Links December 30 2021

Macro & Markets




Terra Specufestor

…and furthermore…

Latest posts by Chris Becker (see all)


          • The Traveling Wilbur 🙉🙈🙊

            You can show him how to work a text to speech reader / help find his reading glasses when you pick up the $200.00 Frosti.

            Or just borrow him a grammar lesson-book.

        • No, you asking me if ‘want to lend $200’ is read exactly as that: *you* asking *me* if *I* want to lend $200 to a yet to be named 3rd party (presumed to be *you*, not Labor)

          Now, if you meant the opposite, all you had to do was to put that as ‘want me to lend you $200?’ Simples!

          Do you see how pronouns work? It’s as if by magic the question becomes clear insofar as to who the is the lender and who is the purported borrower.

    • Perhaps it’s not the moderators but the poster of the comment that is to blame? They are simple rules to follow. One as wise and clever as you claim yourself to be should have little trouble abiding by them

  1. Totes BeWokeMEMBER


    Paypal and eBay are a joke. Decades of their drama.

    Ebay charge 14% to sell. That’s beyond ridiculous. It was less than 3%, 20 years ago.

    eBay run Gumtree for free, that’s just good enough so no one competes against them, and just sht enough most just use ebay.

    Paypal take 4 days to clear funds from my bank account, after it took 5 goes and numerous painful phone calls to get it working. How hard is it for two mega companies (my bank and paypal) to get something so simple right?

    Got a few million laying around? Compete with these global companies and clean up

    • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

      Talking about regulation.

      Did our government regulate the obscene fees these two charge?

      No, they instead let ebay charge us, and, on Gerry’s request, got ebay to collect GST on the governments behalf.

      Leave LNP and Labor last. Make a difference before it’s too late.

    • Don’t need a few million dollars, it really doesn’t take much to sell things on your own website. The advantage of eBay is the buyer protection, but most people are now so comfortable with shopping online you can pretty much ditch them.

      • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

        They’ll slowly shift the fees from ebay to paypal.

        I hate how Straya is so weak against global companies, particularly feebay, that are just reaming us.

      • Facebook marketplace is free. Sites like ebay and trademe are now just full of chinese drop shippers selling stuff. If you are looking for second hand stuff FB is the place to go. Usually half the price of the stuff on ebay/trademe as well as people flog off stuff without having to worry about paying the cost of selling it.

        • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

          Thanks kiwikaryn. I’ll check them out.

          Disturbing thing is I’ve got about 5 funds with ebay a top 10 company. It’s horrible, and I’m sure most people are trying to get away from it.


        • innocent bystander

          ime free FB ads only work if you get a buyer in the first day, after that you need to pay(boost) to get your ad seen.
          Ever set up an Alert for FBMP? only work sometimes. And if you run it manually you will get hits, but not everything (I no idea why). How do I know cause you can scroll through the ads and see ads that should have been returned with your search but weren’t. I don’t know how their search algos work but not on exact keyword matching that is for sure (they even seem to use image matching?)
          A retailer I know says they never get a sale unless they have paid to boost their ads.

          • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

            Need an Australian ebay IMO. Far lower fees.

            Ebay has a lot of benefits I like. Selling/buying to a broad audience.

            What I don’t like are the fees, it can be complex to navigate outside the ordinary buying/selling. Their support is atrocious. They constantly try and trick you. Example; automatically paying with PayPal.

            I don’t like ebay, or Labor and am passed trying to fix them. I just want to punish them.

      • Don’t need a few million dollars, it really doesn’t take much to sell things on your own website.

        The mechanics of selling are easy,

        Finding buyers, on the other hand…

    • Absolute BeachMEMBER

      Yep. I stopped selling products on Ebay due to stupid fees and my sales went up overall. Ebay spends so much on Google Ads campaigns that I was competing against myself in keyword bidding.
      But the Paypal thing sounds unusual. My payment withdrawals clear into Wpac on the day. That was with both a private and business account….

      • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

        I tried to attach the account a decade ago, and recently tried again from the start. They made 2 small deposits a few times. Never appeared.

        They finally got it working (activated it because it’d been there for 10 years) but now am waiting for funds to clear so I can transfer to betting account ready for my next successful (hopefully) plunge.

        That is use PayPal as a hub to put a lot of money into the best-price bookie immediately.

        It’s clumsy the way I’ve done it in the past and paid big CC fees.

        How hard does it need to be!!!!

    • I stopped using eBay ages ago. Total rip off.
      PayPal is ok, but I put their fees into my prices.

      But you’ve described why BitCoin will win. No middle men like PayPal or banks on the take. Just transfer money between 2 parties.

      Facebook marketplace is better than Gumtree (less scammers) but not immune to it.

      1. As mentioned above by Innocent Bystander the algos are rigged.
      2. Selling items is a pain with people messaging “is this available” then never replying.
      3. I actually want to quit Facebook and use it less.
      4. When looking for bargains, stuff goes within minutes if you don’t jump on it and in order to see them you need to be scanning it all day. Not worth the time suck.
      5. I refuse to give money to Zuckerberg. I hate the Kent…

      Running your own platform requires work, but if you have an audience and the time, it’s worth doing.

      I run a car club website with a captive audience I used to list items for sale there. Everything would sell eventually.

  2. Had the obligatory 10 minute chat with the ex mother in law at the Xmas day function and she lives in Wynum, in Brisbane. A bit of of a whinger but one was interesting. She said the local shops were a joke – mainly coffee shops and cafes, over 20 in the not overly large retail strip she reckoned. Then I stumbled on this the other day –
    With the cost of coffee doubling, mainly in part to poor climactic conditions, the price of the drug drinkers fix is bound to rise. And seeing as our economy is based upon housing, digging up stuff and posing in cafes and bars, I think the inflation situation may not be as transitory as the big wigs would like. Another chat in a local cycle shop informed me that freight container charges had risen 400% with 20% rises in bike prices baked in. As the LNP sacrifice health for open borders without a care for the consequences, housing won’t fall, wages won’t rise but cost of living will still keep going up. Interest rates are the be all and end all, and I look forward to much squirming. Especially at the barista level as punters make some choices re discretionary spending.

    • Add rising fuel/energy costs to this. Honestly this has been baked in since the much championed QE started in Aus.
      Australias gonna get that inflation it asked for good and hard,
      Wage rises =skills shortages= more immigration to fix problem

    • “housing won’t fall, wages won’t rise but cost of living will still keep going up.”

      The middle class is the only thing that will be transitory. So how bad will things have to get before the migrants make the economically rational decision not to come and the ponzi explodes? Well, no matter how bad things get here, how quickly our high standard of living is consigned to the dust bin of history, you can bet your ar$e it will always be much, much worse in the overpopulated slum continents that will provide the never ending flow of boomer pension and health care spending tax donkeys. So the answer to the question “when will the ponzi implode?” is “never”.

      The aim of our leaders now is to crush our standard of living as quickly and as quietly as possible. A high standard of living is no longer compatible with the amount of claims made on the future. If there is going to be a Great Reset, that’s it. Reversion to the mean will happen, it’s just going to be in real terms, not nominal.

      Oh and…if you could catch covid right now as an extra bit of unpaid overtime to the ponzi…that would be great.

      • A high standard of living is no longer compatible with the amount of claims made on the future.

        The future is unlikely to deliver all the expectations of all the people. Disappointment is the likely result. The form of disappointment is the question.

    • I heard the blokes from nearby Lota can’t get a date with the local girls. Apparently their not Manly enough to Wynnum

  3. Totes BeWokeMEMBER

    Totes…..”Labor are overly empathetic, and we’ve decided that hurts the crowd”……

    drsmithy….”Yes. Clearly the party that has abandoned the lower classes to promote the causes of international capital is driven by an over-abundance of empathy”….

