Vic budget – slashing services for the poor, building $500m private prison. Contrast ignored by media
With the release yesterday of a state budget by the Steven Bradburies of Australian politics, Ted Baillieu’s Liberals, Victorians were thrilled to learn of massive spending cuts (including letting basic utility discounts for very low income earners fall behind inflation) in order to pander to the right-wingers’ insane fixation on surpluses-at-all-costs.
Interestingly, none of the coverage seemed to contrast the cuts with the vastly more money Baillieu’s team is spending increasing sentences and building a $500m new private prison – you know, to really lock in that crime rate and work to build it. Rehabilitative programs that actually do work – those are being slashed. But expensive new prisons that train minor offenders in more serious crime? And the extra court time needed to deal with increased contests due to mandatory sentences? For those, we can always find money. Because none of the media dare to say a word against them (The Age) – or are outright screaming for them (The Herald Sun).
But you’d think the contrast would be worth noting in budget coverage. Haven’t seen it attempted yet.