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Clowns to the Left of me, Jokers to the Right, Here I am, Stuck in the Middle with the ALP

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Sunday, 15 May 2011 18:41 by HillbillySkeleton


Recently I have noticed, as have others, that as The Greens’ voice gets louder, and as the Conservative Party of Tony Abbott takes more positions on issues than the Kama Sutra, as it drags Labor to the Right or outflanks it on the Left if it suits them to do so, so long as it is in opposition to the Gillard government's position, we have reached a situation where the Gillard government is 'Damned if they do, and damned if they don't’, in a political pincer movement from the political parties to the Left and Right of them. Whatever they do is 'never enough' for The Greens, and always 'going too far' for the Conservatives. Of course, this feeds perfectly into the maw of the media who seem to love nothing more than a good political stoush; and being fed ready-made critiques from the Left and Right of the government satisfies this requirement to a T. They can satisfy their Conservative-leaning readers or viewers with, 'The Opposition says...', and their Left-leaning demographic with a Greens spokesperson. Also, as is becoming increasingly obvious to me, it serves well the purpose of the imperial media in this country to 'demolish' the government of Julia Gillard. I mean, you can't say they aren't presenting a 'balanced' point of view when they have criticism of the government from both the Left and the Right, can you?

It almost seems to me as though there has been a societal schism open up as a result of the transformations society has undergone recently, on a dual track, both as a result of the Howard/Bush years of Neo-Conservatism, and the contrapuntal emergence of the Humanitarian Enviro-Organic lifestyle, Healthy Living movement. If you're not a newly-reconstructed Conservative and supporter of a Neo-Liberal ethos, you're a supporter of the causes The Greens have adopted as their own. Or a combination of the two, a 'BlueGreen', if you like, that I have noticed popping up more frequently of late, such as the aggressive Free-Market supporting a Renewable Energy/Wind Turbine company owner whom I saw on Lateline Business a few weeks ago who looked like the embodiment of a Greens' voter, who ate healthily, exercised regularly and kept his chakras in strict alignment. And he was definitely no fan of the ALP. They were obviously not 'pure' enough for him and his well-articulated strain of Green Libertarianism.

Which is leading me to conclude that the Labor Party has become increasingly isolated as a result of this solidifying societal schism between the rock of Neo-Conservatism and the hard place of the Neo-Puritanism of the ersatz ascetic Green Left.

The contemplation of which, in a very circumloquacious way, gets me to the subject of this blog, 'What can a Progressive Labor Party stand for in the 21st Century?' Which was essentially the over-arching theme of the Progressive Australia Conference which I attended over the May Day weekend recently. What can/does the Labor Party stand for? How can it renew and refresh what it stands for?

Firstly, let me just say that I only attended one of the two days, simply because I came back home from Day 1 mightily pee'd off with a lot of the participants at the Conference. So much so that I got into a verbal stoush with one of the so-called Labor Party 'supporters' who were attending the conference (yes, I know, you find that hard to believe :) ), as they had the temerity, in my eyes, to set up a stall, complete with little complaint postcards for attendees to pick up and send off to the PM. The purpose of their stand? To have an almighty whinge that the Labor Party had not done enough in government for Public Education(!!!), and was oh so wrong to keep supporting Private Schools with taxpayers' money, such that they got new swimming pools while the Public Schools suffered in their jocks, or words to that effect. Now I agree that Private Schools get too much from the taxpayers' purse, but it would be political suicide to cut it back severely, as last week's hue and cry over a little trim to Family Tax Benefit showed. Suffice to say I tried laboriously to point out just how much the Federal Labor government had done for Public Education since it had been in power: Laptops, BER, My School shining a light on Public vs Private schools, and now, a full-scale review of the Private School federal funding model, the first in over two decades. But no, that wasn't enough for this underminer from within the Labor tent. Mark Latham's disastrous 'Private School Hit List' should have been implemented the day Labor came to power federally, and all else was a mere sideshow to this one ideal of theirs. Just so they could have their own swimming pool for their children at the Public High School, it seemed to me. As I said to the person, “So you'd rather direct your anger at the party who has made a serious attempt to redress the infrastructure imbalance, instead of redirecting your postcards to Tony Abbott, who is the one who wants to perpetuate the system you are complaining about?” The answer to my question? “Well, we'll have to agree to disagree then”, after which I was roundly ignored. Not one bit of my counter argument and defence of the federal Labor government's achievements in Education having sunk in as she continued to spruik her wares. Sigh.

Anyway, onto the conference itself.

I'll just provide a summary of the main points made by the Keynote speaker first up. I think that in doing so I will provide ample food for thought, which you may like to comment upon.

The keynote was given by James Purnell, former Social Secretary in the UK Labour government. He spoke about 'Renewing Our Progressive Values'. He said that what we need, and need to identify, are Activist leaders in local community debates. That is, so often these days we hear from Conservative activist voices in community debates, but not Progressive activists. Or should I say, not moderate Progressive activist voices. Which reflects the point I made before, that the 'Angry Ants' (or should that be 'Angry Birds’ these days?), in the community are more likely to be to the Left and Right of Labor, with a seeming vacuum in between. However, to remedy this, first we have to identify what it is that we moderate Progressives stand for these days.

James Purnell believes we need to re-establish 'The Labo(u)r Tradition'. In essence what he means is that Progressive 'Labo(u)r parties have always been about getting a fair share of the nation's wealth distributed evenly. Previously that has come about as a result of the workers getting a fair share of the profits of business through fair pay and conditions.

Well, Purnell argues that we can still maintain this ideal, but due to the transformative changes that have occurred as a result of global capitalism and the Free Market, that we should modify the original intent of worker-driven Labo(u)r parties to acknowledge that markets are a valid way to generate revenue, and that workers may indeed also be shareholders or small businessmen and women, but that what should be therefore emblematic of a Labo(u)r party now is that they should advocate that using the money generated by the market is necessary to create a more equal society. Such that Progressive political parties may continue helping the poorest and most vulnerable, and continue to cleave to the ethos of, “A common view of a life proper to human beings”, as their 'Light on the Hill' to work towards.

He also pointed out the fact that we subconsciously assume that there is one only set of Progressive ideals. Not so. In fact, there is a competitive tension between 'The American Dream', that anyone can make it, versus 'The European Welfare State', which recognizes that not everyone has what it takes to make it. He believes we should be advocating more 'American Dream' and less 'Welfare State', post Global Capitalism's transformation of the world economy. He acknowledged that 'Labo(u)r and 'Progressive' traditions and aspirations (now, there's a word we should take back from the Cons), ARE different. We must admit that open markets are the best way to generate revenue, and so, what we need to concentrate our efforts on is the best way to take advantage of the revenue generated by markets in order to satisfy the Progressive ideal of creating a more equal society, helping the poor and most vulnerable and thus allowing all boats to rise equally, in a metaphorical sense.

He also sounded a warning that, when the perceived 'Intellectual Elites' of the Left are seen to be deciding policy that they think is good for us, in contrast to being seen to be reacting to the electorate's commonly and popularly-articulated concerns, then they, and the 'solutions' they impose on the electorate, are in danger of being seen as impositions, and they can engender disgruntlement and ungratefulness. Even if those solutions have produced a net positive result for those very same people. As we have seen only too clearly this past week with the Budget brought down by the federal Labor government. Net positive outcomes, but massive media-led and Coalition-fed disgruntlement and ungratefulness. As positive moves were not sold as well to the electorate as the supposed negatives.

Which leads into another telling point made by James Purnell. It goes to the language Progressive politicians get hung up using. He said that we need to “Keep our language real, to keep us real.”

As we know, the Coalition has this dictum as its talisman. It is partly why it is so effective and successful.

What we also know, from bitter recent experience, is that Kevin Rudd was guilty of the sin of speaking in the twin tongues of Gobbledygook and Bureaucratese, and he ended up paying the heaviest of price for it. His party lost faith in him and his ability to sell its messages to the electorate, and the electorate lost faith in him to be able to speak their language. Their PM became alien to them.

Let me also just add at this point, that I believe that Wayne Swan should not be the Treasurer for this same reason. He may be good at the nuts and bolts of his job, but he couldn't sell a hot pie on a cold day, and he is woeful at selling the Labor government's economic achievements to the country at large. Why the Labor Party ever thought they could get away with putting a man with a speech impediment and about as much charisma as a box of Corn Flakes into the job that had just seen Peter Costello and Paul Keating fill the seat, I don't know. Wayne Swan should have been Finance Minister and Lindsay Tanner, Treasurer. Pity Tanner didn't figure a way out of the Left the way Julia Gillard did.

