Author Archives: Jon Stanford

Jon Stanford

About Jon Stanford

In a former life, Jon Stanford was a Division Head in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Currently, as a Director of Insight Economics, he is undertaking significant research on Australia’s future submarine project, generously supported by Gary Johnston, owner of the Submarines for Australia website.

JON STANFORD. A Response to Michael McKinley on Future Submarines

In a series of five pieces in Pearls and Irritations last week, Dr Michael McKinley cites the recent report by Submarines for Australia at some length. While I acknowledge some of Dr McKinley’s concerns about our approach, it is not … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD: Second rate leadership: Future Submarine Part 4 of 4

I have suggested that recent governments have failed to provide leadership in the defence portfolio. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the case of SEA 1000, the future submarine program.

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JON STANFORD: Second rate leadership: Future Submarine Part 3 of 4

I have suggested in earlier posts that recent governments have failed to provide leadership in the defence portfolio. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the case of SEA 1000, the future submarine program.

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JON STANFORD: Second rate leadership Part 2 of 4: Defence  

“Australia is now a confident, wealthy nation that has the right to expect its leaders to rise above the second rate.”

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JON STANFORD.- Second rate leadership. Part 1 of 4

Australia is now a confident, wealthy nation that has the right to expect its leaders to rise above the second rate.

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JON STANFORD. Comment on Mike Scrapton’s article ‘The casual talk of war’.

Isn’t it interesting that in the Prime Minister’s attempt yesterday to make us all very frightened indeed about the national security threats that a Labor government would expose us to — ranging from hordes of asylum seekers at the gates, … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD. The Future Submarine: Time for a Review

One year ago, Insight Economics, sponsored by Sydney businessman Gary Johnston, published a comprehensive, independent report on the future submarine (FSM) acquisition. Launched at the National Press Club by Professor Hugh White and Dr Michael Keating, the report highlighted the … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD. Australia’s Future Submarine. Part 3 of 3. Responding to the criticisms

At the National Press Club in Canberra on 27 September 2017, Hugh White, Professor of Strategic Studies at the ANU, launched an independent report by Insight Economics on Australia’s future submarine (FSM). The report, Australia’s Future Submarine: Getting This Key … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD. Australia’s Future Submarine; Part 2 of 3 : Addressing the problems in a second-best world

At the National Press Club in Canberra on 27 September 2017, Hugh White, Professor of Strategic Studies at the ANU, launched an independent report by Insight Economics on Australia’s future submarine (FSM). The report, Australia’s Future Submarine: Getting This Key … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD. Australia’s Future Submarines: A response to Christopher Pyne

Last week at the National Press Club, Hugh White launched a report by Insight Economics, Australia’s Future Submarine: Getting This Key Capability Right, of which I was the principal author. The report was sponsored by Gary Johnston, a Sydney businessman … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD. Australia’s Future Submarine – Part 1: The problems

At the National Press Club in Canberra on 27 September 2017, Hugh White, Professor of Strategic Studies at the ANU, launched an independent report by Insight Economics on Australia’s future submarine (FSM). The report, Australia’s Future Submarine: Getting This Key … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD. Brexit and some lessons from the British election.

Despite recent disruptions in the comfortable world of electoral punditry – Brexit, Trump, even Macron – when Theresa May called a British general election in April, the only question was how many additional seats the Conservatives would win.  

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JON STANFORD. Australia’s climate change policy mess: quo vadis?

Make no mistake: Malcolm Turnbull’s pusillanimous refusal even to consider the option of an emissions intensity scheme (EIS) for electricity generation represents a massive abdication of responsibility to the Australian community.

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JON STANFORD. The French submarine boondoggle.

