GetUp cam­paign sug­ges­tion: First Home Prop­erty Buy­ers Strike

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The cam­paign group GetUp has a “sug­ges­tion box” in which new cam­paign ideas can be sug­gested, debated, and if they receive suf­fi­cient votes, adopted.

Pros­per Aus­tralia recently sug­gested a First Home Prop­erty Buy­ers Strike (click here for the Pros­per Aus­tralia press release), and after a week or so it is the 9th ranked cam­paign idea with 1700 votes.

I just logged on and voted for it, with the fol­low­ing com­ment:

This is an excel­lent idea which I endorse. It would be a fool­ish per­sonal deci­sion to take out the size of loan now required to enter the mar­ket, and it would be superb to turn this per­sonal dilemma into a polit­i­cal cam­paign. Though the banks have the most respon­si­bil­ity for dri­ving up house prices by let­ting their LVRs rise from the respon­si­ble 70% lev­els of the 1960s-1970s to the utterly irre­spon­si­ble 97% lev­els of today, the house price bub­ble has also been inflated by the so-called “First Home Own­ers Grant” scheme. This scheme, which I pre­fer to call the First Home Ven­dors Grant, has been used as a cheap macro­eco­nomic boost by the gov­ern­ment on five occa­sions now–1983, 1989, 2000, 2001 and 2008–and each time all it has done is push up house prices.

There are good odds that house prices will start to fall this year–with macro­eco­nomic impacts flow­ing from that–and there may well be lob­by­ing to bring back the FHVB for a sixth time. This cam­paign might well make that an impos­si­bil­ity, which would be a very good thing.

I urge Debt­watch read­ers who are Aus­tralian res­i­dents to log on to GetUp (it’s free to join) and vote for this pro­posal.

This link will take you straight to the dis­cus­sion page for the pro­posal, where you can com­ment first and join up later (which I did).

Alter­nately, you can join GetUp first and vote for the pro­posal later. This is prob­a­bly a bet­ter way if you don’t want to make a com­ment as such on their blog.

Each mem­ber gets 10 votes, of which up to 3 can be given to any one cam­paign idea (the votes are returned to you after a cam­paign idea is either adopted or dropped). The more votes a pro­posal gets, the more likely it is to be adopted.

As they used to say in Chicago, vote early and vote often.

About Steve Keen

I am Professor of Economics and Head of Economics, History and Politics at Kingston University London, and a long time critic of conventional economic thought. As well as attacking mainstream thought in Debunking Economics, I am also developing an alternative dynamic approach to economic modelling. The key issue I am tackling here is the prospect for a debt-deflation on the back of the enormous private debts accumulated globally, and our very low rate of inflation.
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  • sir­ius

    Apolo­gies for the numer­ous posts but since an opin­ion of “Krug­man” cropped up I thought it may inter­est a few here…

    http://www.wdm.org.uk/blog/krugman-misses-mark-food-speculation

  • Philip

    Lyon­wiss,

    The prob­lem with jour­nals is the “pub­lish or per­ish” issue within the uni­ver­sity sys­tem, rather than profit motives. In order for aca­d­e­mics to keep mov­ing up the hier­ar­chy, they need to con­tin­u­ally pub­lish, espe­cially if they are on the tenure (or equiv­a­lent) track. If not for this pres­sure, then I doubt many aca­d­e­mics would even bother pub­lish­ing one paper, let alone the tens and pos­si­bly hun­dreds they aim for.

  • Lyon­wiss

    Philip

    You are right. I meant “profit” in a gen­eral sense. Pub­li­ca­tion is paper pro­duc­tion. Uni­ver­sity is a degree fac­tory and so on. The goal is to min­i­mize cost (or max­i­mize out­put per unit cost) in pro­duc­ing a given mea­sur­able out­put. The mar­ket model for aca­d­e­mic knowl­edge empha­sizes quan­tity and not qual­ity, lead­ing to short-term appar­ent suc­cess but long-term decline, which is now evi­dent.

  • juven­tus88

    Hi Steve Keen, I fully sup­port your cam­paign of First Home Buy­ers — Prop­erty Buy­ers Strike — How­ever what about if we take it one step furthur & get the mes­sage out to peo­ple & actu­ally start putting up signs stat­ing first home buyer’s strike/ prop­erty mar­ket crash, I have been doing this in my area of Leich­hardt in Syd­ney.

  • Sounds good Juven­tus: we may well find that GetUp con­sid­ers sim­i­lar actions if/when it decides to go with a cam­paign on house prices.

  • DrBob127
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  • sam­myla

    Hi Steve

    We are very dis­s­a­pointed by the response from GETUP(i have posted their response to the cam­paign below).i strongly believe they are being biased and influ­enced by speculators.may be Face­book will take us further.please let us know what you think.i wouldn’t be sur­prised if Getup even­tu­ally decline this cam­paign and delete it like the last high­est voted cam­paign that never made it.

    One thing I’m happy about is that the cam­paign hit main­stream media with­out Getups involve­ment at all.i know that the prices are already falling with record num­ber of prop­er­ties up for sale.so that is a con­so­la­tion to me.

