Sunday Supplement: 18 October 2020

‘Rocks Condemned’ 1965, Reinis Zusters, Art Gallery of NSW

 

Macro & Markets

Americas

Asia

Europe

Terra Specufestorus

…and furthermore…

Comments

    • pfh007.comMEMBER

      Most markets are rigged to some extent. Try to win but don’t emotionally commit.

      Don’t be Charlie Brown.

      Congratulations on your win.

      Another example of something it is best not to emotionally commit to are debates about Australian economic policy.

      These debates are full of people who constantly claim to be critical of housing bubbles and a strategy of driving asset prices with cheap debt….. but don’t really mean it.

      There is a lot of them about.

      The response to the COVID-19 pandemic has been excellent at smoking them out as when there is a bit of pressure they quickly drop the act and demand that the central bank cut interest rates and insist that access to credit be made as easy as possible. If that is not enough they will demand a bunch of other policy measures also be rolled out to further distort the market.

      The Newspapers and airwaves are full of these views at the moment.

      Royal Commission into banking? Bah !

      A few will try to cover the nakedness of their demands by claiming that their motivations have some other ‘higher’ or legitimate justification, including the following.

      1. Their real objective is really to debase the currency and drive down the AUD.

      2. The damage caused by cheap and easy credit can be managed with Macroprudential policy.

      3. There is no alternative (or at least none they are prepared to consider)

      But in the end it all boils down to the same thing.

      More of the same thing that got us into this mess………just a lot more of it.

      • Stewie GriffinMEMBER

        “Congratulations on your win.

        Another example of something it is best not to emotionally commit to are debates about Australian economic policy….”

        With Segways like that you should be presenting a Current Affair!

        Good subsequent points though – Australian commentators are basically fair weather sailors, the slightest hints of rough seas has them scurrying back to port like so many pleasure cruiser gin palaces.

      • Jim's Central Banking

        “Another example of something it is best not to emotionally commit to are debates about Australian economic policy.”

        Easier said than done! But is sure beats crippling depression.

          • My reading of that is inequality and financial deregulation have led to more debt which has then *led to* a lower natural rate of interest.
            Reframe the low interest rates lead to more debt argument as follows:

            Low interest rates lead to more savings – it’s the same argument.
            So why do lower interest rates encourage creditors to spend less?

            ‘CB rate cuts are responsible for more debt’ argument doesn’t add up. Yet 007 just assumes it.
            It’s partial equilibrium thinking.

          • Jim's Central Banking

            “So why do lower interest rates encourage creditors to spend less?”

            Depends on their stage of life, but their income has been reduced and/or they need to save more to reach their goals.

            “‘CB rate cuts are responsible for more debt’ argument doesn’t add up. Yet 007 just assumes it.”

            Combined with asset bubbles it does.

            Rate cuts tend to push up the price of assets that have a yield, which encourages people to take on more debt, around it goes. Most of this debt is unproductive, which is why wage inflation is low. If we go into a period where that is not true, I would expect rate cuts to result in people paying down debt, particularly if the debt was used to fund an asset that is falling in value.

          • yes lowering interest rates pushes up asset prices (for same current/future cash flows)
            But it doesn’t lead to more debt. qty credit supplied reduces with interest rates. loanable funds supply curve is upward sloping

          • pfh007.comMEMBER

            Sweeper,

            You better give the RBA a ring because they seem to think it does.

            “.. Fiscal policy is having the largest impact in shaping the outcomes in the economy. But the monetary policy actions are also having a material influence. The monetary policy action taken by the Reserve Bank since March has a number of elements which complement each other. They are aimed at supporting the recovery by lowering borrowing rates for households and business as well as the government and supporting the supply of credit….”

            https://www.rba.gov.au/speeches/2020/sp-dg-2020-09-22.html

          • you do realize that Debelle isn’t specifically talking about rate cuts there?
            He is actually moreso referring to the balance sheet stuff they have done. Which yes obviously is designed to assist the banks. Read the very next sentence

            “The various monetary policy actions have led to a significant increase in the size of the RBA’s balance sheet from $170 billion in February to $300 billion currently”

            In other words they are lending themselves. Yes obviously supplying more credit directly will “support the supply of credit”

          • pfh007.comMEMBER

            “.. They are aimed at supporting the recovery by lowering borrowing rates for households and business ..”

            You do realise that everyone can read.

            That the RBA is supporting the banks credit creation process by supplying the banks with super cheap funding does not help your contorted analysis.

          • pfh007.comMEMBER

            Sweeper,

            He is referring to reduced borrowing costs and that includes the overnight rate as well as the various other methods the RBA is now resorting to, to try and reduce those borrowing costs even further.

            And why are they doing that?

            According to you, using your logic, it is only to drive the purchase of assets (which you call saving) and maintain upward pressure on asset prices and has NOTHING to do with increasing the demand for bank credit to purchase assets.

          • no he isn’t. he is talking about the balance sheet stuff.
            Cutting the cash rate does nothing to increase credit supply. Why would it. He even lists all the balance sheet based policies they’ve done.

            When i swapped debt with saving I was just trying to point out how the statement is wrong because qty of debt is not solely determined by demand for credit – partial equilibrium mistake.

        • pfh007.comMEMBER

          Sweeper,

          “… Low interest rates lead to more savings – it’s the same argument….”

          Be specific – what are you referring to when you assert that low interest rates lead to more “savings”.

          Are you simply referring to the fact that when a bank approves a loan the result is

          1. An interest bearing debt contract with the borrower

          And

          2. A liability of the bank to the borrower

          And you are claiming that No. 2 is savings?

          If that is what you are talking about it is pretty clear why I don’t find it the exciting point you seem to think it is.

          • I don’t think it does.
            I restated the argument to show why it’s erroneous.

            lowering interest rates just lead to more spending.
            It implies nothing about who is doing the spending.

            Say lowering interest rates led to more spending by creditors v debtors. qty debt would reduce. But lowering interest rates wouldn’t be responsible. It’s a distributional and finance thing – not monetary.

          • pfh007.comMEMBER

            Sweeper,

            You have ignored my clarifying question in response to your pop up gotcha assertion. Which by the way was YOUR claim not mine.

            I am happy to say no more than the current object of low interest rate policy by the RBA is to stimulate the demand for credit creation by banks. If you think that is not the object of RBA, government and APRA policy produce some evidence.

            I am not interested in your attempt to deflect by changing the topic to “spending” ……whatever you might mean by that.

            “.. lowering interest rates just lead to more spending…”

            Are you referring to No 2 when you talk about lowering interest rates increases saving?

            That Skippy the Bank Kangaroo is nodding in agreement with you is never a good sign.

          • I did answer your question. I said the argument was erroneous. I just restated it to highlight why.
            Change the topic? How? An increase in debt just means that debtors are doing more spending v creditors.

          • “I am happy to say no more than the object of low interest rate policy is to stimulate the demand for credit creation by banks”

            No it isn’t.
            The object is to stimulate aggregate demand via the substitution effect.
            This has zilch do to with banks or credit.
            An increase in spending is also an increase in income, so there is in fact no reason why stimulating demand leads to more debt or even reduces saving.
            eg. say everyone increased their spending by 2% of initial income, and income also increased by 2%.
            All additional spending would be financed by currently earned income with no increase in debt or decrease in saving.

            You hear this argument around debt all the time and people say it like its self evident.

          • pfh007.comMEMBER

            Sweeper,

            Your restatement was the deflection. A deliberate but typical deflection.

            Answer the question are you referring to No. 2 when you refer to savings.

            “.. An increase in debt just means that debtors are doing more spending v creditors…”

            Who are the “creditors” you are referring to when you talk about spending by creditors v debtors.

            Who are your creditors that might otherwise do the spending in the Australian economy.

            The wholesale sources of bank funding?

            The RBA buying up bonds and other securities from the banks?

            Or do you mean the pensioners who might otherwise buy a better grade of baked beans with more interest on their “savings”?

          • Pft that hard money framework is your drama and not others, add on some wonky morals and ideology and then you wonder why nothing is as you expect.

            Name calling for years aside, albeit it does show how it effects you and the projections with it.

          • Sorry pft … but endless rewording of the same thing changes nothing nor does it make it a reflection of reality.

            Thanks for vindication of exhibit A. on personally issues.

          • pfh007.comMEMBER

            Sweeper,

            So when you said

            “Low interest rates lead to more savings – it’s the same argument.”

            What you meant was that low interest rates result in people buying more assets?

            Brilliant! I am glad we sorted that out.

            And your false accusation was that ……according to you I say the ONLY way people can buy assets is with debt?

            Another Sweeper straw man spinning away blowing in the wind.

            It would be nice if once in a while you waste your time making points with at least some substance.

            Don’t worry Skippy no one expects that of you.

          • pretty sure I said take-up of assets. not purchase. a new mortgage is offset by an equal amount of saving on the equity/liability side of the bank..
            I don’t see the point you are trying to make?
            You said “the current object of low interest rate policy by the RBA is to stimulate the demand for credit creation by banks”

            I pointed out it isn’t, point is to stimulate demand, who does the spending is based on distributional issues, credit constraints etc. (unrelated to monetary policy). loanable funds supply curve is upward sloping qty credit supplied increases with interest rates.
            .

  1. Even with failure to deliver on key election promise policies and imposing a strict national covid lockdown, contact tracing and quarantine failures and even a second outbreak lockdown, Ardern and Labour romp home.

    On the back of this (and ACT/NT election results) I’m making a bold call that all Australian state/territory govt will be Labor after their next elections. I’ll even throw in Labor Federal win as well.

    My justification is something about stars, solar storms, demography, tea leaves etc. and mostly that in the face of things like pandemics and financial crises people do not like austerity or top notch LNP “economic management”, they learn to love the welfare state as they watch Exceptional Murica give it’s citizens the “freedom” to choose between dying and dying.

    • Arthur Schopenhauer

      NZ Nats only managed 35 of 120 seats. Ouch!

      And Winston Peters’ NZ First only managed 2.5% of the vote. Well below the 5% List seat threshold.

      List seats would be a wonderful addition to the Australisn lower house. They would break the Lib/Lab monopoly.

    • happy valleyMEMBER

      Maybe you are right and enough Strayans will have had their fill of the LNP’s “economic management” (aka rorts and game of mates) in a few months’ time?

      • The Traveling Wilbur

        Not if said voter has a mortgage. Or home equity supporting a business. Or share dividends form a core component of their household income. Or they don’t have a household income and still have some Super left.

    • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

      Australia will never put today’s big Australia federal Labor party into power again.

      I’d bet anything on it.

      That means unless we do something about it, LNP are winning again and again and again.

      By then we’ll be 40m people on half today’s wages, much of the ecology will have crashed, amenity destroyed, LA style traffic, Medicare gone, welfare near nothing, freedoms handed to government, higher taxes for the plebs, Workchoices etc etc etc.

      Labor have to be broken to save Australia. It is essential. The longer we watch what’s going on without addressing the cause (elites taking over the Labor party), the more irreversible damage done.

      https://imgflip.com/i/4i5fky

      The situation is obvious. Theres only one way to fix it.

        • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

          Want a sizable bet?

          Labor went into the election hot favourites. There’s no way they’ll be favourites next election, and let’s be honest, near zero chance of winning.

          How can they possibly turn things around? There’s just no scenario i can imagine that sees Australia voting for Labor in their current form.

          Albanese, or anyone of the others have no chance of 1.understanding what’s wrong. 2.what needs doing about it. 3.selling it to an electorate that hates them.

