Sunday , September 25 2022
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John Quiggin

Why we need an elected President

With the death of Queen Elizabeth, the issue of an Australian republic has naturally arisen. The immediately following question is whether we should support a ‘minimal’ republic, as similar as possible to our current system, or replace the Governor-General with an elected President. The starting point for both monarchists and supporters of a minimal republic. is the claim that ‘the existing system has worked well’. This is incorrect in two crucial respects First, the current...

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Monday Message Board

Another Message Board Post comments on any topic. Civil discussion and no coarse language please. Side discussions and idees fixes to the sandpits, please. I’ve moved my irregular email news from Mailchimp to Substack. You can read it here. You can also follow me on Twitter @JohnQuiggin I’m also trying out Substack as a blogging platform. For the moment, I’ll post both at this blog and on Substack. Share this:Like this:Like Loading...

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A bit of this, a bit of that: Stage 3 tax cuts, the Australian welfare state and Republican identity

I’ve been on holidays on the Sunshine Coast this week with my wife Nancy. I’d normally be racing in the SC 70.3 Ironman, but breaking my wrist a month ago put paid to any training (I’m recovering well, but slowly). We still had the accommodation booked, so we’re enjoying a relaxing time by the sea. Before we took off, I submitted a bunch of articles that have now come out. I already posted my piece on the Ethereum merge so, rather than bombard you with emails, I thought I would wrap...

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The Bitcoin Monster, updated

A little while ago, I wrote about the impending shift of the Ethereum cryptocurrency from “proof of work” to “proof of stake”, with an energy saving of 99 percent. I’ve now expanded that post into an article for The Conversation, which has just come out. Read and enjoy (or skip, if you’ve heard enough about crypto). Share this:Like this:Like Loading...

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Sandpit

A new sandpit for long side discussions, conspiracy theories, idees fixes and so on. To be clear, the sandpit is for regular commenters to pursue points that distract from regular discussion, including conspiracy-theoretic takes on the issues at hand. It’s not meant as a forum for visiting conspiracy theorists, or trolls posing as such. Like this:Like Loading...

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Monday Message Board

Another Message Board Post comments on any topic. Civil discussion and no coarse language please. Side discussions and idees fixes to the sandpits, please. I’ve moved my irregular email news from Mailchimp to Substack. You can read it here. You can also follow me on Twitter @JohnQuiggin I’m also trying out Substack as a blogging platform. For the moment, I’ll post both at this blog and on Substack. Share this:Like this:Like Loading...

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The end of the Bitcoin Monster?

For a few years now, I and others been banging on about the environmental cost of Bitcoin, and similar cryptocurrencies. This cost from the electricity wasted on the pointless calculations used to ‘mine’ Bitcoins, under the ‘proof of work’ protocol used to ensure the validity of entries in the Bitcoin blockchain. The cost is huge, about the same as the energy use of a medium size country. For almost as long, we’ve been promised an alternative ‘proof of stake’, in which the integrity...

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Monday Message Board

Another Message Board Post comments on any topic. Civil discussion and no coarse language please. Side discussions and idees fixes to the sandpits, please. I’ve moved my irregular email news from Mailchimp to Substack. You can read it here. You can also follow me on Twitter @JohnQuiggin I’m also trying out Substack as a blogging platform. For the moment, I’ll post both at this blog and on Substack. Share this:Like this:Like Loading...

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All history is presentism

Earlier this year, I wrote a piece in defence of presentism, discovering just before I posted, that the same title had been used (also this year) by David Armitage, Professor of History at Harvard. It was good to know that I wasn’t alone, but as Armitage made clear, “presentism” has been “a term of abuse conventionally deployed to describe an interpretation of history that is biased towards and coloured by present-day concerns, preoccupations and values”. A fairly standard version...

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