Australia’s Austerity Budget By the Rich, For the Owners
|May 20, 2014||Posted by Catherine Cashmore under Editorials|
This 2014 excerpt of MacroBusiness, May 19, is by Catherine Cashmore.
Last week, Liberal MP Joe Hockey stood up in Parliament and spoke on behalf of the Abbott administration. The multi millionaire and former banking and finance lawyer, husband to an investment banker, owner of several premium land holdings, including a 200-hectare cattle farm in Malanda and mansions in Sydney, whose own ‘entitlements’ and that of his colleagues, remain largely untouched spelled out cuts to: single mothers, low wage families with kids, university graduates, retrenched workers, hospitals, and schools …
while studiously protecting the assessed $484bn total increase over 12 months in unearned capital gains (more correctly termed “economic rent”) accruing to landowners (ABS) …
or laying a finger on the licensed resource monopolies, the mineral wealth of which increased by $56bn in 2012-13 alone.
Without land, or the ability to use it, rent it, or buy it, we’re unable to do, or produce anything. We are by definition “poor.” The quality of its location, the pride in its ownership, tenancy, and care of its product, lays the foundation for a thriving community of healthy individuals.
Destroy the land, or prevent ready and affordable access to it, and you destroy a population – “Pay the rent or leave.”
Land is not included in the Consumer Price Index – the tool the RBA use to measure inflation and reflect the cost of living, despite land prices and the size of the loans needed to service them consistently exceeding wage growth – at least for the average household and income earner.
More importantly, while the politicians behind this budget and the other “twenty percenters,” will only feel a modest change to their disposable income with the newly imposed ‘wage levy,’ they will claw far more back in the increased value of their land holdings – particularly as we enter the next economic cycle.