Trust Labor to get it arse about. Bill Clinton famously used the mantra, “It’s the economy, stupid.” to win the 1992 election. Hapless Labor seems to have adopted it – inexpertly – for the 2019 election.
Labor is not so much ill-intentioned as inept and shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen’s negative gearing plans have gone into negative territory with their lack of robustness.
As Judith Sloan has pointed out in, not only does his mistaken statistic about the volume of new apartment sales cloud Bowen’s credibility:
It also affects the estimates of additional revenue that can be anticipated through the abolition of negative gearing. Rather than $35 billion, the actual figure could be lower by somewhere between $2.5 billion and $8 billion, depending on the estimate of the true proportion of investment for new dwellings.
Labor’s policies on negative gearing, the capital gains tax and franking credits on shares suggest, as Terry McCrann put it last year, that:
Labor certainly has not the slightest idea what the policy combination will do to the capital formation process and to investment decisions and outcomes.
They’re clueless, in other words.
From disastrous border protection policy to pink batts to school halls to managing the economy and balancing the budget, Labor has repeatedly shown that it is genetically stunted in turning good intentions into successful outcomes. It doesn’t set out to mess things up, that’s just how things turn out for them.
As Hanlon’s Razor rules, “Never ascribe to malice that which can be explained by incompetence.”
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