Which thoughts bring me to another bugbear about the way the Labor Party sells itself back to the electorate, and which James Purnell encapsulated nicely.

It's really 'old-fashioned' the way the ALP sells itself. Day after day the Pic Facs get trotted out, with a Minister or the Prime Minister dropping in to a school, factory or building site of appropriate interest. Some cursory involvement occurs for the cameras, a few questions are asked by the assembled journalists, and then they are all gone. James Purnell said that what we have to do is engage with the people in a more substantive and genuine way. Progressive MPs and activists for the cause need to talk to people about what makes them angry, what they'd like to change. Sit down, talk and build a common interest with people. Build that common interest that you agree to fight for on their behalf. This 'Reciprocity' will build trust and support.

Importantly, James Purnell exhorted Progressives to forever fight for the maintenance of the Social Safety Net. However, in light of the market-oriented, entrepreneurial and aspirational society the world sees as the new normal, what Progressives need to articulate is that we support a hand-out when necessary, then a hand-up to a better life, as the ALP tried to articulate this week with its 'Welfare to Work' initiatives, which were drowned out in a cacophony of, “Is $150,000/year 'rich?”

Markets can empower people, but they can also exploit people. Progressives need to be always on the lookout for this. James Purnell noted that he had seen the rise of 'Individual Flexibility Agreements', which sound mutually beneficial to both employee and employer, but which are simply the Neo-Liberals new AWAs, re-badged. Which goes to the point that the social should never be entirely replaced by the commercial in Industrial Relations. We should never allow workers to be entirely commoditized as 'Units of Production'.

Last, but not least, James Purnell has seen the 'Blue Green' mind meld come to UK society, and, as I explained before with my Green Businessman example, in another form that we are also seeing here. That is, consumers are thinking mindless consumerism is dead. Call it the 'New Frugalism', or 'Responsible Consumerism', but it is one area that I believe the Labor Party should be getting on board with. A responsible approach to consumerism hand in hand with a responsible approach to the planet.

Anyway, there was more, much more, at ProgCon, but that's enough for now.

What do you think?

Comments (327) -

May 16. 2011 01:00 AM

Patricia WA

Good post,FS.   I can imagine your frustration with so-called lefties who are so outraged that PM Julia Gillard hasn't immediately done something about their pet peeve or hobby horse that they plan to vote Greens and preference Liberals. So there!

Patricia WA

May 16. 2011 07:42 AM

lyn

Hi Hillbilly

Thankyou for your intense article, you have been very busy.  Your efforts and loyality to "The Political Sword" are appreciated.

The Abc are having a lovely time with this mornings with poll results, repeating over and over the Coalition would win
an election.   The line supports the Murdoch agenda. I guess they think if they say it enough there will be an election.  If they harp & harp, the voters will demand an election, they will all revolt, very funny.

Cheers


lyn

May 16. 2011 08:11 AM

lyn

TODAY'S LINKS

The Dark Side , Mr Denmore, The Failed Estate
That the Australian people - waiting for another government handout to meet the payments on their flat screen TVS and margin loans - haven't woken up to this conspiracy by a US citizen and his paid employees
thefailedestate.blogspot.com/.../dark-side.html

2011 Budget , John, True Politik
Abbott, meanwhile, will “do anything” to destabilise government in Australia. We will be in for a long 2 1/2 years of Government and Opposition spin.
truepolitik.blogspot.com/2011/05/2011-budget.html

A Current Bolt Affair. Today and Tonight, Ash, Ash's Machiavellian Bloggery
Episode two of the Bolt Report has aired. And I am still laughing. OMG!!!! He had a psychologist on???Seriously. He had a psychologist ontodiscuss glass breakage.
ashghebranious.wordpress.com/.../

Negativity behind Abbott's early poll push:  ABC

Mr Windsor said."Quite clearly what Mr Abbott's been suggesting of recent days, he wouldn't have been interested, he's interested in getting back to the polls, so a hung parliament wouldn't have suited him.
"www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2011/05/15/3217197.htm

The trashing of politics and media, Clare Curran, Red Alert
I think it’s worse here in NZ  because we don’t have the diversity of media that Australia has. But the hunger for trivia is increasing.
blog.labour.org.nz/.../

And I bet he was waiting for their advice, too, Jeremy Sear, Pure Poison
Tim Mathieson has apparently done an interview with News Ltd in which he told them that he was interested in marrying the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard. So the tabloid media company, giddy with excitement
blogs.crikey.com.au/.../#more-10152

Less budgy, more irony , Lachlan Harris, The Telegraph
There was something in Abbott's speech, his profound sentimentality for the Howard government, his kind of hero worship of Noel Pearson, and his allusions to a "cult of youth" and small businesses that are "like families" that made me think that Tony Abbott has a very American stylewww.dailytelegraph.com.au/.../story-fn6b3v4f-1226055905615

Will Aussie housing go bust? Macro Business
In fact you don’t have to go as far as the Northern hemisphere. Prices in Noosa, a fashionable coastal
resort town in Queensland, have reportedly fallen by about 40% since their peak a couple of years ago. macrobusiness.com.au/.../

Perhaps pandas David Horton, The Watermelon Blog
the animals are being killed to provide horns to the Chinese market for fake aphrodisiacs,part of the general market in Asia for fake “medicines”
davidhortonsblog.com/2011/05/16/perhaps-pandas/

Are you a better leader / person if you are married with children?, reflexio.com
It is time the Australian media focussed on matters of policy substance and not the personal lives,
reflexioixelfer.wordpress.com/.../

Pitfalls for Prime Minister Abbott, Rob Burgess, Business Spectator
The populist answers being provided by Tony Abbott to a suite a of serious structural problems in the Australia economy won't work in government. I'm sure he's aware of that
www.businessspectator.com.au/.../Tony-Abbott-prime-minister-poll-Coalition-welfare--pd20110516-GVT5Z

How Abbott botched the budget reply, Alister Drysdale, Business Spectator
he went short. He went after party faithful hand clap, the cheap headline and looking  for yet another early term poll boost.
www.businessspectator.com.au/.../Abbott-budget-response-federal-budget-opposition-l-pd20110516-GVSAD

lyn

May 16. 2011 08:17 AM

Ad astra reply

LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Ad astra reply

May 16. 2011 08:20 AM

Feral Skeleton

lyn & PatriciaWA,
                 Thank you for the supportive words. It's starting to feel very lonely in the space I'm in, stuck in the middle with the ALP.
   Case in point. You'd think that after the government announced that more refugees would now be able to come to Australia, after deals with Thailand and Malaysia, that the refugee advocates and their proxies in the parliament The Greens, would be over the moon and congratulating the government of Julia Gillard on being so generous, but no, this morning I have to listen to David Manne, refugee lawyer and self-interested party who will see his business dry up as a result of not having any refugees taking asylum decisions to Australian courts anymore, and Ian Rintoul of the Refugee Action Collective, who will lose prominence in the debate and a cause to champion in the media and among his acolytes, now turning their attack onto the government again, without pausing for breath, and complaining up hill and down dale in the media about the conditions in Thai and Malaysian refugee camps. Have they ever stopped to think that, in the long term, bringing these countries into the asylum seeker tent may lead to improvements in the conditions that the refugees in those countries face, especially as the Australian government will be taking more of them out than are going back in? Nope. According to the professional complainers you would think that the asylum seekers picked up in boats and sent to Malaysia or Thailand will be in fear of their lives and subject to cruel and inhuman punishment similar to convicts shipped off to Tasmania in the 1700s.
   Not only that, but today we have a story that has been ginned up by the ABC on Christmas Island about the fact that the residents of Xmas Is. actually want the boats to keep coming to their shores because without them their economy will collapse and people who work in the Detention Centre will lose their jobs. Even though the Shire President of Xmas Is. says he has been assured by the Dept of Immigration that the numbers will only fall to about 1000 from the 1700 now, which will actually see a lessening of tension in the Detention Centre and a return to more normal levels of operation. Sheesh! Some people just don't want to be mollified and satisfied with anything this government does.
   Of course the Opposition just oppose. Which seems to be working just fine for them at the moment.
   Thank goodness that election is not around the corner as Tony Abbott hopes and prays and brays for every day.
   It really is almost impossible to govern for the best interests of the country these days, especially when a concerted and co-ordinated campaign in the media based upon a complete and thorough misrepresentation of the Budget and the Asylum Seeker regional solution, hand in glove with a studied ignorance of Tony Abbott's failure to address the Budget in any substantive way, thus leads to the sort of results we have staring us in the face in the polls in the newspapers today.

