Weekend Links: 29-30 June 2019

Victor Rubin, Ward 369: An indicative cage, 1987, Art Gallery of NSW


Global Macro




Terra Incognita

…and furthermore…

Latest posts by Gunnamatta (see all)


  1. This my chance! Winner at the Village Green Trivia last night, first cynic/anarchist/crashnik tonight!

  2. Game over for Mascot Tower


    The cost to unit owners in the troubled Mascot Towers is set to reach new heights. A number of owners, now facing what looks to be a year out of the building, are considering declaring bankruptcy as they are left with few options.

    Emergency financial assistance for temporary housing, announced by the State Government last weekend, has done little to ease the financial burdens faced by many owners. They fear taking the money, which the Government has offered as an interest-free loan, will lead to ruinous circumstances for them.

    At a second meeting of the owners last night, a number of them told news.com.au they declined to take funds offered by the state government to pay for temporary accommodation. This is because the payment is an interest-free loan, which they fear they’ll personally have to pay back, breaking their already overstretched budgets.

    • I would declare bankruptcy, like that rabbit (Nimble it) on TV. Just declare bankruptcy and move on.

      • MountainGuinMEMBER

        Bankruptcy might be the option for OOs who don’t really hold many other assets. I think this will be interesting for the banks to see how many write offs they get if/once more towers are identified with major issues.
        I can’t see too many investors seeing bankruptcy as a path forward unless they loaded up on heaps of failing dogboxes, or are seeing large capital loses across their property portfolio.

    • Even StevenMEMBER

      Some sympathy for them. But to the extent Mascot tower owners are the same ones that keep voting in these packs of idiots (LNP and Labor) I have none. The country has gone to the dogs and excessive immigration and rampant construction to meet this demand has caused the problem.

    • And, the developer literally made over $100 million net profit from the project. Completely home safe.

      • Wait, $100mill just from Mascot Towers or in total from all of the shit boxes he’s built?

    • One of the reasons for such dodgy construction over the past decade is the loss of unions on site. You have the developers pushing fore more in less time with less money while unions push to slow the job down for extra wages at more cost but in doing so ensure construction quality is perfect. Big builders even used to employ their own tradesman now it is all subbied out. I hear people (mainly fake liberals who bought these apartments and think they are middle class) regularly complain how unions were pushing the price of construction higher but now without them these crappy apartments are still astronomically expensive yet built terribly by mostly overseas short term migrants for peanuts. Who takes the money? Not the construction wage earners but the money has now shifted to the banks and developers while people still pay the same apartment price for less quality.

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        Indeed. Also add in that every single time a union goes public about shoddy and unsafe work practices the media goes to work, smearing said union but never discussing the problems they raised.

      • When Tony Abbott was PM, many people were calling for a Royal Commission into the entire building industry; instead, he called a Royal Commission to look into the unions but not any other part of the industry.

    • DominicMEMBER

      “I think this will be interesting for the banks to see how many write offs they get if/once more towers are identified with major issues.” (Mountain Guin)

      Without wanting to sound like a stuck record, the banks are the key here. If they’re at risk from situations like Mascot (and others to follow) they will be reluctant to lend against collateral unless they’re dead certain of the build quality.

      Developers will be at risk (in future) of banks refusing to lend to buyers of units in their buildings or possibly even financing the building phase — this is the game changer and is why banks should be a key part of the solution. Tinkering with regulations is just more of the same that has failed in the past.

      The Government needs to stand pat and let the owners default — if they bail them out then nothing will change.

      The State govt is at significant risk here because once they set a precedent of bailing out the Mascot residents they face an open-ended liability that will undoubtedly bankrupt them down the line.

      This is the banks’ issue – let them deal with it. Let them force change in the building industry.

      • I reckon you are right. Letting the banks eat the losses is the only way anything will get done. Can’t have the banks losing money!

    • Hmmm apparently “Someone” needs to be held accountable.
      I guess it goes without saying that that someone is not one those that sort obscene wealth by denying others shelter. The underlying problem is not simply demand outstripping supply but rather that brain bug that trained average Aussies to expect to all profit from this imbalance.
      So now they’ve had their profit, they’ve enjoyed the good times, they’ve leveraged this in-built advantage but oppps apparently their was an undisclosed downside, apparently there is a Risk that comes with this everyone gets rich plan.
      No my sympathy is not with the owners, they rolled the dice and played the game, my sympathy lies with all those that chose to see Risk where Risk clearly existed and paid dearly for their prudence. This has been a long time coming , layer upon layer upon layer of Risk, ALL ignored and not just ignored by the desperate buyers, regulators have ignored this risk, banks have ignored this risk, heck even the government has ignored this risk …yet now there’s some expectation that those affected need to be bailed-out ….
      No F’that, no bailout, no handouts, no risk sharing, for once we need to let the market do what it does best and price these “Assets” correctly.


        Well put Fish!
        No different to those bone heads (city folk) that head into rugged country without any required survival gear save the EPIRB
        ( just in case something goes wrong) and expect to be extracted when they up the creek. Actions always have consequences and to believe that a rescue posse will always be assembled when one ignores ‘real’ risks is an immature and exceptionally selfish way to behave. Its not uncommon for the ‘rescuers’ to be hurt.

      • Yeah I see these city weekend warriors all the time, usually it’s a fairly new Prado burred in the sand and resting on it’s axles, just one glance tells you that they’ve got at least 40psi in their tyres. No Snatch strap, no recovery tracks, no winch, no shovel, no clue what they’re doing, completely stuck….. and they expect me to drop everything I’m doing and come over and drag them out of the sand. I’ve even had these losers get in my face for not doing everything that I could do to help. I actually loaned my shovel to one (first and last time I’ll do that) he dug for about 5 minutes and than wanted me to take a turn ’cause he had blisters …like F that it’s not my problem, so guess what he also broke my shovel. I told him to air down at least 3 times but apparently that wasn’t the problem. Eventually I got sick of watching went over dropped the tyre pressure to 15psi rocked back and forth a couple of times and than just drove out. I could have stopped but I made him run along behind for about 400 yards. I laughed so hard watching this overweight banker (spelt with a w) start to sprint on the soft sand when he thought I was nicking his car.

      • GeordieMEMBER

        Hear hear! Put the safety net in place so people don’t end up rotting on the streets, but let them live with a lifetime of financial ruin, and if it’s a bank or builder that goes bust, they’re on their own.

        Isn’t that how a capitalist market with democratic government is meant to work? Oh yeah, I see… we don’t like to do it like that in Straya.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Fisho, loved that story.
        There is another side to that though. Used to have to tell the cops and life guards before surfing kilometers out to sea in storms. Didn’t want help but there was always some stupid person who thought I needed a rescue helicopter. Now if I wanted this wouldn’t I be paddling toward shore not away. It became so bad eventually wrote Boomas (gym) on the bottom of board and would turn it over and the pilots would just wave,”its only John” and would keep going.
        Did they thank you ? , saved two pommies from a rip that went towards rocks once on the beach just walked off without even thanks,

      • No real thankyou but he did at least share with me why my cheap shovel broke….naturally it wasn’t his fault….trouble was it wasn’t cheap it was actually an expensive ultra lite-weight carbon fiber snow shovel from my Skiing days …useless !#@$

  3. Relevant StakeholderMEMBER

    ‘Trump’s Hated Deficits Are the Source of U.S. Strength’

    So what are the benefits of being the reserve currency other than sanctions?

  4. I posted this in the afternoon links already, but here it is again and I think it’s important.
    It covers, the debt bomb, low interest rates and how it’s hurting everyone (who isn’t a debt peddler), lower teh rates won’t fix thing because it’s not helping young Entrepreneurs, instead it’s going to companies who buy each other up, strip them of assets or “optimize them” i.e destroy wages and kill morale, then flog them off for record profit (flip) and it also talks about foreign hot money buying up homes destroying the middle class etc..it looks at London, but same same in Sydney/Melbourne etc..

    Draws it back to deregulation of the Gold standard of Nixon (damn those Hippies).

    • Gav….

      Central Banks post gold standard have been operating firstly from a monetarist and then quasi monetarist point of reality, hence its an administrative issue. On top of that politicians under the auspices of neoliberalism aka “The Market” EMH [tm] forgo any State policies that hampered the aforementioned, too wit, there has been an endless roll back of State policies as everyone is supposed to bootstrap or self fund themselves aka skin in the game or pay to play.

      If you want to think about capital flows all one needs to do is look at Plaza, sovereign currency had no part in that, only an ideological preference.