    Sam

    Hi all,
    Thanks so much for your involve­ment in this thread. I’ve been absolutely blown away by the enthu­si­as­tic cam­paign­ing, com­ment­ing and vot­ing that’s been hap­pen­ing at all hours of the day and night. I have a close eye on the thoughts that are com­ing up here and relay­ing them to the rest of the GetUp team, and we’re all well aware of the pop­u­lar­ity of the cam­paign idea.
    At the moment, our next steps are to inter­ro­gate the pos­si­bil­i­ties for this cam­paign, includ­ing a great deal of research and sur­vey­ing our mem­ber­ship to gauge their sup­port for this cam­paign. In the mean­time, I’d just like to remind you that one of the most impor­tant things to remem­ber about this web­site is that it takes more than a pop­u­lar idea to make a GetUp cam­paign — you can read more about this on our blog post (http://blog.getup.org.au/2010/11/16/261/). In ref­er­ence to this thread in par­tic­u­lar, we know that this thread has been affected by astro­turf­ing and boosts because of media cov­er­age. We know there are gen­uine mem­bers who sup­port this cam­paign, but it will take more time and research before we’re able to know how mem­bers con­sider this as a pri­or­ity for a new cam­paign.
    This page is a pub­lic space – we do this so that every­one can have their say, and its a great way to gauge inter­est in new issues. How­ever, any cam­paigns we run have to have the sup­port of our own com­mu­nity, and not just the gen­eral pub­lic, which is why we don’t con­sider run­ning a cam­paign unless it has the back­ing of the GetUp com­mu­nity — we deduce this by run­ning reg­u­lar sam­ple sur­veys of the mem­ber­ship. It’s very easy for inter­est groups to rally sup­port from their own mem­bers to bump up the num­ber of votes for an idea, which means that the per­ceived pop­u­lar­ity of a cam­paign is inflated. At the end of the day how­ever, the cam­paign­ing pri­or­i­ties of our mem­ber­ship are at the fore­front of our cam­paign­ing deci­sions – and we’ll be doing more research and speak­ing more with them before con­sid­er­ing a cam­paign on this sug­ges­tion.
    If you have any thoughts, feed­back or sources that you’d like us to look at while we’re in this process, please email us at info@getup.org.au.
    Thanks!

  • ak

    Astro­turf­ing”…

    The “pro­gres­sive” agenda of intro­duc­ing polit­i­cal cor­rect­ness to kindies
    http://www.news.com.au/national/ban-on-naughty-corner-easter-egg-hunts/story-e6frfkvr-1226033027252
    may suf­fer if neg­a­tive gear­ing is removed.

    Some peo­ple at GetUp might not have realised what hap­pened to the Labor (and the Greens) in NSW. The so-called “pro­gres­sive move­ment” is brain dead. The corpses of ALP and Trade Unions need to be removed as they occupy space which should belong to some­one else. 

    Replac­ing dis­cus­sion about real social and eco­nomic prob­lems by pub­lic rela­tion cam­paigns about hot air taxes, manip­u­lat­ing young peo­ple into irrel­e­vant “activism” and away from tack­ing their gen­er­a­tional prob­lems is the best way to ensure that true con­ser­v­a­tives will stay in power for the next gen­er­a­tion.

  • vk

    It would be pru­dent to know who GetUp are and who stays behind them.

    These google searches may help:

    GetUp! warned on how-to-vote site (The Age)
    Inside GetUp and the New Youth Pol­i­tics (Quad­rant mag­a­zine)
    GetUp! accept­ing union dona­tion ‘hyp­o­crit­i­cal’ (ABC)
    Get Up! funded anti-Abbott ad with union’s $1m gift (SMH)

    Attri­bu­tion: the list was com­piled by http://www.nocarbontax.com.au. I do not intend to debate car­bon tax here.

  • ak

    VK,

    This is a kind of Kom­so­mol but so what? What else can we expect?

  • I think that’s a some­what stan­dard response from GetUp Sammy, and I wouldn’t be too wor­ried about it. This is a dif­fi­cult issue since it does divide peo­ple at the hip pocket nerve (and the foun­tain of youth).

  • Just a heads-up for an excel­lent piece by Yves Smith on Naked Cap­i­tal­ism. I’ve asked her whether I can cross-post here, but in the mean­time, have a read of this:

    http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2011/04/blacklisted-economics-professor-found-dead-nc-publishes-his-last-letter.html

  • ak

    Steve,

    I smell a rat with this dead pro­fes­sor — exactly as with the Krugman’s inter­stel­lar trade.

    Do a Google search on “Phi­lalithopou­los –dead”, noth­ing is returned. Either the name is mis­spelled or such a per­son never pub­lished any­thing on the Net.

    The date of pub­lish­ing the story is also sus­pi­ciously close to 1 April.

  • AK, It’s a joke!

    There is such a thing as satire; not every­thing writ­ten is seri­ous! Yves is send­ing up neo­clas­si­cal eco­nom­ics.

  • ak

    Steve,

    Fair enough. Is what Alan Greenspan wrote also a joke?

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/14662fd8-5a28-11e0-86d3-00144feab49a.html#axzz1IbOsIqU3

    (To read the arti­cle sim­ply copy and paste the URL into Google and the fol­low the link from the Google’s results page)

  • Nope, I’m afraid that appears to be seri­ous! Peter Hartcher of the SMH seri­ously con­tem­plated the only sen­si­ble alter­na­tive inter­pre­ta­tion, that Greenspan has always been a Fifth Colum­nist for Ayn Rand, bent on the destruc­tion of fiat money and the return to a gold stan­dard. But my read­ing of the arti­cle is that he’s still befud­dled by why the crash hap­pened, and is blend­ing his proto-Aus­trian side with his neo­clas­si­cal lean­ings in an utter mis­mash of think­ing.

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