    So, why would anyone but the elites wrapping our entire politics up into a money making machine for them, vote for Labor?

    • MerkwürdigliebeMEMBER

      Totes…..”Labor are overly empathetic, and we’ve decided that hurts the crowd”……

      drsmithy….”Yes. Clearly the party that has abandoned the lower classes to promote the causes of international capital is driven by an over-abundance of empathy”….

      So, why would anyone but the elites wrapping our entire politics up into a money making machine for them, vote for Labor?

      Well the question then becomes – Who else would people vote for which represents less of an investment into our politics being a money making machine? and subsidiary questions of ‘what would they achieve by doing this?’ and ‘Is this ‘good’ for us as a people?’

      and from there it actually morphs into

      ‘Is voting for anyone else an investment into making our politics less of a money making machine or is it an investment in allowing those who have turned it into a money making machine to do as they like in turning it ever more to a money making machine?

      which at a number of levels starts to look like ‘Is our political system representing our interests or is it merely providing a façade of representing our interests while actually representing the interests of others (say the 1%) and effectively bullshitting us to keep us quiet while that interest does as it sees fit?’

      and from there we move along to ‘Would an openly corrupt dictatorship be any worse? or even ‘would an openly corrupt dictatorship which happened to give us one or two policies which we actually thought necessary – which ‘democracy’ couldnt address or wouldnt address – actually in some ways be ‘better’ than ‘democracy’?

      and of course you are quite right to observe that it may not actually be corrupt dictatorship but anarchic chaos which unfolds if we cease to commit to and have belief in ‘democracy’ which then transforms our questions into ‘Would anarchic chaos be any worse? or even ‘would a chaotic anarchy which happened to give us one or two policies which we actually thought necessary – which ‘democracy’ couldnt address or wouldnt address – actually in some ways be ‘better’ than ‘democracy’?

      and from there we would morph into ‘Would corrupt dictatorship or anarchic chaos be likely to deliver better or worse longer term outcomes than ‘democracy’ does, and would they be as durable as ‘democracy’ [in our Australian context]’

      • Totes BeWokeMEMBER

        I know 2 things.

        1. What we are doing isn’t working.

        2. Fast forward 40 years and it’ll be obvious we had nothing to lose, (and lost everything), and should have done whatever it took to destroy the duopoly.

        Only the dumbest Australians still think Labor are a solution.

      • I would take a corrupt dictatorship that forces us to stop bringing fossil fuels on focus on renewables over the options we currently have. That’s the single biggest issue IMHO facing humanity right now. Unchecked climate change and runaway population growth and rampant consumerism.

        It’s all linked of course, we need to learn to live with less widgets, build more sustainable housing, and infrastructure and undo urban sprawl etc..

        I truly believe we will see rates of depression decline, if we start to reuse, recycle and repair things and find ways to reduce wasteful behavior and focus more time and energy into our communities and helping others within the group.

        Won’t happen, but if a corrupt dictator imposed it, I wouldn’t complain lol.

        • Sorry Gav, but you can’t choose the type of “corrupt dictatorship”! That is *not* how it works.

          You can’t suck on a rod of plutonium and think you can choose the cancer you get.

          • Oh I know, I’m being facetious. Democracy isn’t great always but it’s still better than all the alternatives.

  4. Chickens coming home to roost……..and remember that another huge stimulus will be needed next year. The urban centres of the US are shutting themselves down in stages as Omicron clears the streets You can’t restart a fire without fresh fuel.

    The root cause……living on the kindness of strangers

    The idea that this will all blow over in 3 weeks seems unlikely from the child hospitalisation figures…..who can’t get a vaccine. As soon as the kindergartens, child care and schools reopen it will be back full on.

  5. The Traveling Wilbur 🙉🙈🙊

    Premium-year Bunnamagoo is back baby!

    I even left a few on the shelf for you chvnts. Which was ironically unshelf-ish.

