Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Germany is full of idiots

Yeah I know that is strong but simply read this
You now agree right!
Classical economics has a lot to answer for.

( yep I am still in pain oh woe is me!)

Sunday, 28 September 2014

A Wedding and Hospital

On Saturday I went to a quite nice wedding. She is a friend if my wife.She teached at the same school for a while.She is slightly below 50 and he is slightly above 50. ( Much younger than I).
It was held at a hotel at Darling Harbour and it was terrific. The only slight problem was the music which was a tad high for people whose ages graced this occasion and the songs were too 'modern'.

However a good time was had by all.

When I got into the car about 11 p.m. my back hurt. It was mainly my kidneys but I thought little of it. My wife, who does not drink, drove a friend home .She teaches at a local high school like my wife. I started to complain about my back and how it hurt like blazes.
Eventually I got my wife to drive me to Ryde hospital, I thought and everyone else thought I was having a kidney stone, It was a very painful.condition and despite getting morphine the pain didn't want to go away.
One thing I could do not  do was pee despite wanting to do this on a large number of occasions.
It eventually came out that my prostate simply was not working properly and putting immense pressure on my kidneys which shut down for a short time.

Once I was fitted up with a catheter all the pain left me however I did find out on being at home My kidneys were still hurting a bit and I seemed to be out of breath a lot.

I suspect it will take time before I can get back to where I was before the wedding.

The urologist took out my catheter believing my body would adapt as it normally is expected to. It didn't.

I was back at Ryde hospital last night to get another catheter because my prostrate refuses to do its job.
This it is off to the San on Tuesday to operate on the damn thing.

Woe is me!

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Around the Traps 26/9/14

It is time for Around the Traps again. I have a wedding to attend on Saturday so wil try tp update on Saturday night or perhaps Sunday Afternoon.

Northern America
Andrew Gelman ( Mainly stats)
Dave Giles (Econometrics)
Dianne Coyle (quirky + book reviews)

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Castle Series 7 approaches

The greatest TV series of all times enters dangerous waters as it approaches its 7th season which starts on Monday night (USA time)

Since Castle and Beckett have gotten together the quality of writing has declined. This is the 'Moonlighting curse' affecting Castle.
Moreover it got worse in season 6 we had contradictions in the canon paraded regularly, plot holes deeper than the grand canyon and OOC roles.
The main culprit was Andrew Marlowe but it has always been him.
If we go back a little Season 6 started off reasonably well as we said in castle-series-6-thus-far
This overlooked some problems that would eventually jump up and swallow the series.

  • Castle made possibly the worst proposal on TV after appalling behaviour by Beckett. He claimed he was doing this because he wanted to spend the rest of his life with her. Err was this irony because he would have said that to both Meredith and Gina ( Both of which divorces we know little about in Series 6!)
  • Castle almost dies in episode 2 BECAUSE Beckett was completely thoughtless , selfish and self centered when accepting the job. It was London to a brick Castle would follow her and try to help her but this never crossed her mind despite being in love with him! 
  • In Episode 3 rather than resign and be true to her principles she stays and gets sacked as she should have. Castle makes the absurd claim that he can write anywhere, Has he? No! More evidence that NO effort or homework was done in accepting the job.
  • We had the Alexis arc where absurdly she turns rebellious and acts a like a spoilt brat just about when she is going to be 20! (Irony button no.)And do talk about those loves scenes with Pi. ( irony button of now.)
  • The Like Father Like Daughter was dreadful with them building theory together however that is what Caskett do and it is foreplay so what sexual deviant thought that idea up?
It just goes to show you what great episodes they had up to that stage that managed to overcome all this.

However it was downhill from there despite VERITAS being the greatest ever Castle episode.

We got the worst ever episode , In the Belly of the Best ( ITBOTB) where the Narcotics Captain wants Beckett , the most publicized cop in NYPD history, to go undercover without any experience or guidance or any change in her appearance. No Stop laughing that was the actual absurd script.At the end of the case which goes badly pear-shaped there are NO repercussions. no-one is sacked, Castle is not angry and Beckett does not apologise. Truly the two writers do not have a clue what love is!

