Weekend Links 2-3 April, 2016


Policeman Floating in River, Sidney Nolan, 1964, Art Gallery of New South Wales




United Kingdom

United States


Terra Incognita


Capital Markets

Global Macro

…and furthermore…


    1) Humans pumping more carbon, faster, than in last 66 million years. Lead author Dr. Richard Zeebe from U of Hawaii.

    Humans are tossing more carbon into the atmosphere ten times faster, and in much greater quantities, than at any time in the last 66 million years. We’ll talk with the lead author of that study, Richard Zeebe.

    2) From The Center for Climate and Security, Shiloh Fetzek on origins of Syrian conflict, Ret. Brigadier General Gerald Galloway, on what the Pentagon knows about climate threats.

    With the turmoil of the Middle East spreading into Europe, Africa and beyond, we ask two specialists on the driving role of drought, heat and climate change. Our guests are analyst Shiloh Fetzek and retired American Brigadier General Gerald Galloway

    Download/listen (podcast, mp3, 14MB, right click and save as…)

    • The BBC is saying there are now more obese persons in the world than are hungry,
      Humans are going to kill emselves off before any of this climate change nonsense affects them.

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        Maybe the grim reaper is betting on flies on the wall. You know, a bit of a gambling man having a punt on what takes out humanity.

        In one corner we have climate change, predicted to cause 250 million dead a year by 2030. In the other corner…the one with two stools…we have Sugar Ray Obesity.

        DEATH seemed to have a dry sense of humour in all those Pratchett books. Reckon he’d enjoy this.

      • Not that I agree with the AGW meme as the so-called “Pause” has now lasted for near-on 20 years, however life flourishes in warmer environments as can be clearly seen in equatorial regions.

        Winter is coming.

      • Jag.

        Contrary to your opinion life is not flourishing, not when its considered the 6th extinction event in the – planets – history.

        Skippy…. over 60% of fish stocks are gone, you should familiarize your self with the term tipping point too imo… economics and financial acumen are not transferable to other more rigorous intellectual pursuits.

  2. pyjamasbeforechristMEMBER

    Tesla Model 3 unveiling – https://youtu.be/Q4VGQPk2Dl8

    US$4.7billion worth of pre orders on they first day! (To put that in perspective Tesla total revenue over the last 12 months was US$4billion)

    Stock up 7.8% in pre market open in the US

    Tipping my hate to you Elon. Thought you where toast a few time before. But now the world is on board for the ride it seems.

    • Refundable, non escrowed deposits for a car that doesn’t exist and won’t for another 3 years – assuming TSLA doesn’t go broke in the meantime and take your deposit to the grave

      Somehow a company that can’t make money selling cars starting at $70,000 is going to turn profitable selling one for $35,000

      The Model X is a disaster. Cars leaving the factory with misaligned panels – $100000+ cars that is.

      The warranty/repairs department is already stretched thin after selling 50,000 cars total last year.

      This bullshit company has a leave pass like no company before.

      • And yet it’s the most popular car on Consumer Reports (a huge thing in the States) by a wide margin. Collecting $190+ million on deposits alone goes a fair way to building a gigafactory and tooling for production.

        Then again I guess there is just no pleasing some people.

      • Quelle surprise, 88888 hates a successful (by basically every metric) electric car company. Seems like the reviews, sales growth, and stock market disagree.

      • Ronin8317MEMBER

        While there is some hype involved, Tesla is currently the best and only hope for humanity to go beyond a carbon based economy. People are not just buying a product, they are investing in the future.
        The car also looks really really nice.

      • Consumer Reports had to downgrade their view on the Model S once a few miles down the track saw the drivelines falling apart:


        If I spent over US$100,000 on a car – let alone $150,000 for the first batch of Model X – I would expect a mint condition car.

        Model X completed deliveries to original bookings is down to under 30%.

        TSLA will be raising capital very soon.

        Negative operating cashflow with an ARPU over $100,000 isn’t going to be cured selling for $35,000.

        The spectre of the 3 arriving soon at that price point must also be negative for Model S demand? A car that must be getting a bit long in the tooth by now?

        Pretty sure I could muster some refundable deposits if I promised to deliver BMW 3 Series for 35% below sticker prices.

        “Monorail, monorail, monorail”

      • From the Consumer Reports link:

        But those problems mostly still fall under Tesla’s four-year/50,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty (and eight-year/unlimited mileage battery and drivetrain warranty), so they are generally being corrected at no cost to owners.

        Ground-breaking, revolutionary car has some teething problems that are fixed by manufacturer. Fossil fools are quick to jump up and down about them, predictably. Yawn!

      • The warranty is another factor weighing on the longevity of TSLA. Just like the operating losses – the repair of all of those failed drivelines and doors that refuse to open has to be funded by someone. They wah they account for these future expensed is just another red flag for people that follow things like cash flow statements and don’t get giddy when the company talks about non-GAAP achievements.

        My argument has nothing to do with EV vs ICE.

        If they could deliver all those model 3s for a profit – hats off.

        I just can’t get over the reality force field that surrounds this company. It is something that will be remembered for decades.

      • I’ve been listening to people predict doom for Musk and Tesla for many years now. It’s getting really, really boring. ? ?

      • Telsa biggest problem is commodity based which water plays a massive part of…. so his stock price or units.

        Skippy…. at this juncture is all based on expectations….

      • Took a while for Madoffs Ponzi to be uncovered so the fact Tesla hasn’t gone bust is neither here nor there. With rates at Zero and equity holders piling in things can go on for a long time. In the long run he has to make it profitable and for all the hype about putting down deposits, how long till you actually see delivery? That is why this company is seen as getting a leave pass. When you need to buy a car you don’t want to wait three years.
        Then there is all the 3yr old Tesla’s coming of lease with guaranteed resales.
        Supercharger network is Ok now with few cars on the road, but how well does this scale if the 3 truly sells enmass? Some of those charging stations where you need to stay for half an hour to get 80% charge will get mighty busy.
        The other thing is the other manufacturers aren’t sitting still. As much as GM has missed the boat, they too look to have a 200 mile Ev close to release. Would be ironic if they beat Tesla to market.
        As for environmental outcomes, any discussion about pollution from the resource extraction required for all those batteries?

      • The Chevy Bolt is coming early 2017 and is slated to cost $37,000

        It is ugly compared to the Model 3.

        The Tesla is more attractive with a lower and wider stance and obviously higher levels of accommodation. These things cost money. So apparently Tesla is going to deliver a faster, more bespoke, lower, wider vehicle for cheaper than Chevy who has the buying power of a company that sells over 200,000 cars a month.

        You are spot on saying that TSLA is a creature of the environment of free money and a general suspension of thinking once someone mentions ‘disruption’.

        Car manufacturing is not scaleable like AMZN or even smartphones. Tooling up and R&D is insanely expensive and these guys have no cash cow beyond the clients of Morgan Stanley.

        If TSLA were actually able to produce the 200,000 cars for the $1,000 depositors in a year (they cant) and generate the same 10% EBIT margin as BMW (they wont) on an average of US$50,000 sale price (closer to the mark than the BS $35,000) – the company is still trading at 30 times EBIT.

        This is before considering the debt load, immense CAPEX and the impending warranty and lease buyback charges.

        Madoff took decades to bilk his followers – TSLA and their bankers will be ludicrous speed in comparison.

        I haven’t even started on the credibility of their accounting and the revolving door of executives that leave the place and quickly dispose of their shares.

      • A journo obviously not inside the Musk Kool Aid Teepee


        “In strictly financial terms, Tesla Motors operates on the dollar equivalent of fumes. Its last quarterly report, released Feb. 10 for the three months ended Dec. 31, marked its eleventh straight quarter of losses, and widening losses at that. Investors had been expecting, finally, a profitable quarter. Nevertheless, they bid up the stock the next day, based largely on Musk’s infectious optimism. The extent to which Tesla’s stock price rides on faith in Musk’s vision and operational skills rather than on profit-and-loss statements can be seen from its extraordinarily volatile stock chart.”

        “a successful (by basically every metric) electric car company.”?


      • The Chevy Bolt is coming early 2017 and is slated to cost $37,000

        It is ugly compared to the Model 3.

        ..and I think you overlooked something very very important – it has zero supercharger infrastructure, not in 2017 at least. Gives a whole new meaning to “stranded asset” 🙂

      • Sure mav

        I’m not saying the Bolt is going to be a hit or not – just that Chevy is pricing their dinner roll at $37k and from that it is fanciful that TSLA can make money at $35k with a sexier offering.

        The superchargers in place are sunk cost but trying to maintain the experience if they did actually quadruple the user numbers fast is going to cost the company even more money that they don’t have.

        They may win the battle but a bunch of Germans and Japanese will be coming over the horizon to win the war.

      • There are a few cost reduction factors in play.

        * Gigafactory scale makes batteries cheaper to produce.
        * Scale of car sales worldwide
        * direct selling – no stealerships to pay commission to.
        * Cost cutting via bare interiors – no mechanical gauges and wires – just a single 15 inch display.
        * and possibly cost of the glass roof versus steel/aluminium.

      • @5×8

        I think you are right. TSLA wouldn’t last a min without free media hype and subsides

        This is not anti electric car, in fact is the opposite. Tesla with their business model that is quickly being attached to electric cars of any kind is threatening the very idea of mass produced electric cars.

        The problems with with their cars is quality, not performance but reliability and price –
        Tesla cars have reliability below many ICE cars despite having few dozens moving parts compared to thousands in IEC.

        What Musk doesn’t get is that production quality has very little to do with knowledge (hiring bunch of smart geeks) but it rather child of experience. It takes decades to be able to make good quality cars.

        I just hope heavy lifters like Toyota, VW, … will get into the game before the very EV car idea gets killed buried by disappointment coming from Tesla’s wrong business model.

        Musk and many others have no idea what quality (reliability) is how it’s achieved. Car industry is not IT, people will not tolerate freezes and reboots here and there. I just hope people who buy his cars will not relate these problems to EV technology as such but somehow realise where the problem is.

      • @ Mav

        It will be hard to get any savings from scaling up battery production. At the present material cost is around 2/3 of total cost. With manufacturing including all overheads is under 30%. Halving that would not provide Tesla with any significant market advantage. Due to Musk’s business model and egotism Tesla is stuck between high performance expectations and cost reality – an extremely hard position to be in any business.
        Car industry is not IT – people do not tolerate mishaps

      • check out the pdf photos

        Your climate denial relies on cherry-picking the data, and your Tesla-smearing does too! Go to the end of that linked thread and what do you find?

        Reading some of the threads and pictures on the forum here, I was pretty scared when my DS said my vehicle arrived earlier this week …. Took delivery today and used the checklist that is on this forum somewhere..absolutely beautiful work done by Tesla.. nothing wrong at all. It’s the best vehicle on the road. And there was another delivery before me and another after me. All of them seemed to be perfect. Tesla has definitely got it together and is producing high quality vehicles

      • Maybe you can put me on your non-GAAP accounting denier list too

        The fact financial luddites like yourself are actively cheerleading your hero makes me more confident of reentering and building a short position over time.

        Let the bankers take advantage of the useful idiots to get a chunky cap raise away up here and get short for the inevitable Musk delays and dissapointment.

        How is the 10kWh Powerwall coming along?


        Lol, withdrawn from market


      • me denier? bs
        i argued so many times that we should go 100% solar and 100% EV

        what I said is that the way scientific community is dealing with the issue is egotistic and stupid

      • @R2M

        Before you start crapping on about climate change, take a look at Teslas accounting.
        Nobody is arguing that cleaner vehicles aren’t the way of the future, the argument is about how we get there.
        People like yourself should be especially worried about the business models behind market leaders such as Tesla, precisely BECAUSE of the damage that would be done if they don’t deliver on their now long list of promises.
        Meanwhile there are some great hybrid vehicles entering the market, and while I am sure while you will claim they are not as pure-white as Tesla they are heading in the right directtion.
        Unlike Tesla, they are affordable, mass produced, delivered and importantly without subsidy.
        One example:
        This car for examples gets 47mpg, and owners on youtube see 50mpg+ in real-world driving. Direct-drive electric motor to the wheels with a clutch engaging at 46mph to provide more power. Essentially it has no transmission so these losses are avoided.

      • @doctorX
        LOL. Freezes and reboots for a car! Not to mention the retractable door handles. Now I admit it is a cool looking feature, but I imagine the gimmickery rapidly wears off the first time they fail to extend and you can’t get into your own car. Your $100000plus car that is.
        Not to mention do they still work after thousands of extend/retraction cycles.

