Category: LNP Economic Management

Just Don’t Try To Make Sense And Accept That The Liberals Can Flip Position Without Anyone Noticing! – » The Australian Independent Media Network

This loosely is how the Google/Australian media controversy has gone. If I use Google to look up Scott Morrison to see whether he’s announced that he’s taking another break and I’m directed to an article by newspaper that doesn’t have a paywall, then they’ll be relying on advertising from the traffic that goes to their site in order to make money. Why they’d argue that Google should be forced to pay, I can’t work out. It would be different if Google was plagiarising the articles or breaching their copyright, but if the media companies aren’t happy with this arrangement, then they can put all their articles behind a paywall.

Just Don’t Try To Make Sense And Accept That The Liberals Can Flip Position Without Anyone Noticing! – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Treasury’s latest population projections seem hard to believe

From boom to bust: The Treasurer’s population forecasts

The overall population projection Treasury is now making is that once international borders fully re-open and things go back to “normal”, the population will grow at around 350,000 per annum for the second half of the 2020s. So, can we believe this latest population projection? Is Treasury really now being transparent?

Treasury’s latest population projections seem hard to believe

The Morrison Government and the biggest withdrawal of spending since World War 2

As Jobkeeper, JobSeeker and other stimulus measures are wound back in 2021, it is doubtful the Morrison Government will rise to the enormous economic challenges ahead, writes Tarric Brooker.

The Morrison Government and the biggest withdrawal of spending since World War 2

Fair global distribution of vaccines is vital

But with major pharmaceutical companies rolling out vaccines and millions of doses being bought by the United States, Britain, the European Union and Australia, developing countries argue such attempts to give them purchasing power in the market will only go so far. In October, India and South Africa asked the World Trade Organisation to temporarily waive intellectual property (IP) protections so that vaccines and other equipment for fighting COVID-19 could be made more cheaply at greater scale. Australia joined Britain, the US and the EU in opposing the move, arguing that existing rules on licensing would be sufficient to meet demand.

Fair global distribution of vaccines is vital

Economists back JobSeeker extension, wage subsidy review

Economists are divided about what should happen to the federal government's wage subsidy payments.

Top economists want the dole permanently increased in 2021 and a closer review of the federal government’s wage subsidy scheme JobKeeper to determine the future of the $100 billion lifeline.

Economists back JobSeeker extension, wage subsidy review

Balancing Act: Qantas reaps $1bn from taxpayers, but jobs, flights, fares all up in the air – Michael West

Charging exorbitant prices for travellers stranded overseas while raking in record government subsidies. Qantas and Virgin are the quintessential cases of “privatise the profits, socialise the losses”. Tasha May.looks at the airlines’ fine balancing act in corporate socialism during the pandemic.

Balancing Act: Qantas reaps $1bn from taxpayers, but jobs, flights, fares all up in the air – Michael West

Foreign investment clampdown prompts claims of Chinese buyers being ‘frozen out’ – ABC News

Chinese flags fly high outside the Australian Parliament House in Canberra

All foreign investment bids for Australian assets must be screened by the Foreign Investment Review Board From December 31, foreign buyers will face even more scrutiny when bidding for sensitive assets Experts say restrictions are being used to screen out bids by Chinese companies and are counterproductive to trade relations

Foreign investment clampdown prompts claims of Chinese buyers being ‘frozen out’ – ABC News

Bad Gig: industrial relations “reform” bill delivers flexibility … for employers – Michael West

IR, industrial relations, worker

When one-third of casuals work full-time hours, almost 60% have been with their employer for more than a year, and more than half cannot choose the days they work, is the “flexibility” of a casual job really for the benefit of employees? Professor David Peetz reports.

Bad Gig: industrial relations “reform” bill delivers flexibility … for employers – Michael West

The truth about much ‘casual’ work: it’s really about permanent insecurity

The federal government’s industrial relations “reform” bill offers a new definition of “casual” employment that creates more problems than it solves. It effectively defines a casual job as anything described that way by the employer at the time a job commences, so long as the employer initially makes “no firm advance commitment to continuing and indefinite work”. Anyone defined as such loses any entitlement to leave they might otherwise have got through two recent Federal Court decisions. Fair enough, you might think. Casual jobs are meant to be flexible. There can’t be an ongoing commitment.