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 09:04 AM

lyn

Hi Ad

Here is the polls:

Newspoll: 54-46 to Coalition; Nielsen: 56-46, William Bowe, The Poll Bludger

However, Tony Abbott is down too, contrary to other polls from recent weeks: his approval is down four points to 38 per cent and disapproval up three to 51 per cent.

blogs.crikey.com.au/.../

lyn

May 16. 2011 09:04 AM

janice

Excellent piece FS.  However, I don't agree with your paragraph re Wayne Swan:
Let me also just add at this point, that I believe that Wayne Swan should not be the Treasurer for this same reason. He may be good at the nuts and bolts of his job, but he couldn't sell a hot pie on a cold day, and he is woeful at selling the Labor government's economic achievements to the country at large. Why the Labor Party ever thought they could get away with putting a man with a speech impediment and about as much charisma as a box of Corn Flakes into the job that had just seen Peter Costello and Paul Keating fill the seat, I don't know. Wayne Swan should have been Finance Minister and Lindsay Tanner, Treasurer. Pity Tanner didn't figure a way out of the Left the way Julia Gillard did.



I've come to the conclusion that everyone is putting too much emphasis on the need to "sell" a policy/a budget/a perception to the public.  There is too much criticism on this aspect and not enough emphasis put on the fact that people only hear what they want to hear and simply turn off if what they're being sold does not happen to be what their expectations are.

It is, (only my opinion) pointless to yearn for a treasurer who can emulate a Paul Keating and so easy to say Lindsay Tanner would have made a better Treasurer than Wayne Swan.  It is just as pointless for people to yearn for the return of Rudd as some people still do, and not stop to consider that if there had not been a leadership change Rudd most probably would be in the same boat as Gillard.  Dwelling on the what-might-have-beens is the way to going backwards and a distinct impediment to gaining support for progressive policies.

I believe the Labor Party at this point in time has the strongest line-up of Ministers we've ever had - there are no duds on the front bench.  I also think that it is not a matter of selling themselves or their policies by matching the sloganeering Abbott indulges in, but rather it is a matter of slamming the voters with some home truths in plain ordinary language.

By this I mean that when the media, for instance, ask Swan or Gillard if they think those on $150,000 are rich, the answer should be "Rich?  No, not rich but comfortable enough to survive without government welfare."  They might also state at every opportunity that every dollar given away to those who can stand on their own two feet, is a dollar that cannot be spent on providing the infrastructure the country needs to prosper.  They might point out that the Howard Government handed out the bulk of the "mining boom" revenue into supporting the top end of town at the expense of infrastructure, which left us with nothing to show for a decade of record government income.

Just another opinion to add to others.  

In short, people need to be told and made to understand that if they want to enjoy the benefits of first class education, medical services, roads and transport facilities, then they need to support the government which is working hard to provide it and stop whining and putting their hands up for government free-bees.  Time to tell them the truth that they're greedy and selfish and stop pandering to them.  Trying to be diplomatic with people who've been conditioned to expect everything for nothing has never worked and never will.  

janice

May 16. 2011 09:44 AM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       I see what you are saying about Wayne Swan, and coincidentally, the exact same topic was discussed by the Partyliners, Ross Cameron and John Della Bosca, on Deb Cameron's show on the ABC this morning, so, I think that the point I was putting forward is a live one and obviously on other people's minds.
   John Della Bosca made the point that Wayne Swan, as Treasurer, is doing a great job and that it is only relatively recently and coincidentally that the Treasurers in Howard and Hawke's governments have also been the chief head-kickers and rhetoricians. So, his thesis was that Labor has got a couple of good practitioners of attacking rhetoric that he thinks could match Tony Abbott if let go in the media, but because they are not the Treasurer or Assistant Treasurer(and I think what was left unsaid was that because those two gentleman keep a tight rein on who can speak about their portfolios), therefore Labor is suffering as a consequence in the public debate. Also he said that Labor needs to encourage more MPs into parliament that can turn a phrase well, like Abbott.
  He also brought up a fantastic Whitlam quote about Snedden that could be applied equally well to Tony Abbott:
  Gough Whitlam said, "Mr Snedden says he has all the solutions, well, I'd just like to hear one." Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 09:46 AM

Patricia WA

Very well said, Janice.  There is nothing wrong with this government that the bankruptcy and firesale of News Ltd. won't fix.

Why Such Limited News Of Our Prime Minister?

Who else finds it odd, mysterious,
There’s only limited news, no serious
Comment, on achievements of this woman
In a man they’d say were superhuman.
Abroad, she was acknowledged everywhere
As statesman-like. Here, no one seems to care.
Journos meanwhile with camera and mike
Trail a fitness freak on a racing bike.
Budget Day our Prime Minister is seen,
As PMs should be, on the TV screen.
For two days featured on front page,
The nation’s leader was centre stage,
Praised by bankers and economists,
Businessmen, even some agronomists.
Then a ‘story’ breaks. Will she, or won’t she, wed?
Consensus is, politically, she’s dead.
Meanwhile focus turns, with great fanfare,
To a Budget Reply that wasn’t there.
Last year’s election speech some say was ‘smart.’
I’d say, “Rubbish! Re-cycled by a media tart
Who seems to have press so beguiled
That news limited to him is all that’s being filed.”



Patricia WA

May 16. 2011 10:05 AM

Gravel

Feral

Well done, I agree with most of what you say, the only thing that jarred was your opinion of Wayne Swan.  I think he is doing his job very well, he was never going to be  a blaggard like Costello or a sweet talker like Keating.

I am pleased this Labor Government has not pandered to special interest groups as much in this budget.  There will always be the whingers and whiners, won't they just love it when the Opposition get in. Look what they did in England, cut all the pensions for all pensioners, disabled as well, but did not raise taxes for the richer people. We have that to look forward to regardless of the need for it.

Thank you everyone for your concern about my health, can I say whinging about housework should point to the fact that I am improving.

Lyn

Thank you for reposting that link, I appreciate your time and effort for me.

Gravel

May 16. 2011 10:16 AM

Tom of Melbourne

The reason for the ALP malaise is that it has neglected to renew itself.

Hawke & Wran wrote a lengthy, considered and relatively conservative report on some of the failings of the ALP, about 10 years ago.

You’d think when leaders with the stature of those 2 make some wide ranging recommendations, the party would do something (like implement stuff).

But no, even the modest changes recommended were too threatening to the entrenched power structures.  

The ALP has lost its way because it is structurally weak, it is unresponsive to the interests of its membership and the community. It is reactive, it only reacts to-
•  Opinion polls, a lagging indicator of public sentiment. So the ALP cannot lead the public discourse, and
•  The narrow interests of the union hacks, many of whom work full time on party issues. Manoeuvring and dealing to maintain their power base, and ultimately their sinecure in parliament.

The weakness of the ALP is more fundamental than its failing ministry, its flummoxed Prime Minister and its f**ked policy structure.

But the mindless barrackers just don’t get that.

Tom of Melbourne

May 16. 2011 10:18 AM

debbiep

Feral believe me ~ you are not alone in 'your space' ;0

Smile

debbiep

May 16. 2011 10:20 AM

Ad astra reply

FS
Thank you for such a challenging piece, which invites a carefully considered response.

We are getting on the road now to the King Valley in central Victoria to enjoy the autumn leaves and historic towns, so I won't have time to prepare a response perhaps until tomorrow.  I hope the 3G reception there is good enough for me to keep in touch.

Ad astra reply

May 16. 2011 10:21 AM

lyn

Hi Gravel

You are such a sweetie.  I am glad it was the right link
for you.

Your comment above is  delightful, I can see you are improving
every day, well done to you. Yes and whinging about the housework does show all us girls are doing fine, it's the ironing I hate as so time consuming, maybe Mr Abbott can
Stop the ironing".

In the links above The Business Spectator, you will see how
all this stuff Abbott is spruiking is ok for the polls, but he will come undone if he does get elected when his loooooong
wait is over.

Hope you have a nice comfy day Gravel

lyn

May 16. 2011 10:22 AM

Ad astra reply

Folks
Web Monkey has been working on an archive for Lyn’s links, and has placed it in the Page List in the left panel, where all of Lyn’s links are situated.  It has been a complex process to aggregate so many links under a few headings, so we thank him for his sterling effort.

LYN’S LINKS ARCHIVE, which is situated towards the foot of the list, will be a useful resource for anyone who wishes to refer to long past links, which go back to 3rd April 2010. There are now thousands of links that Lyn has painstakingly collected since then.  

Somehow the first anniversary of Lyn commencing her links has slipped by us, so we all now want to say a BIG THANK YOU to you Lyn for over a year of collecting these links, which attract so many visitors to TPS to enjoy and benefit from what you provide day after day.

