PEARLS AND IRRITATIONS LINKS

Bookmark johnmenadue.com/blog to read posts by John Menadue and guest bloggers as they are published (daily).
P & I was launched over three years ago. There are now over 6,400 subscribers. 

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CHRIS BONNOR. Time for some ghost-busting in school funding by ALP.

The ALP seems to have missed many points about school funding, especially the need to establish Gonski’s schools resourcing body, a proposal which has been strongly supported by the Grattan Institute.
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REG LITTLE. Understanding cultural differences between Australia and China.

Australia’s most urgent challenge today is overcoming two centuries of ‘false education’ about China. Western thought culture tends to be characterised by assumptions, abstractions, rationalities, theories and belief. In contrast, Chinese thought culture tends to be holistic, fluid, intuitive, reflective, strategic and practical. Continue reading

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WALTER HAMILTON. When all else fails, try Pearl Harbor

Prime Minister Abe of Japan is running out of tricks, but there is no viable alternative.
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GILES PARKINSON. Turnbull leads attack on wind as Coalition readies carbon price backflip.

A rebadged carbon tax!

In its review of its climate change policies, the government will try to dance its way through internal politics, the demands of the fossil fuel lobby and comparisons with Labor’s proposals. Turnbull and Frydenberg appear to have concluded that the best way to appease the far right rump of the Coalition is to abandon direct support for renewables, help open up the Galilee coal resource and push for more coal seam gas. Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull will do anything to secure an outcome.

Malcolm Turnbull’s experience in negotiation has been in the boardroom of Goldman Sachs, but the atmosphere of the Senate crossbench is more akin to that of the Istanbul Souk. 
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HAZEL MOIR. Evergreening of patents and the cost of pharmaceuticals.

A low standard for granting patents can mean lengthy delays generic medicine availability. In one case this is shown to have cost taxpayers almost $A3 billion extra in Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme outlays. A solution is to grant patents only for inventions that embody a significant increase in what is known. Continue reading

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OLIVER FRANKEL. When does housing become unaffordable?

Affordable housing has become one of the most hotly debated social problems of our time, yet there is no consensus on how to identify when it exists, let alone its root causes and how to fix it. Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. George Brandis is a dead man walking.

What is not clear is whether George Brandis was genuinely ignorant of the implications of the tax case or whether he deliberately ignored them. In either case, he should immediately have resigned.  
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JOHN MENADUE. White man’s media

The Australian media behave as if Australia is a large island parked off London or New York. Our media is remarkably derivative as a result of media systems laid down over a century ago. It is very unresponsive to the needs of Australia in the 21st Century in relations with our own region. Our media remains North-Atlantic centric. Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. The National Party is silent on rural poverty and poor rural health.

Country electorates have the most disadvantaged people, the poorest health and inferior health services.  But the National Party does very little about it.
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