More featuring Bert Kelly»

1. Sugar — sweet and sour (August 21, 1984)
2. Sugar not so sweet (August 28, 1984)
3. A proper way to behave (September 18, 1984)

Bert Kelly, “Sugar — sweet and sour,” The Bulletin, August 21, 1984, p. 135.

Fred has a bee in his bonnet about selling his sheep-wheat farm down here so that he can go to Queensland to grow sugar. I warned him that sugar prices were very low, so the industry was very sick at the moment, but he insisted that this was the right time to buy in. He said nastily:

I know it is your usual practice to buy cattle when they are dear and sell them when they are cheap but that is what has kept you poor, Bert. Wheat farms are selling well just now and sugar land is sure to be cheap because sugar prices are down, so I am going to have a look. Besides, it is lovely and warm up there and wet and cold down here. And they have that wonderful Uncle Sir Joh as their Premier so we wouldn’t have to contend with the creeping socialism that troubles us here. You can stay home, but I’m off.

So to Queensland we went. Getting away was easier than it used to be when we had to sneak past the bank where the banker always seemed to be looking out of his window. But both Fred and I have sons to run our places so the banker let us go without much fuss — and without much money, either!

We called in on Eccles in his ivory tower in Canberra as we drove north. Eccles does not know much about sugar-growing but, of course, that did not prevent him telling us how the industry should conduct its affairs.

Ignorance has never been a barrier to eloquence with Eccles. He told us that, in recent years, the sugar industry has been receiving very little — if any — subsidy from consumers or governments and has been in a fiercely competitive export market bedevilled by heavily subsidised EEC sugar. “But watch out, Fred,” Eccles warned, “the industry is controlled by the Queensland Government in a way a wheat farmer like you may not be able to understand.” But Fred and I knew that he was talking nonsense because everyone is aware that Queensland is the last bastion against socialism.

When we reached the sugar country, Fred went to see a land agent to give him the good news that he was in the market to buy a sugar cane farm — expecting that the agent would be all over him. But it wasn’t like that at all.

The first question the agent asked was not whether Fred had enough money but whether he was a fit and proper person, good enough to be allowed into the industry. This rather staggered Fred. He has always had a suspicion that farmers are more virtuous than other people but he did not realise that you had to demonstrate your virtue before you were allowed to start growing sugar. Evidently, with sugar, virtue is not something you accumulate as you get poorer by farming but you have to have it to start.

Having cast this shadow on Fred’s character, the agent warned him that, even if were as virtuous as Sir Joh himself, there was little chance of his being able to get his hands on an “entitlement” to grow sugar. Evidently, entitlements are a refined way of referring to quotas. They are given out very sparingly; only 16 since 1964.

It is no good having a farm unless you can get an entitlement and these are allotted by people already in the industry. It seems that the sugar cane can of worms hardly turns at all. Just how sick would the wheat industry be now if it had stayed in the same locations and in the same shape over the past 20 years? But, evidently, they hate change in the sugar industry.

Then the agent warned Fred that, even if his character were of the required high standard and if he were fortunate to know someone high up in the industry hierarchy and so got himself an entitlement, he should not delude himself that he could do what he liked on his own farm.

Evidently, a cane farmer is only allowed to grow cane on certain parts of his farm and an inspector comes around to make sure he is not using any others land on the sly. So rotating his crop around his farm to make the best use of its fertility, as we do with wheat, is not allowed. And everything has to be done as the inspector orders; you are not allowed to cut your cane quicker than the sugar mill and its inspector permit and, as we will see next week, the sugar mills also hate having their feather beds disturbed.

While this sad recital was in progress, I watched Fred’s enthusiasm evaporating. The sugar industry evidently hates change but this does not surprise me. Eccles always warns me that all people — even farmers — who get themselves comfortably settled on feather beds hate having to turn over, particularly to let others join them there.

Now that sugar prices are so low, sugar growers would no doubt appreciate having more feathers in their mattress. All the same, I think they would be better off without it.

Bert Kelly, “Sugar not so sweet,” The Bulletin, August 28, 1984, p. 136.

