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Malevolent

redactedfamilyoutcomes

 

The 2014 budget omitted the table of adjusted family outcomes that had been in every previous budget since 2005. The analysis was done by treasury and available for inclusion but that it was not there indicates it was deliberately omitted. The figures went to Cabinet, so they were fully aware of the allegedly inequitable outcomes. Was it omitted for political reasons? The Coalition and its budget already have a problem with the public believing (and increasingly, and justifiably so) that it is unfair. Long-term observers have held the suspicion that the Coalition governs for its mates, the well-to-do, the elite, the born-to-rule set, and nothing in the budget, nor the Coalition’s rhetoric and off-budget policies since, have given cause to doubt this. For just a few examples, consider:

  • University FEE-HELP changes to impact disproportionately on poor graduates
  • A permanent hit to pensions and welfare vs. a short-term levy for the rich
  • The $7/visit co-payment for GP visits (the well-to-do might complain over a copayment but it is the poor who will simply stop going.) This might also reduce rates of vaccination in Australia, putting the whole country at greater risk.

The perception that the budget is unfair is widespread and even having an effect on business support for the Coalition’s policies. Could the Coalition cope with further documents showing that the poor would pay disproportionately for the Coalition’s fictitious “budget repair process”, and that the Coalition knew about it and went ahead anyway?

Fairfax and other outlets have sought this information, and failed to receive it. Accordingly they and other analysts have done their own sums on the basis of published figures. The analysis confirms that the poor will be harder-hit than the wealthy.

Joe Hockey has been up in arms about Fairfax publishing this analysis. “It doesn’t tell the whole story,” he says. “It doesn’t reflect the fact that the rich pay more tax, and that the taxes of the average wealthy person pay the social support for an average four recipients of welfare.” Fairfax’s reporting “failed to take account of the higher rate of income tax already paid by higher-income households”. “Fairfax reporting has been malevolent,” he says.

Let’s pause for a moment and consider Hockey’s reported statements on the issue of equality, tax and welfare.

“In fact, just 2 per cent of taxpayers pay more than a quarter of all income tax. Maybe these taxpayers would argue that the tax system is already unfair.” “The average working Australian, be they a cleaner, a plumber or a teacher, is working over one month full time each year just to pay for the welfare of another Australian.” http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-06-11/hockey-tries-to-set-straight-perception-budget-is-unfair/5516718

What does this say about Joe Hockey’s fundamental concept of social welfare? In a nutshell, it suggests that he is either beholden to, or at least panders to, selfishness. In Hockey’s world, it is portrayed as a bad thing that people with resources assist those without. This is a profoundly anti-charitable approach.

Our society has put in place progressive tax systems, effective social welfare structures and a range of subsidies, payments and tax breaks in an ongoing and long-term attempt to find a comfortable middle ground, where the privileged can continue to prosper whilst the downtrodden are assisted to keep their heads above water. Obviously Mr Hockey, and the Coalition, believe that the middle ground has trended too far in one direction. The problem is that society as a whole does not appear to agree with them.

Of course higher income households pay more tax. That’s the whole point of a progressive tax system. To argue that it’s justified to penalise low income workers more because they pay less tax is an attack on the very principle of the sliding scale. That’s an ideological position and it’s a valid choice, but it should be understood as such. Penalising more or less on the basis of tax rates entails an effective change in those rates. In other words, arguing that you can implement changes that hurt the poor more than the rich because the rich already pay more tax, is effectively arguing for a tax cut for the rich, or an extra tax for the poor, depending on how you want to look at it, and it is in no way an equitable outcome.

Let’s take a step backwards and approach this differently. Assume that every Australian is going to pay the maximum $844/pa as a result of the 2014 budget. Now you start handing some of that money back in concessions. $50 to this group, $100 to that, $327 to the top bracket. Why do you do this? Because they’re already paying a lot of tax. You are levelling the playing ground. You are moving closer to a situation where everyone pays the same amount of tax. This is the opposite of a progressive tax system.

Malevolent: adj. “Wishing evil or harm to another or others.” With his 2014 budget, Mr Hockey is seeking to specifically do harm to those who belong to a different socioeconomic class than himself. Now who’s being malevolent?

Yes, Mr Hockey, the 2014 budget is indeed unfair. It does increase inequity. You’ve known it since well before the budget was announced. And the way you’re talking about it, and responding to the questions about its unfairness, seems to indicate that the unfairness is quite deliberate. I’m not entirely sure that’s the message you were trying to achieve.

52 comments

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  1. Geoffrey England

    Bloody good read. Excellent.

  2. flohri1754

    It would seem that the LNP in Australia have learned nothing/nothing from the debacle of the neo-cons and the Tea Partiers in the U.S. Or, let us say, they have absorbed the negative and destructive aspects of what has taken place over there ….. why try and take Australia down that terrible path????

    “Of course higher income households pay more tax. That’s the whole point of a progressive tax system. To argue that it’s justified to penalise low income workers more because they pay less tax is an attack on the very principle of the sliding scale. That’s an ideological position and it’s a valid choice, but it should be understood as such. Penalising more or less on the basis of tax rates entails an effective change in those rates. In other words, arguing that you can implement changes that hurt the poor more than the rich because the rich already pay more tax, is effectively arguing for a tax cut for the rich, or an extra tax for the poor, depending on how you want to look at it, and it is in no way an equitable outcome.”

