Category Archives: Economy

JIM COOMBS : Bean Counters Stand Up and Be Counted

Budget problems arise for governments who don”t control spending. Where are their financial advisers when gross overspending takes place. No business could survive the profligacy of our government’s spending.

Posted in Economy, Politics | 5 Comments

JOHN MENADUE. The litany of failed privatisations. (Repost from 20 March 2017)

Ideologues ,the self interested bankers and accountants and lawyers still persist with their fixation with privatisation despite the fact that it is failing in one area after another and the electorate shows very clearly that it does not want it.  … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Infrastructure, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

GEOFF DAVIES. The chasm between the society we are offered and the fair go we want

There is widely perceived to be a gap between our stumbling political system and the wishes of the Australian people. However those who look a little deeper into our Australian hearts see not just a gap but a yawning chasm.

Posted in Current affairs, Economy | 3 Comments

John Menadue. The Coalition, rural poverty and rural health. (Repost from 16 January 2016)

It is not surprising that independents are making headway in country electorates. But what is the ALP doing?  

Posted in Economy, Health, Politics | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

MICHAEL KEATING. Why Blame Neo-Liberal Economics: A Response

My previous article on Why Blame Neo-Liberal Economics, which argued that neo-liberal economics was not a main cause of increasing inequality, drew an unusually large and mostly critical response. While it is not feasible to respond to all the detailed … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Taxation | 19 Comments

IAN McAULEY. Australia’s economy: she’ll be right mate – or will she?

A few good economic indicators and Coalition disunity are distracting us from fundamental structural weaknesses in the Australian economy.

Posted in Economy, Politics | 3 Comments

CHARLES LIVINGSTON. Victorian pokies “reforms” may impose big costs on population

The Victorian Government has announced that it will extend existing poker machine licences until 2042, freezing the total number of machines available in pubs and clubs at 27,342 (there are another 2,658 at Crown Casino). The Minister made much of … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Health | 1 Comment

JOHN QUIGGIN. Governments are buying up where the market has failed. Is this the end of privatisation?

Australian governments are back in business. Every couple of months, it seems, we hear of a new venture into public ownership of business enterprises, or an expansion of existing enterprises. Most recently, Victoria’s Labor government has announced the purchase of … Continue reading

Posted in Economy | 2 Comments

MICHAEL WEST. Goldman Sachs & News Corp tax tricks as Canberra claims battle won

Peering at the local accounts of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and Goldman Sachs … is the government’s claim to have sorted multinational tax avoidance correct? As they gaze down from their glass eyries, partners of the Big Four accounting firms … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Taxation | 1 Comment

TIM COLEBATCH. One census, three stories

In the broad picture, the 2016 census has confirmed things we already knew about ourselves. But burrow down into the detail, and you’ll find much that will surprise you.

Posted in Economy, Multi-Culturalism, Religion and Faith | 2 Comments

GILES PARKINSON. Garnaut: CET may be useless without higher emission targets

Leading economist professor Ross Garnaut says the clean energy target recommended by the Finkel Review could be useless in meeting current emission reduction targets, because technology change and coal retirements will get us there in any case.

Posted in Climate change, Economy, Environment | 1 Comment

TONY MAHER. Energy future debate needs to put people first

Without bipartisan support for the key planks of energy policy, we will continue to have electricity shortages, higher than necessary prices and investment decisions being made by governments based on populism. Workers shouldn’t be used as a pawn in a … Continue reading

Posted in Climate change, Economy, Environment | 1 Comment

RAMESH THAKUR. Moral hazard in modern democratic politics

While all Western democracies accept the need for social safety nets, conservative governments point to moral hazard to justify less generous public provisions, while progressive parties prioritize more assistance to the needy over additional minor inconvenience to the better off

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STEPHEN LONG. Reserve Bank boss Philip Lowe urges workers to push for pay rises

It wasn’t quite Karl Marx, but, for a central bank boss, it was heady stuff: The Reserve Bank governor, no less, exhorting workers to demand higher pay rises. 

