Weekend Links 5-6 January 2019

Artist : Jeffrey Smart (Australia, b.1921)



Europe/Middle East


Australia/New Zealand


Latest posts by Chris Becker (see all)


  1. Welcome to the FIRST Weekend Links of the new year.

    What’s everyone’s new year’s resolutions?

    My ten are:

    1) Take up vaping.

    2) Experiment with hallucinogens more.

    3) Vape hallucinogens.

    4) Get involved in local amateur musical theatre. Or at least research “verified amateur thespians” in a private window – WIP.

    5) Consume a pallet of Taylor’s Clare Valley Cabernet Sauvignon non-reserve over the next 12 months (in your face ermo) – WIP.

    6) Kill and skin a cougar (tick).

    7) Get some perfect beaver.

    8) Get a Legend of the East Satchel. Am having trouble getting a perfect beaver. Have the cougar skin

    9) Stay in more – WIP, refer above three points.

    10) Spend more time with the people I love (MB hikikomori) – WIP.

    A busy year ahead! Let it be BMW year not TOYATA year!

    And let’s share it together!


      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        I am hoping my year is a CJ Chrysler sedan with the 318 fireball – preferably with some adjustments to the suspension and steering (seeing as the original handled like a bucket of cold custard).

        ……and I would quite like the fluffy dice I had in my early 1980s model of the same and wish nana would return from the other side and whip up a nice crocheted drape for the bench seat

      • Brother has a CH coupe with 318. Beautiful old girl. I’ve still got a 318 short block in his shed, balanced, ball peaned etc etc. Probably rusted to sh!t now even though I put the rods in zip locks with oil, doused the block and crank. That was 20 odd years ago now

      • Dad worked at the chrysler engine plant in lonsdale. They had a pic of the e49 engine with triple webers and the headers going past cherry red to white hot in the dyno room. Loved the old vals. Big old boats though.

      • Dad worked at the chrysler engine plant in lonsdale. They had a pic of the e49 engine with triple webers and the headers going past cherry red to wh!te hot in the dyno room. Loved the old vals. Big old boats though.

        Goddam the stupid autobot and it’s fvcking idiotic banning of wh1te.

      • Had a VC val with the 225 slant six. They were actually a really good motor, rev like mad, and I loved the body style of it. AP5 is probably my fav for the old school styling though. Push button auto too!

      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        @EP I grew up on the 265 Hemi. Magnificent engine.

        My first car was a HG Kingswood which I was given which I drove into a lake. The first couple of hundred I rustled up afterward bought me a VJ Vacillator with a 265. I was still using it after completing Uni despite complaints from professional work colleagues (and their secretaries) that my car being parked near their devalued theirs. I once drove from Rosebud (leaving at 0530 in the AM) around Port Phillip through Melbourne to Geelong in 90 minutes, including the drag from the Westgate bridge to the North Shore bridge in Geetroit in 19 Minutes – this back in the day when through Port Melbourne involved a stint on Ingles street. What happened was i pulled onto the Freeway in Rosebud, and was overtaken by some dude doing near enough to 100 Mph, and thought ‘bugger it, if he can do it I can too’ who I followed up all the way to Frankston, along the Nepean through Chelsea and up to Mordialloc, and then along Beach Road past St Kilda. When the due turned off into Melbourne I thought the morning was ripe to rip the bags and give the car its head all the way home (to a waiting girlfriend). I pulled into my driveway in Geetroit West just as the 0700 news came on, and as I turned off the ignition I could hear the engine hissing as it contracted. In the end it bit the dust on the big sweeping bend between Serpentine and Kerang (en route from Melbourne to Swan Hill) when I blew a tyre and took out maybe 500 metres of fresh fencing into freshly sown oat field before rolling the old beast coming to a stop between two dead trees (which would have made a mess of me had I been a metre or two one way or the other). I did a lot of driving in the country back then. The 265 wasnt the fastest out of the blocks from zero, but if you wanted to pick up from maybe 80 to 130-150 there was nothing like it…….

        Get a load of this for a spunky machine…..

        For the slant 6 lovers ……

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        First car HJ panel van 202
        Second car purple HQ primer with black vinal roof 202
        Third car purchased at 19 was a “half done up” HJ Pannel van,…Fire engine red with a 5 litre V8, M21 4 speed gearbox, GTS dash and steering wheel, Hot wire mags with 265 rubber on the back (used to scrub the gards) and 245 on the front and a red back spider gear stick!
        After I blew up the diff I got a 2.78 : 1 centre put in on the rebuild and this made the PV good for 200 kph.
        I Committed numerous stupid over takes in this vehicle on the Old Pacific Hwy in the late 80s early 90s on my many surfing and pot runs up the coast into the Nambucca Vally and beyond.
        Should have been Jailed for some of those overtakes.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Neighbor at factory is going to get rid of his Datsun ute. Is shell with all parts. Will look into it if you don’t mind putting it together. Gavin prefers 240z ‘s 260z ‘s I think.

      • Thanks for the memories. A mate of mine bought a 120y and had it from new most of his adult life… But, Sam is a bit, you know…
        My first car my Mum sourced for me, a 1962 Green 850cc Mini for $250 including rego. This was winter in Canberra (1979) and the heater was a vent that allowed air to flow over some hot part of the motor and into the cabin. Well, I was only 17 and not well versed in anything really, so when the foul, oil smelling air was the result, well I shut off the vent and went and bought a good coat.
        Six months later, I was a clerical assistant and good enough for $4k from Combank which financed a 250inch Cortina XLE 4 speed – metallic bronze with cream vinyl roof. What a car!!! Not super quick, but surprised a lot of other six cylinders…
        It front ended another car as we were heading out to the Sundown drive-in one night, I was driving and it was my last at fault accident (touch wood)
        That caused me a bit of a set back as I had to get a cash advance to fix the damage to the Cortina, and then I needed to back trade to get out of debt. Not good when you’re just turning 18 or so, but I did learn a lesson about insurance…
        This led to me owning a 1972 Yellow HQ Sedan, bench seat, three speed on the tree. Had that girl for several years and she even did a Sydney to Townsville trip in 1982.
        Traded her in for a burnt orange two door RS2000. Now, that, was a car!!!

        Cheers for memories again

      • Saw a guy driving a 57 Chev Ute, Matt b lack on new crome and big white-wall tires, looked to be running a small block 350. Had been converted to rhd with power windows power steering, very cool ride. Love the big nose.

    • Harry, old school glam metal might be good occasionally but heavy music has moved on. Currently I’m obsessed with Japanese all female metal bands.
      superb vocals: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UxSrOqAxaKw
      gorgeous legs and guitars: https://youtu.be/7zH8IqCjEq8?t=354
      etc btw this is a bit older but related has anyone not heard of Babymetal? here’s my pick
      the best: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cK3NMZAUKGw
      the most popular (metal about chocolate): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WIKqgE4BwAY
      the most bizarre: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qVdBBOpSoN4

    • I’ve got my BMW straight6 N54 engine putting out close to 800Kw so it’s definitely time to party like it’s 1999!
      The exhaust energy recovery system is working fantastic
      and I’m getting about 100NM extra instant grunt on both front and rear axles from the electric boost
      trouble is it’s sketchy and hard to control on anything but super soft rubber
      oh well boy’s and their toys.

      • It’s not exactly a stock motor anymore, although I did get over 450Kw more or less stock.
        I’m running E85 with over 30 pounds of boost and Water / Methanol injection…plus a few other tricks and lots of expensive Billet and race engine add-ons and lots of cooling system / oil system upgrades.

      • to be honest the 800 number was on an engine dyno so there were no problems keeping the inlet air temps down and no heat soak issues. I’ve had no reason to try to get any more out of the car because it’s difficult enough to drive already. My focus at the moment is improving the weight distribution by moving some of the batteries and getting the center of gravity a little lower. There’s also a yaw problem on quick right left right sequence that I’m trying to fix
        As for youtube, I’ve thought about it but I’m not ready for all the negativity that flows through the comments so many embittered shut-ins hiding in the Mum’s basement and talking smack…I’ve got absolutely no time for them….haters gonna hate…I guess

      • cosworth mob did a lot of r n d using 2.0l ford 4cyl test engines [ cosworth rotating assy]
        one iteration was delivering 1250bhp ps for 7min before piston failure [on toluene 6atm boost/ intercooled + no2]

      • I’m doing the engine management system myself because I want much tighter integration of the Electric motor /generator / exhaust/ braking regen with the traditional engine management and traction control systems.. the good news when you do this is that the dynamics of the engine become much less important than they are in a non hybrid power system.

        I’m keeping as much N54 stock as possible because I like the idea of being able to source new (wrecker)motors reasonably easily…same reason Barras are so popular

      • Sounds like a very interesting project Fisho. It’d be nice to see it chronicled…. Stuff any haters, just delete them – it’s your project.

    • C.M.BurnsMEMBER

      Harry, the best (only reliable) place to hunt for beavers is Huon Glen, on the Kamassa River. It’s directly west of Van Horn. The legendary beaver is also here.

      Definitely prioritize getting the Legend of the East satchel, it removes so much busy work of going back to stores and the fence to sell loot / craft items.

      Also, as an FYI, there is no achievement for fully furnishing the camp. And no one seems to notice / doesn’t have any camp benefits. So after you’ve got the Legend Satchel, focus on what clothes you want to make at the trapper.

  2. It appears Oz universities are not up with current academic standards ….. nowhere do Oz universities offer our legions of overseas students in the courses that REALLY matter …..

    “….schisms within the LGBTQ political movements, queers and disability, issues of race, class and representation within the queer community, and non-human perspectives on queer.”

    For more details: ……


    and if you think this is all some sort of scam, here’s the official website:

    READ IT & WEEP …..