          The question is what faith do you have in Labor to result in anything different to what LNP are punishing us with?

          Labor policies are as harmful to the plebs as LNP policies.

          Time to open your eyes. Labor are the problem, not the solution.

          https://imgflip.com/i/4i5fky

          • I can only see Federal Labor winning if they actually go on the attack, but Labor seem adverse to negative campaigns. The fact is that there there are very few Lib/Nat Federal MPs who have covered themselves in glory and most have been involved in something dodgy.

            https://twitter.com/AccessDisrupt/status/1301310586442018817

            The last election was basically lost in QLD, so picking a Queenslander – eg. Chalmers may be enough to win over that state. I think Australian politics is that shallow otherwise we wouldn’t be sitting here with Morrison as the PM.

            Morrison’s weaknesses are pretty clear – he can’t stand up to scrutiny and hates being associated with bad news, as demonstrated by that refugee protest group who yelled and threw vegetables at him when he went to QLD. I don’t think he’s welcome in VIC and WA after trying to open up the boarder and scapegoat these states, so similar acts could restrict him to NSW and limit any broader appeal.

          • The image would still remain accurate if the two occurrences of the word “Labor” were omitted.

          • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

            @L

            Yes true. Chalmers would turn the rest of the country away from Labor.

            Labor can’t address what’s hurting them IMO, the party is terminal as a potential government. They can’t win while their core policy of immigration hurts their (ex) voter base so much.

            Plebs, the environment, Australia, our kids need a new party before it’s too late.

          • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

            @know idea

            Yes, but the reality is no one should accept it still makes sense with “Labor politicians” and “Labor voters” in the meme.

            We are being scammed.

          • Labor need to step up to the plate and make the next federal election about Rupert.

            Submit or lead.

            Choose one.

          • Labor just needs a couple of things and they would win in a landslide:
            1) Zero NOM
            2) Revert to integration not multicultural policies
            And for extra value,
            3) deport Mike’s list, putting a HECS-like charge for the service.

            But they won’t.

      • I wouldn’t stress too much — the Roman Empire collapsed under its own hubris and debauchery (moral and monetary), and the same will happen in the West. It’s baked in the cake. Just monster MMT to come and that should lead to wholesale collapse.

        A fresh start is what we need — the youth and unborn Australians most of all.

    • I think a lot depends on US elections. If Biden wins in a landslide I think there is a chance for Labor here to do the same.. but I am not sure Alabanese is the leader to do it..so we shall see. But I am hoping we boot the LNP. They have done so much damage. Enabled by Rupert.

  2. The more I watch Dan Andrews, the more I am convinced he is a fkn psychopath. Not being a Mexican, I’ve never really paid much attention to him before but sheesh -what is his motivation keeping the state locked down?

  3. Took my pride and took it down
    Climbed a mountain and I turned around
    And I saw Trumps reflection in the snowflake
    Covered hills until a landslide brought him
    Down

  4. So Gary Ablett and Cam Smith – the two greatest players of their generation, possibly ever, in their sports – will retire on the same weekend, possibly with Premiership wins.

    • Gary Ablett Jr isn’t one tenth of his old man and wouldn’t make most peoples top 20 of all time. Most overrated player to ever play the game.

      Mercenary who went to gold coast for cash – and then spent the entire time as a loose checking outside receiver with zero accountability and demanded the ball no matter what – usually ending up being caught – this allowed him to rack up the amazing stats he got playing in the worst team in the history of the game.

      Honestly he is an absurd player compared to the greats like Wayne Carey, Ablett Sr, Locket, Mathews etc – shouldn’t even be discussed.

      Dangerfield is ten times anything Ablett Jr has ever been.

      Cam Smith lols.

  5. NEW ZEALAND: WHY IS THE RESERVE BANK BLIND TO THE DESTRUCTIVENESS OF UNNECESSARY HOUSING INFLATION ? …

    … Finance commentator Janine Starks opines …

    Why house prices are likely to rise post-election … Janine Starks OPINion … Stuff NZ

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/property/300131053/why-house-prices-are-likely-to-rise-postelection

    OPINION: Post-election, what will cause the next round of house price rises in New Zealand? The answer is the behaviour of the Reserve Bank.

    That’s a strong statement, but it’s a view I can’t draw myself away from.

    How can we possibly blame the poor old RB? Surely it depends on the outcome of the election. Political parties are firmly focused on the housing supply problem and affordability. They’ll open up zoning, make changes to the resource management act and hopefully find a way of paying for infrastructure costs in new subdivisions, instead of piling these into land prices. … read more via hyperlink above …
    .
    .
    Access yesterdays MB posts via … https://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2020/10/weekend-reading-17-18-october-2020/#comment-4007807

    NEW ZEALAND: CHRISTCHURCH NORTHERN AND SOUTHERN MOTORWAYS MAJOR EXTENSIONS COMING ON STREAM … and others …

  6. https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/politics/article/3105904/australian-pm-calls-senators-questioning-chinese-australians

    Now see i suspect the 3 individuals whom he asked to denounce the china are extremely unlikely to be agents of influence for the china here. But i have no doubt there are thousands of the Chinese diaspora who are influenced via the china, either because they have family or friends being held hostage in the china or because they moved here as part of the china government spy and influence programs, in that they work for the china. Regardless of the reason there are thousands of Chinese spies in this country and they need to be exposed. this is no time for half measures and no time to allow ourselves to be side tracked by the femi nazi greenies that have corrupted the politics of this nation with the aid of subversion money directly from the very agents of influence that are scattered through our communities.
    Apparently if you are not white you cant be asked to denounce a foreign government with documented human rights abuses.

  7. Andrews threatens border closures over Kiwi arrivals

    Gladys Berejiklian made it clear her government would not prevent passengers travelling to Victoria

    Victorian authorities spent much of yesterday trying to track down the travellers

    https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/some-things-have-gone-wrong-here-andrews-wants-help-finding-17-travellers-from-nz-20201017-p56606.html

    From 6pm on 2 August 2020 Victorians are not allowed to travel more than 5km from home. Kiwis are exempt apparently. 😠

    • happy valleyMEMBER

      OMG – before I wrote the above comment, I should have seen Rupert’s Sunday rag – the Sunday Tele. Front page – Gladys B… – The Interview. “I love him … but I’ll never speak to him again”.

      Jacqui Lambie summed it up perfectly to the effect that the Gladys saga is like reading a Jackie Collins novel.

  8. I wish I could do a booze reset. I basically have 4 days off the stuff so I can savour and enjoy Friday through to Sun but I have trashed myself so badly in the last 36 hours I am sick of the taste of the stuff now. I reckon I’ll do a long run this AM.

    • boomengineeringMEMBER

      Hope you have better luck than I as up at 3.50am but was raining so cancelled the 60 -80 klms Then no rain at 7.00 so short N Head instead only to be met with cops at top road block due to burn off yesterday that got out of control
      Here I sit broken hearted paid a penny and only fretted. Sitting in the bus shelter blogging.

      • Yeah, I saw that fire yesterday and thought it would stuff up your riding.

        As a matter of interest what is the elevation you get going up North Head? I have to confess I have never been there. I assume there is some distance of reasonable gradient if you start down at the water?

        • boomengineeringMEMBER

          Bruz.
          Was planning to do McCarrs & maybe Akuna Bay as well but won’t ride in the rain because the cars can’t see you.
          Have done 20 laps of the N H hill to the arch and back down about 10 months ago. Starting in real high gear and changing down with each lap.
          North Head is not that hard at an elevation of only 83 metre and about 1 klm of hill. Once you get to the top its plain sailing in the national park. Plenty of running tracks there for you (I can’t run for sht)

      • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

        This is how losing our country works.

        MSM rejig the narrative and the chicks say “she can’t be blamed for who she fell in love with”. Or whatever works for a given situation to hoodwink a dumb naive electorate.

      • happy valleyMEMBER

        Well, at least we have an NSW ICAC that has cleaned a few of the pollies out, but never under a federal LNP gubmint will we see one or at least one with any teeth (and everything would be heard in camera). The federal LNP gubmint showed their colours again the other week in the budget by cutting back the ANAO’s funding by $14m a year (ie equivalent apparently to 10 audits a year – so, now 37 instead of 47).

          • happy valleyMEMBER

            You’d hope so. But, from what I can recall the Angus investigation ended up going nowhere while Annika Smethurst and the 2 ABC journos were put through the wringer on other matters but with all charges (thankfully) eventually not pursued?

          • The AFP are a joke and will do nothing. They are there to protect the corrupt interests who control the federal government.

    • Yep Gladys just held a master class in political hypocrisy.
      How can she ever expect to be taken seriously again?
      If it were just the relationship then I’d probably give her a free pass however in this case we have the Premier of the state actively avoiding specific subjects where she strongly suspects corrupt political interference. NSW has a long history of political corruption but what’s on display here is next level, I don’t give a F, as long as I can claim not to know the specifics of alleged corrupt practices undertaken by my long term lover-boy.
      For me this is a new low, so Gladys must go.

      • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

        Yep. Then add what’s completely dropped off the news feed. Gladys used as her defence in one of her first news conferences, LNP were approached to partake.

        No one reported it. WTF.

        We should be going to an election over this, but we won’t.

      • happy valleyMEMBER

        She’s gold standard but not in the sense SFM and all the other Rupert clones were pushing and even that wasn’t gold standard. That Ruby Princess inquiry is “dead, buried and cremated” and not a person has been sacked or fallen on their sword that I am aware of – probably, the opposite – promotions and/or pay rises?

    • So let’s get this straight….

      Now she says they were in love with thoughts of marriage.

      But she’d said the relationship wasn’t serious

      and now it’s clear she would have benefitted from Daryl paying off his $1.5m debt……..

      Anyone see what I’m seeing?

      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        Her looking the other way in full awareness of his general dodginess, and presumably his visa scamming……Thats what I am seeing.

        It might have been lerv, but it was also corruption and well beyond what is appropriate Ministerial behaviour

  9. boomengineeringMEMBER

    GAVIN calling GAVIN
    Just when you thought Datsun 240Zs were getting expensive, a buyer in Japan has raised the bar to a whole new level.
    A buyer in Japan has paid a record AUD$1.17 million for a rare 1970s Datsun.
    The hammer went down on the 1970 Nissan Fairlady Z432R in Tokyo last weekend and the selling price made it one of the most expensive Japanese cars ever sold.
    Known as the Nissan Fairlady Z in Japan, and Datsun 240Z in other markets including Australia, the Z432R is the one that gets Japanese classic car enthusiasts hearts racing.
    With only 30 to 50 estimated to have been produced, it makes it even rarer than the 420-run production of the Fairlady Z432.
    Both variants were powered by the same 118kW/177Nm Nissan GT-R S20 inline six-cylinder engine; the first GT-R engine made.

      • I wish the S20 motor alone is worth about $100k+ just for the long motor… I should have bought a couple when they could be had for $20k but I thought that was expensive..

        • It makes me ill thinking that I could have got an immaculate dark green 240z auto from the neighbour across the street for $3500 in 2001. It was his mother’s. She was still driving it at 80.
          All I needed to do was find $3500.

          • Only the cool people were into them, haha!
            The 1600 was my dream, but by the time I had a job and money they were fetching a pretty penny.

    • The 432-R is incredibly special. Another changed hands about a year ago for just over $1m AUD.
      https://photos.app.goo.gl/ZXo9RkVZz3hgfG3v9

      Basically it was a super light weight version designed for racing (not sold to public) on privateer racing teams. Each car was customised to buyer specifications.

