, as we seem to have a miscommunication.

        In Australia, as in the US, there is an existing legal process and conditions wherein naturalised citizens can be “denaturalised” and lose their non-native citizenship [0].

        Consequently, fitting something like watching Al Jezeera in Arabic as a reason to trigger that process, is easy to envisage.

        However, in both Australia and the US (and probably most countries, I’d wager), stripping someone of their native citizenship does not have any existing legal validity. Therefore, putting in place a legal method of stripping someone of their native citizenship for having terr’ist thoughts a vastly more difficult proposition.

        In this context, your implication that the US is significantly different in this regard is, IMHO, inaccurate. The high-level concepts are the same in both (I agree that the specific methods of a court process vs potential ministerial administrative decision are very different, but the chances of it ever being the latter in Australia are slim, to say the least, no matter what the Mad Monk might bluster on about).

        [0] Interesting corner case: what happens with naturalised citizens that had to renounce their native citizenship to be naturalised ?

      • Let’s face it when the brains were handed out Abbott took the day off to go surfin.
        This whole stripping citizenship issue has lots more corner cases than the simple dual national idea.
        For one there are plenty of countries where citizenship is not a birth right,(China is one) so presumably non Chinese born in China would be stateless if their Aussie citizenship was revoked.
        I’m with MT the whole concept needs proper investigation before any half cocked TA brain farts are turned into legislation. This is especially necessary if you actually want to keep these powers otherwise the whole law will collapse once one unintended injustice is identified and overturned in the courts.

    • While Tony is getting himself into a vote winning lather screaming “death cult” at every opportune moment, thankfully there are a few level heads like Dennis Richardson still in control.

      Terrorism and China: finding our way in the new world order

      The Secretary of Defence, a former top spy and diplomat, acknowledged in a speech on Wednesday that the “ungoverned spaces” that are attracting “extremist ideologies” in Africa, the Middle East and South Asia are strategically important. But then he politely dispensed with this as a priority, at least in so far as the long-term requirements of his portfolio were concerned.

      Rather, he said, the shift of economic and strategic power to Asia was the “decisive shaper” of Australia’s defence force requirements . “At its simplest, it is the story of China’s rise,” he said

      http://www.smh.com.au/comment/terrorism-and-china-finding-our-way-in-the-new-world-order-20150528-ghbuhl.html

  5. I had a good laugh at the Gittins article. What about all the 80,000+ ‘unskilled’ IT jobs that got shipped out when we were above parity? The problem with unemployment and underemployment extends far beyond a few miners and engineers being out of work but apparently no one gives a f*ck when it’s ‘white collar’ jobs.

    • In the noughties, if your industry didn’t involve hiviz, no one gave two shits if it closed down.

      Pigeons are coming home to roost.

  6. In the intermediation of loanable funds model of banking, banks accept deposits of pre-existing real resources from savers and then lend them to borrowers. In the real world, banks provide financing through money creation. That is they create deposits of new money through lending, and in doing so are mainly constrained by profitability and solvency considerations. This paper contrasts simple intermediation and financing models of banking. Compared to otherwise identical intermediation models, and following identical shocks, financing models predict changes in bank lending that are far larger, happen much faster, and have much greater effects on the real economy.

    http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/research/Documents/workingpapers/2015/wp529.pdf

    • Even StevenMEMBER

      Thanks, FF. I have saved it and will put down on my essential reading list. One day (possibly) the banking system will be redesigned and papers like this will be instrumental in this process. A good find.

      • Just read the Stylised Facts and Related Empirical Literature section and conclusion.

    • FF,

      thanks for that. I thought it was that other paper until I saw the date.

  7. A good piece by John Silvester on the investigation methods into the modern drug ring.
    http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/the-good-mail-on-the-bad-mail-20150529-ghbk2m

    It ends up appearing a rather futile waste of energy and resources.
    Now if drugs were a health, and not a criminal issue then these police officers could be doing something else with their time. It may also lead to a decrease of corruption on the force.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yJT1ImT600
    Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP)

  8. Mish’s Global Economic Trend Analysis: Chicago PMI Unexpectedly Crashes: New Orders, Production and Employment Down by More Than 10%

    http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.co.nz/2015/05/chicago-pmi-unexpectedly-crashes-new.html

    Unexpected Chicago PMI Crash

    Looking for signs of strength? You will not find them in today’s Chicago PMI report.

    The Bloomberg Consensus estimate was for a 53.1 expansion reading. Instead, the PMI came in at 46.2, well below the bottom of the consensus range of 51.0 to 54.0.

    Readings below 50.0 indicate contraction. … read more via hyperlink above …

  9. I’m here to ruin your weekend 😯

    Download/listen MP3 podcast, ~14MB

    Among the news covered:

    * 2015: hottest first 3 months ever

    * the new highest carbon dioxide levels ever recorded

    * methane and melting permafrost in Russia

    * record extreme heat in Spain, Portugal and Italy

    * will the California drought last 30 years? (and is it time to get out)

    * Australians lose billions with heat waves (even indoor workers affected)

    * Canadian scientists protest government muzzling

    * Arctic sea ice at new record low for May

    * Obama approves Shell Arctic drilling

    * even more ice loss in Antarctica than we knew.

    • plus record flooding in Texas. But then that might be God’s punishment for the number of Fundamentalists there.

    • Prof Ugo Bardi:
      The senility of elites: coal mining must continue, no matter what the human costs

      This post was inspired by a recent article about coal mining in India by David Rose in the Guardian about coal mining. In India, people are dying in the streets because of excessive heat caused by global warming, but Rose reports that “…across a broad range of Delhi politicians and policymakers there is near unanimity. There is, they say, simply no possibility that at this stage in its development India will agree to any form of emissions cap, let alone a cut.” In other words, coal mining must continue in the name of economic growth, no matter what the human costs.

      I think it is hard to see a more evident example of the senility of the world’s elites. It is, unfortunately, not something that pertains only to India. Elites all over the world seem to be nearly totally blind to the desperate situation in which we all are.

      • @3d1k,

        “Judith Curry is a climatologist at Georgia Tech, infamous for flirting with the denier community on the basis that some of them have “good ideas” and can’t get their contrarian papers published. For instance, she has posted on Anthony Watts’ blog, as well as Steve McIntyre’s Climate Audit. She has further embarrassed herself (and her university) by using refuted denier talking points and defending the Wegman Report, eventually admitting she hadn’t even read it in the first place.[1] This and other shenanigans led Tamino of Open Mind to say, “Judith, your credibility is now below zero.”[2] In short, she’s the Richard Lindzen of the South. Or maybe the Roy Spencer of Georgia, take your pick.

        Perhaps what has sparked the most criticism, more than any other one thing, is that she has invited McIntyre to talk at Georgia Tech. No, really.[3] This makes her a massive enabler.

        Some other stuff she’s been wrong about:

        Maybe the Heartland Institute isn’t so bad after all![4]
        The BEST team tried to “hide the decline,” because there has been “no warming since 1998.” (This was widely quoted in a Daily Mail article.)[5]
        (From the same Daily Mail article) “The models are broken.” She later backed down about this on her blog, saying she was misquoted and “had no idea where it came from.”[6]
        Murry Salby is right about CO2 and every other scientist is wrong.[7]

        This list could actually go on for much longer — just go to her blog for more info.”

        http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Judith_Curry

        In September 2010, Curry started a weblog, Climate Etc., which takes the same “stress-the-uncertainties” approach also seen in other efforts to thwart science-based policy actions, as documented by Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway in their book Merchants of Doubt[9].

        Skippy…. 3d1k seems you and Curry have the same job title….

    • Lol. Didn’t ruin mine.

      New paper in Nature: climate to cool 0.5C for “a number of decades”
      New paper: natural variability of Pacific Ocean oscillation. Plays ‘crucial role’ modulating ENSO and Asian Monsoon.

      Chip chip chip. The ediface is crumbling – and that’s great news!

      • I’ve been thinking for a couple of weeks that the old 3d1k has been replaced with an apprentice due to a change in prose style and the spelling now makes me certain.