    • GunnamattaMEMBER

      Well it arguably has more traction on, and offer more insight into, day to day existence than any marketing, public relations or human resources courses (or the MBAs these are all too often bundled into)

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        Mmm,…good point Gunna.
        I wouldn’t mind learning a bit more about that non-human perspectives on queer stuff.
        Blacky, our male Labrador retriever, appears to only be intrested in trying to root the legs of our male (human) visitors when he’s feeling frisky but not the legs of our female guests, and yet he seems happy enough to frequently shag the $hit out of our neighbours Austrslian terrier bitch.
        Our neighbors, an elderly couple, were quite distressed at the regular thrashings Blacky was giving their little dog (princess) so after numerous attempts at keeping them apart (unsuccessfully) we decided to get Blackys balls removed.
        I regret this decision now as I am worried that this might make Blacky feel confused about his sexual identity now.
        I was cool with him being a Bi dog and all, but since his little opperation he no longer tries to Root the legs of our human visitors,…male or female, but he continues to be a menace to little princess, instisting on having long sniffs of her privates.
        I think enrolling in one of Walshies cources above would help me understand the difficulties Blacky is going through in his,…or Her or that 3rd genders voyage of discovery.
        I want my Dog to believe it has a totally hip and Woke,…Master.

      • Lol, Ermo, my neighbor breeds Labs, and of course only keeps the bitches. They hump each other for dominance. Now what does that say? If i’m a boy and I thought I was a girl and I get humped by a girl that thinks she is a boy? *head assplodes*

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Jack our black Lab was always getting the dominance hump from all the dogs big or small any other aggression and he would just roll over. Finally with one paw in the grave and he’s started to return the favor,

      • Just as Eisenhower warned against the ““Military-Industrial Complex”“, so Australia is developing its own set of complexes.

        One of these is the Education-Immigration-Real Estate complex comprising:

        • universities;

        • migrant services; and

        • real estate developers,

        each of whom clips the ticket whilst auctioning off Australian residency rights under the guise of education, and providing them with somewhere to live in the process.

        This joins the well-established funds management-infrastructure-contracting complex comprising:

        • union-managed industry superannuation funds;

        • investment bankers; and

        • contractors,

        each of whom clips the ticket whilst auctioning off strategic monopolies, essential services, critical databases and newly-created tax farms to private companies, all financed by the quasi-tax levied on wage and salary earners.

        Just because these complexes generate “economic activity” doesn’t mean that they’re actually producing anything of value to society.

        The problem with complexes is that so many people come to depend on them for their livelihood that they become impossible to challenge. It is yet another collective action problem: those who benefit will spend the time and effort lobbying politicians (and perhaps “bribing” politicians, formally or informally) to maintain their benefits. For the rest of society there is a Prisoners’ Dilemma in that no-one suffers such individual harm that they’re willing to incur the costs of challenging the system.

        This is especially a problem under the system of elective government where politicians respond primarily to powerful, well-organised minority groups. It continues until the whole system eventually collapses under the weight of its own inefficiency.

        It is especially a problem in a geographically large, economically diverse polity with a powerful central government (weak institutions of federalism) that allows communal rent-seeking on a continental scale.

        Australia: “The Rent-Seeking Society”.

      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        @Stephen, I am completely with you on that observation, old coq.

        You and I may differ however in that I think the lobby you refer to has essentially had control of the economy for a generation, and we have well past the high water mark for that control, and that that control is currently being lifted from the economy one dead economic finger at a time. At the moment I tend to the view there are those in our midst noting rigor mortis related phenomena and suggesting that the economic corpse we have become can be brought back to life with the application of a RE related poultice of one sort or another. Similarly, there are others who, noting the corpse is in fact fact dead, are adopting a front running position arguing corpus delicti before there is any blame apportionment for the death while also noting that enough people holding hands and offering some form of supplication (with an actual sacrifice of, say, first home aspirants, also a positive development) will bring the corpse back from the other side [while I suspect they will do a runner in the midst of the spectacle, and hope that nobody notices them missing at the end]

      • @Stephen Morris
        more than a half a century after Eisenhower’s warning, Military-Industrial complex is still ruling the US
        we have no change of changing anything in the case of our lobby so lets join them

  3. Also, have the whining self-hating Australians had enough reaming yet?

    Edit: Faf you are a hero even though you have been twice convicted of ball tampering.



    no other year bans for any other perpetrator

    Absolution complete for Warner and Smith upon return,

    • bolstroodMEMBER

      No appeasement for the sand paper team.
      I will not be happy until not one of the 11players in the sandpaper team are picked in the current team…
      …and another thing…
      (Players in bold* have played for Australian Test team this summer)

      Steve Smith 51.79
      Usman Khawaja 50.07*
      Glenn Maxwell 44.15
      Matthew Wade 43.11
      Joe Burns 43.11
      David Warner 42.94
      Shaun Marsh 41.59 *
      Kurt Patterson 41.48
      Peter Nevill 40.73
      Peter Handscomb 40.13*
      Daniel Hughes 39.76
      Hilton Cartwright 39.50
      Callum Ferguson 38.87
      Cameron Bancroft 38.83
      George Bailey 38.49
      Jake Lehmann 38.39
      Matt Renshaw 38.13
      Travis Head 36.08*
      Marcus Harris 35.32*
      Marnus Labuschagne 33.88*
      Aaron Finch 31.08*
      Mitchell Marsh 28.02*
      Tim Paine 27.79*

      Selectors please explain

      And another thing…
      Has anyone got the stats on the Aussie 4 bowlers up to Sandpaper gate and after sandpaper gate ?

      • Disagree, but won’t argue as everyone has fairly set opinions on this.

        Don’t understand why Maxi isn’t in the team. The public love him too, no?

        Joe Burns is still < 30 too.

        SMarsh is older than Clarke was when he retired……

        My team selection would be…

        Arrrggh it's too hard!


      • eerrmm
        lessee ‘ere
        Warner mmm or weatherald or short?? ynot?..suburban boy blossomed from t20 ranks. test these two
        Harris? read the above marcus….boned if these 2 guys thrive.
        Koala? who else? Burns perhaps
        Smith ….natch
        Maxi….y?? been there before n he didn’t give a fk. play me for the money i dont give a fk either
        Stoinis?.. dark horse could be anything
        Keeper? only one ..carey.. captain hopefully
        Lyon ….a lock
        Cummins …all rounder almost.. in my team for sure
        Starcy?. nope.. pace has not been there swing not there… dwarshuis has late swing both ways.. cant be ignored
        Josh?.. nope same as starcy ..nothing sideways goin on with the ball and if extra bounce is his *advantage* stanlake has him covered…. either one of the Richardson’s for me

    • – Excellent initiative !!!! It will help to reduce pollution, reduce costs for cleaning up streets, lawns, etc.
      – Why didn’t they do/start that (much) earlier ?

      • There’s always resistance from product companies for some reason.

        It’s usually implemented as a “deposit” so it raises the purchase price by whatever the deposit amount is (+probably some additional profit because they can and blame it on the government).

    • – I see one reason why companies would resist this. It would mean that the companies see their costs going up.
      – Take e.g. glass bottles. If you recycle that bottle then the producer also has to pay the costs of returning the bottle to the factory. And every company wants to make as much profit as possible, right ?

      • It would seem the only reason costs would go up for the manufacturer is they’re forced to recycle.
        If there was a ready market for left over bottles, the manufacturer wouldn’t see increased expenses.

  4. – Alexandria Ocasio Cortez is a millennial elected to the US Congress. FOX News has demonized her but it seems she is more popular than the TV station thought. And frankly I am NOT surprised. The majority of people who are watching FOX News seem to be Baby Boomers and that group is ageing and shrinking and becoming less and less important as time goes by.
    – I found the video in which she dances:

    • The average age of Fox News viewers is apparently close to 70 years old. They are literally dying out.

    • proofreadersMEMBER

      Fake Greens and right wingers need their nannies, personal trainers and baristas to be paid slave rates.

    • The fake Greens want AUS to be a low-wage nation and so do right wing pricks.

      there is nothing wrong with low wages as long as cost of living goes down as well. If housing goes down by 50% (optimistic scenario) people will actually have higher standard of living even if their wages go down by 20%
      Since 2000 all wage growth did was pushing house prices up and not leaving much to young people anyway

  5. Mr RobertsMEMBER

    Just out of interest Gav, what is your favourite aussie muscle car- ever, and favourite jap production car of the 90’s?

    • Godzilla skyline has to take first for the 90’s. Then the sierra killed it, but not jap. Even though I really dislike fords for their engineering and handling, gt phase 3 has to be the muscle car of the past. Even the v8 toranas can’t pass it for a muscle car.

      • Meh, give me a Toyota 2000gt over a BMW 507. A Toyota Supra over an M3 of the same era. 😁

      • BMW 2002 Tii will get relations with strong genetic back grounds vs the questionable offerings of lesser status rides …. chortle …

        Wellie then again my old classic Kombi cherry’ed up – with top of the line sound system for the day [worked at Clarion HQ] was a beach babe magnate more so than my say 86 corvette [accusations of rich wanker], but then again the German and classic English stuff always got the West Lake Girls ….

    • Funny how our mates Toyota vs BMW comment has caused weekend link to turn into car discussions, but Aussie Muscle cars I find hard to pick a favourite. Hard to go past a Phase 3 GTHO Falcon who was basically a race car sold for the street. I’d love to own the Phase 4 still born cars for the history of the muscle car scare etc..

      But E49 charger is cool and I’m a straight 6 guy more so than a bent 8. But the XB Falcon Coupe has always had appeal. Even dressed up Mad Max style.

      As for 90s cars, easily the most beautiful is the FD Rx7 (biased as I have 1). To me the most interesting is probably the JC Cosmo for it is the only Triple rotor road car ever. Sadly many sacrificed for that motor too! Very rare car and I’d love to own 1 as a cruiser.

      I tried to get my hands on an SP Rx7 a couple of years ago to replace my current FD, but they shot up from $50k to $100k + literally after 1 went to Shannon’s Auctions and sold for $88k or so. So it was no longer viable. Could be a deal in hindsight (who knows could be worth $1M in future?)

      As a Nissan man (Datsun guy) I’ve always loved the R32/R33/R34 GTRs. The RB motor can thank the previous L-series engine in my Datsun for its lineage. Even share the same bore spacing, you can almost interchange parts between them.

      I seriously weighed up getting a GTR when I lived in Dublin. Problem was road tax was linked to engine capacity and the 2.6ltr was expensive to tax compared with the 1.3ltr rotary engine, now however prices of GTRs have soared (I’d love a Burgundy Red R32 GTR) / Australian delivered (much much rarer) but now $100k+ for 1 with the right pedigree.