    • Which varietal/vintage? I think I’ve got a bottle of the Shiraz stored away that someone gave me. I see they also do a Tempranillo which could be interesting.

      • The Traveling Wilbur 🙉🙈🙊

        2016s of the Merlot and the Merlot-Shiraz-CS.

        And the Tempoeranaliliello thingy is the very definition of interesting (if it’s a 2017 or earlier). Not my cup of tea, but was a quality drop for the one I tried. Great for a sunny afternoon.

        • Just checked and it’s 2012 Merlot so I’ll have to give that a go soon. I picked up a case of Petaluma hanlin hill riesling 2014 for $24 a bottle which is cheaper than the current vintage at uncle Dan’s.

          • The Traveling Wilbur 🙉🙈🙊

            Sorry, I should have said 2014-2017 (AFAIK).

            2014 and 2015 were awesome. 2016 is v.good (drinking now, just to make sure). 😀

            Good luck with the 2012 (never had one of those of this maker’s).

  6. The Grey RiderMEMBER

    Love the way definitions are are so fluid this century…don’t like the result it gives, change it. Definitionwang?
    Anyhow, now that our Overlords have changed the definition of close-contact for their convenience…they can jam their QR code sign-in thingy up their jinga.

    • The Traveling Wilbur 🙉🙈🙊

      +1 (as far as highlighting the blatant lack of joined up thinking demonstrated by the ‘adults in charge’ goes; and an interesting factoid too).

    • This is just too funny:

      “Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the change to the definition would take place from midnight tonight in NSW, Victoria, the ACT, South Australia and Queensland and in Tasmania from midnight on January 1”

      This is the headline:
      National cabinet has agreed to a new definition of a COVID-19 close contact to mean someone who has been with a confirmed case for more than four hours within a household.

      No actually, they haven’t. The NT & WA haven’t as yet as far as I’m aware. Make an announcement and try and force the others into agreement.

  7. The Traveling Wilbur 🙉🙈🙊

    Thank you Santa!!! Have a safe flight home. Look forward to seeing you again next year (I’ll bring the carrots).

  8. The covid situation in NSW is surreal Maybe Omicron is a lot less severe, but if it isn’t a lot less severe .. wow.
    Some stats. In 1 week cases in hospital have roughly doubled. Cases in ICU have also roughly doubled.
    Today there were another 121 cases in hospital.
    estimate of lag from case numbers to hospital admission is 8 to 14 days gives rough hospitalisation rate of around 4-6%
    Assume 14 days (it doesn’t matter much because case numbers were fairly similar 8-14 days ago), gives around 4,500 admissions as at 13th Jan, with average stay around 2 wks 1/4 of all beds are filled with covid patients. And it gets worse from there as the larger case numbers kick in in the second half of the month.

    • If it gets bad, they will stop releasing case numbers, and the number of people in hospital will stop going up when hospital no longer admit COVID patients.

      Like in Wuhan, not testing people who died in their home means they didn’t die from COVID.

      • The only way Domicrons let it rip tactics can work is if we follow the same pattern as South Africa where cases peaked after a couple of weeks. But that was in a country with much higher prior infection.

    • TailorTrashMEMBER

      Getting the booster shot is more than a tad hard too……..chemists say don’t have supply ….GP clinics not answering their phones …government sites referring you to chemists and GP practices ….
      ( north shore ….scomo safe seats ?) ……..getting interesting ……

    • There is still so much we don’t know about the virus.
      Like the loss of sense of smell and taste which starts before the respiratory and flu symptoms and continues afterwards, suggests a degenerative process and possible long term cognitive impairment.
      that is why the anti vaxxers are just nuts.
      even in their delusional schema where they weigh up the risk of the vaccine to themselves v the risk of the virus *to themselves* (not the real multiplicative risk to everyone), they are still completely wrong.
      They don’t know the risk of the virus to themselves. No-one does.

