David Leyonhjelm guest post on motorists

Australians love their cars. It’s not hard to see why; cars can be comfortable, convenient and liberating. Yet our governments seem intent on making life for motorists more difficult.

First, there are the taxes on new cars.

There’s a 5 per cent import tariff, unless the car is made in a country with which Australia has a free trade deal. So an import tariff of more than $1,500 is imposed on entry-level Commodores, which are now made in Germany.

Then there’s the luxury car tax, which imposes a 33 per cent tax on the value of new cars over $65,000. This adds more than $6,000 to the price of a basic Landcruiser, and more than $120,000 on a top-of-the line BMW.

The GST of 10 per cent applies on top of that, after which comes state duties of around 3 per cent on top of the GST-inclusive value. That’s quadruple taxation: a tax on a tax on a tax on a tax.

The tax penalty for buying a new car is a key reason why Australia has an old car fleet, with the average age of cars in Australia around 10 years. This is a key contributor to our road toll, because older cars are not as safe in an accident, and it doesn’t help our pollution and emission levels either.

The high price of new cars in Australia is also the result of government-imposed restrictions on competition from used cars. Quotas on used car imports mean that only around 6,000 used cars are imported into Australia each year, compared to more than a million new cars. If these quotas were removed to allow unrestricted imports of used cars which are less than five years old and meet Australian standards, including right hand drive, it would only lead to the import of around 30,000 used cars each year. However, it would put significant downward pressure on new car prices.

Such a removal of quotas occurred in New Zealand with great success, and has been recommended by a succession of reviews including the Government’s own Competition Policy Review. But the Coalition, intimidated by the manufacturers and their dealerships who sell new cars into Australia, is now threatening to make used car import arrangements even more restrictive. This would further increase the price of cars in Australia.

After you’ve purchased a car, our governments continue to make life difficult for Australian motorists. Before you’ve even pulled out of your driveway you’re hit with hundreds of dollars in registration fees, licence fees and surcharges on your insurance.

Once driving, you’re hit with fuel tax of 40.9 cents a litre. The unfairness of this is plain to see; those with a fuel efficient car pay less tax than those stuck with an old clunker despite using the same public roads. Those with an electric car pay nothing.

In fact, the burden of fuel tax falls heaviest on those in regional Australia who enjoy little road funding, and on those in the outer suburbs of the major cities who also pay for their road use with tolls.

Overall, Australia’s motorists are not only paying for the road infrastructure they share with cyclists and pedestrians, but are also paying for everything from the ABC to the welfare state. Each year the revenue from road-related taxes and charges exceeds spending on roads by more than $4 billion.

None of this includes local government rates, most of which should be viewed as road-related given that the proper role of local government is roads and rubbish. Nor does it include hundreds of millions of dollars in speeding fines collected each year, which reflect a focus on revenue rather than safety on the road. Speed limits on many roads, particularly multi-lane highways and arterial roads would not be so dismally low if there was genuine concern for safety and convenience.

And as if all that’s not enough, harmless modifications lovingly undertaken by car enthusiasts are regularly used as an excuse by police to impose even more fines, or even to impound their pride and joy.

Given how much they are taxed, regulated and fined, it is remarkable that Australians are still in love with their cars. Perhaps it shows they have more sense than our governments; cars are, after all, a lot of fun. Even miserable, mean-spirited governments can’t change that.

David Leyonhjelm is a Senator for the Liberal Democrats

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55 Responses to David Leyonhjelm guest post on motorists

  1. Gavin R Putland

    Senator Leyonhjelm wrote:

    The GST of 10 per cent applies on top of that, after which comes state duties of around 3 per cent on top of the GST-inclusive value.

    And according to the precedents set by the High Court, those state duties are UNCONSTITUTIONAL (pardon my self-promotion).

  2. jupes

    Excellent post David except for one point:

    and it doesn’t help our pollution and emission levels either.

    Who gives a fuck?