      If I had the coin I’d add this to my collection for sure.
      Check out this Nissan Skyline.

      But alas I’m priced out (for now 😁), so I’m looking at the rare elusive Nissan Autech Stages 260rs (Rb26) family wagon. Basically a GTR that looks like a Volvo. 😊

      Sorry can’t pick just 1 of each. I already have 6 cars. Non car people don’t understand.

      • reusachtigeMEMBER

        Although Aus property has never got into a bubble Aus bogan cars have gone worse than tulips and only dumb cunz get into that sh1t!

      • I’ve thought about that RB26 Stagea too…… not the prettiest of wagons though. I’m starting to find my grey import is getting harder to find some parts for too…… It’s on blocks for another spend as I speak – had to go for inserts in shocks this time, no originals left on the planet.

      • I’m not sure I agree with your L20 being the granddaddy of the RB26.
        If memory servers me correctly the RB motors are an offshoot of Prince Motors which was originally a straight-6 from either BMW or Daimler (depending on who you think they purloined the most from)

      • @Fisho the Prince G series engine was a different lineage. The L20A comes from the Gloria of the 60s. The RB is a direct ancestor of the L-series motor. You can literally bolt the RB26 head to the L-motor but the oil and coolant galleries don’t align.

        They both suffer hot spots between cylinder #5 and #6 also.

        The LY head was a hemisphere head like the RB30 and is the forerunner to the RB30 design. Infact given how rare the LY heads are many have fitted RB30 heads to the L-series engines.

      • Gav, “…. I’m a straight 6 guy more so than a bent 8. ” No one at MB cares about your sexual orientation, they love you just as you are. Come outta the closet!

      • I don’t know the facts BUT I did know a few guys in the BMW engine development team back in the 1980’s that claimed the RB26 was all stolen technology but it might just be a sort of sour grapes response when the competition bests your best.
        I get the feeling it’s a bit that way with Huawei these days where by there are all sorts of claims of stolen technology yet for some unknown reason their stolen technology out performs the original technology…like how often does that happen without doing some serious R&D yourself?

      • If anyone’s interested in Grey horses, better get your finger out……. From Prestige MS.
        NEW IMPORT REGULATIONS (and the 25 Year Rule) will START on 10 Dec 2019. The Road Vehicle Standards Bill 2018 received Royal Assent on 10 Dec 2018. This Bill forms the skeleton of the new laws. All the detail on actual operation will be in the attached Regulations which have not yet been released. We will update again once this happens – could be this year or early next year. – https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Bills_Legislation/Bills_Search_Results/Result?bId=r6032

      • Hi Gav, one of my good mates talked to me about selling his R32 the other day. I said i’d Never get it past my wife, but if you’d like I can get some details for you. He said it might need some work to return it to stock.

      • Hey Adrian, appreciate that. I am going to look at a Stagea Wagon first. Since they are practical. I’m currently looking at 2 properties to make an offer on, but they are 10 mins drive to a train station and I may keep the Suzuki Jimny as a station (don’t give a hoot car) for a while yet. The Stsgea was gonna replace the Jimny. But who knows if my low ball offers will be accepted.. 1 place has a 9 car garage and so I’d have spare for another toy if I bought it. 😁

    • Mining BoganMEMBER

      Man, there’s a lot around me that have been trying to sell since september/october. Most of them look like wanting money for nothing for rentals that have never been upgraded. This country.

      Only about 5% drops(dreamin’), except for the one agent who has increased prices by 10% expecting lowballs and hoping to catch someone unawares.

      Let that be a lesson kiddies, do your research and avoid Darren Jones. He goes on the list with Ray Wh!te and Barry Plant.

    • Mining BoganMEMBER

      Man, there’s a lot around me that have been trying to sell since september/october. Most of them look like wanting money for nothing for rentals that have never been upgraded. This country.

      Only about 5% drops(dreamin’), except for the one agent who has increased prices by 10% expecting lowballs and hoping to catch someone unawares.

      Let that be a lesson kiddies, do your research and avoid Darren Jones. He goes on the list with Ray Wh!te and Barry Plant.

    • Great website, although it gets thrown off when agents use price ranges, but not a single price. It also is a pain to determine how it groups suburbs into regions.

      I found a few rippers in North East Melbourne where prices had dropped from 1.1m down to 800k range and still unsold.

      I haven’t tried it yet, but you can set an alert when a property drops in price to get emailed. 2 properties I am looking at originally were listed for an optimistic 1.15m, 1 is now looking for $950k but I think $800k is more appropriate (large 9 car garage) and the other I think $760k (they paid $770k in Jan 2017) but prices in the suburb don’t appear to have slid much yet (low sales activity make it hard to evaluate).

      • With greatest respect Gav, what part of this don’t you understand?…
        Do not buy now.
        Temper your enthusiasm. The market will come back to you. If something changes, there will be warnings, watch the leading indicators (e.g. clearance rates)

      • If you pay 400k instead of 800k now, it saves years of lifetime working.

        1.2mil to 800k might look like a bargain, but that’s what happens growing up in a bubble.

    • Great find! The site doesn’t seem to play nicely with initial POA listings and there are some examples of 99-100% falls which are due to errors in collecting the asking price, but there do seem to be plenty of double digit falls with asking prices in all the places I’ve checked so far.

      For instance, this one is closer to 30% down from the peak asking price although it records it at 0% due to the POA.

    • I don’t understand the listings on that site that have increased in price in the last few months? Surely no one is going to list and then 1 month later increase the price, particularly in this market.

      • @Shawn, I suspect it’s because houses that went to auction were initially listed with a guiding range. Eg: $720-$800k. But fail to sell at auction then listed with a fixed price of $850k. I’ve seen this many many times by agents who often place a price about $50-$100k above the best bid or vendor bid at auction.

        My thought is that any Johnny come lately who low balls an offer $100k below, won’t realise that no other mug was going to pay that anyway at auction. Like I say, been seeing it a lot after reviewing auction results.

    • innocent bystanderMEMBER

      seems pretty useless to me.
      any filtering on WA properties returns zero.
      looking at non filtered, just regions, grouping is useless.
      and it ignores how agents use advertising. Address on request, POA, Contact Agent, Re List after a pause.
      and how vendors use agents. change agents etc

      • It’s a bit tricky to use because the filtering options and regions can be a pain to work with. Start broad and then use slightly more aggressive filtering. I’ve had a lot of trouble with getting it to work, but with a bit of perseverance it’s handy.

  6. What property crash? From a regional newspaper (Sunshine Coast, an area I’d like to move to), this headline this morning:

    Sunshine Coast agents’ property predictions for 2019
    Expect plenty of southern investor interest, more million-dollar luxury apartment sales, and prices to either hold or climb to potentially uncharted heights.

    • Ah, the mythical southern investor interest which, like Elon Musk’s genius, never seem to run out.

      • A friend of mine was looking in the inner west of Sydney in the 1990’s and he kept being told about this mysterious “buyer from Chippendale”. For example: “Yes, I will take that offer to the owner; but, there was a buyer from Chippendale who was also interested, so I need to check with them as well”.

    • Finally bought on Sunny Coast 3 months ago. Having waited 12 months for property to start correcting. It didn’t. Went up +10%.
      Defying gravity at the moment but the crunch will come.
      A few places relisting after failed contracts – finance.

  7. Can anyone give a rough breakdown on the kind of profit the developers would have made on a project like Opal? 330 apartments at nearly one million each, and they still need to nickel-and-dime the subcontractors!?! Someone must have made an absolute killing on this.
    Tony Abbott initiated a Royal Commission a few years ago, but the terms of reference were very narrowly focused just on the building unions. There were calls at the time to broaden the scope to look at the entire building industry, but Abbott stubbornly refused.

      • In other words, the developer could have sold each apartment for $600k instead of $850k and still made a decent profit. The rest is just gouging. For investors, this difference is even more significant than it looks, because depreciation can be claimed on building costs.

    • I thought the whole debacle over the soccer stadium built in England over 10 years ago, would have settled that question ….

    • In a sense, we can be grateful for their greed. They pushed too hard to squeeze profits and the whole thing has blown up in their face, and provided better exposure of the issue than we could ever have hoped for.

      • A block of land sold in Canberra a few years ago for $53 million and about 530 units were approved to be built on it so that’s roughly $100,000 per unit. Then building costs and financing costs. Selling for – actually I’m not sure – but must be at least $450,000 for a one bedder given the Campbell location.
        Anyway lots of nice cars in Canberra at the moment but the noise they’re making is enough for me boil up oil on my stove and remodel some larger water pistols.

      • Summernats!

        Put on your demin shorts and bikini top Mild Colonial!

        That’s what I’m in at the moment, and I’m at work!

        (***harry to HR – I thought we embraced difference?)

      • Yep, they have done us all a favor and accelerated the end of this pathological apartment boom.

    • The Beetrooter Advocate

      The terms of reference weren’t ‘narrow’. They were ‘appropriate’. It was essential that Shorten face-up to a barrage of mushroom related questioning to restore a sensible cost-base to property developments.

    • Developers operate in the same marketplace as everyone else. The profit to be made on a unit being sold gets soaked up in the land value. Developers would be targetting min 15% ROI. Ina rising market they could make more obviously. Also if they where able to get the land rezoned at some point then they make bank, this is where it can get super dodgy.

      Answering other question yes developers squeeze everyone to the last dollar, well primarily the builder who then must squeeze everyone else. ICON are actually a reputable builder in my experience, but it wouldn’t be uncommon for them to go in on a job at 3-4% margin in order to win a project from their competitors. Given design is not complete when they win a job this can easily over run (construction is tricky). Not uncommon at all for builders to lose big money on a job. Need to cut down on everything and hard to not accept the lowest price from subcontractors. Structural engineering fees typically 0.42% of construction cost. Yes the number is known to the second decimal place of a percentage!!!

      The system is stuffed but blaming the dodgy builder is a gross over simplification. They obviously cocked up here but the systemic nasty stuff is really happening with the smaller builders doing those 20 apartment jobs. Super dodgy.
      Some have got really large and are super scary.

      Have a close look at DYLDAM.

    • Twatter message:

      Are you sure you want to post this message from an iPhone? This may affect your Social Credit inadvertently.

