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Message of the day

As Lenore Taylor reported on Friday, every morning the major parties send out the “messages” of the day. These aren’t really super-secret documents since ministers and MPs dutifully recite them into any available open microphone.

At the media briefing after the Coalition’s party meeting the assembled journalists were told, “The prime minister said 2014 had been a very good year for the government and he’s confident next year would be at least as good if not better.”

And last night on Lateline we saw Steve Ciobo dutifully relaying the “message”.

The Abbott government’s plan is THE ONLY PLAN to improve economic growth and repair the budget – regardless of what question is asked, this is to be the reply. They are to repeat over and over again, what a good year it has been.

Look how Scott has stopped the boats. (But don’t look at the offshore gulags where children are locked up in appalling conditions.)

Look at how many Free Trade Agreements Andrew has signed. (But don’t ask for the detail about what we sacrificed for those signatures.)

Look at Julie – isn’t she pretty? (But don’t ask us for foreign aid or any contribution to global action on anything that doesn’t involve bombing people.)

Look at Matthias – there’s a man who knows how to repeat the lines (But any deficit blowout is most definitely not his fault – it’s Layboor’s debt and deficit disaster and when you get sick of that it’s Joe’s fault for not selling the message).

Ciobo slipped right into the script we knew was coming. He said that the Coalition has already cut Labor’s debt by over $300 billion.

That would be a spectacular feat if true since gross debt when they left office was about $280 billion.

PEFO showed that gross debt was expected to climb to $370bn by the end of 2016/17. In Hockey’s MYEFO that figure had grown to $430 billion and then to $450 billion in the budget, and by all accounts it is still growing as we shall see in Hockey’s next MYEFO in a couple of weeks.

So where is Ciobo getting his figures from? This little piece of number gymnastics from Hockey’s budget.

“The published 2013‑14 MYEFO face value of CGS on issue figure of $667 billion in 2023‑24 did not include a cap on tax receipts. The projection for MYEFO in Chart 1 includes a 23.9 per cent of GDP cap on tax receipts, increasing the face value of CGS on issue projected to $748 billion in 2023‑24.

In comparison, at 2014‑15 Budget CGS on issue is projected to be $389 billion in 2023‑24, an improvement of $359 billion. By 2024‑25, the projected end‑of‑year face value of CGS on issue is expected to reach $362 billion.”

When Emma Alberice pointed out that using MYEFO as a basis of comparison was ignoring the Charter of Budget Honesty, and that it contained Hockey’s spending and revenue cutting measures like gifting the RBA almost $9 billion and foregoing the revenue from the carbon and mining taxes and wasting billions on Direct Action, Ciobo just spoke over the top of her saying Labor had left the RBA in a vulnerable position. Tony Burke then tried to point out that the Coalition had taken $1.24 billion in dividends from the RBA this year, something they roundly criticised Wayne Swan for doing, he also was interrupted and spoken over.

The first instalment, over $600 million, has already been paid back to the government in August.

As reported in Crikey:

“When Wayne Swan took a dividend of just $500 million from the RBA in 2012-13, he was accused of “raiding” the bank, by Hockey among others. It was subsequently revealed that Treasury, after consultations with the RBA, didn’t believe there was any imperative to increase the Reserve Bank’s capital buffers. But if $500 million is a raid, over $1.2 billion looks more like open plunder. How dearly Swan would have liked being able to get another $700 million that year. So as some of us predicted back in 2013 Hockey, having blown out the 2013-14 deficit with his $9 billion gift to the RBA and blamed it on Labor, has got his first repayment to bolster the 2014-15 budget bottom line.

Curiously there is no mention of the dividend in RBA governor Glenn Stevens’ foreword to the report, despite discussing how the $8.8 billion had replenished the bank’s capital reserves; you have to go down to page 77 to get an explanation of the dividend. It’s particularly curious given that the dividend — whether one is to be paid or not, and how large it will be — is regularly mentioned in the forewords of previous annual reports. The omission doesn’t help the impression that the whole business of the $8.8 billion has undermined the perception of RBA independence.”

This politicising of independent bodies like the RBA, Infrastructure Australia, NBNco, the CSIRO, the AFP and the ABC, is a very worrying trend designed to keep even more information from the public.

So my “message for the day” is stop the crap Joe and co. If MSM journalists are incapable of exposing the bullshit then step aside – you have made yourselves redundant.

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95 comments

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  1. diannaart

    Tweeted and FB’d Kaye Lee – Stop the Crap, to which I could only humbly add NOW!

  2. intermediatescan

    I really enjoy your writing and insights.

  3. Florence nee Fedup

    Time for MSM to start telling us what those so called free trade agreements are costing us. Maybe time for Labor to enlighten us why they were reluctant to reach agreement with Japan, China and South Korea.

    We can be thankful, that Hockey took some pleasure in telling us, that it was him cutting off support to GMH, Ford, Toyota and SPC that opened the door to allow them to happen.

    By the way, that paper signed with great gusto and pageant with China, was not a FTA but intention discuss further,

  4. Kaye Lee

    Thanks to all the people who read my ramblings and pass them on. As I have said many times, I learn just as much from you guys as you learn from me. I am not part of any press gallery that gets briefings. I am not in the inner circle, fed leaks by politicians with a barrow to push. We have been let down by our politicians and many of our journalists so it is up to us to stand up and say “Stop the Crap”. We cannot blame the people who believe what they are told by Abbott and Murdoch. One should be able to trust they are telling us the truth but sadly we cannot. So to every one of you I say thank you for taking the time to inform yourselves and to make your voices heard to try and save our country. Enough is enough!

  5. Terry Goulden

    The MSM is actually worse than irrelevant. They seem to be amplifying the “Thoughts of Chairman Abbott”. Even Laura Tingle last night could not help herself by trying to be “evenhanded”. It appears now that the Labour/Green narrative of an unfair budget which has been very sccessful with the general public is not effective enough communication for her. Maybe she is pissed off that her friend Abbott is such a bad PM.

  6. Terry2

    I notice that even the Australian is saying that the reduction in company tax from 30% to 28.5% from 1 July 2015 – as included in the May budget – is absolute madness at a time when the government is crying poor over falling tax revenues.

    I wish that somebody in this administration would, for once, start telling the truth.

  7. Loz

    Kaye why are these figures mouthed by the Liberal party not disputed over and over again by Labour? Why are we not hearing about the Trade deal details from Labour? I am also concerned that they are still uttering three word slogans that are now being repeated over and over by Hockey and co “repair the budget”. Their previous slogans got this despicable government elected but hopefully Australians are now aware of their disingenuous character.

  8. Kaye Lee

    Loz, I cannot answer that question. I have been bashing my head against the wall since last year’s MYEFO. All the figures and bullshit are there in print but any time someone tries to call them on their crap they just talk louder and repeat the mantra “Layboor’s debt and deficit disaster” with a liberal sprinkling of our children and grandchildren’s future being mortgaged to pay for it.

    Anyone with half a brain realises that right now is a perfect time to borrow money at 3% to invest in employment initiatives and productivity enhancers like the NBN which will bring a far greater return. Anyone with any sense recognises our children’s future is going to be badly affected by climate change and cuts to education and deregulation of university fees and rising unemployment and changes to welfare and erosion of universal healthcare and workplace entitlements and delay of the rise in superannuation guarantee and increase in retirement age to 70 and cuts to research.

    I just want to shake the whole country and say wake up.

  9. Maureen Walton (@maureen_walton)

    Great article easy to understand and take in Much thanks.

    Media, are saying that Labor has learned not to argue with Liberals like they did when Julia Gillard was in, as people are sick of it. I only remember Labor arguing when Liberals told their ridiculous lies, that they are still doing it and still being believed….

  10. mars08

    Kaye Lee:

    Look how Scott has stopped the boats. (But don’t look at the offshore gulags where children are locked up in appalling conditions.)

    ….or the actual number of boats being sent back. Or the sinking boats that are ignored by our Navy because of political considerations.

  11. Florence nee Fedup

    Maybe the problem is that we have allowed politics to become a blood sport. Where all that counts is the latest gotcha.

    It seems to be all politics. Ability does not count. No respect for convention, laws or convention. Only thing that counts is winning, winning at any cost. Means no longer matter.

    One cannot maintain a democracy or civil society in this environment. Only solution I can see, is keep on throwing governments out until they get the message. Time for one term governments across the country.

    We are a wealthy country. I cannot see how even Hockey and Abbott can destroy that. Yes, the budget even the economy but not what makes Australia so great.

    Gillard had the ideas. Great at good governance. That is why this mob are having it so hard. She ran a tight ship with no fat whatever. Their biggest gripe seems to e, that she beat them to making any cuts that were available. They are now finding having to cut deeply into the flesh.

    Yes, good at governing, good at negotiating. Good at identifying what needed to be done. Too honest to be good at politics. Not into theatrics or spin.

    Now we have the opposite All spin no substance.

    The public has to take most of the responsibility for the mess, government has become.

    We the voters, allowed it to happen.

  12. Florence nee Fedup

    Suggest that it is better to leave Abbott alone to box himself. Very good at scoring home goals.

    I think one will see a different Labor next year. Abbott is very much on the defensive. What more could one want after 15 months.

