As escaped public servants, partner and I were shaking our heads last December about the Henry Tax Review. We were familiar with the release of reports to a generous consultation period, followed by a draft government response and further argy-bargy with the affected groups.
But only the Government got to see the Henry report, and it was only released when the government response was released. That ain’t the way it is supposed to work in a real democracy. Surprises like the resource tax are not good for consensus.
Maybe Rudderless has taken a leaf out of Hugo Chavez’ songbook. Good intentions maybe, bad administration certainly.
The public clearly was insensed on behalf of the mining industry, although on the face of it the new tax is reasonable. Last time I looked, I was taxed on my total income, minus all legitimate deductions. Whether you call that profit or anything else is besides the point. And if you add up all the territory and federal taxes, my rate of tax in semi-retirement is closer to the 30% mark than 10 or 15.
But process is everything, and a government that fails to heed the most basic principles of partnership, planning and politeness deserves the big clobber it is now getting. Shape up, mate!