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We told you things would be bad (part 2)

Some things just slip under the radar, such as this piece of news which was “concealed” on the website of the Department of Human Services this week:

The Australian Government has committed to abolishing the Schoolkids Bonus. On 24 October 2013, the Government released an exposure draft of the Minerals Resource Rent Tax Repeal and Other Measures Bill 2013 that includes abolishing the Schoolkids Bonus. This legislation will be introduced into Parliament on 13 November 2013.

What did we tell you before the election?

If you have school-aged children…

Under Labor you would receive the Schoolkids Bonus of $410 a year for each child in primary school and $820 a year for each child in secondary school.

The Coalition would axe the Schoolkids Bonus.

It’s apparent that if you want to know what the Government is up to you’d need to scour their department’s web sites. But really, who would have thought to look up the draft MRRT bill on the Treasury web site to first learn about the fate of the Schoolkids Bonus?

Yes, I say again: We told you things would be bad.

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  1. JohnB

    How is it that these changes can be implemented without legislation passing parliament?

    Why do we even need a parliament if these changes such as these can occur at the “direction” of the Prime Minister?

  2. Kim Wright

    I have got to agree JohnB. Whats the go here. Abbott and co are making change after change with no oversight. The strategy is obviously to do as they like as fast as they can. The opposition parties cant possibly catch up. BUT how are they being able to do it without going through Parliament. Is this when we confirm that we have a dictatorship?

  3. leonetwo

    This has to go before parliament and it will. The provison for the schoolkids bonus was part of Labor’s MRRT legislation. Abbott will attempt to repeal that when parliament resumes. Here’s his program of legislation to be proposed to the next sitting of parliament.

    The repeal of the MRRT legislation will be blocked in the senate by Labor and other non-government senators. That means the government will not have the MRRT repealed ahead of next year’s budget. The schoolkids bonus and other benefits in Labor’s MRRT legislation will most likely not be able to be taken away until the 2014 budget.

  4. Tyson

    That piece of news was actually given by Tony Abbott at his pre-election campaign launch as shown on the liberal website in his launch transcript. Stop making up shit.

  5. cartoonmick

    These are early day mysteries. I’m sure there will be many more to follow.

    Mysteries, past, present and future provide heaps of material for Australia’s political cartoonists.

    Some of mine can be found here . . . . under EDITORIAL / POLITICAL


  6. Tyson

    Snap! Dan Rowden. Also on the Liberals website.

  7. Eve O'Brien

    Yes, I agree, it’s not a surprise, but was well advertised before the election. Still disgusting

  8. Fed up

    Yes, we did indeed say things would be bad.

    I do not believe any had any idea of how bad.

    None of their team do not seem to have any comprehension of the consequences if their actions.

    Do not care or know about unintended outcomes.

    They set out to sack, I believe one quarter of the CSIRO, saying they are on contract, and will make no difference to the outcomes of the Organization.

    I suspect, because of the nature of research, many are contracted, according to the research being done.

    Yes, that research might be concluded, if one I lucky, but saying they or others will not be rehired, can only mean that there will be no new research, to replace what is being done now.
    Cutting out all committees, can only mean there will be no input into legislation, outside that comes from the minister.

    As Howard said, one must be careful not to be swayed by experts, but to rely on the instincts in your stomach.

    One can only get the feeling, they are not interest in any program now in place, but in the illusion of small government, and the market must be allowed to rule with no restraints. That people are there to serve the economy, and those who have the means to control it.

    No place for science, in this brave new world of theirs.

    No, I cannot believe, any seen things would be this bad.

  9. Fed up

    Abbott still has not, or cannot make the decision, as to where he wants to live. Seems he cannot live away from being close to the surf. Also easier to ride his bike, out at Forestville.

    Will someone tell Abbott, sacking or doing twelve thousand leads to being twelve thousand less jobs, whether they are casual, short term contract, or anything else.