    • The gold standard is a thorn in the foot of both Govt and Big Business (in particular banks and property). The connection between the debt disaster we have to today and the ‘temporary’ suspension of the gold standard is unquestionable. Skippy is welcome to think otherwise. Under a true gold standard property today would still cost little more than 2 or 3 times salary and it wouldn’t be a financial asset — it would be a consumption item (shelter). The global economy has been (and still is being) consumed by the march of financialisation — hell, most US companies these days have given up investing in capital goods (core business) that will help them grow and are now engaged in perpetual rounds of financial engineering i.e. stock buybacks and M&A. Most of it debt-financed. When will this reach its natural conclusion? Who knows. But it will end and I doubt it will be pretty for any of us.

      • Agreed Dom… rarely does anyone print a lot of money to pay for labour because there is no short supply of it. But every day our central banks are printing money at a furious pace to enable bidders to outbid one another on scarce real estate. We need a scarce currency – gold – to put a cap on how much printing can ever take place and stop the divergence of labour prices and real estate prices.

      • Relevant StakeholderMEMBER

        In saying that I get the attraction, bringing money back into physical reality and linked to the natural world…. but what is the point? For the gold standard not to be abused (audit the fed!) would require government power anyway i.e. regulation.

        Fk knows what the answer is though… eliminate human corruption?

      • What a joke …

        Coming from the ideological camp that foamed the way for corruption, due to wonky ex ante truisms, its a hoot to watch the money cranks point everywhere but at self.

      • DominicMEMBER

        There is no need to audit the Fed to discover whether there’s been abuse or not. Under a proper gold standard the people have the power to do so — they simply walk into a bank, hand over the worthless confetti known as ‘cash’ and demand gold. Once there is a run on gold you get to find out pretty quickly what the score is. The ability, under law, to exchange notes for gold at a fixed rate holds everyone to account. Always. However, governments don’t like to be held to account — particularly not by their citizens — and thus the gold standard was thrown in the trash. Statists like skippy believe that more Govt is the answer to all our problems, rather than the problem itself, which is quite extraordinary given the levels of anal intrusion they subject their citizens to on a very regular basis. The more they get the more they like it, it seems! A strange response, but then, not everyone is wired the same way (and thank goodness for that).

      • Dominic …. understand it fine, does not square with with your – preference – due to evidence. Furthermore the functioning of both markets and society are impacted by what dominate economic theory is administered during the period, of which, moeny is a factor, one of a multitude.

        So your telling me the decades that mainstream econ was flapping its gob without a functional model of monetary or financial systems was due to them not understanding money. How about they ignored it for whatever reason [ideologically] and set governance and legal systems to advance an agenda.


        Don’t know what part of, at least, the last few hundred years you missed, let alone the neoliberal period.

      • Gav …

        Saying you have no idea has more to say about your biases than it does identifying anything T or F that I’m saying.

        Come on just look at Dominic’s anti government shtick, must be why in Americas case they keep handing out those Freedom and Liberty medals to those pushing Dominic’s ideology. This coming from the same sorts that pre GFC were ringing in the glorious future had arrived.

        I mean do you two even have a functional memory of events a decade or so out of the GFC, Powell memo, Citi memo, Summers memo, Obama was a socialist commie anti goat boy that retained the same economic advisors and put Penny Pritzker in as Secretary of Commerce, Rubenomics Paul didn’t blink when informed productivity and wages diverged, endless cramming down of labour, mobile labour theory, Says law, Chicago Boys and Born, Bush Jr being informed of rampant mortgage fraud by FBI, Obama refusing the hair cut Paulson offered, rational agent model regulatory forbearance, etc …..

        But the best you two can come up is it was the moeny did it – ?????? – sigh ….

      • @skip
        I’m with Gav on this – I have no idea what you’re on about so a constructive debate appears out of the question. However, to clarify, I am not anti-Govt per se, I’m merely pointing out the fact that the debt-based money system does not hold government to account and, as a result, is a bad thing. The pernicious effects of bad government are given a great deal of oxygen by money created out of thin air — deficits that grow like Jack’s beanstalk into the clouds. I am an advocate of Austrian economics, a school that supports the principles of sound money (gold backed, for example) and sound money is, by definition, limited in quantity and actually retains its value in a way that debt-based money does not. As such, it restricts Govt power and size, which is good for the citizens in so many ways. The losers from a sound money system are those entities (private and public) who live off taxpayer largesse …. and of course those individuals who do the same.

        A debt-based money system is, by definition, inflationary and serves to rob all those who wake up and go to work every day i.e the working and middle classes. I would call that immoral, but others like the 1% and the recipients of transfer payments think it’s a fantastic system as it serves their interests. The hugely topical ‘decline of the middle classes’ is proof of this dynamic in action even if a conga-line of clowns and ‘experts’ have tried to pin the blame elsewhere.

        As an aside, I should make it clear that ‘neoliberalism’ (whatever that is) has nothing to do with anything I believe in or support. We live in a world dominated by Keynesian and monetarist economic theory, the very antithesis of Austrian economics so to suggest that the Libertarian movement has anything to do with what ails the economy today is utterly laughable and betrays an extraordinary ignorance.

      • Austrians were – brought in – by the good people [see original founders of FEE et al] that started the libertarian movement, which then launched neoliberalism. Its also the founding group of globalism or did you not get the “transnational economist” MPS bit or the whole rational agent model debacle which gutted “sound” financial regulation – own goal.

        I also find it hard to reconcile your Keynesian quip as I was unaware that the Chicago schools was Keynesian anything nor the MIT model loving crowd, this is compounded by austrian view on Zimbabwe – loved the land redistribution [killed trade flows] and then had a sad about resulting hyperinflation as they attempted to sort internal debt post facto, not to mention a romantic view of the robber baron period.

        And in case you missed it, at the core of all the wonky models is an austrian ex ante axiom.

      • DominicMEMBER

        Are you living on the same earth as I am, because I’m not convinced.
        – there are virtually no true Libertarians left in politics (Ron Paul aside, now ret.). They’ve been rendered extinct over the past few decades by the march of the Statists. The evidence is anywhere you care to look: budget deficits, runaway Govt debt, huge welfare programs. The aforementioned are ALL antithetical to what Libertarians believe in so to say they’re in charge somehow is delusional. Oh, and let’s throw in the fact that Libertarians believe that war is a racket and should be avoided at all costs — only defence of state borders at the border is acceptable, if at all. Several hundred US bases around the world and 20 years of perpetual war in far flung places is just further proof that Libertarians are nowhere to be seen in Govt — anywhere in the world. Your associating Libertarianism with neoliberalism (assuming you understand that term correctly) is proof that you haven’t the faintest clue.
        – The Chicago school certainly started off as pro free market but then drifted into monetarism (and thus interventionism – something that goes totally against the Austrian grain). Ditto MIT model/s. WTF? Ask any Austrian about economic ‘models’ and they’ll laugh at you — Austrians don’t do models and they don’t do ‘math’, just sound economic theory.
        – Austrians ‘loved land redistribution’. Whaaaat? This is total bollox — such an act by Govt is considered theft by Libertarians. Libertarians are anti-State ownership of anything and support private ownership. Again, you appear to be misinformed or have Libertarians mixed up with another mob.
        – Zimbabwe hyperinflation was very simple: the Govt couldn’t help itself and printed money with gay abandon. Eventually, the citizens caught on and lost all faith in the worthless Zim $. Nothing more to it than that.
        – Austrian ‘wonky models’? Lol, as explained above, Austrians don’t do models — Keynesians, monetarists and assorted other interventionist cranks do ..

        Please stop. This is just too easy. I suggest that when you edu-ma-cate yerself you get the facts rather than invent them. Or at least stop reading those conspiracy websites. C’mon fella, come out of the wilderness — the truth is quite liberating 😉

      • Gold has no value knolage is king.money has no value knolage is king get it keep it power comes from knowing not gold not money

      • Yes Mr wolf, knowledge is indeed king. But knowledge that doesn’t naturally lead to appropriate action is basically a waste. Obviously.

        A small part of my knowledge tells me that gold is money and has been for thousands of years. All that time and all that extraordinary change and yet that one fact has remained constant throughout. Nothing has threatened it. The witterings of sh!t-for-brains academics will not change the fact and nor will attempts by the authorities to demonetize it. The market, like the forces of nature, always win out.

      • I agree that you live on a different planet, trade shock was what precipitated Zimbabwe dramas, libertarians = biggest no true Scotsman fallacy ev’a, not that it was a ideological propaganda PR feature to start with, Paul is BFFs with Gary North and that should sort what hes banging on about.

        [email protected]

      • DominicMEMBER

        On a serious note though, skip. Can I have some of what you’re smoking? That’s quite a trip you’re on 😉

    • Watched it. They were going well until the Trump and Brexit jibes at the end. It is as though Obama govt had nothing at all to do with what eventuated after the GFC, and Globalisation has nothing at all to do where we are today either.

