15. REFORMING THE SYSTEM

A government of Independents will have countless ideas for reform, but keep your eye on the main game, stopping capitalism’s gallop, with its carbon emissions, general pollution and waste.

You cannot put a cap on what C.E.O.s of private enterprise earn, but you can encourage philanthropy after the fact, and shame the greedy by naming them under Parliamentary privilege. Investors should be made aware of their power to check management and owners of the companies they invest in. Too many mum and dad investors don’t know they can attend meetings and make a difference in policy. Government should make information readily available to help them do this. The public can also vote with their feet and not invest in unethical companies.

Government should crack down more quickly and more firmly on companies which indulge in unethical behaviour. Assuming that given the opportunity the Australian public will have the common sense to elect politicians with common sense, we will no longer have three years of argy-bargy over whether or not to conduct a Royal Commission into organisations doing the wrong thing, and then another three years argy-bargy over whether or not and which of the Commissions’ recommendations to accept.

Don’t trust media outlets to tell you which companies are behaving unethically. Media outlets are big business and side with other corporations.  Be careful of those which try to brainwash us into ‘transitioning” to renewables so quickly it will wreck Australia’s economy and leave us prey to foreign influence and economic invasion.  Also check for messages from the “Granny State”.  The traditional media,too, will try to persuade you that the Party system is the only way to go, whether the particular newspaper backs Labor or LNP.  They will ridicule the idea of Independents in power.  Ignore their sallies.

  A liveable minimum wage is needed, and a system of individual enterprise bargaining.  Migrant workers are particularly vulnerable, but it is questionable whether we need so many migrant labourers.  Many come as skilled workers, can’t get a job in their chosen career, and take up labouring jobs instead.  Skilled migration needs to be more adequately supervised,as do wages in general.  

We need to create jobs. Increase employment and get the workers and small business bosses behind you, and the battle is half-won.  At least, at last, the Federal government is concentrating on infrastructure.   We need to have Federal Government take over the railways and lay 5’3″ gauge nationally. It should have been done a hundred years ago. I know the task is astronomical, but so is the task of sending a rocket to Mars.

I am appalled at the egomania of our Commander-in-Chief in avoiding a vital task like reforming the railway system, yet blasting a rocket to Mars. Such an endeavour will employ mainly the elite, and keep us joined at the hip to the United States of America for the unforseeable future. On the other hand, a railway through the Centre, and perhaps a road or railway around the circumference of Australia, will give jobs to ordinary everyday Australians for years to come, unite the country, decrease carbon emissions and dangerous road traffic by taking road trains off the roads, and bring us into line with other developed countries which are spanned by rail systems.

Any unemployed astro-physicists and the like would be perhaps over-qualified for designing software for the railways, but they could retrain and join the defence forces as cyber spies or work in Artificial Intelligence.  They could even start up our own Space-Based Solar Power Industry.  As I have stated before, the United States of America needs us, not we them, for space endeavours.  Rather than a dodgy partnership, let’s have a crack at going it alone in space.

I would not like to see Australia a socialist country, but I would  commandeer the Commonwealth Bank for the Commonwealth and put branches in all regional towns as a service to the public and as a form of genuine competition against the other three big banks, which manage to get around all laws against collusion. I would regulate electrical power. With the price of electricity bound to rise too many companies would see that as an excuse to raise prices even higher and blame Climate Change.

I would bring back some form of regulation, to ensure that primary producers got a fair price for their produce. I would institute a percentage of profit on produce allowed by the middle-man and the duopolies to make sure the customer gets a fair price. I would also allow below standard produce to be sold at the markets for Convenience Store owners to purchase at a lower price. We should encourage the return of ‘the corner shop’ and suburban shopping by abolishing penalty rates and payroll tax for small business, and by regulation of the retail hours of the duopolies as well as other retail stores.  This would revive communities, lessen dependence on the car for the weekly grocery shop and lessen the use of surplus packaging, refrigeration, and lighting…….all things which contribute to climate change or to pollution.  

Those are my pet business projects. More than enough for you would-be Independents to be mulling over.  You will have your own ideas. Argue for or against mine, or abstain. I simply put them out there.

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