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A Dismal Tale of Failure

The latest Labour Force data has been released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics and it is not pretty.

Over the last 12 months, Australia has recorded a loss of 86,500 full time jobs and the creation of 196,000 part-time jobs. Employment growth for September was negative, yet the overall rate fell by 0.1% due to a 0.4% decline in the participation rate, i.e. unemployed people giving up looking for work, either permanently or temporarily.

The employment participation rate is now 64.5% of the population, down from its peak of 65.8% in November 2010. Even the most optimistic supporter of the government’s “jobs and growth” mantra would recognise this as an economy heading in the wrong direction.

The ABS September 2016 quarter figures show there were 1,011,100 underemployed and a total of 1,881,520 workers either unemployed or underemployed.

The Australian bureau of Statistics says, ‘The latest Labour Force release shows further increases in part-time employment. There are now 130,000 more persons working part-time than in December 2015, while the number working full-time has decreased by 54,100 persons.

From a long term perspective, Bill Mitchell describes the position thus: “Total official unemployment in September 2016 was estimated to be 705,100. However, if participation had not have fallen relative to November 2010, there would be 956,500 workers unemployed given growth in population and employment since November 2010.”

The obvious conclusion is that demand for labour is weak. Any government member who finds this trend encouraging should resign. It is a disgrace.

During the election campaign, Malcolm Turnbull continually stated that one of the key differences between the Coalition and Labor was that they (the Coalition) had a plan.

While they were never able to fully explain what that plan was, they were adamant that, beyond the gobbledygook, a plan existed. The plan, we were told, was intended to create jobs, albeit one totally reliant on the private sector providing those jobs.

As things stand, the private sector is waiting for the government to inject some stimulus sufficient enough to give them the incentive to invest. Neither seem able to show any leadership.

cashWhichever way you view them, the numbers continue to go south and the government continues to look incapable of stopping them. Treasurer, Scott Morrison and Minister for Employment, Michaela Cash are effectively missing in action.


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  1. lawrencesroberts

    The robots are upon us. Labor would do no better.

  2. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    This is the time when significant, government-backed micro finance must be freed up for unemployed and under-employed people so they can provide their own self-employment in new micro businesses based on their skills and ingenuity.

    This would help to stimulate the economy with the boosted activity and provision of new lines of home-grown goods and services.

    It would also significantly reduce poverty and the negative health and welfare consequences of unemployment and under-employment.

  3. Harquebus

    Absurd infinite growth ideology meets physical realities of a finite planet.
    Low growth and high unemployment are just two of this phenomenon’s many symptoms.

  4. brickbob

    The last Federal election was a good one for Labor to lose and people may finally wake up to how incompetent the Conservatives parties are,and lets hope if Labor win the next one they will do a better job and keep their fragile egos in check.”””””””

  5. Trish Corry

    The current job figures are dismal and it is a huge worry. I do disagree with Lawrence Roberts above. It is easier to be lazy and just churn out this mantra we see time and time again.

    Labor will address job creation by:

    Investing in Infrastructure Australia and correcting the 50 odd billion dollars of deficit in infrastructure the LNP caused.
    In the cities – invest in massive infrastructure projects for public transport
    Strategically encourage jobs in outer city areas where houses are to decrease travel to the city for work.
    Decentralise the public centre by creating other CBDs (I personally disagree with this, that public sector should be decentralised to the regions, not two CBDs in capital cities).
    Use locally produced steel in all infrastructure projects (this creates demand in this industry)
    Develop a local steel supplier advocate so some of the smaller steel suppliers get contracts
    Implement Albo’s baby – High speed rail.
    Include in all infrastructure projects – build in bikeways to encourage cycling
    An apprentice for one in ten workers on Government Projects
    Work with States to ensure this is for state projects too
    A list of massive road projects from Gladstone to Cairns (Hell Yeah!)
    A national automotive advocate to advocate on behalf of the suppliers who were supplying Ford and Holden so they stay in business
    Regional consortiums (up to $500,000 a year) between Uni/Tafe-LGA and business to create new regional businesses (hell yeah!).
    50% renewables target by 2030
    Establish Independent office of Animal Welfare
    Licencing Labor Hire so there are no more sham contractors
    Investment in frontline workers and services for domestic violence

    Anyway, I could go on. There are heaps more. As we can see the Liberals do nothing, but some will still harp on with the mantra that Labor are the same. I guess “One Hundred Positive Policies” isn’t as exciting as ‘We have a plan for a plan”

  6. Ross

    It goes something like this;
    The final siren has sounded. Scores are tied. The MSM umpire has given team Australia a free kick 1 metre out directly in front. Team Oz’s captain Mal the Magnificent hands the ball to his gun full forward Jobson Growth. He can’t possibly miss from this distance. He lines up the kick and…………he’s missed.

  7. Michael Taylor

    Probably a fitting result, Ross. He staged the free kick and the umpire fell for it.

  8. Möbius Ecko

    Trish Corry. It’s going to be interesting to see what Mike Baird spends his $16b from the part sale of Ausgrid is getting him. He has promised the biggest infrastructure spend in NSW for a long time.

    This will eventually cost NSW consumers for certain but the timing of it will help the Federal government in time for the next election. This is why Hockey wanted the States to sell off their assets in return for Federal money. Nothing to do with the long term good of the country and everything to do with the short to medium term gain of the L-NP to win elections and destroy the Labor and Greens.

