A MESSAGE FOR THE ‘CHEER SQUAD MEDIA’
Crikey, 26 November 2018
When is it wrong to write 5.3 percent as “around 5 and a half percent”? Not when the Reserve Bank does it. According to Nick Cater and Judith Sloan, the answer seems to be “when the writer is a member of the Labor Party”.
Over recent weeks, the duo has mounted a bizarre attack on an opinion article that I had published online in the New York Times at the start of October. The critiques are as fatuous as they are false.
Apparently it was perfectly fine for Josh Frydenberg to write on the UK Spectator website in 2012 that Julia Gillard was ‘dumbing down... our foreign policy’ and ‘cheapens our parliament with a trumped up and false charge of misogyny’. But for me to discuss the challenges of the Australian economy on the New York Times website (with no direct critique of the current government) is tantamount to high treason.
Being fact-checked by Cater and Sloan is like getting a lecture on business ethics from Christopher Skase. Both angrily fault my 9 October article for its failure to use statistics released on 18 October. It’s not clear whether they are clumsy or deliberately trying to deceive their readers. Worse yet, perhaps they just don’t care about the truth - just whether they can score a partisan point.Read more
MONDAY, 26 NOVEMBER 2018
SUBJECTS: The Banking Royal Commission; Victorian State Election; National Integrity Commission; Labor’s Fair Go Action plan.
ADAM SHIRLEY: Which bank should sponsor the Australian of the Year awards? For some time the Commonwealth Bank has been a corporate partner of the Australian of the Year Awards, which if you don't know celebrates some of this country's most dynamic, highly achieving and downright extraordinary citizens of this country. But some are grumbling about the Commonwealth Bank's involvement because parts of its behaviour along with other financial institutions have been anything but pristine. The Royal Commission into financial institutions has revealed this to be true. One of those placing a question mark on the bank's future involvement with the awards is Dr Andrew Leigh. He is the Shadow Assistant Treasurer and Member for Fenner and he's with us today. Dr Leigh, is it time the Commonwealth Bank stepped away?
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Good morning, Adam. Great to be with you. This is an issue that my colleague Matt Thistlethwaite has raised, based on a whole lot of the evidence that we've been hearing out of the first the parliamentary committees, where the government was fighting against the royal commission, and then of course the royal commission since then. And the point he's making is that the Australian of the Year awards are among our most significant awards in Australia and they’re a moment where the announcement is emblazoned with the marketing of the Commonwealth Bank. No one's saying here that the Commonwealth Bank shouldn't be engaged in good citizen corporate philanthropy, but the question is whether that crucial announcement for Australia ought to also be a marketing opportunity for the Commonwealth Bank.
SHIRLEY: And where do you sit on that? Do you see real merit in Matt Thistlethwaite’ s concept and his question?
LEIGH: Look, I do and I think Matt’s very thoughtful on this issue and has been there hearing a lot of the evidence coming forward against the Commonwealth Bank's bad behaviour. I think the Commonwealth Bank is stepping back from the marketing for a couple of years, so we don't have the Australian of the Year emblazoned with Commonwealth Bank logos, presented by Commonwealth marketing, I think that's probably where many Australians would sit. I think they'd say, look the conduct of the big banks is not such that we would necessarily want them to be tied at the hip to the marketing on Australia Day when we're making these announcements.Read more
MONDAY, 26 NOVEMBER 2018
SUBJECT: Labor’s plans to right the economic wrongs of the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Governments.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Good morning. My name is Andrew Leigh, the Shadow Assistant Treasurer.
If you're a millionaire or a multinational, then under the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Government, every day is your lucky day. You've got a government that will defend every single tax break, a government that will fight for the rights of tax haven users every step of the way.
But if you are a blue collar worker in Scott Morrison’s Australia, the past few years have been tough. As the Reserve Bank Governor told us last week, real wages have barely budged under the Abbott, Turnbull and Morrison Governments. We've seen penalty rates cut, we’ve seen energy bills flying as high as Scott Morrison's jet on a bus tour. Over the last few years, the government has shown an inability to tackle climate change, an unwillingness to look at inequality, it’s been an absolute failure on the energy front.Read more
ABC RN DRIVE
MONDAY, 19 NOVEMBER 2018
SUBJECTS: Levelling the playing field for first home buyers, Labor’s commitment to a National Integrity Commission.
