Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Rudd Government - a bad joke

The Rudd Government was elected in November 2007 with a me-tooist approach to policy. Policies were replications of those of John Howard. There were two exceptions - climate change policy and industrial relations.
  • By 2007 John Howard had designed an ETS but Rudd promised to get 'really' serious on climate change. After 15 months we have signed the irrelevant Kyoto Protocol and committed to a policy which seeks a maximum GGE emission cutback of a miserably low 15% to 2020. Would John Howard have done less than this?
  • On industrial relations Rudd promised to end the tyranny of the Coalition's WorkChoices Policy which delivered some flexibility in the workplace by allowing individual contracts between worker and employer. The policy helped deliver high wage growth and the lowest unemployment in 34 years. Moreover, this is one policy Rudd will deliver on. In the worst recession the world has faced in 80 years Rudd/Gillard will reregulate labor markets and reintroduce the executive authority of trade unions.

History may come to judge this government as one of Australia's worst. Sad for us all.


dk said...

I come here because I respect your hard-headed analysis, but can't help but feel a little dissonance. Surely that record wage growth was a result of the mining boom and would probably have happened largely regardless of Workchoices thanks to the shortage (long since dissipated) of mine labour.

I do wonder how you support (1) the imposition of tougher greenhouse targets but gloss over the physical and political realities of Australia's extractive industries - cf. 4corners last night?

Matt Canavan said...

dk, mining accounts for less than 2% of employment.

jc said...

It's basically a version of the Whitlam government with the rougher edges cut away.

It has to be one of the worst governments ever seen in oz.

badmofo said...

They're proposing to regulate the labour market differently rather than more/less. Workchoices hardly counts as deregulation; the highly prescriptive approach as to what employer/employee could include in a contract was more of a Soviet-style imposition of ideology than anything Rudd & co could come up with.

And why is it that people always trumpet wages growth under the Coalition (combined with a prolonged fall off in productivity growth) yet decry the risk of "wage inflation" under Labor (when the Accord and post-Accord policies delivered a fall in real wages and high productivity growth).

Anonymous said...

Harry, can you give some examples of the cases you allege re Industrial Relations?

hc said...

You mean examples with respect to the legislation that has not yet been passed.

BTW read the comments policy and use an identifier.

Anonymous said...

Harry,do not generalise.

you claim without any evidence that work choices was responsible for strong employment growth.
you claim part of the legislation is bad for the economy.

Which specific part.

By the way Workchoices had over 1600 pages of legislation. This indeed re-regulated the workplace with the Minister gaining powers hither too never contemplated.

you have not provided any evidence the proposed legislation re-regulates more than Workchoices

George W Bush said...

"The Howard Government" ...
You mean the junta that abolished the rule of law, whipped up fears of terrorism, and denied that climate change even existed?

How bourgeois that you completely ignore the loony search for weapons of mass destruction, the lies about "children overboard", the detention without trial of Australian citizens, the deportation of Australian citizens, and the demonisation of muslims.

Are these the acts of a capable or humane government

jc said...

Oh my the lunatic left has arrived.

The earlier comments were by Homer, harry. I know that diction anywhere.

observa said...

Google ‘The dead NBN sketch’ in the Business Spectator for a rundown by Alan Kohler on why Conroy is an L-Plater. Actually it's a typical example of why leftists fail at Govt. They're far too busy emoting over the 1 or 2 percenters to concentrate on the maxm good for the most people and hence their perpetual pathological love affair with tragedy. As the man said they love not wisely but too well. If leftists like Conroy find policymaking for the majority far too detached and emotionally unappealing he should get himself a pet for emotional comfort and then screw his head on for the task at hand. In the final analysis leftists like Conroy are happy to have their epitaph read- 'He meant well!' rather than he did well. Perpetual tragics the lot of them, but the tragedy is always on us.

Anonymous said...

Well my answer is that Harry has bugger all knowledge of how the legislation will worsen wage flexibility which matches his expertise on the evidence of Woek choices.

hc said...

You spelling is improving Homer - only two spelling mistakes per sentence.

I agree with The Australian's last two editorials:

'Yet both the Government and Opposition are fiddling at the edges of legislation set to take Australia back to the kind of rigidity that facilitated the disasters of the early 1980s. There can be no worse time to return to the failures of the past. Does neither side of politics have any foresight?'

'For almost three decades, successive governments had the foresight to recognise that rigid, high-cost workplace relations based on erroneous notions of social justice no longer served the interests of workers or the nation. At the last election, strong prosperity and unemployment at 3.8per cent, Work Choices looked to many like something Australia could do without. With unemployment at 5.2per cent and rising, Work Choices could look like a really good idea by the time of the next election.'