The working poor, and poor in Australia are voiceless. There seems no political will to enable these people to find the security and dignity you would expect in a prosperous first world country such as Australia. It begs the question why the nice and good people of Australia are content to let these unfortunates, usually due to circumstances outside of their control, to remain denigrated within our borders.
My hat is off, my head is bowed to the likes of the now deceased Elizabeth Wynhausen who wrote her remarkable and compelling book ‘Dirt Cheap’ who subjected herself to Continue reading
When there is a job to fly in the face or reason and integrity, Christopher Pyne is your man. I don’t believe I have ever seen him put himself in the firing line for anything that can be interpreted as holding integrity. Here he is again doing what he does best with the the Gonski unity ticket that he and Tony Abbott went to the Federal election with.
Before the election Tony Abbott’s statement was ”As far as school funding is concerned, Kevin Rudd and I are on a unity ticket”. After the election Pyne says ”There is no broken Continue reading
The Coalition federal government is ditching the Better Schools Plan “Gonski” funding model. This is undoing work applauded by the majority of states, the majority of education experts and the majority of people in the community.
On this issue, it’s hard to avoid the impression that the Coalition has made a disastrous political miscalculation. This a broken election promise.
Signed agreements between elected governments can’t be simply ignored, nor can legislation. The government will need to rescind signed contracts with angry state Continue reading
A devaluing of our humanity exists in current outworkings of society in general, including a lack of ethics in business practice and management of human resources. There is perpetual discrimination of women in workplaces, where ‘a strong case exists for increasing gender diversity on corporate boards based on notions of fairness, justice, equity, and equal opportunity’ where studies correlate ‘a critical mass of female directors outperform all-male boards’.
The modern economy is ‘Stripped of a framework of morality, [that] … call forth perversions of justice and humanity’. The outcome is ‘ethics and intellect’ are denied Continue reading
The Indonesian President is seriously miffed that Abbott didn’t take seriously enough the sense of invasion of privacy when in the process of intelligence gathering, the phones of a number of senior Indonesian politicians, including the wife of the President, had their phones tapped. In a hardline response, Indonesia is likely to redirect most or all of its beef Continue reading
One of the first decisions was to scrap tax concessions to low and middle income earners, to support their saving for their retirement, while people on high incomes receive very substantial concessions.
Now, they are going back on their promise to honour the Gonski funding that enables all Australian children, no matter their postcode or family income, to have equal access to quality education.
In justification the public are given the less than balanced judgement that the more financially advantaged are discriminated against.
“With its misguided emphasis on students’ socioeconomic backgrounds and its discrimination against private schools, the Gonski education reform needed to be reviewed” writes Kevin Donnelly.
It is the old saying, don’t let the objective truth get in the way of a good biased assessment.
If you are unfamiliar with the Gonski Review, it is the most comprehensive investigation of the way schools are funded in almost 40 years, with the respected business leader David Gonski at the helm, the review found too many schools did not have the resources needed to give every child a high quality education.
It is hard not to wonder what the Coailtion have against the disadvantaged and low income earners.
Firstly, they remove tax concessions for low and middle income earners, where those on high incomes ‘receive very substantial concessions’.
‘A new report says Australians are not seeing enough economic benefits from the country’s once-in-a-century mining boom.’
Another indication of how prosperity is benefiting the already exceptionally rich, and not being managed to benefit the wider community.
We have lost sight of the reason and reality that a single person and their family can only benefit from so much monetary wealth. The culture of never enough is rife in this behaviour.
Once again the Scandanavian countries are punching well above their weight with inclusive practices as exhibited in their education and music programmes, especially Finland, and in Norway’s Sovereign Wealth Fund.
The political divide of left and right should be recast as community inclusive or community exclusive. Of course a line does need to be drawn according to what is affordable and this is the main debate, but the divide seems to be more about something else. The divide is more about politicians ability and support to deny what are not grey areas but are hard facts. Climate change is the elephant in the room at this point, but this debate also includes education, supporting families that do not have traditional or generational support structures.
All these issues have reams of well founded, rigourous analysis and yet all this is marginalised in politics, not by what is affordable, but what we pick and choose to be true or not as convenient. Most of these issues can easily be addressed without spending more but spending prudently.
“Radical back-to-nature forest kindergartens where children are allowed to climb trees and play with fire have spread across the country. Will the concept of the Waldkindergarten become Germany’s next export success?”
Has it come to this? Are we so far removed physically, psychologically and emotionally from the natural world that it is now being posited as a new revelation of health for children and can be packaged as a product for export?
The human condition in its full healthy state includes a necessary stimulation on so many levels including our senses, physical, emotional and intellectual encounter and exploration. Is the modern world so disconnected from the basics of human health and development for both children and adults. How did we let this happen and slide under the threshold of awareness?