    Abbott has a problem. All his so called successes he is so proud of, are going to come back and bite him.

    Repealing CEF ?? carbon emissions back on world agenda. Pulling out blackberry bushes does not really count. Suspect no future in pushing coal, or even uranium.

    Repealing MRRT, when tax needs to be raised or at least collected from corporations. Revenues, not spending the problem.

    New immigration powers will blow up in Morrison’s face, when he begins loading refugees on planes, back home. Expect actions taken in high court. If not under the refugee charter, under our obligations to the universal convention’s on human rights. Yes, the so called boat people are humans. If they are illegal, breaking our laws, they are entitled to due process under our legal system.

    Last, they have not fixed the budget. It is going backwards at a rate of knor=ts. Curring further will only exaggerate matters., Maybe the cross benches, by not passing cruel and unfair budget, has saved them from themselves.

    We have Lima and MYEFO to look forwarded to before Christmas.

  13. Colin

    @ Florence – some good points – certainly, the one thing Abbott is “good” at is boxing himself.

    Hopefully, more of the electorate will realize that the “successes” he (and his band of regurgitators) promulgates are just lies and that they can focus on voting a party IN (based on a sound assessment of actual good plans and policies) rather than punishing a party that was stupid enough to infight whilst in government. That was one of the reasons the Australian electorate voted in one of the most embarrassing, inarticulate idiots that we’ve seen (and now suffer from) in a long time. Never again should we give an idiot the chance to be voted in because he said nothing.

    Other reasons (and this scares me) are, that many I know gleefully digest the crap in paper wasting tabloids like The Worst Australian and their ilk and actually don’t see Murdoch’s agenda for what it is – a Megalomaniac that presumes (very wrongly) that he has the right to instruct the Australian voting public how to vote and question their parentage at the same time.

    I sure hope you are right about next year!

  14. Kaye Lee

    Bill Shorten is a political animal – a manoeuverer, a manipulator, a reactor.

    That is not what we need.

    He tries to calmly articulate a vision for the future – good start – but then loses every opportunity to state how he will achieve this vision because he won’t disclose his policies this far out from an election.

    I am sick of scared people. Tell us your thoughts. You don’t have to sign a contract yet. Tell us what needs doing.

    Can’t you bring yourself to say that we will address tax concessions for superannuation which are set to outstrip old age pension payments in a few years?

    Are you too scared to say affordable housing is a huge issue so we will limit negative gearing concessions to new constructions with some greenfield developments slated as owner-occupied only?

    What about fossil fuel subsidies?

    You started action on corporate tax evasion…let’s hear more.

    Your job is to help run the country…stop hiding your homework.

  15. stephentardrew

    Labor would be well served to tie the LNP in with global corptocracy to get Australians used to the fact that there is an attempt to control the country from outside our borders. Scare the hell out of the compliant anesthetized masses. Statements like “should we lose our Independence to global Corporations and the Banks. Abbott sell us out to Global Finance. Make the US Tea Party Link while pointing out lie after lie. As you say Kaye attack MYEFO with PEFO and scream debt debt debt. Saying Abbott is putting up the GST even if he denies it just push the fact he is a proven liar. Bashing on relentlessly about inequality and what I call the rush up effect that turned off the trickle down tap as wages and conditions are erode. Lets hope they start by tearing MEYFO to shreds after Hockey’s new attempt at replicating Ebenezer Scrooge. Great Christmas metaphor for Labor if they are game to use it. My heavens if they can’t make substantial mileage out of the free offerings from the LNP we are lost. The voice has to be long and loud however does Shorten have the strength or staying power.

    I suppose we are yet to see. Lets hope they do get some exposure to this site.

    I would still prefer to see Albo leading because Plibersek is not quite ready. Just needs a little more time. Would make a good Deputy though.

    Ah but one cannot help dreaming.

  16. Florence nee Fedup

    I see no reason why anything will get better for Abbott and his mob next year,

    The only danger is if the focus is moved from Abbott to Shorten,

    Abbott has been working hard this week for this to occur. very hard. I am hopeful it is not working.

    At the stage, Shorten leads Labor. No point in undermining him. None at all. There has been a change in Labor’s response over the last couple of weeks. Shorten has gone on the attack. He has pointed out, that Labor will be concentrating on developing policy. Will be following Labor due process to do so. Early in the year, is Labor’s National Congress. . Shorten has signalled that one of the first things to go, will be Imperial Honours. Good start

    Shorten did pull Leigh into line, when he said he will not be selling or explaining policy two word slogans, Takes more than that. Yes, time for the spin to go. Might be a little boring but so be it.

