Wry & Dry

Census & super debacles. If China sneezes. Computer games.

What were they thinking?

Wry & Dry cannot help but think that the same public servant isolation from the real world that led to the government's superannuation shambles also led to the census shambles. 

Image the same conference room that gave us the superannuation shemozzle: Glorious views; butcher paper blue-tacked to the other three walls; electronic white-boards; trays of multi-coloured white-board markers; an easel or two; plates of spherical, tooth-chipping mints and a struggling coffee percolator in the corner emitting fumes of stale and inadequate caffeine.

And occupied, on a sort-of-interchange basis, by the same defined-benefit-superannuation-schemed public servant-types, casually dressed, with their government provided tablets.

All fired up for key decision-making...

Meeting room

For the last seven years.   Suddenly, one of them awakes.

"On-line!  That's it!  We'll do it on-line.  Think of the trees we will save."

"Excellent, Smithers-Chan, you'll be promoted to Grade 4 (b) (i) for that idea.  Now let's search Google to see how we do it."

Good grief.  How embarrassing.

So now, readers will have seen the birth of a new Olympic sport: Running Backwards.  The Australian team, led by PM Turnbull is bound to medal.  

Note: to medal - a new verb.  

And yet to medal in Rio is the alphabetically powerful team from Afghanistan.  But how about that champion women swimmer, who is also yet to medal, but made the semi-finals of the 200m freestyle.  Representing Hong Kong, her name is Siobhan Bernadette Haughey.  Confused?

Allow W&D to assist.  Her father is Irish and her mother Chinese.  The Irish have claimed her as theirs*.  The people of Hong Kong have also claimed her as theirs. 

The government of China have also claimed her as theirs, rather like an atoll in the South China Sea, upon which they will build... oh, never mind.

Elsewhere, W&D notes that the Duke of Westminster has died, passing his estate onto Hugh, his 25 year old bachelor son (by-passing the new Duke's three older sisters).  Hugh was clearly smart enough to be the first son of a duke.  W&D's daughters are on the next plane.

By the way, the estate is valued at about $12.3 billion**.  Nice work, if you can get it.

More comprehensively, this week, W&D ponders what if China sneezes, economically, that is; looks at the possible problem of massive youth unemployment in the Arab world; and notes that US companies' share prices keep going up (another record high last night) but their profits are going down.

Follow The Money updates the odds on the US presidential race.  W&D is now convinced that The Trumpster can book his Club Med vacation.

And, of course, Miscellany, to soothe your troubled mind.

Our sister publication, Investment Matters reviews the sustainability of company dividends, reports on the company profit of Paragon Care.  Plus the markets.

*Her great uncle, Charles Haughey, was the former Taoiseach (i.e. Prime Minister) of Ireland.

** In 1677, Sir Thomas Grosvenor married the 12-year-old heiress Mary Davies and came into possession of 500 acres of swamp, pasture and orchards to the west of London.  More than 330 years later, a majority of those 500 acres remain in the possession of Sir Thomas’s family. The suburbs are... Mayfair and Belgravia.