Sunday, 31 May 2015

FIFA is still a disgrace

I originally wrote about FIFA being a disgrace here.
After the vote to keep Sepp Blatter as head of FIFA it is even more of a disgrace.

The amount of corruption just occurred from nowhere.It isn't anyone's responsibility why it occurred, how it occurred and where it occurred.

See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil!

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Biblical Illiteracy

Ewen Jones a liberal MP from Queensland says he now supports gay marriage because he concludes ,with a straight face, that that is what Jesus would do.

Err no.
No person in the New Testament talks about the perils of hell more than Jesus.
When Jesus talked about the sinful sexual behaviour he was talking about adultery and fornication. That is any form of sex outside of marriage. When he talked about marriage he talked about man and a woman.

Sex between two people of the same sex is always condemned whether it be the Old Testament or the New Testament. It is the same for heterosexuals outside of marriage.
Jesus came to fulfil the law and he did.

Around the Traps 29/5/15 John Nash Edition

It is time for Around the Traps again.
 The tributes to John Nash is in the Dave Giles ( Econometrics) section.

Just a reminder I do not endorse/support all articles. They simply have to be thought provoking.

Northern America
Andrew Gelman ( mainly Stats)
Genial Dave Giles ( Econometrics)
Dianne Coyle ( Quirky + Book Reviews)
Vox wonk

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Revoking Citizenship

For some time the Government has leaked the information that it would revoke the citizenship of people found to be part of a terrorist organisation. It patently applies to ISIS/ISIL.

It is utterly stupid.

It puts people who murder people in the Middle East well ahead of people who murder in Australia. If an Australian commits a crime then charge them with the crime and they can defend themselves in court.
That is what occurs in a democracy.
If they are fighting against Australian forces there is a very easy charge to be made.

Moreover as David Kilcullen has said most Australians who have gone to the Middle East to fight have not actually been involved in fighting. They are involved in medical services etc.
People who become disillusioned with ISIL can be used to combat its influence and reduce their recruiting.

The Government's response thus far has been a boon to people seeking people to recruit for ISIL.

At this stage I am unsure whether this is due to being a very weak Government attempting to look strong or just plain incompetence. I am leaning to the former as I  do not believe they would be advised to do what they are doing at present.
Greg Craven makes a good point. Make no mistake being 'tough' on terrorism simply brings in more ISIL recruits!

Monday, 25 May 2015

Tim Carmody

 Tim Carmody will resign as the Chief Justice of the Queensland Supreme court.
The man should never had been appointed.
He had been the Chief Magistrate. Appointing him was a complete joke. A magistrate is not a judge. See Ken Parish. He was never up to the task. He still had not written his opinion when other Judges had completed theirs. see here and here

Whether it was deliberate or simply incompetence Carmody was seen as Newman's patsy.

The judgement ( pun intended) by Newman was appalling both ex ante and more so ex poste.

Other Conservative leaders have found Judges who were qualified and fit for the job why couldn't Newman.

One may never know.


Sunday, 24 May 2015

George Pell was hard done by

During the Royal Commission one of the people who claims to have been molested made allegations that George Pell rang him up and asked him how much money he would need to 'hush up' his allegations.

When I first heard this I was highly sceptical of these allegations.

He was a mere priest in Geelong. He had little money of his own and how was he in a position to make an offer on behalf of the diocese or get hold of it.

Moreover the time of this alleged offer was made AFTER the catholic priest in person had been charged. It is very hard to keep allegations under wraps if the said person has already been arrested.

This Royal Commission reminds me of the inquiry into the 'Stolen Generations' . No effort is involved to see whether the allegations are correct. All allegations are assumed to be right.

Royal Commissions are expensive things to run. We deserve to get EVIDENCE from them not just allegations.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Around the Traps 22/5/15

It is time again for Around the Traps.
'Mathiness' in economics articles in wonk section

Northern America
Andrew Gelman ( Mainly Stats)
Genial Dave Giles ( Econometrics)
Dianne Coyle ( Quirky + Book Reviews)
Vox wonk

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Will the 'small business'package boost the economy?

I have to say I have yet to meet anyone who actually understands what the small business package means to either small business or to the economy.
My own experience from last Saturday when my youngest boy played football at meadowbank park is most people thought the government was giving away 20,000k to every small business.

Not so.
ROSS GITTINS has it right.

There will be a slight positive effect on the economy. The capacity to rort is minimal as you must earn income to claim against.

A person working from home could make improvements to their home BUT there is little flexibility here. If for example. you work in a home office at your home and it around a quarter of your house that is all you can claim.
You could certainly update all the computers at home if you have the income.To claim a new car or used car you need to show it is essential to the business as it is to a tradesman for example.

Overall I suspect when people in small businesses talk to their accountants and realise what the policy is all about then the present 'exuberance' will subside.

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

A public service to Catallaxy

Yesterday Katsey didn't have a clue about PEFO and MYEFO. What made it worse was no-one else did either.
Sinclair Davidson finally put up his head to declare that maybe perhaps PEFO were better figures. However HERE he tries to imply there is much of a difference between the two.

He says this "Alberici is in a perfectly legitimate position to suggest that she prefers the information contained in PEFO (apparently non-partisan) over the (probably partisan) information contained in the MYEFO. That is not inherently a Labor argument. That is the policy design and intent that the Howard government had when it established the Charter of Budget Honesty."