    I would love Shorten to come out in the next five weeks, before parliament resumes, saying that they are unhappy about how question time has been over the year. To help matters, Labor will not be raising points of orders or objections, but will sit quietly, respectfully listening to the governments answers. They would leave it up to the listeners to work out what the value is, of the PM’s and his ministers answers.

    Yes, name of the game is to keep focus on Abbott. Maybe the public might heart what he is or not saying.

    it is Abbott under pressure now, not Shorten. It needs to continue that way.

  17. corvus boreus

    Unfortunately, Tanya Pliberseks’ choice of husband may be something of a mill-stone for her to carry politically.

  18. Kaye Lee

    “At the stage, Shorten leads Labor. No point in undermining him. None at all.”

    I do not consider it undermining anything to criticise Shorten or to ask for better from him. If he cannot provide a viable alternative then I will look elsewhere. If he cannot lift himself out of the game and start working for the greater good then bugger him I say. Some ethereal “vision” is pointless without an answer on how you will achieve it and his silence whenever asked that is deafening. Not good enough.

  19. corvus boreus

    Mr Shorten undermined any support I may have had for him when he pronounced himself satisfied with the honesty and transparency of the current government whilst dismissing calls for a federal ICAC.
    Him being an old bhoy and a chum of John Roskam doesn’t help either.
    I think Labor needs to do a little careening and de-encrusting of the hull themselves to be viable as much more than a Not-Abbott protest/default alternative on the ballot sheet.

  20. Garth

    I have also wondered at the ‘mortgaging our children’s and grandchildren’s future’ mantra. If a social democratic government is unwilling to provide accessible education, universal healthcare and a decent social safety net, then what the hell do we need them for?!

  21. Garth

    Having said that, I’m all too aware of their true agenda. This relentless mantra of ‘we must obtain a surplus’ is just baseless propaganda. The LNP are systematically working their way through the IPA agenda but most of our other Australians don’t realise it, and don’t understand it’s purely crafted to serve the best well off in our society. I, like you Kaye, bang my head at the fact these bastards have done all they can to demonise anything that looks like progressive aspirations for our country as irresponsible. It starts and ends with the fiscal bottom line with these bastards – people be damned!

  22. corvus boreus

    Thanks for the 4:51 info post, Dan Dark.
    Another log on the fire.

  23. Erotic Moustache

    Kaye Lee,

    Can’t you bring yourself to say that we will address tax concessions for superannuation which are set to outstrip old age pension payments in a few years?

    No, Shorten can’t, because the second he does he’ll be asked about how and he likely does not have that detail worked out. So, he’ll look like a man offering empty rhetoric for the sake of manipulating the electorate (conservatives traditionally get away with that shit; Labor does not). This is the historic problem Oppositions face. It is trenchant but no easy political fix exists.

    There’s always danger is speaking to policy areas in any specific way when you don’t have policy fully worked out. And even if you do, you can’t offer it this far out from an election because you hand the Government the information with which to screw you over.

    But that’s not Labor’s problem. Their problem is a growing neblosity of ideology and distance from what is recognisable as traditional Labor values and principles. Labor has to speak to the heart in a general, but nevertheless meaningful way, and contrast that with the heartlessness of this mob. This far out that’s their best option, imnsho.

  24. Kaye Lee

    Erotic Moustache,

    You seem to forget that Labor introduced legislation to tax superannuees 15% for any annual income over $100,000 – seemed a good start to me. The Coalition immediately got rid of it because “the superannuation companies told them it would be impossible to implement.” I rang Joe Hockey’s department and suggested that maybe there could be a conflict of interest in that advice and suggested that the ATO could collect the tax since everyone is already issued with an annual statement of earnings. I was told that taxation wasn’t their area of expertise as they terminated the call.

  25. corvus boreus

    EM,
    Beware, expressing an nsho can sow the seed of self deception.
    I agree with the general sentiment and ideas you expressed, though.
    The current political/societal climate does not encourage clear, detailed and sophisticated enunciation of policy intent. A stuttering reptile was recently elevated and enthroned on the basis of simple slogans without sums.
    A meaningful display of commitment to decency of principle and conduct by Labor would definitely go a long way towards restoring confidence and support. Proposing or supporting the an open and independent investigation into the seemingly blatant general corruption in and around federal politics would be a very good start.
    (imhoatm)

  26. Kaye Lee

    If it was up to me, every time the Coalition said “So what is YOUR plan?” I would hold up the 2013 budget. We had the plan. NBN was underway, needs-based funding for education was assured for 6 years, we had a price on carbon, we had a mining tax, we had a NDIS, we had water table protection, Murray-Darling buyback, and marine parks. Maybe all of these things needed fine-tuning but at least they were underway.

