Jul 29, 2014

Business Council goes back to the ’80s for its latest warning of woe

The BCA's latest economic vision -- its second in a year -- is a return to the sort of thinking discredited in the 1980s, write Bernard Keane and Glenn Dyer.

Bernard Keane — Politics editor

Bernard Keane

Politics editor

The head of the Business Council of Australia has declared Australia is at a crossroads, unveiling an economic plan for the country that calls for major reforms in a speech widely covered by the media as business demanding long-term vision …

Oh, wait … we’re a little confused. Which Business Council head? Which economic plan? It’s a bit over a year since Tony Shepherd rose to deliver an eminently predictable Business Council “vision”. Now Shepherd’s successor, Catherine Livingstone, has delivered another, very different, vision. What happened to the Action Plan for Enduring Prosperity unveiled by Shepherd last year? It’s not clear. The solitary reference to it yesterday was that the McKinsey report unveiled by Livingstone “followed on” from it. In the “perpetual present” of the media, the Shepherd-era plan — with its 93 amazing recommendations across nine great policy areas — is now forgotten (much of it ended up in the Abbott government’s Audit Commission, which sank like a stone), while the new plan is covered in the same breathless terms.

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10 thoughts on “Business Council goes back to the ’80s for its latest warning of woe

  1. Yclept

    The BCA obviously hasn’t heard about the “age of entitlement” being over.

  2. Bill Hilliger

    BCA is the union that continues to support the coalition government, as long as they do their age of entitlement will continue. BCA should be included into the RC enquiry into union activity in Australian society.

  3. MJPC

    The BCA does not have to follow a climate change line now, they have the government of climate change deniers so why maintain the illusion of sustainability, (but the hand is still out I notice from this article)

  4. Emile Tsalto

    Yes, Australia’s future should be entirely in the hands of market forces – as managed by multi-nationals and free trade agreements.

    I wonder what bubble we should have next.

  5. Djbekka

    And is the BCA committing it’s members to filling 2 jobs a day and taking on several ‘work for the dole’ trainees? Just wondering where the jobs and non-volunteer places are coming from…

  6. dazza

    Bill Hilliger, one of the first things after Abbott gets the baseball bat treatment at the next election, should be for a RC enquiry into BCA and the building industry.

  7. Alex

    Yep, in these hard times of low inflation and even lower interest rates, lbusinesses still seems to need assistance. Maybe there’s a market in high-end begging bowls for the ambitious executive.

  8. AR

    Ya gotta lurve the “invisible hand of the free market”, always in your pocket and pissing in the government’s.

  9. Dez Paul

    “incentivising”?! Vision-less and illiterate. Rent seeking clowns.

  10. Mal Park

    Rename them to the Big Business Bonuses Council – more business welfare, before driving their FBT rort luxury car home to their tax free sheltered luxury home, picking up the kids from their subsidised private schools, checking their super tax deductions, and negative gear another apartment in the evening, while looking over their family trust statements. Then employ a few more 457 accountants instead of new graduates, and a couple of cash renovators….Then email about those unemployed getting too much govt money.
    And then state “Problem is too many working graduates” problem hitting home is that other graduates are gonna take the remaining graduate jobs from their kids of calibre. Better wind back the universities and up the fees to get rid of the unfair competition.

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