ERROL PARKER | Editor-at-large | Contact

The Prime Minister has lashed suggestion that the Australian Tax Office’s (ATO) new witch hunting algorithm is just another incarnation of the infamous RobotDebt saga, telling reporters in Canberra today that there are some key differences between the two.

Earlier this morning, it was announced that the ATO was “reviving” a number of debts once considered “uneconomical” to pursue previously. Upwards of $15bn is missing from the public purse because of these debts and it’s something Anthony Albanese wants to recover.

The scheme is arguably more sophisticated and targeting less vulnerable Australians when compared to RoboDebt but that hasn’t stopped criticism from some in the taxpaying community; that it’s a lazy and unimaginative method to plug holes in the economy.

One of the key differences between the two predator debt collection schemes was outlined by Mr Albanese this morning.

“The ATO’s robot is actually a member of Canberra’s queer community,” said Mr Albanese.

“Because, uh, representation matters. At the appropriate level bureaucracy. It’s good to, uh, have some cut from that cloth. The rainbow cloth, uh, yeah. When, uh, I first heard of this scheme, I was a bit trepidatious about it being a good thing but, uh, we found the right candidate,”

“They are, uh, while, uh, gay or, uh, what have you, queer or non-binary, uh, yes. They’re also, uh, a quarter Laotian. Very unlike the brutal, rugby union enjoying RoboDebt robot of the previous government. That, uh, RoboDebt robot wore chinos and RM Williams boots, also a blue gingham Gazman shirt. Perched upon the robot’s head, was, uh, a peaked Wallabies cap, bleached from the sun. Not good. The ATO robot actually, uh, was on the Australian Tax Office float in the, uh, Sydney Mardi Gras. I was, uh, supposed to be on the Lockheed Martin one but I had, uh, a clash,”

“So, uh, as I have said previously, uh, it matters to have representation. Even in sectors such as this one.”

The Advocate reached out to the ATO for comment but have yet to receive a reply.


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