Monday Message Board

Another Monday Message Board. Post comments on any topic. Civil discussion and no coarse language please. Side discussions and idees fixes to the sandpits, please. If you would like to receive my (hopefully) regular email news, please sign up using the following link You can also follow me on Twitter @JohnQuiggin, at my Facebook public page   and at my Economics in Two Lessons page

23 thoughts on “Monday Message Board

  1. I don’t know anybody in the Liberal Party, but I know people who know people who are well-connected in the Liberal Party, and here is inside tip on what the Liberals think will happen in the election and beyond.

    1. They expect Labor to win, but not by all that much, probably just a single digit majority.
    2. Labor plus Greens won’t have a majority in the Senate and the Liberals, Nationals and others will have the numbers to block Labor’s many big ticket tax policies (abolishing negative gearing for all but new housing, abolishing cash back on franking credits, taxing distributions from trusts at a minimum 30% and increasing the top marginal personal income tax rate to 47% plus 2% Medicare levy).
    3. Shorten will fail as Prime Minister since he will find it impossible to please everybody he has made promises to, especially with the revenue hole he will have with his tax increases being blocked.
    4. The LNP coalition will be a big chance of winning in 2022.

    1&2 are believable. We’ll have to wait and see about 3&4.

  2. The polls show the 2PP gap narrowing, which is depressing. I blame it on News Ltd’s propaganda and Shorten’s wooden personality.

  3. IPCC have driven a stake through the heart of geo-engineering advocates

    “C.1.4. Solar radiation modification (SRM) measures are not included in any of the available assessed pathways. Although some SRM measures may be theoretically effective in reducing an overshoot, they face large uncertainties and knowledge gaps as well as substantial risks and institutional and social constraints to deployment related to governance, ethics, and impacts on sustainable development. They also do not mitigate ocean acidification.

  4. If Labor wins the election, I hope they smash the Murdoch media empire once and for all. One family having so much power undermines democracy ***

  5. “If Labor wins the election, I hope they smash the Murdoch media empire once and for all.”

    Me too. If the remaining dragon survives the last two episodes of Game of Thrones, we should press it into service.

  6. Plot Spoiler! Please be careful, some of us have not seen the most recent season episodes yet. 😉

  7. Hmmm. Daenerys Stormborn can then rule the Murdoch empire. Sounds good to me 😉

  8. Tony Abbott was first elected to the federal parliament the same year, 1994,that Australia’s most notorious serial murderer, Ivan Milat, was arrested for the backpacker murders. And now, it seems, that Milat will die within days of Abbott’s political death.

    There’s a weird symmetry to it all.

  9. Goodbye indeed. 89 is a good long innings though. Most of us won’t get that far.

    Coincidentally I was today reading the obit of the great Japanese mathematician Goro Shimura who died a week or so ago also at 89. The two of them both made their corner of the world a better place in completely different ways. We all having something to contribute.

  10. I see Bloomberg claim that Bob Hawke “unshackled the economy” and “deregulated the nation’s financial system”. In other words, he helped implement more laissez faire capitalism and less regulated finance. Not exactly a working person’s hero, so let’s give up on the hagiography nonsense at the outset.

  11. Iko

    On the other hand, as others have noted, when you look at your Medicare card, you can thank Hawke. Universal health insurance added more to working people’s lives than deregulated finance subtracted.

  12. Iko: “Not exactly a working person’s hero, so let’s give up on the hagiography nonsense at the outset.”

    We’ll have to wait for thirty years before that can take place. All is vanity… As I recall, as a priority the first legislation Hawke saw passed into law as PM was his extension of defamation law to thirty years post mortem. I recall how that action surprised some, both in its being a priority, and as something that needed doing at all.

  13. Smith9,

    It’s far more complex than that. Public health initiatives go right back to 1788.

    It’s the long, full history and the actions of all people that count.

    We had Medibank (Whitlam), Medibank Mark II (Fraser) and finally Medicare (Hawke). Hawke did not institute ex nihilo (out of nothing). Nobody can institute ex nihilo. The democratic demand for universal health care came from the people. The entirety of the people created it and the necessary goods and services for it. Leaders are just vainglorious types who stand up and claim the credit for what everyone did collectively.