The truth about much ‘casual’ work: it’s really about permanent insecurity

Who’s really behaving badly? Confronting Australia’s cashless welfare card

The government’s Cashless Debit Card almost fell apart on Wednesday night. Senator Rex Patrick’s refusal to support the government’s plans to make the scheme permanent gave some hope that this expensive, ideological and cruel policy would end.

Who’s really behaving badly? Confronting Australia’s cashless welfare card

Christian Porter’s new wage growth attack defies Reserve Bank advice

Attorney-General Christian Porter AAT scandal

Porter’s attack on workers will do something else as well. It is workers and households that have been the heroes of the recovery. While business has hidden in its bunker, Australians have endured lockdown, complied with often draconian restrictions on their freedom, then emerged to get back to work and start spending in exactly the way the government has urged them to. Their reward for that? Workchoices 2.0, designed to undermine their wages and further tilt the industrial relations playing field in favour of employers. It’s vicious, ideological and idiotically self-defeating.

Christian Porter’s new wage growth attack defies Reserve Bank advice

Assuming employers will lift wages in place of superannuation levy is a triumph of hope over experience – Michael West

A
superannuation guarantee rise

Remember the promise of the Casual worker’s bonus for benefit sacrifice that was a Trumpian promise still in waiting.

The government sat on a report into the retirement income system for four months because it was so politically sensitive and then released it on the day the Brereton report into potential war crimes in Afghanistan was released. Harry Chemay looks at what’s at stake in the debate around the rise in superannuation guarantee levy.

Assuming employers will lift wages in place of superannuation levy is a triumph of hope over experience – Michael West

The Liberals Are Ramping Up the Marketization of Australia’s Public Schools

The Liberals Are Ramping Up the Marketization of Australia’s Public Schools

Public school teachers have been working harder than ever during the pandemic. But that’s not enough for the New South Wales Productivity Commission, which wants to cut pay and conditions, while increasing productivity by pitting “value-added” teachers against their colleagues.

The Liberals Are Ramping Up the Marketization of Australia’s Public Schools

Reality Underemployed: time for truth in jobless figures – Michael West

Job queue, Australia unemployment

It is time the Australian Bureau of Statistics changed the way it reported unemployment figures, writes Alan Austin. Australia’s real unemployment rate is closer to 13% than 7%.

Reality Underemployed: time for truth in jobless figures – Michael West

“Mind-boggling” waste revealed in the record rise in weapons spending – Michael West

Frigate, Royal Australian Navy

Australian governments and their defence leaders, with help from lobbyists, choose immensely complex, overpriced and overmanned weaponry. Wasteful spending has to end, writes Brian Toohey.

“Mind-boggling” waste revealed in the record rise in weapons spending – Michael West

Money-laundering bill finally back in Parliament despite fight by Law Council, property lobby – Michael West

As Australia is a global pariah on climate change, it is a pariah for not cracking down on money laundering and financial crime that facilitates child exploitation and terrorism. But with the Greens’ amendment to the anti-money laundering/counter-terrorism financing bill to be debated this week, Labor, the Coalition and the cross-bench senators will have to decide: are they owned by the powerful property, accountancy and legal industries or not? Tasha May reports.

Money-laundering bill finally back in Parliament despite fight by Law Council, property lobby – Michael West

‘Borrower beware’ of new responsible lending laws

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg wants to make it easier for consumers to obtain loans.
Debt Slave Trade Garantor

More than 120 consumer, legal and other associations and almost 100 “prominent individuals” have signed an open letter to MPs urging them to reject a bill that would axe important borrower protections.Treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s decision to overhaul the National Consumer Credit Act is an attempt at making it easier for consumers to obtain loans and spur growth as the economy slides into recession.

‘Borrower beware’ of new responsible lending laws

Why is the Coalition trying to abolish a valuable safeguard for consumers? | Australian economy | The Guardian

Why is the Coalition trying to abolish a valuable safeguard for consumers? | Australian economy | The Guardian
Prime minister Scott Morrison and treasurer Josh Frydenberg.
PM and Treasurer of Debt Slavery under the guise of Recovery

The LNP is the jettisoning of responsible lending obligations (RLOs). The proposal to remove RLOs for much of consumer lending from the relevant legislation, under the guise of supporting economic recovery, and unsurprisingly supported by the banks, has provoked widespread opposition.

Why is the Coalition trying to abolish a valuable safeguard for consumers? | Australian economy | The Guardian

Ignore the spin – unemployment still up, says ACTU – » The Australian Independent Media Network

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) released unemployment figures for the month of October, and in its monthly labour force survey on Thursday revealed an increase of one-tenth of one per cent nationwide, bringing the figure up to an even 7.0 per cent.

