The haste to waste in a spending frenzy
Monday, September 28, 2009
JEREMY Travers, a Year 12 student at Eagle Vale High in Sydney’s southwest, knows an education revolution when he sees one. In his opinion, a recording studio and an upgraded kitchen don’t make the cut.
Not when the students at his school, in one of the nation’s most disadvantaged areas, lack such basic tools as text books.
Australia’s very own Messiah Comrade Kevin 07 Rudd
Yet the Rudd Labor Government, grandstanding mightily, acting decisively and spending wantonly, is determined to provide buildings the school doesn’t need and ignore the fundamentals.
Travers, who has fruitlessly attempted to contact Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard, the Federal Minister for Education, Employment, and her state counterpart, Education Minister Verity Firth, told me that teachers and pupils at Eagle Vale High would like to see money spent on such basic necessities as toilet seats before the Government’s borrowed cash was splashed elsewhere.
Travers and his fellow students first welcomed a recording studio and a science kitchen upgrade but soon realised the studio would be under-used and the kitchen work was just a refit.
They wanted the money spent fixing the problems that exist in the system they are currently saddled with, he said.
“Our school would honestly have the worst text books,” he said. “There is nothing wrong with the content, it is the condition of them. Half of them have been destroyed or are unreadable.
“Other resources are in just as bad condition. Only a few classrooms have projectors and we have limited teaching resources. It is ironic that the Deputy Prime Minister stands at the dispatch box in the House talking about teachers and principals praising the fact that schools will be getting laptops when, from our point of view, we need to fix the problems we have currently rather than create new ones.”
Travers said basic infrastructure problems needed addressing. Many school desks are broken and chairs are missing legs. Students have to hunt for basic equipment before their lesson.
“I have tried to contact Ms Gillard and Ms Firth,” Travers said, “but I am confident they do not care about the future of students in disadvantaged schools although they say otherwise.
“Contrary to popular belief, students such as myself in disadvantaged schools have dreams and aspirations. We just want a ‘fair go’ in life and a good education is the key to that ‘fair go’.”
The waste in the Building the Education Revolution program has been nailed by The Australian which has forensically chronicled example after example of grotesque bureaucratic ineptitude including money earmarked for a school which has but one pupil enrolled, and the destruction of existing, sound infrastructure so new buildings could be built to no great advantage.
At Baulkham Hills North Public School, Gillard proposes to blow $2.45 million demolishing an existing school hall to make way for a new structure which would have an extra 30sq m space, enough to seat an extra 50 people.
The cost of seating each extra person, according to Craig Turner, the chairman of the school’s parents and citizens association, would be about $50,000.
“It won’t alleviate our problems with school assemblies; our kids will still be sitting on cold concrete undercover.
The Rudd Labor Government has laid down extensive guidelines for implementing its education revolution, detailing the speed with which the money must be spent, the size of the signage that must appear near the projects and the requirement Gillard be invited to every opening of every project.
Nowhere is there a requirement for common sense mandated nor is stupidity outlawed as should be obvious given that the inept NSW Labor Government’s Education Department has been tasked to manage the program in NSW.
Baulkham Hills school had presented a plan for a new hall to be built next to the existing building and integrated with it to effectively double the assembly space to a size sufficient for its needs.
This was rejected because it didn’t meet the Government’s early deadline.
Gillard was asked about the school’s problems before Parliament rose and effectively accused the P&C representative of lying. She has still not offered any apology.
The sign outside the school should read: Waste at Work.
Just last week a Senate Committee was presented with a spirited economic paper which rips into the Rudd Labor Government’s claims that the global crisis was the greatest fiscal disaster since the Great Depression and then challenges Labor’s claim that its stimulus spending has been responsible for saving the nation.
The lead author was Professor Sinclair Davidson, of the School of Economics, Finance and Marketing at RMIT University, and a senior fellow at the Institute of Public Affairs, a conservative Melbourne think tank.
Reasonably, he asked that the Government design and produce a better quality package rather than rush to implement an ill-devised scheme.
