Monday, 31 May 2021

A comment on two libel cases

 I do not claim to have any legal expertise at all.

However two recent libel cases has left me quite satisfied. Peter V'landys lost a libel case against the ABC. I actually viewed the program on which his case was based and thought the action was a joke. He was attempting to assert A was B. It seems My thoughts were justified.

The other libel case was Christian Porter's action against the ABC.  Given I assumed the wrong person in both the program and article I again did not think Porter's case was valid at all. We can only speculate on why Porter has given up on the case but it is clear it was not a win for him at all. No compensation, no payment of costs means he got very little.

Both cases show me the law can be other than an ass sometimes.

Sunday, 30 May 2021

what is going on in the USA ?

 US politics is getting very strange. HERE . We see a minority of republican voters believe in Qanon and a  majority believe that the last election was  lost by illegal voting or election rigging.

It is pretty easy to dismiss these findings as republicans voters are simply morons. However it means you miss the larger picture of republicans striving to make voting harder to do. Why have so many caved to Trump since the Insurrection. It must be because he controls the base. Simply observe what has happened to a true conservatize like Liz Cheney.

Trump besides being obese, stupid, lazy etc is a populist. A lot of his policies were left wing.  ( See Here) He is not a supporter of democracy. Populists never are usually  because they never get the largest proportion of votes.

Are the Republicans therefore heading down towards an anti-democratic  USA ? Probably. That is what suppressing the vote is all about. Are they about questioning every election now. Probably again however it appears their major aim is simply to produce a modern version of rotten boroughs.

When Trump eventually retires from US polity we shall see if this is a temporary or permanent problem. It still lays the seeds of civil unrest because people will not accept decisions by politicians whom they know are illegimate.

Thursday, 27 May 2021

Around the Traps 28/5/21

 It is time again for Around the Traps.


Northern America






  • nuttin

Andrew Gelman ( mainly stats)


Dianne Coyle ( quirky + book reviews)

Vox Wonk

Wednesday, 26 May 2021

Australia's covid problem

 We are now worrying about what mat occur in Victoria with regard to covid. We know it is the indian variant which spreads very rapidly and we know the person ion question did not take a test until about a week after he got covid.

Both the Federal and state governments did a great job of containing covid indeed it could well be the best in the world.

However two problems stand out like a shag on a rock. ( see HERE )

We have not brought enough Aussies home and that is because the quarantine faculties are inadequate. hotels are a great short term solution but not long term as we have seen. They were advised some time ago by Jane Halton what to do but as yet have done nothing.

The vaccine roll out has been abysmal. We are one of the slowest countries in the world in terms of roll out. This is bad in two ways. Victoria would be looking vastly different if most people would have had their two jabs. We cannot open up until the vast majority of people have the vaccine. That looks ages away. My own experience tells it all. I saw nothing on TV, heard nothing on the radio etc about the roll out despite being on 1B. I eventually got to know when I saw my doctor.

The government needs to get up and start doing some work and it needs a clear succinct message.

It will look very silly if say the USA and the UK open up but we cannot!

Tuesday, 25 May 2021

A case study of why coal fired power plants are simply no good

Coal fired power plants are like the dinosaurs a thing of the past.

They are more expensive than renewables and infinitely more unreliable. Ketan Joshi gives us a grest case study of this.

Monday, 24 May 2021

What is it with the Upper Hunter by-election

 I am struggling to understand why there are any federal implications of the upper hunter by-election. This is or was a very safe national party seat. The late George Souris used to be the member. it has been in National party and their forebears hands for at least 90 years.

It was a State by-election. We have seen in Queensland, Northern Territory, Western Australia and Tasmania  All returned their governments even though several were poor. Their handling of covid was central to that.

In normal times this by-election could and should have been lost . Our Gladys has been shown to be very low on morals. Whilst her lover was driving at 100 mph towards illegality she did nothing and said nothing. She blatantly pork barreled in the last election and then tried to hide the evidence. And how can we forget her 'forgetting' not to self-isolate after having a covid test.

