Rabbit holes in suspicious places
Posted by Dave Bath on 2010-09-02
Looking at where the multi-billion dollar holes Treasury discovered, I smell an agenda… as the biggest holes are specifically in areas the LNP would slash anyway given any excuse.
Health, education, and parental leave are something Mr Rabbit and his warren friends love slashing.
I can just imagine the lines they would love to use once in government, lines that could appeal to economic hawks in the rural independents, and economically gullible sections of the public…
Perhaps the costings would only be "discovered" after having started, leading to claims of "unexpected high demand" on funds, and then policy rollback.
The specific policy areas:
- Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme;
- Paid Parental Leave Scheme; and
- education tax refund.
Does anybody think the LNP ever wants to spend a cent on these things?
Given half an excuse, Mr Rabbit’s mob would slash spending in these policy areas to zero, zilch, zip.
You could even think, given half a chance, they’d slash even more than the hole in the figures, and then claim virtue in budget
Rabbits are almost the largest rodents of all.
The next economically neo-con that leads the LNP will probably be Mr Capybara.
- At this moment, the poll about whether the hole damages Mr Rabbit’s legitimacy (halfway down the page) is running at 76% anti-Rabbit, 24% don’t think so.
- "Hockey Hokey" (2010-09-02) sums up what the hole means for LNP financial team credibility. While that mentions $11b, $4b is denied by the LNP, leading to the "at least $7b" in morning broadsheet headlines.
- Tony Windsor is even more suspicious now about the LNP in general, although still not ruling out supporting an LNP minority government.
- Meanwhile, ALP costing have been adjusted to show minor savings compared to earlier efforts: close enough to support claims of accurate estimates and calls for confidence, but enough to say they are a little conservative unlike LNP idiots/liars.
- "The $10b question: why Abbott and Treasury are so far apart on his costings" (Mark Davis, The Age 2010-09-02)
Costello’s Charter of Budget Honesty turns out to be about as unforgiving as a pair of budgie smugglers for an Opposition Leader inclined to exaggerate the size of his budget appendage.
It has shown that in the lead-up to the election, the Coalition overstated the size of its budget savings more than 10-fold.
But what’s 1000% between friends? And would this get the truth-in-advertising Trade Practices Act in trouble if the LNP was selling a financial deal, or even socks?