December 2016

Government debt would be zero if we had Howard tax levels

by Ben Oquist in Crikey

This op-ed was first published on 19 December on Crikey here >… The debate surrounding MYEFO and whether Australia has a credible path back to a surplus should start by remembering how we got here. If Scott Morrison had delivered much of Peter Costello’s taxation ratio the budget would not be in deficit today. This

July 2016

Backroom deals: we can’t govern the nation on a wink and a nod

by Ben Oquist in The Guardian

During the campaign, Labor and the Coalition understandably made strong pitches to win majority government in their own right, ruling out deals with minor parties or independents. In a way, this was a legitimate pre-election pitch from both sides attempting to win government alone. But that was then. This is now: the electorate has, more than likely,

May 2016

Australia Votes, then it’s the Senate’s turn

This opinion piece originally appeared in the Australian Financial Review. Elections are only the start of policies, that’s why proper scrutiny needs to be given to senate candidates and parties. Technically this election is about whether the parliament should pass two pieces of obscure industrial relations legislation. Politically, of course, the election is more about

December 2015

Capital gains tax and pensions assets test should cover homes

First published by The Australian Financial Review – here. The mining boom tax cuts have left the Australian budget unable to collect the revenue needed to fund the services that Australians expect from their government. The Treasurer’s insistence that there is no revenue problem, combined with the received political wisdom that the family home is

June 2014

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