      • New paper in Nature: climate to cool 0.5C for “a number of decades”

        You are referring to this paper, that concludes

        This may offer a brief respite from the persistent rise of global temperatures, but in the coupled system we describe, there are compensating effects. In this case, the negative AMO is associated with a continued acceleration of sea-level rise along the northeast coast of the United States

        I looked at the paper to see where and why you thought that there would be a “half a degree cooler” change. I couldn’t find it. Not anywhere was there a mention of any “half a degree cooler”.

        http://blog.hotwhopper.com/2015/05/bob-tisdale-goes-amo-ing-to-big-chill.html

      • Oh look, 3D has been caught lying. Yet again. You have zero credibility, 3D. People generally ignore your posts, or laugh at you….

        … because you’re wrong about everything! You’re the George Costanza of the dirt-scratching sector. You’re mister $120 per tonne iron ore. You wrote hilarious blog posts backing Abbott, and even more hilarious blog posts lionizing Gina. And you’re just flat-out wrong about climate change whenever you post; not just wrong, but you’ve been caught lying again. Naughty naughty!

        Speaking of lying narcissists who are wrong about everything, say Hi to that fat slug Gina for me. Ask her how the kids are going.

        “In the course of the litigation, Mrs Rinehart … has repeatedly, directly, or through her lawyers, or through other influential connections, sought to deter the plaintiffs from prosecuting it, by measures some of which closely approach intimidation” – Justice Paul Brereton

        3D1K’s world is collapsing… it’s wrong about everything! The cognitive dissonance is epic!

      • It’s a habit of 3d’s to comment on a link he posts that is supportive of his “paid for view” to only see as has happened here, that it’s the opposite. As SS believes I think 3d has been downgraded.

      • Well it seems after some set backs by 3d masters the rate for comments has been diminished or more comments must be produced, a hit to quality can only be expected.

      • A genuine challenge to those who regularly post SkepticalScience Judith Curry character assassinations, read Climate etc for one month – I guarantee you will become better informed, more questioning and unable to identify bias. Read every link on say the last three or four posts: articles from across the spectrum of the climate issue. Regularly researchers that present papers discussed visit her blog to discuss criticisms or elaborate on difficult points. If they respect the intent of Climate etc, perhaps so too should others.

      • @3d1k,

        Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming

        Oreskes and Conway write that a handful of politically conservative scientists, with strong ties to particular industries, have “played a disproportionate role in debates about controversial questions”.[5] The authors write that this has resulted in “deliberate obfuscation” of the issues which has had an influence on public opinion and policy-making.[5]

        The book criticizes the so-called Merchants of Doubt, some predominantly American science key players, above all Bill Nierenberg, Fred Seitz, and Fred Singer. All three are physicists: Singer was a rocket scientist, whereas Nierenberg and Seitz worked on the atomic bomb.[6] They have been active on topics like acid rain, tobacco smoking, global warming and pesticides. The book claims that these scientists have challenged and diluted the scientific consensus in the various fields, as of the dangers of smoking, the effects of acid rain, the existence of the ozone hole, and the existence of anthropogenic climate change.[5] Seitz and Singer been involved with institutions such as the The Heritage Foundation, Competitive Enterprise Institute and George C. Marshall Institute in the United States. Funded by corporations and conservative foundations, these organizations have opposed many forms of state intervention or regulation of U.S. citizens. The book lists similar tactics in each case: “discredit the science, disseminate false information, spread confusion, and promote doubt”.[7]

        The book states that Seitz, Singer, Nierenberg and Robert Jastrow were all fiercely anti-communist and they viewed government regulation as a step towards socialism and communism. The authors argue that, with the collapse of the Soviet Union, they looked for another great threat to free market capitalism and found it in environmentalism. They feared that an over-reaction to environmental problems would lead to heavy-handed government intervention in the marketplace and intrusion into people’s lives.[8] Oreskes and Conway state that the longer the delay the worse these problems get, and the more likely it is that governments will need to take the draconian measures that conservatives and market fundamentalists most fear. They say that Seitz, Singer, Nierenberg and Jastrow denied the scientific evidence, contributed to a strategy of delay, and thereby helped to bring about the situation they most dreaded.[8] The authors have a strong doubt about the ability of the media to differentiate between false truth and the actual science in question, however stop short of endorsing censorship in the name of science.[9] The journalistic norm of balanced reporting has helped, according the authors, to amplify the misleading messages of the contrarians. Oreskes and Conway state: “small numbers of people can have large, negative impacts, especially if they are organised, determined and have access to power”.[7]

        The main conclusion of the book is that there would have been more progress in policymaking, if not for the influence of the contrarian experts, which tried on ideological reasons to undermine trust in the science base for regulation.[9] Similar conclusion were already drawn, among others on Frederick Seitz and William Nierenberg in the book Requiem for a Species: Why We Resist the Truth about Climate Change (2010) by Australian academic Clive Hamilton.

        —————-

        Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming

        Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming
        by Naomi Oreskes, Erik M. Conway
        4.12 of 5 stars
        4.12 · rating details · 1,379 ratings · 233 reviews

        The U.S. scientific community has long led the world in research on such areas as public health, environmental science, and issues affecting quality of life. Our scientists have produced landmark studies on the dangers of DDT, tobacco smoke, acid rain, and global warming. But at the same time, a small yet potent subset of this community leads the world in vehement denial of these dangers.
        Merchants of Doubt tells the story of how a loose-knit group of high-level scientists and scientific advisers, with deep connections in politics and industry, ran effective campaigns to mislead the public and deny well-established scientific knowledge over four decades. Remarkably, the same individuals surface repeatedly—some of the same figures who have claimed that the science of global warming is “not settled” denied the truth of studies linking smoking to lung cancer, coal smoke to acid rain, and CFCs to the ozone hole. “Doubt is our product,” wrote one tobacco executive. These “experts” supplied it. Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway, historians of science, roll back the rug on this dark corner of the American scientific community, showing how ideology and corporate interests, aided by a too-compliant media, have skewed public understanding of some of the most pressing issues of our era.

        http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7799004-merchants-of-doubt

        Skippy…. your ilk is a millstone around humanity’s and the orbs neck… if history is any guide your stripe… it does not fair well down the road… just saying…

  10. Brian Schmidt highlights one of our major shortcomings as a nation:
    Nobel laureate urges Aussies to take risks
    “The problem we have is an almost complete aversion to failure in this country,” Prof Schmidt told AAP.
    “(But) trying to guess in advance where highly innovative things are going to occur is almost impossible.” That’s why we’ve got to invest in all forms and accept the risk of the unknown, he says.
    Speaking at the Clunies Ross Awards dinner in Brisbane, he proposed a partial solution: a “national innovation agency” to cut across different government departments and ensure a big picture approach. It’s all a matter of encouraging bolder investments in the country’s relatively conservative economy, he told an audience of Australia’s leading innovators.
    “We have a culture where people go to uni and stay put and do what they’re doing,” he said.
    It’s a status quo he, too, could’ve followed in the early stages of his own career.
    Instead, Prof Schmidt says he opted to chase a single, big project and leave the obligatory report writing for later.
    A Nobel Prize later, the risk paid off – and now it’s just a matter of helping others do the same.
    “We need the upside risks of being innovative to outweigh the downside risks,” he says.
    “Because failure is the heart of innovation.”

    http://www.news.com.au/national/breaking-news/nobel-laureate-urges-aussies-to-take-risks/story-e6frfku9-1227373341227

    I may just add that we seem to be “genetically built” to appreciate only three word slogans (like, “nop, nop, nop” or “a crime is a crime is a crime”) and unable to make sense of an intelligent argument put forward by people like Schmidt.

    • Prof Schmidt is on the money. The problem we have is that funding is small and the community is evolving into wall street. Careers are being built on the next bonus rather then than next idea that will change the world.

    • Those risks often came after people were sure they hadn’t handed their lives over to the endless greed and emotional indifference of the little landlords.

      Debt, it’s never free.

