The combination of unequal education opportunities and access to healthcare and inadequate systems of social protection translates into poor average performance of our children - well below the average of the advanced countries in standardised tests, in contrast to Australia, whose children perform well above average. Contrary to what some in Australia’s government have suggested, support for poor families is not only a moral imperative, it is an investment in the country’s future.
Two big lessons of economic research over the past 10 years are that inequality is not the result of inexorable laws of economics but rather of policy; and that countries that adopt policies that lead to high inequality pay a high price - inequality not only leads to a divided society and undermines democracy, but it weakens economic performance. Hopefully, as Australia debates its new government’s budget and economic “reforms,” it bears this in mind.
Tuesday, 8 July 2014
Stiglitz compares Australia to the US
Joseph Stiglitz compares Australia to the US in Inequality: Why Australia must not follow the US.