Health and education, when less is more

Photo:  The Daily Telegraph

Photo: The Daily Telegraph

The prime minister said,  “. . . the rate of spending growth in the longer term had to be reduced if good schools and hospitals were to be sustainable“.

What is it that Tony Abbott attempting to state?  An interpretation might be that in order for the quality of schools and hospitals to be maintained, that they need less money spent and that this in turn will enable schools and hospitals to become “sustainable”.  Hell!  It must be time to cut funding to the wealthiest of the private schools; consider the *outstanding* education that they will be able to provide once they’re given less money.

From one blogger over on the ABC:


2:04 PM on 25/02/2014

There appears to be huge gap between the government’s understanding of the health and education experiences of ordinary people and what the government thinks is happening.

“There is too much education spending”. Real experience: my granddaughter’s teacher brings his coffee machine to school and sells coffee to the other teachers to raise money for equipment for his special needs classroom.

“There is too much health spending”. Real experience; there is a two YEAR wait to see a back specialist in the public health system, there is a $25 gap to see a GP, there is a $200 gap to get a simple knee scan at the local, privately owned medical imaging place because the government has privatised the rural medical imaging in South Australia. It costs $900 to get a child diagnosed with autism because the WCH cannot cope with the need for diagnosis in SA.

“Wages are too costly” Real experience; there are thousands of people who are not getting fair wages, let alone raises, there are thousands who are not getting holiday, sick pay or getting their superannuation paid on time.There are thousands of young people doing unpaid internships that last months and months without any wages at all.

“People need to work longer” Real experience: we want to work longer, we are fit as fiddles at 70 but NOBODY wants to employ us. Are you listening Mr Abbott?

ABC’s Insiders program: ”I want to give people this absolute assurance: no cuts to education, no cuts to health, no changes to pensions and no changes to the GST.”, so said Tony Abbott on the 1st September, 2013.

Naturally the Liberals will deny that there is no lie at all as they are not actually going cut funding to health and education, just reduce it.  Weasel words.

On hospitals, and the report below is dated 14th February this year:

  • A NEW report card on public hospitals shows just 68 per cent of urgent, emergency department patients are being seen within the recommended 30 minutes.
  • It also shows the average wait time for elective surgery has not improved since 2010/11, and still sits at about 36 days.
  • The report was released by the The Australian Medical Association, which says more money must be pumped into public hospitals failing to meet key targets on patient care.
  • The report reflects data gathered in the 2012/13 financial year.
  • AMA president Dr Steve Hambleton says the true picture on elective surgery could be far worse, because the official data only captures those who are on waiting lists.
  • Many others were still waiting to see specialists and they weren’t reflected in the figures.
  • The report card also showed there are just 2.6 public hospital beds for every 1000 people — a 43 per cent drop in 10 years.
  • Dr Hambleton said the report showed how vital it was for the federal government to boost hospital funding and abandon $400 million in cuts planned over the next three years.

It’s very disturbing that we’ve got these figures showing our hospitals are under pressure and yet the funding may not be there,’’ Dr Hambleton said.

This is not the time to cut funding.’’

Unlike former prime minister Kevin Rudd, he (Tony Abbott) wouldn’t say the buck stopped with him when it came to making sure health infrastructure was properly funded.

It depends on the particular issue where the particular buck stops,’’ Mr Abbott said.

Did I mention the phrase weasel words?

54 comments on “Health and education, when less is more

  1. People go to hospitals and Health services to bludge off the system, not because their sick. It’s just a way that thems lefties use to bring the economy to it’s knee’s. This Must Be Stopped…. Tony will ‘Stop The Sick’ by stopping them seeing Doctors, both in and out of Hospitals, this will then ease pressures on the PBS and any related medical procedures by removing patients from the proccesses’, Patients have been the main driver in relation to costs and their removal will not only rein in costs but will also ease the worklode of health staff. The bonus in the ‘Axe The Patient’ proccess will allow the down-sizing of Medicare as sick people will be turned back to their deathbed of origin or will be detained in emergency waiting centres for an indeterminate time and will be thus detered from making a claim.
    Tony will Stop the illegal sick people, he will turn them back and rid our health system of Labors dogooder rort of helping the sick and unhealthy.
    Tony’s a ‘friend’ to all ‘the sick’ and is sure that this seemingly harsh measure is really an ‘opportunity’ for them to raise themselves up and be well and truely…. heeled!!