The evidence from Eagle Vale, Baulkham Hills North and hundreds of other schools demonstrate how irresponsible the Rudd Labor Government has been in its dash to spend borrowed cash.
Sample of Readers responses to Akerman’s article below.
Why can’t people see what this spending really is? It is a pretty simple repayment for support. The unions spent millions on vilification of the last government to ensure the ear wax eater got in, but it would be a little too obvious if they just gave thema bucket of money. Instead here is a whole heap of work that is only allowed to use a specific unionised labour workforce. With inflated prices it ensures they are getting their money back three fold.
If you doubt my point, please show me one education revolution that is using a non-union based work force for the key works.
Dave of The Real World (Reply)
Mon 28 Sep 09 (11:41pm)
D.T. replied to Dave
Tue 29 Sep 09 (10:54am)
That’s right Dave, these socialists get their hands on our money, spend it all and borrow more to spend, and blatantly direct it to promote themselves with little consideration for our money and value for money.
Death To The Left replied to Dave
Tue 29 Sep 09 (12:35pm)
Correct Dave - this is criminal pork barreling, nothing more. This ‘government’ is a disgrace, and I don’t give a stuff what Glenn Stevens says about debt levels, just do the sums: if this criminal ‘government’ keeps spending and we’re half a trillion in the hole by election time, that’s $25,000 for every man, woman and child in the country. BUT if you take away the kids, the unemployed and the pensioners, it’s PAYE earners who will foot the TAX BILL - so make that $50,000 for every worker in Australia. And it has to be paid back somehow. Oh, and let’s not mention the PLAIN SIMPLE FACT that as government debt rises, interest rates follow…
The Rudd government’s fiscal ‘policy’ is madness, it is designed to prop up their complete lack of vision, and is aimed fair and square at its union mates. The spending has made no net gain in productivity, no new infrastructure of note, no improvement in education…
And Gillard has THE GALL to call this union-backed spending lunacy an ‘education revolution’. It’s an INSULT to anyone of intelligence.
Every time I read this complete BS I wonder if in fact I have died and am living in hell.
The only ‘revolution’ union skank Gillard is interested in is a Socialist/Marxist one, with her and the CFMEU pals at the helm. She’s a loony left wing screecher of the worst possible kind, and like Rudd, a total, flat out liar. This ‘government’ lies, lies and lies again. They lied to get into office, and it’s been lying and spinning ever since.
What’s worse is the ego-obsessed Rudd is now dismissing the Howard Government’s outstanding management of the Australian economy while mincing around the globe trying to bloat his already bloated sense of self with G20 nonsense and seats on the UN Security Council.
Howard had the courage and the decency to acknowledge - AND VOTE FOR - major economic reforms that Paul Keating proposed. Labor, under Beazley and Crean and Latham and Rudd OPPOSED every reform Howard proposed (remember Beazley’s ‘GST rollback’? That was a good idea, wasn’t it? What a w**ker Kim Beazley is....) and now Rudd and the withered little mincing Swan are attempting to rewrite history and take credit for avoiding a downturn that was little more than a blip because of the Howard Government’s management and surpluses and savings AND of course, spending bucketloads of YOUR money on its mates.
Sickening. That what this ‘government’ is. And Rudd is certifiably mad, a pathological narcissist. I almost put my foot through the TV every time I see his pasty, arrogant face.
When the hell is the dull, fat electorate going to wake up and smell the coffee???
God help Australia.
Curious replied to Dave
Tue 29 Sep 09 (02:58pm)
Dave - you have a good point there. The Teachers Union spent millions to get the Rudd Labor Govt elected.
Now Rudd-Swan-Gillard are paying their dues by spending billions of Chinese Govt borrowed funds to spend on school halls etc using developers who donate to the ALP.
Schools are having all this money thrown at them while hospitals cannot afford to pay their bills for meals for patients. Public transport is third world, while the private owners of toll roads are collecting millions while road signs are non-existent.
The schools stimulus package was nothing but a ‘thank you’ to the Teachers’ Union which is the arm of the Labor Party.
Is there anything in this country that actually works since we have the highest number of politicians in any country in the world?