Help Stop Australia’s Democratic Farce!

What we know so far is that earlier this week Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd (fresh from calling for a New Ultra-Keynsian World Order) proposed the biggest spending increase in Australia’s history.

It includes:

  • Building a new building (apparently if needed or not) in every one of Australia’s schools (even though constitutionally a state responsibility)
  • $950 Welfare Check to “eligible families, single workers, students”
  • “Local community funding” – up to $650 million
  • Build 20,000 “new social housing dwellings” – ie government housing ($6.6 billion)
  • Free ceiling insulation for 2.2 million households. And a $1000 rebate for 500,000 others.
  • $3.9 billion in “green incentives”

This bill – equivalent to 4% of Australia’s ENTIRE national output and will turn a forecast budget surplus of $21.7 into a $22.5 billion deficit.

Yet all we have is a media release. They have not put up for public scrutiny the actual legislation. Yet they want to rush it through parliament in ONE DAY. Having given legislators the bills THE SAME DAY THEY ARE TO BE VOTED ON! (Update: the first of the bills as just been introduced at about 9:30am AEST. Update 2: As of now – 10:00am AEST Coalition staff still havn’t received copies, so it will be some time)

I repeat Rudd wants to push through the biggest spending increase in our nation’s history in one day. With no consultation. This is just farcical. No other words can describe this affront to democracy.

I am sure when we go through this bill in detail, we will find out why he is refusing transparency and where this money is going.

In the interests of transparency and good governance we CAN NOT pass the greatest spending increase in our history with no consultation. Without expert analysis. Even if you support Keynsian economics, surely you must realise that rushing this through without any proper debate or examination can’t be good.

This bill needs a senate majority to pass. PLEASE contact Senators Xenophon and Fielding and tell them to vote against this bill. We can not pass the biggest spending increase in our nation’s history in one day – heck not even a week would be enough. Please contact them and tell them to vote no. We don’t have much time.

Update: From the ALS Blog

“It [the Government] estimates the plan will support up to 90,000 jobs over the next two years.”

$42b/90,000 = $466,667 per job. Wow!

Of course, they claim that two thirds of the money was on “long-term investments to generate future growth,” so it’s really only $155,556 per job. That’s better.”

Update 2: The gov is moving a bill to lift the borrowing limit the government is authorized to borrow from 75 billion to 200 billion. Wow. I mean. Wow.

Update 3: Bipartisan pressure has forced the Bill to be delayed. Thank God. “Independent Senator Nick Xenophon and Family First’s Senator Fielding have reached agreement with the Opposition to vote to refer the legislation to a Senate committee this afternoon. Word on the street is the immense public pressure on them forced them to do so. Good. Let’s now just keep it up!

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2 Responses to “Help Stop Australia’s Democratic Farce!”

  1. Stefanie Says:

    Rudd is an idiot… he is buying popularity

  2. Natalie Says:

    Even if a spending increase was justified (which usually it is not), the government should be giving more money for the purposes of creating and fostering enterprise, not as a handout to those on welfare.

    Although my stepfather would not agree. He actually said:

    “I don’t agree with the part of the stimulus package that gives money to the private sector as they would be more likely to save the money and not spend it.”

    The most surprising thing about all of this is how the media is just glossing over the fact that we are going to be in a huge deficit. Instead all they are focussing on is how Rudd is supposedly saving the population and the long article he wrote in The Monthly on the financial crisis. As people struggle with money all they will do with their lump sum payment is either save it or pay off existing debt. They will not invest it or attempt to generate more wealth from it.

    This primitive view that building public works stimulates the economy is just not logical. But as you suggest, Tim, Rudd seems to think that Keynes is God.

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