The King hit of faith and obedience is all a bit rich


The RBA’s role is to ensure that its policies and actions ensure the stability of our currency, maintain full employment and contribute to economic prosperity. While the RBA is independent in setting interest rates, its charter requires it to consult and inform the government about its monetary and banking policies. For this reason we can expect the government to heed Lowe’s advice to the parliamentary committee. The government spent happily, rightly so, at JobSeeker and JobKeeper, but like mortgage holders, debt needs to be trimmed now as we move into a higher interest rate environment. We all need to realize that massive resources are needed for welfare, health, education, infrastructure, climate change, national disasters and of course defense. Rather than simply raising income taxes, it’s time to consider raising Australia’s GST rate – one of the lowest in the OECD. Perhaps a targeted GST increase would be easier to sell politically. Increase taxes or penalties on carbon, beef, sugar, traffic congestion (and violations), luxury vehicles, and water use. In most cases, this has secondary economic benefits and also modifies erroneous or wasteful behavior. John Kempler, Bay of Roses

Each watchdog will have its time

Finally, we have a federal-Labour government which, as promised in its manifesto, will enact the establishment of a federal integrity commission (“Finally a Watchdog with a Bite,” 17 September). Peter Hartcher points out that Scott Morrison would fall victim to his own creation and states that people didn’t really care. You were so wrong, Morrison, and your arrogance and stubbornness gave us an Albanian government. Let’s see how many crimes against Australia will be uncovered by this long overdue federal agency. Of course, it must be endowed not only with the necessary powers, but also with the resources to do its job properly and in a timely manner. Under the NSW Government, our state ICAC has been starved of resources. Paul Reid, Campsie

If Peter Hartcher is right and the federal government’s plan for a National Anti-Corruption Commission is indeed legal, we can all breathe a sigh of relief. And Peter Dutton should heed the warning that if the opposition decides against such legislation they can expect to be wandering in the wilderness for some time – during which time the majority of Australians will be enjoying a fully cooked roast. Score one for democracy. Donna Wiemann, Balmain

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I would like to add my suggestion that the federal anti-corruption agency should not be called NACC, but should be called “Federal Anti-Corruption Court”, ie FACT. Charles Gerhard, Randwick

If this commission is indeed empowered to investigate alleged corrupt behavior that has taken place since and before it was set up, then not only will it cook the odd potential chicken, but there is already a veritable chicken coop waiting, marinated, watered and to be fried. Fred Jansohn, Rose Bay

Does this mean that a Pollie or other scoundrel caught by the NACC will be naccered? Tony Tucker, Leichhardt

It looks like the new National Anti-Corruption Commission will become the NACC. I guess that means anyone suspected of corruption will be sent to the NACCery. Kevin fell, Cook’s Hill

Reverse cursed fusion

In 2016, the state government suddenly merged several councils without consulting the hundreds of thousands of affected residents (“Sydney Council Presents 900-Page Divisive Case,” September 17). The people of the Inner West have spoken and the government must now pay the cost of reversing this undemocratic and disrespectful process. Hopefully other merged councils will follow suit. James Deli, Oatley

Did I read correctly that the estimated cost of revitalizing the Inner West, Marrickville, Ashfield and Leichhardt LGAs is between $150.8 million and $162.9 million, with the kicker that “margins of error are huge”? Then why would they think NSW taxpayers would rush to fund the split in full? None of these councils have a brass razoo, and decades of unfunded capital work remain incomplete. Perhaps interest payers should have been asked if they would support a split if financed internally from rate hikes? Let every division go at the expense of the locals. Russell Murphy, Bayview

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degree no difficulty

One of the main reasons I chose my university (Sussex, UK) (Letters 17 Sep) was that the assessment for the BA Hons degree was entirely through essays and dissertations with no exams. I also only attended one lecture, which reinforced their definition as the quickest way to get the lecturer’s notes into the student’s notes without going through the brains of either. But still get a decent degree. Lewis Kaplan, Birchgrove

Crown and Jules

Julian Assange

Julian AssangeRecognition:AP

Prime Minister has invited King Charles and Queen Consort to visit Australia (“Albanese says first meeting with King Charles III was ‘great honour’ but republic not discussed”, smh.com.au, 18 September ). British authorities should be warned that a visit is unlikely to go smoothly until Julian Assange is released from his London prison and allowed to return to Australia. Chris Smith, Kingston (ACT)

Our times, our names

Your correspondent (Letters, September 17) would like to abandon colonial street names for those more in line with “ours.” Nowadays, naming rights to parts of public property are enthusiastically bought by private interests (e.g. sports stadiums). This practice could be extended to streets (or even cities with British names). What a boost that could help tax offices at all levels of government. Peter Cox, Gerringong

Word mightier than pen

I don’t breed corgis or have the right to use QC or KC by my name, which obviously brands me a rabid Republican. On the other hand, I saw the late Queen in person twice, and my fountain pen leaked everywhere when I was in third grade. I’m quite upset that the ABC didn’t see fit to interview me on one of these extremely trivial topics. Jeremy Cornford, Kingscliff

Deposit (or withdraw)

Unfortunately, I have to disagree with your correspondent (Letters, September 16) that refusing cash is illegal. The Reserve Bank has a notice that states: “If a supplier of goods or services specifies other means of payment before entering into a contract, there is normally no obligation to accept legal tender as payment.” Lee Cook, Orange

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royal pain

Ceremonial attire and military uniforms seem endless, but by now all upscale shops in Britain must have gone entirely out of civilian black outfits. Megan Brock, Summer Hill

If this is the queen’s plan, well, I’m incredulous. Ten days of mourning, royals everywhere, international visitors and so on. The cost to the Commonwealth will be in the tens of millions. If this is what she planned as her departure, bring about the Republic. Michael Cronk, Dubo

multitasking

Why all this anxiety about whether we should appeal to an indigenous voice or to a republic? Can’t we walk and chew gum at the same time? Randi Svensen, Wyong

phone groan

When I see someone obsessively fumbling with a smartphone, it reminds me of lyrics from The Sound of Silence, with just a slight change: “And the people bowed and prayed/To the neon gods they made.” David Peach, Armidale

Para is important

These slippery eels played like an obsessed team – no wonder their resounding success. Edward Long (Born and raised Parramatta), Milsons Point

The digital gaze
Commenting online on one of the stories that received the most reader feedback yesterday smh.com.au
Lambie shames Labor over tax cuts and calls on ‘lazy voters’ to blow up the system
Out of To mark: “Good of Jacquie Lambie for acknowledging the reality that these tax cuts are prohibitively expensive. Nothing wrong with changing your mind when the facts change – and in the case of the federal budget, the facts have clearly changed since 2019! Those who still support these extravagant tax cuts are sticking their heads in the sand! Or they don’t mind adding another $24 billion a year to a structural deficit that’s already 2 percent of GDP″⁣

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