    • Not even a Nobel sees risk in what Aussies do for risk (specufesting at any price). The risk taking behaviour referred to will not occur until post property mean reversion.

    • Mining BoganMEMBER

      Wow. So many are going to burn, on top of those who already have.

      I think I related the tale of that chap who put two Moranbah properties in his SMSF. Good times.

      • Failed SMSF investments should not be grounds for pension eligibility. Otherwise privatise the profit socialise the loss issue.

    • PantoneMEMBER

      Wow. SMSF really need to come with some sort of aptitude test, atleast basic understanding of portfolio management. 80% to property is insane no matter the circumstances.

      • SoMPLSBoyMEMBER

        Wow is right! No ‘aptitude’ test needed if you have the $. And the SIS happily allow SMSF’ers to devote their entire ‘position’ to one asset class as long as you have an ‘investment strategy’ it’s all sweet.

        Reg 4.09 of the SIS requires trustee(s) of SMSF’s to consider the following:
        • The likely risk and returns of different asset categories
        • The need to spread risk by having a suitable range or diversity of asset categories
        • The fund to be in a position to pay benefits to members as they fall due ( i.e. liquidity)
        And , this all needs to be in writing as part of the ‘investment strategy’ of the SMSF.

        Paradoxically, the trustee(s) can select from 0-100% amongst all the popular asset categories and as you observe, the list is long of those with 100% property and alot of them also carry deep leverage. My observation is that an enormous amount of money is consumed along the way to property inside a SMSF as you’ll need legal, conveyancing, auditing, tax prep, finance, insurance initially and ongoing.

        It’s just another avenue to expand the debt book and the ancillary services noted would logically agree with, and endorse a ‘bonzer’ investment idea like that due the annuity style income that can be invoiced. Remarkably, it’s beyond ASIC as there’s no ‘advice’ provided here- sort of like building and flying an ‘ultra-light’ plane -if you meet the ‘rules’, then CASA will let you up in the sky.

    • Really? That’s a disgraceful figure. How can we be so utterly, so mind-bogglingly imbecilic?

      Over the next couple of years, as the economy falters and begins to recede, and unemployment has an 8 in front of it, what will keep house prices from sinking lower than Valles Marineris?

      Importing more cashed up criminal investors from up north – but how? when were forced to align with the Yanks against them?

      Maybe India’s untouchable’s will gentrify fast enough to pay 8 mil+ for a brick-veneer flat in Brooklyn, Melb. (it does come with 1 parking spot!)

      • The Traveling Wilbur

        Q: That’s a disgraceful figure. How can we be so utterly, so mind-bogglingly imbecilic?
        A: Duh… this is Australia is how.

    • Yes, SMSF is a big industry now and people promoting it are making big money. Why put your money in a Super fund that has some checks and balances when it comes to asset allocation when you can let your gambling instincts run wild and go for a custom made SMSF? People have not learned the lessons from Enron employees that put all their retirement money into the company’s stock. SMSF owners that are risk blind deserve what’s coming to them.

      • The issue re DIY property is that the accountants are doing much of it, knowing full well the disclosure they require re kick backs etc is zero compared to funds etc. Accountants are greedy like all industry players and direct prop via DIY funds will be the next forestry plantation time bomb, you can guarantee it.

    • innocent bystander

      I am not sure what is more DISTURBING pyjamas misleading quote or the knee jerk comment reactions.
      Roger said the 70-81% exposure was via property ownership or exposure to bank shares (who are heavenly exposed to property). He said 20% of SMSFS own a property investment.

      Not in this linked clip, and not sure if it was the same interview with Ticky, he went on to say they would be better off 100% in cash. Not sure if he saw the irony there, presumably he meant cash in a bank rather than under the bed 🙂

    • From the interview, “I define a bubble as a social epidemic that involves extravagant expectations for the future.”

      Mr Shiller has given a good definition of a bubble right there.

    • IMO, we will see the Bond bubble burst leading to equities then to house prices busting.

    • Everything is overvalued……

      Isn’t it the same as stating that the currency is losing its purchasing power?

    • A good find.

      I am reading a good book on stoicism at the moment l, ‘ A Guide to the Good Life’, by William Irvine.

      The best psychologists seem to be the pre-Christians. Both east and west, because Buddha and Confucius were aldi all over what irritates us and how to not let it constantly overwhelm you.

      • PantoneMEMBER

        That book is a great overview of stoicism. If highly recommend Seneca’s Letters from a Stoic. It’s amazing how even thousands of years later people still grappled with same issues regarding what is important and status anxiety. There really is nothing new under the sun.

      • There really is nothing new under the sun.

        “The sun shone, having no alternative, on the nothing new.” Samuel Beckett

    • Age old and well suited to the times – a panacea to those who worry about the Age of Inequality. Don’t.

      • That’s a bit off the mark there 3D, but then you only ever have your marks in mind when you shoot something off.

      • Good grief. I see R2M is still running around like chicken little calling ‘the end is night’…… on the biggest issue no one really cares about. The last study I saw in the US on this was that it didn’t even rank as a consideration in the populace. That temps haven’t moved in near 2 decades matter naught I suppose. Ice is umm normal, polar bears are procreating – no wonder with the severe winters oop north.

        The biggest risk to the planet is poverty and disease. Energy , the cheaper the better, will mitigate those risks and provide a better standard of living for all. But the Green nazis would rather see our species die, or culled. Whetever has the world done to deserve this infestation of green disease?

      • Spot on GSM, whilst your last paragraph is a little pedantic I agree with the general flow.

        Something the greenies forget is that if and when we’re truly staring down the barrel of climate catastrophe we as humans are a well formulated group who will tackle such issues if and when they appear!

        In the mean time scientist / mathematicians have much to answer as to why prior predictions have NOT resulted into relaity

        Meanwhile solar investments AVG 3-5% return PA and investments and funding to further develop green tech is generally plum with cash.

        BTW anyone using the tragedies in India as a example of a non event like global warming deserve full scrutiny. Nothing at all backs up that the abundance of heat is due to man made climate change. Just check previous weather recordings.

      • @GSM @Nudge @Simplicity

        Guys this particular sub thread has nothing to do with climate change so I will say what you have been screaming about. Stick to the topic please.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Something the greenies forget is that if and when we’re truly staring down the barrel of climate catastrophe we as humans are a well formulated group who will tackle such issues if and when they appear!

        Not sure if serious.

        In the mean time scientist / mathematicians have much to answer as to why prior predictions have NOT resulted into relaity

        Yes, they have.

      • @footsore

        Surely that is a key message: seek, value, treasure, enhance something of genuine meaning to your own existence. Don’t obsess about the lives of others, resist eternal comparison, wholeheartedly embrace what is special to you, find ‘flow’. Simple pleasures: a dog, or your kid, or a garden, or work you love, or study, or good friends, or …. You know the stuff … And it is the antidote to worrying about the Age of Inequality.

      • If you remove the outliers, say the top 5% and bottom 5%, inequality not so headline ready. The inequality ‘ thing’ looks to me to have existed forever. And by almost all global comparisons, Australians are rich, even the poorest.

  11. For 2big. What a conundrum. If everything is in a bubble it might make it that much harder for any one asset to pop. Where do you run to if anyone of those bubbles pop? Cash? The banks would look pretty shaky too and you might get caught bailing in. One really has to look outside this country or invest in agriculture- the last refuge.

    • macrofishMEMBER

      Who said cash need to be in the bank so they can bail in? A safety deposit box with hard cash will do and it not like you are missing much in interest.

      • safety deposit boxes have been raided by governments before – though it’ll be less likely in australia

    • Yes, I know, it’s challenging to identify where to invest in such an environment. MB mentioned that they might provide some suggestions. Obviously, it would all depend on your time horizon among other things. Key thing is to diversify across asset classes, industries, and geographies and stick to low cost ETFs.

      • “The stupidest article of the day”

        Is this a new award you started handing out daily?

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        No, but maybe it should become a thing. It’s not like there’s not plenty of contenders in Oz media.

        I’ll start with the daily Peter Harcher article and work from there.