    From the start of the Howard reign, this has been the Liberals goal. Gain and/or remain in power at all public costs, and destroy oppositions by any means using public cost and resources as much as possible. They spend enormous public time and resources to achieve their main goals whilst actually governing takes a back seat of tokenism. Governance even takes a back seat to their rorting entitlements and spending time on the job.

  9. Trish Corry

    I tried and tried and tried to warn NSW voters that Baird would be like Newman. I was but a whisper in the roar of people enamoured by his perfect Colgate smile.

    I hope that NSW people wake up to the farce of a Govt they have. You are spot on.

  10. Michael Taylor

    If Baird doesn’t get kicked out at the next election then one can only wonder at how stupid people are.

  11. Wayne Turner

    Sadly Michael,most people are very stupid – Voted this lying crap mob back in,with a gutless leader with Abbott policies.Plus,the fact that Abbott EVER become PM,shows their is no cure for stupid.Abbott is the dumbest PM we have EVER had.

    Another LNP fail,played down and/or ignored by the LNP’s MSM – No surprise.Imagine the MSM carry on if this was under Labor.

    Malcolm NoBalls jobs and growth was always another empty slogan,from Mr “Advocacy” and “NOT slogans.

    The LNP are slave labour conservatives – Puppets for (certain) businesses,anti-worker,love the working poor and love “slaves for the dole”.

  12. johnlward010

    The last Parliament (2013-2016) twice declined to allow the Executive’s Bill to Abolish the CEFC to become law. Subsequently, the Executive arm of Government had tried for two years to change the CEFC investment mandate.

    Recently, while in caretaker mode, the LNP created a different investment mandate directive (in order to appear to the electors to have authority) to modify the intent of the CEFC Act, without returning to the Parliament (which BTW no longer existed).

    So apparently they were preparing to seek such an alteration to the CEFC Act in (the next) the 45th Parliament.

    During the election campaign Prime Minister Turnbull purported to have the authority to redistribute $1billion from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) to fund his new Clean Energy Innovation Fund (CEIF).

    $1 billion was also set aside to finance a ‘Better Cities Fund’ announced two thirds of the way through the campaign.

    And a further $1 billion ‘drawn ‘ from the “Green Bank ” to clean up the Barrier Reef ($0.6 Billion) is mentioned in an advertisement in the Australian newspaper for jobs to deliver higher water quality in farm runoff in what looks like a subsidy to sugar / ethanol industry.

    $100 million was set aside to prevent the closure of the Steelworks in Whyalla SA, and the University of Tasmania’s Northern Campus in Launceston received a pledge of $150 million to be extracted from the CEFC.

    These monies are part of the proposed omnibus legislation meant to wedge the ALP.

    Prime Minister Turnbull is fundamentally saying to Tasmanians and UTas, “you can have an expanded Northern Campus or a renewable energy industry, but you cannot have not both”.

    Malcolm promised money he cannot access, with the total pledged so far being $5.6 billion.

    Cabinet Ministers have conspired to remove all funds from the CEFC by pledging the total amount left in the CEFC account to other ‘good LNP causes’.

    At the same time Malcolm Turnbull is subsidising the fossil fuel industry with $24 billion of taxpayer funds.
    This includes exploration funding for Geoscience Australia and tax deductions for mining and petroleum exploration.

    Prime Minister Turnbull, Deputy Prime Minister Joyce, Former Prime Minister Abbott, Ministers Pyne, Hockey, Cormann and Hunt are attempting to falsely convince the public that the Cabinet can “re-purpose and re-direct the Act” without going back through the Parliament.

    These attempted changes to the CEFC Act 2012 are still to be legislated.

    Let’s consider the limits the Clean Energy Finance Corporation Act 2012 imposes on the responsible Minister’s mandate.

    Section 65: The responsible Ministers must not give a direction under subsection 64(1):

    (a) that has the purpose, or has or is likely to have the effect, of directly or indirectly requiring the Board to, or not to, make a particular investment; or
    (b) that is inconsistent with this Act (including the object of this Act).

    The object of The Clean Energy Finance Corporation Act (2012) is to facilitate increased flows of finance into the clean energy sector.

  13. Denisio Fabuloso

    Not to mention one hour a week work gets counted as ’employment’. Imagine how large the actual unemployment figures are? Same old… same old. I despair at the prospect for meaningful and beneficial social and environmental change. I don’t see anything changing until the unholy trifecta of climate change, financial and environmental collapse is bearing down upon us. The rewards of 50 years of trickle up wealth and unregulated growth at all costs corporate managed neo liberalism. Then inevitably it’s the shit storm from hell which there is no coming back from. Happy days.

  14. jim

    You’d have to go back near 70 years to find a government as bad as what we got now.

    We have the worst government . since 1949 and it’s the LNP,……As the Australia Institute’s research in June found – across a broad range of economic measures, the Abbott/Turnbull government has performed the worst of any Australian government since 1949. Economist Jim Stanford’s report examines economic performance across 12 indicators – including GDP per capita, the unemployment rate, employment growth and the growth of real business investment and intellectual property investment …

    What the media and the governments tell you are all LIES

    Q&A favours certain think tanks over others, with the IPA having 4 staff members making 11 appearances, while no representative from The Australia Institute has ever been seen on Q&A..