  3. JohnB

    Well said Ozfrenic – Hockey is well aware of the impact of his budget – it is deliberate class warfare, imported by their US ‘tea party’ advisors and sponsors.

    An appropriate TED talk presentation on relative tax scales by Nick Hanauer here:

  4. DanDark

    They all knew who this budget was going to kill, that was their plan to tip people over the edge that are just clinging on to half a life, and doing it hard, the unemployed the single mums the elderly, women, our first peoples, all the gov idiots knew not just Hockey,
    he is just the head henchman on the budget, the ENFORCER because he is tough now, he has lost his tutu somewhere,
    it was all an act for the early morning viewers, Joe playing the funny fool, he is not so funny now is he Channel 7 viewers?
    this fed gov had no intention to tell the truth, DECEPTION is how they run,
    I would call it hide and seek, the gov hide the deception and the public seek the TRUTH…..

    “Fairfax has been trying to provide the public with what Hockey has not – a table that has been in each of the past nine budgets and was missing in this one. Introduced by Hockey’s mentor Peter Costello in 2005, it was at first called ”benefits of new measures for families” and later ”detailed family outcomes”.

    Joe Hockey says Fairfax’s reporting of the Treasury budget analysis “does not represent the true state of affairs”.
    It displays the changes in real household disposable incomes expected as a result of all of the budget measures taken together. It lists the results for up to 17 different family types, among them sole parents, single and double income couples, and couples with and without children.

    It wasn’t in this year’s budget, replaced by a table that compared incomes in 2013-14 with those expected in 2016-17, and it was noted that incomes would be higher by then. What it didn’t do is outline which family types would be better off in real terms and which would be worse off, as used to be done previously.
    So using the freedom of information process, Fairfax asked for whatever so-called cameo analysis the Treasury had prepared, whether or not it was included in the budget.

    http://www.theage.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/joe-hockey-needs-to-put-his-cards-somewhere–the-tables-gone-missing-20140804-3d4k6.html

  5. bobrafto

    Rich people paying tax?

    D’oh, maybe Hockey has forgotten about negative gearing, where the taxpayers pays no tax for the investment property and in fact the taxpayer picks up the bill for the investment property.

    Novated leases on cars mostly for the rich and the taxpayer pays $1.8B p.a.

    Then we got super, blah,blah, blah.

    Yes, Joe, the rich pay 50% of their pay in tax.

    Here is a link to a pic I created titled an Ode to Joe

    Enjoy!

  6. DanDark

    oh bobrafto,,, could you please put, “This could contain graphic images that could be distressing to some”
    sheeesh OMG that is one vision I didn’t need for rest of my life
    Whore Hockey in full garter and stuff, ROFLMAO, but shit its feckin hilarious 🙂
    I will have to go and wash my eyes out now, he is one toxic mother fecker that toe tappin” cigar smokin”
    fool that cannot count the fingers on his hands,
    Unlike Tone’s he is always proving he can count on his fingers,
    1 finger up… axe the tax, 2 fingers go up…stop the boats, 3 finger goes up… the debt mess labor left us with,
    um geee I don’t think he gets the 4th finger up often, but then he gets confused, cos he is looking at what finger should go up next,
    Tone’s needs to give smoking Joe a lesson on how to count on your fingers,
    Tone’s has got this childish finger counting down pat, as he has no brain to think with, so finger counting it is 🙂

  7. Matters Not

    That’s an ideological position and it’s a valid choice, but it should be understood as such

    Indeed! And there’s nothing ‘natural’ or ‘normal’ about such ideological positions. The current arrangements whether they be social, economic, religious or whatever evolved over time and they will change further in the years ahead. It’s in the nature of the beast. As a subset of economic arrangements, budgets are also ‘constructs’ and, more often than not, are manifestations of ideologies.

    What makes this budget so contentious is that it brings the underlying ‘class warfare’, (always present in capitalist economic arrangements), to the surface. Most people shy away from concepts such as ‘class warfare’ because they are seen to be about Marxism, communism and the like or they don’t appreciate the accuracy and usefulness of that concept.

    Most people accept that it’s useful to use the concept of ‘class’ in everyday language. People often self identify and take pride in being ‘working class’ or ‘middle class’. In Australia, very few self identify as being ‘upper class’, even though that descriptor can accurately be applied to the some rather than the many. ‘Class’ is a concept: a mental construct that’s a useful way of conveying an idea. While ‘class’ is subject to a almost infinite range of definitions, (and is almost impossible to define in terms of necessary and sufficient conditions), most people ‘get’ what it means, even if their understandings vary somewhat.

    No class isn’t the problem, it’s the warfare bit that raises the hackles. Warfare for many if not most people is seen in terms of physical violence. For the many, class warfare is about physical conflict between groups of people (classes). In Australia and elsewhere that (usually) doesn’t happen. Sure, there’s the odd scuffle or two, but it’s hardly warfare. (Synonyms for warfare include: fighting, war, combat, conflict, armed conflict, struggle, military action, hostilities) It follows therefore there’s no class warfare and therefore to use that ‘class warfare’ concept is not ‘useful’.

