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In these four consecutive weekly columns from 1980, Bert Kelly welcomes, with free publicity, Rod Hartley, the new spokesman for the textile, garment and footwear industries:
1. Handouts can buy salvation more easily than idolatry (January 11, 1980)
2. Learning to thunder like Elijah in the wilderness (January 18, 1980)
3. Beware of crocodiles (and others) at textile meetings (January 25, 1980)
4. Wanted: textile spokesman, no understanding of economics necessary (February 1, 1980)

A Modest Member [Bert Kelly], “Handouts can buy salvation more easily than idolatry,” The Australian Financial Review, January 11, 1980, p. 5. Reprinted in Economics Made Easy (Adelaide: Brolga Books, 1982), pp. 215-17, as “Mr Hartley (a)”.

It is interesting to see that the textile, garment and footwear industries seem to have appointed a new spokesman, now that another Industries Assistance Commission hearing is in the air.

While the industries were out to scare ignorant and nervous politicians like Mr Bowen, they needed someone like their previous spokesman, Mr Aitchison, who could throw his weight around and kick in the ruck.

And certainly Mr Aitchison has demonstrated his ability to do this. But his best work is done at elections so probably they are saving him to come on at the end of 1980.

And I suppose he attracts a certain amount of derision to his cause when his enthusiasm runs ahead of his logic.

The new spokesman, Mr Rod Hartley, is a different kettle of fish altogether. He was carefully reared in England, he is well educated and he represents a large English textile firm in Australia.

I have had the good fortune to appear on the same platform as Mr Hartley so I have an advantage over you ordinary people.

As you would expect, I was rather like a piecart following the Lord Mayor’s coach, I being only a modest farmer. But I was there, even if I didn’t loom very large.

I often try to imagine what went on when the three industries met together to help Mr Hartley with his homework so that he could give a good performance before the IAC.

I know that the meeting would have started with their making obeisance at the free enterprise altar. I am certain of this because I have heard Mr Hartley say how dedicated he is to this ideal.

Indeed, I would almost class him as a liberal in the nicest sense of the word and I am certain that, when he returns to England, he will become one again.

But out here, he doesn’t let his principles interfere with this determination to get as big a handout as possible from the government.

And when you realise that his industries have been able to squeeze, through government intervention, about $700 million a year out of us consumers, you can imagine that the meeting did not spend too much time worshipping at the free enterprise shrine.

They quickly got down to the more menial task of deciding how to get the government cow into the bail so they could get a clear go at her. I can imagine the chairman saying:

The first thing you must remember, Rodney, my lad, is never let them confuse you with logic. And if that wretched Eccles come crawling out of the woodwork talking economic sense, just brush him aside by saying that it is only economic theory anyway. We are in enough trouble already but if those wretched economists get their claws into us we have had it. So my advice to you is not to let a word of economic understanding pass your lips.

Then Mr Aitchison would give the meeting the benefit of his large experience. His sage advice was:

If they start talking economics to you, you must hide behind the picture of unemployment that will follow if we do not get everything we want.

Of course, we all know that our main interest is to increase our profits but you must never admit this. As far as IAC hearings are concerned, we are only interested in employment, not profits.

Then a rather rash young man in the back of the hall with an economics degree pointed out that in spite of the ruinously expensive assistance that these industries have received, employment in them has fallen by 30 per cent in the last five years.

I can imagine the chairman saying:

That may well be so, but if they start that kind of thing, hit them with the adverse effect in employment in country towns which will follow if we don’t get what we want.

And then looking sternly at the rash young man, he added:

Now you be quiet! We know as well as you that, if we got a tariff subsidy of $1000 million, and that is the kind of money we are after, then about $800 million of it will go to industries in the metropolitan areas and so will encourage those industries to stay where they are, in cities.

But regional unemployment is always a certain winner if assisted by a little judicious help with the handkerchief.

The young man retired hurt so did not mention what the head of Treasury, John Stone, had said, that if mining and other industries were to increase exports, then imports would also have to increase.

And if import barriers were not lowered to encourage this, the exchange rate would move up to do the same thing. So in the long term painful and inevitable readjustments would be forced on the industry. And the longer they were delayed, the more painful they would be.

