Tag: Proposes

Albanese proposes government spending to aid recovery in budget reply speech

In his budget reply speech, Anthony Albanese has flicked the switch from “we’ll have policies before the next election” to “here, have three policies”.

a man wearing a suit and tie: Photograph: Mick Tsikas/AAP

© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Mick Tsikas/AAP

a man wearing a suit and tie looking at the camera: Anthony Albanese says Labor will lift the childcare subsidy, map a plan to encourage more trains and modernise the grid, lowering energy prices and creating jobs.

© Photograph: Mick Tsikas/AAP
Anthony Albanese says Labor will lift the childcare subsidy, map a plan to encourage more trains and modernise the grid, lowering energy prices and creating jobs.

So what were the big ideas the Labor leader unveiled on Thursday night?

Rewiring the nation

Labor will invest $20bn (off budget) to establish a government-owned entity, Rewiring the Nation Corporation, to rebuild and modernise the electricity grid.

Think of it as the NBN Co of the electricity grid, a government body to make investments in infrastructure we all use that delivers an economic benefit but may not be built quickly (or at all) by the private sector.

Related: The arts sector is already suffering. This year’s budget just pours salt on the wound | Leya Reid

The corporation will make investments and partner with industry to deliver the Australian Energy Market Operator’s integrated system plan – a blueprint promising to transform the grid from one designed to deliver coal-fired electricity from centralised power plants to one that integrates a higher mix of renewables.

The system plan, released in July, identified projects such as the Marinus Link interconnector to Tasmania, the HumeLink transmission line and the Central-West Orana renewable energy zone transmission link as priorities.

It suggested that renewable energy may at times provide nearly 90% of electricity by 2035; and that 26 gigawatts of new large solar and wind farms and six and 19 gigawatts of dispatchable power will be needed to replace 15 gigawatts of coal-fired generation that is scheduled to shut.

According to Labor, fixing transmission is technology neutral but the grid will deliver “renewables as the cheapest new energy source” – lowering costs for electricity consumers.

Albanese said by “using the commonwealth’s ability to borrow at lower interest rates, it will be done at the lowest possible cost”. The corporation will have a mandate to recover its real costs, not to deliver a commercial return or profit to government.

Albanese said the policy will deliver a boost to the economy of “up to $40bn and create thousands of new jobs”.

According to AEMO, that $40bn benefit will be realised under the fastest-paced “step-change scenario” in which “consumer-led and technology-led transitions occur in the midst of aggressive global decarbonisation and strong infrastructure commitment”.

Childcare subsidy boost

Albanese said the childcare system “penalises the families it’s meant to help” because “for millions of working women, it’s simply not worth working more than three days a week”. That’s because the combination of tax and the cap on childcare subsidies can mean an extra day’s care costs more an extra day’s earnings.

Labor will:

  • Scrap the $10,560 annual childcare subsidy cap.

  • Lift the maximum childcare subsidy rate to 90%.

  • Increase childcare subsidy rates and taper them for every family earning less than $530,000.

Under Labor’s plan, families earning

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South Korea proposes compromise abortion law after landmark court ruling