      • Vaxxed & Infectious

        Lot we don’t know about the vaccines too. Stage 3 trials promised 95% immunity from catching it but couldn’t have been more wrong. Let’s hope they didn’t get anything else wrong like long term safety.

        • Wrong, that’s just shameless lying. There was no ‘promise’ of 95% immunity from catching it.

  9. I’m hearing lots of war stories from Xmas gatherings. It seems like a bad zombie script played over and over. People hiding their bites. Others covering up and protecting those that are too far gone. Cracking under pressure and the a$$h0le within coming out. The weird thing is that when I ask if they’ll give themselves a year off next year they say it’s impossible to break free from it. Hell is other family members.

    • It’s exactly the same as the flat earth movement. There’s either a refusal to accept or an inability to understand what the evidence makes clear. Sadly the consequences of this stubbornness is far greater and more tragic.

    • The number of unvaccinated 50+ dying is a tragedy. They delude themselves into the “only the weak die” propaganda without realising the risks rise exponentially with age, and that they are the ones at risk despite their perceived physical condition.

    • I can’t figure out what is going on in anti vaxxers heads.

      Not all people trust big powerful corporations. Can you understand that Sweeper?

      Not all people trust doctors that have been threatened with dismissal if they deviate from official propaganda. Can you understand that Sweeper?

  10. For while, it did seem that Aus government agenda was (broadly) responding to the public health needs arising from the virus.
    Now, it seems government agenda is evolving to reflect surrender of their responsibility for public health. It’s like: “Here are our new protocols; we are certain COVID will respect our collaboration and not do anything unpredictable or overly nasty.”
    Well, we had it good for too long here in regional Qld I guess. Under immense pressure from the evil Murdoch-puppet Courier-Mail, Palacechook finally succumbed, and opened up, embracing the warm flood of viral-laden bodies from yon Deep South.
    One of the weapons in the CM propaganda deluge, was a constant feed of stories about bereft Qlders stuck outside the border, unable to come “home”, a veritable cry-me-a-river daily of kids who couldn’t see their gran, people who couldn’t make it to the funeral of a cherished loved one etc. (Well, they could come “home”….they just didn’t want to meet the quarantine requirements. I guess they didn’t miss their “folk” that much after all.) So, I can’t be sure, but I would suggest this cadre amounted to a very small % of the Qld population. To cater for their emotional needs, we will now be subjecting the majority of the population state-wide to inconvenience, illness, and, if unlucky, death. Somehow the calculation doesn’t seem balanced to me.
    But that’s the new “reality” that the authorities have insisted we must live with.
    There was a strange episode up here in Redneckistan during the interlude between the old and new CHOs here. The outgoing CHO Dr Jeanette Young, was famously hardline in keeping COVID out of Qld as much as possible, and suppressing it when it did rear it’s mutagenic heads. When she succumbed to the offer of a much cushier role, the heir-apparent was anointed: Dr Krispin Hajkowicz. He accepted, and then rejected the offer, in a very short space of time. He had begun working at Qld Health’s corporate office, but demurred due to the old chestnut of “personal reasons”.
    This of course leaves us free to pursue wild conjecture. Perhaps he had gleaned something of the impending direction of Qld’s public health policies, and decided to stay true to his medical principles?
    Only he would know; but in due course the new King of COVID was announced. Come forth, Dr John Gerrard! In appearance, something of a Dutton-lite, he soon revealed his “health” plans for Qld.
    Widespread infection.

    “Omicron is extremely contagious,” he said during a COVID-19 press conference on Thursday.

    “Not only is the spread of this virus inevitable, it is necessary.”

    Let’s try a few variations on his theme of “learning to live with the virus”.

    We have to learn to live with measles.
    We have to learn to live with pneumonia.
    We have to learn to live with cancer.

