Following the path of most resistance

Whenever I worry about the Government only getting it right about three-quarters of the time, I am reminded of just how bad things could be if the other mob took over again. As is said, for every problem there is a solution that is neat, plausible and wrong. Labor seems to have a lock on every one of these solutions as does its cheer squad in the media.

GDP rises more rapidly than expected. Good news, yes? Don’t you worry about that, there’s always a leaden cloud around on even the sunniest days. The first para from the Business Editor of the SMH:

The imbalance in the Australian economy was highlighted further on Wednesday, with the mining industry contributing around 80 per cent of the jump in growth.

Well if it’s imbalances you’re after, let me then suggest this:

The new national minimum will be $640.90 per week, or $16.87 per hour. It amounts to a 50 cents per hour increase to the hourly rate.

The 50 cents per hour is there no doubt to trivialise the amount. I-spit-on-your-50-cents-an-hour kind of thing. Really, why mention it unless you are trying to show how minimal the increase actually was. But 50 cents an hour or not, it comes to $33,333 per year. Do you see that? No one in this country, no matter how minimal their skills and experience, may by law be paid less that $33,333 per year. And then try to employ someone for the weekend or nights. Don’t forget the super and workers’ comp. We are a high wage economy trying to deal with low productivity growth.

This is a hard row to hoe for business. It’s not easy to find that kind of money. If you are running a coffee shop, you need to sell 9523 cups of coffee over the course of a year at $3.50 and that’s before the on-costs get counted in. What a good idea it must also have been to raise the cost of energy as well through the carbon tax.

Labor, and its Labor-lite supporters you can find in the oddest places, love the populist bits. But the reason Labor is not the permanent government of this country, in spite of all of the populist stuff they peddle, is because they drain the country of its economic energy. Tony and company are doing what they can in the face of massive resistance since in each person’s own world, there is no reason they can see why they can’t have more of what’s going for less effort in actually helping to produce.

I can only say I wish them well in trying to fix things up, because there really is a lot to fix.

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183 Responses to Following the path of most resistance

  1. stackja

    Tony and company are doing what they can in the face of massive resistance since in each person’s own world, there is no reason they can see why they can’t have more of what’s going for less effort in actually helping to produce. I can only say I wish them well in trying to fix things up, because there really is a lot to fix.

    Totally agree!

  2. Gibbo

    Whenever I worry about the Government only getting it right about three-quarters of the time, I am reminded of just how bad things could be if the other mob took over again.

    Exactly! This seems to be forgotten around here lately. While ever you are seeking the “perfect” Government you will be disappointed. The goal is not to find perfection, but simply the “least worst”.

  3. Robert Blair

    Sorry, Steve. I do not agree.

    If they cave on 18C, or go to a DD without having tackled it, then they don’t get my vote.

    It’s not like they’ve done so much elsewhere that I can say, oh hey, OK I’ll give them a pass on flushing my right to speak freely down the proverbial.

    If the country totally tanks under the Labor/Green Socialists it would be nice to be able to speak out freely about it.

    Thanks to Jelly-Back Brandis and Tony the weak-kneed Phony I won’t be able to. What I will have to say will offend someone.

  4. While on the subject of coffee shops, a lot of little food businesses are putting off re-gassing their fridges. I’m sure the experts who put the huge whack on the cost of refrigerant gases are also against wasting food. I’m sure all their opinions are virtuous. They don’t run coffee shops or businesses where things have to be kept cold, so they are free of bias in such matters.

    Labor leaders are very keen on the idea of northern Australia as a food processing hub, presumably so herds of live cattle won’t be left stranded again when the ABC finds a brown person in an abattoir somewhere in Asia being rough with a cow.

    What Labor leaders are less keen on is affordable refrigeration. The planet thingy comes first, right? And Bill Shorten doesn’t expect his favourite sausage roll to just appear, does he?

  5. Mayan

    And although correct in theory, people react differently because the various layers of government have made this a very high cost nation. The price of real estate is an obvious one, and one that will be at the core of objections to abolition of the minimum wage. The ACT Auditor-General has pointed out the blatant price maintenance scheme in that jurisdiction, although it is the same in others. Then there are the thousands upon thousands on regulations and laws that increase the cost of doing anything in this country, and which in turn inflate the costs of housing, food, energy and transport.

    So, although objections to the minimum wage are well-founded in principle, they are frustrated by the impaired operation of the market in general. To do away with the minimum wage would require the removal of the other sources of costs that set an artificially high floor under the income required by a typical person.

    Merely hammering away at the minimum wage might convince some, but it will fail utterly to persuade a majority of people. It’s tone-deaf politically, and it ignores a herd of elephants in the room for the sake of a mouse.

  6. James

    Tony and company are doing what they can in the face of massive resistance

    Yeah, that resistance includes sneering from the Cats

  7. James

    If they cave on 18C, or go to a DD without having tackled it, then they don’t get my vote

    What an irony. The government proposed changes to 18C, got unpopular in the polls because of the ethnic community backlash, then those 18C change pushers say “oh! You didn’t upset people hard enough, I won’t vote for you”. We then end up having a Labor / Greens / PUP Coalition.

  8. crocodile

    We are a high wage economy trying to deal with low productivity growth.

    Nobody seems to mention this too much. Productivity growth has been on the slippery slope for a decade and a half. It’s biting us on the arse now. Delve into the figures a bit deeper. Labour productivity hasn’t been too bad. On the other hand capital productivity has been the albatross. I can understand why joe blow doesn’t want his pay cut. Instead of smacking pay and conditions it might be worthwhile to attack the long productivity slide.

  9. Yobbo

    If you are running a coffee shop, you need to sell 9523 cups of coffee over the course of a year at $3.50

    Or half that many at $7 each, if your shop is in Perth.

  10. .

    Abbott is nuts. He has a mandate and he is throwing it away.

    Far from perfect – he could simply undo the damage Gillard and Rudd did – and it wouldn’t be perfect or earth shaking.

    The idea that only small steps can be taken will simply make ALP policy permament.

    He needs to gut it, salt the earth and make them pass their taxes and regulation again.

    Imagine arguing for the Gillardian agenda again after she is widely reviled.

  11. Combine_Dave

    Tony and company are doing what they can in the face of massive resistance

    Yeah, that resistance includes sneering from the Cats

    Picture this if you will. Tug-a-war. With Abbott in the middle and the cats pulling on one end and an assortment of moochers, vested interests, duopolists and socialists on the other.

    On which side are you James?

  12. whyisitso

    Far from perfect – he could simply undo the damage Gillard and Rudd did

    All right Mr Know-It-All, tell us how, for example, he can abolish the Carbon Tax.

  13. whyisitso

    Also perhaps you can tell us how to go about reversing the NBN without paying massive compensation re set-in-concrete contracts.

  14. Combine_Dave

    From what I’ve seen of coffee shops here is that more and more they are shedding staff, with the owner working longer hours and doing more of the hard-yards themselves (can’t be good for the unemployed).

  15. whyisitso

    We then end up having a Labor / Greens / PUP Coalition.

    That’s what Davidson, and apparently the majority of commenters on this site now are praying for.

  16. .

    What an absolute load of shit.

  17. .

    whyisitso
    #1335907, posted on June 6, 2014 at 1:01 pm
    Far from perfect – he could simply undo the damage Gillard and Rudd did

    All right Mr Know-It-All, tell us how, for example, he can abolish the Carbon Tax.

    You’re such a bedwetter that you actually oppose repealing the Gillardian agenda.

  18. Robert Blair

    Mr whyisitso:

    You wish to cement the ratchet in place. Socialist government advances the agenda, Conservatives do nothing, Socialists advance again. That, Mr whyisitso, is the Road To Serfdom.

    There is no point expending energy, time and treasure to re-elect a do-nothing conservative government. Invest either in an alternative party, or in insulating you and yours from the socialist steam-roller.

    If you don’t agree that Abbot and Co are do nothing’s in terms of trying to roll the agenda back, then argue that case.
    Don’t creep around here whinging that Cats are being mean to the nice conservatives.

    Those cats will go straight back to purring once the conservatives start doing what they were elected to do.

    Now buzz off and check your Bunsen burner’s, you superannuated old yankee git.

  19. .

    Couldn’t have said it better myself Robert.

    This “strategy” is madness. Madness.

  20. Mr Skeletor

    A great article, hope Sinc reads it considering some of the crap he has come up with of late.

  21. whyisitso

    Well you dickhead socialists, how does Abbott get to repeal the Carbon Tax? A question you continue to ignore.

  22. struth

    “Tony and company are doing what they can in the face of massive resistance”

    Really?

    The whole time they were in opposition and all this time in government and they come up with this plan. Not good enough.
    Us banging on about minimum wages while correct, and yes is having an effect, shows an absolute ignorance of the real and massive problems at the coal face. Worksafe and red and green tape.
    OH@S and red and green tape enforced upon business is making it impossible to operate.
    What unions once did to cripple Australia, is now being done by public servants that WE pay for.
    Our taxes are in essence union fees and the left wing, industry destroying public servants, are to blame. Crazy shit that plays into the hands of public servants in OH@S that expands their departments and power, using business fear of being sued or shut down.
    I make a point here that I will stick by no matter what.
    Until our country fixes up OH@S and looks seriously at curtailing the power of worksafe and re invigerate the sickeningly quiet , compliant and now lazy, younger generation that have grown up with it, we are stuffed.
    Bang on about whatever else you like but this is the major problem by far.
    We cannot compete.
    This and this alone killed our mining boom.
    How much was China buying from us that now comes out of Canada and other non third world suppliers?

