As the media falls over itself lauding Scott Morrison for lasting a year without being rolled, we are approaching the six-year anniversary of a Coalition government which invites reflection…
What have they achieved?
We hear a lot about jobs growth.
In September 2013, there were 706,400 people unemployed. By July 2019, there were 715,600.
Average hours worked in September 2013 was 141.3 per month. By July 2019, that had decreased to 137.6 hours.
We are told that the number of people on welfare is at its lowest rate in 30 years.
At the same time, the Poverty in Australia Report 2018 shows that over 3 million people, including 739,000 children, are living in poverty.
According to the Liberal Party page, “While electricity prices doubled under Labor, we have begun to turn the corner on power prices.”
The truth is that, since 2015, wholesale electricity prices have risen by 158 percent while gas prices have tripled.
Policy uncertainty has been a contributing factor in restricting investment and is it any wonder.
Last year, when Minister for Energy and the Environment, Josh Frydenberg was out on the hustings selling the National Energy Guarantee.
“People are sick of the hyper-partisanship which has dictated and dominated the energy and climate debate. They want practical, workable market-based solutions.”
Frydenberg said the NEG policy was “backed by business, industry and community groups”.
“Never have we seen such a loud chorus of support for a policy to boost the reliability of the energy system, deliver on our emissions reduction targets and to put downward pressure on power prices,” Frydenberg said.
“This is an opportunity which cannot be missed. It is time for all governments – federal, state and territory to put the national interest first and deliver a more affordable and reliable energy system through the national energy guarantee.”
Scott Morrison as Treasurer was likewise a fan of the NEG, saying it was how to “get the best functioning energy market with the lowest possible price for businesses and for households”.
Morrison also smacked down a backbench push for the Turnbull government to back a new coal plant, arguing that high-efficiency coal does not mean cheap energy, and taxpayers would also be left on the hook.
Now that they are the leader and deputy of the Liberal Party, the NEG is dead, any pretence at caring about emissions reduction is dead, power prices continue to rise and their solution is some sort of talk about “big sticks”.
The question should be asked, were they lying then or are they lying now?
We crow about being the biggest exporter of LNG as we suffer domestic shortages – meanwhile, headlines overseas read European natural gas prices are at a historical low.
“Natural gas prices in Europe have plummeted thanks to a rising gas export war between Russia and the US, much to the delight of European consumers. The clear winners from the war between these two gas powers are the European end consumers, who benefit from record-low natural gas prices, and power prices which have dropped more than 30% in the last six months.”
The Liberal Party page also tells us that “We have invested a record $328 million in preventing and reducing domestic family violence, including for new emergency accommodation.”
Compare that to the $423 million limited extension to the Paladin contract to provide “services” on Manus which currently works out at a cost of at least $1,600 per day for each refugee and asylum seeker, not including food or medical care.
Meanwhile, 26,500 children aged 0–9 were assisted by specialist homelessness services due to domestic violence in 2017–18, police recorded 25,000 sexual assaults in 2017, and 1 woman was killed every 9 days and 1 man every 29 days by a partner between 2014–15 and 2015–16.
Whether it’s aged care or foreign aid, wages stagnation or water security, Indigenous recognition or GHG emissions, government debt or hospital waiting times – the Coalition government, in all its iterations, has been an abject failure.
Morrison deprecatingly swept aside mention of his one-year anniversary as being narcissistic.
Narcissistic people have an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for excessive attention and admiration, troubled relationships, and a lack of empathy for others.
If the foo shits…
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