There was a by-election because of sordid reasons by the previous member. We now have another  member of cabinet under investigation.

Whilst Matt Kean has delivered and is delivering a very good record on the environment particularly on new electricity which Barilo has agreed on. for some unfathomable reason no-one pulls them up for saying one thing in the city and another in the country even when it is a blatant lie. This should have been highlighted by the ALP. It wasn't.

These are not normal times and The present government's performance on covid is being rewarded.

Does it have any federal implications? I fail to see any.  It is only fodder to those who desire to see a leadership challenge in the ALP.

Sunday, 23 May 2021

Monetary policy and the distribution of income

 A fascinating article from some employees in Sweden's central bank on the above topic.

Well worth a read.

Thursday, 20 May 2021

Around the Traps 21/5/21

 It is time again for Around the Traps.


Northern America






Andrew Gelman ( mainly stats)


  • nuttin

Dianne Coyle (quirky + book reviews)

Vox Wonk

Tuesday, 18 May 2021

Government spends money on a white elephant.

 The Federal Government is going to spend money on a gas fired power station.

See HERE and HERE and HERE

It is clearly not needed.  AGL made this clear in their press statement when they announced they would close Liddell.  AEMO has little concern over supply post Liddell. Moreover it is assumed the station will not be used much anyway and have to use diesel in its early stages which makes it both expensive and bad for emissions.

If the market had failed the government would have a fair case but it hasn't. Over time the power station will be rarely used. It will be an expensive white elephant.

Monday, 17 May 2021

the future for London and Hong Kong

 Daniel Woker from the ever excellent Lowy Institute writes a great article on the future of London and Hong Kong.

Sunday, 16 May 2021

The Jewish/ Palestinian conflict

 All hell has broken out in Israel/ Palestine.


A few points.

I do find it rather ironic Israel refers to Hamas as  terrorists. Terrorisms is how Israel was created. Two former Prime minister were former terrorists who never repented of the murders they participated in. 

We can be very fortunate that the present islamic terrorists have not killed as many of their jewish terrorists did in the late 1940s.  There has been a huge rewriting of history.

This all started when Palestinians in Jerusalem were being forced out of their houses by jews.  This was sinful conduct and showed the jews had never read their bibles patricianly amos and micah!

Hamas fired rockets ( please do not call them missiles. Hams cannot direct them) and Israel replied as they always do in a way that was way more than was proportionate. The bombing of the building holding two news organizations was particularly reprehensible because as yet not a shred of evidence has been produced.

Both sides should refrain from further action but will not because neither recognize the humanity of the other. It is much easier to murder people when this is the case.

Friday, 14 May 2021


 For some reason I have no idea about Around the Traps this week has been deleted by google.

I am hoping this is a once-off affair.

It is google has admitted to making a mistake

Thursday, 13 May 2021

Around the Traps 14/5/21

It is time for Around the Traps


Northern America






Andrew Gelman ( mainly stats)


Dianne Coyle (quirky + book reviews)

vox wonk

Wednesday, 12 May 2021

the Republican party is officially the party for wingnuts

 Liz Cheney was replaced from he position of number three in the House of Representatives.





Now if you examine facts this decision is inexplicable. Her record of voting as a conservative is vastly superior to the person who succeeded her. She also supported Trump as President in her voting record more than her successor.

So why was she shafted?  Easy peezy. She declared it was a great lie to say the election was stolen. She upheld that decision. She also believed Trump was responsible for the insurrection.


Tuesday, 11 May 2021

does belt and road provide local benefits

 Sorry not interested in commenting on the budget.

THIS paper from the wonderful Lowy Institute  examines the above question.  

Monday, 10 May 2021

how should the ALP respond to the budget

 I think it should be simple.

Remind people they have not changed in policy making. since the coalition has they must have been wrong about their criticisms of the ALP's response to the GFC.

Criticise some policies on the margin but just leave it at that. You are being consistent. They are not.

Short, simple and concise but effective.

