Bert Kelly, Quadrant, September, 1991, pp. 51-53. Based on a speech delivered to the Australian Cane Farmers Association on 9th April 1991.

I had many sad experiences during the nineteen years I was in Federal Parliament. I was elected in 1958, and in 1959 I was made a member of the Forster Committee which was asked to advise the Commonwealth Government on the steps that should be taken to develop agriculture in the Northern Territory. At that stage there was some excitement because scientists had found that they could grow peanuts in the Top End of the Territory. They also knew that cattle in the Top End increase rapidly in weight during the flush wet season when the grass is green, and then lost most of that weight during the dry when the native pasture lost most of its protein. The idea was to grow peanuts and crush the oil from them and export it and then use the protein-rich peanut meal to feed Top End cattle during the dry. So this was done and it really worked; the cattle which were fed the peanut meal gained weight as expected. The more meal they ate the more weight they gained. But the trouble was the more meal they ate the more money we lost. The sad truth was that cattle raised on good grass in the south were cheaper to raise than cattle fed peanut meal in the Northern Territory. This made me sad because by this time I had realised that governments love closer settlement schemes and one based on peanuts would have obvious attractions.

Then I thought that, if we could not have a closer settlement scheme based on feeding peanut meal to cattle, perhaps we could have one based on selling peanuts in their shells to kids in cinemas in the south. But this idea was brushed aside by people in the know. “Don’t be silly, Bert,” they said. “Charlie Adermann is the Minister for Primary Industry in Canberra and he lives at Kingaroy where they grow peanuts so surely you can see that, with Charlie sitting on the peanut well, there is no chance of the Government mothering a closer settlement based on selling peanuts in the shell in competition with peanut growers in Kingaroy.

Now I have been carefully reared, so I did not know what they meant about Mr Adermann sitting on the peanut well. So they explained that once the legendary couple, Dave and Mabel, stayed at a hotel in Sydney where the plumbing was much better than at home. At ten that night Mabel asked Dave to get her a drink of water which he did. At eleven he had to get her another and again at twelve. But this time he came back with an empty glass. “What’s wrong, Dave?” Mabel asked. He replied, “There’s someone sitting on the well.” Then I understood.

I had another sad experience in the NT. I knew that the Commonwealth Government, like all governments, loved building dams. Indeed I used to say that at each election I could feel a dam coming on. By then I knew enough about politics to realise I would further my political career if I could advocate the building of a dam on the Ord River. I spent some time at the Kimberley Research Station on the Ord and I knew they could grow cotton there, but I also knew that all around them grew the plants on which the pests that ate cotton lived. So I knew the more cotton they grew, the more expensive  would be their spraying costs, so the more money they would lose. But no-one took any notice of me, so the Ord Dam was built and some splendid speeches were made when it was commissioned and I used to be called “Knocker Kelly”. When the cotton growers went broke spraying their insects I made another desperate effort to climb the political ladder by suggesting that they produce sugar instead of cotton on the Ord. I knew we could grow sugar-cane and I thought if the sugar infrastructure was put in before they started producing the cane, then perhaps they would be able to produce sugar as cheaply as in Queensland where everybody knows live the best sugar producers in the world. I also knew that, even if we were to double Australia’s sugar production, we would not flood the world’s sugar market as we only produce about three per cent of the world market for sugar.

So I mentioned these matters nervously to the good and great in Canberra, but again they brushed me aside. “Surely you have learnt the facts of political life by now, Bert,” they explained kindly. “You must know that the Minister, Mr Adermann, comes from Queensland where they are experts at producing sugar and he would not want to see Ord sugar competing with Queensland sugar.” They gave me the impression that Charles was sitting on the sugar well, too.

_____

I was finding the political ladder hard going, but worse was to come. In the early 1960s there was a Bounty Bill to subsidise the production of our butter, so we could keep the price high here and sell it cheaply overseas. When others do this well call it “dumping”. But when I told my dairy farmers if we kept the price of butter as low as they did in New Zealand and so consumed as much per head as they did, then we would not have a butter surplus to worry about but we would have to import butter from New Zealand. This made me more unpopular.

