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John Passant

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December 2015



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My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. (0)

My interview Razor Sharp 11 February 2014
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp this morning. The Royal Commission, car industry and age of entitlement get a lot of the coverage. (0)

Razor Sharp 4 February 2014
Me on 4 February 2014 on Razor Sharp with Sharon Firebrace. (0)

Time for a House Un-Australian Activities Committee?
Tony Abbott thinks the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is Un-Australian. I am looking forward to his government setting up the House Un-Australian Activities Committee. (1)

Make Gina Rinehart work for her dole

Sick kids and paying upfront


Save Medicare

Demonstrate in defence of Medicare at Sydney Town Hall 1 pm Saturday 4 January (0)

Me on Razor Sharp this morning
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace this morning for Razor Sharp. It happens every Tuesday. (0)

I am not surprised
I think we are being unfair to this Abbott ‘no surprises’ Government. I am not surprised. (0)

Send Barnaby to Indonesia
It is a pity that Barnaby Joyce, a man of tact, diplomacy, nuance and subtlety, isn’t going to Indonesia to fix things up. I know I am disappointed that Barnaby is missing out on this great opportunity, and I am sure the Indonesians feel the same way. [Sarcasm alert.] (0)



Is it now Time for a Better Designed Resource Rent Tax on all Extracted Minerals and Gas?

This joint article has just been published in the Journal of the Australasian Tax Teachers Association.

John McLaren and John Passant, ‘The Minerals Resource Rent Tax has been Repealed; Is it now Time for a Better Designed Resource Rent Tax on all Extracted Minerals and Gas?’ (2015) 10 (1) Journal of the Australasian Tax Teachers Association 87.


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Comment from Chris Warren
Time December 17, 2015 at 11:36 pm

The failure of the Mining Resources Rent Tax illustrates the abysmal level of consciousness within the political class and within right-wing labourite politics in general. The fundamental symptom is class collaboration – in other words, designing a MRRT but as directed by major mining companies and their cheer-squad in the media.

In essense, the balance of power within today’s class struggle, probably means that Gillard’s project was doomed, if not from the start, at least when the government changed. Even if the tax produced the expected billions – Abbott would still have expunged it from our statutes. While the headline was MRRT as a means to husband a scarce resource, in class struggle terms, capitalism saw it more strategically – as a move by social democracy to tax “super profits” in principle.

A key issue that can only grow in future years is the nature of returns to capital. It is disappointing to see in the Tax Teachers Association article that:

A super profits tax such as a MRRT should be designed to capture only additional revenue from mining companies when they make a profit over and above a reasonable rate of return on labour and capital,

This makes no sense. Any value (ie product) beyond depreciation belongs entirely as an income to the labourer who wielded or consumed that capital. Forcing workers to accept a wage, so that a surplus is artificially conjured into existence, does not mean that there is any real logic to giving capital some vague “reasonable return”. This is pure capitalism.

Allowing capital to accumulate the value that should have gone to workers is why we have had declining wages since the 1970’s and a GFC for almost a decade.

Comment from John
Time December 18, 2015 at 8:24 am

I make similar points in Passant, J. (2014). The minerals resource rent tax: the Australian Labor Party and the continuity of change. (2014) Accounting Research Journal, 27 (1), 19-36.

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