The Folly of Social Democracy

21 07 2011

We live in so-called social democracy where the weak and uncompetitive are entitled to other people’s money. None of us in our daily lives go to the market and buy things based on the needs of the seller. We don’t think "gee this guys onions are twice the price but he has four kids" or "this lady sells stale bread but she has a lisp or a minority background". We want to buy good quality at he lowest price.

Yet we expect our society to be organised in exactly the opposite way where some people get supported by others. The miners are making too much money – let’s take it off them and give it to car makers or farmers and so on.

If something makes no sense to us on the individual level, it should make no sense on the collective level either. Government edicts cannot overturn the laws of economics any more than they can overturn gravity. The results of this folly is now plain to see in places like Greece, Iceland, Ireland, UK and USA.

With Friends Like this Who Needs Enemies

8 07 2011

Now we can really see what this new tax is about. From Christine Milne’s press conference this morning:

The (tax level of $23 a tonne) price will not be high enough to drive the transition to renewables.

She then twice refused to give a guarantee that this tax would even achieve the Government’s target of a 5 per cent cut in our 2000 emissions by 2010.

So why are we doing this? Gillard is toast and ALP may go with her. It’s too late to save Gillard, time to save the ALP.

More from the same series:

THE Greens have been accused of "gazumping" Labor with a major renewable energy announcement, as they admitted the starting carbon price will be less than half the level they wanted.

People already don’t believe a word Gillard says and then we have Greens confirming every worst perception.

The Madness of Carbon Tax

7 07 2011

Somebody has to ask the following questions:

Is CO2 from petrol any less dangerous than CO2 from coal or gas? If not, why is petrol excluded from this tax?

Is CO2 from the poor any less dangerous than CO2 from the rich? If not, why should the emissions from the poor be subsidised by this tax?

Why are power stations that produce electricity are called a "big polluters" but banks, offices, households and our parliaments that consume this electricity are not?

CO2 is a by-product of industrial activity and the tax on CO2 is a tax on industrial activity pure and simple.

We are told that the tax will encourage the move to cleaner forms of energy but politicians will not let us use any realistic alternative to generate 24/7 base load power! Nuclear is clearly out at least for as long as ALP and Greens are in power and then it takes many years to build a nuke station. Clean coal is a pie in the sky fantasy that may never be realised. Gas is quite expensive and also produces CO2. Wind in solar are intermittent and stupendously expensive.

What are we supposed to do?

John Faulkner to ALP – “Change or Die”. Sounds like Die to me…

10 06 2011

I had a great laugh reading this. The ALP is doomed…

Delivering the Neville Wran Lecture at NSW parliament, the former ALP Senate leader said Labor had already "lost a generation of activists" and unless it confronted internal reform, "we will risk losing a generation of voters as well".

His message was that Labor suffered from a deepening malaise that was a national problem. He attacked Labor’s governing culture of control and staying "on message" as "no longer enough", and argued the public now valued authenticity over "the appearance of harmony".

"The Australian Labor Party was formed because working men and women in Australia needed a voice in parliament.

"The need for such a party still exists, and it will still exist even if Labor should fail the test of reform."

Except of course modern ALP has nothing but contempt and “we know better then you” attitude towards the “working men and women”. It has become a party that somehow tries to bridge the lofty infantilism of the trendy urban left and the “working men and women”. No wonder it’s not working because these peoples’ attitudes are polar opposites. The fact is LNP now represents the “working men and women” of Australia despite the constant kicking and screaming from the ALP that such support is biggotry, racism, sexism, denalism and many other -isms that became meaningless words…

And what good would making the ALP more democratic do? It would only strenthen the divide. Moreover “democracy” in ALP world would mean activists would get even more control of the party because they are ehhh.. more active. Therefore ALP would drift even further away from the “working men and women” and further towards the fringe.

ALP’s problem is not the lack of passion but the lack of mature thinking exemplified by its constant embrace of ill conceived fringe crusades driven by shallow and infintile thinking of organisations like GetUp and Australian Greens.

White elephant gives birth to rich babies:

9 06 2011

THE cost of staff for the National Broadband Network has reached $132 million a year against revenue of only $3 million this year.

Executives are on big salaries – 34 NBN Co staff are on between $300,000 and $400,000 a year, putting some of them ahead of Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

Disabled Nation

10 05 2011

The number of people receiving a disability pension now exceeds 860,000 – or 220,000 more than the number claiming unemployment benefits. It costs the Budget $13 billion. In the past 10 years the number claiming disability pensions has climbed 11 per cent.

From the new budget:

PEOPLE claiming a disability pension will be allowed to work up to 30 hours a week and still receive part of their welfare payments in a bid to get more people back in the workforce.

Except disabled people by definition cannot work!!! According to Centerlink:

You may get Disability Support Pension if you are unable to work for 2 years because of illness, injury or disability, or if you are permanently blind.

This is pretty much an admission that a large number of so-called disabled disabled people are not actually disabled. What sort of perverted welfare addicted nation is this and why do these people get disability pension when they are actually not disabled by government’s own definition and admission?

via Andrew Bolt

Value Investing – Margin of Safety

3 05 2011

I was musing about Benjamin Graham’s Margin of Safety (MOS) during my waking hours last night and it occurred to me that MOS is not only a great tool for finding undervalued businesses but also to time the market. I know that value investors are not supposed to time the market but good MOS can only develop under two conditions: 1 – the business is genuinely undervalued during normal market conditions (this can occur for many reasons); 2 – the market as a whole declines reducing the price of all stocks (e.g. during the GFC). In the second scenario the by-product of MOS is to assist us timing the market. Obviously, MOS cannot tell us the top or the bottom of the market but when the stocks decline across the board a juicy MOS would only develop closer to the bottom. “It’s about being approximately right, rather than absolutely wrong”.