Posted in Economy, Industrial relations | 2 Comments

IAN MCAULEY. This time, let’s get electricity pricing right

Consumers are understandably annoyed about recent electricity price rises. But that does not mean they would necessarily react negatively to a price rise associated with adoption of the Finkel Report recommendations. People are more likely to accept a price rise … Continue reading

Posted in Economy | 1 Comment

BISHOP VINCENT LONG. Fashioning a more equitable and participatory society

On 16 June 2017 Bishop Vincent Long spoke at the Sydney launch of Race Mathews’ book Of Labour and Liberty: Distributism in Victoria 1891-1966. This is a transcript of his speech, in which he suggests Whitlam would have been appalled … Continue reading

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BRIAN TOOHEY. Building submarines in SA simply sinks Australian dollars

Despite claims to the contrary by the defence industry minister Christopher Pyne, this sector is not driving growth in the economy or jobs. A defence economics specialist Mark Thompson has debunked these claims in a careful analysis just released by … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Economy | 1 Comment

JOHN MENADUE. Who can we trust?

In the series “Fairness, Opportunity and Security” last year I drew attention to the pervasive loss of trust in institutions . Essential Research revealed that the six least trusted institutions were: the news media, state parliaments, trade unions, business groups, … Continue reading

Posted in Democratic Renewal, Economy, Politics | 1 Comment

JOHN MENADUE. The Abbott and Turnbull legacy on climate change and energy policy.

This is a repost of an article that was originally posted on 15 February 2017. I have reposted this in light of current controversy on the Finkel Report. Let’s be clear, the Coalition and particularly the Liberal Party and Malcolm … Continue reading

Posted in Climate change, Economy, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , | 5 Comments

JOHN QUIGGIN. The OECD joins the backlash against unfettered globalisation

The OECD, in a recent report, has recognised that globalisation has many dimensions. Its enthusiasm for globalisation is undiminished, but it does acknowledge that the costs of globalisation “have been larger, more localised and more durable than previously thought, and … Continue reading

Posted in Democratic Renewal, Economy | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

MUNGO MacCALLUM. The Finkel Report and Malcolm Turnbull – compromising at the expense of the planet.

It has little if anything to do with the real issues around climate change: it is all about satisfying Tony Abbott, Barnaby Joyce, George Christensen and Eric Abetz. 

Posted in Climate change, Economy, Environment, Politics | 1 Comment

GILES PARKINSON. Finkel decoded: The good, the bad, and the very disappointing

The Finkel Report on the future of the national electricity market falls short of its opportunity to redefine energy markets. It has been focused on trying to find a pathway through the toxic energy politics in Australia, and accommodating the … Continue reading

Posted in Climate change, Economy, Environment | 2 Comments

DUNCAN MACLAREN. May’s Folly: the Brexit election result

The people who will suffer most from economic meltdown likely to follow from the UK election will be the country’s poorest and most vulnerable as funds dry up for public services, jobs disappear as firms move to the EU and … Continue reading

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IAN MCAULEY. Australia’s finance sector: a bloated overhead?

Rather than capricious and populist measures such as the government’s levy on the big five banks, we need a thorough and far-ranging consideration of the role of the finance sector in our economy. This sector, which should have benefited from … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Politics | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

BERNARD KEANE. Low emissions target: a win for both Turnbull and climate denialists, a loss for everyone.

The beauty of a  Low Emissions Target as a climate action policy is that, as a kind of lowest common denominator, it means everyone wins — and for that matter loses.

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IAN McAULEY. Labor’s love affair with private health insurers

There was a recent flurry of media excitement about a supposed “secret hospital funding plan”, which turned out to be no more than an option under consideration by a think-tank. But the real (and overlooked) issue in health funding is … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Health, Politics | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

IAN BERSTEN. Tax policy and reducing financial barriers for small business in Australia.

There is much discussion about the benefits of reducing tax so that Australia can be competitive with other countries in the world. This is only of consequence to multinational companies considering where to establish their headquarters. All small companies and medium-sized … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Taxation | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

PETER MARTIN. Game of Mates: How billionaires get uber-rich at our expense

“The rich are different from you and me” the saying goes. “They have more money“. But that’s not the only way they are different. In the updated Financial Review Rich List released on Friday, 45 of the richest 50 Australians are men. And they are … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Politics, Vested Interests | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

CHRISTIAN DOWNIE. If the US can’t make coal clean, what hope is there for Australia?

The Prime Minister’s recent decision to back coal rests on the assumption that it can somehow be made “clean”, or more precisely, that carbon, capture and storage (CCS) technologies can be made to work for coal plants. The problem is … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. Miners, taxation and donations. (Repost 17/10/2013)

In my blog of June 3 “the Miners Lament”, I pointed out that the large foreign owned  mining companies in Australia may yet regret that they rejected out of hand the Resources Super Profits Tax that the Rudd Government proposed. … Continue reading

Posted in Australia and Asia, Economy, Education, Politics | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment