Forget the budget because it will never happen. Nearly all of measures won’t take effect until after the next election, and if Abbott wins the next budget will revert to Hockey’s first budget and we will be living in the Fourth Reich. If Labour wins the budget will change to suit Labour Party philosophy. The budget is a total non-event dressed up to con the electorate into believing that the Abbott government has become warm and cuddly.
No-matter what economists and pollies may say all economics is ideology driven. If Australians want a caring compassionate country that does it’s best to look after all it’s citizens then we would follow one set of economic guidelines. If the desired outcome is to screw the poor to give to Murdoch and Rinehart then Joe Hockey is your man.
The moral and humanitarian attitudes of the party in power mean more than any short-term vote getting arse saving measures like the second Hockey budget. The Abbott government is still an extreme right government with an extreme right agenda. It is a government that runs concentration camps and treats Australian citizens as beasts of burden who’s only function is to serve the rich and powerful.
Concentration camps is the only way to describe overseas prison camps where refugees are stripped of their names and are known only as numbers, kept caged in appalling conditions with no hope, and who’s only crime was to seek our help in escaping repression. The Abbott government is a government that only changed its plan to withhold unemployment payments for under thirties for six months only when the Australian public comprehensively rejected it. It is a government who wanted to cut aged pensions whilst pretending that aged pensioners would be better off. It is a government that blackmails senators in to passing odious legislation. It is a government that refuses to understand that if we do not start looking after our planet in a short while we will not have an economy. The list of the evils of the Abbott government could go on forever but back to the budget.
Gross national product is not a good measure of our countries prosperity. What matters is how the gross national product is distributed. Does it matter how wealthy Australia is if one percent own everything and the rest of us scrabble for the few morsels falling from the snorts of the few with their heads in the trough. Joe Hockey will call it ‘trickle down’ but is it more like a very slowly dripping tap.
There are no universal economic rules. Economics is about who gets what from what is available. Economics is a about distribution. How do we want our wealth distributed? Is the distribution to be for the maximum good of all Australians or is our wealth solely for the benefit of the one percent?
Instead of discussing the Hockey non-budget the discussion needs to be about what sort of country we want to live in? Do we really want to live in the Fourth Reich? For those who do not like the idea of living in the Fourth Reich Abbott and his complete extreme right front bench must be buried under the same rock as Azazel, never to be seen again until the day of judgement.
There is a myth being perpetrated by the Abbott government that the Australian labour force is expensive and incompetent. This is a slur on Australia and a lie to cover Abbott’s twisted economic policy to give multinational companies the cheapest possible cost so they can screw Australian Workers.
The major problem with Australian labour costs is dumping. Dumping is when a company produces at the level that gives the lowest cost and maximises prices. When the lowest cost gives production units that is higher than the level needed to maximise profit the extra units are ‘dumped’ at cost on any country that has low levels of protection. When Abbott says Australia is open to business he means that Australia is open to anyone who wants to dump their excess production and in the process distort the relative costs of Australian labour. The cost of imported goods in Australia in many cases bears no relationship of the actual costs of production. This makes it impossible for say the Australian car industry compete with imported vehicles that are selling at thousands of dollars below their true price.
Protectionism is a dirty word according to Abbott and his economic minnows. Having tariffs that raise the cost of imported goods to the level of their true value is not protectionism; it is creating a level playing field. A system of tariffs that protects against dumping but goes not create not inhibit true competition would be flexible across industries and flexible over time would require a sensitive touch that is difficult to achieve, but the benefits would be a true indication of the cost of Australian labour and I would be surprised if we were to be found to be non-competitive.
There is another aspect to the argument. If Australia is to be competitive in a modern world Australians will need to get used to the idea that they will pay the true price of imported goods. Australians cannot have it both ways. We either have a vibrant economy or cheap imports. We cannot have both.
That description came from an American PBS broadcast relayed on channel 24. The reporter described a political system of total brutality and infighting with no reference to policy. His description was absolutely correct.
What do you do when the climate is warming, the Earth is burning, the seas are dying and democracy is collapsing into mob rule? Do what the Romans did. Give the people the circus.
Give them a place where you can go to watch the lions eat the Christians. Where the people can watch fully armed gladiators slaughter the innocent. Where everything is ruled by brute force. Where a ‘Thumbs up’ or ‘Thumbs down’ determines political life of death.
Einstein said that the world will not be destroyed by bad people. It will be destroyed by those who watch. Australia is being destroyed by a political system that relies on ideas and policies but has become so corrupted that it is now only a blood sport.
As each brutal encounter comes to a close the people give a ‘Thumbs up’ or ‘Thumps down’ via the opinion poles and the victor progresses to the next round. Who rises and all falls is dependant on brute force and bloody murder not on ability or policy.