The Dog’s Bollocks

Truth is like a dog’s bollocks – pretty obvious if you care to look.

The Budget spiv-fest

LeunigI’ve never heard such unmitigated prognosticative crap spoken in the current round of budget commentary. As Possum put it – laughing at the budget spiv-fest. Swann has delivered a competent budget, while seemingly achieving the miraculous – cutting spending and increasing spending at the same time. For weeks, Malcolm Turnbull was warning that budget cuts would slow the economy but more spending was needed. Well, he got his wished for.

There is still a sense of denial amongst the conservative economic talking heads. They concede that the Labor budget was not too bad, given that they are amateurs, and not the rightful proprietors of our nation’s public purse. A spiv from Access Economics last night appeared to be saying that the government is benefiting from enormous revenue flow from the commodities boom creating a huge surplus which we should do something with, but it shouldn’t be spent because it would be inflationary. Or something. The rules of the game have changed and the goal posts have been moved.

The conservatives have long told us that we can only spend money on health, education, the environment and infrastructure once the economy is good and we can afford it. Apparently now that the economy is good and we can afford it, we still shouldn’t spend money on these things because it might damage the economy. Catch 22. Money is really only meant for the wealthy and powerful. I think they would prefer that that budget surpluses be locked up into investment funds for private brokers to play the markets with for a nice little earner from coupon-clipping commissions. Or something.

That everyone is confused by the conflicting economic narratives of the commentariat suggests that Rudd’s first budget is a political success. The Government has kept its promises and is seen as economically conservative through its domestic cuts while signalling significant public investment in public infrastructure. If you can’t invest in infrastructure now, when can you? When hell freezes over? The average punter understands that there is more to life than framing budgets to satisfy market analysts.

With the shambolic incoherence of the opposition on matters budgetary, I cringe in anticipation of Brendan Nelson’s budget response. He might be better off just saying nothing, for it will no doubt confirm the total irrelevance of the Liberal Party at this time in our history. Turnbull has revealed himself as no saviour – witness his indignity that taxes have been increased! On alco-pops and cars costing more than $80k! Oh the outrage! And means testing is class envy! Give us a break.

Tough times indeed for Australia’s natural economic custodians.

Filed under: Economics, Politics,

The Dog’s Bollocks

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