  15. Pingback: A Dismal Tale of Failure | THE VIEW FROM MY GARDEN

  16. Jaquix

    Trish, good comeback to Lawrencesroberts’ negative (trolling?) comment. There is so much that can be done. The Libs are lazy, but also not interested in “governing”, in fact they dont actually understand what is involved. Such a backlog of reform needed, Labor might have to do what Gough Whitlam apparently did – before appointing any ministers, he sat down with his righthand man and compiled a list of matters needing action. They worked their way through them, before getting back to normal. Maybe a bit close to the wire but it would speed up the work needed to clean up the mess the Libs will be leaving.

  17. Trish Corry

    I agree Jacquix. I think this is what they have been doing with their 100 positive policies. Labor absolutely needs to get in. The difference between Labor in QLD compared to Newman’s LNP in QLD – I don’t even have the words to describe. Under Newman I woke up feeling scared every single day.

    Now I don’t feel like that under Abbott’s or Turnbull’s rule. There was something very vile and sinister about Newman’s approach and I think it was that he was an Authoritarian above all else. The current alignment of LNP with the LNP Nats in QLD and Hanson has me very uneasy we are going back down the road to Newman, but federally.

    Years of Abbott and Turnbull is really kicking in and getting depressing. Labor absolutely needs to get in and they need to do it right from the day they get in and stay in for a very long time. I think Shorten has the capability to do just that.

  18. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Not just Labor needs to save the day coz they can’t do it alone coz they have been waylaid also by neoliberalism for too long.

    Labor needs to get serious about joining forces with parties forging in the same direction of socio-economic change.

    The Greens are obvious allies and so are numerous new progressive micro parties.

  19. cornlegend

    Well that makes sense 😀
    “Labor ,,,they have been waylaid also by neoliberalism for too long.”
    “Labor needs to get serious about joining forces with parties forging in the same direction of socio-economic change”
    what? all the neolibs get together?
    They wouldn’t be holding hands with the Greens under any of your options.
    I understand Green resentment setting in as it continues on in irrelevance and desperation to pin their tails to another party to maintain some sway, but alas, it ain’t happening {as if you didn’t know that already} 😀

  20. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Well cornlegend,

    sorry to disappoint you but I don’t know that already.

    Even Labor can come to its senses eventually when its minions are set aside and some more intelligent people start advising the big brass.

  21. cornlegend

    Hey Jennifer, you are from Victoria ?
    No wonder you can’t trust the Greens.
    did you hear about about the Age/Greens little lark?

    During the Victorian 2010 State Election campaign it was discovered that the Labor database full of confidential correspondence and personal details of voters had been illegally accessed and voter records illegally viewed or copied.

    It would appear that a Labor laptop was stolen during the campaign by someone impersonating a Labor volunteer. That laptop then ended up in the hands of former Greens councillor and Greens endorsed State candidate Fraser Brindley.

    From there the login was used from the offices of the Age clearly supplied by Brindley or an associate.

    The information gathered from the crime was then illegally used in an article written in the Age to assist the Greens State campaign in the inner city.

    Four people were charged and in court admitted criminal behaviour and plead guilty over this matter, the Greens Fraser Brindley, and from Fairfax Royce Millar, Ben Schneiders and Nick McKenzie.

  22. Jexpat

    There goes old cornpone again: showing exactly why we should never trust a Labor party stalwart. With these sorts (no matter what the evidence shows) it’s always going to be: Go the Blues or Go the Maroons.

    Wouldn’t matter which side kicked a goal -or kicked a fan in the head.

    We’d hear the same thing.

  23. cornlegend

    never trust a Labor party stalwart.”
    Then don’t try to create these bloody alliances
    and trust?
    I didn’t pinch a laptop, that was the Greens candidate and his Age cronies.
    “We’d hear the same thing.”
    You Greens have, but you don’t listen,
    I posted it once before but this is just for you in case you need to digest it
    Chris Bowen, made the reality clear in a recent interview on Radio National.

    “We are not interested in any Coalition agreements with any party,” he said. “I wrote about this in my book in 2013; Labor governs alone or not at all. Who parties vote for in a confidence vote is up to them. If there is a confidence vote after the election, and independents and other parties have to choose who to support, that’s a matter for them. We will not be entering into any agreements, coalitions or deals with the Greens or anybody else.”

    Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has explicitly ruled out forming a coalition government with the Greens
    Adam Bandt raised it , but got shut down by Bill
    The Greens aren’t running serious in any seat against the Liberal Party so this is an argument where they try to say to Labor voters you can have your cake and eat it to, you can vote for us and really it’s a vote for Labor. It’s absolutely not.”

    “But Mr Shorten, who is campaigning in far-north Queensland, said Mr Bandt was “dreaming”.
    “Labor will fight this election to form its own government and to form a government in our own right,”
    “Labor will not be going into coalition with any party.”
    Ms Plibersek says Australians would be “horrified by the idea of another hung parliament’’ as she rebuffed the Greens’ advances.
    Ms Plibersek said Labor was “playing to win’’
    “We will not enter into a coalition:”Anthony Albanese
    Adam Bandt was there again today on Sky News attacking me, he’s got a bit of an unhealthy obsession I think, he can’t seem to do an interview without mentioning me,’ Mr Albanese said.

    ‘The Greens aren’t in a position to be a threat to anything,’ he said. ‘They have one member of the House of Representatives, where government is formed, the same number as the Katter Australia Party.’
    Opposition legal affairs spokesman Mark Dreyfus repeated Labor’s policy … that we will not form a coalition with the Greens, full stop,”
    Tony Burke “We certainly would not be forming any sort of coalition agreement with the Greens,”‘ Mr Burke told ABC radio.”

