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From the Desk of the Executive Director

Ken Phillips is co-founder and Executive Director of Independent Contractors of Australia. He is a published authority on independent contractor issues and directs research on related commercial and trade practices issues. Through his numerous articles in newspapers and think-tank and academic journals, Ken is known for approaching issues from outside normal perspectives and is frequently sought out for media comment.

Victoria is building the conditions for a recession

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Recessions can be politically induced. In Victoria, there are flashing red signals to suggest that scenario may be developing.

Let’s begin with last week’s Victorian budget.

The previous Coalition government spent four years keeping public sector wages under control. They had a ‘war’ with just about every public sector employee group and suffered electoral backlash as a result. More...


Small retailers will suffer the ultimate penalty

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

The political uproar that is the debate over penalty rates could almost be a hysterical comedy written for Australians by the ghost of Shakespeare.

Think of it. Some months ago as Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s popularity polling was crashing, he dared utter the thought bubble that penalty rates should be reformed. There was uproar from his surrogate political opponents, the union movement, headed by the ACTU. More...


Toll takeover should come with a TWU warning

Monday, February 23, 2015

The offer by Japan Post to purchase Toll Holdings looks like a smart move by the Japanese as explained by Robert Gottliebsen earlier this week (The Toll takeover exposes our institutions' ignorance, February 18)

Over the last eight years, Toll has built a logistics footprint into Asia that the Japanese clearly value, as is reflected in the significant premium they’re prepared to pay. More...


Victoria must brace for an election wrecking ball

Friday, September 05, 2014

In many respects, Victorian voters will have to choose between a Coalition government and a CFMEU-controlled Labor government at the looming state election.

The CFMEU has dominated the headlines in recent weeks, with evidence from the Royal Commission into union corruption unearthing serious allegations that it has engaged in potentially criminal behaviour. Its links with prominent crime figures have also come under scrutiny.  More...


How Abbott is rebuilding the construction landscape

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

There are plenty of naïve people at the big end of town who haven’t yet realised the extent to which the Abbott government is changing the landscape of business in Australia.

The first dramatic signals came early this year when the government announced the end of corporate welfare. This had substance, with the rejection of taxpayer bailouts to Holden, Toyota, Coca Cola’s subsidiary SPC Ardmona and Qantas. The message to corporations was straightforward: grow up and stop your dependency on taxpayers! More...


Saying no to corporate welfare

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has promised to do away with corporate welfare. Thank goodness!

Corporate welfare is effectively a business prop, most frequently for big businesses that aren’t well run. In the last 16 years $30 billion has been given to car manufacturers. What’s that achieved?  Mostly wasted money and painful delays to the ultimate closures of Ford and Holden! More...


Holden: The car maker's Australian exit is a good thing

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Thank goodness Holden is finally leaving Australia. The pain is over and no longer will ordinary Australian taxpayers and small business people have to pay to keep Holden going.

Yes, unions are crying ''What about the poor workers!'' Poor workers? These are privileged workers. More...


Political card tricks

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Small business people lose out under Abbott government. Incompetent big business wins

Last week the Abbott government did two things that signal it as a big business, big union, big government operation. This is probably surprising to most people who thought the Coalition was a union hater. But not so!  More...


IR deals hog-tie Holden

Friday, September 20, 2013

It was only the middle of last year that Ford announced it was closing. Now Holden is making the same threat, not directly but through what it seems is its chief lobbyist, the South Australian Labor government. This time, Holden is saying it wants another $275 million from government or it closes. More...


Caution will reign in the Abbott government

Friday, September 20, 2013

Now that it’s clear that Labor and the Greens have lost control of the Senate as well as government, the nature of Tony Abbott as national leader comes into sharper focus. As prime minister, Abbott has the numbers (with reasoned Senate negotiation) to effectively govern.   More...



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