Tuesday, 30 April 2019

Australia can be powered 100 % by renewables by 2030

I got this via Giles Parkindom of Renew Economy fame.

Ross Garnaut made a speech on this topic quite recently

Just some tasty morsels.

  • Solar PV has fallen 82% in cost since 2010 and is now cheaper than old coal.
  • Everyone here and overseas has badly underestimated how quickly and how far these costs have fallen
  • He is particularly worried about AEMO reacting too slowly to this radical change
  • He thinks it i s likely solar PV costs wil be $ 30 /MWh by 2030. This means costs back when old coal was at its cheapest!
  • He then sees a renaissance in aluminium in Australia as he believes we have a comparative advantage  in this are.
Read the article and then listen to the speech.

Monday, 29 April 2019

The Leaders' debate

Okay I admit it I watched it last night
As I said yesterday these 'debates' are highly over-rated.
No-one has ever had a 'knock out punch' indeed I fail to recall a bad mistake from the past.
There are always 'winners however such as last night when the audience thought Bill Shorten won.

I think the expectations last night was Bill Shorten would  either 'lose' or not do well  because he was not 'campaigning' well.

Well he performed well last night. He left it to Morrison to interrupt most of the time, He was confident. I thought Morrison looked anxious. The smiles or smirks on  both men did not endear them to anyone!

The only thing that occurs is the psychological and emotional bounce Shorten will gain for a few days probably only today though

Will the debate matter? No really all people will read or view is the audience verdict and maybe a short grab of some answers. Very few people including me will look at the nest debate on Sky on Friday night.

Some thoughts here from 'experts' courtesy of the Conversation.

I should have been explicit why the 'debates' are usually always good for Opposition Leaders. This is the ONLY time they are on an equal par with the Prime Minister.

Sunday, 28 April 2019

The frustration of watching an election campaign whilst recuperating

I thought recuperating after my combined gallbaldder/hernia operation would be enjoyable since the election campaign was on. I was SOOOO  WRONG.

Its Deja Vu all over again

Almost everybody got it wrong last election. This was possibly the easiest election to predict. From when the election was called until election night the polls did NOT move given the margin of error.
Only problem was no-one really looked at the polls. They were always wrong for some reason or other.

He is good in election campaigns

I simply knew people would say Morrison is impressive and Shorten is not. Let me give an example. A person is only a good campaigner if they increase their party's vote. Let us examine John Howard. The great campaigner par excellence. Hang on. From when the election was called and election night he only increased his party's vote in 2004 and possibly 2007 ( depending on which opinion poll you like).
If you want to say Morrison is a great campaigner, Bill Shorten is a poor campaigner or vica versa then provide the polling evidence.

Seat polling

The United Australia party got a lot of publicity through 4 seat polls. See HERE and HERE on why seat polls are crap.If you read any party is doing internal seat polling then you know it is complete and utter garbage. It costs way too much and is totally unreliable.See Peter Brent for a great conspiracy story about those 'polls'

Internal part polling

Pulease. Internal party polls which are different to public polls are NEVER to be trusted

Preference Deals

The was much hooha about the Liberal party and the United Australia party exchanging preferences.
First of all where are all the UA party's votes are coming from?  Most probably from the Liberals .This being the case unless all votes come back to them via preferences the Liberals will lose votes. Will the UA party have people on the ground to hand out leaflets in all the polling booths? I do not think so thus there will be some leakage of preferences.
Also If Palmer becomes a senator history shows he will not turn up so some sittings, quite a lot of sittings.


I am not a fan of betting markets 'predicting' elections. See Kevin Bonham. All of the above shows punters have no better information than anyone else.

The Polls

I cannot understand why seasoned journalists still say there is a tightening in the polls when they may change from say 52/48 to 51/49. I have just heard Fran Kelly say this. Dennis Shanahan is another culprit. Sometimes I feel I should do an Andrew Elder spray.

for the latest there is Galaxy and Newspoll

 Just remember a few things. There are both done by the same company at the same time. Also 52/48 and 51/49 are the same result given the margin of error.

The Debates

In almost any country political debates have no to little impact on the result. In Australia the Opposition Leader usually does well as he is now getting equal coverage. Also in most cases he attacks the government's record and presents a small target. This time it will be different. The ALP has a very large target. It won't matter.

Thursday, 25 April 2019

Around the Traps 26/4/19

It is time for Around the Traps.

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

Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Book Review : Bertie

The english academic Jane Ridley wrote this book some time ago but I have only just got around to reading it.
I have always been interested in the politics of the time both in Europe and the UK afterall David Lloyd George is one of the most interesting politicians you could read about.
However I have never read anything on the English royal family so I borrowed the book with trepidation.
Well I should not have been. It was a fascination read.
I didn't know Queen Victoria was unpopular nor Bertie the Prince of Wales equally so. Victoria rarely made any public appearances after her beloved Albert dies.

Bertie is a book which is designed to enhance his reputation however the more I read about him the more I was repulsed.