Last week I told how Fred had induced me to go with him to Queenland to see if he should sell his South Australian wheat-sharp property to buy a sugar farm. One reason for this was his conviction that, in Queensland, he would not have to suffer the creeping socialism that dogs us down here.

However, it has been a nasty shock for Fred to find that sugar growing is under the iron hand of the Queensland Government with the willing agreement of the sugar industry leaders who like being looked after even if it is bad for them.

I have had many sceptical enquiries about last week’s statement that Fred would not be allowed into the industry unless he could prove he was a person of good character. People seemed to think I must have made that up. But under section 37 of the Regulation of Sugar Cane Prices Act, applicants to buy land with an entitlement to grow sugar “must demonstrate that the prices or terms of a proposed sale, lease or sub-lease, letting or transfer, are not unreasonable or unfair and that the buyer or lessee is a fit and proper person to hold an assignment.”

There is nothing in writing in the Act about the desirability of being a member of a political party or secret society but no doubt this could be mentioned at the personal interview.

The same Act contains the stern injunction that the Central Sugar Board, when allotting entitlements to grow sugar, must have regard to “the provision of the utmost employment of labour economically possible under reasonable wages and conditions.” It is surprising they do not command their farmers to use horses instead of tractors to create employment.

Last week the land agent scared the daylights out of Fred by telling him how closely the Queensland Government controlled the way cane farmers managed their farms. This week we will take a quick look at how the milling side of the industry is controlled by the government, this last bastion against socialism.

I have before me a copy of the Queensland Government Gazette dated April 20, 1983, which spells out the regulations to control the relations between the Rocky Point Sugar Mill and the growers who supply it. I understand that these are typical of what is required for all mills. There are four closely-printed pages of the most minute directions about what has to be done and when. Crushing had to commence on August 2 this year (3.5 months ahead) and from then on all procedures were either spelt out in regulations or were under the control of the cane inspector who controlled everything else.

The land agent told Fred that the regulations direct each farmer to send his cane to a particular mill. The costs of transport are averaged over all suppliers to the mill, thus destroying any incentive to cut corners in transport.

Further, the allocation of cane to the mills is done on historical and equity grounds rather than on the basis of what is the best way to manage matters today. Yet conditions now are so different to those in 1915 when the industry arrangements seem to have been set in concrete. It is not surprising, then, to find that mill numbers and locations have remained unaltered for 60 years in spite of enormous changes in technology and the size of the industry.

The regulations that control the sugar industry are centred on protecting it from the discomfort of change. The industry was conceived and grew up in the sheltering arms of governments and it hates the thought of being weaned, even late in life. This dependence on government support explains the regulation which I quoted before that demands the maximum use of labour.

I know that change is almost always uncomfortable. But a bucket of worms that stops turning soon dies and people who are not disturbed on their feather beds soon get drowsy.

Cane farmers seem to have faced the traumas of change on their farms but they seem scared of change to their entitlement system and particularly to the way their cane is handled after it leaves their farm gates. Yet such changes are inevitable in the long run.

This is not only the opinion of wheat farmers such as Fred and I or even that know all Eccles. I quote now a retiring official of the Central Sugar Cane Prices Board, who said last year: “The regulations of the Sugar Cane Producers Act creak and growl like an old un-oiled windmill!” Those bushies who have such a windmill — and most of us have — will have a very clear idea of the behaviour of the sugar industry.

Fred came back home with his tail between his legs. He says that he never wants to hear another word about Uncle Sir Joh being the last bastion against socialism.

Bert Kelly, “A proper way to behave,”
The Bulletin, September 18, 1984, p. 150.

Eccles, Fred and I are back home after looking at Australia’s sick rural industries.

Fred returned satisfied that the farmers he had seen on his travels were even worse off than he was and this made him as happy as you could expect him to be. Eccles was happy, too, because he loves being miserable about industries. I was the only sad one.