    But when sociologists and others use the concept of class warfare they are, general speaking, not talking about the ‘physical’ at all. Rather they are talking about how one class ‘appropriates’ more and more of that nation’s wealth at the expense of the many. Synonyms for appropriate include: commandeer, expropriate, annex, arrogate, sequestrate, sequester, take possession of, take over, assume, secure, acquire, wrest, usurp, claim, lay claim to, hijack.

    And that’s why this budget can accurately be described as ‘class warfare’. It’s an attempt to create a new ‘common sense’ that justifies and legitimates wealth transfer, not through physical violence but through legislative ‘violence’.

    Having said that, I would caution against using concepts such as ‘class warfare’ in this debate because, while the concept is accurate and ‘useful’ in describing what is happening, it has such pejorative undertones that most people are simply ‘turned off’.

  8. Dan Dark

    Bobrafto tooo funny yes I do appreciate funny cartoons about phoney tony and co, “ditch the prick” what a great 3 word slogan, I am going to put that on my sign for next march in march placard, I will put Australian’s first though and make it a 4 word slogan, that will confuse the Coal ition as we know they can’t read past 3 words 😉

    Australian’s
    Ditch
    The
    Prick

  9. Matters Not

    In a nutshell, it suggests that he is either beholden to, or at least panders to, selfishness

    Well it’s pretty well accepted now that Hockey’s (and Abbott et al) policy agenda was formulated by and is now being driven by the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA). An organisation that has a strong philosophical ‘rationale’, and like any organisation with deep philosophical roots, it has its heroes and heroines. One such heroine is Ayn Rand who regarded ‘selfishness’ as a virtue rather than a vice. So much so she (and a lesser know figure) published a collection of essays and papers and entitled it: The Virtue of Selfishness.

    Perhaps Joe regards ‘selfishness’ in the same light? Perhaps a journalist might ask him? But I don’t think so. It’s easier to report along the lines of ‘he said – she said’.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Virtue_of_Selfishness

  10. darrel nay

    Hi everyone,

    Why is there still the view that not getting vaccinated endangers those who are vaccinated when it is so obvious that if you have been vaccinated then, in theory, you should be protected from the virus in question?

    On budgetary matters, it has been obvious for decades that if communities, and their citizens, become dependent on the feds they will eventually pay for it – I think we need to foster a greater independence from the feds. The mob in Canberra will always be too removed from local communities to be able to help when times get tough ie. take the ‘Brisbane Line’ defense in WW2 when the Canberra mob basically turned their backs on people north of Brisbane.

    Cheers

  11. Jason

    @Matters Not

    Please retire.

    There is much that is rooted about the IPA. Very little of it is philosophical. Ideology for them is malleable thing. For example, the idea of libertarianism for them melds quite easily into authoritarianism depending on who profits. They are white supremacist arseholes and should be acknowledged as such.

    Thanks for the info on Ayn Rand. One looks forward to you catching up with (and commenting on) the more recent neo-con agenda. Perhaps start with Nixon / Watergate and see where your research leads…

    Your comments regarding class warfare are quaint.

  12. ozfenric

    Darrel, re: immunisation – there are a number of reasons lower levels of vaccination are a concern. A major reason is that it compromises herd immunity. If a high enough proportion of the population are immunised against a preventable disease, then anyone who does get the disease is less likely to pass it on to other unvaccinated persons. (Typical herd immunity rates are about 85%; it’s pretty easy for a vaccination rate to fall below this.) Below herd immunity levels, you can assume that not only will some people be susceptible, but that the disease will spread through the community rather than being isolated cases.

    Secondly, there are always some people in the community who, for various reasons, cannot be vaccinated. General vaccination of the community will protect those people via the herd immunity effect. Apart from anything else, children cannot be vaccinated against all diseases until a certain age is reached and the immune system is mature. Having unvaccinated persons in the community increases the risk to all children of diseases that can either kill them or affect them for the rest of their lives.

    Vaccines are not 100% effective 100% of the time. Even in highly-vaccinated communities, disease outbreaks can affect those who have been vaccinated. Vaccination significantly decreases the levels of infection, and in some cases can ameliorate the effects of the disease, but by not being vaccinated you are putting all the community at risk.

    Just for one example, see the whooping cough epidemics in the US. This link – a little dated now but still useful – http://www.forbes.com/sites/stevensalzberg/2012/07/23/anti-vaccine-movement-causes-the-worst-whooping-cough-epidemic-in-70-years/ – covers the lack of herd immunity, the infection of vaccinated but not fully immune children, and the costs to healthcare.

    Perhaps the most pertinent reason, though, is the cost to the community and to the taxpayer. Every infected person requires healthcare resources for management and, in some cases, long-term care (e.g. measles can lead to deafness or other permanent disabilities). Every case matters, even if it is their own fault (either through misinformation about fictitious negative outcomes from vaccination, from apathy, or from not wanting to spend the small amount of money required for vaccination.)