When I finished my speech, the MP who represented Gippsland, the best dairying land in Australia, snarled at me, “Asking my dairy farmers to compete on equal terms with NZ dairy farmers just shows how ignorant you are, Bert. Surely you must know that good dairying land in Gippsland is worth £500 an acre while New Zealand land is far cheaper.” But Gippsland land was dearer because they got the butter bounty so of course they felt that they should continue to get the butter bounty. I often wonder if sugarcane land is so expensive because the price of sugar consumed locally is kept so high. The trouble is I do not know whom to ask. Perhaps someone will tell me after the meeting.

Then I got into trouble with my wheat farmers when I told them that, if they were successful in their efforts to twist the arm of the government to make it keep the wheat price artificially high, then we would probably produce more wheat than we could sell and perhaps we would have to have a wheat quota scheme which allowed farmers who have grown wheat in the past to continue to grow it but would deny this right to others, even young battlers who had bravely cleared country to grow wheat when they were told their futures were assured. This was a shameful period in our wheat history except for those who had a wheat quota and so were sitting on the wheat well.

I have always been interested in the way milk producers get around Section 92 of the Constitution which says that trade and commerce between the states must be absolutely free. I once asked a Queensland milk producer whether he was concerned that cheaper Victorian milk might flood the Queensland market. His reply was prompt. “Sir Joh would never allow it to happen.” Evidently Sir Joh was sitting on the milk well.

_____

It is really surprising that I lasted nineteen years in Parliament. In August 1984, when I was back on the farm, my neighbour, Farmer Fred, got unhappy about life on his sheep and wheat farm and he nagged me to take him to Queensland which he regarded as our last refuge against the blight of socialism which was destroying the rest of Australia and where Joh was valiantly holding it at bay. So off we went, with Fred with enough money to buy a sugar cane farm. We called in at Canberra where our economic adviser, Eccles, lives in his ivory tower. Fred told him that he was going to escape from socialism, but Eccles warned him to prepare for some nasty shocks.

When we reached one of the nice sugar towns in Queensland, Fred saw a land agent’s sign and went in to give him the good news that the wanted to buy a cane farm to get away from socialism and all that. I sneaked off to speak to the local MP who I knew as a statesman of high degree who I found slaving away in his office. Fred was in the agent’s office for hours and came out wearing a worried frown. He explained that evidently not just anyone can buy a cane farm. He even quoted Section 37 of the Sugar Cane Prices Act which says that a cane grower must be able to demonstrate that he is a fit and proper person before he can be given a licence to grow sugarcane.

When Fred told me this I suggested that perhaps the agent wanted to know to which political party he belonged. “Show him your Liberal Party ticket,” I advised, so Fred did this and came back with his tail between his legs. “He says he never heard of the Liberal Party,” he said sourly. And then Fred went through all the regulations that hold the sugar industry in an iron grip.

I know that that silly Section 37 has been scrubbed and some others also, but there are plenty left. You know them better than I do and I will not parade them before you lest you think I am doing so to expose you to the derision of the rest of the world. I know that these regulations not only tell you growers how, when or where to grow your cane, but your millers are told how to operate their mills also.

Because I come from the south and know nothing about growing sugarcane, I will not expose my ignorance before you. Instead I will quote the retiring Chairman of the Central Sugar Cane Prices Board who said in 1983, “The regulations of the Sugar Producers Act creak and groan like an old unoiled windmill.” I had a windmill just like that and I know how he felt.