    All of Australia should humbly apologise to Julia Gillard and beg her to come back.

  27. Florence nee Fedup

    Why should Tanya’s husband be of concern. He was young. Has redeemed himself. He holds a high ranking job. Never has his past been a secret. Some see drugs more a health than criminal matter.

  28. Florence nee Fedup

    Kaye agree. But is this the time to do so.

  29. Kaye Lee

    I am tired of political games Florence. It may not go over well with the electorate – I admit to not understanding how people could possibly think Abbott was better. Oh yes, that’s right. We never got the chance to watch Gillard out-campaign Abbott. She would have chewed him up and spat him out. Labor has a lot to answer for.

  30. corvus boreus

    Florence,
    I personally have relatively ‘liberal’ od ‘progressive’ views regarding the issue of substance usage, but I really do think that having a convicted and incarcerated heroin trafficker as a spouse will give Tanya’s political opponents a ready source of cheap ammunition.

  31. DanDark

    Yep I agree, Tanya was on kitchen cabinet discussing her husbands past life and how everyone deserves a second chance, as long as that said persons wife is not in politics that’s fine, but it’s called the price of being in politics and the slime minister will use anything he can to destroy the ” enemy” sad but true..

  32. stephentardrew

    Spot on Kaye about holding up the 2013 Budge then on top of that there are a whole lot of other savings, as per your suggestions, and there would not have been a pseudo deficit problem that Labor still hasn’t got it’s head around. Unfortunately Swan was captured by the debt mantra and didn’t pose a credible alternative.

    It’s no different now for Labor they have to have a critical analysis of debt and work full on to educate the public long term. They could use Bill Mitchell and Steve Keen as advisers to formulate a revised attitude towards debt. It’s no use waiting before the election because they will need a concerted long term effort to reeducate the public. Some things can be left late but this is not one of them.

  33. Wun Farlung

    The problem with that course is that the LNP and their acolytes in the MSM would reheat the Budget emergency myth and we all know that unfortunately works.

    Labor and the Greens should take control of the narrative, start putting out ideas with as little detail as possible and when the LNP and MSM attack and ask for more information drip feed it, keep it short and to the point. Most of the mug voter’s attention span lasts for about 2 sentences before looking at their smartphone to check Facebook. They don’t want detail (and mostly don’t understand it) they want headlines, That’s why the 3 word slogan tactic works

  34. Garth

    Exactly Wun, that is exactly why the 3 word slogan works and it’s despicable. The right of politics don’t have to be the way they are. They can attain their goals without selling the majority of the population down the river. I think we now just have a bunch of nutjobs who are willing to attain their goals without any thought for the rest of the people. These guys just play on the prejudices and fears of the population and for the life of me I can’t see how progressive politics will effectively fight it (or alternately, how a decent bunch of Liberal pollies could emerge).

  35. corvus boreus

    I like the strategic ideas proposed by Wun Farlung, in that the simplicity of message dictated by the lowest common denominator is combined with the (albeit graduated) release of greater detail of information as demanded.
    In the epoch of short attention spans and aggressive disinterest, it is good to be able to get a basic message across to the distracted masses in a brief time with simple words but there is still a moral obligation for those proposing to implement public policy to answer, with detailed candor, questions posed by focused and interested adults.

  36. Möbius Ecko

    http://www.abc.net.au/elections/sa/2014/fisher/result.htm

    The State Libs were expected to win this giving Weatherill a minority government. Newspapers were already stating a hard time ahead for Weatherill.

    Nobody can say if the Abbott factor is at play and the election isn’t a done deal for either party, but even if the Libs win it’s another blow going so far backwards in an election they were expected to win.

  37. DanDark

    Thanks for that link ME
    I have been wondering how that by election was going
    There’s been a lot of talk around Dan Woodyatt, looks like he is travelling better than the critics expected.

  38. Michael Taylor

    Fisher has always been a right-wing safe seat. I should know – I used to be part of it. 🙁

  39. Möbius Ecko

    Twitter political commentators are stating it as a blow to the Liberals.

  40. Möbius Ecko

    Antony Green

    21:00 – Even if the Liberal Party do end up winning Fisher, there will be huge recriminations from this result. This is an 8% swing towards a 12 year-old state government in a seat Labor hasn’t won since the 1985 state election. This is a result that can’t be blamed in electoral boundaries. Someone is going to have to take responsibility for this result. Will it be the state Liberals? Will the finger be pointed at the federal Liberals? This is a very bad result for the Liberal Party in South Australia.

    Couldn’t agree more.

