(Image: AAP/Deam Lewins)

With the Reserve Bank of Australia’s long-awaited interest rate cut rolling out, Crikey readers added their voices to Bernard Keane’s point that it’s a stinging indictment of the government’s “strong economy” illusion. Readers went a step further in accusing the RBA of mismanagement itself. Elsewhere, readers took a similar line in their denouncement of the economic policies that lead to Australia’s productivity crisis.

On the RBA

Simon Mansfield writes: Since 2004, the RBA mismanaged two mining bubbles, two currency bubbles and finally the great housing bubble. The so-called “independent” central bank of Australia has failed over and over for 15 years. It’s independence is a complete fiction with no direct legislative basis and exists purely on the whim of a ministerial note. Maybe time for elected politicians to take actual responsibility for the economy and stop outsourcing the decisions to an overpaid central bank that keeps failing.

On Australia’s productivity crisis

Marcus Hicks: The lost decade, Bernard calls it. Well, guess who has been in office for two thirds of that decade? That would be the Liberal-National Coalition. Not just at a federal level but also at a state level in many cases. So the loss of this decade must surely come from the failed twin strategies of austerity and trickle-down. Time for neoliberals to rip those articles of faith out of their bibles.

John Brooker writes: Scomo and co. trumpeting their alleged superior economic management credentials for the whole of the recent campaign managed to suck a majority of voters into believing it. Most of this was known before the election and, believe it or not, Labor had policies to fix a lot of the Coalition’s blinkered incompetence and adherence to the bankrupt theory of a trickle-down based economy.

Wayne Cusick writes: No doubt the Productivity Commission’s solution to the problem it identified is to sell a government asset — perhaps the NBN.

Scott Grant writes: It might be time to bring the old quote from Alex Carey (Taking the risk out of democracy: propaganda in the US and Australia), out of storage: “The twentieth century has been characterised by three developments of great political importance: the growth of democracy, the growth of corporate power, and the growth of corporate propaganda as a means of protecting corporate power against democracy.” We don’t use the word propaganda enough. It describes pretty much the entire output of the Murdoch press and lot else besides.

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Peter Fray

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