Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Economy

NATION: Aspirational? Don’t try to take us all for a ride, Mr Turnbull

First published June 25

Ageing chestnut mare, Aspirational, returns to the Canberra track, next week, in the lead-up to The Super Saturday By-election Stakes, to be run 28 July. Aspirational, a J Howard favourite, now hopelessly long in the tooth, was always a baulky, flea-bitten nag, but her recent runs are shocking.

Aspirational is all over the track. The PM’s spin unit has injected the tedious buzz-word into every MP’s talking points. Are they aiming for a wake-up call, or hitting the snooze button? What exactly is aspirational? Ambition 2.0? Hope? No. Currently, it is a cover for increasing inequality.

Abracadabra! Hocus pocus! By the magic trick of lifting the “tax burden” (a Tea Party, TM, idea) or making our tax system flatter, less progressive and more unfair, aspiration will kick in. Take off.

Those who’ll benefit the most over the next seven years are the rich. Turnbull’s tax cuts skew the system in favour of the wealthy. And they are subversive. The government’s new flat marginal tax rate of 32.5% for all workers earning between $41.000 to $200.000 a year undermines our progressive taxation system. It flouts the principle of each according to his or her means.

Workers average $62,000 a year. The median is trickier although there is no excuse for the PM taking the question on notice. It can range from 47K to 55K depending what you take into calculation. Easy. But how to reward the wealthy at a time of alarming increases in economic and social inequality? Easy. Pretend you are rewarding the mythical aspirational worker.

Is Liberal hoop Turnbull guilty of reckless riding? His backhand whip action and his attempts to box in rival top jock, Labor’s wily Will Shorten create uproar. But can he put Bill’s weights up?

Turnbull is in the running for best venomous toad

“Slimy, insinuating and patronising” hisses the PM. It’s his best barb of the week. Turnbull is in the running for best venomous toad. His puffy eyes seem to fill with the milky white toxin which some toads produce from poison glands behind their eyes. He shouts. He bellows. He screams:

“This groveller, this man who abandoned workers while he tucked his knees under Pratt’s table.”

Turnbull is overcome by class hatred. ‘There’s class war all right,” US billionaire Warren Buffett reminds us, “but it’s my class, the rich class that’s making war and we’re winning’.

It’s the same, insane, snarling rage that ruined Turnbull’s pyrrhic victory speech, election night. Like Abbott, The Incredible Sulk, or his mentor, Donald monster man-baby Trump, a sore loser, Turnbull stoops to his “knees under the table” routine. It says more than he knows about himself.

Courtesy of Rupert Murdoch, whose Newspoll, which has installed itself as our national political oracle, Turnbull is reminded of two bitter truths each day parliament is in session.

As Tassie psephologist, Kevin Bonham, tweets, “Turnbull and Coalition lose an outright record 34 straight #Newspoll 2PPs, Bill Shorten 34 2PP wins in a row is the most for an Opposition Leader.”

Beyond desperate, the Coalition now tries to bribe the electorate with an over-hyped message about a “record” $140 billion of tax cuts, a mantra its ABC echo-chamber faithfully repeats. No matter those cuts are a long way into the future. Besides, aspiration, like grifting, is in its DNA.

“We’re not mystified by [aspiration],” the PM crows this week. “We recognise it, we embrace it.”

Turnbull’s turns puce. His face is puffy. He howls down deputy Opposition Leader, Tanya Plibersek who doubts anyone refuses a pay rise, or a promotion just because they have to pay extra tax. She defends marginal tax rates which even The Grattan Institute says are vital to a progressive system.

Liberal Party internal polling predicts a Coalition rout next election

Mal’s a dead man walking. Liberal Party internal polling predicts a Coalition rout next election. To use the surgical meaning, toxic Turnbull will soon be aspirated; sucked out of politics entirely.

In desperation, the PM tries to buy us with tax cuts. Yet his dodgy tax cuts will favour the rich. “Class warfare” is a reproach from the right of politics, whenever an attempt is made to help workers, those on low incomes, or the rapidly expanding underclass. Now it’s his main strategy.