    The public service now controls every aspect of Australian business and therefore is wrecking it.
    Just like Hitler’s nazis controlling business but not owning the businesses.
    It is that bad.
    So Tony talks about cutting red tape, but what has been done to attack the core problems?
    That is all anyone in the blue collar workforce talks to each other about. The insanity of OH@S and worksafe and how it’s stuffing the country.
    What red tape did the liberals attack so far.
    Seems like a little bit has been done around health and not much else. If they don’t know what the problems really are they are so out of touch we have no hope.
    Basically Australia’s public servants have outlawed work and deemed it unsafe.
    Changing this one situation would allow our industries to try to compete again, and grow, therefore increasing revenue for the government, and saving the need for “deficit taxes” …..re Fisky’s brilliant post.

  23. incoherent rambler

    18C repeal, reduction of energy taxes were two key aspects of the LNP election campaign.

    They have piked on 18C and increased energy taxes.

    Just two little issues that they have lied about. Two little issues that means that in the upcoming DD I vote for anyone else.

  24. whyisitso

    They have piked on 18C and increased energy taxes.

    Incoherent, please take us through the mechanics of getting this through Parliament.

  25. johanna

    The imbalance in the Australian economy was highlighted further on Wednesday, with the mining industry contributing around 80 per cent of the jump in growth.

    What a load of tosh. What is this “balanced” and prosperous economy they dream of, and how about providing a few examples?

    Do they think that every other sector should have provided the same amount? Or that mining should have provided less?

    Back when Australia was immensely rich (by world standards) because of the wool trade, no doubt they would have been against that, too.

    Better to be poorer, but “balanced”, it seems.

    Morons.

  26. Balatro

    Easy Folks – settle. Go back and read the post again then read the comments from Mayan and Crocodile.
    Maybe watch Milton Friedman on the four ways to spend money again as well.
    They way for a high wage economy to compete is to have high productivity, right? So this has to be the first cab off the rank. Wind back the FWA provisions about the cost of labour and get capital more productive. Mark Latham is right. The dog and pony show in the Senate will continue to be a distraction as long as the media give the clowns oxygen. Palmer will revel in the attention as long as he can hold Abbott and Hockey to ransom, and trying to force legislation through the Senate will become the sole focus of attention. The best way to deal with gatekeepers like Palmer is to step around them. So, reset the game, focus on FWA amendments which can be achieved without putting it to the Senate, and get some more balls in the air – get all the rent seekers upset. While they are running amok in the streets with banners, quietly get on with some real work on wages and conditions. The Carbon Tax, 18c and the rest will follow. Just have a bit of patience.
    Clive Palmer has a few problems of his own to deal with. Citic Pacific asking the Court in WA to help them find the missing 12 mill, the ATO getting impatient about Clive not paying the 12 mill carbon tax, and Campbell Newman offering as a defense against Clive’s matter of defamation the claim that Clive attempted corrupt inducements to politicians in return for financial gain. If he is found guilty of any of these, or the ATO bankrupts him, he is out of Parliament, and his ragtag party will soon follow.

    Early days folks. This is a heavyweight event of twenty rounds. Don’t look for a knockout in the first round.

  27. If you are running a coffee shop, you need to sell 9523 cups of coffee over the course of a year at $3.50
    Or half that many at $7 each, if your shop is in Perth.

    The cost of the fixin’s for a cup of coffee range from 90 cents to $1.50 the rest goes to pay for staff, rent (possibly quite a high in Perth) power, lease payments on equipment.
    And don’t forget to knock 11% straight off the top for GST.

  28. Senile Old Guy

    whatisit

    They have piked on 18C and increased energy taxes.

    Incoherent, please take us through the mechanics of getting this through Parliament.

    You sure as hell don’t get anything through Parliament if you don’t try.

  29. incoherent rambler

    They have piked on 18C and increased energy taxes.

    take us through the mechanics of getting this through Parliament.

    On 18C, present the repeal legislation to parliament, vote on it. If it fails, I would back them in a DD.

    On energy taxes, do not increase excise by regulation.

  30. Robert Blair

    Balatro:

    They way for a high wage economy to compete is to have high productivity, right?

    You don’t get it Balatro. The fiscal fight is not the main issue.

    I am prepared to believe that the Chinese economy is run relatively smoothly and efficiently. Even if that is not wholly true, it is at least partially true, and could be made wholly true – without diminishing the awful power of the Chinese State one little bit.

    To live in an Australia that has (almost) full employment, a reasonable balance of trade, and low government debt will not help in the slightest if I cannot spend the money I earn (after taxes) on whatever tobacco, alchohol, or other stimulant that I wish.
    It will not be so good if I must hold my tongue every hour of every day in the workplace, in case I say something homophobic, or sexist, or racist, or offensive to some-one.
    Then I lose my livelihood, and what good is that economy to me then?
    And guess what? By today’s standard I am homophobic, racist and sexist. And probably a whole lot of other “ist’s” too if I examined my heart.

    When I get home from that job where I’m watching my tongue all day – I can’t park outside my own house anymore. Because the Council has decided it is better that everyone live in high density housing. I’ll need that good economy to pay all the parking tickets.

    There’s a hell of lot more if that crap to come if someone doesn’t start pushing back. The LNP have decided it’s not their job. Fine, I’ll go looking for someone who will do it.

  31. incoherent rambler

    Robert Blair, great contribution. Thank you.

  32. johanna

    Rab Blair, if only more Scots derived folks were like you.

    Alex Salmond is turning the Old Country into a toilet.

  33. struth

    And guess what? By today’s standard I am homophobic, racist and sexist. And probably a whole lot of other “ist’s” too if I examined my heart

    I doubt it.
    Just because lefties like to put people in boxes and categorize them doesn’t make it right or the truth.
    In fact, the process of dividing people into those boxes is the true “ism” that we must fight. The true divider.

  34. Robert Blair

    Struth:

    I doubt it

    No, I’m serious.

    Why am I a racist?
    Because I believe that every individual should be treated equally, regardless of the color of their skin. I don’t think any group deserves special privileges not available to other groups, nor should there be special laws or courts based on race.
    Further, I don’t believe all cultures are equal, nor should all cultures be treated with equal respect.
    This makes me a pretty serious racist in today’s world.

    Why am I homophobic?
    Because I regard homosexuality as an unfortunate affliction, rather like my deaf and dumb Uncle. There should be no stigma attached, its not their fault. And heck, they should be free to marry, adopt kids, whatever, like my Uncle did. That’s what you would expect in a free country.
    But I refuse to celebrate it, and whinging professional gays get on my tits.
    Besides, I agree that homosexuality is natural, it is fairly common in mammals, and a large enough proportion of humans do it that it must be a natural thing.
    Ditto homophobia (well my sort of homophobia). There are at least as many people like me as there are homosexuals, so that would appear to indicate it also must be a natural thing.

    Why am I sexist?
    Because I believe men and women are innately different. And not just physically. There is a reason why the statistics for men and women are different. For crime, for suicide, drug addiction, retardation, genius, whatever way you cut it they are different.
    To try and force everyone into the same cookie cut compliant feminised piece of nullity is going to end in tears.
    What is done to small boys in our school systems, an open scheme of feminisation, is wrong.
    And that makes me a huge sexist.

    And I can be sacked thrice over for saying all that out load.

    Lucky no ones listening to me here.

  35. MemoryVault

    Because I believe men and women are innately different.

    That would explain the bumps on my wife’s chest – amongst other things.
    Thanks Robert – I often wondered.

  36. DrBeauGan

    I would guess about ninety percet of australians substantially share your views and ninety percent of those wouldn’t dare say so.

  37. Alf

    Fair enough, would anyone here be happy to live on that little? Why shouldn’t people be paid a reasonable wage for their labour? Or would it be better to have an even lower wage underclass who struggle to survive? If business doesn’t want to pay people a fair wage, maybe they shouldn’t be in business.

  38. Fair enough, would anyone here be happy to live on that little? Why shouldn’t people be paid a reasonable wage for their labour? Or would it be better to have an even lower wage underclass who struggle to survive? If business doesn’t want to pay people a fair wage, maybe they shouldn’t be in business.

    Regardless of my happiness or otherwise, I’ll be paying the new wage, coz that is the law.
    But I’ll be paying it to one less person.

    Coz that is the law of economics.

    Perhaps the “fairness” of this economic law will elude the poor bastard who gets the chop so that I may comply with the wage law. Perhaps I shouldn’t be in business?

  39. struth

    ” This makes me a pretty serious racist in today’s world.”

    This makes me a serious threat to lefties using race to gain advantage and funding.

    A serious homophobe……………………….

    This makes me a serious threat to lefties using homosexuality to gain advantage and funding.

    Ditto sexist.

