Tuesday, 28 February 2017

The Delusionists

When Tony Abbott was toppled as Party leader it was acknowledged at the time it was done because the Government was headed for an electoral catastrophe.

We now have history being re-written by some 'conservative 'commentators asserting Abbott would have won the last election.  Unfortunately for them the polls told another story. The LNP would have been decimated. in the last two weeks of the election campaign people were asked how they would vote if Tony Abbott was leader. The answer a resounding loss to the LNP.  See Peter Lewis

Turnbull is now toast .Mumble says it all.
The Liberals have the choice of Abbott, Bishop, Morrison, Dutton or Hunt.

That is no choice at all!

A bit more:

George Christensen
George is in no trouble in Dawson. If the ALP come third their preferences will easily get over the line. In Australia the primary vote means diddly squat. It is the Twp party preferred that matters. This is in essence why the One Nation party was dormant for so long. Their primary vote was sometimes impressive but they never got any preferences!

Malcolm Turnbull's demise
People were ecstatic when he became leader. Here at last was an adult in charge, Abbott was not only completely out of his depth he was an embarrassment. Unfortunately as time went on it was clear Turnbull had sold his soul. There was no change in policy at all. He was fortunate to get over the line at the election. Without Daniel Andrews he perhaps would not have.

Monday, 27 February 2017

Evidence that Trump is evil

The ever excellent Sam Wang's site has the memo from from Homeland security which advided Trump on his nbow infamous executive order.

Consider this:

  • The country of citizenship is unlikely to be a reliable indicator of potential terrorist activity
So the EO was based on NO evidence whatsoever but went ahead just to scare the living daylights of those poor unfortunates so stupid as to believe Trump's ravings.

It is also an excuse for the USA to get out of its obligations to asylum seekers and refugees.

Trump is evil full stop. Impeach him now.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

The social conversative case for penalty rates

The Fair Work Commission cut penalty rates last week. Greg Jericho examines their arguments and fins them wanting.
Ross Gittins brings his salvation army history to bear. ( His late brother was a Baptist pastor)

Sunday is very different to any other day.
These days of increased technology people are working on Saturdays at home ( so much for more leisure time).
It is nigh impossible to have a family dinner on Saturdays now and forget about inviting people over for lunch or dinner.
Sunday is the only day of the week when people rest if they can. Thus it is the only time when people can meet and see each other.
People are relational beings. There has to be at least one day of the week when people can 'meet and greet' so to speak.
The penalty rate decision is simply making Sunday another working day.
It is anti-family and anti- friends.

If people wish to open business on Sunday then they should have to pay significantly higher wages to pay for the privilege. This means higher prices for goods and services.

We have seen this with Tradies for quite some time. If you require a Tradie on Sunday then you pay a lot more money as you should.

No social conservative would ever want Sunday to be just another commercial day.There is such a thing a society.

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Around the Traps 24/2/17 Ken Arrow edition

It is time for Around the Traps again.
There are some great tributes to Ken Arrow, perhaps the greatest economist of my times, in General

Northern America
Andrew Gelman ( mainly stats)
Genial Dave Giles ( econometrics)
Dianne Coyle  ( quirky + book reviews)
Vox wonk

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Some people have no shame.

The wages data came out yesterday and yet again we have an all time low in annual rises in wages.

I leave Greg Jericho to give you the good oil on it.

I am wondering when certain people such as Gerry Henderson , the Peroxide Princess et al  will come out and say they were wrong in alleging the labour market was re-regulated.

We know this was NEVER the case.

If it was then the following would have occurred.

  • Industrial disputation would have risen as unions used their new found power
  • Wages would have risen again as unions used their new found power
  • Unemployment would have risen as labour costs rose substantially.
NONE of the three occurred .Indeed the opposite occurred As I stated way back when.

ain't it funny that those who got it so badly wrong cannot even admit to their blundering mistakes!

The academic consensus on austerity

Simon Wren-Lewis has a typical thoughtful piece on Austerity. When to use it and when not!

Ignorant people think keynesian economics is all about greater spending all the time. This is patently untrue.

When there is a liquidity trap you must boost the economy through greater spending by one-off measures. Greater infrastructure spending is preferred because most Governments have an infrastructure 'gap'. This means it is a one-off and only temporarily increases a structural deficit. Reducing the structural deficit is therefore very easy. Tax cuts permanently increase a structural deficit if not accompanied by spending cuts. If they are then there is no boost to economic activity.