Ad astra reply

May 16. 2011 10:26 AM

janice

The reason for the ALP malaise is that it has neglected to renew itself.

Absolute bullshit T of M as is the rest of your analysis of the ALP.  The quote above from your comment applies directly to the Coalition who are still persisting with the dregs of the Howard Ministry.

janice

May 16. 2011 10:34 AM

TalkTurkey

Professor Skeleton,

I wish that your treatise carried less weight than it does.
Sad to say, it is amongst your best efforts inHo, and it had to be said.

It is a desperate but retrievable position for Labor - and us.
The necrotic infection that is Abbortt apparently continues to gnaw at Australian flesh, but I have never thought that he can make it to PM. I think that if he is still Leader at the next election, whether that be mid- or full-term, Greens-intending voters would HAVE to come to grips with the thought that preferencing the Coalition would probably do it too, i.e. get a bloody Coalition government, and I can't imagine Brown encouraging them that way, and what he says carries a lot of clout. Damn, Greens R Us when it comes down to matters of the heart, but they are ornery and maverick and it's like herding cats with them, still I reckon by the next election the Greens better've sorted their brains and I think they will've too.

There are also the Turnbull types who don't really trust Abbortt,and for good reason. Gillard is doing a splendid job of governing, the economy for all the naysayers and doomsayers is about #1 in all the known world and Labor and the unions must and will work on that as Lionel Rose, r.i.p., worked on fighting Harada in 1968.  


When the roll is called up yonder, Never Fear, FS Dear, -
When the roll is called up yonder, FS Dear, We'll Be Here!
    
Shouting out our Battle Cry
     of  
Substance not Slogans!


Thoughts on the MSM

They're a #*(@in' witches' coven!
Illwillful and unlovin'!
Don't let 'em fool ya!
Do It *J*u*l*i*a* ! -
Govern govern govern!

TalkTurkey

May 16. 2011 10:35 AM

janice

So, his thesis was that Labor has got a couple of good practitioners of attacking rhetoric that he thinks could match Tony Abbott if let go in the media, but because they are not the Treasurer or Assistant Treasurer(and I think what was left unsaid was that because those two gentleman keep a tight rein on who can speak about their portfolios), therefore Labor is suffering as a consequence in the public debate.

FS, Albanese is 'allowed' to do a bit of headkicking.  I seem to remember though that it wasn't until Keating was gone that people began to appreciate what they'd lost.  If Labor had not retired into a wombat barrow and allowed the party and its record of good economic management etc to be trashed, then it might not have the difficulty it is having today.  Therefore, it is imperative that every single labor supporter start talking up their party and their achievements instead of sinking into negative analysis of what is wrong.  There is NOTHING WRONG - we have an excellent PM backed by an excellent front bench so we need to stand up and YELL it loud and clear.

janice

May 16. 2011 10:41 AM

Feral Skeleton

Tom of Melbourne,
                 Good to see you're more than a One Trick Pony.
Yes, I agree that since the Hawke/Wran review was handed over to the ALP not much appears to have changed. I also agree that more needs to change. Which is why I have written about the sorts of changes in attitude that need to occur and which are being resisted from the inside of the ALP, as you say. However, where I don't agree with you is that I am not prepared to just throw up my hands in disgust and walk away from the ALP. The core beliefs that they stand for are too important to just casually trash the party that still stands for them. Therefore, and it has been a long and laborious and, at times, thankless task, I have decided to work from within and without to bring about those changes that everyone of good intent wrt the Labor Party wants. It may interest you to know that just last week, in a debate against just those exact same Union bulwarks in the party, those of us who want to see their entrenched power base change were successful in defeating their motion to perpetuate the status quo of the apparatchik track into parliamentary seats. It was just a small victory in one small federal electorate committee, but they thought they had the numbers, and we proved they didn't. Not to mention that the Union reps in that room, on that night, did not all support the maintenance of the status quo ante the others were fighting to preserve.
   Frankly, and I have told him so before, I believe Simon Crean would have made a fantastic PM. He showed guts in taking on his old confreres in the Union movement and succeeding in breaking down the 60-40 voting bloc that the Unions had, where no one before him had been able to, mainly because they had that 60-40 vote in a Catch 22 situation. Hard-headed and effective, just like the ALP needs. He is my inspiration. Also, and you may not realise this but that 60-40 knowckdown to 50-50 WAS one of the recommendations to come out of the Hawke/Wran Review. The most important one in my opinion.
  There are others, like I have suggested above, and such as open casting calls, so to speak, for candidates sympathetic to the ALP but who may not necessarily be in the party. And that is the fight that we had last week. And won.
   So, please, don't think that the ALP is hopeless because they haven't achieved what you want them to by yesterday at the latest. It's a hard road to hoe. But change is coming, I feel. Also wrt matters that are dear to your own heart. This party is a 100 year old Titanic, and it takes a lot of effort to turn it around. Especially in the face of media headwinds that favour the other ship in the race.
   There is only one facet of the problems which beset the Labor Party via their Union connections that I can do nothing about, and that is the overweening influence of the powerbrokers from the Catholic Right, like Bill Ludwig, who provides Wayne Swan's power base, and Joe De Bruyn from the Shop Assistants Union.
   ToM, if yoou can give me a suggestion about how to blast these two and their acolytes out of their Araldited-on positions in the Labor Party, for the benfit of us all who have the best interests of the party at heart, let me know.

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 10:47 AM

Feral Skeleton

Talk Turkey,
            Thanks for the vote of support. If only what I had to say was taken notice of within the bowels of the party where they have the blockages to apeurient thought. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 10:51 AM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       Albo has bad teeth and also seems to have a speech impediment, though I will admit that when he gets going he can be effective. I'm not trying to be nasty, but what the ALP needs is someone with the looks of Kate Ellis and the attack dog smarts of Abbott. Probably impossible to just magic someone up like that, but if I were the government I'd be training up those who potentially fit that bill because. it. works.

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 10:53 AM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       For example, look what the Liberals are doing with Wyatt Roy. They are putting a lot of effort into that boy, improving his media skills, making him the focus of attention. Where is the ALP equivalent?

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 10:58 AM

lyn

Hi Ad

Thankyou so much for you congratulatory comment to me
I appreciate your words very very much.

Ad I have sent you an email, I hope you don't mind me
asking you to check the email box for me.

We are getting on the road now to the King Valley in central Victoria to enjoy the autumn leaves and historic towns

Ad I love the autumn leaves but the Historic Towns just
make me change my whole personality, they are to be savoured and adored.  One of the most wonderful parts of my trip
to Tasmania. The miners cottages would make a wonderful
home for me, with a pink rose covered front door.

Enjoy yourself and your pretty, gentle little wife Ad

Cheers

lyn

May 16. 2011 12:47 PM

TalkTurkey

Speech impediment?
The POOdle IS a 'speech' impediment!

But his POOs (Points Of Order, remember) don't impede the Government as much as they used to now that the longsuffering Harry has finally come to the end of his patience, Dog be praised, and you might have noticed Poodle hardly raised any POOs at all during the Budget session. Harry has forewarned him, he'll give POOdle short shrift from now on. What a waste of MONEY that nasty little fellow is! NTM of time for mature debate! And of possible bipartisanship and goodwill,(as if!)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Lyn, I didn't know when you started doing what you do so well with TPS because you started before me, so your anniversary passed without my or I guess many others realizing it. Because anybody who did realize when it was, even the trolls, would surely want to say Thank You Very Much, I know that you do get a lot of appreciation but it could never be as much as you deserve. I'm not quite sure this is right but I seem to remember that when I started following the fortunes of TPS (my first contact, and post, was the day after *J*U*L*I*A* became PM, in early September, just 8 months ago) the total number of hits in 2 years was less than 10 million, now it's over 40, is that right? (Ad astra would know, and Web Monkey* too.) - Anyway we know that you attract many readers, a lot of whom don't ever comment but do use your Links, so educational and helpful to all. You are unique, and the Tweety Bird award of yours better be solid gold because you deserve nothing less.
  
*[BTW Web Monkey too, Thank You ever so, you are making this blogsite stronger and clever and more respected by the day, all behind the scenes, why don't you write us all a billet doux so we can say Thank You a little more personally?]

  

TalkTurkey

May 16. 2011 01:41 PM

Gravel

Lyn

Congratulations on your anniversary of supplying us with all those wonderful links.

Gravel

May 16. 2011 01:44 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
We're in Euroa having lunch.  FS has emailed to say that she has had difficulty accessing TPS. So I'm sending this message from my iPad to test the site.

