Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Budget 2014-15

Being born in 1955 might just be the smartest thing I have ever done. The Budget demonstrates the truth of the expression, “You can only be young once, but you can be immature forever”.

This is not the adults in charge, these are intergenerational warriors. We no longer think there is anything mature about giving the young’uns a thrashing – taking the Under 25s off Newstart and fitting them up with 60% of the cost of their education. Nor is there anything mature about saying Grandad, get your backside off the couch and get a job.
The first problem with that is that if everyone works till they’re 70 instead of retiring then they’ll be occupying the jobs that young people should be moving into.

The second problem is that both the young unemployed and mature age unemployed – and the Treasurer reminded us that we have over 700,000 unemployed – have little prospect of finding jobs as long as they remain in ferocious competition with the over 1 million non-Australians who are here on temporary visas which give them work rights.

The Government itself doesn’t believe all this ‘tough love’ is going to work. Their unemployment projection for the whole of the forward estimates is around 6%, so they don’t believe their own rhetoric. And it’s true, it won’t work. The thing that would work is to cut back the migrant worker programs.

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