1 Reds under our beds
The day after telling the Australian people that the country faced the gravest possible economic news since the Great Depression, Scott Morrison fronted the assembled media and television cameras to tell us that we were under cyber attack.
He couldn’t tell us who it was but it was a state-based country. He was talking about China while at the same time treating us as children.
If he knows who is hacking into our systems why does he not name them? His acting was as bad as that second-rate actor, Ronald Reagan.
Of course, this time it was different. How different, he couldn’t say, but he assured us it was. In fact he couldn’t tell us much at all except it was serious.
The assembled press asked all the appropriate questions and went away to write about Chinese propaganda and other assorted hacking techniques.
He said that the attacks “hadn’t just started,” they were “on-going” and constant threats to Australia.
It was all straight out of the Crosby (now Sir Lynton) Textor book of political propaganda.
Crosby Textor are a globally conservative “dirty trickster” election campaign specialist company who exploit unstated fears in the electorate, aggressively attacking the opposition as not just wrong but positively incompetent in all manner of ways.
One of their dirty trick techniques is to continuously replace one fear with another.
Finding the truth and reporting it is more important than creating a narrative where controversy matters more.
So the fear of losing your job one day was replaced the next with the fear of the Communist Party getting into your bank account. Morrison’s cyber attack warning was a classic Crosby Textor grubby ploy that should have been identified by every journalist at the hastily convened press conference.
I happened to be watching at the time and I saw right through it. But the journalists starting asking questions like they had fallen for it hook, line and sinker.
How sadly it reflects on the quality of our journalism. Or was it just that most were Murdoch hacks.
Meanwhile, Twitter was busy reacting to Morrison’s announcement. Please note the cynicism:
Why announce a cyber attack by a state controlled entity without detail of by whom and of its impact and significance? Weren’t these already happening? Is this much more significant? Without detail reasonable to wonder whether announcement was just another distraction?
— John Hewson (@JohnRHewson) June 19, 2020
The “look over there” strategy is already working. Check MSM online and journalists on twitter. Far more interested in this than a massive overhaul of funding and career paths at universities. https://t.co/EKaWYrLznh
— Barrie Cassidy (@barriecassidy) June 19, 2020
Announces this “ongoing” attack just as the education overhaul hits the news. Could Scomo be burying the lead here? https://t.co/pLGLBFfZID
— Caitlin Cassidy (@caitecassidy) June 18, 2020
Why today? I hope someone presses the PM for this – if this has been 'ongoing'… exactly why are they announcing this today??
— Sabra Lane (@SabraLane) June 18, 2020
But on ABC Insiders last Sunday there wasn’t a hint of cynicism from the likes of Mark Kenny or Lenore Taylor when the subject was raised. Although confused by his intent, they didn’t doubt his words.
Yes, #ScottyFromMarketing had conned them all again. It showed that not only was he a brilliant marketing man but it also showed up the standard of journalism in this country. Mind you, most were from the Murdoch mob where the truth goes to die.
Lying in the media is wrong at any time however when they do it by deliberate omission it is even more so. Murdoch’s papers seem to do it with impunity.
2 The next budget: Who will pay to fix the economy?
On the one side we have the middle and the lower classes who earn very little – or more than likely they are on welfare. They also consist of regular taxpayers.
On the other side there are the upper class, the rich individuals who have earned their wealth through their own enterprise or inherited it. Then there are the small business owner’s, corporates and the multi-nationals.
When the next budget comes into being will it reflect the Prime Minister’s statement that “We are all in this together”?
Indeed we are, but will we all share the burden equally? I have long contended that the government is far too generous to the rich and privileged, who receive subsidies and handouts that are not available to the middle and lower classes.
So diminished is my trust in our Prime Minister that I cannot see any possibility of any equity in the coming budget.
Allow me to share with you some facts and figures from a report commissioned by Anglicare by Per Capita.
It records some of the details of what most people and the media already know. That is, that the richest part of Australian society receives much more government support than the poorest.
The study uses Treasury data, ABS figures and a University of Melbourne’s HILDA survey, to illustrate that the rich and privileged of society, the top end of town, costs ordinary taxpayers $135 billion a year. “Wow,” I hear from the assembled voices.
The report says that this is more than the cost of Newstart, the age pension, family assistance payments and disability payments combined.
And yet they say that welfare is such a burden on society. Will the budget correct this anomaly?
Poverty is the fault of the victim but wealth comes from virtue and both are the natural order of things.
And would you believe that more than half of these handouts go to the richest fifth of Australian society? The report doesn’t consider handouts to corporations otherwise the benefit to those at the top would be much larger.
Do you remember Foxtel received a $30 million handout in November 2018 and avoided paying $8.3 billion in tax for three years? It was only one example. Nobody to this day knows why they got the $30 million, not even the minister could explain it at the time.
It was but one example of 354 companies operating in Australia who avoided paying income on $911 billion, and last year, 36 percent of companies pay no tax.
And in the 2015-16 financial year, 17 of the 50 biggest Australian companies paid no company tax.
It was reported at the time that:
“In the context of the Per Capita report, it reveals that the richer you are, the more you get in superannuation concessions, and the greater your capacity to take advantage of income splitting, capital gains tax and negative gearing. It proves beyond doubt, that the tax system is deliberately designed to shift income upwards.”
It’s not the weak that are unable to say sorry. It’s the strong and the privileged.
If we want a more equitable share of the country’s wealth then the disproportionate handouts to the richest must come to an end.
However, I foresee a time in the near future when the Treasurer and the Prime Minister present the next budget where they will, like many other things, yet again try to pull the wool over the eyes of every Australian. Or just lie about them.
My thought for the day
Meritocracy is a term used to imply that those at the top of the social scale have merit and a slur against those at the bottom.
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