Monday Message Board

Another Message Board

Post comments on any topic. Civil discussion and no coarse language please. Side discussions and idees fixes to the sandpits, please.

I’ve moved my irregular email news from Mailchimp to Substack. You can read it here. You can also follow me on Twitter @JohnQuiggin

I’m also trying out Substack as a blogging platform. For the moment, I’ll post both at this blog and on Substack.

12 thoughts on “Monday Message Board

  1. What happened to the Russian Air Force? Nothing to see or hear from it. Aside that it happened in the first place, nothing besides that was all that surprising to my cycnical mind in that stupid war. Is there some kind of major advantage of ground based anti air defense vs offensive air forces when the enemy is at a somewhat comperable level or is there some specific dysfunctionality going on at the Russian side?

    Hum, another serious question: Are there any sings the Ukrainian army is particular competent, or is it just the opposit on the Russian side combined with the we actually got a reason to fight defensive and western weapons advantage? Frankly i´m leaning towards no sign of particular Ukrainian competence so far.

  2. Ukrainian competence so far;
    “Great results can be achieved with small forces.”
    Sun Tzu

    “Wars may be fought with weapons, but they are won by men. It is the spirit of the men who follow and of the man who leads that gains the victory.”
    George S. Patton

    Good question re air force hix.
    Any answers?

  3. “In favor of a fully-socialized city
    “Map of New York City Showing Concrete Socialism in Red, and Private Enterprises in White”

    An 1895 map showing public vs private space. Saved for us by a property developer who “helped direct several major civic improvement projects in Boston, including …, and 5,100 units of affordable housing”.

    UQ has a Spatial Data Scientist and a Quantitative Human Geographer,  who may make socialized maps of Australia – hint hint JQ. Link at end.

    “In favor of a fully-socialized city
    “Map of New York City Showing Concrete Socialism in Red, and Private Enterprises in White” 1895
    Location: Leventhal Map & Education Center at the Boston Public Library

    “Map shows how socialist New York City already was 127 years ago

    Digital Collections · Leventhal Map & Education Center at the Boston Public Library
    24 Results for Australia. One caught my eye:
    EG: “3. Sketch map of New South Wales showing the localities of the principal minerals 1876”

    Norman B. Leventhal
    “At Beacon, Leventhal helped direct several major civic improvement projects in Boston, including …, and 5,100 units of affordable housing.”
    “In 2004 Leventhal, a collector of historic maps, partnered with the Boston Public Library creating The Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library (BPL). The partnership enables public access to the 250,000 maps and atlases in the Boston Public Library’s collection. ”


    Professor Yan Liu
    School of Earth and Environmental

    “Professor Yan Liu is a Spatial Data Scientist and a Quantitative Human Geographer, specialising in Geographical Information Science (GIS), urban modelling and geo-simulation, spatial data analytics, and spatially integrated social studies.

    “Her research focuses on developing cutting-edge methods for the collection, analysis and modelling of spatial data in order to provide science-based decision tools and data-driven solutions to a range of social-environmental challenges that we face in our urban and regional space.”

  4. Bullcrap. My kids central west NSW public school this year, has as many if not more teachers away, sick or stressed. Openly saying they hate teaching and may leave.

    As evidenced by the 3 heads – the principal, and the 2 deputies, now taking classes to cover the short fall.

    Ranting out loud in class – no problem as disruptors have no where to go or be supervised. Learning support teachers part time.

    Vaping in drama class and toilets. Except the ONE toilet where a smoke detector installed. Vapes used as entrepreneurial training wheels for continuation of rentier capitalism.

    If you JQ, and others here want a better society, I suggest education fix asap.

    Drugs? 15yo’s using ice. Truancy rampant. Many with attitudes akin to aging conservative dinosaurs. Who will get a job in mines and be happy as Larry. Until they have kids or the next gfc.

