Australian Citizens Party Citizens Taking Responsibility



The great rebellion against bad banking spreads!

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Lead Editorial

6 September 2023
Vol. 25 No. 36

This week the Australian Citizens Party wrote to every local councillor in Australia, updating them on the campaign for a national post office People’s Bank, and the fight against the major banks leaving communities without essential financial services.

The councillors represent the communities which are being smashed economically by banks pushing to go 100 per cent digital and using their oligopoly power to force the whole country to go with them, regardless of the damage to people and communities.

The banks only have this oligopoly power because the Commonwealth and State governments have vacated the field by privatising all public banks, leaving the whole economic fabric of society at the mercy of decisions the private banks make to maximise their short-term profits and control. Even so, it’s stunning that the Commonwealth and States have not intervened to order the banks to stop their aggressive dismantling of essential financial services infrastructure.

Local councils, however, the level of democratic government closest to the people, are recognising that the very survival of their communities is at stake and are starting to stand up and take on the banks in the way the Commonwealth and States aren’t doing.

Temora Independent headline
The Temora Independent on 1 September 2023.

At least 16 local councils have now passed motions endorsing the ACP’s public post office bank policy, the latest, Temora Shire in NSW, in direct response to NAB closing the local branch. The Temora Independent newspaper has given extensive coverage to the bank closures issue and the ACP’s public post bank solution.

More councils have replied to the ACP’s update this week indicating they are putting the issue on their agenda. Councils are also keen to band together against bank closures, putting up a united front against NAB for instance, which has closed or announced the closure of 40 regional branches this year in outright defiance of the current Senate inquiry into bank closures.

Waroona Shire in WA, one of the latest towns to be informed by NAB that its branch is closing, reported to the ACP that NAB’s announcement came a week after the local paper reported that Waroona was recognised as having the third highest net internal migration of any regional shire in Australia in 2022- 23—206 per cent!

Waroona proves that NAB isn’t closing branches because demand has fallen or regions are in decline, but only because it intends to force its customers to go 100 per cent digital; however, removing an essential service by closing the branch puts the town at risk.

Around Australia 13 towns currently face losing their NAB branches, and are talking about rebelling against NAB together—watch this space!

The rebellion spread to Parliament this week, where a Liberal Senator voted with the Greens and other crossbench parties against his own party to stand up to the banks.

Senator Gerard Rennick, who also established the Senate inquiry into bank closures and advocates for a public bank, was the only major-party Senator to vote for Greens Senator Nick McKim’s amendments to the Financial Accountability Regime bill, to include million-dollar personal fines for dodgy bankers.

Personal civil penalties for bankers had been a recommendation of the 2018 banking royal commission— why should the banks pay fines for bad conduct, which the shareholders end up paying, but the executives who made the decisions to blame for the bad conduct get away scott-free?

Initially, both the Liberals and Labor supported personal fines for executives, until Anna Bligh and the Australian Banking Association lobbied them to drop the measure, and both caved. Last November, the Greens negotiated an agreement with Labor to again include the personal fines, but Anna Bligh called Treasurer Jim Chalmers and Assistant Treasurer Stephen Jones and Labor backflipped again.

The banks are confident they have the Liberals in the bag, and while McKim’s amendments didn’t succeed, Senator Rennick’s vote is another demonstration of the rapidly spreading rebellion against corrupt banking power.

In this issue:

  • The political crime of removing Christine Holgate over $20,000 has now cost Australia Post 10,000 times more
  • Time to open ASIC’s black box
  • Brace for a decade of Bowen’s blackouts
  • PwC learnings: Put government back in charge of policy
  • Political Amnesia
  • Austrian chancellor pushes constitutional protection for cash
  • Jerome Powell marches to oblivion
  • Busting up the bankers’ dictatorship
  • More Banks to Fail? Not in North Dakota


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Page last updated on 10 September 2023