TPP 2.0 to further open immigration floodgates

By Leith van Onselen

The Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) has unleashed on the revised Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement (dubbed “TPP11”), which will reportedly allow employers unfettered access to ‘skilled’ migrant workers from member nations. From The Guardian:

The revived Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal will allow at least six countries to access temporary skills shortage work visas without first testing the Australian market, unions have said.

According to the unions’ peak body, the Australian government has confirmed in consultations that employers will be able to hire workers from Canada, Mexico, Chile, Japan, Malaysia and Vietnam in 435 occupations without first advertising jobs to Australians.

The consultation from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade appears to confirm for the first time that the text of the new TPP11, negotiated after Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the agreement, will lower Australian barriers to skilled migrants…

The ACTU president, Ged Kearney, said the deal would mean that migrant workers could be brought in as nurses, engineers, electricians, plumbers, carpenters, bricklayers, tilers, mechanics and chefs.

“Clearly the only allegiance the Turnbull government values is to employers,” she said, accusing it of putting big business ahead of “the rights of workers and the national interest of Australia”.

“There has been no analysis of how this will affect local employment, nor have there been any safeguards proposed to protect these vulnerable workers.

“This agreement would be a disaster for Australia and we call on the Turnbull government to immediately cease negotiations until they have proved that the deal will not come at the cost of massively increased exploitation and unemployment”…

This is pathetic by the Turnbull Government. The recent Senate Report, entitled A National Disgrace: The Exploitation of Temporary Work Visa Holders, explicitly recommended stringent labour market testing of all temporary ‘skilled’ workers to ensure that employers employ locals first wherever possible:

Recommendation 7: The committee recommends that the replacement of local workers by 457 visa workers be specifically prohibited.

Recommendation 8: The committee recommends that the current exemptions on labour market testing for ANZSCO skill levels 1 and 2 be removed.

Recommendation 9: The committee recommends that the Migration Regulations be amended to specify that labour market testing applies to all positions nominated by approved sponsors under labour agreements and Designated Area Migration Agreements.

Immigration should never be included in trade agreements. Immigration is covered in Australia’s ‘Migration Programme’, and there is little sense in negotiating away control of our sovereign borders other nations – and in the process diluting Australian wages and working conditions – for slightly improved market access.

Trade agreements should be for trade and nothing else.

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Comments

  1. i thought this had been dumped after trump rejected it. why are they so intent on bringing back this garbage legislation?

  2. Relevant StakeholderMEMBER

    Could a corporation sue the government if workers are denied entry?

    Who controls the occupation list? would it be open to legal dispute?

    Can we purge DFAT of globalists? or would there be no-one left?

    • Chinese construction corporations are already doing what they want.

      Next to where I work in Epping, Sydney, a big Chinese construction group are building a whole lot of medium-rise apartment blocks.

      Around 90% of the labour on these sites are Chinese workers. They work long hours, too. Unlike Ozzie tradies who knock off at 3pm, these hard working Chinese are still slaving away under floodlights at 6 or 7pm at night when I leave work.

      • I say in all seriousness, DO NOT BUY. Long hours, yes. Profits from fools, yes. Quality and safety? That’s just what you ASSUME is there because that’s been a reasonably safe assumption that’s very expensive for an amateur to test. Buyer beware.

      • blacktwin997MEMBER

        ‘these hard working Chinese are still slaving away under floodlights at 6 or 7pm at night when I leave work’

        Don’t they have daylight saving in Epping?

      • @Eric
        Cut and paste comment from months ago.
        Yeah Yeah everyone works harder physically and is more intelligent than Australian born because beaches??? Sure

  3. Atlassian already imports heaps of staff from Vietnam and pays them $1000/month in Sydney!

    about 300 jobs at least twice the price we would have paid in Vietnam

    https://www.dealstreetasia.com/stories/australian-software-firm-atlassian-leaving-vietnams-blooming-outsourcing-industry-16860/

    What are the wages in Vietnam? $500/month? So twice that is $1000/month! They have people working here for $1000/month!