Ad astra reply

May 16. 2011 01:46 PM

Ad astra reply

FS
The message above went off OK so I presume TPS is working.

Ad astra reply

May 16. 2011 02:04 PM

Feral Skeleton

Ad Astra,
          Working OK this end as well. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 02:10 PM

Feral Skeleton

  Better poll figures from the Essential Poll today:
www.crikey.com.au/.../#comments
   If you get a 'Must Have Subscription' message, let me know & I'll C'n'P it. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 02:24 PM

debbiep



I second all the congrats to Lyn,

Hip Hip ~  cheers from me also Smile

debbiep

May 16. 2011 02:27 PM

lyn

Hi Ad

The comments were down for a little while, but back working
fine now.  I have noticed they do go down fairly frequently
for short intervals.. Web Monkey will know what it is
I suspect.

Here is some dribble for you to read under the Autumn Leaves:

timdunlop timdunlop
This is how quality journalism gets done, apparently http://bit.ly/lTXyko
23 minutes ago Favorite Retweet Reply


Swan's glass cracks the press Gallery., The Australian

Wayne Swan’s infamous glass smashing incident on ABC Radio’s AM program was the TV story of the day last Thursday. It gave TV reporters that magical visual ingredient that makes political stories come alive.

The rival commercial networks and Sky News were livid. They argued it was “pool” footage and not an ABC exclusive. It was technically pool footage because AM is one of the many events which are filmed by one network camera and then shared - because no-one has the resources to cover every event.



Sky News? Well they had such a tantrum over the ABC vanity stamp they refused to run the footage in their news bulletins at all - talking about the story all day without the crucial vision. Now that’s grown up isn’t it?

Forget Seven and Nine rivalry, in the modern day press gallery the ABC and Sky are the biggest rivals of all.

blogs.theaustralian.news.com.au/.../index.php

lyn

May 16. 2011 02:35 PM

janice

Albo has bad teeth and also seems to have a speech impediment, though I will admit that when he gets going he can be effective. I'm not trying to be nasty, but what the ALP needs is someone with the looks of Kate Ellis and the attack dog smarts of Abbott. Probably impossible to just magic someone up like that, but if I were the government I'd be training up those who potentially fit that bill because. it. works.

Gosh FS, you are really into wishful thinking. Smile  None of the pretty boy stuff will compensate for integrity and brains, both of which is sadly lacking across the Coalition board.  I certainly don't want to see any Abbott/Wyatt Roy/Wilson tuckey/or even Malcolm turnbull types gracing Labor benches.  Besides, the lying, cheating rhetoric spruiked by Tony Abbott only works because the media let him get away with it unchallenged and by not accurately reporting Labor's replies or even accurately reporting Labor's policy announcements.

Take the STB announcement for instance.  I've heard the PM, the Treasurer and Sen.Conroy endeavouring to set the record straight time after time after time, yet still the media are spruiking the Abbott/Hockey rubbish.  I even read comments by Labor supporters who happened to catch the last interview by Conroy saying "why has it taken so long for Labor to explain?"

FS, I really do think that Labor supporters are complaining instead of listening, so if their own supporters can't hear above the noise of "the opposition says",  what hope is there to 'sell' their wares?   What we really need in this country is more journalists of the calibre of Laura Tingle, Ross Gittens, George Megalogenis, Lenore Taylor and one or two others whose names I can't think of at this moment, who are willing to do some real research and are willing to give credit where credit is due.

janice

May 16. 2011 03:00 PM

NormanK

Hillbilly Skeleton
Thanks for another thoughtful, thought-provoking post. This is well out of my league so I will watch and read with interest the wiser heads here.

janice
I would add Rob Burgess to your list, I find him refreshing and honest even when he says what I don't want him to say and, god forbid, he does his homework.

lyn
Let me add my voice to the chorus of "thank-you" for your hard work and diligence over the last year. I shudder to think how large your list of potential contributors are each day. I hope Today's Links brings you half as much pleasure to compile as it does for me to read. Smile Smile

NormanK

May 16. 2011 03:02 PM

NormanK

That 'are' will be an 'is' then I guess. Bugger Frown

NormanK

May 16. 2011 03:09 PM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       I agree with everything you have said. However, I will say it again, the ALP need to find their own 'cute as a button' 21y.o. MP with a killer instinct, and they need more MPs with a killer instinct, and that are telegenic, for the right reasons, simply because that is what is required of politics these days. Sad but true. Since they put those little cameras in every mobile phone, visuals have become as important as the substance. Tony Abbott and the Liberal Party realise that. So, even though everyone and their dog knows what a bastard Abbott is, they are being mesmerised by the visual campaign that has been crafted around him and which gets wheeled out like a performance of the Organ Grinder with his monkey every day.
   Frankly, the ALP should get more MPs like Kristina Kenneally, without the baggage, into federal parliament. If it wasn't for the dags in parliament with her she would have done a lot better. She knows what it takes these days to be a successful ALP politician.

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 03:11 PM

Feral Skeleton

lyn,
    You are the jewelled Tweety Bird in the TPS crown. Smile
Happy Anniversary. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 03:16 PM

lyn

Hi Ad

This is a link to Massivespray, one of our commenters
I do really enjoy Massivespray's writing and do try to
praise him in his comments box when I can:

I will post the link again in "Today's Links" so you
don't need to worry about occassional lonely links
that are posted thoroughtout the day.

Government has lost the media war, Massivespray, Spray of the day

Whenever an interviewer brings up a spurious talking point factoid, slap them down hard and fast.  
Slam them with some short, punchy statements with salient facts and don’t be afraid to ridicule them.
  
sprayoftheday.wordpress.com/.../government-has-lost-the-media-war

lyn

May 16. 2011 03:23 PM

lyn

Hi Talk Turkey

Thankyou so much for your congratulations I treasure
your thankyous. I know that you enjoy the links because
you wrote me a song remember, when you get up and
"Put your Blue Jeans On".

Ummm, interesting figures the total number of hits in 2 years was less than 10 million, now it's over 40, is that right? (Ad astra would know, and Web Monkey* too.) -
As you said Ad Astra will know but I know the hits are very high daily, especially when something happens in the news.

Yes Web Monkey is a smooth operator and a valuable one too.

I keep my compliments in a golden folder,
thankyou Talk Turkey.

lyn

May 16. 2011 03:24 PM

David Horton

Anticipating Lyn for once, Ad and FS (and other TPSers) may both like my latest here davidhortonsblog.com/.../

David Horton

May 16. 2011 04:35 PM

janice

Lyn, I apologise that I kept forgetting to wish you a happy 'anniversary' and to thank you for the hard work you put in to provide such a comprehensive set of links every single day.   Happy anniversary Lyn and thank you for being such a busy little Tweety Bird.

janice

May 16. 2011 04:56 PM

janice

the ALP need to find their own 'cute as a button' 21y.o. MP with a killer instinct,

I know, I've grown so damned old that I still see a 21 y.o as little more than a teenager with, perhaps, potential when he grows up :lol:  

There is no way I would ever place my faith and vote in a 21 year old candidate, no matter how cute or how sensible he/she may be, or appear to be.  Young people of this age are still learning and trying out the every which ways of being an adult and having the responsibility of representing an electorate with diverse political beliefs, is I suggest, a bit out their league.  

Having said said, I have always been proud of the fact that I managed to raise my kids to be caring, responsible adults.  But, I would never have considered them prepared, or ready, for election as an MP.  Sure, a decade later they would be not only prepared and ready but capable as well.

janice

May 16. 2011 04:59 PM

Miglo

Lyn, I for one have appreciated your links. Not only have they helped bring people to the Cafe, but without your assistance I could never have started Australian Blog Sites.

Miglo

May 16. 2011 05:13 PM

lyn

Hi Norman K

What can I say to our steady as it goes, fabulous
reader, commenter, writer, but a big thankyou for
your words to ad to my golden folder.

Norman K just what you said
I hope Today's Links brings you half as much pleasure to compile as it does for me to read.   makes me
spread my wings to try and do better and betterer as my Grandson says.

