Weekend Links 30-31 January 2016

Global Macro / Markets / Investing:

Americas:

Europe:

Asia:

Trans-Tasman:

Other:

 

Comments

  1. Perhaps this is the perfect weekend to flog the 30% fuel price increase explanation…

    observing th e pump price one could be fooled into believing that the oil has rebounded majorly.

    $0.96 to $1.26 makes about 30% increase.

    Did a simple google search on Aussie fuel price cycling and about 99% bubbled info google provides is pro-cycling as a benefit to the consumers.
    But a proverbial needle in the hay stack is there…
    more to come later as time allows.

    If I am wrong into thinking that fuel dispensing is another rort and rentier business, I wish to be enlightened on the topic…

    • I wouldn’t say the fuel price cycle is an advantage to consumers, but the regular 7-10 fluctuation in fuel prices has been going for for *at least* 22 years (‘cuz that’s how long I’ve been watching prices). It’s hardly something that’s started recently.

    • I don’t know about dispensing being a rort but importing is as companies are not allowed to import fuel independently and so have to pay some fixed price

    • Seems to be a pretty big rort in Canberra.

      The standard price around town for regular unleaded at the moment is a pretty uniform $1.24-1.29/L, whilst Costco is selling it for 99.7c/L.

      There’s a Woolworths Caltex within spitting distance of Costco which matches Costco’s price until around 9:30 every night when Costco turns off their pumps, at which point the Caltex jacks the price by ~30c/L.

      • Did you consider that maybe Costco is just trying to get motorists to cough up the $60 for membership with the time honoured tradition of a loss leader?

    • Had quite a bit of drive around Sydney this weekend and used the opportunity to observe the prices.

      * AIP lists Friday’s gate price for ULP to be $1.021
      * Cheapest gate price this week was $0.1019 and in the last fortnight it was about the same
      * my observation this weekend shows ULP was ranging from as bad as $0.1299 to as low as $0.96
      * 96 cent price could be discounted further by 4 cents to 92 Cents a litre for ULP

      I am not an economist, I find it hard to believe that discounted fuel would be sold less then the cost, in the worst case scenario, which would suggest that 92 cents is true delivered price (or less).
      I could potentially understand that perhaps AIP has “the list” price and that dispensers have some sort of standing rebate or discount but that would mean that profit margins are far greater than what we are being brainwashed into (easily as bad as up to 40 cents profit at the pump).

      I also fail to see the incentive for a dispenser to sell the fuel at the cost (unlike Coles and the ilk selling e.g. cheap milk or cheap bread just to get you in store where you will pay for this milk with inflated prices elsewhere).

      I hope someone may provide a better explanation.
      So far, everything points towards the major ripoff scheme being sold as “discounting cycle”.
      Sure I understand that my findings are anecdotal and that I could be missing something but I also find it strange that any talk of fuel and pricing that can be searched online talks exclusively of “benefits for the consumer” and “poor dispensers whom hardly make ends meet with about 12 cents margin at best” (and have to employ illegal workers) and hardly tackles any $ figures in depth, pointing the finger only at the gov’t’s share of the pie.

      Sure I will be digging more into the subject…

  2. Negative interest rates tell us only one thing – that the future price of goods and services will be lower than they are today.
    Once the financing cost of all productivity falls, that cost is built into the final sale price, which is lower. Real wages can rise into the face of Nominal wage falls! What does go up in price is the result of non productive endeavour.
    If Japan, or any one else, is trying to defeat deflation by lowering interest rates, they are doing entirely the wrong thing.

    • I have a lot of friends that work on the Production side of the equation, They all tell me that the real problem is demand deficits, of course seen from the Financiers perspective this really just means Supply excesses. What’s the point of looking for Productive uses of capital when the state of the Global system suggests we need less rather than more Production?
      At the moment I’m struggling with this equation myself….lots of good manufacturing opportunities for sale…trouble is most will never generate positive operational cash flow unless interest rates are negative .

      • Ahhh yes. … but interest rates as you know are but one input.

        Rent, taxes, input costs (with lower dollar), wages, inefficient technology.

        As I say to my mates – it’s everything.

        It’s the vibe.

        But ultimately the consumer is tapped out – most indebted in the world.

      • @Escobar…

        http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2016/01/how-central-banks-and-even-keynes-misled-the-public-about-banking-and-money.html#comment-2541666

        Pertinent comment wrt optics…

        diptherio
        January 29, 2016 at 12:29 pm

        When I looked into the data about 5 years ago, it appeared that only a few large banks were actually operating on a credit-creation basis. Most banks (meaning your local, independent banks and credit unions) appeared to be operating on an intermediation model. Deposits are always the cheapest way to fund a loan, and for small banks, that looks like pretty much the only way they do it – iirc, loans were 60-80% of deposits in most banks. However, at JPM, BofA, etc, their loans were well over 100% of their deposits…like waaaay over. So it looked to me like just a few big players were driving endogenous money creation, while most banks actually were doing, essentially, what fractional-reserve theory says they do.

        That’s my understanding, but I don’t claim to be an expert.
        Reply ↓

        Anon
        January 29, 2016 at 12:36 pm

        diptherio:

        Banks no longer keep their loans on balance sheet, so a simple static analysis of their balance sheet doesn’t tell us much about how much credit creation they are doing. To study the degree to which banks create money you have to look at the role they play in the shadow banking system as well.

        Skippy… therein lies the rub e.g. some fixate on one component of a veritable galaxy of operational scope, so at this juncture on can surmise that new universes of credit are created and inserted into the multiverse to survive on their own [inhabitants luck of the draw]. Maybe theoretical physics would be a better methodology of describing credit activity’s at this juncture than thermodynamics, ideology, or socio-economic-political optics…

      • @HRHolden
        It seems to me that it all depends on how you define wealth.
        From what I can see and impute from your examples wealth for you is defined by material possessions and the utility value of these possessions. So for you the cost to obtain something is an important part of the purchase decision. for many however the high cost of an item is what makes it attractive. An excellent example is the special iPhones that are only available in China/Japan, they cost many $thousands and offer no more utility than any other iPhone the difference is a little gold plating or some exclusive screensaver. ZERO value to me, as a result my very well to do North Asian friends often mock my purchase decisions. Interestingly they dont mock me for being a “tight ares” rather they mock me because my decisions are not accretive to my personal value, or seen another way my “tight arse” ways diminish my influence and thereby diminish my wealth, I could be much richer if I just spent more of what I have.
        Wealth is a funny thing to define, if I can obtain wealth by prolific spending than why not buy an $10000 bike and dispose of it for $1000 after the first flat tire, why not buy the very latest phone, the very latest 100inch curved screen TV, especially if your wealth comes from the value others associate with this prolific spending.

    • “…Trying to stuff more credit into a system that is already choking on it will do nothing to increase the money supply in circulation. It cannot -even possibly- be inflationary. We are already in monetary contraction, as Williams has noted, and the contraction of credit makes the situation considerably worse than it appears from traditional money supply measures. Contraction is being aggravated by a fall in the velocity of money, as people, companies and banks hang on to what cash they have.

      In a deflation, real interest rates are always higher than nominal rates. The real rate is the nominal rate minus inflation, and when inflation is negative, the numbers are added rather than subtracted. Even zero in nominal terms is not low enough to make the real rate sufficiently low to reignite borrowing and lending.

      This is the liquidity trap, and governments are thoroughly caught in it already.

      There is no chance that the money injected by the Fed will find its way into the real economy, and no chance that it will ignite a wage/price spiral in an era of credit contraction and rising unemployment. Employees will have no pricing power at all under such circumstances, which means that wages will fall rather than rise. Prices will also fall, as the withdrawal of credit will remove price support across the board. However, even as prices fall, affordability will be getting worse, because purchasing power will be falling faster than price.”

      Getting there…

      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        Believe it or not 3d i find myself in complete agreement with what you have there. That situation is precisely what we have. And i think the only way out of this is for governments (and this is a global/multinational phenomena) to agree with each other that they are going to have a multinational spendathon, and to direct the benefits of that spendathon to the 99% while explicitly excluding the 1%.

        Now if you think that would get us globally to a point where sprouts of deman could get above the supply suffocating them, (and IMO it require years of careful cultivation after demand was first seen) you would think that globally thoughts would be directed towards finding one of

        A major disruptive technology or technologies – i have no idea whether one of these is on the way or if there are new ones around the corner, but would observe they would need to be absolutely mega, or

        major global commitment to reaching a clear and comprehensive process on how the world would support demand for mine this would have to cover not just capital flows, but would need to encompass everything from national taxation levels (of multinationals in particular) to credit access to salaries (and of course from there to numerous living standard measures) to demographic flows and ultimately global warming. To say the least i doubt the world is ready for that yet, and we could be sure that any given nation would feature pretty serious political backlashes against the thought of.

        Of course we could alway utilise the traditional absorber of excess supply and rip into a global war. But short of all that i see us (globally) wading through the quicksand for a while yet, until various parts of of the curent global balance crack under the pressure. Given that Australia is a fairly small part of the global equation, i suspect it eill be allowed to come apart, and in common with most Australian negative economic events, will be denied by the political processes and elites until long after it is manifestly obvious on the ground.

    • I wonder about the whole global demand thing.

      We’ve either automated or outsourced the work of the middle class to poor countries and hence removed the ability of the largest market to consume.

      Then there is possibly what might be the outcome of affluence. For example – since my phone got a large screen, fast internet and a reasonable battery life – I have zero interest in a new one. Equally, our cars have all the features one does needs and all those you don’t need as well, so I’m not enthusiastic about buying another car. I and a mate just bought barely second hand $10,000 mountain bikes for ~$2,000. I recently picked up a $1,000 BBQ off the street, (ok it was a flash street). But, is this becoming a thing – or is it just me? If it is a thing, then it’s not good news for global demand. It’s good for sustainability though, I guess.

      So can people spend less, consume less, work less, have a better quality life probably with zero growth?

      That said I think we’ll spend the savings on travel!

      • “Then there is possibly what might be the outcome of affluence. For example – since my phone got a large screen, fast internet and a reasonable battery life – I have zero interest in a new one. Equally, our cars have all the features one does needs and all those you don’t need as well, so I’m not enthusiastic about buying another car.”

        You seem to have forgotten about planned obsolescence. I’m willing to bet that in a couple of years once your phone has gone through hundreds of recharge/discharge cycles and the battery no longer holds charge you’ll more than likely buy a new phone (or have it replaced as part of your phone contract) rather than have the battery replaced. Or maybe the trigger will be when the fireware/OS on your phone is outdated and updating to the latest firmware/OS turns it into a buggy, slow POS. Your new car may have all the ‘features’ you need but what do you think happens to its reliability as it ages? Think about all those rubber seals + hoses that have a limited lifespan and will eventually leak, costing you a few hundred to replace a $10 part.

      • So can people spend less, consume less, work less, have a better quality life probably with zero growth?

        Absolutely. Arguably that’s the endgame.

        Unless you’re someone for whom the market is the end, rather than the means, of course.

      • ricsvtr,

        Of course there is the issue of stuff wearing out. But if people only replace stuff when it wears out, then demand will be much lower, that if they were replacing stuff because the new item was far better or shinier. You’d have to think replacement due to wear only, would have to reduce demand by ~30% and that is a heap.

        And what about the recycling? buying stuff second hand has become a lot easier and there seem to be alot more people doing it. We renovated and pretty much put anything of value on gumtree and sold the lot – some for bugger all – but at least that help someone and got the stuff recycled.

        On the bikes – it’s now a lot easier to find exotic bikes second hand. To ride these two biked you wouldn’t know they were second hand – the only marginal compromise is wheel size, with the size we have still reataniing some benefits. Spending an extra $8,000 for a few % difference seems ludicrous …

        My guess is that consumption patterns may be changing … but I don’t know if it’s just me. I it’s not so much that I’m being a tight arse i don’t think – I’m just finding that the old stuff is so good the marginal benefits of new stuff just are not motivating me. Thing is – I’m not sure if this a thing or just me …

      • DrSmity,

        Yeah but does the whole thing fall over if demand stagnates? I can’t buy the second hand bike if it wasn’t made because demand has plummeted.

        If demand plummets – where there be enough peopling doing and buying enough to keep the ecconomy and services going at the standard we are used to?

        Will the first world end up looking 2nd or 3rd world?

        What will happen to the distribution of wealth?

    • I’d check my assumptions on this.

      I can’t see anything but real prices increasing.