    TPP or not, put a massive $1000/week tax on each work visa to solve the problem.

    • You’ve been corrected on this before.

      FFS, how dumb do you have to be to whinge about forty 457s (and I’ll guarantee they’re all earning a lot more than $12k/yr) while ignoring 250+ new jobs created ?

      • Scott Farquhard is a liar. As if none of the 700 staff are from India.

        SCOTT FARQUHAR: The industry technology industry in Australia when we started 10 years ago: it didn’t exist. There was no technology industry and we sort of built it over that period of time.

        Nice lie. No computer programming was done here till “10 years ago”!

        EMMA ALBERICI: But as I understand it, Atlassian is one of the biggest users of 457 visas?

        SCOTT FARQUHAR: Yeah, that’s correct.

        Mostly we get people from Silicon Valley, from Europe, around the world and bring them to Sydney.

        By “around the world”, he means around the 3rd world. Why did he not mention Vietnam?

        Because this interview was broadcast on 22 Sep 2015 and the very next month, he said that he is importing 40 to 300 staff from Vietnam instead of hiring the kids of refugees (from Vietnam) born in Australia. Even the genes are the same! But the kids can get more than $12k/year by delivering pizzas – so no point in studying IT. Also, if an Aussie said “I am willing to work for $10/hour”, which boss would believe the Aussie?

        Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes, has previously spoken about the need for Australia to increase its immigration

        Jesus Christ! There is not enough immigration already?

        Farquhar has warned that Australia must become more appealing to the best US-based technology talent and increase immigration

        Farquhard must be telling the truth. We need to keep giving out work visas for $0 each.

      • These jobs aren’t “created” they are just moved. And they are not jobs for locals. The US border tax proposal was one of the few interesting things to come out of the current administration but unfortunately it was shut down by powerful companies. Instead of allowing exploitation of workers and the environment to be imported here (“if you can’t beat em join em”) we should be taxing imports that come from exploitative regimes.

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        “exploitative regimes.”,…These Authoritarian military dictatorships, some with Nuclear weapons pointed at us,…shouldn’t have been given access to OUR regulated markets in the first place.

      • @drsmithy, surely you are being sarcastic. If we have the Uni’s, why hire from Vietnam and not Silicon Valley?

        250 jobs created? I’ve seen entire floors of staff replaced by IT visa’s. Not sure how you think jobs are created, perhaps you are thinking of the dribble on effect.

      • Scott Farquhard is a liar.

        LOL. From the guy whose middle name should be “non-sequitur” that’s a laugh.

      • If we have the Uni’s, why hire from Vietnam and not Silicon Valley?

        250 jobs created? I’ve seen entire floors of staff replaced by IT visa’s. Not sure how you think jobs are created, perhaps you are thinking of the dribble on effect.

        Try reading the link.

      • “if you exclude the richest 20%, do not call it unconditional basic income”.

        Well, everyone is happy to call it GST even though fresh fruit is excluded from it.

        Here is a right wing nutcase (“tax is theft!”) ranting against UBI – claiming that taxing land to pay for UBI will lead to too much inflation! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QxUzTW5dM4o

        What frigging inflation? 4G data is cheaper than ever. Solar panels are cheaper than ever. Even Iran has UBI. You think Iran has UBI in order to hurt the poor? What actually hurts the poor is their previous welfare program (petrol subsides). A lot of poor nations subsidise petrol – how does that help people who can not afford a motorcycle?

  4. It would be nice to have a break from the Indian and Chinese monoculture, actually. I don’t really mind the immigration levels, just the fact that there is no diversity, and the Indian component is overwhelmingly male.

    • We are actually supporting gendercide by allowing most foreign “students” to be male. We are also saying it is not worth educating females. Think about it. A law must be created that says 51% of the foreign students from every nation must be female.

      I agree that if 90% of the IT team consists of staff from the subcontinent, that is not diversity at all – that is monoculture.

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        @reusa

        Clearly,… like Jagger and Bowie rooting each other,…you’ve just had so much top shelf Pu$$y, that anything different is worth a try,… you’ve spoiled the whole game for yourself.