I suppose I have enough political instincts left to want to be loved by all but spelling out the problems of sick industries is not the path to popularity. When I moaned to Eccles about this, he told me that becoming unpopular was a proper way to behave. He warned:

You must expect to be disliked, Bert, if you are doing your duty. Remember what the famous British economist, Alfred Marshall, said last century: “Students of social science must fear popular approval; evil is with them when all men speak well of them. It is almost impossible for a student to be a true patriot and have the reputation for being one at the same time.” So stop being sorry for yourself, Bert. You are not the first person to discover that telling people what they do not want to hear is not a popular pastime.

I suppose Eccles is right. The worst thing about him is that he usually is.

In the middle of April we began four articles setting out the problems and general principles that we expected to run into. Some of these were the inability of governments to set wise production goals, the dangers inherent in production quotas and cost of production marketing arrangements. There were some plaintive pleas that some industry leaders found it difficult to understand the convolutions in their own industries, let alone in others. You can imagine then how nervous members of parliament must feel about exposing their ignorance in public. This is why some industries have got into the mess they are in; no one has been game to give them the nasty medicine they need.

And remember what the Tasmanian Dairy Council said about its industry:

The whole system results in advantages for organisations and companies who are represented on boards and committees and, in doing so, tends to divide the industry into those “in the know” and those on the outside.

Having got all that off our chests, we did four articles about the Riverland, three on dairying, two each on eggs and sugar and one each on rice and tobacco. What did we find?

There was one common problem — the damage done by the European Economic Community to all our industries. Although it may make us feel better to castigate their wickedness, nothing we can say or do will alter them — particularly when we are not lilywhite. We will just have to adjust our production to their perfidy, unless we are prepared to go to war or something.

A pathetic belief persists that government and industry groups can set wise production goals. Limitations on production are set by allotting quotas, entitlements or assignments, to particular producers while denying them to others. This worries me more than it appears to worry producers, though we should realise that it is the industry leaders — those with quotas — who speak for their industries. The poor sods who are denied quotas are hard to hear; they are usually scared of criticising their industry leaders for fear of being regarded when the next quotas are handed out as not being fit and proper persons.

However, apart from the morality problem of giving one person a quota while denying one to his neighbour, there is a bigger problem in the system. A letter from a representative of the sugar millers said: “Production in the sugar industry is controlled to regulate output to meet available markets.” Well, their efforts have been singularly unsuccessful — as this table shows.

YEAR | PRODUCTION in 000 tonnes | PRICE $ per tonne
1974 | 2848 | $259
1975 | 2854 | $236
1976 | 3294 | $218
1977 | 3342 | $188
1978 | 2900 | $213
1979 | 2962 | $285
1980 | 3329 | $375
1981 | 3434 | $275
1982 | 3536 | $223
1983 | 3172 | $280 (est.)

Prices have fluctuated widely while production remains about the same. When the price was $188 in 1977, production was almost the same as in 1980 when the price was $375. I am not critical of them for making mistakes — I make them all the time — but I am critical of their thinking they can give wiser guidance than the market signals.

My mistakes are cancelled out by the mistakes of other farmers, some of which are often in opposite directions. But the mistakes that industries and governments make are always big ones. Also, the desire to be popular is usually stronger than the desire to be right.

Most of the industries in trouble were heavily regulated. The question is: Was this cause or effect?