I have been wanting to put a science link up for you, I hope the article of interest, I know your analysis will be
an enjoyable read, it's a worry but not for us five billion years wow!:

Science explains the end of the world, Washington Post

In about five billion years the sun will run out of hydrogen, which will upset its self-regulating equilibrium; in its death-throes it will swell, and this planet will vaporise. Before that, we can expect, at unpredictable intervals measured in tens of millions of years, bombardment by dangerously large meteors or comets. Any one of these impacts could be catastrophic enough to destroy all life, as the one that killed the dinosaurs 65 million years ago nearly did. In the nearer future, it is pretty likely that human life will become extinct – the fate of almost all species that have ever lived.
www.washingtonpost.com/.../AFaLvBiG_blog.html

lyn

May 16. 2011 05:14 PM

Feral Skeleton

  Has any journalist with more than 2 brain cells to rub together thought to ask Mr Abbott why we should have an election right now on the Carbon Tax when the government hasn't even legitimately introduced it into parliament yet? How can we have an election on something, for the mandate that Mr Abbott says is needed, when that something hasn't been put in front of the people yet for them to scrutinise and come to an informed conclusion about?
  Just asking. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 05:17 PM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       Without putting too fine a point on it, there must have been more than a few adults older than Wyatt Roy who actually thought he was MP-material enough to vote for him at the last election. Now he is being used by the Coalition to great effect. Labor should therefore follow suit, despite the philosophical argument that says, quite rightly, that he isn't old enough to have more than the faintest association with wisdom.

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 05:23 PM

Feral Skeleton

  If anyone is interested in understanding what the ALP is up against, in the Right Wing Think Tanks that supply the training grounds for aspiring Liberal Party politicians, then just read what verbal gymnastics they learn to engage in to support their case, even when it is only over the fairly trivial, in the scheme of things, matter of whether Palm Oil should be listed as an ingredient in food products, and also how it is like trying to get blood out of a stone for Senator Xenophon to get an answer to who funds the IPA:
www.aph.gov.au/hansard/senate/commttee/S13733.pdf

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 05:27 PM

Jason

FS,
  Wyatt Roy one trick pony!There he was so worried about about a gotcha,that he forgot that come July 1 the coalition can't block Labors attempts to get back to surplus!

Jason

May 16. 2011 05:27 PM

lyn

Hi Janice

Now I come to our sweetest ever, Janice
Thankyou Janice that is so nice of you, you have been
very productive today with your wonderful well thought
out sincere comments, you are delightful Janice. In the
golden folder you go quick smart.

I agree I would never vote for a 21 year old either, no
way in the world, as a matter of fact when my children
were 21 I still found it hard to take them seriously.
Anyway isn't it proven that the brain doesn't mature
until 20 years old anyway. Wyatt erp is it, his  swelled
head is not going to make a reliable, responsible
law maker.
He hasn't seen a Labor surplus in his life time,
Oh! puleease.

lyn

May 16. 2011 05:39 PM

Jason

FS,
  I do concede Labor needs to do something! I would think at the moment after what Conroy had to say this morning all that would happen is we would end up with a clone of a factional warlord.
Also if you were say 20 something "todays modern Labor" is not the place where you would be allowed to bloom!
Ludwig Farrell etc

Jason

May 16. 2011 05:40 PM

NormanK

FS
In some senses you have too much faith in the electorate's ability to be discerning. Remember you're talking about Queensland regional voters when you look at Wyatt Roy's success. Sadly, as in my own electorate, voters quite often just go with the party that they have always followed or vote 'presidential' style for the leader they prefer. Part of Roy's success was a vote in retaliation for Rudd's 'backstabbing', part anti-RSPT which they thought was going to destroy Queensland's mining prosperity and the discovery of the word 'spin' and applying it to the ALP. Combine that with an appalling ALP election campaign and any fool (like George Christensen for Dawson) can win a seat.
Have a good look at this fool and tell me he is the telegenic future of the LNP.
http://lnp.org.au/dawson
It won't do our optimism stakes any good but I'm afraid the overall percentage of people who are fundamentally disengaged from, and even hostile to, political discourse is both astonishing and depressing.

NormanK

May 16. 2011 05:45 PM

Feral Skeleton

NormanK,
        Aaaarrrggghhh!!!
   With family traditions in the Labor Party and his own involvement in two unions, George understands the needs of all members of the community and is committed to using his knowledge and experience to gain a better deal for everyone in Dawson.
  But he needs to be a member of the LNP to represent his peeps?

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 05:46 PM

Feral Skeleton

Jason,
       What has Stephen Conroy done now?

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 05:48 PM

lyn

Hi Hillbilly

You are the jewelled Tweety Bird in the TPS crown.  
Happy Anniversary.
.

Thankyou for your comment Hillbilly, that is so nice
of you to say such nice words.

Honestly If I hear about Julia Gillard being dead and
finished, anymore today just because of these latest
poll results, I don't know how I'll manage.

election right now on the Carbon Tax when the government hasn't even legitimately introduced it into parliament yet?

Has any journalist thought to ask Abbott, how come the
cost of everything has gone up because of the Carbon Tax
when it is not introduced yet.  I haven't heard any Journalist
ask, but a broken glass that probably came from "Crazy
Harry's", is  more important, they fight over the rights
to show the video clip.    Pathetic.

lyn

May 16. 2011 05:55 PM

lyn

Hi Miglo

Thankyou Miglo, your words are very much appreciated
what a nice thing to say, in the golden folder with
you quick smart.

I really am proud of Australian Blog sites you have
done so well with the setup Miglo and also the lovely
quiet Cafe filled with all the upper class of the
blogosphere sipping their latte and whispering politics.

Hope you had a nice holiday and so sorry to hear about
the hacking, such mean people out there.

Lyn, I for one have appreciated your links. Not only have they helped bring people to the Cafe, but without your assistance I could never have started Australian Blog Sites.

lyn

May 16. 2011 05:56 PM

NormanK

Jason is probably referring to this bit of bad news for those seeking reform within the ALP.
Stephen Conroy attacks ALP 'self-indulgence' and says voters want action, not navel-gazing
www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-fn59niix-1226056603496

to balance the scales:
ALP best manager of money, history shows
www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-fn59niix-1226056371414

NormanK

May 16. 2011 06:01 PM

Jason

FS,
   Conroy said to Fran Kelly this morning!

A SENIOR Labor frontbencher has attacked a review of the party's internal structures as "self-indulgent"', as new opinion polls show voters are increasingly turning on Julia Gillard and her government.
Defending the government after a dramatic slump in the Prime Minister's personal satisfaction rating in the latest Newspoll, Communications Minister Stephen Conroy said the public wanted to see action, not “navel-gazing''.

www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-fn59niix-1226056603496

Jason

May 16. 2011 06:05 PM

thenewjj

FS,

All of this nonsense about Wyatt Roy is really just that, nonsense. To say that he is some sort of a symbol that is helping the Liberal and national Parties across Australia is just not right, and to say, as FS does, that you have to be old to be wise is just plain wrong (anyway, who is to say that many of the pollies in parliament now are wise?). I think Wyatt Roy is a good advocate for young people in Australia, but i also dont think he really represents them (he does not seem like a normal 21 year old).

As for the talk about the polling today... it sure is not looking good! The average Labor primary vote seems to be tracking around the 34% mark at the moment which is a massive drop since the last election! Sure it isnt close to an election, but there comes a point when people stop listening... and the polls are telling us that we have either reached it, or are on the precipice.

May i just say that the now clear Labor strategy of attack Abbott (try and do what he does to them) will not work. What the Labor Party needs are big policy runs on the board. The more and more Gillard focuses her attacks on Abbott, the more and more she will look desperate and un-prime-ministerial. Abbott is opposition leader, he cannot produce and implement policy, so he is able to attack because that is his job. Gillard has the levers of power, usually they are a help, but Gillard is doing everything it seems to make them into a hindrance.

thenewjj

May 16. 2011 08:02 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
We are now in a cosy cottage near Harrietville after a pleasant drive through the King Valley and Bright where the autumn colours are still adorning the countryside.

Despite its remoteness, the 3G reception here is good and connection to the Internet instantaneous, in contrast to the poor connectivity in the heart of Melbourne.

So I will be able to respond to some of your comments in the evenings; during the day we will be out and about enjoying the scenic beauty of this region.

Ad astra reply

May 16. 2011 08:09 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
Some regulars here on TPS have expressed concern at the argumentative quality of the debate on some subjects that has occurred in recent times.  Controversial topics have been introduced by visitors, but instead of a polite discussion of the subject in question based on its merits, the debate has become quite caustic, and there have been some personal remarks made about bloggers who took a different view from the proponents.  Some of these TPS bloggers have been named on another website, causing them distress.  

When I set up this blog, which is a private one but which allows comments by visitors, it was to discuss in a rational way the significant issues in Federal politics.  It is not a forum where those riding a particular hobbyhorse can come to dominate the discussion, returning time and again in more strident fashion to press their case.  I’m sure I don’t have to spell out what I am referring to.