        I dread to imagine what’s next for you, my property Aristocratic fiend,… probably dogs and Goats.

    • And the Indian culture is, on the whole, an arrogant, entitled, selfish, sexist and corrupt culture too.

  5. reusachtigeMEMBER

    TPPs are great as they increase trade and profits. This one is especially good because it aims to reduce the boredom faced by Australian city dwellers due to extreme lack of vibrancy.

  6. I smell a bait-and-switch coming. In other words, they’ll announce an immigration cut but in the background they’ll work immigration into the TPP and try to pass that in the background, therefore business as usual.

    Scum.

  7. Ah ! the union movement, or lack of movement. Where the fcuk have you bluggers been for the last 15 years while our governments have been selling our ‘labour’ sovereignty. I put unions into the ‘necessary evil’ category. Chock full of minorities and virtue signalers.

    • And yet no one seems to care. All the general populace f**kwits care about is house prices. I hope they lose their jobs and their house so they can wake up. People are voting for high house prices regardless of how raped the country is getting.

    • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

      Nation State Democracies with the power to produce their own currencies and set their own rules are still the biggest impediment to a wanna be, Totalatarian, Multiethnic Global Plutocracy,…that’s why these transnational “legal agreements” are supported by the powerfull everywhere,…from the cadre of Plutocrats that run the Chinese “Communist” Party, to the Economic Libertards of the US and the bureaucratic technocrats of the EU,…there overriding purpose (Free trade agreements) is to circumvent Nation state Democracy.

      Any politician that supports these agreements are traitors to population they’ve been elected “represent”,…some of them truly don’t know any better, so indoctrinated we have all become,…others know exactly what is going on and have just decided to sycophantly throw their lot in with the Winners of this developing antidemocratic global Plutocracy.
      They are our Enemies.

      The first thing we need to do here in Australia,…is kick them out of our “people’s party”,…the ALP.

      For the sake of our Democracy,…please help.
      http://www.alp.org.au/joinlabor

    • The real disgrace is how easily voters are hoodwinked into voting by using the ‘tough on terrorism’ dog whistle.

      • I guess when Terrizm won’t work any more, the next escalation is “terrist kiddie fiddlers”. Catholic church is going to have an apoplectic attack…

  8. Got to hand it to Turnbull he’s been unrelenting in pursuing his agenda and has succeeded in getting a lot of it done. Just a shame he’s fckd the electorate over along the way.

  9. ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

    “Clearly the only allegiance the Turnbull government values is to employers,” she said, accusing it of putting big business ahead of “the rights of workers and the national interest of Australia”.

    Well he is the Former Head of Goldman Sachs Australia,…did any of you fools think he was going to advocate for anyone else,…pfffft!

  10. The Boomers don’t care as long as house prices keep going up and they get their massive redundancy payout at the cost of their grandkids! They only care about their own interests. Sellout non combatents.👎

  11. The govt was clever not including any countries that would be easy or desirable for aussies to move to, otherwise there would be a mass exodus. Got to keep the pressure on the Aussie kids!

  12. I wouldn’t mind a few hot Canadians. They also like their weed. Plus send over a few of those robot engineers from Japan. They will come in handy.

    • >… robot engineers from Japan

      Oh, you mean them Sybians, eh? 🙂 ’cause with all the stress of not having a job and troubles making ends meet – the little guy will have troubles to come out to play…

      • Actually, considering the many educational videos out there, I am somewhat of an expert on the Sybian.

        Although not at the moment, at work.

        Just idly musing about putting in a request for one with my stand up desk.

  13. I apologise for the length of this , but I found it a very good starting point in understanding where we have come to in Politcs and Economics;

    If you take an introductory course on economics, you can pretty much count on being told that the modern science of economics was launched by Adam Smith. Like so much conventional wisdom about history these days, this is false, and it’s false for at least two different reasons.