  2. So another two major promises broken, and big ones at that, yet the silence of the meek and mild lambs from the right wingers, as they always run away and hide when this government back flips and deceives.

    Abbott thinks that if he lumps the two into the one statement he’s not breaking two promises, and by saying he is going to reduce the rate of growth it’s not really cuts.

    Thanks be that every news service I have heard called it a cut in the rates for health and education, with a couple actually calling them for what they are, cuts in spending.

    No surprise the Business Council is calling for even greater cuts because of course they want greater cuts to their tax rates and bigger handouts, and can always go overseas for expensive medical treatment and for the kids education.

    This government lurches from woeful and terrible to even worse month on month. No spin in the world and blame shifting to Labor at every turn can in anyway make this government look any better, it is that bad and by far the worst this country has ever seen.

  3. LOVO, that was about the reasoning..that the poor people are clogging up the system. I’ve even heard it mentioned that a fee will act as “a deterrent”…because of course poor people like nothing better than to hang out evenings in Emergency waiting for hours on know, just for the sheer thrill of it.

  4. Poor VOYAGER, that’s his lot in life, to come into blogs, throw in an inane sentence or two of absolutely no intelligence and then scarper off under his rock again.

    Proves absolutely that Abbott has yet again stuffed it big time and has lied through his teeth, and for that confirmation we thank you VOYAGER.

  5. Morrison, Johnston & Campbell must have guilty conscience, truth bloody hurts

    Opposition Leader Bill Shorten needs to show some authority and make a senior frontbencher apologise for his verbal “attack” on a military general during a Senate hearing, the government says

    Opposition defence spokesman Stephen Conroy was forced to withdraw comments he made on Tuesday, accusing Operation Sovereign Borders commander Lieutenant-General Angus Campbell of a political cover-up and comparing him to corrupt fictional film character, Colonel Jessup.

    Now Defence Minister David Johnston wants Senator Conroy to say sorry to General Campbell too.

  6. No man is above the law. If this general had nothing to hide why didn’t he simply answer the question posed to him, we are not America, we don’t have the 5th to plead. Makes me think that Conroy is correct in thinking there is a cover-up. Now we are forced to deal with this strawman argument about the credentials of Angus Campbell more relevant than the real issue.

  7. Well well, look here.

    Senator Nash’s chief of staff, Alastair Furnival, resigned this month when it was revealed by Fairfax Media that he had retained ownership of a lobbying company in breach of the ministerial staff code of conduct. This followed a decision by the minister’s office to take down a healthy food website seen as hostile to the snackfood industry.


    Mr Furnival had worked for Cadbury and months earlier had lobbied the Tasmanian government on behalf of the company to secure $400,000 for a visitor centre.

    Pictures located by the Seven Network show Mr Furnival was at the Cadbury announcement in August sitting with Mr Abbott and other senior figures.

    The pictures suggest Mr Furnival, who went on to hold a key post in the Abbott government with critical responsibility for food policy, was central to Coalition discussions resulting in a promised transfer of taxpayer funds to the company.

    Senator Nash also refused to answer questions about whether Mr Furnival’s company, Australian Public Affairs, had continued to represent junk food industry clients while he worked in her office.

  8. And no it’s not just a whoopsie (as Abbott would like us to see it), this is an issue involving millions of dollars…

    And why not? There are Nash’s multiple contradictions, and there’s the still unexplained role played by Furnival in securing a whopping $16 million for his client Cadbury.