      They quote 30-50 made. I heard more like 30 and many were destroyed in racing. I know of 1 that was destroyed during its debut race in the 70s. So how many are left? Maybe 10-15?

  10. In terms of political corruption, Helen Coonan and Jane Halton have been giving a master class in what they learned at JWH’s knee during the Crown inquiry.

    Jane Halton did her apprenticeship with Reith and Co in kids overboard and obviously not developed a conscience since. A serial failure falling upwards as she answered her master’s calls.

    Crown, aka, legalised money laundering, is a shining example of corruption since Packer won the Melb tender with Lloyd Williams fronting.
    Sheraton had the best bid at the official closing of bids but Jeff K gave Lloyd and Kerry an extra week to massage their numbers. The rest is history.

    An interesting case at the moment is the retirement of Nick Warner – Ozzie patriot or LNP boy?

  11. PalimpsestMEMBER

    The completely unbiased Asia Times article article helpfully explains how the decline of the US and the rise of China means the end of Imperialism. Apparently only the US used it’s military and economic leverage to influence or force changes. It might be hard to persuade Australians that we’re not facing a rising Empire. Perhaps we need more evidence of the joy felt by the Uighers, the Mongolians, and the Taiwanese at being embraced by the loving not-an-Empire-at -all. We seem to be at a deer in the headlights moment. We might buy a couple of missiles, do some useless posturing, cling tightly to the skirts of a Country that’s lost its Mojo (whether temporarily or not). None of this is effective positioning for what looks like an existential threat. We could try a Norway model, or follow up on the German EU model suggestion, but right now we’re going down the tubes with no plan.

    • Can one ever plan for real change, or does one just adapt to it?
      What happens when change forces us to question our own deeply held beliefs?
      What happens when change delivers advantage to those that we consider socially inferior?
      What happens when “new money” blasts past “old money” like it’s standing still?
      I suspect we’ll learn the answers to most of these questions in the upcoming decade, but a decade is not a lot of time for real change to ripple through the social fabric of Australia

    • PalimpsestMEMBER

      Let’s play a straight bat to this one. Sure, a widespread reaction to change is just to let it happen. Hope things will work out. Keep suppliers the same (corporate) or allegiances the same (political). It’s generally not an effective strategy. An alternative is to look at options and fine tune them as change rolls through. Trying to stay on top of the wave. This approach is common to longer lasting companies and more effective societies.

      One example is energy costs and climate change. Insurance companies that don’t accept the changing risk profile are now virtually non-existent. Significant areas of California are now finding themselves almost uninsurable after the wild fires. China is seeing climate change as a strategic advantage manufacturing ‘green’ technology and investing heavily in it locally, to support a new industry sector. The EU is threatening a carbon tariff on imports form poor carbon performers.

      Australia however, can see the changes coming, and had a lead in solar research that has since been thrown away. We have no plan to transition our sectors to lower carbon, so when we do have to move the transition will be over a much shorter time and more expensive. Our electricity prices are artificially high to support the Gas cartel, so that even domestic solar becomes cost effective. Instead of funding an electric highway initiative with thousands of jobs and slowly transitioning the fleet, we have vehicle owners left with few options to transition, meaning further shocks are in store. We can either address change with plans, or hope things don’t change really. It’s the difference between a passive consumer and an active participant. Passive consumers almost always lose. Active participants sometimes survive.

      So it is with our place in Asia Pacific. Change isn’t coming, it’s here. We can do nothing and hope the US or Germany will save us, throw a few insults China’s way, and hope it all works out. Or think of some options to reposition ourselves and our neighbours, and what used to be our biggest trading partner that really is a panda big enough to displace any gorilla. Australia didn’t used to be a Country that just stood there, wrung it’s hands and said “there’s nothing we can do”.

      • Good post, but I suspect you’re addressing the wrong audience, most here are more inclined to wave their fists at change, shout abuse at change and pine for a time when they understood the rules, a time when the right sort of people got ahead.
        Truth is most Aussies are too poor to live in Australia so they busy themselves trying to reset residency rules to compensate for their lack of valuable skills….if you think things are bad now just wait 10 years

          • Nah mate nothing élite about it, I’m just saying that in an open market most Aussies lack the cashflow to afford to remain Aussies. They can’t afford their houses, their jobs simply don’t generate enough money to fund their lifestyle, so as a result they’re busy looking for government handouts of one type or another.
            In the one case they want the government to build houses at a loss and house a substantial portion of the population that are locked out of the rental market. At the next level (lets call it MB) they want policy change that will eliminate demand for housing and rules enforced to limit foreign ownership. The hope is to reduce the pool of participants all climbing all over each other to get a house.
            This speculation insanity won’t stop by limiting the population of buyers rather it will stop when Aussie labour finds the skills (or the price point) at which Aussie labour secures the necessary cashflow. At this point our labour becomes something that one can invest in.

    • But …. the US still have the most powerful military, the most nukes and the world’s reserve currency, so they’re not about to sink beneath the waves anytime soon.

      That said, the biggest threat IMO to the US is the failure of the US Dollar — if no one will accept dollars anymore then running and fueling the mighty military becomes an issue. So, gold …. but what if the US don’t actually have the 8,199 tons they claim to have? It’s never been audited and the authorities refuse to countenance an audit. And what if China actually has a sh1tload of gold – say, 20,000 tons as some suggest. If any of that comes to pass then, yes, the US is in a spot of bother.

  12. boomengineeringMEMBER

    https://youtu.be/KQ09_anJeF4
    How lucky I was to have Deadmans to myself for so long, early 1970’s, 80’s 90’s 2000 until a jetski dropped in on me and the same day got a tow rope burn across my neck. Still ride short boards and guns on the big surf, although my days are numbered and ability going down the drain on small waves.

  13. PalimpsestMEMBER

    The article “The final season of the Trump show”. Two things. 1. Never count your chickens until they’re hatched. The election is not far away but a week is a long time in politics. The polling still has a chance for Trump, and in 2016 he made a big run in the last week. Maybe it is unlikely, but it’s still a possibility. 2. If he loses, he’s still president until the new inauguration. He can do an enormous amount of spiteful damage, from continuing to block stimulus to promising pardons to various groups plus things never seen before.

    Besides which the Senate may well be Republican – they’re focussed on the Senate race, not wasting time on the Presidency, because they see it as their ‘firewall’. The polls are favouring a close Senate, and maybe a flip, but that’s still a maybe. With no stimulus until February as the best base case the US is not looking healthy.

    This is too early for assumptions about outcomes or what they mean.

      • PalimpsestMEMBER

        It’s hard to assess the value of a commentator without a long record to assess against. In a polarised issue like this, it’s even harder to find a useful guide that doesn’t come out of confirmation bias. The biggest issue threatening a clear view, paradoxically, is if one travels the country to see what people ‘out there’ think.

        The fivethirtyeight assessment of poll corrections went something like this: most have corrected by weighting against education. The assumption is that educated voters don’t vote for Trump (yes, even pollsters have their biases). For those that looked deeper, it turns out that’s not such a big factor. Plenty of educated people vote for Trump. Shortening the discussion, it’s the City/Country divide that’s the biggest factor (there are lots of others).

        Now some might argue that Country folk are just more trusting and don’t recognise a con artist when they see one. Well, maybe. A more likely explanation is that, in common with our Country people here, they’re just angry at being overlooked, and they will just keep prodding the politicians until they start paying country areas some attention.

        Even though Trump wouldn’t know a cow pat until he polished it for sale, he has directed Billions in aid to farming groups hit by his ‘war on China’, and consequently retained a lot of support. He’s actually heard of some Country areas enough to mention them in speeches. Country areas are so ignored, that a small amount of lip service is better than what they normally get. So here we have an opinionated commentator that has read an article by someone that ventured outside a city to talk to people across the country. Something all politicians strenuously avoid. And the country people support Trump! gosh, the polls must be wrong … again!

        Well the polls are always wrong, but well run, long term polls are not wrong by a lot. When they are wrong this time they will refine their models again, adjust their correction factors again, and may be wrong in the other direction next time. However, there are a lot more city voters. That’s one more reason the country areas are so angry.

        One of our commenting family on here has made a $50k bet on a Trump victory. It might pay off. I also suspect the ‘blue wave’ may be overstated. It’s possible that the early voting has skewed polling because people classified as ‘unlikely voters’ have voted Democrat and become reclassified as ‘active voters’ and are now included in surveys where they would have been previously discounted (just one hypothesis of Biden’s unusual lead).

        So this video is possibly accurate in its way, but a perfect example of where its conclusions, affected by selection and reinforcement bias, and a serious misunderstanding of the population and sector sampling errors, gives a potentially misleading prediction. This isn’t enough to make me join Rorke’s Drift on a Trump victory bet. I still don’t think any Democrat should be opening the champagne yet either.

  14. GunnamattaMEMBER

    OK Ladies (I know there are some here) and Gents.

    I really do think now is the time to create some sort of new political party/discourse. We have a Liberal Premier going down in NSW on corruption grounds. We have an ALP Premier likely to go down in VIC on grounds of having told porkies about the engagement of private contractors for quarantine purposes. We have a Federal ScoMo & Josh government which is short changing Australia with an Austrian budget designed to shunt wealth into those who already have it and impose some form of ‘fiscal rectitude’ based ideology on the 95% of us further down the food chain. We have a Federal opposition which is seemingly ensconced in a ‘big Australia’ China KowTow mindset which has major corruption issues of its own

    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

    The below is a comment I threw up a few weeks ago now (so there is some sort of awareness of what sort of policy platform we are looking at) . The latest is I would like some help getting a website together. If anyone is interested, can you email me at [email protected].

    I had a blog for a while a few years ago and my experience was that that it got spammed immensely. My guess would be that anything that looks like morphing into a new political party (or movement, or social discourse or whatever) will also be spammed immensely. My initial thought is that using WordPress would probably be fine, but that down the track we may need something with heavier security.

    I still think Bullshit Australia is a plausible alternative. I tend to think simply having a party of that name would upset the mainstream parties immensely insofar as they would be all too aware that every time they came out with a pronouncement on anything the risk of having someone call ‘bullshit’ and having that call gain traction in the public mood poses a real risk to them (all of them, Liberal National ALP and Greens). I think the word ‘bullshit’ although widely recognised as mildly offensive, is also widely used by just the types of Australians we would want to vote for us.

    My other thought of the moment is that I dont simply want to be a party focused on hating the ALP (as seems to be the motive of some in our midst) and would rather spread the awareness of bullshit to the point where we can get some meaningful policy up.

    First I need to get time to get a website together, and work out what we need to do to help registration etc.

    The below are draft policy positions (all up for shaping – I note Dr Smithy had some good tax positions on one of the comments loaded but I cant find them)

    This is Bullshit – Bullshit Australia!

    Does Australia’s body politic – both mainstream sides including the Lberal Party, the National Party and the Australian Labor Party – have at its core an economic policy of completely trashing the competitive basis of the Australian economy and to inflict lasting economic pain on all Australians?

    Have Australian public sector data gathering, regulatory, and policy formulation organisations and departments been so corrupted that they do not identify the above? Have they been so neutered that they cannot report the above to Australian politicians?

    And at that point

    Are Australian political and public sector elites acting in the best interests of Australians? Are they accountable for acting in the interests and explaining their actions to Australians to a sufficient degree enabling Australians to feel that their politicians and senior policy makers are accountable to them? ….and if they are not, How can they be made more so?