A real class war election will be triggered by Turnbull’s move to lock future governments into huge income tax cuts for high income earners, as John Quiggin, notes. The top twenty per cent of earners will benefit – that is people who currently earn $87K or more.

Workers on $120,000-a-year today will still pay today’s average tax rate of 29 per cent in 2027-28, unchanged from today. Yet tax rates for middle-income earners will continue to rise.

If you earn $36,000-a-year today, your tax will increase from 10-16 percent, a 6 percent rise. Consequently, workers on the highest incomes get to pay a lower share of tax.

No wonder class inspires much of the PM’s bravura performance in Question Time this week.

Keeping his class-warfare personal, the PM attacks Tanya Plibersek’s family earnings, an extension of his mantra that the Labor Party is made up of class traitors just out for themselves.

Our PM’s a class act. What a ham

“From the hard streets of Rosebery, with a household income of just under $1m, the deputy leader of the opposition says aspiration is a mystery,” he hectors. Our PM’s a class act. What a ham.

It’s a typical pick-on-Plibersek moment for a government which finds it uplifting to ridicule and publicly humiliate a woman. It’s a ritual that is, sadly, not just confined to the blokes.

Julie Bishop loves to mock Tanya Plibersek over such critical issues as Africa being a continent and not a country; or her knowledge of which of the Marshall Islands is now submerged due to climate change. Rebukes even echo the misogyny of the blokes in charge – in 2016, Bishop accused Plibersek of a “hysterical campaign of misinformation” about the government’s approach to Iran.

It’s inspiring, character-building stuff just guaranteed to make any woman feel equal and at ease. But it doesn’t stop with the put-downs. This week, Plibersek is even thrown out of the chamber when she attempts to table a transcript of the very interview which the PM is wilfully misquoting.

The transcript she offers would stop Turnbull’s mockery; correct the record – surely a reasonable and responsible action on her behalf. It is peremptorily disallowed by Speaker Tony Smith.

Her transcript reads: Honestly this aspiration term, it mystifies me. As if someone on $40,000 a year isn’t going to want to earn $100,000 a year because they’re going to pay a bit more tax. They’re going to get a lot more income, they’re going to pay a bit more tax.

I think it’s just an excuse and a cover for a government that is determined to give the biggest tax cuts to people like them, people that they want to look after at the big end of town. How is it fair that a surgeon on five times the income of a nurse gets a 16 times larger tax cut. Is that fair?”

Plibersek nails it. No wonder the government didn’t want the full text to appear in Hansard.

As for the PM’s guff about aspiration, that’s just a cover for injustice

At other times, the PM and his team of mostly old white blokes tell men to wise up. Lift their game. Abuse of women would stop if only blokes could just show women a bit more respect. Further idle flapping of the gums is also devoted to why so few women are Coalition MPs. As for the PM’s guff about aspiration, that’s just a cover for injustice; a lame excuse to rip off the poor.

Not even Turnbull believes his cynical rhetoric – an excuse for rewarding the rich based on the lie that the harder you work, the richer you get. Australia has always been a stratified society. It’s a place, moreover, where’s been no real change in social mobility since the 1960s, former ANU economist, Andrew Leigh’s research, concludes, confirming other, significant, academic studies.

Family background still matters. What is growing, however, is income inequality and policies which accelerate it. Decades of neoliberal policies have widened the gap between the haves and have nots, enriching the toffs while creating an impoverished, marginalised underclass.

Yet Turnbull’s riposte is revealing – and ultimately self-sabotaging. It’s a key note in the week’s all-in brawl over tax cuts and justice which plays out against news of Donald Trump’s decree to separate babies from their mothers while their parents are prosecuted for illegal entry to America.