  3. Leigh Lowe

    What is a mororist?
    Someone who is a follower of Morrison?

  4. RobK

    Well done Gavin and David.

  5. Zatara

    Moroists are muslims from the Philippines aren’t they?

  6. jupes

    What is a mororist?
    Someone who is a follower of Morrison?

    No that is a moronist.

  7. Leo G

    The mandated reduction in the density of petrol- the Howard government changed the composition of petrol- is also effectively a tax.

  8. Oh come on

    given that the proper role of local government is roads and rubbish

    This is a very strange view for a libertarian to hold.

  9. rickw

    The only conclusion one can reach is that Australian Politicians are a bunch of greedy scumbags who think they’re smarter than everyone else.

  10. Bruce of Newcastle

    Given how much they are taxed, regulated and fined, it is remarkable that Australians are still in love with their cars.

    I think it’s remarkable that anyone should think Australians preferring their cars is remarkable.

    Think of the alternatives.

    Public transport is slow, inconvenient, expensive and dangerous. The danger has been rising with the importation of violent people of a certain religion plus the abrogation of parents’ responsibilities to control and raise their kids (admittedly this is made worse by lefty education and policing policies).

    Taxis are often driven by people who inspire fear, and can be surly and difficult.

    Uber is promising but with security and service issues of its own.

    Bicycling on roads is an invitation to be run over and killed.

    It light of the alternatives the love of Australians for their cars is perfectly understandable. No wonder governments hate us.

  11. Entropy

    A much, much more worthy issue to campaign on Senator Leyonhjelm.
    The advertising writes itself.
    (The dream) The freedom of the open road on a warm sunny day with a babe (Lara Bingle look a like) beside you. Happy music;
    ( the reality) dull skies, your driving an old, clapped out old clunker with you both wearing rags and dirty hair, while a flash comcar flies past you, Turnbull and Shorten look a likes drinking champagne in the back seat.

    The end message: they did this to you.

  12. Senile Old Guy

    Another irrelevant post by DL. Remember that this person is an Australian Senator. He gets paid lots and he has accomplished what?

    Has he attempted to do anything about the things he is writing about?

  13. Tom

    Stat of the day:

    Each year the revenue from road-related taxes and charges exceeds spending on roads by more than $4 billion.

    Thanks, David.

    I’d like to know which nations are more heavily taxed than Australia: it can be only the lemmings of the EU. There’s something about our island nationhood, far from the rest of the developed world, that down through history has turned our local, state and federal politicians into rapacious, corrupt bushrangers in love with over-regulated scams like the real estate Ponzi who regard their constituents primarily as easy pickings and a source of revenue.

    It’s also time the IPA updated its size of government survey which showed in 2013 that nearly 40% of every Australia dollar was confiscated by local, state and federal government. I’d be surprised if that is now less than 50%.

  14. Entropy

    Good point Tom, maybe the ad could finish with the Turnbull and Shorten look a likes stepping out of the comcar and cry “Stand and Deliver!”

  15. Shy Ted

    Australians love their cars.
    No no no DL. We’re tortured souls who weep on the way to work knowing we are destroying the environment and creating a global furnace for our children. The ABC told me so.

  16. Richard 2380

    What a very interesting article, from the great David Leyonhjelm. I have personally never owned a new car, I just can’t seem to justify the price.
    I choose a more refined method of selecting the most you can get in a car for the least amount of money. With this in mind I have a 1998 V8 Ford Fairlane Ghia. This vehicle has a full leather interior, full climate control, airbag rear suspension, electric adjustable seats, fantastic sound system, very comfortable to drive, and so on and so on.
    The car itself cost $2000 There is no point having comprehensive insurance as it would never be repaired should you have an accident a big annual saving. Third-party accidental insurance $125 a year, no need for theft insurance as that would be highly unlikely. Registration is a little more expensive than smaller vehicle. Fuel consumption is around 12 km per litre, not bad not good. All in all a very cheap and extremely comfortable vehicle to run. Should a major mechanical issue arise you simply get rid of it and find another one.