(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. Too many car men in the feather bed
  15. The Kangaroo Population Bomb
  16. How Bert Kelly repays a free feed
  17. Reining in the human rights horse
  18. Modest column #898
  19. Chicken-hearted feathered friends strange bedfellows on a feather bed?
  20. Who needs literary licence?
  21. A touch of Fred's anarchy
  22. Helping the farmers help themselves
  23. Standing on the shoulders of the downtrodden
  24. Supply and Demand
  25. Bert Kelly responds to claims he is arrogant and uncredentialed
  26. Politics: it's a very confusing business
  27. The best featherbeds run on rails
  28. Bert Kelly on Disaster Relief
  29. Bert Kelly Wants to Secede
  30. Blinded by their tears
  31. Anti-freedom pro-tobacco industry lobby harmed Australia
  32. Under Labor, is working hard foolish?
  33. An Idiot's Guide to Interventionism
  34. Is free priceless healthcare worthless?
  35. Can government kiss it better?
  36. Bert Kelly Destroys the Side Benefits Argument for Government
  37. Bert Kelly gets his head around big-headed bird-brained politics
  38. First Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  39. Second Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  40. Third Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  41. Fourth Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  42. Fifth Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  43. Sixth Modest Member (Bert Kelly) AFR Column
  44. Bert Kelly on the 2011 Budget and Australia's Pathetic Journalists and Politicians
  45. Bert Kelly, Bastard or Simple Sod?
  46. Liberal Backbencher Hits Govt. Over Import Restrictions
  47. Bert Kelly feels a dam coming on at each election
  48. Bert Kelly Enters Parliament
  49. Why take in one another's washing?
  50. Bert Kelly breaks the law, disrespects government and enjoys it
  51. Gillard's galley-powered waterskiing
  52. State Premiers are always asking for more taxing powers
  53. Can price control really work?
  54. Should we put up with socialism?
  55. We're quick to get sick of socialism
  56. Time the protection racket ended
  57. Can't pull the wool over Farmer Fred
  58. People not Politics
  59. Bert Kelly admits he should have had less faith in politicians
  60. The inspirational incentivising Dear Leader Gough Whitlam
  61. Labor: a girl who couldn't say no
  62. Why leading businessmen carry black briefcases
  63. Ludwig von Mises on page 3 of AFR
  64. Bert Kelly's empowering feminism
  65. Another shot at motor car madness
  66. Mavis wants the Modest Member to dedicate his book to her
  67. What if the whole country is swindled?
  68. Moss Cass: "Flood plains are for floods"
  69. A worm's eye view
  70. Eccles returns to haunt us
  71. How to grip a politician's ear
  72. It's hard to digest this economic cake
  73. Time to Butcher "Aussie Beef"
  74. Cold water on government-instigated irrigation schemes
  75. Hooray for Ord River Dam!
  76. Tariffs paid by exporters
  77. The problem of principles v popularity
  78. If you support State Quotas, where will your logic take you?
  79. Against guidance by government
  80. A socialist in Liberal clothing
  81. Never ask the government to help
  82. Don't listen to economists!
  83. Bert Kelly's revolutionary strategy
  84. Welfare state incentivises bludging and being thrown out of work
  85. It all sounds like bloody politics to Fred
  86. Mavis wants me to get in for my chop
  87. Whitlam's July 1973 25% tariff cut
  88. Bert Kelly on Import Quotas
  89. Good directions when government backseat driving, like reversing down wrong side of road
  90. Barriers to imports are barriers to exports
  91. "I was right" — but he's off to hospital ...
  92. Kicking the multinationals is too easy
  93. Bert Kelly reviews The War Diaries of Weary Dunlop
  94. Bert Kelly reviews We Were There
  95. Tariffs get the fork-tongue treatment
  96. Bert Kelly reduces government to its absurdities
  97. Politician sacrifices his ... honesty
  98. It's all a matter of principle
  99. Bert Kelly Destroys the Infant Industry Argument
  100. Bert Kelly Untangles Tariff Torment
  101. Bert Kelly resorts to prayer
  102. Eccles keeps our nose hard down on the tariff grindstone
  103. "Don't you believe in protecting us against imports from cheap labour countries?"
