“The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out for himself, without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos.” (H. L. Mencken).
Over the next few weeks we’re going to have glossy brochures shoved in our letter boxes, explaining the necessity of the Government cuts. This will, of course, be difficult, because if it’s paid for by the Government and not the Liberal Party, they won’t be able to use the phrase, “The mess Labor left”. Although I suppose “Budget Emergency” may sneak through.
Now I have a massive problem with many of Abbott and Hockey’s statements on the Budget. I accept that the extent of the “emergency” is highly debatable. And I can’t see how anyone can argue that they didn’t break any promises and, anyway, they have to break some promises in order to keep their main promise, because the Budget position has detiorated since the election and that’s all Labor’s fault. But neither of these is my main concern today.
What concerns me is the idea being pushed that we have no choice. For example, couldn’t we – instead of a co-payment – raise the Medicare levy by one percent at the same time as raising the taxfree threshold from $18000 to $20000. That would effectively give every wage earner an extra couple of hundred while taking more than that away from people earning higher incomes. But no, there is no choice.
Imagine if Joe was your doctor:
“Now because of the incompetence of your previous doctor, we’re going to have to remove your leg.”
“Can’t it be saved?”
“No, we have no choice. Your previous doctor wasted a lot of time and money with prescriptions and life-style changes. And all that did was get you further into debt.”
“I’ve had a look at your credit card statement. There’s over three hundred dollars on it.”
“Yes, but I was planning to pay that next month. I mean, thanks to my previous doctor, I’ve been able to keep working.”
“But at a trememdous cost. I have a friend who’s a surgeon. I’ll book you in straight away.”
“Will I still be able to work after the surgery?”
“What’s your line of work?”
“I’m a professional dancer.”
“Mm. Well, you can always retrain as something else. For a very reasonable cost, I have a friend who runs a business building skills for people who need to retrain.”
“But how can I afford that?”
“Easy. You can borrow the money and repay it at 6% interest.”
“Ok, but one last thing. How will cutting off my leg cure my migraines?“
“No choice” has a nice ring to it. Like “you’ll thank me for this later”. At least there was no “This hurts me more than it does you” or “Take your medicine”
But Abbott has acknowledged selling the Budget will be difficult. If it wasn’t for the fact that we’ve grown so cynical about politicians, it might be easier. Imagine if Abbott were instead something more respectable like a car salesman. (N.B.Before I get nasty comments from car salesmen upset at being put in the same boat as politicians, I did say more respectable)
“Excuse me, but I bought one of your Real Solution models.”
“Oh, an excellent brochure – one of our best.”
“Yes well, now I’ve taken it home, I notice that it looks nothing like the one in the brochure.”
“You mean it’s a different colour?”
“No, I mean it lacks many of the features promised. For a start, you promised me that it’d be cheaper to run.”
“Yes, that’s true. It’d be much cheaper to run than to drive.”
“And you said that it contained the same access to ABC radio as my previous car.”
“Ah, well we had to leave the radio out. People don’t need radio these days.”
“As for the safety features…”
“We felt that seat belts and an air bag just encouraged people to have accidents.”
“But you promised all these things.”
“I think you’ll find that all the features are there.”
“I want my money back.”
“Because you haven’t delivered anything you promised!”
“Look, my over-riding promise was to deliver you a car, and I’ve done that, so I don’t see what the problem is.”
“That’s the other thing. Apparently the engine isn’t being delivered until 2017.”
“Well, as I said before: Trust me!”
Yep, lucky that Joe and Tony are only politicians. I mean if they were doing something important, they could really stuff things up.
Like what we do at The AIMN?
You’ll like it even more knowing that your donation will help us to keep up the good fight.
Chuck in a few bucks and see just how far it goes!
Your contribution to help with the running costs of this site will be gratefully accepted.
You can donate through PayPal or credit card via the button below, or donate via bank transfer: BSB: 062500; A/c no: 10495969