Monday, November 12, 2012

ATO "shock and awe" with non-bureaucrat appointee

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An interesting development has occurred in Australia of late. The Gillard government has appointed a former advisor to ex-PM John Howard to be the new Australian Tax Commissioner. More interesting still is the fact that Chris Jordan is a former policeman. This decision is VERY INTERESTING for several reasons:
1. Its Labor appointing a 'Liberal man' - that is one way to avoid controversy - keep it bipartisan
2. Its Labor reaching out to the community with a non-bureaucrat, i.e. a candidate who is purportedly 'of the people'. We'll see if that's the case when his remuneration package kicks in, and when he comes to face some pretty compelling ethical conflicts raised by taxation. Its like appointing one of us. Well, one of you, because I don't sanction extortion. I don't vote for these idiots in power. I will not give people my 'power of attorney'....not anyone, and most particularly I don't give it to strangers. You never renounce your personal never accept without never disempower yourself. This is what this succession of governments ask of you...just as they sent thousands of Australians to Gallipoli to die for some cause they did not understand. Nope, you people are slaves and they will work you to your last breathe. They did not give women the vote to give them 'rights'; they wanted to give them 'responsibilities', so they could enter the tax system. You might wonder why Australian productivity did not rise with increased women in the workforce; its because there was a corresponding inefficiency with endlessly growing government and tax receipts. 
3. Its Labor appointing a former 'police officer' to head a pretty dirty business. Yes, basically the tax office is an agency with a legal sanction to extort wealth. Now, this is important because this policeman was previously working in a role where his job was to arrest extortionists. Now his job description is be the "chief extorter", as head of the tax office. This is no paradox; this was a political decision. We are in the midst of a financial crisis, and the government is attempting to bring as much credibility into tax collections as their thinking, there is no better way that appointing a former policeman.

Of course, it should make no difference to us; just as we have soldiers who don't understand justice; who rap women on the front line, so we have policemen who are corrupt, who just have no moral conviction. This candidate says he comes into the job with no preconceptions; but he will enter the field with some moral reference. Maybe its biblical, maybe its pragmatic, but rest assured that he is not there for his conviction to wind back or abolish the tax system. He will be a man with a great deal of moral ambivalence; and he will get away with it because such is the nature of our unethical, unaccountable tax system. His job is secure, as most extortionists are, because they have the assurity and security of an intimidating force behind him. In his case, its the pretensions of justice that come with legal justifcations, the threat of force (from police, military and legislature). The pack of them have no backbone....but what as they evade that knowledge with appeals to 'social values', 'stability', 'the common good', the value of public resources. I'm not impressed by any of these arguments because they are used as a basis for forced compliance, systematic ineptitude, and cause far worse consequences than they would ever admit. 

Stop slavery and repudiate their claim to your sovereign right to exist - for your own sake - not for theirs. That does not have to mean your existence is a claim on others; it means that 'dog-eat-dog' is their philosophy, despite the rhetoric of 'common good'. They exist for their own sakes; and rejection of their 'sanction' and the recognition of a principled existence is a framework for entering my kingdom - the realm of a human being with self-respect. A human being who does not make arbitrary or incoherent claims upon others lives, and who does not allow others to make such claims upon him. 

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