      • Diogenes the CynicMEMBER

        The market for decent homes in Perth in good suburbs seems to be still ticking along, someone is buying these things before I can! Most sellers seem to be losing 15-30% from the peak and often that is after spending $200/300k on redoing bathrooms, floors and kitchens. A lot of retail is closing down – it must be very tough in that category.

      • I occasionally toy with the idea of moving back to Perth to minimise the damage if I’m forced to buy a house…could probably “snap up” something decent and only lose another 30% going forward…!

    • Panic over…

      “A number of fundamental drivers of prices suggest a turnaround for Perth,” Mr Wiltshire said.

    • GeordieMEMBER

      We’re flat out at work in the resource evalutation and project valuation space. Lots of mining mobs looking at getting long term management plans in place too, so we’re seeing tailing, hydro and geochem groups all busy too. However none of this is new projects or projects that will see new development beyond replacing existing production and extending mine life at current production rates.

      All the new projects are in Eastern Europe, Africa and North America.

      So, if you’re in WA and employed, it’s a pretty good deal.

      • TheRedEconomistMEMBER

        I hear it is like $10 a schooner in a Perth.

        How do the beer drinkers survive?

    • Thanks SOPMLSBoy and A2. I’ve been superimposing Bradfield scheme, pondering rivers to ‘nowhere’ (L Eyre, obviously, Menindee Lakes). Those straight-ish parallel ‘rivers’ running SSE to NNW wedged in the L Eyre system have me intrigued.

      This collection at U Texas is awesome in scope: https://legacy.lib.utexas.edu/maps/

      • Ginger I think those are channels through the sand of the Simpson Desert, which is a very flat and featureless patch of land and I expect any “watercourses” are temporary in the extreme. If you look at a regular relief map of Aus it is like a total bald patch.

        Any MBers been there?

      • desmodromicMEMBER

        Please no. The rivers need less regulation not more. Unlike the Murray-Darling Basin, the Lake Eyre Basin is mostly intact and supports a diverse ecology, tourism and a pastoral industry. The Bradfield Scheme will simply mess it up long term for the short term gains of a few agricultural interests. The outcomes will be no better that what we have done in the Murray-Darling.

        @Arrow2, I’ve worked there on and off since the mid 1990s. The area is vast and most years there are flows somewhere in the dryland river systems, often minor and/or local. The big flood events we have just experienced occur about every 7-8 years.

      • Desmo, I’m not advocating it. Had campaigned against it from 30 years ago to today.

  5. Sydney retired the sweat-set trains this morning and finally got a fully air conditioned fleet:

    After 47 years of service, the last of the trains dubbed “sweat sets” by passengers due to their lack of air conditioning will officially be retired in the early hours of Saturday morning when the last timetabled service leaves from Olympic Park Station at 12.02am.

    Air-conditioning units were placed in the driver cabins of the S-Sets more than 15 years ago but not fitted in carriages because of power supply issues and a lack of suitable places to put them.


    Of course, we’ve heard premature reports of the death of the S-Sets before — they were pulled out of retirement last year to meet demand.

    lol Victoria did the same thing! Sold the old Hitachi trains to a collector and then purchased them back again due to mass immigration.

    23 Apr 2007

    Packer reportedly said you only get one Alan Bond in your lifetime. Trainspotter and savvy businessman John Horne must think the same about the Bracks Government.

    In 2002, it decided to scrap and sell its ageing Hitachi train fleet. Mr Horne picked up half for the bargain price of $2600 per carriage. Last November he sold three carriages back to the State Government for $60,000

    Lacking air-conditioning, they’re unpopular with commuters.

    Hitachi trains were finally retired for good in Dec 2013.

    • I like then old Hitachi trains. Fond memories of riding them in the early 90s with friends before the population Ponzi and crush, before we privatised the trains and it was still called The Met.

  6. Mining BoganMEMBER

    No, nothing to see here.

    ““What has actually taken place is that a person who was known to be very close to the Prime Minister, who is sitting on the Prime Minister’s Indigenous Advisory Council, receives a direct grant which no other person was able to apply for to develop a television program to raise his profile, and then that person nominates as a candidate for the Liberal Party,” she said.

    “Can you see why people might find that just a little bit unacceptable in terms of use of public money?”

    “No, I can’t at all,” Scullion replied.”



    • Ah, nothing like dipping into the taxpayer slush fund every once in a while. It’s not like it hurts anyone, right? 😉

    • I’m not sure who is the biggest looser here; Mundine because he stands for whoever “pays” him the most attention or Skullion because he’s an arrogant corrupt politician.

  7. CanuckDownUnder

    I just learned there’s a dedicated kiosk at Sydney Airport for welcoming international students.

    • “I just learned there’s a dedicated COUNTRY JUST OUTSIDE Sydney Airport entirely given over to the needs of international students.”

      There! Fixed. 😉👍

      • CanuckDownUnder

        Two or three dedicated countries if Nepal is contributing enough bodies to be included.

        I’m facing karmic retribution for getting here three full hours before my flight and loving the stress-free arrival at the gate, a 2 1/2 hour bloody departure delay!

  8. boomengineeringMEMBER

    Had a win the other day,Venezuelan mechanical engineer tried to fix his band-saw but failed (electric motor wouldn’t go) Around the corner from me and took only a few minutes of testing to find hidden fuse on circuit board. Offered $300, so didn’t say no.
    Flawse thanks for the China importing advice, all good.
    Afund, Mike and I were sat on by Simon and Shorty all the way but beat me again to the top. Hes been doing 2 hr during the week training sessions plus gym work, no mechanical s excuses as my bike behaved itself.
    Hope you fixed your sprocket jump. My Campagnolo used to jump over the top of the 11 tooth so I welded a derailer hanger thread onto the chainstay forward of the axle so the chain wrapped around the sprocket more.
    If you want me to send you the hand sketches of the wave machine look up Boom Engineering website.

    • BE, we usually say if someone beat us they’ve been doing secret training lol. I’ve been crazy busy with work, and Friday left to drive to Broadbeach. Two days of driving though I’ve have done it in one go before, but I was just too tired. Got here last night at 7:15 and slept 10 1/2 hours. Beautiful weather here today 23c. I’ve got a mate here and for two weeks we’re going to do 5am starts and ride before work. Hopefully no rain. The surf is well up here, but just closing out at BB, but it’ll be better at the point breaks. I’ll check out your wave machine thanks for sharing. I’d just love to quit and surf and cycle. I’m bloody worn out doing what I’m doing now and I’m sure most with a young family are.

  9. boomengineeringMEMBER

    That $300 have been good Karma after giving St Mary’s catholic school $350+gst discount the other day due to crying poor. Didn’t have to do it and she was very thankful. No resusa nothing else happened.

  10. ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

    “Intersectionality may undermine any activism that truly embraces it, because it highlights division rather than unity of purpose.”

    In my view Intersectionality provides an endlessly regressive distraction to the building of real Solidarity among the Masses.
    This is why the Plutocracies of the West give it so much oxygen.

    This stuff is not “Left wing”
    Its narcissistic smorgasbord of identity as a Consumer product with an endless offering of new outrages.


  11. A couple of things we haven’t had for a while …one is a decent sized volcano, the last one being Tambora on Sumbawa island in Indonesia in April 1815. It pushed so much ash into the stratosphere that global climate was impacted for 3 or more years (including the devastating “year with no summer” in 1816).


    Also we’ve not had a decent cholera panademic for yonks after the 19th century was dominated by about 7 of them (cholera, TB and malaria were the grim reapers of that age). The first cholera pandemic began in the Ganges Delta area in 1817 – coincidentally or not in a region and at a time still heavily impacted by the after effects of Tambora – and spread by european traders.


    • boomengineeringMEMBER

      No mention of Krakatoa ? Many times pandemics are blamed for deaths but usually it is malnutrition that is the precursor inviting its proliferation. Sometimes volcanic action causes the malnutrition.

    • Also we haven’t had a Jebus in a while. All threats of second coming, but no dice. Can’t blame him though, who’d want to come back to this train wreck? He’s probably better off on whatever CEO job he’s got up there after the unpleasantness from a few thousand of years ago…

      • Not to downplay the man-made tragedy of what is happening in Yemen but these days cholera is not the killer it used to be (perhaps the strains are not as virulent as once were around, better knowledge of how to treat and prevent it also). Whilst tens of thousands get cholera in Yemen “only” a few thousand died from it. Back in the 19th century it more than decimated populations, about a million died from it in one outbreak in Russia and it was not uncommon for hundreds of thousands to die during a single cholera outbreak.

