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EYE-BALL Opinion on – The PM – Duchess Gillard – Living in her own Glass Bubble!

The-EYE-BALL-Opinion-Header-2
Title:
– The PM – Duchess Gillard -
Living in her own Glass Bubble!
18th June 2012.
Leaders of the World with membership to the G20 select group – are currently gathering for a meeting in Mexico over the next few days. The World awaits the outcome of this meeting with reference to where Leadership can agree in how to overcome the continuing GFC fallout.

Firstly, members will collectively sigh their relief at the weekend Greek election result that appears to have handed victory – be it by a tight majority – to the New Democracy Party that stands on a platform to remain a part of the EuroZone.  That would mean that the Greek people have voted to accept the bail-out package and its austerity terms as offered some three months.  It was this same bailout package that saw the Greek elections some six weeks ago end in a stalemate and sent global financial markets into another panic.

The agenda for the G-20 can be read at this link – and the associated B-20 meeting at this link.

Some background on the G-20 – and as presented at the G-20 statistics website linked here..

G20 members represent almost:

  1. 90% of global GDP.
  2. 80% of international global-trade.
  3. 64% of the world’s population lives in G20 member countries.
  4. 84% of all fossil fuel emissions are produced by G20 countries.

For a more comprehensive portrayal of key economic indicators of G20 countries visit: http://www.principalglobalindicators.org.  The G-20 is becoming a big deal – as compared with the G-7 where the global monetary decisions are made.

Our Prime Minister Ms Gillard is among the G-20 leaders assembling at the summit and she has delivered a pre-emptive message to all the g-20 members on what she and the Australian Treasurer think should be a focus for the meeting.

But firstly – the PM delivered a speech to the Australian Business Forum she arranged to try and have 150 or so Business Leaders believe in the Australian economy and talk it up as opposed to the pessimism that prevails over most of the economy.

Below is the speech delivered by the PM to open her Business forum.

Prime Ministers Speech to the Prime Minister’s Economic Forum

| The full text of Julia Gillard’s speech to the Prime Minister’s economic Forum in Brisbane on Tuesday, June 12. | listen to her speech on-line. |

It does give me great confidence in our economic future to see you all here tonight.

I’ve got great confidence in Australia, because I’ve got great confidence in you.

You’re Australians who understand the big changes at work in our country and who understand the opportunities those changes create.

You’re Australians who know we can be the winner in the Asian Century and who, through your presence here, also show your commitment to work together to get us there.

And you’re Australians who know that in a difficult global environment, we wouldn’t change places with anyone in the world.

Above all, because you know the facts.

Since Labor came to office:

Euro area: economy shrank, one point seven per cent.

Japan: economy shrank, one point seven per cent.

United States: economy grew, one point two per cent.

Australia: economy grew, ten point three per cent.

The facts speak up for Australia – but I will say to you, they don’t just speak for themselves.

We’ll have some detailed policy discussions tonight and tomorrow, we’ll talk about some of the concrete things we can do together, identify specific problems, some of them big ones, develop new approaches and specific solutions.

That’s vitally important.

It’s just as important that we all leave here tomorrow determined to speak up for our economy, to speak up for the facts.

The bad news from overseas is making more noise at the moment than hailstones on a tin roof.

Those of us who know how strong our economy overall really is do have to speak up to be heard.

We know it’s in the interest of business that confidence grow, we know it’s in the interests of working people that confidence grow too.

We all need investment to flow, we all need jobs to grow, we all need consumers to spend.

In truth, there is strength, and the facts of our economic performance support a pragmatic, soundly-based, long-term confidence in our country and in its future.

So speak up – because we are strong today, and we do have a chance now to build that strength for the future.

We can do things now to ensure that in ten and twenty and thirty years’ time, this country is still fair, still strong, and we still don’t want to change places with anyone, anywhere.

That’s really the job before us at this Forum.

Now, that’s never easy – the strength we have today came from decades of hard work. Building tomorrow’s strength will demand just as much.

And you know the challenges of the contemporary moment.

Global weakness, no one here needs reminding of that.

But I will be reminding my G20 colleagues in Mexico next week of the Australian example.

Here, we have put growth and jobs first – growth which in turn is the solid foundation for fiscal discipline in the long term.

Austerity alone is not the right path. That’s the case I’ll be making at the G20.

And I’ll be making the case that today’s challenges cannot be allowed to distract us from the importance of acting now to shape the future.

Once again, I’ll point to the Australian example.

Two crucial initiatives come into force next month.

The long debate about whether an economy like ours should tax minerals rents concludes for practical purposes when the MRRT begins operation.

I know we have a better model today because of the genuine process in which you’ve engaged with us. And the facts of continued investment in the mining sector bear this out.

We’ve had an even longer debate about pricing carbon pollution and driving the shift to clean energy – and now the time for action has come with the implementation of a carbon pricing scheme which is market-based, efficient and fair.

So this is a demanding chapter in our nation’s economic story.

But we have made great progress, in which we can all take pride, and last week’s national accounts show that.

And it’s quite false to say that this was built only on mining – consumer spending was measurably stronger this first quarter than last year – and there’s a message in that for those who continue to jawbone the country down.

It’s increasingly clear that we’ve got the macro policy settings right.

We stimulated in the down turn.

It was controversial, some in Australia wanted to go down a different path, some overseas did go down a different path.

But here, Government stimulated, in nation building, in jobs – business did the right thing, preserving employment and maintaining the skills base – unions were responsible partners and worked with the broader community to manage change.

And here we are, with growth back to trend, with more than 800 000 new jobs under our belt in five years, with more to come.

And, in line with the strict fiscal rules we adopted at that time, we’re consolidating in the recovery.

The sharpest fiscal consolidation on record in Australia, giving us a Budget surplus in 2012-13 and growing in subsequent years, even while tax receipts are forecast to remain below 23 per cent of GDP across the forward estimates.

Government making savings decisions, business and unions working with us to identify priorities, to build support for plans for our economic future.

And here we are, with prices under control, with the Reserve Bank given ample room to lower rates given difficult conditions overseas, with the benefits of those hard decisions being seen and felt.

Our country’s made progress and the things we’ve done together are making a difference.

There are big challenges still before us and the job for tonight and tomorrow is as simple as this – to follow through on our investments and reforms to lift productivity, to do more to sustain and spread growth.

