Turnbull government shows signs of entering into panic mode

Photo from the Conversation: Malcolm Turnbull
Contributed by Joe Montero

Signs are that the Turnbull government is rapidly shifting into panic mode gear. The catalyst has been the fallout over the exposures over the behaviour of the banks. A Royal Commission has been put into place to side track doing anything, so ineptly that is has backfired.

Making mistakes has become the trademark of this government, and it is a good sign that it is unraveling. Nevertheless, it would be a mistake to pin it all on the ineptitude of the prime minister and his ministers.  This is an outcome of the direction in which the government has been traveling, how people are reacting to the outcome, and how thew government is responding. All of this is the legacy of what has been going on since well before Turnbull and his team came into office. The price is now being paid.

In an effort at damage control, there has been a move to turn the coming May budget into a means to try and win back some lost ground in the popularity stakes. Not that there is going to be a great deal there. Two give aways already announced are to raise the income tax bracket threshold for middle and low incomes and not to go ahead with the Medibank levy increase for now.

Both are minimal, and they are likely to join some other sweeteners, before the budget is delivered. The rub is that this is likely to be a case of making a big deal of giving with the one hand and taking much more away with the other. There is absolutely no intention of changing the existing economic policy.

The government has also announced that it will act on the wrongdoings of the banks and shelve its corporate tax cuts. On the first promise, nothing substantial has been put on the table and there is certainly no suggestion that greater regulation of the financial system will be brought in. holding back on the corporate tax cut, was not its decisions, but the result of the failure to get it through the Senate. Malcolm Turnbull and Scott Morrison have made no secret of the intention to bring it back later.

Put it together and this is preparation for an election.

Although formidable, the biggest problem the government faces are not the banks, it is the state of the economy and the rising perception of the Turnbull government’s mismanagement.

Both are a mess. Real economic growth is almost non-existent, if it exists at all. For many, the accepted standard of living is slipping away, as incomes remain stagnant in in nominal terms and fall in real terms. The failure to shift towards a new and renewable economy is also affecting the standing of the government. There is concern about a shift away from compassion and the rise of big brother politics. Rising housing affordability crisis is also having an impact.

Breaking now, is the sorry impact on the government budget, brought about by generous handouts and privatisation. Although on paper the government looks like it operating on a surplus, this has been at the expense of lifting the government’s debt. This will not go down too well, when there is already a great deal of revulsion against the huge scale of corporate tax avoidance, the extent of official corruption and the efforts of the government to cut company tax. The unhealthy state of the economy is seen in  the data released of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Net worth,  the measure of federal government assets minus liabilities, has fallen by another $79.2 billion to minus $399.8 billion, since Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Treasurer Scott Morrison came into office.

Providing benefits to the biggest corporations operating in Australia has not translated into increased investment driving the economy forward and providing real jobs. The only real growth has been in the speculative economy and the level of private debt. an April report by Focus Economics shows the poor position of a range of important economic indicators

Perhaps this is not strictly the government’s fault. The problem lies within the operating economic system, over which the government has limited control. But its response is making matters worse, and its inability to break away from a failing course, is damaging its standing.

Cuts to expenditure on services will continue. Policies that have attacked real jobs will not be stopped. Above all, a weak economy will continue to operate, still being made worse by continuing failed policies.

Is there an alternative? Firstly, putting an end to the corporate tax evasion industry and ensuring that the biggest businesses contribute to Australia’s future. Under performing operations that have been handed over to the private sector, should be brought back into government ownership.

Increasing government revenues and targeted expenditure can work as an engine to build the economy and do it on a sustainable foundation. This is necessary for future success.

If there is one thing the inquiry into the financial system is showing, it is that the deregulation of the financial system was wrong and their needs to be sufficient regulation to ensure that as well as tackling corruption, there is the ability to ensure that investment is directed to the needs of Australia, and in the first place, this means the needs of people.




6 Comments on "Turnbull government shows signs of entering into panic mode"

  1. gary st john | 30 April 2018 at 1:46 pm | Reply

    well written journalism. pitty the people that its aimed at don’t listen.

  2. gary st john | 30 April 2018 at 1:47 pm | Reply

    an election earlier than later coming soon,.

  3. it is no secret that the Turnbull and Abbott government before it has it’s greatest election asset in the ineptitude and apathy of the Shorten labor in opposition. Which raises an even bigger problem. you see the Shorten ALP strategy is to let the government run on a long enough leash to run it’s self into a ditch and strangle it’s self, So that the right faction controlled Labor
    can, when and if it ever takes government, minimize its concessions to the left factions. This for the Australian public’s interests is a 2 edged sword but this particular sword cut us both ways, first and foremost it amplifies the damage the current government is inflicting on Australia’s interests on vertualy every from from international relations, to government debt levels, the quality of life for all but a few privileged Australian people, public health, education and welfare,industrial relations, you name the contextual field and this government has and is actively it under an aggressive attack utilizing pseudo fascist methodologies to swing the pendulum and gain as much ground as possible in servitude to the interests of it’s global right wing elitist masters.

    the secondary factor here is that the only choice the people of australia has is to support a an apathetic inept and lackluster labor opposition being run by self interested career focused political individuals that have interest in supporting traditional labor values beyond the point of getting it’s self elected. It will then continue to minimise its concessions to Australia and it’s peoples interests while extending it’s every effort into staying in power by actively continuing the wholesale selling out of Australia interests to the same elitist right wing masters as its predisposes.

    what will inevitably happen in such a situation that Australia having effectively no other choice under its pseudo democratic system driving full speed ahead into a global oligarchy, is that people in Australia will follow the Americans and take the third option, or should I say “the kamikaze way” and vote to actively drive the the Australian political and economic system off a cliff.
    the problem with that is that in the case of our Yanky counterparts” the elites had predicted, pre-prepared for and have hijacked that scenario also and used trumps ego to turbocharge that path to the very same global oligarchy.

    With this inevitable fact in mind, what then?

  4. Pity the poor buggers that win the next election. The mess they will be left with is unfathomable. As long as Turdball goes, and his mates, there could be a light at the end of this sewage pipe.

  5. Labor needs to heed the requirement of taking the middle road with left and right ,taking a road to far one ☝️
    Way will not see it in power for long do what the people are asking.through out the world it’s catching on.
    Just take the right road with good and permanent look with Taxation economy is bleeding take back the
    Privatised operations as a beginning to undo what The LNP have destroyed. Quickly as possible give
    The public a site of the future jobs put the NDIS back way Julia Gillard constructed. Common sense to the
    Fore ….

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.