    First of all, economics isn’t a science. What sets apart a science from other kinds of human knowledge is that the assertions of a science are tested against what actually happens. When a scientist makes a claim, at least in theory, other scientists run the same experiment or observe the same phenomenon and see if they get the same results. If they don’t, the claim made by the first scientist—again, at least in theory—goes into the wastebasket alongside such discarded notions as phlogiston and the luminiferous ether. Nowadays, this doesn’t always happen, and that’s one of the core reasons that the sciences these days are facing a catastrophic crisis of legitimacy, but that’s an issue for another post; when a science does what it’s supposed to do, every claim is tested to see if it can be replicated. That’s what makes it a science.

    Economists don’t do this. They don’t even pretend to do it. Mainstream economists like to make claims about what will happen when their preferred policies are put into place, mind you, but the mere fact that those claims simply aren’t true never gets considered when repeating them. Consider the way neoliberal economists to this day rehash David Ricardo’s claim that free trade will make poor countries rich. They’re wrong; history shows that when poor nations embrace free trade, they become even poorer, while poor nations that reject free trade schemes generally prosper. Yet the total disconfirmation of free trade theory in practice has yet to register on the economic mainstream. As far as economists are concerned, Ricardo said it, they believe it, and that settles it.

    So economics isn’t a science. It also wasn’t founded by Adam Smith. What Adam Smith founded, rather, was political economy. You won’t hear much about that field of study these days, and that’s not an accident. Political economy, as the name indicates, explores the relations between wealth and power in a society. For reasons that I suspect my readers will have no trouble understanding, this is something that a great many wealthy and powerful people in today’s industrial nations don’t want to discuss—and that, my children, is why we don’t have courses on political economy in universities today. We have courses on political science, which claim to study power without taking wealth into account, and courses on economics, which claim to study wealth without taking power into account, and both of these highly praised, well-funded fields of study by and large duly churn out vast amounts of poppycock instead of offering useful insights into the societies in which we live.

    We’re going to talk about political economy in this week’s post. We’re going to do that because it’s not really possible to understand why the world’s industrial nations are running themselves into the ground without understanding the self-destruct button hardwired into capitalism, and it’s impossible to understand that latter bug—or is it a feature?—without talking about the ways that wealth and power form feedback loops in an industrial society.

    The most important thing to understand, if you’re trying to make sense of political economy, is who owns the means of production. Means of production? That’s a convenient bit of shorthand. Every human society produces goods and services; the means of production are the sum total of the arrangements made to do this necessary task. Now of course a category this diverse is going to include things owned by an equally dizzying array of people, but in most societies, ownership of the most important means of production tends to follow specific patterns.

    Examples? Consider a feudal society—early medieval England, let’s say. It’s an agrarian society in which most people are employed in farming, and the means of production that matter most can be summed up in one word: land. Who owns the land? That’s a simple matter. The king owns all the land; he grants the right to use it to his immediate vassals, the great dukes and earls of the kingdom, in exchange for their loyalty and obedience; they pass on the same right to barons, the lesser fish of the feudal system, on the same terms; the barons then do exactly the same thing, and we proceed straight down the feudal pyramid to Higg son of Snell in his peasant hovel. Higg has his hovel and the farmland that goes with it because he’s a vassal of Sir Hubert de Ware, who is a vassal of Baron Fulk of Lewes, who is a vassal of Duke Geoffrey of Sussex, who is a vassal of the king. Understand that pattern of ownership of the means of production—that pattern of political economy—and you understand early medieval English society.

    Okay, let’s consider another example: early twentieth-century America. It’s an industrial society. and factories and offices are the means of production that matter most. Who owns the factories and the offices? That’s also a simple matter. The factories and offices are owned by corporations. Who owns the corporations? Their investors. How do you get to be an investor? By having enough capital to purchase stocks and other investment vehicles. How do the investors exercise their ownership? By electing boards of directors in elections in which each share of stock has one vote; the boards of directors then hire and fire the people who run the factories and offices. (Remember, this is early twentieth-century capitalism; things are different now.) Understand that pattern of political economy, and you understand early twentieth-century America.

