You might think that as a journalist, I will be keenly monitoring the Budget tonight. You’d be mistaken.
Like millions of women around Australia, I will be juggling the long commute back to my suburban house where the daily battle of bed and bath time awaits, a daily re-enactment of the War of the Roses. My babysitter will be coming over, and I will be heading into the night with my heels on… but it won’t be to a Budget party.
"You would be sadly mistaken if you thought I would be watching the budget."
"The state of the economy matters!" you say. Yes I'm sure it does...to someone. But like millions of women around Australia, I am time-poor, sleep-deprived and a brutally practical person. I ain't got no time for that, and this is why:
1. We kind of already know what's going to be (not) in it. The issues that matter to me: childcare reform, education, housing affordability, Indigenous health, refugee policy: nothing I've read so far has given me the sense that the government is going to make any drastic changes.
2. It's confusing. I find the Game of Thrones plot line easier to follow than the Paid Parental Leave scheme. Is it getting rolled back, implemented, abolished? Who knows. Education? I want to give a Gonski but can't . Someone just tell me whether my kid will be able to attend the overcrowded local primary school in 2 years. Negative gearing >> investors >> housing affordability. The only thing I've ever invested in is a good pair of shoes.
Watch Carrie Bickmore tackle paid parental leave on The Project. (Post continues after video.)
3. Policy takes AGES to implement. Even if I was wrong and they do make a drastic announcement (see point 1) what gets announced today might not resemble what gets enacted in say, 6 months time. Why sweat it now?
4. Announcements, like promises can be unwound. Remember the mining tax? That consultation process took months and months and probably cost millions. Where is it today? In the dustbin, like my hopes and expectations.