Don Arthur writes about Australian econo-bloggers and whether they play more than a commentary role: “So even though econo-bloggers … aren’t getting anyone sacked, they’re well worth reading.” He was reacting to an article in The Australian lamenting all of that (but since the article did not mention this wonderful blog I won’t link to it!). But all this discussion got me thinking about whether bloggers can and should do more than sniping commentary.
Truth be told, Australian econo-bloggers are part-timers. Blogging is a very small part of their day (it takes at most half an hour of mine) and so it would be surprising if it could ever result in someone losing their job. That said, I reflected upon a few posts of mine that were supposed to be more than just commentary and I thought I’d list a couple here as a point of interest.
In 2006, I woke up one morning and wondered what Telstra told the regulator in New Zealand where it is an entrant and not the incumbent. Here is the post. Amazingly, it not only advocated the entrant case it did it very well and with evidence. This was all in direct contrast to what it had been saying in Australia. I gather that following that post, this inconsistency became understood by our own regulators.
That said, I think we do serve a role in pointing out inconsistency in the economic statements of politicians. Here is one I got to first on Julie Bishop (similar to yesterday’s on Joe Hockey) and just last night Sam Wylie tackled the PM (actually, Sam is doing this quite regularly). All of this stuff is not just academic commentary but could easily have been things that were tackled first by the mainstream media but, in fact, got there first from this blog.