  17. flyingduk

    Of course governments are against private ownership of cars, its the ultimate expression of freedom

  18. A Lurker

    In my country town there is no local public transport other than a taxi company.
    The State government closed our railway down around 30years ago and seemingly has no intention of re-opening it despite the wear and tear on the roads and highways and the number of accidents involving either cars, and/or big trucks.
    The nearest train is an hour’s drive away.
    Greyhound no longer runs a bus service; however, a local bus company has started up running a bus service to other regional centres and to Brisbane three days a week, and there is another bus service that runs every-other-day connections to train stations in other regional centres.
    There is no local bus service other than school pickups.

    So cars are a lifeline here.

  19. Allen

    And you can no longer import classic cars, as they may have asbestos in them.
    So hang on to you MGB and your E-Type or your other fancy as there will be no more allowed.

  20. Tel

    Think of the alternatives.

    It’s not even safe to walk in some neighbourhoods… Melbourne for example.

  21. Motelier

    Mark Skaife on 60 minutes circa 2008 was onto this. His arguement was safety by reducing the age of the Australian car fleet.

  22. Roger.

    …cars are, after all, a lot of fun. Even miserable, mean-spirited governments can’t change that.

    Narxist (narcissistic Marxist) Di Natale has already used the word “force” in regard to getting people out of petrol fueled cars and into electric ones or public transport if you can’t afford that.

    One can envisage a scenario where a Labor government dependent upon Greens support could be enticed to adopt such a policy in the big cities at least, with rural/regional Australians having to prove their need for a petrol vehicle.

    Perhaps the government would offer a “buy back” scheme for your outlawed petrol vehicle? After all, the starting point for Narxists is that the government owns everything – or should – and only doles property out to a compliant populace.

  23. Helen

    Dont forget driving in a sports car with the warm wind in your hair (if you have any – Sinc would have to borrow a wig) before a certain age!

    Other hair waving possibilities

    Horse riding – can’t park it in the shed when you dont want to use it
    bicycle – have to wear a helmet and very sweat inducing
    running – sweat inducing, especially crotch area = fetty swanny
    electric car – not at all romantic

    They just dont cut it for me, and I dont think a ballad would have been written about them as a means to escape reality.

  24. Percy Porcelain

    you can no longer import classic cars, as they may have asbestos in them

    What the f*ck??

  25. None

    So basically Lurjer what you’re saying is that unless you have a car you can’t work.

  26. Percy Porcelain

    The drooling cretins responsible for that act of spiteful fascist idiocy should be publicly flogged and then hanged.

  27. Mother Lode

    Of course governments are against private ownership of cars, its the ultimate expression of freedom

    All governments are frustrated by any private ownership, and progressives (and their slavering, baying packs of bureaucrats) are implacably opposed to it.

    They can tax it, regulate its use, its availability, require licenses, permissions, overrule the owner on aspect of their enjoyment – it is as if the government, but there is a tiny point, zero millimeters across, zero grams weight, impossible to actually pinpoint, which is ownership and which they are denied.

    Something elusive that works on their minds day and night, for which they ceaselessly driven to search and root out.

    Did I mention that these people are our servants?

  28. Mother Lode

    it is as if the government,

    It is as if the government owned it and we leased it from them at their discretion and direction,

  29. struth

    Adding to this and of course not unexpected that I have to, in an analysis by a politician that is none the less a good analysis, is the massive effect to the cost increase of everything , absolutely everything due to the costs and taxation of the road transport industry, (of course the largest private employer in the country).
    The cost to our nation by not only this taxation but the negligence by government by not providing decent road infrastructure in not only lost international competitiveness (especially because we are a large country) but in actual lives lost is incalculable.

