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Day to Day with John Lord 2/11

Monday November 2

1 Curtin University has estimated that an increase to the GST will cost the average family $4000 dollars a year. My view is that the Coalition will take a host of revised taxation policies to the next election. Everything Turnbull utters is done so in a manner framed in “everything is up for consideration.” That’s fine but it does illustrate just how little policy reform will have been done in the Coalitions first term. A wasted three years.

2 Bill Shorten should insist that the investigation into Labor Party branch stacking is honest and truly independent. The latest scandal has again humiliated the party and exposed it to public ignominy and disrepute.


Party stalwart Race Matthews lays into the establishment in this article:

“There may never be a better opportunity to clean up once and for all the morass that has been exposed. The party must not let this opportunity be lost”.

3 Two years ago I conducted a focus group with some final year school students. The purpose was to ascertain just what they knew of our political system. Overwhelmingly I found that they knew little of Political Ideology but were very well informed about the issues. Whilst I support lowering the voting age to 16 it would have to go hand in hand with a curriculum that enhanced their knowledge of our democracy and how it works.

4 A reminder not to miss the four part series beginning November 8 on the dismissal of Gough Whitlam.

5 At first the announcement that Australia wants to co-chair the Paris Climate talks might bring forth ridicule, even cynical laughter but here is another way of looking at it. The fact that Australia is putting in a bid to co-chair is itself a strong sign of positive engagement and as a co-chair, any country has a strong obligation to support the process in a positive manner. That is what other countries will be expecting.

6 If you haven’t read it already, I recommend Kaye Lee’s piece; Malcolm and Scott’s great big new tax on everything.


“Question everything. What you see, what you feel, what you hear and what you are told until you understand the truth of it. Faith is the residue of things not understood and can never be a substitute for fact”.



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  1. Friday

    You had me worried that I had done a mini blackout and missed a day.
    it is, as you say, a measure of the times that, not trusting myself, I yahoo7ed the date and time to check.
    It is easy being a conservative and believe that god will look after things in heaven, if not on earth. So the godless commos must not be listened to or trusted.
    How depressing that faith is so powerful as to obviate any need to question politics or why it was horrific to dump the lemon for a godless women but acceptable to replace a good man with a man that will defeat labor at the next election.
    Still sitting on a houseboat on the Murray with a hot cup of tea and another day to try to get a discussion on a 50% rise in GST moving into “greedy”.
    I am ever hopeful but with abbott’s usefulness as my most powerful ally in decline, the task is harder.

  2. Michael Peters

    I agree with your 3rd item (JL_2015_1102_3?? – I am a “how things work/process” type) – the big vacuum in our evolved political system is that for ALL residents/ratepayers/citizens there is no mechanism designed to bring them together, eye to eye and technologically (only 8% of greater local government Sydney have Precinct forums, but they are only allowed to be a one way street and in my experience disrespected), no mechanism to assist in analysing issues, gathering information, assisting in coming to a conclusion, despite technological advances which could facilitate this process starting at local government level (the kindergarten of corruption).
    Under the current evolved (not by accident) system – I wonder whether residents/ratepayers/citizens realise that they surrender their compulsory 1 vote, 1 value for 4 years in the 4 minutes it takes to complete a ballot paper to a popularity/beauty/designed complication/confusion, parade of candidates – the winners, having been thus “blessed” and empowered by the lure of self importance, power and control then decide under the guise of their conviction that they know what is good for us and respond to those whom they know and those who approach them through lobbying, etc, etc,etc whilst the rest of us are left to write, text, email, petition, demonstrate, attend council meetings and get abused but not permitted to engage and eventually disengage – our attempts at responsibility has no where to go and so is left frustratingly languishing and unfulfilled – the current system is designed for compliant populations under the guise of “democracy”.
    Having a system which offers and retains at least optional 1 vote, 1 value voting on issues at grass roots, would be civics in action – the benefit of learning from collective wisdom, promoting sense of community and understanding, training, educating and promoting inter-generational ideas, experience and understanding, choices and consequences, promoting transparency and accountability by those chosen few to us (who pay them), who inevitably and always pay the price of their decisions.
    It is a much better solution than the “focus group” approach with many long term benefits.
    Surely, a two way (up and down) solution filling this vacuum can only be good for those governed and those governing – win/win?

  3. John Lord

    Well put Michael. We certainly don’t have a representative democracy.

  4. Mark Needham

    “Question everything. What you see, what you feel, what you hear and what you are told until you understand the truth of it. Faith is the residue of things not understood and can never be a substitute for fact”

    Good Article John.
    Though the people who will have to pay an extra $4000.00 per year, will be spending $80,000.00 per year on GST products alone.
    Plus their tucker bill, bits that are GST free, average family 3, say @ $150.00 per week, ‘mmm $7,000.00 a year.
    Ok, $87,000.00 per year after tax. Not a bad sort of salary to be on.

    But still a good write.
    But don’t tell anyone I said so.

  5. Kaye Lee


    At the moment, two large costs for families and pensioners are health and education which are GST free therefore those things will go up by 15%. And you would be doing well to feed a family for $150 a week – $21 a day for four (or more) people? Residential rent is also GST free…will that go up too?

  6. Roswell

    My guess is they’ll be too scared to raise the GST without support from many quarters. They’ll have to convince us all that there is a desperate need for it.

    I’m one of those they’ll never convince. Not after we’ve seen them get rid of the income sources that Labor had initiated. Eg carbon price and resources tax.

  7. John Lord

    Labor will have to put its cards on the table sooner rather than later otherwise the Coalition will control the debate right up to the election.

  8. mars08

    I suppose that it’s too much to ask the ALP to attempt to defuse the fantastic “debt and deficit” hand grenade? I mean, it’s just too damn useful for spooking the herd at election time!

  9. Matters Not

    guess is they’ll be too scared to raise the GST without support from many quarters

    I suspect that ‘support’ flows from ‘many quarters’. For example, a pension increase ‘buys’ a significant demographic. Cuts to taxes always buy small business. A ‘package’ for the middle class, will buy them as well.

    As for the ‘elite’, there is no need to ‘buy’. They well and truly understand what is really going on. They know, it’s all about an overall ‘wealth’ transfer from the poor to the rich. At the moment it’s the ‘softening up’ phase, trying to work out the best ‘strategies’ the best ‘arguments’ that resonate. As always, a mixture of ‘fear’ and ‘promises’

    The bottom line will be the ‘selling’ of this wealth transfer. The advertising agencies, and the themes they develop, will be ‘crucial’ as will the ‘sellers’ and currently, I suspect Turnbull is a long way ahead.

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