    “Teacher vacancies hit 2,000 across NSW as some schools record 14 unfilled roles

    “Department of Education figures show permanent vacancies were far higher than reported in June 2021

  5. KT2 was right to quote Sun Tzu. This war in the Ukraine reminds me of the Vietnam conflict. North Vietnam and the Viet Cong survived both the French air force strikes of the 1950s and, more impressively, the US air force strikes of the 1960s. They also took on the US army, a battalion from Australia and the US seventh fleet. They won and kicked out the US military, and sent the ANZACs packing. Surely this is proof of Sun Tzu’s quote.

  6. Yay! Sortition by other names such as citizens assemblies and voice.

    But if news corporation hacks have their way, and people sprout and promote news c crap, we’ll still be back in the dark ages of conservative dinosaurs.

    “France’s president gave ordinary people the power to formulate national climate policies. He got more than he bargained for” 

    Austria – similar to France above.
    “Citizens from all over Austria, 6 weekends, 1 goal: a climate-healthy Austria by 2040.

    “Together, they make up the Climate Assembly. As a microcosm of Austria, they will come up with measures to help actively shape the climate future of our country.”

    “07 | Citizens assemble!”

    Book from the guy who gave us “Everything is getting better and better, worse and worse, faster and faster” at

    “Empowering Public Wisdom”
    By Tom Atlee

    Wise Democracy Project

  7. Scary and apt thought. Ignacio Ramonet says ” “there are media groups with the power of a thousand Citizen Kanes.”. Three, no – one guess – as to which one.

    Even though Citizen Kane is “one of Trump’s favorite films, and … is fascinated by and identifies with Kane”, I am sure my enjoyment and appreciation are for very different reasons.

    Anyine else like Citizen Kane?

    “He [Ignacio Ramonet] believes that this early example of a media mogul influencing politics is outdated and that today “there are media groups with the power of a thousand Citizen Kanes.”[98][99]Media mogul Rupert Murdoch is sometimes labeled as a latter-day Citizen Kane.[100][101]

    “Comparisons have also been made between the career and character of Donald Trump and Charles Foster Kane.[102][103][104] Citizen Kaneis reported to be one of Trump’s favorite films, and his biographer Tim O’Brien has said that Trump is fascinated by and identifies with Kane.[105]”

    Ignacio Ramonet

  8. Follow in imo to support sortition, especially long term citizen policy formulation.

    “Crucially, it wasn’t just experts that Tetlock signed up to the forecasting tournaments. He also placed adverts aimed simply at curious individuals interested in predicting the future. In the first year, 3,200 people signed up. After the tournament had been running for a while, he implemented an algorithm designed to give the predictions of the most accurate forecasters extra weight. He also “extremised” the forecasts, pushing the probabilities assigned closer to 100% or 0%. Helped by the algorithm, the ordinary people who’d replied to adverts ended up producing better forecasts than intelligence analysts who had access to classified information, and much better ones than academics and political pundits. The individuals with the best track records were anointed “superforecasters”, and they continued to trounce others involved in the competition.

    “What made them so good?

    “The Big Idea: can you learn to predict the future?

    “Put any biases aside and you might just become a ‘superforecaster’

  9. Maths by private equity.

    Private Equity gets richer, teachers get the picture, and WE – you too, are paying the equity premium + debt + interest + profit. 

    Or better still, pay teacers the equity premium + debt + interest + profit and WE would own the Math Commons -again.

    Your taxes pay Veritas Capital which “has approximately $45 billion of assets under management” to show my Year 9 child a graph of distance vs time at Gizmos.

    Said kid is doing time and distance math, which I teach in car every time we drive out of town.

    But in class today – “open Gizmos and”… pay private equity.

    Gizmos claims “The company’s website describes their library of over 450[1] Gizmos as the world’s largest collection of such materials.”. I call bullcrap.

