I’ve Been Absent – I’d Get A Note From the Doctor but:


After the funk of Wednesday seeped into Thursday and my brain synapses devolved to that of a root vegetable I am happy to say that Friday has me fighting fit.  Which is a good thing considering our latest federal budget as it seems it’s not enough for us to pay a medicare levy each fortnight out of our pay and then on top of that pay a penalty levy of over $1000 come tax time for not taking out private health insurance.

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No Joe – you’re creating it for the rich as we speak.

NO it seems that our government has decided that we have to pay an extra co-payment each time we go to the doctor, pathologist or have an x-ray as well as an increase of $5 on each prescription item.  To make this extra fun for the family they’ve also removed the family tax benefit which will pull between $80 to $100 a fortnight out of the take home pay of the average wage earner with a family.

Not to mention your children will be paying more for higher education that ever before with higher rates of repayment and lowering the amount needed to be earned to start making the payment. Should they find themselves unable to find employment they will be eligible for support for only six months of the year and only after some serious hoop jumping.

134159-c6977be0-d846-11e3-8125-0ad81a58de5eJust in case we get too cosy we now have to fear a future where the age to receive the seniors pension has been increased to 70 years, after all can’t have all those oldies just sitting around lollygagging now can we.  After a life time of work it seems our government feels that it is being too generous to those who have been the working backbone of this nation for the past 50 years and has decided to not only increase the age requirement but reduce the value of assets owned as part of the means test.  Just the thing to keep these old folks busy, selling the family home that they have worked all their lives to own to eke out an existence at a time in their lives when they should be enjoying the benefit of all the taxes they have paid during their working years.

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It was this combined with cuts to Australian families that has sent supporters into a tailspin

Of course big business and mining has got its mention in this budget – they will have the heavy burden of tax breaks and the removal of the carbon tax as well as subsidized fuel for mining companies and their employees while the rest of Australia can expect an increase of about 4 cents per litre.

The truly interesting thing about this budget is the overall shock Australia wide, even from conservative radio and TV shock jocks who normally have public orgasms over LNP policies.

This time they seem to be unified in the utter disbelief of the blatant and unabashed lies of Joe Hockey [the Treasure] as he tries to say that this government has kept its promises to the people when in actual fact they have broken every single one of them other than those related to big business and the carbon tax. [which let’s face it we wouldn’t have called them on for breaking those ones]

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You campaigned on these promises, you gained power under these conditions – you’ve betrayed this country.

It is also these blatant lies told during the election campaign that has led to the petition to call for a double dissolution of parliament by the Greens, the Independents and the Labor Party.  Should you wish to show your support please follow the link in this sentence to the Change Org Petition and let this government know that they will be held accountable.

If you watch Abbott’s face during the speeches over the last few days when he is called to account for the lies he spoke the only way you can describe it is to call it what it is – Smirking.  He’s smirking and I would like to know why he seems so little troubled by what is really something very serious. The lies he told were not inferred, implied or referred.  He clearly stated these promises on which he campaigned with billboards on No Cuts to Education, No Cuts to Health, No Cuts to the Pension along with a number of others and he has broken each of them.  He gained office on the basis of these promises and has disregarded the wants and needs of the population by breaking all of them.  I want an explanation of how a person, one supposed to be a servant of the people, can justify this behavior to the extent that he finds being called on it amusing.

33 thoughts on “I’ve Been Absent – I’d Get A Note From the Doctor but:

    • I think what worries me the most is the lack of any sort of fear or apology – it makes me wonder why they feel so safe. In extreme conspiracy mode I would say that Abbott knowing he was most likely there for one term only is making friends with big business so as to ensure a plush job when leaving office.

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      • I absolutely agree, Jenni. It makes me wonder, actually, about the link between NPD and positions of power. Narcissists are notorious for their lack of empathy, their sense of personal entitlement and their rage when criticised. I think Top Dog status attracts the Narc – and that this may go some way to explaining why so many politicians pay lip service to real people’s feelings and needs whilst actually feathering their own nests and giving not a shit. xxx

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      • Yes, isn’t he just? The reason these bastards are so hard to identify is the fact that they appear so charming and persuasive when going after what they want. By the time you wake up and smell the rancid coffee of their triumph and your defeat (personally and globally), it is too late – and you cannot get rid of them. xxx

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      • Well we’re working on it – he’s a complete throwback, sexist, racist and elitist all wrapped up in one smarmy bundle. Bleh!!

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  1. In this article, https://newmatilda.com/2014/05/13/rich-and-rhetoric-won-day I read that this budget provides for $8.8 billion “given, rather mysteriously, to the Reserve Bank.”
    It’s global, Jenni. I’ve signed the petition. It needs to be stopped.
    By the way, I don’t know if your political system works the same as ours. A budget must be supported in the legislature – if there are not enough votes, i.e. a non-confidence vote leads to an election. This just happened here in our province of Ontario. We are going to the polls in June.

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    • Sadly for the first time in history the LNP has the majority in both houses, however I have the feeling that a number of their own will cross the floor to block significant pieces of this bill. I knew it would be bad but I never imagined it would be this devastating for the average person.

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  2. That is unbelievable Jenni. Even the “business subsidies” for mining are so wrong that a first year economics student would object. Offering a subsidy in the form of reduced fuel prices is to encourage comanies to use more fuel than they need for it is not valued as much by the end user. That’s unreal. And removing carbon tax? Again, they will not pay attention to carbon produced by fuel burning or processing by products. If the intent is to subsidize (and giving public money to companies who are taking common resources for free is never a good plan), then the proper way would be to subsidize for reduced environmental impact and/or energy used per ton of prduct produced. A lot of these costs are world wide (world crude pricing and carbon taxes) – so, in essence Australia is paying mining companies with public money to pollute the air and environment. Sure glad they are your government and not ours.