On the other hand under Keynesian economics as conditions get better there is a need to get to budget balance and then have greater and greater budget surpluses. A good example of this is the Hawke government getting the budget into black in 1987 and then the Howard government getting the budget into the black in 1997. They are classic examples of keynesian economics at work.

On the other hand classic economics is a crock. By simply having a budget in balance no matter what stage of the business cycle a nation is in then you have a pro-cyclical policy. It exacerbates both booms and recessions.
Again a good example of this was the Howard Government in their last years. By targeting a surplus at 2% of GDP even though the economy was booming it.

People who are entrapped in classical economics do not understand a budget in deficit can be contractionary such as we saw in Europe and a budget in surplus can be expansionary as we saw here in the last years of the Howard Government.
Ignorant confusion on this can be observed by reading articles at Catallaxy. Our mad mate Katesy thought Europe was adopting expansionary policy when it was doing the exact opposite. The Peroxide Princess and Alan Moran also wrote along these lines as well.

Another way of examining this is to examine countries who adopted austerity policies following the GFC. Most countries which did got a depression! i.e. a drop in economic activity of 10% or more!

Game set and match!

Monday, 20 February 2017

The ALP does not need a renewable target

Tony Wood today makes a very obvious point. The party has a policy of an emissions intensity scheme for the electricity sector.

Let me quote Tony here

"If we had a clear policy to reduce emissions at lowest cost, whether in the form of an EIS or some other scheme, renewable energy would naturally increase to whatever level is most economically efficient under those policy settings. Whether this reaches 50% or any other level would be determined by the overall emissions-reduction target and the relative costs of various green energy technologies.
In this scenario, a separately mandated renewable energy target would be simply unnecessary and would probably just add costs with no extra environmental benefit. Note that this reasoning would apply to state-based renewable energy policies, which have become a political football amid South Australia’s recent tribulations over energy security."

Read the whole article as he makes so much sense. Perhaps Bill Shorten should read it as well as he appears to as well briefed on this subject as Alan Moran.

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Sinclair Davidson gets an english lesson

Sinclair Davidson today attempts to fake fake news.
Err no. Trump went to Florida. If he didn't then that is fake news. Imagine a President saying a terrorist incident occurred in Sweden bit it didn't. That is fake news.

The CNN host eloquently tells the trump apologist what fake news is and what it isn't yet the Trump apologist again falsely claimed this was fake news.
The host then stops the program when it is clear the Trump apologist is merely goebbelsising. as he SHOULD.

Perhaps  we should give Sinkers some slack because as we have seen in the past his understanding of the English language is very poor!


Why does Sinclair Davidson defend the indefensible?  Easy peezy. He doesn't believe in free speech. One only has to look at Catallaxy to see that. Catallaxy writers and commenters rarely come out of that cesspool to defend their beliefs that is why the articles are so inarticulate.

It is the same with Trump apologists as in the CNN grab. No argument to defend Trumps conflict of interest so allege it is fake news when it isn't.

Never mind Trump as I have shown is a Fake news President!

!984 was late in coming.

The Sydney Derby

Saturday night saw the Sydney derby at Homebush. There was a crowd of almost 50,000 and it surely would have broken that if the weather was okay.
Football is made for derbies.
It doesn't matter if one team is going well in the league like Sydney FC and the other is not like the Wanderers. If the Wanderers win then the season is a good one particularly given if it stops Sydney's unbeaten run.  They did and the fans were ecstatic.

It was a fantastic game in terms of the football. Given how close the game was the RBB made the game and thus the atmosphere was simply out of this world.

The local derbies are now proven crowd pullers and games to look forward to.  I think all Sydney derbies should be at Homebush and one day it will be packed out.

I can only say it was bloody great to be a  Wanderers supporter on Saturday night.

Oh yes it was a penalty. The Referee did not have a great game

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Around the Traps 17/2/17

It is time for Around the Traps again

Northern America
Andrew Gelman ( mainly stats)
Genial Dave Giles (econometrics)
Dianne Coyle  (quirky + book reviews)
Vox Wonk

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Why Trump is evil

More chaos in the chaos house yet again.
This time we see looney tune Flynn 'resigning'.

For four different opinion on this see:

We should note the FIRST highly specific allegations against Flynn was made in the Wall Street Journal. It was the follow up by the Washington Post with detailed notes on the phone calls which completely sunk Flynn.
Republican Senators want to follow this up. 'What did the President know and when did he know it?'

This issue is but a template of showing how incompetent the present chaos house is..

I want to concentrate on the evil actions of the famous sloppily drafted EO on 'immigration'

First we should realise all three looney tunes  i.e Trump, Bannon and Flynn, all believe in fake news. Bannon had made a career out of it. 

