Keywords: Budget 2014

  • MARGARET DOOLEY AWARD

    Inequality matters

    • Harry Maher
    • 20 August 2014
    14 Comments

    Inequality is dangerous. And inequality is at a near all-time high. At its core, the Government’s recent budget not only engenders but actively exults in the creation and maintenance of inequality, a phenomenon rapidly expanding not just in Australia, but around the world.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    The unjustified secrecy of the Abbott Government

    • Jack Maxwell
    • 11 August 2014
    17 Comments

    Liberal democracies keep secrecy in check. Where secrecy is justified, this justification should itself be public. The Abbott Government has withheld important information from the public on questionable grounds, and it has shielded itself from criticism by stifling debate on whether that secrecy is justified.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Abbott's Team Australia must include jobless young Muslims

    • Michael Mullins
    • 11 August 2014
    18 Comments

    The Prime Minister's Team Australia campaign will only work with policies of social inclusion. The Budget’s harsh and divisive welfare rules will drive young Muslim unemployed into the hands Islamic radicals. Church welfare agencies have suggested a solution by way of an independent entitlements commission to ensure welfare payments are fair. 

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  • RELIGION

    Learning from the homeless

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 07 August 2014
    9 Comments

    Contrary to the message of this year's Federal Budget, there is much more to people than their ability to work. When we come to know the disadvantaged well we are often impressed as much by their resilience as by their great need and their fragility. Their worth is not defined by their economic contribution.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Time to take on the welfare sceptics

    • Catherine Magree
    • 29 July 2014
    22 Comments

    Imagine how the quality of the debate would improve if those who blamed the victims of poverty and illness for their plight were publicly labelled welfare sceptics or denialists, and forced to back up their claims. Social research academics would be thrust into the spotlight. If this issue received the scrutiny it deserves in the media there would be a sea change in attitudes to poverty, unemployment and income support over time.

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  • EDUCATION

    More to tertiary education shake-up than $100,000 degrees

    • Neil Ormerod
    • 25 July 2014
    3 Comments

    Christopher Pyne's proposed changes to tertiary education place many theological providers in an interesting situation. We have seen a number of theological colleges enter into relationships with universities to assist with their financial bottom line, in the face of falling support from their church constituencies. If private providers are to receive government funding directly, we could see some of these arrangements begin to fall apart.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Clive Palmer's world of surprises

    • Michael Mullins
    • 14 July 2014
    9 Comments

    Clive Palmer is thwarting some of the inequities in the Coalition’s Budget and legislative program. He appears to stand for policy that is confused and inconsistent, and possibly self-interested. But in joining hands with Al Gore he has shown himself capable of forging alliances with business and other entrepreneurs, for the common good of humanity. Fellow mining magnate Twiggy Forrest got together with Pope Francis to promote the abolition of slavery. Perhaps the Pope is on Clive’s list.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Why the excluded are still waiting

    • John Falzon
    • 01 July 2014
    29 Comments

    The Government's McClure interim welfare report is predicated on the big lie that welfare is the problem and the market is the solution. The long wait of the excluded for some of the wealth and resources, for some of the hope to trickle down, is one of the most audacious con jobs in modern history. It is not misfortune. It is not a mistake. It is not the fault of the excluded. It is an attack against ordinary people who are made to bear the burden of inequality.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Emergency relief fall guys for a heartless government

    • Mike Bowden
    • 30 June 2014
    37 Comments

    A week ago I get a phone call from the CEO of Northern Territory Vinnies, for whom I am council secretary. Could I come in and sign a letter about emergency relief before the next council meeting? 'Of course.' The letter is produced and, being conscientious, I actually read it. The Federal Government is offering Darwin Vinnies additional ER funds for the rest of the year. And I stop. I am not comfortable.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Abbott's Australia beds American Calvinism

    • Lawrence Cross
    • 27 June 2014
    30 Comments

    While a number of Cabinet ministers are Christian, their policies seem to lack any Christian emphasis on caring for the poor and disadvantaged. America's interpretation of Christianity is heavily influenced by the doctrine of the theologian John Calvin, according to whom the rich who work hard for their wealth are preparing themselves for heaven, while the poor not only deserve their plight, but may well be abandoned by God.

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  • EDUCATION

    Harvard professor defies Australian class warfare

    • Catherine Marshall
    • 27 June 2014
    13 Comments

    Amidst a whirl of media interviews and meetings, David Sinclair, professor of genetics at Harvard University and one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people in the world for 2014, paid a visit to his alma mater: a state school in suburban Sydney. State schools aren't the repositories of children too impoverished or unintelligent for the alternative; they're the living manifestation of democracy, egalitarianism, multiculturalism and ecumenism.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    No, Mr Hockey, the Budget is not fair

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 19 June 2014
    28 Comments

    Many Australians, myself included, believed that the Federal Budget was unfair. So Treasurer Joe Hockey's recent speech in defence of its fairness offers a welcome challenge. Hockey is right to insist that fairness can co-exist with gradations of wealth within society. But fairness is incompatible with gross disparity of wealth because the concentration of wealth in the hands of few people and corporations destroys equality of opportunity.

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