Open Forum: March 17, 2018

Posted in Open Forum | 1,338 Comments

Preparing for a Labor Government

The next Federal election is anywhere up to 12-14 months away.  But here is an event being held in Sydney next week on 20 March.

There is turmoil in Canberra, and uproar over Barnaby’s Baby! Will there be an early election? Will Labor win?

Bill Shorten has announced a number of proposals to “reform” the Australian tax system. How might these impact your clients?

What, if anything, can you do now to prepare for any changes? What other left-field ideas are being considered?

Join us for a discussion about preparing for a change of government!

Your hosts for this event – Brown Wright Stein Lawyers.

Join us for a discussion about preparing for a change of government.  Amazing expression of certainty for lawyers, an industry based on the provision of opinions with enough wriggle room for a South Australian submarine to get through.

The event is free.  To charge for something nowadays would just not be socially just.

Hope to see you all there.

Follow I Am Spartacus on Twitter at @Ey_am_Spartacus

Posted in Uncategorized | 12 Comments

Live Kevin Rudd Export Ban

In 2011 in response to a 4 Corners story, the Gillard Government implemented a live cattle export ban. 

If any Cats out there know someone who knows someone who knows Prime Minister Turnbull, can they please show him the following MSNBC interview with Kevin Rudd.  Please oh please can the Turnbull government then implement a Live Kevin Rudd Export Ban.

Yes.  There will be domestic consequences – we will all have to look at his face and listen to his tripe.  But on the other hand, Australia’s international reputation will not have to suffer any further damage from his pretentious and perfidious windbaggery.  Especially in the US where too often than not, he likes to criticize the US Government.

Like he did in this interview where he claimed that, notwithstanding several US Supreme Court decisions over decades to the contrary, they would listen to the poisonous and mellifluous advice of Kev from Queensland, and ban rifles and semi automatic weapons.

Hey Kev from Queensland.  Go have a fair suck of your sauce bottle and stop talking.  You aren’t here to help anyone but yourself.

The other advantage of dragging his large backside and even larger mouth back to Australia would be to remind Australians of what the current Labor Party stands for, including what the current leader of the Parliamentary Labor Party stands for: winning at all costs and not losing at all costs.

Bill Shorten has probably has not heard what Kevin Rudd said, but he would certainly support what it is that he said.

Follow I Am Spartacus on Twitter at @Ey_am_Spartacus

Posted in Uncategorized | 12 Comments

Lindsay Shepherd and Mark Steyn discuss free speech

On the off chance you think the generations coming through to replace the generation moving on are in some sense onside with the notion of free speech and an open society, then watch this video. As they discuss, argument from the left is reduced to ad hominem forms of personal attack. Since everything is socially constructed everything must be socially deconstructed.

In the video, Mark Steyn talks to Lindsay Shepherd, the Teaching Assistant at Wilfrid Laurier University in Canada who became internet famous at the end of 2017, when three members of the WLU faculty attempted to destroy her life for having shown a short Jordan Peterson public television clip to her students. She had, however, recorded her interview and then released the recording to the media which stopped them in their tracks, and has, in fact, made her famous. Articulate beyond her years, a product of the modern left though she is, she is a bridge between us and the millennial generation. She describes herself as “the most left-wing member of her family”.

Here as well is the original recording of Lindsay’s inquisition by the faculty at Wilfred Laurier, worth every minute of the 43 minutes it takes to listen to it through.

And if you want to see where this is heading, you should look at this and this. More people in “the shut up business”, as Steyn describes it.

The Mark Steyn interview comes via the Mark Steyn Club: Expression, Identity, and the Corruption of the Academy.

Posted in Conservative politics, Freedom of speech | 16 Comments

Shorten’s squeeze on nest eggs benefits nobody

Today in The Australian

When imputation credits were made fully reimbursable, Labor wasn’t merely supportive — it was positively gushing.

Calling attention to the benefits full reimbursement would provide to a “low-income person who earns a little investment income”, Peter Cook, Labor’s then deputy leader in the Senate, claimed paternity for the policy, which Labor had taken to the previous election.

Posted in Uncategorized | 51 Comments

It’s a taxing issue

I have an op-ed in The Age talking about the ALP’s new tax policy.

Labor’s problem is that they are being too clever by half. They want to increase taxes without clearly saying so. That is profoundly dishonest. Receiving a tax refund is not welfare. In the same way receiving your change from the supermarket isn’t corporate charity – it is a return of your own money. Millions of Australians overpay their tax liabilities each and every year and receive a refund from the government. Labor proposes to stop paying refunds to older Australians – both now and in the future.

By invoking a return to Paul Keating’s original policy Labor must have hoped to ignite some nostalgia for a bygone era of prosperity when it had a reputation for sound economic management. Labor’s greatest economic asset, Paul Keating, would be in the forefront fighting a weakened coalition government on economic policy. That does sound like a winning formula.

Yet it immediately contradicts Keating’s greatest achievement – superannuation. The fact is this is just another raid on super. Now there may be good reasons why super funds should effectively pay more in tax, but it is up to Labor to spell out those reasons and not simply hope that nobody will notice a tax increase.


Posted in Uncategorized | 53 Comments

Dividend Imputation Changes – Feature not a Fault

Has anyone out there noticed who has not said a word about the latest attempted tax grab from the Australian Labor Party.  You know, the proposed changes to dividend imputation.

The silence from both the union movement and the Greens has been deafening.

How can it be, that 2 groups who claim to be the saviors and representatives of the poor, the weak and the working class have nothing to say about the latest ALP Reverse Robin Hood?  You know, those proposed changes that will raise, by some accounts, $6 billion per year by taking from low income earners and then pretend to return it through “improved services”, less that standard 20% Cost of Canberra fee.