        Also Krakatoa was an average major volcano, there was one of similar size in 1809 but its exact location was not known for yonks (with Krakatoa there were western scientists observing it). Tambora probably was the biggest eruption in the last 10,000 years or so and apparently was off the scale compared to Krakatoa.

    • Even StevenMEMBER

      Wow. Just… Wow. I knew we were a soft touch but this is ridiculous. Only outdone by the sense of entitlement from our erstwhile ‘refugee.

  12. NEW ZEALAND: Jenee Tibshraeny of Interest Co NZ explains Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s sensible decision to spread responsibilities on urban land use issues …

    With Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford set to continue leading key housing-related law changes, Jenée Tibshraeny argues he shouldn’t be written off as an architect of the Government’s broader housing policy … Interest Co NZ


    By Jenée Tibshraeny

    Phil Twyford may have lost his Housing portfolio, but as Urban Development Minister he is by no means out of the housing fold. … read more via hyperlink above …
    Following the release 21 January of the 2019 15th Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey , The Guardian, The New York Times and The Listener ‘caned’ the poorly conceived Kiwibuild programme ( refer February Update and 2019 Sections http://www.PerformanceUrbanPlanning.org ) …

    … when I made it clear to Mike Yardley of NewstalkZB that at the very least it needed a major revamp …

    Government needs to act quickly to fix housing market … Hugh Pavletich discusses with Mike Yardley … NewsTalkZB


    • … Late March ( now Urban Development Minister ) Phil Twyford explained clearly the direction of the Labour – led Government on urban development issues …

      New Zealaned Housing Minister Phil Twyfords speech to the New Zealand Initiative Members Retreat … New Zealand Government / Beehive


      … extract …

      … In our view there are three big challenges that have to be addressed:

      1. A broken system for financing infrastructure

      2. A planning system based on urban containment

      3. The failure of governments until now, both local and central, to actively work with the private sector to enable urban growth and expansion.

      … concluding …

      … I talked about the land banking and speculative economy, and the pressure cooker that has given us some of the most obscenely expensive housing in the world.

      These moves are designed to change that. …

      … If we do these things we can truly flood the market with development opportunities. We can break the land banking economy, and drive down the cost of urban land.

      We can achieve more competitive urban land markets. And industry that is more focused on development and building places of enduring value instead of land banking and speculation.

      That is the pathway to more affordable housing, and a systemic fix of the crisis that has caused so much hardship, and sucked so much of our national wealth into residential property instead of the productive economy. … read more via hyperlink above …
      … A revamped and significantly reduced KiwiBuild cannot work without affordable land and properly debt financed infrastructure … so that it can provide affordable rented and owned new stock that the market is unable to reach in price terms for the poor and disadvantaged.

      … Megan Woods KiwiBuild success will depend on Phil Twyfords success in getting well understood structural solutions in place.

    • +1 but actually he’s worse than that. He’s a dangerous self interested spruiker personally responsible for getting large numbers of Aussies over their heads in debt in an asset class he clearly doesn’t fully understand, and they certainly don’t.

      He encourages people who have achieved financial security (a fully paid off house prior to retirement) to gamble it all by going back into debt, often late in life, to buy further properties. All with a nice fee and commission for him of course.

      Plus there’s this piece of obvious ignorance: “ CoreLogic figures show national property values have grown 19.4 per cent in the last five years… It is clear that property will continue to be the best investment you can make”.

      It’s a sh!t return at high risk and leverage. I’m putting him on the lamp post list.

  13. Had my first job interview only hours after I was briefed that I will be made redundant. My advice to everyone is not to schedule job interviews on same day you are told you are being made redundant – even if you volunteered. I thought I will be fine but I saw so many people I know (and the ones I don’t know) that were very upset as they did not get a role but wanted to stay and that had an impact on me. I was emotionally charged. It is also an end of an era for me and few people that collaborated over number of years..
    Not the best interview. Feedback is that I still did ok but I do have my doubts as I know if I was to do this next week I would have nailed it and we would have been negotiating salary package. frk.. it is a role in which I can do really well and I can deliver material impact from day one but I am not sure I convinced them. I should have declined the offer for an interview on Friday and should have requested anytime from next week when I would have had clear head.

    • Mining BoganMEMBER

      Even when comfortably ensconced in a position I will occasionally slip out and apply for a job just for practice, going through the process and doing an interview just to see how things roll. You never know, maybe something great could come of it and at the worst you get security to show you the way to the street and back to your real job you go.

      It also embiggens one’s sociopathic tendencies to see how far one can push a HR moron.

      • mate in my industry it would be impossible to do it without getting exposed. IT world is very small and all the players know each-other so word spreads fast that such and such is in the markets. Especially in the part of the industry I am working all major players know me so I can’t afford to just test waters and then say no if an offer is made – means I just burnt a bridge for no reason. I would only jump ship if the organisation is downsizing and I am offered redundancy or place becomes absolute shitehole then I am happy to resign and move on.

      • The Traveling Wilbur

        Good to know.

        How about interviewing outside of Sydney and Melbourne, done any of that?

      • mate in my industry it would be impossible to do it without getting exposed. IT world is very small and all the players know each-other so word spreads fast that such and such is in the markets. Especially in the part of the industry I am working all major players know me so I can’t afford to just test waters and then say no if an offer is made – means I just burnt a bridge for no reason. I would only jump ship if the organisation is downsizing and I am offered redundancy or place becomes absolute sh1tho1e then I am happy to resign and move on.

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        That’s why it’s best to go through life as a faceless bottom feeder. Nobody notices or cares.

      • Thanks Ermo. Not good at all. I damaged my back back in 2003 when working for CSR Fibre Cement and thanks to Labour change of compensation rules I could not sue for negligence. Was given 6% overall loss of capacity even though I can’t perform any physical work for prolong periods. I had all documents showing we (plant operators) were bringing a particular safety issue up for over 3 months and bastards never fixed it until I had the accident. Then it took them 4 hours to apply permanent fix (installing $50 sensor).

        Boom – LOL.

      • The Traveling Wilbur

        If you’re looking for someone with experience in digging half a hole, I’m your man EP.

  14. Arthur Schopenhauer

    Crikey! Boeing!?

    In my experience, most successful engineering projects come from the engineering team and the production team working side by side, in the same physical space. Outsourcing complex engineering solutions is so seductive when there are quarterly financial incentives at stake, and so mind bogglingly stupid when the life of a project spans decades.


    The same lessons apply to our governance and the 3 year electoral incentives.

    • The 737-Max should be ditched for good. You can’t polish a turd and neither can you make it appealing by re-branding it.

      Boeing is in a world of trouble — rock and hard place.

    • How deep is the problem in Australia? Might not be life threatening but none the less there are parallels to development of quality systems.

    • Boeing also has disclosed that it learned soon after MAX deliveries began in 2017 that a warning light that might have alerted crews to the issue with the sensor wasn’t installed correctly in the flight-display software.

      A Boeing statement in May, explaining why the company didn’t inform regulators at the time, said engineers had determined it wasn’t a safety issue.

      “Senior company leadership,” the statement added, “was not involved in the review.”

      How good is that last line.

    • The Traveling Wilbur

      I always thought “Bowing” was a dumb name for a company that built, amongst other things, aircraft wings.

      Equally, nnn-MAX, has a similar ring to it in terms of aircraft safety perceptions. And here we are.

      • And I always thought it was strange that Bill Gates named his business after his small flaccid member.

    • Ronin8317MEMBER

      The program did exactly what was specified, it is not the fault of the $12.80 an hour programmer if the spec doesn’t include any redundancy or sanity check.

