While the proposed changes shouldn’t really affect Australians, they certainly will if used to justify cuts to services and welfare payments

This week came the news that the treasurer had decided that not all debt was bad and that the May budget papers would differentiate between debt for infrastructure projects and that for recurrent spending. While this is sensible, we need to be wary the new accounting measures are not used to justify cuts to spending on services and welfare payments – all in the name of reducing “bad debt”.

It’s not often the treasurer does something I have been calling for him to do. The shift to differentiate between types of debt in the budget papers is a welcome and sensible move – if incredibly hypocritical. You don’t need to be too much of a soothsayer to imagine the response from the Liberal party given their continual attacks against debt (of any kind) were an ALP government to have done the same.

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