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Is the government’s economic mishandling any surprise?

Crikey readers discuss economic stagnation, rural drought crises and questionable media tactics.

Josh Frydenberg Scott Morrison Budget 2019 federal election
(Image: AAP/Lukas Coch)

Crikey readers had much to say on whether the government will be held to account for the economy’s prolonged period of stagnation. Elsewhere, they reacted to INQ’s latest investigation into the questionable tactics of media companies looking for a scoop, and discussed rural Australia in drought and the government’s emissions disinformation.

On the stagnant economy

Tom Mehigan writes: The new federal government has seemingly convinced workers that their tax cuts will compensate for eight years of wage stagnation. If there is absence of effective trade union action there will be encouragement for further likely watering down of workers’ wages and conditions. The disengagement from politics we have heard about recently, now reaching as high as 65%, plays beautifully into government thinking. We truly get the government we deserve.

On media tactics

Judy Hardy-Holden writes: That makes such depressing reading. Fortunately I am also reading, for the second time, Leigh Sales book Any Ordinary Day, where she confronts these issues with research, personal interviews, suggestions from experienced journalists, and her own bravely stated short comings in her career. I think there are journalists, and there are journalists. Some are very sordid, but some approach the same dilemmas with compassion, empathy and a genuine effort to support the important foundational tenets of journalism.

On rural water

Mary Wood writes: If this does not underline the necessity of an Indigenous voice to parliament to be enshrined in the constitution I don’t know what will. Not content with draining the river systems we are now prepared to contaminate the artesian basin with fracking and coal mining. For what — yet more wealth for the top few per cent.

On emissions data

Roger Clifton writes: Allowing the tricksters to play with LULUCF (changes in carbon in biomass) guarantees that spin doctors will use it to fast-talk the public into confusion. There is a limited amount of carbon that can be stored or released by the entire biosphere. On the other hand, the world has an effectively limitless supply of fossil carbon that might be endlessly extracted and dumped in the greenhouse. We should focus on replacing fossil carbon fuels with noncarbon energy. Emissions by the farming sector are not problematic if the farmers are supplied adequately with synthetic fuels (made from captured CO2) instead of fossil diesel.

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3 years ago

“Any future US-UK trade deal would almost certainly be blocked by the US Congress if Brexit affects the Irish border and jeopardises peace in Northern Ireland, congressional leaders and diplomats have warned.” — Today’s Graud Love it. Here you are Alexander Boris de Pfeffel and merry Brexiteers. This is what the independence you sought from an EU in which you had great influence feels like. You will now have to dance to the tune, not only of an EU now free of your influence but of a US Congress over which you have no influence whatever. Have fun!