    There are more if you need them

  24. Trish Corry

    One thing about the rise of Trump, is that there is now a movement against ‘the third party option’ outlying how dangerous this option actually is. They call it ‘action to inaction.’ An apt description in my book. Any move you make that is not a dead certainty to wipe out Trump (evil) versus Clinton (good) to play good vs evil is seen as damaging.

    It is the way I see anyone who votes for a third party. Unless it is a third party who can actually unseat the Liberals and has the complete opposite Ideology and won’t side with them. Point me to one instance where this exists. I cannot think of one. Even Windsor is an ex-Nat.

    Up here in good old Maroon country, the Greens don’t matter a fig. They are irrelevant. Here we need to slay the real Orcs – the bastard LNP and now Hanson.

    Our worlds Jennifer and Jexpat are very different. If you took the time to see the real enemy up close, like I do every day and worse at election time, you certainly would not be meeping about anything else but the fight to get rid of these wreckers and destroyers of everything that is remotely good. You would not have the energy for a third party.

    I don’t believe your fear of the LNP is as fearful as mine. They disgust me to my very core. They hate the worker with a passion and it is historically ingrained in who they are. The hatred of the worker is an insidious blight on society. There is only ONE party who will Govern for fairness and the worker and that is Labor.

    I’m not saying that the Greens are inherently bad or anything, but it is not in their blood. I’ve had discussions with Greens members who put the animals and nature before humans. I’ve yet to meet a Labor member who will put anything before the human aspect of society.

    I’ve lived through Joh and Newman, Fraser, Howard, Abbott and Turnbull and I’ll stick with Labor 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for the rest of my life.

    The lack of acknowledgement for how great Labor made this country during the GFC, when it would have been so much worse for jobs, is astounding. The media is shit. Absolute shit. They allow the public to view the world through their broken bias lens. That is why AIMN, The New Matilda, The Saturday Paper, Independent Australia and the wider Blogger-sphere is incredibly important.

    My blood runs red. I’m proud of it.

    Are you back Corny?

  25. cornlegend

    yep, till next week then we are off on an anniversary trip my missus wants as her pressie

  26. Trish Corry

    Glad to hear!

  27. Jexpat

    Cornpone, cornpone.

    Proving yet what anyone could observe, record and recount for their ownselves.

    Blue -or woo -maybe also Maroon- but never ever Green.


    You’re no friend of anyone seeking to advance progressive values or polices.

    That much has been clear for years from your own writings (and your employee’s [nurse’s] writings).

    Hey Trish: let’s be honest. Your bit above (forget the lazy Trump reference) is -how to put it lightly? Presumptuous.

    You may (or may not) live in a harsh area of Queensland. I may hail originally from far worse place. Somewhere you couldn’t even imagine, scout.

    So when reasonable folks- many of who have come a long way in their own jouneys, hear this pathological partisan bulls!t, you’ll just have to expect a bit of backlash.

  28. Trish Corry

    It is always so fascinating that the most offensive commentators that throw the insults around like its their birth right always claim to have the hardest of lives and are the experts on absolutely everything.

    “You are no friend……” bahahahah sounds like Abbott.

    Hmmm “Scout” as in the boy scout variety or the To Kill A Mockingbird variety?

    It is no secret I live in Central Qld – Capricornia – where they grow Joh worshippers and the likes of Christensen and our own incompetent Landry who finger points to words as she reads questions in Parliament. People like Landry who accused the CFMEU for chasing her daughter out of town, when it came to light that her daughter left her town because she stole from the bank she worked for. But blame the unions. Its in their DNA.

    People like associates of LNP who are now in court for stalking the Labor QLD MP. People like the volunteers who say things like “Who cares if Medicare goes up – not everyone gets sick” and “Which Union thug are you” (all up in my face) and “Capricornia needs the LNP because most people are poorly educated and people are too lazy to find jobs, we will make them get jobs.” “Don’t vote for Katter or Lazurus in the Senate cos they are both funded by the filthy union criminals.”

    and where Senator Canavan, the boy from South Brisbane and lived his entire working life in Canberra, walks around masquerading as a real country boy who understands the farmer. Puh-lease!

    Stuff that makes your guts churn and your blood boil.

    The hatred of the worker runs deep for the born to rule mindset of the LNP. The LNP are vile and repulsive and every effort should be made to rid them from Parliament. To me, that does not include worshipping a third party option that will make no difference to a change of Government.

    This article is about jobs. The only party who can make the changes required for job creation and prosperity is Labor. It might be a hard pill to swallow for some who vote for inaction, like yourself, but it is plain and simple fact. If you think that the Greens with their one seat have a way forward out of this abysmal mess we have ourselves in where jobs are scarce and full time jobs even more so – please go ahead and enlighten us with your wisdom, instead of letting your ‘backlash’ speak for you.

  29. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    When Labor talks seriously about sufficiently financing micro businesses so to create equitable access to sustainable self-employment for low and no income people, who are amongst the UNemployed and UNder-employed workers, then I might believe they have everybody’s interests at heart.

    Right now, Labor’s care for the growing unemployed is Missing In Action just when those people need protection from the LNP criminals most.