Let me nominate a couple of my areas of greatest interest in pursuit of these goals.

I am especially keen to hear your thoughts on competiveness.

The business tax reform conversation has been a wide ranging one, perhaps even a diffuse discussion.

I’ve got no doubt the company tax rate should be lower – and no doubt the revenue base has to be maintained as well.

And we understand that the benefits of a lower corporate rate would flow to workers and the wider community in more jobs and better pay over time.

So I think that’s an area where there’s a lot we can discuss tomorrow.

And we have to talk about labour mobility.

Workforce is one of the real nubs of the economic discussion in Australia.

We’re doing structural adjustment at a time of employment growth, and that’s a good thing, but it doesn’t make the fact of a business closing its doors any easier on the day it happens.

And anyone here who was a bit reluctant to leave home and get up to Brisbane for this night will have a bit of insight into why working families need some convincing that their next job is on the other side of the country.

But we’ve got to crack this nut and it’s one of those issues which genuinely demands a range of measures because it reflects a range of factors.

We’ve worked on national licensing of professions and trades and on incentives for welfare to work and now we’re turning attention to more improvements to jobs services and to issues like State transaction taxes on property as well.

And there’s a range of other issues on the table here as well.

Innovation … infrastructure … skills and education, and we know skilled workers are mobile workers, and that the national curriculum is a serious contribution to mobility too.

All of them, opportunities for investment, opportunities for reform, opportunities to build on the Australian endowment, opportunities to build the new economy of the future.

It’ll take hard work, good ideas, thoughtful business and union leadership, a skilled and creative workforce, generations of private endeavour.

And Governments playing their part.

I know we can do it because we’ve done it before.

It probably wasn’t Gary Player who first said “the harder I work, the luckier I get” but he certainly made that quote his own.

He could have been talking about Australia.

If we ever were just a lucky country, we’re certainly not now.

It’s not luck that makes this a top-ten country on low trade barriers, openness to international ideas, sophisticated and independent economic institutions, a list that goes on.

Luck didn’t give us the three triple-A ratings which only seven other economies can claim – which no previous Australian government can claim either.

Luck didn’t make us a top-two country on the measures that are most important to us: political stability, social mobility, ease of starting a business.

Luck didn’t keep us out of the worst global recession in eighty years.

And luck won’t build us a new economy for the future.

We have to make it.

Just as we made our location an advantage when we all worked hard to open this nation to Asia.

As we made our environment an advantage when we all worked hard to protect it and to show it to the world.

As we made our natural resources an advantage by making the most of mining.

And our people aren’t born with skills and knowledge – the stork doesn’t bring us human capital – we are making it.

In childcare, schools and universities and workshops and TAFEs and in the learning and training that goes on throughout the working lives of millions of our people.

It’s up to all of us – we all have a place in making our economy more adaptive, flexible and better able to seize new opportunities.

Government’s essential responsibility to business owners and to workers is to get the economic fundamentals right.

We have done it – and we’ll keep at it.

We won’t ever rest on our laurels.

I know you won’t either.

Australians should be confident: not because change is always good, but because Australia is always good enough to make the best of change.

What government, business and unions are already doing together is working – together we can do more.

That’s why I wanted to bring you all here, to continue our good work together.

You’re making a great contribution to our country by being part of the conversation tonight and tomorrow.

I look forward to joining with you.

________________________________________

Her closing remarks appear below:

Prime Ministers Speech to the Prime Minister’s Economic Forum

| The full text of Julia Gillard’s speech to the Prime Minister’s economic Forum in Brisbane on Tuesday, June 12. | listen to her speech on-line. |

I
Last night, I said that we would be discussing the strength of our economy – and that’s been acknowledged by participants in the room from many different perspectives today.

I also spoke about the very difficult circumstances affecting the world economy and new ideas to address uneven growth at home.

I said that in today’s discussions we would not shying away from hard questions because we are committed to keeping our economy strong: creating jobs, driving growth and improving productivity – they’re all critical to securing our economic future.

And we have not shied away from those hard questions.

Together we have spent the day framing new grounds for confidence and new ideas for reform.

So allow me to try and summarise what’s been a big day of discussion.

We’ve certainly heard about the need to bolster confidence – to appreciate our strengths and to forge together to build confidence, and to recognise that our glass is more than half full.

We’ve heard about the structural shifts underway in our economy.

The high terms of trade and high dollar – and the benefits and challenges presented by those.

The normalised levels of wealth accumulation and consumption, after a period of unusual growth in both of these areas and the ageing of our population, and what the means for employment of the future.

We’ve heard a lot about the need to focus on productivity and lifting productivity growth.

And we’ve heard about the importance of investment in developing human capital, in developing our people.

The importance of the education system, the importance of maths and science of skills development or research and development.

You would have seen Governor Stevens this morning, in what I thought was a very description of the circumstances of our economy, talk about the need to address and then somewhat modestly suggest he wasn’t the expert and people searching for ideas should go to the Productivity Commission.

It’s not necessarily fashionable in life today to suggest someone might know better than you but he did point to the Productivity Commission.

And I would remind on this question of human capital that the Productivity Commission has found that VET reform is crucial to lifting productivity and delivering the COAG reform goals that we’ve set ourselves would raise GDP by 2 per cent.

So skills work is underway and vital to our productivity.

On infrastructure, we discussed new financing opportunities, risk management, how we use new infrastructure and maximising investment opportunities.

We had a discussion about construction costs particularly for multi-dwelling residential projects and I think it was good that we saw in the room in that discussion, the preparedness of stakeholders within this room to collaborate on this question of construction costs.

We also heard more broadly about the importance of collaboration right across our economy, the creation of such relationships within workplaces through management practices as a way of increasing productivity.

I was especially pleased to see the acknowledge of the effective and ongoing dialogue that there is on these questions maximising collaboration within firms and maximising our use of R&D, employee engagement and minimising conflicts at work.

A clear thread running through today’s discussions has been the acknowledgement that technology, is changing the way we live and work and will change the productivity of our economy.

That it’s driving innovation in sectors like manufacturing and agriculture.

It’s changing the way we do things and it’s certainly changing the way government does things too – our ability to deliver services in a different and smarter way.