      Ask any of the oil experts -> Downey on oil
      Low oil prices setting up a supply crunch: For every month oil below $35, probably adds $2-3 to long term (5yr+) equilibrium price of oil

      The understanding that fiat money, gold back money is simply a call on energy resource
      Currently you can spend a dollar 20 and get a litre of oil – so your dollar is energy backed.
      If oil becomes scarce, there will be a hierarchy of institutiongs that can access oil based on perceived needs, and despite no matter how many dollars you have, you won’t be able to get the oil.

      You may be able to buy solar panels, however it won’t get you very far in your car as stands.

      Thenconsider that systems form themselves, that ruling elite do exist yet aren’t very creative

      That humans think very short term – ie ten minutes, am I hungry, thirsty type of stuff, and act that way.
      That humans, most of us 90% of the time are automated and essentially do whatever is the least resistant path -? no pain, good feelings -> pretty much robots. Any time that an idea clashed with a belief they will reject it and fight the new idea. So in this way humans survived and piggybacked on top of others. We emulate, copy and learn from our surroundings. We are controlloed by our genes, and we essentially follow the culture of our immediate surrounds.

      And then, I may be wrong on all of this.I’m just having a stab, put it all on black, I dare you

    • Most people aren’t worried about what might happen, Hugh, because they don’t understand what’s really going on, and they can only be worried about what they understand…..

      • I challenge you to ask pretty much anyone you know, certainly the majority , “Where does money come from?” and see if they have any understanding of the concept or not. Without that basic understanding, yes, people are stupid!, because they do not understand what they are doing, or why. They instead do ‘what they are told’ which in times past has served they adequately. But we are in exceptional times, where change will only come from wider community understaning. Most people do not understand; ergo, they are not worried. If they were, they wouldn’t be assuming ever more debt to buy what they really can’t afford. You can write and publish as many reports as you like for us to read, but until the majority of our people do read them, and want to, then nothing is going to change outside of an unwelcomed financial adjustment.
        How many New Zealand property owners will go and see “The Big Short” ? Not as may as will go and see Star Wars by a country mile, simply because it doesn’t interest them and ‘they don’t want to know”

      • Janet

        Just to be clear, cos I think you’ve already said it.

        People aren’t stupid, they’re ignorant.

        For what they know or understand they’re quite clever.

        Houses rise in value.
        Alcohol makes me chill.
        Turn the key and the engine starts. Petrol goes in here.

      • “For what they know or understand they’re quite clever.”

        I gather you were half joking, but I think you’re spot on. Personally I don’t blame people for not getting it. Much of this stuff is framed in jargon that can be tough to get your head around. If you go to Wikipedia and look up money creation you’re confronted with a bunch of terms and institutions that are not going to make a lot of sense to most people.

      • If the public is stupid when it comes to housing, it’s because the developer lobby has a pecuniary interest in keeping them stupid. And by developer lobby I mean it in the broadest possible terms. From its libertarian loony right wing to its identity politics obsessed popularised plastic caricature of a left wing. Yep it covers all bases – the right wing lobby against LVT and for liberalisation of the “land market” (that is for the extraction of rents which would otherwise go to the public), the “left” wing lobby for unplanned population growth and throw up the usual non-issue, high emotion distractions. Both repeat the same lines central to the shortage myth, both pretend the solution is on the supply side. The lobby greases the wheels and donates heavily to both major parties, it writes housing policy, it presses relentlessly on all levels of government, it disseminates it’s propaganda through the media, it even appears in the comment section of this site in various forms. Nothing will happen until these charlatans are banned from making campaign donations and excluded from the discussion.

      • Groupthink is as strong in Ireland as it was before the financial crisis – Independent.ie

        http://www.independent.ie/opinion/columnists/david-quinn/groupthink-is-as-strong-in-ireland-as-it-was-before-the-financial-crisis-34406215.html

        Limerick most affordable city in world to buy home – Independent.ie

        http://www.independent.ie/irish-news/limerick-most-affordable-city-in-world-to-buy-home-34408854.html

        Is Dublin leading in repeating the mistakes of recent history ?

      • People are NOT stupid … a further example …

        Schnurman: Thank you, California, New York, et al., for transplants keeping Texas afloat | Dallas Morning News

        http://www.dallasnews.com/business/columnists/mitchell-schnurman/20160129-schnurman-thank-you-california-new-york-et-al.-for-so-many-transplants-keeping-texas-afloat.ece

        If oil prices don’t go up, Texas can always count on California — and New York, Florida, Illinois and New Jersey.

        Those are among the many states that regularly lift the Texas economy because so many of their residents relocate here. Some Texans move the other way, of course, but the net gains are heavily in our favor…. Read more via hyperlink above …

  3. Scott Morrison
    ‏@ScottMorrisonMP
    Labor’s plan is to make taxes higher than spending #auspol

    Sounds like a very good plan for surplus.

    Blind rhetoric in the new role much harder than in the old role of ‘fuck you, i’m stopping the boats.’

    Won’t be too judgmental given early days, but he doesn’t exactly seem like an economic colossus now….

  4. TailorTrashMEMBER

    “This would be a good model for the republic. First, sort out several models with new wording for the Constitution. Say, a directly elected president; a president approved by a two-thirds majority of Federal Parliament; a president appointed by the Prime Minister; and no doubt some others.”

    Definitely not option 3 ……….we could get a captains call …….and who knows what hack gets the gig in Yarralumla …….perish the thought ……..

    • Good idea Trash, tome to rejig from the top down, president with a Swiss style system under that providing a more direct form of government. For example where is the government mandate to have a population ponzi?

    • BoomToBustMEMBER

      Whilst he is probably right, I hate the way port philip publishing writes these articles. They appear like every other scam trying to take your money and use a healthy dose of fear and paranoia.

      • I agree BoomToBust. I stopped reading his stuff years and years ago but saw this headline in my email and had a skim read. He’s had some great calls over the years and some shocking calls too.

      • Not sure Kris is making the most logical argument there. Can’t raise taxes because it will lose votes but stealing superannuation is fine. Not to mention that the Coalition is doing absolutely everything it can to avoid touching super.

        “How do YOU think our leaders will dig us out of this hole?

        They can’t raise taxes as it’ll lose them votes”

      • Thanks AB

        An anecdotal observation I’ve made is most people are ambivalent about super, and carry on about the smallest amount of tax. Who knows? I know I’d be active in any attempt to touch my super in any meaningful way.

        Trouble is they could do it insidiously, like changing the age of access exactly the way they have with pretty much zero opposition.

  5. Sweeper said re dr smithy
    You seem to be very willing to accept highly conjectural evidence to prove the shortage myth, yet highly forensic when it comes to the demand side.

    What’s been revealed here? Apparent massive lefties, dr smithy etal ulterior motives.

  6. I was talking to an arch conservative about the gay marriage plebiscite.

    He said, if you have a plebiscite and the majority support gay marriage then people like me will just have to live with it. Whereas, he said, the legitimacy of a vote in Federal Paliament alone would be forever debated by the losers, whom ever they may be.

    Hence I think the plebiscite is the better option for the long term stability of any decision made…

    • pyjamasbeforechristMEMBER

      Also would show the nations general support on the single issue. Personally would like to see it happen (for friends that feel strongly on the issue) but its not a major item that swings me in a general election. I suspect there are many like me that would say yes if its seperated as a single vote item but are a bit meh when its just part of the general political noise.

    • It would be far easier to be sympathetic to that view if JWHs amendment banning gay marriage hadn’t had the specific purpose of preventing another democratically elected parliament from carrying out the wishes of their constituency.

    • It is a simple and basic question of equality before the law. It shouldn’t even need extensive debate in parliament. It certainly wouldn’t if, for example, the qestion was “should aboriginals and non-aboriginals be allowed to marry”.

      Far, far more serious issues have been settled with zero public consultation. Pick any FTA (or similar) for an example.

      Small minded morons just need to get over their desire to run a theocracy and accept secular Government. Marriage (to the state) is a legal contract between two people, nothing more.

      • “Small minded morons just need to get over their desire to run a theocracy and accept secular Government.”

        Besides being rude, you’re assuming people want what you want.

        Based on Australia’s religious holidays Easter and Christmas I’d say we’d be a Christian theocracy.

        I’m sure if Australia wasn’t a Christian country in the 50’s and 60’s my parents wouldn’t have stepped foot on this soil.

        Why would anyone have to accept what YOU want?

        I’d rather a debate.

      • Great comment Escobar.

        I’m loving the resistance to drsmithy’s petulant obnoxious tone. I’m sick of her.

      • While I agree with you drsmithy, (with the exception of the pejorative comments), I respect the views of escobar.

        My pint is that if you want to get to a more sustainable conclusion, the plebiscite actually makes sense. That that I think this was Abbot’s strategy…

      • I couldn’t care less about gay marriage, and couldn’t care less who chooses to sleep with who, but the more they demand we address their micro issue, the more inclined I am to vote no if I get a vote.

        I’m tired of the left demanding their issues be addressed while watching the rest of the country fall apart.

      • Besides being rude, you’re assuming people want what you want.

        No I am not.

        I am assuming we live in an enlightened secular democracy where all people have equality before the law, be they white, black, hetero, homo, rich, poor, or whatever.

        Based on Australia’s religious holidays Easter and Christmas I’d say we’d be a Christian theocracy.

        LOL. You mean the days the vast majority of Australians give each other chocolate bunnies or presents and heave a sigh of relief they don’t have to go to work ?

        Yeah, the religious influence there is truly overpowering.

        I’d rather a debate.

        What’s to debate about whether adults should have equality before the law regardless of their sexual orientation (or, heck, even if you want to call them preferences) ?

        It makes as much sense as “debating” whether people shouldn’t be able to get married because they only like to shag doggy style.

      • While I agree with you drsmithy, (with the exception of the pejorative comments), I respect the views of escobar.

        If Escobar doesn’t want to consider icky homos to be “married”, that’s his prerogative. I’m not going to do anything to try and stop him having or voicing that opinion. The real world consequences of him and I having different opinions are zero.

        It’s when he – and others like him – want to deny people legal equality – i.e.: create actual real world consequences because of different opinions – because they’re icky homos it becomes a problem.

        Only one of us is trying to impose our beliefs on, and control the lives of, others, because of our opinions, and it ain’t me.

        The marriages of heterosexual couples won’t suddenly be annulled when pooftas and lezzos start tying the knot.

        My pint is that if you want to get to a more sustainable conclusion, the plebiscite actually makes sense. That that I think this was Abbot’s strategy…

        People who don’t want icky homos to be able to call themselves “married” aren’t going to change their minds just because most of the rest of the country thinks it’s OK, even if we all take a day to go and tell each other it’s OK.

        There is nothing to debate on this topic. There are no negative consequences in allowing it. Nobody loses in any way anybody should care about from same sex marriage being legal. Nobody is going to learn anything they don’t already know, and nobody is going to change the opinions they already have. So what does a plebiscite achieve other than wasting money and condoning weeks or months of grotesque public homophobia ?

      • The small minded morons in Syria just need to get over their desire to run a moderate theocracy and accept an Islamic State Government. 

        Why? Because I say so.

      • drsmithy

        what a croc of garbage. If you want equality in law, why not ask for that instead of marriage? No reasonable person in Australia would deny that and politicians would be compelled to comply.

        The term “marriage” belongs to the church and literally means a union between a man and woman, therefore the huge resistance (and illogical blabbering by the gay community)

        This is far more about gay pride and demanding what they want because they can’t have it. Grow up.

      • Gawd I’m a dyslexic git. I meant to say that was NOT Abbot’s intent. (dropping key adverbs can be dangerous, eh).

        The point of the plebiscite is it respects everybody’s views in the normal democratic way by and large, every body will respect the democratic outcome. Well except barking mad f*ckwits like Cory Bernardi.

        He gets funnier. On his website that eschews the Liberal party – he says that he’s standing up for the silent majority. Except if there is majority for marriage equality at a plebiscite…

        “”I think there are many members of parliament who are happy to bow to the whims of what is populist public opinion – (but) I’ve never been one of those.”

        But he stands up for the the silent majority, apparently. Ahh the irrationality of mindless ideologues…

        My gosh, he is a spectacular tool.

        … and he actually is in person too, by the way.

      • “If Escobar doesn’t want to consider icky homos to be “married”, that’s his prerogative.”

        Icky is DrSmithy’s word. That’s how he feels. Please refrain from putting words in my mouth or assuming what I think. Having a debate is a million miles away from homophobia or what ever else you think is appropriate to label me.

        “I’m not going to do anything to try and stop him having or voicing that opinion.”

        Other than put words in my mouth like “icky” or label people that like debates as morons.

      • Well said Richard

        “If you want equality in law, why not ask for that instead of marriage? No reasonable person in Australia would deny that and politicians would be compelled to comply.”

