Only a couple of thoughts on the budget.
First, if the coalition were serious about the debt, they wouldn’t be buying billion-dollar aircraft that don’t work. I mean – Who TF do we expect to be shooting? The real reason for the purchase is that military hardware is how the USA extracts tribute from its subject nations.
The USA is an empire, after all, and every empire takes tribute. That’s kinda how they work. The money for the needless planes goes to the defense companies, and they provide employment to the commons and bribes (Sorry! Campaign contributions) to the politicians.
Second, the cruelty of the new dole system: six months on, six months off. If you have no money, you cannot get a job. You don’t have a phone/mailing address, can’t get to interviews, can’t dress for them, can’t get to work for those crucial two weeks before your first pay. Participating in straight society has a barrier to entry. It’s low, but it’s there.
Much like their seven-dollar co-pay, the coalition just does not understand that some people regularly have no money at all.
So what will people do?
Well – many people will beg for money during those six months off. Live off charity organised and unorganised. Expect even more beggars in Civic (Yes, peoples: what they are doing is properly called “begging”. Why should we be comfortable using that word when we are talking about Calcutta, but flinch to admit that that’s what it is here in Canberra? Too Dickensian for you?)
Other people will pair up, form little groups, and share their dole communally. Families, most obviously. The best way to survive this regime is to be a pot-smoking bogan in a family with six adult kids, all on the dole. Another option might be a tiny religious sect.
Thing is: one of the main things you must do to become a productive member of society is to get yourself away from certain people. This budget makes that impossible, because the people you most need to get away from are people who you will most likely be depending on in six months time when your dole stops.
Look, I understand why Australia was sick and tired of the Rudd/Gillard soap opera. It’s heads down and weather the next three years. Lots of people won’t. The Greens did not do a good job of distancing themselves from Labour, so it might be time for another minor party along the lines of the Australian Democrats.