ARCHIVES 1997-2007  --- ARCHIVES 2007 +

OCTOBER  2009.


What is the opposite of "Liberal" in politics?  Is it "conservative" or "Labour"? (as in the UK).  Is it "Labour" (as in Australia).  Is it "Republican" (The US Democrats seem to have claimed the Liberal mantle).

Well no.  None of the above.  Wiktionary has multiple political definitions, but the most general definition seems to be: Favoring ideas that treat all people with equal justice regardless of educational, financial, sexual or racial status.

 Wikipedia stresses that classic liberalism (as distinct from social liberalism) means individual liberty.

So no, the political opposite of "liberal" is "dictatorial". 

Who\which political parties does that most remind you of?  Let me help you.  Who makes laws that dictate discrimination to favor those who are uneducated, or are poor, or are female, or not WASPs?


Here it is, already one quarter of the way through October, and the market has not crashed.  Instead, those upstart Australians have RAISED interest rates, and declared that their unemployment rates have fallen.  So wtf is happening?  When I have been confidently predicting and expecting a further crash in October?

I suppose it is less than one third of the way through October.  And our PM Rudd has been spending like we were all zillionaires, and although employment has been constant, that was only achieved by reducing the working hours instead of sacking workers.  (That is quite possibly as a result of our labour laws, which mean that anyone who is sacked is entitled to a generous "redundancy package" frequently equal to a months pay for every year of employment up to about twelve years.)

And Ross Garnaut is reported as having written a book "Crash of 2008" that warns Rudd against the effect that his illiberal policies might have on our economy.  I have previously reviewed Garnaut's opinions on the environment.

On the economic front, Garnaut has at least seen that the main problem is our protected banking industry.  His suggested controls on banks are almost certainly unworkable and definitely complex and unwieldy.  The solution suggested on these pages on 23rd September 2008 was simpler and workable.  Effectively my suggestion was that the government should decouple cash (M0 & M1) accounts from banks.  (A bit like restoring the old "Commonwealth Savings Bank" which the Labour party sold off.)  Such divestment would probably cause considerable pain to current banking shareholders, which pain could be partially offset by onlending the money transferred to the new government guaranteed accounts.


One of the gripes I have is that copyright and patent are a drain on our culture.  I do not want to deprive the creative person of their due reward, however I do feel that the middleman culture has gone too far.

A neat solution would be for government to enact a "copyright and patent" tax.  I would suggest that the government collect as tax about 80% of the royalties going to the creator, and that there be no exclusive license.  Anybody could make a copy, but would have to pay a license fee.  The government would be responsible for contracting out the collection and policing of royalties and also paying the creative artist.

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