Did you know housing gets counted twice in GDP?

Your car gets counted once when it is built, not when it is driven. Your clothes, your bicycle, your furniture, all get counted once when they are manufactured, and not again when they are worn, ridden, or sat on. But homes are counted twice in GDP, writes Dr Cameron Murray: Once when they are constructed, and again when they are occupied. If we are going to count housing in GDP, shouldn’t we count it just once?

None so blind as those who will not see

There is no other way to describe economics in 2017 than wilful blindness, writes economist Professor Steven Keen.  Nobel Laureates who claimed financial crises were now impossible also claimed the 2008 Global Financial Crisis could not have been predicted. This is all, of course, nonsense. The evidence was there all along. Those with the power to change the course of history simply chose to ignore it.

Marriage and convenience

This September, Australians will be asked to participate in a national windsock poll to help irresolute politicians decide whether to allow the institution of marriage to encompass gay unions. Critics can’t have it both ways, writes Rachael Bolton. Either marriage is an historically sexist property exchange between two men or it’s a modern, secular, legal arrangement entered into willingly by two adults.

The end of the indispensable empire

The challenge facing the US is to operate in a world where there is not one single power, but multiple poles of power and influence. If you were Russia, or China, or Iran, would you believe that the American administration has any interest whatsoever in international law? Would you trust the US? Or would you be looking over your shoulder wondering if you were next?