Julie Peters

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An dot point version of an address given to the ``Faith and the Environment'' group at the Baptist Theological College, 12 Sept 97

The Big Picture

the holistic approach to policy in the Australian Democrats

Julie Peters

Modern government is so complicated that it is very easy to have conflicting policies and usually the economy wins over the environment or social justice. eg Uranium Mining and Green House emissions.

An economy that relies on high unemployment to keep inflation under control is unjust. It's in the economic text books it's easy to understand . And it's easy to increase unemployment very quickly; indiscriminately remove a few tariffs; downsize public services; privatise and you have inflation under control.

Australia's economic well-being can never be separated from its environmental well-being. We must not promote short-term gain from unsustainable economic and environmental practices. Our population growth must be sustainable. We must ensure that the environment we hand on to our childres is at least as clean, as productive and as diverse as the one of which we were granted custody.

Sustainable vs growth economics; ``only a mad-man or an economist could belive in infinite growth in a closed system''.

The only way you can have the appearance of continuous growth is for a small group to grow and the rest of the population to feed it; in medicine that process is called cancer; growth economics is a cancer of wealth distribution. It redistributes wealth upwards.

We need to develop cooperative conflict resolution skills to achieve our policies. Competition has limited usefullness in high achievement.

Conclusion: All policies must be measured against social justice, sustainable environmental and conflict resolution criteria.




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© Copyright Julie Peters 1997
Contact julie@natasha.ironbark.id.au