Ignore the spin – unemployment still up, says ACTU – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Confession time for Lendlease as Tax Office bears down on humungous tax rort – Michael West

Lendlease, ATO, tax

Nine Entertainment chief Hugh Marks dumped for having sex, Christine Holgate chopped at Australia Post over $20,000 in bonuses. Meanwhile, the top brass at Lendlease, having presided over a billion dollar tax scam, nonchalantly claim they are “continuing to engage with the ATO and await the finalisation of its draft determination”. Michael West reports.

Confession time for Lendlease as Tax Office bears down on humungous tax rort – Michael West

Benefits of Coalition’s ‘gas-led recovery’ overstated and declining usage inevitable, report finds | Environment | The Guardian

brightly lit gas plant against a blue sky

The gas industry will inevitably decline as an energy source for industry and homes due to both economic and environmental issues, and will not deliver the Morrison government’s promised “gas-led recovery”, a new report finds.The gas industry will inevitably decline as an energy source for industry and homes due to both economic and environmental issues, and will not deliver the Morrison government’s promised “gas-led recovery”, a new report finds.

Benefits of Coalition’s ‘gas-led recovery’ overstated and declining usage inevitable, report finds | Environment | The Guardian

As Wind, Solar, surge, Renewables to be Globe’s largest Source of Electricity by 2025

LNP wants Australians to invest in the future of Fossil Fuels

The International Energy Agency just issued a report concluding that wind and solar are growing rapidly, unlike beleaguered fossil fuels, and that in only five years they will be generating a third of the world’s electricity, overtaking coal. They will overtake natural gas sooner, in 2023. Coal is the dirtiest fossil fuel, producing enormous amounts of carbon dioxide, a dangerous heat-trapping gas that is rapidly heating the earth and its oceans and endangering our way of life.

As Wind, Solar, surge, Renewables to be Globe’s largest Source of Electricity by 2025

Responsible Lending? Coalition’s left hand not sure what its right hand is doing – Michael West

responsible lending

The Coalition government is pushing hard to get rid of responsible lending obligations, but it doesn’t seem to realise that removing these obligations will pull the rug out from one of its signature pieces of legislation that Scott Morrison championed when he was treasurer – mandatory comprehensive credit reporting. Elizabeth Minter reports.

Responsible Lending? Coalition’s left hand not sure what its right hand is doing – Michael West

Jim Chalmers says two-thirds of the debt in the budget was borrowed before the start of the pandemic. Is he correct? – ABC News

jim chalmers's claim is correct

The claim Both the Coalition and Labor have in the past argued that paying off Commonwealth debt is a benchmark of economic success in Australian politics. But Treasurer Josh Frydenberg recently warned Australians that his July budget update was going to contain “eye watering numbers around debt and deficit”, saying: “The coronavirus has required the Government to spend unprecedented amounts of money to support people in need”. The following day, in an interview with ABC News Breakfast, shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers said the Government must not be allowed to “pull a swiftie” by pretending the red ink in the budget was a consequence of the virus when the vast majority of the debt had piled up beforehand.

Jim Chalmers says two-thirds of the debt in the budget was borrowed before the start of the pandemic. Is he correct? – ABC News

A new normal – yeah, right – » The Australian Independent Media Network

If the Coalition was serious about helping those who have a go, they would be giving larger tax cuts to those who would value the extra $20 or thereabouts a week and spend it on fixing the car, paying the outstanding bills or going away for the weekend for the first time in years, rather than those who really won’t even notice the extra $20 a week in their bank accounts. Morrison and Frydenberg had the perfect opportunity to make a real change for the better. Did they take it? – nope, of course they didn’t.

A new normal – yeah, right – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Asleep at the Wheel: why Australia’s emissions policy debacle puts hundreds of communities at risk – Michael West

Paxton, NSW, coal

Hundreds of communities across Australia are hurtling towards the coal and gas cliff as politicians obsess over Cartier watches and pandemic politics. Michael West reports on the spectre of plunging demand for fossil fuels and the savage effects it will reap on regional communities.