  14. Iko: “Not exactly a working person’s hero,”

    Well I can’t recall ever agreeing with Tony Abbott, but his twitter statement made overnight on the death of Hawke pretty much nailed it: “his key achievements – financial deregulation, tariff cuts, and the beginnings of privatisation – went against the Labor grain, as Labor’s more recent policy direction shows. You might say he had a Labor heart, but a Liberal head. Certainly, the Coalition supported nearly all his big reforms, helping to make his tenure a time of economic revitalisation (sic) … he was always prepared to argue his case, even if it meant first persuading key people on his own side.”

    I’ll never forget the widespread less than positive feelings concerning Hawke&Co held increasingly by the blue collar workforce in the Red Far North of Queensland as the eighties progressesed. A young Council works department labourer one morning in Innisfail in about 1987 summed it up for all sitting around chatting before their shift began: “Bob Hawke? Best PM the Liberals ever had.”

    OTH, I recall that Tom Uren, Minister for Local Government and Administrative Services (1984–87), received a rather different and warm welcome… one completely without cynicism, irony, or rancour.

  15. Svante, I don’t know where you’re getting your information from.

    The first Bill introduced in the House of Representatives after Bob Hawke became Prime Minister, on 21 April 1983, the first day of sitting, was the Statutory Declarations Amendment Bill 1983. The first Acts of Parliament after Bob Hawke became Prime Minister (all also introduced on the first day of sitting) were the Appropriation Act (No. 3) 1982-83, the Appropriation Act (No. 4) 1982-83, the Loan Act 1983, and the Social Security Amendment Act 1983, all assented to on 27 April 1983. There was no Act of the Commonwealth Parliament in 1983 which had the word ‘defamation’ in its title. In Australia, defamation is covered by State and Territory laws and the Commonwealth has no general power to legislate on the subject of defamation. This is all fairly easy to check online if you don’t want to take my word for it (and there’s no reason why you should).

  16. J-D, as I said it was a recollection from long ago that Hawke moved quickly on that. I have a strong recollection of a kerfluffle in the media. If not over defamation law then perhaps it was concerning publication of Cabinet etc documents.

  17. Iko

    “Nobody can institute ex nihilo”

    If that is true of Medicare, it is also true of the things Hawke did that you don’t like, such as deregulated finance. You can’t have it both ways.

  18. Svante, I’m sure you’re right that there was kerfuffle in the media about actions of the Hawke government, because there’s kerfuffle in the media about government actions all the time: but so what?

    The Archives Act 1983 set a time limit of thirty years for Commonwealth government records to become openly accessible; it’s since been amended to reduce the time limit to twenty years for most records, although it’s still thirty years for Cabinet notebooks. But the law doesn’t say anything about waiting until somebody dies for the time limit to start to run, so nearly all Commonwealth government records from the period when Hawke was Prime Minister have already moved into open access, and most of the rest will do so soon.

    Also, on general principles it seems to me to be much more likely that the 1983 Act reduced the restrictions on availability rather than increasing them.

  19. Hawke himself made a lot of money by suing for defamation. This was when he was president of the ACTU and it was a lot of easier for plaintiffs than it is now. He’d spend the money on items of conspicuous consumption, so at his house there was the “[Frank] Packer pool”, the “Fairfax boat” etc. Maxwell Newton – financial journalist, publisher, brothel keeper, p@rnographer, alcoholic and much else besides – complained bitterly about Hawke’s fondness for litigation.

  20. It makes no difference how often Hawke sued for defamation when he was alive, that still doesn’t make it possible for him to sue for defamation now that he’s dead.

  21. J-D

    What’s your point? Anyone can say anything about a dead person without fear of being sued. There are, you can be sure, newspapers with stories already written about people that can’t be published now, but will be over the internet the second after they die.

  22. Smith9

    My point is that there was no foundation for Svante’s original suggestion about how there would be some kind of delay in the truth about Hawke coming out for some kind of legal reason.

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