Monthly Archives: July 2010

Feather duster ambush

Of course, the Labor par­ty would not have need­ed to “back down” if it hadn’t inflat­ed the issue with worse-than-WMD hys­te­ria, reli­gious zeal (cf. Ross Garnaut’s invo­ca­tion of Pascal’s wager) and con­tempt for con­trary evi­dence. “Julia Gillard has put the pret­ty wrap­ping paper of con­vic­tion and con­sen­sus around Kevin Rudd’s emis­sions trad­ing back­down. But inside […]

Kay on the theory of value

Bril­liant sum­ma­ry of the inter­ac­tion between dif­fer­ing pref­er­ences and judge­ments in error. “Wher­ev­er there is uncer­tain­ty, mar­ket prices reflect the beliefs of those who are more than aver­age­ly san­guine. The result is a reserve of illu­so­ry val­ue, con­stant­ly deplet­ed by events and replen­ished by fresh uncer­tain­ties. That is why mar­kets dis­play a sys­tem­at­ic propen­si­ty to […]

Led by lunatics

Mark Lawson’s new book “A Guide to Cli­mate Change Luna­cy” (Con­nor­Court Pub­lish­ing, 2010) arrives with bril­liant tim­ing, just as Aus­tralia gets anoth­er chance to make a choice on cli­mate change poli­cies in the 2010 elec­tion. Based on his cre­den­tials as a respect­ed jour­nal­ist — he’s a lead­ing sci­ence jour­nal­ist and edi­tor for the Aus­tralian Finan­cial […]

A climate ambush

When she took pow­er, Julia Gillard said she want­ed a nation­al con­ver­sa­tion and ‘deep com­mu­ni­ty con­sen­sus’ about cli­mate change. What she has giv­en us, instead, is an elec­tion cam­paign that is, by its nature, guar­an­teed to pro­duce nei­ther. “I was con­cerned that if you were going to do some­thing as big to your econ­o­my as […]

Watch this

Rev­enue strong; div­i­dends down. Google invests in ideas you wish you’d had. “Patrick Pichette, chief finan­cial offi­cer, said Google was invest­ing for what it expect­ed to be a big expan­sion in online mar­kets in the next decade. ‘We think it’s the right thing to do at the moment in the com­pa­ny.’ ” Extract from—Google […]

Krugman’s take on protection

It seems Krug­man will say any­thing to score a point. He wants to argue that insuf­fi­cient demand (unem­ploy­ment) is a prob­lem and that redis­tri­b­u­tion (trade tax­es) is not. “…the attempt to place blame for the Depres­sion on pro­tec­tion­ism is a sort of Noble Lie, an attempt to scare peo­ple into trade pol­i­cy that’s good for […]

Trade ‘imbalances’ are misleading

Alexan­dro Jara, the Deputy Direc­­tor-Gen­er­al of WTO “[R]elying on con­ven­tion­al trade sta­tis­tics gives a dis­tort­ed pic­ture of trade imbal­ances between coun­tries. As we saw when look­ing at the Chi­nese con­tent of the iPad, what counts is not the imbal­ances as mea­sured by gross val­ues of exports and imports, but how much val­ued added is embed­ded […]