Asleep at the Wheel: why Australia’s emissions policy debacle puts hundreds of communities at risk – Michael West

ATO’s debt book grows to more than $53 billion as boss Chris Jordan faces Senate Estimates – ABC News

generic picture of Australian bank notes

The ATO’s debt book has hit another record and pressure is building on the agency to claw back this debt The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in net tax collections dipping over the past financial year, but tax refunds have risen As with prior years, the ATO has opted to settle with some large companies that disputed tax bills, rather than fight it out in court

ATO’s debt book grows to more than $53 billion as boss Chris Jordan faces Senate Estimates – ABC News

NBN battle between the ACCC and the Government

In my opinion, what this means is that the Government would like the ACCC to facilitate NBN Co to increase their prices. I will come back to this in a bit more detail. But in essence, the Government would like to create a better financial position for the NBN to put it up for sale. The alternative I have advocated now for many years is to write down some of the NBN costs.

NBN battle between the ACCC and the Government

The Australian Right Is Trying To Import Trump-Style Reactionary Populism

Victoria’s lockdown has provoked a self-styled rebellion that postures as defending freedom against the state premier, “Dictator” Dan Andrews. But once you scratch the plebian surface, the “movement” is led by right-wing activists and funded by Liberal Party money.

The Australian Right Is Trying To Import Trump-Style Reactionary Populism

BossKeeper: how JobKeeper lined the pockets of top ASX directors, executives and shareholders – Michael West

JobKeeper rorting by business

New Zealand and the US compile public registers to ensure their Jobkeeper-type subisidies are not rorted by businesses. But no such transparency for Australians. As the Government singles out bureaucrats such as Australia Post chief Christine Holgate for corporate excesses, Tasha May shines the torch on pandemic rorting at the top end of town. JobKeeper is the single largest piece of government spending in the country’s history. Yet despite taxpayer funding this hundred billion dollar wage subsidy, there is no public database to see whether JobKeeper is being used appropriately. From the limited information that has come to light, it seems clear that it is not. A report from governance advisory service Ownership Matters reveals four kinds of appalling activity by business.

BossKeeper: how JobKeeper lined the pockets of top ASX directors, executives and shareholders – Michael West

Murder, corruption, bombings – the company at centre of Australia’s submarine deal – Michael West

submarines weapons systems

The arms company at the centre of a deadly criminal saga and numerous global corruption scandals, Naval Group, was selected by the Australian government to build our new fleet of submarines – a deal heralded as ‘one of the world’s most lucrative defence contracts‘. How did this happen? In this special investigation Michelle Fahy discovers significant gaps in anti-bribery and corruption measures on this massive procurement project. The message communicated far and wide is that our standards are lax; grey areas are tolerated; and we’ll bend the rules and look the other way.

Murder, corruption, bombings – the company at centre of Australia’s submarine deal – Michael West

Government wants military response to climate change breakdown – Michael West

climate change disaster

The hypocrisy is extraordinary. On the one hand the Coalition Government reluctantly concedes that climate change exists at all and does little of substance to try to counteract it . Yet on the other hand it is dedicating substantial resources to establish a wide-ranging and powerful authority to tackle what it sees as the perceived threats of disaster from climate change. A bill being rushed through parliament – the Defence Legislation Amendment (Enhancement of Defence Force Response to Emergencies) Bill 2020 – is raising concerns that the Government is preparing for a militarised response to climate breakdown. Freedom of Information requests show that Defence is already planning towards extreme climate change impacts. References are made in the document of the need to “prepare for significantly more disaster support operations and potentially operations involving support to the civil power such as policing the population under exaggerated stresses such as food and water security”.

Government wants military response to climate change breakdown – Michael West

New Zealanders arrive in Adelaide despite South Australia not being in coronavirus bubble – ABC News

A Qantas aeroplane takes off in the air
Morrison’s determined cock up
Image may contain: 1 person, text that says 'Why didn't Border Force share Ruby Princess passenger information to airline operators fearful of covid19 infection spread? DUNNO! I'M NOT A BOAT CAPTAIN Why can't Border Force provide details of the New Zealand travellers who illegally entered Victoria? DUNNO! I'M NOT A PASSPORT INSPECTOR! Jich'

Five travellers from New Zealand have been forced into hotel quarantine in Adelaide after arriving unexpectedly on a flight from Sydney.

New Zealanders arrive in Adelaide despite South Australia not being in coronavirus bubble – ABC News

Aged care residents neglected once again

According to Melbourne-based newspaper The Age, the aged care crisis which peaked during the second wave of our recent global health pandemics was years in the making. The implications of COVID-19 for 180,000 elderly Australians in aged care facilities have been such that, well over five hundred succumbed to death while in residential care in Victoria alone. According to The Guardian, up to 40 per cent of those residents came from just ten residential settings.

