Saturday 21st of April 2018

calmly explaining how you're going to be screwed if you are not part of the elite...

malcolm Y...


Despite efforts from Labor this week to block the impending cuts to penalty rates, thousands of Australians are bracing for a hit to the wallet when their pay for working weekends and holidays is trimmed back on July 1. Coincidentally, this is exactly the same day the nation's federal politicians will receive a pay rise, and a tax cut.

In a bizarre and ironic piece of timing, in just eight days time, some of the nation's lowest paid workers in the retail, hospitality and fast food sectors will have their penalty rates scaled back -- while the base pay for politicians will rise to over $200,000 for the first time, and the Prime Minister scores a $10,000 raise. It is also the same day the government's deficit levy, essentially an extra tax on the highest-paid Australians (including politicians) expires, which means our representatives in Canberra will score a double-whammy of a pay rise and a tax cut on the same day.

"The Tribunal has decided to increase remuneration by 2 per cent for public offices in its jurisdiction, with effect from 1 July 2017," the Remuneration Tribunal announced on Thursday.




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trickle up and dripping down...


A key boast in Scott Morrison's 2017 budget speech was: "Tonight, we announce we will deliver $75 billion in infrastructure funding and financing over the next ten years." That was much smaller than the budget's other capex splurge.

Elsewhere in the budget papers was a pledge for $200 billion in defence capital "investment". And that's just part of the cost of keeping one particularly expensive Abbott-era economic promise: to spend two per cent of GDP on defence.

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more toys, less brains... trickle up, dribble down...


The benefit to the domestic economy won’t be that big

The idea behind the cut is that companies will be motivated to provide jobs and other economic benefits because they are receiving a tax break. In theory this kind of tax should boost the economy in the long term, but as John Daley and Brendan Coates from the Grattan Institute explain it’s not that simple.

In Australia, the shares of Australian residents in company profits are effectively only taxed once. Investors get franking credits for whatever tax a company has paid, and these credits reduce their personal income tax. Consequently, for Australian investors, the company tax rate doesn’t matter much: they effectively pay tax on corporate profits at their personal rate of income tax.

The Grattan researchers point out that if companies pay less tax then they might reinvest what they save, but in practise most profits are paid out to shareholders. So the tax cut won’t have much of an impact on domestic investment.

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see also: trickle down or suck the middle?...



menzies and his non-conservative CONservatives...

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has taken a shot at critics on the right of his party, saying the Liberals' founder Robert Menzies never intended his party to be conservative.

Key points:
  • Malcolm Turnbull says Sir Robert Menzies — the longest-serving Liberal leader — purposely avoided calling the party "conservative"
  • Comments come in the wake of criticism from conservative Coalition backbenchers, including former PM Tony Abbott
  • Mr Turnbull was speaking in London where he was receiving the Disraeli Prize


The comments were part of a speech delivered in London overnight where Mr Turnbull was receiving the Disraeli Prize awarded by UK think tank Policy Exchange.

In his speech, the Prime Minister made the case that his party's longest serving leader Sir Robert Menzies wanted to create a progressive party not a conservative one.

"In 1944 Menzies went to great pains not to call his new political party, consolidating the centre right of Australian politics, conservative, but rather the Liberal Party, which he firmly anchored in the centre of Australian politics," he said.

"He wanted to stand apart from the big money, business establishment politics of traditional conservative parties of the right, as well as from the socialist tradition of the Australian Labour Party, the political wing of the union movement.

"Menzies said at the time: 'We took the name 'Liberal' because we were determined to be a progressive party, willing to make experiments, in no sense reactionary but believing in the individual, his right and his enterprise, and rejecting the socialist panacea'."

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The words of the day are "the sensible centre" whatever this means, in which shock jock pundits threw Bob Hawke in the mix as well. As long as the rich get tax cuts and the poor get hammered, the sensible centre will be hoodwinked into blancmange...

some CONservatives don't like the sensible centre...


Mr Kennett said he was so disillusioned about the state of the modern Liberal Party under Mr Turnbull that he wanted to drink whisky before 9am.

In remarks interpreted as a swipe at leading conservatives such as former prime minister Tony Abbott, Mr Turnbull used a speech in London to say the Liberal Party is not a "conservative party" and that it needed to occupy the "sensible centre" of politics.


"This latest point he has made in London seems to me to be an appalling lack of political judgment," Mr Kennett told ABC Radio in Melbourne.

"Why would you do it? Why would you do it from overseas? Why would you throw a can of petrol onto a fire?" 

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What the Jeff Kennetts and the Bernardis of this world misunderstood is that Malcolm's speech was not designed to preach to the "CONservatives" but to stop the inroad by the Labor party into the middle-of-the-road voters. Under Malcolm or under Abbott, the Liberal Party (KONservatives) has not wavered from its primary purpose which is to enrich the rich and keep the rest of us underfoot (see toon at top). But the number of people suffering from the "liberal" policies has grown and the party has been rejected by decent people who struggle to make a buck. As well, Malcolm has made a few hypocritical concessions on certain fronts such as global warming. He has given lip service to the chief scientist who already was quite ambiguously mild in his views of global warming. So the fiddles are impressively touted, but their design is still based on burning more fossil fuels... It's a Malcolm con all around, but his colleague in the Liberal (KONservative) Party misunderstood where he came from. By trying to capture the "sensible centre" while staying firmly in the CONservative camp, Malcolm only got brickbats from everywhere. 



history — in cartoons...


For those who don't follow history, the words in the cartoon at top: "We are determined to finalise the implementation of a truly consensual fiscal regulatory mechanism, retro-engineered to address the inequalities of..." actually were (possibly) pronounced by Kevin Rudd in 2009. They became the subject of a cartoon by Andrew Dyson for the Age...

I thought the words were in the same vein as what blah blah blah Malcolm ponders in his speeches — except what follows goes slightly differently. Rudd was more in line with hammering the rich and helping the poor.


complicit in injustice...

By Tony Fitzgerald

Democracy has largely been reduced to a contest between three dominant parties, two of which act in coalition.

Each is a private organisation with a small membership which primarily represents the interests — in particular the economic interests — of a section of the community.

They dominate public discussion and debate and one or other of them has governed Australia for more than 70 years.

They enacted the legislation that provides public funding based on past election results, giving them a major electoral advantage over other parties and independent candidates.

During that period, politics has been transformed from a public service to a career with a well-defined path for those who embrace the culture and authority of their chosen party, and accept that ideology and sectional interests are more important than the common good.

Winning is all that matters and "whatever it takes" is the basic rule.

Trusting pollies to behave properly

We have a representative democracy with a "Westminster system" where the Federal Parliament is supreme.

Australian courts have power to enforce the division of power between the Commonwealth and the States but laws made by Parliament cannot be questioned on any other basis.

Unjust laws are valid; courts can only protect individuals or minorities when permitted to do so by Parliament, which can effectively oblige judges to be complicit in injustice.

Parliamentarians are not legally required to act in the public interest or tell the truth or forbidden to act in their own interests or the interests of their supporters. Australia's Constitution requires them only to take an oath of allegiance to the Queen.

Ministers give an additional undertaking which presently merely requires them to serve the Australian people.

The Westminster system takes it for granted that political power will be exercised by people who know how to behave properly and can be trusted to do so.

That assumption might seem strange today. However, ethical behaviour is in everyone's rational self-interest.

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