Some other problems:
  •  Beckett being a model for 15 minutes at 19 except in Series 2 it was when she was 17!
  • Beckett tells Castle she didn't go to the prom except she did in series 1 and Maddie would have said something about that if that occurred in Series 2!
  • The Boys go 'undercover in a Geisha bar but Kevin Ryan gives the game away except he is a very experienced person at being undercover as we saw in Series 5 (The wild rover)
  • Beckett is the Acting Captain in the 70s show except the 12th precinct has a lieutenant ( food to die for series 2 )  and thus a sergeant and she is the lowest ranked leading detective.
  • I am not going to even try and criticise the appalling  and cliche driven finale except to say Marlowe lied when he essentially promised fans a wedding.
Well after that spray you might be surprised that I am optimistic for series 7.
Let us take a look at the reasons why:
  • It cannot be as bad as Season 6, indeed we might assume season 6 is an outlier
  • The writers must have surely learned their lessons from the disasters of Series 6
  • In Nathan Fillion and Stan Katic they have the greatest of all time in showing a loving couple.
  • Andrew Marlowe is no longer in charge and he was the worst in being lazy in writing
  • Castle cannot be allowed to jump the shark

I finish with obligatory Coldplay tune

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Global Warming and the 'Right'

Why is the Right so determined to appear so stupid over Global Warming.

John Quiggin writes about this and it is hard to disagree.

Here is a great example.

Please note no mentions of this at all. No mention of why the ocean temperatures are ratcheting up either.
And the pause. We have looked at that previously.

Any reason why 12 of the 14 warmest years have occurred in the 21st Century?


Why are so many of the right embarrassing when attempting to explain their conclusions?

One is tempted to say they are simply anti- intellectual and anti-science.

Sunday, 21 September 2014

John Howard: Still telling lies

John Howard last night tried to issue a mea culpa about the illegal invasion of Iraq.
He claimed the intelligence he received for believing Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction was not good enough.

Unfortunately for him we already know he was told that Iraq posed no threat. Rod Barton in his book 'The Weapons Detective' ( This newspaper article gives a good outline of it) outlines in painstaking detail how he and and John Gee, who were working for the United Nation's Weapons inspector, had a meeting with Howard. They told him Iraq had no chemical weapons at all and any weapons not found from the previous Gulf war would be so degraded as to be useless.

Very soon after this Howard had a news conference where he said Iraq possessed Chemical weapons that posed a threat to bits neighbours and the world.

We should always remember when Iraq was invaded it possessed the slowest jet fighters in the area, They could not service all their tanks and each time their soldiers were engaged with soldiers who matched them in weapons they retreated faster than a cheetah.

It really would be nice if the Leaders could simply fess up and tell us the real reason why they invaded Iraq because each reason they put up make them look even more stupid.

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Around the Traps 19/9/14 Almost Birthday edition!

It is time for Around the Traps.
Busy all day on Saturday. coaching in the morning and Umpiring in the Afternoon so updating will be on Sunday

Aussie,Aussie,Aussie, Oy,Oy,Oy
Northern America

Andrew Gelman ( Mainly but not only Stats)
Dave Giles (Econometrics)

Dianne Coyle ( Quirky + Book Reviews)
Vox Wonk

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Climate Change

I am outsourcing today's reading to Steve from Brisbane's blog as he has a number of interesting articles on climate change.
They are:

I agree with Jason Soon that Steve's blog is vastly under-rated and almost always interesting.

Monday, 15 September 2014

Iraq, Now and then

I doubt if there are many people who do not wish the policy goal of eliminating ISIS or whatever it wants to be called.
However there must be a main goal. The Allies must know what it is and this when it is achieved.

When The USA and other counties illegally invaded Iraq previously no-one knew why. The reason was unknown.Given this it followed there was little idea of when the military should leave the country.
We knew at the time Iraq posed little threat to its neighbours let alone to the USA or the UK. They knew they posed no WMDS. ( Howard was told by two Australian inspectors Iraq had no chemical weapons and then one day after being told that said exactly the opposite!. Read Greg Barton's book!).

It couldn't have been it was because Hussein was a 'bad' man because he was the only one toppled.
Hence we have no idea of the real reason for the invasion

In the end what resulted was the present mess.

This means Iraqi polity must understand they are one of the main ( but not only) reasons for the current problem.

We can only hope the current leaders are far more competent than the ones who lead us there in the first place!


Here is John Quiggin

Saturday, 13 September 2014

Kelly's Heroes

This was a great movie.

Clint Eastwood at his grimacing best, Telly Savalas, Donald Sutherland, Don Rickles, Harry Dean Stanton  the list goes on.

Here is the them song for that movie

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Around the Traps 12/9/14

It is time for Around the Traps.

Cricket season has started so updates on Sunday if I am lucky.

Northern America
Andrew Gelman (Mainly Stats)
Dave Giles (Econometrics)
Dianne Coyle (Quirky + Book reviews)
Vox Wonk

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Cricket starts on Saturday

come Saturday cricket starts again.