Aged care residents neglected once again

Religious profit: Expanding the cashless welfare card ties in with Morrison’s beliefs – » The Australian Independent Media Network

The philosophy of the cashless welfare card is the perfect marriage of neoliberal ideology and evangelical Christianity, both of which pathologise, criminalise and individualise poverty as a lifestyle choice.

Religious profit: Expanding the cashless welfare card ties in with Morrison’s beliefs – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Josh Frydenberg’s Budget Takes From the Poor to Give to the Rich

Instead of providing sorely needed stimulus, the 2020 budget from Australia’s Coalition government transfers wealth toward millionaires and big business and away from the poor, the unemployed, women, and the government’s ideological enemies.

Josh Frydenberg’s Budget Takes From the Poor to Give to the Rich

Budget 2020 takes Australia towards a trillion-dollar debt, but most experts say it isn’t a problem. Here’s why – ABC News

Opposition Leader Tony Abbott (left) and shadow treasurer Joe Hockey discuss the Coalition's budget reply speech.

We’ve gone from ‘debt and deficit disaster’ to a trillion-dollar debt with no worries. How does that work?

How is the Australian Government funding its deficit spending?

Budget 2020 takes Australia towards a trillion-dollar debt, but most experts say it isn’t a problem. Here’s why – ABC News

The arts sector is already suffering. This year’s budget just pours salt on the wound | Leya Reid | Culture | The Guardian

A ghost light burns at the Arts Centre Melbourne’s closed Playhouse theatre during the coronavirus pandemic

The Coalition has demonstrated its lack of interest in helping a job-rich industry hit hard by Covid-19

The arts sector is already suffering. This year’s budget just pours salt on the wound | Leya Reid | Culture | The Guardian

Budget 2020: Morrison government cuts thousands of refugee places

Acting Immigration Minister Alan Tudge  says the change to the humanitarian intake is needed.
The Covid Cover Excuse

The Morrison government has slashed the maximum humanitarian intake by thousands on the basis it is too difficult to bring refugees into Australia in the same numbers as before the coronavirus pandemic. The humanitarian intake was reduced from 18,750 places to 13,750 over the next four years in Tuesday’s budget.

Budget 2020: Morrison government cuts thousands of refugee places

‘To those who have, more will be given’: Largesse to private schools continues

Private school funding

As families at public schools scrimp and save to provide the bare necessities, the federal government funnels ever more money into private schools without taking into account parents’ true capacity to pay. Trevor Cobbold reports.

‘To those who have, more will be given’: Largesse to private schools continues

Tax break for weapons exports to Mid-East countries accused of war crimes

Zero transparency in Australian weapons exports

Australian weapons manufacturer Electro Optic Systems, with financial support from the federal and ACT governments, is capitalising on the ‘growth market’ of the Middle East, one of the world’s most volatile regions. Michelle Fahy reports.

Tax break for weapons exports to Mid-East countries accused of war crimes

Frydenberg Starts Budget Speech With Reminder That All Figures Are Correct To Closest $60 Billion | The Shovel

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg last night delivered his second budget as Treasurer, beginning his speech by noting that the figures had been checked and were correct, give or take $60 billion.

Frydenberg Starts Budget Speech With Reminder That All Figures Are Correct To Closest $60 Billion | The Shovel

Trust me, I’m a Deregulated Banker – » The Australian Independent Media Network

We’re not ‘all in this together’ — Morrison and his government are back to their ideological worst. And we had a chance to create a new and better normal. What do you think?

Trust me, I’m a Deregulated Banker – » The Australian Independent Media Network

No strings attached: aged care providers have the Coalition wrapped around their little fingers – Michael West

More money for aged care providers

Locking out visitors has made it difficult for staff to meet the daily care needs of residents. What an indictment on aged care providers. They receive billions a year in funding, yet rely on the unpaid work of family/friends and volunteers. Surely it is time for complete accountability for their government funding, writes Dr Sarah Russell.

No strings attached: aged care providers have the Coalition wrapped around their little fingers – Michael West

Top economists back boosts to JobSeeker and social housing over tax cuts in pre-budget poll

Overwhelmingly, Australia’s leading economists want the budget to boost social housing and the JobSeeker unemployment benefit rather than bring forward personal income tax cuts.

Top economists back boosts to JobSeeker and social housing over tax cuts in pre-budget poll