1. The Morrison government has handed down its Federal Budget, claiming it to be the most important since World War II. Certainly, there are some historic numbers in there, including an almost $1 trillion national debt by 2024. But rather than trawl through the thing, here are the biggest policy takeaways and what the next few years might look like.
2. As with any Budget, there are bound to be trade-offs in where you splash taxpayer cash, inevitably producing winners and losers. From economists who think the government may have overplayed its hand, to a tech sector glad to still be standing, this is how different parts of ‘Team Australia’ have reacted thus far.
3. For the average clock puncher, there’s one government policy above all else that is probably going to grab their attention. Tax cuts. Backdating stage two cuts to July this year means workers on $120,000 or more are going to pocket as much as $60 extra a week out of their pay when the changes become effective. Those on less will stand to gain less, but will still pocket some walking around money.
4. For those who missed it, the RBA has kept interest rates on hold at 0.25%. While there’s been some speculation to the contrary, the central bank was keen to see what the federal government was planning before firing off what could be its last cash rate cut. Economist David Bassanese last night said the RBA might not cut at all this year now the feds have gone so hard out of the gate.
5. After 10 years, Instagram is now sparing a thought for its creators. The social media platform, owned by Facebook, has pledged to help its creators make a living wage, unveiling a new e-commerce measure among other changes. Better late than never, I suppose.
6. Not to be outdone, Aldi is also promising to do better. The supermarket behemoth says it will slash its use of plastics over the next five years, following sustained criticism from customers, particularly for wrapping so much of its fresh produce.
7. If you found the Budget all a bit much, perhaps it’s time to hit the road. Well, take inspiration from this Australian couple who converted a full-size school bus into a house on wheels. They’ve been travelling around the country ever since and have plans of slowing down just yet.
8. An Australian conservative columnist managed to get Trump temporarily locked out from Twitter. The US President tweeted Miranda Devine’s New York Post email address, thus violating Twitter policy after she wrote an article praising him and criticising Biden. Ironic then that Devine should be the reason her preferred candidate be frozen out of his favourite form of communication, even inadvertently.
9. Similarly, it’s interesting to see which presidential candidate is preferred by big tech. A new report claims Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google employees have shelled out $US4.8 million to support Joe Biden since 2019 — and just $US240,000 for President Trump.
10. Apple might be about to make a big move into audio products. The company has removed rivals like Bose, Sonos, and Logitech from its stores just as rumours and reports suggest it may launch new audio gadgets of its own. Specifically, there’s some hype that a pair of premium over-ear headphones and a new HomePod speaker are on their way this year.
The gun-toting lawyers who went viral for pointing firearms at St Louis protesters in June have been charged for gun offences as well as evidence tampering and face jail time. Live by the meme, die by the meme, I say.