  30. townsvilleblog

    Independent research from Roy Morgan Research puts the figure higher than the official ABS statistics with 1,101,000 unemployed and 1,002,000 under employed or 2.103 million either unemployed or under employed. This frightful truth of the incompetence of our L&NP govt is horrifying for those 2 million Aussies who are either trying to survive on Newstart or have a few hours work per week to try to sustain themselves on. With the number of Aussies living below the poverty line up to 3 million including 731,000 children and the situation continuing to deteriorate we will end up with 5 million living below the poverty line out of a population of 24 million, 2 million in excess of our sustainable population of 22 million,

    It looks from where I’m sitting as a catastrophe waiting to happen with another 3 years for the tory government we will have no government services left in 2019 including Medicare, which the NSW Branch of the Liberal Party have already touted bringing private insurance companies into our local GP Clinics to replace Medicare. There will be no affordable medical cover left, no public hospitals, in NSW public hospitals are already under private management and this will spread to other L&NP or LNP governed States. We are being sold out to become the 51st State of the United States of America.

  31. cornlegend

    I think a commenter on there summed it up nicely

    27m ago
    1 2

    Labor is the alternative Government, they must be responsible and yet firm when it comes to principles and general direction for this country. Why is that Labor has shown relatively more support in Parliament for the legislative initiatives of this Government than for the past Coalition Government?…. Simple, because Turnbull is trying, desperately, to shift the Coalition away from the extreme stance of the Abbott Government (see the Budget from Hell of 2014). So, essentially, it’s Labor that is attracting the Liberal party away from the extreme right, but this is creating very serious tensions within the Liberal party itself…. the tensions are clearly shown in their internal ideological Civil War. So, as a result of their Civil War Turnbull and his “Moderates” cannot depart too much from the right, thus sinking in a pond of wishy-washiness. This explains why Labor haven’t supported 80% or 90% of the divisions. They are still firmly against what is stinky inside the Liberal party…. and there is a lot, as they are as fundamentally Neoliberal as always!

    The final conclusion is this: Why do you want a Liberal party at war with itself that is succumbing to the Social Democratic pressure from Labor, when you can have the real deal? That is, a unified Social Democratic government ready to lead this country to a change that is both productive and also socially fair, by voting Labor?…. The voters are giving a clear answer to this question, as shown by the consistent results of opinion polls that have favoured Labor since the Federal election. The latest combined results for all polls as calculated by Crickey’s The Bludger Track: 52.1% ALP-47.9 Coalition…..

  32. slowly they get it.

    those arguing the merits of the various political parties seem to have forgotten one thing. Neo-Liberalism. Both Labor and the Coalition have been shoving this toxic ideology down our throats for decades now, neither have clean hands, both drank the “cool-aid” and we have a society, economy and environment all going down the toilet while you screech at each other about who was more responsible for it.

    If you really want to know who is really responsible, look further afield than the domestic muppets.

  33. cornlegend

    slowly they get it.
    I don’t disagree that world problems and the condition we find ourselves in is largely external and from external influences but for the life of me, I learnt at an early age, no amount of jumping up and down, cursing or complaining has any effect on decisions made in the USA, Russia, Korea, China,Uzbekistan or even friendly little Bhutan or any other country for that matter
    No matter my opinion, the people of the USA will decide between Trump and Clinton and I just have to be accepting of the decision made there
    The only change we have a say in is in our own dung heap

  34. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    townsvilleblog stays on message and identifies our common enemy and what threatens all of us.

  35. Andreas Bimba

    Labor must abandon the constraint of balanced federal government budgets. Fiscal stimulus! Fiscal stimulus! Fiscal stimulus!

    Accept the truth of the MMT economists, for a currency issuer – which the federal government is, money is spent into existence, it does not need to be borrowed in the form of government bonds and the federal debt is not debt as we commonly understand it but is in reality a record of additional money spent into the economy.

    Good industrial/commercial/trade policy that allows our manufacturing and associated services sector to survive and thrive, an active economic development policy equivalent to the Japanese METI approach, meeting of the necessary global warming targets, much better environmental protection targets, getting the money and corporate power out of politics, a more balanced mass media and an MMT type of Job Guarantee program are also essential requirements for good government.

  36. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear Andreas.

  37. Miriam English

    Trish, while over-enthusiastic, has her heart in the right place and I agree with much of what she says, but cornie has lost the plot. Jennifer Meyer-Smith is merely pointing out that Labor would have an easier time gaining (and keeping) government if they joined with other progressives. It is almost certain that we wouldn’t be suffering under the LNP twits right now if Labor had been gracious enough to work with their natural allies instead of stubbornly insisting on going it alone. If you hate the LNP now then you should be cursing the fact that Labor was too uppity to join with the other progressives.

    “slowly they get it” (a very cumbersome name for quotes) has made the excellent point that our biggest problem is the economic philosophy shared by both LNP and Labor. Cornie again loses his way by saying some weird stuff about other countries, but again completely misses the point. When Labor did stray from pure market philosophy during the global financial crisis they did a marvellous job, insulating Australia from harm. Even though they are sworn to maintain the rich end of town with trickle-up economics, robbing the poor (just like the LNP) nevertheless Labor have some degree of remnant sanity, making them safer, but it is only marginally safer. Labor will still sell us out. The QLD Labor party has proven that with their “fast-track” on the insane Carmichael mine.

    One great advantage of an alliance between Labor and other progressives is that it would put the brakes on the right-wing extremists in their own party, but that’s probably another reason why it is extremely unlikely to happen.

  38. Zathras

    Converting a full-time job into four part-time jobs may look good for the employment statistics but is another failure for the economy.