    • Buy American, buy Australian ….

      Back in my 80s days of C-corp wanderings I had the privilege of going to the Chrysler plant in St. Louis, MO. over a OEM frackus with the Union guys. Destroyed a few thousand radio face plates, seems they did not like the Japanese Mfg’ers replacing the old Delcos, had to inform then that even the Delcos were 100% Japanese parts assembled by some low wage non union sort in some low socioeconomic region.

    • kiwikarynMEMBER

      Powell appeared on the mountain top and spoke to the masses, reassuring them that he intends to quietly back down from raising interest rates despite a stonking job report and accelerating wage rises. Trump wins.

  8. boomengineeringMEMBER

    Just got out, rocked off at the LR point, son thought better of it and found a safer place but I went anyhow. Waves were smashing against rock face and had to judge it but still hit rocks anyhow and got dragged by current too close to said rock face. Nearly lost fins when dumper smashed me over reef.
    All that for poor vis of 1.5– 2M. Saw no fish except a huge red Mowie but after last week left it.
    All in all a win win situation, got a leg workout and seasickness without vomit.

  9. Britain set for worst decade of housebuilding since WW2 … UK Centre for Policy Studies


    … extract …

    … Despite the Government’s recent efforts to boost construction, new-build housing completions in England between 2010 and 2019 are set to be approximately 130,000 per year – well below the 147,000 of the 2000s or 150,000 of the 1990s, and half of the level in the 1960s and 1970s.

    The picture becomes even worse when you factor in population size. In the 1960s, the new-build construction rate in England was roughly the equivalent of one home for every 14 people over the decade. In the 2010s, that ratio was one to 43, more than three times higher. … read more via hyperlink above …
    This has been the worst decade for house-building since World War Two, and it’s all our fault … Robert Colville … UK Telegraph (behind paywall)

    … What are the British learning from New Zealanders ? … check out the recently updated archival website PERFORMANCE URBAN PLANNING …


    • thanks for the link …… should be included in the school curriculum – might offset the reluctance to read books !!!!!

      • No problem.

        I responded to your comment on Warren running interference in the primaries for a serious contender. Can you expand on what you might think will happen. My thoughts are Clinton will go again and Sanders is likely to as well. Trump may talk his way into a second term. Perhaps 2024 is a better bet for Warren.

      • Just finished watching “They shall not grow old” a must watch it’s amazing, like explodes into a new world and a new perspective to WW1

    • gave u a detailed reply footsore but it appears the spambot is in overdrive – disappeared into the ether, not even a ‘waiting for moderation ….

    • summary: Warren (running interference for Bernie?) et al are part of the problem for the ‘Pregressive Dems’ like AOCortez.

    • …. by 2020 new conservative motivated opposition like Candice Owen will have changed the landscape while the Dems engage in a cultural civil war. Dems will push all the usual progressive nonsense making more of the average voters/sheeple aware of the threat to their society …. meaning Mr T will have a better than evens chance of a 2nd term ……

    • contra Oz, substantial sections of US people really believe in and support their Constitution and their rights under that Constitution … especially 1st & 2nd.

      Simmering discontent will be provoked by the new congress making for a very interesting pre-2020 elections ….

  10. Mining BoganMEMBER

    Righto, I’ve just spent two hours in the garden before rain stopped play so am now sitting with coffee waiting for the Australians to start their 800+ run innings.

    How long before I’m back in the garden?

    • “There were just 19 Australian-made cars sold last year, the last of the Holdens.

      The biggest source of vehicles was Japan – 356,230 units – followed by Thailand – 300,274. Thailand has done well out its free trade agreement with Australia and specialising in light commercials.”‘

      good ol fta’s

      • Works this way; people who make stuff generally belong to unions and unions are bad because they demand stuff like annual and sick leave, penalty rates etc. FTA’s and Governments have reorientated the economy to services which employs a lot of non-union workers therefore are open to exploitation. FYA’s are nothing more than a road to serfdom.

  11. From this morning’s “Letters Fairfax Almost Certainly Won’t Publish File”:

    5 January 2019

    I was intrigued by your readers’ almost uniform ignorance of Australian constitutional history (Letters, The Age, 5 January).

    “Starting again” would not lead to abolition of the States. Starting again would return the States to the status of independent colonies exercising self-government pursuant to the Colonial Laws Validity Act of 1865. Were they to adopt the Statute of Westminster they would become fully independent countries like New Zealand, the seventh colony which chose not to join the Australasian federation.

    Such a development could be highly beneficial for the peoples of Australia. In economic terms, the Australian Government – like all monopolies – tends towards “allocative inefficiency”[1]. It allows rent-seekers to lobby for the policies which profit them individually but mis-allocate resources overall.

    Perhaps the most infamous example is the ill-conceived policy of tariff protection. It profited Victorian businessmen but at the expense of untold damage to the prosperity of Australians as a whole. Eventually it collapsed under the weight of its own inefficiency. More recently the protection of the finance industry through mandatory superannuation sees tens of billions of dollars annually in fees (representing real resources) directed to an industry which enriches the investment bankers of Sydney and Melbourne but arguably produces nothing of societal value.

    Six new independent, dynamic economies – like New Zealand – would see a great change for the better in Australasia.

    Stephen Morris

    [1] See, for example: https://www.scribd.com/document/389095239/The-Nature-of-the-State

    • “In economic terms, the Australian Government – like all monopolies – tends towards “allocative inefficiency”[1].”

      Firstly the issue revolves around axioms which consider society as a market – categorical error. Secondly allocative and inefficiency are jargon to substantiate the aforementioned wonky optics. Thirdly government capture has been at the behest of the aforementioned ideologues via neoliberal organs like FEE et al and capture of education [see Hudson et al], not to mention screeds like the Powell memo.

      Can’t understand the cog dis associated with this advocacy, its results, and the faithful always externalizing the results and then lay claim to some rational logic.

      PS – “allocative inefficiency”[1].” – some arbitrary reference to equilibrium.

      PPS. NC is rerunning some posts on AET mental methodology, do have a peek and then check out the comments.

    • p.s.

      Coase’s great insight in 1937 was to identify the essential similarity between “public” planning by the state and “private” planning within a firm.

      But there is also a difference, as discussed in the famous (perhaps not so famous!) footnote 14 to “The Nature of the Firm”:

      “ It is easy to see when the State takes over the direction on an industry that, in planning it, it is doing something which was previously done by the price mechanism. What is usually not realized is that any business man in organizing the relations between his departments is also doing something which could be organized through the price mechanism. . . . . The important difference between these two cases is that economic planning is imposed on industry while firms arise voluntarily because they represent a more efficient method of organizing production. In a competitive system, there is an ‘optimum’ amount of planning!”

      Conventional economists have generally taken this to mean that firms and states are categorically different. Firms “arise voluntarily”. States don’t.

      But if we dare to step outside the square for a moment, it provides an insight into what could be far-and-away the greatest economic and political innovation of the 21st century. Governments and private firms are NOT categorically different. They differ only in that firms may arise voluntarily while governments are permanent regional monopolies.

      (The UN Charter even contains an anti-competitive “market-sharing” agreement – the recognition of sovereignty – under which the regional monopolists have divvied up the planet and agreed not to offer services to people living in another monopolists’ territory!)

      But if we step outside the square, we might ask: What if states did “arise voluntarily”?

      Of course, this pre-supposes an ability to think outside the square . . . . even if only for the purposes of thought experiment.

      Observably, not everyone has the cognitive capacity to do that. It may be readily observed that many people are bound within a “Paradigm Prison”, surrounded by walls of Cognitive Dissonance which they lack the ability – or perhaps it’s just the courage – to scale.

      It is pointless trying to discuss new ideas with them because they lack the cognitive capacity even to consider them. It’s like trying to explain that species may evolve other time. Or that the location of events in space and time might vary according to the observer. Or that the location and motion of an object cannot be known simultaneously with complete precision.

      All such ideas instantly invoke the Strategies for Resisting Disconfirmation of Belief, and the Believers remain locked forever in their hermetically sealed bubbles of solipsistic certainly.

      It hardly matters. New ideas do not arise from those of such mediocre intelligence. They will eventually die and the new paradigms – if they have any use – will outlive them.

      There is nothing to be gained by trying to engage with them. One might as well sit in the corner hammering knitting needles through one’s skull.

      I mention this only for the benefit of those who do have the ability to explore new ideas and who might be wondering why I refrain from engaging with pathetic, cowardly internet trolls who skulk behind a veil of anonymity and seem to waste their entire lives hanging around little-read websites trying to pick fights.

      It’s a tragedy to behold . . . but not one that I intend to waste time on.

    • so the plan is to first add fourth (private) level of government – strata committee
      and then abolish states
      that way, two out of three levels of government are going to be private: local council (where property or business ownership can buy a vote) and strata that is completely private. The only common level of government will be federal government that is already completely detached from it citizens

      To gain more democracy, federal government should be reduced (to confederative level), state powers changed (take over some federal stuff) and reduced (powers over local issues) and city wide governments established in addition to councils.

      • C.M.BurnsMEMBER

        can’t abolish the states due to the structure and historical timeline of our constitution. The Commonwealth was formed and our C is written as such that the states grant / cede certain powers to the newly formed commonwealth. they are the foundation and as such can’t be legislated away.

  12. GunnamattaMEMBER

    I agree with plenty in this article, but what this lady doesnt seem to quite get is that exactly the same technology she is referring to can be used to profile (in real time) ‘elite’ figures (politicians, public servants, academics, corporate heads, and company spokespersons) to provide observing publics with an effective ‘bullshido’ meter. It is now more than ten years since I interviewed and observed some Russians using algorithms and facial measurements to determine when someone was lying.

    It may not be just our career being impacted, but the entire democratic and administrative process, with every last ‘elite’ figure being examined thoroughly every time they state something in the public domain and with every last thing they have ever uttered being measured along side it to establish how they stack up on an issue vis what they think and what they are saying or writing.

    How biometric monitoring can impact on your career

    • That has f all to do with the yellow vests in France. It is more like the Cronulla riots. It reads like a magnet for angry young men of all stripes. It’s no good for anyone involved, Melbourne or Australia.