    Notice, before we go on, that there are two crucial differences between the political economies of feudal England and industrial America. The first has to do with the relationship between power and wealth. In feudal England, that’s totally explicit: the king is the head of state and also the landowner of last resort; the dukes and barons are political officer as well as economic magnates. In industrial America, it’s not explicit: in theory—mind you, only in theory—the government is entirely separate from the economic sphere. In practice the wealthy buy and sell political offices and voting blocs the way they buy stocks and bonds, and since there’s no explicit relationship between power and wealth, there’s nothing to keep them from doing whatever they want.

    The second difference has to do with the distribution of wealth. In both societies, wealth is very unfairly distributed—the rich are very rich and the poor are very poor—but the feudal system has a counterbalance to the tendency of wealth to flow uphill. If you, dear reader, were a duke or a duchess in early medieval England, and you had the brains the gods gave geese, you would know that your influence, your security, and your survival depended on having plenty of vassals who would come running with drawn swords any time you needed them. How do you get vassals? By granting them landholdings—that is, transferring wealth down the ladder.

    But your vassals are in the same situation you are. They need vassals of their own, and their vassals need vassals, all the way down to Higg son of Snell, who will not only come running with a billhook in his hands when Sir Hubert needs him in battle, but puts in the daily labor that puts bread on everyone’s tables. Thus feudal societies constantly move wealth down the pyramid. As a direct result, they tend to be extremely stable—so much so that when complex societies collapse, a feudal system is almost inevitably what takes shape amid the ruins.

    Capitalist societies don’t do this. Quite the contrary, in a capitalist society like early twentieth century America, all the incentives keep wealth flowing up the social ladder, and nothing brings it back down. The investors who own stock in corporations have an understandable interest in maximizing the return on their investment, so they reliably vote in boards of directors who will hire management who will force down wages as far as possible. The investors who own stock in corporations also have an understandable interest in keeping as much of their wealth as possible out of the clutches of the tax man, so they reliably pressure and bribe government to spend as little as possible for the benefit of anybody outside the investor class.

    As a result, capitalist societies are anything but stable; they suffer from savage cycles of boom and bust. The process at work here is quite easy to understand, and in fact it was very widely understood three quarters of a century ago; regaining that understanding is a crucial step toward making sense of the mess we’re in today.

    Here’s how it works. Since working class wages get driven down, and government expenditures aren’t allowed to rise to take up the slack, people in the working classes can’t afford to consume the value of the goods and services they produce. Sales accordingly falter, and so do profits in productive industries. Since the investor class is interested solely in maximizing the return on its investment, in turn, investment money flows out of productive industries and into financial instruments of various kinds, where it drives speculative bubbles. As the bubbles inflate, they suck even more money out of the productive side of the economy. When the bubbles pop, in turn, so does the economy, and down we go into a depression.

    That’s what happened all across the industrial world in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, over and over again, until the Great Depression hit and the investor class realized that something had to give. What convinced them of that? The rise to power of two rival economic systems that rejected the basic presuppositions of capitalism, and—ahem—worked.

    The first of these systems was socialism. Let’s stop right here for a moment and explain the meaning of the word, shall we? Plenty of people, especially but not only in the United States, have been using that moniker “socialism” to mean any number of randomly chosen things, but the word does actually mean something specific. Socialism is the system of political economy in which the means of production are owned by the national government. That’s what it is, and that’s all it is. (Most of the things that currently get labeled “socialist” in the English-speaking world are actually social democracy, which is an entirely different system that we’ll discuss in a moment.) If it doesn’t have to do with government ownership of the means of production, it’s not socialism, full stop, end of sentence.

    Socialism has its problems. In its most popular form, the version that more or less follows the recipe laid down by Karl Marx, it so consistently produces bloodthirsty dictatorships that a good case can be made for chucking it into the rubbish heap of failed ideologies. The fact remains that as an economic system, it works about as well as capitalism—that is to say, not well, but well enough to stay in power—and it does a much better job of distributing wealth to the working classes than capitalism does, which is why capitalists hate it so much. On the other hand, given a choice, the working classes favor it, for the same reasons capitalists hate it: if you’ve got a choice between two dysfunctional systems, why not choose the one that benefits you most?

