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George Fane on Labor’s expropriation of mining assets

George Fane makes more sense than the group of 21 economist on the RSPT. I summarise.


China leading world on climate change?

Huw Slater at East Asia Forum thinks so.

He argues that a carbon tax in China is being considered within the period of the 12th Five Year Plan, beginning next year. A workshop I attended earlier this year suggested the same. My own work suggests that strategically China needs to mitigate its emissions because […]

Clarke & Dawe on Europe

This Aussi-sourced YouTube on the European debt crisis was hilariously scary. It has been doing the rounds but I picked it up on Greg Mankiw’s blog.


This very brief piece from the MET explains how volcanos contribute to climate change. The general answer is – not much.

Grasshoppers & ants – a modern fable

By Martin Wolf, Financial Times, May 25 2010. This amused me.


Economist statement on the RSPT

The statement by economists supporting the RSPT resource rent tax is curious in its intent. It supports taxing profits rather than the existing production-based royalties as most economists would. But its other contentions that the mining industry will not ‘contract’ conflict with this view.

The claim that depletable resources are ‘different’ to other industries suggests […]

$832,000 dunny

Maybe there are legitimate reasons for this but I don’t know what they are. The Building the Education Revolution scheme splashed out $832,000 on a spartan looking school dunny in the drought-declared Bega Valley on NSW’s south coast – comparable blocks were built in Queensland for $25,000. The package included a small shed and a […]

David Campbell

The treatment of David Cambell by the media and his own party is repugnant. Our society is becoming more American by the day with sexual images and innuendo thrown at us constantly but with, at the same time, a strengthening moral puritanism. It is an understatement to note that David Campbell does not seem to […]

Atkins was right – the problem is sugar not saturated fats

For many years I have supported the ideas of the late Robert Atkins that it is processed carbohydrates not saturated fats that cause heart disease. This study in Scientific American by Melinda Wenner Moyer surveys recent evidence which supports this same claim. In short, cut out the cookies and cakes not saturated fats.



Yesterday, La Trobe Golf Course Alphington. On par 4 seventh hole I got a 2. First in quite a while.

Super profits tax

Ken Henry argues that introducing a super-profits tax and cutting royalty charges will increase investment in Australian mining because while firms are developing their mines and earning profits they will be less penalised in terms of reduced royalties and given additional exploration incentives – and they will only lose a fraction of their super-profits if […]

Some trucking economics

The Intelligent Access Program offers heavy vehicles improved access to a wider range of Australian roads – and the ability to carry increased loads – in exchange for the vehicles agreeing to carry on board telematic devices that describe where the vehicles are as well as their self-assessed load characteristics (mass, vehicle dimensions, suspension) that […]

Henry Review on reform of transport taxes & charges – rough notes

I have been reading through sections of the weighty (in thought and mass) Henry Tax Review: See here. This tome has had only a few immediate political impacts but it will help drive debate on tax reform for decades. My interest is the transport sector for which I co-wrote a consultancy for the review with […]

Jessica Watson

Inspirational stuff – youngest person (short of 17 years old) to sail solo, unassisted around the world. We have heroes! Jessica has her own blogsite, is releasing a book and will sell her story to Newscorp for a packet. I hope she makes a fortune. The deadheads who say her behaviour is masochistic and reckless […]

Consumer theory & individual behaviour

I often get uneasy about some of the basic things I do when teaching microeconomics. One area that does concern is the basic issue of consumer choice. How deep should one dig? This is related to the optimal degree of mathematising microeconomics in this specific area.

In simple terms you can analyse a consumer’s problem […]

Captain Rudd climate change hero

This man a laughable nitwit.

On the 7-30 Report Kevin Rudd has hotly rejected the notion he squibbed a double dissolution election on emissions trading, arguing he has worked hard on climate change and remains passionate about the issue.

“…Penny Wong and I sat up for three days and three nights with 20 leaders from […]

2010 Federal budget

A boring budget that should help Labor regain some votes. Labor didn’t have much money to throw around so that – making a virtue of necessity – not much will be thrown around – at least immediately. Watch for the big promises as the election approaches – particularly if rudd’s popularity continues to wane in […]

Rudd takes a hammering

Kevin Rudd faces a doubtful future as leader of the Labor Party and eventually I hope Julia Gillard will replace him. She is smarter than Rudd and has more spine. Things from here can only get worse for Rudd given his history of exaggerated claims but limited achievement. His popularity is sagging and, as the […]

OK, I will sell out

I’ve decided to accept advertising on my blog.

The horth whithperer

A guy calls his buddy, the horse rancher, and says he’s sending a friend over to look at a horse.

His buddy asks, ‘How will I recognize him?’

‘That’s easy; he’s a dwarf with a speech impediment.’

So, the dwarf shows up, and the guy asks him if he’s looking for a male or female […]