I was very disappointed to read that Tony Abbott wants to retrospectively pay $75 000 to
victims of overseas terrorist attacks – including the two Bali bombings and September 11 … for ongoing trauma.
There is a lifetime of physical and psychological pain for those who survived these terrorist attacks or had family members killed in them. We cannot think that our financial duty to them has ended just because the medical expenses for their immediate injuries were paid for. This isn’t about political point-scoring. It is important to recognise the pain and suffering of these fellow Australians. I want to offer the Prime Minister bi-partisan support to ensure these Australians are financially compensated for their terrible suffering.
Personally I think this is an outrageous proposal – why should the pain and suffering of those affected by a terrorist attack be considered greater than the pain and suffering that others in society experience? Once more this is an example of the Nanny State writ large – the people travelled overseas on their own volition and the Australian Government provided substantial assistance, including counselling, after the terrorist attacks. There are many people in Australia without the means to enjoy an overseas holiday who suffer loss, and experience pain and suffering. It is not the Government’s responsibility to provide compensation to people affected by terrorist attacks overseas. Already we have built up expectation of the services the Government will provide its citizens overseas (many of whom will enjoy dual or multiple citizenship).
Australians have been greatly sympathetic to those affected by terrorist attacks overseas, just as those who have been abducted, raped or killed / maimed in natural disasters. Philanthropy has provided support to many of those affected; the Abbott proposal will simply crowd out private initiatives. The proposal is unnecessary, undesirable and unfortunate. The left is good at spending other people’s money, and, it seems, less generous with their own money. Hopefully those in the Liberal party will not seek to imitate the left’s passion at dispersing taxpayers’ money.