    Certainly, you as a vaccinated person are -mostly- protected against those specific diseases even if they gain a foothold in the community. But it’s not all about you.

  13. bobrafto

    Vicki, he has probably deleted your comment and speaking of experience he will edit or delete any comment he does not like.

    He has defamed just about every NSW judge as viewed on his site and is basically running a one man crusade against corrupt judges which some claims are true.

    He has picked a fight with Kerry Stokes (defamation) in the courts and he is up against the corrupt judges he has defamed and of course the judges have a score to settle as does Stokes and he was found guilty (contempt of court) awaiting for the sentence or fine but I think he will have to pack a toothbrush.

    You can read about him and Stokes on his site and it’s ugly how he is being done over to perfection.

    As with Bill Shorten he is fair game like any other politician, but we do have a ‘presumption of innocence’.

  14. darrel nay

    reply to ozfenric,

    Thanks for your article and for your reply to my post. Unfortunately, the same government that says coca-cola, macdonalds, aspertame and other gmos are safe is the primary body encouraging vaccines. Countless respected doctors and health professionals argue vigorously that many vaccines do more harm than good. The CDC recently admitted that 100 million polio vaccines were tainted with the simian virus and linked to cancer. Last year doctors involved with developing the HPV vaccine claimed that these vaccines were outright dangerous and completely ineffective. Big Pharma is making billions on these vaccines and they are notorious for their ‘independent’ research. People have had to fight big pharma tooth and nail to get them to remove toxic mercury preservatives from vaccines.

    I would simply encourage people to do their own research and to respect the rights of those people who don’t want to be vaccinated. We seem to be moving to a world of forced vaccination which amounts to the antithesis of freedom. Our national anthem reads ‘young and free’ but I increasingly see an Australia which is compelled as opposed to free. If this seems a little extreme then simply consider the highly toxic fluoridation of public water sources amounting to medical treatment without consent – why can’t the government simply allow those who wish to take fluoride do it for themselves without imposing it on all of us.

    Cheers.

  15. mars08

    QUOTE:

    “…should we win the election, an incoming Coalition government will do exactly what we’ve said we’ll do.

    We will be a no surprises, no excuses government, because you are sick of nasty surprises and lame excuses from people that you have trusted with your future…”

  16. ozfenric

    Darrel, I’m not going to go into detail with references debunking all your claims. All I’ll say is that I am a trained scientist (biochemistry and genetics), my wife is an immunologist, and my mother has been mostly deaf for most of her life due to measles, so you’re fighting an uphill battle here. So very briefly:

    The simian virus contamination was between 1955 and 1961. (Hardly “recently”.) Amounts were small, although admittedly the oncological effects of this exposure are not really quantified. (Probably not huge, since we’re talking 50 years ago now.) You might be surprised to learn that techniques have gotten a lot better since then.

    Re: HPV vaccine – this kind of fearmongering is nonsense. Look at the actual stats. For a non-technical treatment, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/quora/how-accurate-are-the-rece_b_4164056.html is good. The chances of an adverse effect with *any* medical treatment always exist. If vaccinating a million people ends up with one adverse effect, but not vaccinating means that a few thousand people will get cancer, for the 999999 people who made the choice, the result was a good one. Besides which, HPV is a different matter to measles or rubella; it’s not epidemiological and herd immunity is of less value.

    Re: mercury preservatives – all the research done to date (and there’s been a lot) confirms that there are no health risks to mercury preservatives in vaccines. Nonetheless, it’s been removed from vaccines (in Australia, at least, where we have adequate refrigeration to preserve vaccines until they’re needed) since 2000. In countries where refrigeration is not available, preservatives are still required; again, it comes down to the one case that might have an adverse reaction to mercury (none documented so far) versus the millions whose lives might be saved by vaccination.

    Re: flouride – give me a break. The idea that flouride is harmful has been so thoroughly debunked I hardly know where to start. Moreover, the dental health benefits have been confirmed in study after study after study. Again, see the balance of risks and benefits. If you’re one of those who believe that flouride is a mind-control substance put into the water to ensure a docile populace, you a) haven’t been watching the news, and b) aren’t going to be interested in anything I have to say.

    I’m sorry, but the anti-vaxxers and the anti-flouride brigade are just as bad as the anti-AGW crowd. They’re just as reliant on shonky and biased non-science, just as deaf to real research and documentation and just as wont to resort to wild conspiracy theories to explain why nobody else is listening to them. We live in a society, which means that we are not free. We pay our taxes. We don’t steal from each other, we don’t throw our rubbish into our neighbour’s backyard, and we do get our kids vaccinated. ‘Nuff said.

  17. DanDark

    In India and other poorer countries there has been a real effort to rid polio in the population, its unbelievable that diseases like these still exist in the world and affect young children by large, if we do not have a good rate of immunization in the population, we will see diseases like this back in this country before they were eradicated by the use of vaccines, by putting misinformation out you are going to harm our most vulnerable babies and children,
    That is pretty selfish of one Darryl, if the consequences of an ideology and misinformation are deadly to other innocent people..

  18. bobrafto

    Hey dan

    Check this Ad out it will rock your socks!

