Then they fight you… Barnett’s new anti-protest laws

The WA Liberal Party’s vague new anti-protest laws are a legal over-reach which reverse the ‘onus of proof’ and damage the credibility of the entire legal system.

Having lost several pet projects to public opposition, Barnett has moved from ignoring and ridiculing activist to trying outlaw us.

The Criminal Code Amendment (Prevention of Lawful Activity) Bill means any person suspected of preparing to use a ‘thing’ to obstruct a ‘legal activity’, could be locked up for 24 months and face huge fines.

Additionally, people charged under these laws will be forced to pay costs associated with their arrest; violent criminals aren’t even forced to pay that.

But these laws will not stop activists from putting our bodies on the line in defence of what we believe in. We know this means we are having an impact, our strategy and tactics are working. We will continue.

It begs a few questions though: Continue reading Then they fight you… Barnett’s new anti-protest laws

Liberal Party policy setting is all wrong

AbetzUgh. The Liberal Party have screwed up the Australian Government’s policy setting again, as we who pay attention knew they would.

Palmer and his cohorts played along, happy to cut a tax which would save his business millions while costing the Australian public billions.

It’s appalling, and next (literally, tomorrow) they’ll be trying to roll back workplace rights for all Australian workers by essentially re-introducing the majority of their previous ‘WorkChoices’ policy.

There’s a pro-forma email to cross bench senators asking them not to support the changes, click here to see it.

Stop ‘moving on’ – a message to White Australia.

It’s very easy to say “yes that ‘happened’, but we’ve moved on”, when you are on the perpetrating, winning or ‘privileged’ side of that ‘thing’ which ‘happened’.

I see it all the time in White Australia.

As a white kid growing up that was the attitude I was taught toward history, that history was just a bunch of interesting stories that happened in the past. Stories we should enjoy and remember, but barely any different from fiction.

Who knows what is and isn’t true about history I was told. History is written by the victor, I was told. History is mostly about wars and how they were won, I was told.

In White Australia, we do not pay much attention to history as a general social rule and where we do our inability to do so respectfully is infamous.

Tony Abbott’s latest declaration is absolutely indicative of that:

“The arrival of the first fleet was the defining moment in the history of this continent. Let me repeat that: it was the defining moment in the history of this continent,” (emphasis added). 

I disagree. Certainly that was a defining moment in the history of this continent, but this continent’s history is MUCH longer than the history of this ‘country’. Continue reading Stop ‘moving on’ – a message to White Australia.

Credit rating loss shows cuts not the answer

Western Australia lost it’s AAA credit rating at Moody’s today, the second agency to drop WA to the second highest credit standing Aa1.

This has primarily happened due to a structural budget deficit and growing debt under the Liberal Government here in WA.

The problem is less how we are spending tax, and more how we collect it.

Too many eggs in the one mining royalties basket was never a good idea, and nor are the many tax loop holes and subsidies for the ultra-rich. Our State Government is hamstrung in it’s revenue raising capacity because it gives up so much in subsidies.

For instances, Gina Rinehart receives over $4bn in tax breaks and subsidies per year.

Cutting funding to essential public services is not the answer to our governments budget woes, it’s short term thinking and bad economics.

Those services have multiplier effects, the people whose incomes they pay are working people, and spend their incomes quickly. This creates tax at point of sale then goes on to be spent by those it employs, with tax paid as income tax and business tax on profit too.

By the time this process is repeated a few times in the economy, each $1 of government spending in say schools or hospitals is likely to actually create tax income in the mid-term. The long term improvement of social outcomes also leads further tax generation.

If the Government are serious about balancing the budget, they need to start shovelling cash from the nearby truck that’s over-flowing with $100 bills, not shuffling budget papers and scraping out the last few coins from working peoples piggy banks.