    This is the great tragedy of Australia.
    It is no exaggeration to say our government is not only taxing us to death, it is actually responsible for physically killing many of us, in this and in many ways, like substandard goat tracks as main roads, to excessively slow speed limits over long distances that increase fatigue, etc, not just by enthusiastically bringing in jihadists, intent on running us down and blowing us up,

  30. stackja

    And:

    Speeding fine costing $446 led to $100K spend on appeal
    Emma Partridge, EXCLUSIVE, The Daily Telegraph
    April 14, 2018 12:00am
    Subscriber only
    TAXPAYERS have forked out $33,000 in legal costs after a Sydney woman appealed against a $446 speeding fine.

    And a “legal technicality” may have opened the door for others to take their appeals against tickets from handheld speed guns back to court.

    The 24-year-old woman’s two-year legal battle revealed the technicality with a certificate which NSW Police used in court proceedings when drivers appealed fines.

    Police withdrew their defence to the woman’s appeal, and have paid her $33,000 in costs. She is now applying to recoup further legal costs, saying she has spent more than $100,000 on her appeal.

    The woman fought the fine because she did not believe she was more than 20km/h over the limit when she was stopped at Lawson in the Blue Mountains in October 2015.

    Her lawyer Carol Younes said a police certificate tendered during the appeal stated speed guns had been “tested for accuracy …. in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommended calibration method as approved by the Commissioner of Police” — but it turned out no such approval by the Commissioner was ever given.

    “The Commissioner should set the record straight and accept that the courts have been misled in prosecutions, which often have very dire consequences for drivers around the state,” Ms Younes said.

    She said the onus was on the driver to call expert evidence — at an average cost of $3330 a day — to rebut police claims the speed gun was accurate but all police had to do was produce a certificate, which she ­argued was invalid.

    A NSW Police spokesman said the “technicality” — that the Commissioner had not ­approved testing of the speed guns — was rectified in March.

    “The methods recommended by the manufacturer and the applicable standard were being used to test and calibrate (the devices) however police did not have a document stating that these methods were approved by the Commissioner,” he said.

    Assistant Commissioner Mick Corboy said even if drivers appealed against fines, he was confident police could successfully defend the cases. “I have absolute faith in the accuracy of the devices, their calibration and the training of police in the operation of them,” Mr Corboy said. “The legal technicality … has been ­resolved and does not impact on current or future issues with the devices and their use.”

  31. Roger.

    struth, I’ve noticed a lot of Sikhs driving trucks lately (the orange turban makes them visible in the cab).

    Good for them. But is there a driver shortage in Australia?

  32. A Lurker

    So basically Lurjer what you’re saying is that unless you have a car you can’t work.

    That is pretty much the case. You can walk to most areas of the town, but due to hills, walking is problematic for the elderly and those with mobility problems – or if you want to do a grocery shop that involves carrying more than two heavy bags. There is a community car service where elderly residents get picked up for doctor visits etc., but aside from that, yeah, car ownership is a must.

    Those wanting reduced car use in Australia must be either inner-city types spoiled for public transport options, or are drinking some serious ju-ju juice, or both.

  33. John Constantine

    The truck driving industry wasn’t diverse enough and a place of pale stale males.

    Therefore, the State built a System that uses crony Big Training, Crony People and Culture departments in crony Big Trucking companies to work with crony Job Placement agencies and crony imported voteherd case managers to hire on Merit, using subsidies.

    Just the Merit isn’t the ability to read English roadsigns [ like low bridge ahead] or reverse the trucks, the Merit is the diversity .

    And Our Optical Diversity is Our Merit.

    Comrades.

  34. John Constantine

    In the future, people will not need private cars.

    If prole attendance anywhere is Required by the State, the State will send a van around to collect them.

    If you being in public spaces is not Required, it will be Forbidden, rationing of access to public space is the way Big Australia can fit a hundred odd millions into the Eastern Seaboard mega-shantytown.

    Stay in your domestic cubicle with your television, until the State comes to collect you.

    Comrades.