Probably not many in the meeting would have been able to follow this argument, they not being strong on economics. But Mr Hartley would have understood it, he being an educated man.

And surely he would not advocate damaging Australia in general in a vain attempt to help the clothing and footwear group in particular. Or would he?

A Modest Farmer [Bert Kelly], “Learning to thunder like Elijah in the wilderness,” The Australian Financial Review, January 18, 1980, p. 9. Reprinted in Economics Made Easy (Adelaide: Brolga Books, 1982), pp. 217-19, as “Mr Hartley (b).”

Last week we left the new spokesman for the textile, garment and footwear industries receiving instructions on how to give a polished performance when milking the consumer cow.

And certainly Mr Hartley needs all the help he can get because he labours under the handicap of being an educated man.

The previous spokesmen for the industry did not have this problem so they could talk nonsense without knowing it and this enabled them to thunder like Elijah in the wilderness.

But poor Mr Hartley knows that most of the stuff they used to dish up was economic nonsense and this makes it harder for him to give a convincing performance.

Those of you who can milk know the importance of confidence when it comes to milking.

So Mr Hartley has to try not to listen to the voice of reason.

It would certainly put him off if he were to remember the messages of the Vernon, Jackson, Crawford and Harries reports, the John Uhrig talk, the John Stone lecture and the White Paper.

He has to be particularly careful not to hear the message of David Trebeck, of the National Farmers’ Federation, who challenged he textile group because they always claim that thousands of people will be thrown out of work if they do not get the $1000 million handout they are after.

So Mr Trebeck prepared the accompanying table.

The first column is the increased employment that would result by 1990 if we could maintain our present share of exports to Asia, 3.5 per cent.

The second column shows the increased employment that would follow if we could increase our exports to Asia from 3.5 per cent to 5 per cent which we would be much more likely to do if we bought more from them.

__________ MAINTAIN 3.5% _ INCREASE TO 5%
Rural _______ 78,000 ____ 111,400
Mining ______ 10,600 ____ 15,100
Manufacturing 140,700 ___ 201,000
Services _____ 149,100 ___ 213,000
Total _______ 378,400 ___ 540,500

The table clearly destroys Mr Hartley’s employment argument so he has to pretend he hasn’t heard it.

So, with typical British bulldog courage he sticks to his task and, after infinite effort, he gets all the milk out of his side of the cow.

But when he leans over to get at the other side, you can imagine his shocked surprise when he found some other sod hard at it milking the consumer cow also.

You can imagine him saying in his well bred manner:

What’s going on here?

It is surely recognised as the manufacturer’s right to milk the consumer cow. Who and what are you?

Then there was a real set-to as the other chap said that he represented the importers, or rather those importers who had been lucky or shrewd enough to get a quota to import these goods, and they felt that they had as good a right as the manufacturers to milk the consumers.

Mr Hartley replied that he hardly thought this was cricket.

This statement did not exactly pour oil on troubled waters so both contestants, accompanied by their supporters, went round to the back of the cow to argue the matter out.

They were doing this at the top of their voices when along came a group of importers who were not smart enough to be allotted quotas so knew that they were being milked by the other importers and the manufacturers.

So everyone got stuck into everyone else at the top of their voices.

Then Mr Hamer, the Premier of Victoria, came by and heard the noise of battle.

When he found out what was wrong, he too went round to the back of the cow to make his contribution. This he did by pointing out that the consumer cow had no right to be mean with her milk and she should let it down for Victoria’s sake, no matter what happened to the rest of the country.

This statesmanlike utterance was received with gratification from the manufacturers because it confirmed their previous opinion that it was their right to milk the consumer cow.

Some of the others were irritated but the one who was deeply hurt was the consumer cow who knew that she had been milked for years and could see the process continuing.

But no one worries about her any more, poor old girl.

When I saw her last she was chewing her cud and contemplating the range of the group arguing behind her, hoping that somehow she could get her own back.

A Modest Farmer [Bert Kelly], “Beware of crocodiles (and others) at textile meetings,” The Australian Financial Review, January 25, 1980, p. 11. Reprinted in Economics Made Easy (Adelaide: Brolga Books, 1982), pp. 219-21, as “Mr Hartley (c).”