    To me you sound perfectly normal, and I agree with everything you said. So would millions of others.
    To me, homosexuality is just a disorder, like many other naturally occurring disorders and therefore the person with the disorder should not be discriminated against. Neither should it be celebrated.
    I always found it strange that an undisciplined child’s behaviour could be classified as a disorder while homosexuality can’t.

    .
    .
    The left also, hypocritically, never seem to find islams approach to homosexuality a problem.

    Lefty victim creed………….
    The terrible western culture is the cause of all evil and if I can prove myself a victim of it, I can bludge off the wealth it creates.

  40. Tim Neilson

    Alf,
    If that’s the case why don’t we increase the minimum wage to $50 an hour so they can all be affluent?
    Then even the Arts graduates who say “would you like fries with that?” at McDonald’s would be over the HECS repayment threshold so it would be a win/win.
    Is there, perhaps, anything I have overlooked with this brilliant concept I’ve developed on the back of your groundbreaking analysis?

  41. Perpetual Motion

    You know nothing, Alf Snow.

  42. You know nothing, Alf Snow.

    He knows what Trades Hall told him to say. Just that he’s no idea what it is, what it means, or how to defend it when questioned on it.

  43. Infidel Tiger

    Fair enough, would anyone here be happy to live on that little? Why shouldn’t people be paid a reasonable wage for their labour? Or would it be better to have an even lower wage underclass who struggle to survive? If business doesn’t want to pay people a fair wage, maybe they shouldn’t be in business.

    People as stupid as you should be paraded through schools as an example to the youngsters and then fed feet first into a meat grinder.

  44. crocodile

    You don’t get it Balatro. The fiscal fight is not the main issue.

    This unfortunately, is the central issue. The social stuff is just fluff. Not insignificant fluff by any means. Productivity has been slipping now for fifteen years. If our competitors aren’t slipping so quickly or even growing it will eventually reach a critical point. I hear nothing but silence on this issue.

    What happens if it slips further. Cut pays again and again. Surely this is not the answer. Whats you gonna do when you can’t cut ‘em anymore. Pick off the complainers one by one. Maybe bring in a few coolies to man the lines.

    Address the productivity slump now.

  45. laugh out loud

    I just look at the amount of money sloshing around in Sydney – BMWs etc cruising around, $70 for Sunday yum cha for two, $5 coffee etc. But those who who wait on your table get min wage while whose who run it are doing a $2m knock down rebuild in Balgowlah. If your business is so marginal, you need to change your business. Many don’t even get min wage – cash in hand.

  46. Alf

    If that’s the case why don’t we increase the minimum wage to $50 an hour so they can all be affluent?
    Then even the Arts graduates who say “would you like fries with that?” at McDonald’s would be over the HECS repayment threshold so it would be a win/win.
    Is there, perhaps, anything I have overlooked with this brilliant concept I’ve developed on the back of your groundbreaking analysis?

    Who argued for that? It’s a straw man. A decent minimum wage does not have to be this exaggerated nonsense. That’s your ground breaking analysis, not mine.

  47. Alf

    He knows what Trades Hall told him to say. Just that he’s no idea what it is, what it means, or how to defend it when questioned on it.

    How about defending it on the grounds that people who give their labour deserve to be paid a fair wage for it? I see the women who work hard at my local woolies, most of them older women, for a basic wage. Why should they, on top of the hard work they do, be made to live an even more meagre existence ’cause the company doesn’t think they deserve to be paid enough to live with dignity?

  48. What do you say Alf, to the person I’m about to sack, so that all the others may enjoy their fifty cents an hour extra?
    Fair? or
    Very fair? or
    What stupid laws Australia has?

  49. john constantine

    are we really better off with a high min wage, and vending machines/self serve/robot checkouts at the supermarket?.

    no more barmaids, just bouncers and vending machines selling cans inside the pub. thanks fair work–building a more equal australia.

    high min wage just brings automation into financial reality

  50. Alf

    What do you say Alf, to the person I’m about to sack, so that all the others may enjoy their fifty cents an hour extra?
    Fair? or
    Very fair? or
    What stupid laws Australia has?

    I say, I doubt that it’s true.

  51. I say, I doubt that it’s true.

    Why? I’ve just over 40 full time staff. A 3% increase is the same as putting one person on the payroll.
    Thus one has to go, to finance the pay rise for the remainder.

    What do you say to that person, the one who has to go? You can’t gutto out of it.

  52. crocodile

    Why? I’ve just over 40 full time staff. A 3% increase is the same as putting one person on the payroll.
    Thus one has to go, to finance the pay rise for the remainder.

    Looks like your margins aren’t keeping pace with inflation. If the wage costs are under pressure from inflation your got other problems as well.

  53. Looks like your margins aren’t keeping pace with inflation. If the wage costs are under pressure from inflation your got other problems as well.

    Wow, so you’re aware of conditions in Australia in 2014?
    Wow…. just wow…. amazing. Next you’ll be telling me the sun may rise in the east?
    C’mon Croc, you can do better than that.

  54. Alf

    Steve, I say – ‘I am liberating you from this work in the hope that you will find better work’, or some such platitudinous crap. I might add ‘for the sake of $1 every two hours – if you work a ten hour day – for $5 a day I can’t figure out how to not sack you in a growing economy and so rather than try, you’re gone.’

    But you probably already know what to say, ’cause I’m assuming that every other time the minimum wage has gone up you’d had to sack someone based on what you’re saying.

    The concern for jobs here is admirable, unless it’s a person who works for the Govt. Then it doesn’t seem to matter at all.

  55. Fisky

    Crocodile is a Leftist stooge who loves Gillard and pines for the days of pink batts, union corruption, and boat chaos.

  56. Nato

    Struth and Alf, you just blew all thought of the article out of my head.

    Alf, yes we should be paid a decent wage, but
    It. Is. None. Of. The. Government’s. Business.

    Organize in a union, respect others’ person and property and negotiate for what you are worth.

    Struth. Worksafe is the body that makes sure that when I’m lifting heavy stuff, I know that an unscrupulous employer has a bigger, badder bunch of a$$holes after him if my workplace is unsafe. Good. They are also the ones who forced me into paying for 4 licences and a nationally certified training course just so that I could lift heavy stuff professionally. Bad. I wish I knew whether to agree with you or not.

    Good post, Mr Kates. I had a relevant comment, but I’ve forgotten it, now.

  57. Alf, I know what I’m going to say.

    What are you going to say to the poor bastard, who has done nothing wrong except for being employed in a country where the parasites in the “Fair Work” commission declare that a pay rise is “law” and thus someone has to go to pay for it?

    Less guttoing, and more of what you’d say. Perhaps you’d say “buck up son, at least your former workmates are being paid a fairer wage”?

  58. struth

    Nato, I had a few too many reds last night.
    Completely sober I would say it much more like this.
    Not enough consideration by those at the top is given to how over the top OH@S has become in this country and how much it is actually is to blame for our lack of productivity.
    The safety and accreditation industry that parasitically feeds off it and the need to do a $3000, 4 day course, to make sure you know how to safely pick your nose (on site) and then realising the incompetent trainer isn’t even accredited in finger nail clipping…………………
    Ah bugger it, I must still be shiraz affected.

  59. Alf

    Less guttoing, and more of what you’d say. Perhaps you’d say “buck up son, at least your former workmates are being paid a fairer wage”?

    Perhaps I wouldn’t. Perhaps I would say, ‘the law forces me to pay you a fair wage, but I don’t want to so you’re fired’. But first it would have to be true and I doubt that it is. I don’t recall unemployment going up every time the minimum wage is increased. But I do remember the arguments from the better off that the sky will fall in if the lowest paid receive a little more. But somehow, it never does.

  60. Pauly

    If we want to compare ourselves to other countries with similar living standards and government provided services – the minimum wage in Australia is approximately double the minimum wage in Japan.

  61. In other words you’ve guttoed. This was expected.
    How about “The law say that wages must go up, this means we can no longer afford you, consequently you’re sackd”

    Key question. Where you going to get the money from for this “fair” wage?
    That is the part missing from you lie about “Fair” wages & employers not “wanting” to pay.
    You’re slinging mud without offering a solution. This is about as far from being intellectual as it is possible to be.

  62. crocodile

    Crocodile is a Leftist stooge who loves Gillard and pines for the days of pink batts, union corruption, and boat chaos.

    Fisky, you wouldn’t know if your arse was on fire.

  63. MemoryVault

    Steve at the Pub

    Mate, the problem is you just don’t understand the economics of supply and demand, and Alf and Crocodile are only trying to help you. Instead of quibbling over a lousy 50 cents an hour, you should be paying your employees $100.00 an hour. You’d all end up better off.

    You see, if you paid your people $100.00 an hour, they would all have huge disposable incomes, and they would spend, spend, spend in your community. That would make all the other business people very happy and they could start to pay their workers $100.00 an hour. So they would be happy too.

    With all these deliriously happy people around with huge disposable incomes it is only natural they would all want to head down the pub for a celebratory drink. YOUR pub Steve. Think of the turnover. Relish the extra profits generated. Go forth and prosper.

