Bran, babies and a bus pass.

If we re-elect HoWARd, the paternalism will be out-of-control.

In legislation proposed yesterday, from July 1, 2008, low-income Australian families whose children are neglected or have unexplained school absences, will have the right to freely spend their government welfare payments withdrawn and replaced with a Centrelink-controlled electronic spending card.

The government plans to ‘store’ welfare payments on a parent’s individual electronic spending card which could only be used at shops to buy food and clothing for children or to pay rent.

“Governments must never be neutral when it comes to the special responsibilities that families shoulder in our society and to the importance of parents providing basic essentials like food, clothing and shelter and ensuring children attend school.’’

Under this proposal, each family would lose the ability to spend their payments autonomously. They will need to gain the approval of a public service organisation (or perhaps a private tender company) to buy essentials.

I think this government is missing a perfect opportunity for some social engineering if it doesn’t also address Australia’s childhood obesity problem, its aging population and low birth rate and the need to reduce the effects of global warming. Whilst, within this policy, there already exists Centrelink control of the parent’s electronic spending card, why not go that step further?

Clearly the PM loves the number eleven (as in 11 years in power) so in honour of that achievement, policy will be aligned to the number eleven.

Parents and their children would be weighed and if any one person in the family is more than 11 kilos overweight, the card could ban the purchase of any processed, fatty and sugary foods.

Until you have 11 children, all forms of contraception would be replaced by one cheap book- “The Billings method.”

A family’s car, if they have one, would be checked for air pollution and greenhouse emissions. If it’s over 11 (three stars), your family gets a bus pass.

Our PM, John HoWARd ends his policy statement with this:

“No one has a right to have the Australian taxpayer fund their irresponsible behaviour.’’

So, given that $55 million was spent on advertising WorkChoices legislation, the word WorkChoices will be reintroduced into the political landscape, eleven times every day, up to and including election day, so as not to be responsible for irresponsible taxpayer funded behaviour.


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15 Responses to “Bran, babies and a bus pass.”

  1. Red Ink Says:

    Yes Sooooooooki, he is just too holier-than-thou. I think at last he has run out of stunts. The population has come to expect that everything he now says or announces, will be a beat-up.

    It will be interesting to see how he washes his hands of the 2 dead Australians today, won’t it ?

    As for The Indian Doctor affair, he is running at 1 million miles an hour away from that one already . Do not worry – the bastard is on the run. Nobody believes that he can swing a “Doctors Overboard” stunt this time.

  2. weezil Says:

    Nobody believes that he can swing a “Doctors Overboard” stunt this time.

    Oh, Piers ‘A Rank Premise‘ Akerman and Glenn ‘Gimme another gol-dam Xanax‘ Milne still have faith in HoWARd’s rabbitry… but I think you’re right, the rest of us are on to Johnny.

    The mere fact that Labor has some competent (if not politically ideal) leadership now as opposed to 2004 has most voters confident that it’s time to swing the ol’ political pendulum. The indigenous intervention debacle is just one more nail in the Libs’ political coffin. However, DorkChoices was the attack on the Australian people that seems to have pushed most swinging voters to boot the Libs. We’ll see if the Newspolls match the real ones. I’m hopeful- but nowhere near certain- that we’ll have a Labor govt come spring.

  3. Suki Says:

    I also notice that there is no mood for forgiveness, when HoWARd forgets a candidate or misspeaks and confuses upgrade with update.

    I will be voting HoWARd out!

  4. weezil Says:

    Yeah- the meeeeeeeeeeja doth knoweth which side their bread is buttereth upon!

    hmm… we’ve got a button for that…

    I Blame the Press!


  5. Dave C Says:

    John Howard is a scary, scary man.

    Just when you thought Welfare to Work couldn’t get worse, and the government policy couldn’t be used to further punish people for being poor – he takes it a step further.

    I take my power back! and I will be voting HoWARd out!

  6. Dave C Says:

    Nice subversive use of a cuddly family poster too. Very nicely done.

  7. Suki Says:

    I’d be less scathing, Dave C, if in fact the weight of evidence supported this type of punitive measure.

    As evidenced by the heavy lifting Mark and his truck have done over at LP, there is little evidence to support better outcomes for families, if they are moved from welfare to work, unless actual income is significantly increased.

  8. Dave C Says:

    I’d be less scathing, if he also cut back rich people’s and corporate subsidies.

    I mean how do you justify giving huge tax breaks to the rich while you’re cutting off all of the the less wealthy people’s income.

    Fair go, I say.

  9. weezil Says:

    How do you justify private heath insurance and private hospitals in a country with a national healthcare system?

    I guess you start by underfunding the public system to deliberately make it look incompetent beside the private system; then you can claim the existence of political contributor mates in the healthcare and private health insurance industries is completely justified.

    Fair go, indeed.

  10. Dave C Says:

    And the government ads on Healthcare with the different coloured umbrellas in them shit me.

  11. Helen Says:

    And, $55 million is a multiple of 11. Don’t tell me that’s an accident.

  12. Suki Says:

    Very little about HoWARd et al is an accident Helen.

    I keep thinking about the nice, neat number 12 and hope that this PM does not reach the dozen.

    If he does, I have warned my family that I will be unavailable (safe under my doona) for at least a week. Then it’s back to fighting this government I go.

  13. Graham Bell Says:

    This new system, of course, is likely to be run by an off-shore corporation in line with Howard’s system of honest privatization and perfect competition. Wonder what convoluted legalese will be used to prevent Australian firms becoming successful tenderers for the multi-billion dollar contracts? Hey, hang on. all this will be Commercial-In-Confidence, won’t it? That means that they can’t let the public – including Australian proprietors and executives – see any of the contract documents.

    Isn’t it wonderful living in a country where government activity is so transparent and where democracy prevails?

  14. Suki Says:

    I believe, that over these eleven years, I have developed a hybrid illness which combines depression, cynicism and ennui which I will call HoWARd Attributable Disease, as in-
    I’ve been HAD.

    Eek, egads and all that.

    I blame John HoWARd!

    I will be voting HoWARd out!

  15. Ann O'Dyne Says:

    “depression, cynicism (acute) and ennui” = dysthymia and I have it too.
    It could be cured if I lived where there was a fearless articulate sensitive and understanding LEADER ……

    I will be voting HoWARd out!

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