      • My calculator isn’t getting reception in my basement
        – can you tell me how many more refundable $1,000 deposits TSLA will need to cover last year’s cash burn?

        What about the next two years while they tool up to manufacture this model. The other two have been less than successful generating cash apart from investors.

        You sound pretty confident in your financial model – I would love to see how it differs from mine?

    • Where did you get the $4.7 billion number? Are you including the price of the car X number of pre-orders? They collected $115 million even before they showed the car !!

      BTW, I put in a pre-order :).. It is refundable. I will drive away if I am still in the US in 3 years time 🙂

      • pyjamasbeforechristMEMBER

        Elon is tweeting with updates.

        Elon [email protected]

        Model 3 orders at 180,000 in 24 hours. Selling price w avg option mix prob $42k, so ~$7.5B in a day. Future of electric cars looking bright!
        9:11 AM – 1 Apr 2016

    • St JacquesMEMBER

      How about we just hand the Holden facilities over to Musk for free and see if he can make a go of them? After all, we’ve paid for them.

      • St JacquesMEMBER

        No worries WW. The falling AUD, the already sliding (real) wages, especially in automotive manufacturing and related supply industries – which will accelerate as things get truly desperate the next few years, the improvishment of SA and Vic as their bubbles weaken, will all see to that. Let’s note, that the current Chevrolet SS which US based reviewers have been waxing lyrically about, is very price competitive in its category, and it would only get more-so if Holden were not being shuttered.

      • St JacquesMEMBER

        Fair point skip, given our bubble inflated wages are all out of whack, our economies of scale etc, etc. I being more provocative than realistic, Of course I know there is zero chance of anything like this for economic or political reasons. Maybe we could use those facilities for something else, but , but to hell with GM, why should they get to keep the cash from selling OUR plant and land?

      • St. Jacques…

        I disagree that our wages are over inflated when in fact they have been stagnate for decades, same for America imo.

        Skippy…. not interested in a race to the bottom nor a global labour pool of cheap surfs…. low bargaining power… we’ve seen the results…

      • St JacquesMEMBER

        Yes I agree with that point skip, I was referring obliquely to our debt pumped economy or relativities in my rushed reply but my first comment was not meant to be taken at face value. Please drink less coffee. lol

      • St. Jacques…

        The debt fueled aspect is a direct result of the aforementioned wage dramas, which again was the result of economic perfidy which hyperventilated about upper bracket inflation whilst the majority of the productivity went to an increasing smaller amount of people, offset by lowing the credit underwriting bar.

        Yet some still scratch their heads when all one need to do is look at the epoch of Milton and Greenspan w/ Rubin sauce pored all over it.

        Skippy…. History is a much better tool than endless navel gazing about Econnmetrics…

      • If TSLA shifted manufacturing offshore to Oz, President Trump would ban or levy them.

      • When watching the video of the unveiling I didn’t think about the car production taking place, rather, I was thinking about our lack of a Gigafactory. Surely we can at least do that here.

      • Australian’s have made it clear and will make it clear at the next election, we prefer to sell dirt and flip property, innovation is for fools. This country doesn’t like smarts, smarts are bad mmmkayyy… We should cut funding to science org’s, schools, higher education and fire all the CSIRO staff. Those climate change nutters.

    • pyjamasbeforechristMEMBER

      Elon Musk ‏@elonmusk
      253k as of 7am this morning
      5:09 AM – 3 Apr 2016

      Elon Musk ‏@elonmusk
      @34thrain Maybe 1/4 to 1/2 of what happened. No one at Tesla thought it would be this high before part 2 of the unveil. 5:19 AM – 3 Apr 2016

      So that’s ~$9-$10billion in orders in 2 days!

  3. haroldusMEMBER

    hey everyone.

    i signed up to the chartist for a month full membership. heard about them in an excellent MB blog about stops and busts. (http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2016/01/why-risk-management-not-stock-picking-matters/)

    i’ll let you know how it goes.

    also is anyone interested in going in the asx market game? i can set up a league if so. started already but can still go in. ends in june i think. there are 2 a year. top 200 asx is what you can trade. no shorts i think.

  4. HUDSON: This was the one thing that Alan Greenspan contributed to economic theory: the Traumatized Worker Syndrome. He said, the reason you’ve had this huge productivity gain without any wage increase is workers are afraid to go on strike, or even to complain about working conditions, because they’re just one paycheck away from homelessness.

    HEDGES: Which is true.

    HUDSON: And if they miss a credit card payment, all of a sudden their credit card fee escalates to 29%. Even if they’re late on a utility bill, the bank will raise the fee.


    Uber CEO must face price-fixing lawsuit from passengers, US court rules

    Antitrust suit claims Travis Kalanick organized price fixing among drivers: ‘Today’s decision confirms that apps are not exempt from the antitrust laws’


    Judge Jed Rakoff is presiding.

    • Late night copy/pasta from nakedcap eh, skipster? I am surprised Yves Smith hasn’t served you with a Cease and Desist for your uninformed and blatant copy/pasta.

    • Hay Mav great to see you still can’t get past dealing with the information, because that would necessitate intelligence and not grouse about C&P.

      FYI the whole links list above is a massive excessive in C&P…. so by your logic Gunna and I share a distinct methodology….

      Skippy…. Sorry that you could not add your expertise to the comments section…

      • LOL.. that copy/pasta was not even from the NC post, but from the comments section of NC. Gunna cites and links to the original source. Steve H must be pretty happy that you have plagiarized even his comments! I suggest you post at the aus property forum, where Gunnu’s comments used to be plagiarized on a regular basis.

      • Your making the mistake that I’m claiming ownership Mav, I’m merely using material sourced from the public arena. Its your drama to insinuate that I make that claim and further more that it has any relativity wrt the the T or F status of the material.

        Skippy…. in addition the numbers for Bernie wrt the primary’s is not an accurate accounting of the demographics until the general election. That’s when you can see the final tally, not before.

        PS. lol the Clinton’s are carpetbaggers, I’m the first person on NC during Obama’s 1st campaign that called her a commodity for sale…

      • Yep, I saw the Cooke link Skippy. I keep churning out the boomer babble link ad nauseam in the hope of injecting a bit of reality into that particular debate. Some folks around this place seem impervious to reasoned discussion and would rather act as amplifiers of memes and pop culture. Ignore the flak from the barnacle brigade – I read your stuff with interest.

    • Well, two can play this game.. This is from nakedcapitalism.com’s water cooler section

      “On Thursday night, the democratic socialist drew 18,500 raucous supporters to St. Mary’s Park in the South Bronx. Although the senator’s campaign has often been portrayed as the whitest thing since sliced Wonder Bread, the crowd in Mott Haven was a rainbow coalition: Among the Caucasian Sandersistas were significant numbers of African-Americans, Latinos, Asian-Americans, and even a smattering of Hasidic Jews. BernieBros and BernieBroads were out in roughly equal numbers. The only demographic that went underrepresented was “people who were alive when Ronald Reagan was in office” [New York Magazine]. “‘We have to talk to our parents, because the older generation — they on this Clinton thing,’

      hahahah.. everyone present except the baby boomers. Skipster, do you have any insightful comments on why the baby boomers support the kleptocratic Hillary Clinton? Surely, you need to start accepting this is a fact when your go-to source, nakedcapitalism.com itself is pointing this out?

      • I’m pro Bernie mate so I don’t know what your malfunction is, as well as constantly stating that I’m pro a more Eisenhower democracy.

        Your grok fail is wrt the boomer meme… seems you like to regurgitate jingoism’s whislt ascribing power to groups that span 20ish years when confronted with reality’s like Citizens United.

        Skippy…. sorry Mav you just don’t seem to have the deep of knowlage wrt economics or sociopolitical to get past your tribalism.

        PS. FYI both YS and Lambert over at NC have absolutely no time for wankers using the boomers meme. Ask.

      • So there you have it, two things that your aggressive ad hominem debating style has been attempting to bully off the table have been easily called into question, provided someone is prepared to risk the bile, invective and personal abuse thrown their way for questioning it (even when done politely).

        Empirical neuroscience does not support extreme no-agency ideology which present it as fact (and even the neuroscientists are getting sick of this crap – some have their own websites lamenting pseudo-neuroscience as agenda driven);
        Empirical data looks to show age demographics linked to wealth and opportunity are revealing a voting pattern (it seems even the mighty Yves is looking at this issue).

        What a total fucking waste of time this has been. And it really has nothing to do with the issues and has everything to do with asserting intellectual authority (i.e. playing verbal chess)

      • Funny thing Malcolm the information about Richard Cooke was supplied in the video I supplied at the very beginning of this, seems some prefer to cling to internalized concepts rather than deal with accuracy….

        Skippy…. hence they spend all their time on perfecting the argument on in accurate postulations… some call it path dependency… then I get aroused of trophy hunting and point scoring…. groan…

      • Aj.

        As noted above your trying to perfect an argument based on inaccurate data, Richard Cooke whom “coined” the pop term for “The Monthly”…. ffs its not an academic term to start off with

        “Hugh Mackay is quite possibly one of the old opinion makers of the ‘cultural lockout’, who has so incensed Richard Cooke that he has lost any semblance of logic or objectivity. “Who is Richard Cooke?” you may ask. Richard is an author who wrote the article ‘Boomer supremacy’ for The Monthly – an article, which, as someone who is firmly in the targeted age group, I found quite staggering.

        What damage can be done when a single-generational focus wilfully ignores disadvantage for other generations? As if there aren’t enough societal challenges and areas of disadvantage, do we now need to pit younger people against older people to make any progress? I don’t think so. And here is why.

        Baby boomers comprise 26 per cent, or 5.5 million, of Australia’s population of 24 million. Born between 1946 and 1964, they cover a spread that is more than a generation – hence the literature often refers to two cohorts: ‘leading edge’ boomers born from 1946–1955 and ‘shadow boomers’, born 1956–1965. As with all other large demographic categories, boomers are a diverse bunch: black, white, rich, poor, male, female, gay and straight. Yes, they do have some common formative experiences, including the Vietnam War, the Women’s Liberation movement, relatively low-cost higher education, times of full employment and times when a full-scale recession meant far lower employment prospects, and inflation spikes featuring interest rates of 18 per cent.

        Boomers do not lock step on social policy, nor do they vote as a bloc. They do not, in fact, support the overly generous tax concessions on superannuation, with a solid majority of 66 per cent in a survey taken just before the 2015 Federal Budget, stating removal of these concessions as the number one priority.”

        You many not know it or are gaming the conversation but when you ascribe agency the way you do without any evidence save pointing at who was elected or poling results is not accurate of the actual demographics e.g. you just looking at sub groups. Not only that your making a case against democracy its self. Shit look at the age demographics for Obama last two elections, are you going to tell me that it was the younger age cohorts fault for Obama’s epic failures.

        In face of all the material facts it hard to reconcile your – need – for the boomer meme, like a maypole which then you can attach all the other crap on…. its akin to arguing with someone pushing Praxeology or Religion.

        Skippy…. then it becomes absurd to see those that say they want Bernie yet on the other hand sequel about the younger age cohorts getting the burn end of the stick but then embrace P. Peterson’s et al Conservative economic ideology…. massive case of cog-dis…

      • Skip, I didn’t say you are a Clinton supporter. That is a pathetic attempt at diversion. I asked you a very simple question:

        Do you have any insightful comments on why the baby boomers support the kleptocratic Hillary Clinton?

        This is a fact borne by both empirical data, anecdotes and now acknowledged by nakedcapitalism.com. Lambert even goes on to say “I remember in 2008 that some (voting age) children persuaded their parents to vote for Obama. Is that not happening this time, or is there some generational math I’m not doing correctly?”. So are you the lone holdout NC fan who is not accepting that boomers are the only demographic that is helping Clinton lead?

      • As i have conceded, I have no issue with this point being on the table. I also agree that the term ‘baby boomer’ is suspect in this debate (something i conceded long before this discussion with you). I would question whether such a static analysis without a temporal analysis is really uncovering the story. We are talking about a 20-30 year history of putting in place policies that benefit existing asset holders and established generations over new generations, lead primarily by politicians from a demographic that benefited itself.