    • This is really sad stuff, I knew a few very talented Boeing Engineers and they were truly at the top of their game.
      They were the very best in the world for anything to do with High reliability systems development, now I know a thing or two about High rel systems design, but that’s nothing compared to the best engineers at Boeing.
      Unfortunately this is stuff that you can’t teach, it’s a mind set, it’s an attitude, it’s a skill set and most importantly it’s experience…combine this all in one package and what you get is a sort of technical perfection. That’s what the best Boeing engineers delivered. Their software was just correct, it did exactly what it set out to do AND it had all sorts of in built checks that would alert you if something wasn’t correct.
      Trouble is if you out source this sure you get a working product back but just how rock solid is that “working product”? Everything that I’ve read about this 737-MAX problem suggest to me that the software is failing completely, something along the lines of a Stack over flow corrupting some variable being returned and making major rather than minor adjustments.
      These sorts of problems can be very hard to find if they’re caused by a combination of faults or an unexpected sequence of events accompanied with component faults…the really experienced high-rel software engineer is thinking about the interaction of these unexpected corner problems. What the microprocessor is actually doing and what’s happening in Real time inputs and Interrupts. Real time computing is not the same as batch computing. In the batch case you just keep churning until the job is done however in the Real time (especially in the presence of a fault) you sometimes need to throw away data and cut short the processing cycle so that you can keep up to date with the input stream. If you fall behind than the system becomes “laggy” BUT what input data is it that you’re throwing away? that’s where experience and good judgement come into play. If the control routine gets overloaded by a faulty sensor than crashing the plane is not the solution, even if you know that you’ll eventually catch up….This is precisely where real time software differs from normal software development and errors can easily creep into the code when you have different code execution paths, each of these paths needs to be properly understood and properly designed even though they’re very low probability paths. This is where errors and easily creep into the code
      I’ve seen the simplest Real time bugs kick the butt of the very best office apps coder or even a gaming coders because they’re not used to thinking in terms of Task execution times and consequences of failure to complete the task before the next event runs. In the real world every system eventually runs out of memory or runs out of processor cycles if you can’t keep up with the tasks that are scheduled. This is the point where 5hit happens.
      I’ve got nothing against Indian engineers they can be really good or the can also be really bad, so they can be definitely used to supplement development teams, the real trick is to understand just when and where to used these resources….btw that’s not a decision that should ever be left with the bean counters.

      • Milton Friedman’s share holder value strikes again … pinto of the sky’s …. engineers relegated to the cheap seats in lieu of MBA’s laying of hands on numbers, boardroom governance is a perch for malleable sorts for CEOs [sometimes multiple conflicting perches], passenger survival is a factor of insurance risk, et cetera …..

      • In most respectable High tech US companies (pre GFC) there was a Technical Ladder that had equivalent positions to the Management ladder. The top guys were all Technical Fellows and basically had a job for life at a very good salary their opinions re what was necessary especially wrt safety issues were simply not negotiable, if the Fellow overseeing the project didn’t have a smile on his/her face then that project was never getting their release sign off. The project manager could scream and shout and run it all the way up the Management chain but none of that mattered and with the best companies (and Boeing was the best of the best) the project was as good as dead if the Technical leader couldn’t be pleased. These guys all knew 5hit when they saw it and I guarantee you the top management respected their opinion….I suspect the market also understood what was happening and rewarded these companies with higher share price ratios.
        IF this technical oversight is a thing of the past than I’d expect WallSt will punish companies like Boeing because they’re introducing risk and WallSt hates risk.
        The savings from outsourcing engineering will be nothing compared with the share price drops when your product Transitions from best-in-class to Also-ran.

      • “Unfortunately this is stuff that you can’t teach, it’s a mind set, it’s an attitude, it’s a skill set and most importantly it’s experience…combine this all in one package and what you get is a sort of technical perfection”

        So many managers of technical staff do not understand this. They treat s/w developers as commodities and think that they are interchangeable. I’ve had many managers wonder why I take longer to do changes to systems compared to some recent PR developers. It’s because I am removing technical debt, removing duplicate code, reducing the code to smaller, reusable testable chunks. All of this takes time. Any monkey can cram extra code into an already bloated method / class and shout “Done”. It’s the talented ones that go the extra step to leave the code in a better state that what they received it in but management just see them as being slow and inefficient.

      • Zaxxon – that is very good point but when work is done for a client who does not want to pay for time required to do proper job.. I used to manage senior security engineers and I had to deal with these predicaments all the time. Very often we would get involved in migrating to new firewalls and most customers would not want to pay for us to clean the rules.. I’ve seen some firewall rules 1km long and 100 years old. People just keep adding new rules.

      • It’s interesting that you mention “Code Bloat”
        From what I’ve seen in commercial Code development Bloat is expected it’s almost championed
        I’ve heard many software developers brag about how many lines of code they’ve written
        Most Real time developers just sit there and scratch their head wondering what sort of task took 10K lines of code to write …even 1K lines is a big program in Real time systems.
        Different strokes for different folks I guess

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        No. Too much training. Draw the line at 5-6 hours a week and maybe top out at 10 hours if there’s an event coming up. I’m like our Tony, do the bare minimum, finish two thirds the way down the pack then get the media to talk about what a great athlete I am.

        People I know who did the Croc enjoyed it. Although, they’re also people who enjoyed riding down to Innisfail, up the Palmerston, through the Tablelands and down the range from Kuranda as something to do on a quiet Sunday morning. Madness.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Mining, sounds like you’ve hit the sweet spot. Over-training is bad for your health, physical & mental.

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        Booma, I’ll do two sessions each a week of swimming, running and spin bike plus a 2hr run or ride on a Sunday if I’m not golfing. Then compete maybe once a month. Occasionally I’ll hit a good rhythm and think about pushing harder but meh, honestly I’d rather sit down and watch tv with a cold beer.

        So in the back half of the year I’ve got a couple of half marathons, trail runs, triathlons and getting dragged into some recreational rides both road and gravel and that will be enough. Just along for the chat really. Don’t want to seize up from inactivity either.

        In saying that, I do have a series of races planned in the back of my mind to prepare for this girl…


        Good excuse for a holiday I reckon.

    • I would take daily moves on CoreLogic with a HUGE grain of salt. We have no idea how their ‘algorithm’ works, the mix of data they use. An 0.23 move in a single day in Sydney is simply not credible as was the absurd 0.45 move on the Sunday after the federal election.

      CoreLogic dailies should be considered along with auction clearance rates in terms of its integrity.

      • Something went wrong with the daily figures yesterday as they were all 0.00, so they might be playing catch up.

  15. Stewie GriffinMEMBER

    LOL – and H&H thinks Trump is going to be defeated in 2020. Basically the entire Democratic leadership threw their hands up to see who could offer more services and benefits to non-Americans, or potential Future-Americans, ie 7billion people who are just as entitled to the Social Capital of America as the people and culture that built the place.

    Still I envy Americans, at least they have one party who are at least prepared to discuss the interests of native born Americans over potential future Americans…. meanwhile BOTH of our major politicial parties in Australia pander more to potential Future-Australians over the poor smucks born here.

    “Every woman on the planet who has experienced domestic abuse can now come to America and claim asylum. Also everyone… who doesn’t live in a stable, orderly, low-crime society. Literally billions of human beings now have the right to asylum in America.”


      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        So Skippy,
        Are you in agreement with this right wing think tanks (The Cato institute) policy proposal for open boarders?

        “The Cato Institute is libertarian in its political philosophy, and advocates a limited role for government in domestic and foreign affairs. This includes support for abolishing minimum wage laws; opposition to universal health care; the privatization of many government agencies including Social Security, NASA, and the United States Postal Service as well as public schooling; abolishing child labor laws; and a non-interventionist foreign policy.”

        With the exception of the “non-interventionist foreign policy.”
        I would have thought you were opposed to all of the above including “open boarders”.

        Are you just trying to point out to the ignorant that “Open Boarders” are more if a “Right wing” phenomenon and that people who think otherwise, who think its primarily a “Left wing ” thing are a bunch Morons who have been conned by propaganda?

        It’s this line from your Cato post that makes my blood boil the most,

        “Expenditure on the welfare state will contract because even if immigrants vote for welfare spending, existing residents will vote for less generous benefits when they believe these accrue to recent immigrants.”

        So Advocates of all this mass immigration not only do so for the cheap, easy and lazy economic growth but to also manipulate the Public will away from our hard fort for Welfare state that took centuries of democratic struggle to achieve.

        These Cnts want to reintroduce Feadualsim 21st century style and every bastard want to blame “The Left”

      • Its a response to Stews views about one party still looking out for a certain group, contra to the historical evidence and the views expressed by Conservative think tanks like Cato. Per se Trump has a long history of using illegals and breaking rules on his projects, yet like in his last diatribe he stated all problems stem from immigration and topped it off with the “you [audiance] know that [smart people]”. This is compounded by evidence showing Mexicans are leaving and the influx is mainly Central Americans fleeing the results of decades of U.S. influence in the region.

        This is all made more absurd when one looks at Trumps policies WRT labour – wage earners.

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        Ha Ha thought so.
        Still keeping your cards close to your chest on what/how the rates of immigration should be set.

      • E.P. I find immigration debate a derivative of more core economic factors, deal with the later and the prior will sort itself.

  16. Stewie GriffinMEMBER

    This is a pretty interesting interview by Joe Rogan of Hotep Jesus, on Corporate power over creators content e.g. Macrobusiness and how their Corporate enforced morality lies behind demonetisation of views that are in conflict with the values Corporations are seeking to enforce. Basically all accessible social media is primarily controlled by a handful of IT companies, and consequently the filters that they control.

