Latest posts
  • Having and eating your housing cake

    If house prices go up, it is a scandal. If house prices go down, it is a disaster. That must be the logic by which the media reports on the ups and downs of the property market. [...]
  • Financial innovation beats Kiwibuild

    Besides, the construction of 9,000 homes is more than 26 times the number of buyers who have qualified for Kiwibuild so far. It’s a pity that complex finance initiatives do not make for great photo opportunities with the Prime Minister. [...]
  • Towards Trump 2020

    Few outcomes of the US midterm elections could have been predicted with certainty. Except that President Trump would call the result a “tremendous success” no matter what. And he did just that. [...]
  • The race to succeed Merkel

    The way it is going, Germany’s chancellor in early 2019 would no longer be called Merkel but Merz. That may sound similar. They even belong to the same party. But it would be a markedly different government. [...]
  • Tricks and treats

    02/11/2018

    Halloween is a strange feast in our calendar. Nobody knows what is celebrated and why. But that, I would argue, makes it the perfect candidate for New Zealand’s next public holiday. We need more nonsensical feasts to guide us through the year. [...]
  • The current political landscape leaves classical liberals not just alone but genuinely isolated. Their positions, which they once assumed were shared widely, are now exclusively theirs. [...]
  • When the waka jumping bill went through Parliament last month, National had objected to it based on high principles. By not invoking this monstrosity of a law even as it would benefit them, National showed it believes in those principles. [...]
  • The world economy is undergoing fundamental shifts – and these transformations could dwarf the things we fret about. [...]
  • German leader Angela Merkel rose from obscurity with no clear ideological platform thanks to a skill at jumping on and off bandwagons, but her run of luck is over. [...]
  • It does not happen too often that politicians do what I want them to do. It is even stranger when this almost makes me change my mind. New Zealand First’s Respecting New Zealand Values Bill has achieved this remarkable feat. [...]
  • It is a sure sign I am getting old. At age 43, I am still working and I do not think it is a problem. [...]
  • Britain will inevitably exit the European Union, but hopes of a "smooth Brexit" are likely to be thwarted by the EU's realisation that it's in its interests to make it as messy as possible. [...]
  • It had to take an evolutionary psychologist and a lawyer to dissect (some of) the craziness of modern society and polity. Jonathan Haidt and Greg Lukianoff’s new book The Coddling of the American Mind is required reading for anyone wishing to understand 21st century politics, not just in the US but globally. [...]
  • “I’d never join a club that would accept me as a member,” says Woody Allen’s character in Annie Hall. With the European Union, it is the other way around: The EU would reject new members as anti-democratic as itself. [...]

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