  35. struth

    To register a simple Prime mover for example, one that is only single rated, costs over $2000.oo a quarter.
    This is only the Prime Mover.
    This is only the very start of government cost before you have even turned a wheel.
    There is roughly an average of about maybe seven hundred litres of fuel used a day, if you averaged out more for road trains less for urban semis etc.
    I thought I would give example of the level and amount of tax just one moving prime mover hands over to the government in one day, but it would be too much of a post (even for me) to itemise it.

    Everything you see, including the roads themselves, that is not natural to that area has been on the back of a truck.
    If it was sea freight or air or rail freight, it still been on the back of a truck, and sometimes many, many times, from raw product to finished and packaged etc.
    The cost of excessive road taxation to a country (like Australia especially) is in calculable , absolutely incalculable.

    Think of the huge costs to absolutely eveything

  36. stackja

    Roads congestion: Budget bucks meant to quicken traffic
    SHARRI MARKSON, The Daily Telegraph
    April 14, 2018 12:00am
    Subscriber only
    BUSTING congestion and slashing the time commuters sit in traffic will be a major focus of the Turnbull government’s federal Budget next month, with tens of billions of dollars in road and rail projects planned.

    In an exclusive interview with The Saturday Telegraph, Infrastructure and Cities Minister Paul Fletcher said the government’s aim was to reduce travel times for workers with an “unprecedented infrastructure spend”.

    “People want congestion reduced, they want to find it easier to get to and from work,” he said. “We are making very substantial investments in infrastructure so people can move around our city as quickly and efficiently as possible.”

    Data shows Sydney’s most congested roads have become steadily slower over the past decade. According to the NRMA, it now takes 10 minutes longer to drive the M4 than it did in 2007, when there was an enviable average commute time of 36 minutes.

    A daily commute on the M5 takes on average one hour and 52 minutes — seven minutes longer than 10 years ago.

    In a change of political strategy from previous years, the sell on the federal Budget will begin weeks out, rather than leaving it all to a single major announcement on Budget day, May 8. The spend on projects designed to bring down congestion could top last year’s $75 billion.

    Over coming weeks, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Treasurer Scott Morrison will press the phrase ­“congestion-busting infrastructure”.

  37. John Constantine

    Their turnfailure debacle coalition election winning machine are announcing that mass importation of agents of decolonialisation by there millions will not make traffic worse, because we are borrowing another hundred odd billion to compensate for the extra traffic.

    Which will park where exactly?.

    The Lord and Lady Failmayors of Greater Decolonialised Sydney strike again.

  38. struth

    Good for them. But is there a driver shortage in Australia?

    Sikhs are driving trucks.
    They are alright, but just not the cleanest.
    There is a severe shortage of drivers.
    This is caused by the harassment drivers get on the road and the increased regulation that is absolutely gobsmacking in it’s intrusive nature.
    I am a diesel mechanic by trade and have my Kenworth sitting in my shed.
    I will not put it on the roads.
    My customers loved what I did and my business only suffered at the hands of government.
    I don’t have time to list all the reasons but basically it is the corruption of corporatism (tolls an Linfox) and a few other big companies who have the government in their back pockets and the scalies working for them.
    It’s corrupt and in your face.
    There are many guys out there still doing it, but smart guys will not accept the treatment.
    I now operate on bush roads in remote aboriginal places like Arnhem land where I ford rivers and muck about.
    They still want me to fill out a log book but I leave The bullshit behind.
    I operate where there are no laws, because any motorist is a privileged black.
    These people wouldn’t know a road law, a roadworthy car, or what a licence looks like and the local police are only worried about whether or not I’m carrying grog.
    And even then, they are not over zealous.

    That all starts soon.
    Right now I actually am doing a bit of oversize work (not today, I am working for Mrs Struth and why I have to go shortly) in Transport, but it’s actually only because it has got busy pulling equipment out of closing down mines etc!

  39. Bruce of Newcastle

    The woman fought the fine because she did not believe she was more than 20km/h over the limit when she was stopped at Lawson in the Blue Mountains in October 2015.