      • Escobar

        Icky is DrSmithy’s word. That’s how he feels. Please refrain from putting words in my mouth or assuming what I think

        Left wing MO is to obfuscate and shut an argument down with slanderous accusations of xenophobia, homophobia, what ever phobia fits. Calling them out infuriates them and will bring abuse. It’s time everyone on here and the broader media stopped them. It is literally stifling nation changing debate in this country. They have had the run of media ever since sensible people have been shut down with terms such as “racist” for questioning anything. The left are a disgrace.

      • FiftiesFibroShack

        “Besides being rude, you’re assuming people want what you want.”

        He’s right though.

        “Based on Australia’s religious holidays Easter and Christmas I’d say we’d be a Christian theocracy.”

        Good grief. Section 116 of the Australian Constitution says:

        “The Commonwealth shall not make any law for establishing any religion, or for imposing any religious observance, or for prohibiting the free exercise of any religion, and no religious test shall be required as a qualification for any office or public trust under the Commonwealth.”

        Sure, a few of our politicians seem convinced they’re governing by divine guidance, but delusions aside, we’re safe.

        “Why would anyone have to accept what YOU want?”

        It’s got nothing to do with what he wants, it’s what the government has a right to determine free people can and can’t do.

        “I’d rather a debate.”

        I’d prefer not to stick my nose in other people’s lives, but each to their own.

        If there is any debate it should be about replacing the marriage act with the civil union act. The law should cover all adult unions regardless of religion, or absence of. People can call their relationship whatever they want, but as far as the government is concerned they will all be civil unions, with the same laws applying to all.

      • what a croc of garbage. If you want equality in law, why not ask for that instead of marriage?

        O.o

        Not sure if serious.

        The term “marriage” belongs to the church and literally means a union between a man and woman, therefore the huge resistance (and illogical blabbering by the gay community)

        Not it does not.

        If marriage “belonged” to the church, only people who were members of said church would be able to get married. Clearly and obviously this is not the case.

        The term “marriage” is defined in law, by the Marriage Act. You might recall Howard changed it to pander to homophobic conservatives. What churches do or do not consider “marriage” is completely and utterly irrelevant to the discussion, because we do not live in a theocracy where laws are defined by what the church (which church, by the way?) says.

      • The point of the plebiscite is it respects everybody’s views in the normal democratic way by and large, every body will respect the democratic outcome. Well except barking mad f*ckwits like Cory Bernardi.

        The point is that some people’s views – in as much as they are allowed to control the lives of others – do not deserve to be respected. Barking mad f*ckwits like Cory Bernardi, for example.

        We would not entertain the idea of a plebiscite to institute slavery, for example. There are undoubtedly people who have views that slavery should exist and be legal, but their views do not deserve respect.

      • If there is any debate it should be replacing the marriage act with and act that deals with civil unions. The law should cover all adult unions regardless of religion or lack of. People can call there relationship whatever they want, but as far as the government is concerned they will all be civil unions, with the same laws applying to all.

        +1

        The best solution would be to get “marriage” out of the legal code all together, thus short-circuiting the time-consuming but inevitably wrong arguments about what “marriage” is based on religious beliefs. But that’s a significant and expensive job, whereas just removing any gender requirements from the existing marriage act is a matter of changing about half a dozen words.

      • Well said Richard

        No, it’s not, because asking for equality before the law IS EXACTLY WHAT ALLOWING SAME-SEX MARRIAGE IS.

      • Icky is DrSmithy’s word. That’s how he feels. Please refrain from putting words in my mouth or assuming what I think. Having a debate is a million miles away from homophobia or what ever else you think is appropriate to label me.

        You’re not debating. You’re stating homosexuals shouldn’t be allowed to marry.

        If you want to debate, offer some reasoning.

      • O.o Not sure what that means but I’d be confident it’s patronising or belittling.

        Not sure if serious.

        Yes. Serious. If they’ve already asked for it, I’d guess like me, hardly anyone knows about it and therefore there’s no pressure on politicians to do it.

        The term marriage was born in the church and the gay community want it. lol.

      • Fifties Fibro

        “Section 116 of the Australian Constitution”

        Irrelevant to deciding if a country is Christian or not.

        It’s people once decided that observing Christian holidays was paramount.

        That may have changed.

      • Dr Smithy

        “You’re stating homosexuals shouldn’t be allowed to marry.”

        Nonsense. Never said anything of the sort.

        You’re either trying to put words in my mouth or you’re not reading carefully enough or confusing what you’ve read somewhere else and ascribed it to me.

      • To the thumpers out there and their ilk..

        From polygamy to same-sex marriage, here are 13 milestones in the history of marriage.

        1. Arranged alliances

        Marriage is a truly ancient institution that predates recorded history. But early marriage was seen as a strategic alliance between families, with the youngsters often having no say in the matter. In some cultures, parents even married one child to the spirit of a deceased child in order to strengthen familial bonds, Coontz said.

        http://www.livescience.com/37777-history-of-marriage.html

        Skippy… shenanigans – [W]hen two people are under the influence of the most violent, most insane, most delusive, and most transient of passions, they are required to swear that they will remain in that excited, abnormal, and exhausting condition until death do them part. [G.B. Shaw, preface to “Getting Married,” 1908]

      • Nonsense. Never said anything of the sort.

        Then why are you spending so much time arguing ?

        It’s a trivial issue of legal equality and should be treated as such.

      • What Dr Smithy sees as a simple argument is far from. The tradition of marriage was created to stop men wondering and to provide a stable environment for the raising of children. Clearly a gay couple cannot have children, therefore it does not apply to them.
        This is not a matter of gays having equal rights it is simply a matter of what marriage is and why it was first developed.
        If we are to say marriage is not about children then we should not just allow for gay marriage, we should also remove incest laws and allow polygamy. For example why should two brothers not be allowed to marry.
        I have no problem with gay couples being recognised under a civil union and being entitled to all the rights of a married couple regarding the application of the law (not having to give evidence against them, superannuation etc). Gay marriage advocates never have a good answer to these arguments they simply dismiss it as “slippery slope”. Advocates see it as a “rights” issue but what about the rights of incestuous couples? or polygamist couples It is the same argument.

      • Then why are you spending so much time arguing ?

        Come on. Is that your argument is it? I think you’ve been blown out of the water.

        Go and tell the gay community they should be asking for equality in law instead of marriage and they’ll have it next week. That’s not what this is about though is it?

        Heisenberg. Don’t go talking logic around here or you’ll be called a homophobe.

      • Dr Smithy

        I’ve had to argue against your incessant need to put words in my mouth and assumptions that can’t be gleaned from what I write, but are evident only in your mind.

        I basically started by saying let there be a debate. Let people have their say.

        Just because you think one way. Doesn’t mean it’s right. No matter how smart you think you are.

      • FiftiesFibroShack

        @Escobar

        “Irrelevant to deciding if a country is Christian or not. ”
        “Based on Australia’s religious holidays Easter and Christmas I’d say we’d be a Christian theocracy.”

        Don’t change your tune now. You said “Christian theocracy”, therefore, highly relevant.

      • Fifties Fibro

        I did say Christian theocracy. But I was using Dr Smithy’s words (theocracy) to make a point.

        I’ll try to remember next time that EVERY statement must stand on its own.

        Cheers.

      • “Based on Australia’s religious holidays Easter and Christmas I’d say we’d be a Christian theocracy.”

        I don’t know much much you can extrapolate from people’s love of Christmas and Easter. Most of my friends are atheists or agnostic, but they still celebrate Christmas and Easter with their children, who will no doubt do the same with theirs. There is no religious element for them, it’s just what they’ve grown up doing.

        As for gay marriage, i’d say based on current social trends and attitudes it’s inevitable. No doubt some people won’t like it, but tough luck. Things change.

      • Richard. That is what makes me most angry in this debate that you are howled down as a homophobe for not supporting gay marriage. I had gay friends at our wedding and we disagree but they would never describe me as a homophobe.
        I hate having to justify yourself all the time that you are not a homophobe. One of my closest friends as school was gay. We were both into rowing and in a country town being gay is hard. Again we disagree but he would never describe me as a homophobe.
        Arguing for traditional marriage is like arguing that Australia is in a housing bubble. Friends and family think you are mad until you logically dissect the argument!

      • What Dr Smithy sees as a simple argument is far from. The tradition of marriage was created to stop men wondering and to provide a stable environment for the raising of children.

        No it wasn’t.

        Clearly a gay couple cannot have children, therefore it does not apply to them.

        Yes they can.

        This is not a matter of gays having equal rights it is simply a matter of what marriage is and why it was first developed.

        To the state, marriage is a legal contract.

        If we are to say marriage is not about children then we should not just allow for gay marriage, we should also remove incest laws and allow polygamy.

        Holy crap, so many fallacies wrapped up in once sentence.

        Marriage is not about children. If it were, infertile couples would not be allowed to marry and couples who do not produce children would have their marriages annulled.
        In no way does incest or polygamy follow on from allowing same-sex marriage. The former is an entirely separate area of morals, ethics and law, and the latter is a fundamental and significant change of scenario from “two people” to “more than two people”.

        For example why should two brothers not be allowed to marry.

        No reason I can think of, but why would they want to ?

        I have no problem with gay couples being recognised under a civil union and being entitled to all the rights of a married couple regarding the application of the law (not having to give evidence against them, superannuation etc).

        Then you support same-sex marriage. That’s all “marriage” is – the word used in the law for what you are calling a “civil union”. There is no reason for two terms to exist in law to define the same thing. Unless you do want those things to be treated differently in law ?

        Gay marriage advocates never have a good answer to these arguments they simply dismiss it as “slippery slope”.

        That’s because they are slippery slope (amongst other things). Same-sex marriage no more implies polygamy should be legal than mixed-religion marriage would imply bestiality should be legal.

        Advocates see it as a “rights” issue but what about the rights of incestuous couples? or polygamist couples It is the same argument.

        No, they have completely different arguments.

      • I can see the theologians and ilk don’t want a bar of sociology or anthro… broad evidence based discussion…

      • Go and tell the gay community they should be asking for equality in law instead of marriage and they’ll have it next week. That’s not what this is about though is it?

        Yes, that is what it’s about. The law is the Marriage Act. They want the law changed to remove the gender-specific parts. Equality in law is precisely what they are asking for.

      • “The term marriage was born in the church and the gay community want it. lol.”

        A lot of people that don’t believe in God want (and do) get married too. Makes no bloody sense to me, but nobody seems to complain about that..

      • I basically started by saying let there be a debate. Let people have their say.

        And, as I replied, there is no need for a debate. It is a trivial issue of equality before the law. We already know what people will say. Nobody is going to suddenly change their mind because it’s a plebiscite.

        We would not debate whether or not two people of different religions should be allowed to get married, even if their religions forbade it.

        Similarly, there is no need to debate whether or not same sex couples should be allowed to be married.

        The ONLY reason this is an issue is because it forms a convenient outrage-concentration point for far-right politicians. As soon as it ceases to be useful for that, or something better comes along, any opposition from most public figures (True Believer outliers like Cory Bernadi aside) will stop.

        Just because you think one way. Doesn’t mean it’s right.

        I’ve never thought that it does. But you need to do better than “you’re wrong” if you want to change my mind.

      • Dr Smithy.
        So I can understand this you are OK with two brothers marrying which by extension means a brother and sister should be allowed to marry. So we will need to also remove laws that stop incest. Good luck with that campaign.
        Marriage is about children. Just because couples do not have children does not change that. It was why marriage was developed. It is from our Juedo-Christian heritage along with many other traditions like magna-carta, democracy…
        Gay couples cannot have children. They can adopt, they can use surragates, donor egg and sperm but they cannot have their own biological children. Being a doctor you would know this.
        Mixed religion marriages have never been an issue in the eyes of the law. In the eyes of various religions yes but not in the law. How you get to beastiality I am not sure.
        You state that “…there is no need for a debate. It is a trivial issue of equality before the law.” This is the scary thing about this and many other debates today. Those who oppose, you seek to shut down and it is because you live in an echo chamber. All your friends etc agree with you so your ideas are never challenged. However when tested in a public forum they are found hopelessly wanting. To avoid such nasty scenarios you simply state there is no debate. If that is not a totalitarian then Stalin was a good guy.

        Also you conveniently wish away equality for polygamous couples as ” an entirely separate area of morals, ethics and law” but polygamy is accepted morality in a huge number of cultures, infact I would argue it is more accepted world wide than gay marriage is. Morality and ethics are subjective. What is not is our history and our culture and why marriage was originally created.

        In the crucible of robust debate your arguments are found badly wanting.

      • The concept of marriage was not born in the Christian church and predates it by at least a couple of thousand years.
        It exists amongst any other reason to establish property rights. As a result if you can’t access marriage you have fewer opportunities in society.