Last week we left the textile industry, and their hangers on, having a noise meeting at the back of the consumer cow.

The most strident voices were those of the importers who, by cunning or good luck, had been allotted import quotas.

This was like giving them a licence to print a limited amount of money.

They were bitterly assailed by the importers who did not have quotas.

These were loud in their lamentations about their treatment and were also eloquent about their deep dedication to the ideal of free enterprise.

But I fear that this fine sentiment would soon be forgotten if some spare quotas were to be handed out so that they could get their trotters into the same trough as the quota holders.

Then Mr Chris Hurford, the Labor Party spokesman on tariffs, came hurrying along, hoping that someone would ask him to say a few words.

But no one could remember who he was, so he wandered away, wondering why he has got washed up on the political beach.

Then Mr Lionel Bowen, the Deputy Leader of the Labor Party, came by. He saw that a meeting was in progress so, without hesitation or invitation, he mounted the rostrum and began to talk.

It would have been better, however, if we had been able to understand him.

Lest you think I am judging him harshly, I quote from a letter he wrote to the Financial Review, when discussing the textile tariff:

The IAC acknowledges that in the key ORANI model of the IMPACT project, 900 variables are exogenous or predetermined, that elasticities of pricing and of substitution are predetermined, that input coefficients and thus technology are based on data at least five years old, that there is no appreciation of regional industrial structure or regional interaction, and that all industries are aggregated into 109 categories so that, for instance, there is no difference between the motor vehicle and automotive parts components industries.

What a mouthful! And all in one turgid sentence too!

It makes me blush lest I too once talked like that.

But when I suggested to one of the bystanders that this kind of performance was not doing Mr Bowen’s reputation any good, and that it was generally wiser to keep your mouth shut and have people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt, I was told that Mr Bowen feels that he has to behave like that.

Evidently he has to have a power base so that he can hang on to his deputy leadership position even if Mr Hawke displaces Mr Hayden as leader.

The uneasiness in the Labor Party about the imminent entry of Mr Hawke on the political scene is starting to look almost comic.

Do you remember, in Peter Pan, how the pirates were relentlessly stalked by the crocodile who had swallowed an alarm clock, so they spent a lot of their time looking anxiously over their shoulders or with their ears to the ground, listening for the tick-tock of the approaching crocodile?

Now I do not suggest that there is any similarly between Mr Hawke and a crocodile, though their teeth do seem to mesh together in the same way.

But the Labor Party does seem to be treating Mr Hawke as a crocodile.

Mr Bowen addressed the meeting for an hour or more, and then Mr Hartley, the new spokesman for the textile group, thanked him in his cultured manner, he being an educated man, so having a hazy idea what Mr Bowen had been talking about.

Then Mr Bowen trotted off, looking anxiously over his shoulder and frequently putting his ear to the ground listening for that dreaded tick-tock.

Then the Prime Minister came striding up, having heard that there was a textile meeting in progress.

He was immediately asked to say a few words.

He admitted that he had half expected to speak so had hurriedly got something together.

He then pulled from his pocket a roll of parchment such as Prime Ministers use, and off he sailed.

He had got as far as reading “defensive protectionist policies exacerbate the situation they are meant to deal with, in that they result in an inefficient use of labour and capital resources,” when one of his henchmen, Mr Harry Edwards I think, nervously plucked at his sleeve and whispered:

I think you have the wrong speech. That’s the Lusaka one, which is for overseas consumption only. I think you have another one about how wrong it is to use labour-saving machinery, the one we call your Luddite speech.

So we listened to that and most people clapped furiously because that was the kind of stuff they hoped to hear.

The only member of the group who was unimpressed was the poor consumer cow who was heard to mutter wistfully that there would be more likelihood of getting something out of her back end if only they give her something at her front end!

A Modest Farmer [Bert Kelly], “Wanted: textile spokesman, no understanding of economics necessary,” The Australian Financial Review, February 1, 1980, p. 11.  Reprinted in Economics Made Easy (Adelaide: Brolga Books, 1982), pp. 221-23, as “Mr Hartley (d).”