PATRICIA KARVELAS: As house prices in Melbourne and Sydney continue to fall, there are fresh calls for Labour to abandon its planned changes to negative gearing. The opposition has proposed limiting negative gearing on existing dwellings, although the change would not apply to those already using the tax break. The government says the policy would hurt mortgage holders who've already seen the value of their home drop and they’ve won the backing of Aussie Home Loans founder John Symond, who described the impact as a nuclear bomb this morning. Andrew Leigh’s the Shadow Assistant Treasurer. Welcome back to RN Drive.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Thanks, Patricia. Great to be chatting with you.
BHP DECISION BASED ON LAWS THE COALITION VOTED AGAINST
The Coalition voted against laws that helped secure a $529 million transfer pricing settlement between the Australian Taxation Office and BHP.
These laws, passed by the former Labor Government in 2013, were opposed by Liberal and National Party members on the grounds that they were ‘retrospective’.
Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg owe the Australian people an apology. If they had their way, the budget would be millions of dollars worse off.Read more
EVALUATOR GENERAL: ADDITIONAL THIRD PARTY SUPPORT
“The plan to establish an Evaluator General is welcomed by the preventive health sector. Public health experts have long relied upon scientific evidence to shape policy, but of late governments have become increasingly averse to acting on this evidence. An Evaluator General, making use of the best tests of effectiveness, like randomised control studies, should give confidence to decision-makers choosing evidence-based policy over the populist nonsense, which all too often passes for public policy. As an independent public health body responsible for injecting strategic research and advocating for evidence-based public policy, FARE supports establishing the Office of Evaluator General."
- Michael Thorn, Chief Executive, Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE)
"Sound policy evaluation is essential to ensuring that resources are spent efficiently and help achieve the best possible outcomes for those most in need."
- Professor Deborah Cobb-Clark, School of Economics, University of Sydney
“Better evaluation and a stronger focus on outcomes and impacts can only strengthen government performance.”
- David Crosbie, CEO of Community Council AustraliaRead more
FREE TAX CLINICS WILL MAKE TAX LESS TAXING
A Shorten Labor Government will make our tax system fairer for disadvantaged Australians by funding 10 free tax clinics across the country.
While multinationals and millionaires can afford an armada of experts to navigate the tax system, low and middle-income Australians are often intimidated by the tax system, and unsure where to turn to get help.
Tax clinics will provide free tax assistance for disadvantaged communities. Each tax clinic will have volunteers, students and pro bono tax practitioners on hand to help low income taxpayers and microbusinesses with administrative tax matters, including completing tax returns and responding to queries raised by the tax office.
The former Inspector General of Taxation, Ali Noroozi, has stated that tax clinics “have the potential to be of significant assistance to vulnerable taxpayers”, noting the model of Low Income Tax Clinics in the United States.Read more
EVALUATOR GENERAL: THIRD PARTY SUPPORT
‘The announcement of the Evaluator General is a very welcome one. The more we know about the effectiveness of public programs, the better they can be designed and the more efficiently public money will be used. Well-designed social programs benefit the neediest in society and contribute to making Australian society more equitable. Randomised controlled trials provide the most reliable evidence of policy impacts.’
- Professor Lisa Cameron, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, University of MelbourneRead more
CRAWFORD SCHOOL OF PUBLIC POLICY
AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL UNIVERSITY, 13 NOVEMBER 2018
In 1958, psychologist David Weikart took up the job of being director of special education in Ypsilanti, Michigan. At that time, schools were segregated, and all the African-American students in the town attended one primary school - the Perry School. Weikart noticed that the school was run down. Instead of a playground, it had a field filled with thistles. Many of the African-American students ended up repeating grades, entering special education or leaving school early.
Yet when Weikart gave a presentation to school principals about these problems, users responded defensively. One sat with arms tightly folded; others stood by the window smoking; a few left the room. When he pressed them to act, they said there was nothing they could do. Black students were just born that way. So Weikart came up with an alternative solution: 'Because I couldn't change the schools . . . well, obviously you do it before school.'Read more
ANDREW LEIGH MP
SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER
SHADOW MINISTER FOR COMPETITION AND PRODUCTIVITY
SHADOW MINISTER CHARITIES AND NOT-FOR-PROFITS
SHADOW MINISTER FOR TRADE IN SERVICES
MEMBER FOR FENNER
LABOR CANDIDATE FOR BONNER
LABOR CLEARS THE ROAD FOR MECHANICS IN BRISBANE
Labor is driving a better deal for car owners and independent mechanics with a plan to make timely access to technical information a reality.
No matter what you kind of vehicle you own, everyone should be able to choose where they get their car serviced. But independent repairers are struggling to get fair access to the standard service information they need.Read more