I have been told that you have been trying to change some of these regulations, but you must know how many remain. When I received the invitation to speak to you today, I was told that one reason was that I had suggested that rural industry needed a think-tank. All other sections of the economy have been greatly helped by these think-tanks that bravely tell people what they do not want to hear. I know that my tariff campaigns have been greatly helped by these think-tanks and I think rural Australia needs them as never before. The mess we made of wool is a grim example. Our political influence is falling as our numbers fall, so we need clear thinking logic as never before. I know we have the Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics and I greatly value them. But they are under control of the Minister who might perhaps not want one of his pets looked at too closely. And it would not have been easy for even a Minister as good as Kerin to tell the wool-growers what were the facts of life which they did not want to hear. Those of us who have been trying to talk tariff sense to secondary industry have been greatly helped by the Industry Commission, but we have need the think-tanks also. I think we desperately need a rural think-tank. Perhaps its first task should be to have a close look at the regulations that control sugar production in Australia.

_____

With this problem on my mind I called in to see Eccles because I thought he might want the job. He was delighted. “I am just the man to do it. I am about the only person in this ivory tower who is not on some committee of inquiry or other. I think it is a splendid idea.”

However, on second thought a big inquiry would not be necessary. Perhaps all the Queensland Government would need to do would be to encourage the production of sugar in a big way in the Burdekin. I remember that was one of the justifications for building the dam. At least then it would be in Queensland’s tender care. But if this is forbidden, perhaps we could encourage either the Commonwealth or the West Australian government to encourage sugar growing on the Ord. It would be nice for this great engineering achievement to be used for more than growing a few melons and for water-skiing. And if that happened I bet you chaps down here, where you are really expert at sugar-cane production, would smartly show the Ord people how to do things properly. And I bet the first thing you would do would be to remove the short and strong hobbles that now hinder you. Perhaps evens Tate & Lyle would be prepared to help you with the Ord development. Surely you people would not try to sit on that well.

Later …

Well, Tate & Lyle took the easy way out and climbed into the Bundaberg featherbed instead of tackling the Ord as I hoped. I was disappointed, but not surprised: featherbeds are always tempting for big, powerful people. In 1980 I wrote about featherbeds that flew, and how the Ansett bed was kept so comfortable by the government’s two-airline policy that Rupert Murdoch and Peter Abeles climbed aboard and poor Sir Reggie was pushed out. So I was not surprised that Tate & Lyle preferred the Bundaberg bed; it is just what I would expect a big, powerful company to do. But the two-airline policy is now gone and the airline featherbed is pretty crowded right now. I have a suspicion that, in ten years’ time, the Australian sugar bed will get crowded too. It is a common fate of featherbeds.

Before I gave this talk, I had a quick look at the hotel swimming pool, half expecting that I might be thrown in after the can growers had heard me. But they didn’t seem to mind much, not the younger ones anyway. I guess some of them realised that changes in the sugar industry are inevitable.

My suggestion about producing sugar on the Ord is not fanciful. We know that it will grow well there. We know too the Ord dry season is really dry and that there is plenty of cheap water for irrigation. And you would not need to have can farms located close to sugar mills by being tied to their mills by small railways. These were necessary in Queensland when the industry was young, but now we could cart the cut cane for bigger distances in really big motor trucks. So the mills could be bigger and probably more efficient.

If Tate & Lyle really want to produce sugar for the Asian market and have the guts to do it without government “guidance” and Sugar Board “help”, I reckon they should have a hard look at the Ord.

