The politidemic

As the leading left articles in the Australian media this week make clear, the Morrison government is using the pandemic as a pretext for things they couldnt otherwise get away with, and as cover for things they were doing anyway.

The relentless drive to tax cuts, when the economy will require demand stimulus, not supply cost cuts, will be sold as something about which there is no choice. The cash release of superannuation, which defunded workers future income, while easing the need for rent relief and jobkeeper/seeker, is a downpayment on destroying the system to kill its countervailing political power.

This is complemented by the UK-Australia right’s attempt to link the two countries politically, subordinating Australia to the needs of the British right, in service to continued anglosphere dominance.

The unashamedly, brutal star chamber rendition of Julian Assange, and the Australian government’s acquiescence is of a piece with this. And underneath it all, wrecking crew style, the actual machinery of government is being disassembled – a move beyond Howard-era public service politicisation.

These moves create a gap that could be filled by a bold assertion of the need for economic courage and imagination, independence and a commit to government as a public act. Does anyone believe that initiative will be taken?

– Guy Rundle