    • Words fail me.
      Domain should just have a big note on the website that everything has been paid for and none of the information herein is to be trusted.
      It makes ‘The Australian’ appear reputable.

      • That would make far more sense to the rubbish they force feed people. People like to bag News ad nausium but Fairfax is just as woeful. Every single news heading is exactly the same, it does my head in.

  12. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-05-29/gina-rinehart-barnaby-joyce-slammed-over-trust-pressure/6506022
    … the 6th link under local also speaks of the same thing.

    Hey 3D! Look at your favourite billionaire. Corrupting the government… tsk tsk tsk. Pushing her kids around to keep control of everything she inherited from daddy.

    When Gina dies (which will be soon because she’s very fat and disgusting), I’m pretty sure her kids will set up a system where you can pay to go and piss on her grave. And all of her kids but one will take the first turns.

    “If you won’t consider my well-being, at least allow me to remember you as [a] neat, trim, capable and attractive young lady… rather than the slothful, vindictive and devious baby elephant that you have become” – Lang Hancock

    Ha ha!

    • Funny how everybody knows everything about that Gina family business yet not a single one of you have an actual clue.
      Also funny how Gina cops so much abuse in these pages, with Twiggy running second, yet in the major ironore business they are the onloy Australians having a go. Yep! Much better to have foreign companies like Rio and BHP!!!!

    • And anyway as keen readers should be well aware 3d1k rolled the juniors under the bus weeks ago. No more christmas cards from Tiggy or Gina for their fair weather friend.

      3d1k is on fully on board with the crazy idea, promoted by far too many people who should know better, that even though Australia has and will continue to have massive market power in Iron Ore it should not use it.

      The only people who like that idea are China, BHP and RIO and in that order.

      3d is simply cudding up to the largely foreigned owned big boys and their customers.

      What you might call a real ‘internationalist’

      http://pfh007.com/2015/05/29/iron-ore-a-national-iron-ore-export-volume-auction-is-the-best-solution/

      • Serious question: explain to me why I should care whether iron ore resources are developed by a rapacious corrupting (see Barnaby’s email from his parliamentary account trying to influence a lawsuit) Australian billionaire who inherited it all (Gina), or by a whiny rent seeking billionaire trying to get government to legislate in his favour (Twiggy) , or by a group of international investors.

        I seriously want to know.

      • Serious answer – you don’t need to care – but your question indicates that you do not understand the point I am making.

        The issue is the loss of Australia’s national income – not who digs it up.

        Unfortunately, the somewhat understandable dislike of Twiggy has driven many people to point the national shotgun at the nation’s feet.

        Have a read of the link and you will see that ‘leaving’ our iron ore to the decisions of China, BHP, RIO, Twiggy or Gina is nuts.

      • Curious as to how this helps Australia? Only time a quota will help is if our lowest cost capacity exceed the worldwide seaborne demand.

      • It also assumes we have the ability to set price; we’re not the only producer. I see no indication that we can dictate price. Reducing volumes may well result in a tiny margin increase that nowhere near offsets the volume loss, with the net result of lower national incomes.

        Even if we could set prices now, how long will that last, with Chinese demand set to continue tanking?

        Seems a bloody risky strategy to me. And that’s leaving out the geopolitical risk that China seeks further supplies of their own in order to smash any cartel-like behaviour, even if it costs them in the short term.

      • LD,

        “…It also assumes we have the ability to set price; we’re not the only producer. I see no indication that we can dictate price. ”

        Did you actually read the link?

        Of course Australia has massive market power.

        The problem is that when Australian miners are allowed to compete against each other they will compete down to their marginal cost of production which is much much lower than the marginal cost of most of the foreign competition. The only competitor on price Vale cannot produce at a volume to replace the Australian production.

        What will China think? Are you serious? China is actively manipulating the iron ore market right now.

      • Pf, if it is possible to simultaneously love and hate the same idea then your Iron Ore plan would be top of my love/hate list. Unfortunately like most other ideas on this list it combines a noble concept and an unworkable solution.

        Iron Ore is, was and will always be a bulk commodity, and under all normal circumstances miners will normally be price takers, so yes even BHP and Rio are price takers. Of course, over the short term, they can collude and juice up their margins but this comes at the cost of pissing off the biggest buyer in the market. ALL this new IO capacity is to service China, and its not a diverse end market, it’s a market that’s quickly collapsing and will within 10 years consist of less than 5 significant IO buyers and 3 or 4 significant suppliers.

        This is a totally different market dynamic to Oil, totally different, different in practically every way.
        So like I said at the start, I love the idea but at the same time i hate it, I think that means it belongs in the wishful think pile.

    • Duddles, we know you’ve got the hots for Gina, you’re more obsessed than most – enjoy

      Gina in the New Yorker, some inaccuracies but won’t bother you as you lust over her ample…fortune

      http://goo.gl/LLQ2rs

    • Good find Gunna. Isn’t the whole 457 thing ridiculous. What a wonderful front door way to bring potential terrorists into the country, too. The ridiculous billions spent on a barely competent security apparatus (AFP/ASIO) and there’s an open front door not being patrolled.

      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        Yeah I must admit I think there is room for a look at the whole population flows/migration thing.

        With the 457s I think we need to ask ourselves what on earth the program is for. Then I think we have the great unaskable question about why we would be running immigration at 3 times the 30 year average as the economy sails of the capex cliff. Then I would be looking at those refugees we routinely slap towards Nauru or New Guinea and ask ourselves if that is value for government outlay, and maybe even if perhaps bringing them onto the mainland and say putting a illegal migrant camp somewhere out in the boondocks might actually make more sense. From there I think we could do far worse than to look at Special Investor visas and ask ourselves if those special investors are actually investing in anything which is of lasting value to Australia. After that I think we need to match the migration program with some form of economic framework (ie we run migration at X level if the economy is going at Y rate, or we run migration at higher than X level if we are looking to develop the XYZ sector of the economy [presumably because someone somewhere thinks this may be a goer in terms of paying the way for the nation’s economic future) – and then last but not least I think we should be asking ourselves if perhaps we should be using that migration do develop more cities [outside Sydney – Melbourne -Brisbane – Adelaide – Perth ] and then even asking something as blasphemous as if it may make more sense to use the extra demand represented by the immigration we propose to run to do something more than support existing residential real estate prices…..

        But I wont hold my breath

  13. So, watching ABC this morning.

    Gay marriage has completely dominated the weekend roundup.

    It’s started. The new distraction that will see everything else put on hold for the next three years. EXACTLY AS I PREDICTED.

    Selfish gays.

    • Umm, the problem is not with the LGBTI, it is with those who wish to prevent them from having basic rights. It is like Chris Rock said about Obama becoming president, a black man could have been president ages ago if white men weren’t such big dicks.

      • I agree entirely footsore. That doesn’t make it right to steal the agenda for selfish reasons.

        “as we ponder this in the weeks and months to come”. Abbott. More like years is my guess.

        LNP love this. They get to fuck us all over for longer while we discuss gay marriage. It would not surprise me if it was LNP that started the ball rolling.

        Why aren’t the media asking what do we do after all the assets are foreign owned?
        Why aren’t the media asking how our ecology can handle more people?
        Why aren’t the media asking how will equality be treated when we are mainly Asian?
        Why aren’t the media asking, is the casualisation of the workforce a pseudo workchoices?
        Why aren’t the media asking, if Australia can’t balance a budget with having sold most of our stuff, during the biggest boom in history, with half the proposed population, what does the future hold?
        Why aren’t the media asking are wages about to collapse?
        Why aren’t the media asking a million other questions? Because the left have thrown them a selfish distraction, and the media love it, LNP love it, Labor love it and Greens love it, while the entire country falls apart.

        We’re doomed as a country, but you gays keep going with your little agenda. Good luck with it. I hope marriage is the misery for you that most heterosexuals find it to be, and you lose 70% of your wealth when you break up.

    • This distraction was invented by John Howard when he decided to ban gay marriage in the first place most likely to make it easier to bring more people in.

