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Crikey says: cut the guts, bugger the consequences

A vindictive budget? That’s Bernard Keane’s assessment. Plus Richard Denniss on the political reality. Where will the ABC cut? Arts companies living in fear. Infrastructure spending: what’s really new? Reaction from the health sector. Our abandonment of foreign aid goals. Plus how the media commentators reacted. And all the gossip from budget night in Canberra.

This is a budget that hurts the most vulnerable Australians and breaks promises on the back of a confected debt campaign. And that’s not us saying that, it’s Clive Palmer.

Palmer as a voice of reason? These are strange times, indeed.

Australians got screwed last night. Not just the families who lose benefits; the students who will pay more for higher education; the sick who will pay to visit a doctor; the disabled who face tighter criteria for receiving the pension; the unemployed who will find it harder to access financial support; senior citizens who lose concessions and welfare supplements, the public servants who will lose their jobs; motorists; viewers of public broadcasting; anyone who cares about the environment … We’ve all been had, every voter, rich or poor, by a government that carefully crafted a web of lies to recast the nation in its own image. Nobody signed up for all of this.

And after plundering billions of dollars in health and education funding from the states, Tony Abbott has the hide to tell his colleagues to be “adults” and find the money for themselves. This government isn’t even prepared to own the consequences.

New South Wales Premier Mike Baird — a Liberal — said this morning it was a “kick in the guts” to the state. And the rest of us.

It’s economic pragmatism. And gutless politics.

6
  • 1
    paddy
    Posted Wednesday, 14 May 2014 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

    It’s not even economic pragmatism.
    Slashing money from those who spend everything they earn, or receive as part of our economic safety net, will not help the economy.
    There will be a terrible price in broken lives from this vicious act of bastardry.
    Abbott and his sleazy band of ideologues will not be forgiven for this….Ever!

  • 2
    David Hand
    Posted Wednesday, 14 May 2014 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

    Palmer the voice of reason? The very fact that he said it exposes the shallowness of such a view.

    But I wouldn’t expect Crikey to have any insight about that.

  • 3
    zut alors
    Posted Wednesday, 14 May 2014 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

    While I am one of those least affected by this cowardly budget it leaves me saddened…and angry. Angry that so many voters were duped by Abbott, a simplistic egomaniac who, let’s face it, was only elected because he wasn’t Rudd or Gillard.

  • 4
    AR
    Posted Wednesday, 14 May 2014 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

    Abbott’s seminary (seminal?) daze have definitely inflicted him (and, as a consequence, US!), with the pernicious dogma of “pain for gain” - he keeps spouting that mantra,as if a shield against thinking.

  • 5
    CML
    Posted Thursday, 15 May 2014 at 1:14 am | Permalink

    Right on, zut! I would add that he was only elected because he told li+s to the electorate for three years+, and had overwhelming support from the MSM. Especially Ltd News.
    Really makes you wonder what our journalists (most of them) have as their code of ethics/values.

  • 6
    Luke Helbling
    Posted Thursday, 15 May 2014 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    Cutting $113 mil out of CSIRO but putting an extra $250 mil into school chaplancy programs? A clear priority for this govt. Way to take Aus back to the future!

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