Scott Morrison’s government may be more authoritarian populist than strictly conservative.
Authoritarian populism has been around for a while, but this government's determination to punish some groups make the label more apt than just "conservative".
Coming to a community near you.
Sabrina Roy with her baby Xena at the Milingimbi general store in the Northern Territory in 2015.
The government wants to triple the number of Australians on the Cashless Debit Card in the face of scant evidence it does them any good.
Unless we know who who Newstart recipients are, we are likely to make wrong decisions about how much to pay them and whether to drug test them.
A typical Newstart recipient is middle-aged, female, and more likely than most to live outside of a major city.
It helps to know what happens to people who stop claiming Newstart.
Getting people off welfare appears to "disappear" as many as it puts into jobs.
Even when sharing a house, the average cost of rent means very little is left over from the Newstart allowance for food and living costs.
Once rent is paid, having to live on only $14 a day doesn't cover the costs of job seeking. The evidence of the need to increase Newstart and Rent Allowance is overwhelming.
The extra 24 cents per day can buy an extra 36 peanuts per day, more if you buy in bulk.
Newstart increases are projected to get smaller and smaller relative to pension increases. By the end of the century Newstart will be just two fifths of the pension.
“We’d be mad not to learn the lessons” of the election result, said Chalmers on Labor’s way ahead.
Jim Chalmers on the need to change economic course.
The Conversation, CC BY 35.9 MB (download)
In this podcast, Shadow Treasurer Jim Chalmers argues the government can have both a more stimulatory policy and a surplus going forward.
Liberal MP Gladys Liu has beeb the centre of much heated debate in federal politics this week.
Another stormy week in federal parliament has seen debate around Gladys Liu's alleged links to China and the ethics of the government's push to drug-test Newstart recipients.
Proponents and critics of drug testing welfare recipients are repeating the same arguments. Here’s how to break the deadlock.
We need to look at what's behind arguments for and against drug testing welfare recipients to avoid repeating the same debate, over and over.
Helen Haines (centre-right) made history at the election as the first federal independent to succeed another independent.
Independent MP Helen Haines on using ‘soft power’
The Conversation, CC BY 27.1 MB (download)
Helen Haines, who does not have the real legislative power her predecessor, Cathy McGowan shared after the Coalition fell into minority government, says "building relationships is key to getting things done".
The latest claim that job-seekers are actively snubbing work opportunities flies in the face of research.
Claiming "there are jobs out there for those who want them" is cheap rhetoric glossing over the reality of unemployment.
Parliament has now finished its sitting fortnight. Michelle Grattan discusses the key issues from it, including Labor's approach to passing legislation given its weaker position in the Senate.
Morrison has trouble keeping his backbenchers in line, as they rebel on issues like superannuation and Newstart.
This week, Morrison told his backbench to keep their opinions in line or internal, appointed a man he's personally close to as his new head of the Prime Minister's department, and put the public service in its place.
After a bruising election result for GetUp, national director Paul Oosting is in Canberra this week to work on press freedom.
Paul Oosting responds to GetUp’s critics.
The Conversation, CC BY 29.1 MB (download)
GetUp's national director Paul Oosting joins Michelle Grattan to respond to critics who accuse the organisation of "creating an environment...[of] abuse, harassment, intimidation".
Most of those receiving the $40 per day have been doing it for a long time.
Many people enter and leave Newstart quickly. But most of those on it have been on it for a long time.
Energy minister Angus Taylor was the target of Tuesday’s question time and given that he’s not a strong performer in the House, he floundered.
Morrison is keen to whip the backbench into line early, telling the backbench to be “mindful of what we took to the election and what we didn't take”.
Centre Alliance will be pivotal for the government in passing some legislation this parliamentary term.
Centre Alliance’s Stirling Griff on Newstart
The Conversation, CC BY 26.3 MB (download)
Centre Alliance Senator Stirling Griff tells Michelle Grattan that his party will pressure the government to raise Newstart.
All Newstart recipients are eligible for other benefits too, but in many cases these are paltry.
AAP Image/Julian Smith
Yes, most jobseekers who receive Newstart payments are also eligible for other benefits. But in many cases this is just a few dollars a fortnight to help with expenses such as electricity bills.
Labor’s budget reply stole the mic from the government.
Caroline Fisher talks about the week in Australian politics with Michelle Grattan.
The extension will add some $80 million to the original cost of $284.4 million.
Frydenberg said the decision was made at a meeting on Tuesday night of Morrison, Cormann and himself. He indicated it was about smoothing the passage of the measure through the parliament.