Monthly Archives: June 2010

Revisiting the climate evidence

Julia Gillard’s deter­mi­na­tion as Prime Min­is­ter to revisit the debate about an Aus­tralian response to the poten­tial dan­gers of cli­mate change calls for a review of the evi­dence to ensure that any response is pro­por­tion­ate and effec­tive. In my view, the rel­e­vant data show less and less rea­son to attribute recent warm­ing to human activities […]

Forward to the past with the NBN

Although details are still sketchy, Henry Ergas points out that in one of his last acts, Rudd appar­ently sad­dled us with a return to a government-sanctioned oli­gop­oly at the heart of our telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions mar­ket. Worse still, it will be taxpayer-funded. “Cen­tral to those out­comes is the heads of agree­ment, which has two basic com­po­nents. A […]

Why we should pull out of Afghanistan now

There can be no stronger argu­ment for our with­drawal from com­bat (along with Nether­lands and Canada) than this arro­gant mar­tial non­sense from Mal­colm Turn­bull on the ABC “Q&A” pro­gram on 21 June “We are in a war, a global war against ter­ror, and the bat­tle in Afghanistan is the front line, so we have a vital […]

ACTA is an attack on the WTO

India has com­plained in the recent TRIPS coun­cil that the ACTA pro­vi­sions mod­ify the bal­ance of rights and oblig­a­tions estab­lished by a mul­ti­lat­eral agree­ment (TRIPS) cov­er­ing the same domain. The secret nego­ti­a­tion of this pluri­lat­eral agree­ment by a cabal that included Aus­tralia is an attack on that bal­ance and hence on one of the pillars […]

A whiff of luddism

Ken Rogoff—the Cas­san­dra of the finan­cial mar­kets crisis—insinuates a moral les­son from a another tech­ni­cal dis­as­ter with­out, how­ever, actu­ally defin­ing one. “If ever there were a wake-up call for West­ern soci­ety to rethink its depen­dence on ever-accelerating tech­no­log­i­cal inno­va­tion for ever-expanding fuel con­sump­tion, surely the BP oil spill should be it. Even China, with its ‘boom […]