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Economic and other fairy stories

You probably would have noticed the media attention given to the Australian economies historic 26 year reign of economic growth which has been claimed is breaking that held by the Netherlands. Apart from being incorrect, (The Netherlands’ real GDP declined by 0.3% in the June quarter of 2003, and by 0.01% in the September quarter of that year) that record should go to Japan. In fact, if Japanese GDP data were available on a quarterly basis earlier than 1960, it’s likely that this run of continuous economic growth would have been even longer, perhaps as long as 38 years, inferring from annual data available back to 1955. Not bad for a nation mocked for its decision to abandon population growth and actually reduce its population.

Le Pen vs Macron & global elites in 3rd French presidential debate 2017

As the moderators summed up, Le Pen and Macron hold irreconcilably different points of view. This was a battle between a nationalist representing the French as a people and an ex-banker representing the global elite with all the support of banks, the mainstream media, the EU and the US-NATO bloc. Marine Le Pen is a highly skilled barrister, versed in criminal law, who was raised in anti-establishment politics, but one cannot help think of Joan of Arc trying to fight off the English here.

The Turnbull’s population credibility collapses under Dick Smith barrage

Article by Leith van Onselen. Dick Smith is a national treasure. Yesterday he used his own money to fund an ad in Australia’s major newspapers challenging Lucy Turnbull – the chief commissioner of the Greater Sydney Commission (GSC) – on mass immigration, and asking her what her eventual plans are for the population of Sydney – querying whether it could be 16 or even 100 million.

On the inability of Free Markets to solve problems


The ideology, or perhaps the theology of neo-liberalism is partly based on the idea that 'markets', that is to say, the scope of human activity where trade of valuable goods and services occurs, reveals a fundamental truth or reality beyond that scope of immediate trade. One could say modern Capitalism, or Neo-Liberalism is essentially a form of 'Marketism', where market forces rule all, judge all and value all.

The globalised business agenda for overpopulation and open borders

Growthist corporations, their peak bodies and other similar organisations have long pushed for a big and continuously growing population in Australia. They have been crowned with success in the past ten years, but will always want more. Towards this, they are in the business of breaking down national borders and national resistance to being overcrowded.

Economics and witchcraft in the ALP and elsewhere

Dr. Andrew Leigh MP is a former Professor of economics at the ANU and is now the Labor member for Frazer. During his university career he was awarded the Economic Society of Australia's Young Economist Award which is given to honour that Australian economist under the age of forty who is deemed to have made a significant contribution to economic thought and knowledge. He has published over 50 journal articles in the disciplines of economics, public policy and law, and over 100 opinion pieces. His research findings have been discussed in, amongst others, the Australian, the Australian Financial Review, the Christian Monitor, the Economist, New York Times, the Sydney Morning Herald, Time and Washington Post. He has also written a number of books, perhaps the best of which is titled Battlers and Billionaires, which weaves together vivid anecdotes, interesting history and powerful statistics to tell the story of the growing inequality in this country. It is not as hard hitting as Thomas Piketty's book Capital which has a similar theme but a different conclusion, arguing that increased growth will not prevent the spiral into global inequality. Andrew's book on the other hand tells us that inequality can fuel (economic) growth, almost implying that the end justifies the means.

Economic growth negatives for Scott Morrison

Australia may have the world’s highest debt to GDP ratio. We have the lowest ranking in the region (61st) for income security. Our social expenditure is behind Greece, Portugal, Spain and Italy's. The OECD has ranked Australia second last in government funding of public education.

The great immigration subterfuge - Article by Leith van Onselen

One of the most profound changes affecting the Australian economy and society over the past 12 years has been the massive lift in Australia’s net immigration, which surged from the mid-2000s and is running at roughly twice the pace of long-run norms (see next chart).

Geoff at Eco Bushwalks Sydney's picture

Letter to Hon Peter Dutton MP, Minister for Immigration and Border Protection

Dear Minister Dutton.
Australians are sick of your government's excessive and irresponsible immigration rate and 457 Visa intake levels. This is clear by studying recent polls, Mark O'Connor's book Overloading Australia, and monitoring social media. Of particular concern is the dreadful impact that the your resulting unsustainable and damaging population growth rate is having on our local urban and natural environments.
(This letter has been sent today, 17 Jan 2016, to the Hon Peter Dutton MP. Minister for Immigration and Border Protection. The author encourages others to copy and forward to other Lieberal MPs. The author, Geoff Dowsett, is a member of the Hornsby Kuringai Greens and a member of the NSW Greens Population/Sustainability Working Group. Headings have been inserted by the editor of candobetter.net and some minor typos have been corrected.)

