Social democratic critics of the Australian government’s income management policy often argue that the policy is driven by the philosophy of neoliberalism—as espoused by thinkers such as Milton Friedman. But were Friedman alive today, it is almost certain he would oppose income management, as a wasteful and ineffective violation of individual liberty. In fact, Australia’s so-called neoliberal think tanks have done little to promote the kind of reforms that Friedman supported. Instead they have pushed for conservative policies that direct increasing amounts of money and effort into controlling the lives of people on income support. In a fight against income management, might neoliberals be potential allies for social democrats?
Read Don Arthur's article in the Australian Review of Public Affairs (642).
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