50% of @PaulineHansonOz @OneNationAus votes come from @AustralianLabor voters

How can Pauline Hanson be an extreme right-winger if half of her votes come from people who 2nd preference the Australian Labour Party? This strong support for her populism has been well-known since she won the safest Labour Party seed in Queensland in the 1996 Australian Federal Election but is hardly ever mentioned by the media or her critics.

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Source: Antony Green’s Election Blog: Preference Flows at the 2016 Federal Election.

It should be therefore no surprise that a lot of her views have popular support because she has support across the political spectrum. Not knowing that will means you will be not very good at combating her views which you simply do not understand where they come from.

Few of her supporters see themselves as extremists and will be insulted when you suggest they are. Listen here dummy is no way to win back votes of people who just voted for you recently.

Hanson’s support among Labour voters is increasing. Only 42% of her voters gave their 2nd preference to Labour in previous federal elections for the House of Representatives.

What 3 skills do public policy analysts need?

I used to argue that the quality of public policy making would double if public policy analysts remembered the first 6 weeks of microeconomics 101 but on reflection more than that is required.

I picked up my initial insight out when working as a graduate economist in the Australian Department of Finance. That was a few years ago.

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I am now concluded that policy analysts also need to know the basics of the economics of tax incidence. Who pays the tax depends on the elasticities of supply and demand rather than who writes the check to the taxman.

The number of times that I have read media and public policy analysis saying who pays the tax is the writer of the cheque to the taxman is beyond counting.

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There is also what to do about unemployment and inflation. Do not just do something, sit there might be good advice on most occasions. As Tim Kehoe and Gonzalo Fernandez de Cordoba explain in the context of first do no harm:

Looking at the historical evidence, Kehoe and Prescott conclude that bad government policies are responsible for causing great depressions.

In particular, they hypothesize that, while different sorts of shocks can lead to ordinary business cycle downturns, overreaction by the government can prolong and deepen the downturn, turning it into a depression.

How to tell if you are a modern progressive – a two-part test by Scott Sumner

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Source: How to tell if you are a modern progressive, Scott Sumner | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty.

What undergrads and @stevenljoyce need to know about trade @GreenCatherine

Minister for everything Stephen Joyce wrote some nonsense in the paper today about how trade agreements and more exports will mean more jobs:

I would like to make the point that trade access is hugely important for a small country like New Zealand. 

Without fair and equal trade access we can’t sell as much of our goods and we get less for them. And that means fewer jobs.

This make-work bias is as bad as those who oppose trade agreements on the grounds of an anti-foreign bias. Trade affects the composition of employment, not the number of jobs. Paul Krugman spent a good part of the 1990s trying to explain that to the general public and public intellectuals.

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Source: What Do Undergrads Need To Know About Trade?.

Political bias, free trade and @berniesanders @realdonaldtrump

The 1st @PaulKrugman on globalisation & development @harleyhs #TPPANoWay

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Source: Paul Krugman (1997) Enemies of the WTO.

This visiting American education professor who specialises in globalisation, claimed in the linked radio interview that real wages had fallen in the USA and Mexico. Even for the bottom 20% of the USA, their after-tax household incomes increased by 40% since 1979, with most of that after the signing of NAFTA.

Everything that is bad in crony capitalist Mexico is the fault of NAFTA if our visiting academic is to be believed despite trade tripling and investment increasing 600% because of NAFTA.

Women’s earnings growth has been perfectly fine over the last 40 years despite the horrors of NAFTA and the attack on unions and workers rights by a top 1% emboldened by NAFTA and globalisation, if our visiting academic is to be believed.

Gender analysis, gender analysis, where is his gender analysis of NAFTA? Few labour market statistics make sense without being broken down by sex because of the immense economic progress of women in the last 50 years. Can NAFTA claim credit for that?

George Stigler on the influence of economists on public policy

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The art of economic analysis

Make Progress, Not Work! Bryan Caplan’s best single video

Henry Hazlett on why economics is so difficult

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