Peter Hehir

Labor leaflets in Summer Hill and Balmain are attempting to allay the fears of residents concerned about the Western Harbour Tunnel (WHT).

A recent City Hub article outlined a scenario in which at some point after the election Labor would do a back flip on their election promise to oppose the WHT.

Well, it appears we did not have to wait that long.

Is anything really going to change in NSW on March 23?

Let’s assume Glad the Impaler [NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian] gets up and we are subjected to another four years of the Coalition’s neo-conservative brutality.

Everything that hasn’t already been sold is then put up for sale, forgoing any pretence of morality or acting in the public good. Public assets segue into private property.

The entire state becomes a private entity, run purely for profit — even the prisons.

And so it begins. Premier Gladys Berejiklian has been hitting the airwaves telling us all how successful she has been at raiding the public pantry and flogging off the spoils.

On the other side of the political divide Labor MP Jo Haylen is busy telling her Summer Hill electorate just how much WestConnex is on the nose — but conveniently neglecting to mention that her party is right behind WestConnex.

An ever growing number of Sydneysiders are now aware that WestConnex will not solve Sydney’s traffic problems — instead it will only worsen the chaos.

Many also see that its $16.8 billion budget has been seriously underestimated: it is more like the $45 billion that SGS Economics, the private contractor engaged by the City of Sydney indicated. This figure includes the additional work needed to connect the tollway with local road networks, costs that were deliberately excluded to downplay the project spend.

Here’s a novel idea: Instead of politicians voting themselves another pay rise, how about we give them a pay cut? A real pay cut. We ask them to do what a couple of million Australians are expected to do, week in and week out.

When is enough, enough? The latest assessments of the new round of tax cuts for the top end of town indicate that that they will definitely be better off.

But why, I find myself asking? How in all conscience can those with money to burn press for a bigger slice of the pie when they already have much more than they’ll ever need, at a time when there are so many living below the poverty line?

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