45 thoughts on “Monday Message Board

  1. @Moz of Yarramulla

    The authors first classify the “Homo economicus” model as a ‘textbook’ model in economics and then call it the “canonical” model in economics. It is not canonical (see literature on interdependent preferences – sometimes called ultruistic preferences and see the literature on satiated preferences, to give two examples). Moreover, even in first year undergraduate textbook model, individuals’ preferences are defined over physical goods and services and not over payoff in monetary terms. (Rationality is defined in terms of actions – choices – being consistent with preferences.) Their notion of ‘economic man’ is akin to the assumed behaviour of a corporate decision maker where Fisher Separation applies; another special case.

  2. @Jozef

    An excellent insight into how our keepers drive agendas with a mix of funny polls and scares while jockeying for power.

    However there was a link to a good article looking at non-tax possibilities, noting that the argument for a carbon tax is just that it is the “most efficient” based on arguments of economists.

    So it is our economists who have mislead society and led everyone down a blind alley.

    All this just demonstrates that despite all the talk-talk we get from our overpaid pollies, in fact nothing will be done and most countries are increasing production of crude oil as shown at:


    And all we hear today is how wonderful Paric was and how there is some pause in carbon emissions etc etc.

    We are living in a fool’s paradise.

  3. @Moz of Yarramulla

    The paper only looked at pre-capitalist societies, and gave no reference to the so-called canonical view (which only arose from bourgeois society)

    The paper chose:

    15 small-scale societies exhibiting a wide variety of economic and cultural conditions. Our sample consists of three foraging societies, six that practice slash-and-burn horticulture, four nomadic herding groups, and three sedentary, small-scale agriculturalist societies.

    Marx also looked at such societies and left his notes in his “Ethnological Notebooks”.

    The finding would have been very different if they looked at bonded immigrant labour societies in Middle East or any capitalist society.

  4. Jeepers, look at how much so called privatised education bodies are really costing.

    Australia’s biggest private colleges have received up to $264 million a year from taxpayers despite having completion rates as low as one in 10 students, new data reveals.

    …Education Minister Simon Birmingham said the figures were an “indictment” on unscrupulous providers who had preyed on vulnerable Australians by signing them up to courses they could never complete.

    The data is “littered with even more examples of rorting and shonky behaviour from some providers who continue to take advantage of students and taxpayers”, he said.


  5. even when all the evidence shows that the entire LGBT agenda has absolutely nil importance to the average Australian voter, this disproportionate (3%?) but very powerful insidious lobby of very shrewd chameleons is absolutely and totally committed to pushing through their agenda regardless of any objections which are all immediately labelled as ‘homophobic’ when clearly the majority of citizens don’t actually care about supposed changes to the marriage act or what that might mean in terms of the entire process of legal recognition & compensation to society at large.
    It’s as if this is the absolute MOST important item in the current parliaments agenda and the only real problem Australians are facing … oh really? Well give us a break and lets discuss some real issues rather than this very peripheral side issue that has no relevance to real life other than those few who want the rest of us to accept their form of behavior as if that will somehow give them moral relief from world opinion where at least 3 billion people believe otherwise. The blow-back from such social agenda’s are now the fundamental basis for absolute intolerance by the Islamic and supposed 3rd world .. are Australins really ready for this sort of confrontation?

  6. @david
    a simple due diligence check on Senator Brandis would clearly indicate exactly what sort of person he is .. without any derogatory comments .. it is quite obvious that simply based on the facts regarding the current split with the attorney general he is unfit for his position.

  7. @Ivor
    Ivor you are absolutely right we have passed the tipping point and now our only option to to mitigate and plan for species survival .. anyone up for a one way trip to Mars?

  8. @ralph

    Um, anybody who really thought that same sex marriage would lead to confrontation with “the Islamic and supposed 3rd world” would not think it was a “very peripheral side issue that has no relevance to real life”.

    Try not spewing a load of contradictory arguments over the message board next time, please.

