It is fast becoming a recognised fact — almost a truism — that the Newstart Allowance is too low.
The Australia-US alliance has led to Australian involvement in numerous wars, from Korea in the 1950s, and Vietnam in the ’60s and ’70s, to more recent conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria.
Within hours of the Australian Border Force — Prime Minister Tony Abbott's paramilitary amalgamation of the Customs Service and immigration department — announcing on August 28 that they would be joining the Victorian police and privatised public transport operators in Operation Fortitude.
On the weekend of July 18 and 19 there was another round of right-wing Reclaim Australia (RA) protests. The stated aim of RA and its offshoot, the United Patriots Front (UPF), was to defend what they call “Australian values” from the threat of “Islamicisation”.
On the one hand there is a highly militarised state, with one of the best equipped armed forces in the world, generously subsidised by billions of dollars in Western military and non-military aid. On the other hand there are 1½ million people, subjects of this state, which has herded them into a walled ghetto on which it imposes a starvation siege.