    That threatens to bring Abbott right back into the fray if it turns out Furnival stitched up the Cadbury/Coalition deal.

    So the money for Cadbury’s was a whole lot more than money for tourism, nor was it just one of those pre-election promises to make Tony Abbott look good. This is all about money given at the behest of a junk food lobby group. And then lied about in Parliament, not only by Nash but by Tony Abbott.

  9. Yes, Voyager is correct, this government just keeps on giving. Today we have Qantas is calling the biggest con we have seen this day. Time for Mr. Joyce to go.

    5000 jobs to go. Once moire Melbourne and Adelaide.

  10. Well, it appears to take ones work force off shore does not work. Qantas still in trouble.

    How does one have a flag

    It appears that competition is the company’s biggest problem.

    Why should Virgin pay the price, to allow them to make a profit.
    What do we have to lose if they go. After all, this is a market force at work. Capitalism, which some bow to, over the body of a civil society.
    Time to cut Qantas adrift, and keave them up to market force.

  11. Well, one of the first things this government has pulled the moderate if not light weight gambling legislation. It is a wonder that plain packaging has survived in t relation to cigarettes.

    Yes, they do deliver to those who support them during election campaigns.

  12. Still no one from the government. ACTU getting a good hearing. Have the media decided they are going to do their job today? ABC 24

  13. Maybe Abbott and Co have gone into shock. I am sure they never believed that maybe unions can fight back. Not in their scenario I suspect.

    Will be interesting to see if Albanese is correct. Abbott will first blame the workers, then carbon, finishing off with Labor.

  14. I see that Abbott is keeping to his word, that he will only appear when he has something worthwhile to say. It is obviously that when it come to Qantas, he has not.

  15. The list is still growing.

    ………….THE LIST

    110. Blames asylum seekers on Manus Island who were defenceless when viciously attacked inside our detention centre leaving one dead and seventy-seven seriously injured without verifying the facts which later turned out to be untrue – 25 February 2014

    109. Contravenes 113 years of established practice by releasing the previous Government’s confidential cabinet papers to the Royal Commission into the Pink Batts scheme – 22 February 2014

    108. Pressured SPC Ardmona to slash pay and conditions for workers in return for Government money – 20 February 2014

    107. Blames carbon pricing for the close of Alcoa smelters and rolling mills and the loss of nearly 1000 jobs, despite the fact the company states it had no bearing on their decision – 19 February 2014


  16. Deeply regrets………..

    The Abbott government insists it is up to Qantas management to determine the future of the ailing airline in the wake of its $252 million first-half loss.

    But Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said the government deeply regretted the company’s plan to axe 5000 jobs in a bid to dramatically cut costs.

    She used the decision to push the case for repeal of the carbon tax, which costs Qantas more than $100 million a year.

    ‘The role of government is to ensure it is easier to do business in Australia, not harder,’ Ms Bishop told reporters in Canberra.

    Opposition Leader Bill Shorten accused the government of coming up with thought bubbles instead of serious action.

    ‘This is the worst day for aviation people since the collapse of Ansett,’ he told reporters.

    Independent senator Nick Xenophon, a vocal critic of Qantas management, has called for a judicial inquiry taking aim at CEO Alan Joyce.

    ‘The jobs that should have been lost are Alan Joyce and his board,’ he said.

    Mr Shorten says debate about the Qantas Sale Act, which limits foreign ownership in the airline, is not the immediate issue.

    Instead it should be offering Qantas a government-guaranteed stand-by line of credit.

  17. FACT CHECK. ABC Who is responsible for that death on Manus?

    It appears Australia is responsible.

    We can contract out process, but not responsibility.

  18. Yes, Mr. Albanese is once again correct. The government is blaming the worker. I wonder why Air New Zealand is expanding and increasing it’s profit?

