I'm ranting altogether too much over local "journalism", and this comment introduces nothing new to what I've posted many times before, but since the Advocate won't publish it:
Again I have to wonder why drivel produced by the seething hive mind of News Corp is being syndicated by my local newspaper. This opinion comes from somebody who appears to be innumerate (eight taxpayers out of ten doesn't necessarily - or even very likely - equal eight dollars out of every ten) economically illiterate, and empirically wrong.
Tax dollars do not fund welfare, or any other function of the federal government. Currency issuing governments create money when they spend and destroy money when they tax. "Will there be enough money?" is a nonsensical question when applied to the federal government. As Warren Mosler puts it, the government neither has nor does not have money. If you work for a living, it is in your interest that the government provides money for those who otherwise wouldn't have any, because they spend it - and quickly. Income support for the unemployed becomes income for the employed pretty much instantly. Cutting back on welfare payments means cutting back on business revenues.
And the claim that the "problem" of welfare is increasing in scale is just wrong. Last year's Household, Income, and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) report shows dependence on welfare payments by people of working age declining pretty consistently since the turn of the century. This opinion piece is pure class war propaganda. None of us can conceivably benefit in any way from pushing people into destitution in the moralistic belief that they must somehow deserve it.
In a draft of his “Essay on the Poor Law,” Locke writes:
Now no part of any poor body’s labour should be lost. Things should be so ordered that everyone should work as much as they can.
That passage, which Locke ultimately deleted, came right after his complaint that women were staying home with their kids and not working. As a result, he wrote, “their labour is wholly lost.”
Locke follows this observation up with a complaint about the existing poor laws in England: the problem with them is that “they are turned only to the maintenance of people in idleness, without at all examining into the lives, abilities, or industry, of those who seek for relief.”
That is what a reformed poor law must do: examine into the lives, abilities, and industry of those who seek public assistance.
This is part 2 of our feature on water-based toys (see last week's Action Man waterboarding accessories).
In the late 1970s, the government predicted that by the time the decade's children were grown up, suicides would be commonplace, perhaps even fashionable. This would be due to the "inevitable effects of living in a declining society in which the government has abandoned the welfare of its citizens in favour of fun hobbies it finds less boring", but mostly because "it will make suicide a compulsory part of national cutbacks".
The minister for welfare proposed that "suicide clubs" be established (they even launched a slogan: "Let's all say Felo-de-se!"), and that suicide methods be taught in schools and job centres by alternative-career advisors.
The government also funded several toy manufacturers who created products which cast suicide in a positive light. One such toy was the Play & Learn Drowning Game, which was also adapted into a console game in 1978.
"In times of economic crisis, cuts are inevitable. We feel, however, that the citizens of Scarfolk should be directly involved in the process of how these cuts are implemented and that is why every household will soon receive a booklet describing all the cuts we currently recommend..."
Two weeks after the speech, thousands of poor families received Charcuterie for Beginners, which contained several pull-out posters, one of which is presented above.