PVO in The Australian draws our attention this development:
Just when you thought One Nation couldn’t become any more craven one of its senators has threatened to block the government’s budget measures unless ABC funding is slashed by $600m.
Putting to one side the pathetic tit-for-tat game of blocking one policy script to pressure a government to enact another, what is the ABC’s crime exactly?
Senator Brian Burston doesn’t like the way the ABC has reported on recent One Nation controversies. Of course he doesn’t — the odium of what’s been exposed damages the reputation of the minor party and its senior team, raising serious questions about the need for reform to its operations.
Now there are 1.2 billion good reasons to cut ABC funding – but as PVO points out cutting their funding for doing precisely what they currently funded to do does seem a bit strange. But it’s the hypocrisy that really annoys. PVO also tells:
Thankfully government MPs and Senators have quickly attacked One Nation’s approach.
Hmmmmmmm. Would those be the same government MPs and Senators who are so keen to introduce the bank levy?
We need to call out what has happened in the lead-up to the bank tax because spite and politicking are the real reasons behind this policy, not prudent decision-making. Morrison was outraged that a former Labor premier (Anna Bligh) was selected to head up the Australian Bankers Association. One of Morrison’s staff members had been in the running for the role. Liberals were annoyed that three of the big four chief executives signed a letter calling on the government to support marriage equality. So much for free speech advocacy. And Resources Minister Matt Canavan laid into Westpac over its decision to shun investments in new coalmines.
This archaic, decrepit government — out of touch with diversity and environmental modernity — doesn’t like big organisations spouting what they know about the value of such principles to succeed. So it has bitten back with a backward-looking tax that will harm the economy. It doesn’t even expire when the budget is back in surplus, even though Morrison called on the banks to help get the budget back into surplus as his reason for instituting such a tax.
Our friends in Canberra are abusing their policy making powers if not actually for personal gain* certainly for personal reasons. It is not enough to be personally annoyed with the ABC so let’s cut their funding (but watch this space) or personally annoyed with the banks so let’s whack them with a new tax.
*For that level of brazen behaviour you need to look to New South Wales state politics.