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The Forum > Article Comments > Economic tricks > Comments

Economic tricks : Comments

By Adrian Pagan, published 22/1/2008

So abolishing WorkChoices would cost up to 400,000 jobs? Let's take another look at those figures ...

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I agree with the author. The insistence that workchoices was responsable for creating jobs in an already tight labour market is absolute garbage. I watched a local business sack it's entire workforce, offer them their jobs back for less and then replace them with (presumably) cheaper AWA workers when they refused. The business did not appear to hire one single more staff member and the price of what they were selling did not come down. The employees did not benefit, the customer did not benefit - Gee, I wonder where the cost saving went?

Why would workchoices prompt employers to hire more than they needed? Recruitment and training costs are very expensive. If you are not obliged to pay penalty rates, shift allowances etc and you can sack someone on a whim, then it becomes more economical in many cases to simply make existing employees work as many hours as possible on the single ordinary time rate.

Workchoices was simply about a transfer of power from employee to employer. The proponents of such a scheme must have assumed that too few people would have been negatively affected to make a difference to the vote or that those not (yet)been affected would not care what happened to their friends, relatives, countrymen etc. I fail to see how introducing a policy that effectively allowed for the lowering of many people's ability to consume in such a consumption based society made good economic sense.
Posted by Fozz, Thursday, 24 January 2008 7:46:26 PM
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