    I thought this story was fun when I saw it a couple days ago:

    New Orleans Man Tires of Getting Speeding Tickets on His Parked Car

    A man in New Orleans continues to collect speeding tickets from his parked vehicle beside his home.

    A glitch in a nearby camera pointed in the direction of his house captures his license plate every time a driver speeds down the same part of the street. He’s even gotten speeding tickets when police vehicles speeded passed his parked car, WWLTV reported.

    For every one of those tickets he has to spend time in city hall explaining the situation, again and again. At one point two years ago, a contractor adjusted the camera so it pointed away from his vehicle.

    But in March, it was repositioned again, and the problem tickets returned. A spokesman for the mayor told WWLTV that the city would not readjust the camera again, WWLTV reported. “If it was in front of the Mayor’s house, he’d take care of it,” Schulz told WWLTV.

    What a nightmare!

  40. manalive

    City motorists are seeing their share of the roads they pay for ever diminishing, taken up by lanes used by invisible cyclists.

  41. Kneel

    “And a “legal technicality” may have opened the door for…”

    Ah, the outcry over someone “getting off” on a technicality – what a load of crap! How many have been “done” on a technicality and what is the response then? “That’s the law, sorry, you have to cop it”. If it’s good for the goose…

    Take the “speeding” example. Point of the law: safety.
    Drive down a motorway posted at 110 doing 130 and plod will happily book you for it, even where you have 5km visibility, good weather and are on a controlled access road – you are not a danger to anyone, certainly not significantly more than if you were doing 110.

    “oh”, they say “speeding is a major cause of road death – we MUST prevent it!”.

    Yeah – just a quick note: according to RMS, more than 6 times as many road deaths in NSW are from “speeding” that involves excessive speed for the conditions, but not over the speed limit, than are caused by simply exceeding the speed limit. SIX TIMES! So even if you prevented everyone everywhere from breaking the speed limit, the BEST you could get would be a 15ish % reduction in the road toll. They shouldn’t be telling you to “slow down”, they should be telling you to “pay attention” and “drive to the conditions”. Ah, but that involves people THINKING.
    So much better easier to beat them into submission to obeying the law than actually fix the problem, eh?

    It gets worse: pick any “long weekend” and any “non-long weekend” period and compare crash and injuries rates – NO DIFFERENT! Yep, no significant difference between road death and serious injury rates for long vs non-long weekends.
    Further, road deaths haven’t been as low as they have been recently IN ABSOLUTE NUMBERS since 1950 or so. How many more cars doing how many more km do we have now? How safe is safe enough?

    Even worse: charges for PCA remain stubbornly stuck at about 0.5% of drivers randomly tested. Hasn’t changed for years – decades even.

  42. City motorists are seeing their share of the roads they pay for ever diminishing, taken up by lanes used by invisible cyclists.

    Correct.
    In my area, the road system has been severely damaged by bicycle lanes. In many cases, changing roads from 2 lanes of motor vehicles to one lane (in each direction).
    One of these disaster roads has proud advertising that boasts that the road “improvement” was funded by a gazillion federal dollars.
    And the state government and local council can’t understand why the roads in the area are so congested.

  43. Sydney Boy

    I’ve just returned from Bali. Fuel was the equivalent of 70c per litre. Other than commercial vehicles (small trucks and the like), the age of the cars on the roads was much less than the average age of cars on the road in Australia. I saw zero old clunkers. Why?

  44. Roger.

    I thought as much, struth.

    Thanks!

  45. Bruce

    “Each year the revenue from road-related taxes and charges exceeds spending on roads by more than $4 billion. ”

    The numbers associated with taxes on booze and smokes vs ACTUAL spending on ACTUAL health are pretty staggering, too.

