Ross McKitrick: Reopening has risks. So did the Industrial Revolution
- The real parallel is in reopening the economy — which means facing and managing downside risks while pursuing growth and prosperity.
- This means we will be building economic activity in an environment with large known benefits but also large potential costs that must be carefully monitored and mitigated.
- When most economies around the world made the decision to harness fossil fuels they knew about the potential benefits and costs.
- Thus, facing an opportunity to embark on a path of growth with both enormous potential benefits and considerable downside risks that would need to be carefully monitored and mitigated, every country around the world chose to “open.” They chose to harness the energy, manage and mitigate the downside risks, and enjoy what turned out to be net economic and social benefits beyond the wildest expectations of anyone who had lived in previous generations.
Trump's reality show is wearing thin
- Washington | It’s one of Washington’s favourite parlour games, fuelling the constant rounds of "whataboutism" that Donald Trump’s presidency inspires.
- And that he used some of his top officials – including chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley, the highest-ranking military officer in the US Armed Forces – as human props for the grand political theatre?
- But unlike 1968, when Nixon destroyed incumbent Democrats over the lawlessness and rioting that gripped America prior to and during the Chicago Democratic national convention that August, 2020 is likely to be a different beast.
- Until recently, and despite chaos inside the White House, the nation's capital has actually been a serene and lovely place to live, work and visit, at least for those who can afford it.
- Donald Trump invoked a 213-year-old "insurrection" law to deploy the US military and "dominate" streets as riots erupted across America for a seventh-straight night.
RBA holds cash rate at 0.25pc
- The decision on Tuesday to maintain the 0.25 per cent settings - put in place in an unscheduled meeting in late March - was widely forecast by economists and the market.
- While Governor Philip Lowe noted the economy was going through a difficult period because of the coronavirus pandemic, the bank's statement struck a more upbeat tone than the previous one.
- While an appreciating Australian dollar has previously been of concern to the central bank, it has refrained from offering commentary on the currency of late.
- Regulations to freeze pay increases for 420,000 NSW public sector employees have been put in place.
- We're tracking the Australian economy as it recovers from the coronavirus pandemic lockdown.
- A plan to freeze public sector wages to save three billion dollars for job creation is facing strong political and industrial resistance.
The start-up founder who's cycled the southern hemisphere
- Vend's Vaughan Fergusson says the 80-day solo trip was life changing - and with the COVID-19 restrictions easing, he's keen to get back in the saddle.
- Vend founder Vaughan Fergusson cycled from Cape Town, South Africa, to Buenos Aires in Argentina.
- Dream bike and equipment?There is a cool new hydrofoil bike [for riding on water] being produced in New Zealand called the Manta5 that would be handy for around-the-world cycling adventures, when we can travel again.
- How do you feel now about overseas cycling adventures?I might have to wait a while for those, so it's time to enjoy my own backyard for a bit.
- I did a mountain bike race across the Southern Alps of New Zealand once.
- Favourite ride?Well, the long answer is my trip around the southern hemisphere, solo, in 80 days.
- Ever felt scared on a bike?Going on long solo adventures you are usually safe.
How to Make this Moment the Turning Point for Real Change
- Second, I’ve heard some suggest that the recurrent problem of racial bias in our criminal justice system proves that only protests and direct action can bring about change, and that voting and participation in electoral politics is a waste of time.
- The point of protest is to raise public awareness, to put a spotlight on injustice, and to make the powers that be uncomfortable; in fact, throughout American history, it’s often only been in response to protests and civil disobedience that the political system has even paid attention to marginalized communities.
- But the elected officials who matter most in reforming police departments and the criminal justice system work at the state and local levels.
- Finally, the more specific we can make demands for criminal justice and police reform, the harder it will be for elected officials to just offer lip service to the cause and then fall back into business as usual once protests have gone away.
Virgin leaves workers in the dark
- It would appear that nobody in the process wants to talk publicly about the ugly reality in store for thousands of workers as the airline emerges from insolvency into the hands of new owners.
- Virgin's administrator, Vaughan Strawbridge, the various bidders competing to buy the airline and the unions representing Virgin workers have avoided discussing the job losses that must inevitably lie ahead.
- Kaine appears to be unaware of the fact that the business plan put forward by Virgin's former chief executive, Paul Scurrah, and distributed to bidders by Strawbridge includes slashing the airline's cost base by about 40 per cent to $3 billion by 2021.
- If the workers go into the creditors' meeting with unrealistic expectations about their employment prospects, it could result in a voting outcome that does not result in a sustainable long-term business.
The protests are raising fears of a spike in coronavirus cases
- New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said that while people have the right to protest, even during a pandemic, they also have a duty to protect the health of themselves and others.
- Cuomo also noted how the coronavirus has brought long standing health disparities for the African American community to light once again.
- Maryland Governor Larry Hogan shared a similar sentiment saying the priority has been to keep people safe during the demonstrations but the focus has to also include the months long fight against the spread of coronavirus.
- Health experts have also spoken out about the need for masks and other protective measures in light of racial disparities in the data showing minorities have an increased risk for catching the virus.
- Other doctors told CNN that the racial disparity in the way coronavirus spreads will only be compounded by the protests.
Chaos and dissent may not work for Trump this time
- A burning, divided and angry America swept Donald Trump into the White House almost four years ago.
- Washington | A burning, divided and angry America swept Donald Trump into the White House almost four years ago and many believe today’s chaos will help keep him there in November's elections.
- On the surface, the lawlessness, looting and violence that has erupted across major US cities provides Trump with all the fodder he needs to prosecute a tough-guy argument and blame Democrats for enabling criminal behaviour.
- It's easy to forget watching the big crowds and vandals' flames erupt across American cities that the coronavirus pandemic is still raging.
- Major US cities feared another night of violent protests over the death of George Floyd in police custody, cleaning up streets strewn with broken glass and burned out cars.
Sonder: E-Ink Keyboard
- Available soon.
- The Sonder Keyboard combines a sleek new design with a built-in rechargeable battery and enhanced key features.
- With an improved mechanical mechanism beneath each key for increased stability, as well as optimized key travel and a lower profile, the Sonder Keyboard provides a remarkably comfortable and precise typing experience.
- It pairs automatically with your Mac, so you can get to work right away.
- And the battery is incredibly long-lasting — it will power your keyboard for about a month or more between charges.
- Testing conducted by Sonder using preproduction Sonder Keyboard devices, firmware and software.
- Testing consisted of full battery discharge while engaging the device on a paired iMac using automated equipment.
- Battery life depends on device settings, usage and other factors.
Trump vs. Twitter: The president takes on social media moderation
- After Twitter gave one of President Trump’s tweets a modest reality check, the president threatened to “shut down” social media companies, personally targeted a Twitter employee, and signed an executive order that would affect the entire internet.
- It’s the latest salvo in a long-simmering feud between the president and his favorite social media platform.
- Although he has more than 80 million followers and has been on Twitter since 2009, Trump has long complained about what he considers anti-conservative bias on the platform (but without citing evidence).
- Twitter had elected not to delete or modify Trump’s tweets, even when they violated its terms of service, until now.
- Facebook, in contrast, refused to remove posts similar to the president’s tweets.
- The executive order is expected to face legal challenges.