Kath and Kim land (letter)by Greg ByrneNews Weekly
, December 18, 2004
I notice that Brian Handley has picked up on Labor's plan to back the middle class and drop the "heartland" as Kath and Kim land (News Weekly
, December 4).
Actually, Labor went after the middle class from about 1970 when I was in my late 20s. I can still recall a shift towards the new educated class from the universities and colleges.
Education became a major plank of the Labor Party at that time, probably because of the power of the teacher unions. These unions were concerned about the careers of their members and wanted plenty of federal money spent on secondary schools.
But of course the question is: where was this money to come from? It had to come out of the pockets of blue-collar workers in many cases. This was redistribution upwards, from the poor to the middle class.
During the recent campaign, Labor's tax package was seen to distinctly disadvantage single-income families, revealing that the plight of single-income families was not considered an important issue by Labor. This would impact particularly badly on blue-collar workers.
The other thing is that, if the wife has got a job and the husband loses his at 45 or later, they may divorce so that the husband can get the dole. So that can be a very difficult predicament for these people in the later stages of their lives.Greg Byrne,