  64. Hehe, Memory Vault, with your name you’ll no doubt remember how that theory worked out when it was put into practice in 1972.

  65. MemoryVault

    Hehe, Memory Vault, with your name you’ll no doubt remember how that theory worked out when it was put into practice in 1972.

    Exactly, Steve.
    Gough is still the most revered of all Australian political leaders in my lifetime, so obviously it works.
    We had growth, growth, and more growth.
    We had growth in the public service.
    We had growth in the public debt.
    We had growth in the welfare bill.

    In fact we had so much growth everywhere, that Malcolm Fraser was hard-pressed to match the achievement. But somehow he did. Credit where credit is due.

  66. Alf

    No Steve, the key question is, have you saked people every time the minimum wage has gone up? You say you employ 40 people – how many did you start with and have you let one or more go annually for this reason?

    If you do employ employ 40 people then bloody well done to you. You must be doing OK and that is why it is disappointing to see you banging on about the imposition of a 50c per hour increase in someone’s wage when that someone is not earning all that much in the first place. If the people whose labour keeps your business going aren’t worth a slightly higher low wage, then who is? Or are you happy to have the people who work for you earning less and less each year – how can that be good for the economy where you live?

  67. Answer the question Alf.
    So far you’re just bleating ambiguous drivel, and trying to pull a bait & switch. (In addition to calling me a liar).
    You’re sounding very like someone who cannot walk the walk.

    How will you raise the money to pay the extra wage?

  68. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    Alf, just asking. Have you ever actually run a business? Watched your cash flow, worked out your costs, met a wages bill each week? Do the math – a 50 cent per hour increase in someone’s wages over forty people? That money has to come from somewhere.

  69. Alf

    I don’t need to answer the question Steve because it is a distraction. What difference does it make what I would say? I’m not in that position, you are. I’m more interested in your answers to my questions, none of which are drivel. You just don’t want to answer them because, I suspect, you’ve been caught out. You are not letting anyone go, are you?

  70. Alf

    Alf, just asking. Have you ever actually run a business? Watched your cash flow, worked out your costs, met a wages bill each week? Do the math – a 50 cent per hour increase in someone’s wages over forty people? That money has to come from somewhere.

    No I haven’t, but my mother and father did and I saw what went on. And no, they didn’t rip any staff off, or sack them. Somehow they managed it. But your questions are a red herring. My situation is irrelevant here – the question remains – why is it reasonable to pay people crap money for their time and labour.

  71. Jesus Henry Christ on a Broomstick! Alf you’ve no idea what you’re banging on about.
    News bulletin: Everything, absolutely everying in this life has to be paid for. There is no Fairy Godmother dispensing free money.

    You’re bringing a knife to a gunfight. Bringing emotion to an engineering design.
    There is no emotive and undefined “fair” or “unfair”. There are only actual real defined and finite Dollars.

    The law says I must pay more dollars to my staff. (“Fair” or “not fair” is immaterial, it is the LAW)
    The amount of more dollars I must pay is more or less the same as if I hired one more person. (“Fair” does not come into it)

    Thus I must find the Dollars to pay one more person, without there being one more person (“Fair” does not come into it), or;
    I must find a way to remove one person. (“Fair” is immaterial.)

    It is that simple. You have much to say, on airy-fairy drivel such as “fair” & when called on it start saying I am a liar.

    But you do not at any stage say how the real dollars (not abstract concepts such as “fair”) will be found to finance this (shortsighted, unfair and stupid decision by inferior intellects) new law.

    I do NOT have to answer your questions. I have to find dollars, on an ongoing basis, or sack someone.

    It is easy to see you have never had to walk the walk. Armchair theorist, who has never had to pay for the light bulbs that stream through your head.

  72. struth

    Where does the money come from Alf?

  73. Steve:

    How will you raise the money Alf, to pay the extra wage?

    Alf:

    I don’t need to answer that question Steve because it is a distraction.

  74. notafan

    why is it reasonable to pay people crap money for their time and labour.

    Why am I working in my own business unable to employ anybody because the minimum wage is often more than I take in the B&M in a week? And that is without thinking about penalty rates
    if I were to increase my prices online by 50c that would put me over my competitors price and I would not sell a thing. When you compete in a global market 50c can be make or break.
    The LNP needs to look getting of rid of what makes Australia’s cost of living so high, housing would be a great start.

  75. Notafan, you must pay your workforce a “fair” wage.
    Give yourself a pay rise, effective immediately.

    Eh? What’s that you say? How to pay for it? Don’t distract yourself with unimportant considerations. It’s the vibe man, be fair, man. You don’t expect yourself to work for an unfair wage do you? Like, man, like, be fair – dude.

  76. notafan

    Lol Steve
    on Monday I will tell my customers everything is 50% more than the marked price cos I am paying myself penalty rates

  77. notafan

    I actually haven’t put up my prices since I opened in 2006, its just getting harder and harder still lease is up Sept 2015 and then I’m going to go back to my job I had as a 15 YO check out chick (now check out chook) if they still have those

  78. on Monday I will tell my customers everything is 50% more than the marked price cos I am paying myself penalty rates

    Nah, don’t tell ‘em that. Just parrot Alf’s wisdom.

    You’re merely charging a “fairer” price for your product.

    If they don’t happily pay the new “fair” price, then they are arseholes, and some commission should order them to pay. I think that’s the general thread of Alf-the-financial-genius’ theory.

  79. Mr Rusty

    Steve at the Pub

    I’m second guessing you here Steve but I fully expect that the worker you retrench will be one of your least productive (likely the most recent recruit still learning the ropes). So some young person with the least skills and least experience will face the indignity (very early in their career) of losing their job and being thrown on the unemployed pile, which will be growing larger as a result of the FWA decision – and then have to find a new job with few skills, little experience and a far tougher job market.
    How does that sit with you Alf oh Great Defender of Da Poory Peoples, oh great sage of the workings of the economy, oh Master of all that is “fair” and “decent”?

  80. I’m second guessing you here Steve but I fully expect that the worker you retrench will be one of your least productive

    How did you know that? You must be Nostradamus!

  81. Mr Rusty

    why is it reasonable to pay people crap money for their time and labour.

    Hey Alf, what is “crap money”? Some new kind of faecal fiat? Who are you to decide what is “crap money” and why?
    If a company pays 10 people $30,000 pa but is losing money are they getting “crap money”?
    What about a company that pays 10 people $250,000 each pa and turnover is 5 million?

  82. Alf

    And yet, not a single answer about why people shouldn’t get a decent wage for their labour. No, I don’t run a business – but I do and have worked, have a mortgage, kids, the whole bit and I know what it is like to live on not much having done so during several periods of my life. So I am not an arm chair theorist any more than anyone else on this site.

    If fair and unfair are not concepts that are comprehensible then why complain about anything. Presumably you think it is unfair that you have to pay people a whole $1 for two hours work. If you can’t manage it, as I said, why be in business? And if you pay yourself less than the minimum wage why be in business? Or are you able to offset that against deductions which in effect mean that you are doing better than the base figures suggest?

    I wonder what you would all like to pay your staff, as opposed to what you have to pay them? How low would you go if you had a free hand? Would it be Gina’s $2 an hour?

  83. Is this a send up, or is this Alf as fucking stupid as he’s making out?

    I’m inclined to think he really is that stupid. I’ve met union leaders of exactly the same mindset. Barely enough brains to feed themself, no concept of reality, and come out with bullshit emotive concepts.

    Alf is bringing a knife to an economic gunfight.

  84. Alf

    Alf is bringing a knife to an economic gunfight.

    And you’re bringing a tired cliche Steve.

    You say you’ve met brainless union leaders. I’ve met brainless employers – you may have too. Big deal. There are union leaders and unionists out there who care about the conditions under which people work and who work hard to make sure that those conditions are acceptable. I’ve worked for people who happily ripped off their staff and their customers – but it doesn’t mean they are all like that. Obviously they’re not.

    Calling me brainless is a cop out.

    Mr Rusty – you’d probably know crap money if you were paid it. You might even complain about it. Yes, it’s subjective, but if you are struggling to survive week to week and are not living with luxuries – or in any other way with any profligacy – and you work full time, then you are probably being paid crap.

  85. JC

    Alf, you slimeball, Answer his question you gutless bastard.

    Can Alfie and that other scumbag also define what they believe is “fair”.

    IT is right, both of you fuckers should be put through a meat grinder… Alive!

  86. Senile Old Guy

    Is this a send up, or is this Alf as fucking stupid as he’s making out?

    He’s a troll, stupid or both.

    Until he provides a definition of “fair” that is more than “It is what Fair Work says it”, it is a useless argument.

  87. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    you’d probably know crap money if you were paid it.

    So, we have all had jobs where the money is crap. You do have the freedom to get another job, improve your skills, retrain to get out of the rut….the last thing you do is just sit and whinge about crap wages.

  88. Alf

    JC’s back and with another killer argument. Well done little man – an insult and a violent metaphor.

  89. JC

    Alfie, you leftist disgusting piece of shit, answer Stevie’s question and mine. Pretend you have a normal set of balls instead of microscopic ones and have a go. What’s the worst that can happen? We all laugh at you. Of course we will, as that goes without saying.

