The doddering, the unhinged, the Messiahs and the frantically busy hotel manager at the WEF

The World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland has just wound up its 2023 meeting. What a joy it is to behold the WEF meetings. Because it is when the participants believe themselves to be among friends that they say what they really think, thus exposing themselves to scrutiny. In the eyes of many, Klaus Schwab, the founder of the WEF, is evil personified.

Klaus Schwab

I disagree. I think he is a doddering old fool. I think he is incapable of achieving anything other than an expensive gabfest each year.

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Trouble with definitions

If you can’t define what a woman is, how can you define “gender pay gap”?

I’m going to hazard a guess here: those acquaintances of yours who claim that there is a gender pay gap in Australia will be unable to define a woman when asked. You try it out for yourself.

There are two ways of defining gender pay gap. One is correct and the other isn’t. The incorrect way is to add up total earnings of men and women separately then divide by the total number of men and women respectively and compare the two answers. They will be different. That allows the unscrupulous and the unthinking to cry “gender pay gap!” very loudly. Just like how today’s story in The Age reports.

However, the above calculations merely represent average earnings of men and women. Nothing can be inferred about whether men and women are paid equally by looking at averages.

The correct way to test for a gender pay gap is to look at pay for equivalent work. Then you will find that Australian business does not pay different rates for men vs women.

CEO employment prospects for middle aged white straight men are on the up

I’m in a sunny mood today as I have become convinced that my employment prospects as a business CEO are on the rise. In the event that I should need to come out of retirement and get back in the workforce, perhaps because the expense of keeping a wooden ocean going yacht has gone beyond eye watering levels, then I can see opportunities opening up aplenty. The reason is simple. Boards of directors appoint CEOs. Boards also sack CEOs. Boards are increasingly fearful of sacking a CEO who happens to belong to a protected species. Middle aged, white straight men are not a protected species. Everyone else is. So, the obvious conclusion is: appoint someone who, if they turn out to be hopeless, we can sack! Times are good, even for hopeless middle aged white straight men!

In the business pages

It’s sometimes refreshing to get a laugh out of the business press, especially when much news is rather gloomy. 

First up today is James Glynn (writing in the Australian) who attempts to defend the Reserve Bank of Australia. His headline says it is unfair to rage against the RBA. Long time readers of this blog will know that I have been a harsh critic of the RBA for many years, so I naturally expected this piece to start my day on a humorous note. James did not disappoint. 

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Corporate wokeism

Many people working in large corporations feel the same frustration as does Dr Jordan Peterson, well expressed in this monologue “Message to CEOs”. Corporate wokeism has been getting worse for a number of years and business leaders have been broadly weak and fearful in its face. Instead of pushing out the nonsense because it is damaging to customers and staff and therefore shareholders, they have en masse waved it through.

I am perhaps a little more optimistic than Dr Peterson is. I suspect that with hard economic times unfolding, corporate wokeism will become subserviant to corporate survival. The big business bottom line has been relatively easy to keep black for the last 10 years. But from here, red ink may be needed with increasing frequency. CEOs faced with the choice of being turfed out of their contract for missing financial targets vs giving more succour to diversity, equity and inclusion maniacs will see things more clearly. Ask yourself why wokeism has not infected small business. It’s because small business must focus on survival at all times.

Market failure?

Oh dear. The Australian Energy Market Operator has suspended the market. The Operator says the market was “impossible to operate”. Does this constitute a market failure? It’s definitely a failure of something.

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I say it’s not a market failure. That’s because it’s not a real market. The authoritarian left often decries market failure as reason for Government intervention in all manner of ways. Well, here’s an example of a highly restricted and distorted pseudo market failure right in front of our eyes at a time when the energy supply is tottering on the verge of blackouts.

The reason for this failure is precisely due to years of Government intervention, mismanagement and lies. Goodness knows what happens from here, but mark June 2022 as the month in which the creaking facade masquerading as an energy system in Australia crumbled.