    .Transport Minister Warren Truss has singled out Qantas’ high costs and wages as a key factor weighing the airline down and says the government will monitor markets’ reaction to the airline’s reported $252 million underlying loss on Thursday before moving to respond.
    In an exclusive interview with Fairfax Media, Mr Truss said the Coalition was ”not in the business of propping up businesses”, but acknowledged the key strategic role Qantas played in servicing cities across Australia..

    Read more:

  19. Mr. Abbott, there are serious is available to those who lose their jobs. Weasel words reply to the first question in QT.

    Abbott is not going to play politics. In other words he is doing nothing. No wonder the man has no it had the guts to face the media.

  20. Mr. Abbott grieves with the workers that are facing an uncertain future. He says there are better days ahead. Yes, this is what he just said. So now he grieves as well as regrets. Hard day, yes, too hard for Abbott. He is telling the truth, his words, there are hard days ahead,.

    Governments do not save business, It is government and staff working together.. Marrow of its bones. Not government………..

    Mining tax red tape……

  21. It appears that the PPL stays no matter who criticizes it. Once again, Abbott is the only one in step. This is a po0licy whose day has come.
    Is a historical change…. Suggest that it was history, when the one we now have, introduced by Labor was passed.

    He is only increasing benefits to indecent heights, and removing in the long run, responsibility of the employer.

    The only one that supports PPL is Abbott. Not even his party seems to be in agreement

  22. Well, unions are still out in force. Maybe Abbott will have to do more than greive with the workers and sent his regrets,

    MPI Led by Opposition Deputy Leader.

    About no surprises and b4roken promises by this government.

  23. Have never heard or seen Tanya as she is today. Yes, she is answering all the questions on health, now onto education.

    Yes, I believe Labor is now releasing the anger they have held in check for the last through months.

    Now we have Hunt. Just, back to the so called Gillard lie. Not sure what it has to do with the MPI.

    Bishop is fast losing control.

  24. I wonder what would follow, if Shorten called a press conference saying, they fully back the present CEF bills, but due to the fact, Abbott is using this so called tax as an excuse not to do what is needed, they will allow Abbott’s demolition bills through. Yes, but they will be taking similar promises to the next election. Shorten could say this action is needed, so Australians have some certainty during the reign of this government;’

    Only the bill that deals with the so called tax should be allowed to be repe3aled. The rest of the CEF suit of bills should remain in place.

    All about talks about is repealing the tax. Let him do it.

    This would clear the air, and Abbott, when the promised nirvana does not occur, will have to begin dealing with the economy as it is.

    Abbott would then have no more excuses.

  25. It this happened, Abbott would be forced to debate all the CEF bills. It would come obvious, there is not much different from his vague Direct Action. Well are, there is no green army, but that is the bigtgest difference.

    Chris Boen now on ABC 24. On PPL.

  26. It seems the Manus Island riots where fuel by anger. Why would one expect any other reason?

    They do not say whether the anger was warranted or not.

    The only ones that appear to have suffered injuries are refugees. Yes, refugees, not transferees.. Yes, human beings.

    Wonder if any of the dogs suffered injury.

  27. Noit the company’s fault.

    Prime Minister Tony Abbott says he is not going to make political capital out of a difficult and anxious day for Qantas workers.

    But he says it’s not the job of government to save business, it’s to ensure the ‘fundamentals’ of the economy are strong.

    Mr Abbott was responding to a question from Opposition Leader Bill Shorten about what the government would do to help 5000 Qantas workers who are set to lose their jobs.

    ‘The last thing I’m going to do today is to play politics or to try to make capital out of what is a very difficult day,’ he told parliament on Thursday.

    ‘The fundamental job of government is to ensure that our economy is as strong as possible and that means getting the fundamentals right.’

    He said no blame should be laid on Qantas management which was ‘doing its best’ to secure a good future for its workers.

    ‘I am right when I say that there will be better days ahead in a stronger economy, when workers can get the jobs they need.’