    The result is four people paying little or no tax while getting supplemental handouts from the taxpayer while reducing the overall amount of buying power for discretionary items.

    If there was ever an economic “trickle-down effect” this is where we will see it.

    Meanwhile the government fiddles and revels in false glory while the economy continues to smoulder.

  39. cornlegend

    Miriam English
    fair dinkum,
    how many times do you need to be told, Labor are not into doing deals .
    There is no “plot” to lose.
    Labor will run their campaigns and the greens theirs and they will do it seperately and autonimously
    What is so difficult for you to understand ?
    Spend your time trying to do a Greens deal with Xenophon or Hanson or someone else, Labor have made it clear, NOT INTERESTED

    “Labor will still sell us out. ”
    Why FFS do you so badly want a deal done then?

  40. Miriam English

    Cornie, you need to actually read what I say instead of assuming. Go on, I’ll wait patiently while you go back and read it.

  41. Miriam English

    Hmmm… Cornie, you probably won’t read it, believing that your superficial skim was sufficient, so I’ll explain.

    I completely understand that Labor have ruled out an alliance. I also understand it is almost certainly why they are not in government right now.

    I would like to see an alliance so we could get rid of the LNP idiots, but I know it almost certainly won’t happen.

    Unfortunately it is looking suspiciously like Labor have pinned their hopes on becoming LNP-lite. This would give the mainstream media cause to promote them, but would be bad for us because it’d mean we’d just have the same illness, but with a different name. This is what worries me most. This is at the heart of Labor QLD’s sell-out. Yes, they’d be better than the idiots in the LNP, but lesser evil is still evil. What a pity for a party that has such a history of doing good.

  42. king1394

    While the private sector continues to be seen as the ultimate provider of jobs, we will continue to have less and less real full-time jobs available. The private sector only employs enough people to maximise their profits from the work done. The private sector is happy to replace working people with machines (assisted by Government grants / tax deductions for the capital expenditure). The private sector is delighted to have ‘flexible’ work arrangements which mean they need not employ people full-time but can treat labour as a just-in-time input. Labour hire companies are thriving. In more and more industries both short-term and sham contracting keep the labour costs down and bugger the workers.

    On the other hand there are so many jobs that need to be done, which really would have to be paid for by public money because no one would directly make a profit if the work was done, even though society would benefit. Every rural road that I have travelled in the last few months is desperately in need of substantial repairs. Mining companies are allowed to walk away from massive amounts of environmental damage that could be making long-term jobs for many people. Every job that is being done by a volunteer could be a paid job, as could the work-for-the-dole jobs. There is no reason for unemployment other than that our economic system refuses to pay people to do much necessary work.

    The funny thing is that were people being employed at a decent, full-time wage, there would be a substantial improvement in demand for many consumer goods and services, which would create more jobs and growth in the private sector. A type of Trickle down economics could work, if the wealth were placed in the hands of the poorest, and allowed to move through the entire economy

  43. Trish Corry

    I find what you say about QLD Labor as highly offensive Miriam. QLD Labor has been incredibly efficient. Palaszczuk was voted the most popular Premier out of all the Premiers (although I’m surprised she beat Dan) Labor is doing great things here every single day. I could not be prouder.

    93 page of achievements in 100 days

    Newman had 10,000 pages of destruction in 100 days. The amount of destruction they had to fix AND us being hit by a cyclone in their first week (the LNP have STILL not paid the councils for the work, QLD Labor has!), should not be dismissed as evil. Your view is absolute nonsense.

    Labor is not the enemy. Nor are they evil. Stop insisting that they are. It is getting beyond pathetic. Your Labor hating rhetoric for the sake of hating Labor is actually harmful. I wish you could see that.

    The history of the Party has done good and they will continue to do good. You can shout your sanctimonious opinions into your own lunchbox.

    The Greens do not even matter in QLD. No one cares about them here. However, the anti-Labor rhetoric from people such as yourself has sprouted a new evil – Hanson. “QLD’s Third Party Choice when people convince others that the majors are just as bad as each other” Thanks for that.

  44. Kaye Lee

    “Your Labor hating rhetoric for the sake of hating Labor is actually harmful. I wish you could see that.”

    And I wish you could see that Labior’s backing for the Carmichael coal mine is harmful to all of us. I wish you could see that Labor’;s backing of offshore detention is killing people. I wish you could understand that we want Labor to listen. Blaming Miriam for One Nation is beyond the pale. Queensland have been electing cretins for decades.

  45. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear king1394, Miriam (especially @ 3.37pm) and Kaye.

  46. Trish Corry

    Kaye do you even live in QLD? If you don’t. You have no idea. If you do, you still have no idea.

  47. Kaye Lee

    If you say so

  48. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I agree with Kaye. Palaszczuk’s green light to the Carmichael mine is political abomination.

    Palaszczuk’s actions support Adani, a known environmental vandal with one of the World’s precious natural assets, the Great Barrier Reef, at greater risk than it’s current vulnerability.

    She supports a filthy, decadent coal mining industry.

    She represents neoliberalism in it’s most cynical aspect: the so-called provider of jobs for a limited few workers and at the expense of our climate and environment.

  49. Kaye Lee

    Why do you continually attack people who are on your side in wanting progressive policy Trish? You dismiss people. Why? Are you so programmed into what is decided at annual conference that no idea can be entertained in between? No good idea could ever come from anywhere else? No concerns can be voiced?