    It is time for open revolt.

    Bullshit Australia – the party to identify and deal with Australian Bullshit and to promote informed and data backed decisionmaking throughout the political and administrative bodies of Australia, and to hold politicians, public officials and corporate interests to account for past decisions made, starting with a permanent standing Australian Corruption Commission.

    I propose we aim initially – the next Federal election – at trying to get up 4 Senators from each state. I propose we get as far as we can up the nose of the current ‘elites’ by constipating their policy platforms in the Senate.
    I think/suspect we currently lack women…….

    Key Slogan
    ‘This is Bullshit!’
    Men and Women of Australia, Have you ever wondered about your energy costs ………‘This is Bullshit!’
    Do you wonder why your salary hasnt gone up in donkeys years? ‘This is Bullshit!’
    Do you work in a large organisation wondering why psychopaths inhabit the upper floors and you get stuck with meaningless KPIs? ‘This is Bullshit!’
    Do you worry about if your kids will get a decent education in a government school while ‘elite’ private schools get more funding from all levels of government than your kids school does? ‘This is Bullshit!’
    Do you wonder why your governments keep banging on about immigration needed for skills shortages when kids with Master degrees are joining the military as base grade grunts because there is nothing else for them to get into? ‘This is Bullshit!’
    Do you wonder why Australia, the worlds largest gas exporter has the worlds most expensive gas in Sydney and Melbourne? ‘This is Bullshit!’
    Do you wonder why foreign nationals traipsed on in and laundered money through Australian real estate so your kids need to move to Campbelltown to be able to afford a house, and hack out a 2 hour commute to a peanut paying gig every day? ‘This is Bullshit!’

    Every time a mainstream politicians opens his mouth (or her mouth) in the public domain, just point out ‘This is Bullshit!’

    Draft Policy Platform – for discussion/arguing about/ data provision
    I propose that the Bullshit Australia and the Macrobusiness cognoscenti run a full campaign in the upcoming election to get ourselves elected as the swing players, running on a platform revolving around (with negotiations/debate/argy bargy) the below…….

    – which would at least offer some sort of genuine left and data backed – and openly transparent – presence in parliament

    Policy Positions

    Constitution

    · Enshrine Medicare into Constitution

    · Enshrine ABC funding into Constitution

    · Enshrine Australian Bureau of Statistics funding into Constitution

    · Enshrine political party funding transparency into Constitution

    · Enshrine freedom from foreign influence legislation into constitution

    · Enshrine requirement for all candidates for every election in Australia to be approved by AEC prior to standing for parliament

    · Enshrine a National Crime & Corruption Commission into Constitution and give it investigatory powers.

    Taxation

    · End negative gearing

    · End capital gains tax dispensation

    · End health insurance rebate

    · Implement Federal Land tax

    · Remove PAYE taxation for those earning under 55K (but retain/create Medicare (4%), Defence (2%), ABS (1%) and ABC (1%) levy

    · Inclusion of family home in determination of access to the aged pension where the home is worth more than 500k.

    · Development and maintenance of publicly available database on Australian taxpayers [companies & individuals]

    Economic and Monetary Policy

    · Reinclusion of employee and community representatives on RBA Board.

    · Requirement for RBA to report quarterly to Parliament on monetary policy in relation to wages and housing costs

    · Requirement for RBA to report quarterly to Parliament on the effective use of taxpayers funds in relation to support for Australian banks and financial system entities.

    · Requirement for RBA, Treasury, and other government agencies (including ABS) to develop standards and monitor quality of life issues being faced by Australians (both on average and by decile) and report on how policies being adopted by them influence a range of demographics

    · Mandate the creation of new entity to be called the Australian personal public and corporate debt commission to produce analysis on the debt, indebtitude and debt servicing of Australians and Australian entities This organisation is to have representatives of the RBA, Treasury, State governments, local governments, retail banks and community organisations at a board level.

    · Requirement for RBA to report quarterly to Parliament on money creation and the beneficiaries of money creation over the preceding quarter and year, and forecast such into the future.

    Housing

    · Commence federal government building housing

    · Implement competitive GST Bonus payable to states which do best on housing affordability and housing creation

    · Enshrine right to housing into Constitution

    · Enshrine a National Probity and Veracity test for all funds used for housing purchases.

    Urban Design and Construction
    · Establish a set of national standards for residential design and construction. Enforce these standards with criminal penalties.
    · Establish ‘Plot Ratios’ in the state planning systems to ensure adequate green space on residential blocks.
    · Establish a national policy to harvest storm water for urban parks and open spaces.
    · Establish access to natural light as a property right.
    · Re-establish the professional registration of building related engineering services.
    · Outlaw private building surveyors and re-establish the system of Municipal Councils administering building standards.

    Politicians

    · Mandate real time visibility of politicians allowances and outlays

    · Mandate Housing affordability requirement for all politicians to reaffirm whenever they propose legislation

    · Audit all payments to or on behalf of politicians

    · Mandate funding transparency for all levels of Australian government (Federal State and Local), and a donations and gifts declaration requirement for all persons above a particular level (about SOG C in APS) in all public services of budget funded organisations (including Universities)

    · Mandate rate of politicians salary at 2, 3 , or 4 times average full time earnings.

    · Mandate access to politicians super is only accessible by vote of the seat which politician represented each 5 years at rate of 25% 50% 75% or 100% of standard politician rate.

    · Mandate all politicians and all political aspirants seek and gain clearance from Australian Electoral Commission on suitability for office regarding S144 of the Constitution & fiscal relationships with the Australian Taxpayer

    Industrial Relations

    · Reintroduction of the Australian Industrial relations Commission with powers to intervene in cases of Award and Agreement transgression – whether brought before it by parties or now.

    · Additional role for revived AIRC will be to oversee employee superannuation payments, their payment by employers, and the effective deployment of these funds as regards to the interests of employees (and with a view to minimising longer term budget and pension impacts on government outlays).

    · Additional role for revived AIRC to oversee use of contractors, contracting arrangements, and corporate entities to ensure employees are appropriately addressed for entitlements.

    Climate Environment & Agriculture

    Mandate of Inland Water Commission

    Abolition of tradable water rights

    Audit of all inland water resources and adoption of real time water availability monitoring.

    An investigation into the viability of major water users in the Murray darling basin (eg cotton farming) and the impact these have on water for other water usage in the basin

    Mandate of Australian Native Flora and Land Clearance Commission and audit of all Flora on Australian landmass and adoption of real time monitoring

    General policies to promote reforestation where Australian Native Flora and Land Clearance Commission designates appropriate

    Mandate of Australian Salt Office to promote annd monitor management of salt issues in land use

    Energy

    · Mandate gas reservation policy to ensure globally cheap electricity and gas.

    · Mandate solar panels and hot water on all new dwelling construction

    · Mandate tax deductability of residential and corporate solar battery investment

    Defence

    · Enshrine right to lifetime medical care for all Australians who have served in the military more than 7 years

    · Mandate immigration rights (for individuals and families) for those foreign nationals agreeing to serve 10 years in ADF

    · Mandate that no deployment of more than 200 ADF personnel to any particular offshore location or theatre of operations can occur without debate and vote in joint sitting of parliament.

    Education

    · Remove student visas from right to residence and housing purchase

    · Remove student fees from first degree in science, mathematics, finance, medicine

    · Increase training of medical practitioners and access to medical degrees

    · Remove all public funding for non government schools

    Immigration

    · Mandate economic diversity criteria

    · Mandate country of origin criteria so that applicants of no nation comprise more than 10% of the total immigration intake in any one year.

    · Enshrine 70k NOM per annum as Immigration base, with priority to refugees and families

    · Allow NOM above 70k per year only where economic diversity, debt, education, housing affordability, intergenerational quality of life and employment conditions are being met.

    · Allow temporary visas in circumstances (eg academic world, some science) where globalised workforce would expect it.

    · End temporary work visas unless companies can demonstrate they have made attempt to develop their own skills in their own workplaces, or made genuine attempt to source skills within Australia.

    · End Special Investor Visas (except where entity is contributing to export or import competing business in Australia employing more than 10 Australian employees)

    Free Trade Agreements

    · Mandate audit of all Free Trade Agreements entered into prior to signature and ratification by Australian parliament

    · Have productivity commission audit all extant FTAs Australia is signatory to

    Foreign Policy
    Foreign Aid with a focus on:
    – The Pacific
    – Supporting nations on the frontline of refugee crises to make safe camps there with the hope they can return.
    – Empowering women in developing countries to make decisions on family size.

    Public Service

    · Commence regionalisation policy for major APS agencies

    · National audit of all APS outsourcing since 2000

    · Mandate that no company identified to shift profits offshore can receive government contract (onus is on company to prove and gain certification from ATO)

    · Mandate that all contracted services in Australian public sector are audited and re[ported on to parliament for effective use of public monies, and with all transition costs (including relocations and redundancies) included in that consideration.

    · Mandate that selection for all Senior Executive Service Positions in the Australian Public Service be subject to approval of APS Probity Commission

    · Mandate creation of Evaluator General for all public policy proposals

    · Mandate all policy that can be based on empirical evidence should be so based
    · Mandate any policy that is intended as an interim measure have a review date and terms of review attached to it, and
    · Mandate that all policy Have a clear plan for the future of the nation at a federal and state level, so policy has a long term rather than short term vision

    Social Welfare

    · Make unemployment the same as study assistance

    · Re Establish Commonwealth Employment Service

    · Mandate requirement for all calls to all social welfare services be monitored, and answered within 10 minutes

    Internet Data

    · Mandate that all Australians own the data collected on them

    Royal Commissions

    · Royal Commission into the Tertiary Education Sector and Links to Foreign States

    · Royal Commission into Private Indebtedness

    · Royal Commission into the Funding of Australian Politicians

    · Royal Commission into Housing Affordability

    · Royal Commission into the advent of COVID 19 – its Origins, entrance to Australia, and effects on the Australian Public

    · Royal Commission into the value for the Australian people & Impact on budget of Australian Public Sector Outsourcing and the Embedding of Private Sector Providers into Australian Public Sector Service Provision

    · Royal Commission into Housing Affordability

    • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

      I don’t want to hate on Labor either, but if you go in without criticising Labor and highlighting their betrayal of everything, why would anyone vote for the BS party?

      Labor are in the way, and have to be destroyed to move forward.

      I’ll help with anything you need gunna. I’m not just anti Labor, I’ve actually got a very broad range of skills.

      Can I suggest you fund-raise via MB or gofundme to get this started.

      Glad to see deletion of the policies that have made Labor so toxic to the electorate.

    • Hmmm Plenty of RC’s should go a long way towards gaining support from the legal community
      but what is it that they say about RC’s and never starting down a path if you don’t know where it leads

    • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

      The slogans are awesome gunna. Get rid of “Cambelltown” and replace with “further out” or something. People get upset about that stuff. Ditto the “army grunt”. Don’t want to demean anyone…..and definitely don’t want to devalue our military personnel.

      Everything LNP, Labor and MSM are selling is BS. I like it.

    • Shades of MessinaMEMBER

      Removing student fees of a first degree in Finance ?.

      The last thing you want is more of those pr!cks, they are the ones who got us in this mess in the first place !. Most Mathematicians also end up in Finance.

      Teaching and Teachers in this country badly needs a shot in the arm.

