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Tag Archives: Parental Leave

Since when did we become a greedy nation?

Watching QandA last night I was struck dumb when a young female member of the audience pounced on Bill Shorten for the government not matching the handout she could expect under Tony Abbott’s PPL scheme. It wasn’t so much the question she threw at Shorten that stunned me, but her attitude.

I cannot remember her question word-for-word, though I remember she introduced herself as a young, ambitious lady who would soon be entering the workforce and confidently embarking on a successful career. In her opinion, as a successful young lady, she feels she would deserve to be paid a bucket load of money to have a baby.

Is it just me, or is that attitude wrong?

Good luck to her in her career, which I hope is very rewarding. I also hope her success matches her enthusiasm. She might know that success in a career usually comes from putting in the hard yards. Do that, and the rewards will more than likely come. Nobody is going to hand success to her on a platter. Yet she wants the government, nay, taxpayers, to give her $75,000 for six months of baby time.

Why should she have the expectation that her pre-supposed success should be rewarded? Why should she have such a sense of outrageous entitlement? Or rather, why should she expect anything at all?

I don’t have issues with paid parental leave but I do have issues with people who expect the government to cater for their every whim. Women or anybody for that matter who is in need of government support should be able to receive it, but why should a successful person be entitled to receive more for something (that is basically a life choice) than a person who is unable to make that choice purely based on financial grounds? In essence, this young lady expects the government to give her a handout. A huge one.

Maybe I’m showing my age but I don’t recall these greedy attitudes from older generations. Since when have we become a country of people who want something for nothing and expect hard-working taxpayers to provide it for us.

This young lady made it clear – without saying so – that her vote would go to the party prepared to give her the most money to have a child. There was little-expressed concern that most of the taxpayers who foot the bill earn less in a year than she would pocket under Abbott’s PPL scheme (assuming, of course, that she is in a successful, high-paying job as she expects to be).

I don’t like Abbott’s scheme for a few of reasons. Firstly, I can’t see it as being viable (which I won’t go into as it is not the purpose of this post). Secondly, I find it discriminatory (again, I won’t expand on this). Thirdly, and most importantly, as shown on QandA last night it produces a sense of ‘unearned’ entitlement and greed. And sadly, at the expense of people who are more needy.

Someone is sure to enlighten me by announcing that her attitude is typical of today’s generation. If it is, then I was seriously unaware of it. If it is, then I find it extremely disappointing. If it is, do we really need to keep encouraging it?

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Labor Bashing

It’s surely not just me who has noticed the mainstream media losing their shit this week.

It’s like the very sight of Kevin Rudd is crack cocaine – sending journalists into a frenzied, chest beating fit of prediction and smear. It’s not like we can’t explain why this happens. We can. It’s because Kevin Rudd is a stick to beat Gillard’s government with. But mark my words, if it wasn’t Kevin f*cking Kevin, or Telstra’s asbestos, or Joel unhinged-Fitzgibbons or Labor backbenchers with their overnight suitcases being reported as having packed up their offices, it wouldn’t make any difference. I’m not going to waste any more time trying to find blame for this situation with the Labor Party, because surely this job has been done, and done and done and re-done many times with many more words than I could write in a hundred years. Let’s be honest. The axis of self-interests – the Murdoch, Rinehart, Abbott triangle is running the show. And they’re winning. This is a war, and the wrong side is winning. It’s a sad, humiliating fact for this great country. But it’s true. The 1% is kicking the 99%’s arse.

Labor does have a communication problem. I would like to see the best communicator in the world cut through a Murdoch smear campaign when his profits are threatened, but still, Labor does have a communication problem. But if you, like me, think it’s more important to judge someone by what they do, instead of what they say, it’s quite clear the Labor party is an incredibly successful outfit. It doesn’t matter who you are or what you’re rusted on to. This is fact. Policies, economic credentials and Labor party values intact – the Gillard Labor government is hugely successful. But this is the dagger in the heart of people like me who have been watching politics for the last three years, and have been reading mainstream news, and been incredulously reviewing the poll results. It’s becoming clear that it wouldn’t matter what the Gillard government did. Gillard could walk on water and it would be reported that she failed to swim. It’s as if we need to find a new word to outdo frustrating because it’s just getting too much to accept.