    Not his responsibility either, it seems.

  28. In QT Abbott answered that Furnival was an economic adviser for the company when that photo was taken, Do people in such a position to turn up for political electioneering photo ops.

  29. Interesting conversation going on with Falkiner and Wong. Having trouble establishing what words mean under this government. Yes, words like exspended. allocated and committed. Believe me, it is an education.

  30. Where dfoes Qantas pay that carbon tax?

    ……QANTAS will raise surcharges for international and domestic flights by as much as 24 per cent, blaming higher fuel costs and the impact of carbon taxes in Australia and Europe.
    Qantas and its regional offshoot, QantasLink, will increase domestic fares by an average 2.5 per cent from February 9.
    It translates into a $5 fare increase for a flight between Sydney and Melbourne.
    A one-way international flight will go up by as much as $60.
    That means the total fuel..

    Read more:

    Qantas to London – Great fares & no booking fee –‎‎
    Enjoy Price Promise, book now!
    Best Airline in Australia/Pacific in 2013 – Skytrax
    Qantas has 130 followers on Google+
    Flight Specials – Business Class – London Hotels – Travel Insurance
    Search Results
    EU carbon tax turbulence hits Qantas | Business News … – Herald Sun…/eu-carbon-tax…qantas/story-fn7j19iv-122623…‎
    Jan 7, 2012 – QANTAS has hit out at the European Union over its new carbon tax while China, whose national carriers refuse to pay the new charge, …
    Carbon Pricing | Qantas‎
    The carbon price does not apply to international flights. Flights to and from Europe will be affected by the European Union’s Emissions Trading Scheme (EU …
    No carbon tax? Europe will make us pay instead…/no-carbon-tax-europe-will-make-us-pay-in…‎
    by John Birmingham – in 257 Google+ circles
    May 31, 2011 – Next year, Qantas air fares will increase because of a 15 per cent penalty … The EU’s 15% carbon tax penalty has been imposed but you say, …
    Qantas puts carbon taxes in frame for fare increases…/qantas-puts-carbon-taxes-in-frame-for-fare-increase…‎
    Feb 3, 2012 – Qantas had already said the carbon tax will cost it as much as $115 million next financial … Airbus, airlines team up to attack EU carbon tax.
    European Union tax on carbon to push up airfares | The Australian…/european…tax…carbon…/story-e6f…‎
    by Sid Maher
    May 14, 2011 – QANTAS will be forced to lift international airfares to Europe from next … Qantas would be forced to pay a tax on 15 per cent of its carbon …
    EU revives airline emissions carbon tax proposal for European ……/eu…carbon-tax…european…/story-e6frg95…‎
    Oct 17, 2013 – EU revives airline emissions carbon tax proposal for European airspace … Reports Suggest Qantas Will Cut Jobs And Sell Melbourne Terminal.
    Images for qantas carbon tax europe – Report images

    Carbon tax crippled Qantas: coalition |…/carbon-tax…qantas…/story-e6frfku9-1226706548…‎
    Aug 29, 2013 – QANTAS’S modest profit shows the carbon tax’s hit on aviation and tourism, opposition environment spokesman Greg Hunt says.
    Qantas announces carbon tax surcharge – ABC News (Australian …‎
    Feb 2, 2012 – Flights to and from Europe will attract a surcharge of $3.50. … Qantas says the carbon tax will cost the two airlines a total of around $115 million.
    Carbon tax, fuel sends Qantas Group fares up | Eco News…/carbon-tax-fuel-sends-qantas-group-fares-up/‎
    Feb 3, 2012 – Australia’s Qantas Group airlines have hit travellers with higher fares to pay for carbon pricing schemes in Australia and the European Union, …

  31. We can see why Joyce is reluctant to blame carbon tax. It could be, that passengers are already paying a levy. Maybe someone can enlighten me.

    The only thing that Abbott contributed today, was that he supported Joyce, it is not his fault.

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