(in order of appearance on Economics.org.au)
  1. Bert Kelly on his journalism
  2. Move for a body of Modest Members
  3. Modest Members Association
  4. Bert Kelly's Maiden Parliamentary Speech
  5. Government Intervention
  6. 1976 Monday Conference transcript featuring Bert Kelly
  7. Bert Kelly, Hayek and Mencken on the virtues of farmers
  8. Sound economics calls for quiet from government
  9. Petrol for Farmers
  10. Some Sacred Cows
  11. Experiences in Parliament
  12. Spending your Money
  13. Is Taxmania a politician fetish?
  14. How Bert Kelly repays a free feed
  15. Modest column #898
  16. Chicken-hearted feathered friends strange bedfellows on a feather bed?
  17. Who needs literary licence?
  18. A touch of Fred's anarchy
  19. Helping the farmers help themselves
  20. Standing on the shoulders of the downtrodden
  21. Supply and Demand
  22. Bert Kelly responds to claims he is arrogant and uncredentialed
  23. Politics: it's a very confusing business
  24. The best featherbeds run on rails
  25. Bert Kelly on Disaster Relief
  26. Bert Kelly Wants to Secede
  27. Blinded by their tears
  28. Anti-freedom pro-tobacco industry lobby harmed Australia
  29. Under Labor, is working hard foolish?
  30. An Idiot's Guide to Interventionism
  31. Is free healthcare worthless?
  32. Can government kiss it better?
  33. Bert Kelly Destroys the Side Benefits Argument for Government
  34. Bert Kelly gets his head around big-headed bird-brained politics
  35. First Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  36. Second Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  37. Third Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  38. Fourth Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  39. Fifth Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  40. Sixth Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  41. Bert Kelly on the 2011 Budget and Australia's Pathetic Journalists and Politicians
  42. Bert Kelly, Bastard or Simple Sod?
  43. Liberal Backbencher Hits Govt. Over Import Restrictions
  44. Bert Kelly feels a dam coming on at each election
  45. Bert Kelly Enters Parliament
  46. Why take in one another's washing?
  47. Bert Kelly breaks the law, disrespects government and enjoys it
  48. Gillard's galley-powered waterskiing
  49. State Premiers are always asking for more taxing powers
  50. Can price control really work?
  51. Should we put up with socialism?
  52. We're quick to get sick of socialism
  53. Time the protection racket ended
  54. Can't pull the wool over Farmer Fred
  55. People not Politics
  56. Bert Kelly admits he should have had less faith in politicians
  57. The inspirational incentivising Dear Leader Gough Whitlam
  58. Labor: a girl who couldn't say no
  59. Why leading businessmen carry black briefcases
  60. Ludwig von Mises on page 3 of AFR
  61. Bert Kelly's empowering feminism
  62. Mavis wants the Modest Member to dedicate his book to her
  63. What if the whole country is swindled?
  64. Moss Cass: "Flood plains are for floods"
  65. A worm's eye view
  66. Eccles returns to haunt us
  67. How to grip a politician's ear
  68. It's hard to digest this economic cake
  69. Time to Butcher "Aussie Beef"
  70. Cold water on government-instigated irrigation schemes
  71. Hooray for Ord River Dam!
  72. Tariffs paid by exporters
  73. The problem of principles v popularity
  74. If you support State Quotas, where will your logic take you?
  75. Against guidance by government
  76. A socialist in Liberal clothing
  77. Never ask the government to help
  78. Don't listen to economists!
  79. Whitlam's July 1973 25% tariff cut
  80. Bert Kelly on Import Quotas
  81. Good directions when government backseat driving, like reversing down wrong side of road
  82. Barriers to imports are barriers to exports
  83. Bert Kelly reviews The War Diaries of Weary Dunlop
  84. Bert Kelly reviews We Were There
  85. Tariffs get the fork-tongue treatment
  86. Bert Kelly reduces government to its absurdities
  87. Politician sacrifices his ... honesty
  88. It's all a matter of principle
  89. Bert Kelly Destroys the Infant Industry Argument
  90. Bert Kelly Untangles Tariff Torment