        This very discussion is actually having an effect on baby boomers (and those that have benefited from the inequality) – as they are of course not inherently evil, they just had no-idea that they were winning at the expense of everyone else, and that this was really a type of bribe for policies that entrenched even deeper social inequality. It’s also getting boomers that were not winners out of their seats to point out that general social inequality was enhanced over this period.

      • That was an good response to my comment – and i’m pleased to see it!

        Which part? Maybe you did not realise tha skip basically copy pasted the article linked to by Malcolm.

      • Gezz mav and aj…. did voters have much to do with funding MPS or agreeing on neoliberalism – Washington consensus or Thirdway as implemented by the plutocracy. Funny how I never heard it in campaign rhetoric from either side over the last 50ish years, yet it has been the cornerstone of economic policy formation during the time in question.

        And if your confused about that just take a hard look at the events in south central America wrt Corporatism and the Chicago boys during the last 100 years.

        The drama is seeking data to fit an inaccurate axiom e.g. one could easily justify people getting sick from ill winds not that long ago with statistical analysis. Hence the compartmentalization of humans over huge event horizons premised on statistical metrics like flexian ideology is about as useful as the “Bible Code”.

        Skippy…. if voters have a problem its corporatist MSM propaganda and the failing education system, not some intrinsic values which can be ascribed to millions+… its a bad case of the cart before the horse…

      • * Ignores skipster’s desperate hand waving distraction*

        I will amend and repeat my question one last time and skip out:

        Do you have any insightful comments on why the baby boomers support the kleptocratic Hillary Clinton while the rest of the demographic support Sanders?


        corporatist MSM propaganda and the failing education system,

        How come the Gen X/Y/millenials don’t fall for this? Are you suggesting that boomers are dumb illiterates who have fallen for corporatist MSM propaganda?

      • Mav….

        I highlighted a section of the article which supports my argument and added to it, as demonstrates the Boomers authors dramas and its inaccurate portrayal of huge age cohorts. You have not refuted it. What you have done is what both you and aj accuse me of by a number of logical fallacies. Albeit I do admit to vitriol as a product of the disdain I hold for those that refuse to acknowledge the actual material under question, but run all over the paddock to deflect direct questions and direct answers.

        Skippy…. what ever your issues are I don’t need you projecting them on me… with the only support for your augment being… you believe it so…

      • “I do admit to vitriol as a product of the disdain I hold for those that refuse to acknowledge the actual material under question, but run all over the paddock to deflect direct questions and direct answers.”

        Not the case. The fact is distain is not the precursor of the invective, nor does it explain the aggressive and often nasty couched ad hominem style of debate. It is very easy to make a solid case and show there is a logical fallacy without either of these. And it is also very easy to to express frustration about a good case avoided without invective.

        You could do with some some intellectual honesty here about this style of debate and admit that the purpose of the vitriol is much more complex. It has moral undertones (which curiously always still exist for those that don’t believe in natural law) and is therefore likely linked to unstated ideology (good or bad) and also links in with cultural and social discussion norms associated with your identified belief systems and network.

        It also has a clear functional purpose (which is the key reason its use developed as a debating style) and that is to stifle debate and expression of countering views. It achieves this by making it too hard to participate for many (particularly for those not as capable of wearing the abuse – essentially bullying). Combined with esoteric, vague and unnecessarily complex language it also creates a false perception of erudition and enlightenment leading people to question whether questions are worth making.

        It is actually a very intellectually dishonest style of debate, and it has seriously stifled real discussion and debate on this site, as well as damaging many interesting aspects of human discourse – irony, paradox, humorous rant, despair, gloating etc and the good old fun one – just having a go.

        This style is a plague of locusts that leaves all bare in its wake, its not about the ecology of ideas and discussion.

      • The entire shiteshow is wrt using the pop culture term “Boomers” and nothing else… aj… especially when some want to attach a hate parade to it.

        All the answers have been provided in accurate detail, tho some insist to use a inaccurate term as an axiom to buttress – all – their arguments. Then after all the escalation due on part to those that embrace that pop term now cry foul for violations of intellectual etiquette… mon dieu!

        Just the fact that it has been shown to be demonstrably wrong, from so many different perspectives, yet the best the those that embrace it can to is insinuate and engage in spurious conjecture about Hillary, primary counts, cut and paste, and anything but focusing on the validity of the term or the wonky correlation mixed up or mistaken for causality ascertained by its use.

        Now this has turned in to a face saving exercise by those that trotted it out as fact, because in calls into question, the veracity of those that put immovable stakes in the ground in the first place.

        Skippy… personally I not going to have my name slandered when the facts speak for themselves…

      • I always think of Einstein’s Quote as I scroll through Skippy’s comments. “If you can’t explain it to a six year old, you don’t understand it yourself.”

      • If the facts speak for themselves then the abuse, couched ad hominem and bile and invective are completely unnecessary. In my opinion, the temporal context (i.e. the patterns over time) hasn’t been addressed, nor has the actual statistics from the both the left and right think tanks that have looked at wealth accumulation by age demographic.

        To say that polls now show the top age demographics think the laws should be changed is a logical fallacy in its own right. It’s possible at least this change has only come about because of social backlash against generational wealth accumulation?

        My point is that this is a reasonable topic for discussion, not the space for an ideological shut-down, and this debate has been drawn back into the debate mechanism itself because that is necessary to counter the aggressive ad hominem style you choose to bring to the table i.e. you are using it as a tool in the issue at hand, and then cheekily seeking to exclude it from the discussion.

        I am completely signing off from this topic, because it is well past the point of seriously pissing off the people that come to this site a range of reasons other than watching an epic chicken fight on esoteric points from nobody hacks…

        I take the point you are trying to make and i think it is not without merit.

      • Again aj….

        I’ve spent months providing information which refutes the term “boomers” only to have many different people here engage in ad hominem, by suggesting my age or other things drive my comments or outlook on it – with out – dealing with the material facts.

        Yet when I get gut of the game and dish out the same treatment its now all my fault….

        No one is talking about stopping statistical analysis using age as long as its methodology is sound, peer reviewed, and consensus on it is achieved. What is unconscionable is using a inaccurate methodology and then presenting it as truth or fact. Known neoliberal think tanks don’t help in this regard. Your engaging hyperbole to suggest I would think what your carrying on about.

        BTW the wealth you ascribe to so called boomers is dwarfed by what the upper quintiles have accumulated since wages and productivity diverged in the 70s. Yet some would like to subscribe the notional wealth the older age cohort has as being the big problem.

        Taking one age based analysis of Sanders voters – at primary’s – is the height of cheery picking, to flesh out the boomers stole all the wealth meme, that Conservative think tanks like PPIE, Heritage, and Cato pump out to headfook the ignorant in removing Citizens rights, whilst promoting the far right wing agenda of privatizing the commons and all other government functions.

        Dan… trying to evoke Einstein in this regard with a broad brush is indicative of the whole shemozzle e.g. you have nothing offer, but homily’s, yet can’t actually engage the topic on any meaningful level.

        Skippy…. Aj… this is about – trust – and even if where we do agree on somethings [if they are even true to start with, on your part] stuff like this means I have to reconcile everything else going forward in reference to this episode…. its called risk weighing… and I make no apologies for it.

        PS. massive double standard wrt mig-i dialectal style for some it seems…

      • Taking one age based analysis of Sanders voters – at primary’s – is the height of cheery picking

        No need to hyper ventilate. Just say you still can’t answer (you can even plead the 5th) a very valid question that I asked after Lambert pointed out that large number of “old parents” vote for Clinton (even if it is against their own children’s interest).

      • Mav…

        I’ve answered the question ad infinitum. The original OP was about the pop term boomers, to which, aj. decided to offer a neoliberal think tanks statistical analysis on Sanders primary voting demographics. I responded that it had no bearing on the original OP wrt the validity of the term boomers w/ noting the ideological bent of the source. So in the first case aj. and then you went off into the fog to attempt a run a round wrt the pop culture term Boomers in order to frame the conversation about olds vs. younger gen when it was always about the inaccuracy baked into boomers meme no matter how you use it.

        Now if you want a separate conversation about Sanders [who is a boomer] and how in the primaries he has a huge advantage over Hillary, that’s a completely different and seperate topic all together. To wit, I clearly stated that it is inaccurate to finalize a demographic statistical analysis before the general election because its not a true representation of the demographics nationally. Further more if you or aj are serious about Sanders on would think that attacking a possible allies [Hillary’s and Bills stench becoming to overwhelming for even branded older dems to ignore] by drawing lines in the sand.

        Now back to the olds vs young gen meme some want to push e.g. the boomers stole all the wealth meme. Its a well know right wing conservative talking point used to frame the rights which the new deal set up and have always drove the conservatives around the twist, for purely ideological reasons. Worst of all its not backed by any facts but a sociopolitical desire in establishing an societal template to force on everyone else, regardless of consequences – see history.

        So one hand you and aj say your pro Sander’s who is a democratic capitalist, but then engage in far right wing phraseology and tropes to support a fiscally conservative political and economic agenda, which one is it Mav.

        Skippy…. had you, aj. and others in the past focused on the one thing in question none of this would have transpired. Not only that but all those cracking a fat about ad hominem and dialectal styles have a bad case of double standers as a favorite commenter mig-i could only function on that level, too the raucous support and cheering on of you and your posse. So I guess that it only applies to those that you perceive as being a threat or opposed to your agenda.

      • I’ve answered the question ad infinitum.

        Can please you indulge us by copying and pasting your answer again below? I am not going to repeat that specific question for the 3rd time. By now, you cannot pretend not to know what it is and the source that triggered the question is definitely not some neoliberal think tank, but mine and yours go-to blog, nakedcapitalism.com.

        To wit, I clearly stated that it is inaccurate to finalize a demographic statistical analysis before the general election because its not a true representation of the demographics nationally.

        LOL.. so when the “older parents” ( note this is a term used by nakedcapitalism.com, not me) may have already eliminated Bernie from the general election and thus strangled their own children’s dreams and aspirations, that is the time to perform a demographic statistical analysis. God, you are worse than Hillary!

      • Mav…

        You can ask Lambert himself about his context wrt to this issue directly and please use the pop term boomers…. I’ll watch.

        I don’t share your reading of NC. You should cut and paste the material your referencing so I can see exactly what your on about and reconcile – contextualize that with the entire piece. That way I can check it your cheery picking, projecting of attempting to frame the narrative in your own manner.

        Worse than Hillary [see this is what I talked about before], I disagree, Hillary likes to play games like you, where Bernie does not engage in such obvious weasel games.

        Skippy… please show were Sanders uses the Boomer meme or frames his policy platform the way you frame the topic. As I’ve said before, with so called friends… using far right wing rhetoric like you… who needs enemy’s.

      • LOL. another childish “dog ate my breakfast” dodge. I have given the nakedcapitalism.com context in full and referenced it in the beginning of this thread.(unlike what you do everyday, stealing other people’s work without linking or crediting them)

        Well, two can play this game.. This is from nakedcapitalism.com’s water cooler section

        It seems you don’t want to see the stuff that your conscience cannot reconcile. You are the epitome of willful blindness.

      • Come on Mav you have not added anything to the conversation, but reiterate your question[s and then express your opinion on matters. Malcolm and myself have provided granular unpacking’s of why your assertions are not only wrong, but damaging.

        Skippy… you edit out over 90% of everything under your nose… and then have the cheek to write the drivel above….

      • The time stamps prove that I posted at 9:24AM and you posted a response at 9:36AM, i.e. >10 mins after my post.. I don’t think posts cannot edited beyond 5 minutes after the initial posting. And I don’t have a time machine.

        So there goes another one of your senile excuses – I have mathematically proven that you are willfully blind.

      • Mav…. what part of this topic being about the pop culture term boomers and extrapolation of demographic statistics from a neoliberal site…. in an attempt to validate the former… do you not understand…

    • So Mav you have no problems with Uber if found to have been engaging in price fixing?

      Skippy…. seems you would rather talk about your personal feeling about me… me wonders why…

  5. Doing the rounds on twitter:

    “Bloomberg puts Trump’s current net worth at $2.9 billion, Forbes at $4.1 billion. The National Journal has worked out that if Trump had just put his father’s money in a mutual fund that tracked the S&P 500 and spent his career finger-painting, he’d have $8 billion.”


    It’s a very old link but interesting that it;s popped up again now.

    • St JacquesMEMBER

      Hope Trump runs for president. Then the Dems would have no choice but to choose Bernie, who’ll wipe Trump out. Otherwise, it’s back to the Establishment with the fraud and phoney.