  104. Even if lucky, we needn't be stupid
  105. Great "freedom of choice" mystery
  106. Small government's growth problem
  107. I like my kind acts to get a mention in the press
  108. A Modest Member rakes the embers
  109. Tariffs Introduced
  110. More About Tariffs
  111. Sacred cow kicker into print
  112. Bert Kelly's 1984 two-article quote-collection on Aboriginal policies
  113. Modest Member must not give up
  114. Traditional Wheat Farming is Our Birthright and Heritage and Must be Protected!
  115. Tariff-cut nonsense lives on
  116. Bert Kelly brilliantly defends "theoretical academics"
  117. The high cost of protection
  118. Generosity creates problems
  119. The Society of Modest Members
  120. Is this an illogical, soft, complicated, unfocussed and unsuccessful attempt to communicate the case for markets?
  121. Modesty ablaze
  122. Case for ministers staying home
  123. The unusual self-evident simplicity of the Modest Members Society
  124. Animal lib the new scourge of the bush
  125. The Association for the Prevention of Cruelty to Krill
  126. modest members society
  127. Repeal economic laws, force people to buy new cars and enforce tariffs against overseas tennis players
  128. Thoughts on how to kill dinosaurs
  129. Let's try the chill winds
  130. Taking the Right's road
  131. Bert Kelly: "I did not try often or hard enough"
  132. Bert Kelly "lacked ... guts and wisdom"
  133. A look at life without tariffs
  134. The Gospel according to Bert
  135. Tiny note on Bert Kelly's column in The Bulletin in 1985
  136. Why costs can't be guaranteed
  137. Hitting out with a halo
  138. Paying farmers not to grow crops will save on subsidies, revenge tariffs, etc
  139. "The Modest Farmer joins us" | "How The Modest Farmer came to be"
  140. Bert Kelly Destroys the Freeloading Justifies Government Argument
  141. Industrial Relations Club shovellers
  142. From Shann to Stone
  143. Government Intervention
    Government Interference
  144. A sojourn in the real world
  145. The tariff wind swings
  146. Bigger Cake = Bigger Slices
  147. Bert Kelly on the Political Process
  148. A charabanc called protection
  149. Taken for a ride - to nowhere
  150. Down hill, in circles, all the way
  151. Economic facts and figures are statistics who should speak out
  152. Any cons arguing small business bad but big government good?
  153. Relationships with the Liberal Party
  154. Tariffs = High Prices + World War
  155. Bert Kelly's Family History
  156. Bert Kelly's Pre-Parliament Life
  157. What the MP could say to the Bishop
  158. Why Bert Kelly was not even more publicly outspoken
  160. How to stand aside when it's time to be counted
  161. How the Modest Member went back to being a Modest Farmer
  162. My pearls of wisdom were dull beyond belief
  163. Bert Kelly on Political Football
  164. Undigested morsels in Fraser spew
  165. Bert Kelly on LSD
  166. Bert Kelly reflects on the Australian car industry in 1992
  167. Bert Kelly wants reprinted Shann's Economic History of Australia
  168. If tariffs are opposed here then why not there?
  169. The emperor has no textiles, clothing and footwear sense
  170. Ross Gittins Wins Bert Kelly Award
  171. Interesting 1964 Bert Kelly speech: he says he is not a free trader and that he supports protection!
  172. This is the wall the Right built
  173. The Impertinent Society: Cheeky MPs take Mr Anthony at his word
  174. Tariff Protection in Australia (1970)
  175. Has Santa socked it to car makers?
  176. Is the Budget a cargo cult?
  177. Will we end up subsidising one another?
  178. Keeping the bucket of worms alive
  179. Can we get off the stomach-churning head-spinning tariff merry-go-round?
  180. Do we want our money to fly?
  181. Can a bear be sure of a feed?
  182. How to impress your MP -
    ambush him
  183. The time for being nice to our MPs has gone ...
  184. Don't feel sorry for him -
    hang on to his ear
  185. Trade wars can easily end up on a battlefield
  186. Tariffs Create Unemployment
  187. Bert Kelly recommends Ayn Rand
  188. Bert Kelly on Alf Rattigan's Industry Assistance: The Inside Story
  189. Bert Kelly's Satirical Prophecy: Minister for Meteorology (tick) and High Protectionist Policies to Result in War Yet Again (?)
  190. Bert Kelly in 1972 on Foreign Ownership of Australian Farmland and Warren Truss, Barnaby Joyce and Bill Heffernan in 2012
