opinion quickie

Misplaced Obsession

Alan Kohler:

…in Australia, the budget is in a wonderful position – heading back into surplus in a couple of years despite one of the world’s biggest and most successful stimulus programmes during the global recession.

But you wouldn’t know it. Five billion dollars needed in flood recovery spending and … oh dear, we need a levy. Can’t possibly wait a year or two to go back into surplus. What would Tony Abbott say?

Completely straightforward in my mind: the idea of a “flood levy” when Australia has such low levels of government debt is ludicrous and pure politicking about a number that is being held at an artificially precise amount ($3.1bn “predicted” surplus in FY2012-2013).