    Listen you appalling dickhead. There are reams of economics suggesting that if you artificially raise the price of wages, it will invariably cause unemployment. Denying that is like denying that gravity exists.

    Your argument about a fair wage or a living wage is a welfare argument. This means that if you believe popel ought to receive higher incomes then pay them welfare. That’s obviously a political argument.

    You ought to be fed to the dogs you cowardly arsehole.

  90. All you have to do Alf, is come up with a workable real life solution for how to find the money to pay one extra staff (without actually getting one extra staff).

    Failing that, you should come up with a response to the person I’m about to fire, coz they’ll ask “Why?”.

    It is you who defended the stupid decision of the inferior intellects at FairWorkCommission.
    You should do more than run around with your hands in the air bleating (like a nanny goat tethered in a cold breeze) that pay should be “fair” & that employers should not rip-off staff, & other stuff that solves nothing.

    You seem to have some difficulty with either of these.
    That will be because your argument/position is not only wrong, it is indefinsible.

    Something for you to reflect upon. Realising that a belief you’ve held all your life is not only wrong, it is harmful to ordinary workers.

  91. CanberraJim

    A viewpoint in this article that will surely cheer Steve up:
    “A healthy economy is one where you have low unemployment, growth in per capita wages, strong investment that creates new jobs, low government and personal debt, and strong productivity growth. Productivity means you’re increasing output per person without increasing costs.

    “That’s an economy that creates jobs, encourages the formation of new businesses, delivers new goods and services to consumers, and allows families to enjoy a high quality of life without resorting to credit cards or a second job or a second mortgage. What I’m saying is that you get that kind of healthy GDP from espousing some basic economic principles. One of those principles, for example, is called ‘Say’s’ Law.’

    “It’s named after the French economist Jean-Baptiste Say. He said that ‘products are paid for with products.’ Today economists would say that ‘supply creates its own demand.’ But what it all means is that a healthy economy gets wealthier through production. If you produce goods and services, then you earn an income that allows you to buy the things you want and need.”

  92. Cheers me up no end Canberrajames. (cheer, cheer, cheer) :) :) :)

    But how does it pay my bills this week?

  93. Notafan

    I’m surviving on online sales, losing money in the bricks and mortar shop, 2014 has seen a significant deterioration in foot traffic , sometimes you just hang on hoping things will improve.

  94. Alf

    So it must be to their benefit to make sure they don’t earn enough make ends meet every week, Steve? Since this 50c an hour seems an insurmountable problem to you – and since it is going to have to be paid by your pub competitors I assume you will increase a price or two somewhere to cover it. What have you done in the past? Do that again, it’s probably what everyone else will be doing.

    It’s not enough to consider me or the people at Fair Work stupid. That’s just a way of saying you disagree with them – why not say that. They probably are no more stupid than you or I. For the record Steve, I don’t consider you stupid, brainless or any of the other insults being bandied about here (JC, you, on the other clearly are). As I said before Steve, if you’re in a position to employ 40 people you’ve obviously done something right and are also obviously good at running a business. Not everyone is. My talents, such as they are lie elsewhere and I have been lucky enough to do OK out of them because people will pay me for what I am good at. Not everyone is so fortunate. Zulu has a point – some people can retrain etc, but not everyone is in a position to do so. I used the example of the older women at my local Woolies earlier – not in a position to retire, or to retrain, getting by on a basic wage. What are they supposed to do if their pay doesn’t keep up? They already work hard every day, well into the evening for not that much – ‘fair’ is paying them enough to have some dignity in what they do.

    My definition of fair is a wage that while modest is sufficient to meet basic needs without having to resort to charity, skipping meals or figuring out which bills can’t be be paid – you know, that type of thing.

  95. JC

    No one, not one single person needs to skip a meal because of lack of money in Australia, Alfie, you fucking idiot. For most people that are not so well off, they probably ought to skip a meal as a fair slab are grossly overweight.

  96. Alf

    No one, not one single person needs to skip a meal because of lack of money in Australia, Alfie, you fucking idiot. For most people that are not so well off, they probably ought to skip a meal as a fair slab are grossly overweight.

    You really are a dope JC.

  97. JC

    I used the example of the older women at my local Woolies earlier – not in a position to retire, or to retrain, getting by on a basic wage.

    Yea, let’s go to the lowest common denominator to emote some pathetic excuse of an argument. Normally left wingers wheel out the kids, but Alfie is trying it different. He’s wheeling out little old ladies.

  98. JC

    You really are a dope JC.

    Fuck off you disgusting lowrent pig. You think we haven’t seen your pathetic excuses of an argument before?

    You dickhead.

  99. JC

    Think of the children has now morphed into…

    Think of the old ladies.

    Lol.

  100. So it must be to their benefit to make sure they don’t earn enough make ends meet every week

    Shove that bullshit assumption Alf. If you are saying people don’t earn enough to make ends meet, you have two obstacles to get past.
    1/. Demonstrate it.
    2/. Explain what that has to do with the price of fish in Japan.
    I am not anybody’s mother, it is not my role to organise their life.

  101. Since this 50c an hour seems an insurmountable problem to you

    We’re dealing in real dollars here. So call it what it is. Stop this “fifty cents” bullshit.

    It is $85,000.

  102. I assume you will increase a price or two somewhere to cover it

    That the best you can do? You economist you.
    You business advisor guru you.
    FMD

  103. JC

    But, but think of da old ladies, Stevie. 50 cents an hour could mean the difference between a weekly perm and fish&chips onFriday evening.

  104. It’s not enough to consider me or the people at Fair Work stupid

    We’ll leave you out of it, but the Fair Work Commission is stupid. They are stupid.
    None of them have held a real job. None of them would be able to hold a real job.
    Without that ripoff commission, which holds this country back (as well as ripping off working taxpayers to feed big salaries to stupid parasites) they’d be flat to hold down jobs on a stop & go sign.
    That is not a rant, that is a considered opinion. I’ve met the dunces, I’ve dealt with them, and I’ve read their garbled bullshit.

    They are a dead loss to society. Always have been.

  105. if you’re in a position to employ 40 people you’ve obviously done something right and are also obviously good at running a business

    If it wasn’t for the unfair dismissal laws, and other laws that punish me for employing people, there’d be more like 70 on the payroll.

    Something for you to reflect upon.

  106. people will pay me for what I am good at. Not everyone is so fortunate.

    Are you suggesting that because someone is no good at anything, that I should pay them a shitload of money to compensate them for their ineptness?

    Are you kidding?

  107. My definition of fair is a wage that while modest is sufficient to meet basic needs without having to resort to charity, skipping meals or figuring out which bills can’t be be paid – you know, that type of thing.

    So start paying people a “fair” wage then.

    I pay an economic one. If their work has value, they’ll be paid that value. If their work is shit, they’ll get paid that value. Or in the Australian system, they’ll be sacked, coz there is a floor price in wages, meaning anyone who is not able to produce the floor price in work, loses their job.

    Something for you to reflect upon.

  108. I used the example of the older women at my local Woolies earlier – not in a position to retire, or to retrain, getting by on a basic wage. What are they supposed to do if their pay doesn’t keep up? They already work hard every day, well into the evening for not that much – ‘fair’ is paying them enough to have some dignity in what they do.

    If their work is not producing as much in value as their wage, they’ll lose their job.

    Unless you are saying I should be some sort of charity, and pay $10 for something that produces only $4 for the employer?

    In which case you’re off your rocker.

  109. Alf

    As I asked before Steve, what have you done in the past? It’s still 50c an hour, however much you multiply it by. I never said I was an economist. You’re in business. What have you done every other year when the basic wage has increased? All insults aside, I’d be really interested to know the answer to that question.

  110. It’s still 50c an hour

    Bullshit.
    It is Eighty Five Thousand Dollars, no matter how many times you divide it.

  111. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    Unless you are saying I should be some sort of charity

    I don’t think Alf has grasped that yet – all these wages have to come out of someone’s pocket, and wages are a cost – unless he thinks that those of us who run businesses are just bottomless pits of money…(Steve, I haven’t forgotten your crack about bloated subsidies, either.)

  112. Alf, when I crossed the payroll tax threshold, I fired two people.
    Every year at payrise time (or most of the time it is twice a yeary, you IR guru you) the matter is assessed. Sometimes I’m able to absorb it, coz it is a year when prices can go up, or business is booming. It has been near impossible to get staff for about 10 years.
    That has changed, now for the first time in years I’m retrenching and belt tightening, like most of Austrlia is.

    In that climate, there is no appetite to dig into my own pocket for a non-existent $85,000 and just give it to somebody.

    So the stupid fools, the dickheads, the dribbling parasites, the oxygen thieves on the FWC have cost at least one job at my place, god knows how many nationwide.

    You still have not explained how you’d pay for the wage rise.
    If you haven’t an answer, why defend the pay rise?
    You should be condemning the inbred dildos on the FWC for their shortsighted, retro, economy killing decision.

  113. Alf

    Why can’t you answer that simple question Steve? I’m not trying to be a smart-arse here, you must have been in this position before and from what you’ve said, you’re a successful pub owner or manager. What did you do in the past? Why wouldn’t that apply this time?