    We are on the same side. Those of us who do not belong to a party are expressing the things that trouble us. We want Labor in power (under the current system – system change to a multi-party execuitve would be preferable in my opinion) and most of us can see the maths of the Greens getting a way higher vote than the Nats but the Nats effectively controlling the government which is why people are searching for a way for your parties to at least collaborate in some way – that does not have to mean giving up autonomy, no formal coalition….just some way of together advancing the progressive cause rather than bitching about each other.

  50. Kaye Lee


    I don’t understand the decision at all unless they are at risk of being sued because I can’t see the project going ahead without government input – Peter Costello was talking about investing some of our Future Fund in it which would be criminal. The few jobs aren’t worth the potential damage.

  51. cornlegend

    Miriam English
    The cold hard facts are that I am a realist and accept that an LNP Government was elected.
    Holding hands with the Greens would change nothing.
    All the figures I have had provided to me indicate that people will continue to support the LNP
    It is predicted Baird will win NSW again,
    It is predicted the LNP will win the next Federal election. Even though the polls are showing a swing to Labor it is not uniform and not in the necessary key seats.
    It is predicted Labor will lose in S.A. with NXT holding the balance of power.
    It is predicted Labor will lose in QLD with One Nation holding the balance of power
    All this is based on current figures and may well change, and I hope so.
    There is no advantage to Labor in having any alliances with the Greens, and in fact it could be detrimental electorally .

    I was interested in your statement
    “I completely understand that Labor have ruled out an alliance. I also understand it is almost certainly why they are not in government right now.”

    Please explain
    as there is absolutely no evidence to indicate that

  52. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    their decision is mislaid. GetUp and other activists are succeeding at telling potential financiers of Carmichael that it is NOT in their PR best interests to fund Adani’s proposal. If the banks are pulling back, why is the Palaszczuk Government providing support?

  53. cornlegend


    Australians overwhelmingly want Malcolm Turnbull’s government to negotiate with Labor and Nick Xenophon to get its agenda through Parliament rather than turn to either the Greens or One Nation for support.
    More than half – 54 per cent – put Labor as their first or second option.

    The Greens were the only other party more likely to end up at the bottom of a respondent’s list than the top. Thirty-six percent of people put the Greens in their top two, but almost half – 47 per cent – put them in the bottom two.

  54. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    The evidence is, cornlegend, that the anti-LNP forces lost by – arguably – ONLY ONE SEAT on 2 July 2016.

    HAD Labor come down off their high horse and made alliances with progressive and even semi-progressive political forces, we all would be in Government now, as opposed to sitting on the sidelines watching the worser evil of the LNP Degenerates in power shitting on our heads with smug looks on their faces.

    Where is your pride, cornlegend? Would you prefer to make deals with Malcolm Muck and his reprehensible and unentitled morons? Labor needs to show that there are NO DEALS with the LNP or Labor is lost full stop.

  55. Andreas Bimba

    CFMEU likes coal. The miners even donate to this union and they donate to the ALP. For the ALP it’s always jobs before the environment when it should be jobs and the environment. They are played like fools by the Kleptocracy.

    I really like king1394’s comment.

  56. Kaye Lee

    I think Palaszczuk ruled out any state government support other than fast-tracking approvals. The Federal govt has made noises about using some of the $5 billion Northern Australia Development Fund and perhaps the Future Fund. Banks were running without GetUp! having to do anything – it’s a very questionable investment with a company who has a questionable record in a contracting market.

  57. Kaye Lee

    Interestingly, the CFMEU also like the Greens.

    The CFMEU is the second biggest union supporter of the Greens after the Victorian branch of the Electrical Trades Union, which gave $360,000 to the Greens in the year to June 2014, the last year for which figures are available. Total union donations to the Greens reached almost $600,000 in 2013-14 following ­donations of $50,000 the previous year and $100,000 in 2011 from the ETU’s Victorian branch, with smaller amounts from several ­unions over the past decade.

    “It’s a matter for the union and determined by its democratically elected governing bodies,” Mr Noonan said. “It is disclosed as required by law. The union is loyal to the interests of its members first and foremost.”

    The ETU ended its affiliation with Labor in 2010, declaring that it would support whichever party “speaks genuinely” for workers.

    The union payments pale next to donations from mining and energy companies, which gave about $1.8 million to the Coalition and about $450,000 to Labor in 2013-14, but unions have the ­capacity to offer more than cash.

    The National Tertiary Education Union was hailed for mounting a $1m campaign to support the Greens in the Senate at the last election, confirming its break with Labor. The NTEU’s last filing with the electoral commission confirmed it spent $1m on political campaigning in 2013-14.

  58. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Excellent gathering of information for your post, Kaye Lee.

    Unions’ support for the Greens put those Unions into the 21st century and the realm of democratic socialism again.

  59. cornlegend

    “The evidence is, cornlegend, that the anti-LNP forces lost by – arguably – ONLY ONE SEAT on 2 July 2016”
    No they didn’t, what about LNP lite McGowan and Sharkey , throw in Katter most times
    check out their voting patterns

  60. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    You said that last time, cornlegend.

    Sharkey, being on Nick Xenophon’s team, must have some redeeming points, as in preferring NXT and not the LNP.

    Katter also has rough edges but some bloody good ones too.

    So you see, they might be hard to handle but some good negotiation and recognition of their more palatable policies would have done Labor a bagful of good.

    Still would, if Labor still knows how to negotiate for diverse Aussies for the greater good for all of us and not just modern Labor’s diminishing self-identity.

