Budget imbalance

Stephen Kirch­n­er scep­ti­cal­ly assess­es attempts to sell a bud­get which he describes as ‘fis­cal Hobbe­sian­is­m’1 bq.  (Trea­sury Sec­re­tary, Ken) Hen­ry tries to spin the Bud­get as a pos­i­tive con­tri­bu­tion to these goals [labour pro­duc­tiv­i­ty and labour force par­tic­i­pa­tion], but the Bud­get’s con­tri­bu­tion is mar­gin­al at best and broad­er progress on struc­tur­al reform in the Aus­tralian econ­o­my has come to a grind­ing halt. It is a damn­ing indict­ment of Aus­trali­a’s pol­i­cy estab­lish­ment that the great struc­tur­al reform agen­da of the 1980s and 1990s has now been reduced to mea­sures such as tax­pay­er-fund­ed baby-sit­ting. (“institutional-economics”:http://www.institutional-economics.com/) 1 I’m not sure what this means; but it sounds suf­fi­cient­ly dread­ful. I think it’s a sort of reverse meton­o­my: SK means what Hobbes might have called fis­cal Leviathanism … if he’d thought of it.

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