    While you’re there check out the Prime Ministerial Menus, in response to the Julia one.

  19. Dan Dark

    Hey Bobrafto, OMG noooooooo the bedside kneel by the little woman lol nightmare material for women
    My goodness back to the future with Tony Mcfly it is scary,
    I bet they try to bring back the “time” machine before long, nothing else is working for them

    It’s been a good week for them, that much so they have to get rid of Tones out of the country till it all the metadata dies down,
    He couldn’t make it to the Garma Festival for the living in Northern Australia but can head over seas to act like some hero, the operation thingy at work again, geez “lock the gate”when he is gone, good riddens to bad rubbish I say 🙂 oh and I couldn’t find the menu thing, you might have to point me in another direction, I couldn’t find my way to it 🙂

  20. Dan Dark

    Bobrafto It’s okay I found my way through cyber space to the menus, that’s the first time I have seen the whole menu of Julia, no “leadership” there by the then opposition leader Phony Tony,

    But paybacks are a bitch, and it is payback time and Tones has done a runner tonight to escape the scrutiny and criticism that is coming he and his idiot backward thinking minstrel ministers way,
    he is jumping ship and leaving the crew to defend the sinking ship lol
    too funny, and good to watch them slide into oblivion on many fronts 😉

  21. bobrafto

    Dan
    It’s in the Abbott’s DNA, one only has to look at the Abbott’s ministry.

    You’re not a man unless you wear a blue tie!

  22. Dan Dark

    “You’re not a man unless you wear a blue tie!”
    I believe you have left the “con”out of this sentence Bob
    Because that is exactly what they are con men and women,
    For some reason Bonny and Clyde come to mind when I think of the Coal ition now.
    A blast back to a famous past as criminals go 🙂

  23. Manfred

    Psychologist’s would have a field day with the current Australian Conservative Liberal party.From psychopaths to sociopaths to religious nutters. Look at me world strutterers.Does my short hair look good in this slinky outfit? The ignorant, the just plain dumb. I only know about country people.Yep mate. To the mean nasty school prefect type; and city hardened toughs. Mostly I see very vain individuals of questionable principles, ability and empathy, who work for a team but who are only interested in themselves. They could all be playing for Collingwood or Hitler or The Catholic Church. It doesn’t matter as long as they belong to something and it gives their lives some kudos, prestige security and money. Oh! .Yes don’t forget the money. And if anyone in Australia ever say’s that politicians are not paid enough I will shoot them with a pea shooter

  24. Hotspringer

    @ ozfenric. I cannot agree with you. I and my (now adult) children were immunised. When they were small, we gave them fluoride tablets to chew and spit out. I use fluoride toothpaste. Those were CHOICES. I object to anyone forcing all to consume fluoride (or any other substance) against their will. By the way, what kind of a trained biochemist can’t spell “fluoride”?

  25. corvus boreus

    I agree with Hotspringer regarding the addition of fluoride to our water. I have heard of a statistical minority subject to adverse reactions to fluoride exposure, skin and internal. The processing of our drinking water should only be to the extent necessary for it to be safe. There should be no extra ‘therapeutic’ dosing of a necessity of life without express consent. Fluoride as a ‘health additive’ should be freely distributed to those who want it, but not forced on those who do not.
    If the issue is public dental health, the proliferation of the consumption of sugars (particularly in corrosive, addictive, ‘energy’ drinks) amongst children is causing a pandemic of tooth decay beyond the ability of ‘preventative medication’ to address.
    As for vaccination/immunisation, the wider implications of infectious diseases means it becomes an issue more of communal health rather than individual choice.

  26. Möbius Ecko

    Hotspringer. To start with please don’t be a prat and pick on online typos. That last dig diminished your post.

    People have an opt out choice today if they don’t want fluoride in their water. There are filters they can install or jugs they can buy, and if really concerned they can go to the expense of having bottled water.

  27. jagman48

    Darryl we vaccinate to keep herd immunity so those children who can’t vaccinate are a bit safer. A fairly charitable attitude really. Not that I want to hijack the discussion.

  28. ozfenric

    Hotspringer, a valid choice to not want fluoride in your water (although why you would *not* want a safe additive that promotes dental health I find hard to understand). In Australia as well, we receive plenty of fluoride in our toothpaste (presuming we use it). I’m not strongly motivated about fluoridation and I don’t see it as a problem that a harmless substance with documented health benefits be introduced to our water supply. However, I can understand your point about it being a necessity of life and people being without a lot of practical opt-out options.

    There are obvious, measurable health benefits to including it, so it stays in the water as a public health initiative. The levels are so low that hypersensitivity should be exceedingly rare. Ethically speaking, if fluoridating water makes it undrinkable to anyone, there ought to be government support to assist that person to acquire alternative water sources (free bottled water for life, anyone? 🙂

    As far as choice goes, get over it. There’s all sorts of things in society that we don’t get a choice about. Speed limits, use of tobacco, use of drugs (there’s far more of a valid debate going on about the purported health benefits of marijuana than there is about fluoride) etc. – these are all public health issues and the decision is made on the basis of the greatest good for the greatest number.

