Australian Financial Review
Students Vital to Growth - 28 September 2010.
The noughties may well be remembered by historians as a terrific decade for gadgets. But when it comes to productivity, Australia has had a disappointing decade. Although we don't yet have all the data, the noughties looks set to record a rate of productivity growth about half as fast as we enjoyed in the nineties.
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Debt Has Served Us Well - 14 September 2010.
Much fun was had during the election campaign when the Chaser lads pointed out to Tony Abbott that while the ratio of Australian government debt to national income will peak at 0.06, his personal debt-to-income ratio is nearly fifty times higher (Abbott's reported $700,000 mortgage is almost three times his annual income).
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Time to Make Our Luck - 31 August 2010.
In 1964, Donald Horne argued 'Australia is a lucky country run by second-rate people who share its luck'. Forty years later, he wrote that: 'Things have changed for the better. But the jury is still out.'
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Make Trade - Not War - 3 August 2010.
We sometimes think of globalisation as something new, but it's easy to forget that the world economy of a century ago was highly integrated. As John Maynard Keynes famously described the world economy of 1913: 'The inhabitant of London could order by telephone, sipping his morning tea in bed, the various products of the whole earth... he could at the same moment and by the same means adventure his wealth in the natural resources and new enterprises of any quarter of the world.'
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Good Schools, Less Crime - 20 July 2010.
Notorious gang rapist Bilal Skaf dropped out of school at age 14. Convicted murderer Neddy Smith writes in his autobiography that he last saw the inside of a classroom at age 13. Port Arthur killer Martin Bryant could not read or write when he left school. In Australia's jails, the typical prisoner has under 10 years of education - substantially less than the general population.
Read full op-ed about schools and crime