    • macaroni jewelerMEMBER

      Suggestions-
      All religions pay Tax as per non-religious individuals/ organisations.
      All Energy, Food, Water, Communications, Defense Infrastructure to be 100% Australian owned and managed.
      Re-establish commonwealth works departments, controlled by industry leaders not MBA’s. with the sole aim to be the leaders in all fields of engineering; CSIRO restructured with a research science priority, retain patents and value to Australian owned industry.

    • Suggestion:
      Give the Treasurer on advice of the corporate regulator authority to remove CEOs where they breach an agreed minimum criteria based on community expectations.

    • From the other week:

      Constitution / Electoral reform
      I feel like these should be doable without fundamentally redesigning the system ?
      * Recall elections (eg: get X number of signatures from the electorate and trigger a by-election.)
      * Citizen-initiated legislation (eg: get X number of signatures across the country to force legislation into consideration)
      The trick here is making X high enough to discourage stupidity but low enough to be feasible.

      Reform political donations
      * Allow donations from registered voters only.
      * Overt “volunteer” time (eg: doorknocking, creating campaign materials, etc) counts as a “donation” at hours * minimum wage (additional allowances for people who are time-rich – eg: retirees, part-time workers, unemployed, etc) On further reflection I think this was a bad idea as it would discourage people from getting involved, even though it makes the next point a bit harder to justify.
      * Max annual donation limit per person equivalent to 4 weeks @ minimum wage (so about $3k)
      * Donations must be processed through a centralised system with real-time disclosure. Donors are publicly anonymous.
      * Deliberate attempts to circumvent limits by donors should be subject to crushing fines. Mandatory gaol time for repeat offenses or attempts using co-ordination or coercion (eg: someone giving a group of others money to donate).
      * Deliberate attempts to circumvent limits by politicians should be subject to mandatory gaol time and loss of any possible ongoing benefits (eg: pension).

      Taxation
      Maybe make an explicit point around the purposes of taxation being to drive economic and social policy – (re-)distribution/investment of wealth (with a preference that people make those decisions themselves), disincentivise undesirable behaviour, incentivise desirable behaviour, etc ? Ie: we levy income/wealth taxes to encourage productive investment and discourage unproductive accumulation, we levy sin taxes to discourage harmful behaviour, we provide tax deductions/breaks to encourage good behaviour.

      Remove PAYE taxation for those earning under 55K (but retain/create Medicare (4%), Defence (2%), ABS (1%) and ABC (1%) levy

      I don’t really see the point of special levies.

      How about this instead:
      * Tax-free threshold is set at the median income (adjusted each year based on previous year’s tax returns).
      * Tax brackets defined as based off income percentile or multiples of the median income rather than fixed $ figures. Eg: set marginal tax rates based on whether your income falls in the top 0.01%, 0.1%, 1%, 5%, 10%, 25%, or at 2x, 5x, 10x, 25x, 50x, 100x median income. (I have not run these percentages/multipliers against actual numbers to see if they are reasonable – it’s more about pushing the concept, then refining the criteria. The vast majority of people should pay little to no tax, but tax rates should increase sharply at the top end just like income and wealth inequality does.
      * Taxes should start to get punishingly high past about 25-50x median (per above the objective here is to get really high income earners to do something more productive with their money than have it taxed).
      * A wealth tax (modelled after the Swiss)
      * Death/estate taxes, but per Damien’s (?) suggestion the other day, come at it from the angle of a maximum allowance for recipients after which it is taxed as income. Again, the objective here is to incentivise distribution of wealth/money rather than having it taxed – ie: if you’re going to die a squillionaire, distribute your wealth how you see fit to relatives, charities, etc or it will be brutally taxed. Care needs to be taken with the PPoR (per next point), farmers, small business owners.

      Inclusion of family home in determination of access to the aged pension where the home is worth more than 500k.

      I disagree with this to a degree. Lots of people will have ended up with huge paper growth in wealth through the property bubble but haven’t benefitted in real terms from that – so they shouldn’t be punished.

      That said, if someone is sitting on a massively valuable (10s of $millions) house… So I guess my caution here is more around the threshold amount ($500k seems low) than the principle of the issue. I actually think most of these threshold amounts (eg: for the estate tax above as well) should be fairly generous – the problem is the massively dynastically wealthy, not the upper end of the middle classes leaving their children a house worth a couple of million.

      Indeed, in general I am fine with the cutoffs or allowances before taxes really start to bite to be pretty generous. It helps avoid simplistic divisive arguments about whether Engineers and GPs, or homeowners who got lucky and have a lot of theoretical wealth are “rich”.

      How about:
      * Leveraging increases in property value (eg: re-mortgaging at a larger amount) trigger a CGT event.
      * Retain the PPoR CGT exemption but only for people moving from one PPoR to another (maybe allow a 12 month grace period to buy a new PPoR).

      Development and maintenance of publicly available database on Australian taxpayers [companies & individuals]

      Could go down the radical transparency path of Norway (I think it is), where everybody’s tax returns are publicly available. 🙂

      Politicians
      Mandate rate of politicians salary at 2, 3 , or 4 times average full time earnings.

      I actually think ALL PS wages/wage brackets should be calculated as a multiplier of the base social security payment. The multipliers should be relatively hard to change (especially for politicians), but the base payment should be much easier (and indexed to inflation (or maybe median wage?) at a minimum).

      Immigration
      Allow temporary visas in circumstances (eg academic world, some science) where globalised workforce would expect it.

      I assume this is to address skilled immigration ?

      I’ve always said setting (and policing/maintaing) the requirements for skilled immigration sufficiently high would fix most of the problems here. Eg:
      * Minimum Master’s Degree in directly relevant field (academic sector) or 10 years of directly relevant work experience.
      * Must have a job offer to apply for a visa
      * Minimum salary for skilled immigrants should be something like 2x national median income or 1.5x median income within the industry sector, whichever is highest.

      Social welfare
      * Make Centrelink the administrative point of politician pensions and associated lifetime perks, with no “special caller” lines or exemptions.
      * Introduce a job guarantee.
      * Provide specific additional support around transport and accommodation to people prepared to relocate to follow seasonal rural work.
      * Simplify and reduce means-testing and “mutual obligation”.

      Education
      * Expand the publicly-funded school system to include childcare.

      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        Smithy, vis your thoughts I think they are generally good (and thought so the other week)

        Constitution / Electoral reform
        I feel like these should be doable without fundamentally redesigning the system ?
        * Recall elections (eg: get X number of signatures from the electorate and trigger a by-election.)
        * Citizen-initiated legislation (eg: get X number of signatures across the country to force legislation into consideration)
        The trick here is making X high enough to discourage stupidity but low enough to be feasible.

        Agree, I think Australia lacks that currently, and I think this has the effect of diminishing the accountability of politics across the board.

        Reform political donations
        * Allow donations from registered voters only.
        * Max annual donation limit per person equivalent to 4 weeks @ minimum wage (so about $3k)
        * Donations must be processed through a centralised system with real-time disclosure. Donors are publicly anonymous.
        * Deliberate attempts to circumvent limits by donors should be subject to crushing fines. Mandatory gaol time for repeat offenses or attempts using co-ordination or coercion (eg: someone giving a group of others money to donate).
        * Deliberate attempts to circumvent limits by politicians should be subject to mandatory gaol time and loss of any possible ongoing benefits (eg: pension).

        I like it, particularly the last two points.

        Taxation
        Maybe make an explicit point around the purposes of taxation being to drive economic and social policy – (re-)distribution/investment of wealth (with a preference that people make those decisions themselves), disincentivise undesirable behaviour, incentivise desirable behaviour, etc ? Ie: we levy income/wealth taxes to encourage productive investment and discourage unproductive accumulation, we levy sin taxes to discourage harmful behaviour, we provide tax deductions/breaks to encourage good behaviour.

        Remove PAYE taxation for those earning under 55K (but retain/create Medicare (4%), Defence (2%), ABS (1%) and ABC (1%) levy

        I don’t really see the point of special levies.

        I am not adamant about it but I do think that people being able to say ‘I pay X to Medicare’ Y to Defence Z to ABS and Z also to ABC will focus them on what those organisations do and the context in which they do it, and from there maybe take more interest in policy surrounding them. I also wonder if another levy, for Environment, might also be desirable. But as I said as long as all these are funded appropriately and not starved of funds to political effect, as was the ABS, then I tend to be a buyer of any idea I think will work.

        How about this instead:
        * Tax-free threshold is set at the median income (adjusted each year based on previous year’s tax returns).
        * Tax brackets defined as based off income percentile or multiples of the median income rather than fixed $ figures. Eg: set marginal tax rates based on whether your income falls in the top 0.01%, 0.1%, 1%, 5%, 10%, 25%, or at 2x, 5x, 10x, 25x, 50x, 100x median income. (I have not run these percentages/multipliers against actual numbers to see if they are reasonable – it’s more about pushing the concept, then refining the criteria. The vast majority of people should pay little to no tax, but tax rates should increase sharply at the top end just like income and wealth inequality does.
        * Taxes should start to get punishingly high past about 25-50x median (per above the objective here is to get really high income earners to do something more productive with their money than have it taxed).
        * A wealth tax (modelled after the Swiss)
        * Death/estate taxes, but per Damien’s (?) suggestion the other day, come at it from the angle of a maximum allowance for recipients after which it is taxed as income. Again, the objective here is to incentivise distribution of wealth/money rather than having it taxed – ie: if you’re going to die a squillionaire, distribute your wealth how you see fit to relatives, charities, etc or it will be brutally taxed. Care needs to be taken with the PPoR (per next point), farmers, small business owners.

        There is nothing there I disagree with in principle. I wonder about the 25-30 times median income for punishing taxes (with view it would need to be maybe 10 times)but I am not adamant about it and (I am ex-IR for a living and tend to the view there is always more than one way to fry an egg) very much agree that the higher earners in our society should be encouraged to do something productive with their wealth (and understand that this is the basis of them being taxed very highly at a certain point) .

        Inclusion of family home in determination of access to the aged pension where the home is worth more than 500k.

        I disagree with this to a degree. Lots of people will have ended up with huge paper growth in wealth through the property bubble but haven’t benefitted in real terms from that – so they shouldn’t be punished.

        That said, if someone is sitting on a massively valuable (10s of $millions) house… So I guess my caution here is more around the threshold amount ($500k seems low) than the principle of the issue. I actually think most of these threshold amounts (eg: for the estate tax above as well) should be fairly generous – the problem is the massively dynastically wealthy, not the upper end of the middle classes leaving their children a house worth a couple of million.

        Indeed, in general I am fine with the cutoffs or allowances before taxes really start to bite to be pretty generous. It helps avoid simplistic divisive arguments about whether Engineers and GPs, or homeowners who got lucky and have a lot of theoretical wealth are “rich”.

        How about:
        * Leveraging increases in property value (eg: re-mortgaging at a larger amount) trigger a CGT event.
        * Retain the PPoR CGT exemption but only for people moving from one PPoR to another (maybe allow a 12 month grace period to buy a new PPoR).

        I tend to the view that what is needed is to dissuade a very large section of Australian society that the concept of rising house prices is good for them. Again I wouldnt particularly want to be that adamant about it but I do think that coming from a backdrop (of a generation) where a lot of people have been spending housing earned income, and that ensuing generations now need to go into life deforming debt to meet the entry cost of housing, I still think there is a case for keeping the cutoff point for pension purposes fairly low. How low is always going to be a tender point, but I would be inclined to look at low enough to to have a pension impact on a lot of people, and high enough so that ordinary Australians dont think it is likely to affect them. Obviously that would have a significant impact in inner Sydney, Melbourne Brisbane and the like. Again the idea would be to be quite overt in establishing that housing price rises were not an inherently ‘good’ thing.

