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Private Empire. ExxonMobil and American ...

Private Empire. ExxonMobil and American Power by Steve Coll won the FT/Goldman Sachs prize for best business book of 2012 and deservedly so, the book is actually much better than the publicity. It focusses on the fairly recent history of ExxonMobil under Lee Raymond and Rex Tillerson. Each chapter covers a particular topic like the […]

Why Australia Prospered

Why Australia Prospered. The Shifting Sources of Economic Growth by Ian McLean is the first economic history of Australia in 40 years. It covers 200 years of Australian history and is very relevant to current debates such as the role of the resources sector versus manufacturing. Generallyit concludes that Australia’s natural resource abundance has been a […]

Conspiracy of Fear

  Good quote from Alan Kohler 10 November taking about the western world generally: Conspiracy of Fear There is a conspiracy of fear formation between a media desperately seeking sales to save itself with, and politicians desperately seeking relevance. The financial establishment is happy to join in the conspiracy because market volatility produces profits. Nobody […]

Economics the optimistic science

I’m currently reading Grand Pursuit, The Story Of Economic Genius by Sylvia Nasar author of A Beautiful Mind. An excellent book, partly about the development of economic thought but also about the lives of Marshall, Keynes, Hayek, Schumpeter, Fisher, Friedman and the others giants who created modern economics. Highly recommended.  While they don’t feature in […]

GASEX 2012

Every two years the gas industry of the Western Pacific holds an information exchange conference called GASEX. GASEX was originally established as a joint Japanese-Australian initiative about 20 years ago.The next GASEX will be held in Bali on 9-11 October 2012. The Australian Gas Industry Trust is sponsoring six delegates to this year’s conference. I will […]

Australia more engaged with North Asia t...

Julia Gillard is in Vladivostok for the APEC meeting. It’s interesting that Australia exports twice as much to China (around US$74 billion in 2011) than Russia does (around US$34 billion in 2011). Australia also exports more to Japan and South Korea. This is notwithstanding Russia’s closer proximity to all of these countries. I think this […]

To frac or frack?

What is the appropriate noun and verb for a fracture stimulation? Frac or frack? Frack looks ugly (I’m sure American) but Google lists millions of entries for frack but only thousands for frac so I guess we had better fall into line too.

The Quest by Daniel Yergin

Daniel Yergin is well-known as a global energy guru, founder of Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA) and author of The Prize, the Pulitzer Prize winning history of the oil industry. He has now produced an even more ambitious book, The Quest. Energy, Security and the Remaking of the Modern World. This latest work covers not […]