Monthly Archives: May 2004

Errors of distribution

The apparent near identity of the genome of chimpanzees and man—98.5% of the DNA sequences are the same—is puzzling. But the distribution of differences—and their expression in proteins—is what makes distant similarity of apparent near identity. The differences (1.44%) are distributed in a way that easily explains the differences in the outcome, as Japanese research […]

Mot juste

“The great rorschach blot at the end of the New Testament… ” is how “Milt Rosenberg”:http://miltsfile.blogspot.com/2004/05/great-rorschach-blot-at-end-of-new.html memorably characterizes the Book of Revelations, capturing at once the arbitrariness and inanity of the crazed vision and its evangelical interpreters. Alas, he also calls its exegesis a ‘theological hot potato’ in the next sentence … but even Shakespeare […]

Budget imbalance

Stephen Kirchner sceptically assesses attempts to sell a budget which he describes as ‘fiscal Hobbesianism’1 bq.  (Treasury Secretary, Ken) Henry tries to spin the Budget as a positive contribution to these goals [labour productivity and labour force participation], but the Budget’s contribution is marginal at best and broader progress on structural reform in the Australian […]

Pascal takes a punt

The back-story to the Commission’s offer[⇒ related story] to eliminate agricultural export subsidies is starting to emerge. It seems that, in typical fashion, the Commission made an offer that—if it did not actually exceed its mandate—leaned some distance forward of the consensusof Member states. bq. The letter[⇒ related story] drafted by Lamy and Fischler was […]

Submission to Senate on US-Australia FTA

This is the text of my submission to the Senate Select Committee. The suggestions for leveraging the agreement have appeared here in earlier posts[⇒ related story], but this posting also contains a summary in the Overview section of my views on the strengths and weaknesses of the Agreement. This Agreement deserves the Senate’s full support […]

Reading entrails

“John Kay”:http://www.johnkay.com has a very good “short essay(link to subscription page on the FT site)”:http://www.ft.com/servlet/ContentServer?pagename=FT.com/StoryFT/FullStory&c=StoryFT&cid=1083180430082&p=1012571727102 in the Financial Times [sub] on the (usually minor) impact of interest rate changes on output, consumption and investment and on the misleading fashion for anticipating and recording each little movement. The essay is also “available(link to John Kay’s site)”:http://www.johnkay.com/trends/334 […]

US welcomes EU initiative on export subsidies

USTR Zoellick’s “statement(pdf file about 10k)”:http://ustr.gov/releases/2004/05/2004-05-10-statement-doha.pdf says, in part, bq. “The United States has noted it will support the EC’s move by agreeing to negotiate a parallel elimination of the subsidy element within export credits, and to negotiate disciplines on food aid to preclude displacement of commercial sales. “(“USTR”:http://ustr.gov/releases/2004/05/2004-05-10-statement-doha.pdf)