  91. Bert Kelly resorts to prayer
  92. Eccles keeps our nose hard down on the tariff grindstone
  93. "Don't you believe in protecting us against imports from cheap labour countries?"
  94. Even if lucky, we needn't be stupid
  95. Great "freedom of choice" mystery
  96. Small government's growth problem
  97. I like my kind acts to get a mention in the press
  98. A Modest Member rakes the embers
  99. Tariffs Introduced
  100. More About Tariffs
  101. Sacred cow kicker into print
  102. Bert Kelly's 1984 two-article quote-collection on Aboriginal policies
  103. Modest Member must not give up
  104. Traditional Wheat Farming is Our Birthright and Heritage and Must be Protected!
  105. Tariff-cut nonsense lives on
  106. Bert Kelly brilliantly defends "theoretical academics"
  107. The high cost of protection
  108. Generosity creates problems
  109. The Society of Modest Members
  110. John Hyde's illogical, soft, complicated, unfocussed and unsuccessful attempt to communicate why he defends markets
  111. Modesty ablaze
  112. Case for ministers staying home
  113. The unusual self-evident simplicity of the Modest Members Society
  114. Animal lib the new scourge of the bush
  115. The Association for the Prevention of Cruelty to Krill
  116. modest members society
  117. Repeal economic laws, force people to buy new cars and enforce tariffs against overseas tennis players
  118. Thoughts on how to kill dinosaurs
  119. Let's try the chill winds
  120. Taking the Right's road
  121. Bert Kelly: "I did not try often or hard enough"
  122. Bert Kelly "lacked ... guts and wisdom"
  123. A look at life without tariffs
  124. The Gospel according to Bert
  125. Tiny note on Bert Kelly's column in The Bulletin in 1985
  126. Why costs can't be guaranteed
  127. Hitting out with a halo
  128. Paying farmers not to grow crops will save on subsidies, revenge tariffs, etc
  129. "The Modest Farmer joins us" | "How The Modest Farmer came to be"
  130. Bert Kelly Destroys the Freeloading Justifies Government Argument
  131. Industrial Relations Club shovellers
  132. From Shann to Stone
  133. Government Intervention
    vs
    Government Interference
  134. A sojourn in the real world
  135. The tariff wind swings
  136. Bigger Cake = Bigger Slices
  137. Bert Kelly on the Political Process
  138. A charabanc called protection
  139. Taken for a ride - to nowhere
  140. Down hill, in circles, all the way
  141. Relationships with the Liberal Party
  142. Tariffs = High Prices + World War
  143. Bert Kelly's Family History
  144. Bert Kelly's Pre-Parliament Life
  145. What the MP could say to the Bishop
  146. Why Bert Kelly was not even more publicly outspoken
  147. WEATHER IS USUALLY UNUSUAL
  148. How to stand aside when it's time to be counted
  149. How the Modest Member went back to being a Modest Farmer
  150. My pearls of wisdom were dull beyond belief
  151. Bert Kelly on Political Football
  152. Undigested morsels in Fraser spew
  153. Bert Kelly on LSD
  154. Bert Kelly reflects on the Australian car industry in 1992
  155. Bert Kelly wants reprinted Shann's Economic History of Australia
  156. If tariffs are opposed here then why not there?
  157. The emperor has no textiles, clothing and footwear sense
  158. Ross Gittins Wins Bert Kelly Award
  159. Interesting 1964 Bert Kelly speech: he says he is not a free trader and that he supports protection!
  160. This is the wall the Right built
  161. Tariff Protection in Australia (1970)
  162. Has Santa socked it to car makers?
  163. Is the Budget a cargo cult?
  164. Will we end up subsidising one another?
  165. Keeping the bucket of worms alive
  166. Can we get off the stomach-churning head-spinning tariff merry-go-round?
  167. Do we want our money to fly?
  168. Can a bear be sure of a feed?
  169. How to impress your MP -
    ambush him
  170. The time for being nice to our MPs has gone ...
  171. Don't feel sorry for him -
    hang on to his ear
  172. Trade wars can easily end up on a battlefield
  173. Tariffs Create Unemployment
  174. Bert Kelly recommends Ayn Rand
  175. Bert Kelly on Alf Rattigan's Industry Assistance: The Inside Story