      • Bill Maher had a good show with Sanders last year. Essentially, the US electorate would rather vote in a Bible thumping, drug inhaling moron (which they did) than somebody like Sanders. He is a nice guy but he has a snowflake´s chance in Hell of winning the election. You could end with Trump (or worse, Cruz) for Prez and witness WWIII.

      • St JacquesMEMBER

        That characterisation oversimplifies the US electorate. Both Trump’s and Bernies; success is being driven by a working and middle class revolt against four decades of neo-liberal policies that have screwed them, so a lot of supporters of both would defect to the other “rebel” leader if an Establishment figure, like Cruze or Clinton was running. . What is interesting is that polls show that Bernie would crush Trump in a presidential showdown.

      • Nah, if you want to laugh at Trump just look at the projections for the electoral college.


        Election analysts prefer close elections, but there was nothing we could do to make this one close. Clinton’s total is 347 electoral votes, which includes 190 safe, 57 likely, and 100 that lean in her direction. Trump has a total of 191 (142 safe, 48 likely, and 1 leans).

        Over the years we’ve put much emphasis on the seven super-swing states: Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Virginia. While some will fall to the Democrats less readily than others, it is difficult to see any that Trump is likely to grab. In fact, four normally Republican states (Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, and Missouri) would be somewhat less secure for the GOP than usual. North Carolina, which normally leans slightly to the GOP, would also be well within Clinton’s grasp in this election after being Mitt Romney’s closest win in 2012.

    • +1
      And thanks for the insight into corruption that you put into yesterday’s links.

      • +1 The Links are outstanding.

        I am not a pay member of this site – I just dont need to know that much about the Australian economy – but I come here each Friday afternoon for the links. There are other guys where I work (US West Coast) who do the same.

        Is there some reason why the comments about corruption in yesterdays links that you mention are not a post? It is very well written.

  6. China…can now do whatever she wants. Challenge her, and your economy is going to the wall…..

    China has thrown down the gauntlet in an escalating trade war …. imposing punitive tariffs of 46pc on hi-tech steel produced in Britain and the rest of the European Union…..“If this is not a trade war, I don’t know what is. We’re literally drowning in a flood of Chinese imports globally…..The country can no longer absorb its own supply as the construction boom fades and the catch-up phase of breakneck industrial growth hits the limit. ”


    • St JacquesMEMBER

      Wasn’t it Lenin who said something about capitalists selling the rope they’ll be hung with or something?

    • Original John

      And yet the moron force still believes that Chinese stimulus will save them – it won’t. It is all about protecting Chinese jobs now. Feel like a broken record on this topic, but once it is clearly understood what the purpose of this current round of stimulus was (yes was), Australia’s rebalance from China will be shown to be the farce it really is. They said they won’t use currency devaluation to enhance exports – did they lie? No, they are full on in a the start of a trade war and will do anything to preserve jobs and stop unrest now.

      • Thank you OJ for your earlier response to my query as to a morph from currency to trade war !

        Firstly how can China possibly think it can win a trade war? Because it can’t, nobody wins wars they are a lose lose game.

        Australia will be crushed in this struggle and there is little doubt the trade war will morph in due course into something more sinister ! Sadly !

      • Original John

        I warned months ago that I was expecting an announcement at the congress in China, then they announced the massive layoffs and industry consolidation prior to the conference (which is half of what I had been told). I also said if it is what I am expecting then go cash because this will not be good for Australia – it will initially be viewed as AUD positive, but once the real implications become apparent, it will be very negative to the Australian economy and much worse than just a hard landing. The whole focus is around preserving and growing China, which has always meant that a protectionist regime will follow. I work with SOE’s who are investing (ie looking for growth businesses that feed into their existing business models) not private companies (who are trying to move capital out of China while they can). I can see a 2 tier import tariff system in the future which benefits SOE affiliated foreign firms over non-affiliated exporters. The congress announced as I had stated a large increase in focus on Chinese agriculture and the China 2025 program. What happens when China imposes tariffs on select foreign food imports from non-aligned countries? Examine how hard it is for a Chinese graduate of an Australian Uni to get a job in Australia first (not all can afford to stay after their degree) then in China (common complaint was their English is worse than local Chinese uni grads!). A whole lot of capital flow protections (as I have stated for months) have been increased and the next will be the Hong Kong affiliate company invoice scam. Consume local and push excess out to neighbours. I have noticed a large increase in the closeness of relationships between Brazil, Venezuela and China, including beef export permits and other food stuff. We negotiated a major export agreement out of Brazil for Chicken paw and feet to the mainland, Australian product can only be exported to Hong Kong. Times be a changing and need to be flexible to flows of trade, and trade wars do have a tendency to blow up into other more sinister hot situations…..

      • Whilst were on layoffs…

        Complete media blackout for mass firings at IBM.

        Roughly 20K American jobs cut and not a peep from the media or State AG’s over failure to report under The WARN Act. Oh that’s right, IBM claims that it’s a “trade secret” to disclose such. No worries though, those buybacks appear to be doing wonders according to Form-4 filings. – h/t Northeaster

    • Well, that was a dumb move. China is practically begging the UK to go along with the antidumping. This is not real power, it is another demonstration that we got it all wrong. Chinese bureaucrats are not the patient, long-horizon-peering, Confucian sages some have assumed them to be. They are the same morons as everywhere else but with a bigger chip on their shoulder. Now they just need to pick a fight with India and they are set.

    • Real strange outcome given that Britain has been the lone voice against higher pan European Tariffs on imported Chinese Steel. Looks like it’s a trade war forming with all the illogical consequences that go hand in hand with trade wars.
      Makes you wonder how long before some brain dead politician (lets just call him DT) decides to impose oil/coal/io embargoes on China in support of their strategic / geopolitical objectives …..wait a minute I think we’ve been here before, wasn’t there something in my high school text book about Pig-Iron Bob and Japanese oil embargoes, @#$% it all happened so long ago it cant possibly be relevant today.

      • A mercantilist behemoth like China has more to lose out of a trade war, which makes me wonder if China´s “harmonius” society is worse than assumed. In which case they may well chose to start (or finish) a small regional war. The Philippines must be high on their mugging list.

      • Just read again what OJ wrote above. China will protect their jobs in order to avoid riots. I will not be suprised if they deval too as that will help them keep few mines open which will be even uglier for us.
        My view is Oz will be collateral damage. Big powers already picked the winners and losers. We tend to think we are strategic but the way things are we are left to chose who’s bitch we will be. They really simplified it for us. LOL

      • I can’t work out how the ‘steel for national security’ crew in the UK can make their steel without imported iron ore?

        Maybe if they were serious they would buy/bail out Whyalla and rely on the historic ties to Australia.

    • St JacquesMEMBER

      Yes, all very good but the failure to address the Triffin Dilemma that is at the heart of the problems of any country running the world’s reserve currency will just send us in endless circles. The Triffin Dilemma highlights the failure to adopt Keyne’s Bancor concept.

      • Good point and one that PBOC officials have been banging one about since the GFC. The Triffin paradox didn’t die with the gold standard it lives on and on, It also follows that any unwinding of the existing Reserve currency structure MUST involve a reversal of fortunes for the fading reserve currency and a reduced cost of capital for the emerging reserve currency. hence our inescapable ZIRP /NIRP problem. Western economists really need to start reading and understanding the PBOC’s publications because a lot of these post GFC consequences were outlined in 2009 PBOC articles.

    • Original John

      For an opaque organisation, the PBOC sure does tell us a lot about what they are thinking and why….. Maybe we should start listening to them?

    • CB,

      Those articles merely state the obvious that trade deficits/surpluses are matched by capital flows.

      Notice how they completely avoid the issue of what determines capital flows and what happens if they are regulated or as is so often the case manipulated by central bank monetary or credit creation policy or government rules on foreign investment.

      The policies and regulation of capital flows determines the trade position.

      If a country does not regulate, control, minimise unproductive capital inflows it ends up with a higher exchange rate than it otherwise would.

      The trade position follows from that.

      They ignore capital flows and assume they are free and regulated as though a fact of nature for a reason.

      • Thanks for the link.

        I am not a big fan of conspiracy theories but the “don’t mention the capital flows” strategy is so prevalent that it hard to put it all down to over sight and ignorance (when it comes to most main stream commentary ignorance is the most likely explanation.

      • @Pf007 I do understand your position wrt restricting “unprodcutive capital” and the obviousness of the links between Trade deficits and the need for capital flows to balance trade imbalances. I do understand that the trade deficits wouldn’t be possible without the capital flows so restricting either Trade or capital should have the same effects. Unfortunately there are 23M Aussies that want something from overseas and their desires are in no way tempered by our trade imbalance, matter of fact the only substantive link between their desires and their ability to fund these desires is the AUD exchange rate. Logically for an economy with no assets trade imbalances should be directly reflected in the exchange rate however until Australia has disposed of all tangible Assets AND all future revenue streams (as in created a nation of debt slaves) the exchange rate will drift about and be more impacted by large capital flows than it is by continual Trade imbalances.
        I agree that in principle capital controls could be put in place relatively easily in Australia because most of the debts creating these capital flows are being incurred by a handful of Banks and large financial institutions (not with standing the huge sums that have recently been invested in Mining/LNG Processing). However, what I don’t get is that IF on Monday you simply put these Capital controls in place how would this restrict our trade deficit? It would definitely create a liquidity crises, it’s probably signal a shortage of tangible imported goods and thereby indirectly trigger price inflation. I’m not sure what would happen to the AUD over the short term, My guess is that it would become hyper volatile with wild swings up and down because you would have removed the buffering/market damping effect that secure capital flows create and replaced it with the thinly capitalized model of (I cant pay you till I get paid).
        Bottom line: I like the idea of Capital controls but I hate the idea of a liquidity crises forced on a nation by rigid capital regulation.

      • CB

        “… However, what I don’t get is that IF on Monday you simply put these Capital controls in place how would this restrict our trade deficit? It would definitely create a liquidity crises, it’s probably signal a shortage of tangible imported goods and thereby indirectly trigger price inflation. …”

        On Monday I would direct APRA to direct the banks to reduce their usage of off shore borrowings to support mortgage operations by X % per quarter with the goal of reaching 0 % over Z years.

        The immediate result of that would be some mild upward pressure on mortgage rates and mild downward pressure on the exchange rate.

        At the margins those minor changes start to change behaviour.

        That specific change has no direct impact on goods on shelves etc.

        As we know quite large fluctations in exchange rate do not always result in changes in prices – at least for a while.

        APRA might find that the rate of reduction in off shore borrowing can be increased if the change is not causing too much grief but change over a 5-10 year period seems reasonable.

        At the same time restricting Bond issues that can be sold to offshore owners and the sale of assets can be restricted.

        Co-ordinating these measures is not an all or nothing process – they can be introduced gradually.

        Importantly they do not have a direct impact on trade or the availability of goods. Those impacts are gradual and will likely involve a greater degree of import substitution as locally produced goods become the cheaper alternative. As they build market share on price they are likely to increasingly compete on quality.

        Another important point – none of this involves picking winners etc. It simply involves removing over a period of time the distortions that unproductive capital inflows inflict on the exchange rate.

        With an exchange rate that reflects trade performance AND productive capital flows we may still not have a manufacturing sector (as we may still get by on dirt and ag sales) but the odds of having one are better.

      • Interesting ideas but I suspect the banks would not be happy AND you would indirectly be gifting the Aussie mortgage market to any unregulated entity (say an Investment bank) that simply borrowed all its capital abroad. I’m certain the banks wouldn’t like that outcome.
        What concerns me most is the myriad of indirect paths that capital flow would adopt and the way this would comparatively disadvantage the average Aussie buyer.
        How would house afford-ability be helped if businessmen with direct access to foreign capital were say paying 4% mortgage rates while Aussie First time buyers were paying 7% or 8%, sounds to me like something that would help Investment Property owners and I’m not sure that’s a good outcome.
        I’m not even sure that 8% mortgage rates would be sufficient to guarantee that the necessary capital was available from Aussie saving sources.

      • CB,

        You are missing the main obstacle.

        The international treaties that Australia’s dumb bum pollies have signed us up for prohibit what I am proposing.

        Unrestricted capital flows are what the US has demanded of its colonies post WW2. Japan was allowed off the leash until the mid 80s but since then have been tamed with BOJ ‘independence’.