    I understand very well that wages come out of someone’s pocket – it’s a cost of running a business. As I said, my parents did that. But none of that answers my question. You clearly consider me dull-witted, why not enlighten me by answering a simple question that goes directly to your own experience?

  114. Steve, I haven’t forgotten your crack about bloated subsidies, either.

    Neither should you, you’re probably still in the station office, opening envelopes containing diesel subsidy cheques.
    What do you do with all that free money the govt gives you? Buy racehorses?

  115. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    What have you done every other year, when the basic wage has increased

    With no way of passing on costs, it’s another cost you have to absorb. This place used to support four families as late as the 1970′s. I now employ one man full time.

  116. JC

    What have you done every other year when the basic wage has increased? All insults aside, I’d be really interested to know the answer to that question.

    Those that can pass it on do so through higher prices. Those business that aren’t able to go bust.

    Look fuckknuckle, the only way we can pay real wage increases is through higher productivity/ increase in the capital to labor ratio. In fact the only thing that distinguishes us from a third world shithole to a industrial civilization is the amount of capital (investment) devoted to raising the productivity of labor.

    No amount of union slugs have been able to raise real wages. Savings/investment has done that.

    Now start talking to us about the old ladies missing a meal. It’s hilarious.

  117. Question

    Why can’t you answer that simple question Steve?

    Answer

    Steve at the Pub #1337531, posted on June 7, 2014 at 6:50 pm

  118. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    probably still in the station office

    Sitting on the front verandah, in the cane bottom chair, watching the ragged serfs go to work.

  119. I think we shold stop the subsidy for wages in Australia let ‘em compete free of the incredible govt protection they now enjoy.

    Most of the useless bastards’d starve. They’re only kept in a job because of the artificial protection the govt gives them.

  120. Sitting on the front verandah, in the cane bottom chair, watching the ragged serfs go to work.

    Do you ring a bell at quittin’ time? Or does the head boy do that when you give him the nod?

  121. If you ever get my email address ZK2A, I’ll give you a link to my farming blog. It has lotsa nice pictures of planet raping by big smoke belching diesel pollutant non-compliant-with-sea-sheperd muscle dozers.

  122. JC

    It’s fucking amazing that we’re still having debates with lowrent leftwing slugs about how wages /real wage increases are derived.

    Even Paul Krugman has reluctantly admitted that rising living standards can only come from increased investment… an increase in the capital to labor ratio.

    The reason dudes can earn 400,000k per year in mining is because the capital devoted to that sector is perhaps the highest in the world. So much for just digging holes in the ground as leftwing slugs keep saying.

  123. JC

    I think we shold stop the subsidy for wages in Australia let ‘em compete free of the incredible govt protection they now enjoy.

    There can be a case made for a negative income tax, Stevie. A small one though. Tiny in fact.

  124. The reason dudes can earn 400,000k per year in mining is because

    That may have changed JC. Plenty of blokes have taken a $50k pay cut, just to keep their job.
    There weren’t many jobs paying over $200k anybody on more than that was something to remark upon, rather than representative of the industry.
    There were plenty on a base rate of under $100k

  125. Alf

    Thanks Steve – under all the insults, I appreciate your answering my question. I don’t think the FWC are fuckknuckles etc. They obviously give the matter considerable thought but they have to weigh the interests of business against the interests of workers without sending either to the poor-house.

    I never said old ladies were missing a meal. I used a real example, of real workers in the part of the country I live in. Why mock them? They’re hard working older women who don’t appear to be in a position to do much else to elevate their situation. They rely on a fair wage to make ends meet. Turn it into a joke if you like – but that is their life.

  126. There can be a case made for a negative income tax,

    I was thinking more of lifting the blockade on overseas citizens.

    If filipinos were allowed in to work, on an open market, the average mining wage would be $30,000 and twice as much would be getting done.
    No end of anglo-saxon shitheads would be jobless & starving, coz they lack the balls & guts to compete.

  127. JC

    Yea Stevie,

    But on the whole the dudes were earning fabulous wages which is a good thing. If they’re taking 50K pay cuts they obviously see the halcyon days coming to an end.

    My point was that mining is an example of being close to the highest capital/labor ratio sector we know and why those high wages can be paid.

  128. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    I was thinking more of lifting the block on overseas citizens

    The last time I advertised for farm workers, all the applicants, bar one, were New Zealanders and South Africans. The only Australian who applied backed out, when he found out how far east of the Darling scarp we were.

  129. Gab

    I don’t think the FWC are fuckknuckles etc. They obviously give the matter considerable thought but they have to weigh the interests of business against the interests of workers without sending either to the poor-house.

    far out. It simply is just pointless trying to explain commercial matters to a leftie.

  130. I don’t think the FWC are fuckknuckles etc.

    I know they are. remember, I’ve met some.

    They obviously give the matter considerable thought

    Most of them are barely capable of thought. Even my hot young chick lefty and not very perceptive lawyer gets shocked each & every time some dunce on the FWC says something utterly stupid.

  131. MemoryVault

    And yet, not a single answer about why people shouldn’t get a decent wage for their labour.

    Okay Alf, all digs aside, you’ve taken a bit of a pounding here, so let me see if I can answer your question fairly and reasonably.

    The reason some people can’t get what you define as a “decent” wage for their labour (however you define “decent”), is because Joe Public won’t allow it. That’s right, Alf. Joe Public. You and me.

    Management (wife) and I end up with the grandkids for a few days each school holidays. As a special treat we take them to MacDonalds. It usually works out to costing me around $26.00. Now, it grieves me to see those kids working in dead end MacJobs, earning what I consider to be a pittance. I have seen the breakdown of costs for a typical Maccas store, and I know if I just paid a single dollar more, each of those kids could be paid 50% more – what you would call a “decent” wage. I would happily pay the extra.

    Trouble is, Alf, most people – Joe Public – wouldn’t. They would defect to a cheaper competitor. We shop at the local IGA, specifically because they pay their kids over-award wages because most of them are saving up for uni or similar, or attending part time.

    I don’t begrudge the extra dollar or two on my grocery bill. Bribie is an upmarket place, but 90% of the population still shop at Woolies, who pay straight award wages. Why? Because they save a dollar or two. These are people just like you, Joe, who will wax effluent about people earning a “decent wage”, but when it comes to reaching for their wallets, price wins every time.

    Think back to the last time you bought a household appliance, Alf. A TV, or a computer, or a fridge, or a washing machine, whatever. You probably had a whole list of priorities – suitability, performance, warranty, price, and other factors. You considered all of these – probably researched them.

    I will tell you the one thing you DID NOT investigate, Alf. One thing you DID NOT factor in. I will bet London to a brick that you never phoned the retailers to find out who paid the highest wages. If you are a typical person you made a choice of make and model based on a number of factors. Having made a choice you then went looking for where you could buy it at the best possible price. The company’s wages policy was never even considered.

    So you see, Alf, you and I, Joe Public, are the reason people like Steve can’t simply pay what they – or anybody else – deems a “decent wage”. They can only pay what the market will allow them to.

  132. The last time I advertised for farm workers, all the applicants

    There is one position I’ve had advertised on & off for 9 years now, that has never had an Austrlian applicant. Ever. Head Housekeeper, fully kept position, up to $70,000 salary.

  133. Alf

    Well, it’s been a joy, as usual. But it’s too easy to dismiss everyone who you disagree with as an idiot etc. Trust me, there are people out there who might say the same of many people on this site – it doesn’t make it so, but it’s an easy cop out.

  134. I don’t think the FWC are fuckknuckles etc. They obviously give the matter considerable thought but they have to weigh the interests of business against the interests of workers without sending either to the poor-house.

    Perhaps they may one day weigh the interests of workers to actually keep a job.
    Yes, they are fuckheads. Remember, I’ve met some. I’ve dealt with some. I’ve read some of their rationales.

    My dog is smarter. This-is-not-a-joke.

  135. Gab

    Well, it’s been a joy, as usual. But it’s too easy to dismiss everyone who you disagree with as an idiot etc. Trust me, there are people out there who might say the same of many people on this site – it doesn’t make it so, but it’s an easy cop out.

    It must be wonderful to have such a a blithe indifference to matters of commerce and economics.

  136. The idea that only small steps can be taken will simply make ALP policy permament

    This is exactly right. Was nobody paying attention to ALP ramming through a record amount of legislation? Why? Because they were taking a gamble that Abbott would be too lazy to wind it all back.
    They were right.

  137. john constantine

    the balance between maximum and optimum is hard, but at some stage, employing workers to hit maximum targets stops making sense, and my business retreated to an ‘optimum, but not maximum’ production level where not as much goes out the gate, but more is leftover after costs.

    the compliance burden of employing people is bad, but the nightmare of employing the wrong sort by mistake is now a horror story.

    if i haven’t known someone,or their family for a fair decade, no point taking the risk.

    let less animals eat more and put weight on cheaper. [weigh em by getting your toes trod on, less hard on the boss when running sheep].

    include a fallow in the crop rotation, instead of continual cropping.

    beaten the demand for extra labour already.

