:: Friday, 30 January 2004 ::
Since when is reading to your kids a Federal Matter?
I am watching Latham speaking at the Labor conference thing and announcing a policy.
Get this: at the first maternal nurse meeting thing after a kid has been born, the gumment is going to pay for ma to get a kit with a story book in it and cards with the numbers and addresses of libraries. He is calling it a "Read Aloud Australia" policy, and it is an education issue.
Which means it is a State issue.
What part of section 52 of the Constitution does reading aloud to kids between 0-4 years of age come under?
Here he goes, this is a new idea, we mustn't look backwards (wha'?) we must look forwards, children are the future, we must invest in them. Oh, and too much about how his own son has been read to.
Pardon me, I have to puke.
Does the man not even hear himself when he says "Read Aloud Australia". Jeebus wept, it's like those ads from years ago when some fat cartoon bloke was exhorted to go for a walk in the sunshine, or some such activity.
It is not a government matter. Less tax to gumment means more money in my pocket means I can buy books to read to my kids.
Horrible nanny state nonsense.
Zif folks don't Read Aloud to their kids already.
My ma and pa read to me. Pa liked Poe and Somerset Maugham and Virgil and Tesio and Wizard of Id cartoons. Ma liked Joan Aiken and Agatha Christie and Lampedusa. I liked Moomins and Thelwell. They took me to the opera. They took me to the races. They parented me. As was their duty as parents. And a good job they done too.
Thye did it. With no gumment help.
"Read my books Aloud Australia" is probably what Latham wants, too. Or his choice of books.
How can Howard react to this without sounding like a jackass who hates kids? Cos that what he faces - a stupid Labor nonsense feelgood policy that does nothing so it's hard to complain about.
Just go with tax. Just say:
reading aloud is great. I was a beneficiary of it and I did it for my kids too. But is it really a government matter that you read or what you read? I don't think so, because the richness of life comes from choice and reading different materials. And people can choose to do that now. They don't need the government to tell them to read. They just need to pay a little ess tax, a little lower interest rate, so they have some extra to choose and buy the books they want. Or join the libraries they want.
That is all.
Now a policy that sets up, say, mobile libraries - that's a good policy. And that's a State matter, and the States are currently doing it. So if folks want more books in their life, they should feel they can get them now, And if they don't feel that, they should feel they can press their State governments to arrange it for them. The States are getting all the GST of course, as well as stamp duty which they still have not abolished. And they are all labor states.
You get the picture.
Latham is a nannystater.
:: WB 5:38 pm [link+] ::