History unlearned has an unfortunate habit of repeating itself.
Unfortunately, the present economic policies of the Abbott LNP will have historical long-term economic and social consequences.
The following ready reckoner and broad analysis sets out the short and long term consequences of an Abbott LNP government. (Please note these commitments are not costed).
Short Term Consequences
Long Term Consequences
Obviously, even on a superficial understanding of the economy and Government spending, these promises will have to be funded through as yet unspecified spending cuts and/or extensive privatisation. One of the policy think tanks aligned with the LNP has specified an extensive blueprint here. Further suggestions are here.
Whether the LNP implements such wide-ranging spending cuts and/or privatisation remains to be seen. But there will be long-term consequences.
Privatisation, unfortunately has a poor track record in the public sphere:
- Governments have a poor record of successful privatisation with increased costs and decreased efficiency of service delivery.
- Privatisation increases public revenue in the short-term and decreases revenue in the longer term.
- Privatisation increases costs to the public in the long-term (especially for electricity).
As for spending cuts, as most Government spending is Health, Education and Human Services, inevitably the axe will fall there. The long-term consequences will be:
- Health cuts will not satisfy the existing and increased demand for services due to mental illness, an aging and increasing population, etc.
- Education reductions will create future skills shortages.
- Social security cuts will create even more long-term unemployed and homeless with resulting social dislocation.
The same policies of spending cuts and privatisation have created recession for:
Worst of all, the LNP has stated its commitment to a budget surplus. Such a commitment retained during an induced recession, will be history repeating itself : the same policy that worsened the 1929 Depression and the same policies that have hurt Greece and Spain.
It (will be) much worse than we thought.
Politically, I always thought it was the role of the Government to bore the electorate to death. And then be re-elected.
But, and especially of late, that role has been taken on by the Opposition.
Now it is the AWU scandal which dominated Parliament yesterday with allegations that the PM broke the law. Which does not match her defence or recollection. Besides, if that is the case there should be an investigation. Or perhaps a Royal Commission into all lawyers that gave good advice subsequently misused. Boring.
And the week before it was the carbon tax which has had its day. Boring.
And every question time the Opposition moves for a suspension of standing orders which almost always is lost. Boring.
Wouldn’t it be funny if there was an election and the Opposition was re-elected based on their boring performance.