    • Was always going to happen eventually when our governments sells us out and turns a blind eye to minority violence. So asio are watching the right wing guys, yet they let the Sudanese run amok.

      • the anger and frustrations are building ….. as long as the progressives’ rule book & hypocrisies continue to be forced on everybody, this behaviour will become more common until we get to the point that random violence based on identity is the norm ….

      • LOL.

        Coalition has been in power for 16 of the last 22 years. Guaranteed most of these fvckwits have been voting for them (directly or by proxy) the entire time (because low taxes, stop the boats, and oh noes the pooftas).

        But somehow it’s the “progressives” who are the ones wrecking the place.

      • It is quite affirming to my doubts with such comments that Aussies will never have the guts to have yellow vests movement.
        1- They didn’t get triggered by government corruption.
        2- They didn’t get triggered by high cost of living imposed by their representative policies.
        3- They didn’t get triggered by higher power prices that cause individuals to bankrupt and businesses to close.
        4- They didn’t get triggered by high house prices causing homelessness and social tensions.
        5- They didn’t get triggered by low wages and slavery conditions.
        6- They didn’t get triggered by by the findings of the RC to the banks robbing every soul.
        7- They didn’t get triggered by 3ed world internet
        8- They didn’t get triggered by the price of fuel that keeps rising despite international barrel price
        9- They didn’t get triggered by the findings of the quality of buildings built in Australia that threatens a far larger number of lives than quite any terrorist attacks

        But hey they get triggered because they watched channel 9 too much and the government sponsored marketing that immigrants are the cause of all the above.

        I guess you have to have very low IQ compared to average to trigger your anger on the wrong people.
        Politicians are laughing with whisky glasses.

        It’s not the immigrants, it’s not the muslims, it’s not the chinese……it’s them trying to trick you that these are the real problem

  13. Taibbi on the uselessness of that notion of electability.


    “What the campaign press hasn’t yet grasped, despite overwhelming evidence, is that things like endorsements, the support of key donors and media approval have become negatives for significant portions of voters in both parties.

    Richard Minter at Forbes, as far back as 2012, was one of the first writers smart enough to recognize that traditional ideas of electability were probably upside down. Writing about the Republican field that year, he noted the embrace of Romney by pundits, and particularly by the Republican Party establishment, would actually work against him.”

    If Sanders runs again I think that this will an issue for him. He’ll be the same person yet he’ll have a slicker machine, won’t be seen as such an outsider, and will probably be tarnished by any celebrity supporters speaking out in favour of him.

  14. Property report from trenches of 2153. Castle Hill NSW. A mild 35km from the CBD and with a metro to no where soon to be completed. And toll roads in every direction so trans urban have a hand in your pocket every weekend.

    https://www.realestate.com.au/property-house-nsw-castle+hill-130038426, vendor wants to sell today for 1050,000 (originally it was quoted to me at 1,1m is where the vendor will talk, within the hour 1050). This vendor has seen the chasm forming under prices. That puts in my current monthly rent territory with my deposit and cash left over for the pool and mild reno’s. Almost got me to give a written offer but I want to view https://www.realestate.com.au/property-house-nsw-castle+hill-129934086 on Monday. I can’t see what 100k extra gets me apart from stairs and creaky floors to fix when compared to that single story battleaxe block.

    https://www.realestate.com.au/property-house-nsw-castle+hill-129693470 agent wouldn’t sniff at 1.1m. “I’ve got heaps of people I could sell this too at that price.” “Thanks, please let me know if the vendor changes their mind. Its a lovely home but I would like to change a few thins to my taste”. Maybe they will get in touch when it should be 990k and want 1.1m.

    • I tend to agree with Fish, but who knows how far this thing is gonna play out for? Hence why I’m not looking to buy at the bottom of the dip, just waiting until enough punters are side lined so I can get something I actually want / like..

    • TheRedEconomistMEMBER

      You’d be surprised what people will pay just to get there kids into Castle Hill Hjgh. I believe all 3 house you posted are in that catchment.

      Public transport wise Castle Hill is pretty we serviced with express buses to the city and hopefully some of the congestion in the Hills will stop once the Metro opens. By 2025 you will be 40 minutes to the CBD on the train. Buses outside of peak can you get to town in 40m now … but forget about in peak hour.

      Most of the places you posted would have gone for 200-300k more a year ago.

      If any of these are potentially you forever house and repayments are close to what you are paying in rent you should have a crack.

    • If you’re happy to buy something that will very likely be valued at $100k less in 3-6 months and the value to further continue falling over the next couple of years, then go for it.

  15. Hmmm I wonder when the Saturday RE Auctions will get started again? (next weekend, maybe the weekend thereafter….)
    I wonder how many RE agents even want to come back to work, it’s got to be depressing to have to tell 2016 minted Specufestors that they’ll likely lose money on a sale.
    But they’re worried: so what options do they have?
    But the bank wants to increase my repayments
    But the Tenants are complete A-holes (why can’t you show their house whenever you want they’ve only rented it you know), they’re ruining my perfect place …how soon can you get them out…but wait a minute I want them to keep paying rent even if the toilets don’t work (I bet they’re to blame), even if the building is structurally unsound.
    But it’s partly your fault: after all you sold me the house/apartment
    But I was just doing what I could for my kids
    But nobody ever told me that one could lose money on RE
    But…but but but
    But WHAT DO YOU MEAN it’s only worth….?
    If it were me I’d be looking for a different job for a while at least.

    • Not to mention hordes of smug cashed up tyre kickers wasting time pretending to be serious, wasting time at inspections and clogging their inboxes with useless follow up questions, such as

      – could you just get me the height in mm of all the doorways and the width in inches of all of the window frames?
      – can you also tell me the 45 degrees diagonal distance from the toilet pedestal to the bath tub?
      – can you just check the impedence of the TV antenna socket?
      – what size socket is the dining room light?
      – how far apart are the hot and cold laundry taps?

      and then after all of that, lowballing the sh$t out of them at 60% of the asking price.

      Not that I would ever do such a thing …

    • The funny thing, apartments “for sale” adverts for Opal tower are still in force on RE.com.au/domain.com.au… without the actual address! You have to search for “Opal” keyword… “Address available- contact agent”…. hahaha burn f**ker!

    • Once the thing gets into the courts, it just gives the guilty parties an excuse to clam up, slows down things and then there is nothing for the journos to write about. The best thing for the owners would be for the building to fall over.

      Interesting that Gladys explicitly poured cold water on the Government assistance idea. There have been some mumblings but I thought she could have just side stepped it. It will loose (lose) her votes amongst that part of the populace who believe/dream that it is the role of Government to bail them out of sour RE deals.

      • TailorTrashMEMBER

        Agree with Gladys on that ….precedent and all that ……while not without sympathy for the poor folks who now own this sh1t …….the government will be better off using its money pursuing the reals crooks in this saga …but donations aside
        …go hard Gladys ….history will give you a place ……

      • Agree TT, while it was successive NSW Governments that created this mess fulfilling donor desires, they can’t bail out the unit owners. If they did, then by extension they’d have to bail out anyone dudded by charlatans operating under NSW law. Berajerklian should be offering legal assistant (she won’t) and Royal Commission (fck I’m funny) into the building industry and what role Government played in this mess.

      • Sour RE deals?

        I think the word “deals” and “investment” is just a way to victim blame. Change that to home and the emphasis on who or what is responsible changes.

        People live(d) in that tower. This isn’t just another investment.

        An apartment tower is not a house, its not a stand alone dwelling. Apartment towers are incredibly complex, with multiple different specialists involved in their design, construction, etc. How can the average buyer be across all the details of an apartment towers construction? They can’t, hence why we have regulation, etc.

        I don’t know much about fire safety codes in buildings. I know that there should be fire alarms in certain places, exit signs and what not, but that is about it. I don’t need to know the finer details because many generations ago society, through a series of horrible disasters, recognised that due to the complexity of city life, mandatory fire codes were a necessity. So I can buy and safely inhabit an apartment in the knowledge that the chances of being burnt to death in my bed are minuscule….

        Or so we all thought. Then Grenfell and Lacrosse happened and all of a sudden it became apparent that due to laxity of the part of our authorities such protections had been eroded. This is why Opal is horrible, because its now clear just how badly basic protections have been eroded.

        More and more people are living in these kind of buildings. Such buildings are being touted as the answer to our high population growth. They are being rolled out across the city.

    • “apartment owners are toast”

      +1. Any profits from the construction would have already been paid out and transferred into a family trust or similar. Another vote for trusts being the perfect tool to subvert many Australian laws.

    • I can’t help but notice how quiet Harry T is about all this. He has never been shy about putting his views foward before.

      Why so quiet Harry?

    • Concur and have said as such for the better part of a decade due to job longevity and quality issues.

  16. Great comment from NC….

    A very good piece by the estimable Elizabeth Farrelly in the Sydney Morning Herald on the Opal Tower fiasco.

    ‘But what was really cracking from side-to-side was the smooth face of neoliberalism, revealing the ugly lie that good governance can be contracted out’

    I would have replaced the last two words with ‘sold’, and extended the finger of blame a little further in the last paragraph, but whatever.

    She makes the link to our shambolic rail service, which a few years ago switched to a card swipe payment system, also called Opal. The card works OK, though the cost has risen steadily since adoption, but the network itself has suffered from ‘regrettable’ service failures in recent years, most spectacularly on New Year’s Eve. Regrettable for almost everyone, but not for those who lie in wait for public rage at the ‘incompetence’ of the long under-funded public system to reach a mass critical enough to allow full throated roars in the fellow-travelling MSM for private industry to introduce ‘market discipline’ via ‘streamlining’ and ‘finding synergies’ and removing ‘waste’ and public service ‘feather-bedding’… the Playbook, in other words.

    Re the Opal card, when this was being forced down our throats a few years ago, I was interested to find out who was behind it. A few minutes Googling revealed that a former NSW Transport Minister, Bruce Baird, was on the Board of Advisors of the parent company Cubic, based in San Diego. What makes this tasty is the card was introduced under the Premiership of one Mike Baird, son of Bruce, and now a big wheel at one of the Big 4 banks, a position he took up with indecent haste after vacating the top job surprisingly early… just in time to leave hapless successor Gladys Berejeklian to deal with the hangover from the neoliberal orgy he presided over (and which of course Berejeklian herself was part of).