Nearly 1800 immigrant families are torn apart at the US-Mexico border from October 2016 to February this year. In Brisbane, a solo mother is being torn away from her eight year old son, Giro, who is an Australian citizen, by Peter Dutton’s Home Affairs and deported to the Philippines.

It will be at least three years before she will get a chance to return to see Giro again.

Like Dutton’s (broken) Home Affairs and his supporters, Trump peddles the pernicious myth that undocumented migrants are a danger. A myth? The Poynter Institute’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Politifact reports, “undocumented immigrants – (along with all other migrants) commit crimes at lower rates than the native born.”

Giro’s mother, Bernadette Romulo has lived in Australia with her children for 11 years. She works in aged care, pays taxes; contributes to her church community. Her son cannot leave with her because partial custody arrangements require that he not be separated from his father.

In reality, he’s just his playing to the gallery, or as commenters love to say, his “base”

Trump boasts it’s his tough zero-tolerance border policy, but, in reality, he’s just playing to the gallery, or as commenters love to say, his “base”. Immune to reason, impervious to all evidence of ineptitude, illegality, or betrayal of its base, a more suitable term for his devotees is “cult”.

Yet base is a perfect word to fit Trump’s hollow posturing. Like Dutton, Morrison or Abbott before him, he’s forsaking all decency and humanity to win votes by pretending he’s a tough guy. And everybody knows only tough guys are caring and protective. Alpha males rule. It’s a grotesque, dog eat pup, faux show of strength in a neoliberal theatre of unfathomable cruelty.

That theatre is even more terrifying because it operates in a void. Trump’s America does not care, writes Robert Kagan, It is unencumbered by historical memory. It recognizes no moral, political or strategic commitments. It feels free to pursue objectives without regard to the effect on allies or, for that matter, the world. It has no sense of responsibility to anything beyond itself.

We are dragged along by our great and powerful friend’s coat-tails. Melania Trump causes a fuss this week when she chooses to wear a $52 Zara coat which says “I really don’t care. Do U?”

Melania’s coat is seen as she embarks on a plane to head to McAllen, Texas, for a surprise visit to the heart of the family separation crisis at the southern border. Could she be so heartless?

In a word, yes. Yet a torrent of apologies, excuses and semiotic glosses ensues, including a tweet from the POTUS saying his wife was heroically liberating herself from the tyranny of fake news.

He tweets, “‘I REALLY DON’T CARE, DO U?’ written on the back of Melania’s jacket, refers to the Fake News Media. Melania has learned how dishonest they are, and she truly no longer cares!”

As if. Gertrude Stein points to the truth with elegant simplicity, “A rose is a rose is a rose”.

If fake news is a thing, so, too are fake tweets. Trump’s one big thing is to feed our mistrust.

… we are driven to blame aliens; enemy agents to appease our guilt

Above all, we need to demonise the other. Even as neoliberalism’s mainspring unwinds, its selfish competition and commodification of relationships vitiates normal social bonds of reciprocity, obligation and responsibility, we are driven to blame aliens; enemy agents to appease our guilt.

Pastor Peter Dutton, ever keeping us safe from terror, pipes up about the need to keep our “foot on the throat” of demon people-smugglers, terrorists and bad dudes with tats and facial piercings from Kiwi bikie gangs we must deport back to Nelson, Wellington or Christchurch.

It’s critical, he tells The Weekend Australian much in the same way that Christian Porter insists we pass the proposed espionage and foreign interference bill – a bill which he says is necessary to protect the Super Saturday by-elections, July 28, which could be sabotaged by foreign agents but he can’t say who, how or why. It’s another excuse to silence advocacy groups and GetUp!

Dutton tells Coalition colleagues that Australia is in a “danger phase” with illegal boat arrivals. One act of compassion could “undo overnight” five years of hard work in “stopping the boats”.

His claim is preposterous. But who needs a reasoned case with evidence in an age of metanoia?

In the end, Trump rescinds his decree. Sort of. He tells an aide, Tuesday, that “it doesn’t look good politically”. Instead, children will be locked up with their parents, on bases, a practice zealously embraced by Australia despite Dutton’s repeated fake claims that we have no children in custody.

