Well, Kevin Rudd’s Crikey honeymoon didn’t last long, with his tentative suggestion that having some industry left, it might be good to have a policy on it.

Goddam it, yes you can’t have the government picking winners, like they do in the Nordic countries, can you? I mean look at what it does to competitiveness:

Switzerland, Finland and Sweden are the world’s most competitive economies according to The Global Competitiveness Report 2006-2007, released by the World Economic Forum on 26 September 2006. Denmark, Singapore, the United States, Japan, Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom complete the top ten list, but the United States shows the most pronounced drop, falling from first to sixth.”

Oh never mind, it’s only that well-known Bolshevik front, the World Economic Forum (according to whom, picking no winners, we’re at number 19).

Still, such policies encourage corruption don’t they? Erm, no. According to Transparency International, the five Nordic countries are in the top eight non-corrupt economies.

Still, it’s clear that economic planning doesn’t solve the problem of poverty, does it – I mean the US has the lowest rate of poverty in the advanced world, and Sweden the highest, and the lowest literacy rate…

Oh, sorry. It’s the other way round.

Never mind. In an age of religious politics, it’s wonderful to see that economic fundamentalism carries on affirming its faith in things unseen, against all evidence.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey