While the US has the most powerful military machine in history, it is also incomparably the most expensive – and members of Congress work aggressively to maintain it.
Some areas of concern remain. These include the mobilisation of local resources, reduction of the fiscal deficit and stabilisation of the national debt.
With the current state of the South African economy and public finances, the Parliamentary Budget Office could play a major role in ensuring that this happens. But the office is in complete disarray
Bigger surpluses, lower debt and tax cuts baked in the Coalition's worst nightmare come true.
Governments are addicted to tax revenue from harmful activities. It is stopping them from doing what is in society's best interests.
The opposition aims to put Medicare at the forefront of its campaigning, as it did in 2016. But there is a notable difference.
The government has delivered a pretty disappointing budget for education, with no secure funding for early childhood education and a recycled commitment of $300 for schools.
Peter Martin and Tim Colebatch on Budget strategy and numbers.
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From inside the budget lockup, Peter Martin and Tim Colebatch shared their reactions to the pre-election budget.
The budget includes a step towards modernising Medicare, through a new annual payment for each person with diabetes who signs up with a specific GP.
The government wants this election to be all about tax. The tax cuts you will get, now and later. And the “higher taxes” that Bill Shorten would impose.
Peter Costello's Future Fund is funding the apparent elimination of government debt.
The budget – the first brought down by Treasurer Josh Frydenberg – doubles the tax relief that average earners were due to receive within weeks, from $530 in last year’s budget to $1,080.
It's a cash splash worthy of Rudd, and it will push an extra $3.5 billion into the economy within weeks.
Booming global commodity prices have masked the impacts of a weakening economy. With luck, the budget will be the shot it needs.
South Africa's latest budget was a necessary stop-gap after the ravages of the past decade. But it didn't have ideas that addressed the needs of poor people.
History suggests the government will spend most of the extra $10 billion per year that the MYEFO will reveal on Monday. The only problem is, those riches won't last.
A new ANU computer algorithm can provide near instant answers about how to get the best bang for welfare dollars. It says we should boost Newstart and cut either pensions or family benefits.
The damage done during the preceding decade will have a negative effect on South Africa's public finances and the economy for some time to come.
The budget deficit is as good as dead. For practical purposes we are back to normal with financial firepower recharged for the next crisis.
Around 1 in 8 Americans was poor in 2017. That doesn't compare well to other developed nations.