Gosh, I nearly choked on my muesli when I heard the proposition that Bill Shorten is a pro-business candidate. I think it was McTernan spouting this nonsense on The Bolt Report. (Bill is more pro-Jools than Albo, I guess).
Pro-business – my arse.
He was one of the worst Workplace Relations Minister we have ever had. He bent over backwards to pile up pro-union provisions and enacted them. He picked the ‘eyes’ from the post-implementation report on the Fair Work Act which the government commissioned using a panel of reliable friendlies.
The only change left unaccomplished was the return to compulsory arbitration – on the unions’ wishlist – and he was have enacted this if he had the time.
And some of the new inclusions in the FWA are completely unworkable tosh – eg. the anti-bullying provisions.
His stacking of the Fair Work Commission is nothing short of a national disgrace – lobbing in pro-union, pro-Labor candidates to outrank appointees made by the Howard government. And note that all these appointees are there for ever, until they choose to retire. A more motley collection of union hacks, labour lawyers and Labor mates more generally you could not imagine.
He was completely impervious to business pleas to either leave well enough alone or to make some useful changes eg. to the greenfields provisions of the FWA, something that Martin Ferguson was screaming for.
He was right behind the restrictions on the use of 457 visas, another profoundly anti-business change pushed through in the dying days of the Gillard government.
(Didn’t you love Jools having a go at Kevvie about being an economic nationalist. This was from the Prime Minister who said ”I offer absolutely no apology for putting the opportunities of Australian working people first, front and centre.”)
So Bill Shorten – pro-business. I don’t think so. In fact, I would put my money on Albo to be slightly less hostile to business but only slightly.