  29. bobrafto

    Hey Dan

    Enjoy!

  30. Kaye Lee

    The benefits of fluoridation of the water are measurable and significant. For the very small minority who may have a hyper-reaction, they, like people who are lactose intolerant or can’t handle gluten or have peanut or seafood allergies etc, can opt for alternatives as mentioned by other posters.

    I agree that diet and dental hygiene are also important but every bit helps. I was born before fluoridation. Younger siblings were after fluoridation. Observable comparisons of dental health in my and my friends’ families (as well as the great body of research) shows the difference it made. I agree the benefit to the many far outweighs the inconvenience for the very few who may have or choose to use filters or bottled water. It’s a free way to help with dental health for the whole community.

    Re taxes – my father always said he aspired to a tax problem because having one would mean he was earning a shitload more than he was at the time. Anyone who earns sufficient money to make a difference has a bevy of accountants whose raison d’etre is to make sure that person or entity pays the absolute minimum they can get away with. I consider taxes as royalties to the nation for providing the resources by which they could earn that megawealth – dividends to shareholders and an investment in maintaining a stable environment with a skilled healthy workforce (paid for by our education and health systems) with infrastructure paid for by us and the certainty provided by an equitable society (with a welfare system) and a secure government.

  31. darrel nay

    Just a thought,

    Governments put fluoride in our water and countless products are washed with fluoride – the fluoride used is a waste product of the fertiliser industry and it would be a serious environmental crime to dump this chemical in waterways but the govt. is allowed to do it – they are control freaks who have forgotten the meaning of ‘mind your own business’. Governments also pollute our land with toxic genetically modified organisms and the long term effects will likely be disastrous but again governments tell us that they’re safe. Governments put a raft of chemicals including preservatives, additives and GMO sweeteners (aspertame/neotame) in our food. Governments keep telling the public that the endocrine disrupting chemicals (Bisphenol A) in our plastics,clothing,carpets, etc. are nothing to worry about. Governments used to say that asbestos was safe. They tell us that environmental exposure to microwaves is safe. They tell us that irradiating the food we buy from the supermarkets is safe. They tell us that fracking is safe. They tell us that spying on our private lives is necessary. They spray live viruses on our meat.

    I could go on for hours about questionable claims by government and scientists but I think people are waking up to the fact that governments have been in bed with the big corporates for years and that they can’t be trusted. I mean this website details the lies the pollies tell on a daily basis and it would be a little naive to think that their lies don’t extend to the public health domain. Many people are just sick of the lies and corruption and take anything the government and big corporates have to say with a grain of salt.

    Organic

  32. darrel nay

    PS.

    Governments also tell us that waging war in Iraq and Afghanistan is in the public interest – millions dead. Governments have no shame and they need to be put back in their box.

    Peace

  33. Dan Dark

    Yes Darrel you are right when it comes to gov’s and toxic things they know about
    Alcohol is classed as alcohol only before it has passed the lips, then after that it is classed as a toxic poison
    And the damage to individuals and the community are all there to see
    For years gov’s knew cigarettes were killers, but because smokers in general die younger pay more taxes in their life than non smokers, and are not a burden on the old age pension they were fair game it’s a fact.
    It was only because of the lobbying of the health profession that the gov clamped down on smoking,

    But the damage of alcohol costs more to the community in various crimes and health institutions, than smoking did and does, but once again gov’s are making big big money/tax off the sale of alcohol
    There are double standards everywhere when it comes to gov’s and standards of safety concerning the population, but vaccination saves money and the cost of human misery inflicted on our most precious our next generation, nooo thanks,
    I don’t drink never have, but I have all my kids are vaccinated to protect them and the herd which are our communities that we live in and have some obligation too at the end of the day..

  34. darrel nay

    PPS.

    Fukashima or Chernobyl should tell us all that when governments/corporates tell us it’s safe then that is when we need to worry – bigtime.

  35. Dan Dark

    Darrel don’t let paranoia get to you, but knowledge is power , and the better educated we are on history, the worse off the gov’s will be 🙂

  36. darrel nay

    re. vaccinations

    I have had some vaccinations. If the arguments for being vaccinated are so overwhelming then most people will get them. However trying to force the millions of people who don’t trust vaccines to have them is only going to be counter productive. I don’t think that the ‘common good argument’ carries much water – witness the inquisition, eugenics, apartheid or burning witches as examples of actions carried out for the common good. Unless someone died and made the state GOD then I would argue for the individuals right to decide. I am not self-righteous enough to impose my beliefs on others. It is true to say that in the future much of today’s accepted science will be laughed at – this is the way it works. I love science but I know it is a work in progress.