      • “Marriage is about children” – to you maybe, but not to the 10s of thousands of married couples or are deliberately or otherwise childless.

        I’m married – but I did so with a celebrant. Marriage is very meaningful to me, even if that does not make sense to a non-secular person. And yes it means something to me a MARRIAGE not a civil union. There is no point trivializing my view – it exists to me. It’s real and in a free society that means something. In a democracy it means something. You may trivialise my belief in my secular marriage – but I have a right to vote and there is a chance that will result in marriage equality. So you don’t get much more real than that.

        Marriage means different things to different people. I respect what marriage means to non-secular people and the different meaning it has to them and I support strongly their right to that view within their own family and community.

        The thin edge of the wedge augment is pretty flawed – as it nearly always is. For over a decade, well over 50% of people have supported marriage equality. It has a good chance of getting up at a plebiscite.

        Polygamy, incest and bestiality will not get support at a plebiscite now or any time in the foreseeable future. So drop the Polygamy, incest and bestiality, it’s an utterly pointless argument.

      • I did say Christian theocracy. But I was using Dr Smithy’s words (theocracy) to make a point.

        And I used that term because, inevitably – or, at least, I’ve never seen it end any other way – it always boils down to “my god says gay marriage is bad [because homosexuality is a sin and allowing them to marry would be encouraging sin]”.

        People who want others to live by their religious beliefs are arguing for a theocracy.

        Your logic that public holidays based in ancient Christian (or even more ancient pagan) festivals does not support the same outcome. Nobody is forced to recognise Easter, or Christmas, as evidenced by the large number of them who don’t spend it in Church. One could, barely, make an argument that Christianity is forced upon those who, for example, want to work on those public holidays that are so aligned, but by and large they are not prevented from doing so.

      • So I can understand this you are OK with two brothers marrying which by extension means a brother and sister should be allowed to marry. So we will need to also remove laws that stop incest.

        No, we won’t. Because incest is an entirely separate issue upon which same-sex marriage has no impact or bearing.

        Marriage is about children. Just because couples do not have children does not change that. It was why marriage was developed. It is from our Juedo-Christian heritage along with many other traditions like magna-carta, democracy…

        No it’s not. Marriage predates Christianity by a long, LONG, way. Marriage is, and always has been, about legal contracts and property ownership.

        Gay couples cannot have children. They can adopt, they can use surragates, donor egg and sperm but they cannot have their own biological children. Being a doctor you would know this.

        I’ve never claimed to be a doctor (but I don’t think it’s a pre-requisite from understanding homosexuals cannot conceive without assistance).

        If the biological ability to bear children is a defining factor of a legal marriage, then that means infertile couples should not be allowed to marry and couples that fail to produce children should be sanctioned in some way (eg: at death all their property is appropriated by the state). Those are conclusions that actually do follow from the premise, unlike your one above about incest.

        Mixed religion marriages have never been an issue in the eyes of the law.

        Yes they have. If you want to argue mixed-religion marriages have never been an issue in the eyes of the law _recently_, you might have a point. But since you’re talking about the Magna-Carta, I’m going to assume we can go back into history.

        How you get to beastiality I am not sure.

        Well, I was taking two entirely unrelated things and stating that one must lead to the other. Like you did.

        This is the scary thing about this and many other debates today. Those who oppose, you seek to shut down and it is because you live in an echo chamber. All your friends etc agree with you so your ideas are never challenged. However when tested in a public forum they are found hopelessly wanting. To avoid such nasty scenarios you simply state there is no debate. If that is not a totalitarian then Stalin was a good guy.

        I find my ideas challenged all the time because it is something I actively seek out.

        However, I have yet to see a single argument against same-sex marriage that could withstand scrutiny by an intelligent schoolchild. That is why there is no debate.

        Kind of like there’s no debate about slavery anymore. Not because there’s a shortage of people who want to have the debate, but because there’s no argument in favour of it that withstands even the slightest scrutiny.

        It’s got nothing to do with “shutting people down” and everything to do with “not wasting people’s time while actual harm is occurring”.

        Also you conveniently wish away equality for polygamous couples as ” an entirely separate area of morals, ethics and law” but polygamy is accepted morality in a huge number of cultures, infact I would argue it is more accepted world wide than gay marriage is. Morality and ethics are subjective. What is not is our history and our culture and why marriage was originally created.

        Actually, no, that’s what I said about incest.

        Polygamy fundamentally changes the legal construct from being between two people, to being between more than two people. This complicates issues of property ownership and legal responsibilities – the real historical purpose of marriage – substantially. It should not take much imagination to come up with some scenarios around, say, child custody in the face of death or divorce, to understand why “same sex marriage” and “polygamy” are entirely different discussions.

        In the crucible of robust debate your arguments are found badly wanting.

        LOL. I begin to see why “friends and family think you are mad”.

      • FiftiesFibroShack

        “In the crucible of robust debate your arguments are found badly wanting.”

        Don’t know about that. His arguments were factual where required and rational when based on opinion. I can’t say the same about yours.

      • HR Holden.
        You may argue the thin edge of the wedge argument is deeply flawed. I suggest you see the debate in the Netherlands which is already moving towards polygamy. The thin edge of the wedge argument is very real
        I say marriage is about children in the context of why it is part of our culture. I never argued you had to have children when you get married or how children are conceived for that fact but it is the reason as to why it was created.
        Marriage means different things to different people as you point out. Polygamy is accepted for example in parts of aboriginal culture but that does not make it acceptable under Australian law because our law is based on a very different interpretation of marriage which is derived from Judeo-Christian culture. If you want marriage equality then why not recognise the polygamous marriages of our first Australians.

        As for DrSmithy well her hubris is incredible “I have yet to see a single argument against same-sex marriage that could withstand scrutiny by an intelligent schoolchild. That is why there is no debate.” It sums up the left’s instincts perfectly to shut down debate rather than engage. She then goes onto equate arguing for traditional marriage to be akin to arguing for slavery. (though no doubt some will argue marriage is akin to slavery!)

        She argues that “Polygamy fundamentally changes the legal construct from being between two people, to being between more than two people. This complicates issues of property ownership and legal responsibilities” But sharing property rights between more than two people is very much a part of western tradition and culture. Whether it be siblings inheriting assets and holding them in say a trust or holding an incorporated company with numerous shareholders. Trusts and limited liability companies have been around for 100’s of years.

        Ultimately I would happily accept the result of any plebiscite on the issue of gay marriage, but would DrSmithy? I doubt it because she cannot accept someone having difference of opinion to himself in the first place.

      • You may argue the thin edge of the wedge argument is deeply flawed. I suggest you see the debate in the Netherlands which is already moving towards polygamy.

        This is not the Netherlands.

        If the Netherlands, as a society, decide to create legal structures around polygamous relationships, that is wholly and solely their business. It would be no different from any other change in legal status like, say, when women were allowed to own property or vote (changes vastly more far-reaching and disruptive than same sex marriage could ever be – and equally not in need of “debate” were they arising today).

        The thin edge of the wedge argument is very real

        No it is not. Because it is not even a thin edge of the wedge situation.

        I say marriage is about children in the context of why it is part of our culture. I never argued you had to have children when you get married or how children are conceived for that fact but it is the reason as to why it was created.

        You can say whatever you want, but that doesn’t make you right.

        It’s quite demonstrable that the legal arrangement of marriage has absolutely nothing to do with children either now, or historically (outside of its influence on inheritance and legal guardianship).

        The *only* issue at question here is the legal arrangement of marriage. Your personal beliefs, or what your church recognises, are completely unaffected.

        Marriage means different things to different people as you point out. Polygamy is accepted for example in parts of aboriginal culture but that does not make it acceptable under Australian law because our law is based on a very different interpretation of marriage which is derived from Judeo-Christian culture. If you want marriage equality then why not recognise the polygamous marriages of our first Australians.

        Because, for the third (?) time, the difference between hetero- and homosexual marriage is nothing other than a few words in the marriage act. The difference between monogamous and polygamous marriage is a whole shitload of new legislation, inevitably followed by years, if not decades, of case law to iron out the kinks.

        The history of marriage is in some ways quite interesting. You should read about it.

        As for DrSmithy well her hubris is incredible “I have yet to see a single argument against same-sex marriage that could withstand scrutiny by an intelligent schoolchild. That is why there is no debate.” It sums up the left’s instincts perfectly to shut down debate rather than engage.

        I’m a “he”.

        I’ve engaged all of your “arguments” against same sex marriage and explained why they are either factually incorrect, logically inconsistent or just flat-out absurd.

        Again, this has nothing to do with “hubris” or “shutting down debate”. It has to do with not wasting anyone’s time (and tens, if not hundreds, of millions of dollars) on arguments that have no sound basis to start with, have been refuted countless times previously and are being allowed for no reason other than as succour to cowardly thugs and bullies who get off on abusing and intimidating others (eg: Tony Abbot). You are still making arguments that were unsupported and irrational decades ago, therefore it is quite obvious there is no point in any attempt at “debate” at all.

        She then goes onto equate arguing for traditional marriage to be akin to arguing for slavery. (though no doubt some will argue marriage is akin to slavery!)

        No, I didn’t. I said there’s no need for a debate about slavery because there’s no rational arguments in favour of it. Similarly, there’s no need for a debate about same sex marriage because there’s no rational arguments against it (outside of eliminating marriage all together – but, again, that’s a much larger legal process than changing a few words in the Marriage Act). The two situations are similar because neither warrants debate, not because marriage is akin to slavery.

        But sharing property rights between more than two people is very much a part of western tradition and culture.

        Certainly, but that is not marriage. Marriage is between two people. That’s why there’s an offence called bigamy, entering into a new marriage before exiting a previous one.

        Your slippery slope fallacy is built on polygamous relationships being recognised *as* marriage. Not that a new arrangement (let’s call it “polymarriage”) be created. Nobody is fighting for “polymarriage” (yet). They are two entirely separate issues. There is no logical or legal path from same-sex marriage to polygamous marriage.

        Ultimately I would happily accept the result of any plebiscite on the issue of gay marriage, but would DrSmithy? I doubt it because she cannot accept someone having difference of opinion to himself in the first place.

        No. No more than I would accept the result of a plebiscite in favour of slavery or denying women the vote. Not because of a different opinion, but because it causes harm or disadvantage to others for no justifiable reason and defies some of the core tenets of our legal system. Ie: it is morally and ethically wrong.

        I don’t have the slightest problem with opinions different to mine. That’s just free speech. I have a problem with people seeking to harm others by imposing their beliefs on them for reasons of greed, selfishness or irrationality. That’s oppression.

      • Funny to hear someone argue against gay marriage because it’s against Judaeo Christian ethics on the one hand then because it might lead to people adopting the marriage arrangement practiced by King David on the other.

      • “Only one of us is trying to impose our beliefs on, and control the lives of, others, because of our opinions, and it ain’t me.”

        LOL.

        Maybe that’s your view of this situation, but hardly represents your general ethos.

        Why not argue for the abolishing of the marriage act and government involvement at all?

      • Why not argue for the abolishing of the marriage act and government involvement at all?

        Because there’s no public desire to abolish marriage ?

      • I do find it rather depressing to read posts that are little more than thinly veiled (and sometimes blatant) prejudice.

        @BB
        “Maybe that’s your view of this situation, but hardly represents your general ethos.”
        Nor does it represent yours. Given you have often argued for a small/nominal role for government in the economy and society generally (exemplified by your complaints in the past about minimum wage protection, government funding of the ABC etc etc), I can see why you feel the need to point this out to drsmithy. Does it add to a debate which is essentially about equality?

        “Why not argue for the abolishing of the marriage act and government involvement at all?”
        Why that would be a better option?

      • “Because there’s no public desire to abolish marriage”

        So you do wish to impose your beliefs and control the lives of others, providing there is public support for it. Glad we’ve cleared that up.

      • So you do wish to impose your beliefs and control the lives of others, providing there is public support for it. Glad we’ve cleared that up.

        Yes. I think murder is wrong, and I’m happy to have my view – sharing, I believe, wide public support – that murder is wrong be imposed on those who don’t feel that way.

        Similarly I’m a “statist” because I think laws really are quite useful things to have.

        Now that we’ve got the stupidity out of the way, what are you actually trying to say ?

      • Stupidity through the conversation above included your sweeping comments attacking others highlighting blatant hypocrisy on your part. I don’t disagree with everything you say, just often the way you argue your points (or non-points as is often the case).

        I agree with your comment ‘Marriage is, and always has been, about legal contracts and property ownership’, in which case I think it would be reasonable to do away with government sanctioned ‘marriage’ and/or ‘civil unions’, instead these should be replaced with legal contracts which could cover the same legal terms of the marriage act and broadened to cover more than two people (so that those who wish to pursue polygamy or even nominating family members to have the same rights as a partner can do so). Perhaps there will be some issues complicated by this, but an argument to use (& slightly alter) the marriage act, because it would only require change of ‘a few words’ is just lazy.

