Blockades, wage cuts for civil servants should be closely related


Commentary

“We need to restart the economy. We need to restart society. We can’t put Australia in jeopardy. We need to be able to move forward.”

These were the words of Prime Minister Scott Morrison on April 30, last year.

Morrison is now not only encouraging Premiers to put their citizens on the brink of ruin, but also buying and distributing them themselves.

As some commentators pointed out during Victoria’s fourth blockade, the Prime Minister became a “blockade enabler.”

His announcement that the federal government will get half of the tabs to support individual and corporate income during the blockade provides an incentive for the state to blockade sooner.

The analysis was then confirmed by the blockade of Greater Sydney, and Prime Minister Daniel Andrews pushed the entire state of Victoria to the fifth blockade, in response to a small number of COVID-19 cases (18 cases).

Epoch Times Photo
Overview of an empty arcade plaza in Melbourne, Australia, July 16, 2021 (Asanka Brendon Ratnayake / AFP via Getty Images)

After just a month’s blockade when the pandemic began, Morrison could say that Australians needed to learn to live with the virus, and that we couldn’t hide from it forever. Is now noteworthy.

But he said this when he was planning to “flatten the curve” by a temporary blockade that would spend time learning more about the virus and strengthening our health system.

But the idea of ​​flattening the curve was quickly forgotten.

Almost overnight, Australia’s political and bureaucratic elite turned tact into a full-fledged exclusion strategy.

And there is one brief explanation as to why this happened. Politicians and bureaucrats who decide on the blockade do not suffer from the consequences of the decision. Instead, they believe that the blockade is a perfectly appropriate tool for every small outbreak.

Throughout the Pandemic, the Institute of Public Affairs has discussed how the blockade imposes greater economic and social costs on private sector workers, small business owners, low-income earners, and young Australians. I have been investigating and analyzing.

A research report, “Not in This Together: Analysis of the Economic and Social Impact of the COVID-19 Lockdowns,” released earlier this year, shows the private sector of about 300,000 people unemployed due to the blockade that began in March 2020. Identified workers. By the end of the year, he was still unemployed.

Conversely, public sector employment increased by 26,000 before the virus arrived in Australia.

Epoch Times Photo
Pedestrians will travel along the nearly empty George Street of Sydney CBD, Australia, on June 28, 2021. (Lisa Marie Williams / Getty Images)

As a result, private sector workers lost $ 8.3 billion (US $ 6.14 billion) in the six months to September, and total public sector wages increased by $ 2.75 billion (US $ 2.03 billion). did.

Most importantly, the biggest impact was on those who couldn’t afford it.

It is estimated that the blockade destroyed the employment of 515,000 of the bottom 20% of income earners and increased the employment of about 200,000 in the top 20% of income earners.

The effects of the blockade have produced the most substantial wealth transfer in the western world in recent memory.

As ironically suggested in early 2020, very large companies support strict and long-term repeated blockades. This allows you to further establish your position at the expense of in-store competitors.

And this is exactly what happened.The Washington Post is impressive— —Owned by Jeff Bezos of the billionaire, he has published a number of articles advocating a blockade during 2020.

During this period, another Bezos company, Amazon, increased its market capitalization from approximately US $ 940 billion to US $ 1.9 trillion. It’s bigger than the Australian economy as a whole.

Blockade is a conscious decision by politicians and bureaucrats. They are not inevitable. And they stop only if politicians and bureaucrats are forced to bear the cost each time they decide to impose restrictions.

New South Wales Treasury Secretary Dominique Perotet said Chief Health Officer Chanto should cut wages against her decision to unnecessarily extend the blockade of Sydney’s 2020 Northern Beaches. It has been reported.

This is the correct call.

And perhaps Greater Sydney is under a five-week long blockade, but all politicians and senior civil servants in the state need to cut wages.

Small business owners, low-income earners, young Australians, and other private workers have endured since March last year only by sharing some of their financial and social challenges, politicians and bureaucrats. Will understand that the blockade of enormous difficulties causes.

Until then, blockade is the only response to every new virus case in Australia.

Cian Hussey is a Research Associate at the Institute of Public Affairs in Melbourne, Australia. His work focuses on the impact of government regulation on SMEs and the wider economy.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

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