        Development and maintenance of publicly available database on Australian taxpayers [companies & individuals]

        Could go down the radical transparency path of Norway (I think it is), where everybody’s tax returns are publicly available. 🙂

        I completely agree with Norway’s path. Someone asked recently here about why the Scandinavian countries tended to have more trust in their elected officials recently and I referred to greater awareness of public organisations and role they play, but the overtly transparent nature of their taxation settings is another.

        Politicians
        Mandate rate of politicians salary at 2, 3 , or 4 times average full time earnings.

        I actually think ALL PS wages/wage brackets should be calculated as a multiplier of the base social security payment. The multipliers should be relatively hard to change (especially for politicians), but the base payment should be much easier (and indexed to inflation (or maybe median wage?) at a minimum).

        Completely agree, including for the Public Service.

        Immigration
        Allow temporary visas in circumstances (eg academic world, some science) where globalised workforce would expect it.

        I assume this is to address skilled immigration ?

        I’ve always said setting (and policing/maintaing) the requirements for skilled immigration sufficiently high would fix most of the problems here. Eg:
        * Minimum Master’s Degree in directly relevant field (academic sector) or 10 years of directly relevant work experience.
        * Must have a job offer to apply for a visa
        * Minimum salary for skilled immigrants should be something like 2x national median income or 1.5x median income within the industry sector, whichever is highest.

        completely agree. I am against the population ponzi, but have no issue with going offshore for skills which arent here, especially if an employer has made some effort to engender those skills here, and especially if an employer can demonstrate that those skills will be fostered here using foreign/visa holders.

        Social welfare
        * Make Centrelink the administrative point of politician pensions and associated lifetime perks, with no “special caller” lines or exemptions.
        * Introduce a job guarantee.
        * Provide specific additional support around transport and accommodation to people prepared to relocate to follow seasonal rural work.
        * Simplify and reduce means-testing and “mutual obligation”.

        Agree, for the most part I tend to see ‘mutual obligation’ as more Tory bullying of single mothers and the inform. I would also look at making unemployment/student allowances/disability allowances all one rate – considerably higher than where they are – with the unemployed and disability crowd getting an extra something if they undertake some form of study.

        Education
        * Expand the publicly-funded school system to include childcare.

        I would buy that provided that the childcare was provided in public schools, by suitably qualified people, with appropriate facilities

        My thoughts for the arvo……..

        • I am not adamant about it but I do think that people being able to say ‘I pay X to Medicare’ Y to Defence Z to ABS and Z also to ABC will focus them on what those organisations do and the context in which they do it, and from there maybe take more interest in policy surrounding them. I also wonder if another levy, for Environment, might also be desirable. But as I said as long as all these are funded appropriately and not starved of funds to political effect, as was the ABS, then I tend to be a buyer of any idea I think will work.

          Maybe I’ve been drinking too much MMT koolaid, but IMHO this sort of explicit divvying up is bad not least because it’s incorrect, but more importantly because it reinforces the “taxes fund government spending” idea, which – along with the “do you really think ABC/Medicare/ABS/whatever deserves x% of your taxes” rhetoric – really opens up a political wedge.

          There is nothing there I disagree with in principle. I wonder about the 25-30 times median income for punishing taxes (with view it would need to be maybe 10 times)but I am not adamant about it and (I am ex-IR for a living and tend to the view there is always more than one way to fry an egg) very much agree that the higher earners in our society should be encouraged to do something productive with their wealth (and understand that this is the basis of them being taxed very highly at a certain point) .

          I’m mostly just throwing numbers out there to get the idea across, I haven’t put analysis into what they look like in real dollar terms (would be great if someone actually did, hint hint 😉 ). The more I think about it, the more I think basing it off percentiles rather than median multipliers would be better, but it really needs to capture those high-end percentiles properly (0.01%, 0.1%, etc), because the income graph goes up extremely sharply at the end. So your tax brackets are probably going to be something like 50th percentile, 90%th, 95%th, 99%th, 99.9%th, 99.99%th. At the end of the day these are just different ways of doing the same thing, but the point is to reclaim progressive taxation and align it with what the income distribution actually looks like.

          Median is about $55k, so your 10x is probably about right and my 25x might be a bit high. That said, when I say “punishing taxes” I’m talking about 75-90% marginal rates so maybe in that context it’s not ?

          I tend to the view that what is needed is to dissuade a very large section of Australian society that the concept of rising house prices is good for them.

          I agree but I don’t think the way to do this is by targeting the family home in isolation. In particular because, as I said, there are a lot of people who will be sitting on huge capital growth in their homes that is in no way reflected in their lifestyle.

          Hence the idea of making accessing increased equity in the home a capital gains event. To be honest it is a mystery to me why it already isn’t (the only exception I can think of is to repair/renovate/extend the same property).

          Again I wouldnt particularly want to be that adamant about it but I do think that coming from a backdrop (of a generation) where a lot of people have been spending housing earned income, and that ensuing generations now need to go into life deforming debt to meet the entry cost of housing, I still think there is a case for keeping the cutoff point for pension purposes fairly low. How low is always going to be a tender point, but I would be inclined to look at low enough to to have a pension impact on a lot of people, and high enough so that ordinary Australians dont think it is likely to affect them. Obviously that would have a significant impact in inner Sydney, Melbourne Brisbane and the like. Again the idea would be to be quite overt in establishing that housing price rises were not an inherently ‘good’ thing.

          Yeah, I hear ya, but I’m coming at it from the opposite direction of “selling” it politically. Better to be relatively “generous”, IMHO, so you don’t get embroiled in corner-case discussions about whether someone who’s broke except for the $2m house they’ve lived in for fifty years deserves the pension or should be forced to sell. Those kinds of people (more accurately, their children) have certainly won a lottery, but I don’t think they are “the problem”.

          I am against the population ponzi, but have no issue with going offshore for skills which arent here, especially if an employer has made some effort to engender those skills here, and especially if an employer can demonstrate that those skills will be fostered here using foreign/visa holders.

          As I’ve been completely clear about here for years, IMHO if you fix the root causes that enable explotation of low-wage immigrant labour, it will stop AND you’ve also fixed the root cause for labour exploitation (“wage theft” etc) across the board.

          Agree, for the most part I tend to see ‘mutual obligation’ as more Tory bullying of single mothers and the inform. I would also look at making unemployment/student allowances/disability allowances all one rate – considerably higher than where they are – with the unemployed and disability crowd getting an extra something if they undertake some form of study.

          The thing I come back to here – and one of the fundamental problems I see with the UBI – is that different circumstances require different levels of support. People talk about trying to make social security simple (with a UBI) all the time, but the problem is that it’s NOT a simple problem, it’s a very complex problem – and you should always be wary of people who claim to have simple solutions to complex problems.

          I would personally come at it from the perspective of a single “base rate” (eg: minimal required income in Canberra), then apply a multiplier to that to adjust for localised (say, based on LGAs) cost of living (ABS could/should/does? collect and publish the necessary data to work it out). Then that should have additional supplements added on where appropriate to account for dependents, children, disabilities, etc, also adjusted with a localised multiplier. But at the end of the day I’ve had relatively well-paying jobs my whole life and never needed any assistance, so what would I know about what it’s like on the ground ? People who are actually on the receiving end of this stuff need to be directly involved in figuring out the best and fairest way for it to work.

          I would buy that provided that the childcare was provided in public schools, by suitably qualified people, with appropriate facilities

          Yeah, that’s meant to be implicit. No private childcare centres skimming cream from a Government-granted monopoly.

  15. Remove all public funding for non government schools
    sounds like a good idea but the execution of the idea creates a huge own goal
    It’s a bit like “needs based funding” also a good idea and also a huge own goal
    In real world Politics it’s necessary to know which footballs you can kick and which to simply leave alone.

    • A true meritocracy actually allows someone to rise from poor beginnings, where their ability to achieve actually shines through. And this prompts people to put their energies into improvement.
      But that is not what we have now. When the rich stack the deck to entrench their advantage, and the rest of us by extension become an underclass, that’s when you have problems. Over the last 40 years, we have seen the aspirational middle class cut down, whether it’s university costs rising, diminishing value of degrees, uncertain and low wage employment … AND we’ve also seen manufacturing jobs ripped away which would have suited those skilled with their hands. And the replacement jobs simply didn’t suit their skills or abilities, which consigned them to an undeserved scrapheap.
      So it’s not a surprise that those who have had the ladder ripped away while they were standing on it utterly resent the self-serving urgings of those who have already “made it” and effectively blame people for their misfortune.
      Because it’s not a meritocracy now. People get rewarded for being shameless, self-promoting and just lucky, none of which justifies their rewards.

  16. innocent bystanderMEMBER

    Rabbits showed courage to keep the scoreline that close but the game showed the Panthers dominated due to being younger & fitter.
    the faster game has shown tiredness is now part of the game (as it always should have been) and the week off is a bigger advantage than in the past – not a coincidence that the two grand finalists both had the week off.

    • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

      The Quinella was paying very well. Storm have come way in, and are $1.75 for next week. I’ve got lots riding on them at far better odds.

      Canberra looked so unfit compared to storm, and were never going to win, ditto souths last night IMO.

      Half a dozen storm players are as good or better than Clearly i reckon. Storm should win comfortably. They seem to be peaking at the right time as opposed to 2018.

      Exciting.

    • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

      Theres about 3 tries on average a game that wouldn’t have been scored 20 years ago (flickingitin from the deadball or sideline, or taking out the cornerpost), all due to their athleticism, fitness anda few rule tweeks). Modern nrl is awesome to watch.

    • TailorTrashMEMBER

      Macron will denounce and nothing will happen until the next atrocity……might be time for the French state to
      get madam guillotine out of retirement and do a spot of decapitating of its own. But that would be barbaric
      or racist or islamophobic or something bad.

    • Buying off the plan always problematic- will possibly get worse as profit margins fall.
      Certainly a pretty ordinary finished product.
      One of the photos looks as though it has been built on a lean- another tilting tower.

    • Arthur Schopenhauer

      Wollongong’s Lord Mayor said as long as the building complies with approved plans the final look is up to the developers.

      The Approved Plans, are meant to prescribe the facades and internal arrangement of any building.

      What the fck do we have a planning process for?

