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The consequences of Coalition policy

The impact of the Coalition’s policies is being starkly brought home.

They speak of repealing the carbon tax as an achievement.

Since they did that, our emissions have risen significantly on the increased use of dirty coal. The year to March 2016 saw increases in electricity demand, electricity generation and emissions from generation in the NEM. This continued the general pattern of the past seventeen months. Annual emissions were 5.5% higher than in the year to June 2014.

The Great Barrier Reef has undergone a terrible bleaching event. Each year breaks more record temperatures. We lost revenue of about $7 billion dollars and chose instead to hand out industry assistance of over $3 billion to polluters.

But we can’t give industry assistance to Arrium Steel who were supposed to benefit greatly from the removal of the carbon tax, weren’t they?

And we can’t decide to use Australian steel for Australian projects because of the free trade agreements that they also claim were a good thing.

Strangely though, when Gina Rinehart borrowed money from an American lender to finance her Roy Hill mine, the lender made using American steel and equipment a condition of the loan. You can be very sure the US will do very well out of the TPP as we sign away our sovereignty.

Bill Shorten has called for a Royal Commission into the banking sector. The reaction from the Coalition has been immediate.

“It would be a waste of tens of millions of dollars”.

Unlike the Royal Commission into Pink Batts?

“ASIC have it in hand..they are the tough cop on the beat.”

When the government introduced its metadata retention laws in October 2014, they didn’t include ASIC on the list of organisations that could access the data, taking away a capability they already had to investigate white collar crime.

Information it has gathered as part of investigations of corporate crime in the past, including basic information on telephone calls and emails, will not be able to be obtained for investigations under the new regime unless it is given special clearance by the government.

Other agencies are also locked out of the data retention regime by the new bill, but ASIC is under particular pressure because communications are central to the most serious breaches of the corporations and securities law it polices, including insider trading, market manipulation and fraud. In the case of insider trading, communication is in effect the offence, and must be proved.

The Australian Federal Police which sometimes shares investigations with ASIC, has the power to intercept communications but is prevented by the existing law from passing on what it learns to the corporate regulator.

ASIC and the ACCC were eventually included on the advice of a Senate inquiry.

The Coalition also slashed funding for ASIC in both budgets leading to the loss of over 200 jobs and the curtailing of investigative capacity.

“Expect a stunt a day from Shorten up until the election…when ever that may be”

In August 2015, Tony Abbott was in trouble. A meeting of the National Security committee of the cabinet was asked for a list of national-security-related things that could be announced weekly up until the election.

“Shorten is making statements that will damage confidence and investment”

“He’s playing politics”

The Coalition seemed to have no qualms about damaging confidence by trumpeting the “debt and deficit disaster” before the last election but Scott reassures us “that was politics” and that, despite the debt being much higher and no surplus in sight, they have turned things around.

“They voted against a Royal Commission a year ago.”

A year is a long time Scott. I would imagine that, with the mounting number of scandals emerging in the financial industry, investors would be quite pleased to hear about a crackdown.

Scott Morrison is furious. He’s been everywhere vehemently calling this a “reckless diversion” from the real problem which is, of course, those lawless union thugs. He has even resorted to belittling Shorten’s appearance.

The Coalition sees their strategy hurtling towards a cliff. Try as they might to keep the focus on union bashing, almost every day sees another example of corporate corruption coming to light. The plan to sell a company tax cut also gets harder and harder as it is shown that very few of them actually pay any tax. They have resorted to reannouncing already announced funding for infrastructure.

Any day now, I expect to hear Malcolm say “We stopped the boats.”

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14 comments

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  1. Glenn K

    I bet you my 2015/16 tax bill (which will be high because I am a PAYE) that Malcolm will acknowledge the LNP “stopped the boats”. He’s gonna do it, but not if Gunna Morrison beats him to it!!

    Love your work Kaye. messy homes don’t matter. 🙂

  2. Arthur Baker

    Ironic, isn’t it? The carbon tax was supposed to wipe out Whyalla. It didn’t. But they abolished the carbon tax anyway. Now Whyalla is about to be wiped out anyway.

