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It's time for Gillard to face the inevitable and be graceful

Comments on Dennis Shanahan “Even Victorian faithful think Labor is on the nose”, 27/09/2011, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/opinion/even-victorian-faithful-think-labor-is-on-the-nose/story-e6frgd0x-1226147314109

The problem for Labor is that the longer Gillard hangs on the more unpopular it gets and the bigger its electoral loss in the next election.
Gillard should swallow her personal ego and be wise enough to accept and acknowledge her problem is unsolvable and pass the leadership to another person, presumably the one who has the best chance to win the next election. She would serve the ALP and herself a big favour if she did just that, the sooner the better.

An voluntary and orderly change in the ALP leadership would be the best for ALP, certainly much better than another leadership change forced by its parliamentary caucus.
Now it appears that that person may be Rudd or Smith. Neither of them may guarantee an election victory, but either of them is infinitely more electable than the current one, if the polls are a rough guide.

Is Rudd good enough?

Comments on Niki Savva “Kevin Rudd a golden opportunity for Labor”, 27/09/2011, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/opinion/rudd-a-golden-opportunity-for-labor/story-e6frgd0x-1226147266953
There are two potential problems for Rudd should he be returned to the Prime Ministership.

Firstly, whether he has changed enough to get the ALP federal caucus on his side and united in governing. He may have learnt his lessons from his lost of that leadership, but it is unclear whether his own character has afforded him enough self reflection.

Secondly, the three problems Gillard said would be hers priority to fix, namely mining tax, border protection/boat arrivals and climate change, are likely to continue to hunt Rudd, even though he may choose new strategies by saying that he would seek mandate on them from an election.

Yes, the gambling/poker machine issue may not be a serious one for him.

However, when an election is on, voters may get serious on Rudd and change attitude from a honey moon period one towards Rudd. The question is whether the sympathy toward him for his treatment by the ALP federal caucus would be enough to warrant them to vote him back into prime minister.

That would be an interesting question to be seen.


A plan to save euro and Europe

Comments on Philip Stephens “Wanted: one plan to save Europe”, 23/09/2011, http://www.businessspectator.com.au/bs.nsf/Article/Eurozone-debt-crisis-euro-currency-monetary-union--pd20110923-LY4T2?OpenDocument&src=rot
There is a need for both shorter and longer term plans. A short term plan could be a euro bond that has differential costs to different countries when they use it. The costs should be lower than a higher risk country's own bond implies but higher or lower than the costs of the euro bond. How much higher or lower should be determined by the member countries collectively.

A differential design imposes a real cost to those countries that have taken too much risks or ill disciplined fiscally that contributed to their current fiscal predicaments.

It will provide a solution to those countries risking of default with lower cost of financing.

It will also lower the costs of those other countries that bail out those high risk countries.

Politically it would be beneficial for both debt and credit countries within the euro zone.

A longer term plan could be further strengthening the original requirement by the euro constitution/agreement.

A really long term or permanent plan is fiscal integration. But it will take time for the conditions to be right.


US cannot avoid Japan-style stagnation

Comments on Anatole Kaletsky “Barack Obama can still pull US back from a slide into Japan-style stagnation”, 8/09/2011, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/barack-obama-can-still-pull-us-back-from-a-slide-into-japan-style-stagnation/story-e6frg6ux-1226131676602

A major weakness of and indeed a serious problem with this analysis and the reforms is that most of European economies are in deep troubles too at the moment.
Secondly, what do some of the proposals mean for the two government owned lenders in terms of their profitability and solvency?
Further, while it is true that investment in aged infrastructure can be profitable and productive, the US government does not have the capacity to do it because of its very high levels of debts. It has to rely on the private sector to invest and that would require privatisation that would take time and whether it is now politically viable or not remains an open question, although in the medium and long run it is inevitably required to do so.


Rudd may do a better job this time

Comments on Paul Kelly “It's not just the leaders, it's the party”, 7/09/2011, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/opinion/its-not-just-the-leaders-its-the-party/story-e6frgd0x-1226130893027
While the core point Paul Kelly has made that the ALP needs to reflect and change is obviously correct, his argument that a change in leadership does not do the job may not be so correct.
A change in leadership, say back to Rudd, can work if the new leader is determined to change and can bring about that change. Otherwise, a mere change in leadership will not work, as Paul has put it elegantly.
Rudd, if he has learnt the lessons why and how he lost the leadership, is the best person to do just that. He has the quality to bring the public with him and be popular with the voters, although what he would really also need to do is to add real substance to policy and achieve hard results.

With that quality, he would be in a position to push changes of the ALP culture. Of course he would need to work collegiately with the caucus colleagues to achieve it.


ALP's antiquatity and Loosley's illogicality

Comments on Stephen Loosley “Key issue is not gay marriage but selling yellowcake”, 5/08/2011, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/opinion/key-issue-is-not-gay-marriage-but-selling-yellowcake/story-e6frgd0x-1226129282316

While Loosley's argument may apparently have some logic based on his own reasoning of logic, his logic is illogical overwhelmingly.
Some commentators already commented on some of his illogicality, one important point deserves more analysis - that is, why shouldn't Australia build its own nuclear power stations, given the need to deal with climate change and reduce carbon emissions, as well as the facts that Australia has large production and reserves of uranium and that Australia is geologically very stable and much more stable in most countries that already have nuclear power generations?
Loosley completely ignored this much more important issues related to Australia's uranium and instead focused on a secondary issue instead shows his distorted logic, not too different from the ALP antiquated nuclear policy re export of uranium to India he labelled and argued against.
Loosley could do ALP and the nation a positive service should he approach the nuclear issue rationally and logically, the same s his call for the ALP to be logical and catching up with time.