  176. Bert Kelly's Satirical Prophecy: Minister for Meteorology (tick) and High Protectionist Policies to Result in War Yet Again (?)
  177. Bert Kelly in 1972 on Foreign Ownership of Australian Farmland and Warren Truss, Barnaby Joyce and Bill Heffernan in 2012
  178. Bert Kelly baits Welfare State Tiger
  179. Why does Govt wear two faces?
  180. Parliament a place for pragmatists
  181. Of Sugar Wells and Think-Tanks
  182. Bert Kelly: "I must take some of the blame"
  183. Bert Kelly on dumping duties
  184. The Govt's helping hand often hurts
  185. Unbuckling the hobbles on the motor industry
  186. A Modest Farmer looks at the Problems of Structural Change
  187. Government Fails Spectacularly
  188. Know your proper place if you want the quiet life
  189. Bert Kelly on political speech writers
  190. Having your cake and eating it
  191. Perish the thawed!
  192. Hooray for Northern Development!
  193. The silly image of our MPs
  194. Bert Kelly Question Time highlights
  195. Modest Farmer sees his ideas take hold
  196. Should facts stand in the way of a good story?
  197. Fondling one another's glass haloes
  198. What is the sense in making the effort to look after yourself?
  199. Fred's Feeling: Counterpatriotic country contrarian
  200. Handouts for big boys only
  201. Mavis trying to buy a hand loom
  202. Bad news for bearers of bad news
  203. Is it time to get aboard the tariff band-waggon?
  204. Why farmers resent tariff protection for motor makers
  205. A sordid use of scare tactics
  206. Goods vs services
  207. Tariffs are hilariously counterproductive
  208. Bert Kelly on decentralisation
  209. Inflation breeds moral decay
  210. Who envies equality?
  211. Growth – malignant or benign?
  212. Government wiser than Magna Carta
  213. Bert Kelly on looking to politicians for moral leadership
  214. Max Newton: Maverick in Exile
  215. Whitlam & co on the Dismissal
  216. 25% Tariff Cut
  217. Bert Kelly on pensions
  218. Mr Clunies-Ross of the Cocos Islands should rule Australia
  219. They get the wind up when it changes
  220. Why the Big Green Lie survives
  221. Ross McLean in 1982: "Malcolm! Why don't we try good government? It might be popular."
  222. Bert Kelly on the importance of exchange rate movements
  223. Bert Kelly shows how to attack
  224. Bert Kelly vs Bert Kelly vs Bert Kelly
  225. Industrial relations dinosaur, Bruce, chews his cud
  226. Hooray for "firmly entrenched"!
  227. Respect your dinosaurs
  228. What if something is "deeply ingrained" yet harmful?
  229. A case for ministerial inertia
  230. Why politicians don't like the truth
  231. Our great open spaces
  232. Ominous dark clouds are gathering
  233. Better to be popular than right
  234. Crying in the wilderness
  235. Ivory tower needs thumping
  236. Bert Kelly asks, "How can you believe in free enterprise and government intervention at the same time?"
  237. Politicians get undeserved praise, why not undeserved blame too?
  238. Feet in a bucket of champagne
  239. Rural Problems
  240. Health cover needs a $30 excess clause
  241. Unholy state of taxation
  242. Boring economics worth a smile
  243. The Libido for the Miserable
  244. Agricultural Development and Tariffs
  245. Fred's too poor to have principles
  246. Eccles Law of the constant wage share
  247. "He whom the gods would destroy ..."
  248. Tariffs: when to wean infant BHP?
  249. Keep any government as far as possible from farming
  250. The Playford charade is out of date
  251. Bert Kelly: the odd man out who's now in
  252. Dries must resist giving up struggle as going gets tough
  253. How a well meaning Government can be so stupid
  254. The icing on the economic cake
  255. Sir Roderick Carnegie's foreword to Bert Kelly's Economics Made Easy
  256. The Vale of Popularity and the Protection Procession
  257. Politics 101: Pay Lip Service to Capitalism and Shoot the Messenger
  258. Bert Kelly makes politicians eat their own words on tariffs, then says, "We cannot be blamed for treating the statements of our statesmen with cynical contempt"
  259. Bert Kelly on Free Enterprise
  260. Cartoons of protected industry, the welfare teat and the nanny state
