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29
May

That’s One for Bill

shortenWhatever the outcome of Bill Shorten’s surprise move this week, he has caught Tony Abbott on the hop and executed one very successful wedge. Nice one, Bill.

The Irish vote for marriage equality has turned the issue on its head in Australia and one can be confident there is no going back now. Abbott can no longer hold back the tide. Shorten might have been playing politics announcing that he would introduce a private member’s bill to legalise same sex marriage, but so what?

Read more at: The Australian Independent Media Network

26
May

Why the budget will fail

haplessJoe Hockey is sitting on a knife edge, just like our economy. His 2015-16 fiscal statement (the budget) is predicated on the expectation that the Australian business community will awaken from their slumber. He thinks they will kick-start our economy back to a growth rate that will absorb a sizeable chunk of the unemployed. The Age’s Michael Pascoe explains here why this won’t happen.

Hockey’s flawed plan for revenue exposes his naïveté. One can only conclude that he is listening to the wrong people, i.e. those who have a vested interest in leaving things as they are, or his advisors, who appear as much in the dark as he is.

Read more at: The Australian Independent Media Network

21
May

Fluffy figures, flawed calculations, false expectations.

exageratedFair, reasonable and balanced. That has been Tony Abbott’s latest pre-budget mantra, a mantra that took a hiding after Joe Hockey delivered what will surely be his final attempt at a budget last night.

Even when they are trying to save themselves, the coalition have once again demonstrated how glued they are to an ideology of trickle-down economics they can neither shake off nor hide.

If this budget were to sway one single vote it would prove the collective IQ of the nation had gone into further decline.

Read more at: The Australian independent Media Network

21
May

Reflections on Trans-Pacific Nut Cases

indianSpending five weeks on the North American continent recently, four of them in the USA, was a great way to experience first-hand views and opinions on a variety of different subjects that penetrate the pores of the media in the land of the free.

It’s a good thing because when one observes the lunacy, ineptness and sheer bastardry of the LNP government here, seeing similar lunacy with the Republicans on the other side of the globe helps one to feel less isolated in one’s search for social sanity.

American politics, I observed, has more nut cases than we have here. But in our current political environment, I could also see that we were gaining.

Read more at: The Australian Independent Media Network

15
May

The Mystery of Money or how I learned to stop worrying about debt and deficits.

salesWhen Leigh Sales asked Bill Shorten on Thursday night how he was going to pay for the promises he made in his budget reply speech, Bill dodged the question. Well, why shouldn’t he? Politicians do that. But the answer he should have given was: The same way governments pay for anything. They credit our bank accounts with money the Reserve Bank creates out of thin air.

If the broader Australian community understood the principal of the three sectoral balances, they would be immune to the lamentable language used by politicians, journalists, business commentators and television anchor men and women who demonstrate daily how little they know about money.

Read more at: The Australian Independent Media Network

9
May

Hapless Hockey’s Hyperbole

haplessWatching Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey the other night on television sitting together in one of their offices pretending to look over their latest brainchild, the 2015 budget, I couldn’t help but feel embarrassed.

To see our two most senior government members, one so stern faced, trying to look so accomplished, the other like he didn’t have a clue, parading in front of a compliant media, was near laughable.

I remember the very same stunt last year which, we all know, ended in disaster. The repeat performance this year proves that they have learnt nothing. They still play the same old game, without any variation, without any sense of vitality or optimism. They are such ham actors.

Read more at: The Australian Independent Media Network

5
May

A Massive Over-Reaction

anzacWhat is Anzac Day to Australians and New Zealanders? As an Australian, I was taught to see it as a day of honouring the fallen, of remembrance and thoughtful reflection on bravery, self-sacrifice and brotherhood defiant in the face of adversity. This I believed.

I was also taught that it was a day to be grateful for what our soldiers did in WW1 at Gallipoli because they did it for us, that we would be free. This I have always struggled with. I struggled to see how an event that occurred 30 years before I was born could impact on me in that way. I struggled to see how my life would have been any different had these men not travelled to Gallipoli. I still struggle with that today.

Read more at: The Australian Independent Media Netwok

5
May

Abbott and Hockey Running Scared

promiseA week or so out from Joe Hockey’s second attempt at bringing down a national budget, what are we hearing? Not much. It will be dull and routine, boring, the job of fiscal repair is half done and so on. What rubbish. Behind all the upfront rhetoric we are hearing, the calming assurances and so on, both the PM and the Treasurer are running scared.

The overwhelming rejection of the 2014 budget, one that was so poorly crafted, has left our fearful duo so concerned they are keeping their twin mouths shut for fear this next one is sunk before its maiden voyage.

Read more at: The Australian Independent Media Network

4
May

State finances are not like a household or a maxed out credit card

An excellent article from the UK

Think Left

 Prue Plumridge patiently explains to a Conservative MP the true nature of Osborneomics and their devastating impact on the UK’s economy and people.

Dear Mr Whittingdale

I would like to take up where we left off at Sunday’s hustings on the subject of the national debt/ deficit, since not being a quick witted politician, I was unable to reply in the way I would have liked.  Let’s start with the Tory pledge that they’d balance the books by 2015.  Clearly this has not happened and, not only is the government on course to break this promise with the deficit set to be £75 billion next year, but is also set to borrow £207 billion more than planned. George Osborne’s plans to make more cuts (whilst not saying, unsurprisingly, where these cuts will fall) will take Britain back to 1930s levels of public spending, and that’s without the planned £7 billion…

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