    We have socialized health care here in Canada as well, so I can relate to the health care costs. Adding co-payment for doctor visits, tests, etc. is closer to the private health care system the US has and that is such a serious failure that they are trying with an omnibus bill to implement mandatory insurance – which is seriously failing. Fewer and fewer Americans can afford health care and many are going without. In the end this cost is transferred to society in the form of higher costs for less services. It also reduces the middle class and empowers the upper class, for whom health care is not a challenge , hence they can remain healthier and live longer wih less pain and more quality of life.

    As far as increasing the age of retirement is concerned, this is becoming more common in other countries. Although a jump to 70 is pretty harsh. Canada has increased it to 67 or 68 for those retiring after 2024. There are a bunch of reasons for this and in total they are compelling. (i.e. the reduction in lifetime physical labor is leaving people in better shape at an older age and more able to do the jobs available; the reduction of the birth rate means that a smaller workforce is supporting a larger retired group; many object to mandatory retirement at the current age like academics, professionals, etc, who want a later retirement age; an increase in life expectancy which would suggest a longer work-life; etc.)

    All in all, that has to be the most damaging regressive budget I’ve ever seen implemented by a democratic country. And it also breaks every written promise made by the goverment that resulted in their election. You know, if a business took customers’ money based on a contract (and contracts can be verbal as well as written) and then reneged on services delivered – they can be charged for fraud (among other things) and, in extreme cases, the owners can be fined and jailed (at least here in Canada) and the business shut down. I don’t undersatnd why these laws do not apply to political promises as well. After all, seeking power as a representative government and then, after the election deliberately refusing to honor verbal contractual obligations and not acting in the best interests of the voters, is fraud and should be prosecuted as such.

    Good Luck in seeking representative government Jenni.

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    • The sheer audacity of it still shocks me. I don’t expect white knights in politics but this time they’re not even pretending to keep their word. There is a great deal of other cuts to social services and all of these effect those who will suffer the most for it. Those with wealth are not affected at all and in some cases are now better off under this budget.

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      • The very best definition of “civilized” that I have ever heard is: a nation that that treats the most vulnerable of its members including the elderly, the young, the disenfranchised, the poor and the sick, with care, respect and awareness. It seems your new budget is attacking all of those groups in one fell swoop. This says something very important about how civilized your current government is acting. This is an unqualified step backwards in the evolution of a fair and representative government in Australia. It brings up some very serious questions to other world governments and citizens who are watching, regarding the quality and survival of Australia and its citizens. Are we going to soon start receiving Australian refugees whose lives can be shown to be endangered by your government’s policies? And are your mining subsidy policies going to effect world trade (WTO demands that members do not subsidize products or commodities that are exported) such that sanctions against Australian goods will be necessary? All good questions (amongst many others) that will concern other countries about your new budget and current government.

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  3. My son (who is not stupid) did a brief recap of the main budget money-reshuffling on Facebook. (Sam Meikle if you want to look.) It ended like this:

    We had a birthright once. Hard won and not always easy to protect, but worth the blood, sweat and tears spilled for it.

    Universal health coverage. Accessible education. Freedom and opportunity.

    Don’t stand for anything less.

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  4. Yes, I am up at 3:30 in the morning. Couldn’t sleep 🙂
    Some good news is that I had a drink with a colleague after work tonight and she is a LIVID ex-Abbott voter as from Tuesday night. Completely outraged. I think that even liberal voters have a heart and cannot fathom the atrocious attacks on the underprivileged, medicare, pensions and education; not to forget expecting blue-collar workers to crawl around ceiling cavities or digging trenches at the age of 70.
    Great post and I do so admire your courage in speaking out.

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    • I’ve been a little caught up this weekend myself with the whole lack of proper sleep thing but I’m not surprised to hear about your friend. I know many who are so shocked by this budget and horrified that they voted for the LNP. Take care and I hope the sleep fairy pays you a visit – if she does remind her to visit me too.

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  5. I can’t say I’m surprised by the budget. This is exactly what I expected of Abbott and the depression I went into at his election seems to have been warranted. I am horrified at the changes that are proposed to the very services that make equality in this country possible. I grew up when universities were only accessible to the wealthy and we fought hard to make it possible for all to attend, for health care to be universal and social services to be available. What is proposed totally isolates one section of the community from any help whatsoever. I’ve signed the petition and hopefully people power and the senate may neutralise some of these plans. Having spoken to Abbott myself I know he is never going to act on climate change and when he spoke to me he had the same smirk on his face as he has done of late on the television. I’d like to do what my parents always threatened to do to me and my brother and wipe the smirk off his face.

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    • Oh yeah he gives me itchy palms too – arrogant man. I’m hoping that even some of his own will cross the floor on some of the issues. They have been sneaky however by tying research to the medicare co-payment, if that is blocked they then will be able to say that they wanted to spend money on research but were stopped by the senate.

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      • And then there are my two favorite magazines for encouragement: “Yes” and “The Intelligent Optimist.” I learned long ago in a journalism course that people aren’t interested in good news. The result is, of course, that we see the bleaker side of life. And then, too, there’s the fact of the news media being “bought” by those with money. But the two magazines I’ve mentioned emphasize the encouraging things people are doing below the level of common knowledge.

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