        Those who wish to label their relationship a ‘marriage’ or ‘union’ can do so.

      • Never in the field of MB conflict has so much been said by so many about so little. Almost as fascinating as the dog fight I saw in the park last week.

      • Stupidity through the conversation above included your sweeping comments attacking others highlighting blatant hypocrisy on your part. I don’t disagree with everything you say, just often the way you argue your points (or non-points as is often the case).

        Having been likened to genocidal totalitarian dictators for arguing in favour of publicly funded services, it’s hard to feel guilty about calling people who think same-sex marriage leads to incest, or who argue for no reason other than to disagree with a group of people they don’t like, stupid and small minded.

        I agree with your comment ‘Marriage is, and always has been, about legal contracts and property ownership’, in which case I think it would be reasonable to do away with government sanctioned ‘marriage’ and/or ‘civil unions’, instead these should be replaced with legal contracts which could cover the same legal terms of the marriage act and broadened to cover more than two people (so that those who wish to pursue polygamy or even nominating family members to have the same rights as a partner can do so). Perhaps there will be some issues complicated by this, but an argument to use (& slightly alter) the marriage act, because it would only require change of ‘a few words’ is just lazy.

        How is doing the minimum amount of work necessary, involving the least amount of legal changes and Government involvement to achieve the desired goal, “lazy” ?

        The problem exists because Howard changed the Marriage Act in 2004. Change it back and we’re done. That’s not lazy, it’s smart.

        The same people who whinge about same sex marriage will whinge about same sex civil unions. Their problem is with the gays, and won’t be solved by anything except the gays going away.

      • Marriage. Meh.

        That’s generally the way I feel about it, but my g/f doesn’t feel the same way lol…

      • Yea beginning to wonder if this blog has jumped-the-shark, seriously gay marriage…who gives a @#$%?, if necessary fix a couple of laws relating to inheritance and enduring power of attorney etc and move on. I’ve got absolutely no problem with gays, I work with plenty day in day out and to be honest they’re the first to say this whole gay marriage issue is the biggest non-issue in their lives.

      • ” I work with plenty day in day out and to be honest they’re the first to say this whole gay marriage issue is the biggest non-issue in their lives.”

        What are we suppose to conclude (if anything) from such a diverse sample as that? Personally I feel the same way about marriage as 3d1k appears to, but if two consenting adults want to get married good luck to them. Institutions evolve with the times; they always have and always will.

      • Gay marriage is just the semantic. As I said above, the only reason it’s specifically still an issue is because it forms a convenient issue on which to gather conservative outrage, so they continue to oppose it.

        The underlying discussion is really about secular society and equality in the legal system.

        There are many people who think their club should get special treatment, that they should be able to impose their beliefs on others without good reason, or that we should keep/create policy because “that’s how it’s always been” (when it usually hasn’t) rather than evidence. They are a cancer on enlightened, civilised society.

      • dr smithy Gay marriage is just the semantic.

        No it’s not just a semantic. You’re unbelievably egocentric and I hope you never get gay marriage because you refuse, as usual, to see it from anyone else’s perspective.

        A few people here have tried to explain a simple concept to you and you refuse to not just acknowledge it, but defend your weak position. The exact reason it hasn’t happened yet is because you want to hang on to a word “marriage” that others don’t want to let go of. Yet you continue saying it’s easier this way. lol.

      • A few people here have tried to explain a simple concept to you and you refuse to not just acknowledge it, but defend your weak position. The exact reason it hasn’t happened yet is because you want to hang on to a word “marriage” that others don’t want to let go of. Yet you continue saying it’s easier this way. lol.

        You are completely immune to facts and reason.

        Nobody has “explained” their position in any other way than “my god says it’s wrong”. Which has no bearing on how laws are defined in this country.

        The relevant piece of legislation is called the “Marriage Act”. It is the legal definition of marriage. Hence, any changes to it are fundamentally tied to the word “Marriage”.

        A better long terms solution – as mentioned above – would be to strike the word “marriage” from the legal code completely and replace that entire legal construct with “civil union” as that completely circumvents these sort of stupid discussions. However, as also noted above, this is not as trivial a change to legislation, which in the case of the Marriage Act is literally a matter of half a dozen words or so.

      • would be to strike the word “marriage” from the legal code

        Most people would oppose that.

        What’s wrong with parallel legislation alongside that has the term “civil union”?

        This seems really easy to me and I say again. this is not about legislation, it’s about getting what the gay community want. It’s about gay pride.

        I am therefore even more resistant to it as I’m sick to fking death of the left hijacking debate for their selfish petty micro issues.

      • Richard, you have the gall to call drsmithy egocentric, what an effort that must involve to ignore yourself when making that statement, incorrect as it is as well.

        I find the logic that I have gay friends so therefor I’m not homophobic like the “I support racial diversity by eating asian food.”

        It dumbfounds me that by saying gays should not be able to marry, but instead the law should be changed to recognise their union in a legal manner, you don’t realise what you are saying to gay people…..”Your relationship is inferior to mine, it doesn’t deserve the same standing as mine, your love for your partner is inferior to mine…etc, etc” Doesn’t matter how you dress it up, it shows you look down upon it.

        Not all racists or homophobes treat those they look down on with disrespect, most do, but not all. By arguing against gay marriage it means you believe it diminishes your relationship and that somehow theirs is different and not as deserving as yours. FMD, that’s not homophobic?

        Btw, straight marriage doesn’t need gay marriage to pull the institution down, it’s doing that itself very well. If the family is at threat how pathetic must it be if gay marriage is a threat to it. I’ve read a number of times the argument that it we are encouraging homosexuality, if those rates increase with broad acceptance it just means it was latent anyway, people can now just be who they are.

      • Richard:

        What’s wrong with parallel legislation alongside that has the term “civil union”?

        I assume what you’re saying is this would be a separate set of legislation, but one that would be equal to marriage? A “separate but equal” status if you will? Now where have I heard that term before…

        More importantly, if you’re ok granting all the substantive rights and benefits (access to super, equal standing in the law etc), then it seems like you’re excluding a group from marriage for very little substantive reason. I mean, you’re arguing that marriage came from the (what I can only assume as Christian) church… so what happened before the church? Or in non-christian societies?

      • dennis

        ”Your relationship is inferior to mine, it doesn’t deserve the same standing as mine, your love for your partner is inferior to mine…etc, etc” Doesn’t matter how you dress it up, it shows you look down upon it.

        I’ve been really clear about my view. You might want to read it before twisting it. I’m merely reading between the lines about what people like Abbott and the church are saying. It’s about the word “marriage”. They believe, I believe, it belongs to a male and female union. It has nothing to do with who’s inferior or superior. Such an argument would be ridiculous.

        The more I hear the weak defense of it, the more I’m convinced this has nothing to do with equality within the law, but wanting what you can’t have. Demanding what you can’t have.

        I started arguing about this, primarily because I don’t like smithy or lefties. Not because of any hatred of gays, which btw I didn’t defend with any weak “I have gay friends” as you suggested, but I do anyway and they love me, because I challenge the left. I call out their absolute contradictory BS. Why do the majority of the gay community have to be so left? It’s bizarre. Most of the left are privileged spoiled brats just wanting more of what they can’t have.

      • Snagard

        I mean, you’re arguing that marriage came from the (what I can only assume as Christian) church… so what happened before the church? Or in non-christian societies?

        Who cares. If it wasn’t born in the church, they’ve taken ownership of it for 1000’s of years. Quite a tradition, that’s clearly not going to be given up easily.

        This stuff’s not hard. Why does the gay community have so much trouble with it? After all, all they want is legal equality. Isn’t it?

        A “separate but equal” status if you will? Now where have I heard that term before…

        Not sure, but how could it be problematic in 2016? The law is the law.

      • Most people would oppose that.

        Yes, they probably would. Hence the reason nobody is seriously proposing it.

        What’s wrong with parallel legislation alongside that has the term “civil union”?

        Mainly because it’s a pointless and massive waste of everyone’s time and money just to pander to a group of bigots who should in no way be pandered to.

        You might as well ask “what’s wrong with parallel legislation for men and women”.

        But also because history shows us that creating “separate but equal” status generally ends up producing the opposite outcome.

        This seems really easy to me and I say again. this is not about legislation, it’s about getting what the gay community want. It’s about gay pride.

        Of course it seems easy to you. As you’ve said a few times, your position is simply ‘I’m doing it to annoy the lefties’ (and you accuse _others_ of being egocentric !?). You are putting no critical thought into either the reasons why homosexuals want to get married, nor the consequences of multiple sets of legislation defining the same thing.

        If you have any lawyer friends, ask them how easy it would be to craft and maintain “civil union” laws that would be guaranteed to always produce the same outcome whenever they are applied in the same way as marriage. Ask them to compare and contrast to changing a few words in the marriage act and only having one legal construct to deal with.

        I am therefore even more resistant to it as I’m sick to fking death of the left hijacking debate for their selfish petty micro issues.

        Pretty simple way to put and end to it – stop opposing people’s equality before the law. The only reason it remains an issue is because of people like you preventing the handful of words in the Marriage Act being changed.


      • If it wasn’t born in the church, they’ve taken ownership of it for 1000’s of years. Quite a tradition, that’s clearly not going to be given up easily.

        The church took over the ‘marriage concession’ from the state some time after the Roman empire collapsed. They basically lost it again sometime between the beginning of the Reformation and the end of the Enlightenment essentially due to the fact that parallel sets of law – one for Catholics, another for Protestants – was unworkable.

        Marriage in Australia has been a State issue since at least the mid nineteenth century – for example the State of Western Australia took control from the churches in 1841.

        In the 21st century, less than a third of Australians are married in any church, while those that are spread across many faiths. Any church aspect to marriage has now long since been reduced to a rump for individual adherents and their particular churches. Part of the reason religious leaders object so strongly to same-sex marriage is that it highlights this loss of influence.

      • Richard,

        I haven’t twisted your words at all, by stating you believe marriage is between a man and a women indicates that you view that relationship differently, and therefor if you do not want same sex marriage allowed under the same rules you must see the man/women thingy as being superior, otherwise you’d see no need to replicate rules for same sex marriage. You can use whatever adjective you like, different, dissimilar, unlike, or whatever. The point is it indicates you see your relationship as being better, and recognising same sex marriage in the same manner diminishes yours.

        Your argument is no different to those who once opposed mixed race marriage. You are can argue however nicely you please, it doesn’t hide the fact of how you value those in a same sex marriage. Deny it as much as you like, if it was’t the case you wouldn’t oppose it.

        It threatens you!

      • Careful chaps. If more of this gay marriage stuff continues there could be death threats coming from our fastest growing cult(ure). There’s no shortage of tall buildings in OZ you know….

      • Jeez,

        Sorry everyone else – I just thought the old chap had an interesting take on the plebiscite. I didn’t mean to set that off!!

    • TailorTrashMEMBER

      Early days yet in 2016 ……but I have been watching a couple of houses in Artarmon …..
      One on the market since November ….asking 2.6 mill …..passed in at auction in mid Dec …….now withdrawn ……..
      Another on the market since November ….was asking 2.8 mil ……….latest guide …..2.6 -2.7 mil …..that’s a 3% to 9% adjustment in asking price

      These are red brick 1920 ish bungalows off Mowbray road ……….they have a long way to go before their asking prices get anywhere near their value …..

  7. pyjamasbeforechristMEMBER

    Time to short FMG again after their Friday rally? Gotta love the use of wet metric tonnes before shipping costs in their announcement. When converted to its dry 62%fe delivered equivalent its a break even around $36 per tonne. 10% profit margin only! And sooon to be 0% I suspect.

  8. “Ron and Rand Paul’s top campaign aides, led by the husband of Ron Paul’s granddaughter, bribing and extorting a crooked Tea Party Iowa politician to endorse the “Ron Paul rEVOLution”—which turns out to have been little more than a mirage built on fraud, oligarch cash, and the credulous fantasies of a few thousand pimply college-aged waffendweebs” [Mark Ames (but then you knew that), Pando Daily]. Unlocked for 48 hours.

    https://pando.com/2015/08/21/googles-lawyers-ron-pauls-grandson-and-most-depraved-presidential-campaign-crime-decades/1745e99da278256185d461f0a3177666aa8c70eb/

    Skippy…. for the libertarian breathers amongst us.

