Blogotariat

Oz Blog News Commentary
Delimiter Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 16:49 Source

A state parliamentary committee has told Western Australia's Department of Health to end four years of acting appointments and hire a permanent CIO, in the wake of news that the lack of such an executive role in the department contributed directly to the fiasco at the state's new Fiona Stanley Hospital, much of which has revolved around poorly delivered IT systems.

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Inside Story Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 16:29 Source

State as religion: A guide in the Pyongyang metro stands in front of a mural exhorting people to work harder.
Michael Milne/ Flickr

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 16:23 Source

Chris Weston, Chief Market Strategist at IG Markets Asia has shown less caution to Ukraine concerns than Europe, with big volatility seen in DAX futures. The market is still keen to watch developments here, with operations underway to regain Ukrainian facilities, with various sources suggesting that Russian Special Forces have been aiding the separatists. The [...]

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Cheeseburger Gothic Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 16:21 Source

Syfy are, thank god, going back to sci-fi, and have commissioned a long form series based on James SA Corey's Expanse series. We discussed Leviathan Wakes here a while ago, one of my fave deadline reads this read.

I am hideously excited by the prospect of this. I don't know whether this breaks the drought for space based sci-fi on teev and I have no idea whether the producers will do the novels justice. But damn, it will be worth watching anyway.

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 16:13 Source

David Bassanese has a questionable analysis of house prices this afternoon: As should be clear, house price cycles have differed across states. Relative to average weekly earnings per worker in each state, the peak in Sydney house prices came in 2003, followed by peaks in Hobart, Brisbane and Perth just before the financial crisis in [...]

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 16:13 Source

David Bassanese has a questionable analysis of house prices this afternoon: As should be clear, house price cycles have differed across states. Relative to average weekly earnings per worker in each state, the peak in Sydney house prices came in 2003, followed by peaks in Hobart, Brisbane and Perth just before the financial crisis in [...]

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Delimiter Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 15:56 Source

High-flying IT executive Peter Grant has left his senior position in the Queensland State Government, a year after the state demoted him from the whole of government chief information officer role he had held for the second time.

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The Australian Independent Media Network Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 15:31 Source

I have a brief statement:

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The Australian Independent Media Network Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 15:26 Source

tony-abbott2As Tony Abbott once said, “politicians are gonna be judged on everything they say”, (May 2010), and goodness knows, Tony has said some rather controversial things in the past.  We are told that ma

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Table Talk: Bob Ellis on Film and Theatre Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 15:15 Source

What four films, all set in Texas, could have been set in Australia, without a word of dialogue changed?

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Andrew Leigh Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 14:59 Source

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

PRESS CONFERENCE
CANBERRA
WEDNESDAY, 16 APRIL 2014

SUBJECT/S: ACT Government working with the Australian Charities and Not for Profits Commission to help charities.

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 14:55 Source

From Bloomie: Japan’s second-biggest bond fund is looking to buy the Australian dollar on dips, predicting a slowdown in China won’t derail the global recovery…Kokusai Asset Management Co. had 1 percent of its Global Sovereign Open Fund invested in Aussie-denominated assets on April 10, down from 4.5 percent at the end of September, data on [...]

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 14:47 Source

By Leith van Onselen Alan Kohler has published a good post today at Business Spectator warning that increasing credit availability, brought about partly from the resurgence in securitisation, is combining with Australia’s constipated land use/planning system to raise house prices, to the detriment of younger Australians: We are seeing two quite different markets being mixed [...]

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 14:46 Source

Fresh from Westpac’s Phat Dragon and check out that chart. It looks to me like an economy very quickly going “ex-growth”: Looking at the breakdown of real activity from the production side of the accounts, primary output decelerated (3.5%ytd from 4.0%ytd in Q4) while both secondary (7.30%ytd from 7.85%ytd in Q4) and tertiary activity (7.8%ytd [...]

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Table Talk: Bob Ellis on Film and Theatre Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 14:38 Source

How soon will he be Sir Barry O’Farrell?

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 14:28 Source

Earlier this week I noted that a great coal whinge had begun in the mainstream media and now it is clear why. From Crikey: When the brains behind the Minerals Council launched an advertising campaign to defeat Labor’s mining tax, they nailed it. The tax was gutted, and the PM who dared propose it — [...]

