The Coalition came to power in 2013 with the promise to wreck things and they didn’t disappoint.
Labor had introduced a price on carbon that was working well. It encouraged polluters to reduce emissions, investment in renewable energy, and research and development. It gave money to farmers for carbon abatement. Trade exposed industries were compensated as were consumers with a tripling of the tax-free threshold, increased pensions and energy supplements to welfare recipients.
We also had a tax on mining superprofits with the revenue to be redistributed via company tax cuts, small business instant asset write-offs, increasing the superannuation guarantee and super tax concessions, an infrastructure fund for the states, increases to family tax benefits, a supplementary allowance for those on income support, plus the schoolkids bonus.
And then along came Tones who got rid of it all.
Investors in clean energy fled as the Coalition “axed the tax” and cut the renewable energy target. Soaring profits from mining continue to be funnelled off to foreign shareholders as they squeeze every cent of profit from what are fast becoming stranded assets, leaving this energy rich nation to deal with exorbitant power prices and the insecurity of an aging fossil fuel generation fleet.
Under the Gillard government, a real FttP rollout of the NBN had begun.
Abbott’s response to this nation building infrastructure as he instructed then shadow communications minister Malcolm Turnbull to “demolish” it?
“The Government is going to invest $43 billion worth of hard-earned money in what I believe is going to turn out to be a white elephant on a massive scale. We can be certain the NBN will be to this term of government what pink batts and school halls were to the last term of government.”
It is telling that they chose Murdoch’s Fox Sports studio to announce the demolition.
We are now paying billions to redo NBN connections to all those poor bunnies who had the totally inadequate FttN thrust upon them.
Over the last nine years, our relations with other countries soured. Our rankings for human rights, transparency and corruption, and press freedom have all tumbled, as has trust in government and other institutions.
These will all have to be rebuilt.
From the way Peter Dutton has started as leader, it seems the wrecking mentality continues in the federal Coalition. Luckily, the Australian electorate has made them irrelevant.
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