        And the tools for managing the process are ‘independent’ monetary authorities in the colonies with powers that are limited by international treaty.

        I will assume you were joking about foreign businessmen dodging the ATO and FIRB outbidding Australian first home buyers on existing home sales.

        They are the least of their problems.

        The moribund RMBS market shows how much interest there is from off shore investors when there is no effective taxpayer guarantee on offer.

        If off shore investor want to have a punt on new housing they are welcome – building new housing is productive.

  7. Straya has been on a roll for 25 years, but the federal budget has been in deficit for 8 years straight. This year will be the 9th. Does that bother you?
    Simply passing on the tab to future generations because the current generation of taxpayers is unwilling to pay enough taxes to fund the public services they currently enjoy is unfair
    The federal government has been raising insufficient money to cover the cost of expenses, like welfare, schools and health funding. And there is no end in sight.
    On the latest estimates, the budget will remain in deficit until at least 2020-21, another 5 more.
    Why? Because when the economy is weak, business profits are lower, wages growth is slower and overall consumer spending is subdued. And in another 5 years AI will have made about 25% of the workforce redundant.
    The federal government raises most of its revenue through taxes on personal and company incomes and consumption. So it’s only natural that a weak economy means weak revenue. And a collapsing economy. Who is going to pay more tax? Not the Boomers that is for sure.

    • The budget is actually in massive deficit for those that have a more nuanced delineation between private and public debt – except that bugger all is flowing into public infrastructure. Sydney residents borrowing to pay stamp duty is just public debt with a private skim.

    • @WW read the Peterson institute reports linked above.
      It’s something that I’ve been banging on about for a long time. basically IF as an economy you run a CAD, THAN you must run a deficit at either the Public or Private level or somehow make up the difference through direct foreign investment (such as Chinese buying Aussie houses)
      It’s not optional its Cash-flow accounting 101.
      Since it is highly improbable that Australia will run a current account surplus in the near to medium term future (given trends in Iron Ore and LNG pricing) we have only two options:
      1) as nation we must run a fiscal deficit
      or 2) we must increase our net private debt to the world.
      Given that for the most part Australian Private debt = Mortgage debt, it follows that any attempts to repair Federal and/or state budgets MUST result in higher house prices or at least larger foreign bond sales in support of our existing Mortgage market ( both equate to a greater reliance on foreign capital)
      This is precisely why ARPA’s efforts are doomed, Australia cant simply reduce our reliance on foreign capital without first repairing our Trade imbalances, it’s mathematically impossible. It appears that foreign banks are only really willing to loan money to Australia for Mortgage backed securities So the logical result is mortgages to the moon.
      ANY attempt by the State or Federal governments to increase the Fiscal deficits WILL result in our AAA status being lost and given the reliance that our big 4/5 banks have on this AAA rating it follows that we’ll all be in a worse position if we’re silly enough to risk our AAA rating.
      Bottom line: Our CAD must be funded with RMBS’s.

      • TailorTrashMEMBER

        So in essence we are selling our home to fund our extravagant lifestyles because we produce nothing ………If Australia was a business we would be selling the factory that makes nothing to pay for our lunch ………..and how long before the new owners put us on the street ?

      • China Bob is entirely correct.

        There isn’t a hope in hell that Australia will take the short term pain, long term gain route. Just look at the property cheerleaders and tax free, welfare fueled boomers grasping at their entitlements.

        The only outlet is the AUD

      • Add to this OJ’s story on the value of agricultural land being worth zero, except for the value of what it can produce in crops or livestock. All these rural purchases by foreigners will fail, and if this sugar thingy takes off and we cant find a replacement for sugar cane, half of the east coast of Straya will be bankrupt, just from the rural aspect.
        Some have been whinging here that they cant cop this bad news, well this is just the pre-lude.
        Act 1 will be the property collapse
        Act 2 will be the collapse of the currency.

      • Dear skippy

        Mr Gunnamatta’s directions to me are……

        ‘Ditch anything that looks offensive. Anything which looks like it is a massive cut and paste job, anything which has too much swearing in it (or swearing which looks to you as though it is intended to offend, rather than simply express someones sentiment – if in doubt ditch). If posters start calling each other names, or start getting involved in long and protracted assertion and denial situations, feel free to ditch that too. Anything smacking of race or religion, ditch it. If you overdo the ditching that almost certainly will not be a problem. We want intelligent, reasoned, questioning people to feel free to comment without feeling abused, snowed or overly bullshitted. If you want to quote these direction to you feel free to insert them in place of what you delete.’

        Feel free to contact us at [email protected] to discus spam policy


      • Mr Spambot.
        What are you going to do about the ghosts and sock pupetts which haunt this site?
        The credibility of this site rests entirely on the standing of the editors, their history and the veracity expected from the posters, which unless stated otherwise is expected to be a reasonable person.
        Ghosts and sock puppets need to be removed pronto, and the policy of sock puppets published.
        No one is going to leave this site with a feeling of having been informed is the article is not genuine. In fact if word gets around of site rigging, the site is valueless and it will be ridiculed. WW

      • @5*8 No argument from me except to say that in Australia’s case devaluation over the short to medium term results in an increase in CAD rather than a decrease. The only mechanism by which this can translate into decreased CAD is through dramatic decreases in unit volume of imports (or a substantial lowering of quality / unit cost of imports). Basically we’ll fix CAD by having shop shelves empty….welcome to 1980’s East Germany.

      • Again…. the link [PPIE] I responded to which unpacked the ideological bent of conservative fiscal policy is not a universal truth, it is a political decision made to force a sociopolitical and economic ideology as a societal template.

        Oz bonds are in AUD which then leaves the big 4 banks holding the bag for everything they created, during the neoliberal period. Which imo they leveraged government for in bargain power, self inflicted wound as it were.

        Skippy…. hence one has to take the PPIE’s policy with a fist full of salt, having historically, played a large part in shaping the neoliberal reality we all deal with now. Its like Obama appointing the same economic advisers which blew up things in the GFC…. in the first palce….

      • Just to flesh that out a bit more…


        The Problem is not per say so much operational reality is it is ideological preferences for a sociopolitical template, over economic options. This has been a long battle to remove rights from citizens in favor of privatizing everything under the sun and let da’ market sort it all out.

        Skippy…. file under corporatism… above representative democracy… unless the democracy conforms to the aforementioned expectations…

      • Original John

        Loved thus the smiley face 🙂 Poor spambot getting a heavy workout again today.

    • WW,

      Out of curiosity, which posters do you think are the sock puppets?
      I tend to not take it too seriously here (my own prattle included) so, apart from 3d1k being multiple folks using one account, the whole dodgy account thing tends to go straight past me.

  8. TailorTrashMEMBER

    Former Navy chief says ‘unforgiveable’ if UK steel production ends
    “And it’s important we have our own indigenous capability so that when push comes to shove and our backs are to the wall we can still produce things vital to ensure the survival and safety of our population.”…………………….take note straya !

    • Geopolitics was always going to derail the religion of free trade. Ricardo’s simple, obvious, and wrong theory of comparative advantage assumes that no-one ever implements strategic trade policies. It also assumes that concentration of vital industries in one or a few countries is politically acceptable, which of course it isn’t.

      The first mover advantage in many sectors is TOTALLY ignored; in industries whose marginal returns increase with scale, those who grow fast enough to reach economies of scale first generally win, comparative advantage be damned (or it may be more accurate to say that one can pump resources into a desired industry in which one does not have a comparative advantage, and by doing so create said advantage). Those are generally mercantile nations. Conversely, those unfortunate enough to have dominant industries with decreasing marginal returns (generally agriculture) are doomed to be poor and corrupt forever; centuries of experience bears this out.

      The Irish potato famine was an example of Ricardo’s bullshit principle catastrophically failing. Over-specialisation and lack of diversity and redundancy in complex systems doesn’t work.

      In addition, not a single one of Japan/Koria/Taiwan/China reached their current level of development using ‘free trade’ – it’s been aggressive mercantilism all the way. The same applied to the developed nations back when they were developing.

      International free trade is a pipe dream pushed by large western corporations because it allows them to lower costs and fatten margins. Like most things, it’s an issue of balance; sometimes free trade (which actually means no trade barriers and no subsidies) is beneficial, and sometimes it is harmful. In situations where one set of nations adheres to it like a religion, and another set of (mercantilist) nations subsidises and protects its industries, ‘free’ trade is unsustainable. That is the current situation.

      Ricardo’s bullshit principle was probably the most wrong thing I was taught in my economics classes at school. It’s so simple, elegant, obvious, and wrong that people fall in love with it and use it as the entire basis for their world-view, evidence be damned.

      Even worse, they think they’re clever for swallowing it because there’s an idea that it’s counter-intuitive. Bullshit; factoring in opportunity cost to trade ain’t rocket surgery.

      Our political/economic elite are like a group of laymen who discovered special relativity, thought it very clever and elegant, ignored non-inertial reference frames forever, and thus never progressed to general relativity.

    • They know their dirty money is safe here if not welcomed with brown paper bags ready to fill.

    • Good find.
      “Australia, which saw 8,000 millionaires coming to its shores” These guys are not going to put up with the bullshit from Turnbull and the newly minted form of Shorten. What happens when property dives. or eventually say 17-18 currency collapses. The plot thickens!

  9. (From Footsore) not published here publicly
    WW, Out of curiosity, which posters do you think are the sock puppets?
    I tend to not take it too seriously here (my own prattle included) so, apart from 3d1k being multiple folks using one account, the whole dodgy account thing tends to go straight past me.

    Footsore try these dodgy 13 > Alex B, Brendan, Col, Damien, Frederick Nietschie, Insomniac, JamesRick, Ludwig Wittgenstein Michael Francis, Poida, Rigsby, ScreenBlatt,, The Red Economist,, XU the actual number i have is over 100.

    And of Course yourself “Footsore” aka Becker.

    • LOL.. I don’t see any of your named trolls posting here or if at all, very rarely. Do you imaginary enemies (and friends too) ?

      • Easy one for you. What part of being a troll, or a ghost or a sock puppet or a stooge is not being deceitful.
        How deceitful do you have to become before it is labelled corrupt.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        There is someone who posts here under a collection of different user accounts named after reasonably famous people, generally philosophers or economists, eg: Frederick Nietschie/Ludwig Wittgenstein/Thanasis Veggos/etc.

        However, he’s been posting here for many, many years, his writing style is fairly distinctive and he doesn’t seem to use different accounts at the same time (or within the same discussion) so it’s a struggle to see much effort to deceive in it. I had just assumed it was someone gaming the “free trial” system until I saw someone else get a public smackdown here for doing that a few weeks back.

        It’s hard to see listing the others as more than paranoia, unless there’s some actual quantifiable criteria being used.

    • Man, if you think I’m Becker then your troll/ghost/sock-puppet sensing abilities are very poorly calibrated. He’s a lot brighter than I am, and I doubt he could dumb himself down to my level in regard to the topics of the articles. When he wants to go daft he just uses an animated GIF.

      On the topic of others….
      I’ve often wondered who SpleenBlatt is, I’ve occasionally thought it could be Don Watson unleashing all of the weasel words he has access to.

      Briefly and Stephen Morris are the two posters of yore I whose contributions I miss.

      I’m glad Lord Dudley is back.

      And I apologise for all the TISM, Sparks and Prieboy links that I post, but I have no restraint when it comes to those things…..

      Prieboy, ‘Build a Better Garden’
      Currently the greatest musical rant that I know of.

      • TheRedEconomistMEMBER

        Gee Wiley wolf… Not sure where your astroturfing radar is.

        I believe I broke the news on the ALP stopping negative on new builds. From memory the Mining Bogan could not believe it and it sent him into a frenzy to verify my breaking news.

        I have very strong beliefs and opinions on the direction of the Australian economy and the massive malinvestment in property. These openly promoted attitudes have seen me the pariah at many BBQ’s and local pub. Plus my opinions have definitely been career limiting.

        So in a nutshell … I am disappointed you think this. Plus I just recently became a full MB member despite a crippling mortgage.

        Just hoping to set the record straight.

    • I’m curious as to why anyone would even try astroturfing on this blog. I can’t see any of it gaining traction with this crowd. The only successful one I’ve seen so far is Reusa…

      • haroldusMEMBER

        I’m curious as to why anyone would even try astroturfing on this blog. I can’t see any of it gaining traction with this crowd. The only successful one I’ve seen so far is Reusa…

        agree. who truly gives a fuck.

        although I haven’t heard anything from you before my friend, and that is exactly what a turfer would come out with.

        as far as I can see the only reason anyone would come to this blog is my Wildean bon mots.

