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Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Without a prayer...

With this link up, I had an idea to point out how un-Christian I felt the 2014 Budget was - I was going to change the words to a prayer accordingly. I googled a prayer for the poor, and this is what I found:

Prayer for the Poor

For the poor and the oppressed, for the unemployed and the destitute, for prisoners and captives, and for all who remember and care for them, let us pray to the Lord.
Lord, have mercy.

Source

While it's wonderful to ask the Lord for help, I do believe we can start to have a little mercy on them ourselves. I am unsure how the Christian chaplains in schools sits side by side with a budget that neglects the oppressed, unemployed and poor.

However, when I read this, it has stopped me in my tracks. The Liberal Government aims to "Cut $2.5 billion from aged care programs, such as Meals On Wheels." What kind of person cuts the funding from Meals on Wheels? Who doesn't see the value in that programme, run mainly by volunteers? What excuse can you give to yourself to justify the lack of compassion?

I am at a loss with this.  This budget appears to be turning it's back on 99% of Australia. It is uncharitable, uncaring and unchristian. It is heartless and self-serving. I don't believe it is in the best interests of the people of this country, despite what Mr Hockey says.

“Self-absorption in all its forms kills empathy, let alone compassion. When we focus on ourselves, our world contracts as our problems and preoccupations loom large. But when we focus on others, our world expands. Our own problems drift to the periphery of the mind and so seem smaller, and we increase our capacity for connection - or compassionate action.”
Daniel Goleman, Social Intelligence: The New Science of Human Relationships

Mr Hockey & Mr Abbott, consider that quote and please try again. This time, take into account the poor, the elderly, the unemployed and under employed, those with disabilities, those with large families and low incomes, those with medical issues and pretty much everyone on less that $250k.

I'm sure the end goal you desire can come in a less detrimental fashion. When you made that policy poster, you obviously had some plan - stick to that. Your Real Solutions pledged no cuts to Education, no cuts to Health and no changes to pensions or GST. Why don't you come back with the budget that was drafted for the Real Solutions Campaign. There must be some middle ground between the two documents.

Let's hope those chaplains do more than just pray for the Nation. No one sums it up better than Sleeping Beauty in the fabulous Fables series by the incredibly talented Bill Willingham: "Well fuck us, huh? Can I get an "AMEN" on that?"

 
AMEN!


Linking up with Always Josefa with Conversations over Coffee on prayer, and with some Grace for FYBF.
 

21 comments:

  1. Amen to that. As a Catholic myself, it is upsetting and baffling that these two, who went to Catholic Boys Schools, could be this way. They are against everything I learnt at a Catholic school… I don't know. It's baffling.

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    1. I'm not Catholic, and I hold myself to a higher standard. I find it very strange that as a Government, responsible for all the people of a Nation, that you would cater for so few.

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  2. From the few details I know and understand of this budget it makes me very sad. I think it lacks the heart and empathy that not only our country deserves, but that we should pride ourselves on. When you fail to help those you are less fortunate, when you fail to help those you are sick, when you fail to help those that are in need - then you fail the country at its heart and soul. A beautiful post, thank you for linking up to #convocoffee Josefa

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    1. thanks for hosting, and the prompt...

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  3. I was just listening to the radio before and it was the reality of the next wave of university students having HECS debts that may well take up to 40 years to pay off. That is is baffling to me, knowing that both the leaders had free education to get where they are. Ill keep praying though, if not just for change but for our leaders to see the other side of the fence and a bit of reality...

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    1. They went into the election with a completely different budget plan, so I don't understand why they don't use that one. (I am presuming Abbott had actual figures backing up his election promises, so for some reason, in 8 months, that proposed Budget document got ditched for this one. There has to be middle ground between the two...surely?

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  4. “Self-absorption in all its forms kills empathy, let alone compassion." I think that says it all really. Despite Joe Hockey's assertion that this is 'a budget for the future', I fail to see how creating a climate of poverty around an entire generation of children can be at all forward-thinking!

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    1. So I saw my first pro-Liberal meme and it had school kids on it, and I thought it was a joke (as I hadn't seen one before) and kept trying to work it out, cos I didn't get the joke...then the penny finally dropped, and apparently, they're doing all this lack of funding for education to HELP the school kids...

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  5. This budget is missing heart. That's really all I can say about it. I'm not much into politics nor budgets etc. I usually just accept what we've been given knowing that I get the chance to vote again one day so that my voice can be "heard" .. but this time I am feeling sad. I just feel that some of the heart has disappeared from our nation.
    Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit

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    1. I do think it reflects poorly on us all...

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  6. Yes the budget totally sucks. And yes it's very un Christian. But isn't that what Australia wants? A divorce of religion from government.

    The budget while terrible for pretty much every weak or disadvantaged person is actually very savvy and suits this ridiculous meritocracy we live in.

    Plainly, charity does not make good business sense and as we veer away from these Christian values our society once stood upon we will only see more budgets like the ones just served up.

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    1. I would question why we are spending so much on chaplains then? As someone who believes the Government should be secular, I strongly believe we have a moral and ethical obligation to look after our fellow man. I think business sense shouldn't be the bottom line. I think there are other countries offering better models, and am curious as to why we feel the need to copy the failed models of the US and UK.

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  7. I find it frustration that running a country is about growing the economy, rather than taking care of its inhabitants. But that is capitalism. Ultimately this is what the people seem to want, so this is going to be the outcome.

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    1. Given the numbers in the streets, I don't know if it is what the people want. It also isn't the budget promised prior to the election. People voted them in on the Real Solutions promises, none of which are reflected in this budget.

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  8. I wonder if they've had any second thoughts since releasing this budget.....no, probably not. I don't really think they gave it any first thoughts.

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    1. No, probably not, but I do know a few devout Liberals who have admitted dismay at what they've done (but very quick to say they don't want Labor to get back in either)...which leaves us with????

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  9. That's a brilliant quote there and it gets to the issue nicely. I'm scared for the future of this country because everything the Abbott government makes a decision on leads us more and more into a nation that lacks empathy and compassion. Sad.

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  10. The thing I don't understand is Mr Abbott is a Catholic and was once going to be a priest I think or trained as a seminarian. Huh?

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  11. This budget makes me sick to my stomach. I don't like the direction this country is headed at all, and it makes me sad. I used to love this country, think there was no greater place to live. now I'm not so sure. -Aroha

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  12. I know my suggestion is simplistic but surely raising the GST would have been a better solution than most of the drastic changes that have been made?

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  13. My understanding is that that will also come, but on the sly...(that's what the State Liberals are up in arms about)

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