poorBy sending fleets of English convicts–largely bred of a raging worldwide economic depression–out to a new colony at New South Wales from 1788, William Pitt the younger barely managed to avoid the bloody revolution that had taken place in America and was about to break out in France.

Such is the magnificence of human progress, the State of Victoria now proposes to have its criminals serve out their time in shipping containers.

During WWII, Victorian magistrate, PR Biggin, produced a booklet showing that a fatally flawed economic system was responsible for approximately 80% of Australia’s crime.

Biggin’s The difficulties of a beak provides striking insights that unfortunately continue to elude today’s governments, economists and magistrates.


They lie, the men who tell us in a loud decisive tone
That want is here a stranger, and that misery’s unknown;
For where the nearest suburb and the city proper meet
My window-sill is level with the faces in the street


  1. Indeed, Chris. I’ve just come from a workshop in Chengdu where it seems China may now be seriously considering selling off its land as a “one-off” public fund-raiser, rather than replacing the burgeoning number of taxes on its various forms of real estate with the one ongoing land rent. (BTW, I have been enjoying your letters!)

  2. “By sending fleets of English convicts–largely bred of a raging worldwide economic depression–out to a new colony at New South Wales from 1788”

    And then in New South Wales the same mistakes were repeated by the colonial governors virtually giving away land that was an incredibly lucrative investment.

    Then when the colonial governments later found themselves strapped for cash their solution was to hit soft targets like gold minining individuals and to leave alone the rich landowners who had acquired their land for a bargain.

    Some things never change.

  3. In the spirit of the times, I think it is only appropriate to point out that the gentleman holding the sign up should update his text to:

    “When the rich rob the poor it’s called capitalism, when the poor fight back it’s called terrorism.”

    In today’s world if you:

    Question the status quo? Terrorist.

    Believe in wealth distribution? Socialist Terrorist.

    Don’t think the government should be doing anything it likes in the name of alleged national security or law and order? Obvious unpatriotic terrorist.

    Don’t think the 1% should be able to keep screwing the 99% over a barrel? Bleeding heart, socialist terrorist.

    Apparently the right-wingers can’t work out that you can’t spy, arrest, jail or threaten you way out of a raft of social problems. The narrow-minded thinking and ideological blinkers is too firmly entrenched.

  4. There is a definite link between mortgage stress and domestic violence.
    Couples can no longer afford to separate as doing so would likely end in homelessness. It takes 2 incomes to survive nowadays and both tiers of government are responsible for anti-single parent policy.
    Parents who fight like cat and dog as a result of mortgage stress also have a big impact on their kids behaviour resulting in juvenile ‘attention seeking’ crime.
    Such families are also regular targets for being stereotyped and demonised by MSM which only fuels public resentment.

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