The Guardian July 26, 2000


GST Week Three: More Lies!

As week three of the GST bloodsucking frenzy descended on us, further 
gaping holes in Howard's promise of "no-one will be worse off" 
appeared.

This week the banks joined the fray, going for the consumer's jugular with 
another round of fee increases.

Worried that the GST would eat into their billion dollar profits, they have 
decided to pass these costs on to their customers with higher interest 
rates on home loans, and account servicing fee increases.

The Commonwealth Bank alone expects to snatch a further $70,000,000 from 
customers' pockets.

The Chairman of the ACCC, Alan Fells, has stated he is happy with the 
increases, as long as banks do not "profit" from them.

When asked what checks would be in place to ensure that did not happen, all 
he could offer was "we will have the banks under scrutiny for the next two 
years."

Workers, get out your wallets...

Food: The greatest GST lie of all has been exposed by a Labor survey 
on everyday food and grocery prices.

Howard promised that the price of everyday items would be in line with ACCC 
forecasts, yet the survey has shown that many items have jumped in price, 
or the price has fallen a lot less than promised.

Using volunteers to collect information across 20 electorates nationwide, 
they found that CSR sugar was up four per cent opposed to the ACCC 
forecasting a decrease of 1.2 per cent.

Kellogs Cornflakes up two per cent (forecast -1 per cent) and orange juice 
fell only 2.2 per cent, (forecast -10 per cent).

In blow to women Carefree Regular Tampons are up 12 per cent, and the price 
of glass of beer down at the local has risen 14 per cent.

Stamps: In the best example of GST lunacy yet, Australia Post has announced 
that it will need to issue two different sets of stamps. Letters and 
parcels destined for overseas do not incur the GST while those posted 
within Australia do.

In an effort to prevent people from "misusing" their stamps and avoiding 
the GST, a special "international issue" will be produced. A headache for 
customers and postal workers alike!

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