Keith Rankin - Latest News [Page 3]

39,000 Steps

Monday, 15 February 2021, 2:53 pm | Keith Rankin

Last Thursday I walked the Tongariro (Alpine) Crossing with my partner. Actually, it was my third time, having also enjoyed that beautiful volcanic walk in 1979 and 1990. This was my first time with a mobile phone in my pocket. My phone assured me ... More >>

Science: The Good, The Ugly, The False, And The Expedient

Friday, 18 December 2020, 11:07 am | Keith Rankin

2020 has been the year of the scientist, or at least the public health scientist. Science is a method, not a discipline; it includes social science, because social science does at least notionally apply the scientific method. While being about the ... More >>

Queen Of Hearts, With Teeth

Thursday, 17 December 2020, 4:07 pm | Keith Rankin

I recently watched Season Four of 'The Crown'. Yes, it's a drama, not a documentary. The two dominant characters – outside of the Windsor bloodline – were Princess Diana and Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Both characters were probably overplayed, ... More >>

Easter Sunday 2019

Thursday, 10 December 2020, 3:17 pm | Keith Rankin

I was in Victoria, Canada over Easter weekend in 2019. On Easter Sunday I returned to my hotel, to the shocking news of a set of coordinated suicide bombings in Colombo, Sri Lanka. 267 people died that day, and at least 500 others were injured. The target ... More >>

Microbes And Macrobes

Tuesday, 8 December 2020, 4:07 pm | Keith Rankin

To understand the world we live in, it is important to read books written in different time periods. Older literature does not have access to the latest research and currently fashionable tropes, and they may include some expressions that would be censured ... More >>

Microbes And Macrobes

Tuesday, 8 December 2020, 3:56 pm | Keith Rankin

To understand the world we live in, it is important to read books written in different time periods. Older literature does not have access to the latest research and currently fashionable tropes, and they may include some expressions that would be censured ... More >>

Fixing The 2020 New Zealand House Price Bubble

Monday, 23 November 2020, 5:32 pm | Keith Rankin

To the surprise of most pundits, substantial real estate price inflation has resumed, after a hiatus from 2017 to 2019. As to be expected, most of the usual tropes have been employed: a lack of supply, immigration (in this latest case returning New Zealanders), ... More >>

Masks As Social Engineering

Monday, 16 November 2020, 10:01 am | Keith Rankin

On Friday the mainstream news media has been reporting that, today, the decision will be taken to make mask-wearing compulsory on Auckland's buses, trains and ferries; and on all domestic flights in New Zealand. None of the news reports indicate that ... More >>

The New 'Centre-Left' Establishment

Wednesday, 11 November 2020, 4:26 pm | Keith Rankin

The Linear Political Spectrum In both New Zealand and United States, we have just seen the political success of the one-dimensional political centre; perhaps a nudge to the left of centre. By one-dimensional (or 'linear'), we mean the traditional ... More >>

Public Debt: Pay It Back Or Pay It Forward?

Friday, 16 October 2020, 8:53 am | Keith Rankin

I recently encountered the concept "pay it forward", with reference to a debt. While it was in a personal context that I came across this concept, on reflection I am wondering why – as a follower of news media – I have never heard the concept ... More >>

Existential Concerns

Wednesday, 14 October 2020, 4:02 pm | Keith Rankin

This 21st century epoch is coming to be one of 'existential crises', meaning that various large-scale dangers are increasingly coming to be seen to threaten 'our' existence, where 'our' most commonly relates to people, but may also relate to multicellular More >>

Aotearoan Origins

Friday, 9 October 2020, 1:41 pm | Keith Rankin

Over the last month, I enjoyed watching Origins on TV1. Very ambitiously, it looked at the origins of Tangata Whenua, going all the way back to the origins of humanity in Africa. Nevertheless, the final episode in particular bothered me. It presented ... More >>

The 2020 New Zealand Election Is Not A Foregone Conclusion.

Friday, 25 September 2020, 11:11 am | Keith Rankin

The most recent TVNZ Colmar Brunton poll felt about right: Labour/Green on 54% and National/Act on 38% of decided voters. But I sense that Labour is losing momentum. What needs to happen to make Judith Collins the Prime Minister in October? National/Act ... More >>

Balance Sheet Recessions, And The Government Debt Fix

Friday, 18 September 2020, 2:44 pm | Keith Rankin

Definition 'Balance sheet recession' is an innocuous name for a very big economic event. It represents a particular kind of contraction of a country's economy – or of the global economy – in which one of the most important laws of 'financial ... More >>

The Added-Worker Effect, In Economic Hard Times

Thursday, 10 September 2020, 3:41 pm | Keith Rankin

My MA thesis was about labour supply in New Zealand and Australia during the 1920s and 1930s, with particular reference to the 1930s' 'Great Depression'. More >>

Extending Democracy; A Path-Dependent Process

Wednesday, 2 September 2020, 4:34 pm | Keith Rankin

In practice, democratic political reforms are usually incremental, though typically seen as part of a process leading to wider and more embedded improvement. Reforms are 'evolutionary' – indeed, in a technical sense – in that they improve the More >>

The Two Policy Silos: Reserve Bank And Treasury

Thursday, 27 August 2020, 4:28 pm | Keith Rankin

Macroeconomic Policy Macroeconomic policy is largely the art or science of the governance of economic imbalance. Some of the words that indicate imbalance are 'recession', 'inflation', 'deflation' and 'contraction'. Another word, 'stagflation', represents ... More >>

Epidemic Costs And Responses: Coronavirus And Tuberculosis

Thursday, 20 August 2020, 4:21 pm | Keith Rankin

Early Identification and Action We are now learning, from Covid19, one thing above all else. With epidemics, it is early identification and action that matters. When our Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, says that New Zealand's government approach is ... More >>

Messaging And Masks

Thursday, 13 August 2020, 4:36 pm | Keith Rankin

Jacinda Ardern is Prime Minister for a good reason. She is an excellent communicator. She got the message about mask-wearing almost bang-on in her speech yesterday. She was correctly reported as saying: Aucklanders should use a mask if they leave the ... More >>

Money: Where Does It Come From, Where Does It Go?

Tuesday, 11 August 2020, 5:15 pm | Keith Rankin

"I think you have to recognise money comes from somewhere. It doesn't just come from a big money tree." Judith Collins 2020 "Someone has to pay the bill – there aren't little pixies at the bottom of the garden printing cash." ... More >>