Talkin’ ’bout my generation:

Angus Sharpe writes: Re. “Gen X Reserve Banker: squeezed between Boomers and Yers, we’re screwed” (yesterday, item 25). Great article from Glenn Dyer. The fact that there could be any doubt in the mind of a Boomer that we (Xers) hate you (as a group) says all you need to know about how introverted and selfish Boomers are (as a group). Although we don’t hate you personally Glenn — you rock.

Keating introducing super was probably his greatest legacy. But it meant that we (unlike boomers and Ys) have to pay for retirement twice (for your pensions and our super). As our friendly reserve banker points out, we will also have to pay twice for your outrageous debt (once in the past to get us to surplus, and now again, after this recession is over).

As for the Ys, a few of the lazy ones are being sacked (“What do you mean, no pay rise this year?!?”). Ohhhh the soothing balm. But not enough, I tell you, not enough.

League tables and real estate:

David Hardie writes: Re. “Richard Farmer’s political bite-sized meaty chunks” (yesterday, item 11). Why go to Baltimore for the story when it has been going on for years here in WA? For some reason, The West Australian started referring to Rossmoyne Senior High School as the “flagship” high school for Perth. If any school has this sort of status it would be Perth Modern School. But even before this there was a perception that Rossmoyne SHS was ‘head and shoulders’ above surrounding schools.

It would be fair to describe Rossmoyne Senior High School as being in the top tier of high schools in Perth and the school has a lot for which it can be commended. However, it does not post results that would be generally better than several nearby schools. However, houses for sale being advertised as being within the Rossmoyne Senior High School zone would outnumber houses listed as being in the zone for any, and possibly all, of the surrounding schools and would have to have an impact on differences in prices literally between one side of the street and the other.

It’s a safe bet that “league tables” (and the cruder the better) will be a bonus for Real Estate in select areas but in this respect, nothing beats reality like perception. However, the knock-on effect is even more interesting.

The reality of school league tables is that the best predictor of these results is the socio-economic status of the students’ families. If more affluent families move to a suburb, then this will impact on student results which will in turn increase property values etc. And who thought that Julia Gillard was an old school social progressive?

Tony Abbott:

Shirley Colless writes: In response to Virginia Gordon (yesterday, comments) and her support for Tony Abbott, there is a world of difference between “Catholicism” and “Roman Catholicism”. That branch of the Christian faith espoused by Benedict 16, Cardinal George Pell and Tony Abbott is not the full sum of the one holy and Catholic Apostolic Church to which Christians in general, whether Roman Catholic, Protestant, Reformed, Orthodox, Coptic among others adhere.

In fact it would seem from many responses from faithful Roman Catholics post Vatican 2 that there is a wide gulf of opinion within that part of the Christian Church about what is and what is not, evidenced by a rather large emigration from the priesthood into a secular life in which they have contributed considerably to the legal, political and social uplifting of Australian society.

That Tony Abbott, sometimes portrayed (and with good reason) as the Mad Monk, adheres to a particular view of the Roman Catholic Church is not in dispute. It just happens that he and many others like him are adhering to a model of Christianity that fails to come to terms with the Way of Christ in the world in which we live and which, quite frankly, is at least three hundred years out of date.

Climate change cage match (now with its own blog):

Peter Jones writes: Re. David Hand and Justin Pettizini (yesterday, comments). Part of David Hand’s assessment is probably correct. Workers don’t know what serious action on climate change would cost “the economy”. This is healthy. Workers shouldn’t care how much it would cost, because they shouldn’t have to pay for it. The rich should pay to clean up the planet because they have profited from destroying it.

Discussing individuals’ “carbon footprints” is a distraction. This is also why Justin Pettizini is wrong to translate my argument that “individuals” (i.e. workers) should not bother spending money on reducing ‘their own’ emissions into an argument that individual states (i.e. groupings of ruling class) shouldn’t. Workers should demand that capitalists pay to clean up their mess regardless of where they live.

If the ruling class squabbles over which of them should pay that’s just another reason to get rid of them. This matters because most environmentalists pitch to the left liberal middle classes. They love making us all feel guilt with moralistic arguments. But we aren’t all responsible for causing climate change: the profit system and those who benefit from it are.

If greens started appealing to workers, and stopped chasing political “respectability”, we might build a movement with some chance of averting catastrophe.

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