  138. And yet, not a single answer about why people shouldn’t get a decent wage for their labour.

    I’ll play.
    The reason is that you price some people out of the labor market, so they just end up on the dole.
    This is the reason for youth unemployment for example; businesses are reluctant to employ a fresh starter with no track record and no experience at a premium price. They’d rather pay a lower price and then up it as they go. But they are not allowed to do that.

    Second reason. If someone wants to work for a lower wage (e.g., they are just desperate for a job, or want experience in a particular industry), they’re not allowed to. Tough luck. As a result they often end up sitting on the sidelines, with no job, or failing to break into their chosen industry.

    Third reason. Fixed wages only work in what you might call a ‘one company town’ where an employer has a monopoly on employment. But people are more mobile now than they were even fifty years ago; there are very few one-company towns, and the ones that exist actually pay extremely high wages (such as mining towns). So the risk to workers being ‘exploited’ in Australia is minimal.

    The real result would be that groups such as the long term unemployed, youth, people with disabilities, etc, might be able to pick up marginal work (albeit lower paid than what’s available now) instead of sitting at home collecting government welfare.

  139. Tel

    the compliance burden of employing people is bad, but the nightmare of employing the wrong sort by mistake is now a horror story.

    I’ve seen one shop that not only had insurance against employees suing them, but had contracts with clients that DEMANDED to see certificates proving that they were insured against employees suing them. So I’m told, in other countries this is the norm, not unusual, so probably it will become normal in Australia 10 years behind everyone else. Add that to the cost of your everything.

  140. JC

    There is one position I’ve had advertised on & off for 9 years now, that has never had an Austrlian applicant. Ever. Head Housekeeper, fully kept position, up to $70,000 salary.

    Can I send wifey’s resume? She reckons she keeps a good house (with help because it’s far too much for her) and she ought to earn her keep for once in her life.

  141. stackja

    Head Housekeeper, fully kept position, up to $70,000 salary.

    Sounds like any good wife.

  142. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    she ought to earn her keep for once in her life

    JC, I hope for your sake that the lady doesn’t read this blog and put two and two together……

  143. MemoryVault

    The reason dudes can earn 400,000k per year in mining is because

    Prior to my stroke in 2010, I spent fourteen years working FIFO in the mining industry.
    I’ve worked at sites all over mainland Australia.
    I have never heard of, let alone met, or worked with, anybody earning anything remotely like $400,000.00 a year. Yes there are specialists who may be able to command $6,000.00 to $8,000.00 a week for a month long contract, but they might only get two or three such contracts in a year.

    The highest paid person – in terms of an ongoing wage – that I worked with was a senior loco driver with Rio, stationed at Paraburdoo in 2004. He earned $220,000.00 a year plus FIFO back to Indonesia, for two weeks on, two weeks off, working twelve hour permanent night shifts. It was right at the beginning of the boom, and qualified loco drivers were as rare as hen’s teeth.

  144. JC

    Zulu

    I think it would be a great job for her and a learning experience. No, she doesn’t read this blog, hut not to worry I’ll ask her if she wants to apply. I will too.

  145. Tel

    http://freebeacon.com/issues/government-union-demands-major-upgrades-to-taxpayer-funded-research-facility/

    Here’s an answer to the question “why people shouldn’t get a decent wage for their labour” and the answer is that the money all went somewhere else. Astounding huh?

  146. Can I send wifey’s resume? She reckons she keeps a good house (with help because it’s far too much for her) and she ought to earn her keep for once in her life.

    Sorry JC, the position is filled with a furriner on a 187 visa, who is paid Two Dollars per hour and kept locked in an unventilated corrugated iron shed for the 6 hours each day they are not at work.

  147. Tel

    At two dollars per hour, in order to earn the $70k you promised, they would need to work 700 hour weeks. That’s pretty tough, I don’t think JC’s wife would be able to handle it.

    Anyhow, at least you can no longer say you haven’t had an Australian applicant.

  148. tomix

    During the days of the Whitlam Gov’t's quarterly wage rises, Bjelke-Petersen summed it up well:

    “One man’s pay rise is another man’s job.” And that’s how it’s turned out.

  149. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    On the subject of a “fair wage”, back in the days of the Commonwealth Employment Service, we listed a farmhand’s position.

    One applicant, asked about wages, and sneered at the figure offered. He was informed that that was the going rate for an experienced farmhand. “What experience have you had?”

    “Experience? Experience?” was the answer. “Commonwealth Employment Service said any bloody fool could work on a farm.”

    He didn’t get the job.

  150. Anyhow, at least you can no longer say you haven’t had an Australian applicant.

    JC, you didn’t say your wife was Australian. Are you sure she knows how to work?

  151. At two dollars per hour, in order to earn the $70k you promised, they would need to work 700 hour weeks. That’s pretty tough, I don’t think JC’s wife would be able to handle it.

    Tel, are you trying to bring fairness into this economic discussion?

    What’s next? Lunch breaks or something?

  152. nerblnob

    I’ve seen one shop that not only had insurance against employees suing them, but had contracts with clients that DEMANDED to see certificates proving that they were insured against employees suing them. So I’m told, in other countries this is the norm, not unusual, so probably it will become normal in Australia 10 years behind everyone else

    That is already the norm in our contracts with certain multinationals working in Australia and is being aped by their Australian counterparts since they employ the same compliance and contracts people who can’t wait to add any new features such as anti slavery policy, anti child labour, anti money laundering, anti bribery and so on.

    It’s not enough that we employ middle aged engineers on good wages who wouldn’t pay a bribe to save their mother’s life, we have to write out in detail how we’re preventing all these modern day evils from happening. Our only recourse is to pay a firm full of the same fucking leeches who write these ever inventive policies, to write one for us that nobody ever reads . I say write, they cut and paste them from somewhere but we can never be certain enough of where to do the same.

  153. I say write, they cut and paste them from somewhere but we can never be certain enough of where to do the same.

    I caught my (former) law firm doing just that. They cut & pasted reams of stuff. They were stupid enough to put in writing that their bill was so stiff coz they’d had to “go back to law” to glean most of the info.

    HOWEVER: It just so happens that in mighty Qld many laws & stuff are totally different for a building that has a liquor licence, than for a building that does not (ie pub, nightclub, etc vs Residential apartment building, supermarket, lawyers chambers, etc)

    When I pointed out a shedload of stuff that was plain wrong, or illegal, and asked why they’d (haha) “written” it in the work for me, they were stupid enough to defend their “work”.
    When the bill (nearer $100,000 than zero) arrived, I refused to pay it. They got dark, they got nasty, they did lotsa stuff. They wrote me long letters full of all the reasons I should pay, blah blah blah.

    One of the partners phoned me (from the safe range of a thousand miles or so) and obliquely hinted I’d been trying it on with some of their hot chick junior lawyers. (I near had to be restrained from being at his office the next morning to deck him)

    I called one of the nation’s heaviest hitters from a Melbourne firm, who wrote them a letter explaining how it’d work out for them if they didn’t shut up.

    They laid off for a few months, then sooled their “credit control partner” onto me. Back to Melbourne heavy hitter, who rewrote them one of the biggest slapdowns/professional insults you’d ever see. So good I framed it.

    Haven’t heard from M.Mouse & Co since.

  154. Aristogeiton

    Steve at the Pub
    #1337698, posted on June 7, 2014 at 9:08 pm
    [...]
    Haven’t heard from M.Mouse & Co since.

    That’s disgraceful. You should have contacted the Law Society.

  155. Aristogeiton

    Sorry; the Legal Services Commission. Drunk.

  156. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    I near had to be restrained from being at his office next morning to deck him

    Had an argument, by proxy, with the Eastern States headquarters of a firm of agricultural machinery – dealing with their Western Australian sub agents, and the East were being as obstructive as they could.

    I don’t lose my temper these days – I just get icily polite. Works far better.

    “Would you please tell your Eastern States headquarters that the client has the means to fly to your head office, and continue this discussion face to face? He will not enjoy the experience.” Worked.

  157. It could be your firm Aristo. Hows your PI insurance for up to date?

    Actually I seriously considered it. There was more to the matter (a significant cost overrun) as the job was one the firm had quoted $5,000 for, and had 2 years before quoted abut $1,100 for, and that I finally had done by a major Brisbane firm for about $1,500.

    I recently stumbled into a room that contained said motormouth partner, (who – here’s a surprise – pracices solely in family law) and managed to leave without hooking him. Had the adrenalin running though, as I had one wound up ready to go, managed to hold myself back & went away for some deep breathing exercises.

  158. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    I near had to be restrained from being at his office next morning to deck him

    Had an argument, by proxy, with the Eastern States headquarters of a firm of agricultural machinery – dealing with their Western Australian sub agents, and the East were being as obstructive as they could.

    I don’t lose my temper these days – I just get icily polite. Works far better.

    “Would you please tell your Eastern States headquarters that the client has the means to fly to your head office, and continue this discussion face to face? Your representative will not enjoy the experience.” Worked.

  159. Tel

    Tel, are you trying to bring fairness into this economic discussion?

    Let’s start with basic arithmetic, and not jump ahead, mkay?

  160. He’ll never know how close he went. Coz he wouldn’t know me from Adam.
    Funnily, that firm M.Mouse & Co, are to this day regular clients at my place.