    Hmm..doesn’t seem to work in all scenarios. Isn’t a public health officer’s main role protection of community health? Rather than insisting on universal propagation of a potentially lethal virus?
    The Hippocratic Oath has become a tad unfashionable in Aus, replaced by the World Medical Association Declaration Of Geneva. Two of the pledges are:
    THE HEALTH AND WELL-BEING OF MY PATIENT will be my first consideration;
    I WILL MAINTAIN the utmost respect for human life;
    Dr Gerrard is in contravention of the Declaration. He had made a decision based on politics, not medical outcomes. Our beloved PM has similarly washed his hands of culpability, rendering it all about “personal responsibility”.
    In a pandemic.
    “We’re…errr…… YOU’RE all in this together.”
    Gee…thanks guys.

    • I feel sorry for QLD, SA and WA. You managed to keep Covid out. I wish we did, heaven know Victoria tried and Dan got roasted for it. Now I don’t agree with Dan’s methods, but I did believe Covid 0 was doable each time, I just think having flights and borders open made it impossible to keep it out.

      Business as usual must prevail, to hell with your health is the message. This equity won’t grow itself and we need more warm bodies for the population Ponzi grinder. So get out the way!

      • desmodromicMEMBER

        In SA, Marshal is in trouble and he knows it. Opening the borders is not playing well because the disruption has been huge and case numbers have exploded. A month ago we had no Covid and were separated from family interstate. Now we are separated from each other and businesses are closing. The government has relaxed the rules but people are staying away. I still have to wait another two weeks to get my booster because I can’t get an appointment. It’s BS and the government were totally unprepared for the decision they made. ‘Thoughts and prayers’ is all we get.

    • I feel the same way. 20 months of sacrifices for nothing. When Janette young moved on, I sensed she knew something we did not: that her support from the establishment was about to end.

    • Very sad, I really feel for those kids. When I went to Syria I met a bunch of nice kids in the local gym. They all thought I was American. My accent has been influenced by the fact I worked with a lot of Americans for 10+ years, but I was sure to tell them I was Australian.

      2 years later I saw tanks rolling down that street in Hama where I met those kids. Always wondered what happened to them.

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        Wow. I didn’t know (until now) just how bad things are in Lebanon.

        “In a recent report, the World Bank wrote that the economic and financial crisis in the country ranks among the three most severe crises since the mid-19th century and notes that, “such a sharp and rapid contraction is usually associated with conflict or war.”

        The national currency lost more than 90 percent of its value against the dollar, while consumer price inflation – the standard basket of food and drinks – rose 290 percent year-on-year in August, the highest in the world, according to Bloomberg. Three-quarters of the country’s inhabitants are now said to live below the poverty line, according to one UN report.“

        Is this where Turkey is headed?

      • Lots of dangerous ideas in that article. The last line said it all: “”The Lebanese want to avoid banks, because they have no control over what happens in them.”

        Good find Gavin.

      • A. not a Keynesian

        B. Monetary outcomes are proceeded by Political ones so getting the order right completely changes the perspective.

        C. BTW Keynes after making and losing two fortunes completely changed his investment strategy to the long perspective which which one might review a few times a year …. imaging being like a rat in a maze endless days seeking the cheese which alternates its location … now how would one expect that to effect not only an individuals psychological state, but that of entire populations … looks out window … don’t look up!

        D. productivity has gone up 400%+ since the 70’s where productivity and wages diverged, where did it go, where is it going currently, why were people forced into the Casino/RE to offset this loss …

        E. what does crypto do to remediate any of this …

  11. The Travelling PhantomMEMBER

    If you test positive to COVID using an RAT test, make sure you keep a record. Take a photo with your phone with the date. Preferably get a PCR test too if possible.

    If you don’t you won’t be eligible for any emergency government payment if you miss work, because you have to prove you’ve had COVID.”

    Found it in a comment in an article at the Age
    Thought worth sharing

    In addition, there is little knowledge of the long term impact of COVID, so for the sake of future diagnoses, or health issues, it’s a good idea to have a record of when you had COVID.

    • I cannot understand how self testing could be accepted by the authorities. How much more are they willing to compromise?