    I could have produced these in Stella in 1992. For free. With an educational download – for free. Or with these:

    I demonstrated Stella in 1994 at (now Eddy Woo’s) Cherrybrook High. About 15mins into demo the head teacher said “can you stay here and do this in a class please”. An hour later I was in front of a class building such simple simulations. Compound interest model made them sit up. And even Hamlet model showing system dynamics simulation is able to be used across all subjects. Predator prey. Springs etc. Economics, biology etc ala “The Lotka–Volterra equations, also known as the predator–prey equations, … differential equations,…the dynamics of biological systems…”. You lecturers know. 

    See other examples and “Simulating Hamlet in the Classroom” (Pamela Hopkins) (D-4540-1) at;

    Every kid is able to get a free download and actually BUILD a simple stock & flow diagram and output to graph or csv datafile. Better understanding and the “gee, look what I did” factor. Immediate feedback across the three main reward functions, further enabling mastery and retention. 

    Or MIT Scratch. Or Python. Or or or. Our teachers!

    A timer at Gizmos in the top left hand corner counts down from 5 minites before; “Get access to Gizmos today! “Without an account, Gizmos can be viewed for just 5 minutes each per day. If not, sign up for a free Gizmos account today.” But we pay.

    Of course each Australian State Education department is using our taxes to pay private equity profits. Not teachers. 

    The chain leeching your taxes goes: “Gizmos” 》owned by Cambium Learning Group, Inc. 》owned by Veritas Capital private-equity firm.

    Cambium Learning Group, Inc.

    •Importantly, Learning A-Z expanded access to its digital literacy solutions in response to the pandemic, and to date has more than 12.5 billion downloads.
    • Today Cambium serves more than 18 million students in 170+ countries.
    “Strategic Acquisitions Expand Cambium’s Brand

    “Cambium Learning Group . .. As of December 2018, it is owned by Veritas Capital, a New York-based private equity firm.[1]

    Grrrrr. Look who fees went to for by out of Gizmos owners! “Macquarie Capital acted as the Company’s financial advisor….” Businesswire

    And your taxes end up at;
    “Veritas Capital is a New York-based private-equity firm founded in 1992 that invests in companies providing critical products and services, primarily technology-enabled products and services, to government and commercial customers worldwide.[6][7][8] The firm’s first fund closed in 1998.[9] They closed an eighth flagship fund in 2022; in all, Veritas has approximately $45 billion of assets under management.[3][4][5] Veritas is led by Ramzi Musallam, the firm’s Chief Executive Officer and Managing Partner.[10]

    I feel like I need to apologise to you all for not getting this embedded in our educational system.
    Can you hear my screams? Sorry.

    Ikon, at least you get 5 minutes a day free! Give Gizmos a go. It is good and has won awards. But just another Delaware swamp leach.

  10. Dr James Hansen, Makiko Sato and Reto Ruedy at Columbia University’s Earth Institute published their August 2022 Temperature Update on 22 Sep 2022. Figure 3 caught my attention, with their accompanying ‘predictions’ that:

    1) For year 2022, the final four months this year should average warmer than the same months last year – meaning the 2022 global mean surface temperature should be about level with year 2017, vying for (equal?) fourth warmest year on record (at around +1.2 °C);

    2) Year 2023 should be warmer than year 2022, rivalling the two warmest years on record (2016 & 2020, approaching +1.3 °C); and

    3) Year 2024 is likely to be “off the chart”. A classical, strong El Niño in 2023-24 could push the global mean surface temperature to about +1.5 °C relative to the 1880-1920 mean baseline.

    Click to access AugustTemperatureUpdate.22September2022.pdf

    We will clearly know by early:
    • 2023 if the first ‘prediction’ is close to the mark (or not);
    • 2024 if the second ‘prediction’ is close to the mark (or not);
    • 2025 if the third ‘prediction’ is close to the mark (or not).

    In Aug 2021, Hansen & Sato wrote:

    The Faustian payment that we noted in 1990⁸ and is discussed in detail elsewhere⁹ is now due. Dr. Faustus had to pay the debt himself. We have willed it to our children and grandchildren.