He was not very intelligent but quite personable. So it appears  he inherited some of his Mother's genes but none of his father's. His sexual escapades were both legendary and disgraceful as it almost always was adultery. He continued this even when King.

What I found unanswered was how could this man have so many sexual escapades. He was fat, he smoked regularly , was a glutton and drank a lot. Being gregarious does not make up for that. Given whom he bedded they were not royal groupies so why did the women do it. The author does not even entertain this question at all.

She does say his popularity as a King was as a result of  his faults. He was one of them apparently. The punters could relate to him.

She also attempts to show how good he was at foreign affairs ( and how poor Edward Grey was). I was not convinced. She absolutely destroys the Kaiser

One interesting aspect of the man was his sheer hypocrisy went it came to formality.  No separate or divorced couples for him. you also had to wear the right clothes for the occasion.

The other question not answered is why his danish wife stood by him so staunchly thought their married life.  Did she think well adultery is simply part of Bertie's makeup and so I shall put up with it and ignore somewhat. Or did she do what we might call doing a Melania Trump.

However despite my reservations I would recommend reading the book. You do find out about how various royal families act and quite ironically the book helps the republican cause.

Perhaps I should end by finding it amusing how he detested Lloyd George. The politics is understood but in personality and sexual behaviour they were a match. LG however was quite intelligent.

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

Is this the best description of Donald Trump

A grossly inflated sense of self, very quick to take offence,incapable of learning from experience and ultimately superficial.

He had no sense of remorse, no empathy for the feelings of others and seemed incapable of feeling affection.

The former is narcissistic personality disorder and the latter some of the traits of a sociopath.

The author is describing Kaiser Willhem 11 but I think it describes Trump to a tee

A trip to Lawrence

I visited my brother in Lawrence ( It is between Grafton and Maclean).

A few points

  • There was intermittent showers which was good for a region that was in drought.
  • Traffic still awful before the bridge around Newcastle and just before Raymond Terrace.
  • Far too many Clive Palmer party ads in the country. He is obviously targeting the country vote.
  • Nationals on the nose about water even with the Murray/Darling a long way away
  • Bowraville was never a great little town when I was young and hasn't changed 
  • Petrol was cheaper at Grafton than in Sydney
  • Cattle we saw was not large at all but on a the skinny side
  • The main conversation I heard at one place was why did the Federal government pay for water that has no value at all i.e flood water. They know all about floods near the Clarence river.
  • Scott Morrison must be desperate to allow TV cameras in. ( okay not part of the holiday but I couldn't miss it.)
  • found out SBS has got Monty Python on monday nights. My brother and I knew a lot of the skits.

Thursday, 18 April 2019

Around the Traps 19/4/19 Easter Friday Edition

It is time for Around the Traps again.

 I will be on the road to Lawrence and hope to update once I reach my brother's place

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

Wednesday, 17 April 2019

Israel Folau, Again it gets very frustrating

I find it bewilderingly frustrating trying to talk to secular people on this topic.

It has been the hot topic on Macquarie Sports Radio. Given I am in convalescence and thus have plenty of free time I have attempted to ring programs on this topic as well as e-mailing. Unfortunately most programs won't let me on the air. I even had one presenter saying since he disagreed with my position he would not list any of my em,ails on air.
I did get to talk to Julian King who is the presenter on evenings ( and I might add easily the best presenter on the network). I hasten to add I regularly ring up to talk on both sports , football and cricket, so there is some sort of relationship there.
Despite me explaining  that Folau did NOT say anyone goes to hell simply because they are homosexual. It is for acts just like acts of fornication and adultery will do the same for heterosexual.
It mattered not Folau was still a bigot and  homophobic.

Moreover why is the Rugby Australia CEO, NSW Rugby CEO, the National Coach, the Captain talk about Rugby being inclusive and Folau being guilty of not observing their diversity policy.
Again Huh. Folau has not talked about who can or should play rugby or the same for watching and viewing et al.  Folau has exhorted through the Star Express of Kings Cross for homosexuals to play rugby!  not the actions of a bigot or homophobe I would have thought.

We now know there is going to be a legal battle  HERE is an interesting opinion I heard yesterday.
I even heard a legal expert on 2GB  say Folau was in a lot of trouble because he said homosexuals go to hell because they are homosexuals. Whoopsy . Bad research. Folau did not say that.

Bear in mind I have only studied Introduction to Law where the only case I ever remembered was Donoghue V Stevenson ( where the Judge sourced the book of Luke). Happy Days.

If any person cannot state their beliefs in a private capacity ( people should remember the perils of hell ( which  Jesus more than any other person talked about) is a leading evangelical device) then free speech is dead.

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Lessons from the Great Depression

Francess Coppolla has written three essays on the Depression. The last one is entitled lessons-from-long-depression.
She lins her earlier two essays.
I think it was Santayana who said if you do not learn from history you are doomed to repeat it or words to that effect.
This is why I think any essays on the Great Depression are always useful to read.

Monday, 15 April 2019

A few musings on the election

  1. Pay no attention to internal or seat polls.  I have repeatedly written about internal polls. There is no need to take any notice of them as we shall have various public polls out. Kevin Bonham has also repeatedly warned about . They are hopeless
  2. Policy costings. Wayne Swan's best initiative was creating the Parliamentary Budget Office. This means the Opposition now gets costings for any of their policies that is as good as Treasury. Unfortunately this government have not learnt from the ALP's disastrous attempt to use Treasury in the 22013 election. They simply look foolish
  3. The Victorian election should be heavily criticised for their use of taxpayers money to criticise the present Government. This has now set a bad precedent.
  4. I am interested in the seat of Warringah. I believe Parliament would be a far better place without Mr Abbott. He seems to be worried given how many crackdowns he has taken
  5. I am somewhat amused by the government criticising the ALP for their large taxing measures. If these measures are bad for the economy how come this did not occur when Howard was PM?
Losing power today so possibly more later

okay a few more things from the library

  • Taxable income is a very poor indicator of how wealthy a person is. It is total income MINUS deductions. Wealthy types always have a lot of deductions. A reason why some economists ( and I support them) want to get rid of deductions. My memory has the very conservative Michael Porter being one of them
  • electric car scare came and  went. It is a target which is very similar to the Government. It is not mandatory. Very east to get charged without resorting to the electricity network I would have thought. If electric cars take more and more of the market would not service stations put of solar panels and batteries. would drivers of electric cars fill it up or simply top it up

Sunday, 14 April 2019

Book Review Andrew Fisher

I have just finished David Day's excellent biography on Andrew Fisher, The ALP leader during WW1 where he won majorities in both the lower house and upper house.

As with a lot of early Labour party MPs both here and the UK he was a christian. Being from Scotland he was a fervent Presbyterian.

In Scotland and when he came to Australia where he settled in Queensland he was a coal miner. He did studies which meant found employment further up the pole than most miners.
Again like a lot of early ALP members he read a lot and therefore could debate people very easily in a number of areas.

He started off in Queensland parliament but gravitated to Federal Parliament  once federation occurred.

Although not leader at first he eventually made leader and seemed a natural leader.

It is interesting that the first ALP Governments were dominated by people who were confirmed Protestants. Indeed the woeful Billy Hughes hated catholics with a passion.

With Fisher in charge the ALP seemed to be the natural party of government in Australia.
However his statement that Australia would back England with their last man and last shilling came back to haunt him as it became apparent the Allied Generals had little clue of how to win the war.

Fisher retired from politics perhaps too young because of this.
Billy Hughes then went on to become the ALP leader and proceeded to split the ALP on conscription.

In a saddening development he succumbed to dementia . like Cook before him,

The Seat he held has never been held by the ALP since.

In ending I should comment on all parties at that time trying to be the all white party of the time. I would be intrigued how Fisher who was such a fervent Presbyterian could reconcile this with his biblical beliefs.

I highly recommend this book.

Thursday, 11 April 2019

Around the Traps 12/4/19

It is time for around the traps.

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

Wednesday, 10 April 2019

Israel Folau again

Rugby player and christian Israel Folau put out something on social media.
THIS basically shows how the media overall sees what Folau says.

Now before we go on we should examine rugby Australia's DIVERSITY POLICY.

Interesting eh!

Folau is talking about Heaven and Hell. Rugby Australia is talking about who can play rugby.

I can see a lot of legal work coming up if Rugby Australia attempts to say Folau has breached their policies.

Slow update:

Rugby Australia has sacked Folau. I will be interested if Folau takes legal action

Further Update:
Why has No-one who has criticised Folau read THIS
Croaking Cassandra on this.

Phillip Jensen magnificent on his first 'offence'

The Australian Christian League enters the fray.

As Brad De Long would say MOAR

Very Late update:
This is Terrible. An academic who doesn't even know the facts. Folau has NEVER argued against inclusion in rugby . He has actually done the opposite.

Tuesday, 9 April 2019

Paying off National Debt

Greg Jericho has a good article on this.
however he omits the most important feature of how Howard and his government cut debt.

Asset Sales. Sorry dear folks but budget surpluses did n't much in this area. Selling off Telstra did however

Monday, 8 April 2019

Poll Roundup

Kevin Bonham gives us his usual poll roundup.
As an added bonus we have Mark the Ballot giving us:

Amongst the many things that were polled we find major party supporters are latte drinkers.

I am a supporter of the flat white!

Sunday, 7 April 2019

In case you are wondering

The operation went well.
Apparently they pull the gallbladder out of my belly button. This is why it is so sore.
Another reason is they found a hernia there and also treated that as well.
I am now on six weeks of doing very little. I cannot even take out the garbage.
I will now have the 'pleasure' of seeing the election close up and personal.


Thursday, 4 April 2019

Around the Traps 5/4/19

It is time again for Around the Traps.

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