      • You’re right IMO. So, let’s demand we have a referendum on it. It will be passed and we can move on. Do not let politicians drag this on for three years while ignoring everything else.

    • The problem is not gay marriage and moves to allow it. The problem is simply that the ABC as with much of the media is now populated with ‘media studies’ and ‘communications’ graduates and those courses have zero content beyond cultural studies and po mo nonesense. They simply don’t understand any substantive policy issues and thus focus on what they have been trained to understand.

      That is why most of the important issues raised on MB do not get addressed and all we get is endless news stories about issues which may be worthwhile but should not be leading the news day in day out. Australian can introduce changes to the marriage act AND talk seriously about economic issues.

      Just look at the way Q&A did not permit a single question on trade and the TPP to the trade minister a few weeks ago.

      They don’t understand the issue and think it boring compared to their ‘feel good’ cultural issues.

      • @pfh007.

        “That is why most of the important issues raised on MB do not get addressed and all we get is endless news stories about issues which may be worthwhile but should not be leading the news day in day out. Australian can introduce changes to the marriage act AND talk seriously about economic issues” Yep. I agree.

        “Just look at the way Q&A did not permit a single question on trade and the TPP to the trade minister a few weeks ago”. That’s a disgrace and QandA should be finished up. It is a treasonous broadcast. I often can’t help watching it though just to get a feel of how the maniac left think (or rather don’t think). Tampon tax while they’re locked out of housing etc.

        “They don’t understand the issue and think it boring compared to their ‘feel good’ cultural issues”. Exactly. The ABC should be wound up.

    • “Selfish gays.”

      Yeah! How dare they demand equal treatment before the law! The term that we used to use for people who didn’t know their place was ‘uppity’; we had good ole boys to take them down a peg or two.
      /sarc

      • Genuine Q, I’m admitting I’m ignorant on this topic and thought most laws were covered by the defacto legislation. It’s occurred to me this morning, that if a gay couple were travelling overseas and weren’t married (because of Aust law), that could cause problems. Can someone point out to me what laws are not consistent?

        Fight for a referendum so

        1. You get it, and
        2. it doesn’t consume parliament.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Fight for a referendum so

        1. You get it, and
        2. it doesn’t consume parliament.

        O.o

        You’re whinging and bitching about the media time taken up by gay marriage and you think a *referendum* will result in less of that ?

        A referendum for what should be a minor administrative change to maybe half a dozen words in existing legislation is about as sledgehammer and walnut as you can get.

        As usual, you appear to be advocating a course of action that will result in the exact opposite effect of the one you claim to be seeking.

      • @drsmithy.

        “As usual, you appear to be advocating a course of action that will result in the exact opposite effect of the one you claim to be seeking.”

        Yeah right. I thought we’d been talking about it for a couple of decades. Seems you need a sledgehammer. Left missing most of the issues again.

      • rich42, a gay couple passing through the UAE will not be saved from their laws on homosexuality regardless of the fact they are married.

      • Good point Dudley because I do want to know what the concept of ‘gay marriage’ really means both in legal terms and socio cultural terms. Does it mean the right to adopt children as would a conventional couple? Because if it does I would be less keen on such equality.

        So again what does it mean the GM thingy

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Good point Dudley because I do want to know what the concept of ‘gay marriage’ really means both in legal terms and socio cultural terms.

        It means gay couples get the same legal status as hetero couples.

        Does it mean the right to adopt children as would a conventional couple? Because if it does I would be less keen on such equality.

        There is no “right to adopt”, nor is there any reason to discriminate against homosexuals adopting.

        Thanks for informing us of your bigotry.

      • I know 5 gay couples with kids, three of them exceptionally well. They are all outstanding parents.

      • dennis
        May 31, 2015 at 12:02 pm
        “”rich42, a gay couple passing through the UAE will not be saved from their laws on homosexuality regardless of the fact they are married”

        because all Arabs/Muslims are brutal barbaric sub-humans riiiight? .there’s no way your IQ exceeds 100. This is clear racism, ban this moron. But none of you will, because Disney brainwashed you too, and you cannot see it… Come on down stop on by, Hop a carpet and fly, to another Arabian night 🙂 you are very – very stupid dennis.

      • @drsmithy

        So please explain to me the concept of the legal equality you refer to ? Do you mean pensions property next of kin, There are so many and I want to know before I give ‘blanket’ support.

        When you call me a bigot because i want to understand the issue its reasonable to assume you don’t know either.

        Instead of a response you revert to name calling. While I did not intend to offend I do wonder if a discussion blog is the right place for you, (and your kind)

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        So please explain to me the concept of the legal equality you refer to ? Do you mean pensions property next of kin,

        Go wild.

        There are so many and I want to know before I give ‘blanket’ support.

        Why ? Why does it matter for equality before the law ? If we substituted “mixed race marriage” for “gay marriage” would you still want to know what that entailed before giving “blanket” support ?

        When you call me a bigot because i want to understand the issue its reasonable to assume you don’t know either.

        I called you a bigot because you seem to disapprove of homosexuals raising children.

        Instead of a response you revert to name calling.

        Maybe I’m just tired of seeing the same broken arguments used over and over and over and over again.

        I’m surprised we didn’t see a “well if they CHOOSE to be gay they should know that comes with some consequences”.

    • interested party

      rich42,
      Classical Pavlovian behaviour by the plebs.
      I will also go so far as to say that the same tendencies are present here on MB……….most notable on slow news days.

      • The astute observer will note that on this article, the first comment on ANY topic was a comment on gay marriage by rich42. The first response was a comment on gay marriage by 3d.

        So please, tell me again who the obfuscating stirrers are.

        Edit: oops – I’m putting words in your mouth. Sorry. Read that as ‘Please, tell me again who has a pavlovian response to the topic of gay marriage’.

      • @LordDudley. Astute observer? Not you this time Lord. I’m all for gay marriage. I just don’t want it consuming time while all else falls apart. There are far bigger issues that affect all of us, in far more reaching ways than gay marriage. Surely you can agree on that?

        I’m always the one that everyone thinks is a redneck but I’m not. I’m the most giving person you’d ever meet. I’m just sick of the left missing most aspects of an issue that coincidentally ends up hurting them. They need help, and I’m here offering it.

        Demand a referendum, and let’s move on to issues I’ve outlined above that threaten to bring the entire country down including the gay community.

      • Having a referendum seems the most effective way to make this issue consume absolute maximum airtime.

        Gay marriage is like fuel excise indexation; it’s an inevitable no-brainer, so just bloody well get on with it, then we can move on.

      • Lord. “so just bloody well get on with it, then we can move on.”.

        Exactly. Politicians have proven they’re incapable of it, so pass it to the public who will overwhelmingly support it. Have the gay community considered if it goes to a parliament vote, it could be voted down? It then wouldn’t be revisited for a decade. Didn’t think so.

        The left not thinking again.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Exactly. Politicians have proven they’re incapable of it, so pass it to the public who will overwhelmingly support it. Have the gay community considered if it goes to a parliament vote, it could be voted down? It then wouldn’t be revisited for a decade. Didn’t think so.

        Please outline the process by which the public can raise a referendum.

      • interested party

        @LordDudley
        “oops – I’m putting words in your mouth. Sorry. Read that as ‘Please, tell me again who has a pavlovian response to the topic of gay marriage’.”
        Dude, step back a bit. This world is not just about you. I was noting societies response to the GOVS smoke and mirrors. The great distraction……and society salivates as expected and planned by the handlers.
        I made no mention of marriage…..gay or otherwise.

      • @drsmithy. Get their ABC friends to put it to ministers via interviews, and on QandA. Not so hard is it?

        Or you can just continue to revel in your victimhood I think you all secretly love. It’s just not possible you are all this hopeless. FFS, it’s just been passed in a predominantly catholic country.

      • rich, you have stated a number of times how smart you think you are, but the obvious seems to pass you by. The fight for equality by the gay community has been ongoing for effing decades, how do you expect the question of equality to be addressed if they’re required to “shut-up” until your hobby horse issues are dealt with. If that was the case it would NEVER be dealt with as there would always be an issue.

