Monday, October 25, 2010

Armed & Dangerous

In the US, criminals have better weapons than police. Is that what we want in New Zealand? An escalation of arms ownership between hard-pressed law enforcers and desperate law breakers?

Why aren't we tackling arms ownership and removing weapons? Arming the constabulary doesn't solve the issue of crime, instead it escalates the violence.

We need to reverse the spiral, remove the arms so they can't be used, and establish social policies that leverage people out of desperate circumstances.

Arming law enforcers and removing benefits leads to more people armed and desperate. This is dangerous for everyone.

The US is not the model to follow on crime prevention.


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Economic Models & Reality

We don't understand economic models. Economic models don't understand reality.

'Economic models, all other things remaining the same, depict reality' ADD 'All other things never remain the same' EQUALS 'Economic models never depict reality'

If economic models contained places for all possible variables they would be a reality, but still not our one.

Economic models used as prediction tools don't work unless there are no serious shocks, but then 'what's the point?'

If only one could be an economist without talking about mathematical models, but that isn't possible any more, not via the academic route.

[Related Post – Paul Krugman: Macro Economic Madness -]


Bolger Recants

Bolger (former NZ Prime Minister) recants the sale of Telecom. Wow. Personally, I've never got over the way the then recently-privatised Telecom ripped out or painted over every red phone box in the country, so they could have their new yellow corporate branding on them, despite loud protest and public vexation.

It shocked me and continues to shock me that, in a democracy, a government or monopolistic essential-service provider can act completely undemocratically to rip the heart out of a community, to make changes nobody wants and nobody's asked for, to act without care for the community that, through its votes or its purchases, has put the government or the company in its position of power – but this happens all the time.

Representative's (some democratically elected, some not) make changes they think are good for us, even ones that rip out our heritage, dissolve our security, and destroy our familiarity, because they think this is best for us, even though we say isn't at the time, find it isn't when it happens, and regret it once it has.

Real democracy is coming, but it isn't here yet.

Bolger: Telecom Sale A Mistake -


Saturday, October 16, 2010

Labour Market Specialists Win 2010 Nobel Economics Prize

Still not the whole picture, but perhaps better. It's funny how academic economists and social scientists lag so far behind commonsense. I guess it's partly down to academic verification, transliteration and peer approval processes, before it is finally translated back into plain English (and what we've known all along) – if it ever gets that far.

AFP - Trio of labour market specialists wins 2010 Economics prize


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Legality Over Justice (& Commonsense) - Sometimes Britain Is Stupid

Actually, it's far too frequent that rule pushers forget that rules are meant to be fair and that laws are meant to be just, and this is just another example of rules applied over principle:

Brought up, educated and married in England... but father is denied UK citizenship for not being 'English' enough -