    Big Pharma lobbies for compulsory vaccination everyday because they make billions from vaccines. They are also forcing millions of children onto mind altering drugs (it’s a sick experiment) and we are allowing it. When will we stand up and tell them to leave the kids alone?

    cheers

  37. Dan Dark

    I am not arguing Darrel, but yes I agree Big Pharma and doctors will have some questions to answer, when the whole Rittalin thing comes out more, but to agree to your child being prescribed these toxic medications is a bit diff to vaccination, it’s like comparing apples to oranges really,
    vaccination is not an experiment, it is a preventative to some really nasty deadly diseases that are devastating to the whole of society and the impact, the proof is in the pudding as they say, we have eradicated these diseases in our country,
    I have a cousin who had an adverse reaction to vaccine many years ago now and has disabilities as a result, but that is one out of many many family members and with good consultation and education from doctors it has never happened since,
    Darrel anything in life is a risk, driving a car is a risk compared to walking, flying in a plane has a certain amount of risk compared to walking, having a baby carries a certain amount of risk to staying non pregnant, that dosnt mean we all die in a car crash, or die giving birth, as the numbers go there is always a certain amount of risk that doesn’t mean we all stop doing whatever involves a certain degree of risk in life.

  38. nurses1968

    ‘Abbott lies’ web domain names registered in Liberal party name

    Bill Shorten seizes on discovery as evidence the prime minister ‘knew Australians would be angry about his lies’
    Labor has sought to embarrass the government over the discovery that web domain names that include the term “Abbott lies” have been registered in the name of the Liberal party.

    Web registry searches indicate abbottlies.com.au and abbottlies.net.au were registered by “Liberal Party of Australia” on 13 May, the date of the government’s first budget.

  39. Kaye Lee

    “I don’t think that the ‘common good argument’ carries much water – witness the inquisition, eugenics, apartheid or burning witches as examples of actions carried out for the common good.”

    This argument holds no validity Darrel. Being an heretic or black or a witch are not contagious diseases that will cause the death of millions of people. If a personal decision puts millions of people at risk then it is not fair to say “I have the right”.

    Measles is an extremely contagious respiratory illness spread by coughing and sneezing. Most people do recover from it, but it can cause deafness and pneumonia, and it can be fatal. The prevention is simple, extremely low risk, and so effective that back when vaccine uptake was high, both the US and the UK categorized it as “eliminated” because it basically had ceased to circulate in populations in either country.

    Andrew Wakefield’s bogus MMR vaccine scare in 1998 led to a resurgence of the disease in Wales that left 1219 people infected with measles and one in ten hospitalized. Most were hospitalized with pneumonia or dehydration, and most fell into the age range of children who should have been vaccinated around the time of the Wakefield scare. These people can carry the disease to other countries where hospital treatment is harder to come by, increasing the number of deaths.

    The previously named Australian Vaccination Network have spread misinformation which has caused the people in the area where they are based to have a far lower vaccination rate and there have consequently been epidemics of whooping cough that have caused the death of several babies who were too young to be immunised.

    Mass immunisation has been the most effective public health strategy ever launched in Australia. Polio epidemics once struck with fierce consequences. More than 1,000 died and tens of thousands more were paralysed. But when a vaccination was introduced in the 1950s, the disease was all but eradicated.

    Those who argue against vaccination are like those who argue against climate change – they are ignoring all scientific evidence and putting the rest of us in danger.

  40. OzFenric

    BTW, the New South Wales Office of Fair Trading has forced the “Australian Vaccination Network” to change their name, as the name itself is “misleading and a detriment to the community”. The organisation is registered in NSW, and has accordingly changed its name to the “Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network”. I note however that they still use the original name on Facebook. They have also been stripped of their right to fund-raise.

    People like Darrel claim that their problem is with the removal of personal choice, but they and the “AVN” and others of their ilk specifically aim to promote their dangerous beliefs to the unwary and the uncertain.

    If you choose to not be vaccinated, I can understand (but not approve) that. If you choose not to vaccinate your children, you are putting them at risk of death, paralysis, disability or other serious consequences and you are at the very least unsupportably selfish. And if you try to convince others of your hair-brained paranoiac fantasies you are potentially responsible for death and disease in others, including my children who are not yet fully immunised, and this is the most unforgivable of all.

  41. OzFenric

    Note that the “Australian Vaccination Network” has been forced to change its name by the New South Wales Office of Fair Trading (where they are registered as an organisation) as their original name was “misleading and a detriment to the community”. They have also been stripped of their right to fund-raise. I note, however, that they haven’t stopped using the original name for their Facebook identity.

    Darrel says his concerns stem from his fondness for personal and individual choice, but organisations like AVN and people like Darrel seek to actively promote and encourage their beliefs for the unwary, the uneducated and the unsure. They are worse than harmless.

    If you choose not to be fully vaccinated, that’s your choice; it’s a stupid and misinformed one but we can’t stop you. If you choose not to vaccinate your children, you are being cruel and selfish, deliberately exposing them to preventable diseases that can lead to death, disability or other major consequence. And if you convince others to follow your hair-brained paranoiac fantasies, you are exposing others to serious illness, disability and death, and this is the most reprehensible of all.

  42. Pingback: Joe Hockey Despises the Poor | The Abbott Proof Fence

  43. darrel nay

    Evening

    re: the vaccine lobby

    I don’t appreciate feeble insults even from those preaching from the moral ‘high-ground’. Being insulting is not constructive and simply takes the discussion into the gutter. I respect your opinions but I disagree on this issue. I am not the only person who has remaining queries about some of the vaccine ‘truisms’ – countless medical professionals have issues with aspects of the vaccine program. The German government recently rejected ‘dirty’ vaccines during the bird-flu/tamiflu drama.

