Is Tony Abbott preparing us for major cuts to public services and would this be good for our society

Two recent commentators have cast light on these questions. The first, “Five myths of the Australian economy” addresses Abbott’s claim that we are in a “budget emergency”. It finds that we are not in a budget emergency, giving rise to suspicions that he is paving the way for an austerity drive if he wins the September election.

The second is an engaging video interview with the Scottish economist Mark Blyth, author of “Austerity: the History of a Dangerous Idea”, who discusses the disastrous consequences of austerity for the economy and society and why right-wing politicians do it anyway.

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