Ritualised Forms

Homage to Contemporary Bullshido

Smug new overlords tell us we’ll fit in just fine with their bullshit

The SCMP is a great newspaper, and every week it has a host of very good reads. However since early last year its Australia related pieces have become particularly noticeable for a level of condescension. It all boiled over in the SCMPs commentary on last years Bennelong bi-election which became as palsied fact free diatribe as has ever been passed as social commentary.

This weekend it is back again touting Chinese migration to Australia – as it has done a number of times this year – as being a wonderful thing, but not actually questioning what is in it for Australians, and it makes for some entertaining reading if you can get beyond the bouquet of smugness which pervades the entire piece. As with the Australian media there is a certain value in asking what the piece misses out in in terms of its own frame of reference, and posing the question of who is served best by this lacunae. And with this piece you could make a case that Chinese security services would find all the boxes ticked Continue reading

No bullshit like Innes Immigration ‘compact’ bullshit

We had an A grade example of the type of parallel universe Australia’s mainstream media has descended into late this week.  A completely false story given prominence in the national media by the Australian, which was then picked up by various other of Uncle Rupert’s stable of bullshit sheets, but which sadly even made it beyond that – all without a single shred of fact, and all without anybody in the land of Uncle Rupert or beyond thinking to check, or even think about, the main line of the story being reported.


Better still it shows how easy it may be to get a view into the public domain and have it picked up, with a mobile number, and a basic website splashing about a few logos, to create a Potemkin public ‘movement’.  And from there we can get a sighter into the sort of desperado vested interests who’d go there to try and stoke public opinion.


………The story begins with this piece which was shat into the Rupertarian on Thursday night Continue reading

Censorship, government, gargoyles corporate tax cuts, and the fraudulent use of ‘Exclusive’

The ABC’s chief economics correspondent Emma Alberici.

In a fairly spectacular piece of ideological constipation the government decided late in the week to have an article pulled from public domain about corporate tax cuts and the relationship of these with wage growth.

The article – still available here – by ABC journalist Emma Alberici, which I thought well written, essentially posited that there was bugger all relationship between corporate tax cuts and wages growth.  Beyond that it noted that in Australian’s case corporate taxes were not particularly onerous and that a large number of companies didn’t pay them, that corporate taxes had a marginal relationship with investment decisions, and that if Australian corporate taxes were reduced then the biggest likely beneficiaries would be large multinationals and investors in these rather than employee wages. Continue reading

Bullshit from Hong Kong – the SCMP spouts off on the Bennelong by-election

There are times when one starts to assume that Bullshit, for lack of a better word, is so manifestly redolent of the Australian media world, that one forgets it is the purview of the media across the world.  This week we have an absolute pearler of a reminder from one of Asia’s pre-eminent media organisations……

The South China Morning Post is a paper I have long had a lot of time for.  Most weeks it has a number of genuinely good reads, and it is always insightful on how China sees and reacts to the rest of the world.  But this week it has laid a solid turd on Australian-Chinese relations, and the implications of the by-election in Bennelong this weekend.


Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull helped create the anti-China paranoia gripping Canberra. Now, as a backwater ballot in Bennelong provides a litmus test for Sino-Australian relations, it’s coming back to haunt him


16 DEC 2017

Continue reading

A thousand steaming words about Australian debt

It’s another Jess Irvine piece.  You won’t get it because Jess didn’t get it.  She writes with all the aplomb of someone who has read about what Paul Keating said to John Laws back in the winter of 1986, but has never thought about it all that much – she sure as hell doesn’t remember it the way many people will.  You come away from this 1000 words of shinola with the idea that Jess has never known debt and its impact on the national economy going bad, and probably has never been in a situation where she (or her family) owes a lot of money and is concerned about whether they will have a job in six months.  If this is what Fairfax is now stooping to serving up, then I hope she doesn’t have a large mortgage – for the end may come quick.

A trillion dollars in debt, but no ‘banana republic’


Jessica Irvine

On May 14 1986, treasurer Paul Keating delivered his famous warning that Australia risked becoming a “banana republic”.

The comment was a reaction to figures showing the biggest current account deficit ever recorded, at 6 per cent of GDP.

Low commodity prices, high government debts and high interest rates were, indeed, crippling the economy.

Continue reading

A(nother, spurious, incoherent) trope fig leaf over Australia’s economic malaise from the Fairfax 2nd string

As it makes it way gracelessly towards a post journalism future Fairfax is becoming a study in downsizing organisations, between the plethora of last comments from skilled writers who have shaped the way Australians see themselves and the world over a generation, to the desperation resonating exhortations of those still on the books as a guide to how desperate they are to remain thus.

Jess Irvine is one of the latter.  She regularly tees off with incoherent economic diatribes as a sort of backfill spakfilla when Gitto or the Pascoemeter take holidays, and occasionally limbers in with some reasonably pertinent observations on social phenomena (notably housing).  Sadly, todays serve is one of the former – another vacuous incoherent chunder of utter bilge revolving around the economy and labour economics, with a dash of an anti-Union slant.