    I will not try to convince anyone to have or avoid vaccines because as I’ve said it should be an individual’s right to choose their medication – this principle was clearly established at the Nuremberg Trials. I am sick of people with ‘good intentions’ who believe it is their right to dictate to others how they should live. Eugenics is a sick ‘science’ fostered by some who feel they are in a position to qualitatively value life.

    There is a saying about how power corrupts and most people believe it refers to those of us in positions of authority, but equally, it refers to those of us who become accustomed to holding opinions as to how others should live. Life has always been about risk – one of the reasons the chicken crossed the road is that nobody dared tell the chicken it wasn’t free to choose.

    If the consensus of scientific opinion says we should have frontal labotomies or electroshock therapy some people will argue for their right to abstain from medical intervention and their wishes need to be respected. Any honest, educated appraisal of medical history will tell us that the medical profession has made some horrific blunders and so we should always respect the wishes of those communities and individuals who prefer other paths – who are we to judge? It is time we realised that medical science is not infallible, rather it is a work in progress.

    I have included the following link which presents chilling evidence that the vaccine story is not as one-sided as we are often led to believe

    http://www.infowars.com/merck-developer-admits-vaccines-contain-hidden-cancer-viruses-derived-from-diseased-monkeys/

    There are reasons why big pharma are one of the biggest advertisers in society and the billions they spend on media spin often leads to commercial propaganda at the expense of true science.

    Pity the society where some dictate to others how they should be medicated.

    Cheers

  44. Matters Not

    Darrel, your link takes me to Alex Jones.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alex_Jones_(radio_host)

    Presumably this is the same Jones who asserts:

    Jones denies the existence of human-induced climate change, describing the underlying science as deceitful and merely a means for global governance and global redistribution of wealth

    Personally I think such a link weakens your argument big time.

  45. darrel nay

    reply for Matters Not,

    The link should take you straight to to a an article exploring the merck developer (Maurice Hilleman, Merck Pharmaceutical Company’s previous Chief of Vaccines Division) who admits vaccines contain hidden cancer viruses derived from diseased monkeys.

    As for Alex Jones, nobody agrees with anyone on every topic, but if you can name any individual (or group) who has been more successful in exposing government/corporate corruption then I would be interested. People around the world are increasingly upset at the levels of corruption we are exposed to – trust in government is at historically low levels.

    Cheers

  46. OzFenric

    Darrel, I got a little emphatic and insulted you by reference, and for that I apologise unreservedly; it is not my intention to descend into personal insults. However, my belief stands. If you choose to take horrendous risks and stay disease-susceptible that is your own lookout. But failing to vaccinate your children exposes them to much greater risk than to yourself (as their immune system has not had the countless exposures, plus vaccinations, that you are the beneficiary of). You also put your whole community, including the immunosuppressed, the young and the elderly, at increased risk. You put extra burden on a stretched healthcare system and potentially contribute to a higher number of deaths. And if your own loved ones, from whom you withheld the choice to be vaccinated when they needed it, become sick, how will you respond to the outcomes that could have been so easily prevented?

    Your argument about lobotomies and EST is beset with fallacies – straw man, reductio ad absurdum, proving too much, take your pick. If the cost/benefit ratio for EST was as high as it is for vaccination, you’d find me in line and arguing against the misunderstanding of anyone who still held reservations. Of course, I would want the benefits and the costs to be absolutely and unambiguously proven, as they are with immunisation.

    Medical science is indeed a work in progress. Progress means that each new position is better than the previous. Currently progress has brought us to a point where we engage in mass vaccination; I somehow doubt that the next form of progress is going to be to go back to an unvaccinated state.

  47. OzFenric

    Re: the “cancer viruses”: this was a documented case of contamination of some vaccines with simian virus, and it happened between 1955 and 1961. I previously referred to this fact in an earlier comment.The contamination is no longer in vaccines, and hasn’t been for decades. The people who took these vaccines did so over fifty years ago and any widespread carcinogenic effects would have been widely known by now. As I said in my first comment, 11:14 on Saturday, this kind of nonsense is blatant fearmongering and not worth your attention.

  48. OzFenric

    And we appear to be getting diverted from the main article on behalf of a single throwaway sentence. 🙂 So how about that Joe Hockey fella, huh? 🙂

  49. Matters Not

    but if you can name any individual (or group) who has been more successful in exposing government/corporate corruption then

    Darrel, there’s a few assumptions in your statement that might not bear close scrutiny. I know it’s just a personal point of view. Can you provide some examples where Jones has successfully ‘exposed government/corruption’ and the like?

    Are you referring to “U.S. government of being involved in the Oklahoma City bombing”? Or “the filming of fake Moon landings to hide NASA’s secret technology”? Or maybe his assertion that:

    government and big business have colluded to create a New World Order through “manufactured economic crises, sophisticated surveillance tech and—above all—inside-job terror attacks that fuel exploitable hysteria

    Darrel, At this point I am walking slowly backwards but keeping my eyes fixed … so as not to disturb ..

    Bye for now, and probably forever.

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