We heard in this last session a recommitment to the deregulation and competition agenda first outlined at the Business Advisory Forum which met with COAG in April, and I do thank people for the kind words about that initiative, bringing business leaders together for the first time with the Prime Minister and Premiers meeting in COAG to talk directly about deregulation.

It’s imperative that we bring the reforms that we outlined through that process home this year and next year.

And coming back, once again to the Reserve Bank Governor pointing to the Productivity Commission and its analysis.

The Productivity Commission recently examined 17 deregulation priorities and estimated that these reforms could increase GDP by over $6 billion in the longer term – so working through that forum, an important productivity initiative.

So in thinking about these issues in advance of our Forum and thinking about the in the course of discussions today, I do now want to outline some priorities for attention.

On the key issue of competitiveness, we have had discussions in the sessions and through the proceedings, and I want to say this.

To the business representatives in the room, we’ve heard you loud and clear on the company tax rate and we see it as a priority for the next steps in tax reform, building on the Government’s substantial record of tax reform.

Now I’ve lost count of the amount of times that Wayne, Penny or I have said we’re in the cart for a lower company tax rate.

But it has to be affordable and that means that it has to be funded by other changes in the business tax system.

So today though, let’s be very clear.

From today I want to see achieving this company tax rate reduction as the absolute top priority of the Business Tax Working Group.

I want it to be the focus, and I want it to be the outcome.

I want it dealt with before the other business tax issues in the Working Group’s in-tray are dealt with.

And if we do that, if we have the Business Tax Working Group addressing the questions of the right offset, you will get your company tax cut as a down-payment to help you be more competitive in this the Asian Century.

That’s what we’re on about, what you’re on about, and ultimately it’s why we’re here.

To help our businesses be competitive, to ensure our economy remains strong and becomes stronger.

Another theme to emerge from the discussions today is this question of labour mobility.

There are thousands of jobs being created in our strong economy, but there are also some areas where industries are struggling and jobs are being shed.

And it’s our collective task, for everyone in this room – as a matter of good economic management and good social policy – that we do our absolute best to match the demand for labour with those who are seeking employment.

The Government’s going to continue to provide leadership, and work with other governments, other levels of Government and business and unions to promote a more mobile labour force – including through measures like ensuring skilled trades people can move seamlessly from one part of the country to another without having to get a new license.

And it might seem puzzling to some that we are still in the modern age working on these questions like recognition of occupational licenses but we are – a simple measure, a very important measure and we’re very determined to get it done.

But there is always more we can do.

The Government invests over $6 billion every four years on jobs services.

That’s the services that go to assist people to find work.

These are the services right around the country, who reach out and help people who are out of work including those who have just lost jobs.

Our current arrangements for our employment services make it easier and more convenient and financially rewarding for a provider to place someone in a job in their local area, and less convenient and rewarding if a jobseeker moves out of the region or interstate.

To help us improve labour mobility, as a result of today I commit the Government to providing stronger incentives for our employment services to grasp interstate opportunities available in the jobs market.

We need to provide better incentives for employment service providers to put people into jobs wherever they are in the country, including the growing resources sector but let’s not forgot to the growth we’re seeing in the services economy including particularly the health and caring sectors.

Of course looking out on this room of many business leaders I would say this, employers also have a responsibility to train-up and employment people who are prepared to move.

We’ve got to help get the match between the people and the places that are available.

In a similar vein, I took a lot of notice of worthwhile comments made during the course of the day about training and income support and making sure that we have a better package of the two.

I’m keen to pursue the ACTU idea to better marry up income support and training.

Job services bring these things together already. But as an outcome from today’s discussion, I want to explore further options to combine Government efforts to support individuals who need income support, many of whom also require further training to be successful in the labour market.

I also noted the suggestion made by small business here, by Peter of better integrating the training needs of small business into our training system and that is both employees and owners.

I think he made a powerful point about the need for our training system to work for owners as well.

And making sure that people in small businesses have the opportunity to up-skill even as they operate their business so we will be looking at that.

The new HECS for TAFE arrangements will help workers undertake further training to get those skills without forgoing income, that is without paying up front fees.

Of course, last night we heard from business and unions alike a desire to better capture the opportunities of this Asian century – our desire to make sure that Australia is a winner in this period of growth.

We articulated that last night as a search for greater people to people links and stronger economic integration.

It is my view that Australia has been slow to participate in global value chains, by one measure ranking third-lowest among OECD countries.

As Minister Emerson, the Minister for Trade and others mentioned, if Australian businesses participate in global value chains they can be producing for the vast and rapidly growing markets of Asia instead of relying on our relatively small domestic market.

This economic transformation would be a big boost to both Australian manufacturing and to all the service industries that can participate in value chains.

My Government is willing to support this transformation, integrating our manufacturing and services industries more fully into the opportunities in the economies in our region.

The Government will deploy the expertise and resources of Austrade and the Export Finance Investment Corporation in encouraging the participation of Australian manufacturing and service businesses in global value chains.

We will also ensure the Export Market Development Grants Scheme is helping to capture these new opportunities for Australian export businesses.

With my Ministerial colleagues and I intend to deal with many of the other very important points that have been raised today in the period ahead.

We are going to take what you have said forward and feed it into the ongoing policy processes we have underway.

By that I mean the business tax working group, with a renewed focus on company tax cuts.

The manufacturing taskforce, with an even further impetus for policies which drive innovation and high performance workplaces.

Through the high-powered Business Advisory Forum, which is working at great speed to deliver the deregulation agenda and of course in the vital work that is being undertaken to prepare the Asian Century White Paper.

Working through these processes will allow people in this room to continue to collaborate on solving some of the big economic challenges before us.

These processes, together with today’s Forum, are helping to re-enliven important reform important conversations in the context of an economy that is once again undergoing structural change.

To make sure, at the end of the day, that we deliver the very best policy outcomes on the key questions that will govern our future, our economic security and our prosperity as a society.

I’ve certainly heard in the room a real hunger to continue these kind of collaborative processes and we will.

It’s the best way of making sure that our policy outcomes are informed by a broad cross-section of views. It’s the best way of making sure that we are taking those views and using them to secure our aim of more prosperity in our society and more fairness.

Finally, there have been a number of observations during the course of the day about the nature of the international economy and about how fortunate we are to live and work in an economy as strong as ours.

Many reflections both formal and informal about how there is no place in the world you would want to live or work than Australia.