  41. corvus boreus

    It would seem, glancing at the stats, that the bulk allocation of preferences by Dan Woodyatt(Independent candidate with 22% primary vote), who (by his website) seems to have run on a ticket of moderate and conciliatory negotiation ability and promises local petitionary representation(presumably he preferenced Labor) was a major deciding factor in the Fisher by-election.
    Message?

  42. DanDark

    Just the way to finish an already “ragged week” for Phony Tony and Co,
    The libs are making the ” excuses” up as we speak, “it’s all Labors fault” is the norm.

  43. Kaye Lee

    I am still sitting here amazed that no-one in the MSM (to my knowledge) has picked up on Hockey’s hypocrisy re taking money out of the RBA. One year he borrows $9 billion to prop it up…the next he takes $1.2 billion out to prop up his budget. This was a flagrant attempt at make the debt as big as you can so we can blame Labor, very quickly followed up by grab the money and run, something they derided Wayne Swan for doing to a much smaller degree when the debt and deficit were far smaller.

    Talk about sheisters.

  44. Möbius Ecko

    The problem I see for Abbott and his senior ministers along with the right wing commentariat is that not a single one has said there’s anything wrong with their policies nor their lying, the problem is not getting the message across, in other words they’re not lying convincingly enough.

    As long as they keep believing that then results like Fisher will continue to occur.

  45. Michael Taylor

    Sheisters? You’re too kind, Kaye.

  46. Kaye Lee

    I wanted to say lying manipulative f*ckwits but I don’t want to offend others.

  47. corvus boreus

    Mouth! Soap! Naughty corner!

  48. DanDark

    People have stopped listening to Abbott and Co it won’t matter how they try and spin it, and convince people into the future, they have lost credibility and they know it, but if they admit to lying it is a defeat and they know it,
    Tones and the Libs are free falling in the polls and they know it.
    so they have wedged themselves into a corner and the public know it 🙂

  49. DanDark

    Lol Kaye as blown a fuse, sometimes ya just got to use the F word, it’s good therapy…….

  50. John Turner

    Any transfer of money between the Treasury and Reserve Bank are thimble and pea operations. The Federal Government owns both. The transactions are key strokes on a computer. So are all pension payments. A currency issuing government cannot go broke paying for anything that is available for it to buy in exchange for the currency it issues.
    Australia’s problem is not the Budget Outcome. The problem is the Current Account Outcome and with the closure of Ford, Holden and Toyota, the closure of all white-goods production and the exhaustion of domestic oil the CA outcome can only deteriorate. The Budget deficit should always at least match the CA outcome or the private sector loses financial assets.
    Plotting the two outcomes on a fiscal space diagram shows that without a doubt, for Australia’s long term well-being the Howard Government was the worst in my long lifetime. Abbott may do even worse than that.

  51. Kaye Lee

    The Australian reported in October last year…..

    “[Hockey] conceded the money would have to be borrowed and would deal a “significant hit” to the budget at a time when the government was trying to bring debt under control.

    However it was a necessary measure that should have been taken by the former Labor government, which instead withdrew “extraordinary” dividends from the RBA and weakened its position.”

    I await the outrage from the Australian at Hockey taking 250% of what Labor took in dividends.

  52. Kaye Lee

    John I agree. But it is all about the message. Giving money to the RBA cost them nothing as you rightly point out but it made those projected numbers (whisper in ten years time) sound scary to the public who do not understand about sovereign currencies.

  53. Bacchus

    😆 Even when Kaye “blows a fuse” DD, she does it with class and style!

  54. DanDark

    Yes Bacchus, touché perfectly said about Kaye….

  55. Kaye Lee

    You flatter me.

  56. Garth

    I’m still trying to figure out the (likely) provision of the subs contract to Japan. I understand it’s likely a trade off in the FTA but other than saying they got the FTA what do the LNP get out of it?? They sure as hell aren’t doing it for AU so what is the motivation? Anyone help explain this one to me (?)

  57. Kaye Lee

    I cannot explain it any more than giving the US $12.4 billion for 58 more fighter jets that won’t arrive for a decade. Tony loves war toys, he wanted signatures on dotted lines with accompanying photo shoot by the end of the year, and he is easy pickings for seasoned negotiators – that’s my take on it. Punishing SA for voting Labor could be a subplot? Perhaps someone can explain to me what we need lots of submarines for.

    “Former senior Japanese military personnel have spoken out for the first time against the submarine deal the Abbott Government hopes to conclude with Japan.

    Australia is considering buying 10 state-of-the-art Soryu class submarines from Japan, at a reported price of more than $20 billion.

    But Japanese military insiders have warned that it will cost much more.

    They told the ABC there was great reluctance within the Japanese military to share their expertise, and said it would take Australia decades to perfect the submarines’ top secret technology.

