Righteous Rightie despairs at Turnbull’s reluctance to stand up for hardly done by capitalists
Dear RR – As an agile and innovative small businessman operating in a 24/7 world, I long ago embraced wage flexibility. After they’ve interned full-time for six months, I pay the staff at my Norton Street café a flat rate of $11. Unless they are foreign students with poor English language skills and a terror of being deported, in which case they get $7. I do, of course, also offer non-cash benefits – employees can help themselves to a glass of tap water to enjoy during their five-minute break after they’ve worked for 14 hours. But while I ignore anachronistic penalty rates, I’m disheartened by the lack of glee shown by the putative ‘Party of Capital’ at the prospect of slashing workers’ wages. Why isn’t Turnbull making the obvious points? That given how laughable the prospect is of them outbidding, say, a successful café owner at a house auction there’s no reason for members of the lower orders to continue to earn the kind of money that could fund a mortgage. As for “vulnerable young people”, what are they going to spend money on? Transitioning to another gender? Getting another face tattoo? Undertaking a dodgy vocational training course in the desperate, forlorn hope of escaping their service sector fate? Scott, Leichhardt
RR replies: The thing I admire most about the US, apart from its well thought out gun laws and foreign policy, is that free-enterprise-loving Americans working in hospitality and retail are delighted to receive a handful of food stamps for their labours. What is more, they can be relied on to vote for pro-business candidates promising to make their employment conditions even more flexible! Sadly, until that glorified shop steward Turnbull is rolled by Abbott, the Bolsheviks will retain their iron grip on the industrial relations system and shamelessly exploited wealth creators like you will continue to be the forgotten people in political debates.