        For the life of me I cannot understand why more than one issue cannot be dealt with simultaneously. Can you chew gum and walk at the same time?

        Heaven forbid if we should ever worry about principle and as to people being selfish and egocentric, shit!!

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        rich, you have stated a number of times how smart you think you are, but the obvious seems to pass you by.

        Rich is so smart he thinks all it takes to get a referendum up is a pointed question on Q&A, that a referendum doesn’t have to go through parliament, that a referendum doesn’t have much media, bureaucratic or political overhead and that a referendum is an appropriate way to deal with changing half a dozen words in existing legislation.

        For the life of me I cannot understand why more than one issue cannot be dealt with simultaneously.

        Rich only cares about one issue. Anyone not sharing his exact opinion on that issue is a moron, as is anyone who gives the slightest fuck about any other issue.

      • “rich, you have stated a number of times how smart you think you are” I’m not ridiculously smart. I’ve told you before, I’ve got an IQ of 135 which puts me in the top whatever, but I guarantee I’m a fucking lot smarter than the clowns on here that have called me stupid. It’s easy for them to say I’m stupid as a shut down comment but clearly I raise some issues that challenge their limited intellect and it annoys them. Most of the time I’ve said I’m smart to counter one of these wankers that do not have the ability to think outside the square. They are the ones with limited IQ and they are the ones that are helping destroy Australia. They know who they are.

        “The fight for equality by the gay community”. What equality? I’ve asked for the answer to what legislative inequality and no ones given it to me. Marriage refers to a heterosexual couple in wedlock.

        “effing decades….hobby horse…..” My hobby horse issues happen to affect the entire lot of us and are detrimental to the way we live.

        “For the life of me I cannot understand why more than one issue cannot be dealt with simultaneously?” Yeah. Me too, it clearly can’t though.

        “Heaven forbid if we should ever worry about principle and as to people being selfish and egocentric, shit!!” Perhaps I should not have used that because if we can’t fight for principle what are we? Okay I agree with you, but for fucks sake, can we not let it dominate everything for a decade……AND…. can we get some people like yourself getting on board the issues that are affecting everyone tremendously getting a bit of media coverage?

      • bolstroodMEMBER

        @ Interested party
        I totally agree, “a great distraction”. The issue of gay marriage is being used by LNP/ Lab/ Green to obscure the fact that they do not have a clue what to do about the economic decline we are experiencing with each passing day. Or what to do about the coming confrontation between the USA & China.We are being confronted with war on our door step , across our shipping lifeline, & yet we do not hold a strategic reserve of fuel and have allowed our refining industry to shut down. Gay marriage is fine by me , but the issue has been highjacked to cover the impotence of the Government & oppositions.

      • @bolstrood. That is exactly how I feel about it.

        I’m all for it. Let’s pressure politicians to rush it through so we can move on and tackle those issues you raise.

        From now on drsmithy, you’ll see me advocating gay marriage (for six months only). If it goes beyond that I’ll start an anti-gay group.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        From now on drsmithy, you’ll see me advocating gay marriage (for six months only). If it goes beyond that I’ll start an anti-gay group.

        I’d have expected nothing less moronic.

      • @drsmithy. “I’d have expected nothing less moronic”.

        So you know it will go beyond 6 months?

        I retract my generous offer.

        A young girl got action on Qand A for tampon tax with a pointed question Hockey couldn’t squirm out of.

        Yet, an entire 10% of the population that are passionate about gay marriage can’t get any traction? Wrong tack obviously, but I’m the moron.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        So you know it will go beyond 6 months?

        I have no idea how long it will take. To a certain degree, I don’t really care as I have nothing personally vested in gay marriage – that’s why I don’t start conversations about it. It will probably remain a political football for as long as the evil media overlords deem it useful to be one.

        I was making comment on the utter stupidity of putting an arbitrary time limit on supporting an issue of basic human rights after which you intend to take a completely opposite viewpoint, presumably for no reason other than being an egotistical arsehole.

        A young girl got action on Qand A for tampon tax with a pointed question Hockey couldn’t squirm out of.

        That Hockey couldn’t squirm out of it says more about Hockey than anything else. He’s a terrible politician by any measure you want to apply.

        Yet, an entire 10% of the population that are passionate about gay marriage can’t get any traction? Wrong tack obviously, but I’m the moron.

        Heh. This from the guy claiming 80%-odd of the public care about overpopulation and overpriced housing. Funny.

      • rich42, so your in the top 1%, so that makes you “Rudd Smart”, so smart you think your view on everything must be right, that was Rudd’s issue, he couldn’t see another opinion or take advice because he thought he knew it all, or would with a bit of reading up!!

        Okay, here we go………..Quote “but for fucks sake, can we not let it dominate everything for a decade…” Well, that’s exactly the effing point, except it isn’t one decade, it’s effing many and we still aren’t there yet. Gay equality should be exactly that; EQUALITY in FUCKING EVERYTHING. Go back 3 decades and dung punching would get you thrown in jail, go back another and it could cost you your job, especially if it was in the PS!

        As to gays adopting, why not? If your a male homo are you more likely to be an abuser of children? If so does that mean as a straight man I’m more likely to abuse young girls?? Where does that take us then? If you’re not married try telling the hospital that you’re in a relationship and YOU are the next of kin and will be making decisions on your partner. Whether or not life support will be turned off, what the funeral arrangements will be etc. No, and if the family have never accepted the relationship that their son/brother/sister/daughter decided to take, then you could find yourself completed locked out and ignored, or facing an expensive legal fight.

        The equality thingy runs through every aspect of day to day life, except some straight people don’t see it because it doesn’t impact on them. Recognition under the law is just the start of getting true and complete acceptance across society.

        Those who see it as a threat to marriage make me laugh and cry! Is marriage that shit that allowing gay marriage will destroy society as we know it (maybe a good thing!), will legalising it turn men and women towards their own sex?? For all the arguments I heard, I’ve yet to hear anything that is legitimate, all show a bias and a lack of logic

      • @dennis. I find you one of the most reasoned commentators on here and I agree with you 100%. In the real world (not on this blog), I’ve stuck up for gay people my entire life. I have convinced others (occasionally some pretty burly boofheads) that it just doesn’t matter who someone sleeps with. So much so, people often think I’m gay because of it. I couldn’t care less and never have done, even decades ago at school.

        The issues you’ve pointed out are abhorrent and are ignorance in the extreme. There’s some truth to what both you and drsmithy say about me only being interested in and only seeing my issues. They’re pretty important though and if ignored not much else we do matters. What I’m seeing is yet another distraction probably given traction on purpose by LNP or the media. We’re mugs if we let it overtake all else. I’m fucking tired of watching it, one thing after another. Let’s get it on the table, deal with it and then discuss how many people Australia can carry, how many assets are gone and what the future holds for existing Australians, gay, yellow, blue, white or otherwise. The distractions are simply facilitating the transfer of our entire wealth to big business and we’ll all lose because of it. All of us.

      • Trolling? That is obfuscating at it’s best. I’m not trolling, that’s how I see it. I’m not alone in that view. The behaviour of the gay community has been astoundingly selfish.

  14. Geez there’s a lot of gay marriage hate on the boards this weekend. For all the whingers complaining that the media doesn’t care about the issues you care about- why not write some articles and submit them somewhere? Pretty much any idiot can get published in “The Conversation”. Don’t expect the Australian journalist community to read your mind and know what you think is important. You’ve even got leverage through Macrobusiness. All you have to do is persuade the rest of us that your opinion is worth a damn.

    At to the “gay marriage is irrelevant” argument, it’s a huge social change so it deserves the time that the media spends on it. It’s important for two reasons. Firstly it signals a huge move away from a profound age old social prejudice. The fact that such a change in opinion has happened so quickly (in about a decade) is very interesting and poses the question: what is the spark for massive social opinion change? I know Gladwell’s had a go at this sort of thing, but more generally, can we learn anything that gives us some sort of power against extreme religious fundamentalism?