Is DCNS’s imaginary Shortfin Barracuda submarine Australia’s biggest defence blunder.  The Turnbull government’s decision on the future submarine (FSM) represents bad policy. It is bad for the Navy, bad for the taxpayer and bad for the future defence of Australia. … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD. Business welfare under the Coalition: two case studies (2)

This is the second of two articles by Jon Stanford on the Coalition’s approach to industry protection and ‘business welfare’. Part 1 (Motor Cars) can be found at Jon Stanford. Business welfare under the Coalition: two case studies. Naval shipbuilding … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD. Business welfare under the Coalition: two case studies (1)

  The Abbott government came to power with a Treasurer who announced that the “age of entitlement” was dead and that he had no time for “business welfare”. In these two articles, Jon Stanford examines how this philosophy has been … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD and JOHN MENADUE. The submarine confusion continues. Is the way being prepared for Australia to acquire nuclear submarines?

REPOST In an interesting development relating to Australia’s new submarine acquisition, Peter Jennings, Executive Director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), has written a piece in The Australian (7 June 2016) that is clearly at odds with the Institute’s … Continue reading

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JON STANFORD. Brexit – UK is unprepared.

The thrust of Michael Keating’s essay on Brexit is that the vote in favour of leaving the European Union taken by the British electorate on 23 June will be bad for the UK but will have a minimal impact on … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. French submarines and the East and South China Seas. – why?

A response to Richard Broinowski.  While the government might emphasise the roles for the new submarine that may be regarded as defensive – “intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance” – Richard Broinowski ignores perhaps the most important role, namely power projection in … Continue reading

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John Stanford. Technology, economics and Australia’s future submarine. Part 3 of 3.

Part 3: Implications: a more efficient and less risky approach Introduction The purpose of this three-part article is not to question the government’s requirement for advanced submarine capability but rather to explore some of the technological, economic and financial issues, … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. Technology, economics and Australia’s future submarine Part 2 of 3.

Part 2: Economic and financial risks Introduction The first part of this article considered the technological risks involved in the decision, as set out in the 2016 Defence White Paper, to procure twelve new submarines at an acquisition cost of … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. Technology, economics and Australia’s future submarine. Part 1 of 3

  Part 1: Technology risk Introduction The most important acquisition included in the government’s Defence White Paper, released in February 2016, is the decision to procure twelve new submarines for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN). With an acquisition cost of … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. Paris Agreement on Climate Change: Implications for Australia

Despite a generally positive reception to the Paris accord on climate change, the ideologues on both sides of the debate regard it as a failure. For the sceptics, the agreement that developing countries (which played a negligible role in causing … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. Defence procurement and the new submarine

When people remember Gough Whitlam, few would identify him as an economic rationalist. Economics was not his primary interest and, partly because of the perceived urgency of implementing “the programme” after 23 years in opposition, partly because of the incompetence … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. The Pathway to Two Degrees: Should we ban New Coal Mines?

Leading up to this month’s major climate change conference in Paris, there has been a welcome increase worldwide in the commitment to address climate change generally and, in particular, to restrict global warming to two degrees Celsius. Although they are … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. Australia’s New Submarine: What is its Mission?

Recent papers published in Pearls and Irritations by Jon Stanford and Rear-Admiral Ian Richards have suggested respectively that: the case for providing significant financial support to the naval shipbuilding industry is flawed, both on defence policy and industry policy grounds … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. The government’s new naval shipbuilding policy

  I think this is an outstanding article on naval shipbuilding, industry policy and economic prospects in South Australia. Jon Staford suggests that in terms of industry policy, ‘continuing to prop up the car industry … would probably have been … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. Climate Change Policy: a wedging opportunity for the ALP?

For those who believe that Australian elections should be based on a contest of ideas about public policy, developments at the national conference of the ALP in July 2015 will provide some basis for optimism. In contrast to some previous … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. Policy Approach to Climate Change

Policy Series Given that the substantial threat brought about by anthropogenic climate change has been recognised for a quarter of a century, it is remarkable that global policy makers have been so dilatory in responding to it. Voluminous scientific and … Continue reading

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