Refugee Council of Australia figures indicate there are seven children in detention facilities; 33 on Nauru, 180 in community detention and an estimated 3083 in the community on a bridging visa.

Since 2010, 40 asylum seekers have died in detention. This week, Home Affairs Minister Dutton bows to pressure and allows Ali, a 65 year old man, dying of lung cancer, to return to Australia.

As loyal US allies, we are still helping turn Afghanistan into a hellhole

Afghan refugee, Ali, has been interned five years on Nauru. As loyal US allies, we are still helping turn Afghanistan into a hellhole. Worse, grave allegations emerge that our forces have committed war crimes, amid a “complete lack of accountability” from the military chain of command.

Yet no-one can explain what Australia is doing in Afghanistan – apart from blindly following the US. Even the US can’t say what it is achieving in its longest war in history and the costliest since WWII. It began as the Bush administration’s response to the September 11 attacks. It has cost over $1 trillion to date. Civilian casualties are fast rising under Trump’s “fight to win strategy”. There were 10,000 civilian casualties last year with over 3000 deaths.

Trump’s push is as ineffective as his decision to drop the GBU-43, the mother of all bombs. What is certain is that the region has been the source of a flood of refugees which some estimate to number three million. The nation has the reputation of causing the greatest number of refugees in the world. Of those who do return, three quarters are forced by violence to flee again.

The brutal answer to the question of what we are doing is that we are creating refugees.

Similarly, few are prepared to make the link between our illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003 and the subsequent flood of millions of refugees or those from Syria. Nor do we hear of the ways the US illegal invasion helped radicalise Iraqis; join al Qaeda in Iraq which would become ISIL and other groups. Easier to discover are estimates that around four million Iraqis were forced to flee ISIL.

We’ve helped to dispossess Afghans but we don’t want them here. Ali and his family were told “under no circumstances” would he be permitted to set foot on Australian soil. It’s a reversal of a Trump-like decision by Border Force and Home Affairs to deny all natural aspiration to humanity, compassion or respect for international law regarding the unity and protection of the family unit.

The UNHCR reluctantly agrees to help in the relocation of refugees from Nauru and Manus to the US, reports Ben Doherty, in The Guardian, but “on the clear understanding” that vulnerable refugees with close family ties to Australia would ultimately be allowed to settle there.

This proviso is ignored. Our government’s aspirations do not embrace or honour UNHCR requests.

Amnesty International calls our policy a “human rights catastrophe”

Australia’s refugee policy is now a byword for brutality. Our Nauru detention centre which bears the Orwellian name of Regional Processing Centre is a place of medical neglect, hunger strikes, suicides and abuse. Amnesty International calls our policy a “human rights catastrophe”.

330 refugees and asylum seekers, including 36 children, remain in detention on Nauru. Our government tells them that they will never be able to settle in Australia or New Zealand.

Are they, too, entitled to aspirations? Perish the thought. Time to return to Turnbull’s stunt.

Turnbull blunders. Is derision the best way he can respond to a Plibersek, a politician who has the integrity and intellectual honesty to own that she is mystified by his vacuous cliché? Bad enough that he must fend off her challenge to his platitude, a challenge which goes to the empty heart of his sonorous oratory; all sound and fury and no conviction, but he makes a very bad call.

Aspirations are not all to do with working harder, earning more or “improving” your social status and it diminishes any leader to pretend otherwise. Mal’s quip and the Coalition’s subsequent mockery by reiteration ad absurdum of the word aspiration in Question Time are another poor call. The nation is again dismayed by his lack of judgement. In World Cup terms, it’s an own goal.

Far from embracing or recognising aspiration, the Turnbull government will be remembered for its ever lowering of ambition in its desire to act with compassion, justice or humanity. Or humility.