Now if we take this at face value then Davidson doesn't quite understand what the essential difference is.

A statement by the Secretaries of Treasury and Finance would be seen by any person as non-partisan as they are NOT under any Government direction. On the other hand MYEFO is under Government direction and given the short period between the two documents a substantial amount of direction was given.
 I have outlined the differences previously HERE.
To quote myself:

The only changes to PEFO and MYEFO are:
  • Changes in Government policy
  • Changes in economic parameters

As I said about the MYEFO at the time the main changes to the deficit was Government decisions not changes in economic parameters.. Yet the Government as exemplified by Cormann was blaming the Previous ALP Government for their own spending decisions outlined in MYEFO.
It is seen at its worst in the blatantly political Inter-Generational report.

The ALP record  on leaving can only be seen by the PEFO figures and never by the  MYEFO figures. If a person does not understand that then they should go to University and study economics and enquire about how to interpret budget documents.


A person has e-mailed /rebuked me for not outlining that GROSS debt must increase each year every year because of the BASEL rules that increase the number of bonds issued. see HERE

Monday, 18 May 2015

'Budget' polling

The polls since the budget have been brought down.

First the imitable Mark the Ballot HERE and HERE.

Naturally if one is to make sense of this we need to read KEVIN BONHAM.

The nub is they still say an ALP victory. Remember the Coalition only need 49% of the 2PP vote to win the election.

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Paid Parental Leave

Paid Parental leave became news last week mainly because of the incompetence of the Government.

Sue Williamson from Friday's Around the Traps gives us a good understanding of why it was brought in.

The important thing to understand is that the Government brought in the policy to AUGMENT policies out in the market place. Very few if any current policies allow for six months paid parental leave. The Commonwealth policy of 18 weeks paid at the MINIMUM wage allows most mothers to have the first six months of the baby's life with their child. This is the ILO recommendation done at the behest of the WHO.
( If you are interested here is what is offered around the world courtesy of the ILO)

Thus it is IMPOSSIBLE to double dip on such a policy because of the design of the policy. It was announced by the Minister at the time ( Jenny Macklin). Neither is it a rort or a fraud when people use it. People who think it does are either liars or ignorant.
On the politics I am with Andrew Elder.


I am reminded that Abbott's original PPL women got 6 months leave.

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Around the Traps 15/5/15

It is time for Around the Traps.  updating hopefully on sunday.

Northern America

Andrew Gelman ( Mainly stats)
Genial Dave Giles ( Econometrics)
Dianne Coyle ( Quirky + Book Reviews)

Vox Wonk

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Budget part two

The budget has been delivered.

It is strange. Some expansionary measures and some contractionary measures. all up it adds less to GDP than the average.
I would have thought spending on Infrastructure  was the way to go given the impact it has on the economy but no infrastructure spending is very low .( What happened to the Infrastructure PM?)

The main way the deficit reduces is by bracket creep. The revenue elasticities are very much at the high end given nominal GDP.

It appears to me they have gambled this will give a small boost to GDP and then trend GDP will do the rest revenues recover .

Perhaps it may.

I should have added although it is clearly an election budget, very few election budgets work these days. Ask Peter Costello


The Kouk does not like the high spending. I tend to agree. one only needed a modest stimulus and on infrastructure.
The inimitable Greg Jericho shows what is occurring in graphical form.
Steve from Brisbane gives us John Daley who has a good take as well.

I should have added count me as a sceptic of the revenue the government will get from Companies, social security applicants etc.  Experience tells me they will get none of this. They are also reliant on measures stil locked up in the Senate.

Further Update:

Sinkers again does not say if the budget is expansionary or contractionary. Still burnt by his absurd comments on Swan's last budget. ( The last one he had full  responsibility for.)

Monday, 11 May 2015

Steve Kates and Niall Ferguson beclowned.

I see Katesy has taken off the strait jacket to agree with Niall Ferguson that Keynes is dead and Kruggers was wrong.  People should be very wary of taking anything Niall Ferguson says seriously.

Except Kruggers wasn't wrong as he writes here.    See also Simon Wren-Lewis on media myths

Either Ferguson and therefore Katesy have no idea that the UK stopped it austerity policy or they are goebellsising. Given their record we can be very confident they have no idea! 

oh dear


DEAN BAKER excoriates Ferguson . Embarrassing is the word.

Further Update:

Simon Wren-Lewis on blaming-keynes

The budget part one

It is budget time.
Not for the first time I would like to emphasise  the budget balance is not as important as the state of the economy.
Hence I am pretty much in agreement with ROSS GITTINS on what to do in the short term.

In the medium term I would implement most of HARRY CLARKE'S  suggestions.

As JOHN EDWARDS points out 4/5 of the problems of the budget deficit is because of revenue and this is where most of the 'improvement' in the budget is coming from with this government

Tonight we shall find out.

Saturday, 9 May 2015

Puccini O mia babbino caro

Quite easily the best live version I have ever seen of the greatest aria ever written . Also possibly the best song Puccini has ever written and he wrote a lot

This lady has a sensational voice. The song and voice makes shivers go down your spine


Bravo Bravo

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Around the Traps 8/5/15 UK Election edition

It is time for Around the Traps again.

Northern America
Andrew Gelman ( Mainly stats)
Genial Dave Giles ( Econometrics)
Dianne Coyle (Quirky and Book Reviews)
Vox wonk