  261. Bert Kelly on the theory of constant shares and the Fabian Society
  262. Bert Kelly vs Doug Anthony
  263. You're lucky if you escape being helped by government
  264. Bert Kelly on Small Farmers
  265. Bert Kelly on Apathy
  266. Bert Kelly in 1967 on "problems of government and things like that"
  267. The last "Dave's Diary"
  268. Bert Kelly vs The Australian on tariffs in 1977
  269. Bounties or Tariffs, Someone Pays
  270. Geriatric companies without a minder
  271. A free marketeer wary of free trade
  272. Nixon's puzzling profession of faith
  273. "Ford ... seems to spend more time bending its knees than its back"
  274. Clyde Cameron's weak ways with wise words
  275. Why flaunt what others flout?
  276. Bert Kelly yearns for Tim Flannery's powers of prediction
  277. Looking after yourself is silly
  278. Bert Kelly masterpiece on drought, fire, flood and other natural disaster relief schemes
  279. Government can take credit for our car industry mess
  280. Car makers want the 4wd driven deeper into tariff bog
  281. Why our MP is no longer prone to a good sob story
  282. Auto industry is in a straitjacket
  283. Bert Kelly on market predictions
  284. Why should dryland farmers subsidise irrigation farmers?
  285. How much should government decrease incentive for independence from government?
  286. Clarkson crowned Deputy Government Whip
  287. Bert Kelly to blame for soaring government healthcare costs
  288. 1959 return of Dave's Diary
  289. Bert Kelly in 1966 on developing northern Australia
  290. Successful government intervention can [sic] occur
  291. Vernon Report upholds Clarkson
  292. Quiet Man Makes An Impact
  293. Should it be compulsory to buy footwear and clothing?
  294. To save Australian clothing industry women must all wear same uniform
  295. Don't confuse plucking heart strings with plucking harp strings
  296. Speech only for public
  297. Catchy Tariff Circus Extravaganza
  298. Bert Kelly in 1985 on cars yet again
  299. Hurrah for the Gang of Five
  300. Thoughts on a verse about Balfour
  301. Bert Kelly pep talk to politicians
  302. Government intervention = Agony postponed but death brought nearer
  303. Recipe for disaster: Freeze!
  304. Recipe for government intervention: Gather winners and scatter losers
  305. Recipe for industry destruction: Blanket market signals
  306. Mavis writes!
  307. Bert Kelly's empiricism is not kneejerk reaction kind
  308. The $2,000 song of the shirt worker
  309. Subsiding only small farmers means subsiding the big banks
  310. Difficult to be fast on your feet when you've got your ear to the ground
  311. It would surprise people to see how sensible MPs behave if they think they are not being watched
  312. Bert Kelly on "this land of limitless resources" and "great open spaces"
  313. Growing bananas at the South Pole
  314. Car components tariff protection under fire
  315. Why carry a $300m car subsidy?
  316. Tariff feather beds for the foreign giants
  317. Bert Kelly says end compulsory voting to stop donkey vote
  318. Perhaps being smart and insured isn't all luck
  319. You gets your tariff, you pays a price
  320. More funds to train Olympians?
  321. Fire in their guts and wind in ours
  322. Should free universal healthcare include pets?
  323. Sound advice from a modest farmer
  324. A tottering monument to intervention
  325. Cunning meets wisdom
  326. Competition, Aussie-style: Who's the bigger parasite?
  327. Australians are proud patriotic parasites, says Bert Kelly
  328. Taxpayer-funded sport is cheating
  329. Being loved by all is not always a good thing
  330. Welfare State Destroys Society
  331. 1980 Bert Kelly feather bed series
  332. The White Mice Marketing Board
  333. Government intervention and advice can be harmful, even when right, even for those it tries to help
  334. One small step on the compulsory voting landmine
  335. The free & compulsory education sacred cows have no clothes
  336. Holding a loaded wallet to an economist's head
  337. Political No Man's Land
  338. Only blind greed demands both equality and prosperity
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