What Incompetent Amateurs. - The AIM Network
After a disastrous first budget, Joe Hockey looks
to be a man without ideas. So too his dear leader Tony Abbott who, in
what appears to be an act of desperation, has pleaded with the business
community to help him.
In what could be interpreted as a cry for help, Abbott has called on
business leaders and state governments to be the drivers of a new wave
of economic reform. Speaking at a Business Council of Australia dinner, this week, the Prime Minister signalled out taxation as the most urgent of the nation’s woes. Really?
One can rightfully ask if this is analogous to waving the white flag.
As well as the business community, Abbott has included the Labor party
in this invitation and all state governments, “to join Team Australia and to think of our country and not just the next election.” Could it be the Prime Minister is telling us he doesn’t know how to govern the country?
What? These magicians of spin, these production wonder boys, these
wealth creation gurus, these self-proclaimed ‘budget emergency’ busters
who conned so many of the electorate into thinking they were our
economic saviours, are they now giving up?
lying, deceitful cretins who supposedly had the answers to all our
problems are now asking members of the former government who saved us
from the GFC to come on board as partners in ‘Team Australia’?
What a pathetic way for a national leader to acknowledge that he and
his treasurer are no longer up to the task. And if that is true, they
should hide their heads in shame and go back to the people.
Abbott’s plaintive call to 400 of the country’s leading executives
came after another week of management failures that covered a range of
areas involving his own stupidity, his Defence Minister’s stupidity, and
the Communication Minister’s stupidity.
It came after a week that included other ministers sending mixed
signals about dumping the $7 GP co-payment, which itself came right on
the heels of some disastrous fiscal projections from the Parliamentary
Budget Office concerning the ever ballooning deficit.
Laura Tingle of the Australian Financial Review notes that “Prime
Minister Tony Abbott finds himself defending the indefensible, or the
already mortally-wounded, on three different fronts”. She is
referring to a now dead budget strategy, the ABC broken promises parody
and Defence Minister, David Johnson’s ‘rhetorical flourish’.
With the government’s Senate option’s now even harder to negotiate,
little wonder Abbott is showing signs of desperation. How humiliating it
must be for him to ask for Labor’s help. Particularly, as Laura Tingle
explains, the markets and the business community now see the budget
impasse as “a disaster of the Coalition’s own making.”
In a quite feeble defence, the government has also called on Labor to say what it would do to ‘fix the budget’. Once again, they seem to forget that they are no longer in Opposition.
seen through their narrow-minded neo-liberal eyes, what a fix it needs.
Just last May, Hockey projected a budget deficit of $29 billion for
2014-15. The report just released by the Canberra-based consultancy
Macroeconomics suggests that on current trends
the deficit will more likely be $47 billion. Worse still, they are
projecting a deficit of $24 billion in 2016-17 against Hockey’s
projected $2.8 billion.
How vindicated must Wayne Swan be feeling right now as he witnesses
these incompetent amateurs stumbling around in the dark desperately
trying to spin their way out of their own ineptness.
Meanwhile the Parliamentary Budget Office has released an analysis
emphasising the “sensitivity” of the economy to the areas of
productivity growth, the labour force participation rate, and the terms
of trade and the likely outcome on revenues if the present targets are
not met. Take a look. It isn’t pretty.
are some dark days ahead for Hockey, right up to the next election. But
Abbott’s position is worse. He has all but lost credibility within his
own party. As Laura Tingle puts it, “As
Abbott’s credibility is under deadly assault, and the authority of his
senior ministers is missing in action, the resolve of both Labor and
cross benches to stand their ground only increases.”
They say what goes around, comes around. Surely that Sydney Daily Telegraph front page headline of the 5th August
2013, urging the electorate to “kick this mob out” must certainly be
resonating around the country right now. If asking Labor to help get it
out of its fiscal mess is any guide, perhaps it is also resonating from
within the Coalition.