  191. Bert Kelly baits Welfare State Tiger
  192. Why does Govt wear two faces?
  193. Parliament a place for pragmatists
  194. Of Sugar Wells and Think-Tanks
  195. Bert Kelly: "I must take some of the blame"
  196. Bert Kelly on dumping duties
  197. The Govt's helping hand often hurts
  198. Unbuckling the hobbles on the motor industry
  199. A Modest Farmer looks at the Problems of Structural Change
  200. Government Fails Spectacularly
  201. Know your proper place if you want the quiet life
  202. Bert Kelly on political speech writers
  203. Having your cake and eating it
  204. Perish the thawed!
  205. Hooray for Northern Development!
  206. Politicians can resist everything except pressure
  207. The silly image of our MPs
  208. Bert Kelly Question Time highlights
  209. Modest Farmer sees his ideas take hold
  210. Should facts stand in the way of a good story?
  211. Fondling one another's glass haloes
  212. What is the sense in making the effort to look after yourself?
  213. Fred's Feeling: Counterpatriotic country contrarian
  214. Handouts for big boys only
  215. Mavis trying to buy a hand loom
  216. Bad news for bearers of bad news
  217. Is it time to get aboard the tariff band-waggon?
  218. Why farmers resent tariff protection for motor makers
  219. A sordid use of scare tactics
  220. Goods vs services
  221. Tariffs are hilariously counterproductive
  222. The dilemmas of Aboriginal Affairs
  223. Bert Kelly on decentralisation
  224. Inflation breeds moral decay
  225. Who envies equality?
  226. Growth – malignant or benign?
  227. Government wiser than Magna Carta
  228. Bert Kelly on looking to politicians for moral leadership
  229. Max Newton: Maverick in Exile
  230. Whitlam & co on the Dismissal
  231. 25% Tariff Cut
  232. Bert Kelly on pensions
  233. The plotting powers of Mavis nag martyr to snag compo
  234. The backseat drivers of the Pilbara
  235. Mr Clunies-Ross of the Cocos Islands should rule Australia
  236. They get the wind up when it changes
  237. Why the Big Green Lie survives
  238. Ross McLean in 1982: "Malcolm! Why don't we try good government? It might be popular."
  239. Bert Kelly on the importance of exchange rate movements
  240. Bert Kelly shows how to attack
  241. Bert Kelly vs Bert Kelly vs Bert Kelly
  242. Industrial relations dinosaur, Bruce, chews his cud
  243. Hooray for "firmly entrenched"!
  244. Respect your dinosaurs
  245. What if something is "deeply ingrained" yet harmful?
  246. A case for ministerial inertia
  247. Why politicians don't like the truth
  248. Punemployment: people are neither numbers nor puzzle pieces; the platitude attitude
  249. Our great open spaces ... an empty blessing
  250. Heart in right place but head missing
  251. Ominous dark clouds are gathering
  252. Proverb vs proverb
  253. Better to be popular than right
  254. Crying in the wilderness
  255. Ivory tower needs thumping
  256. Bert Kelly asks, "How can you believe in free enterprise and government intervention at the same time?"
  257. Politicians get undeserved praise, why not undeserved blame too?
  258. Feet in a bucket of champagne
  259. Rural Problems
  260. Health cover needs a $30 excess clause
  261. Unholy state of taxation
  262. Boring economics worth a smile
  263. The Libido for the Miserable
  264. Agricultural Development and Tariffs
  265. Fred's too poor to have principles
  266. Eccles Law of the constant wage share
  267. "He whom the gods would destroy ..."
  268. Low tariff torch burnt Eccles' fingers
  269. A cow of a car — with dual horns
  270. Tariffs: when to wean infant BHP?
  271. Keep any government as far as possible from farming
  272. The Playford charade is out of date
  273. Bert Kelly: the odd man out who's now in
  274. Dries must resist giving up struggle as going gets tough
  275. How a well meaning Government can be so stupid
  276. The icing on the economic cake
  277. Sir Roderick Carnegie's foreword to Bert Kelly's Economics Made Easy
  278. The Vale of Popularity and the Protection Procession
  279. Politics 101: Pay Lip Service to Capitalism and Shoot the Messenger
  280. 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"
  281. Bert Kelly on Free Enterprise
  282. Cartoons of protected industry, the welfare teat and the nanny state
  283. Bert Kelly on the theory of constant shares and the Fabian Society
  284. Bert Kelly vs Doug Anthony
  285. You're lucky if you escape being helped by government
  286. Bert Kelly on Small Farmers
  287. Bert Kelly on Apathy
  288. Bert Kelly in 1967 on "problems of government and things like that"
  289. The last "Dave's Diary"
  290. Bert Kelly vs The Australian on tariffs in 1977
  291. Bounties or Tariffs, Someone Pays
  292. Geriatric companies without a minder
  293. A free marketeer wary of free trade
  294. Nixon's puzzling profession of faith
  295. "Ford ... seems to spend more time bending its knees than its back"
  296. Clyde Cameron's weak ways with wise words
  297. Why flaunt what others flout?
  298. Bert Kelly yearns for Tim Flannery's powers of prediction
  299. Looking after yourself is silly
  300. Bert Kelly masterpiece on drought, fire, flood and other natural disaster relief schemes
  301. Government can take credit for our car industry mess
  302. Car makers want the 4wd driven deeper into tariff bog
  303. Why our MP is no longer prone to a good sob story
  304. Auto industry is in a straitjacket
  305. Bert Kelly on market predictions
  306. Why should dryland farmers subsidise irrigation farmers?
  307. How much should government decrease incentive for independence from government?
  308. Clarkson crowned Deputy Government Whip
  309. Bert Kelly to blame for soaring government healthcare costs
  310. 1959 return of Dave's Diary
  311. Bert Kelly in 1966 on developing northern Australia
  312. Successful government intervention can [sic] occur
  313. Vernon Report upholds Clarkson
  314. Quiet Man Makes An Impact
  315. Should it be compulsory to buy footwear and clothing?
  316. To save Australian clothing industry women must all wear same uniform
  317. Don't confuse plucking heart strings with plucking harp strings
  318. Speech only for public
  319. Catchy Tariff Circus Extravaganza
  320. Bert Kelly in 1985 on cars yet again
  321. Hurrah for the Gang of Five
  322. Thoughts on a verse about Balfour
  323. Bert Kelly pep talk to politicians
  324. Government intervention = Agony postponed but death brought nearer
  325. Recipe for disaster: Freeze!
  326. Recipe for government intervention: Gather winners and scatter losers
  327. Recipe for industry destruction: Blanket market signals
  328. Mavis writes!
  329. Bert Kelly's empiricism is not kneejerk reaction kind
  330. The $2,000 song of the shirt worker
  331. Subsiding only small farmers means subsiding the big banks
  332. Difficult to be fast on your feet when you've got your ear to the ground
  333. It would surprise people to see how sensible MPs behave if they think they are not being watched
  334. Bert Kelly on "this land of limitless resources" and "great open spaces"
  335. Growing bananas at the South Pole
  336. Car components tariff protection under fire
  337. Why carry a $300m car subsidy?
  338. Tariff feather beds for the foreign giants
  339. Bert Kelly says end compulsory voting to stop donkey vote
  340. Perhaps being smart and insured isn't all luck
  341. You gets your tariff, you pays a price
  342. More funds to train Olympians?
  343. Fire in their guts and wind in ours
  344. Should free universal healthcare include pets?
  345. Sound advice from a modest farmer
  346. A tottering monument to intervention
  347. Cunning meets wisdom
  348. Competition, Aussie-style: Who's the bigger parasite?
  349. Australians are proud patriotic parasites, says Bert Kelly
  350. Taxpayer-funded sport is cheating
  351. Being loved by all is not always a good thing
  352. Welfare State Destroys Society
  353. 1980 Bert Kelly feather bed series
  354. The White Mice Marketing Board
  355. Government intervention and advice can be harmful, even when right, even for those it tries to help
  356. One small step on the compulsory voting landmine
  357. The free & compulsory education sacred cows have no clothes
  358. Holding a loaded wallet to an economist's head
  359. Political No Man's Land
  360. Only blind greed demands both equality and prosperity
  361. A cow that sucks itself — that's us!
  362. Foot-dragging on lifting tariff drag
  363. Nip the bud of incentive; mock community spirit into submission
  364. Bert Kelly questions why miners pay royalties to the Crown
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