  3. Janet Simpson

    Can we get a visual presentation of this – perhaps in cartoon form – (and isn’t Moir wonderful?) – for the election campaign (with music by Tim Minchin??) we need to ram it home to all voters. …. the destruction and the waste and the lies. It will be interesting to see if MT offers any “election promises”……we should laugh in his face.

    Janet Simpson

  4. Kaye Lee

    They refused the $1.8 billion in revenue we would have got by just making people justify the business usage claimed for their car once every 5 years, supposedly to save the car industry. Or not.

    As the real effect of the FTAs takes hold we will see more and more jobs go.

  5. ImagiNation

    What else would you expect from an ex Goldman Sachs bankster and a Goldman Sachs sponsored TPP, honesty?

  6. Douglas Pye

    Thank you for a comprehensive article Kaye. .I believe it’s simply fair to say the Coal- ition have regarded the Australian public as ‘ Mugs ‘ since way back, when they slandered the previous Labor Gov’s. Of course, when they gained power under Abbott’s leadership, they simply raised the Contempt up a few notches …..the Hockey budget epitomised utter and blatant contempt !!

    Frankly, ( and not from a purely Partisan perspective ) it appears to me that nothing, short of a humiliating defeat will slow the Australian Conservative element down – even if our cause gains significant ground World wide. The ‘ sprat ‘ that the Panama ‘ revelations ‘ tossed to the World is far short of the tip of the iceberg !!

    Should the Conservatives gain the Treasury benches at the pending election, I personally will feel scared for myself and for mine !!

  7. jimhaz

    On a more generic basis, one of the worst consequences to me of Coalition policy is its effect on ALP policy. Every neo-con policy they get through the senate tends to shift the ALP slightly more to the right and the ALP now supports policies that go against the grain of working class voters. It allows the ALP more room to be political arsewipes.

    They create a new norm. This new norm is what the conservative lobby groups like the IPA constantly seek (and express as if dumbfounded everyone doesn’t just accept their “facts”) to create this new right of centre norm in the public mind.

  8. ImagiNation

    ‘You can be very sure the US will do very well out of the TPP as we sign away our sovereignty.’
    I know I’m repeating myself but the above line is possibly the most important issue Australia (and the world) faces at this time. If you are not aware how this is the case I thoroughly recommend finding out.

    Thank you Kay, as you are aware the magnitude of this corporate power grab is unprecedented throughout history.

  9. diannaart

    Whenever an “achievement” is claimed by the Coal-ition, such as the fear that investors will be scared off investment in Australia by an inquiry into the banking system, does any one of them bother to think through what they are saying?

    Surely a review of standards and how the banking sector treats its customers and does business is a positive thing? Isn’t such action showing concern into how this nation does business?

    Maybe, not, if the overseas investors Morrison fears losing are the Mafia, Drug lords, dodgy nation states and other organised crime and business monopolies.

  10. Matters Not

    As the real effect of the FTAs takes hold we will see more and more jobs go.

    From Australia? Yep. From the USA? Yep. It’s a claim made again and again by Bernie Sanders. So where do these jobs go? Try Vietnam as a good example. Growth in Vietnam predicted at 9% versus very little in the USA and Australia.

    But consider this. The TPP and other ‘free trade’ agreements aren’t really about which ‘Nation’ (and citizens) benefit (we are using the wrong conceptual framework here) but are about where large corporations can utilise the cheapest labour with the lowest workplace health and safety conditions and the most favourable taxation arrangements. Anyone who’s been to Vietnam will witness how labour operates there and under what conditions.

    In short the TPP (and their like) aren’t about countries and their citizens but all about ‘corporations’ and the one percent. The TPP is all about ‘sovereign’ nations becoming anything but. And with they themselves ‘choosing’ to do exactly that, via a ‘democratic’ process. QED.

  11. lawrencewinder

    Perhaps a very pointed, targeted and sustained attack on the “intellectual” wing of the office-boys of the ruling rabble, the IP bloody A and the results of its “free-market theory might clarify things for some people…. for it IS the IPA who are running the country.

  12. Deidre Zanker

    Never mind stopping the boats, it’s time to stop Malcolm and his malcontents.

  13. ImagiNation

    Panama update –
    24 hours later and not one media outlet in Australia is mentioning Iceland releasing jailed GFC banksters. I wonder why….

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