Why is it that conservatives can never learn from their mistakes, only repeat them?
With Campbell Newman’s latest announcements, on privatising health and educational services, on top of his savage cuts to the public service and general government services, he is surely showing a sample of what to expect from an LNP Federal Government, and himself as Tony Abbott’s “mini me”.
The problem is that the conservative side of politics believe that government should be run like a business, and they are ideologically driven to producing surpluses regardless of the impact on the lives of workers or the wider economy.
A government’s job is to provide services and infrastructure to the people, for the purposes of nation building and taking care of the elderly, the sick and underprivileged, as well as the maintaining a healthy level of support for the wider community.
Now the truth is that many of these services and infrastructure requirements will not, and cannot be profitable, without a degradation to areas of quality and delivery, usually to rural and regional areas and lower socio economic communities.
The lessons to be learned from the GFC are that firstly austerity measures are decidedly unpopular amongst the majority of the citizenry, and secondly they are manifestly unsuccessful.
Austerity measures, as seen in Europe and now in QLD and other Eastern states, are implemented to impact the most vulnerable in society, namely pensioners and those that depend on social and medical services.
In QLD, Newman used the Costello audit and claims of a state economy comparable to that of Greece, to justify wholesale sackings in the public service sector and removing the traditional job security associated with the public service.
He promised that there would be no cuts to frontline services, which was a blatant lie, as we now know.
Newman’s first year in office is marked by:
- Cutting thousands of jobs, and then cancelling the state government jobs support and retraining schemes, not only making it harder for those that found themselves unemployed, but forcing them to compete for what jobs are available with the people/educators who would otherwise have been helping them to find work in other areas.
- Removing the inbuilt protections for public servants to be able to give advice from an independent stand point, and the inherent past security of public services.
- Axing the Premier’s Literary awards to save $250,000 whilst giving millions to the horse racing and sporting fraternities.
- Sending out directives that remaining public servants should bring their own tea and coffee to save money, as well as such innovations such as printing on both sides of a piece of paper for further savings.
- Telling The Australian Conservation Foundation that: “I take this opportunity to reaffirm my statements, made before the last election, that the State Government has no plans to approve the development of uranium in Queensland”. Then within two weeks, Newman’s Government voted to lift a ban on uranium mining.
- Outsourcing and selling off health and educational services, which invariably results in poorer services and service delivery.
- An economy going backwards, while the rest of the states still show varying levels of positive growth.
These are just a few of the cuts, and lies, that have created unnecessary uncertainty and hurt amongst the community and done untold damage to the states economy along with his ramping up of the cost of royalties to the coal mining industry, which are now as high as anywhere in the world further reducing investment opportunities in QLD.
The fact that mass sackings, reduces the levels of tax receipts, and affects the job prospects of up to a further four workers for every public servant sacked, in a number of related service industries, reducing consumer confidence across the wider community and further depressing the economy, seems to completely elude those of the ideologically driven LNP.
Campbell Newman is by no means alone in the implementation of this style of ideologically driven policies, with lies, misrepresentations and backflips being the stock in trade of the NSW and Vic LNP Governments as well, cutting spending on such meaningless portfolio areas as health and education?
The scary thing for Australians is that even this week, Abbott was reconfirming his support for Newman’s style of governing, and after Hockey’s stated commitment to a Costello style audit and Abbott’s declaration of at least 20,000 public servants to get the chop, there can be no doubt that Campbell Newman … Tony Abbott’s “mini me”.
Note: This has been a guest post by one who goes by the name of Truth Seeker, who runs the site Truth Seeker Musings, where the original of this post can be found. Of Truth Seeker Musings, he describes it is a proudly Australian, left wing site, dedicated to satirical and political poetry, among others.
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