How then do we cope with this?  One way is to delete comments that have become over the top.  I don’t wish to do this as it would be seen as censorship, although I will delete offensive and personal comments when I see them. There is another way, and that is to not become embroiled in these emotional debates, but simply to read them and resist the tendency to hit back.  A non-response will usually allow the heat to go out of the debate, whereas a testy response turns up the heat.

So I make a plea to all who blog here to keep the conversation polite even when the heat is rising, and to use your good judgment about when to bail out and let the debate cool.

There is another type of visitor who comes here to bag Labor and those who support it.  These folk love to quote adverse poll figures, as if we can’t read, and enjoy quoting any source that is making derogatory remarks about PM Gillard, her ministers and her Government, again as if we were unaware of them.  They seldom ever discuss Tony Abbott’s vision for the nation, and we know why, and they never paint a picture of how an Abbott led government would improve our nation in a way superior to what the Gillard Government is planning and doing.  They are Abbottesque – intent on knocking down, refusing to build up.

These visitors, who some label as trolls as they come back over and again singing the same song from the Coalition hymn sheet, in my view are best ignored, until and unless they have something constructive to say.  Responding to their tiresome tirades serves only to encourage them to return. Again I ask regulars here to use their judgment about if and when to respond.

Ad astra reply

May 16. 2011 09:06 PM

Feral Skeleton

jj,
   A half-way rational and thought-through comment.

Feral Skeleton

May 16. 2011 09:14 PM

NormanK

lyn
WHAT HAVE YOU DONE?
We've only got, at the very outside, 5 billion years before we are wiped out by the expanding sun!
I freaked out!
We're all gonna die! We're all gonna die!
(A bit redundant I know because we ARE all gonna die.)
But then, to calm myself down, I did some sums.
By my crude reckoning, I could probably cycle through about 100 million reincarnations in that time (at 50 years per go) provided I don't get dudded with multiple jaunts as a Deep Sea Cod or some bloody old slow-moving turtle. That's 100 million goes at sorting out my karma before the Big Whoosh.
It's not so bad when you look at it that way.
So, I've finally got myself calmed down enough to be able to sleep tonight without dreaming about astroids and vaporising planets and I go back to see what prompted that particular discussion in the first place AND ......................
It turns out THE WORLD IS GOING TO END on May 21!!!!!!
We're all gonna die! We're all gonna die!
Why didn't you put that in your little snapshot of what the article contained?
How can I possibly turn things around in 5 days?
Why am I bothering to write this comment?
What a waste of precious time.
I've got to start, right now, being kinder to small animals, stop killing insects, give all of my money to charity (what for I don't know, they'll just blow it on the pokies once they get wind of this news article) and purging the toxins out of my body.
As a first step in my rehabilitation, I forgive you lyn for giving me false hope of 100 million more lives before I become cosmic dust.
Remember folks, Saturday is the Big Day.
Bugger, it means we'll miss out on thrashing NSW in the State of Origin.
Oh well, time, tide and the cosmos wait for no man.

ReCaptcha : Human Malland. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?
No sleep tonight.

NormanK

May 16. 2011 10:06 PM

lyn

Hi NormanK

I knew it, I knew it, you would do it, thankyou Norman k
you made me laugh out so loud, what a wonderful person
you are.  

What a greater than great dissection NormanK, I said before
you are a lump of gold and you definately are.

You know, I really don't think you should lose any sleep
though.

I freaked out!
We're all gonna die! We're all gonna die!
(A bit redundant I know because we ARE all gonna die.)
But then, to calm myself down, I did some sums


Oh! dear no wonder we love TPS.

lyn

May 16. 2011 10:36 PM

Ad astra reply

FS
Regarding the comments about Wayne Swan, I agree with much of what janice and Gravel have said about him.  I regard him as a good Treasurer, as I believe you do also.  With the others in the so-called Gang of Four and Treasury, he rescued Australia from the GFC despite what the naysayers still say.  He seems to be well across his brief, and he speaks common sense. So the main problem is seen as his not ‘selling’ his Budget very well.  He is compared with Paul Keating because he is expected to have Keating’s oratory.  That is a big ask!.

Of all the Treasurers I have seen, Paul Keating was clearly the most competent, and still is the best speaker on the economy. But although I enjoy hearing him speak, the complexity of his discourse is such that few would bother listening for more than a minute or two.  He had a nice turn of phrase, which is why the journos held onto his every word – they made great copy.  I’m not sure that this ‘sold’ his messages though.  He was in some ways like Tony Abbott in his capacity to demean, such as when he said of John Howard: “I am not like the Leader of the Opposition, I did not slither out of the Cabinet room like a mangy maggot”, and when he described Wilson Tuckey as: “A dog returning to his vomit”.

Peter Costello is lauded as the nation’s greatest Treasurer and no doubt Coalition supporters would agree, but how good was he at ‘selling’ his messages?  For my part he came across as arrogant, condescending and unconvincing, made all the more so because of his ’smirk’.  So I don’t think he can be held up as a paragon of a great salesman.

So we have Wayne, who despite his competence, is not seen as fulfilling the second role all ministers now seem to have – ‘selling’ their message.  Why is this?  It is because the media insist that this is what they must do.  Only a few economics correspondents, such as Ross Gittins the other day, take the trouble to analyse and dissect the Budget and give an appraisal for the public to digest.  Most of the others are too lazy or incompetent to do that, relying on Wayne to gift them some clever lines, to make complex matters breathtakingly simple, to wrap a Budget of thousands of words and facts into a few sound bites they can use in the 6 o’clock news or in their columns.  And even if he did that, News Limited outlets would not print it or use it in news bulletins, but distort and misrepresent it to meet their agenda of crushing the Gillard Government. Even if he delivered a Budget speech of the calibre of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, News Limited journalists would maul it and accuse him of not ‘selling’ his message, and of being a dull speaker.

It does therefore make one wonder if it would ever be possible to satisfy an antagonistic Murdoch media.  Personally I don’t think it ever will be.  It is out to diminish Swan, not praise him.

The same could be said of Julia Gillard. Commentators demean her slow Aussie drawl, which just happens to be her natural way of speaking.  They demean her even when she speeds up, just they demean her nose, her earlobes, her dress.  They want her to be as feisty as she often is in QT, but at a press conference, where that would be silly, except of course if she aimed some of her feistiness at reporters who asked stupid questions, as she is inclined to do lately.  Then of course they go mute.

It seems to me that in tune with what Lindsay Tanner said in his book Sideshow: Dumbing Down Democracy, ‘entertainment’ is the name of the game, and Wayne Swan doesn’t give the media the entertainment it wants and needs.  And so it gives him no credit for all the effort he has gone to in preparing a Budget in the most adverse circumstances economically, gives him no credit for planning for a two-speed economy with labour shortages in some places and unemployment in others, no credit for the plan to create half a million jobs, no credit for the cuts he has made in an effort to bring the Budget back to surplus.  The media prefers to spread the inane utterances on economics of Joe Hockey because of their entertainment value.

I know some will accuse me of blaming the media again.  Well go ahead.  As far as most of our media are concerned, if the cap fits, wear it.  Instead of explaining the Budget to the people, as after all they are supposed to be red-hot communicators, here they are last week spending countless minutes on Wayne Swan breaking a glass!  Can you believe it?  It was on every network, on Insiders and of course on the Bolt Report where a psychologist was brought on to delve into the sinister meaning of the Treasurer breaking a glass during a radio interview.  And the TV outlets that did not have the vision of his glass breaking available to them, were livid. If you read this in a fictional novel you would say: ’Well it’s only fiction.’  Sadly it’s not fiction.  This is the new reality of latter day journalism.

In conclusion, I do not think it is possible to turn Wayne Swan into a Churchillian orator.  And if it were possible it would make no difference to the media.  So long as he goes on breaking glasses they will be happy, but if they have to explain to the public the important measures in the Budget and how they will affect the nation and the individuals who live in it, forget it.

Ad astra reply

May 16. 2011 11:48 PM

Miglo

Lyn, I wish not to cause you distress, but we don't have as much time as you think.

True, the sun will die in 5 billions years time, but the dying process will begin in a mere 1.1 billion years.  That's when it realises it's running out of fire wood and will expand in search of fuel.  The inner planets - Earth included - will be engulfed, frazzled, and there will be no trace that they ever existed.

I learned some horrible things about the sun in astronomy at uni.  The temperature at the centre of the sun is a crispy 14.5 million degrees Celsius.  We should be thankful for the cool outer layers as a piece of the sun's core the size of a pinhead would generate enough heat to kill a person from 160 millions kilometres away.

Sorry to be off topic Ad astra but I can't help myself when the subject of astronomy is introduced, however slightly.  Your name gives away the clue that you too have an interest in the stars.

