Friday, May 18, 2007

The Budget

I remember now I was going to say something about the Australian Budget. In the two extremes, the superannuation co-contribution policy built up over the last few budgets is nothing short of pure genius. I may need to explain why this is so but it is a little long-winded. On the other extreme, the resumption and expansion of solar cell subsidies is throwing good money in the bin. The amount of carbon reductions per dollar spent is pathetically small + it distorts the green economy such that private enterprise will flourish chasing the subsidy and not the underlying carbon reduction goal.

Unfortunately, the government has not specified how it will achieve desired higher unemployment for those complaining about the worker "shortage". Even the labor party has twisted the problem around by saying it is a "skill" shortage. It is not. There is just not enough of the trained unemployed like we had in the Keating era.

4 comments:

Dr. Clam said...

I don't think we now need to be satisfied with *any* level of unemployment- what we need is to maximise fluidity. With today's level of communications, we ought to be able to see any worker leave one job on Friday and start another the next Monday.

Marco said...

Unfortunately, communications was never really the bottleneck. Matching ambition with opportunity, and ability with job requirements, with government and family safety nets when it doesn't work out lends itself to a double "buffer" of a pool of temporarily unemployed and a pool of unfilled vacancies at an equilibrium. This is a mismatch of supply and demand. Admittedly, the last couple of office employees that left went straight into new jobs, and the new ones went straight from their old ones to take their place. People need to be highly prepared to move town, too. My psychologist, I discovered, works half the week in Sydney and half the week in Townsville! Maybe your utopian vision is starting to take shape.

Dr. Clam said...

You should report your psychologist to the Greenhouse Inquisition- it looks like they have serious climate sins to expiate :P

Marco said...

Indeed, unless they convert aeroplanes over to hydrogen power (+lift) - it appears cross-country commuting has some serious carbon implications.