The Labor government’s policies are popular. The budget is economically responsible. The economy is outperforming all expectations compared to all other developed nations in regards to growth, unemployment, inflation and interest rates. Gillard’s renewable energy policies are restructuring the economy for future challenges. The Labor Party is doing exactly what they promised us they would do – they’re being progressive. NDIS, Gonski, a nation building NBN, a Carbon Price, the mining tax, Paid Parental Leave. But it wouldn’t matter how many successes they have – in fact the more successful they are the more the Murdoch, Rinehart, Abbott triangle ramps up their opposition. And depressingly, it would appear that the interests of the mega-rich trump public interest hands down.

How have we come to this point in our nation where we would prefer to shrink back into a bigoted, mean, selfish, stop the boats, cancel the Carbon Price, kill the NBN, scrap Gonski’s education funding, boost Gina Rinehart’s fortune, prop up Murdoch’s out of date business model instead of being brave, bold and committed to a better future for our children? A nation who hates unions and public services, but who turn a blind eye to capitalist corruption. For what purpose would anyone in their right mind behave like a irrational Iain Hall (please stop commenting on my blog) troll and think that it’s a good idea to eat shit and whip on the handbrake with a vote for Tony Abbott?

If you’re waiting for the mainstream media to wake up and realise they’re failing the country by waging a political campaign to destroy the Labor government, you’ll be waiting forever. They’re all in Murdoch and Rinehart’s pocket. When the ABC is as bad as the rest of them, you know all hope is lost. All it takes is for one bad poll for Labor and every political journalist in the country shows their true colours by waving their pom poms in the face of every Labor MP they can find. And when I say true colours, I mean the colours of their bosses. Just as one example of the priority of our journalists and the news they choose to focus on – this week Greg Combet told Parliament the Carbon Price is working – emissions have reduced by 7.4%. This is big news, I would have thought. But the radio report on ABC’s Radio National did not mention this important fact. No. Instead, their report was on Combet’s response to a question from them about what he will do if Labor loses the election. I rest my case. If this country wants Murdoch, Rinehart and Abbott’s 1% to decide their futures, they deserve everything they get.

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A Clarification – not a backdown on the PPL!

“Earlier this week, a Labor backbencher, Michelle Rowland, was denied a ‘pair’ in spite of having a sick child. We have in the studio, Mr War-on Inch explaining this decision. Good afternoon, Mr Inch”

“Good afternoon, I’d just like to point out that we have since given her the pair and now Ms Rowland is home where she should have been all along.”

“This is being used by the Labor Party to suggest that you’re out of touch when it comes to the needs of the working mother.”

“That’s just typical. Tony Abbott is introducing the Parental Leave (PPL) scheme to enable mothers to stay at home. And he has a wife and daughters, not to mention the fact that his mother was a woman. He certainly understands women far better than the PM.”

“So why didn’t you give her the pair earlier?”

“We didn’t know that her child was sick.”

“But she’s produced a letter where you talk of her child being unwell. before saying that the pair won’t be granted.”

“Yes, but she didn’t say ‘sick’. I mean, people in the workforce get sick leave, they don’t get unwell leave.”

“That seems to be splitting straws.”

“No!”

“No?”

“I think you’ll find the expression is ‘splitting hairs’. No-one says splitting straws.”

“But the point is surely that you should have given her the pair earlier in the week!”

“No the point is that she shouldn’t have waited until Thursday. She should have been home with her child and not even come to Parliament.”

“So you’d have given her a pair if she hadn’t turned up at all?”

“No, I’m just saying that it just shows what sort of parent she is. Leaving a sick child.”

“Surely she has an obligation to represent her electorate. I mean would you stay home if you had a sick child?”

“I’m not a mother!”

“That’s a matter of opinion …”

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