    Has not made any cut back to CSIRO, when they are going to sack one quarter of their staff.

  10. eddietla

    Almost everyone said they didn’t vote for Abbott (Murdoch),yet he becomes PM.How come???????

  11. Fed up

    “..housands of federal public servants face a bleak Christmas after government department chiefs were shown how to make 12,000 job cuts.

    Treasurer Joe Hockey is unable to say exactly which departments would be hit, but the details will be revealed in the mid-year economic and fiscal outlook to be released in December.

    The Australian Public Service Commission (APSC) on Friday released guidance for agencies in helping the government meet its target of 12,000 jobs cut by natural attrition.

    Mr Hockey told a business forum in Sydney on Friday the government was going through each department ‘balance sheet by balance sheet’ to find savings.

    ‘Strong economic growth in partnership with more prudent and focused public sector spending will be the key to improving our standard of living,’ Mr Hockey said.

    ‘It is our best chance of returning the budget to surplus and paying down our record debt.’

    The APSC guidelines say agency heads will ensure that ‘existing non-ongoing employment arrangements cease at the end of their current term, and refrain from entering new arrangements’.

    A contract should only be extended if it is a job which involves a ‘critical business demand’.

    As of June 2012, there were 14,273 non-ongoing employees in the public service.

    Most were women and the biggest users of the positions were the Australian Taxation Office, Department of Human Services and the Australian Electoral Commission.

    The majority of these workers are APS 1 and 2 – the lowest pay position for a public servant – and one in five are aged under 25.

    The commission s………..”

  12. Michael Taylor

    Wonderful. Tyson wants us to get all our news from the Liberal website.

  13. Michael Taylor

    Dan, those links were to articles before the election.

    But the point is, is that people who knew this would be taken away, and still voted for the Coalition, should have little to complain about now.

  14. Didn'tVoteForThem

    eddietla, wasn’t it that on first preferences LNP wouldn’t have got in?

  15. PeterF

    Actually, the scrapping of the MRRT is being carried out BEFORE it starts to bight the profits of the resource companies. The main reason for the low tax collection has been the write off of all costs of setting up the mines: now that they have stopped construction, and are getting into full production, the real profits will start to accumulate. It is therefore imperative that Abbott removes this tax before his friends are affected.

  16. Terry2

    But, isn’t the point that the government are giving big media coverage to the reduction in electricity bills after the carbon tax is repealed, with possible savings of around $5 a week to the average consumer. The School Kids Bonus and various other measures are being tucked away under the MRRT repeal legislation : this is deception at its best.

    PeterF, well spotted, you won’t read about it anywhere else; the MRRT is a progressive and sensible tax and only applies to profits unlike the royalties which apply to volume.i

  17. CMMC

    Why was the LNP campaign so mind-numbingly bland when they have such an extreme agenda?

    Regardless of what is in the fine-print, they kept mouthing “no nasty surprises”.

  18. Dan Rowden


    But the point is, is that people who knew this would be taken away, and still voted for the Coalition, should have little to complain about now.

    Indeed, they are probably quite content. One of the inherent problems with democracy, however, is that they’ve made the choice for all of is, and probably without giving a second thought to that particular fact.

    It’s when the Abbott Government begins to do things that weren’t identifiable or known before the election that things will get really interesting and some discontent will begin to emerge. Of course, we know the inevitability of that. It’s all there in the attitude. Who needs advisory bodies when you apparently know everything? That alone should be enough to terrify everyone. But oddly enough, there’s a type of person that actually responds to and admires that sort of confidence, because it inspires confidence, albeit false, in them with regard to their Government. It’s a type of psychological button-pushing that the Coalition has employed the past few years – to great effect. Credlin didn’t visit the U.S for nought.

  19. Kaye Lee

    As far as I can see, the only thing this government has achieved is to put thousands of people out of work, to stop all action on and research into climate change, and to get cracking on approving the biggest coal mines in Australia. Apparently if we want any research done in this country the public will have to fund it because our government thinks all that research stuff is a waste of money.

