Category Archives: News and Views

Increasing bank ripoffs exposed in differences between Visa Card purchase rates and RBA cash interest rate

A reader has sent me a spreadsheet that amazed me when I got around to examining the data. We have all been aware of occasional media reporting of high credit card interest rates compared to the RBA cash rate and we see the rates near 20% on our card statements. For example – The $2 billion credit card ripoff – and from two years ago – Big banks in credit card gouge
Until I plotted the data for myself I had no idea that the banks have been increasing the difference between the interest they charge on cards compared to the RBA cash rate over the years.
Note how both the ANZ and CBA Visa Card rates stay near 20% and very near one another as the RBA cash rate reduces.

But this chart of the two differences leaves no doubt as to what is happening.

The Government should move to increase real competition in our retail banking sector – these charts show there is no competition. When I last looked banks were big contributors to political parties.
I would appreciate people sending me data from other credit cards and the other two banks. Enter columns into a csv file or old xls please – not new fangled xlsx. If you are concerned at these ever increasing credit card interest rates lease send this information on to wherever it may help.

Outgoing Chief of Army Lieutenant General David Morrison in Australia opines in TV interview that the military has never solved anything

During his TV interview last night with Leigh Sales on the ABC 7.30 Report outgoing Chief of Army Lieutenant General David Morrison was asked “Can an ideology be defeated militarily?” He replied “No. I don’t think that there’s a military solution to anything. …” He added later “…throughout recorded time, there’s been – there’s never been a military solution to anything. …”
You can read his full reply in his second reply at the 7.30 Report transcript.
It left me a tad puzzled as to what General Morrison thought the British Empire, USA, France and Allies should have done when faced with aggression by Germany and then Japan in WWII ? Imagine yourself back in time to September 1939 and put yourself in the shoes of a farmer in Poland seeing a grey tank column approaching surrounded be determined looking armed guys in field grey and steel helmets – he strolls over and says “..look, we are just creating the society we want to live in…”. Good luck with that General.

Confession to make – for years I had assumed the BoM weather station in Adelaide at Kent Town was in parkland on the east of the CBD

How wrong I was – the weather instruments are just on a lawn in a commercial area – see pink X – the parklands near Norwood start in bottom left.

This is additional to the post on 11 April 2015 commenting on Fairfax media reports that the Kent Town site has to close in July due to lease running out and the BoM are relocating back onto parklands near the original West Terrace site. I am hoping somebody from Adelaide can send me photos of the new site.
Just found this 26 Mar 2015 Agenda of the Adelaide Park Lands Authority – 14MB pdf. See pages 54-88incl – lots of fascinating information and nuances piled on politically correct nuances.
Anyway – this aerial map sets out the essence.

Would still appreciate any photos of activity at the site.

Prominent actor tweets Gallipoli was an invasion – so what, we were at war – the Ottoman Empire had attacked Russia and joined WWI on the side of Germany in October 1914

Watching the Australian media it is possible to get a distorted view of the place of ANZAC in history.
On twitter hardly one person states correct historical situation that in late October 1914 naval ships of the Ottoman Empire including two German crewed cruisers chose to attack and sink Russian ships around the Black Sea. This resulted in Russia and the Allies – France and the British Empire declaring war on the Ottoman Empire. After that the Ottomans declared Jihad on all the Allies I think. The Ottoman Empire could have remained neutral – might have survived after WWI and Gallipoli would not have happened.
There is a great need for better public knowledge of the bare essentials of WWI origins and basic history.

Reading The ANZUS Treaty

Guest post from David Archibald –
Senator David Johnston’s dismissal as Australia’s Defence Minister came soon after he said that he wouldn’t trust ASC (formerly Australian Submarine Corporation) to build a canoe. The ASC sheltered workshop wanted to be paid $3 billion to build a submarine. The Japanese build them year in and year out for $600 million a copy. Surely an attempt to be an effective Defence Minister shouldn’t be a sacking offence in an ideal world.
Download the 100KB pdf with many links – Reading The ANZUS Treaty

Merchants of Doubt movie box office triumph in USA – takes $54,242 – where can I get the DVD

Would that pay for theatre hire? I can not wait to see Marc Morano in Merchants of Doubt – in the meantime enjoy his assembly of critics comments painting him as some “super villain” with mysterious powers to wreck the just plans of the good and the great IPCC supporter base. If anybody finds a source for the DVD please let us know – thanks.