Sunday, 9 May 2021

What occurred in the UK?

 There were council election, a by-election and elections in Scotland.

Labour lost a previously safe seat. This seems inexplicable. They now have a very capable centrist leader who is clearly superior to Boris Johnson whether in Parliament or in public. .They are rejecting corbynism every day yet there is not a swing towards them.

I have read little and only heard a few people talk about the results but I will endeavour to sum up

  • The public is still affected by the Corbyn hangover
  • the public thinks nothing has changed since Starmer took over the leadership
  • the public thinks the Labour party is against brexit
  • the public know Johnson is corrupt and don't care
  • the public will not admit that brexit will be bad for the economy
  • the public had put more emphasis on the vaccine rollout than handling covid
Please note without saying it many of these reasons assume the public are idiots although I have yet to hear any evidence for the above assertions.
Very curious and Keir Starmer must be tearing his hair out over the results.

Thursday, 6 May 2021

Around the Traps 7/5/21

 it is time for Around the Traps.


Northern America






Andrew Gelman ( mainly stats)


  • nuttin

Dianne Coyle ( quirky + book reviews)

Vox Wonk

Wednesday, 5 May 2021

Is the RBA doing their job?

 The RBA yesterday said it was looking to see a rise in both wage and consumer price inflation before it raises rates.

However it does appear the current low interest rate regime is only encouraging large rises in asset prices or in this case housing prices. See HERE for example.

Hence inequality is exacerbated. My house is now worth a hellva lot more than we bought it for however it is much harder for my two sons to get into the housing market let alone buy anything.

Time to think again I think

Tuesday, 4 May 2021

Is Michael Slater right?

 Michael Slater was a useful attacking batsman and now is a competent cricket commentator. (only competent).

He has given Scott Morrison a verbal thrashing. He wants to come back from India where he was commentating on the IPL ( a very boring ofshoot of cricket) He went over there BEFORE the latest covid outbreak.

His criticism is twofold.

  1. Australia has a poor quarantine system if people cannot come home from India. This is undoubtedly true. Morrison has been caught out by saying quarantine is working well but at the very same time saying it will have problems if too many people from India come home with covid.
  2. Morrison will have blood on his hands if an Australian dies form covid in India. very hard to argue with this. Morrison is essentially saying for the time being you are on your own.
A few more things. Is this LAWFUL? Secondly we are the ONLY country to deny their own citizens entry to their own country. 

Monday, 3 May 2021

Sky News

 Whilst i was resting from my heart attack I thought I would look at Sky news courtesy of WIN. Now i have to be honest I only did it during commercial breaks and even then it was too long. Well what did I find.

First the sensible Sky news. Kieren Gilbert does afternoons as David Speers used to. He puts his heart into it however he is no David Speers. why? he has no personality nor can ask penetrating questions.

Sky after dark is an embarrassment. All the presenters are highly biased and do not even attempt to get anther point or opposing point of view on the air. Peta Credlin is on far too early for me. Alan jones has a good head for radio . although very eloquent is simply not intelligent.  Matt Canavan and mark Latham are always interviewed. Paul Murray who went to the same high school as my sons is simply terrible. One night he went through three commercial breaks ( 25 minutes) and was still talking to the screen.  One night he railed against the ABC for producing an anti-Christian survey. ( they had not if he had read the article properly.) Then he got Graham Richardson and Michael Kroger to talk on how anti Christian the ABC were. Three  less likely people top uphold Christianity you could not find. That all three got everything wrong about the article ( it was actually pro-Christian) says it all. 

I do not understand how anyone can watch a talking head on TV. Remember that talking goes on for sometime. agggh

Sunday, 2 May 2021

Tasmanian election

 The result was not unexpected but poor anyway. My rule of never voting for a government who has two terms has been broken again. i might note few have performed in their third term.

The Lib leader was surprisingly unimpressive both in the campaign and in the 'debate'. It appears the ALP suffered a reversal in their poor vote from the last election. since I do not live there I have not a clue for the reasons for this.

Not much to see me thinks