      • Libertarianism really… at the end of the day… is just an apologia for fraud and corruption…

        Skippy… the boom – bust cycle is supposed to moderate it with out human agency…

  9. I’m going to put in a plug for

    http://www.quantamagazine.org

    It’s an American hard science online magazine supported by bequest money (so it’s free and no ads).

    Actually it’s not just hard science, there are a lot of great biology articles too. But for maths, fundamental computing, physics, chemistry, that kind of thing, it’s a good way of finding out what some of the best new ideas are.

    The writing’s great and for me it’s the best way of keeping up with new ideas in the sciences.

    Usual disclaimers apply (I have no affiliation etc etc)

  10. @Original John ref Japan neg IR….

    Japan Goes Negative

    I liked Scott Fullwiler’s tweet on this.

    “Proves yet again that policy makers will do anything to create income + jobs EXCEPT directly create income + jobs “

    Skippy…. my take… neoliberalism cannot under any circumstances deviate from prophesy… or the ideological illusion [religion] dies…

    • Skippy that is so true. All Kuroda did on Friday is convince the Japanese business community that he has no clue. The guys I was with last night thought it was a political move to divert attention from Amira coming back to the government. I can’t say this helped me much, we do all our business in USD as our suppliers are in the US, so our costs just went up again. That said, I am moving development of the software elements to Osaka as there are some good government incentives to do so and I can claim Japanese content which eliminates a 20.54% with holding tax payable on foreign software and services used in Japan. Most small Japanese banks are going to be creamed by this new NIRP move as they can not afford to pass the cost on to their clients (mostly elderly pensioners).

    • I was thinking about the Japanese problem with housing and consumption. Japan has -ve population growth, a rapidly ageing population and high debt load – all elements that say that consumption will decline, and demand for housing will also decline. So no amount of effort will prompt a major increase in debt loads now – it is just not needed for domestic reasons. So businesses need to export to countries that have a growing demand for their products and services. This was China, but with Abe, sentiment in China has turned against Japan. Add China’s own demographic issues and economic challenges, and it is easy to see that we need a global reset before everything crashes and burns in war. Maybe war is the only real option left? Destroy a shit load of things so we can rebuild again?

      • Don’t joke about war as the solution. As far as bankers are concerned that is the solution. A perfect opportunity to create ginormous public debts and strap the taxpayer into debt servitude for centuries. Bankers simply love the farce that is the government bond market.

        Whenever we read of even more lunacy from the BOJ the more we should worry what it will take to break the circuit.

      • It seems nothing is happening in Japan except shopping and eating, everything else in the country resembles a meticulously clean museum of 1985. A lesson for oz about consuming your way to growth and all that glen Stevens bullshit

      • @Alby, I tend to agree to a point. Japan in 85 was all about conspicuous consumption, the shopping now appears targetted and not buying as retail therapy (except for the 3000 Chinese tourists who just invaded my hotel tonight). Food is everything here that is true and damn is it good. Even a sandwich from Lawsons is better than most you find at 7-Eleven in oz. ate lunch yesterday at a all-you-can-eat snow crab buffet. Most us and oz buffets suck, but this was amazing food for around 48aud per person.

      • Don’t joke about war as the solution. As far as bankers are concerned that is the solution. A perfect opportunity to create ginormous public debts and strap the taxpayer into debt servitude for centuries.

        Also fixes that population/unemployment problem.

        “The sell” on war is already well on the way and arguably has been for a long time. The middle east conflagaration continues to increase and there are plenty of people out there eager to see the world engulfed in a religious conflict.

      • They better get a move on – war’s going to be a tough sell in any country where the median age is north of 40 (30 really)

      • “They better get a move on – war’s going to be a tough sell in any country where the median age is north of 40 (30 really)”

        Oh yeah, bugger that! We’re all too old and soft! I don’t see how the developed world could wage a world war sized conflict today (even if they could talk us into the need for one). They’re going to have to figure out another way to reboot things.

        “Destroy a shit load of things so we can rebuild again?”

        Yeah, but the US blew up and rebuilt significant parts of Afghanistan and Iraq, other than add to their debt did it really help their economy?

      • They better get a move on – war’s going to be a tough sell in any country where the median age is north of 40 (30 really)

        We wage war these days with robots controlled from air conditioned rooms on the other side of the planet. Don’t even need to be fit for that, let alone young.

        I’m sure there’ll be plenty of poor people prepared to be boots on the ground in exchange for a job, and if that fails there’ll be no shortage of immigrants interested in shortcutting the usual citizenship wait.

    • Japan should have done this ages ago.
      If bond yields go negative the ministry of finance should refinance the debt and use the interest revenue? to finance another fiscal stimulus.

    • If Japan is in so much strife why has the AUD slid so far against the JPY. When it seems to have gained value agains the USD? It’s a weird world..

      • notsofastMEMBER

        Gavin,

        Maybe its because with these type of policies having a strangle hold on the global economy and with things slowly getting worse Australia is in more trouble than Japan. Japan might be in trouble but because of their enormous US 5 trillion dollars in foreign investments they will be doing better than almost anybody else and much better than Australia.

  11. Got a notification from Interactive brokers that they are raising the margin on cny and hkd.

    “The recent turbulence and volatility in the China currency market increases concerns about policy driven rate events (as opposed to market driven rate changes). Because both the Chinese Renminbi and Hong Kong Dollar are managed currencies, policy decisions by national financial authorities can lead to dramatic valuation changes.

    Accordingly, IB will be increasing the margin it requires to hold a position in CNY/CNH and HKD to 10%.”

    It is rare to a notice for currency margin changes. The last time they did was for swiss fran well before their central bank did their thing.

    Perhaps IB know something is happening soon for those two currencies?

    • since the debacle with the swiss franc this is standard for the ccy brokerages. pb’s are also keen on this kind of risk mitigation.

  12. The descent into deeper monetary depravity is the countenance of insanity and madness. It doesn’t really matter if there (seems to be logic in it), the whole thing is wrong and disproven (by) persistent observation – not the least of which is inflation setting closer to zero than 2% month after month, quarter after quarter, year after year. An unbiased observer might view that fact (as proof) that monetary policy doesn’t really work at all, but the FOMC declares that… more is necessary, as if negative nominal rates are any different than negative real rates

    http://www.alhambrapartners.com/2016/01/29/that-didnt-take-long/

  13. File under…. The Future is Here Today…

    Having to complete a final year group project, the quartet finally decided to focus on their specialty of algorithms as well as their keen interest in finance. The four wanted to create a trading tool that could help the ordinary man in the street achieve the same success as a veteran, well-educated trader, with the minimum of effort; they called it ‘Ultimate4Trading’.

    After initial testing, this revolutionary trading algorithm outperformed all their expectations. Within just a few months, Abbey had personally made around £75,000.

    The development of ‘Ultimate4Trading’, which gives users more than a 70% success rate when predicting financial markets, is now being released to the public for free by these benevolent and talented entrepreneurs.

    http://www.biznews247.com/abbey-walker-jones-wanted-to-be-a-millionaire-by-26-for-a-selfless-reason-to-help-her-mum-retire/?zone=AUwebOSS&m=0

    Skippy…. I hear that the more you say the name entrepreneurs the more chances you have at being happy…

    • I’d better get my skates on! Apparently if I don’t reserve one of the very limited number of seats at the next lecture series, I won’t find out what the secret to success is!

    • Seriously, a better idea is to create a pokie machine where you can put in gold coins, pull down the lever on options calls etc, and essentially have a clearing market for people to bet away on shit they can make real money on

  14. DarkMatterMEMBER

    Last November some of you may have seen that the Raspberry Pi Foundation (small self contained computer for $35) announced the Raspberry Pi Zero. This is effectively a computer-on-a-chip for $5. Two months later, the demand is so great that when a new batch is made, you have about 30 mins to buy one (one per customer rule) before they are all sold out. Many people want to buy ten or more at a time, but there is no date on when of if that will be possible.

    So, from an economics point of view, this raises all sorts of questions. What is the future of a product that seems to have unlimited demand, but the margins are so small it isn’t worth selling? When you ask people about this in many cases they will start stumbling around with conventional economic ideas of supply and demand, market forces etc. Do these still apply? I don’t know.

    What if we get to the point where our highly automated and efficient manufacturing processes allow more of these disruptive rogue products to appear? It might be possible to take a Rpi Zero and add a some extra circuits to make a $10 mobile phone. A $10 phone would probably have a huge demand. What puzzles me is whether this can be explained or even make sense in conventional economic thinking?

    • Given demand is massively in excess of supply what’s to stop a competitor offering something equivalent for a slight higher price, hence better margins now that raspberry pi has invented this market?

    • DarkMatterMEMBER

      Well, I suppose that is the rational answer. Except, it is a bit more complicated. Raspberry Pi have now shipped 6-7 m units, and that means there is a community and software base so it is much easier to get software that works reliably – a bit like the Windows effect. So many people have Windows that it ensures (mostly ) you can do what you want. Linux is free and often better, but very few people use it.

      Even if a competitor (and they are springing up everywhere) came out with a $4 computer, most people would probably wait to get the RPi one. Since RPi Foundation is operated as a charity, they have been able to channel income back into development. HW accelerated drivers for their chip just appeared in the Linux Kernal. That means the $5 version could, at a pinch, be used as a desktop replacement.

      So, they have a large commercial advantage which should let them increase their price and still smoke the competitors. But instead of doing that, they are doing the opposite – using their commercial advantage to reduce the price and force lower profits.

      I guess my question is really is this a type of Black Swan? Judging by the GFC, most experts will look at a Black Swan approaching and say “It must be a crow, or at worst just a slightly discloloured Normal Swan”. I suppose we will just have to wait and see.

      • I can see how they’re forcing down the price of chips and I get all that.
        At the same time a rival chip maker just needS to make a chip that can run Raspbian if they want t run existing raspberry pi software and the completely separate group of people at the Raspbian foundation would like to extra supply of chips that can run the OS they’ve developed.

      • Guess it is just a really great example of a charitable/special interest group that is broadly achieving thier goal of getting kids into universities that have some skills to work with both code and hardware. They are a charity which has slightly different objectives than a company. Making accessible low price hardware was just part of the strategy.

        As you pointed out the brandname strength really lies in the depth of the community support behind the products. There has been a couple of other commercial competitors (banana pi, orange pi etc…) but they really just offer slightly more specialized design variations. Quite different in the microcontroller space with arduino knockofs everywhere.

        Good luck to them and their user-base. The uptake of ARM core (licenced core designs) by fab manufacturers may pose a direct threat to Intel’s architectures. In other related signs of threats and challenges I note that the pine64 kickstarter (also based on an ARM core) was quite successful. interesting times.

      • I don’t think it’s raspberry pis intention to Intel broke but supposing they did what would happen to chip innovation without Intels r&d spend of more than $10 billion U.S. Each year?

      • Even if intels architecture was to become virtually worthless overnight (like when apple dropped PowerPC for intel) the R&D into the fabrication capability will still have value. Altera aquisition could directly use the fabrication capability, and capacity. Also nothing stopping them from licensing ARM designs and developing additional customisations to it. This is just what Apple did with the Iphone:
        http://appleinsider.com/articles/15/01/19/how-intel-lost-the-mobile-chip-business-to-apples-ax-arm-application-processors

        Do hope intels focus on servers and specialised chipsets works out for them because its hard to see much growth in laptops and PC’s. Low volume commodity at this point. Actually think that the Solid state hard drive has contributed to this lack of growth in some way. For instance a SSD in an old laptop has completely rescued it and made it perfectly usable. The inny-pipes is more of a limiting factor than the CPU.

      • Wasn’t suggesting Intel’s IP would be devalued any time soon – more that slow sales would lead to low cash flow forcing cuts to further R&D (whether manufacturing or chip architecture), also leading to Intel’s competitors cutting their own R&D budgets., leading to slower advances in chip technology.

      • No. There are several good articles out there that I couldn’t pick a best one, so google “raspberry pi vs arduino” and have a read.

        The Raspberry Pi is a computer.
        The Arduino is a microcontroller.

        The Arduino is “closer to hardware” so to speak. The example I read in one of the article made it clear: If you want to make a led blink with a Pi, you might write a python program under linux with appropriate drivers to talk to the right port. With the Arduino you write a couple of lines of code and you’re done.

      • @ajostu thanks for clarifying I’m still figuring it all out myself. I have some specific use cases, I want to control a vintage clock using an Arduino or Raspberry Pi but the clock requires an analog signal to work.

    • http://www.informationweek.com/it-life/will-$9-linux-chip-replace-raspberry-pi/d/d-id/1320359
      Asus/Intel have their own products coming out.

      Linux as a software will probably be replaced by something better before too long – however as a fremium product it is ok. Torvald still uses Debian ffs.

