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Articles on Federal Budget 2014

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The policy is imbalanced because it imposes burdens on the poor to provide benefits to the rich. flickr: mikeleary83

Proposed medical research fund is unfair and unethical

Medical research is a significant winner in the federal budget: we’re told, (probably falsely), that the government will establish the largest medical research fund in the world ($20 billion by 2023…
Ever thus… there is a quite a history of the federal government pulling funding from the states. AAP/Alan Porritt

Funding stoush between the states and feds not so new

The states have some justification in being annoyed about being stripped of $80 billion worth of federal funding for health and education funding. These programs were negotiated on the basis of shared…
Attorney General George Brandis will be expected to lead the culture change to one of open information. Stefan Postles/AAP

Transparency trade-off means FOI will get more expensive

Tony Abbott’s 2013 election platform promised to “restore accountability and improve transparency measures to be more accountable to you”. In spite of this promise the first Abbott government budget will…
The federal budget shows that Tony Abbott is now committed to a strong division of responsibility between the Commonwealth and the states, rather than a more centralised model. AAP/Alan Porritt

Abbott draws up new battlelines in the fight over federalism

When treasurer Joe Hockey detailed his first budget on Tuesday, the announcement that the states and territories were to be stripped of A$80 billion in federal health and education funding agreed to with…
Has Education Minister Christopher Pyne destroyed the equity of Australia’s higher education system? AAP

Higher education: the age of Pyne the destroyer begins

In Hinduism Lord Brahma is the creator, Lord Vishnu is the preserver, and Lord Shiva is the destroyer and transformer. Here are rich models for contemporary leaders, whether they were raised in the Hindu…
Opposition leader Bill Shorten attacked the government’s budget as ‘ideological’, but his own vision in the battle of ideas is far less clear. AAP/Alan Porritt

Shorten’s budget in reply: will it reshape voters’ memories?

Opposition leader Bill Shorten was emphatic in his budget in reply that the Abbott government’s first budget was an “attack” on the Australian way of life. In his speech on the floor of parliament last…
The federal budget has shifted costs rather than controlling them. Quentin Jones/AAP

Budget takes hospital funding arrangement back to the future

It was only seven years ago, but it seems like a lifetime; then-opposition leader Kevin Rudd was promising to end the “blame game” in health-care funding. Fast forward a few years, he’d received a report…
Many people prefer casual work and a phased approach to retirement. Shutterstock

If we are to work to 70, we need to rethink work

The norm of permanent full-time terms of employment is under serious challenge. In Australia today more than one-third of employed people work on more variable terms – in particular as casuals (19%), independent…
Loss of the service will impact Australia’s international image, media diversity in the region and coverage of news from the Pacific. dithern

Scrapping the Australia Network affects more than the ABC

The termination in the 2014 budget of the ABC’s international television broadcasting contract to run the federal government’s Australia Network service, barely a year into its ten-year term, was hardly…
Opposition leader Bill Shorten delivered his first budget in reply speech on the floor of parliament tonight. AAP/Alan Porritt

Bill Shorten’s budget reply: experts react

Opposition leader Bill Shorten has vowed to oppose funding cuts to hospitals, schools and higher education in his budget in reply speech, threatening more than A$10 billion in budget savings proposed by…
The budget calls for the creation of a medical research future fund from estimated savings in health expenditure. AAP/Lukas Coch

Better ways to spend the medical research future fund

One of the few real surprises in the budget was the creation of medical research future fund, to be partly funded by the introduction of a $7 GP co-payment. This injection of money provides an opportunity…
A student protester confronts a grim reaper with the face of Education Minister Christopher Pyne…has the budget killed your prospect of a debt-free future? AAP

How much student debt will you be facing post-budget?

Education minister Christopher Pyne has released new public subsidy rates for domestic students in degrees offered by universities, to take effect from 2016. As a budget saving the government aims to lower…
Australia’s public service broadly lacks in a number of key areas that are necessary for the Abbott government’s vision of a small government to become a reality. AAP/Alan Porritt

What skills does a ‘smaller’ government need?

The 2014-15 federal budget, released by treasurer Joe Hockey earlier this week, set out a vision of government that is leaner, meaner and more efficient. It built on the Coalition’s “Smaller Government…

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