This Australian Budget Ends The Liberal Age

This Australian Budget Ends The Liberal Age, by John Roskam, with graphs from the IPA newsletter of 11 May 2017.

Maybe it’s time to acknowledge what in recent years has become obvious, and what was confirmed on budget night.

A unique period in Australia’s modern history is drawing to a close. For three decades both of the country’s major political parties held a commitment to policy reform based on the principles of economic liberalism. …

Tony Abbott’s former chief of staff Peta Credlin said of the budget: … “Malcolm Turnbull and Scott Morrison delivered a budget that owes more to the ghost of Labor leaders past than it does to Liberal fundamentals of debt reduction, prudent spending, lower taxes and smaller government.”

Special taxes for particular industries is unfair and bad economics, because it tilts the playing field for capital. Much as the banks make excess profits due to their special privilege of manufacturing brand new Australian money, this is not the way to redress the situation.

Within minutes of Morrison revealing a new and arbitrary tax on the banks, the shadow treasurer Chris Bowen announced his support for it. …

The Australian Government has a spending problem:

Government humbug:

On budget night the Liberals’ double standards were made apparent.

In February, when explaining why the Turnbull government could not abolish the Renewable Energy Target, the Treasurer said: “When you put in laws … if you put them in one day, and you change them the next day, what do you think people investing are going to do and thinking about the stability of government policy? That’s called sovereign risk.”

So if you’re running a wind farm, the Turnbull government won’t dare touch you. But if you’re running a bank, the Liberals will happily throw a metaphorical brick at you. If you’re a Liberal-voting retiree trying to live off your superannuation savings, the government will throw two bricks at you.

Once, Liberal and Labor were different:

A typical member of the Labor Party doesn’t believe taxes should be as low as possible so individuals can be free to choose to spend their own money as they wish – the typical member of the Liberal Party does. Once upon a time a typical Liberal MP believed that too.