What’s The Daily Tele’s Grand Plan Today? Sterilisation Of Drug Users

There’s nothing like sitting down in the morning with a cuppa joe and the newspaper, leisurely making your way through the news of the day, then finally reaching today’s mad screed about forced sterilisation.

Miranda Devine has a new yarn in today’s Daily Telegraph in which she beats on the favourite drum of the right-wing commentariat when it comes to drug policy: chuck ’em all in the clink and hold the carrot of a cash bonus above their head on the condition that they consent to being sterilised:

Yet our welfare industry turbocharges the underclass. It incentivises hopeless drug addicts to keep having children they can’t take care of, ­because it provides them with more money for each child and priority ­social housing. There is no need to stay with the child’s father because the state is a better breadwinner.

A truly radical program would be to offer addicts a sterilisation bonus, like the baby bonus, so they can wreck their own lives but no babies are harmed in the process. If that’s too draconian, how about an incentive to take long-term contraception.

Nice. Nice. Devine is responding to the Tele’s favourite story from the past few days – a so-called “taxpayer-funded nanny” provided to an ice addict who had already had eight children removed by the state. Writers like Devine are particularly gleeful when they encounter these depressing edge cases, because it provides carté blanche for them to advocate ramping up some of the most regressive and failed drug policies of the past century. Treating drug addiction as a crime has worked so well in the past!

You have to respect, if not endorse, the kind of thoroughly cooked brain which would envision a ‘sterilisation bonus’ as a desirable public policy. Glad we’ve got Devine prescribing ‘draconian’ policy for the underclass from her fortressed North Sydney enclave. Love it!
Perhaps – just perhaps – the fact some drug addicts feel ‘incentivised’ to claim the baby bonus is less because of the existence of such a remuneration scheme and more because we decided as a society the best way to treat drug addiction was to criminalise it, throw users out onto the street and force them to survive on whatever meagre stipend Centrelink deigns to dish out? I’m just spitballing here.
Love it!
Photo: Daily Telegraph.