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The Direct Action plan - your questions answered.

What is the Direct Action plan?

The Direct Action plan is the government's plan to reduce CO2 emissions. It replaces Labor's carbon pricing mechanism. The government describes their plan as the cheapest, simplest and most effective option.

How did Labor's carbon pricing mechanism work?

Lest we forget.

"I think Aubrey Herbert's charge against him [British General Sir Ian Hamilton, Commander of the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force at Gallipoli] is the most serious of all namely the wickedness of always leaving thousands of our wounded to perish in front of the lines after these attacks have failed instead of arranging for an armistice for their burial. The Turks have always proved themselves perfectly willing to have armistices and have actually asked for one at Helles which was refused by our General Staff.

Unchecked power to Transfield Services

The Migration Amendment Bill 2015 is currently before parliament. This bill gives security officers in Australia's off-shore detention centres unchecked power to use force against asylum seekers in any circumstance they think reasonable. The bill introduces a subjective test whereby security officers themselves get to decide if violence is warranted. Where excessive force is used in most cases the officers will be immune from legal action.

Here's how it works

1. Set up a shelf company in Singapore where the corporate tax rate is 13% less than in Australia.
2. Avoid paying the 30% corporate tax rate in Australia by turning your Australian company into a subsidiary of your Singaporean company.
3. Avoid paying the 17% corporate tax rate in Singapore on profits by loaning that money to your Australian subsidiary.
4. Use that debt incurred from the loan repayments back to yourself as a tax deduction in Australia.

Challenges

Last year the top 900 companies in Australia effectively paid 19 cents in the dollar tax, while the rest of us paid 30 cents. That cost us $25 billion, about two thirds of our current budget deficit. Joe Hockey's response is to propose an increase to the GST and a tax cut for corporations.

This illustrates the economic challenges faced by the Abbott government: how to to tax companies less, lower wages, create less jobs and still find enough money to pay for the tens of billions used to subsidise big business in Australia.

Employment Incentives

The government's latest exercise in taking money from those who need it to give to those who don't. Taxpayers will now be funding a new government program of cash payments to employers, in an attempt to encourage businesses to employ people for as long as someone else pays for it.

Intergenerational Theft

Joe Hockey's Intergenerational Report is a long term prediction of Australia's economic challenges, a justification for Hockey's harsh but (according to the report) necessary budget cuts, and the most demonstrable horseshit any Australian government has had the audacity to pass off as economic analysis.

A Murderous Farce

Indonesian authorities have confirmed Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran will be moved to Nusakambangan Island prison. They are among ten people who will be transferred to the prison this week for execution. While the method of execution varies slightly from case to case it is likely the scenario will be similar to the last time Indonesia carried out executions on the island in January.

National Hypocrisy Week

This week is National Hypocrisy Week culminating in the annual ‘Jeff Kennett Hypocrite of the Year’ award, named in honour of Jeff’s 2011 feat of calling for less restrictions on poker machines while simultaneously chairing the anti-depression initiative BeyondBlue.

Past winners include such Australian luminaries as Alan Joyce, Gina Rinehart and Rupert Murdoch. This year has seen some of the strongest entries yet. So without further ado here are the results:

One commissioner shoudl resign

While the Abbott government and Murdoch's lackeys have been busy attacking Gillian Triggs over her inquiry into the government's treatment of children in Immigration detention, Australia's Human Rights Commissioner has been characteristically silent.

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