      • Reusa’s not a turfer. That dude is a performance artist. He’s awesome! He has taken full retard property obsession to its obvious conclusion, and in doing so has been the most predictive poster on this entire site.

        He occasionally used to break character, but hasn’t done that for some time (about a year or so was the last time). He operates in the proud tradition of Shelley the Republican (where even half the people discussing it on snopes aren’t sure if it’s real or satirical):


      • Yes,

        When it come to Reusa he is a superb artiste.

        But I am not sure that many realise that life is immitating his art to a frightening degree. Almost to the point where Reusa is describing the world past, present and future.

        Has he been wrong ?

        Even once?

        Reusa would score a gig at Delphi without drawing breath.

      • Reusa is a genius.
        A giant of our time.
        His posts deserve their own wing at the Ian Potter Gallery at Federation Square.
        He is the William Blake of Australian property set.

      • Agreed. Reusa is a brilliant but sad comedian. His sadness stems from all of his jokes still waiting on a punchline…

  10. Where is 3d1k…?? And I don’t believe 3d1k is multiple poster…Think hard whom 3d1k could be without a gender bias…

    • I thought 3d1k (atleast the original 3d1k, before his astroturfing role was offshored) used to have a style similar to Uncle Rupert (of the tabloid rag fame).

      • Yes the final 3d was Andrew Bolt-like. Hence my trolling of it a couple of months back. I will heed the warning above and try not to post too much offensive stuff. Need to keep my school-boy type lame humor in check.

    • drsmithyMEMBER

      There were unquestionably multiple people behind the 3d1k account. It would regularly make posts with quite different writing styles, grammatical structures, spelling errors, etc.

      • Diogenes the CynicMEMBER

        So 3D1k was offshored? I thought the writing was mostly consistent but I tuned out as the message was astroturfing. Plenty of Perthies getting some gardening leave.

      • Excellent observation…and if one ties into Mav’s input…You would have someone that maybe dictates what they wish to share….and where time permits….personally…The upper echelons would be somewhat time constrained…

    • And 13 more “miss Donna”.

      Andrew William,bp2, Dennis 413, Donna, Geo Fibonacci, Ian ,JS, Katharine, Louise, Office Boy ,robert2013, Slavoj Zizeck ,Teague.

      Yeah must be paranoia. !

      • Aaah WW …far too busy working as a pleb…and far too cautious to be ripped apart , to be a full time poster…..However , 3d1k posts do intrigue me …Paranoia…!?…No , just like to exercise the grey cells of whom lives behind the “curtain”…

  11. Amusing insight from Marc Faber:



    • Before my head gets bitten off, I know that anecdote is not evidence.
      Yet, here is a tale.
      I was at a wedding a few years ago with a bunch of other people that had grown up in Cairns.
      Growing up there always involved school camps on Fitzroy Island and excursions out to the reef.
      We turned to the topic of who still visits and what we get up to when we go back.
      We all commented that if we do head out to the reef when we head back that it does look sad and sorry compared to the past.
      We find that we have to go out a lot further in order to see what use to be around the inner islands.
      To quote J. Mascis, “What a mess.”

      • Oh how I wish 3D were here: it would write reams of gibberish obfuscating and casting doubt on what you’re saying; people would correct it, but it would simply obfuscate more. It would go on for pages and make scrolling through the comments very difficult.

        Oh, actually, that’s not true. I’m very glad 3D is not here. That thing was toxic and the comments are sooooo much better and more informative since it left.

        Huge shame about the reef. I hate to say it, but most Australians simply don’t give a shit; the entire thing could bleach 100% next week and they couldn’t care less.

      • LD…

        Aussies have a pretty good record for environmental concern… tho the GFC and increasing concerns over a wide array of issues enviably screw with it.

        Skippy…. industry always getting what it wants, in the end, doesn’t help either….

  12. GunnamattaMEMBER

    wont that be nice…….

    Australia is free to sell the essential ingredient of nuclear weapons to a bankrupt, oligarch controlled provider of arms to ISIS, which has its main nuclear energy plant less than 200 klm from real shooting action in Eastern Ukraine, and which has a nuclear plant collection of 15 – of which ten are out of date by 2020.

    Australia to sell uranium to Ukraine


    • don’t be nasty Gunna. Petro is Tony’s best friend remember?
      Plus if anything happens we can always blame Putin. Those bloody Russians.

      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        Yeah, and guys like Igor Kolomoisky or Rinat Akhmetov can tell us just when to blame (as well as plenty about friends)

        should be a hoot

  13. Hi guys

    just wanting some advice here

    i think that the RE agent we have been dealing with is behaving untoward

    we put an offer on a place that has been on the market for some time, and they have already dropped their price once. Been on the market a while. Had 1 offer that the buyer rejected…non structural though, just that they werent able to do something to the block.

    We have put a contract down which apparently has been ‘rejected’.

    in saying this, the agent has emailed us the ‘rejection’ wording from the ‘vendor’, but is is filled with minor spelling mistakes and grammatically and word wise, it seems to be almost the same as a RE agent would write. The agent has emailed us on a few occasions with slight grammatical errors just like the email version from the supposed vendor.

    The problem is this…we are close to the max amount we can offer…what should we do?? insist that the agent get the vendor to formally sign a letter of rejection for our offer (we believe that there is a 40% chance that they havent put our offer in at all)?

    contact the agents solicitor via our solicitor and ask them whether our offer has been received?

    we have already upped our offer by 10K based on the initial email saying ‘it wasnt enough’

      • Good advice – I would have countered with 25K less just to see the look on the real estate agents face and told him/her that I will rescind the offer on Monday COB.

      • u think that would work? its hard, as we want it, but dont want to appear like we really want it

        they dont teach u this stuff at schoool or uni…its bloody hard!

    • Did you put any time limit on acceptance of the contract?

      What % below asking price is your offer? Does it reflect reflect market value/comparable sales?

      Tell the agent you are signing a contract/putting in an offer on another property on Tuesday if your offer hasn’t been accepted on or by Monday. Be prepared to walk away.

      If you are already near your limit then chances are you are stretching the budget already (of course not every situation is the same, perhaps you have other savings/assets you want to hold onto).

      • i put a time limit on the original contract. It expired last week.

        my offer was 11% below asking…but it has been on the market for ages. And they have dropped the asking price 10% already.

        the point is how can i believe the RE agent put our offer in?

      • It’s worth remembering that a 11% drop isn’t a large hit to the real estate agent’s commission in the grand scheme of things ($8.9k down from $10k on a $500k property), but is to the final price for the vendor. It sounds like it would be in the interest of the agent to close the deal (given the long term listing), so chances are the vendor has been presented and rejected the offer.

        Are you sure the agent wasn’t just relaying the vendors transcribed phone conversation (as opposed to copying and pasting a written response)?

      • BB

        it appeared written by the agent…the agent said it was actually written by the vendor

        the vendor needs it sold btw soon due to buying elsewhere

      • Fair enough, thought maybe the agent hadn’t been that explicit.

        If it’s in QLD or NSW feel free to email me details at [email protected] and I can do a lookup for vendors name and historical records which might help (e.g. last sale price, etc).

    • haroldusMEMBER

      I’m not sure I can believe this. A real estate agent with poor grammar and spelling?

      One of the main deliverables of a RE university diploma is a job-ready graduate with high levels of functional literacy and numeracy. And ethics is a compulsory subject.

      Otherwise an AQF Diploma in Real Estate Operations would not be worth the paper it’s printed on in the office out the back 5 minutes before graduation. The sacred educational duty imposed by 50K of taxpayer funded debt should ensure a winning outcome.

      A concise understanding of the law is something that I believe each successful businessman must understand to keep the successful trend.

      What’s it driving? Higher end 3 series? Audi A4?

      If it’s sub 100k walk. It’s a charlatan otherwise.

    • “What should you do?”

      FFS grow a pair – tell them they have until 5pm Monday to accept or your offer is withdrawn.

      It looks to me like you think there arent any other properties – the market is/will fall – next month your offer might be accepted as fear and doubt will set in.

      You are in the box seat – dont blow it with emotion.

    • haroldusMEMBER

      ok seriously now I agree with OJ and stomper. 25K less and goes down 5K a day thereafter**.

      walk if they give you static. times they are a changin’ my blue-eyed son

      ***not to be construed as investment advice

    • Errr…Dan….Have you considered that the vendor IS the RE agent? Find me a RE agent that doesn’t have his own property portfolio and I’ll show you a market ‘professional’ who didn’t pay attention at the industry sponsored lectures! Most RE agency cats own at least on IP each, so don’t be surprised if you get a paw print at the bottom of a contract one day…..

    • This stuff is like bargaining in a market in Asia, show some interest, make a low ball offer then WALK AWAY, wait for the beseeching screeches to bring you back then bargain like an crazy. They start at 100, you start at 20, and eventually you settle for 25. (well maybe not quite like that for Oz RE but you get the picture).

    • 74% clearance rates for Syd and Mel with 69% of results reported. So real clearance rate would be around 63%. Getting there just be patient. Also look at Melb median price – that number looks bit low me thinks.

  14. “Social Media Predator”


    “Sepúlveda, now 31, says he traveled the continent rigging major political campaigns. With a budget of $600,000, the Peña Nieto job was by far his most complex. He led a team of hackers that stole campaign strategies, manipulated social media to create false waves of enthusiasm and derision, and installed spyware in opposition offices”

    • Ha… 8~ America and other colonialist have been doing the same for over a hundred years, remember Manuel Noriega.

      Skippy…. it was my old unit they sent in to secure all the corruption and drug money when he got late stage cocaine psychosis… ohh… and remember the commies on Granada…. that was actually a huge cluster fook… against a real opponent they would have got their asses kicked…

      • Indeud

        Cool yarn though and good to see bloomie carrying it

        I’m now envisaging skippy in fatigues chomping a robusto

        “We a rescue team, not assasins”

      • None in that unit have any misconceptions, after a time, that they are anything more than brown people reduction or pacifying squad.

        Skippy… and some wonder why PTSD as well as suicides are going through the roof…

        PS. Off to Noosa….

    • A great piece.

      “As for Sepúlveda (the hacking subject of the piece), his insight was to understand that voters trusted what they thought were spontaneous expressions of real people on social media more than they did experts on television and in newspapers. He knew that accounts could be faked and social media trends fabricated, all relatively cheaply. He wrote a software program, now called Social Media Predator, to manage and direct a virtual army of fake Twitter accounts. The software let him quickly change names, profile pictures, and biographies to fit any need. Eventually, he discovered, he could manipulate the public debate as easily as moving pieces on a chessboard—or, as he puts it, “When I realized that people believe what the Internet says more than reality, I discovered that I had the power to make people believe almost anything.””

      • The success of the US military shooters program post Vietnam should quash the belief in rational agents and the ability to modify base human behavior. Studies done post WWII -Vietnam showed an alarming ratio of those not putting sights on body’s, something like below 10% if memory serves.

        Skippy…. its manifold now… almost instinctual… conditioning over rides thought processes…

  15. haroldusMEMBER

    apropos of nothing am at my olds’ place in the bush and am watching an absolutely glorious praying mantis patiently sitting like a stick underneath the back verandah light. he waits…..waits. must be 8cm and iridescent green.

    there is a possum that lives in the roof and he’s got the shits I’m on the balcony (edit: verandah – not in the unit now) cause that’s how he gets inside (my mum is pretty soft). when i saw him in the tree watching me I thought he was a wallaby he’s that big.

    finally there are antechinus that get in via the fireplace. they are so fast you think you’ve got the DTs. they are not so good cause they shit everywhere and have a sweet tooth so you can’t leave anything out.

    if it wasn’t for the fucking septic pump buzz it would be only me and the bush creatures noise.

    • innocent bystander

      my goanna has left home cause I have taken the ceiling down for repairs.
      the roos still visit the water bucket tho

  16. Mav…

    I’ve answered the question ad infinitum. The original OP was about the pop term boomers, to which, aj. decided to offer a neoliberal think tanks statistical analysis on Sanders primary voting demographics. I responded that it had no bearing on the original OP wrt the validity of the term boomers w/ noting the ideological bent of the source. So in the first case aj. and then you went off into the fog to attempt a run a round wrt the pop culture term Boomers in order to frame the conversation about olds vs. younger gen when it was always about the inaccuracy baked into boomers meme no matter how you use it.

