The Budget Set Aside $20M On Trees For The Queen But Did Fk All For Lowering Student Debt

The Government’s 2022-23 Budget was dropped last night like the world’s most disappointing SoundCloud remix. And in it were some real choices. Bad ones, I would say.

You can clock our full breakdown of the Budget here. But sufficed to say, there’s not loads in there for young people.

The climate policy is underwhelming to say the least and downright catastrophic to say the most. There’s nothing for renters (aka most young people). And incredibly frustratingly, there’s nothing to reduce student debt or uni prices either.

The lack of support for students has been criticised by the Greens. Senator Larissa Waters claimed student debt would increase by $9.2 billion.

You aren’t charged interest on student loans (aka the HELP scheme) but the loan is indexed. Essentially the debt changes to adjust it to the cost of living, which is based on inflation. But alas, inflation is on the rise.

We also know the amount of unpaid HELP debt is increasing. Gee, I wonder why. In the 2020-2021 financial year there was $68,725,000 of outstanding HELP debt. By 2021, the average HELP debt was $23,685.

So you might think the Government would be keen on, IDK, helping out young people by slashing those debts.

You would be wrong. But luckily the Government has made another important commitment. It’s spending $20 million on planting trees for Queen Elizabeth‘s platinum jubilee, as first pointed out by The Guardian.

The $20.3 million will be spent on community-led tree planting initiatives over three years. Look, I love trees as much as the next gal. But why the fuck are we spending $20 million on an old English lady’s party? If we can afford that, surely we can afford to cancel student debt. Just a thought.

We’re also spending $3.5 billion on 75 fancy new tanks and armoured vehicles for the army. Cool!

$6.9 million of the Budget will go towards a load of diplomats getting tax-free booze, as per The Guardian. Reps from the UK, Samoa, Tonga, Fiji, Latvia, Papua New Guinea and more will score refunds of GST, fuel and alcohol taxes. Good for them.

Finally, the Budget’s committed $1.16 billion into Australia’s National Space Mission. That $1.16 billion will go towards the building of four satellites through ’till 2038-2039. I love space as much as the next bitch but could we sort out the problems on planet earth first please?

So there you have it. Fuck students I guess. But Queen Liz can have $20 million worth of trees and we can spend literal billions on tanks and space.