Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Murdoch's Law - Part II

I see robots ...

The Minister for Superannuation and Financial Services defends the interests of the Superannuation Industry over the hard earned savings of Australians on the ABC's '7.30 Report', then to add insult to injury breaks "Murdoch's Law":

CHRIS BOWEN: Well, Kerry, look, 'The Australian', the financial editor of 'The Australian', Andrew Main, has said the Government's handled the issue very well in terms of dealing with the industry concerns. We've listened, we've sat down with industry and we've said, "OK, we won't walk away from the fundamental tenant of the Budget measure," which was to raise a significant amount of money and to protect the revenue base and ensure everyone's paying their fair share of tax. Now we've got a measure which does that, and which by and large - you'll never please everybody - which by and large, most reasonable commentators have said, achieve those objectives in a way which they can live with. So we have - this is not an easy issue, we've got a real obligation to protect the revenue base and ensure everybody's paying their fair share of tax. That's never going to be uncontroversial, Kerry. That's never going to be easy to do.

From 'Waiting In Vain', Germaine Greer responds to Kevin Rudd's essay on neoliberalism in 'Overland' (Issue 195):

"Australians detest being patronised. Giving people $950 and telling them to run off and spend it is about as patronising as it gets, especially when the money you're being given is your own, in theory at least. Nothing was said about the most vulnerable segment of the population - pensioners living on fixed income, who desperately need some assurance that they are not faced with utter destitution. What provident Australians would appreciate is some sort of guarantee against the white-anting of their assets and investments, but this Rudd could not give. In Australia more people have more money invested in managed funds than anywhere else in the world; the performance of $1.7 trillion invested in 300,000 financial entities is monitored at a distance by four separate regulatory bodies, only one of which is concerned with consumer protection. The Australian superannuation inudstry is now vast, complex and opaque, and all Australian workers, however squeezed, have no option but to see 9 per cent of their earnings disappear into it."

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