    Interesting comment comes in at 51:34 when Rogan’s producer chimes in on the Interview about the use of the BSV Blockchain for creators to circumvent the controls and filters of Social Media companies

    “My friend uploaded an mp3 to the BSV network maybe?… He wanted to be the first on there, which he is.

    “That’s where it’s at, and I was talking to him for that. He’s almost my guinea pig, like ‘Alright, you did it, you figured it out, now how do I get a three hour podcast on there and how are people going to get it?’ Not figured out yet, people are definitely working on it, everyday there’s been advances.”


    • watched that Hotep Jesus interview, I already subbed to HJ and Handy Mayhem so it was funny to see one of those fellas on JRE. Frankly though, the whole blockchain thingo won’t fly, due to ternary quantum computing. Binary is dead.

  17. Went to an inspection this morning (2289). Property was priced low, relative to others. Turned up and there would’ve been 50+ groups (almost all young couples, lots with little kids – odd vibrant). Lining up looking like lambs to the slaughter and the c*nt of a estate agent announced “this is what happens when we elect liberals! How good!”. Wife and I walked.

    Much as msm is telling me, I’m not feeling the market is taking off, but there is demand there so holding for now. Interesting to see what happens in spring. Wife’s planning on purchasing at the end of the year, I’ll have more ammunition to hold off if the arse is dropping out of it again

  18. The Pentagon’s Bottomless Money Pit.
    When the Defense Department flunked its first-ever fiscal review, one of our government’s greatest mysteries was exposed: Where does the DoD’s $700 billion annual budget go?


    “Meanwhile, the Air Force, which has a $156 billion annual budget, still doesn’t always use serial numbers. It has no idea how much of almost anything it has at any given time. Nuclear weapons are the exception, and it started electronically tagging those only after two extraordinary mistakes, in 2006 and 2007. In the first, the Air Force accidentally loaded six nuclear weapons in a B-52 and flew them across the country, unbeknownst to the crew. In the other, the services sent nuclear nose cones by mistake to Taiwan, which had asked for helicopter batteries.

    “What kind of an organization,” Andy asks, “doesn’t keep track of $20 billion in inventory?”

    Despite being the taxpayers’ greatest investment — more than $700 billion a year — the Department of Defense has remained an organizational black box throughout its history. It’s repelled generations of official inquiries, the latest being an audit three decades in the making, mainly by scrambling its accounting into such a mess that it may never be untangled.

    Ahead of misappropriation, fraud, theft, overruns, contracting corruption and other abuses that are almost certainly still going on, the Pentagon’s first problem is its books. It’s the world’s largest producer of wrong numbers, an ingenious bureaucratic defense system that hides all the other rats’ nests underneath. Meet the Gordian knot of legend, brought to life in modern America.”

    • Mr RobertsMEMBER

      No mention of that missing trillion aye? Oh, thats right, a plane flew into the pentagon and burned all the files. Carry on.

    • I bet Russia probably has more accurate database on what Pentagon has than Pentagon itself.

    • reusachtigeMEMBER

      Miracle? You’re kidding yourself aren’t you? Youse blokes will never ever learn and never ever appreciate seeing the turn in the usual housing cycles so that you can gear up into the next mega major intense supreme ribald boom!

  19. moving from AVAST to Kaspersky – got tired from AVAST popup adds plus I am sure Kaspersky is the best out there. Also because MSM will never give that recognition to a Russian company.

    • Kasperky-free pretty good. One annoyance is it disables real-time protection including Windows Defender real-time protection which is required for ransomware protection.

    • It was discussed further up. They could have done cheaper than $9 p/h. There are profits to be made.

      A pity that the Airbus dodgy cost-savings practices were not very well publicised. The Qantas A380 engine explosion that nearly killed everyone on board seems like a long time ago now. I bet most people have no idea it ever occurred, and even fewer would know that it was due to faulty manufacturing after a cost-saving exercise.

      • The point being it is not just Boeing. Just reading that something similar happened with one of the other Airbus engine manufacturers. When one eventually kills everyone you can explain to the families it wasn’t Airbus’ fault.

      • Engines fail all the time. They are getting better, but it’s still gonna happen. You realise how fast those things rotate and how much stress is on them?

    • reusachtigeMEMBER

      That’s pretty expensive. I know people from the parties that tender online and often get poor and suffering people from third world countries to code for them for $9 per day, not hour! They have #learnedtocode as a way out of their misery. Good on them! A pity the whingers on here don’t try and compete to gain some success in life rather than try and leech off everyone else via a UBI, or rather, an STI.

    • reusachtigeMEMBER

      No need to panic bloke, cutting the interest rates fixes thing each and every time!

      • Reusa, I’ve been meaning to ask you about the Izzy Folau thing. The outrage from the PC crowd is about Izzy’s reference to homosexuals. No mention about the others types Izzy refers to. How do you feel about the PC crowd’s discrimination of drunks, liars, fornicators, and adulterers?

      • Freddy whats PC about calling out religious authoritarians for pigeonholing vast swaths of humanity for not conforming to their ex ante beliefs, sounds a wee bit like force with a side of incarceration for eternity for non compliance.

      • Voicing an opinion or belief is Authoritarian? Firing someone for voicing an opinion is not?

      • Saying millions of people are going to the worst place in the universe, because he read it in a book, cobbled together in antiquity, used to enforce divine claims on authority, and a plethora of other goodies like slavery et al, is not just voicing an opinion.

        Did you not get the imperative aspect “of” and not the “I think” some people are doing wrong bit or something. He’s not issuing a personal opinion, he’s issuing religious dogma as a fact and what the consequences will be for non compliance and by such assumes a superior social status over others.

      • Would also add by dint “of” you then have to reconcile all the other goodies ensconced in said book or how effortless it is to radicalize, see “opinions” in the U.S. leading up to and during the early M.E. war, not to mention the activities in the M.E. or did you miss the entire Bush Jr – Fox news religious movement.

      • Dogma? We have SSM, legalised abortion, currently debating euthanasia, and you carry on as though we are living within an authoritarian religious rule?

      • Why are you attempting to drag the conversation away from the OP of using belief as a means to vilify others – when its source is so questionable to start with. Especially when considering those rules are only applicable to those that believe the sources veracity to start with, not to mention the fundamentalist zeal.

        Look heaps of people attend church as a communal social thingy and take the rest with a bucket of salt, don’t think much of the purists trying to lord over everyone else. Not that the person in question even has the theological back ground or multidisciplinary knowlage to make such profound statements. I mean does he understand all the various aspects ensconced in the book or broader views of key characters or events, dog under the masters table, serve your master as you would the creator or how the whole Councils of Nicaea was envisioned and why.

        I mean what would he think of this – https://www.baslibrary.org/biblical-archaeology-review/20/3/4

        For that matter the ladder that can’t be moved which exemplifies why the temple is at risk of collapse due to the intransigence of all concerned in compromising on how to remedy the situation.

        Lastly I would suggest he have a good look at Goodwin’s Concise Commentary about a wide verity of ecclesiastical views before, as a high profile sports personalty, starts bagging on about stuff as a rank layman outside his depth.

    • I was in the market for a new car recently. All the car yards I went to were dead. I went to a flagship BMW dealer and found four sales staff chatting amongst themselves. As I walked past one of them half heartedly asked if I needed a hand. I politely declined as I wasn’t interested in their over priced cars, just wanted to see what I could get for what I wanted to spend. After a month or so of looking I bought used.

      • Wellie they might have noticed your sincerity at onset when you pulled up on your POS or pedestrian transport mode …. lmmao

    • Re Melb clearance rate – all good. We need to burn through the pent up demand ASAP and get everyone excited to list for sale by Spring.

      …it’s a trap!

  20. Xi will be a happy camper after dumbass Trump caves at G20.
    Need to keep that clown away from any real negotiations.

    “Strategic partners,” @realDonaldTrump’s response when asked by Chinese media outlet reporter what kind of relationship the US and China should have.
    China gets:
    -no new tariffs
    -access to US tech for Huawei
    -better visa treatments for Chinese students
    -truce on #tradewar (resumption of talks)
    US gets:
    -bigger purchases for farmers

  21. The Traveling Wilbur

    Could someone please explain why two-year olds can’t learn words like engine, water or seatbelt (or if they do there’s an extra f s h or j in there somewhere) but say the f word, just once, and back it comes at you with every single consonant emphasized to.perfection. How?

    OK, it was twice. But still… how does that happen?

    PS it can now say ‘Fudge’ or ‘Fudjudge’ perfectly, which not only proves my point but solved my immediate problem. Question still stands.

