The NBN $47 billion Internet White Elephant

Rolling out a cable NBN over 8 years into a mobile computing world? Madness. How will NBN sell its services to the mobile generation, like this:?


The National Broadband Network (Official Government NBN Website) intends to connect, over the next decade, a government fibreoptic network carrying very fast internet to almost every home around Australia … for free. It promises the best future-proof communication network in the world, improving productivity, health care from home and entertainment revolution. Internet and communication services will be sold by third parties.

Who could resist?

But this is by far the most wasteful and ill conceived deceptive of all the failed Labor government white elephant projects. The list of incompetence and deceit is staggering:

  • It will cost a staggering $43 billion or $2000 per every person. It compared to $330 per person for New Zealand and $60 for the USA. It is 36 times more expensive than the US scheme for wireless.
  • It has a business plan with hardly any financials and unbelievably for such enormous expenditure, no cost benefit analysis – it is a politically not economically planned project
  • It rolls out fixed internet line, in an almost completely mobile internet age.
  • It dishonestly claims benefits to productivity and medical home care without a scrap of supporting evidence – businesses already have adequate internet and seeing the doctor via internet is a decades old dystopic bureaucratic dream – undesired by patients and usefullonly in remote locations.
  • Everybody knows the NBN’s 100Mbs speed will be used mainly for downloading porn, movies and playing games.
  • It commits to this one technology for 50 years, blindly denying the inevitable technological advances in alternative technologies, especially wireless.
  • It takes Australian telecommunication back 20 years to a government monopoly, stifling competition and reducing choice by customers.
  • It will make telephony less reliable – no internet means no phone. No power means  no phone in emergencies, so every household will require trickle charged standby batteries.
  • Prices of internet on network will certainly be higher – they are already.
  • Labor is an organisation that has bungled and wasted billions on every, repeat, every project they have undertaken. They are the most incompetent government in history. Would you hire them to undertake the biggest project in a generation? You’d be barking mad.

The Australian: Senator Stephen Conroy’s NBN threat to Telstra

THE Rudd government has backflipped on one of its key promises about the operation of the new national broadband network in an attempt to bolster the economic credentials of the massive $43 billion project and to enforce Telstra’s co-operation.

The draft legislation released yesterday reveals Communications Minister Stephen Conroy will have the discretion to allow NBN Co to effectively become a government-owned retailer of telecommunications services — particularly for government departments and agencies — in direct competition to Telstra.

In the past, the government has repeatedly said the new network — which will be owned and run by the government-controlled NBN Co — would be a wholesale-only service, providing open and equal access to all retail telecommunications companies.

The explanatory notes now say the minister could allow NBN Co to “offer services directly to certain end users, for example government agencies”.


Business Spectator: Conroy’s costly NBN mistake

Late last Friday, Senator Stephen Conroy made the following media statement: “NBN Co will operate on a wholesale-only, open and equivalent access basis, delivering long-term benefits for competition and consumers.”

Unfortunately, the current wholesale access pricing model will prohibit direct participation on the NBN by providers with less than 250,000 customers.


Whether intentional or not, this has to be fixed if we are to expect the NBN, whose problems obviously run deeper than new controversies surrounding exorbitant construction costs, to achieve the policy aims stated by the government.

Cash for Clunkers Green $1bil Stupidity

Green is the mantra of Gillard the gullible

Gillard’s promise is to pay $2000 a piece to the first 200,000 voters to drag a pre-1995 car to the scrapyard, as long as they promise to replace it with a new green car, such as the Holden Cruze, Hyundai Getz or Toyota Camry Hybrid, now retailing for $39,000.

The aim of this $396 million plan, says Gillard, is to help save the planet from our wicked gases, which she claims are heating the world to hell.

“Australians own a lot of old motor cars, and those old cars guzzle a lot of petrol and they spew out a lot of pollution,” she preached. “The amount of carbon we anticipate saving through this measure by getting the 200,000 old cars off the road is one million tonnes.”


Official Site for Cash for Clunkers:

The Gillard Labor Government will provide $394 million to support motorists to purchase new, low-emission, fuel-efficient vehicles. Households will be able to receive a $2,000 rebate towards a new vehicle by trading in their pre-1995 car for scrapping.

This is part of Federal Labor’s plan to make positive changes to how we live, work and travel.

Over four years from 1 January 2011 to the end of 2014, the Cleaner Car Rebate is expected to result in significant cuts in Australian fleet emissions as close to 200,000 pre-1995 vehicles are taken off the road and replaced with more fuel-efficient, environmentally friendly cars. Rebate will be capped over its four years of operation at 200,000 vehicles. Improving the efficiency of our vehicle fleet


ABC July 25, 2010: Gillard pledges cash for clunkers scheme, and here.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard has promised a $2,000 rebate for people who update their old motor vehicles.

Campaigning south of Brisbane, Ms Gillard said that if Labor is re-elected, owners of pre-1995 cars who buy a new car after January 1 next year would be eligible for the rebate.


Cars Guide: Cash for clunkers doomed

Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries chief executive Andrew McKellar said the loss of the $430m clunker scheme in which people were to receive $2000 to trade an old car for a more economical model was doomed from the start.

“There wasn’t a lot of industry consultation before that scheme was proposed and it wasn’t the best designed,” he said.


The Australian: Taken for ride by cash for clunkers

I suppose the idea for cash for clunkers in the US came from an adviser to the new administration who knew of its “success” in Europe. When the program started in 2009, I admit I was surprised at the almost immediate outcry from economists, pundits and, yes, citizens, denouncing it as wasteful.

They were, of course, right: It pulls forward new car sales, but it also scraps perfectly good, serviceable vehicles, lowering supply and driving up used-car prices.