    Secondly- and most welcome to me- it signals the defeat of the old school defenders of “traditional marriage”. Traditional marriage usually means “mediated by some fuckwit religion”. Most people- including most gay people- are far too polite to say this, but yes: gay marriage means that the social powerbase of the types of people who talk about “traditional marriage” have been further eroded. Personally I’m enjoying the whingeing.

    It will take two months of intermittent media space and if it gets passed everyone will forget about it and get on with their lives. And- while I understand the frustration that the media can only deal with one issue at a time- the economy will still get plenty of media coverage. Whether it’s any good is the age old problem.

  15. ‘Marriage is a wonderful institution, but who wants to live in an institution’. An oldie but a goodie 😉

    • Yep. I read somewhere yesterday, it halves your rights and doubles your responsibilities.

      Be careful what you wish for huh?

      I’ve noticed no one has answered my Q.

      “Genuine Q, I’m admitting I’m ignorant on this topic and thought most laws were covered by the defacto legislation. It’s occurred to me this morning, that if a gay couple were travelling overseas and weren’t married (because of Aust law), that could cause problems. Can someone point out to me what laws are not consistent?”

      There’s no law that doesn’t apply is there? So this entire debacle is about principle while Australia rots.

      Yeah sure Revert2Mean I’m just trolling. FFS have a look at yourselves. Unbelievably selfish. So egocentric, you will never see it.

      • Yes, above.
        No gay couple regardless of their marriage status in Australia will be immune to the homosexuality laws of the UAE. I’d say the same for many countries

      • 1/12 ain’t bad. The rest are as ridiculous as when applied to opposite sex marriage. Best thing about marriages is getting drunk at the reception and going wild on the dance floor.

      • bolstroodMEMBER

        @ Rich 42
        On marriage,
        I have been married for 43 years, one more than you have been alive i’m guessing,
        You only get 20 years for murder.

      • @bolstrood. haha. Love it.

        In all seriousness, marriage is great. Women are great.

      • rich42,
        ” In the real world (not on this blog), I’ve stuck up for gay people my entire life. ” Well why the fffff would you take an opposite position here, just to piss people off? You’re been accused of trolling on this issue, so why do it. I hate to tell you this, but if gay society doesn’t take the opportunity to get this up it’ll be another decade before they get the chance again, so instead of railing against this put your support behind it and maybe we’d get it over and down with and then your hobby horse can take the lead down the straight!

  16. Parliament should have had a conscience vote on the issue about a week after NZ had theirs. This should have been put to bed ages ago. Problem with the 2 party system is it is now about the egos of Shorten, Plibersek and Tony Abbott. Pliberseks stupid idea that Labor should party vote as a block on the issue was totally against the principles of a democracy and actually set back the cause of passing a reasonable bill that avoided all the politicing.

  17. The gay marriage proponents and opponents both ignore the main issue: the state has no business being involved in marriage anyway.

    If a man wants to marry a man, a woman, two women, a dog or a shoe, then he can declare it so in front of “god”, gaia, his friends and family, the local church, his commune etc etc

    What a spineless and dependant people who require the governments approval and sanction of their private unions.

    All the legal aspects can be dealt with via existing or amended legislation on civil union etc, and the marriage act can be completely abolished

    I think doug stanhope said it best: “oh baby, I love you so much – we gonna get the government involved in this shit”

    I note now that in Sweden there is a campaign to further amend the marriage laws to allow polygamous marriages, and why not? If gay marriage is legitimate, why on earth should we allow discrimination against polygamists?
    This has been driven by muslim immigrants as well as, undoubtedly, “left” campaigners
    The whole argument is absurd born out of an anachronism

    • drsmithyMEMBER

      Mostly a gigantic straw man.

      I doubt you would get much argument from marriage equality advocates about abolishing marriage from the legal code completely, even if it wasn’t replaced by a “civil union”.

      These people are not after the state’s “approval” of their private union. They are after the legal recognition of it because of the consequences this has.

      The simple fact is, right now, a legal contract called marriage exists and it confers certain legal rights and benefits to people entering into it. It is also discriminatory.

      Removing the discrimination is a lot easier (literally around half a dozen words need to be changed in the marriage act) than removing the legal concept of marriage.

      I note now that in Sweden there is a campaign to further amend the marriage laws to allow polygamous marriages, and why not? If gay marriage is legitimate, why on earth should we allow discrimination against polygamists?

      Well the first obvious answer is that there’s a non-trivial difference between a marriage involving two people and a marriage involving more than two people.

      • “Mostly a gigantic straw man.”

        In what way is any of this a strawman? The gay marriage push is the strawman

        “I doubt you would get much argument from marriage equality advocates about abolishing marriage from the legal code completely, even if it wasn’t replaced by a “civil union”.

        These people are not after the state’s “approval” of their private union. They are after the legal recognition of it because of the consequences this has.

        The simple fact is, right now, a legal contract called marriage exists and it confers certain legal rights and benefits to people entering into it. It is also discriminatory.”

        This is exactly my point. The gay marriage proponents have chosen the wrong path.

        “Removing the discrimination is a lot easier (literally around half a dozen words need to be changed in the marriage act) than removing the legal concept of marriage.”

        Leaves the door open for further disgruntled groups who are also being discriminated against eg muslim polygamists

        “Well the first obvious answer is that there’s a non-trivial difference between a marriage involving two people and a marriage involving more than two people.”

        Wrong. Polygamy involves a man marrying a woman, and then marrying another woman. The two women are not married to each other.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        In what way is any of this a strawman?

        The part where you argue people are looking for the state’s “approval” of their “private union”.
        The part where you imply people marrying their dog or shoe is somehow relevant.
        The part where you argue gay marriage implicitly leads to polygamous marriage, etc.
        The part where you drag in “muslim immigrants” and “left campaigners”[0].

        The gay marriage push is the strawman

        I can’t parse that.

        This is exactly my point. The gay marriage proponents have chosen the wrong path.

        No they haven’t.

        Leaves the door open for further disgruntled groups who are also being discriminated against eg muslim polygamists

        No it doesn’t.

        Changing the law to accommodate marriage equality is ludicrously trivial. A few words in existing legislation and that’s it. No impact on existing legal principles, precedents, or anything else.

        The same is not even remotely true of polygamy.

        Wrong. Polygamy involves a man marrying a woman, and then marrying another woman. The two women are not married to each other.

        Uh huh. And when that man ends up in hospital in a coma, and one of his wives says to let him die and the other says to keep him alive, who wins ?

        [0] If anything, gay marriage – that is, the fundamental principle of equality before the law – should be a classic old-school conservative issue.

      • Doctor,
        you can do much better discussion than your last post.
        You do have valid points but seem to froth when people do not agree…
        Dissecting and parsing?

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        you can do much better discussion than your last post.
        You do have valid points but seem to froth when people do not agree…
        Dissecting and parsing?

        Criticism is more useful and productive when it’s constructive.

      • I dont think you understand what a strawman argument is

        Your argument is very confused, and I think you just make it because you like to be righteous

        These are your own words

        “I doubt you would get much argument from marriage equality advocates about abolishing marriage from the legal code completely, even if it wasn’t replaced by a “civil union”.

        These people are not after the state’s “approval” of their private union. They are after the legal recognition of it because of the consequences this has.

        The simple fact is, right now, a legal contract called marriage exists and it confers certain legal rights and benefits to people entering into it. It is also discriminatory.”

        Right. So why not argue to get rid of it, rather than inflame christians and conservatives, who perhaps rightly feel some ownership over “marriage”.

        You seem to be in total agreement with me, except you want to stay on message with the rest of the chattering class

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Your argument is very confused, and I think you just make it because you like to be righteous

        My argument is really simple. Maybe that’s the problem.

        Marriage is a legal contract that confers certain rights and benefits. There is no rational reason for it to be discriminatory against homosexuals. Therefore, the handful of words in the marriage act that need to change to make it legal should be changed.

        Everything else I’ve seen thus far is completely irrelevant to this core issue of equality before the law.

