Category Archives: Politics and Economics

The Melian Dialogue and the Singapore Summit

The previous week I wrote of US intelligence assessments on North Korea’s nuclear programme, which suggests that North Korea is not committed to nuclear disarmament let along complete, verified, and irreversible dismantlement of the type long demanded by the United … Continue reading

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Corporate Power and the Failure of the Australian Labour Market

The Australian labour market increasingly exhibits the classical signs of market failure due to positive externalities. The best approximation to Paul Krugman in Australia is the economic correspondent for The Guardian Greg Jericho. Economic literacy is a critical component of … Continue reading

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Washington is Compelling Iran to Withdraw from the JCPOA

The US is seemingly goading Iran into withdrawing from the JCPOA. That might lead to some nasty surprises, for both them and us. Whilst attention continues to be drawn to North Korea, important developments continue to characterise the Iranian nuclear … Continue reading

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The Trump-Kim Snapchat Summit: All Selfies, No Substance.

North Korea has not moved an inch from its conception of denuclearisation at the Singapore Summit. More substantive progress requires ending the obsession for complete and irreversible denuclearisation. The Singapore Summit meeting between Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un has come … Continue reading

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Korean Denuclearisation and the Possibility of North Korean Political Reform

There aren’t two competing ideas of denuclearisation, probably not even one conception, and could North Korea reform politically? The Kim-Trump Summit Is a go, and what will become of it is highly uncertain. Indeed, it is possible that the summit … Continue reading

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The Road to Denuclearisation in Korea: Strategic Stability and Minimum Deterrence Now, Denuclearisation Through Economic Leverage Later

Rather than focus on denuclearisation the emphasis for now should be on mutual and balanced conventional force reductions on the Korean peninsula. Washington’s economic clout gives it leverage to demand denuclearisation thereafter. Denuclearisation continues to dominate the airwaves, with President … Continue reading

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What Kim Jong Un and Ronald Reagan Share in Common: Supply Side Economics Nuclear Style

Pyongyang has told us to look more closely at the resolution of April’s Central Committee plenum. Doing so sheds much light on Kim’s supply side economics. North Korea just keeps pulling you in even amidst a desire to write of … Continue reading

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Trump’s JCPOA Language Game: The Strategic Logic to JCPOA Withdrawal

Most commentary on the US withdrawal from the JCPOA, at least from the sane end of the spectrum, has made the point, firstly, that it is not based on a firm strategy, that it more reflects the warped impulses of … Continue reading

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Who Lost Korea? The Third Inter Korean Summit

The much anticipated Third Inter Korean Summit, this time between Kim Jong-un and Moon Jae-in, has concluded amid much fanfare and some quite spectacular imagery. The first two Inter Korean summits proved, ultimately, to be failures and whether it will … Continue reading

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US-European Airstrikes Against Syria, the Offence-Defence Balance, and the Left

The war in Syria is simply an obscenity, waged by weak and miserable men. That observation is how any discussion on developments in Syria should proceed, and so it is that I begin this discussion of the April 14 air … Continue reading

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