The noise created by the textile group at their angry meeting at the back of the consumer cow has not abated since we left them last week.

The manufacturers were moaning because they felt that their $700 million subsidy was not enough and they ought to get at least $1,000 million a year.

The importers without import quotas were quarrelling furiously with the importers with quotas.

And in the centre of the noise and dust of battle was the new spokesman for the industry, Mr Rodney Hartley, who was desperately trying to quieten things down so that his well-modulated voice could be heard. An educated man such as Mr Hartley would be rather out of place in such company.

Just when the meeting seemed to be getting out of hand, a rumour ran through the throng that Mr Stone, the head of Treasury was heading that way.

So everyone disappeared around the other side of the cow or hid in a roadside ditch.

They knew that Mr Stone would make mincemeat of them with his impeccable economic logic expressed in simply but powerful language.

After Mr Stone had gone by, the textilers looked hopefully down the road to see if anyone was coming who they could safely ask to speak.

So they were naturally delighted to see the Minister for Finance, Mr Eric Robinson, looming up. They knew that he was once a businessman of considerable status and that he is now a very powerful person.

So of course he was asked to say a few well-chosen words.

This he was glad to do because he happened to have with him a paper prepared by his department which he had not read yet but would be glad to share with them.

Now I have always imagined that the Department of Finance only did simple tasks like checking the till at the end of the day, week or year. I never knew that they thought about things, so I was startled to hear Mr Robinson read a paper that Eccles would have been proud to have written.

Let me quote a few sentences:

The most urgent task is to reduce the excessively high levels of protection, including by-law plans, quotas, etc, which some industries enjoy.

We include protection extended by way of temporary measures … But we attach special importance to early action to move all the higher levels of protection towards an overall industry “average,” with a significant cut at the earliest possible stage.

When Mr Robinson said this, there was quite a stir in the audience and he looked rather anxiously over his shoulder. I thought that he, like Mr Bowen, was listening for the tick-tock of the Hawke crocodile.

But Eccles explained that he probably feared the approach of Mr Fraser’s footsteps.

When Mr Robinson had gone away, pandemonium broke out. And this became worse when the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr Peacock, came along.

He was immediately asked to speak and fortunately had his Menzies oration handy so he gave them a burst from that. There were two particular paragraphs that seemed to trouble them:

Those who demand freedom in the name of enterprise and risk-taking should exhibit these qualities and not simultaneously depend on paternalistic and guaranteed rewards.

Capitalism can be betrayed from within as well as destroyed from without; those who demand its benefits while denying its responsibilities do it no service.

When he heard this, Mr Hartley could not stand it any longer. He is an educated man and has been carefully reared in Britain.

He has always eloquently defended the free enterprise system so he heard Mr Peacock’s condemnation of those who ran with the socialist hares while hunting with the capitalist hounds with acute remorse, he being an honourable man.

So with a sob in his voice he announced his resignation from his position as spokesman for the industry and told the meeting that he was soon leaving for England where he hoped to begin being a good liberal again.

The textile group are now looking around for a new spokesman.

I understand that a high level of economic understanding will be regarded more as a handicap than a help.

I hear that Mr Bowen is a likely starter and the position should suit him for many reasons.

One would be that he would not always have to be listening for the dreaded tick-tock of approaching crocodiles.

