Lucky for the ALP they’re not politically engaged:
Charities and social services groups say Treasurer Wayne Swan’s third federal budget will not aid Australia’s poor or unemployed…
John Falzon from St Vincent de Paul says the budget leaves unemployed Australians living below the poverty line. “With over 600,000 unemployed Australians, we remain stuck with a Newstart Allowance that is less than half the minimum wage,” he said.
If Rudd doesn’t want that to stick, he’ll be hoping that the commercial press can do a bit more “dole bludger” demonising. Those are 600,000 Australians who vote… he’d better hope that they’ve long since given up expecting anything better from politicians and won’t pay attention to which party has just done them over.
Seriously, $33 a day? (Less if they’re in a relationship with someone who is also unemployed.) How does anyone survive on that in 2010?
I mean, if we weren’t already all broken up over what’s happened to the poor oppressed billion dollar mining conglomerates (imagine, only getting 60% of the massively increased profits due to a resources boom!), who knows – we might even have enough sympathy left over for the starving poor. Hey, it’s possible.
UPDATE: Legal Aid funding continues to atrophy, with only half what would’ve been needed to return it to 1997 levels. It’s easy to demonise and pooh-pooh Legal Aid when you don’t personally need it, but if you’d rather our prisons were not full of innocent people, then the importance should be fairly obvious.