New book: Demography Territory Law 2: Land-tenure and the Origins of Capitalism in Britain by Sheila Newman

Did fossil fuel cause capitalism or did capitalism cause the creation of the technology to use fossil fuel for industrial processes? Did population start to grow in Britain before or after industrial capitalism? Why did the industrial revolution begin in Britain? Were there any precedents? Beginning before Roman Britain, this work of evolutionary sociology also looks at how Doggerland, sea-level changes accompanying ice-ages and global warming, forestation changes, malaria and plagues may have affected population movement, along with kinship rules, inheritance laws, and access to distant and denser communities through new modes of transport. Then, departing from Roman Britain, the book examines changes to the political system, fuels, technology and demography during the Reformation, the Restoration, the Dutch capitalist revolution, and the Trade Wars, to the eve of the French Revolution, which is the subject of the next volume. Hint: The cover on this book is like a treasure map and contains the major elements of the final theory. Order Demography Territory Law2: Land-tenure and the Origins of Democracy in Britain.

Video: Keiser Report recommends Greece run with bitcoin and more than you could imagine

In this episode of the Keiser Report, Max Keiser and Stacy Herbert discuss the impossible demand from the Greek voters that both austerity ends and that they remain in the euro as currently arranged. They also look at a parallel “future-tax” crypto currency as a possible answer to Greece’s problems. In the second half, Max interviews Liam Halligan, editor-at-large at BNE.eu and columnist at the Telegraph, about the latest on the unpayable debt crisis in Greece. Liam suggests a Grexit will happen but that Greece won’t be the first European nation to leave the euro.

The Entitlments of the Faux Elite, and the cost to Australia

Australian treasurer, Joe Hockey, stated in April 2014 that the age of entitlement had come to a close. [1] He was of course referring to entitlements that the faux-elite Liberal Party believe that people receive which they don't deserve. Medical health, education, financial assistance during unemployment and so forth. He wasn't referring to Negative Gearing or cash payouts for "Women of Calibre" to stay at home with their child.

Authors Note: The title was changed from "The End of the Age of Entitlement". Editor: Originally published on 2015-01-28 19:13:10 +1000, it has been republished today to bring it up to top of front page again, with the new title.

Ernst and Young oversell privatisation - by John Quiggin

Previously published (22/1/2015) on JohnQuiggin.com.

Ernst and Young, leading consultants to the Queensland government have released a report claiming that electricity costs would be lower under privatisation. Although the report was commissioned by private infrastructure lobby group Infrastructure Partners Australia, it's just a rehash of the same line EY have been pushing for years in similar reports commissioned by pro-privatisation governments. The central claim is that electricity prices have risen more in Queensland and NSW, under corporatisation than in Victoria and SA, under privatisation. What they don't tell you is that this merely offsets increases imposed in the leadup to privatisation, with the result that retail prices are much the same in all four states, and far higher than when the process of market reform (supposedly to reduce prices through competition) began in the 1990s.

Redefining growth - by William Bourke of the Sustainable Population Party

The Group of 20 (G20) is meeting in Brisbane this week to discuss the global economy. William Bourke says we should focus less on the GDP and instead look at real progress indicators like high employment, a diverse economic base and sustainable resource management.

Modern Economic Paradoxes

"Why is Philippine labour cheaper than Australian labour, when supposedly they are of equal value? If there is no fundamental reason for the disparity, why does it persist? If the lower price represents an increased economic efficiency, then one would expect that the nations that jobs are off-shored to would be able to produce desired outputs at a greater rate and efficiency. Yet they are poorer and the people seek to move to countries with less efficient labour rates. Here we have two contradictory market forces. The first, movement of people, suggests that despite the increased cost, first world nations are a more desirable economic proposition. The second, movement of capital and jobs, suggests that the increased cost in the first world nations is not worth it, and third world nations present a more desirable economic proposition. They both can't be right, yet our economic world-view is that both are."

An international student call for pluralism in economics

This republished open letter calls for the teaching of economics to take the real world into account and become responsive to current needs, in the service of society, rather than promoting a single ideology. Republished from The International Student Initiative for Pluralism in Economics

SPA: Treasurer Hockey ignores massive source of funds

Amid all the talk by politicians and media about the imminent horror budget with cuts to many important services, Treasurer Joe Hockey fails to see the source of more than enough money to cover all these ‘holes’, according to Sustainable Population Australia (SPA).

EastWest Link and the Land Transport Infrastructure Amendment Bill 2014 - Kelvin Thomson

"The East West Link is a white elephant that risks undermining Melbourne's productive capacity and living standards. The tunnel is not a solution. It does not provide value for money. Generations of Victorians will be burdened by an $8 billion debt for a tunnel that will have long passed its use-by date. It is regrettable that this government is seeking to amend the Infrastructure Australia legislation to give the minister heightened discretion rather than going through the proper independent, transparent processes that Australians expect when it comes to large spending on infrastructure projects." - Kelvin Thomson, MP. Wills.