    • boomengineeringMEMBER

      Reminds of oldest son saying fruck (truck) and another occasion one kid running around the the house screaming cockles cockles. (cockroaches) because in WA had never experienced ( from memory) rain and thought cockroaches were falling out of the sky.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Wish that wasn’t said, making me feel old, nephew running around house was 50 years ago.

    • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

      Upon arrival at a Child’s birthday party, whilst my family are all getting out of the Car My late to start talking, 3 to 4 year old boy runs up to his friends parents car and starts excitedly calling out “N!ggers” “it’s N!ggers”
      Though the Turkish dad is quite wh!te the Italian mother is very dark skinned.
      As this mother is getting out of the passenger side of her car my boy is directly saying to her, still excitedly, “N!ggers, it’s N!ggers”
      The other father looks horrified! so does my wife when I glanced back at her wondering what to say.
      “Angus!,…what are you saying”!
      “N!ggers” he says more insistently pointing at his friends Mum “It’s N!ggers”
      I’m halfway through poorly explaining that we never use that kind of language at Home and how we have no idea where he picked up “That word” when my wife interrupts and says “He is saying “Nickers”
      He is saying “Nickers”

      Nickers I find out is the mothers groups pet name for Nickola the woman I think (incorrectly) my 3 to 4 year old boy is Racially Vilifing.
      Much relief and nervous laughter follows.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Thanks Ermo
        The wife and I had a great laugh, and she’s part Jamaican.
        She hates political correctness.

      • The Traveling Wilbur

        So… not quite sure whether children getting out of cars and yelling “It’s Knickers!” is less disturbing… however, at least we can be happy that Knickers took it in good spirit and didn’t get all twisted-up over it!

      • Just a small question
        – has he had formal audiology testing?
        – and really importantly, when it was done, were all family members out of the room?
        Happy to explain at length if wanted.

      • The Traveling Wilbur

        Thanks for the concern, good questions given the descriptions I provided above. But no worries on that score. Little bugger’s only turned two recently and his hearing is sharper than mine (looking at his reactions to random events) and he’s been tested as per the norm these days too. A couple of times I think.

      • haroldusMEMBER

        Many anecdotes of how terrible a father I am, but the most recent is the 7yo daughter going “Yeah but you fvcked your wheel mate”.

        I was reversing into a spot and scraped the mags on the gutter, and said “Fvck”. She said “What”. I said “I fvcked my fcking wheel”.

        So whenever I reverse park I get “You fcked your fvkin wheel mate.”

      • haroldusMEMBER

        And trying to escape the IKEA carpark. When I finally work out how to get out, on the trip home I get “This is fvckin bullsh!t”.

        So I explain, don’t say that to mummy. The response? “Bullsh!t”!!!

        The perfect response to anything daddy says!

    • And they say it so well. Mrs Nut was grocery shopping with then then four year old son when she looked at the price of an item and said “bloody hell that’s expensive, won’t be getting that”. Son said “How much mummy” (not that he had any concept of value), wife said the price and quick as a flash and in full proud as punch voice “fvck that mummy”. Wife nearly died and an elderly gentleman looked at her with a grin and said he knew what he was saying. Consequently when I got home that night we had the “watch our fvcken language” talk.


    As a Tory myself, I am extremely impressed in how Labour Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has managed this change … in spreading the responsibilities.

    It certainly makes a pleasant change from the 9 embarrassing and wasted years of the last National – led government … some of which is covered within this section at Performance Urban Planning …


    Is National leaning anything on the Opposition benches ?

    If the National Party can’t do housing properly, it should seriously consider shutting down.

    Access yesterday’s Kiwiblog General Debate posts …


    As a Tory myself, I am extremely impressed in how Labour Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has managed this change … in spreading the responsibilities. … read more above …


    NEW ZEALAND: Jenee Tibshraeny of Interest Co NZ explains Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s sensible decision to spread responsibilities on urban land use issues …read more above …


    New Zealand housing speculators ‘flee for the hills’ … read more above …

  23. Last night I watched W world cup game between Holland and Italy and this morning highlights of the game between Germany and Sweden. To note I watched few other games since the tournament started. Saw England, Brasil, Norway, Scotland, Spain, France, Japan, South Korea and few others.
    I am really confused how our commentators think our girls will be able to improve in the world rankings from current 6th spot. What I’ve seen so far tells me that European countries, in the last 10 years, have been investing big time in women’s football and must have been focusing heavily on youth development with main focus on Skills – ball control, confined space maneuverings, accurate passes, positioning etc.. Once these girls mature focus must have been on the physical side such as endurance.
    What this means, and I hope I am wrong, is that Mathildas will be drop outside top 10 in the next 2-3 years. Why?
    In Australia women’s football must be run by same type of psychopaths and tools that run men’s game. Focusing too early on speed and endurance but applying zero focus on skills. Until we agree that there are simply not enough skilled former players that can step up as development couches and start importing few from Brasil, Argentina, Spain, Portugal and other countries that pay less than us then this sport is doomed.
    This sport is simply loaded with people with useless certificates that somehow makes them “experts” and can pass as development couches but they basically destroy every single talented player that they get to work with. I know this as my son went through this and myself saw few kids that I am sure would have played in top clubs in Europe have we had only 1/4 decent couches here.
    Not sure if this is true but my son told me that i kid that used to play for Sydney Olympic went to Sydney FC for a season and was released as not being good enough. The kid went to Germany to attend few trials and was signed by Bayern M or Schalke – if true that tells you how good our couches and scouts are.

    • Despite being European in heritage and aspirations, Australians are too unruly to play sport like Europeans – we just don’t have the right personal and cultural temperaments.

      We are much more flamboyant, preferring flair, and undisciplined; we prefer less structure, more dynamicism. Think Aussie Rules, Running Rugby.

      I think we should be letting ourselves play Football like we prefer to play other sports.

      As for footballing cultures to mimic ourselves after, I believe we are South American in nature, and should be playing to our natural tenancies, which are not stereotypically European.

      My 2c, from decades of following Aussie football/soccer.

    • Junior sport in Australia is rooted period. That’s the heart of the problem. From where I sit, time and time again the PC parents of kids who simply aren’t interested in playing, don’t want to be there and subsequently struggle, are quick to force themselves onto committees and into coaching to protect their darlings. You can cut any kid you want down in a junior sporting environment, regardless of how talented they are. Many drop out and the rare odd one has everyone scratching their heads at age 20 something when they finally crack it and the sporting world asks how wasn’t this kid discovered earlier? Ugly parent meets tall poppy syndrome.

      • Been doing kids sport for about 12 years now and totally agree with your comment. Cricket would have to be the most political sport we’ve ever been involved with, talent usually comes a very distant third to parental self interest and nepotism. I’m not surprised Australian cricket is in such a bad state.

      • Son gave it away, a kid can only take so many disappointments. How can you have the equal best batting average and tidy bowling figures yet other kids get selected for the state squad who didn’t have the stats including the coaches son. That was only one incident. Plenty of parents turned on the selectors in support of our son. He took up other sports including golf and AFL. Plays of 3 and was the nominated as his AFL club captain at 20. Never going to wear the green and gold but as we’ve said to our kids, just be a competitive, handy player and both are.

    • alwaysanonMEMBER

      It is amazing the difference between US men and women in soccer as well. In the US Title IX requires universities to fund women’s sport including the scholarships they give out the same as men’s – and most of that money goes to women’s soccer unlike men’s that gets split across more sports (gridiron, basketball, etc.). I believe that the newish women’s pro soccer league is doing well there too – http://www.nwslsoccer.com/.

      It is the one world cup it is nice to watch as an American (dual citizen).

  24. boomengineeringMEMBER

    Well contrary to my beliefs, recent DNA tests say that no Dingo blood exists in Kelpiies

    • I don’t think they ruled out dingo DNA from my quick read – they looked at some key genes that make a dingo look like a dingo, and these particular genes were dog genes. But there are tens of thousand genes that they didn’t look at, which in theory could be dingo genes.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        John, thanks, that was also my quick glance impression, but reiterated incorrectly by the missus.

    • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

      Apparently the Dingo is an introduced species brought here by Dutch seafarers 3500 years ago.
      Chalk up another first for those damn Dutchmen!

    • desmodromicMEMBER

      Boom, I know little about kelpies but I do know from testing the genetics of 80+ dingoes in an isolated desert populations that you can’t tell the purity of a dingo by looking at it. This particular population was ‘pure’ dingo genetics despite those animals being all colours, including orange, sandy, black and tan and white.

      • The other question is what makes a dingo a distinct species from the dog…so far as I know, this is done on skull shape, which is not very satisfactory, to me at least. No idea why Australian institutions seem to be reluctant to attack this question head on (pun a happy coincidence).