Next week, I will be sitting at the table of the G20 and in view with that spirit about the Australian example I will be calling on my European counterparts to take the decisive action we all want them to take.

That means greater banking integration, greater fiscal integration and a strong focus on growth and jobs.

And that last point is particularly important.

As our own experience shows, and this is the power of the Australian example, growth and fiscal consolidation are not mutually exclusive.

But growth is a necessary precondition for strong public finances.

The Australian model has worked well for us and we’ve been remarking on it today just what we have achieved together and I will be commending it to my colleagues at the G20.

For the sake of the global economy, and for the sake of our own economy within that global economy.

________________________________________

On the content of the speeches – she is living in a ‘Glass-Bottle’ – she believes in what she says and the reality of that belief is in the poll numbers and her staff screening her from the realism of how the electorate really feel toward her.  The Business Forum was her own show – her own trial performance before the bigger stage performance at the G-20.

The only problem – most saw it for what it was – another PR exercise in ‘selling’ the Julia Gillard brand.  Nobody’s buying.

Glen Stevens the head of the RBA also spoke at this forum and a most embarrassing moment crushed his sheech aftertaste.  He could not draw, or beg further questions from the floor in response to his speech.  [Listen to his speech on-line here.]

It indicated an unwillingness for Business Leaders to engage with the RBA Governor on matters like foreign exchange policy, on interest rate policy and the reasons why the RBA do not use both to cover their mandate. If one was to offer Mr Stevens and the PM a reason why Business Leaders remained silent – it would be because they were there for the food and the network connections, and the business expense tax deduction. They were not there to hear what the PM had to say.

As much as PM Gillard tries – the question that lingers at grass-root levels is how can a privileged existence with extremes of comfort, and material trappings, allow any Political Leader, Government Member, Department Head, or other Public servant living a ‘trappings’ lifestyle and divorced from mainstream Australians, to identify with the realism of a lifestyle attached to the marginalised sectors of their electorates?

How can making economic policy for the future be accomplished without any of these leaders having exposure to the real hardship ordeals that are a part of everyday life for people living and suffering under the policies being delivered?   Talking about Aboriginal existence, of the homeless, of children living without parents, does not get it done.  Unless you are connected to the problem – how can you be offering a solution to the problem?

Australians have turned off Julia Gillard and are not listening anymore. The problem is that someone has yet to tell her the truth about her future in policies in a real and honest way.  She lives in a ‘Glass-Bottle’ – she has staff who isolate her from the real criticism of her Leadership, the real commentary offered up about her style, her orations, her public appearances, her on-camera appearances, and her relationship exposures.

She has lost the respect of the electorate – something that even Kevin Rudd had not achieved before Gillard made her move and replaced him. She has many in her ministry that have similarly been shunned by the electorate. They know who they are via their own poll numbers. Collectively – this Cabinet and its function makes Australia a laughing-stock within the Global community.

The Government believes ‘its actions’ saved the Australian economy – where the truth lies somewhere between the China demand for our resources, and the low public debt levels it inherited from the previous Government.  Rudd’s Prime Minster stewardship also had merit in investing in large infrastructure projects and disbursing funds into the economy and that retained jobs and kept un-employment numbers low.

The Ministers for the largest stuff-ups and wasteful use of Government funds during that challenge were Peter Garret and the ‘Pink-Bats’ scandal, and Julia Gillard and the schools capital works program that saw the Government pay 100’s millions in contract fees that largely went to generous Labour Party donor Companies. Both of these expenditure ‘free-rides’ were never throughly investigated. There remains many questions and a large value of funds unaccounted for. Lawsuits have ensured but this is all backchannelling and not mainstream. Ministerial responsibility has largely been avoided – with the exception that Peter Garret’s political career has flatlined forever. Not so Gillard …

This Governments hubris at their own good fortune at their GFC survival – as opposed to their Government led policy stuff-ups, i.e. MRRT and the Carbon Tax, – have them all living in this ‘Glass-Bottle’ insulated to the realism that is the current ALP and its connect with the Australian people. Given the NSW and QLD State election results – you would think that some humility might prevail – but no – we have Swan wearing his ‘Worlds Best Treasurer’ halo, and Gillard as the ‘doer’ of Kevin Rudd out there thinking they have the answers to the World’s economic ails. Can you believe that they co-authored a letter to the G-20 members that has been delivered and is now being openly talked about. That letter is produced below:

Letter from Julia Gillard and Wayne Swan to the G20 leaders

| Julia Gillard and Wayne Swan Letter to G20 Summit | 18th June 2012 |

| Click here to enlarge Pickering cartoon 1 | Click here to enlarge Pickering cartoon 2 |

DEAR colleagues, The G20 Los Cabos Summit comes at a challenging time. Risks in Europe have intensified significantly in recent weeks.

Increasing concerns over Greece and the stability of the Spanish banking sector are adversely affecting global financial markets and moving us quickly into crisis management mode.

Weaker than expected economic indicators in a number of major advanced and emerging economies are confirming that the world economy is on a slowing trajectory. On current projections, growth in many G20 countries is unlikely to be sufficient to make a significant improvement in employment conditions.

The world is looking towards the G20 for decisive action to address the immediate vulnerabilities facing the global economy. It is also our responsibility to take the lead in putting the global economy on the path to stronger and sustainable growth and creating more jobs.

The euro area public debt and financial crisis is clearly the major immediate risk to the global recovery. The euro area governments and the European Central Bank have undertaken a number of significant steps since the Cannes Summit. However, it is also clear the euro area needs to take further actions to resolve the current crisis.

Europe must move immediately in taking steps to restoring the health of its financial sector. A positive step would be the commitment to move towards a more integrated banking system, involving euro-wide regulatory and supervisory oversight and deposit insurance. Similarly, ensuring fiscal sustainability will ultimately require further measures to share fiscal risk, which must also be accompanied by stronger euro wide fiscal governance. Progress towards deeper financial and fiscal union is needed to underpin confidence in the sustainability of the euro area’s monetary union, ensure the stability of its financial system, and prevent contagion through global financial channels.

While solutions to the euro area crisis must come from Europe, all G20 countries can make a contribution to enhancing growth prospects. The magnitude of public debt in a number of advanced economies remains a key pressure point for the global economy. There is growing awareness that growth must be pursued alongside fiscal consolidation. There is no need to choose between the two. Without sustainable public finances, growth cannot be sound nor sustainable. Businesses will not have the confidence to invest and consumers will not be willing to consume unless they have some certainty over the future. At the same time, credible fiscal consolidation plans must be part of an overall growth strategy.

