A government of barbaric inconsistency

5 Mar

Only weeks after announcing cuts to frontline services that assist women and children escaping domestic violence, Prime Minister Tony Abbott today announced the government will spend $30 million on a domestic violence “awareness campaign.”

While public education on the matter of domestic violence can never go astray, funding such education while simultaneously removing frontline safety nets for women and children experiencing violence in real-time is an act of unconscionable duplicity, and barbaric inconsistency.

One woman each week is slaughtered by an intimate partner during episodes of domestic violence. One woman is hospitalised every three hours with injuries due to domestic violence. KPMG reports domestic violence cost Australia 14.7 billion last year, some 1.5 billion more than in 2012.

Minister for Women Abbott has slashed funding to front line services such as legal aid, and refuges to which women and children in fear of their lives can flee. Offering a sop of $30 million for education while leaving women and children unprotected and with nowhere to turn, is political expediency of staggering proportions.

I do not recall money being offered for “awareness campaigns” on the matter of young men subjected to king hits. I recall an absolute outcry from all levels of politics, and proposals for immediate legislative changes.

I do not recall any politician, state or federal, ever holding a prayer vigil for women and children slaughtered in their homes by an intimate partner, though there was no shortage of them at the vigil held this morning for Chan and Sukumaran, the Australians sentenced to death for drug smuggling in Indonesia.

Let’s not forget Abbott’s reputation for punching the wall beside a woman’s head, and his reference to a woman as a “chair thing.”

In fact, if you want to refresh your memory about the many disparaging things the Minister for Women has said about women here you go

This man doesn’t care about women. No man who cared about women would remove services that helped them escape violence, injury and death. Any man who cared about women would move heaven and earth to ensure essential services are in place.

No man who cared about women and children would financially prioritise an “awareness campaign” before actually saving lives.

The Minister for Women is a dangerous and opportunistic fraud. He has blood on his hands, the blood of women and children who now have nowhere to go to escape violent homes. How many more will he allow to die before he reinstates front-line funding?

Or does he think he can get away with a band-aid?






26 Responses to “A government of barbaric inconsistency”

  1. saraharnetty March 5, 2015 at 5:11 pm #

    Taking money out of women’s shelters? How absurd!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Team Oyeniyi March 5, 2015 at 8:39 pm #

    Could not agree with more if I tried, Jen. Crazy situation.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumpp) March 5, 2015 at 9:28 pm #

    Baa baa baa, barbarian.


  4. Michaela Tschudi March 5, 2015 at 10:00 pm #

    I read today that there’s just one step from fanaticism to barbarism (Diderot). But what comes next after barbarism?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Michaela Tschudi March 5, 2015 at 11:56 pm #

    PW, when I read Diderot, I was reminded of Yeats’ poem The Second Coming. You know it?

    “Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity…”

    After barbarism, I think anarchy follows.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. paul walter March 6, 2015 at 12:06 am #

    Abbott must have a problem with impulse control, it will surely lead him to grief.

    I actually feel a bit sorry for him, it must be an unpleasant thing carrying all that suffocating anger round inside for so long.

    His ideas for society derive of the ultraist catholicism of a Joseph Demaistre, but the blue print has much to do with Murdoch and the US Koch hard right; the primitive anti rational psychotic Tea Party vision, well probed by Margaret Atwood in Handmaid’s Tale.
    His spiritual ally Netanyahu was in the US a few days ago to help the hard right further undermine a properly organised society with healthier, rational, sane priorities.

    As I’ve said before the solution for the old oligarchs, now insecure but still unsatisfiably greedy even upon reaching senility, is feudalism.

    The idea of civilisation being civilising is anthema to them, their mindset can’t see beyond control.

    Sad really, for their victims and for themselves if they only knew it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson March 6, 2015 at 5:30 am #

      That Netanyahu business in the US was disturbing.


      • paul walter March 6, 2015 at 9:19 am #

        Obama, who is actually no saint, has been put in a position akin to the Omega Man with the Zombies after him, who see him as the last barrier to the acheivement of their will.

        Abbott was over there to interfere on behalf of the USTea Party right last year, and I found Obama’s subtle revenge at the G20 absolutely piquant.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. hudsongodfrey March 6, 2015 at 12:19 am #

    Yeah Tony, that’s what women need. An awareness campaign…..because sometimes they aren’t quite sure why you put your fist through the wall!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. paul walter March 6, 2015 at 9:14 am #

    Abbott continued the patronising attitude of Australians towards South East Asia previously demonstrated by previous politicians, but hubris and denialism have their cost.
    He might be able to rough up folk who can’t fight back, or be happily representative of that line of thinking, which is Jennifer Wilson’s point, but out of reach Indonesia defying him on the Bali 2 presages disaster for him.

    Michaela Tschudi knows the story, I think .. Abbott is a tribal “Big Man” caught out by change he couldn’t or wouldn’t adapt to and is finding himself in the same cognitive place as his indifference brought about for others.

    Comeuppance is coming to a theatre near him. And yes, I know. It is not far behind me also.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. paul walter March 6, 2015 at 9:47 am #

    Thinking on, the third last para in Jennifer’s post is potent:

    “No man who cared about women and children would financially prioritise an awareness campaign before actually saving lives”.

    Once again I have Michael Tschudi in mind; someone who understands the message of people like Barthes and Baudrillard. I’m also thinking of a parallel that applies to refugees, where a token is lazily, even maliciously proffered, to deflect attention from life threatening situations for others, to avoid obvious, rational, humane and actually much less expensive real action. It’s a vicious kick at humanity, true repressive tolerance.

    The ugliness comes of an understanding that this is not accidental but likely a deliberate (fascist?) attempt to maintain a vicious status quo and reassert rule by fiat, over thoughtful government.

    Truly desolate, the lack of reflexivity observed and as well as promoted in bystanders intended to catch the commodifying disease facilitating socio cultural reproduction as a norm, so lazy people, mainly men, can avoid engaging with reality in a vain attempt to sustain themselves on the psychic junk food that is power.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson March 6, 2015 at 10:14 am #

      This government, and increasingly politicians in general, have less and less understanding of what politics is, and instead employ it as a blunt instrument to wield power through sheer brute force.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. doug quixote March 6, 2015 at 10:40 am #

    A little off topic, but Julie Bishop thinks that an offer giving several Indonesian criminals back to Indonesia is a useful bargaining tool.

    The Indonesians would then have several criminals to feed and keep secure for 50 years or so rather than the two they will shortly be shot of, at a cost of millions.

    Every Australian prison inmate costs Australia about $115,000 a year. Indonesian standards probably aren’t so high as regards accommodation, but you get the idea.

    She must be nearly as deranged as her fearless leader.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. doug quixote March 7, 2015 at 9:07 am #

    As for this government being inconsistent: they are very consistent in the direction they want to push, and in the process of dismantling anything that Labor put in place and installing their own ideologically driven programs, whether they have any chance of working or not.

    They behave like a totalitarian government, with the expectation that they will never lose power and that therefore they can put in their own men – usually men – wherever they want, and install their own programs for now and for all time following their own daft projections.

    Any rejection by the community is a temporary setback, a failure of communication.

    Suck it up.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson March 7, 2015 at 4:51 pm #

      Of course, you are quite right, they are absolutely consistent in their pursuit of ideological goals.
      Hubris, I think will bring them down eventually. I hope it doesn’t take too long.

      Liked by 1 person

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