The Wild West ... the outback ... The new world of the 1800s was a time of true liberty. People stood on their own merits. They won or they lost and they reaped the rewards or swallowed the consequences. There were no cubicle dwelling civil servants hell bent on saving you from yourself. No planning permits no licenses no permissions no heritage overlay no bylaw no regulators no inspectors. And guess what ... it worked

This site is set up to provide a forum for a number of like minded professional economists to post and comment on contemporary issues. There are a number of regular contributors whose bios are made available on the site. Most if not all of these contributors use a pseudonym for the simple reason that they are practicing economists who must take into consideration the commercial implications of posting their opinions.

While some may feel that this is a bit of a gutless approach it is the only way we can ensure free and open discussion without jeopardising our paycheques.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Whether to laugh or cry. (Roy Rodgers)

We’ve all heard about the economic stimulus. And we all know the basics …. Its a yea old school style reversion to the madness of Keynesian economics.

However, no amount of forewarning can prepare you for this …

I must admit that when I first encountered this site I laughed solid for a good 2 hours. Then I emailed it to my mates and got to experience the joy of listening to them go hysterical.

For maximum frivolity go to the community infrastructure page and check out the list of approved projects. Some of the highlights include

- Water bubbler program in Mosman — installation of water bubblers in various locations around Mosman, some (note not all) providing specific wheelchair access - $20,000.

- Dunny and signs - Nackeroo Lookout Area Upgrade, Timber Creek. Upgrade of the Nackeroo Lookout area, including the construction of ablution facilities, commissioning and installation of interpretive signage for tourists and signage on road and tracks to ensure environmental damage is limited. - $110,000

- Green dunny - Construction of an Eco-Friendly Public Toilet at Springdale Park - Construction of an eco-friendy, composting public toilet in Springdale Park at Barellan Point, $83,500

- Air conditioning - Community Hall Air-conditioning Installation, Bowen - Installation of split system air conditioning in McKenna Hall, Bowen. $100,000

To give you a point of reference National Builders Group is currently prepared to build you a single story house with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, one kitchen, a lounge, a dining room, a lockup garage and a theater room for $131,900. Included in that price is a margin for the builder.

There are over 500 pages of these projects. God knows how many council staff kitchens are being upgraded. And then there’s another list for “strategic projects”. This list is even more hilarious because here the numbers turn from thousands to millions.

I'm not sure when green dunnies and air conditioning became core economic infrastructure, but hey this is how were going to beat the recession (the one were not actually having).

Word of caution … after you stop laughing you will start crying.


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