The challenge for many countries is to implement plans that focus on ensuring fiscal sustainability over the medium term, while using all available scope to support growth and jobs in the short-term. Bringing forward investments in key infrastructure projects is an example of policies that can create jobs and boost demand in the short-run and add to productive capacity in the longer term. While the overall short term pace of fiscal consolidation will need to vary according to country circumstances, spending and taxation decisions can still be calibrated towards supporting growth.

A pro-growth strategy also requires further G20 commitments to structural reforms. These reforms include opening up competition in services and key product markets, encouraging flexible labour markets, and tax reforms and entitlement reforms that enhance productivity and improve incentives to work. Ultimately, structural reforms will have the most significant positive impact on lifting global growth and creating more employment opportunities.

Structural reforms that lift growth also create the positive feedback loop needed to improve the confidence in the sustainability of public finances. Implementing the necessary reforms will often meet with resistance. In many cases, the required adjustment process will not involve quick fixes and will need sustained political focus and effort. This has been Australia’s experience over many years of reform to improve the openness, flexibility and productivity of its economy.

Australia has always been a strong supporter of the G20 and its role as the premier global economic forum. Its ability to bring together the advanced and emerging economies of the world to address the 2008 global financial crisis averted a deeper global recession. It has also enabled the G20 to drive important reforms to the global financial system and international financial institutions. The recent agreement to increase the IMF’s global firewall by a further $430 billion has been another significant achievement.

The G20 must take the opportunity at the Los Cabos Summit to show political leadership to address the current crisis and build on our previous efforts to lay the foundations for stronger, sustainable and balanced growth that leads to more jobs and improves living standards for our people.

Yours sincerely,

Prime Minister Julia Gillard, and Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer Wayne Swan

________________________________________

This letter is a most embarrassing document – and shameful to all Australians and let me tell you why.  I have highlighted sections of the speech that I find most offensive.

This PM has the worst poll numbers of any living Prime Minister – she leads a Government deeply embroiled in a corruption scandal that in any other era would have forced a new election.  She has blood on her hands in the way she became Prime Minister, and she has a yet to be fully exposed and be exploited by a scandal of her own that will rival and surpass the Craig Thompson affair.  She is not a worthy spokesperson to represent Australians anywhere – let alone on a World stage like the G-20.

It can be likened in retrospect to the George Bush moment at the G-20 summit in Australia under John Howard’s Prime Ministership – where GW rambled and slurred his way throughout his address. In Gillards case – her speech was delivered without respect to the genuine hardships other G-20 Members are enduring. Such condescending comments will blow back in her face and rendered her as a ‘dead-woman walking’ in electoral terms.

This ‘Glass Bubble’ she lives within is all about survival mode – yet she see’s that she has the right, and is her duty to preach to the rest of the world about Australia’s economic prosperity.  In the lead up to the G-20, Gillard spoke to the B-20 group. That speech appears below:

Learn from us on economy, Gillard tells world leaders

| Updated June 18, 2012 | Watch Gillard’s B-20 Speech on-line. |

The text of this speech is presented below:

Prime Minister Julia Gillard has urged world leaders to follow Australia’s lead as they grapple with the impact of the global economic downturn.

Ms Gillard’s comments came in a speech to business leaders on the eve of the G20 summit in Los Cabos, Mexico, this morning.

The two-day G20 meeting is expected to be dominated by talks surrounding the eurozone debt crisis.

In the speech to the B20 business group, Ms Gillard said she believed other countries could learn from Australia’s economic record.

“In a world where it is easy to be downbeat, we must also be able to point to our successes and understand our strengths,” she said.

“And today I want to say to you that Australia also takes considerable pride in our own economic achievements.

“Our record of growth and job creation gives me confidence: because I have seen our own determination and decisiveness rewarded in Australia, I’m confident that determined and decisive leadership around the world will be rewarded too.

“And I hope that Australia’s strong economy can be a sign of confidence to other countries.

“We know there is a path of openness, investment and reform which leads to jobs and fiscally sustainable growth for the long term.

“We know that because it is the path we have followed.

“And while we acknowledge that every country faces its own unique circumstances, we do believe that there are some lessons for the world in the Australian way.”

Speaking earlier after arriving in Mexico, Ms Gillard stressed that the result of Sunday’s Greek election – which has seen the pro-eurozone New Democracy party declare victory – would affect Australia.

“What happens in Europe does matter to the economy of the world,” she said.

“Europe is the single biggest economic zone in the world so Australia does have a deep interest in what happens in Europe.”

Other leaders, including German chancellor Angela Merkel, have delayed their trips to the summit to assess the results of the Greek election.

Treasurer Wayne Swan said he hoped Greece quickly formed a government to deal with the economic crisis.

“The parties that are likely to form the Government have restated their commitment to stay within the euro and that is of course a good outcome,” he said.

“There are many challenges in Europe. We certainly need a boost to growth, we also need longer term fiscal consolidation, and we also need action across Europe to restore the banking system.

“There will be fallout from these events, but I think Australians can be assured that we are in the strongest position of any developed economy to cope with any fallout from these events in Europe.”

Shadow treasurer Joe Hockey accused Ms Gillard and Mr Swan of “the height of arrogance” for “lecturing the world on fiscal rectitude and Government competence.”

“Australia is in the position it is in thanks to the financial stability and reserves Labor inherited from the Howard Government as well as the mining boom the Government wants to cripple,” he said.

The G20 brings together the leaders of the 20 big industrial economies, including eurozone heavyweights Germany, France and Italy.

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Let us broach a moment of extreme truth – to be a woman in politics is not so unacceptable – but to be a Nations Leader it takes an exceptional woman to hold such a position. History only reveals Margaret Thatcher having led a successful Government in past history of any of the G-20 Nations. Currently there is Merkel who is Chancellor of Germany and she appears to have the weight of the survival of the EuroZone on her shoulders.

