Having dinner with the PM

barnacle bill

Along with about 400 others. But do not worry. I have my binoculars and my hearing aids are turned up to max so it should be all right.

Most interesting for me is to see what he’s going to do about Barnacle Bill, how he’s going to scrape those last few barnacles off and get on with governing. He has all the makings of a great Prime Minister but needs to get untracked. As the picture shows, he is just warming up.

The one news item that I found relevant about tonight’s dinner was the front page story in The Australian. Where I will be tonight is at the dinner of my previous employer, the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry. ACCI is to employers what the ACTU is to unions. It does much else but I have even presented the National Wage Case on occasion which is something of a career highlight. And the story in The Oz was, “Business raises the case for workplace change”. Goodness knows we need it.

Labor along with many others perennially confuse the need to improve the lives of working people with the need to make unions more powerful. I am no enemy of unions but it is essential that their power is contained if an economy is ever to succeed. Slush funds and such are only just the start of the problem. I wrote six reports on the failings of the current industrial relations system while Labor was in government (here’s one) and with none of the legislation as yet changed, the problems continue.

The Government has been promising a review of the IR system by the Productivity Commission, which is what today’s news story was about. It is certainly time this was called on, if not actually long overdue.