    No matter, she too will end up on a board or two for big dollars when she pulls the pin, ensuring the next few generations of the family attend the tony schools and embed themselves in the servant-class penumbra surrounding the 1%; ie, the owners of the enterprises reaping the profits from the sale of the commons these passing pollies permit.


    • Mystic MedusaMEMBER

      Yes, it was eloquent and the responses in the comments appropriately depict the growing discontent, if not rage. An aside, I know someone who moved into a new build in Camperdown and got a letter from strata warning that the balcony (seven stories high) may not function “as intended” strong during high winds, so caution was advised.
      Another person – also in a new high rise – was blamed by the landlord for having “blocked the toilet with something” but it eventually turned out to be building debris that blocked up the pipes in the whole building. So leafy aspect and charming area, shame about being unable to use the lavatory in your apartment. These stories could be collected into one place – like Vodafail a few years ago – and then translated into other languages.

  17. Bestjet founder breaks silence after company’s collapse

    Staff member from Trade and Investment Queensland sacked over alleged ‘sophisticated’ fraud

    The 1960s Amphicar 770 was neither a decent car nor an accomplished motorboat

    The Difference A Day Makes – The Property Imperative Weekly 05 Jan 2019

    • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TBXv37PFcAQ

      Fallacy of composition to remit failure on the ability to price that which can not be ….

      For instance how do you accurately price the natural water replenishment cycle and more so humans activity in degrading the potability of it.

      Would seem to require an ability to risk assess it, regardless of the amount of uncertainty it portends to quantify.

    • I would ask you footsore … if this falls befoul of the Hayekian notion that markets are some sort of supreme determinantor of information that is some how immune to human agency skewing it for anti social or nefarious reasons, contra to what was proposed originally.

    • Ha! I don’t see semi-coherent mildly amusing hikikomori on that list!

      A report in November 2017 suggested that physical jobs in predictable environments, including machine-operators and fast-food workers, are the most likely to be replaced by robots.

      Management consultancy firm McKinsey, based in New York, focused on the amount of jobs that would be lost to automation, and what professions were most at risk.

      The report said collecting and processing data are two other categories of activities that increasingly can be done better and faster with machines.

      This could displace large amounts of labour – for instance, in mortgages, paralegal work, accounting, and back-office transaction processing.

      Conversely, jobs in unpredictable environments are least are risk.

      The report added: ‘Occupations such as gardeners, plumbers, or providers of child- and eldercare – will also generally see less automation by 2030, because they are technically difficult to automate and often command relatively lower wages, which makes automation a less attractive business proposition.’

  18. TailorTrashMEMBER

    So ……I just paid the Christmas bills on my credit cards …on the date they tell me they are due …exactly …..as I have done for years ….I have oft noted somewhere in the fine print that you are supposed to allow a few days for clearance of funds …like it’s still 1962 ……..I never have ….bang on the day due I pay …..and my money immediately disappears from my account …..so I expect it to reappear just as immediately in the billers account …..
    Are there still folks that pay early and give the banks a few days with the funds to play with on short term ?…….not a lot on an individual account ….but could add up
    if a lot of the punters still allow those few days ………?
    Perhaps its a case of the fine print covers cash , cheques or other 1962 types of payments .
    Would be interested to know how this works .

    • Usually the week after I get the statement so a fortnight or so “in advance”. It’s a no fee CC with a modest amount of annual turnover so I’m getting 5-35 days of interest free advance from the bank. Mostly use it to keep up a credit rating, limited insurance, and to do a chargeback if needed.

  19. Spoke to a developer friend in Melbourne. He’d sold some projects off the plan with a 24 month sunset clause and 10% deposit. Development delays has pushed the completion date past 24 months and buyers can now legally back out of the purchase with their 10% deposit returned. Current selling prices are less than the 2016 contract prices creating a big problem. Many developers are in the same situation, sweating, hoping the purchasers don’t walk away.

    • there’s an enormous amount of highly skilled craftsmanship, creativity, hard work and $$$ goes into those cars.

    • We,as totally non car type people,strayed into Summernats when we stayed at Phillip Island.
      The cars were amazing to look at- l must admit the paint jobs were the only bit l could appreciate, but they were ott and astonishing. Made sure we didn’t park too close to any( my parking is a bit ordinary).
      Most of the people we saw were dressed in total rockabilly costumes/ hair/ makeup.
      And then we found ourselves at one of the rock-a-billy stage shows.
      It looks like a huge,time warp, theatrical , stage show – at least to this outsider!

    • boomengineeringMEMBER

      The factory neighbor off to Summernats getting high octane ethanol (only 2 places to get it at CC ) and asked him about races. He said no more races there just burnouts and show cars.

    • I’m a car guy but Summernats doesn’t appeal to me. Mostly because too many yobbos. It’s also more of a V8 guy kind of thing. All about big HP etc.. cars can be a bit like music each genre appeals to different people for different reasons.

      I am much more into World Time Attack series. But I appreciate the hard work that goes into anyone’s car etc..and appreciate the craftsmanship on display.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Tried to explain the theory behind high octane versus slower combustion and distance traveled but don’t know if it got through.
        Ships engines with a 2 metre stroke wouldn’t run on a fuel that didn’t explode slow as if the explosion was fast and had a short distance of travel then it would push the piston down for 75mm or so then stop but the piston has still to travel nearly 2M so it would just stop. To be able to use very high octane you would have to have a short stroke crankshaft. Alternatively if you used too low octane then the explosion would sill be expanding on the next up stroke, counter productive.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Whoops, got mixed up a bit, too tired after my ride maybe Used the word octane in the wrong places. May correct later.

      • Bubba would undoubtedly find my past times as strange and bewildering as I find his. The obvious difference being that he’s the best at his, while I’m middling, at best, at mine.

  20. ‘Peaceful rise’ my arse.
    Xi Jinping orders the PLA to be ready for battle.

    China’s armed forces must “prepare for a comprehensive military struggle from a new starting point”, he said. “Preparation for war and combat must be deepened to ensure an efficient response in times of emergency.”

    I wonder what sort of ’emergency’ Xi has in mind?
    perhaps an economic collapse?

    • TailorTrashMEMBER

      China might be biting off more than it can chew.,,,
      Lot of countries in Asia are a tad miffed about those islands ……rule number one in any environment where you are not alone is ..,, you gotta have friends

      …..Uncle Xi might find himself alone …
      Jacson …,.we need your Perspex tive

    • My gut feeling is that the economic war is currently in full swing. Economy is surely China’s weak point and US might set back Chinese accendancy through such tactics.

      This is bound to have points of crisis, and who / what will fare better is the question

      • Xi clearly thinks that a military response is a key element of any response to a crisis… so not just economic.

    • I think there is a history of dictator expanding their empire (currency zone) to delay avert and or distraction from the economic collapse

    • kiwikarynMEMBER

      He’s sending the army to Mexico, so they can all walk across the border before Trump can build his wall. The Democrats will welcome 300 million Chinese invaders, oops I mean immigrants, I’m sure.

      • There are more Chinese immigrants to the US than Mexican immigrants already. The days of large numbers of Mexicans moving to the US has been over for a while now.

        Trumpy is running on the attitudinal fumes of the past.

    • If we stop buying their products which are mostly ripped off …eventually CCP crisis. They still might blow us up though…probably regardless we’ll get railed gunned, hypersoniced, or worse. They seem to be going crazy just like POTUS. It’s not very comforting

  21. I’m amazed Jangho’s proposed takeover of Healius (until very recently, known as “Primary Health Care Ltd“) didn’t rate at least one Weekend Link:
    Health giant Healius receives $2b takeover offer from Chinese investor — SMH
    ASIC to examine trading before Healius takeover bid — AFR
    Any MBers out there who’ve had pathology done through Dorovitch, Laverty, Abbott, QML or Western Diagnostics? You may have, and not even be aware of it, if you’ve ever had surgery in private hospital, or had a mole or similar removed at a GP clinic. Healius also owns 70+ GP practices around Australia.

    There are several things about this takeover bid that set the all the sirens and flashers going:
    * Jangho Group are a Chinese construction materials company (they fabricate façade elements, including aluminium composite panels nudge, nudge) and have minimal prior exposure to the healthcare sector — but they have been rapidly (one might even say aggressively) diversifying into healthcare in recent years.
    * The timing of the bid — which comes at a traditionally a “slow” time of year for the private-sector healthcare (in Australia, at least) as well as on the ASX, and at a time when many of Healius’ executives are/were on leave.
    * Shares in Healius jumped 9.4 per cent on January 2 to close at $2.44, more than 12 hours before Jangho announced its bid.
    * It has been suggested that Peter Gregg (recently found guilty of contravening section 1307(1) of the Corporations Act during his time as CFO of Leighton Holdings) worked as a consultant with Jangho after his very brief (Sep 2015 – Jan 2017) tenure as CEO of Primary.
    * Jangho appears not to be a Chinese SOE — but you’d be naïve in the extreme to believe they do not have a strong relationship with the CCP. If ASIC and FIRB permit this takeover, they will have direct access to the confidential medical records of the millions of Australians who’ve been patients of Primary/Healius practices, as well as the potential to access other patient records through the My Health Record system. I’m no IT security expert, but I can’t see how they wouldn’t also be well-placed to launch cyberattacks on other critical information systems, like those of the Health Insurance Commission and the National Blood Authority. The CCP certainly has form in that regard.

    • The plans China has for us are fairly obvious in my opinion.

      Edit. The Nazis liberated the ethenic German in Poland and sudtenland and that tactics might be used here too

    • A few years ago a Chinese construction material company bought Vision Eye Institute. Perhaps related?

    • Reminds me of when Sully and Nick was bought out by some Nordic mob and brought in “efficiencies” and “best practices” over 10 years ago ….

      Yet again this is just a sample of what goes on in America wrt its private health sector, so, I guess its a drama only if say China does it.

      • Oh, lots of things about the changing culture of the Australian pathology industry trouble me. But the Jangho bid, if successful, would put one of our largest private sector providers on the fast-track to Third World quality IMO.

      • I would start with the lowering of standards in education to buff Uni balance sheets and the demands of the market filling the order for widgets to fill slots so some price mechanics hit the sweet spot.

