Thursday, 5 February 2009

Spending other people's money

Government is, among other things, about spending other people's money. It is taxpayer money of course.
In this case it is money that taxpayers have not yet paid. It is money that the present generation of taxpayers will never pay. Their children will pay some of it. Their grandchildren will pay more.
I suspect that history will prove Turnbull right and Rudd wrong. Contrary to what is being said it is not merely a desire to keep free market policies in place on Turnbull's part. He's a banker. He knows the dangers. He would not be committing almost certain political suicide unless he had grave concerns about where the present stimulus package is going.
It would be nice to have what Rudd is offering, nice but irresponsible. In politics however the short view is everything. It is today that matters. It is about opinion polls and remaining in power. It does not matter about the future. So we will probbaly get the nice but irresponsible package with a few tweaks around the edges. This is probably what Rudd is counting on. He will be able to say he listened to the concerns of his opposition, especially those in the minor parties in the Senate. I wonder what maverick Nick Xenophon will demand?

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