      Also remember that pretty much everyone on the web is using linux directly or indirectly – ie pretty much every server uses it as does pretty much every device in the world

      the raspberry phenom is really the start of the internet of things meeting the tinkerer.. some people think that in 20 years every single physical item will have some form of chip in it http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/internet/12050185/Marc-Andreessen-In-20-years-every-physical-item-will-have-a-chip-implanted-in-it.html

      These ARM devices all interface with Linux as well

      The opportunities for disruption are massive – it’s a good idea to be integrated into the full supply chain though – think semiconductor level.

      Then think scale – current system on a chip tech, if following Moore’s law can turn into servers on a chip, and can potentially be 3d printed out.

      http://armservers.com/2012/05/14/what-is-an-soc-hint-the-s-stands-for-server/

      Plenty of opportunities – however before we get to the peak growth curve we may just run out of resources to make any more

      And lets be honest, these douches buying raspberries would be better off on firepower by recycling second hand phones and old computers, clean off and install linux.

      • We use the Rpi and the beagle bone for prototyping and test devices. One of our guys is using a beagle bone to support his own rotor control code to run a UAV, just for shyts and giggles.

        You probably realise this but an Rpi – out of the box, is next to useless without alot of addtuonal bits and effort.

        For $130 you can get a beagle bone with, GPS, IMU (inertial measurement unit), atmophospheric pressure sensor, wifi, and 4G modem. I think once you add a flash screen, very, very compact packaging, a fancy OS and interface, extensive testing to support warranty, a supporting ecosystemit starts to get expensive ..

        Put it this way – we could use a Rpi for our production system, but It’s still more cost effective to do our own board wiith an ARM Atmel procesor on it and satisfy our own specific needs, rather than have big board with stuff on we don’t want….

        I’m surprised they”ve shifted 6-7 million units – thats alot of nerds ….

        So to be honest I’m not sure that it’s such a game changer…

      • From the point of the target market of hobbyists (trying to be the 2016 version of a crystal radio set) and high school kids trying to learn some skillz, 6-7 million throughout the world doesn’t seem like that many.

  15. “The cost of shutting down and ­rehabilitating the toxic land and ponds of Clive Palmer’s strife-torn nickel refinery was esti­m­ated by its previous owner BHP Billiton at ­$1.4 billion. Internal BHP documents show that in the months before the global miner offloaded the refinery to Mr Palmer for free in mid-2009, staff tallied the costs of shutdown, sackings, demolition and clean-up. The total figure came to $1.415bn and included “backfill of pits and rehabilitation of mine area, remediate contaminated soil/groundwater, rehabilitate dams and evaporation cells”. In subsequent internal reviews­, the cost estimates were cut and shared with prospective purchasers including Mr Palmer, who initially benefited from a rising­ nickel price, which has since collapsed. The documents highlight the potentially huge cost to taxpayers in cleaning up Mr Palmer’s site if insolvency experts determine it should be closed, with the remaining 550 workers laid off.
    A creditors’ meeting in Townsville yesterday was told that a cash injection of “tens of millions of dollars” would be needed to prevent the refinery from collapsing into liquidation as soon as April 30.
    The meeting heard Queensland taxpayers would be left with an unprecedented environmental clean-up bill while the federal government would have to pay at least $30 million in workers’ ­entitlements while major creditors would go unpaid.
    More than 200 sacked workers were told the refinery’s debt was “north of $100m”, with more than 1500 creditors. The meeting was told investigations were continuing into more than $20m in political donations by the refinery­ to the tycoon’s Palmer United Party.
    In its internal 2009 review for a division of BHP Billiton, the company identified the known environmental risks. The review asked several fundamental questions, including: “How many years until groundwater is ­acceptable? What is acceptable groundwater quality?”
    The review warned: “Groundwater is already high in ammonia. Post-closure activities could go well beyond 2021.”
    The BHP Billiton review of the pollution of the refinery, at Yabulu near Townsville on the edge of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, flagged costly work to deal with hazardous materials in the tailings ponds and in the soil, including asbestos and radiation sources.
    The refinery was branded by BHP Billiton executives in 2009 as unviable at the prevailing nickel price and out of step with the company’s plans.
    “The refinery was either going to be sold or closed and when Clive came along to buy it, the view at BHP was that we had to make sure he was on the hook and that he was able to take it on and keep it going,’’ a BHP Billiton executive involved at the time said yesterday.
    “That is why BHP effectively gave it away to him. It was a net liability to us at the time.”
    Mr Palmer, who has spent most of his $US415m windfall from a Chinese investment in iron ore tenements on non-performing assets, now lacks the means to run the refinery or fund its environmental clean-up.
    BHP Billiton, concerned about the cost of fixing the environmental legacy and the impact on the local economy from a sudden closure, got a guarantee from Mr Palmer in 2009 that he would not strip cash from the refinery for three years.
    The sale agreement, states that Mr Palmer and his companies agreed that for three years after the 2009 sale, the refinery would not pay “any dividend … permit or facilitate any return of capital, capital reduction, share buyback or any other form of distribution … provide any fin­ancial benefit to a buyer or (Mr Palmer) or to any person or entity associated with a buyer or (Mr Palmer)”.
    However, Mr Palmer soon used the refinery’s cash to buy the Hyatt Coolum resort and golf courses. He subsequently transferred the assets to a separate and unrelated company. To avoid breaching the conditions in the sale agreement, these leisure ­assets, which were also losing money, were bought by Queensland Nickel companies — and Mr Palmer told the staff the business was “diversifying” by picking up distressed properties at ­bargain-basement, post-global financial crisis ­prices.
    The refinery’s environmental risks are a major concern for the Queensland government and the Townsville community. The state’s environmental regulator is prosecuting Mr Palmer’s company over spills of toxic sludge from its tailings dams. In his latest company accounts, Mr Palmer cut $275m from his balance sheet for environmental restoration of the polluted site.
    The refinery poses a serious environmental threat, with ­nitro­gen concentrations in its ponds more than 150 times the maximum for sewage discharge in the marine park, according to a 2014 federal government document disclosed under Freedom of Information laws. The threat of another major discharge from the refinery’s ponds to the ecosystem of Halifax Bay in the World Heritage Area was described­ as “similar to the daily discharge of treated sewage from a city of seven million people”.
    Regulatory action stalled after Mr Palmer threatened a compensation claim of $6.4bn “should the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority intend to exert ­authority over the company’s ­operations”.

    How on God’s earth has the QLD govt not got a clean-up bond for this mess?

  16. On a chilly Kobe morning before I head to Tokyo next week for more meetings, I thought, OJ, what a good time to catch up on your reading and glance at websites you haven’t had a chance to visit in the mayhem of the last week. Lo and behold, this gem (turd?) floated to the surface:

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-01-29/helicopter-money-arrives-switzerland-hand-out-2500-monthly-all-citizens

    It might be 10:50am here, but I am going to open a bottle of sake and hope I wake up tomorrow to find this was all just a bad dream!

    • Any Swiss that works gets a defacto tax cut; any Swiss that’s old no longer gets the Old Age Pension but the Guaranteed Basic Income as a replacement; any unemployed Swiss no longer gets UE Benefits but the GBI instead; any Swiss that wants to study can’t get a student loan but uses the GBI instead; any impaired Swiss no longer gets the Disability Supplement but the GBI instead; any homeless Swiss no longer gets the Accommodation Assistance Grant but the GBI instead etc etc…and all the Swiss agencies that run those previous Welfare Agency jobs are closed and the salaries/ savings are applied to funding the GBI. The displaced Welfare Workers get the GBI as a support until they relocate. What’s not to like!

      • Yes the result will centre around mainly the distribution effects. The way you present it Janet everyone gets a tax cut but the article (if remember directly relates a significant increase in taxes. So it depends a bit on how that effects willingness to work and productivity – particularly long term (by which I don’t bean till the next CB meeting but, at minimum a decade)
        The Swiss currently run a substantial Current Account Surplus so there is certainly room to move on that front. Without detail on numbers, likely savings habits etc the net effect is pretty hard to figure.

      • I understand your comments chaps and agree with them in much of the principle, but who of us want to live on $625 per week! Who could? Every week here in New Zealand we read about someone or other who has rorted the system for, say, 20 years as a solo Mum and has to repay $100,000 in claims that were spurious. And that’s only the ones that are discovered. Let’s get rid of the loopholes. Give everyone that paultry $625 per week to be a solo Mum, or send the children to kindy; be a student or be old or wherever , and that’s it! There are no other avenues to rort. Welfare is the price we pay for a civilised society so let’s acknowledge that, bring it out into the open and let us all participate, equally?

    • OJ… one does have to question the relevance of agrarian and artisan ‘Division of Labor theory’ wrt its applications today e.g. one foot in antiquity and one in modernity… just saying…

      • I spent a week in rural south east France/North west Switzerland looking at mountain cattle farming practices in 2014. Your comment is spot on the money. Have a close read of the groups backing this proposal. You are much more familiar with the old tomes then me, but I recall a “reader” where this concept was discussed from the 1850’s in France I think it was. Those presenting it back then were bitter at their lot in life, intelligent but forced to live hand to mouth as a result of birth rights overriding ability in the collection of wealth. I wonder if we are seeing a little of the same thing here.

    • Janet my main grievance with UBI is its based on Public Choice theory which is grounded in Wicksell and rational choice theory, which then drags us back to the old short term vs. long term debate wrt to monetary policy being the – end all – be all – of human events…

    • Nice box!

      Perhaps the next Real Estate boom in Australia will be selling beach boxes to Chinese investors, beach boxes only go up!

    • @luke,

      They have run that story pretty much every year at least as long as I’ve been able to read them (about thrirty years) There’s several of those auctions this time of the year; the price always seems ridiculous given it’s a wooden shed with no power or water. Just take last year’s story out of the filing cabinet and change a few numbers.

  17. With out further ado…

    “By Bill Black, the author of The Best Way to Rob a Bank is to Own One and an associate professor of economics and law at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Originally published at “http://neweconomicperspectives.org/2016/01/wall-street-declares-war-bernie-sanders.html” rel=”nofollow”>New Economic Perspectives

    I am writing to announce the formation of a new group and a policy initiative that we hope many of our readers will support and help publicize. Gary Aguirre, Bill Black, Richard Bowen, and Michael Winston are the founding members of the Bank Whistleblowers’ Group. We are all from the general field of finance and we are all whistleblowers who are unemployable in finance and financial regulation because we spoke truth to power and committed the one unforgivable sin of being repeatedly proved correct.

    Economists rely largely on “revealed preference” – we think what you do matters more than what you say. For nearly seven years, every financial firm has known about my three colleagues. They are famous for their skills, courage, and integrity. Every financial firm claims that it now wants to make integrity their credo. Any financial firm that actually was committed to making integrity its credo, as opposed to its spin, would have long since hired my colleagues. Similarly, any government regulator, enforcer, or prosecutor that was serious about restoring the rule of law on Wall Street would have recruited us.

    Our group is releasing four documents today and they will appear here at NEP over the next couple of days. The first outlines our proposals, all but one of which could be implemented within 60 days by any newly-elected President (or President Obama) without any new legislation or rulemaking. Most of our proposals consist of the practical steps a President could implement to restore the rule of law to Wall Street. As such, we expect that candidates of every party and philosophy will find most of our proposals to be matters that they strongly support and will pledge to implement.

    The second document fleshes out and explains the proposals. We ask each candidate to pledge in writing to implement the portions of our plan that they specify to be provisions they support. Again, we invite President Obama to do the same.

    The third document asks each candidate to pledge not to take campaign contributions from financial felons. That group, according to the federal agencies that have investigated them, includes virtually all the largest banks.

    The fourth document explains why we formed our group is and contains our bios. I am personally proud and honored to be associated with my colleagues in this endeavor. We are (and have been) actively reaching out to encourage other bank whistleblowers to join our group. The bank whistleblowers share some common traits, but are also highly diverse and we want our group to reflect that full diversity. We cannot, however, in good conscience fail to act now given the urgency of the problems caused by the collapse of personal accountability for Wall Street elites. Our economy and our democracy are both imperiled by that collapse and require urgent redress. Please help us to get our proposals to every candidate, the media, and the public.” – snip

    “Our group is predominately former bankers who worked at fairly senior levels for enormous financial institutions. We do not hate banks or bankers as a group. We know, however, that when elite fraud is not stopped by the regulators and the prosecutors it is likely to create a “Gresham’s” dynamic. The Nobel Laureate George Akerlof was the first economist to describe this dynamic in 1970.

    [D]ishonest dealings tend to drive honest dealings out of the market. The cost of dishonesty, therefore, lies not only in the amount by which the purchaser is cheated; the cost also must include the loss incurred from driving legitimate business out of existence.