    “A government panel on how to deal with the looming issue of Australia’s ageing population will turn to public crowdfunding to finish its report, having been scrapped by the Coalition just months before completing its work.

    The Advisory Panel on Positive Ageing is one of 12 non-statutory bodies to be abolished by the government, Tony Abbott stating they had “outlived their original purpose” and did not help meet the Coalition’s goals.

    The chairman of the panel, Everald Compton, told Guardian Australia he was “stunned” by the decision, which came just months before it was to hand down a blueprint on how Australia should adapt to the “age tsunami” already facing nations such as Japan.

    “I was seeking a meeting with [treasurer] Joe Hockey for some time, but got no response,” Compton said. “Someone in his office called someone in the Treasury who called me to say that I, and the whole panel, were fired.

    “I’ve done two and half years work on this plan and I’ve known Joe Hockey for 20 years, so I thought I’d get a phone call at least.” ”

    “Federal ministers raised objections to Australia’s commitment to the Green Climate Fund during a cabinet discussion of Australia’s negotiating position at the UN climate talks in Warsaw, Guardian Australia understands.

    Finalising arrangements for the fund – which is supposed to channel $100bn a year in public and private financing to developing countries by 2020 – is one of the tests of the annual UN meeting, to which Australia has controversially declined to send the environment minister, Greg Hunt, or any ministerial representative.”

  20. Geoff Of Epping

    In this day of information technology there is no excuse for not knowing the truth, except laziness and wilful ignorance.

  21. Fed up

    According to Deloitte, the budget deficit has grown by 10 billion. This is all due to the effort of this government.

    They also say that to predict when it comes back to surplus is stupid, as one cannot tell what the global economy, especial;l;y China will be doing. Seems to be saying, debt now does not matter.

    They have sad that the nearly nine billion to the RBA is the caused. Seem to give the impression, that was not necessary.

    Yes, all Hockey has done so far, is to cut out revenues that Labor intended to collect. The greatest, is reopening the taxi loop holes, and returning rebates in taxation to higher income earners.

    Most of the cuts that have been made, are those that are paid to low income earners

    Yesterday, they added to the problems they will face, when they set out to dismantle all bodies that are set up to give governments advice, and the public a say.

    The most terrifying, is the cuts made to the CSIRO, in tis age that relies on new technology. Cannot have any science on the greenhouse effect, can one. After all, it is dangerous to accept advice from expert’s. As Howard said, one must rely on their own instincts., More reliable than any facts.

    Abbott must find it a nuisance, that he has to recall parliament. Doing well eh=nough at destroying all in his path, without it.

    Maybe Albanese got it right, when he said,m one knows in their guts, he is nuts. So are all that sit on the benches beside him.

    The confrontation, that is not a confrontation is still on. What Morrison is attempting, is turning back that boat.

    There is no security reasons that the public should not be given the facts. There is a political embarrassment for Abbott and Co.

  22. Fed up

    Just to add, what is not being addressed, is the structural imbalance in the budget. One wouyld need to cut high income welfare and rebates, even to begin.

    Yes, not about cutting, but by increasing revenue needs to be done.

  23. Fed up

    Just heard the ABC say, unless there are cuts made, the budget will remain in deficit. Could I suggest, that if there is not increase in revenues, it will remain in deficit.

    We have outgoings, that are paid for by incomes.

    If a businesses only focuses on out goings, and not look to expanding income, they will soon go broke.

    Not that governments are run like businesses,. they are not. Just a point for those, that cannot see that.

  24. Sandra Searle (@SandraSearle)

    All I can say about everything that this stupid idiotic new government is trying to cut & in particular the school kids bonus is this.

    I want to see the ALP, the Greens & Independents just say NO to absolutely everything. Its not just payback that I am interested in, but trying to keep all of the great things that were legislated by the ALP.