(in order of appearance on
  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 priceless 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. Bert Kelly's revolutionary strategy
  80. Whitlam's July 1973 25% tariff cut
  81. Bert Kelly on Import Quotas
  82. Good directions when government backseat driving, like reversing down wrong side of road
  83. Barriers to imports are barriers to exports
  84. Bert Kelly reviews The War Diaries of Weary Dunlop
  85. Bert Kelly reviews We Were There
  86. Tariffs get the fork-tongue treatment
  87. Bert Kelly reduces government to its absurdities
  88. Politician sacrifices his ... honesty
  89. It's all a matter of principle
  90. Bert Kelly Destroys the Infant Industry Argument
  91. Bert Kelly Untangles Tariff Torment
  92. Bert Kelly resorts to prayer
  93. Eccles keeps our nose hard down on the tariff grindstone
  94. "Don't you believe in protecting us against imports from cheap labour countries?"
  95. Even if lucky, we needn't be stupid
  96. Great "freedom of choice" mystery
  97. Small government's growth problem
  98. I like my kind acts to get a mention in the press
  99. A Modest Member rakes the embers
  100. Tariffs Introduced
  101. More About Tariffs
  102. Sacred cow kicker into print
  103. Bert Kelly's 1984 two-article quote-collection on Aboriginal policies
  104. Modest Member must not give up
  105. Traditional Wheat Farming is Our Birthright and Heritage and Must be Protected!
  106. Tariff-cut nonsense lives on
  107. Bert Kelly brilliantly defends "theoretical academics"
  108. The high cost of protection
  109. Generosity creates problems
  110. The Society of Modest Members
  111. John Hyde's illogical, soft, complicated, unfocussed and unsuccessful attempt to communicate why he defends markets
  112. Modesty ablaze
  113. Case for ministers staying home
  114. The unusual self-evident simplicity of the Modest Members Society
  115. Animal lib the new scourge of the bush
  116. The Association for the Prevention of Cruelty to Krill
  117. modest members society
  118. Repeal economic laws, force people to buy new cars and enforce tariffs against overseas tennis players
  119. Thoughts on how to kill dinosaurs
  120. Let's try the chill winds
  121. Taking the Right's road
  122. Bert Kelly: "I did not try often or hard enough"
  123. Bert Kelly "lacked ... guts and wisdom"
  124. A look at life without tariffs
  125. The Gospel according to Bert
  126. Tiny note on Bert Kelly's column in The Bulletin in 1985
  127. Why costs can't be guaranteed
  128. Hitting out with a halo
  129. Paying farmers not to grow crops will save on subsidies, revenge tariffs, etc
  130. "The Modest Farmer joins us" | "How The Modest Farmer came to be"
  131. Bert Kelly Destroys the Freeloading Justifies Government Argument
  132. Industrial Relations Club shovellers
  133. From Shann to Stone
  134. Government Intervention
    Government Interference
  135. A sojourn in the real world
  136. The tariff wind swings
  137. Bigger Cake = Bigger Slices
  138. Bert Kelly on the Political Process
  139. A charabanc called protection
  140. Taken for a ride - to nowhere
  141. Down hill, in circles, all the way
  142. Economic facts and figures are statistics who should speak out
  143. Any cons arguing small business bad but big government good?
  144. Relationships with the Liberal Party
  145. Tariffs = High Prices + World War
  146. Bert Kelly's Family History
  147. Bert Kelly's Pre-Parliament Life
  148. What the MP could say to the Bishop
  149. Why Bert Kelly was not even more publicly outspoken
  151. How to stand aside when it's time to be counted
  152. How the Modest Member went back to being a Modest Farmer
  153. My pearls of wisdom were dull beyond belief
  154. Bert Kelly on Political Football
  155. Undigested morsels in Fraser spew
  156. Bert Kelly on LSD
  157. Bert Kelly reflects on the Australian car industry in 1992
  158. Bert Kelly wants reprinted Shann's Economic History of Australia
  159. If tariffs are opposed here then why not there?
  160. The emperor has no textiles, clothing and footwear sense
  161. Ross Gittins Wins Bert Kelly Award
  162. Interesting 1964 Bert Kelly speech: he says he is not a free trader and that he supports protection!
  163. This is the wall the Right built
  164. Tariff Protection in Australia (1970)
  165. Has Santa socked it to car makers?
  166. Is the Budget a cargo cult?
  167. Will we end up subsidising one another?
