News of the day

Posted 27 May 2013 4:04pm

When it comes to work and welfare, market rules Labor’s roost: "Gillard has expanded the unemployment bureaucracy beyond recognition — her ‘social democracy’ is too-often narrowly framed by the economic and political interests of middle Australia. Her Government’s record on welfare is fairly poor: she has refused to boost the Newstart Allowance, she made it much harder to qualify for the disability pension and for young people to get the dole, and cut single mother pensions." Luke Williams, Eureka Street.

Market myths and the inclusion of people with disabilities: "Many people in the disability sector have been suckered in to believing that a market system is best because they’ve repeatedly been told that this is the only way to give people with disabilities real choice and direction over their support services, in contrast to the impersonal and degrading one-size-fits-all institutions that many have endured." Sam Wainwright, Green Left.

Move faster on elderly issue – lobby: "The home care of tens of thousands of elderly Australians will be jeopardised if legislation to address the problems in the aged care sector is not pushed through the hung Parliament by the end of June, before it dissolves for the September election, according to representatives of the aged and their carers." Jacqueline Maley, Sydney Morning Herald.

Contrast and compare paid parental leave: "In the lead up to the 2013 federal election, a substantial policy difference has emerged in the area of paid parental leave."Marie Coleman, The Drum.

Taxes put bite on middle-class families: "Far from spraying largesse on the undeserving rich, the striking feature of our tax/transfer system is just how progressive it is. Strict means-testing of welfare payments ensures the poorest 20 per cent of Australians receive over 40 per cent of income transfers; the richest 20 per cent receive barely 3 per cent." Henry Ergas, The Australian.

Policy failure as prisons fill with indigenous people: "Over the past decade, the indigenous rate of incarceration has soared 11 times faster than the non-indigenous rate – and this at a time when the country is locking up more people per capita than at any other time." Inga Ting, Sydney Morning Herald.

Charity watchdog investigates ‘rogue individuals’: "Scores of complaints have been lodged about the conduct of charities months after a watchdog was set up to police the not-for-profit sector." Nick Ralston, Sydney Morning Herald.

Public service advice less expert – Chaney: "The Australian public service is less well-placed that previously to offer expert advice, according to former minister Fred Chaney. Chaney said that public service reforms had actually weakened the capacity of the APS to offer frank and fearless advice rooted in deep knowledge and experience, and to carry out efficiently government policy decisions." Michelle Grattan, The Conversation.

How to lead when you’re not in charge: "In order to engage in a conversation about leadership, you have to assume you have no power — that you aren’t "in charge" of anything and that you can’t sanction those who are unwilling to do your bidding. If, given this starting point, you can mobilize others and accomplish amazing things, then you’re a leader. If you can’t, well then, you’re a bureaucrat." Gary Hamel and Polly LaBarre, HBR Blog.

Pope Francis warns of the dangers of ‘unbridled capitalism’: "Unbridled capitalism has taught people that money is more important than anything else, said Pope Francis during an event to mark the 25th anniversary of the Missionaries of Charity soup kitchen and women’s shelter at the Vatican." Cindy Wooden, Catholic Herald (UK).

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