A briefing to delegates at the Bonn climate change negotiations
Only 2% of national tax revenues come from gambling. But the ethics, economics, and fairness of gambling taxes are becoming a critical issue as ‘the global economy’ challenges the sovereignty of governments. The ever-narrowing range of revenue options has left state governments with little choice but to conform with nearby jurisdictions pursuing expansionary gambling policies. This paper looks at the issues involved in the gambling tax debate including Australia’s federal system and ethics in public policy.
In April 1997 the Australia Institute published Native Title: Implications for land management (Discussion Paper No. 11). It was highly successful, with hundreds of copies circulating around Australia from Parliament House in Canberra to remote communities in Western Australia. The success of that paper was proof of the craving for clearly presented information about indigenous property rights. This paper aims to update and develop further the arguments and information presented in the first paper and contribute to a solution that is fair and workable.
This paper examines the role of economic models in the formulation of climate change policies in Australia. Particular emphasis is given to the MEGABARE model constructed by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics. The Government has drawn heavily on the results of MEGABARE to support its argument that uniform abatement targets would be too costly for Australia and would impose an unfair burden on this country. The evidence provided in this paper shows that the model construction, its use in greenhouse policy analysis and the interpretation of the results have been biased in ways that exaggerate the economic costs of reducing emissions.
It has long been recognised that GDP growth does not correlate well with changes in social welfare, i.e. national well-being. The GPI adjusts GDP by 23 factors that reflect some of the social and environmental costs of economic growth to give a better measures of changes in national prosperity. This paper explores these issues in the context of describing the methodological approach of the Australian GPI. The results show that a sharp divergence between GDP and the GPI has opened up since the 1970s.