    “Australia could have many technical and implementation problems.”

    Mr Yamauchi and Mr Ogawa both told the ABC that an Australian budget of $20 billion would mean that all the construction would have to happen in Japan.

    And they said any attempts to do any of the work in Adelaide would double the price.

    Mr Ogawa said if construction happened in Japan it would be bad for Australian jobs, but good for the Japanese economy.

    “If the issue of military secrets can be resolved then Japanese business will be happy it will bring jobs and growth,” he said.”

  58. corvus boreus

    Herr Abbott ist ein dummkopf scheisse-verkäufer mit ein backpfeifengesicht!(!!!)

  59. Garth

    Thanks Kaye. Depressing, but thanks. 🙂

  60. Garth

    Kaye, I know you have said before that you just use the research tools that are available to all of us in your articles (and responses) but regardless, I so appreciate your ability to pull together this information and express it in such a useful way. Thank you.

  61. Florence nee Fedup

    Has anyone else notice, the industries that Hockey has proudly withdrew government support from all have unionised workforces. Taking over from what Reith and Howard began.

  62. Kaye Lee

    I was a teacher for many years and I learned a great deal from the questions my students asked 🙂

  63. Matters Not

    Abbott’s political ‘success’, in part at least, is explained by reference to ‘slogans’. Repeated ad infinitum. (It’s the nature of slogans to repeat, repeat and …)

    The current ‘mantra’ of Labor’s ‘debt and deficit disaster’ resonates as well.

    While Labor left neither a ‘debt and deficit disaster’, perhaps the ALP could charge Abbott, Hockey et al with the accusation that ‘debt and deficit’ is now looking even worse

    (Fill in the blanks …)

    In other words, attack don’t retreat. Play on their ballpark for a change.

    As I’ve argued elsewhere, it’s total warfare. No quarter should be expected.

  64. Florence nee Fedup

    Corvus, not making excuses. Just saying Tanya has put the information in the public arena. Has not drawn any averse comments. He was very young.

  65. corvus boreus

    Florence,
    I fully respect Tanya Pliberseks’ abilities, and have not been given any real reason to doubt her personal integrity.
    I just think the fact that her husband smuggled smack back in the day might well be played upon with telling effect in the parliament and media should she become a contender for leadership.

  66. corvus boreus

    In the context of the above remark, remember that Julia Gillard was publicly castigated for having a hairdresser as a husband.

  67. CMMC

    Fisher by-election won by Labor, despite ratbag Independent ‘noise’ the swing against the Failed Abbott Recession party is starting to look like panic.

  68. corvus boreus

    CMMC,
    “Ratbag independent noise” appears to have comprised nearly a quarter of all votes, and been crucial to Labor through preferences.
    Labor is somewhat dependent upon the ‘ratbag’ demographic, and should probably start listening to their ‘noise’.

  69. Terry2

    I see that Abbott is about to rejig ‘his’ paid parental leave scheme once again.

    It says a couple of things about Abbott, first the stubborn streak this man has in insisting that it is ‘his’ PPL scheme when we all know that he was totally opposed to the concept until Labor introduced their scheme and he had to go one better.

    Second, we have a good scheme in place already, it pays the basic wage ($640 a week) for eighteen weeks and encourages the employer to top up to normal wages which to my way of thinking is the way it should be : perhaps a tweak here and there to take it up to 26 weeks and include super.

    Abbott and Hockey still go on about “if it’s alright for a bloke to be paid when on leave…..then why not a Mum” which is totally misleading as obviously workplace entitlements are paid by the employer and no the taxpayer.

  70. Möbius Ecko

    The ironic thing about the rejigging of Abbott’s PPL is that is looks like being very similar to Labor’s he so heavily canned when in opposition.

    I do note that the political commentators are patting Abbott on the back for this move. It’s apparently a promise he had to break and everyone expected him to, so good on him, what a great leader he is.

    What should be happening is Abbott being severely lambasted for bringing this turkey up in the first place.

  71. Möbius Ecko

    OK I’m officially pissed off.

    Insiders saying that Hockey had to tell Australians to spend and send a positive message on the economy when he said 2015 would be better and 2016 better again.

    Hang on, in opposition Hockey spouted nothing but doom and gloom that directly effected confidence in our economy.

    Why are the media constantly allowing these double standards with this government, praising or accepting them for things they heavily canned when they were in opposition.

  72. Florence nee Fedup

    ME, one big difference with Labor’s scheme, is that industry schemes already in place continue. They act to top up Labor’s scheme. This is why I believe those on higher incomes will not be that better off under Abbott’s scheme. There will only be Abbott’s scheme and nothing else. He is transferring cost from bosses to the taxpayer. Yes, there is the levy on big business but he sees it as temporary until the budget improves. High income woman now get more.