    Click to access July2021.pdf

    The Australian Bureau of Meteorology is suggesting:

    La Niña continues in the tropical Pacific, and is likely to persist into early 2023.

  11. This “151,636 person-years of follow-up” of alcohol vs risk of dementia study “When compared with abstainers, the risk for dementia was lower in occasional” … will set off the cats and pidgeons! Especially after recent finding of a precursor to myelin causing dementia, not myelin plaque directly. Await more studies.

    I’ve given up being a moderate / regular / irregular drinker. Only Coopers Green. No more than 3 = appox  (1.3 std per bottle x 3) x 10g alcohol per std = 39gms alcohol. fn1.

    Phew “the risk for dementia was lower in … occasional light–moderate (HR = 0.78; 95% CI = 0.70–0.87).

    Phew, I can drink? Studies like this will be used as justification. And wildly reported. Needs a pregnancy caveat/s at least. And all >60 yrs. Teenagers??? 

    And I want an alcohol price inquiry. Cheaper in winter, more spring summer, rentier prices at christmas. Disgustingly low priced / appeal to youth / sport etc branded & lolly drinks.

    “The relationship between alcohol use and dementia in adults aged more than 60 years: a combined analysis of prospective, individual-participant data from 15 international studies

    “During 151 636 person-years of follow-up, there were 2124 incident cases of dementia (14.0 per 1000 person-years). When compared with abstainers, the risk for dementia was lower in occasional [hazard ratio (HR) = 0.78; 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.68–0.89], light–moderate (HR = 0.78; 95% CI = 0.70–0.87) and moderate–heavy drinkers (HR = 0.62; 95% CI = 0.51–0.77).

    “There was no evidence of differences between life-time abstainers and former drinkers in terms of dementia risk (HR = 0.98; 95% CI = 0.81–1.18).

    “In dose–response analyses, moderate drinking up to 40 g/day was associated with a lower risk of dementia when compared with lif-time abstaining. Among current drinkers, there was no consistent evidence for differences in terms of dementia risk. Results were similar when the sample was stratified by sex. When analysed at the continent level, there was considerable heterogeneity in the alcohol–dementia relationship.

    “Abstinence from alcohol appears to be associated with an increased risk for all-cause dementia. Among current drinkers, there appears to be no consistent evidence to suggest that the amount of alcohol consumed in later life is associated with dementia risk.”

    Cheers then.

    “A standard drink is always equal to 10g of pure alcohol.”

  12. Dementia, data and ?China?

    3Bn pieces of energy cinsuming data, dynamics, social insecurity on TikTok. For relief and sharing, a basic human trait in these circumstances.

    Immense carbon emmissions I asaume. Productivity? +66% women.

    Ah, capital idea.
    Just read. Don’t view.

    “On TikTok, the #dementia has 3 billion views. Caregivers for people with dementia have been flocking to the site. They’re posting their experiences and finding support in the videos of others who understand.

    “This is something Elena Portacolone, who studies aging at UC San Francisco, sees all the time.

    “ELENA PORTACOLONE: Because here in the United States, unfortunately, there is not a very strong system of support – of paid support – for people with dementia.

    “WELLS: There are more than 16 million people in the U.S. caring for someone with Alzheimer’s and related dementias. More than two-thirds of those caregivers are women.

    “PORTACOLONE: And so the most common way of supporting persons with dementia is the daughter.

    “WELLS: Portacolone says most of these women are not paid, and many, like Jacquelyn, have to quit their jobs to be caregivers. It’s isolating. And during the pandemic, the systems that are there to support caregivers, like the adult day care center that Jacquelyn’s mom went to, shut down. Trapped at home seven days a week, Jacquelyn’s mom deteriorated even faster. So to cope, Jacquelyn started posting short videos to TikTok about how they were getting through the days,

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