FEDERATION CHAMBER, 15 OCTOBER 2018
When Senator Cormann addressed the APSwide Canberra conference last week he laid out his plans to invigorate the Australian Public Service. Like any propagandist, he tried to take control of the situation by taking charge of the words that defined it, but he forgot that Canberrans can read between the lines.
Fairfax Media got the picture, with the headline 'Cuts are good for you, Cormann tells public servants'.
Canberrans are entitled to wonder why Senator Cormann thinks so differently to them when it comes to cuts. After all, cuts hurt, don't they?Read more
FEDERATION CHAMBER, 15 OCTOBER 2018
As a high schooler of the 1980s, I remember repeated taunts about anyone who seemed to be the slightest bit gay or lesbian. The idea of being homosexual was thought of as abhorrent and was used to attack students and teachers alike. It is a mark of how far we've come today that both sides of politics are now united in the view that exemptions allowing religious schools to discriminate against children on the basis of their sexuality should be removed.
I'm enough of a believer in Burkean representative democracy that I don't need polls to tell me what to do, but I still can't help noticing today's Fairfax-Ipsos survey showing that three-quarters of voters oppose laws allowing religious schools to select students and teachers based on their sexual orientation, gender identity or relationship status. That majority also holds among Coalition supporters, Labor voters, Greens voters and One Nation voters.
It is a significant shift for the Prime Minister, who just a few days ago, after the Ruddock review was handed down, was stating that it is existing law and that the coalition was not proposing to change those arrangements.Read more
THE EQUITY-EFFICIENCY TAKEOFF
MELBOURNE INSTITUTE 2018 ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL OUTLOOK CONFERENCE, MELBOURNE
THURSDAY, 11 OCTOBER 2018
I acknowledge the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation on whose lands we meet today and pay my respects to their elders past and present. My thanks to organisers Abigail Payne and Paul Whittaker and their hardworking teams. I also recognize our distinguished session chair David Ribar, my sparring partner Kelly O'Dwyer - she and I go back to our early time in Parliament where we had a double header on Sky News and got to know each other so well that I think we could probably have done each other's speeches if need be - and to thank the many friendly and familiar faces in this room. The Outlook Conference really is a true national institution, bringing together the social sector, the media, economic policy makers, business, the community sector and more. It is to policy wonks what fairy bread is to preschoolers.
I've certainly been attending the Outlook Conference since I was an Australian National University professor and have continued to be back since entering Parliament in 2010, including since becoming Shadow Assistant Treasurer in 2013. Chris Bowen told you this morning that he is the nation's longest serving Shadow Treasurer. I've got this funny coincidence for you: it turns out I'm also the nation's longest serving Shadow Assistant Treasurer. Like Chris, I've enjoyed the role but I could do with a change next year.
We haven't spent the last five years throwing bombs. We've spent this period in Opposition crafting the most comprehensive economic policy that any opposition in a generation has taken to an election. Voters are sick of the insults, they're sick of the hyper partisanship. Whether I go to Townsville or Darwin, whether it's Launceston or Nowra, people want solutions, not slogans. You don't need to be a former Liberal Treasurer to see the failure of the current government to develop an economic narrative. You don't even need to be a former Liberal Treasurer to see it as a bit weird to promise tax changes in 2026. A time when, as Kelly O'Dwyer's former boss puts it, the Coalition are not going to be in government.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 DEAKIN
LABOR TAKES THE WHEEL FOR MECHANICS IN MELBOURNE
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.
Under Labor, car manufacturers will have to share the same technical information with independent mechanics that they currently provide to authorised dealers.Read more
LABOR WILL DOUBLE PENALTIES FOR PEOPLE PROMOTING TAX DODGING
A Shorten Labor Government will protect the fairness of Australia’s tax system by putting a higher price on the heads of promoters who package the tricky schemes that cheat the tax system.
Tax avoidance has severe consequences for growth and equity in Australia. When individuals or companies don’t pay their fair share, they are increasing the tax burden on honest individuals and undermining the vital services that support us all.
Some of the most egregious forms of tax avoidance are available to those who can enlist a ‘brain behind the operation’ - a promoter. Promoting tax avoidance drains away revenue and erodes public confidence in the tax system.Read more
Sharing the Wealth in Australia
9 October 2018, New York Times
Ten years ago, when the world economy suffered its most severe slump since the Great Depression, Australia was the only advanced country to avoid a recession.Read more
A Creative Capital over government
The Chronicle, 9 October 2018
For Dion Oxley, quizzes are about sparking the joy of curiosity.
Whether it's art, geography or history, her Quizling platform aims to use simple true/false quizzes to help children learn more about the world around them.
DRIVING A BETTER DEAL FOR AUTO DEALERS
Business Insider, 5 October 2018
A few years ago, a multinational car manufacturer told 25 car dealers that their franchise agreements would not be renewed. They hadn’t broken their agreements. They were profitable – some for decades, but some had not yet made enough money to cover their upfront costs. The manufacturer didn’t bother giving the dealers an explanation: the Franchising Code didn’t require it.
Car dealers may not be at the top of your sympathy list. But it’s worth understanding the pressures that Australia’s automotive retailers are under. Car selling is one of the few industries in our economy where the top four firms account for less than one-fifth of the market. Many of the 3500 new vehicle outlets are owned by individual operators or family groups.
But while car retailing is pretty competitive, car manufacturing is a good deal more concentrated. The largest four brands account for almost half the market. Manufacturers are massive global multinationals, who aren’t averse to putting the squeeze on car dealers to maximise their profits.Read more
LABOR’S PLAN TO IMPROVE CEO PAY TRANSPARENCY: THIRD PARTY SUPPORT
“I would love to also see transparency inside industries, an annual ranking on what the pay rates are. Transparency is absolutely fantastic because it just tells the facts to shareholders, and then management and organisations are held accountability to facts.”
Domino's Pizza CEO Don Meij, whose realised pay last year was $37 million.
“ASA welcomes the ALP’s policy announcement to adopt a variant of US and UK measures to require larger publicly listed firms to publicly release (as part of their annual reporting requirements) the ratio of CEO pay to median employee pay.”
The Australian Shareholders' Association.Read more
WHY UNIONS ARE VITAL TO ADVANCE AUSTRALIA FAIR
2 OCTOBER 2018
I acknowledge that we meet on the land of the Boon Wurrung and Woiwurrung (Wurundjeri) peoples of the Kulin Nation, and pay respect to their elders past and present. Special thanks to Emma Dawson for organising this Per Capita event, and Josh Bornstein and Ben Hubbard for the hospitality of Maurice Blackburn. Among the many hardworking unionists in the room, I want to make special note of the presence of Australian Council of Trade Unions secretary Sally McManus and president Michele O'Neil.
The Engels Pause
In the late-1700s, one of the most dramatic transformations in world economic history took place. Starting in Britain, the Industrial Revolution saw production move from hand work to mechanisation. Steam-powered factories massively increased the output of textiles. In previous centuries, economic growth had puttered along so slowly that shops would sometimes carve their prices in stone on the wall. With the industrial revolution, output per worker began to surge. Alongside the domestication of plants and animals, the Industrial Revolution marks one of the major turning points for the world economy.Read more