23 September 2020

Tim Dunlop on Morrison’s shamelessly partisan covid response: “So in setting up responses such as JobSeeker and JobKeeper, the government has been able to pick and choose the way such funds are deployed, and, knock me over with a feather, but what do we find? The Arts Sector, higher education, and childcare have all been singled out for either receiving nothing, or having what assistance they did receive withdrawn early. The blatantly ideological and ‘mates rates’ aspect of all this is perfectly illustrated by how the government has responded to the high ed sector. Not only were universities made ineligible for JobKeeper payments, the government changed the legislation four times to make sure they received nothing. But — just in case their intent wasn’t obvious enough — they have nonetheless made payments available to four private universities. … Far from being ‘non-ideological’ as some journalists bizarrely claim, Morrison is as ideological as any prime minister we have had, and he is being aided and abetted by the cover provided by the pandemic to shake things up; by a weakened opposition, who, perhaps unsurprisingly, still haven’t got their mojo back after the last federal election defeat; and by a media industry that has moved increasingly to the right.”