  61. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Oh, and I forgot Kathy McGowan.

    Go to Wangaratta and surrounds and ask her community what they think of her as an alternative candidate to So-phie and the Christian fundamentalist National candidate whose name I never bothered to learn.

    McGowan has ordinary people who actively want representation and are somewhat ready for change. So where is Labor in wooing Kathy to some negotiated agreement that helps her constituents and the wider Aussie people for the sake of her extra seat?

    Must I teach you how to do politics?

  62. cornlegend

    Yeah but you still have this insane idea the the LNP only have a majority of 1,
    Did you bother to check out the voting of the fringe dwellers.
    for the life of me Jennifer, with so much disdain for the ALP, why do you want ANYTHING to do with them?
    Shouldn’t you be using your time more wisely seeing why the Greens are so unpalatable with the electorate or did you pay your membership just to get a ticket

  63. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    why is paying membership for a ticket the one-all and big-all in your books?

    I don’t remember ever saying I was a member of any party. Please provide evidence to the contrary. I will be interested to see what you might find.

    I admittedly only advocate an alliance with Labor in your current form because you still are the most palatable of the two major parties.

    You know like we know that the duopoly system works for the Lab/Lib benefit so to suggest that there is any immediate or medium alternative grasp of real power is disingenuous.

    Poor cornlegend, your credibility diminishes almost as fast as Labor’s stubborn denial of the need to join the ALLiance.

  64. cornlegend

    Next week the missus and I are off to see the Terracotta Warriors in Xian.
    I will explain to them the folly of your Alliance.
    I’m sure it will sink in quicker with them

  65. Andreas Bimba

    Very interesting regarding union donations Kaye. Terrible that our crappy donation laws don’t ensure up to date figures are available. I wasn’t aware the CFMEU donated so much, I will be nicer to them?

    The ETU Victorian branch may have been concerned about the imminent closure of the automotive industry and manufacturing in general? I’ve lobbied a bit for manufacturing within the Greens but this issue remains a non core issue which is crazy considering the masses of votes picked up by NXT and One Nation on the issue of excessively free trade, closing industries and unemployment. The sustainable economy will face the same type of ruthless competition from the Asian tigers as well as Europe and the U.S. so industry policy is vital for the Greens as well.

  66. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    onya cornlegend,

    you do that. Poor stupid, misguided little neoliberal sometimes man.

    However Andreas,

    you prove to try to sway the pre-eminent thinking of your party when you can see they are diverting from the course of the best action.

    Good on you Andreas.

    Might I also presume to reveal that I have represented my MFS’s and MCL’s microfinancing proposals to the Greens via the honestly honourably Rachel Siewert.

    I await her response with great expectation!

  67. Miriam English

    Trish and Cornie, it continually amazes me that you are so quick to jump down the throats of anybody suggesting that Labor is less than perfect. Trish, don’t you realise I’m on the same side as you? Admittedly I didn’t give a nuanced review of the QLD Labor government — I already tend to write too much so try to cut back on my verbiage (also I don’t want to spend too much time away from my current programming project).

    The Palaszczuk govt gets approval from me in a lot of areas for rolling back the abominable changes brought in by Newman (and they did try hard to undo Newman’s removal of tree-bulldozing restrictions too). But one important point stands out, and that’s their sell-out to the Carmichael mine. That’s why I mentioned it. I don’t understand how it could have been anything but non-negotiable, yet they’re not content with merely giving the go-ahead; incredibly, they’ve fast-tracked it, ensuring citizens and landowners have less ability to protest! Now that is selling out. We will be tens of billions of dollars, possibly hundreds of billions worse off if that damnable mine goes ahead.

    I think, by any rational judgement of morality the LNP fits into the category of evil. They value money over humanity, lie ceaselessly, and play politics as if it was a game where the only end-goal is power rather than governing for the good of the country.

    While Labor is not all the way there yet, I think they are being tempted by the same thing. When they become as bad as the LNP then I’ll stop wishing for them to win government. But they are on that road, and if their fans continue to simply cheer them on, regardless of what they do then they will eventually reach the same place the LNP is now.

    Labor needs to return to more progressive policies. They are part of the reason for Hanson’s position in the senate. It is the same illness afflicting the Democrats in the USA (giving rise to Trump) and Labour in UK (BREXIT). In each case the “progressive” opposition has become increasingly conservative and progressive voters have become disillusioned, feeling they no longer have a genuine choice.

    Trish, no doubt you are seeing red again, thinking I’m slandering your party, but let me assure you that I’m not. I still see hope in Labor even in the face of the disappointments, and as I’ve said many times, I want them in government… but only if they’re going to implement progressive policies. If they continue their drift to the right then they will be a lost cause. I think you can see how scary that would be — for both our big parties to be conservative, right-wing parties. Sadly, it seems to be where things are headed… like in USA and UK.

  68. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Good on you Miriam,

    for trying to join hands with Labor faithful who think their way is the only way.

    I truly hope you succeed.

  69. Miriam English

    The Senate is conducting an inquiry into the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership). Needless to say, the LNP want it, but they don’t have the numbers. Labor looks dangerously close to voting with the LNP and betraying us. Please make a submission to the Senate (it only takes a couple of minutes) to prevent control of our laws and government being given over to overseas giant corporations.

    Australian government should operate for the benefit of Australians, not multinational corporations. Tell the senate not to betray Australia and to vote against the corporate swindle that is the TPP.

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