    Then there was the other rival system, which has been so obscured by shrill rhetoric over the last three quarters of a century or so that we’re going to have to approach it by a roundabout route. Suppose, then, that some charismatic figure in today’s American scene—somebody toward the center of our overheated political spectrum—were to propose a new system of political economy to replace the mess we’ve got now. We’re going to keep capitalism, she says, but it’s going to have its excesses curbed and its abuses prevented, not by the government, but by an organized movement of citizens under my leadership. Each year we’re going to sit management and labor down at the bargaining table, everybody in a given industry all at once, and make them bargain in good faith, with the citizen movement watching both sides to make sure a fair settlement is reached; there will be no more strikes, no more lockouts, no more labor troubles, just a new contract every year, and the citizen movement will enforce that by whatever means happen to be necessary. What’s more, she tells adoring crowds, the citizen movement will take on the same role in the political sphere, and be ready to yank the chains of officials when they get out of line. Of course the citizen movement will have to have special powers to do this, she says, and here’s the enabling act to give it those powers, just as soon as I become Chancellor…

    That is to say, we’re talking about fascist economics. Yes, I’m aware that this isn’t the sort of thing that comes to most Americans’ minds when you mention the word “fascism,” but that just shows how thoroughly ignorant most Americans are about history. Fascism was never about the unrestricted rule of the capitalist investment class—that’s a falsehood originally manufactured by Stalin’s flacks back in the days of the Third International, and repeated by the misinformed ever since. Fascism attracted the masses in the 1920s and 1930s because it offered an alternative to unrestrained capitalism with its lethal boom-and-bust cycles. Did it work? Not very well, but then neither did unrestrained capitalism, and here again most people forced to choose between dysfunctional systems will choose the one that benefits them personally.

    It was in response to the popularity of the socialist and fascist systems that social democracy came into being. (This, remember, is the thing that Republicans these days call “socialism.”) Social democracy was an attempt to take the best parts of fascist economics and combine them with constitutional government and the rule of law. In place of the “citizen movement” of my sketch above—that’s spelled “The Party” in its historical examples—social democracy puts the elected government of a constitutional representative democracy. In a social democracy, capitalism still exists, but at least in theory, it has to put up with legal checks that keep it from running too far off the rails: laws against monopolies, laws against insider trading, laws forcing banks to have deposit insurance, and so on.

    It’s not a bad system, all things considered—which is to say it’s dysfunctional, but slightly less so than any of the three other alternatives we’ve discussed. Its great weakness was that it came into being because the investor class realized that they would end up dangling from lampposts if they tried to keep unrestrained capitalism going much longer, and it could only survive so long as the investor class stayed scared. Once the Great Depression and the age of rising fascist states faded out of historical memory, though, a new generation of capitalists convinced themselves that all this social-democracy stuff was a useless hindrance to their God-given right to engage in a kleptomaniacal orgy of profiteering at public expense.

    That was when the Republican Party in the US, the Conservative Party in Britain, and their equivalents elsewhere embraced the view that the sole business of government was to make rich people richer while kicking the poor in the face, and when the Democratic Party in the US, New Labor in Britain, and their equivalents elsewhere embraced the supposedly opposite view that the sole business of government was to make rich people richer while mouthing vacuous feel-good verbiage at those of the poor who were sufficiently politically organized to be annoying. The results are predictable: in Britain, a resurgence of old-fashioned socialism under the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn, who will probably become Britain’s next prime minister if the clown car that passes for a Conservative government keeps bungling things as badly as they’ve done so far; in America, a crisis of legitimacy that’s already catapulted a populist demagogue into the White House and may well replace him with something much worse in the years ahead.

