It may not work, but if it does this year’s budget will be Malcolm Turnbull’s political masterstroke. He will have effectively buried Tony Abbott and his supporters on the right wing of the Party.
To begin with, the so-called “Zombie measures” of the previous Hockey budgets, which have kept popping up year after year, have now been laid to rest. They will no longer serve as a nasty reminder of the retrograde and divisive nature of the Abbott years.
Gone are the days of debt and deficit, of lifters and leaners, the end of the age of entitlement. Turnbull and Morrison have cast what looks like an expansionary budget funded, we are led to believe, by a tax on the banks. On the surface, it looks pretty smart move. Everybody hates the banks so taxing them might just work. Unfortunately, it is actually quite a bad idea and it’s very easy to explain why. And the banks will undoubtedly be doing so.
Everybody hates the banks so taxing them might just work. Unfortunately, it is actually quite a bad idea and it’s very easy to explain why. And the banks will undoubtedly be doing so.
It is, in every way, the antithesis of the kind of budget that Hockey and Abbott crafted. If it works, and the Coalition gets a bounce in the polls, Turnbull will have effectively isolated Abbott politically and pulled the Coalition back to the centre politically.
Abbott waged war against the Labor Party over the mining and carbon taxes. Now Malcolm Turnbull has done exactly the same thing as Labor only with a tax on the banks.
But now Malcolm Turnbull has proposed a great big new tax just as Labor did. Only this time, is not on the mining industry, it is on the banks.
Abbott and his fellow right travellers must be itching to start shouting “Great big new tax” but they can’t because do so would be undermining the PM in a far too obvious a manner.
So it looks like Kevin Andrews and Tony Abbott will be going on a lot of long bike rides and taking a lot of cold showers.