    • GunnamattaMEMBER

      …..and your hot tip for the evening LabDrudge is that the highest margin (and some of the highest grossing) healthcare establishments in Australia – pathology, medical imaging, physio, diagnostics etc – are those conveniently located near large intake military facilities – Cerberus, Enoggera, Holsworthy, Puckapunyal, Stirling in WA, Townsville, Edinburgh, Tindal, Amberley [the ones with lots of people circulating through and lots of people being referred from the Health centres on base].

      Inside Defence, Joint Health Command has already established that the outsourcing of ADF medical capacity and embedding of the private sector sees the taxpayer and Defence being taken to the cleaners, and has already been the source of an epic data breach affecting the ADF – Defence medical records sent to China in security breach – but the ideology that the ideology cannot be questioned has seen the National Audit Office and Defence Audit (which has itself been largely outsourced) refused permission from the up the political chain to openly investigate and report.

      The nub of the issue apparently reflects a situation where soldier A turns up at a regimental aid post and says he is sick and is then referred to the local pathology for testing to work out what he has, and then gets run through the complete battery where nobody has a rats chance of questioning why all the tests have been carried out, with the service provider in an ideal situation to suggest the soldiers health was their primary concern – with like situations for imaging etc.

      Defence moved from paper records to electronic health records in 2015, and there have been a range of teething issues with their Electronic records system. The last I heard they were still trying to sort it out.

      • Defence doctors refer soldiers for pathology. Pathology companies cannot just run a battery of tests and claim the fees.
        Defence should look at their own medical officers if what you say is true.
        But you often pontificate on medical matters and clearly know little of what you preach.

      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        ….and your hot tip of the evening Andrew is that three quarters of the doctors treating people at Defence establishments are (you guessed it!) contracted.

        It is mildly refreshing to note that whenever I comment on anything about the world of the medical we can be assured that some miffed quack will be along to remind us of the hallowed inviolability of the status quo when it comes to any given question being raised about every last facet of any medical treatment for anyone in this best of all possible medical and health treating worlds with suitably righteous and spurious vim.

        Thank you for your contribution

    • Wait until the royal commission into aged care kicks off. I heard some ripper stories. Can’t share yet.

    • thanks for posting LabDrudge ….. truly ironic when you consider the fanatical obsessiveness of the privacy advocates that have so hindered the use of de-identified patient data in HIC data bases for the purposes of medical research …..

  22. The Traveling Wilbur

    Funny stuff people said

    Buzzy MEMBER
    November 30, 2017 at 6:22 am

    I used to really like this blog, but I’m glad I stopped reading about 2 years ago and went all in on bitcoin. There’s a reason why economists aren’t rich. 100% wrong about everything. Bitcoin, hold [sic], houses, AUD 50c. When are you going to apologise to your readers?

    • Heh, pretty sure it was that guy that one day just commented on every single article with just “bitcoin” After seeing it on about the 6th one I had to question him as to his tardness. Wonder if he sold out? LOL!

    • I just went for a trip down memory lane to try and find that period of madness. Of course Migs comments are still there and I still think he is a bi-polar troll. Oh, and your mate afterbirth. He has been quiet on his calls of parity for the AUD. Pretty sure that was a WW sock puppet anyway.

      • Thanks for the trip down memory lane. It was at that time that two friends became really narky with me when I dared to question their Bitcoin to the moon theories. I realized the thing was mainly a cult based on wishful thinking and relying on a vague counter culture phenomenon. I think it was a move of marketing genius to use a shiny gold coin as the Bitcoin symbol. The marketing alchemy equivalent of turning fog into gold

    • Developer Hua Cheng defaults on $35m loan leaving 14 apartment buyers in limbo


      Another buyer said: “No one in Australia is controlling this. How do we buy a home in the future. How can we trust another developer?”

      How about you stop acting like locusts and buying people out of their own countries housing markets.

      • I object to this…

        Information released recently by the Royal Commission shows that Australian mortgages have been underwritten based on limited and low-quality data. Whether it is income, expenses or the existence of pre-existing debt, the Australian system has not in recent years, been “data rich”.

        The banks knew full well they were blowing the mother of bubbles, which used equity upon equity upon equity to purchase further houses. Blind Freddy could see this a decade ago and the cvnts are now going to say they couldn’t check all this data before lending? Go fvck yourselves you bunch of greedy pricks.

      • There will be a few wannabe Mezzanine lenders about to learn the hard way exactly why they were able to get 20% above RBA rates.

        And another thing – re this comment:

        “No one in Australia is controlling this. How do we buy a home in the future. How can we trust another developer?”

        The sooner the (fraudulent) reputation of ‘straya as a transparent, corruption free, fair go, decent, civilised society/economy is well and truly trashed both at home and abroad, the better.

        The whole stinking game needs to be put down, hard. Starting with the Opal tower.

      • Oh god.

        “The high level of Australian house prices also makes local households more sensitive to wealth effects due to house prices changes. At the peak of the US housing boom in 2006, homes accounted for 36% of the net worth of the average US household. This fell to 28% with significant associated wealth effects. In Australia our starting point in 2017 was a net worth exposure to property of over 70%.”

      • Interestingly, that livewire article was written in march (i guess only mailed out to his clients) but just published on liverwire. Tis a bit prescient.

    • It does look like it has begun. Australia won’t know what hit it. Hearing the explanations and excuses from those who gleefully promoted the bubble will be frustrating. Hearing them regurgitated by those that were hoodwinked will be sad. The likelihood of there being anything that moderately resembles justice is diddly to squat.

      • I like that they are basing this demand on website hits – with that in mind I’m sure the Opal Towers will be the next boom site.

  23. https://www.sbs.com.au/news/us-politician-alexandria-ocasio-cortez-mocks-dance-critics

    Russell Crowe


    Hahaha she’s fantastic .
    The more politicians we have like @AOC the sooner we’ll all be dancing. This is a real person, in touch with her roots. She has a perspective, a work ethic & a humanity based philosophy that seeks the best outcome for the most people..
    More power to her. https://twitter.com/anonymousq1776/status/1080594276831047680

    • “She has… a humanity based philosophy that seeks the best outcome for the most people.”
      Nothing that $50m into her very own Swiss bank account won’t fix….

      • You know some people actually have ethics and say no to graft, but lets lump them into the whole so its even harder to reject the pay to play system. Then we can all sit around an nod in agreement that its base human nature and thus enabling – vindicating the perspective.

        Humans are largely herd animals and environmental conditions set the tone, as such, one would think supporting those that seek to change the dominate perspective should be supported and not thrown under the bus preemptively …. you know the perspective that has worked such a treat in the ME …

      • She and the rest of the women who made the difference in the US mid-term elections will be disgusted with the DNC and Pelosi and Schumer by the time the 2020 elections come around so the women’s vote will be a lot harder to get out next time.

    • oh come on Skip …. she may have ethics and the ‘common touch’ but it doesn’t change the fact that she is fundamentally a vacuous, air head progressive regurgitating a lot of sound good BS with no foundation in reality – haven’t heard from her even the semblance of anything workable ……. BUT ……. the fact that she is so noteworthy is the real message about just how truly awful our political systems have become …………

      • Good to see your simplistic tribalism shine through David, I mean qualifying your opinions on such solid evidence and all.

  24. boomengineeringMEMBER

    Afund, did you ride today and where. Told my mate on our ride this morn about your Mt Buffalo, he was quite impressed.
    Don’t know what happened to C3PO and our holiday ride.

    • Hey Boom – sorry been offline a bit. I sent an email to your work email (from website) – maybe it didn’t get through?? A mate took me on a bit of a cyclo cross ride around Nth head this week – only 20km loop or so but interesting up there now.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        C3, nope didn’t get it, no au on the end, could just send a text.
        North Head is becoming my preferred road ride as it’s a lot safer but for off road I’ll leave that to you.

    • Easy fix..
      Nathan Clark1 HOUR AGO
      I don’t know why the residents are complaining that it’s full. Hyams Beach just needs heavy rail, a monorail, a couple of tunnels, a network of electric buses, trams, a light rail, bicycle lanes, a fast train, a second airport, relaxed building construction standards, a thirty story school tower with morning shifts and afternoon shifts, a new hospital, and an eight lane tollway. It’s not hard to fix these growing pains.

    • Let the sheep all go to Hyams so I can enjoy any of the other spectacular beaches on the south coast in peace.

    • Definitely a sheeple thing. There are about 20 other beaches in Jervis Bay that look just as good as Hyams.

  25. Losing Earth

    The world has warmed more than one degree Celsius since the Industrial Revolution. The Paris climate agreement — the nonbinding, unenforceable and already unheeded treaty signed on Earth Day in 2016 — hoped to restrict warming to two degrees. The odds of succeeding, according to a recent study based on current emissions trends, are one in 20. If by some miracle we are able to limit warming to two degrees, we will only have to negotiate the extinction of the world’s tropical reefs, sea-level rise of several meters and the abandonment of the Persian Gulf. The climate scientist James Hansen has called two-degree warming “a prescription for long-term disaster.”

    • R2M,
      I would welcome your insights about the Ocean’s absorbing excess heat ,
      I heard on Radio National last year ,that it’s likely they are reaching thier capacity to absorb anymore .

      Is this ‘The Tipping Point’?

    • In the late 1970s, a small group of philosophers, economists and political scientists began to debate, largely among themselves, whether a human solution to this human problem was even possible. They did not trouble themselves about the details of warming, taking the worst-case scenario as a given. They asked instead whether humankind, when presented with this particular existential crisis, was willing to prevent it. We worry about the future. But how much, exactly?

      The answer, as any economist could tell you, is very little. Economics, the science of assigning value to human behavior, prices the future at a discount; the farther out you project, the cheaper the consequences. This makes the climate problem the perfect economic disaster. The Yale economist William D. Nordhaus, a member of Jimmy Carter’s Council of Economic Advisers, argued in the 1970s that the most appropriate remedy was a global carbon tax. But that required an international agreement, which Nordhaus didn’t think was likely. Michael Glantz, a political scientist who was at the National Center for Atmospheric Research at the time, argued in 1979 that democratic societies are constitutionally incapable of dealing with the climate problem. The competition for resources means that no single crisis can ever command the public interest for long, yet climate change requires sustained, disciplined efforts over decades. And the German physicist-philosopher Klaus Meyer-Abich argued that any global agreement would inevitably favor the most minimal action. Adaptation, Meyer-Abich concluded, “seems to be the most rational political option.” It is the option that we have pursued, consciously or not, ever since.