    It is criminal that this new mob think that they have a ‘mandate’ to scrap everything that delivers good social, educational and infrastrucural outcomes to most Australians. Its just crazy.

    Send a message to all of the ALP MP’s that we want them to stand up & fight for what they accomplished whilst they were in power. Then make sure that everyone knows the reason they might appear to be obstructive. With a bit of luck it might even bring on a double dissolution. Now that would be very interesting, because the level of discontent with this new mob is very evident & its only going to become more so with every cut to every department that we need to run an effective country.

  25. Kaye Lee

    “Once you realize that trickle-down economics does not work, you will see the excessive tax cuts for the rich as what they are — a simple upward redistribution of income, rather than a way to make all of us richer, as we were told.”

    ― Ha-Joon Chang, 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism

  26. Kaye Lee

    Tony should read this:

    “Workers in German car factories are paid about 30 times more than their Chinese counterparts, and twice what their American “competitors” get. Despite that, German car companies more than match their Chinese and even US rivals.

    One thing that enables German companies to stay ahead of the game is that Germany as a country has invested heavily in technical education and training, making its workers individually more productive than their foreign counterparts. A more important reason, however, is that German workers benefit from more productive technologies as a result of the investments that German companies have made in advanced machinery and research and development. It is exactly because British companies have not made similar investments that they “cannot afford” to pay their workers good wages.

    The low-wage strategy so beloved of the British business elite – or what Miliband called the “race to the bottom” – has no future. If Britain is aiming to compete with China in terms of wages, it will have to lower them by 85%. It is doubtful whether this can be achieved even if it engineers a 30-year recession and installs the harshest military dictatorship. Worse, once it had reduced its wages to the Chinese level, it would have to contend with Vietnam, where wages are one-quarter those of China’s. After dealing with Vietnam, Britain would have to face down the Ethiopias and Burundis of this world, with wages one-third that of Vietnam’s, or less. Countries like Britain can never win that game.

    Does Britain want to go back to Victorian times or, looking forward, become like some Middle East oil states, where a small wealthy minority is served by poorly paid workers with zero-hour contracts and minimal rights? Or does it want to reform its economic system so that its companies and government invest in raising productivity – and thus enable its workers to have decent wages, job security, and well-protected rights?

    The choice seems like a no-brainer. Unfortunately, large sections of the British business and political establishment do not see it that way.”

  27. Fed up

    Corporate leaders, no politicians will be on qanda Monday. Should be interesting. No pollies, and I assume union leaders.

  28. John

    I do believe that it would be appropriate for the opposition to abide by Mr Abbotts statement in parliament as opposition leader that it is an oppositions job to oppose everything .
    Would it be appropriate to say talk about foot in mouth or chickens coming home to roost.
    Make his life as miserable as he tried to make Julia”s Go Bill oppose, oppose, oppose.!!!

  29. Fed up

    It appears that Morrison ordered the General to transfer the people on that boat to Christmas Island. I take it, the non existent confrontation is over.

    He actually made this announcement, not waiting until next Friday.

  30. JohnB

    Could some journalist with a bit of backbone ask Joe Hockey why his stated intent to reduce taxes on corporations, minimise government regulation, reduce government green and red tape and facilitate, cut social spending programs and reduce the size of the public service will not cause the very same problems in Australia that US society now has?

    He stated in a radio interview recently that the government intends to make the business sector more profitable and minimise regulation so the extra jobs and prosperity can trickle down to employees.
    This is the exact same economic theory that Bush and Reagan argued for and implemented in the US during the 1980′ and 90’s – and look where it took the US middleclass:

    Today the US middle-class has all but disappeared – a recent economic analysis showed that on several measures of assessment, approximately 50% of the US population is now living at or below poverty level.
    Why won’t the intended implementation of economic policies almost identical to ‘Reaganomics’ in Australia by the LNP cause a similar disastrous outcome for mid income workers?

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