  168. Keeping the bucket of worms alive
  169. Can we get off the stomach-churning head-spinning tariff merry-go-round?
  170. Do we want our money to fly?
  171. Can a bear be sure of a feed?
  172. How to impress your MP -
    ambush him
  173. The time for being nice to our MPs has gone ...
  174. Don't feel sorry for him -
    hang on to his ear
  175. Trade wars can easily end up on a battlefield
  176. Tariffs Create Unemployment
  177. Bert Kelly recommends Ayn Rand
  178. Bert Kelly on Alf Rattigan's Industry Assistance: The Inside Story
  179. Bert Kelly's Satirical Prophecy: Minister for Meteorology (tick) and High Protectionist Policies to Result in War Yet Again (?)
  180. Bert Kelly in 1972 on Foreign Ownership of Australian Farmland and Warren Truss, Barnaby Joyce and Bill Heffernan in 2012
  181. Bert Kelly baits Welfare State Tiger
  182. Why does Govt wear two faces?
  183. Parliament a place for pragmatists
  184. Of Sugar Wells and Think-Tanks
  185. Bert Kelly: "I must take some of the blame"
  186. Bert Kelly on dumping duties
  187. The Govt's helping hand often hurts
  188. Unbuckling the hobbles on the motor industry
  189. A Modest Farmer looks at the Problems of Structural Change
  190. Government Fails Spectacularly
  191. Know your proper place if you want the quiet life
  192. Bert Kelly on political speech writers
  193. Having your cake and eating it
  194. Perish the thawed!
  195. Hooray for Northern Development!
  196. Politicians can resist everything except pressure
  197. The silly image of our MPs
  198. Bert Kelly Question Time highlights
  199. Modest Farmer sees his ideas take hold
  200. Should facts stand in the way of a good story?
  201. Fondling one another's glass haloes
  202. What is the sense in making the effort to look after yourself?
  203. Fred's Feeling: Counterpatriotic country contrarian
  204. Handouts for big boys only
  205. Mavis trying to buy a hand loom
  206. Bad news for bearers of bad news
  207. Is it time to get aboard the tariff band-waggon?
  208. Why farmers resent tariff protection for motor makers
  209. A sordid use of scare tactics
  210. Goods vs services
  211. Tariffs are hilariously counterproductive
  212. Bert Kelly on decentralisation
  213. Inflation breeds moral decay
  214. Who envies equality?
  215. Growth – malignant or benign?
  216. Government wiser than Magna Carta
  217. Bert Kelly on looking to politicians for moral leadership
  218. Max Newton: Maverick in Exile
  219. Whitlam & co on the Dismissal
  220. 25% Tariff Cut
  221. Bert Kelly on pensions
  222. The backseat drivers of the Pilbara
  223. Mr Clunies-Ross of the Cocos Islands should rule Australia
  224. They get the wind up when it changes
  225. Why the Big Green Lie survives
  226. Ross McLean in 1982: "Malcolm! Why don't we try good government? It might be popular."
  227. Bert Kelly on the importance of exchange rate movements
  228. Bert Kelly shows how to attack
  229. Bert Kelly vs Bert Kelly vs Bert Kelly
  230. Industrial relations dinosaur, Bruce, chews his cud
  231. Hooray for "firmly entrenched"!
  232. Respect your dinosaurs
  233. What if something is "deeply ingrained" yet harmful?
  234. A case for ministerial inertia
  235. Why politicians don't like the truth
  236. Our great open spaces
  237. Ominous dark clouds are gathering
  238. Better to be popular than right
  239. Crying in the wilderness
  240. Ivory tower needs thumping
  241. Bert Kelly asks, "How can you believe in free enterprise and government intervention at the same time?"
  242. Politicians get undeserved praise, why not undeserved blame too?
  243. Feet in a bucket of champagne
  244. Rural Problems
  245. Health cover needs a $30 excess clause
  246. Unholy state of taxation
  247. Boring economics worth a smile
  248. The Libido for the Miserable
  249. Agricultural Development and Tariffs
  250. Fred's too poor to have principles
  251. Eccles Law of the constant wage share
  252. "He whom the gods would destroy ..."
  253. Tariffs: when to wean infant BHP?
  254. Keep any government as far as possible from farming
  255. The Playford charade is out of date
  256. Bert Kelly: the odd man out who's now in
  257. Dries must resist giving up struggle as going gets tough
  258. How a well meaning Government can be so stupid
  259. The icing on the economic cake
  260. Sir Roderick Carnegie's foreword to Bert Kelly's Economics Made Easy
  261. The Vale of Popularity and the Protection Procession