    John Michael Greer | December 20, 2017 at 7:13 pm |

    • Great read, bolstrood. I’ve studied in universities both in the “East” and in the “West”, and it is absolutely true – the “West” does not have political economy. The “East” did, as I studied it, and still does – there is an entire Department of Political Economy in Moscow State University, for example, arguably the most prestigious university in the country.

      Thanks again.

      • That is a key observation. I studied Political Economy (PE) as a young bloke. The number of PE courses may well have diminished and might only be re-badged economics courses. PE asks questions about ‘power’ structures in society and the distribution of ‘value’. People like Smith, Henry George, Marx, etc. were not economists. They created and extended PE thought.

    • Economics has become pointless and calling it a profession is an insult to professionals. Economists spend all their time looking at data and viewing the economy through the rear view mirror. They have zero idea how an economy actually generates ‘economic wealth’. Given this profound lack of understanding their policy prescriptions are next to useless and damaging to the ‘competitiveness’ of economies like the US, UK, Australia, etc.

      The world has fractured into two camps with one group of economies being ‘run’ using neoliberal economic nuttery and where the mental retards think being ‘competitive’ is only realised through cost reduction/arbitrage and large dobs of debt finance. This, as we have found, only benefits a narrow percentage of the wider community.

      The other group of economies have taken a totally different approach which is outside current economic thinking. They have realised that aggressive ‘technology acquisition’ is the key to increasing ‘competitiveness’ and that ‘economic wealth’ flows from that. These economies may have debt but will eventually obliterate the living standards of economies like the US, Australia, etc. They will do this as they are converting investment into ‘competitive’ tradable products and services while we have pissed away hundreds of billions on property investment which contributes nothing to the future economic wealth of the nation. The last few decades of neoliberal ignorance have rooted this nation. Politicians, though, will be insulated from the coming collapse with their gold plated pensions.

    • Modern economics as we know it started with Paul Samuelson. He was the person to introduce partial differential equations into economics, and it changed from a ‘humanity’ subject to a ‘science’ subject because there are difficult numbers and equations involved.

      The feudal system count serfs as ‘property’ so the flows down effect doesn’t go all the way. One of the most ‘socialist’ economic system was invented in ancient China. Each man is given a piece of land when they become an adult in exchange for a yearly tribute. When they retirement they can rent the land out, and when they die the land reverts back to the government. This worked really well for a while, but as wealth increased, the rich people changed government policy and eventually end up owning all the land. The citizen is now landless but still have to pay the tribute, and they end up selling themselves to their rich master and become slaves.

      That is the future.

    • Excellent repost.

      Whoever it is that keeps saying how nobody understands economics and Bitcoin changes everything, needs to read that a few times. In particular this bit:

      As a result, capitalist societies are anything but stable; they suffer from savage cycles of boom and bust. The process at work here is quite easy to understand, and in fact it was very widely understood three quarters of a century ago; regaining that understanding is a crucial step toward making sense of the mess we’re in today.

      Over and over again.

      As I said, the problems we have today are not because of a lack of understanding, they are because of poor policy.

  14. I don’t know why these lefty fake greens are so quick to denounce black slavery etc. yet don’t seem to give a toss about the modern day slavery and exploitation that’s going on today (thai massage brothels, 7/11, asian labourers etc) not to mention the mortgage house slavery. On top of that they are cheering the demise of their own job. This country is rapidly changing for the worse and most people are asleep and will only wake up when their stupid property drops in value.

  15. When I was younger I was glad to be born in a post-nationalism society. I looked down on those in the earlier 20th century who had been so ‘rahrahrah’ for their team’s colours that they caused mayhem everywhere just out of fear of other tribes.

    Now I see the way that Russia ‘protects’ its nationals in nearby nations. I see the way that Aboriginals are marginalised thanks to my ancestors displacing them. I see it with the Ainu in Japan, the various tribes in the American continents.

    I now think you’d have to be a fucking moron to think you can just ‘melting pot’ away all your problems. Multiculturalism can work, but it requires that all parties are actually melting together. In an age of fast internet and cheap airfares, it’s insane to think you can mix these groups/assimilate faster than you can bring people over.