Come on Treasury, Time Doesn’t Stand Still

The structural tax cuts would replace the Low-Middle Income Tax Offset (LMITO), which does nothing to improve economic efficiency, and will cost the budget about 10% more than expected. Further, all future federal governments should follow the lead of the UK Treasury in using dynamic tax analysis to give accurate information on economic efficiency and revenue estimates.

Turning the Clock Back

California has passed legislation to significantly restrict the ability of businesses to use independent contractors. This is part of a seemingly global push against the rise of casual jobs (that don’t pay benefits), including the so-called ‘gig economy’.

We Could Do Better on Child Care

Rather than formal care, 50% of the mothers said they would prefer informal arrangements. They wanted the option to have a grandparent or other relative, a friend or a nanny providing care, with 66% even saying they would accept a lower subsidy if this meant more flexibility and affordability.

No Recession, but Big Policy Task

The economic ghouls may be disappointed that this week’s real GDP read-out for the quarter came without a minus sign. There is no hint of recession. The ‘fiscal stimulus for dummies’ book can go back on the shelf.  But one doesn’t need to be a ghoul to find plenty to worry about in the national accounts details. Although real GDP is still growing, it is not growing enough to match population growth — so real GDP per capita declined slightly in the year to the June quarter. That is another way of saying real living standards are stagnant — which…

Proponents of the New Backbench Bill to Stop No Deal Face a Significant Dilemma over Queen’s Consent

The proponents of a new Bill to prevent No Deal are caught on the horns of a dilemma. If they had drafted a Bill that only mandated the PM to seek an extension, the PM would have been left free to refuse to agree any extension in negotiations with the EU27. However, Benn-Burt goes much further than Cooper-Letwin did (paras 30-32). It mandates that the PM must not only seek but also agree to an extension, either 31 January 2020 or another date if the House of Commons approves a date suggested by the EU27. Mandating that the PM agrees to an extension manifestly…

Teacher Education Degrees Should Face Scrutiny

Australian teachers are underprepared for the classroom compared to those in other countries, according to a recent global survey. The result indicates initial teacher education in Australia often isn’t up to scratch. The OECD Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) asked teachers around the world how prepared they were after completing their teacher education degrees. And on almost every measure — including being prepared to teach specific subjects, teach mixed-ability classes, and manage the classroom — Australian teachers reported being less prepared than the OECD teacher average. While we should not rely too much on international surveys (because teachers in different countries…

Morrison Victory Highlights Divide between Elites and Ordinary Australians

The election victory was clearly a triumph for both the style and substance of Prime Minister Scott Morrison. But the most important post-election issue now is the battle to control the narrative surrounding the causes and meaning of the result. The advantages the PM enjoyed over his opponent are now obvious. These included his mastery of policy detail, his capacity to speak directly to the aspirations of middle Australia, and his authenticity and ‘ordinary everyman’ persona in expressing everything from footy fanatism to his Christian faith. Tax policy — given the targeting of Labor’s franking credits, CGT, and negative gearing…

The Worst US 2020 Election Interference Will Be Perfectly Legal

“After the Mueller report was released, our president called Vladimir Putin, spent an hour on the phone with him,” Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke said on CBS’s Face The Nation yesterday. “Described the report as a hoax, giving Putin a green light to further interfere in our democracy.” “Russia interfered in the 2016 election,” tweeted presidential candidate Kamala Harris the other day. “If we don’t do anything to upgrade our election infrastructure, we will leave our nation vulnerable to future attacks.” We’ve been seeing many such hysterical warnings about Russian interference in the upcoming 2020 elections, and as the election gets nearer we are 100 percent guaranteed to…

Rep. Thomas Massie Prevents House Skeleton Crew from Passing Legislation during Recess

You may think that the United States House of Representatives only passes legislation while in session when members have an opportunity to vote. Not so. On Tuesday, a small group of representatives on the House floor, while most representatives were far afield on recess, sought to quickly approve a 19 billion dollars disaster relief bill and a two-week extension of the National Flood Insurance Program. They would have succeeded, but for the fact that Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) objected on the House floor, preventing the legislation from being approved. Speaking briefly on the House floor to make his objection to passing the…

Close Menu
×
×

Basket