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Australian Greens’ Leader calls for big biz tax to bolster nation’s recovery

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Minister Adam Bandt is pushing for profit-making corporations to spend their extra dollars on helping those who are doing it tough.

Greens’ leader Adam Bandt calls for “super-profits” tax

The Australian Greens continue to put big corporations under the microscope, with the party pushing Labor to adopt a new 40 percent tax on the “super-profits” of big business.

Coined the tale of two pandemics, big corporations are making millions while small to medium-sized businesses are on the brink of bankruptcy.

Throughout the course of the pandemic, three mining corporations made $65 billion in profits between them while Harvey Norman increased their profits by 75 percent.

That’s why Greens’ Leader Adam Bandt is pushing for big profit-making corporations to pay more tax in a bid to equalise to the nation.

“During the pandemic, a lot of people have done it really, really tough and we’ve had millions of people lose their incomes,” Bandt says.

“[Meanwhile] big corporations and billionaires have been making out like bandits.”

If this tax was to come into play, Bandt says money owed would go towards including dental and mental health into Medicare while building more affordable housing.

The proposal would only apply to company’s who have a turnover of $100 million, with a focus placed on the mining sector.

Going in a different direction

While the government has previously acted on expert advice to endorse a super profits tax, the Greens plan to take a different approach.

“Some of the big giants like Apple are making huge profits in Australia, but are engaging in complex legal schemes which means that their profits go offshore,” Bandt says.

“We would instead capture the tax on the activity of those big multinationals here in Australia.”

The Greens’ minister says Australia should rely heavily on the profits of big corporations to kick-start the nation’s recovery, especially with many gaining political ground.

Additionally, big corporations are paying labor and liberal governments in donations to avoid paying tax, with Bandt saying the extra cash should be splashed on giving back to the Australian people.

“I think people would rather Clive Palmer send them less texts, and instead pay a bit more tax.”

Bandt’s view on Newscorp’s climate announcement

Moving onto the ongoing climate emergency, Bandt says Newscorp’s latest announcement to end its long standing editorial hostility towards carbon reduction policies and hit net zero emissions by 2050, comes little too late.

A call to action is now in place for more to be done by the news company by 2030, a deadline which was set by scientists.

“If we don’t take action before 2030 then what we do in the decades after may not matter because we will have missed the window of reining in unstoppable climate change.”

The United Nations is calling on Australia to drop the use of coal by 2030, a position heavily supported by the Greens who aim to turn this into legislation.

“That’s what Labour, Liberal and Murdoch need to get behind because by 2050, it could well be too late.”

Written by Rebecca Borg

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Business

Europe is preparing for winter: how can you keep costs down?

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Britain is facing a surge in cold weather, with icy conditions and fog expected for much of this week

The UK Met Office has issued a Yellow warning, which means there could be damage to buildings as Britons brace for cold conditions.

Like much of Europe, the UK are bracing for very strong winds on Wednesday, causing disruption to travel and some utilities.

Drivers are also urged to take extra care on the roads, with warnings in place for icy stretches forming on UK roads.

But some residents who are seeking to heat their homes are on edge, as power prices remain high.

Peter Smith is the director of policy and advocacy at National Energy Action, who said the rising cost of living is impacting Britons.

“The average annual bill has almost doubled since this time last year.”

The organisation seeks to close the gaps when it comes to energy affordability. It predicts 6.7 million UK households will be in fuel poverty in the coming months.

This means millions of Britons will be unable to afford living in a warm, dry and safe home.

“So far the milder than usual weather has protected many from the spiralling bills as they haven’t needed to heat their homes as high or as long as usual,” Mr Smith said.

How to keep warm without blowing your bill

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has urged people to make their own decisions, as he met with world leaders in tropical Bali last week.

“There are things that we can do—all of us—to improve the efficiency with which we use energy, to be careful about it,” he said.

For example, an efficient heater; taking advantage of the sun, where appropriate; and rearranging furniture are some cost-effective methods to reduce the burden on gas and energy bills.

Pipes at the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline are pictured in Germany.

In addition, there are some other cheap ways to reduce dependence on gas and electricity bills, as the temperature continue to plunge.

  • close off rooms you’re not using
  • lower the temperature of heating
  • make sure windows are fully closed
  • block cold drafts from under doors using door snakes or carpet.

The UK Government has placed a cap freeze on energy prices.

This means households will pay an average £2,500 on their energy bills. But there is a catch: if households use more, they pay more.

National Energy Action believes an additional 2.2 million homes could be in fuel poverty, when compared to the same time last year.

Why are energy prices so high?

As demand increases, so too does the cost of heating homes.

But there is another factor, which has sent prices rising across Europe: the war in Ukraine.

Russia accounts for 25% of global gas trade, 15% of global thermal coal trade and 10% of global oil trade.

However, countries are struggling to find alternative supplies after sanctioning Moscow for the ongoing conflict.

“Putin’s abhorrent war in Ukraine, and rising energy prices across the world are not a reason to go slow on climate change. They are a reason to act faster.”

RISHI SUNAK, UK PRIME MINISTER

Germany halted the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which was expected to double the amount of Russian gas shipped to Europe.

In July, Russia cut the amount of gas pumped through Nord Stream 1 to 20 per cent capacity.

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Ukraine Crisis

Hoax call between Polish and “French” Presidents

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Poland President Andrezj Duda spoke to a hoaxer posing as France counterpart Emmanuel Macron, on the night a missile hit near the Poland-Ukraine border.

The news was confirmed after two Russian pranksters, Vovan and Lexus, posted a recording of the incident, and Duda’s office also affirmed the incident.

During the call, Duda was asking who was responsible for the attack on November 15, wanting to avoid a war with Russia.

The missile landed six kilometres from the border.

Initial reports suggested the missile was Russian-made, but it was later discovered to likely be a Ukrainian air defence missile.

This is the second time the pranksters have targeted the Poland President, who have made their names going after celebrities and politicians, especially those opposed to the Kremlin.

ENDS

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Ukraine Crisis

Russian missiles hit NATO territory, killing two

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Russian missile hits Poland, as the west assesses the attack on a NATO member

Reports a Russian missile has landed in Poland, killing two people. A projectile struck an area where grain was drying in the village of Przewodów, near the Ukraine border. 

An anonymous U.S. intelligence official suggested a barrage of Russian missiles hit the Ukrainian power grid, and spilt into neighbouring Poland.

Poland is a NATO member, therefore, this signifies a potential escalation to the ongoing war. It also marks the first time weapons have impacted a NATO country.

Emergency talks

Currently, the Polish government are holding urgent talks. A Polish spokesman Piotr Mueller has confirmed that top leaders are holding an emergency meeting regarding the “crisis situation.”

Under Article 5 of NATO, an attack on one country is considered an attack on all.

The White House has not confirmed the reports but the Pentagon is assessing the situation.

“I don’t want to speculate or get in hypotheticals. When it comes to our security commitments in Article 5—we’ve been crystal clear that we will defend every inch of NATO territory.”

Brig. Gen. Patrick Ryder, the Pentagon Press Secretary

While NATO has taken collective defence measures on several occasions, including in response to the situation in Syria and the Russian invasion of Ukraine—it has only invoked Article 5 once.

For the first time in its history after the 9/11 terrorist attacks against the United States, NATO evoked Article 5 and came to the defence of the United States.

“Terror is not limited to our national borders.

Russian missiles hit Poland. To fire missiles at NATO territory.

This is a Russian missile attack on collective security! This is a very significant escalation. We must act.”

volodymyr zelensky, Ukraine’s president

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