  17. Now there are plenty of punters here muck around with bicycles
    try this, from On the Wool Track:CW Bean 1910
    As you pack away your pipe you wonder if we in Australia realise the wonderful material we have in the Australian handy-man.
    Yet we with our socialism are actually making an incompetent out of this wonderful material.
    Night is closing in.
    There comes a thundering as of a cavalry regiment galloping past the paddock fence.
    The noise dies, and leaves the station to the stars and the night wind and the frogs.
    It looked like an overloaded towel-horse.
    It stood in the grass-choked gutter, and leaned against the decrepit grey verandah post of the hotel.
    Everyone who stirred from time to time down that straggling, wide, very sleepy street stopped just for a moment to look at it. There was a sort of horse-collar of weather-beaten canvas looped over the forepart of it, and another looped over the back part, and a bulging triangle of canvas packed in between.
    Hooked on ingeniously to various comers were a billy, pannikin, water bag, and one or two unconsidered trifles. From somewhere in front and somewhere behind protruded a segment of rubber tyre.
    There was scarcely anything else to guess by.
    But those who went down that street turned their heads and smiled. They knew it well enough.
    They were looking for a sign of the seasons, much as others watch for the returning swallows
    here it was — the advance guard in the invasion of New South Wales.
    At this time of the year there begins a great movement way back in the heart of Australia.
    Far away the back country is all mobilising.
    Much later we, too, in the big cities on the sea begin to feel the effects of it. They really travel across the sea, and find every comer of the world in the end, only they don’t know it.
    That wave starts in the Four Corners and along the innermost borders ‘of Queensland.
    Some part of Australia is always alive with it, for by the time it dies on the outermost edges it is beginning again in the centre.
    It works towards the south and towards the sea like the stir of wind over the surface of a great forest.
    At this time of writing 400 miles back they are just beginning to feel it; 600 miles back the mobilisation is in full swing ;800 miles back the wave has passed them —they are settling again.
    Have you ever seen the galahs eating across the face of a paddock, lined out like a fan, grubbing as busy as bees, the birds on the flank that is eaten out always flopping across and tacking themselves on to the flank which is entering new country?
    That is the way, each year from July to November, the shearers come across New South Wales.
    And the sign of them in these days is their bicycles.
    It is true some still come on the horses, some in sulkies, some on foot.
    But of late years the bicycle has spread through the country as fast as the rabbit.
    It is extraordinary in what unlikely places one finds those tyre tracks.
    They straggle across the very centre of Australia. We crossed them in paddocks as lonely and bare as the Sahara. They are ridden or driven or ploughed or dragged wherever men can go, and not infrequently where men cannot. They shear through mile after mile of red sandhill; they wander between the great river- side trunks, over a debris of twigs and splinters and burrs which must have crackled under the wheels for 25 miles at a stretch.
    But the bicycle gets through — if the man does.
    The shearer sets out on these trips exactly as if he were going from Sydney to Parramatta.
    He asks the way, lights his pipe, puts his leg over his bicycle, and shoves off.
    For precisely the same trip the average European would probably requisition a whole colonial outfit, compasses, pack-horses, puggaree, sun spectacles, and field -glass.

    The native Australian takes it like a ride in the park.
    If he is city-bred, like many shearers, the chances are he starts in a black coat and bowler hat, exactly as if he were going to tea at his aunt’s
    When Professor Gregory’s party went with its camels and cases of provisions, green umbrellas, and water-bags, and the proper explorers outfit, to search for something they call the “Dead Heart of Australia,” the rest of the party, being told that it was madness to attempt the journey at the time, provided themselves with pith helmets and tropical clothes. But they had an Australian cook.
    The helmet in which he chose to explore the centre of Australia was a ”hard-hitter.
    ” He did not particularly affect it, only it never struck him to change it.
    It is said that on the innermost goldfields of Western Australia there are rumours of men having turned up quietly and begun work who never reached there from the West,
    but who had made their way across from the Eastern States, and had finished, as a matter of course, without making of it anything out of the ordinary, a journey which, if an explorer had made it, would have become a bit of Australian history. That is probably only a rumour.
    But what is certainly a fact is that many of these wanderers — not to speak of the real bushmen such as bring stock from the Territory or the Gulf — in the ordinary course of their livelihood, have accomplished (in other cases undoubtedly have lost their lives in attempting) journeys more deserving to be recorded than some of which the memorials stand in great places in the great cities of this country.
    And so from out of those solitudes, during a certain week a little before the spring, there begin to appear — leaning against the huts around the big bare shearing sheds that stand out somewhere toward the heart of Australia — bicycles. There is not a bicycle shop within 250 miles.
    But bicycles turn up all the same. Some have brand-new tyres, full of air. Others are full of rope.
    There is a burr along the Darling which cuts the back of the shearer’s hand as it works through the fleece.
    It even sticks into cricket balls, and makes them painful to pick up. It cuts bicycle tyres into strips.
    It goes by the name of bindii.
    If you look carefully at the bicycles that come in you will notice that some of their tyres appear curiously lumpy. The rider has foreseen trouble to them, and has got on his way a kangaroo hide and slit it into lengths, which he has bound round the rim.
    Often, when punctures grow too many to mend, they stuff rope or strips of basil inside the tyre.
    But the most hopeless accident that can happen to a bicycle is for the front fork to snap off
    Probably the front wheel buckles in the same smash.
    The back fork would not be quite so hopeless, because it is easier to jury-rig a fixed wheel
    But the front wheel has to work on a pivot, balancing and steering the rider all the time.
    When a front fork breaks the average cyclist would think the only thing left was to sit down and weep.
    But there has wobbled up to a Western shed before now a strange thing — a complicated arrangement of tree branches and fencing wire.
    A front wheel waggles like a drunken man between two solid supporting saplings, which are bound to the debris of a fork with winding after winding of fencing wire.
    Across the drunken wheel itself are two battens of wood, nailed like a cross.
    There was a smash somewhere out there on the sandhills, in which a rider found himself on the ground, lucky not to have lost his life, with broken bits of a bicycle around him.
    But he picked him- self up and set to work.
    And in the end he steered it — stayed out, tied up, bandaged, propped, secured, jury-rigged like a ship, grinding like a chaffcutter, but still a bicycle -safely into port.

    • boomengineeringMEMBER

      WW.
      Thanks, that brought back memories of early 50s collecting bits of hand me downs to put a bike together & 60s stuffing the tyres..Btw stuffed tyres are a pita.even on very short distances so kudos to those hardy fellows.

    • That was when Bean was part of the anti-Labor journalism commentariat.
      Later in life he back-tracked on his earlier views on labour market regulation and social democracy and came round to seeing that the Labor party and workers welfare state were actually a key part of creating the Anzac legend / national character.

      • Some of us went one Track day to the event of the month, a coursing meet in the nearest town.
        He had been as keen as anyone to put his bit on one of the dogs; but he never turned up.
        Later we discovered that he had noticed, on his way in, some sheep cut off on an island by a rising river.
        He gave up the jaunt on the spot, swam his horse across, and got the sheep out instead.
        They were not in the section of the business that belonged to him.
        He was groom, not stockman. But then he was bred as station hand.
        The truth is that through dealing with natives like that, managers are apt to be hardly fair to the Englishman.
        That extraordinary versatility, the capacity to do anything, is in him really ; indeed it is from him that it comes.
        But the Englishman has lived in water-tight compartments in a highly civilised country which has only reached its present eminence through everyone doing his own job.
        He is well fitted for the life he was born to.
        But for the bush he has one resulting defect.
        He has at first a tendency to say a thing cannot be done; whereas, of course, it always can.
        It is a convenience, but at the same time it is a sign of danger in a commimity, when people begin to walk on the right-hand side of the footpath. They begin to lose the capacity for elbowing themselves through a crowd.
        That capacity obviously exists pre-eminently in the British race.
        But it does not come out till the race gets to places like Australia, where it has to.
        There it is the genius of the race — the one valuable thing about us Australians, the one point in which, without being immodest, we may perhaps really claim to add our small quota to the precious acquirements of the world. One can’t help wondering, all the same, if things are going quite the right way in Australia.
        There’s plenty to smoke a pipe over at any time one cares to sit on the horse-paddock fence when the red of evening is just left in patches between the tree trunks.
        The smoke of some contractor’s fires, burning off, floats low along the edge of the wood.
        A boy — a tall, slender cornstalk in knicker- bockers with a pea-rifle over his shoulder — is stalking slowly through the trees
        Somewhere down in the hollow the whistle of the sawmill hoots.
        From the homestead comes a faint, rather musical din.
        It is six o’clock, and the cook is banging the old plough disc which hangs outside the hut for a gong.
        The hum of the saw runs down and dies.
        The smith is putting on his coat, the carpenter is filling his pipe, each of the station hands is turning slowly home- wards from his work to his tea.
        That is the time to think.
        That tall, lanky boy there that passed just now through the edge of the bush does not look a precious possession perhaps.
        But he is, in a way, he is the most precious possession his country owns.
        An Englishwoman, who had lived in this country for many years, once gave me perhaps the best illustration I ever heard of the Australian boy.
        She was standing at a little country homestead about 6 miles from a small town.
        A widow lived there with two daughters and a little son. I forget the boy’s age, but I think it was either 6 or 8.
        It happened one day there was some shopping to be done— the elder daughter wanted some ribbon of a particular colour, there was some harness to be mended, and some butter or something of the sort to be sold, and one or two small matters to be attended to.
        The sister could not go in, so she had to entrust the matching of the ribbon to her small brother to do for her.
        Early in the morning he went out and got the horse, harnessed up the buggy.
        His mother had given him the final instructions about the ribbon, and he had gone.
        They were sitting at dinner when they heard a buggy drive round to the stables.
        They took it that it was Jim back again from town, and kept his dinner hot for him. But he did not come in.
        At last his mother went to see what was keeping him. She found him Iying on his bed crying.
        He had finished his commissions. The butter was sold all right, the harness mended ; the ribbon was the right sort of blue. But he had had toothache for some days
        He had not said anything; but after he finished his commissions in town he had gone in to the dentist and had his tooth out. It was hurting him.
        If the Australian bush boy is a man before his years he is very much a boy too.
        That infant had gone through with his trial without telling anyone.
        But his feelings were overwrought, and he had to make up for it afterwards.
        In older countries people may count it against that boy that neither as a youngster, nor afterwards as a homestead man, is he forward to protest his loyalty to the boss; he has got a different way of showing any feeling that he owns to from that which men who have grown up in the shoes of feudal retainers in the older countries would use.
        But then he is not a retainer, and loyalty is not a feeling which he generally owns to. It is there all the same.
        For example:
        A younger son was managing a station which his father, and probably his grandfather, had owned before him.
        He had driven a mob of sheep into the railway to truck to Sydney, and had taken an old stockman with him to help muster and truck them. They rode in and worked through the afternoon till the sheep were all on the rails.
        But when it came to paying for the trucks, which had to be done before they could be sent away, the boy found he had forgotten his cheque-book. The station master was a new man and did not know the boy’s name, or he would probably have sent the sheep on and let him post the cheque in to him. But he would not do so, and of course he was quite right in this.
        On the other hand, it was absurd to keep the sheep in the trucks for a day or so until the cheque-book could be fetched. The boy offered to draw up a cheque on ordinary writing paper and stamp it — that would be good enough. The station master would not accept this either.
        They were in the station master’s room, and all the while the old station hand was looking on over the boy’s shoulder. Suddenly he took something from his belt and flung it on to the table between them.
        ” Go on, you pup,” he said to the station master “take that!” It was a bag full of gold.
        Having no better place to put his savings he carried them about with him.
        There were £80 in that purse. The boy wanted to refuse, but the old man would not let him.
        ”Well, you had better count it here with me before I take any of it, the boy said. But he would not ”You will give me what you take/’ he said. He could not get over : the station master refusing to take a cheque that would have gone like gold through the back country for forty years past.
        That was his way in showing his belief in the boss’s son.
        Station hands at times will pledge more than their purse for a man they have served.
        A manager told us of a stockman of his who had lately gone into town on station business.
        The police rang up a little later to say that they had him in the lock-up.
        Amongst other things he had been fighting. ” I suppose I ought to have sacked him/’ said the manager. ”
        But it turned out that he had fought a man in a bar who had been saying that he would like to hammer me.
        You can’t very well sack a fellow for fighting when he has been fighting for you.
        ” To show publicly his attachment to any man is not a quality of the Australian.
        He would be rather ashamed to do so than otherwise.
        One does not say that it is necessarily a good point in him — it may be a fault in some ways.
        His loyalty consists rather in doing his bit— in playing fair by a man whom he has known as his friend and mate, even if he was also his boss.
        It can be understood that a man with that spirit makes the sort of lieutenant a man likes to have behind him in a difficulty.
        The boy that passed with his gun through the edge of the trees there is shooting rabbits.
        He does not miss them, because he can’t afford to. On this particular station he gets a cartridge for every scalp he brings in.
        The few he misses he makes up for either with the scalps of trapped rabbits, or out of his money. But they are not many. It is not a shot-gun but a pea-rifle he is shooting with, and he hits four out of five.
        Naturally he does not go out to shoot rabbits, but to murder them.
        In some places, especially near the country towns, the boys make such big profits these last few years, and have such an easy time rabbit-shooting, that they keep away from school altogether ; and something will have to be done about it in the near future.
        But the son of the station tradesman, as a rule, is a capable boy from the time he is born.
        Sometimes there is a school at the station l — the governess lives at the homestead.
        Sometimes the children’s mother or father teaches them, and in some cases does it excellently.
        They may not be able to tell you the name of the President of the French.
        But they can tell you what the spiders and snakes do, and how the birds build, and just what insects you will find under the bark of the gum trees along the river bank.
        And if later on you have to ask them to take cattle for you from Rockhampton to Cape York, as the Jardine boys did with the blacks hanging on to their tracks, and got through where explorer after explorer had failed, the chances are they will be able to do it.
        There is just this one difference between them and town boys — they have had to do something of everybody’s work as well as their own, because the others were not there to do it.
        Under the circumstances it is a little strange that the Labour leaders of Australia have deliberately set themselves to stamp out the genius of Australians by making it illegal for one man to attempt anything more than one job or leave his own particular rut .
        They are forcing back upon Australia those minute cast-iron sections, the leaving behind of which made the genius in the Australian character.
        But they cannot force them on the country, because men on sheep stations are too far from specialists to get their work done for them.
        Consequently, as long as sheep stations exist there will be found, as there is found to-day, a set of tradesmen who can do anything for themselves, and are beyond comparison the most capable men in Australia.