The cold hard fact is that men and woman across the world do not think Women are ‘there’ yet in the ‘feminist’ movement. It’s a generational movement and it will have its failures – Australia have one now in Ms Gillard – she is not exceptional – she is not in any way connected with mainstream women or the ideals of Australians – i.e. she does not believe in marriage, nor religion, nor motherhood, nor gay marriage or civil rights, she has never been outside the Union comfort zone as a employment background – and without wanting to cast personal character accusations – her choice in men she has chosen to share time with has been questionable.

It is time Australia to give this woman a true message – one that she can not mistake – one that will free Australia from the continued disrespect she offers up for the office of the Prime Minister of Australia.

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Have your say where it counts: – contact your Local Federal Representative via the links below and let them know how you feel about this, or any other topic that you feel strongly about – or you can just post a comment below and let off some steam.

Link to Previous EYE-BALL Posts.

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The EYE-BALL Opinion …

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  1. Budda-Balls
    June 18, 2012 at 6:29 pm

    She is isolated, from the electorate, from many of her Parliamentary collegues, from the Business community, someone has to be honest with her.

  2. Alan Austin
    June 20, 2012 at 5:22 am

    Hmmm.
    Not sure your commentary and analysis is valid.
    Gillard may have poor polling figures. But how are the other numbers looking? The one that matter here: the indicators of national fiscal health?
    Is there another leader anywhere in a stronger position to urge reform, do you think?

  3. June 20, 2012 at 7:13 am

    Alan, thank you for the comment and there is merit in what you present – yes Australia does find itself in a much healthier position than other G-20 member Nations.

    The larger question is was Gillard responsible and the architect, or was Australia lucky that China needed our resources. Make no mistake – when Gillard uses the term ‘patchwork’ economy – she and her Ministers have made no effort to protect all the industries that have been effected by the high A$.

    The Government had a choice as did the RBA – they embraced a high A$ policy and it sent A$ revenues from mining and agriculture exports plummeting – the A$ v US$ average since it floated in ’83 us around A$0.75c – at above parity export revenues have fallen 30% – tourism has been hardest hit – a 40 year progressive industry with $100;s billion invested in infrastructure and a workforce trained over decades – wiped out … and this Government stood back and watched it happen.

    If you have the time you should read some of teh Eye-Ball Guru posts on this matter – the MRRT is a cheap grab at the Mining industry already reduced in profit terms by the high A$ policy – This Government’s vision for Australia is flawed – what will they do when the resources run out – when alternative energy is found – when the gamble has failed …

    As for her G-20 letter and comments about using Australia as a model – Australia will be where these Nations are in 5 years as debt will continue to mount and Australia’s exports diminish as cheaper options out of Brazil and Africa come on stream – another by product of the high A$ – it makes it much more expensive for overseas buyers and they will fund cheaper options …

    Gillard nor Swan have any idea where their policies will lead Australia … their advisors have a socialist mantra – and that style of politics will be rejected by Australians. Gillard is so far divorced from Australians – she is not listening to the people and that makes her more dangerous.

  4. Alan Austin
    June 20, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Hmmm.
    Still not sure you have sound analysis here really.

    Just on the reply above:

    On China needing Australia’s resources, yes that is fortunate. But it does not explain Australia going from 9th best-run economy in 2007 to best now, does it? You have been selling resources to China for decades now. And plenty of other countries sell more to China than Australia does. Those countries were not protected during the GFC, were they?

    On the Aussie dollar, what do you mean “the Government had a choice as did the RBA – they embraced a high A$ policy …”
    Choice? Why would any government ever choose a low dollar? Do you remember before the 1996 election when shadow treasurer Peter Costello was “burning with a cold anger” at the Keating Government for letting the Aussie dollar fall to 74 US cents? A weak dollar, he said, “impoverishes every Australian”.
    Was PC right or wrong?

    On tourism, have you looked at the decline in those countries where the currency has actually fallen? There may be other factors here.

    And on the matter of corruption in the Government, have you looked at these questions at all:
    How many ministers in the Howard Government were sacked or forced to resign for corruption or incompetence?
    How many ministers in the Rudd/Gillard Governments were sacked or forced to resign?
    How many MPs in the Howard Government were sacked or forced to resign for corruption?
    How many MPs in the Rudd/Gillard Governments were sacked or forced to resign?

    Looking forward to continuing the chat.
    Thanks. Cheers, AA

  5. June 20, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    Very happy to debate the issues Alan.

    Firstly on the A$ – yes Costello was wrong – the mean average of the A$vUS$ for neigh on 30 years has been A$0.75 – we are a country that exports essential items – i.e. agriculture and raw materials – they make up over 80% of all exports.

    So when the A$ rises the cost of those exports for overseas buyers increase – and the revenues received decreases … I have reproduced two charts below to help demonstrate the ebb and flow of the A$ v US$ – (I pick on the US$ relationship because it is the benchmark currency that most trade agreements are based upon.

    EYE-BALL Guru writes Financial Markets commentary at this blogsite – a history of his blogs can be a seen using this link –

    http://bleyzie.wordpress.com/category/the-eye-balls-authors/the-eye-ball-fmz-financial-markets-zone/the-eye-ball-guru/

    A blog that explains the cost of the ‘cash and carry’ trade that has ripped ‘$100’s billions of wealth out of Australia over the last decade or so can be read here. [Published June 2011.]

    http://bleyzie.wordpress.com/2011/06/25/the-australian-treasurer-mr-wayne-swan-a-bridesmaid-a-jack-in-the-box-puppet-or-just-criminally-incompenent/

    Guru’s latest blog titled – “The GFC – the right of reply … the right to question …” can be read using this link –

    http://bleyzie.wordpress.com/2012/06/15/eye-ball-guru-on-the-gfc-the-right-of-reply-the-right-to-question/

    China have arrived at their prosperous state via a pegged currency with the US$ – as the US$ weakens it makes China exports cheap – it has been that way for 20 years and in that time frame China has emerged as the financial colossus of the world. SO when you refer to Peter Costello saying –

    Do you remember before the 1996 election when shadow treasurer Peter Costello was “burning with a cold anger” at the Keating Government for letting the Aussie dollar fall to 74 US cents? A weak dollar, he said, “impoverishes every Australian”.
    Was PC right or wrong?

    Costello was dead wrong and the intelligence in Governments when it comes to financial management have not got it right in many decades – ut is the same around the globe – debt has been the grease used to win elections, bribe voters, and stay in power.

