‘The art of political polemics, like the art of significant political journalism, is first to over-simplify the issues, for true clarity’s sake, and then to exaggerate them, for the sake of effect’. The Economist, 1964.
Henry ... the budget. Well, it was sure and steady and the flagship item ... a return to the black in 3 years ... will be enough to convince the average voter that the Rudd government knows what it is doing. The attached article shows that the business folk are also content with this turn of events. As they should be.
We missed the GFC when America and Europe didn't; America is still stumbling and Europe is on the edge of an economic precipice due to its insistence on being collectively stupid.Their policies were and are duds, but Australia's policies worked. All these good moves in Australian policy have to be credited to the government. If our policies were a disaster the government would have to rightly take the blame. So when all goes right, they get the kudos. That's how the game is played.
I'm still of the view that MKRudd is 'surplus to requirements'. Nothing on Budget Night changed that. However, this budget should reverse the opinion poll lead held by T. Abbott and that will save the skin of the lucky man in the Lodge. Internet opinion polls show two thirds of people 'unhappy' with the budget ... however, as most people see the budget as some sort of 'lucky dip' where they can and must win a prize, it is understandable that they are unhappy.
The lack of 'lucky dip' prizes is a good sign that the finances of the country are being treated seriously. We have immense national problems facing us and it is gratifying that we have decided to have Greece as a holiday destination and not an economic destination.
This budget is very bad news for T.Abbott. He surely knows, Henry, that he has one shot in his locker; either he wins the next election or he is out. Now that Malcolm Turnbull has decided to stay the Liberal Party has a suitably smooth and plausible chap to take over as leader when Tony is pushed out for the grave offense of 'failure'. I think that Malcolm realized that Rudd would hold on and Tony would be out and therefore the Liberal Party would have nowhere else to go except to the salubrious coast line of the eastern suburbs of Sydney.
This heroic level of self serving action meets with my complete approval. It strengthens the whole self serving approach to politics in Canberra. We need policies that are totally and implacably self serving .. serving us and our Australia. We need a government and Opposition that cares only and totally for us, for our own country and place, and for nothing else at all.
Enough with the whining social worker view of life and politics. Henry, we are in a tight and wonderful spot here on the corner of Asia and the South Pacific. We have more wealth, actual and potential, than God and all the angels. We will lose it all if we do not get ourselves ready to hold onto it. The social worker view of life will always demand that we spread it around to everyone else; let everyone in; do as everyone else wants us to do. Damn them!
The world we live in today is one of the levels of Hell, Henry. Dante couldn't accurately describe the world now. The moment we start emoting our policies (like they do in Europe) we will be stripped naked and thrown aside by a world where the social workers have no voice.
This budget is a good step on this road. The rush to return to the black tells me that little 'Wellingtons' are beavering away in Treasury. (God bless all you unsung heroes). What we need quickly is a move to 15% superannuation contributions. We need the $85 billion this will add to our national savings. We simply must put up as much of our own money as possible in the future development of our mining kingdom. This budget shows that our finances are seen as real money, not 'lollies and free rides' as in Greece and much of Europe. (Shame on Germany for giving in to this 'bound to fail' European bailout.)
Henry, the only secure solution to our long term situation is budgets like this one where we put the emphasis on maintaining and increasing our financial strength. This is and always will be the true road to security. Fighting off debt and being a (modest) creditor nation with perennial budget surpluses of around 1% of GDP will be essential if we are going to be successful in keeping this continent and its resources in the proper hands ... ours and ours alone.