  262. Politics 101: Pay Lip Service to Capitalism and Shoot the Messenger
  263. 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"
  264. Bert Kelly on Free Enterprise
  265. Cartoons of protected industry, the welfare teat and the nanny state
  266. Bert Kelly on the theory of constant shares and the Fabian Society
  267. Bert Kelly vs Doug Anthony
  268. You're lucky if you escape being helped by government
  269. Bert Kelly on Small Farmers
  270. Bert Kelly on Apathy
  271. Bert Kelly in 1967 on "problems of government and things like that"
  272. The last "Dave's Diary"
  273. Bert Kelly vs The Australian on tariffs in 1977
  274. Bounties or Tariffs, Someone Pays
  275. Geriatric companies without a minder
  276. A free marketeer wary of free trade
  277. Nixon's puzzling profession of faith
  278. "Ford ... seems to spend more time bending its knees than its back"
  279. Clyde Cameron's weak ways with wise words
  280. Why flaunt what others flout?
  281. Bert Kelly yearns for Tim Flannery's powers of prediction
  282. Looking after yourself is silly
  283. Bert Kelly masterpiece on drought, fire, flood and other natural disaster relief schemes
  284. Government can take credit for our car industry mess
  285. Car makers want the 4wd driven deeper into tariff bog
  286. Why our MP is no longer prone to a good sob story
  287. Auto industry is in a straitjacket
  288. Bert Kelly on market predictions
  289. Why should dryland farmers subsidise irrigation farmers?
  290. How much should government decrease incentive for independence from government?
  291. Clarkson crowned Deputy Government Whip
  292. Bert Kelly to blame for soaring government healthcare costs
  293. 1959 return of Dave's Diary
  294. Bert Kelly in 1966 on developing northern Australia
  295. Successful government intervention can [sic] occur
  296. Vernon Report upholds Clarkson
  297. Quiet Man Makes An Impact
  298. Should it be compulsory to buy footwear and clothing?
  299. To save Australian clothing industry women must all wear same uniform
  300. Don't confuse plucking heart strings with plucking harp strings
  301. Speech only for public
  302. Catchy Tariff Circus Extravaganza
  303. Bert Kelly in 1985 on cars yet again
  304. Hurrah for the Gang of Five
  305. Thoughts on a verse about Balfour
  306. Bert Kelly pep talk to politicians
  307. Government intervention = Agony postponed but death brought nearer
  308. Recipe for disaster: Freeze!
  309. Recipe for government intervention: Gather winners and scatter losers
  310. Recipe for industry destruction: Blanket market signals
  311. Mavis writes!
  312. Bert Kelly's empiricism is not kneejerk reaction kind
  313. The $2,000 song of the shirt worker
  314. Subsiding only small farmers means subsiding the big banks
  315. Difficult to be fast on your feet when you've got your ear to the ground
  316. It would surprise people to see how sensible MPs behave if they think they are not being watched
  317. Bert Kelly on "this land of limitless resources" and "great open spaces"
  318. Growing bananas at the South Pole
  319. Car components tariff protection under fire
  320. Why carry a $300m car subsidy?
  321. Tariff feather beds for the foreign giants
  322. Bert Kelly says end compulsory voting to stop donkey vote
  323. Perhaps being smart and insured isn't all luck
  324. You gets your tariff, you pays a price
  325. More funds to train Olympians?
  326. Fire in their guts and wind in ours
  327. Should free universal healthcare include pets?
  328. Sound advice from a modest farmer
  329. A tottering monument to intervention
  330. Cunning meets wisdom
  331. Competition, Aussie-style: Who's the bigger parasite?
  332. Australians are proud patriotic parasites, says Bert Kelly
  333. Taxpayer-funded sport is cheating
  334. Being loved by all is not always a good thing
  335. Welfare State Destroys Society
  336. 1980 Bert Kelly feather bed series
  337. The White Mice Marketing Board
  338. Government intervention and advice can be harmful, even when right, even for those it tries to help
  339. One small step on the compulsory voting landmine
  340. The free & compulsory education sacred cows have no clothes
  341. Holding a loaded wallet to an economist's head
  342. Political No Man's Land
  343. Only blind greed demands both equality and prosperity
  344. A cow that sucks itself — that's us!
  345. Nip the bud of incentive; mock community spirit into submission
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