It has heartlessly abandoned and abused to the point of torture those we choose to call asylum seekers. They are refugees; desperate men, women and children, fleeing war, famine and disaster whose only choice is to seek out Australia by boat and throw themselves on our compassion.

Embrace? No embrace here. Aspiration? More like apathy and perverse indifference to our own cruelty and inhumanity. At present, we illegally detain, indefinitely, over two thousand refugees on Manus, Nauru, Christmas Island as well as those in community detention on the mainland.

Despite Aspirational’s Liberal pedigree, Mr Turnbull, you would be well advised to drop the buzz-word immediately. Send the flea-bitten old nag to the knackery. While you’re at it you should drop the attacks on Tanya Plibersek. Can the wisecracks about her household income or Bill Shorten’s dinners with the Pratts. People in glass houses need to aspire to a higher standard of debate.

Finally, it may be a radical step for you, but it’s not too late to recall the last stage of your tax cut policy too. Or scrap the plan entirely. Australian voters are not mugs. They can tell when they’re being taken for a ride.

*David Tyler (AKA Urban Wronski) was born in England, raised in New Zealand and an Australian resident since 1979. Urban Wronski grew up conflicted about his own national identity and continues to be deeply mistrustful of all nationalism, chauvinism, flags, politicians and everything else which divides and obscures our common humanity. He has always been enchanted by nature and by the extraordinary brilliance of ordinary men and women and the genius, the power and the poetry that is their vernacular. Wronski is now a fulltime freelance writer who lives with his partner and editor Shay and their chooks, near the Grampians in rural Victoria and he counts himself the luckiest man alive. A former teacher of all ages and stages, from Tertiary to Primary, for nearly forty years, he enjoyed contesting the corporatisation of schooling to follow his own natural instinct for undifferentiated affection, approval and compassion for the young.

SMH: ‘Remove illegal immigrants’ rights and deport them all’: Donald Trump

The Conversation: Labor makes company tax fight all about Malcolm Turnbull’s money

Author Credits: [show_post_categories parent="no" parentcategory="writers" show = "category" hyperlink="yes"]
12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. Teresa Maddox

    June 29, 2018 at 6:53 pm

    Oops … don’t hold your breath.

  2. Teresa Maddox

    June 29, 2018 at 6:00 pm

    Those workers about to lose their penalty rates will be incredibly inspired by Turnbull’s aspirational comment. They can now aspire to work harder for less money!
    An ultimate hold your breath incentive!

  3. davies

    June 25, 2018 at 1:57 pm

    I appreciate your research Jon, BUT …

    The most accurate and hence most widely used measure for inequality is the Gini coefficient. And why is that? Because it is the only one that takes into account relativities between all the ‘deciles of society, not just some. More importantly it takes into account all taxes and transfers. So your headlines like top earners out-gaining lower earners means nothing, because that is before all taxes and transfers.

    So what does the Gini coefficient say about Australia? We have two main sources in Australia. The ABS Survey of Income and Housing has shown a slight increase from 1995 at 0.30 to 0.33 in 2016. The HILDA (produced by Uni of Melbourne) shows it has decreased slightly from 0.31 in 2001 to 0.30 in 2015. The HILDA is considered more reliable because the methodology used in the ABS Survey has changed over time, making comparisons over time difficult. Professor Roger Wilkins has done work in this area.

    So Australia has remained relatively unchanged over 20 years plus, with a current Gini of between 0.30 and 0.33. How does this compare to other countries? Well the OECD average is 0.33..

    So the only conclusion you can make from the best available data is inequality is NOT increasing in Australia, and it is NOT out of whack with all the other OECD countries.

    I think you also make the mistake of thinking that it is the same high earners year after year. Work done by (I think) Dr Laffer shows that people’s incomes over time can change dramatically. A reasonable percentage of those in the lowest quartile income bracket can, five years later, be in the top quartile of earners. And that makes sense as lower earners can be unskilled and/or young, and neither condition is permanent.

