Sam Shetler | 05 Oct 2019
Before going on to say Jacqui Lambie lacks principle on income quarantining, I will give credit where credit is due.
Lambie is saying that she does not support a national roll out of of the Cashless Debit Card. But it still remains unclear whether she will vote against the Cashless Debit Card Trial Bill 2019 up for a vote this month.
Beyond that, Lambie lacks principle when it comes to forcing the unemployed (and age pensioners in the NT and Cape York) onto a modern version of depression era rations. She also expresses no qualms about experimenting this failed policy on First Nations people’s.
Lambie lacks principle for three reasons.
First because she doesn’t accept there is no evidence that forcing people onto the ration card has no positive effect, only negative. Voluntary is a different story.
Second because Lambie is open to expansion of the trials if various social services are expanded at the same time. As the researcher Eva Cox pointed out, expanding services at the same time as the card skews the trials. It skews the trials in an attempt to make the ineffective and harmful income rationing look good.
Third because she thinks that lowering the obscene cost of the Cashless Debit Card will make the card more feasible. I agree that we shouldn’t be spending $10,000 plus on each card. However, even if the card is significantly cheaper, that only means the government can punish the unemployed and age pensioners more efficiently. The card will still remain inefffective for the people forced on to it.
There you have three reasons Jacqui Lambi lacks principle on all forms of income quarantining.
Since Lambie lacks principle on this policy, she could be persuaded with extra funding for her pet project in Tasmania. This is what we seen around the tax cuts for the rich which passed earlier this year. The same goes for Rebekah Sharkie and Centre Alliance.
Jacqui Lambie isn’t the only cross bencher who lacks principle on this harmful policy therefore the Bill could still pass even if Lambie’s word is kept.