    Now if you want a separate conversation about Sanders [who is a boomer] and how in the primaries he has a huge advantage over Hillary, that’s a completely different and seperate topic all together. To wit, I clearly stated that it is inaccurate to finalize a demographic statistical analysis before the general election because its not a true representation of the demographics nationally. Further more if you or aj are serious about Sanders on would think that attacking a possible allies [Hillary’s and Bills stench becoming to overwhelming for even branded older dems to ignore] by drawing lines in the sand.

    Now back to the olds vs young gen meme some want to push e.g. the boomers stole all the wealth meme. Its a well know right wing conservative talking point used to frame the rights which the new deal set up and have always drove the conservatives around the twist, for purely ideological reasons. Worst of all its not backed by any facts but a sociopolitical desire in establishing an societal template to force on everyone else, regardless of consequences – see history.

    So one hand you and aj say your pro Sander’s who is a democratic capitalist, but then engage in far right wing phraseology and tropes to support a fiscally conservative political and economic agenda, which one is it Mav.

    Skippy…. had you, aj. and others in the past focused on the one thing in question none of this would have transpired. Not only that but all those cracking a fat about ad hominem and dialectal styles have a bad case of double standers as a favorite commenter mig-i could only function on that level, too the raucous support and cheering on of you and your posse. So I guess that it only applies to those that you perceive as being a threat or opposed to your agenda.

    • The Patrician

      Hey Pfh
      That $1.22m median sale price must be close to the highest ever
      Any records on that?

      • Sorry don’t know but it is surprising considering the ‘glut’ that is just ……days?……away. 😉

      • Original John

        Think about how a median price is calculated. Now think about about the types of property that are being sold in Sydney through auction and the areas where auctions are still common and predominant. When you think about the results in this context, you would expect the median price of properties sold at auction to increase as lower end properties in outer suburbs are no longer offered at auction. If correct, then you would expect to see auction price median increase over the next few week. The real question we should be asking is “Is median price an accurate measure of the health of the current auction market?”. I would argue it is not as even domain is acknowledging a 2 tier market.

      • I have honestly never understood people giving any credence at all to the auction figures. They’re so fiddled they strike me as completely meaningless. OJ is right about medians *if* the underlying data is correct; seems to me the underlying data is rubbish so no conclusions can be drawn ever. Am I missing something?

      • Lord Dud, although I too believe the auction clearances are more manipulated than a porcine sperm-donor, they do seem to track house prices or house price changes pretty closely. That’s off the top of my head confirmed by a quick google, I’m no expert.

      • Original John

        JohnR, again, it all comes back to how the house prices are calculated. As I understand the reported data, it is based on sales of what 5% of the housing stock in a given year? It is not hard to see how this data can easily overstate the situation of housing prices. It really is a question of the data supporting the allegations made on both sides of the debate. My wife and I discuss this each week as we drive around Sydney and observe the replacement of houses and groups of houses with large numbers of units. While it is evident that there exists a 2 or 3 speed property market based on geography in Sydney, we both are seeing a unit vs houses market develop as well in the inner suburbs. I don’t expect this to keep going at its current pace for years longer, and in fact I do tend to agree for once with Dr Wilson that the next year (well 6-9 months at least) will see a slow downwards movement in Sydney. I would be surprised if we did not encounter an external risk factor before then, in fact I do expect the Basel changes, capital adequacy and bank dividend policies to have adverse affects that the RBA will try and counter. But the issues we have in Australia with units will reach a tipping point this year for both Melbourne and Sydney and the consequences will be ugly.

      • Yes, the comments about medians are supported by flicking through the results and looking at the properties and the prices.

        I should note that though my Auction Action posts are intended as entertainment I hope that they help illustrate just how important the decisions of the ‘independent’ monetary regulators RBA and APRA actually are.

        The property market is for the most part – their puppet and tool for driving credit creation – making new money.

        They are given a massive free pass every day by almost all media.

        Dont think they are acting in the public interest. They are applying a rule book from Corporate USA and their saff in Washington.

  17. You guys need to make a stand and send Gary Elphick packing as well!
    “We knew he was taking a risk in pretending to have done the harvest work, but what choice did he have?” Now “British-born Elphick is about to become an Australian citizen” yet he was complicit ( above) in lying and breaking Australian Law – because it suited his ends. If you accept prospective migrants like him, you guys are asking for all you get….

    • The best idea I’ve ever heard to rid this country of a large chunk of the queue jumping illegal immigrants that take jobs away from all us honest and hard working Australians is to put on Liverpool vs Arsenal and Chelsea vs Manchester United at the same time in Melbourne and Sydney. Just ask for the bonafides of all who show up and deport anyone who is here illegally.

    • Janet,

      So this guy refused to become exploited labour in Australias farm contract labour system and instead started a business that hired Australian graduates, and you think the system should punish this behaviour?

  18. Today I flew past this in an aircraft. I didn’t know it existed. It was VERY obvious from above; 3 towers in full desert sunlight, with the top of each tower glowing like an enormous glowing thing:


    It’s operational now. Australia should be leading the world in this. Instead, Australia is a total, absolute failure. Did I mention that one of my kids is American and I’m going for a green-card? It’s because I simply don’t see Australia getting any better, ever. You’re one of those corrupt do-nothing resource extracting ‘Southern’ nations now. Such a shame.

    • Pros and cons I guess!
      “Ivanpah’s image as a model of clean energy production has also been singed by a growing tally of dead birds, which ignite as they fly through the powerful solar beams”

      • After adjusting for missing carcasses using experimentally-determined correction factors for the Ivanpah site, the biologists estimated total annual mortality at 3,504 birds—an eighth of Smallwood’s estimate. They projected that collisions with site structures such as mirrors and towers likely killed 774 birds over the year, while burns from solar flux killed an estimated 707. They estimated another 2,012 succumbed to unknown causes, including natural desert mortality unrelated to the solar project.

        Based on the three-level scale of biological impact used by the site’s avian advisory committee, Ivanpah’s biologists categorized the annual impact as “Low” since they detected “minimal or no potential to negatively affect local, regional, or national populations within a particular species or group of species.” Bat mortality is negligible.

        Walston at Argonne National Lab affirms their characterization. He says bird mortality at Ivanpah is “slightly higher” than for an average wind farm on a per-megawatt basis and “falls short” compared to the “millions of birds killed by building and vehicle collisions across the U.S.”

      • “Pros and cons I guess!”

        Which pretty much sums up all forms of energy production. No of them are unproblematic..

      • Based on R2M’s link, it seems like a false equivalence that Joe Hockey would love.

        “Shit, a wind-farm killed a bird. This is unacceptable. All of a sudden I am hugely interested in the welfare of birds near wind farms”.

        Meanwhile, coal fired power stations churn out massive amounts of carcinogens and respiratory irritants, coal mines cause huge amounts of damage, and we inject demonstrably toxic garbage into aquifers for fracking. Then when a few birds die from a new solar facility, we get ‘all energy sources have pros and cons’.

        I guess I could squeeze that zit on your nose, or blow your face of with a shotgun. Both have pros and cons.

        Edit: IEEE spectrum ran an article on this:


        They have added a bolded first paragraph that states:

        “**An update to this article, “Solar Towers Don’t Seem to Be the Bird Destroyers Once Thought,” reports on the latest findings showing that the avian death rate at Ivanpah is smaller than previously believed and still shrinking.**”

      • I’ll cut Janet a lot of slack on this one, because she’s a great poster. IEEE Spectrum got suckered by it too, which is pretty embarrassing for them. You can tell they were embarrassed by the big bolded warning at the top of the article, which comes as close as you can to saying “the article that follows is a load of bullshit and we didn’t do our homework” without directly saying those words. Their later article that they link to pretty much demolishes their previous one.

      • “Then when a few birds die from a new solar facility, we get ‘all energy sources have pros and cons’.”

        I don’t know if you were directing that at me or Janet, given I was the one that implied all energy sources carry risks, but for the record I wouldn’t want to live anywhere near a coal power plant. In fact I think i’d prefer to live next to a nuclear power plant. I stand by my comment though.

      • RobW: your ‘all energy sources have pros and cons; none of them are unproblematic’ (I’m paraphrasing here) comment is a meaningless tautology and is extremely close to false equivalence. It’s up there with ‘global climate has always changed’.

      • “(I’m paraphrasing here)”

        Yeah, somewhat liberally.. Actually Janet said all energy sources have pros and cons, which i responded to, but let’s move on. Can you point to an energy source, that if rolled out on mass, would not cause significant environmental harm? As far as I’m concerned it’s about picking the ones that do the least amount of harm and allows us not to completely trash the planet or accelerate climate change. That might mean rethinking our economic model too. It’s time we stopped deluding ourselves that we can replace coal (which has to happen) without consequences. Own it and move on.

      • “Actually Janet said all energy sources have pros and cons, which i responded to, but let’s move on”

        Sorry, Janet never said this, you’re right, i did. I really shouldn’t log on before work and actually waking up!

    • I’m not a big fan of Solar thermal because it typically uses a lot of water and does not seem to be much cheaper to build than PV solar which uses very little water. The big advantage of solar thermal is in the thermal storage (typically liquid sodium) this allows these sorts of systems to store that days heat until the evening when it’s typically needed for the Electricity Dinner Peak. Unfortunately the downside this thermal lag is that it typically takes at least a hour to get the system up to temperature each morning and this is achiever by good old fashioned natural gas burning.
      Most of the water for a solar thermal system is used in the cooling towers although Ivanpah actually uses air cooling, which results in fairly low thermal energy conversion efficiency…I believe they achieve sub 20% solar irradiation to electrical energy which is what a modern PV system delivers.
      Why make something this complex expensive and prone to point failure when the design offers no construction cost, operational cost or efficiency advantages?

      • Why not try a mix of both and see what wins over the longer term. That’s what the US is doing. And it’s what Australia has well and truly stomped on. No matter what technologies win, Australia isn’t going to be seeing a cent of it. Good, I say; more enterprising and deserving people than Australians will benefit.

      • Dive Brief:
        NRG Energy, co-owner and operator of Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System, said its on track to meet the output called for in its contract with Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E).
        Ivanpah, which is the world’s largest concentrated solar power plant, generated 67,260 MWh of electricity in February, more than twice its February 2015 output of 30,273 MWh. NRG claims it can generate as much as 102% of its March target output.

      • Sounds like the facility needs to be colocated with a gas plant so that you have an ISCC system. Would elimiate the startup lossess because the turbines would be running 24/7 as part of the combined-cycle plant, only the solar heat means less gas would be required during the day.

        The Invanpah system seems grossly inefficient burning so much gas merely to get the solar plant warmed up in the morning. Typical US approach I’d have to say.

      • Ivanpah is another overpriced, underperforming boondoggle.

        Solar thermal is a failed feelgood experiment. The Spanish promoters have gone to zero.

        The only markets that remain are the bribe friendly jurisdictions like South Africa and South America.

        Panels are cheaper.

  19. Does anyone know the ATO contact details should you wish to contact them regarding foreign ownership of residential property?

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Gawd I wish Brissie prices would start crashing. A random search on Realestate a couple of weeks ago after a discussion about school zones and we ended up looking at the best house we’ve seen in probably 18 months at Fig Tree Pocket (everything we want in a house sans a pool, but there’s room to add it). But it’ll go for somewhere between $1 and $1.2m, which is just doable, but a shitload of dough even if we live in it for twenty years…

        ARGH. For the first time since we got back to Australia five years ago my belief in “don’t buy now” is starting to waver !

      • If you’re wrong and it’s a ‘permanently high plateau’, then you can keep Australia. Why would anyone with dual citizenship or permanent residency to a decent country live in Oz? Why would any young Australian who has left return (except for family or emotional reasons)?

        If Australia stays the way it is, I’ll certainly never be returning. Doing so would be the dumbest decision one could possibly make. It would be a recipe for being poor (and ugly).

        Actually, even if it corrects it looks likely I’ll never be returning, because Australians on the whole are greedy stupid people who hate progress and hate the young even more.

        If there’s one thing that the last decade has taught me, it’s that things are this way because the average Australian wants it this way… but it won’t last. The ToT is in the toilet and will stay there, we’re not even half way through the capex cliff, and car manufacturing has yet to shut. The delicious thing is that Australians are so convinced that they are very clever and have yet again dodged a recession that even DrSmithy is starting to feel a twinge of doubt.