      These theories share a common principle: that human beings, whether in global organizations, democracies, industries, political parties or as individuals, are incapable of sacrificing present convenience to forestall a penalty imposed on future generations. When I asked John Sununu about his part in this history — whether he considered himself personally responsible for killing the best chance at an effective global-warming treaty — his response echoed Meyer-Abich. “It couldn’t have happened,” he told me, “because, frankly, the leaders in the world at that time were at a stage where they were all looking how to seem like they were supporting the policy without having to make hard commitments that would cost their nations serious resources.” He added, “Frankly, that’s about where we are today.”

      • Thanks, bro. Yes, don’t think our demise is fixable either. The people that guide the corporations that also own governments are determined to kill us all, food scarcity will be the start of things.

        Some of them actually think they can survive

  26. Why it makes perfect sense to pay to become a phoney international student and so jag a job running the servo in the middle of woop woop in Australia: “India’s railroads had 63,000 job openings. 19 million people applied.”

    Given how Indians are rorting the education system here so as to secure employment I think you’d need to question the legitimacy of all those colleges in India that are churning out millions of graduates.


    • India has terrible problems with corruption and the integrity of education outside a handful of super elite institutions catering for a very small proportion of the population.

      • My partner back in the late 80s was a senior bureaucrat at a well known Australian uni. She viewed all Indian academic qualifications as dodgy until proven otherwise. She told me about an Indian uni where the student body rioted because cheating had been banned. That’s right…cheating was banned by the uni administration and the students went on a rampage. It was so unfair…cheating was still allowed at other unis etc. Can’t pass yoour course? Hire a double to take the exam for you.

        If anybody thinks Australian society is corrupt, check out India for how to do it properly.

    • A couple of years back, someone here who is way smarter than me observed that the time had come for India’s middle class to live up to its duty and fix India.

      If we as a nation have the capacity to meddle in middle eastern embassy politics, send our soldiers to kill people almost half a world away and otherwise stick our noses into the internal affairs of other countries, we can and damn well should make this loud and clear to the Indian people.

      Perpetuating the sham student visa / petrol station and pizza delivery jobs / PR / remit wages and spend nothing in the local economy / reproduce and maximise use of free education / bring elderly parents and maximise use of free healthcare pipeline has no future for Australia or for India. However much our current political leaders support this, it will not survive the will of a dissafected local populace when the coming economic devastation hits this country.

      • It’s a conspiracy to overload the public system so private operators can off their “solutions” (aka american health system).

  27. Sydney and Vancouver have a lot in common……..don’t be sucked in by inventory changes unless sales pick up, it is just delusional sellers going off market for a while


    Lacy Hunt explains the world monetary base for Mr Maudlin


    All that trucking in the US might just have been tariff related stockpiling


    • GunnamattaMEMBER

      Thats a great video – Reich always has a worthwhile point of view and I would strongly recommend a read of his ‘Supercapitalism’ (2008) for a good rundown of his much of this has evolved in the United States, and the concentration of power the Corporates have in US politics.

      But sadly to say the concentration of power in Australia is even more extreme.

      You look at the below list of 10 largest companies (dating from march last year)

      Wesfarmers ($69 billion)
      Woolworths ($56 billion)
      Commonwealth Bank of Australia ($45 billion)
      BHP ($39 billion)
      Westpac Banking Corporation ($38 billion)
      Rio Tinto ($35 billion)
      ANZ Banking Group ($34 billion)
      NAB ($32 billion)
      Telstra ($28 billion)
      NSW Health ($21 billion)

      and the first thing you notice is that only two of those companies are earning in any way from offshore and in any way earning an economic income in the global marketplace (BHP & RIO) – The rest are essentially parasites on Australia, and earning their profits off a direct gouging relationship with the people in Australia – ie how much they can charge. From there you can see why they are all wedded to the population ponzi

      As for the rest the two largest are the highest margin retailers in the world – that means they make more from selling to Australians than their counterparts in the EU, US etc make from selling elsewhere. As Reich coloufully illustrates in his video, the same supplying monopoly dynamics are in play here. Most of the shelves of of our retailers are dominated by the P&G Unilever and Nestle (etc) oligopoly the US shelves are dominated by.
      Four Government backed mega banks – which happen to run the worlds only banking system two thirds reliant on mortgages (which the rest of the finance world refers to as ‘non productive lending’ and one third on doing things which meaningfully competitive banks do elsewhere – and once again makes them totally supplicants for the population ponzi

      After that we have Tesltra – a bastardised ex government para monopoly gouging the shit out of the population ponzi and NSW Healthcare – another outfit not doing anything meaningful in an economic sense, but part of a ‘sector’ of the economy gouging the shit out of the road to death for ageing and unwell Australians backed by the population ponzi and essentially a parasite on the whole dynamic.

      The next ten isnt that much better – a look at the Jan 2019 ASX 20 adds to the above only CSL Amcor South 32 and Woodside as companies which are doing something meaningful (and of those only CSL – an ex Commonwealth entity) is meaningfully investing in Australia and Australians to produce something and sell it in a competitive global marketplace, the others are digging things out of the ground or in the case of Amcor focused mainly, but not exclusively on the Australian market (ie they live mainly off the population ponzi but do some stuff which is globally competitive). Thats while introducing Macquarie, Brambles, Suncorp, Transurban and like parasites

  28. NX eagle groupset on my mountain bike is a finnicky beast.. derailleur is made of butter. Riding to the trails, a stick flicked up off the footpath into the derailleur and bent the cage.

    I’ve managed to bend it back (the hanger was fine) and shifting is 99% back to normal. Pretty frustrating a twig would do that so easily. A few people have recommended upgrading to higher end Eagle derailleur ($400 part) has a carbon cage less prone to bending.

    • With SRAM stuff you get what you pay for, I had a bike with 11sp XX1 and it was indestructible, after a year of abuse it was still super precise changing, my current XO Eagle has been faultless so far.

  29. A shoddy $168m tower block? Raise you a $939m lightfail dud. Another tribute to Australian construction.

    ‘White elephant’: Fears Canberra light rail network won’t be certified

    There are fears stage one of Canberra’s light rail network could become a $939 million “white elephant”, with electricians concerned that high-voltage cables are installed too close to the surface.


    • I did manage a chuckle-snort — but it’s so close to the truth, I can’t LOL.
      US politics are as poisoned as those here in Oz, and for the same reason; a two-party system of entrenched vested interests, on a downward spiral into senile dementia.
      George Washington was eloquent in his farewell address:

      I have already intimated to you the danger of parties in the state, with particular reference to the founding of them on geographical discriminations. Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the spirit of party, generally.
      This spirit, unfortunately, is inseparable from our nature, having its root in the strongest passions of the human mind. It exists under different shapes in all governments, more or less stifled, controlled, or repressed; but, in those of the popular form, it is seen in its greatest rankness, and is truly their worst enemy.
      The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries, which result, gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of Public Liberty.

      TL;DR: At the next US presidential election, voters will have a choice between a right-of-centre neoliberal and a right-of-centre ‘populist’. People in the top 5% of wealth bracket will go on being wealthy, and almost everyone else will get reamed.

    • A major announcement is on the way from the government.
      I expect Scummo to double down on more business immigration and increase the visa numbers.
      I hope I’m wrong.

      • Shirley you jest. If Scomo were to up the migrant numbers the mad monk would be incredulous, Gladys would be pipped and Fraser Anning would start loitering in St Kilda. What faction of the Libs or the community would be attracted to that idea?

        The ALP seems intent on going all the way with Big Australia, all Scummo has to do is position himself to be slightly less gungho than that and anyone against rampant migration will hve no choice but to preference him.

      • @triage
        Incorrect. Scummo will cut total numbers by cutting family reunion places while INCREASING the skilled and business migrant program. He figures that increasing the no of ‘economically beneficial ‘ migrants will balance the economic hit from a smaller total immigration program size.

        Just wait and you will see.

  30. “Change encryption laws or we’ll pay zero tax elsewhere.” say tech giants.

    “Multinational tech companies are threatening to leave the country after the passing of the Access and Assistance Bill, which could cost the government up to $0 in taxes if they make good on their threat.

    The controversial bill gives the Australian government authority to intercept encrypted communications with the goal of stopping terror attacks that may arise through the use of Whatsapp.

    Tech giants such as Apple, Google and Facebook have slammed the bill and stated that if the government doesn’t give their corporations the same right to avoid the bill as sitting MPs they may have to find another country to pay $0 tax in.


  31. Just watching channel 9 doco about fake boomerangs and didgeridoos being made in Bali, complete with made in Australia stickers.

    • The Beetrooter Advocate

      Unemployment trending down.
      Growth, continually.
      Increased activity and growth flowing through to the voters through increased receipts.

      • TailorTrashMEMBER

        Too true …and Opal is a nice end product ….up market slum with a decidedly downward trending slope …….Garn Straya !

  32. Well I’m having fun, got back to Sydney. Looks like an electrical storm took out the modem and TV. I was feeling a bit pissed off because the landlord repaired burnt out wiring a while ago and made some comment about lack of surge protection.. I’m almost certain it’s what cooked the last washing machine.

    Anyway went to turn on the hot water and nothing but cold showers. Even though it’s gas Hot water the unit requires power and it appears to have shat the bed. I’m glad it’s going to give my landlord a headache. It brings some form of joy…

    Renting sucks when landlords so shonky repairs or cut corners on them. At least the TV was 7 years old and the router should be $150 max.

    Still annoyed, but those hot water units ain’t cheap I’m sure.

    I’m guessing landlord won’t be covering damage to my stuff despite the archaic wiring and fuse box on the house? Ughh.. at least the fridge is ok. Next time I’ll unplug everything before going away.

    • Man there was lightning all around us in Newtown late yesterday.

      The iMac was crackling with each strike, but survived.

      In retrospect I should prob have unplugged it.