    Costello was a ‘scrooge’ he never looked to infrastructure projects to protect out recources boom commenced during his tenure … ports, railways, all neglected because Scrooge Peter wanted to tuck his pennies away.

    This ‘buffoon’ Swan and the RBA – along with the Opposition and the bi-partisan arrangement for the RBA and its mandate – is as out dated as flares and disco music. Inflation is something that has been staged managed with ABS refinement, just like unemployment – shifting and deleting sensitive price goods from the calculation can give you a smooth – but then taking a 6 year rolling seasonal adjustment – it takes all the bumps out of any economic figures … with employment they change the category from long-term, looking for work, out of work for 6 months or more – they manipulate the date to give an outcome that suits an economic strategy …

    They use sampling … some 30,000 phone calls around Australia to provide answere to target questions that yield the economic date that the world trades on … it’s happening all around the world … billions are won and lost on the release of these numbers … and in 2-3 months time adjustments are made when real date comes through and nobody cares.

    Sacked Ministers Under Howard –

    There were three over the Telstra float. Howard gave implicit instructions that MP’s were not to get involved in the Telstra float (1) – Moore, Parer and one other who’s name escapes were found to have purchased large tranches of Telstra shares against the PM’s direction.

    The guy who managed the float – Terry Faye – ex NSW Premier retired soon afterwards a very wealthy man …

    On Tourism:

    The question you asked i.e.

    On tourism, have you looked at the decline in those countries where the currency has actually fallen? There may be other factors here.

    … is a bit of a tell … Tourism in this Nation had built itself up to be the third largest industry behind Resources, and agriculture. It encouraged $100’s millions of domestic investment into Resorts, Golf Courses, and top class Hotels … they are all largely empty now and the golf courses have cows grazing on the fairways. The 100,000’s staff hired in the industry have had to leave and find work elsewhere … all a result on the high A$ and tourist’s find cheaper holidays elsewhere ….

    Take Hervey Bay in Qld as an example – I live there – there used to be 40,000 backpackers a week come through the are in peak season – it’s now less than 5,000. Can you imagine what that does to a city and its resident population conditioned to survive on the seasonal tourism industry. You can’t compete unless they come in the first place and the high A$ is the reason they don’t come anymore.

    Any idiot who thinks a high value currency is a good thing is an idiot – someone that thinks because it is high everybody else in the world must think you are doing something right – it’s a con job – look at Japan and what has happened there in the last 20 years – stagflation while their currency has gone from 150Yen to the US$ to 80Yen to the US$ …

    No – Costello if he said what you claim he said – well he is a dickhead.

    Alan – this is a long response – hope I’ve covered enough for you to get on board and thing that a high A$ is a bad thing.

    cya … EYE-BALL Opinion (don’t mind the typos)

  6. Alan Austin
    June 20, 2012 at 6:19 pm

    Thanks for the reply. But it’s not really convincing. You seem to neglect the flipside of a strong Aussie dollar which is much cheaper imports.
    On tourism, for example, a strong dollar dampens overseas arrivals but boosts domestic tourism by allowing more discretionary spending.
    According to the actual figures, Australian tourism is holding up well in comparison with other nations:

    http://www.abs.gov.au/AusStats/ABS@.nsf/MF/5249.0

    Ministerial resignations for corruption or incompetence during the early years of the Howard Government? The answer is eleven.
    In the first two terms of the Rudd and Gillard Governments, the answer is one.
    It might be good to read a little less of the Murdoch media and look at what is actually happening, perhaps.

  7. June 20, 2012 at 8:33 pm

    Alan,

    Again, cheaper imports means less jobs in Australia, if you want on-line shopping in off shore markets – again less jobs in Australia … the financial cost is demonstrated all over the world – if you remain competitive to retain your workforce – you export jobs off-shore and try to do what America did with their blue collar work force – look where they are now – no real manufacturing – buying all the parts from offshore …

    Australia’s current account deficit is about exporting jobs – not creating jobs ….

    Again on the Tourism – domestic tourism is up – but a large number of holiday makers are travelling off-shore to spend their money … I have no idea of your background but I managed a $500 million portfolio back in the day – I know what I’m talking about and if you took the time to read the links I sent you, you would be able to understand the ‘cash and carry’ trade to the point where you get that a A$1billion of exports at A$0.75c as compared with the A$ above parity means some $250 million less A$’s into the Australian economy.

    The A$’s been above or pushing parity for nearly 6-7 years – it did reverse during the late 2008 early 2009 period of the GFC when the ‘resource trade’ went out of favour – and our exports on an annual basis number some $265 billion – [RBA stats 12 months to Apr 2012] – so when you think and work it out – i.e. $250M * 7 years * 265 = $465Billion – that’s right – that is the shortfall in A$ receipts on Australian produced goods exported offshore in the last 7 odd years … or near enough to on the rough numbers used …

    In that time the Howard Government produced about $70 billion of surplus, and the Rudd/Gillard produced about a $100 billion in deficits … you tell me that currency value does not impact on domestic consumption, productivity, and real income to Australia. What would you rather be – poor, unemployed and living on welfare with your only employment option to move to where the mines are – or working in a country that has a competitive workforce producing and manufacturing for its own good.

    I don’t really get the ‘corruption’ argument of your comments – expense rorting and lobbyist kickbacks are a part of the political game – I was told by someone that I respected that bob Hawke got rich by suing Murdoch press – it was a setup – they would print something and Hawke would sue and that was the way money changed hands – all settled out of court – Hawke went in as a pauper – came out a multi-millionaire …

    Keating and his ‘Pig Factory’ – again the ‘banana republic’ comment happened whilst I was in the market and the scuttlebutt was that Keating shorted the A$ through off-shore brokers and made a bucket load – no proof but the market is generally right on this sort of stuff. It’s the easiest thing in the world to do if you know nobody is watching or auditing your finances on a irregular basis.

    On Ministerial expense claims – normally compiled by a staffer to give the Member an out – and if you go into detail on their away from home accommodation expenses – you just gotta know that claim is a rort given that they, or some family member, or a Trust owns the flat/unit/home they live in when they stay in Canberra. They lunch and dine on the taxpayer purse – they get free travel as a part of their expense claims – and we are to trust that everything they claim is above board. It’s a trust that needs to be earned – not given.