    Now wealth is a bit different. It is not so transitory. According to the ABS Wealth Survey, which takes into account the net household wealth, Australia has a GINI of 0.60 in 2016. This has increased from 0.57 in 2004. The main reason for the rise has been asset inflation, particularly housing. But how does Australia compare globally?

    The most comprehensive analysis of global wealth distribution is the annual Credit Suisse Global Wealth Report. The most recent report found that wealth inequality in Australia is relatively low. Only 11% of Australians have net wealth below USD $10,000 which in comparison its 22% in UK and 35% in the USA. The proportion of those above USD $100,000 at 55.8% is the fifth highest of any country and almost seven times the global average. And we have 1,688,000 people in the top 1% of global wealth-holders accounting for 3.5% of this top slice despite only having 0.4% of the world’s adult population.

    So Australia is wealthy and in comparison with other countries equally distributed. Our wealth GINI is the third lowest in the world behind only Japan and Belgium. Any graph you want to look at in the Credit Suisse Report shows Australia is going exceptionally well in distributing the wealth.

    So I repeat, unless you have new data showing otherwise, inequality in Australia has been stable over the last 20 plus years, and our wealth distribution is one of the global leaders.

  4. philll Parsons

    June 25, 2018 at 11:03 am

    #4 may not be aware that claims are being made that Turnbull donates his salary to charity. No mention of his allowances.

    Very few could afford to be so generous without a considerable pay rise.

  5. Jon Sumby

    June 24, 2018 at 7:12 pm

    Re #5, /continued:

    8th Aug. 2017
    ‘Recent commentary on levels of inequality exposes the myth that Australia is an egalitarian society in which the privileges of birth have little currency.

    Focusing on inequality in the distribution of incomes ignores an equally important dimension of inequality: wealth. Wealth is much more unequally distributed than income. Therefore, ignoring wealth inequality skews perceptions of social inequality.

    Perceptions of the levels of income and wealth inequality are derived from our day-to-day experiences. This means that not mixing with people from the other end of the wealth distribution can colour our perceptions of inequality.’
    https://theconversation.com/egalitarian-or-edwardian-the-rising-wealth-inequality-in-australia-81832

    2015
    Income and Wealth Trends
    The gap between the lowest and highest groups is increasing:
    • The share of both income and wealth for to the highest group has risen while the share going to the lowest (and in the case of wealth also the middle) groups has decreased over the past 20 years.
    • The wealth of the highest 20% wealth group increased by 28% over the period from 2004 to 2012.
    By comparison the wealth of the lowest increased by just 3%.
    • Over the 25 years to 2010, real wages increased by 50% on average, but by 14% for those on lower
    incomes (10th percentile), compared with 72% for those on higher incomes (90th percentile).

    https://acoss.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/ACOSS-POVERTY-IN-AUSTRALIA-FACT-SHEET_FINAL-WEB-July-7-2015.pdf

  6. Jon Sumby

    June 24, 2018 at 7:07 pm

    Re #5 … Just a small sampling of a large and conclusive body of work:

    12th Oct. 2017
    IMF says Australia has one of the fastest rising income inequality rates
    Economic body’s Fiscal Monitor shows Australia’s 30-year inequality growth is similar to the US, India, China and the UK

    https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/oct/12/imf-says-australia-has-one-of-the-fastest-rising-income-inequality-rates

    2013
    ‘Nevertheless, while labour income inequality has been on the decline, overall income inequality in Australia has been rising since the mid-1990s. Measures that focus on the very top income earners show a strong gain in their share of national income, as is the case in most OECD countries.’
    https://treasury.gov.au/publication/economic-roundup-issue-2-2013-2/economic-roundup-issue-2-2013/income-inequality-in-australia/

  7. john hayward

    June 24, 2018 at 5:53 pm

    I’m wondering if I’m the only person who doesn’t really know what the true Liberal means by “aspirational”.

    I know the dictionary describes it as something like a wishful desire, but it’s clearly more loaded in the conservative lexicon, which is commercial-in-confidence Being as it was adopted by their high priest, Winston, from inside his white picket fence, we can safely presume it doesn’t have metaphysical connotations.

