August 27, 2015

It was six o’clock on a winter’s night in Melbourne. I entered the Trades Hall and climbed the stairs. The bluestone steps were worn concave from a million workers trudging there before me. The place was dingy, deliberately so, as though it had not changed since the Depression, conveying a message that the workers were still downtrodden. Halfway up the stairs was a large poster of Gough covered in lipstick kisses. I entered Bella Hall and joined a throng of young middle class professionals sipping champagne and beer, and eating sushi. 



Clare O’Neil and Tim Watts were launching the book they h...

March 15, 2015

Entrepreneurs create jobs. So if we want more jobs then we have to create an environment in which entrepreneurs flourish. The converse is also true; if there are insufficient jobs being created then the conditions for entrepreneurs are not sufficiently conducive.


The conventional wisdom is somewhat different. Our politicians promote themselves as the ones who create jobs; presumably most people believe this. It is worth considering in what ways politicians create jobs.


Firstly they can increase the number of public sector jobs. Depending on your world view you may see this in a positive or neg...

March 9, 2015



At the first suggestion that minimum wages and penalty rates might be subject to review by the Productivity Commission, the ACTU hit the airwaves and the streets to defend their hard won rights. Rights that had been won by physical, economic and political coercion were not to be trammeled by rational debate; the proposals were offensive.  Economics journalist, Peter Martin wrote that there was no evidence to support the contention that minimum wages had a negative impact on employment.


Those most adversely affected by minimum wages are those out of work, those for whom the jobs do not exist...

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