HOWEVER Trump and Flynn would have known the EO they were proposing had no evidence to back it up with. ( The Courtsd asked for it but never got it.) They both would have been briefed to that effect by their national security experts. There is academic support for this as well. Refugees do not come to the USA or Australia for that matter as terrorists to kill  people.

Terrorists these days of ISIS are home grown. When people of Trump's ilk spew out their false information it is fodder to ISIS's propaganda machine to boost home grown terrorists.

Why does Trump deliberately lie about refugee being terrorists? He can't say no. He simply cannot be seen as supporting policy which is plainly wrong.
Thus he puts the citizens of the USA at risk by trying to implement policy which has no basis to it AND successfully reinforces false perceptions of some people in the USA.

This is evil

Whoopsy I forgot to say the Acting Attorney General Sally Yates warned Trump about Flynn

double whoopsy. for those who do not know Flynn broke the LOGAN act. ( note to self do not assume)

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

The Energy market is simply not working.

Australia's energy market is just not working.

We had the extraordinary effort by the regulator last week who simply allowed South Australia to have a blackout rather than doing their job.

Previous blackouts in South Australia have occurred because the transfer of power from state to state had continual problems.
Steve from Brisbane  looked at this issue with an article with some great links.

It does appear the system is being gamed by major players. One of the great ironies is that with gas on export parity pricing few producers want to put on gas generators such as Pelican Point in South Australia. This is why the regulator needed to order them to be on standby last week.

No wonder Bruce Mountain wants the States to take back their responsibilities in energy.

Energy costs are not going to go down. It is problematic whether a coal powered plant would get finance these days but they are not cheaper than plants using renewables. If gas is going to be used then prices are going to have to go up big time.

The energy market needs to be completely and utterly re-engineered. The regulator needs changing as well.

THIS is highly pertinent. Thanks Jim Rose

Greg Jericho makes sense.

Monday, 13 February 2017

The Libs are playing with fire with One Nation

The main argument yesterday was the decision by the WA Libs to preference One Nation in the upper house instead of the Nationals.
The quid pro quo is that One Nation preferences the Libs in the lower house.

It seems as Colin Barnett has no knowledge of history. Antony Green has a very informative article on One Nation , preferences the LNP and the 1998 state election.

If a person wants to make One Nation a major player in politics then exchanging preferences is the best way to do it.
A number of people in the Federal liberal party have made comments that One Nation has changed. It is now sophisticated, it is economically rational, it is no longer racist.

I say bollocks (a highly technical term) to that. John Quiggin says what I wanted to.

One nation can be said to be socially conservative but highly interventionist in economics.

They want to return to the 1950s when the government intervened in everything that moved.

They are totally against economic liberalism and deregulation of most industries.

The last time the Libs gave preferences to One Nation they ensured One Nation seats they were never going to win otherwise.  One Nation blew up internally. It is more likely this would occur again however if it does not then the Libs will have to accede to One Nation demands with regard to policy.
That is highly dangerous given how racist, xenophobic not to mention ignorant they are.


Dom Knight who really should be hosting the RN breakfast show instead  of Fran Kelly writes a terrific column HERE.  
Compare that with Sinclair Davidson who thinks Hanson made an impressive speech without telling us why or how. 

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Around the Traps 10/2/17

It is time for Around the Traps again.

Northern America
Andrew Gelman (mainly stats)
Genial Dave Giles (econometrics)
Dianne Coyle (quirky + book reviews)
Vox Wonk

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Cory Bernardi

Cory Bernardi has left the Liberal party.

Big deal. He never showed up as an down under Keith Joseph nor is he an outstanding orator.
Is he a budding political genius. Nah. I saw him debate Penny Wong on same sex marriage at the Canberra press club. We should remember Penny Wong is a highly unimpressive woman. She comes from the Wayne Swan you must always be on topic political school thus we never know what she actually believes in.
Yet despite all this an despite me being very much against same sex marriage she easily bested Bernardi.

He claims to to a social conservative and economic liberal. Again this should appeal to me however Bernardi has yet to recognise the conflicts that occur when one is both. Most social conservative parties either here or overseas are economic conservative. They see the government as a controlling influence over the market as it was in the 50s and 60s.

As for the political implications. I cannot  disagree all that much with Nick Economou.
If he was a man of principle he would resign his seat just as Don Chip should have many many moons ago.

See here for example.

It was highly significant that when asked what policies Turnbull had undertaken that were liberal not conservative ( my paraphrase) he could not name one.

It ain't even interesting