  46. Never thought I would see this sort of trite idiocy from DL! Normally your stuff is well researched but this is pure crap in relation to Australian car dealers so get off your arse and do something useful and then advocate for reasoned and not emotive changes to the system. The whole of government seems to be bent on ensuring that the voting masses should be able to enjoy the best of working conditions mandated by the government at employers’ expense while ensuring that with these inflated emoluments they are freely able this purchase masses of stuff made by people paid less, a lot less, who have their own governments ensuring that this benefit for their own slaves is not eroded by regulating their exchange rate to ensure their stuff can find markets still. So we have not only the ACCC getting involved in the retail car industry but ASIC as well ffs!! With all the restrictions on what car dealers can sell, and for what they can sell it, and to whom, and the warranties that are required to be given dealers might actually have to make money from the cars they sell rather than from selling coffee to waiting customers. There are very few car departments which are profitable in Australia and when you might like to make the comparison between the car industry and green peer where whole industries are subverted, in the case of cars by regulation, while in green power by government subsidy. It is all un-natural and allowing the free import of secondhand cars and assuming that it might be limited to 30,000 is just nonsense. And when these cars are not supported by the machinery which is mandated for local sales, I can presume that more legislation will be needed to protect the import purchasers? The ethos that Australians should not have to pay Australian prices and thereby enjoy a living standard out of all proportion to their productivity is so thing you could profitably spend some time on. Remember this was a deliberate policy hatched between Hawke and Whitlam that by lowering tariffs they would be throwing the textile, clothing and footwear workers out of work but the benefit in living standards for the balance of labor voters was deemed worth it! Might’ve been then comrade but the endgame is approaching at ever increasing speed!

  47. Crossie

    Of course governments are against private ownership of cars, its the ultimate expression of freedom.

    People who like freedom might get some other ideas as well such as that they don’t need the government’s help. The political class don’t like that sort of thinking, it could lead to them being turfed out of their well paid jobs.

  48. Crossie

    Sydney Boy
    #2686523, posted on April 14, 2018 at 12:11 pm
    I’ve just returned from Bali. Fuel was the equivalent of 70c per litre. Other than commercial vehicles (small trucks and the like), the age of the cars on the roads was much less than the average age of cars on the road in Australia. I saw zero old clunkers. Why?

    My guess would be that Indonesia is not impressed with the climate change “science” and don’t see why they should punish their businesses to appease the climate gods.

  49. Tel

    Ah, but that involves people THINKING.

    Where would it end?

  50. John Constantine

    In yarragrad, local councils are progressing their agenda by putting up seventy kmh speed limit signs on crap open roads instead of fixing them.

    Even using the racist line that Big Australia means tens of millions of people coming to the country with no skills to drive on gravel roads.

    Therefore, rationing road access and road speed saves spending on fit for purpose roads.

    Comrades.

  51. Crossie

    In yarragrad, local councils are progressing their agenda by putting up seventy kmh speed limit signs on crap open roads instead of fixing them.

    Bob Carr applied that strategy in NSW decades ago.

  52. Red

    STOP WHINING DAVID AND INTRODUCE A BILL TO DEFUND THE ABC

  53. Entropy

    Bruxner highway between Lismore and Ballina is mostly 80 kmh because it is easier to leave it a windey goat track with low speed limits than actually recognise it as a major highway.
    Major roads in towns and villages, including highways also limited to 50 kmh.

    Another in a long list of reasons why the economy in the Lismore City Council area is stuffed. A large cohort of Greens and one nation voters at the core of it of course.

  54. Anto

    I would also add that most (if not all) large cities have zones for bus and rail travel, such that the more zones you travel through, the higher fares you pay. The reason why people live 20, 30, 40kms from where they work is because they are usually poorer than those living in closer to town and can’t afford the house prices.

    So, they are being hit with higher prices for spending longer times travelling to their less well paid jobs, thereby reducing even further their smaller incomes as compared with their better-heeled inner city citizens.

    In fact, the differences are so large and the services so slow that many prefer to jump in their cars. Thus defeating the proclaimed goal of public transport devotees.

    Sir Humphrey, take a bow.

  55. Speedbox

    Given how much they are taxed, regulated and fined, it is remarkable that Australians are still in love with Australia.

    Fixed.

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