The Insanity of Trump: HE”S YOUR PRESIDENT AMERICA
Florida alone, which has a population of about 22 million people, set a single-day record for coronavirus-related deaths for a third day in a row on Thursday, recording 253 new deaths and just under 10,000 new cases. Statewide, 6585 residents are now dead after contracting the virus.
By comparison, Australia, with a population of almost 25 million, recorded 14 deaths and 747 new cases by Thursday night, driven mostly by Victoria’s spike in infections. Friday’s numbers were lower with 649 new cases in Victoria and eight deaths. Overall, 196 people in Australia have died from the virus.
Reopening doesn’t mean that the threat has passed. It could worsen. We don’t know how the virus will mutate or whether reopening will give its spread a second wind. Studies, for what they are worth, report that there are already a number of mutations of the virus. Given the lack of information and understanding and the many agendas operating, caution is the only responsible course.
The problem is, the economy seems to be running out of puff because it’s caught in a vicious circle: private consumption and business investment can’t grow strongly because there’s no growth in real wages, but real wages will stay weak until stronger growth in consumption and investment gets them moving.
Policy has to break this cycle. But, as Lowe now warns in every speech he gives, monetary policy (lower interest rates) isn’t still powerful enough to break it unaided. Rates are too close to zero, households are too heavily indebted, and it’s already clear that the cost of borrowing can’t be the reason business investment is a lot weaker than it should be.
That leaves the budget as the only other instrument available. The first stage of the tax cuts will help, but won’t be nearly enough. “Structural reform” is always a nice idea, but fixing a problem of deficient demand from the supply side would take far too long to be of practical help.
The miracles that come with Ignorance (ODT)
There’s always going to be a problem with the fact that a large number of people aren’t politically engaged and make their decision based on things like the Clive Palmer ads or what someone posted on Facebook, so maybe there’s no simple answer. But it would certainly help if the media made sure that at least those paying attention weren’t misled by simple slogans that don’t reflect the reality of policy at all.
Why are our politicians so bad Peter Dutton is the the perfect example and damns himself with his own words. Regarded as the worst Minister for health and now the worst for Immigration. Dutton offers no incite into his job other than to keep it. No mention of duty to his electorate or the the people of Australia to to the service he’s being paid for. This Liberal lead government has since being elected in 2013 passed the least number of bills since John Gortan yet is one of the highest paid globally to lead a nation of only 24 million people. Julia Gillard broke records in bills passed while PM of a minority government. (ODT)
“Malcolm is charming and affable but he doesn’t have a political bone in his body and it’s not a criticism, but without political judgment you can’t survive in politics and he didn’t.”
OUR GOVERNMENT IS PREACHING OXYMORONs (ODT)
We read in yesterday’s online Guardian that “Australia will consider adding a “values test” for those considering permanent residency in order to protect its “extraordinarily successful” multicultural society.”
In London the Citizenship and Multicultural Minister Alan Tudge, last week, in a speech to the Australia/UK Leadership Forum was suggesting a “values” test to fend off “segregation.”
“Segregation,” I thought to myself. we have practiced for as long as immigration has existed and is as natural as life itself.
When the Italians came to Melbourne they gathered together in Brunswick, the Greeks in Carlton and the Vietnamese in Springvale and now Box Hill. And so on. Then over time they disintegrated and neatly integrated into general society.
I observed the advent of Asian immigration and all the recycled hatred only to see it vanish in the same way the Greek and Italian animosity did.
Now we are confronted with yet more odious loathing. This time it is directed at those from the Africa. It doesn’t matter what their country of origin if they are Muslim they will suffer the full thrust of minorities xenophobia. Just as 99 per cent of Muslims want peace so do 99 per cent of Australians.
We have a long history of finding fault with things we don’t understand. At various times we have blamed communists, Jews, women, the devil, indigenous people and witches, even God, for all manner of things.
I have been privy to the ignorance that history has recorded on these matters and I am angry with the likes of Pauline Hanson, Peter Dutton and our Prime Minister who would seek to deny Australia of others who desire to, not only seek their personal freedom, but also the opportunity to give of themselves to the advancement of this great nation.
When I sit on the platform at Flinders street Station and watch the passing parade of ethnicity I can but only admire a country I could never envisage from the same seat in the 1950s.
Does the father come before the son is born?
By Dave Chadwick It has been a pretty busy couple of weeks leading up to Christmas and I was going to leave off the overt political commentary for a while, but since Peter Dutton and Steve Price aren’t going to, it would be remiss of me to stop correcting their ignorance. The odious Peter Dutton’s…
By Juan Cole | (Informed Comment) | – – Every time a person of Middle Eastern heritage who ought to …
“Formation” ignites protest from racists who refuse to see pro-black art and speech as anything but anti-white
There were more airstrikes against ISIS this July 4 weekend. Most politicians agree that ‘war is the answer.’ But here’s an argument that peacebuilding is the only realistic way to defeat ISIS.
Joe Hockey ridicules suggestion Australia is among top emitters
Treasurer rejects ‘ridiculous’ comment from interviewer, despite Australia topping OECD per capita rankings
Joe Hockey has ridiculed a suggestion that Australia is one of highest emitters of greenhouse gases in the OECD, despite the fact that it does top the OECD rankings of greenhouse gases per capita.
“The comment you just made is absolutely ridiculous,” the treasurer said in an interview with the BBC when it was suggested to him that Australia was among “the dirtiest, most greenhouse gas-emitting countries in the OECD group of developed countries”.
“We’ve got a small population and very large land mass and we are an exporter of energy, so that measurement is a falsehood in a sense because it does not properly reflect exactly what our economy is,” Hockey said.
“Australia is a significant exporter of energy and, in fact, when it comes to coal we produce some of the cleanest coal, if that term can be used, the cleanest coal in the world.”
Luxembourg reaches such a high position on the list because its low fuel taxes mean motorists from neighbouring countries drive over the border to fill up their cars. The study found Australia emitted nearly 25 tonnes of carbon dioxide per person in 2010.
Emissions released during the process of mining coal and gas are counted towards Australia’s total, but the emissions when the fossil fuels are exported and burned are counted in the country that buys them.
So-called fugitive emissions from mining have been the fastest growing source of Australian emissions in recent years, according to the national greenhouse gas inventory, but still account for only about 8% of Australia’s total.
Australia also lags when it comes to cutting greenhouse gas emissions over the past two decades, according to the OECD data.
Of the 34 nations, only Chile, Mexico, Korea and Turkey have increased their emissions more than Australia since 1990, while the UK, France, Germany and Italy all achieved cuts in that time.
The shadow environment spokesman, Mark Butler, said what was really ridiculous was “that Australia’s treasurer doesn’t know this about Australia”.
“The nation’s most senior economic leader has embarrassed himself on international TV over a fact most school students would know,” Butler said.
Hockey angered conservationists in May when he said he found the wind farms he passed when driving between Canberra and Sydney “utterly offensive” and a “blight on the landscape.”
Last month he clarified that it had been a comment about “aesthetics”.
“I drive from Sydney to Canberra on Sundays to go to parliament and I just look at those wind farms around Lake George and I’m just appalled at a beautiful landscape ruined,” he said.
“Just for all the ‘greenies’ in the audience, if they built a huge coal-fired power station there, I would be equally appalled. So, it’s just an aesthetic view.”