The World is Not Hostile

Hobbes’ declaration that life is “Nasty, brutish and short” is often quoted today  (although , completely out of context, it was not unconditionally so) and modern economists may decry the “scarcity of resources”, but this is only one view of the world, and one that has been formed relatively recently in Western history – perhaps it is no coincidence that this attitude developed along with philosophies of self interest and social theories of “survival of the fittest” (this is no criticism of Darwin’s theories, just their misapplication to human affairs, as promoted by Herbert Spencer).

Prices rise to absorb increases in income - Article by John Kosy

Here is a story that explains this concept. Thanks to our contributor, Matthew Mitchell, for alerting us to this brilliantly simple analysis of our current problem, originally published as a comment here. It is a skilled, yet easy to understand, critique of economic theory that underpins todays political policy and the similar adverse impact of globalisation on places as far away from each other as Bangladesh and Australia.

California Dreamin': Why I am running for State Treasurer

Originally published on opednews.com. (Emphasis added.)
Ellen Brown, author of The Web of Debt and one of the world's foremost advocates of public banking, is standing for Treasurer in the forthcoming California state elections. She plans to use the office of Treasurer to reproduce the success that the state of North Dokota, with its public banking system, had in avoiding the 2008 recession in California.

Governor Jerry Brown and his staff are exchanging high-fives over balancing California's budget, but the people on whose backs it was balanced are not rejoicing. The state's high-wire act has been called "the ultimate in austerity budgets."

Deep Sea Mining is not the answer to poverty alleviation for the Pacific

Civil society groups across the Pacific criticise SOPAC and its development of a regional regulatory framework on deep sea mining (DSM). They argue that it facilitates and pre-empts DSM before Pacific Island communities have had the opportunity to debate whether this is a form of development they want.

Australia heading the same way as the Philippines - Overpopulated and undemocratic...

"Populate and reap rewards," was Monday's editorial (2 December 2013) in the Australian Financial Review. Its flimsy self-serving logic provides a curious contrast to Kelvin Thomson's superb speech on the same topic to a full auditorium of concerned citizens on Sunday. (The speech is embedded in this article.) Where Thomson has reacted to the news that population growth is completely out of control by attempting to help people to organise against the growth pushing forces who seek to benefit financially from overpopulation, the editorial in the Financial Review is cynical in its enjoinder to exploit those problems for elite gain.

Rising Energy Costs Lead to Recession; Eventually Collapse


How does the world reach limits? This is a question that few dare to examine. My analysis suggests that these limits will come in a very different way than most have expected–through financial stress that ultimately relates to rising unit energy costs, plus the need to use increasing amounts of energy for additional purposes:

Comments on Plan Melbourne: An Economist’s Perspective

Plan Melbourne is the latest by the latest Victorian government to attempt to accommodate forced population growth. This article examines the economic propositions entailed in the plan. The fundamental failure of Plan Melbourne is that it is driven by a political imperative to maintain rapid population growth. Developers and some industry sectors will benefit, but to the detriment of the general public. ...Planning solutions, whether they be decentralisation, intra-urban dispersion, environmental pricing or other strategies face too many political and implementation difficulties to be successful. Reducing the rate of population growth, on the other hand, would make the planning tasks so much easier. Excessive growth requires massive infrastructure costs and borrowing requirements that will jeopardize Victoria’s AAA credit rating. Most AAA-rated countries have little population growth and modest infrastructure needs.

19th Century “Rules” Inflexibly Applied to 21st Century Economic Management in Australia

The economy of Australia is one of the largest capitalist economies in the world, with a GDP of US$1.57 trillion. We stand apart from the rest of the OECD with both population growth and economic growth rates roughly four times the OECD country average. Admittedly some of the other members of the OECD are going through hard economic times, but many of similar size to Australia (such as Sweden) have sound economies, high GDP per capita and far slower population and GDP growth rates.

Population Party challenges media: "Boring election campaign needs a spark - via population"

Let’s ask why Greens, Liberals & Labor suppress the population issue: Stable Population Party - The party says it will reveal all in a front-page ad in the Sydney Morning Herald on Tuesday. The Stable Population Party points out that, despite a ‘massive thumbs down for big Australia’, [1] with 70 per cent hoping the population does not hit the 40 million mark projected by 2050, no major party will raise population as a campaign issue.

Twenty Thirteen where shall we meet?

Twenty thirteen awaits us tomorrow. What is reasonable to expect of the year which some may see as being an unlucky number? Should we reach for the sky or just try to maintain business as usual?

Replacement-size families are in the interests of society as a whole: Stable Population Party

Limiting baby bonus payments to each woman’s first two children would mean that the majority of people with two or fewer children would not be subsidising those who choose to have larger families. It would also conservatively save over $2 billion in direct costs to taxpayers every year, not to mention hundreds of thousands of dollars in infrastructure for each new person. William Bourke speaks up about the changes to the Australian baby bonus. The Stable Population Party has been formally registered with the Australian Electoral Commission since 2010 and its website is www.populationparty.org.au

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