In the interests of the much vaunted LEVEL PLAYING FIELD…
In the ‘what’s good for the goose, etc.’ category:
1. While travelling to South America last year I overnighted in Santiago, Chile – this required a Chilean visa.
There are no problems with a transit passenger getting a visa, merely pay the visa fee and out you go into Chile!
The interesting factor is that the Chileans (IMHO, very sensibly!) have a list of visa fees – whatever your country charges a Chilean for a visa, they charge you.
I would suggest that this eminently logical process be extended for implementation by Australia:
· Whatever country X charges Australians for a visa, we should charge the same fee when their citizens come to Australia
BETTER (!), whatever processes country X applies to Australians for entry,
we should apply the same processes.
Yes, I am referring to the USA
2. International trade:
If my memory serves me, one of Paul Keating’s great initiatives ( in his view – and his view of reality was always questionable) was to remove trade barriers to set an example for the rest of the world, AND THEY WOULD SEE HOW GREAT THIS WAS AND DO THE SAME… (I maintain that his view of reality was always questionable).
We are now introducing various carbon tax / carbon schemes / whatever, and a major part of the ‘rationale’ is that we will set an example for the rest of the world, AND THEY WOULD SEE HOW GREAT THIS WAS AND DO THE SAME… (do we learn nothing?)
I have no doubt that SOMETHING has to be done about mankind’s profligate energy waste, but taxation (under whatever name) will not be the answer.
The Government knows full well that:
· introduction of carbon taxes will not affect any member of parliament (past or present) – they will be insulated by indexation of income…
· increasing taxation to the squeak point does not reduce usage (look at petrol, alcohol and cigarettes), and very carefully judges the squeak point,
· increasing taxation to the squeak point will generate masses of cash for the government (great for thr federal budget?)
· introducing the carbon tax under the planned process will enable a number of already rich and manipulative people to become even richer and more manipulative.