Issue 110: 13 Oct to 19 Oct 2022


Australia is well down the path towards an Americanised two-tier health care system
Anna Pha | Communist Party of Australia
As an incentive to take out private health insurance,, the Howard Coalition government introduced a rebate on premiums in 1997. Since then, federal governments have subsidised the private hospital system by a total of $100 billion! The present rebate is age-dependent and means tested ranging from zero for those on $280,000 or more per annum to 32.812 per cent for over 70s on less than $180,000. It is a $7 billion per annum subsidy for private hospitals, which otherwise would be unsustainable.Australian consumers paid almost $25.7 billion in private health insurance premiums in 2020-21.

Medicare is broken and needs overhauling, but fraud is not the main story
Neela Janakiramanan | Crikey
But an accusation of this magnitude requires nuance and clarity. Fraud is clearly unacceptable and should never occur. But in this investigation, bundled in with fraud was a suite of other offences contributing to this so-called “leakage” — such as billing errors, perceived overservicing and low-value care.

Even neoclassical ideologues have to admit stage-three tax cuts aren’t the answer
Richard Denniss | The New Daily
Over the next 10 years around one-third of the $243 billion stage-three tax cuts will go to those earning over $200,000 per year. But while the $80 billion cost of this generosity is jaw dropping, what is more surprising is that, according to the economic models used in Treasury, this $80 billion gift will deliver zero boost to Australia’s economic growth or productivity. Nada. Zip. Zilch.



If you don’t like climate activists staging art gallery protests, organise something better
Jeff Sparrow | The Guardian
In his column on the Van Gogh stunt, Andrew Bolt gave the game away. After the usual abuse of climate activists (“barbarians”, “their only love seems a love of power”, yadda yadda yadda), Bolt said that “global warming … has actually helped us grow record crops, because carbon dioxide is a plant food”. In other words, he not only doesn’t like Just Stop Oil because of their tactics but because of their goals. They want to prevent climate change. Bolt doesn’t.

We should not be lectured about sexism by Gillard
Diane Fieldes | Red Flag
There was also something much more central to the Gillard government’s service to Australian capitalism: neoliberal cuts to welfare, including those targeting women. On the very day of the celebrated speech, the Gillard government passed a bill largely unnoticed by political commentators, the Social Security Legislation Amendment (Fair Incentives to Work) Act 2012. This legislation forced parenting payment recipients (who are mostly women) off their payment once their youngest child turned 6, in the case of partnered parents, or 8, in the case of single parents. 

‘I knew you would get a packed house for your last show’: Uncle Jack farewelled in moving State Funeral
Tamati Smith | National Indigenous TImes
Uncle Jack Charles, revered by many as one of Australia’s greatest storytellers, was laid to rest in a moving State Funeral in Naarm (Melbourne) on Tuesday.The late Uncle Jack spent many years working with prisoners and, as such, his funeral was live streamed in prisons, remand centers and youth justice centres…Towards the end of funeral Gary Foley took to the stage to pay final respects. “Onya jack I knew you would get a packed house for your last show,” he said.

Australia’s opportunity to join the non-aligned nations faltered with the ANZUS Treaty in 1952. It died at Bandung
Alison Broinoiski | Arena Quarterly
It is seven decades since Evatt’s department head  John Burton took out his metaphorical telescope in Canberra and saw Australia sharing a region with India, Indonesia, China, and other Asian countries…But for decades, both major parties in Australia put short-term interests and economic concerns ahead of harmonious relations with the region. ‘I don’t think the Australian people have really come to terms with the fact that Australia is in Asia’, Burton said

Blood In The Archives – Australia ran cover for Indonesia’s invasion of East Timor
Peter Job | Declassified Australia
The Indonesian military, aided by US and Australian supplied material and aircraft, launched a campaign […] of ‘encirclement and annihilation’ saw widespread destruction of food resources in Fretilin-held areas, enforced surrenders of the civilian population, and their relocation into transit and resettlement camps. Villages were bombed and destroyed, crops were burned, livestock destroyed. Napalm was used.

How a neoliberal subject was built: the case of Chile 
Mauricio Quilpatay Belmar  | Progress in Political Economy
They proclaimed that the State exists only in ‘service of the human person’. Positioned deep within Cold War fears, they were concerned that the State would take control and direct individuals’ lives. That the State would force individuals to depend on it to solve needs such as hunger and shelter. Against this, the constitution-makers emphasised the individual must always be the prime mover of the economy.


Activists arrested for anti-logging protest in Ellis State Forest 
Rachel Evans | Green Left Weekly

Protest outside Rishworth’s office calls on Labor to raise the rate
Isaac Nellist | Green Left Weekly

We need your support to make WA Government compensate Stolen Generations survivors
National Indigenous Times