I am now in my 13th year of Junior cricket.
I am a firm believer that a boy inculcated with the values of the spirit of cricket will have a head start in life. Accepting the Umpires decision will help him when he starts work. Understanding how the team works will help him again when he is employed.
The encouragement of team mates and no abuse towards opponents again so.

I am not only umpiring , in Shires, but for some reason the local Umpires have put me in  charge. It could be it is because their numbers have increased from around 2 to 8-10 depending on the weekend and the jobs of some of the locals.

All in all there is a lot of fun coming up.

Some prats put concrete where you put the stumps so over 2 dozen teenagers couldn't play today.

Thanks a lot!

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Tony Makin makes a fool of himself

Tony Makin put out a paper for the Minerals council. In it he attempts to show the fiscal stimulus the Previous Government had actually made things worse.
No-one would be surprised that Henry Ergas, Sinclair Davidson and Judith Sloan all think it is fantastic.

Treasury responded and it was devastating

Just a couple of the clangers Makin made and the three amigos neglected to talk about:

  • Makin's understanding of the Mundell-Fleming hypothesis is  'ahem' limited
  • Makin calims export growth was the main reason.Except exports FELL. They just fell LESS than imports. That is why Net exports made the contribution to growth in the December quarter of 2008
  • Makin claimed the $A rose. It actually fell quite a bit.
This person has a job at a University and he cannot even do basic research!

Before finishing with this bit of academic garbage I should add Davidson is a believer it was monetary policy that caused the December quarter and following to be positive ( after he forecast it would be negative).
Now I did my Masters degree on Monetary policy. I have have never heard nor read of a lag so quick. Remember the RBA only started to cut rates in September. The other problem is these people will NEVER tell you the stance of Monetary policy and how they are measuring it. 
I can tell you some people  the RBA think this theory is absurd and the people expounding it simply lacking any understanding of how monetary policy works!  Amen to that brother.

added bonus Steve from Brisbane has his say.

Monday, 8 September 2014

Climate Denialism

We have seen two classic examples of climate denialism over the last week.

Firstly on the domestic front we had some manufactured controversy on how the Bureau of Meteorology gets the temperatures for the Australian continent.

On this I will outsource to the ever excellent Steve from Brisbane's blog.

Graham Redfearn shows up the ever hopeless research with regard to the denialists.

Meanwhile Matt Ridley wrote some rubbish in the WSJ. Jim Rose  amongst others gave it some publicity. Jeffrey Sachs excoriated it.

All in all it showed up denialists as  either very lazy or very stupid people who will go to great lengths to lie about what is happening to the climate of the world.

Very sad.

Sunday, 7 September 2014

The First Year of the LNP government

We have seen a number of people comment of the first year of the present Government.
From Friday's EXCELLENT Around the Traps here are three:

  1. Michelle Grattan
  2. Lenore Taylor
  3. Mumble
I thought I might just give another reason why it had no honeymoon and is the most unpopular first term Government in polling history.
In Opposition they were inherently lazy. We saw this firstly in their policies in the 2010 election.
Even when it was clear to every man and his dog they would win the 2013 election pretty easily they continued to be.
This can be seen in this Kouk's piece.
Only a complete imbecile would have promised a budget surplus in every year of their first term.

This showed a complete disregard on why nominal GDP has been so weak and how important nominal GDP is to government revenue. We can see Hockey had no idea of the weak state of the Australian economy coming into the election!

The laziness came be seen in their complete disregard to saying one thing before the election and then something completely different after the election. It can also be seen in how they 'negotiate' with minor parties in the Senate.

It can also be seen in the pathetic efforts to explain away they haven't broken any promises at all.

This can all change.
Here are some suggested changes the government could adopt in no particular order:
  • Adopt what the National party did to industrial relations in New Zealand indeed just copy the 96 pages! You de-regulate the labour market further. You do it to better labour market outcomes not to destroy trade unions. It worked there and it will work here.
  • Get a strategy together that will boost Nominal GDP. Wayne Swan's experience will tell you austerity makes it worse. Let's face it if nominal GDP is still weak in 20126 then your government is cactus.
  • Do not be so overtly political. Saying the cupboard is bare and then setting up two blatantly political Royal Commissions
  • Fess up and say yes you did brake promises however you had to do it because of ...

Saturday, 6 September 2014


Here is Diesel doing his best song live. Spot the guest star

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Around the Traps 5/9/14

It is time for Around the Traps again.
Cricket doesn't start until next Saturday so I have all weekend to update.

Aussie,Aussie,Aussie, Oy,Oy,Oy
Northern America

Andrew Gelman ( Mainly Stats)
Dave Giles (Econometrics)
Dianne Coyle ( Quirky + Book Reviews)
Vox Wonk