      • desmodromicMEMBER

        JohnR, Science is divided on this. Some refer to ‘Canis familiaris’ and others ‘Canis dingo’. Yes, some have argued that differences in skull morphology warrant species recognition. For me, there are distinct behavioural differences. From a recent (2019) paper, “We conclude that (1) the Australian dingo is a geographically isolated (allopatric) species from all other Canis, and is genetically, phenotypi- cally, ecologically, and behaviourally distinct; and (2) the dingo appears largely devoid of many of the signs of domesti- cation, including surviving largely as a wild animal in Australia for millennia.”

      • Thanks Dr Desmo. Wouldn’t dingoes be re-wilded, rather than wild per se? ie probably came to Australia as pets/workers, otherwise why would you bring them. I don’t know the formal definition of species, but the fact that they happily (maybe even enthusiastically) mate with domestic dogs means that there is no genetic barrier?

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        I thought Dingo wrists can “rotate” like a cat making then better climbers than dogs who’s wrists can’t “rotate”.
        Pure bred dingoes don’t have that dog Oder either and they Bay rather than Bark.
        Yet they are clearly closely related.

        Are there any Canids that can reproduce with Dogs but end up producing infertile hybrids like mules?
        Or are they all so closely related (Jackles, wolves, coyotes dogs etc) that genetically they are all basically the same species.?
        I mean to ask if you can breed offspring that can themselves reproduce then by definition they are the same species.

        “Neanderthals and anatomically modern humans are thought to have interbred as recently as 40,000 years ago”
        Kinda helps explain my mother in-law.

        I reckon early reusachtige like humans were probably having a crack at those Denisovans or Denisova hominins as well.
        Like all dogs We’ really all are just a pack of Mongrels.
        I suppose.

      • desmodromicMEMBER

        @JohnR There are a lot of semantics when discussing dingoes. Dingoes or wild dogs? Native or feral? Domesticated or wild? Killer or saviour? Most that refer to them as wild dogs want an excuse to kill them by ignoring their role/benefits as a top predator in Australian ecosystems. They have been here at least 3-5,000 years, occupy all habitats, tend to revert to wild types when left alone, and fulfil a useful role in suppressing feral cats and foxes.

        @ Ermo Species/hybrid distinctions have become more complex with new genetic data than the old horse/mule/donkey idea. Canids are particularly difficult and the debate is endless. For me, a dog can’t/doesn’t replace a dingo in Australian ecosystems, left alone dingo populations with domestic dog genes tend to revert to wild type, plus a myriad of behavioural and ecological differences. I’ve not heard the ‘rotating wrists’ explanation and can’t comment.

        @Ginger Nope, not me.

      • @Ermo @DrDesmo @jelmech; from the link:
        Dingoes are far more flexible in limb and hip movement than dogs. They can rotate their wrists and subluxate their hips. These adaptions aid hunting and moving through burrows. Limbs are double-jointed and the neck can turn 180 degrees in any direction, a feat impossible for dogs.
        also @Boomen
        Once believed to have been introduced to Australia by Indonesian seafarers some 4000 years ago, modern archaeological evidence now indicates that the Australian Dingo’s origins are in fact far older than originally supposed. Mitochondrial DNA data collected by scientists from The Royal Society indicates that the dingo has occupied Australia for over 18,000 years, having migrated naturally from central Asia across land bridges that joined the land masses of Australasia during the last ice age (Pleistocene Epoch 18,000BP).

      • desmodromicMEMBER

        @JohnR among Scientists working on dingoes the taxonomic relationships and ecological role of dingoes is more contested than anthropogenic global warming! I concur with most of the info in the link but there is no consensus. I’ve not yet seen evidence for their presence here from 18,000 years ago but it wouldn’t surprise me. Whatever the facts they are an impressive animal up close and a privilege to observe.

        Good link, thanks jelmech.

  25. boomengineeringMEMBER

    My knikers response to your more above post is still awaiting moderation, the missus is part Jamaican born in Australia had a good laugh as she hates political correctness so all jibes to us welcome

    • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

      I saw it posted and it’s still there.
      Happy my anecdote gave you guys a laugh.

      Hey Booming,
      I’m returning my Cousins RPZD tester on Monday or Tuesday arvo, he’s not to far from Curley.
      Probably just after lunch.
      Are you around and able to weld up that cracked Aluminium bracket then?

      • But Reusa it’s making the younger generations more celebate. Which isn’t good for fabulous relations. Surely you want them to be more permiscuous?

      • reusachtigeMEMBER

        ^^ Yeah you’re right. I don’t like the idea of having to actually ask permission. Seems way to progressive to me.

    • Mining BoganMEMBER

      What I don’t get is why are these photos popping up now. Have people been seeing this sludge and thinking it was normal? Or were they trying to ignore because possible fix cost? Protecting their property values?

      Must be a strong reason to continue to live in a possible death trap.

      • Best timing/chance to go public and get a govt bailout? Worth trying to keep it hush hush and sort it out while that’s still an option but if the developer is gone and property prices are falling this may be no options left?

      • Because prices are falling and people want compensation/bail out. When prices were going up, nobody was too worried because it was a sure thing to sell it for more than purchase price. That and the media attention the issues are getting now. Before nobody cared.

      • What Gav said. One of the dozens of problems that didn’t matter as long as prices were always rising.

        Add to the fact that most owners don’t live there. Investor owned, just some looser renting. Incentive for owner to speak up = zero.

  26. In this month’s June 2019 podcast we look at the new Corporate Tax Haven Index released by the Tax Justice Network. What does it tell us about the global economy and the international tax system? And how can we fix it? We also look at how India is pushing the G20 into action on global tax rules – if they don’t act it will implement its own rules.

    The Corporate Tax Haven Index provides one of those really rare glimpses of what actually happens underneath the bonnet of the global economy. It tells several disturbing stories…in what we can only describe as a full frontal assault on the national tax sovereignty of every country on the planet. That’s what they’re doing. They’re attacking the tax regimes of other countries. What it reveals is a really disturbing picture of international failure. We see the powerful European countries and especially Britain lying behind their clusters of tax havens and they have wrecked economies across the world and are now threatening social stability and democracy across the world.
    But when countries like India say, no, that doesn’t work for us, we’re going our own way, then it gets very serious indeed. And the G20 simply cannot afford to ignore this any longer. So the road is open for the next steps. And of course the next steps are going to take us in the direction the Tax Justice Network has always been talking about. And that is in the direction of proper apportionment of profits to the countries where the profits are aligned with the economic substance. In other words, we’re moving towards unitary taxation and formula apportionment…And I think we should all welcome the opportunity now to create a framework for taxing multinational companies that suits the entire world, not just the most powerful countries in the world.

    John Christensen, Tax Justice Network

    I think it is important to point out that the term of tax haven has done us a big disservice for many decades now. That is used instead of claiming what we think is much more accurate nowadays, instead of claiming a spectrum of secrecy, a spectrum of tax haven-ness each country now embodies. We have to be more specific than just tax havens, there are so many dimensions to this and that is why we prefer to speak on the one hand about secrecy jurisdictions…and the other element that we need to complement this terminology is the corporate tax haven, which designates those places that play a more important role for multinationals in shifting their profits across borders. And this is why we have complemented the Financial Secrecy Index with the Corporate Tax Haven Index. [They] paint a different picture, much more nuanced where we can see that many countries nowadays have joined the bandwagon, and have joined the race to the bottom

    Markus Meinzer, director of the Corporate Tax Haven Index and Financial Secrecy Index research teams


    The CTHI page provides a weigthed measure of corporate tax avoidance in 2019 which is a must and follows Pareto rule (20% of countries account for >80% tax avoidance). The following list of 10 accounts for 1/3 of cotporate tax avoidance. I guess that US tax avoidance is mainly in Delaware.
    US: 12,88%
    Netherlands: 12,76%
    Luxembourg: 10,53%
    UK: 7,53%
    Caribb.Comm.: 5,86%
    Honk Kong: 4,37%
    China: 3,67%
    Switzerland: 3,41%
    Germany: 3,32%
    Ireland: 3,11%
    With the exception of China Germany and UK CTH concentrates in small wealthy jurisdictions

    • Good article, reinforces why I was looking at semi-rural properties. I honestly think cities will be dead zones in the future at this rate. Having your own water, food, electricity generation, sewer/septic will become more and more important.

  27. ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

    In this clip Future President of the United States,…Ivanka Trump is talking about the need to move towards unitary taxation and formula apportionmet and create a framework for taxing multinational companies that suits the entire world, not just the most powerful countries in the world.

    The World Leaders surrounding her seem to disagree and brush her.

    Hilarious comments.


    • How cute, she’s playing with the Adults. 🙂 But honestly these Adults are responsible for the mess we’re in so…