Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Earth Moving and the random

It certainly moved for me today. The pneumatic desk chair bounced me up and down as the mild earthquake struck. I think earth movement is amplified when you are near the top of a tall building. Maybe once every couple of months, I feel movement when sitting on the chair at the desk. I considered getting under the desk as the quake struck, but given it is made of glass, perhaps not such a good idea.

Methuselah is not matched to screen and the text, well everything is really weird. I am not hunting around to fix it for the sake of a couple of days, which might muck up the settings of the computer at the doctor's. But its setting may well be altered too. I have told the computer doctor to put in a one terrabyte hard drive, add an extra gig of ram and I am actually going to pay for Windows 7 and I get the disk. It puzzles me that computers don't come with an operating system and you have to pay extra to make the computer actually work. $300 all up, almost half of which is the operating system disk.

I forget exactly when, but we will be in Mount Gambier next week for a couple of nights. If you look at its history, its volcano is overdue to erupt by tens of thousands of years. It would be just our luck....... Ah well, I already feel like a fossil.

Something struck me today. The evil ex Liberal Party Premier of the State of Victoria sold off our electricity assets, mostly to overseas companies. Now, there is a suggestion that the owners of two of the dirtiest power stations may be compensated billions of dollars of taxpayers money to close down. That is, effectively, the government buys them and shuts them down. If the government owned them, they could just shut them down. I just do not get this privatisation of public assets business. The are privatised for supposedly reasons of competition. Maybe there are some areas where that works. Do point them out to me. Airports? Oh no, not there. Public transport? Oh no, not there. Telecommunications? Oh, in spite of my support for fibre optic, no, not there either. Private roads, that the owner's charge you to use? Oh no, not there. I am drumming my fingers waiting for a response.

Beware Perthites where your government wants to privatise your airport. Beware Greece where Euro community want you to privatise your public assets.

There is absolutely no reason why a government owned asset cannot perform as well as a private one. Given the government asset can borrow money more cheaply, double the reason.


  1. Hello Andrew:
    Oh dear, the earth moving whilst in a pneumatically controlled chair sounds very unsettling to us! We are not terribly good in high buildings at the best of times but during earthquakes.....

    We do so agree with you about privatisation. Once upon a time the UK had a train system which was intelligible and did not cost the National Debt. Nowadays, however.....

  2. Personally, I would much rather see the government running the darn things rather than paying someone else in the form of subsidies. Non-regulation got the U.S. in a heck of a lot of trouble but I'm not too bright around economic stuff.

    I used to work in a high rise in San Francisco and I think they do shake more the higher you are cause of the rockers they're built on. But then, I'm not too bright around high rises either.

    On that note...

  3. We had a quake too. One workmate was under the table before the rest of us really realised it had begun!

  4. Wow - I'm in an eight storey building over here and you've made me rather nervous now - my knees turn to jelly if I lean out of the window!

    Hear hear re privatisation. Selling off 'our' assets was always going to be horribly wrong.

  5. Stay in your chair Andrew. Our earthquakes are so short by the time you got under the table it would be over.
    Privatisation is the very worst thing the government could have done to us. Very irresponsible of them.

  6. Jealous :(
    I didn't feel a thing!

  7. Privatisation for competition??That's a refreshing view ... here was I thinking it was all about making a quick buck, albeit one-off!!

    Always thought I was too cynical ...

  8. J&L, it might be no surprise to you that we followed your privatisation model. Is 'that' woman dead yet?

    Linda, I think it is fair to say that non regulation and oversight of US banks almost brought the world to its knees. Well, not just the US. If you worked in SF, well, you could tell me more than I know.

    KN, my ears did prick up when I heard PN mentioned on the radio. I think it is safe to suggest that NZ has had enough of all disasters.

    Kath, given where you are, perhaps best if you keep your socialist ideals quiet. You know, I don't think you ever really get past the height things. If I go to the very corner of our balcony and look down, I get the odd feeling, just as I did when we moved here.

    River, your city is not known for its instability. This is good. No argument from me with your view of privatisation.

    So I saw on Twitter Fen. Never mind. You'll have to find another way for the earth to move.

    Red, whether that is the theory or not, it certainly seems to be how it works.


Democracy is all very well, but why give it to the people? - Audrey Forbes-Hamilton.