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 14:05 Source

Ever since Chinese authorities committed to higher growth earlier this year, they’ve largely backtracked and fudged by emphasising quality over quantity, as well as the importance of the labour market over headline growth. Premier Li Keqiang has said China can tolerate lower growth as long as employment figures are solid. Today the Chinese National Bureau of Statistics did [...]

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 13:24 Source

Excerpted from Crikey’s Bernard Keane: For three years Barry O’Farrell has been an excellent premier of a state that desperately needed both good government and an end to the blatant corruption that became a feature of New South Wales Labor’s last years in power. Like any politician, he was not above compromise and deal-making — [...]

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Jack the Insider Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 13:13 Source

It’s an epidemic out there. Obeiditis is a disease sweeping through the New South Wales political system. Yesterday Barry O’Farrell looked…

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 13:07 Source

By Leith van Onselen  The Australian’s Janet Albrechtsen has written a cracking article today attacking the Abbott Government for refusing to free-up competition in the pharmacy industry, which she argues is one of the nation’s biggest entitlement racket: So here we are again. A Coalition government is back in Canberra, with the same union-busting, free-market [...]

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North Coast Voices Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 12:58 Source
NSW Premier and Liberal Party MP Barry O’Farrell denied receiving a $3,000 bottle of Penfold's Grange Hermitage wine on or about 20 April 2011, from long-time Liberal Party member and then Australian Water Holdings CEO Nick Di Girolamo.
He did not declare this gift in either his ministerial or member’s declarations of pecuniary interests.
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Croakey Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 12:54 Source

The implications of rising levels of inequality for the economy and indeed the future of capitalism are gaining plenty of attention thanks to the splash being created by a new book by economist Thomas Piketty, Capital in the Twenty-First Century. ...

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 12:42 Source

Fortescue’s March production report is out is clearly the worst of the big three: Completion of US$9.2 billion expansion of port, rail and mining operations to achieve production capacity of 155mtpa. • The 40mtpa Kings Valley project was opened in March 2014 following commissioning of the ore processing facility (OPF) which was constructed in record [...]

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New Matilda Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 12:18 Source

Ahmad Alhaj, born in Saudi Arabia but ethnically Chadian, came to Australia seeking asylum. Virtually stateless, his only hope for protection is ministerial intervention, reports Miran Hosny

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 12:09 Source

China has released its combined Q1 GDP and March data today and, again, it’s weakened. GDP fell sharply to 1.4% for the quarter and  7.4% for the year versus 7.3% expected: For March data, industrial production fell  to  8.8% versus 9% expected: Fixed asset investment was bashed lower to  17.6% versus 18% expected: Finally, chalk [...]

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Public Opinion Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 12:00 Source

ICAC's inquiry into the corruption in the NSW political system, which effectively destroyed the NSW Labor Party, is now focused on the NSW Liberal Party. It is examining the influence of lobbyists in the Liberal Party, political donations, corruption, and special deals for mates in the face of the politician's memory loss akin to amnesia.

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 11:55 Source

By Leith van Onselen The ABS has just released dwelling completions data for the December quarter, which registered a 2.0% seasonally-adjusted fall in the total number of dwellings completed over the quarter, with the 3.3% rise in detached house construction more than offset by a 9.9% slump in unit & apartment construction (see next chart). [...]

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 11:48 Source

Cross-posted from Investing in Chinese Stocks: The string of bad housing news out of Zhejiang province keeps on going. This is a paper napkin story: the situation is so bad that an executive can calculate disaster by adding up all the area under construction and dividing it by the population. Selected portions of this Google [...]

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Delimiter Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 11:46 Source

The National Broadband Network Company today revealed it had successfully conducted early trials of the Fibre to the Node (FTTN) rollout model mandated by the Coalition Federal Government, with the trials delivering "raw" download speeds of 105Mbps over a distance of 100m from a local test 'node'.

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Table Talk: Bob Ellis on Film and Theatre Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 11:37 Source

It’s a fairly obvious thing to say, but two things always work in politics. One is crime. The other is big scary numbers.

The Liberals gained office by accusing Thomson, Slipper, Obeid and Gillard of various crimes, and by waving big scary numbers — eighty billion deficit! six hundred billion debt! — at the affrighted, prurient, buffeted voters.

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