  9. @ralph

    It’s a truism that minority rights seem unimportant to a complacent member of the majority. This is true until that that person realises there is some real issue or factor in which he/she is in a minority. Then minority rights are seen to be important. The idea is to not be complacent, to use a little imagination, and understand that minority rights are always important because everyone is in a minority of some kind. It’s one of the balancing acts of secular democracy; majority decisions while respecting minority rights.

    The majority of people appear to be on a bisexual spectrum though objective studies are difficult to conduct. Exaggerated fears of homosexuality usually relate to repressed fears about one’s own sexuality. Methinks you protest too much.

  10. @ralph

    SSM has nil importance to the average voter? Well it’s a good thing that there are no average voters then. Average is a statistical concept.

    There are many ways that freedom from the stupid rules that the religious right impose on the rest of us who do not fit into their notion of how a person should live, is very important.

    I think it is becoming obvious to some of the right wing voters I know personally, that although they might not want to marry a partner of the same sex, they do want the right be able to die when they choose to and this right is denied by the same people who deny gays the right to marry the same way as ‘normal’ people do.

    It is the religious right that imposes unfair and irrational behaviours on people; they are anti-abortion, anti-SSM, anti-euthanasia and if you don’t find these restrictions on our freedom objectionable then you are part of the problem.

    What’s with all the over-the-top language? Very shrewd chameleons? WTF is that about?

    And what’s with the ignorance about how many people are touched by the unnecessary religious prohibitions on people doing what people do? Just because you may not know any interesting people who live different lives does not mean we are all as boring and unhappy and live ‘average’ lives. Sad for you Ralphie.

  11. @Ikonoclast

    I’m not aware of any more recent polling, but in 2015 it was identified by voters as the equal 13th most important issue, along with agriculture, asylum seekers and taxation.


    Yet for some reason, you don’t have blog comments or newspaper opinion pieces complaining that too much of politicians’ attention has gone to the plight of dairy farmers, stopping the boats, or reforming taxation.

    The poll found that 59 per cent of voters view same sex marriage as being of medium or high priority. Ralph is simply wrong in saying that “the entire LGBT agenda has absolutely nil importance to the average Australian voter”.

    This polling was commissioned by a group opposed to same sex marriage, by the way.

  12. well said and yes every minority believes its rights are important particularly to the affected .. but is that really the most important parliamentary item of business for our beleaguered population ? the constant quotation of questionable statistics about what a supposed majority of Australians deem to be a priority to their lives is extremely doubtful and variable on any given day (paydays holidays weather etc). Australia is already so far advanced in the social acceptance of diverse social relationship since the days of Don Dunstan Chief Justice Kirby Gary Barr and our current Syd Gay festival etc .. this country of ours is way ahead of most other western democracies especially the US UK and many EU vassals. The same people who are barracking to bring down our boarders and send us the worlds poor unloved dissatisfied or oppressed masses must also realise that Australia has NO cohesive social process (or identity) to acclimatize these migrants to our non-existent multicultural (multi-purpose room) that serves absolutely NO purpose except to serve the profit mongers of the rental/housing mafia who capitalize on our supposed cultural diversity (fear) of one another so we fence ourselves in with the highest possible property fences in most Canberra suburbs and hope the folks next door will come over and say hello .. enough said about this tangent but mixing in the acceptance by these new migrants of very confronting social deviations from where they originate, is a recipe for the kind of single lone wolf actions that have been left out in the cold of a brutal economic structure that celebrates violence and tolerates anything under the guise that the ‘minorities’ positions are just as valid as the other 90% .. hey that is not a democracy, which is not working very well even in the land where it was supposedly invented .. undoubtedly we require greater cohesion amongst our vastly dispersed population but given that most of the native population have only recently discovered their own cultural heritage and the fact that we still do not have a unified rail gauge that is standard across ALL states and a general population that reads less each year and most have never read Light on Hill or Fatal Shores leads me to believe that you are dreamers living in your own reality .. go get a copy of the Jerilderie letter and wonder why Australia failed to actually have a revolution that it still needs!

