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A flawed budget out of balance

By Stuart Horrex - posted Thursday, 15 May 2014

Sadly, it was not really expected that the Abbott Government would alter course on the inhumane and ineffective approach to asylum seekers first initiated by the various Labor Governments. All Australians who value the notion of the 'Fair Go' and who have compassion in their hearts continue to look forward to an Australian Government whose asylum seeker policies are reasonable and humane.

I believe we need to be committed to building a better world and a stronger humanity; protecting those persecuted across the world, and supporting those who by no fault of their own live in deep poverty. In this regard, I am disappointed by the Abbott Government's lack of commitment to what are reasonable obligations, including our international obligations.

The budget is about how our Government places value, by spending money, on people and programs on behalf of the nation. In this budget tonight we see a clear indication of the focus and ideological bent of this Abbott Government.


In particular, it is difficult to see how the Abbott Government can continue to justify the extraordinarily expensive offshore processing and "Border Protection" schemes. These schemes continue to receive obscene funding increases in this unbalanced budget. One has to ask why the Abbott Government continues to place hard line ideology before genuine fiscal responsibility and basic human decency. It is further distressing that these illogical decisions will be affirmed silently by the ineffectual and acquiescent opposition led by Bill Shorten.

Clearly what is needed for responsible government is a sense of balance and fairness. Sadly, we see little of this balance and fairness in this budget.

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About the Author

Stuart is a Deputy National President of the Australian Democrats, and currently serves as the party National Secretary.

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