I don’t have a problem with an anti-Union slant, and for a decade was an industrial relations official on the employer side for some of Australia’s larger employers – so I have seen them carry on with some weird shit.  But that same experience has led me to the view that the reason for the enduring popularity of Unions in some sectors of the economy is that any given management is highly likely to be carrying on with shit which is every bit as weird, and as far as most employees of their workplaces is concerned is likely to be far more pernicious shit in terms of impacting on their conditions, incomes, and the way they do their work.  In many workplaces it takes the form of a fairly vicious form of workplace politics, which can shape everything from hours worked to promotion or training opportunities, to allowances and workplace safety.  Depending on the workplace it can become serious.  And in many of those workplaces joining a Union makes sense as far as an address to those circumstances is concerned, and ultimately joining a Union is just another manifestation of the safety in numbers and organising in response to a threat phenomena – albeit where the threat is management.

And so we come to todays piece which ostensibly takes snippets of the Australian economy as it is, and attempts to make it stand up as an argument for more education to generate more income and then skips around aimlessly describing whatever economic thoughts have come to Jess at the time ……… Continue reading

Monopoly-Capitalists slam faux population ponzi limitations as capital extraction impediments

Global capital elites slam faux population ponzi limitations as capital extraction impediments

Global oligopolists and a leading neo feudalism brand management guru have savaged the federal government’s visa changes, accusing them of being the leading edge in questioning a generations worth of Monopoly-Capitalist mantra which has paved the way to Australia’s economic malaise and suggesting that a nation with a higher foreign born population than any other in the OECD is labelling foreigners unfairly.

Coca-Cola Amatil managing director Alison Watkins, Woodside chief executive Peter Coleman and GE president Geoff Culbert described changes that will further restrict access to Australia’s visa system as hypocritical and retrograde. They also noted that all three ran businesses which focussed on minimising profits in Australia insofar as they related to taxation payments made here, were happiest when their employees in Australia were paid least, and found fresh migrants the the most committed to corporate values and behaviours while being most expendable without complaining about their minimum.

Former World Trade Organisation director Pascal Lamy lashed out at changes spurred by the global populist phenomenon.

 “We have spent 35 years broadening the scope of global trade for the 1% who control more than half the world’s earnings just to extract ever more from the rest, and free trade and importing cheap labour from elsewhere has been our key leverage tool. Just because highly indebted former middle class types are upset about having their pay outcomes offshored or their services undermined by taxation avoiding multinationals, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t look at the upside. Australians shouldn’t underestimate how good this is…..’  Continue reading

MB Radio: Australia’s economy goes foie gras

In the wake of the 2017 Federal Budget and with prices for Australia’s major commodity exporting slumping Gunnamatta spoke with David Llewellyn-Smith and Leith van Onselen about the Australian economy and its key drivers and outlook.  In a wide ranging discussion they cover the role that immigration is currently playing in sustaining Australia’s current economic data, while making little plausible sense for a nation remaining reliant on natural resources, and how this affects Australian politics, policymaking, real estate and infrastructure.

David looks at the dynamics in the iron ore, coal and gas markets, with the implications this has for the budget, and there is a detailed look at the implications of the Adanic coal mine in Queensland and proposals to build an LNG terminal for imports.  Leith explores the 2017 Budget’s reliance on wages meeting extremely optimistic forecasts, which he and David make clear are simply not going to happen, all ultimately leading to Australia expecting a sovereign downgrade, with the implications of this for the Australian economy and currency.

The discussion last approximately 75 Minutes and comes in 3 parts. Continue reading

Public Policy Failure – We enjoy the pain

Australia has, to put it bluntly,  a public policy BDSM obsession. We like our public policy to inflict pain on ourselves and others, and when it comes to public policy failure, contemporary Australia is the definitive experience.  If our government was to propose Australian citizens  drop their strides and lower their buttocks over a white hot pointed steel pole, and if the media were to follow up with a vigorous discussion on the relative merits of white, red or blue hot poles, and the degree to which they should be pointy, or of the vast array of aromas searing flesh can produce, it would be perfectly in keeping with what we have.

If there was such a thing as Olympic Gold Medals for national economic self-harm then Australia would be legend. Monty Python at their most biting were nowhere near as grotesque as a nation which has (inter alia):- Continue reading

Sanctimonious windbag’s 1800 word point free immigration chunder

Next populist showdown is all about immigration 
• Paul Kelly, Editor-At-Large
• The Australian
• 12:00AM March 4, 2017

Although normally firmly against putting the contents of the Rupertarian anywhere near anyone’s mind, I find myself again in the position of needing to highlight one of Uncle’s pieces – for the purpose of highlight just how banal they can be. Continue reading

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