    We can confirm Akerlof’s warnings about fraud. Indeed, we can testify from personal knowledge that when bad ethics is encouraged it will over time tend to drive good ethics out of individual firms. Fraudulent senior bankers deliberately create a Gresham’s dynamic within the firm and in hiring “independent” professionals in order to drive honest employees out of the bank and to suborn outside professionals that are supposed to act as external “controls” to serve instead as fraud enablers. At places like Countrywide, thousands of employees left annually because they refused to abuse their customers. Only by restoring the rule of law to Wall Street can we allow honest banks and honest bankers to dominate Wall Street.”

    Above in bold

    http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2016/01/bill-black-announcing-the-bank-whistleblowers-groups-initial-proposals.html

    Skippy… ripper~~~~~~

    • Thanks for the link. With all the curve balls flying around in the US primaries and with two substantial candidates (not necessarily both pleasant) throwing rocks at Wall Street there is some chance these issues will get some air time. Especially if the US economy starts to sag through the year.

    • I’ve been saying for some time now that this country is beyond help and the best thing the young can do is run far away.

      Theres a story in the age today about a moorabbin house that appreciated 100k, each year, for the last three years. !!

      Its going to go supernova and immiseration is what we have to look forward to. So why hang around for that? There are places in the world where property has already been smashed and is going cheeeeeeap

      Any dipshit thinking the utter insanity in Melb can go on without a catastrophic meltdown should be my guest; go to a bank, borrow more $, and go outbid the drug runners and money launderers playing the real-estate game. Bid, bid, and keep on bidding.

      Because you simply cant lose.

      • “A young couple expecting a baby won the keys to their new home for $1.02 million.”
        Another good news story from my fav Christina Zhou. The parents to be are clearly off to a great start to family life… /sarc

      • I get why people that have jobs, friends and family would tolerate Melbourne, but I don’t understand why so many new people are flooding here and paying outrageous prices for housing. Surely there are better and cheaper “global cities” to infest. Melbourne has turned into an absolute sh.. wait, do they moderate the forum on the weekends?

      • Grrrrrrrrrrr Yes another of my favourite hates of modern English (mis)usage – ‘winning’ an auction!!!

    • TailorTrashMEMBER

      Talking to news.com.au, Mayor Eaton said councillors who were at the confidential briefing “were satisfied that the deal was a good one” for council.

      Ok ……….remind me again …….what is the purpose of councils and who are they supposed to represent ?? ………i hope the ratepayers are sharpening their pitchforks ……


    • it’s assumed that workers who find themselves in a region whose jobs are vulnerable to foreign competition could simply move and find a job somewhere else.
      But a new paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research suggests that workers’ ability to relocate may be overstated, and that the negative impacts of large trade deals may be more significant than previously thought.

      Another one for the Captain Renault file “I am shocked to find…”

    • Core Logic last week reported their median for Adelaide at $438,000. Sounds like a bit of spruiking from domain to me. Like the medians reported by the same crowd for land at $250,000, when you can buy a project home in north and south for $290,000. The growth areas are beachside inner suburbs and city fringe which are always romping ahead of overall averages. Take those spiking areas out and prices are in a deflationary or holding phase at best which is reflected by rental deflation. I did a quickie on inner city Adelaide recently and the South Terrace side is steady, so it seems to me to be turning to a buyers’ market. The test will be 2017 approaching with the finalisation of the departure of car manufacturing and when the payouts run out the market will move downwards pretty quickly.
      Sometimes you’ve got to pick the bones out of these reports to get at the meat.

  18. “Americans asked to waste less food”

    Getting food from the farm to our fork eats up 10 percent of the total U.S. energy budget, uses 50 percent of U.S. land, and swallows 80 percent of all freshwater consumed in the United States. Yet, 40 percent of food in the United States today goes uneaten.

    Stop wasting food? Is whoever wrote that article nuts! If Americans stop wasting food imagine what will happen to the jobs of the fewer rubbish and delivery truck drivers that will be needed; the fewer supermarket jobs that will be needed.
    Imagine what would happen to the US GDP numbers if production fell in the name of food efficiency.
    Americans, and all of us, need to waste more to keep the economy going, not be more efficient.
    What a sad state of affairs we have all become.

    • Janet
      before xmas i bought a tray of 18 eggs at woolies. when i got to check out it was discovered that 1 was cracked. “get another tray.” the check out girl said. I’ll pay for the 17 good ones I replied.
      That set off a chain of events that required the store manager, a call to head office, the pricing department &much ooohing & ahhing,eventually they let me purchase the 17 eggs.
      “What would have happened to the carton if I had got another one ?” I asked the girl on the till.
      “Oh it would have been thrown in the rubbish.”
      “Wouldn’t they let the staff have it?”
      “No, we don’t get staff freebies.”
      It’s pathetic, this economically rational world .

    • Average weekly household income in Earlwood in 2011 was $1,390 – allowing for inflation say $1,600 or $82,000 per annum.

      So 17x = MADNESS

    • It’s amazing what photoshopped furniture, a lick of paint and a year can do to the value of a property. Wonder if the Chinese bid will save them?

      • Chinese bid? It could be China on the offer! What if it’s one of the 582 (or whatever the number is) files under investigation……That could make for interesting viewing.

      • @Janet, I was being sarcastic knowing the capital controls have been coming in, I can’t see a local paying that for it, even if it looks nice, it’s a shed load of cash for anyone on an ‘avg’ wage in Sydney.

        The amount of passed in auctions this weekend is encouraging… to say the least.

    • What I don’t understand is what happened between 2014-2015

      “Sold $1,400,000
      13 JUL 2015 Source: Government
      Sold $830,000
      08 MAY 2014 Source: Government”

      • I suspect Earlwood caught inner west exuberance – $830k is probably closer to fair value although on only 440sqm I’d say $500k once the market corrects.

        Good question to ask the agent next week ???

      • 2 sales of same property a year apart sounds like money laundering.
        Hello ATO, check the last 2 owners and follow the money!

  19. The home equity line of credit making a big comeback in the US, must get the economy over the line until after the election.

    http://wolfstreet.com/2016/01/29/home-equity-subprime-atm-surges/

    Check out the comments in the article about the Dutch housing market shenanigans since the GFC. I will be surprised if many people are tossed out of their houses here as well. Even in the Great Depression in Australia few people were evicted.

    Lets face it, Aussie bank balance sheets are a fantasy now and will be left to be adjusted to whatever they need to be to retain confidence in the system. Expect low interest rates, extreme delays in foreclosure, government insurance of mortgages and one social program after another to keep people in their homes. There is no appetite for sound finance anywhere, least of all from the person on the street.

    • notsofastMEMBER

      Maybe keeping people in their homes will be in part the best way out of this mess. Given its the financial system that is badly broken, why does it make sense to totally bust average everyday people and their families…

    • While I think you are correct nyleta, I would also expect that to make it difficult or impossible to roll over ‘hard currency’ loans and that a AUD 0.30 would lead to severe unemployment in the services (reality the imported stuff sector).

      So they will talk that talk, but will they walk the walk??

  20. I have some money with vicsuper and they’ve just gone full retard with ‘contact us for advice’ bs before you ‘change your investment settings’ because ‘switching between your investments may cost you’.

    How about the fact that current settings have cost average strayans -4% so far in 2016?

    They are shitting themselves, and with good reason.

    “we’re well placed to see this through” they beg. LOLOLO

    Tick Tock.

    • I guess their message is code for “Don’t go to the Cash Option, because that will force us to sell…even more!”

      • Yes Janet, there are various waypoints in the process of the malaise ‘sinking in’, as happened in 08/09, one was when the super statements started rolling through before a collective ‘F Me!!’ was heard echoing in the suburbs, followed by routers crashing as the punters desperately sought to switch to cash.

        Its clear now the super industry are trying to head this off.

        Good luck.

        I expect the global equities rout to continue after a month or so hiatus.

  21. http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/mehmet-biber-20150930-gjy2se.html

    Meanwhile, the goverment keeps the passport of scum like this so they don’t leave the country.

    Will government officials be brought to trial if this clown gets involved in homegrown terror related activities? Let him leave rather than stay here and breed. The Russians will turn him into flying mince pretty quickly.
    Are they so desperate to prop up the population ponzi, real estate agens happy he will be in the market for a house.

  22. This was posted a couple of weeks back by another commenter but it’s worth posting again as I just got around the listening to it.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2vWNDNW4BA

    It seems to me that infinite growth in the global economy is incompatible with sustainability and preventing global warming, yet central banks are shit scared of a recession. Consumers are tapped out on debt and don’t want to continuously consume like mindless drones.

    Surely this means the end game for economics as we know it? We need to move to a form of resource based economy that promotes conservation of resources and is against “waste”. At least that’s how I interpret our problems. Probably over simplified and I’m sure I’ll get flak for it but that’s what I think.

    • In theory you could still support a market-based economy if you priced in the normally excluded external costs of the climate, environmental health, personal health, etc. Imagine the growth spurred on by capital de-/re-construction if governments applied a CO2 emissions cost of ~$100 per ton. In this sense continued growth would be expressed through increased utility in quality of life rather than the accumulation of material possessions. Of course that would only happen through government intervention so it would never be a truly ‘free’ market, but you have to be a pretty hard-core libertarian to want a truly free market.

    • A big start would be to return to old concepts of saving rather than regard it as some sort of negative. If someone wants to consume more (or invest) they need to pay someone else to postpone their consumption to allow for the morfe consumption by the first party.

      So we MUST HAVE FIRST RAT interest rates that are sufficiently positive to encourage people to save rather than invest.
      The current perceived disconnect of the financial economy from the real world environment is a piece of TOTAL insanity!!!!

    • Could be worst. My housemates’ friend (a mechanical engineer who is not a property developer) has been talked into developing some land in Mt Gravatt to build a $13m development for apartments. Hasn’t reached DA phase yet so maybe council will knock it on the head.

    • Tell him to think of the tax deductions every time he has to repair the place after a storm rips through it !

  23. A tax observation for a minute…related to the current Sydney real property correction.

    The wife and I purchased a PPOR in 2012, an apartment in Bellevue Hill. In September 2015 we moved to a rental the other side of town to be closer to her new job. Before renting out the Bellevue Hill apartment we had a valuer come for the purpose of a cost base reset. https://www.ato.gov.au/General/Capital-gains-tax/In-detail/Real-estate/Using-your-home-to-produce-income/?page=4 As noted in the link there you have no choice in the matter, cost base must be reset.
    The valuation obviously gave an amount well over what we purchased it for.

    But if we decided to sell now in the current market it is entirely possible we would record a capital loss, even though we would have made a handsome economic gain. Proportionment would surely seem a better option??? Not only that what stops valuers putting in ridiculous bubble level valuations that when don’t come to fruition in a sale, it benefits you cause you won’t be paying tax on your capital gains for a while.

    While a tax free PPOR sale is generous, manufacturing capital losses from what have been huge economic gains is even more so.

    An oddity within the taxation system that seems to assume the never ending bull market.

      • Yes aware of that too (the main residence rules really are generous). But this is going one step further. Not only not paying tax but also claiming some losses for good measure.

        Just more making a point in this example that it defeats the policy purpose of capital gains tax if tax losses can be claimed on economic gains. Similarly paying tax on economic losses would be brutally unfair…

    • I’m a bit confused about this – can you only benefit from the capital loss by selling something else for a profit in the same tax year, or is there another way to make use of it?

      • Yogi, the capital loss could be carried forward into future tax years, until you have an offsetting capital gain.
        Stomper, by claiming PPOR exemption on the unit, they would not be able to claim the exemption on their new place on sale in the future. One can only claim the PPOR exemption for any one place at any given time. Exception is for the overlapping window between buying and selling (if buying first).

  24. Auction clearance results –

    According to REIV

    Auction Summary – Sunday, January 31 2016

    TOTAL AUCTIONS
    This week: 210

    Clearance rate: 74%

    S Sold at Auction: 128
    SB Sold before Auction: 25
    SA Sold after Auction: 3

    Total sold is 156

    Thats pretty damned GOOOD

    But according to realestate.com.au

    151 Total Scheduled Auctions 71% Clearance Rate*

    Sold prior to auction: 15 Sold at auction: 63 Sold after auction: 4

    Hmmmmm thats a clearance rate of only 54%

    Its really weird – its like REIV have the total sold as almost the same as real estate .coms actual total auctions ??

    I mean if we use re.coms sales and reiv’s total auctions we have a clearance rate of 39%

    OOOOhhhh – sorry, REIV has posted their clearance rate calculated like this – ALL of the sales which have occurred since December relative to the total auctions this month, no really, thats it.

    This is madness.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eZeYVIWz99I