The Daily Beast

White Male Prof Allegedly Posed as Woman of Color to Bully Women

“The Science Femme” claimed to be a female academic. She claimed to have upended efforts by her social justice-obsessed department to draft a statement condemning racism.And when Twitter users accused her of racism, she claimed to be a woman of color herself—and an immigrant to boot.But The Science Femme, who tweeted from the handle @piney_the, wasn’t any of those things, digital sleuths began alleging late last month. Instead, they claimed, “she” was Craig Chapman, a white male assistant professor of chemistry at the University of New Hampshire. The allegations, bolstered by an internal chemistry department email, would make Chapman at least the fourth white academic revealed to have posed as a person of color in recent weeks.In three of those cases, academics are accused of shamelessly trying to further their own careers. But in Chapman’s case, Twitter users who came into contact with @piney_the say the account harassed real women working in science.The University of New Hampshire said the incident was under investigation.“UNH was recently made aware of allegations on social media about a member of its faculty,” a spokesperson told The Daily Beast. “We are deeply troubled by what we’ve learned so far and immediately launched an investigation. The employee at the center of allegations on social media is on leave and not in the classroom. In order to protect the integrity of the ongoing investigation the university is unable to comment further.”Chapman did not return repeated requests for comment for this story. Both his account and @piney_the were deleted last week.Susanna Harris, a microbiology Ph.D. holder who currently works in science communications, first noticed the @piney_the Twitter account in July.“They put out this huge long thread about how they, as a woman of color in science, a professor, made a big change in their university by shutting down diversity, equity, and inclusion work,” Harris, who is white, told The Daily Beast.Harris wasn’t the only person to make note of the thread, in which @piney_the claimed to have been “successful in killing my dept’s woke statement on recent social unrest.” The viral thread earned write-ups in conservative publications like RedState, which lauded the efforts to derail an anti-racism statement. Some academics were suspicious of the claims, coming from an anonymous professor at an unnamed university.“I did a little bit of poking around to see if there was any chance this was a real person,” Harris recalled. “I’ve been on Twitter for a while and nothing about their account said anything to make me think this is a genuine account.”Other Twitter users had raised similar concerns earlier this year. @piney_the was an especially combative Twitter personality, who frequently tangled with the left online. The account described a female opponent in explicit anatomical terms on at least one occasion, repeatedly railed against transgender people, and posted censored nude pictures of former Rep. Katie Hill. Hill, a former California politician, resigned last year after those pictures were

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Exclusive: EU Chair Germany Proposes Adherence to Rule of Law as Key to Getting Bloc’s Cash | World News

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Germany, current president of the European Union, has proposed a scheme that links access to EU money, including the 750 billion euro recovery fund, to respecting the rule of law, a document seen by Reuters showed on Monday.

The proposal will underpin negotiations between the European Parliament and the 27 EU governments, which in July agreed to such a mechanism in principle but left out much detail to avoid a veto from Poland or Hungary, whose nationalist governments stand accused of flouting EU democratic norms.

Warsaw and Budapest are under EU investigation for undermining the independence of the judiciary, media and non-governmental organisations, and both could lose tens of billions of euros in funding if the rule of law mechanism is established.

In the recovery fund alone, excluding the linked long-term EU budget for 2021-27, Poland would be at risk of losing access to 23 billion euros ($26.84 billion) and Hungary to six billion.

“The rule of law requires that all public powers act within the constraints set out by law … under the control of independent and impartial courts,” reads the proposed draft regulation, which needs the approval of the European Parliament.

But the vast majority of EU lawmakers want the link between money and the rule of law to be stronger than agreed in July and the German proposal – sticking closely to the leaders’ summer agreement – is all but certain to disappoint the chamber.

Liberal German EU lawmaker Moritz Korner, who leads the chamber’s work on the matter, said Berlin was “cuddling” with eurosceptic, nationalist rulers in Warsaw and Budapest.

“Without an automatic sanction system, Germany’s proposal fails to defend the rule of law and the correctness of the EU budget spendings,” he told Reuters when asked about the scheme.

According to the German document, punishment for rule of law breaches would include suspending the flow of EU money to capitals seen as breaching democratic checks and balances. It would be decided by a majority vote of EU governments on a recommendation by the EU’s executive European Commission.

This could allow other governments to override opposition from Poland and Hungary.

But those seeking a stronger link argue that a majority of EU governments should be needed to decline, rather than endorse any recommendation by the Commission, to suspend funding for those flouting the rule of law.

That formula would make penalties more likely by leaving governments less room for political horse-trading.

Some have cautioned, however, that seeking too ambitious a solution could backfire, given that Warsaw or Budapest might withdraw their support if the proposal is changed from what they signed up to in July after four days of tortuous talks.

“It is important that all sides stick to the delicate compromise reached. What didn’t find the support of the (leaders) at that time, will certainly not find it now,” said one official working on the matter.

Germany has already called on EU lawmakers to speed up work on approving the bloc’s next

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