Balneus

Australian Lefty on Politics, Governance, Science and Info Management

Posts Tagged ‘Queensland floods’

Pastor No-Allah and the Press Conference

Posted by Dave Bath on 2011-02-04

Pastor Danny No-Allah, again in the wake of disasters causing much cost and misery, gave out a press release proving not only that his deity exists but that his direct line to the Big El is completely without the bugs of worldly telecoms providers (with atheist shareholders – glitches are only to be expected).

The amount of water falling on Australia is a clear demonstration of the power of our prayers a little while ago, when the nation was afflicted by drought.  It proves I’m the Voice of The Lord currently incarnated in Australia.

No-Allah’s usual detractors point out that there could be some truth in this – No-Allah is a destructive windbag, something consistent with No-Allah’s leanings to primitive Judaism rather than the love and tolerance preached by Jesus.  One of them gave an explanation:

Look at Psalm 29, it’s pretty clear that it’s a storm god, a bit of a crib from the older stories Abraham grew up with, the ones about Enlil, the sky-fairy who did the hard work flooding the world wiping out the population except for the household of Utnapishtim/Noah – check out the Gilgamesh Epic for the pre-Abrahamic origins of that story.

As usual, No-Allah’s theological sophistication, insight and logic was on display:

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Posted in Australia, Humor, Politics, Theology and Religion | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Funding repairs for floods versus financial meltdowns

Posted by Dave Bath on 2011-01-27

Compare and contrast the impact and policy responses of the floods and the latest Global Financial Crisis:

  • How do governments fund the necessary spending?
  • What does the funding mechanism say about the genesis of the crises as an actuary would view them?

Personally, I think whether funding comes from a one-off tax levy, or out of general coffers, the funding mechanism in response to significant crises should be the same, if both are as regular (or not) as each other.

Consider the following principle: one-off levies are appropriate for one-off events, while treatment from general revenue is appropriate for events that are considered likely to occur on a regular basis.

So, the policy response seems to indicate the government thinks that massive financial crises aren’t really that big a deal, or have a reasonably predictable frequency.

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Posted in Australia, Economics and Business, Environment, Governance, Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Tax-funded profits in national disasters and daily life

Posted by Dave Bath on 2011-01-24

As government (thus citizens) will pay for at least some of the rebuilding after the floods in eastern states, how much of this should become subsidized private profit, and what, above minimally decent private goods, should be subsidized?

Consider the starkest example of government/taxpayer funds used in reaction to a disaster like these floods, an evacuation camp:

  • Should the size of the tent, beds, the amount of food, provided to an individual increase with the value of the property from which they were evacuated?
     
  • Should price-gouging by suppliers of tents and food be permitted, or should those goods be subject to compulsory acquisition by the government, with modest compensation?

Why should answers to the above questions be inconsistent with post-disaster reconstruction?

Why should answers to the above questions be inconsistent with our treatment of those in dire need, on a daily basis, if those needy lack the good fortune to have lived in one particular region at one particular time?

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Posted in Australia, Economics and Business, Governance, Politics, Society | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

 
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