This is the sound of Spartacus shaking his head in confusion.

Let’s put aside this being yet another change aimed at pilfering the money workers are forced to put aside to be managed by overpaid “Funds Management Executives”.  You know those executives who still get their 9.5% of wages inflows irrespective of performance.  But why have the Greens and the Union movement been silent?

Could it be that the policy objectives of the Union movement are about improving the wages and conditions of union officials (and not union members).  You know, those union officials who will earn and save enough so as not to be affected.  It is those union officials who decide Labor Party policy and not really Bill Shorten and Chris Bowen.

Could it also be that the policy objectives of the Greens are about improving the wages and conditions of public servants, especially inner city public servants.  You know, those public servants who will be quite happy for the government to extract a further $6 billion per annum so as to increase the salaries of public servants.  Not to mention that these public servants and mostly on tax payer guaranteed defined benefit retirement schemes.

Who would have thunk it that the Union movement and the Greens would not be upset with an ALP proposal to further take from the poor and give to the rich.  Who would have thunk it.

Too many members of the commentariat think this was a colossal mistake by the ALP.  It does not appear so.  This was a feature and not a fault.

Follow I Am Spartacus on Twitter at @Ey_am_Spartacus

Posted in Uncategorized | 35 Comments

An absolutely certain test for detecting moronic ignorance

You want to know what ignorant morons look like? They are the people who vote no to this.

He created a 3m-high illuminated sign — like a vintage advertising billboard — that asks passers-by to vote on whether capitalism has benefited them. The votes are tallied on an electronic scoreboard….

In most iterations, the results had been roughly split between those in favour and those against capitalism.

Half the people in the wealthiest communities that have ever existed have no idea what allows them to enjoy the living standards they have! To vote no on whether capitalism has benefited them, as in has capitalism been a net plus in their lives, means a level of stupidity, ignorance and ingratitude that is beyond comprehension. Beyond dumb and deranged. Ignorance almost in its purest essence. It is also why we in the West are in such danger of having the socialists in our midst turn every economy, including our own, into the next Venezuela.

Posted in Cultural Issues | 91 Comments

David Bidstrup: Snowy 2.0: The madness continues

I first looked at the proposed “Snowy 2.0” project in August 2017, just after it was announced as yet another “game changer”. “The Australian”, (2 March 2018), reports it“will provide additional generation capacity 0f 2,000 MW”, which is a bit misleading because (a): we are interested in energy, that is how many MWh it can produce and (b): it is not a “generator”; it is a nett user of electricity.

In August 2017 the project output was stated as 350,000 MWh over one week.

Using a reasonable 80% efficiency for the scheme, (basic physics tells us here are no “free lunches”), 440,000 MWh of energy is needed to pump enough water to achieve the 350,000 MWh output from one 7 day period. This power will come from “the grid”. The hope is that it will be from “large scale renewables”.

Currently Australia’s installed capacity of wind power – the only large scale renewable resource – is 4,400 MW.  On average, they operate at 30 to 35% of installed capacity so averaged over a year the actual capacity is 1,540 MW, (4,400X0.35).

To pump the water needed for the 350,000 MWh output needs the total Australian capacity of wind power for 12 days. That is 12 days without them putting any energy into the grid for ordinary consumers. At midday on 28 August 2017, (when I wrote the initial article), the combined wind power resources of Australia were producing at 150 MW. At that output the pumping time to “fill” the system is 122 days.

The scheme can then deliver 350,000 MWh over 7 days, (50,000 MWh per day). At midday on 28 August 2017 the total grid load was 24,000 MW so in 2 hours the grid consumed 48,000 MWh or 96% of a “Snowy 2.0” day.

Considering the best case scenario, the time to “fill” is 12 days and the time to “empty” is 7 days giving a “fill/empty” cycle of 19 days. That is 19 cycles per year.

Each cycle requires 437,000 MWh to fill and yields 350,000 MWh when that water is passed through the turbines. The annual power deficit is 1,653,000 MWh. The simplistic view is that this electricity will be sourced when renewable production exceeds demand. That sounds good until you consider the sporadic operation of wind farms. To think that there will be some “spare” electricity when it is needed is courageous at best and stupid at worst.

Of course the renewable energy used for pumping will attract the RET subsidy and the electricity produced will do so as well.

Assuming that the unit cost of power in is equal to the unit cost of power out, and using a plug figure of $150 per MWh as a power cost the operating cost per year is $247,950,000.00 which equals $37.00 per MWh.

The project was originally “costed” at $2 billion but has now become $4 billion. The federal government will now outlay a further $6 billion to buy back the NSW and Victorian interests in “Snowy 1.0” giving a total of $10 billion all of which will be funded one way or the other by power consumers.

Using some simplistic loan repayments at 5% simple per year, the interest on the $10 billion is $500,000,000.00 per year. This gives an annual “financing” cost of $75.00 per MWh so the combined annual costs of operating and financing are around $112.00 per MWh.

Snowy 2.0 is not a “new generator”; it is a nett user of power and it will cost around $112.00 per MWh to produce electricity. This will be passed on to consumers in the time honoured fashion and it will garner RET subsidies along the way. It relies on intermittent power sources to fill the dam and history shows that there are many times when the performance of wind generators is abysmal to say the least. Pumped hydro was originally designed to make use of spare capacity from large, reliable and dispatchable thermal generators when demand was low. I wonder why our “leaders” do not understand that they just look stupid promoting these ridiculous ideas.

Posted in Guest Post | 45 Comments

Wednesday Forum: March 14, 2018

Posted in Open Forum | 1,584 Comments