  13. For anyone in or near Melbourne on November 14th at RMIT there’s a talk on wartime mobilisation as a model for climate action by Laurence Delina

    “In this latest Breakthrough forum, Dr. Laurence Delina will discuss his recent book, ‘Strategies for Rapid Climate Mitigation: wartime mobilisation as a model for action?’. Drawing upon episodes of World War II mobilisations Dr. Delina lays out contingency climate action strategies based upon the relative optimism provided by rapid deployment of demonstrated and proven sustainable energy technologies. In this assessment of accelerated sustainable energy transitions, Dr. Delina describes in a thought experiment how we could quickly mobilise the required technologies, finance, and labour resources, as well as how these processes can be coordinated by governments. Although wartime narratives can provide some lenses for getting us back to a safer climate, Dr. Delina acknowledges that this analogy is far from perfect.”


  14. @ZM

    I had a primary school teacher who used to say “Can’t means won’t.” Of course, this isn’t always true but it is true a significant percentage of the time with both children and adults.

    The current political economy system basically says (in actions which speak louder than its weasel words) it can’t solve unemployment and it can’t solve AGW. In each case “can’t” means “won’t”.

    When the plutocractic, oligarchic and governing classes (overlapping classes to some considerable extent) feel existentially threatened by total war they have no trouble organising a wartime mobilisation and making the economy far more of a command economy that it usually is. Strangely enough this works. Yet they tell us they cannot marshal society’s social and economic powers to fight unemployment and AGW. It’s a lie. Can’t means won’t.

    Why won’t they do it? It would entail giving too much power to change things to ordinary people. It would entail enabling the masses to realise they actually have the power to massively change things if only they combine in solidarity and use that power. This is dangerous knowledge from the perspective of the elites. The mass of ordinary people cannot be permitted to realise their full power.

  15. Ikonoclast,

    The Democratic Party Convention in the US decided to make climate mobilisation their party platform earlier this year, and have committed to having a summit within 100 days of Hilary Clinton winning/starting the presidency if she wins the 2016 election.

    And Race Matthews the Monash uni economics research fellow and former Labor MP has said on Facebook its not a matter of if but when the ALP will adopt a similar climate mobilisation platform.

    I think the main thing is developing the policy in more detail, and making sure there is participation from communities incorporated into the policy as otherwise I don’t think it will be successful since it is a long term policy so it needs buy in from the majority of the community. Something that was just top down couldn’t work for a period of several decades or longer in my opinion.

    In terms of unemployment there was an interesting article in The Guardian about the highest public servant — Martin Parkinson — in the Turnbull government this October 2016 talking about the importance of equity and redistribution in the light of current pockets of discontent with economic rationalism and globalisation. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/oct/06/australia-must-deliver-benefits-of-globalisation-to-win-public-support-top-public-servant

    I think government policies are doing okay at encouraging people to start businesses as a solution for unemployment problems, but maybe not so good at other solutions where starting a business isn’t feasible. Maybe policies that promote social enterprises or co-operatives could help with unemployment.

  16. @ZM

    I shall await the summit, and any real action coming out of it, with less than bated breath. But let us see, maybe I will be wrong this time and action will really and finally start.

  17. Ikonoclast,

    I hope so 🙂

    There’s a something going around on Facebook asking people to collect real life signatures for a climate emergency mobilisation at the moment, since someone called Steve Posselt is going to kayak from Ballina to Canberra starting New Year’s Day 2017, and then on 25 February 2017 deliver the petition to Parliament House Canberra. He’s hoping to get 100,000 signatures, but I don’t know if its on the internet elsewhere or just on Facebook Climate Mobilisation Australia and other similar pages.

    I found it was pretty easy getting dozens of signatures for the petition the Women’s Trust did for climate change, some I collected myself, others I left copies of the petition at shops in town that supported climate action. Lots of people were happy to sign it, so I should print some copies out and do the same again for this one.

    There’s also people visiting their MPs, senators, and councillors getting talking to them about the idea of climate mobilisation and asking them to sign a declaration saying they support the idea. I’ve been pretty busy and haven’t asked my State and Federal MPs yet, but I should try and make an appointment with them at their next community listening post I guess.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s