    We can also deduce from analysing some of its foremost adherents, e.g. Dutto or the eponymous Michaelia Cash, that it’s also fairly free of conventional moral strictures.

    From this we need turn to the word’s present lead proponent and the wealthiest man in Parliament, the PM, who abandons all sophistication in favour of defining it merely as a particularly slimy euphemism for “greedy” or “rapacious”.

    John Hayward

  8. davies

    June 24, 2018 at 3:31 pm

    “alarming increases in economic and social inequality?

    Unless you have new information on this it was determined on the previous thread that inequality has not increased over the last 20 years or so.

    So please provide your source.

  9. John Hawkins

    June 24, 2018 at 2:47 pm

    But then he did ensure that he could protect his fortune from the Labor Party with the largest ever individual donation to a political party of $1.75 million to the Liberals before the last election.

    This was not listed at the time in the AEC records of donations.

    Now that is a real Fizzer for as Shorten said at the time: “If Malcolm Turnbull did not have $1.75 million in his back pocket he would not be leader of the Liberal Party, and he would not be Prime Minister.”

    That is real class war attack-dog material.

    Anyway it is tax deductible, so Turnbull would have paid no tax on his income as Prime Minister in the following year.

  10. Russell

    June 24, 2018 at 1:54 pm

    “This groveler (Turdbull) … this man who abandoned workers while he tucked his knees under Twittler’s (monster man-baby Trump) table.”

    Why should the lowest wage earners, struggling on as little as $40,000 per year and with a personal income tax rate of 32.5%, be higher than the proposed 25% Company tax rate (for those who would splash +$40,000 per year on a new car, and claim it as a deduction), where all the massive profits end up as a direct result from the lowest paid workers’ labours?

    The Banks, Big Pharma and resource extractors will be licking their lips, even after the disgraceful results of the recent Royal Commission which Turdbull didn’t want to go ahead.

  11. Keith Antonysen

    June 24, 2018 at 1:42 pm

    Last week Turnbull attacked Aged Care workers and workers in general with his comments about an Age Care worker in Burnie who, he suggested, could aspire to a better position.

    There was no understanding of the value of the position of Aged Care workers displayed, or other workers providing essential services. Age Care workers have positions which provide real benefits to communities, a position they can have pride in. Numerous underpaid workers provide a greater service than some of the lousy politicians we currently have to put up with; politicians with no idea of what real people have to face. LNP politicians have no idea of the satisfaction and pride people can take in the positions they have in providing a good and valuable service, even though obtaining poor pay.

    Also, when instances of poor service are found in Age Care facilities it is management that is the cause in the vast majority of cases. Management is responsible for the terrible situations, the profit motive being a contributor through poor staff-to-patient ratios, and an unwillingness to provide the medical services a patient needs.

    We keep being told how great tax cuts are for Corporations, but The Washington Post does not believe that to be the case:

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2018/06/15/for-the-biggest-group-of-american-workers-wages-arent-just-flat-theyre-falling/?utm_term=.19b44efe238c

    Quote … “The average hourly wage paid to a key group of American workers has fallen from last year, when accounting for inflation, as an economy that appears strong by several measures continues to fail to create bigger paychecks, the federal government said Tuesday.”

  12. Chris

    June 24, 2018 at 1:03 pm

    My dictionary asks – Is the Fizza true to his convictions characterized by aspirations to achieve social prestige and material success:

    This Donald-like character who chooses to have a Caribbean to have control over his money cries wolf so often, but like some, he cannot bear to think that voters dislike him and his right wing mates less and less.

    Where are his loyalties, here or in his wallet or in some tropical Island avoiding scrutiny and like Obama states, a haven for tax cheats and thieves?

    The Rev would now have aspirations for material success, having de-Abbottised himself and joined the Fizza’s camp. Long live Braddon, onions are off the diet!

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