The Barnett government in Western Australia delivered its budget last month. A deficit of $3.9 billion is forecast by the end of the year. Unemployment is at 6.75% and the incomes of workers are falling. A further contraction of the economy is forecast for the third year running.
Against this backdrop the state government is in crisis. Recent polls show the Labor opposition is leading the government 54-46 on a two party preferred basis. This is a dramatic turnaround from the last state election. Big business is calling for Barnett to be dumped as leader before the next state election planned for March 2017.
While Labor is benefitting from the government’s unpopularity most people have no real enthusiasm for them. Labor says that they would be better economic managers than the Liberals but what they mean is that they too would rule for the rich. Labor refuse give any commitments about stopping job losses, ending cuts to services or halting privatisations.
Working people in WA, and across all of Australia, need a party of their own – a party based on socialist policies that will fight to use the wealth created to fund a decent standard of living for all.
By Mick Suter