        Right. So why not argue to get rid of it, rather than inflame christians and conservatives, who perhaps rightly feel some ownership over “marriage”.

        Because getting rid of marriage entirely would be a large legal, social and cultural change.

        You seem to be in total agreement with me, except you want to stay on message with the rest of the chattering class

        No, you think that rather than trying to make a trivial change to law in line with a large proportion, if not outright majority, of, public opinion it would be preferable to instead make a massive and disruptive change in law that would be in direct conflict with the cultural and social beliefs of a fairly non-trivial chunk of society, because you personally think marriage is anachronistic.

        Personally I’m mostly indifferent towards the institution of marriage from a cultural perspective, though I can respect a lot of people feel it is very important to be very publicly “with” somebody. Legally it provides certain privileges and benefits – and that legal status also provides a social standing weight – and there is no rational reason that legal status should be constrained based on the sexuality of the participants.

      • “Marriage is a legal contract that confers certain rights and benefits. There is no rational reason for it to be discriminatory against homosexuals. ”

        There is no rational reason for it to exist full stop.

        “Because getting rid of marriage entirely would be a large legal, social and cultural change.”

        I am speaking only of abolishing the legal entity. Social and cultural aspects can persist and evolve as society sees fit, without government interference.

        “Legally it provides certain privileges and benefits – and that legal status also provides a social standing weight – and there is no rational reason that legal status should be constrained based on the sexuality of the participants.”

        Again, it has no rational reason to even exist. Power of attorney, wills etc can replace the legal aspect, without any need for us to be mired in the debate and overendow the government with legitimacy and power over our relationships

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        There is no rational reason for it to exist full stop.

        Some would argue it encourages stable family units and thus delivers a benefit to society as a whole and reflects a social and cultural desire to recognise and encourage long-term relationships.

        I am speaking only of abolishing the legal entity. Social and cultural aspects can persist and evolve as society sees fit, without government interference.

        Changes to the legal status will have social and cultural ramifications.

        Again, it has no rational reason to even exist.

        Simple fact is that it does exist, and has many thousands of years of history behind it. Removing that is clearly a non-trivial exercise.

        Changing a few words in the marriage act, however, is a trivial exercise.

    • I completely agree on the state involvement thing, just one point, both parties need to consent. So good luck trying to get agreement if you’re trying to marry your dog or shoe..

  18. And now….for something completely different…
    From the comments section of an NZ website, today..Nothing really new here, but it makes me feel better knowing I am not alone!
    “It has been more profitable for us to bind together in the wrong
    direction than to be alone in the right one.”
    – (from The
    Black Swan)
    “Anyone using logic, reason, historical precedent, facts or utilizing basic mathematics is declared a doomsayer in today’s world. The sheep would rather follow assertive idiots than an introspective wise person. We are awash with assertive idiots in control of Governments, their agencies, Wall Street, Mainstream Media, and the Corporate World. The psychopathic lemmings will meet their demise in due time. It will be obvious after the fact.”

    • drsmithyMEMBER

      This is a similar theme to Pfh007’s comment above, and IMHO is largely a result of the idea – heavily promoted for the last few decades by organisations like Fox News and people like 3d1k – that everything is just an opinion and consequently has a range of opposing yet notionally equally valid perspectives.

      So rather than looking at the facts and evidence, or reasoning things through with some sort of logical analysis, instead we line up a few people with strong opinions and have them shout at each other for a while, then listen to whoever shouts loudest. We also have to ensure we have the same proportions on each side of the argument – regardless of what the weight of evidence actually indicates – because not doing this would be “biased”.

      And people wonder why, after decades of this sort of systemic and institutionalised attacks on enlightenment values and intellectual pursuits, we have a “dumbening down” of society…

    • Janet, Quiet: The Power of Introverts by Susan Cain and also Nassim Taleb’s Black Swan;)

  19. Musk reads more like a conman in this article.

    In a 2008 blog post, Musk laid out a plan: After the sports car, Tesla would produce a sedan costing “half the $89k price point of the Tesla Roadster and the third model will be even more affordable.”

    In fact, the second model now typically sells for $100,000, and the much-delayed third model, the Model X sport utility, is expected to sell for a similar price. Timing on a less expensive model — maybe $35,000 or $40,000, after subsidies — remains uncertain.

    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-hy-musk-subsidies-20150531-story.html#page=1

  20. http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/labor-mps-question-victorias-foreign-tax-slug-on-property-buyers-20150530-ghd58j.html
    Labor MPs have questioned whether a state government tax slug on foreign property buyers goes against Victoria’s human rights charter by discriminating on the basis of nationality.

    Mr Pallas said the changes were intended to lift the burden on Victorians. But in a report tabled in Parliament last week, the Labor-dominated Scrutiny of Acts and Regulations Committee questioned whether the bill “reasonably limits the Charter’s rights against discrimination on the basis of nationality to achieve the purpose of ensuring that a larger number of local home buyers remain competitive in the housing market”.

    FFS, seriously… foreigner human rights are more important than the locals that live here!? I wonder what the investment portfolios of the Scrutiny of Acts and Regulations Committee look like. More oxygen thieves.

    • The Patrician

      What a load of nonsense. Such an interpretation would render the entire immigration act and most of the welfare laws as discriminatory…just to name two large areas of legislation.
      The lengths to which the FIRE brigade will go to protect their interests knows no bounds

      • St JacquesMEMBER

        “The lengths to which the FIRE brigade will go to protect their interests knows no bounds”
        Spot on. Both major parties represent the FIRE sector. Not the citizens. Traitors.

    • Oh yes, this is a real violation of human rights of those who want to buy in here! Forget the human rights of Australians wanting to buy shelter – they don’t matter.

      I agree….. FFS!!

  21. My argument is really simple. Maybe that’s the problem.

    Marriage is a legal contract that confers certain rights and benefits. There is no rational reason for it to be discriminatory against homosexuals. Therefore, the handful of words in the marriage act that need to change to make it legal should be changed.

    Everything else I’ve seen thus far is completely irrelevant to this core issue of equality before the law.

    Right. So why not argue to get rid of it, rather than inflame christians and conservatives, who perhaps rightly feel some ownership over “marriage”.

    Because getting rid of marriage entirely would be a large legal, social and cultural change.

    You seem to be in total agreement with me, except you want to stay on message with the rest of the chattering class

    No, you think that rather than trying to make a trivial change to law in line with a large proportion, if not outright majority, of, public opinion it would be preferable to instead make a massive and disruptive change in law that would be in direct conflict with the cultural and social beliefs of a fairly non-trivial chunk of society, because you personally think marriage is anachronistic.

    Personally I’m mostly indifferent towards the institution of marriage from a cultural perspective, though I can respect a lot of people feel it is very important to be very publicly “with” somebody. Legally it provides certain privileges and benefits – and that legal status also provides a social standing weight – and there is no rational reason that legal status should be constrained based on the sexuality of the participants.

    • Coming

      marriage is about offspring that is where it came from and that is its socio-cultural and legal function and that is why I want that aspect discussed. And while drsmithy may find it offensive I believe based on what I have witnessed over my career as a teacher that raising children seems to work better with a male and female parent.

      Therefore at this point I am stuck and its the only legal aspect of consequence as the children are third parties for whom decisions are being (in the case of adoption) made at a state level.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        marriage is about offspring that is where it came from and that is its socio-cultural and legal function and that is why I want that aspect discussed.

        No it didn’t.

        Marriage came from trading property (including women) and establishing family lineages and inheritances.

        If marriage is about offspring I assume you would be in favour of the law disallowing marriage between infertile couples ?

        And while drsmithy may find it offensive I believe based on what I have witnessed over my career as a teacher that raising children seems to work better with a male and female parent.

        What you have witnessed is that raising children works best with loving, stable and interested parents. What the plumbing looks like in the bedroom is irrelevant.

        Therefore at this point I am stuck and its the only legal aspect of consequence as the children are third parties for whom decisions are being (in the case of adoption) made at a state level.

        Substitute “mixed race marriage” or “mixed religion marriage” for “gay marriage” in your concerns and see if they still sound valid.