    Your referral to the Murdoch Press – I’m no fan and if you read the blogsite you would know that – you sound like a Gillard supporter … well I have never voted anything but Labour all my life – I do vote informal as the alternative – [See 'None of the Above' campaign in the subject headings at the top of this page to get a gist of how I see all Political parties] … I am not a Gillard supporter – I think what she did to Rudd was deplorable – I was willing to sit and see her perform and I believe she is the worst thing to have ever happened to Australia in my lifetime …

    I might return the suggestion – open up your mind to counter opinion and do the research to prove your facts – The last Budget indicates a $2 billion surplus – you just watch that disappear like a lightning bolt as China’s slowdown becomes a halt and the mining boom disappears over the next year or so … see:

    http://www.alsosprachanalyst.com/economy/china-in-deflation-and-how-to-reflate-it-at-all-costs.html

    Titled: “China in deflation, and how to reflate it at all costs.”

    I’m pretty sure that source is not Murdoch press – but it is just one of about a hundred sites I troll every other day looking for the research material to back up my posts.

    This is engaging Alan – cya …

  8. Alan Austin
    June 21, 2012 at 2:28 am

    G’day again,

    Yes, I understand the arguments against a high dollar. But there are arguments for. Like interest rates and inflation. When they are up, some win, others lose. But there is usually a balance where neither side loses excessively.

    Parity with the US dollar seems pretty right. Australia’s balance of trade is now not bad.

    The workforce in Australia is not too bad either. Still a lag after the disastrous years of slack job training. But you are not obliged to bring in too many foreign workers yet.

    Reference to corruption was in response to your gibe that Julia Gillard “leads a Government deeply embroiled in a corruption scandal that in any other era would have forced a new election.”

    This is just total nonsense. The Rudd/Gillard Government is the most scandal-free government in Australia’s history. They have lost one minister and one backbencher to scandal in five years. Howard lost eleven ministers and nobody bothered counting the backbenchers.

    If you want to include Peter Slipper, who was leader of the party that last preselected him for a safe seat?

    Regarding the Murdoch media, you referred to “the ‘Pink-Bats’ scandal”.

    What scandal? Environmentalists hail this as an extraordinary effort which will generate savings – to building owners and the planet – for up to 150 years. Economists hailed it as the centrepiece of the world’s best Keynesian intervention. OH&P professionals marvelled at the way a vast scheme belted out so rapidly resulted in such a dramatic drop in the number of deaths and injuries.

    Governments around the world wish they had implemented the exact same scheme.

    The only people who think it was a scandal are the readers of Murdoch publications. Not the writers. They know the scheme they were lying about – and continue to lie about – was a sound one. They just don’t want people to know how sound it really was.

    No, I don’t support any party or any leader in Australia. Don’t live there and don’t vote there. Just constantly amazed at the level of disinformation daily vomitted from media outlets – mainstream and alternate – which Australians seem eager to swallow.

  9. the parable
    June 21, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    “Economists hailed it as the centrepiece of the world’s best Keynesian intervention. OH&P professionals marvelled at the way a vast scheme belted out so rapidly resulted in such a dramatic drop in the number of deaths and injuries.”

    Which economists, and Which OH&P professionals (should that be OH&S – Occupational Health and Safety).

    Japan’s excessive long term trade imbalance post WWII has seen their economy somewhat backward since 1991 because part of the logic was that there is untapped demand for their consumables. They still enjoy Sony and Toyota amongst other brands, but Samsung and Apple and in vehicle technology, there are many challenges.

    Trade surpluses and not in themselves a bad thing. Conversely trade deficits will occur but should not be targeted. Balance of surplus and deficit being perfect is utter nonsense. Surplus means the right to invest in capacity in all of its forms be they machinery and technology, research and better education, or Cheaper Foreign imports!!!

    So much of Australia’s miracle in this millenium is explained by increase in base metal prices. The correlation between China’s raw material consumption and demand of Australia’s resources in this millenium is signicant. The similar demand from other Asian Tigers is noted but not as significant.

    We all enjoy a good economic debate, but there is no debate with a political stooge.

  10. Alan Austin
    June 22, 2012 at 12:42 am

    The Parable. Hello.

    One economist impressed with the intervention was Nobel Prize winner Prof Joseph Stiglitz from the US. A brief summary here:

    http://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/stiglitz128/English

    Another academic who comments positively about the economic impact, the environmental effects and the occupational safety issues is Prof Rodney Tiffin:

    http://inside.org.au/a-mess-a-shambles-a-disaster/

    He also reflects on the way the Australian media misrepresented the scheme from the outset.

    The most detailed work on the safety and the houses damaged was by the CSIRO. Easily googled.

    A neat summary of the whole sorry story, including analysis of the house fires, is here:

    http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollytics/2011/04/24/the-csiro-gets-hip-to-debunking-media-hysteria/

    “The CSIRO last week released what was effectively a statistical analysis of the reality surrounding large parts of the infamous Home Insulation Program – or for those of you not familiar with this particular policy, you may have heard about it via it’s common alternative name in the mainstream media, the “OMG, PETER GARRETT IS BURNING DOWN OUR FUCKING HOUSES!” policy.

    “As we here have long known and talked about, the reality of the Home Insulation Program was always vastly different to its hysterical media portrayal – driven as it was by naive and innumerate journalists looking for easy sensational headlines, and partisan hacks prostituting their cheap wares before a gullible public.” (end of quote)

    Political stooge? Yes I agree. But I don’t think the Eye-ball Guru would appreciate that descriptor.

  11. the parable
    June 22, 2012 at 8:23 pm

    If we choose to go off on the tangent of Peter Garrett, the Minister for Tiddly-winks and retired rock and rollers who sung “US forces give the nod…. and… How can you sleep when when your beds are burning!”

    Don’t be surprised to see him lose pre selection to either Bob Carr, Foreign Minister and current NSW senator, or Christina Keneally before we go to the polls.

    Good on you Peter, fight the case against copyright on songs, you might have a snowball’s chance.

  12. June 22, 2012 at 9:49 pm

    Alan –

    You should visit one of Australia’s best loved political cartoonist’s Larry Pickering Facebook page to get an idea of how Gillard is viewed and commented on … his facebook address –

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Larry-Pickering/236991276355038

    His webpage is – http://lpickering.net/

    You will get a laugh at some very witty and apt cartoon images of out esteemed Leaders.

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