    Little like Pyne. Not that interest in budget bottom line but in privatising education by deregulation.

    Abbott seems obsessed with removing all cost and responsible from industry to taxpayer, as his DA does.

    Listening to Outsiders ABC RN Interesting.

  73. Florence nee Fedup

    Sunday Extra worth a listen with Jonathan Green

    No PM who has lost respect has never been able to come back” Long list given down to Howard. History suggests this is true,

  74. Möbius Ecko

    Florence Abbott is going to change his scheme, that’s his announcement today. Those over $150,000 will no longer be eligible for a government payment so will have to rely on industry schemes and he’s going to lower the minimum wage requirement.

    He’s talking to it now on ABC News.

    Lot’s of the usual bullshit and it’s not a backdown of course.

  75. Florence nee Fedup

    If that is the case, he is talking about the scheme in place. business will not be pleased.

  76. CMMC

    The Bunker, that is where Abbott is.

    How many litres of gasoline to throw on the pyre?

  77. Möbius Ecko

    My god, he had Margie with him.

    Every time he brings up what he thinks are women’s issues, and PPL is not just a woman’s issue, he rolls out Margie and/or the girls.

    He stated that the people of Australia have said they wanted a better PPL, that’s why he bought in his signature policy. Well that’s a lie, he bought it in off his own back, a brain fart, to attack the Labor government on the issue, and for no other reason. And it’s also a lie as everyone on the Insiders panel stated, it was not popular with anyone, even the women he said wanted it.

  78. Florence nee Fedup

    Levy on big business to stay. Reception not good. Should just have abandon his scheme. Made matters worse. Says it is OK to change ones mind when conditions change. Is that what happened when Gillard bought in CEF suite of bills.

  79. Florence nee Fedup

    Seen him and Margie earlier, sitting before a Christmas tree wishing us a happy Christmas. He must feel threatened,

  80. corvus boreus

    Tone of Arc

    Diminishing soul,
    increasing insanity,
    a bonfire of coal
    (good for humanity)

  81. mars08

    “…Says it is OK to change ones mind when conditions change…

    Maybe it’s my imagination… maybe my memory is shot. But…

    I seem to remember that the word “backflip” was plastered all over the media when Gillard was PM. Not so much these days, eh?

  82. Florence nee Fedup

    So the levy is for childcare. Hard to fault that.

  83. Kaye Lee

    It’s for nannies

  84. Möbius Ecko

    And the incongruities of his policies just continue on.

    He’s going to use the savings from his scaled back PPL scheme to pay the 50% rebate for the home carers he flagged.

    Hang on that was supposed to have been funded elsewhere, so is he now saying it was never funded? And what’s happened to the dire budget emergency that the savings, which aren’t savings as the money was never allocated or spent, are not being used to pay off this massive debt Labor supposedly left them?

  85. Florence nee Fedup

    Changing ones mind because of circumstances was seen as a lie when it came to Gillard.

  86. Möbius Ecko

    mars08 that point was poignantly raised on Insiders, along with the fact that his government has more than doubled the debt, which has nothing to do with Labor, and PEFO/MYEFO was bought up along with giving the RBA $9b.

    They’ve been reading Kaye here.

  87. corvus boreus

    Sunday Tele-crap used the term ‘back-flip’ in their EXCLUSIVE on the subject today.
    Murdochs’ minions are prodding the PM, but the message they are mostly muttering is that Tony needs to be more right-wing and gung-ho with pushing his agenda.
    I suspect the will be background poking for Abbott to ‘get serious’ with the IPA media items(14, 15, 16, 17, 24, 27, 28, 50, 51, 65).
    I think Rupert is staring to pull the whip on his current nag.

  88. Kaye Lee

    Today we had Jane Prentice delivering the message. It is excruciating watching a person who appears to be a decent human being having to deliver the script.

    Message of the day: “Wayne Swan said there would be a deficit of $18 billion and when we came to office we found it was $40 billion.”

    Did nobody bother reading Chris Bowen’s economic update from August which showed a deficit of $30 billion? Or PEFO which confirmed this? Ummm I seem to remember quite a campaign of “the budget has deteriorated by $12 billion in three months” so to say you didn’t know is crap. And the extra ten billion came from Hockey giving the RBA the money in his first week or two. Are they totally incapable of truth?

    And does that mean any increase from $40 billion is the Coalition’s fault?

    Be prepared for more of this bs as they make the economy their message for next year.

  89. YouCannotPolishGlitterEither

    A message for Abbott and Hockey –

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