  161. Let’s start with basic arithmetic, and not jump ahead, mkay?

    I suppose I could raise the pay for sponsored workers to $2.20 per hour or something, in the interests of fairness.

  162. jumpnmcar

    I suppose I could raise the pay for sponsored workers to $2.20 per hour or something, in the interests of fairness.

    While upping their rent by %10 too ?

  163. While upping their rent by %10 too ?

    Whoa! Didn’t think of that!
    Smart thinking Jumps. Recoup the loss. You must have an IQ of 195

  164. jumpnmcar

    You must have an IQ of 195
    Put a decimal point between the 9 and 5, dumb as dogs hit me.

  165. jumpnmcar

    can’t even spell shit, there ya go.

  166. Aristogeiton

    Steve at the Pub
    #1337706, posted on June 7, 2014 at 9:17 pm
    It could be your firm Aristo. Hows your PI insurance for up to date?

    Actually I seriously considered it. There was more to the matter (a significant cost overrun) as the job was one the firm had quoted $5,000 for, and had 2 years before quoted abut $1,100 for, and that I finally had done by a major Brisbane firm for about $1,500.

    I recently stumbled into a room that contained said motormouth partner, (who – here’s a surprise – pracices solely in family law) and managed to leave without hooking him. Had the adrenalin running though, as I had one wound up ready to go, managed to hold myself back & went away for some deep breathing exercises.

    Pricks like this give lawyers a bad name; they should, and can, be drummed out of the profession.

  167. Mr Rusty

    Steve at the Pub (and any other business owner planning to retrench employees):

    You should email the FWC and include a dossier of all your employees – wages, family, abilities etc. Include all the emotive crap that a lefty would use, eg. “Employee C has a disabled Mother that she lives with and cares for, she is the sole breadwinner”.
    Explain that owing to their decision you need to let someone go and you need their advice on which one should get the chop that will not result in an unfair dismissal claim or any other repercussions.
    CC the local paper, local MP, Minister and Shadow Minister for employment and whichever Union represents hospitality workers.
    Pester them until you get a reply and include anything you receive back from them in the letter of dismissal to the employee and maybe even hang it up in a prominent place in the pub.
    If every business that will have to fire people to cover the minimum wage increase did this the retards who live in their overpaid sinecures at the FWC might actually start to understand the actual repercussions to those decisions they take just to make themselves feel all noble and holier than thou.

  168. crocodile

    Looks like your margins aren’t keeping pace with inflation. If the wage costs are under pressure from inflation your got other problems as well.

    Wow, so you’re aware of conditions in Australia in 2014?
    Wow…. just wow…. amazing. Next you’ll be telling me the sun may rise in the east?
    C’mon Croc, you can do better than that.

    Looks like I’ve missed an entertaining thread today.

    Sadly, I believe what I’ve said is true. I rather suspect that your material input costs will rise as well. You face an unhappy position if you cannot exact a commensurate increase in the retail price of your product. It doesn’t make you a poor businessman. I face shrinking margins myself and rising input costs.

    I am certain that this situation gets to the nub of what I’ve raised as an alarming trend that nobody seems keen to talk about. Reminds me of John Cleese in a way .. Shh, don’t mention the war. You, and many others are victims of a decade and a halves worth of falling productivity growth. It is biting harder and harder as time goes on yet no clear direction from any quarter to arrest the slide. Stomping on minimum wages will offer only temporary relief because what happens next year and the one after. Trim down to 38 and then 37 maybe.

    Perhaps there is little you can do personally to increase productivity. It is however, a national indicator. Take the time if you are inclined and look at the figures for real wages growth over the last business cycle. It’s an ugly picture. You’re probably under pressure because your customers are too. We all know that just about the only thing that causes real wage increases over time are the small incremental increases in productivity.

    Even the author of this article acknowledges that we are a high wage nation battling low productivity growth. Unfortunately, he too goes down the path of “pricks have put the minimum wage up by 50c”. Surely, the central issue in all of this is to attack the productivity problem. Wages can’t be forced down forever lest our competitors eventually catch up. By then it’s all over red rover.

  169. crocodile

    Memory Vault, I don’t see that your strategy of paying a few dollars more to the local retailers that pay above market wages has the consequences that are intended. Sounds noble in principle but it also means that for the income you are disposing you are buying less produce. This has the effect of decreasing the total amount of trade and actually decreases business activity. The IGAs of the world are rewarded but only at the expense of the rest. Sadly, with impacts on the people they employ.

  170. nerblnob

    Stomping on minimum wages will offer only temporary relief because what happens next year and the one after.

    And what’s wrong with temporary relief? We’re all going to die anyway. The employee that stays on a bit longer because the business can just afford to keep him/her is paying his/her bills for that bit longer, staying off the dole for that bit longer, making progress in their life.

    You don’t fix low productivity and uncompetitiveness by saddling businesses with more unproductive tasks, which is what compliance regimes involve. It breaks my heart to see our contract partners down under working all-nighters (self-employed, not worth employing extra staff just to do these things that hve been dropped own on them from above, but can’t afford not to do them if their business is to have afuture) to get these compliance things collated and inserted and presented in a way the end client will consider. We do as much of the donkey work over here that we can to help them.

  171. Surely, the central issue in all of this is to attack the productivity problem.

    The solution is deregulation, but I have a feeling you’re against that.

  172. crocodile

    And what’s wrong with temporary relief? We’re all going to die anyway

    I’m going to die but can I have a bit of time in the sun first. What’s wrong with temporary relief is not much as long it stays temporary. Without attacking the causes, temporary become permanent.

  173. crocodile

    The solution is deregulation, but I have a feeling you’re against that.

    Why do you say that.

  174. Aristogeiton

    Aussiepundit
    #1337850, posted on June 7, 2014 at 11:44 pm
    Surely, the central issue in all of this is to attack the productivity problem.

    The solution is deregulation, but I have a feeling you’re against that.

    No, you fix productivity with higher taxes and more productivity-enhancing regulation :)

  175. nerblnob

    Without attacking the causes, temporary become permanent.

    Sure but chasing prices with minimum wage increases, which then increase prices, and so on, is the short-sighted temporary approach, not “stomping on minimum wages” as you allege.

    Deregulation, streamlining, cutting out duplication are just some of the necessary steps Australia must take to be even remotely competitive. The increase in productivity is down to the energy and enterprise of the people, but the three I mentioned are three things that the government can do, or refrain from doing as required.

  176. Fisky

    Crocodile is a John Kwiggin regular. No way does he support deregulation.

  177. Pricks like this give lawyers a bad name; they should, and can, be drummed out of the profession.

    The firm is quite large, in it’s own right is actually one of the larger businesses in Qld. It has many offices along the east coast of Australia and has been involved in some high profile work. They’ve got more partners than I’ve had hot dinners.

    As they say, not all lawyers are bad, just that 99% give the rest a bad name.

  178. Aristogeiton

    Steve at the Pub
    #1337884, posted on June 8, 2014 at 1:21 am
    Pricks like this give lawyers a bad name; they should, and can, be drummed out of the profession.

    The firm is quite large, in it’s own right is actually one of the larger businesses in Qld. It has many offices along the east coast of Australia and has been involved in some high profile work. They’ve got more partners than I’ve had hot dinners.

    As they say, not all lawyers are bad, just that 99% give the rest a bad name.

    Well, the lawyer owes a duty to the court foremost, but secondary to that owes an absolute duty to the client to advance his or her interests. A lawyer is the person you pay to doggedly advance your financial and non-financial interest absolutely when representing you in matters of, and adjunct to, law. This is an absolute professional-ethical, legal and moral duty. Any lawyer who contravenes this principle can, and should, be struck off the roll.

  179. nerblnob

    Any lawyer who contravenes this principle can, and should, be struck off the roll.

    And how often does that happen? How is it brought about?
    What small business owner has the time and resources to pursue such an action?

  180. crocodile

    The increase in productivity is down to the energy and enterprise of the people, but the three I mentioned are three things that the government can do, or refrain from doing as required.

    Productivity is down to the people all right. But it is governments that chose the policy settings to either encourage or discourage where the said people park their capital. Regulation and compliance are only part of a bigger picture. If returns on capital are greater in non productive assets and activities that is where it will stay.

  181. crocodile

    Crocodile is a John Kwiggin regular. No way does he support deregulation.

    By logical extension, so must you. Is there something wrong with reading the opinions of others. You wouldn’t have a clue whether I support deregulation or not. If you saw the number of hoops I have to jump through to get anything done you would know. If you just want to trade insults across the web rather than discuss an important issue I’m happy to oblige.

  182. The solution is deregulation, but I have a feeling you’re against that.

    Why do you say that.

    I admit to stereotyping. You seem to have leftwing/ progressive views, and people with those views tend, in general, to be pro regulation.
    They like red tape (especially if it’s green).
    You imply that you’re not like that, in which case, good.

  183. Any lawyer who contravenes this principle can, and should, be struck off the roll.

    Were that to be actually enforced there’d be at least half the solicitors in the country struck off.
    The pain would be really felt in the 35th floor CBD firms, where there’d be about one in ten remaining, mostly juniors.

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