        When the economic depression hits next year, Australians won’t know what hit them. They’ll have no narrative for it at all. The blaming will be epic. The scapegoating will be awesome. Think of the horrible things they will do to young people for being ‘lazy gadflys who waste ALL their money on iPhones and international holidays while being unemployed and demanding a managing director position in their first job and wanting an 8 bedroom house in Kirribilli’. The boomers will RAGE against the youth; they’ll feel that rocks were heavier when they were young, and now their hard earned ‘equity’ is shrinking. They’ll demand not a single cut to any of their oldtitlements, because they’ve ‘paid tax all their lives’ and they’ve ‘earned it’. The result will be a structural deficit that Australia will not be able to dig its way out of for 20 years.

        As everything turns to custard (because once housing tanks, the ONLY thing you have left is digging up very low margin red dirt) immigration will tank, and any sensible young person who can leave, will leave. The ones who stay will be blamed for being lazy and having no initiative, while the government will not do a single thing to touch the structural deficit. The AAA will go, the currency will plummet, the bail-outs will be huge, and at the end of it all you’ll look like Ireland in 2009.

        I’d be shit-scared to buy (or even own) a house in Oz right now. The chances of multi-month unemployment are very real in that perversely twisted and absolutely unsustainable economy. It’s difficult to tell when it’s going to pop and the exact shape of the decline curve, but it’s getting closer and 2017 is my bet.

        Don’t buy now at the peak of the largest property bubble the nation has ever seen. That’s buying high. I like to buy low. 30% house price drops have happened once already in my lifetime, and I bet they (and bigger drops) will happen again. In the meantime, keep your money (and preferably yourself) out of that declining delusional country.

        Of course, I could be wrong and it will stay like it is. In that case, see ya, wouldn’t wanna be ya. Ha ha ha ha ha!

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Speaking personally, the only reason we are still here is family.

        I have dual Oz/British citzenship, and while the UK isn’t that much better in and of itself, it does give access to most of Europe, either directly or through favourable visa options. I also have friends in the US who could get me a job fairly easily and circumvent the usual problems trying to explain what an E3 visa is.

        However, the wife is about the pop out a couple of babies and both sets of parents are in their 70s. As someone who grew up with extended family nearby, I would very much like my kids to have that experience as well if possible.

        Rationally, the place is borderline. We’d end up with a relatively mangeable mortgage (~4x one of our wages – heh, I suppose that’s trivial by contemporary standards). We could live off our overseas savings for a few years to dump as much money into it as possible and probably have it paid off in ten years without much sacrifice. But the deposit would completely wipe our savings and we’d really need to sell the current place or it’d be a lean few years or the missus would be in the position of having to go back to work rather than it being an option. But the lower part of my brain is playing that “but it’s got everything you want” FOMO card really, really hard and it’s taking longer to wear off than I thought it would. 🙂

        This whole thing started with a “what are the best public schools in Brisbane” followed by “what’s for sale in those catchments”…

    • Form the article: “Dr Oliver says more likely is a fall-off of about 5-10 per cent in Sydney and Melbourne over the next two years, followed by around a decade of prices “treading water” as prices fluctuate up and down in that range.
      That would give wages time to catch up and, at least partly, address the affordability crisis.”

      Assuming wages actually grow meaningful over the next couple of years. I think you nailed it Gavin, young people can suck eggs. Unless there is a significant external shock, the government and RBA should be able to protect homeowners from significant falls. Young should either leave Australia or jack up and refuse to leave home. Don’t become debt slaves and don’t reward rent seekers.

      • Ha ha ha ha ha! A decade of prices ‘treading water’. Wages ‘catching up’… because they’ve been catching up so well for the last few years… pfffffffffffft.

        Can you say ‘deflation’? Because without wages growth (and let’s face it, real wages ain’t going anywhere but down in Oz for a few years yet) that’s what he’s describing.

        I think I’m turning Japanese…

      • Original John

        Is there any sign that rents will increased in the next 2 years during the stagnation of housing prices? I would have thought that so much property is leveraged based on significant capital gains. Also, there are signs that the housing construction is starting slow in Sydney (ie new starts and approvals seem to peaked last year), one can assume a drop in employment and confidence if this is correct. Really hard to see how effective the RBA will be over the next couple of years short of the Federal Government throwing open the doors to one and all internationally (which honestly I don’t rule out).

      • TailorTrashMEMBER

        Must be time to develop an Ap for vacent properties to occupy …….(what I think these days is called disruptive technology ) ………so all you bright young savvy non investors non home owning things should go for it ……..I hope to see it in the Ap store soon …………some names………perhaps ? ……….myprop ? ………upyrs ? ……….takeback ……………..Ourspace …………………………….over to you young people step forward and rebell ……………………just be ready for the wrath of the FBI ,AFP ,Europol and all other protectors of those with the dosh ……….

  20. It seems that the Gubbermint, RBA and China’s Little Emperors can keep houses prices climbing forever.

  21. Read the comments on this article… the boomers are all out in force,


    “Time to have a reality check millennials.. Stop wallowing in self pity and get on with finding your way in life.No-one owes you anything. You have to make your way and stop whinging.

    The fact that you see older people enjoying a good lifestyle usually masks the struggles and the sacrifices that have gone before for them to get to that point. And it is very insulting that you are throwing your generational envy in our faces.”

    • “Time to have a reality check millennials.. Stop wallowing in self pity and get on with finding your way in life.No-one owes you anything. You have to make your way and stop whinging.”

      Let’s face it, this person is just an out touch wanker. I know plenty of boomers that don’t like what they’re seeing and don;t think it’s fair. The real problem is the ideology behind this person’s “thinking”, not their age group. As for their last point, sure my parents suffered during the 90’s recession, but the risk many young families are exposed to now is so much greater. The amount of debt a family has to take on to get into the family tax shelter/home is mind utterly mind-boggling.

      • Obviously not everyone in that age bracket are wankers, guess that’s the crowd that read the Australian lol. lots of condescending boomers commenting on the article.

        It wasn’t so called hard work that built their wealth it was the deregulation of the finance sector leading to the exponential increase in household debt.

        Ive got no issue with boomers who actually worked hard and went out and started successful businesses. its the ones who just happened to buy a house at the right time and now its worth a million dollars all because of there “hard work and sacrifices”.

      • Don’t get me wrong, I hear what you’re saying and share your frustration. But yes, given how similar a lot of those comments are, I suspect there is some serious group think going on. Now I’m not blaming the Murdoch papers.. Oh wait, yes i am!

      • Ha ha ha ha ha! In other words, millenials, L E A V E. Let these arrogant fools stew in their own enormous senses of entitlement. Become wealthy overseas, and occasionally glance at the wreck that is Australia and be thankful you’re not there.

        Australians hate young people. The coming economic depression *might* change that, but I wouldn’t bet on it. The country might well be entering a prolonged period of long-term decline brought about by the awful ideas in its foolish population’s heads.

    • All Gen Y and Millennial’s get is crocodile tears, the older generations don’t give a shit because their 1 major asset has ballooned in price and all because of how clever and smart they were. It’s almost impossible to get them to see otherwise… If our generation just worked harder and stopped complaining we could all have the good life also, or so it goes.

      • Its a mixed bag LD…. still that does not refute the the amount of younger age groups which used it.

        LD I could submit a long list of things younger age groups have that those born in the pop culture term boomers did not enjoy or even have at the time.

        Skippy…. worst bit is history shows whom was driving sociopolitical and economic policies hence scapegoating consumers is in error. Would you spend the same amount of time on these groups and individual architects of reality, than the passengers, we could stop wasting energy on a snipe hunt.

      • I’d be happy with including PPOR in the pension means test so that we don’t give government money to millionaires, and tightening super tax concessions so people with 100k+ annual super payouts pay tax on the investment gains.

        But neither of those things will happen. So instead just up and leave and let the structural deficit do the hard work of re-education of the massively entitled.

        Economic depression is coming to Australia, folks!

      • What about Americas economic depression, will it come first, will it be worse or longer, how about social unrest, will it start WWIII. 25M vs. 300M vs. which has better sense of community and is more egalitarian. So many questions.

        Skippy…. not everything under the sun is about price, because you can’t put a price on it LD.

  22. Sphincter’s are starting to tighten in Qld…..

    China’s tighter capital control on wealthy investors may hit Queensland property projects
    CHINA’S slowing growth and tighter capital controls making it harder for foreign investors to take money out of the country is making developers nervous about buyers’ ability to reach settlement.

    Wealthy Chinese buyers doubled their property investment in Queensland last year to almost $1 billion, according to the Foreign Ownership of Land register, up from $463 million a year before.

    Juwai, a Chinese international property web portal, estimates Chinese investors contribute to more than half of all new apartments sold off the plan in Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

    “We have more developers advertising their off-the-plan listings now than six or 12 months ago,” Juwai chief executive Charles Pittar said.

    But with a weak outlook in the manufacturing sector and slowing construction at home in China, the Chinese government has tightened controls enforcing a US$50,000 cap on money flowing out of the country per person each year.

    With more than 30,000 apartments coming up for settlement over the next two years, local property developers are nervous that investors may be unable to follow through come settlement time leaving them in the lurch.

    “It’s harder to get money and the government is cracking down on fraudulent transactions,” University of Queensland property expert Dr Clive Warren said.

    “There is a real danger that if China really does crack down on money flowing out that there could be some real pain for developers.”

    The crackdown from Beijing has seen Chinese banks set up watch lists of unusual transactions to catch people from transferring more than the limit of US$50,000 each person into an overseas account.

    Brisbane real estate agents say they are already seeing some concern among inner city developers.

    “If you have a Chinese buyer who lives in Shenzhen and they don’t settle on a property how do you find them? How do you get the money? You don’t,” LJ Hooker principal real estate agent Martin Hamilton said. “That’s why there’s more concern with these controls that apartments won’t settle and banks will start pulling back.”

    One Brisbane low-rise residential property developer, who preferred not to be named, said they had already seen a handful of Chinese buyers fail to settle leaving them to scramble to find new investors.

    “Buyers can put down a deposit of as little as $1000 and walk away,’ he said. “At the end of a project that can be make or break.”

    But while developers could be facing an uncertain future, many insist capital controls won’t stop investment, it will just force investors to be craftier.

    Ray White East Brisbane agent Frank Lombardi said he’s heard of investors putting money through their solicitors or in their kids or uncle’s names. “There’s always a way,” he said.

    • GunnamattaMEMBER

      I related somewhere last week (sorry I cant recall where) that some people I know are selling their house in Leopold (Victoria)….they have had it on the market for a while and they have had an ‘offer’ involving some Chinese nationals who have said they will pay the price they are after but that it will take them 9 months to get the money out of China – the sellers are wondering whether to accept the ‘offer’ or not. The agent has told them the phenomena of people taking time to get the money out of China has become noticeable in recent months.

      Without mentioning this particular couple I happened to come across another Bellarine RE man at the local football yesterday afternoon and referred to the general phenomena of Chinese nationals buying abodes. He said that he had noticed a ‘particular urgency’ with one or two deals he had been involved with where the sale had involved nationals from China and added the thought that whereas in the past in his experience (if not everyone elses) Chinese buyers of local abodes were generally careful not to get ripped off (he pooh poohed my suggestion that any would ‘blow away’ an auction – but added that he was aware this could and did happen in Melbourne/Sydney) he sensed there was an urgency to just get the sale over and done with and that haggling over price was less and less an issue, and related two instance he knew of where the buyers had simply looked at realestate.com.au noted there was a price range, and offered the top of the nominated price range to get a transaction (and that in one of these a deal was subsequently agreed where even more would be built into the price because it would take time to get the money out) – these were 500-700K places he was referring to.

      • Tell them to consider if they’re operating based on greed or fear. If it’s greed (wow, look at the stupid amount of money these morons are offering, sure, we’ll take the risk and if it doesn’t pan out we’ll just put it on the market again), then the rest of the market probably is too, so go for it. Full retard to the moon!

        If they’re operating based on fear (if we don’t sell it for this price we’re boned, and this is the sole opportunity) then probably much of the market is too. In that case, a bird in the hand is worth most, so sell to someone who will give you actual money ASAP, not some bullshit promise.

    • Developments secured by $1,000 deposits to Chinese residents, lol

      Lucky there is no sub prime lending in Australia!