        • “Under the circumstances it is a little strange that the Labour leaders of Australia have deliberately set themselves to stamp out the genius of Australians by making it illegal for one man to attempt anything more than one job or leave his own particular rut”

          He definitely would have regretted writing that later in life with a wiser more sober mind..

  18. RobotSenseiMEMBER

    Another typically boorish article from a sector that basically doesn’t want to compete in a labour market:
    “There’s just a massive shortage of skilled Australian workers who want to do this kind of work,” he said.
    Translation: nobody will work for us for what we’re offering, and the job security is non-existent. But we will certainly not raise our wages.
    https://www.goodfood.com.au/eat-out/news/we-are-literally-desperate-restaurants-desperate-for-staff-amid-skills-shortage-20201016-h1rgd0

    • That avenue of business was fully dependent on discretionary spending
      which has now evaporated
      in time that coffee shop mob will all go broke.
      and many others.

      • Dozens of tourist strip venues fined for food safety breaches
        HEALTH An exclusive investigation has revealed 75 GC businesses have been pinged for dodgy food safety practices,
        with eateries in 3 dining precincts dominating the list, as council reported a shocking 526 reports made relating to food safety standards
        Courier Mail.

        • Goes like this: Courier Mail investigates decline in food safety standards > decline is a result of increased safety standards and CoVid restrictions > CoVid restrictions imposed by QLD Government > Courier Mail does not like restrictions > Rupert said so.

    • Arthur Schopenhauer

      It’s right up there with Aussie Executives complaining they can’t hire Data Scientists with PhDs in CompSci, AI or mathematics for $80k. It’s laughable Sydney Boys Club stuff.

      • RobotSenseiMEMBER

        But there’s a skills shortage of people who will do these jobs for 1/2 the going rate whilst shackled to visa conditions to make sure they won’t play up also the allure of PR and also let this be a warning to those of you who have a permanent job that it is not safe

        • Hot off the press,Courier Mail
          Scary wave of closures hits popular tourist strip
          Retail slump. At least 15 prime lots stand empty, bearing for lease signs, as a wave of shutdowns batters one of Queensland most popular and expensinve retail strips.
          WW, that is of course, Suffers Paradise
          From that Visual Capitalist link
          Long story short, the American Dream is still alive—it’s just becoming harder to come by.
          WW like Koalas.???

          • Best bit is those that embrace austerity as a palliative seem to be all over the shop when deploying the “think of the youth” meme.

            Per your previous comment its nuts watching knowledge and skill get crapified one bonus at a time with a side of give me my slaves.

  19. PalimpsestMEMBER

    Update on yesterday’s article noting the EY audits of companies that went bust. The SEC in the modern not-corrupt-at-all US Government under Mr T is on the job.

    From WSJ: “The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission adopted changes that relax some conflict-of-interest rules for companies and audit firms, making it easier for them to avoid violating auditor independence in certain situations.
    The amendment, passed by the SEC on Friday, gives auditors more discretion in assessing conflicts of interest in their relationships with the businesses they audit, in situations such as those involving affiliates of their clients or past lenders. The rule also intends to lessen the burden for companies trying to go public.”

  20. Just to clear up some of the Border Force bashing that’s going on here by the usual crowd, the Victorian thing isn’t their fault at all and neither was the Ruby Princess.

    They have absolutely no power to deal with foreign citizens (or citizens) that have passed the primary line and have been ‘immigration cleared’ and their powers even before that aren’t black and white. There’s no power under the Migration Act or the Customs Act for them to hold anyone once they are cleared and into the community (only S.192 of the Migration Act but that has certain legal parameters that have to be satisfied). The only power that comes even close is the Migration Amendment (Biosecurity Contraventions and Importation of Objectionable Goods) Regulations 2019 that was passed last year, and that is purely targeted at only certain temporary visa classes who are bringing in goods in contravention to the Biosecurity Act – ie tea leaf and fish carrying types who are the responsibility of AQIS. NZ citizens are TY-444 visa holders and aren’t covered by that act either and have essentially the same freedom of movement as PR.

    Now the passenger card system Australia runs is archaic and yes, needs to be changed. It’s easy for someone to lie on a passenger card (or not fill one in at all) and they’re not going to know that information is correct until much later anyway when it’s too late. Even then they can cancel you under S.109 for incorrect information but that has to be established after the fact. The only real question to be asked out of all this are pertaining to the information sharing arrangements between state and federal and even there you get into a grey area of the constitution and privacy acts, as well as a heap of others.

    Some of the stuff floating around about our state and national borders is patently ridiculous and in my view, seems to be more partisan motivated than anything else. No surprises in the land of political footy tribalism.

    • ScoMo:
      “Similarly, the arrangements for cruise ships will have the same effect in specific cases where we have Australians on cruise ships. Then there will be some bespoke arrangements that we put in place directly under the command of the Australian Border Force to ensure that the relevant protections are put in place”

      • Seaports are designated Section 15 ports of entry like airports are, so there’s very little legal difference. Only difference being seaports are subject to higher biosecurity powers under Biosecurity Act due to live e xport and other industries. If anyone is to have the finger pointed for cruise ships its Dept Agriculture and the illustrious David Littleproud and even then, very tenuous legally speaking. Still no legal powers under the Act for ABF to detain people coming off cruise ships on medical grounds nor do they have the infrastructute to make those assessments.

        He essentially just made a PR statement (unsurprising) without defining what he meant, so again ABF not at fault at all.

    • They have absolutely no power to deal with foreign citizens (or citizens) that have passed the primary line and have been ‘immigration cleared’ and their powers even before that aren’t black and white.

      So the point of them is….?

  21. Gareth Hutchens from the abc wrote an article, I have amended it for the average punter here
    Were you born in the past 40 years?
    If so, you’ve grown up in a world in which huge economic trends have been grinding away, influencing politics dramatically, which makes it impossible to escape this depression.
    Since the 1980s, politicians in advanced economies have pursued a policy framework that has failed large segments of their populations.
    This applies to Australia, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the United States, and the United Kingdom.
    Over the past 40 years, for said countries, the average rate of economic growth has been slowing, investment to GDP ratios have fallen, business productivity has declined, and inflation has slowed noticeably, while the average real interest rate has dropped from 6% to near or less than zero.
    At the same time, household debt and government debt has exploded.
    It has underwritten a huge transfer of wealth up the income distribution, to the top 1%.
    The economic boffins say, rising income inequality, and the liberalisation of the financial sector — both of which originated in the 1980s — had pulled said 14 advanced economies into their current low-growth, low-interest rate, high-debt environment.
    It has implications for our current attempt to pull ourselves out of the coronavirus depresson
    Now the economic boffins are telling us the bottom 90% of households in said countries, and governments, had become so indebted in the past 40 years
    it is weighing on aggregate (total) demand.
    At the same time, there has been a huge accumulation of income and wealth among the top 1% and since the super-rich have a greater propensity to save, interest rates have been falling.
    The boffins tell us debt-financed deficit spending may lift interest rates in the short-run,
    but demand will eventually be weighed down again when governments inevitably raise taxes or cut spending to service their even larger debt burdens.

    So the outcome is, in Ermo speak, we are already in the toilet and spiralling toward the S trap.
    There is no way out. (but most of you already know that)

          • Who said history was bunk?
            Today,we are seeing changes take place so rapidly, that history really has no relevance, except for the mechanics of business
            and the resolve of the punters.
            It is the resolve of the punters which forms the biggest doubt

          • the mechanics of business – ????

            Resolve of punters – reality is dictated by day traders – ?????

    • When I returned from my European year or so away as many did in the early 70’s there was a Bankcard waiting for me. It had $500 credit on it – probably about $3k today. I never applied for it. I didn’t know what it was. Who gave me this money. I went round to my local Bank of NSW and they explained you can use it to buy things instead of cash. Really? Every transaction was cash before that – you could either afford something or you couldn’t. Or you could use laybuy and look forward to the day you picked up your purchase.

      What a disaster this current credit based system has become.

      The US constitution “no state…shall make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts”.

      That was reinterpreted by the supreme court to allow a paper (note) to represent gold or silver. At the time the note was convertible to gold or silver.

      And then…in 1971 by presidential decree the US defaulted and the US dollar became fiat.

      And here we are.

      • AND
        as Churchill said above, How come 100,000 of you guys, held up your hands to an inferior number of Japanese.
        I say it was the easy way out
        as the economic boffins have surrended the national economies.

    • “I said I was under the impression it was a working-from-home job, so it didn’t matter where the business was based,” said Nikita, who uses who uses they/them pronouns.

      “She paused and said ‘Oh it can be working-from-home but you would need to come to Sydney to pick up the work laptop’.”

      I thought they / them pronouns meant you wouldn’t call them “she”?

    • I do sympathise though, having recently going through the job market circus with plenty of time waster recruiters and BS tests. Kogan sent me through loops, then went quiet on me. Then a month later said oh we have a job opening again are you still keen? I didn’t reply.

      Dealing with Centrelink was also terrible. I was applying for higher qualification roles, can’t imagine what it is like applying for low skill jobs.

  22. TailorTrashMEMBER

    …and should add that I love the rocks .,,.thank dog for Jack Mundey who saved it …….a true labour hero ….

    The current ones would have taken the money …imagine the wealth that could be created over that sacred site that could be sold to China

    That painting could be Constable’s England but it is still with us …..how nice ….

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