Fruitlooping Swan: Every Word A Lie

27 Jul

Recently I commented to a Twitter follower that, after my 3-weeks-of-work-in-1 spent on researching the government’s National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting department’s entire Register of “polluters” (results here), I now consider every single word that this government utters to be a lie.  By default.

And here comes Wayne Swan talking lying about the economy, confirming that I was right.

From the Australian (emphasis added):

Treasurer Wayne Swan has played down an inflation surge as he defended the government’s productivity agenda, saying its benefits would not be realised overnight.

Mr Swan said a summer of natural disasters and higher fruit prices were responsible for a stronger than expected increase in Australia’s consumer price index, which he accepted was making life harder for struggling families.

“These events are one-off events and they have a one-off impact on the CPI,” he said.

The Treasurer said a 27 per cent increase in fruit prices had contributed 0.4 per cent to the total 0.9 per cent inflation rate.

Bullshit.

Not “fruit” prices.

“Food” prices.

From the Australian Bureau of Statistics, whence cometh said CPI figures fraudulently misquoth by the completely despicable truth-avoidance expert, Treasurer Swan (emphasis added):

JUNE KEY FIGURES

Mar Qtr 2011 to Jun Qtr 2011
Jun Qtr 2010 to Jun Qtr 2011
Weighted average of eight capital cities
% change
% change

Food
1.4
6.1
Alcohol and tobacco
0.7
5.6
Clothing and footwear
2.5
1.1
Housing
0.4
4.6
Household contents and services
1.5
0.1
Health
2.0
4.0
Transportation
1.2
3.5
Communication
0.4
0.4
Recreation
-0.6
-0.3
Education
0.0
5.9
Financial and insurance services
1.6
4.2
All groups
0.9
3.6
All groups excluding Housing and Financial and insurance services
1.0
3.2

Contribution to quarterly change – June Quarter 2011

OVERVIEW OF CPI MOVEMENTS

* The most significant price rises this quarter were for fruit (+26.9%), automotive fuel (+4.0%), hospital and medical services (+3.4%), furniture (+6.0%), deposit and loan facilities (+2.1%) and rents (+1.1%).

FOOD prices increased by 1.4% in the quarter (table, in red).

FOOD price increases contributed almost half (0.4%) of the 0.9% increase in the CPI.

“Fruit” alone did NOT contribute 0.4% of the 0.9% increase in the CPI.

Not unless the entire nation bought fruit and only fruit to eat during the March to June quarter.

Wayne Swan lied.

Again.

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4 Responses to “Fruitlooping Swan: Every Word A Lie”

  1. Paul James July 27, 2011 at 7:49 pm #

    I heard the Goose speaking earlier on the radio today and immediately thought of you. And to think these people have the nerve to call Lord Monckton a bullshit artist.

  2. Fred July 28, 2011 at 12:03 am #

    It seems every time there is a memorable disaster in some part of Qld the treasury puts that memorable moment in the kit bag to be trotted out to explain away some unsavory economic measure. I still recall the time our glorious leaders blamed a rise in inflation on banana price rises following cyclone Larry in 2006. Bullshit then, bullshit now.
    Personally, I just did not buy bananas that year.

    Price rises with the same supply volume could indicate “inflation”. But price rises because of a lack of volume, would not seem to cause “inflation”, except unless ABS forgot to de-weight the volume of those items in its calculations.

    • The Blissful Ignoramus July 28, 2011 at 7:34 am #

      “Personally, I just did not buy bananas that year.”

      Indeed. Which action (non-action?) demonstrates that the Goose is in fact, on this occasion, contradicting fundamental economic thought, by his effectively implying that consumers will continue to purchase non-essential goods that have been subject to shortages thus dramatic price increases, and in similar volume. In essence, Wayne’s lie argues that fruit (and bananas in particular, apparently) are price inelastic. Not that he’d have thought of that consequence, because the media don’t hold them to account – he’s just telling a politically-convenient lie, that happens to be totally and utterly implausible.

      For once, I agree with the mainstream economic assumption. Price goes up (not due to demand, but due to temporary shortage) – demand (thus, influence on CPI should, if it were an honest measure) goes down.

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