Miglo

May 17. 2011 12:28 AM

D Mick Weir

FS,
my other life/lives are really getting in the road at the moment (and givimg me the irrates as well) and with so many other blogs to read and absorb I haven't had time to consider your piece fully.

However,
your comment at May 16. 2011 08:20 AM has caused me concern

... after the government announced that more refugees would now be able to come to Australia, ... would be over the moon and congratulating the government of Julia Gillard on being so generous,

It appears you may have missed some important points.

Please read these two blogs / articles:

Turning away refugees
Australian Observer - Paul Barratt
aussieobserver.blogspot.com/.../...y-refugees.html
Australia is now in the business of turning away refugees.

Xenophobia on the rise long before latest influx of asylum boats
George Megalogenis - The Australian - May 14, 2011 12:00AM
www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-e6frgd0x-1226055634281

The first will explain why the way the Government are wrong, wrong, WRONG with what they are doing.

The second will give another perspective on the whole immigration dilema.

Once again this goverment has sold Australia short and are diminishing us.

There is no defence to the current treatment of Asylum Seekers and we are in contravention of the treaties we claim to abide with

IT STINKS

(and if I could type IT STINKS in 96pt bold to add more emphasis I would)

D Mick Weir

May 17. 2011 01:06 AM

D Mick Weir

This comment by Mike Carlton is, umm, just read it

The refugee thing - debate, question, issue, problem, scandal, outrage, call it what you will - has become so toxic that rational policy decisions are no longer possible.

Ever since the Tampa container ship hove into view with its wretched cargo of boat people and delivered John Howard the 2001 election, the Tories and their media toadies have played the race and bigotry cards with cynical skill.


Me, me, me ... why all the whingeing? National Times May 14, 2011
www.smh.com.au/.../...hingeing-20110513-1em67.html

D Mick Weir

May 17. 2011 01:08 AM

D Mick Weir

and now for something completely different

Carbon Action: Say Yes Australians!
redbluffr.blogspot.com/.../...yes-australians.html

G'night all my other life wants me back at some unearthly hour like 5:00 am yecchhhhh

D Mick Weir

May 17. 2011 07:54 AM

lyn




TODAY'S LINKS


Poll them up, poll them down , poll them round and round, Greg Jericho,Grog's Gamut
And so we really shouldn’t get too caught up in one-off polls – people not surprisingly have a tendency to see themselves as the centre of the economy, and fair enough –  you’d have to be
http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/

Government has lost the media war, Massivespray, Spray of the day
Whenever an interviewer brings up a spurious talking point factoid, slap them down hard and fast.  Slam them with some short, punchy statements with salient facts and don’t be afraid to ridicule them.  
sprayoftheday.wordpress.com/.../

Why Abbott's Budget Is Economic Twaddle, Ian McAuley, New Matilda
He was at the height of hypocrisy when he said he was reaching out to "police, nurses, fire fighters,teachers", all of whom are dependent on direct or indirect public funding. They would be the first  
newmatilda.com/.../why-abbotts-budget-economic-twaddle

Will We Go To The Polls Early?, Ben Raue, New Matilda
The only plausible way that an early election could take place in this term is if the Coalition were to win
a Labor seat at a by-election, undermining Labor’s majority in the House. Considering Abbott’s poisonous relationship with the crossbenches, such a change would probably make it impossible for any party
newmatilda.com/2011/05/16/will-we-go-polls-early

With the zombies in his sights , Jessica Irvine, John Quiggin, SMH
Zombie Economics started out as Quiggin's attempt to kill the failed economic ideas that led to the financial crisis. But even as he wrote it, Quiggin says he found those dead ideas beginning to reanimate.
www.smh.com.au/.../...s-sights-20110429-1e0c3.html
www.smh.com.au/.../...s-sights-20110429-1e0c3.html

Will the Budget slow the growth of Disability Support Pension numbers?Peter Whiteford, Club Troppo
given the recent experience with women aged 60 to 64 years it could be expected that the total proportionof 65 and 66 year olds reliant on social welfare payments will fall.
clubtroppo.com.au/.../

Pharmaceutical budget savings, Brian, Larvatus Prodeo
A standard prescription can cost $34 to someone on less than $30,000 a year on the minimum wage. The same drug is available to the rich (and I do mean ‘rich’) superannuant on a pension of half a million a year for a mere $5.60.
larvatusprodeo.net/.../

The Machiavellian genius of Abbott’s ‘honest politician’ jibe, Helen Westerman, The Conversation
a deceptively simple sentence can convey myriad meanings. Such was the case with Tony Abbott’s carefully crafted swipe at Julia Gillard in his recent budget reply speech. What did you hear? We asked some academics to interrogate the meaning behind these lines.
theconversation.edu.au/.../the-machiavellian-genius-of-abbotts-honest-politician-jibe-1835

Conversation with my Daughter, The Conscience Vote
I couldn’t tell her that the government lacked the courage to smack down the nay-sayers and the fear-mongers.
consciencevote.wordpress.com/.../

Sexual assault is a crime, not an embarrassment, Dave Gaukroger, Pure Poison
This, from a man who sneeringly refers to those he views as ideological opponents as barbarians.
blogs.crikey.com.au/.../#more-10162

Osama bin Laden's wasted life, Brian Doyle, Eureka Street
his life, wasted on a foolish and murderous idea, causing such epic wreckage, and perhaps in the end doing far more damage to his beloved religion than anyone else
www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=26264

Optus to triple Tasmanian 3G coverage, Renai LeMay, Delimeter
The network rollout will see over 45 towns for the first time gain access to a mobile provider other than Telstra, the telco said in a statement yesterday, with the rollout to mean that upwards of 96 percent of the Tasmanian population will be able to gain access to Optus’
delimiter.com.au/.../

Episode 14, 16 May 2011 , Media Watch
You see? A Treasury figure of 1% has become 5% in Jason's mind - probably because that lobby group figure is floating in the ether. And in the Daily Telegraph, of course. So what about this figure?
www.abc.net.au/mediawatch/transcripts/s3218416.htm


Newspapers


Tony Abbott is just one step from power . Phillip Hudson, Herald Sun
Abbott would agree to anything to get his hands on power - after all, he offered Wilkie $1 billion for a Hobart hospital and pledged to increase asylum seeker numbers. They say once he had the keys to The Lodge
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/

My advice to Julia Gillard , Geoff Gallop, National times
Bring in heavy hitters to your major portfolios. Remember that government is about advocacy as well as administration. Too little is being said - and said effectively - about the strengths and successes of the government.
www.smh.com.au/.../...-gillard-20110516-1epd8.html
www.smh.com.au/.../...-gillard-20110516-1epd8.html


Reading



The Inland Sea: Coober Pedy or Desert Nightmare,Steinar Ellingsen , Upstart
Some of us still remain mesmerised by it, and it’s safe to say the outback still plays a defining role
in the shaping of Australia’s national image — despite it being one of the most urbanised countries in the world
www.upstart.net.au/.../

Great Expectations, David Horton, Watermelon Blog
Time for the idealists to start campaigning again, but it will take another century to undo the damage that has been done. Where are we going to find another Charles Dickens?
davidhortonsblog.com/.../

lyn

May 17. 2011 07:58 AM

lyn

Hi Ad

The Phillip Hudson story link is broken
here is another link:

www.heraldsun.com.au/.../story-e6frfhqf-1226057080116

lyn

May 17. 2011 08:09 AM

Ad astra reply

LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Ad astra reply

May 17. 2011 08:12 AM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
Thanks for another set of interesting links.  I've fixed the Hudson link, which now works.

Ad astra reply

May 17. 2011 08:14 AM

Feral Skeleton

  I'm depressed. That Newspoll from Queensland is a shocker. It just goes to show that Bread and Circuses trump runs on the board.
   And you don't even need an Opposition Leader in the run-on team to show what he's got in a contest on the playing field for your side to win support. Frown

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 08:31 AM

Feral Skeleton

  I'm sorry, but I haven't been convinced either by anyone's arguments about what a nice guy Wayne Swan is, or how competent he is, which is all that counts.
   Yes, he has done the job of Treasurer well.
    Yes, he's a nice guy.
     Yes, he survived Prostate Cancer(always the unspoken of elephant in the room when people assess him).
    However,
* He is Bill Ludwig's boy from Queensland.
* Bill Ludwig is a cancer on the Labor Party and should be 'retired', just as has been in NSW the 'Toxic Twins' Eddie Obeid and Joe Tripodi. In fact, the vice-like grip of the Catholic Right on the ALP is slowly strangling it to death because very few voters from the Left want anything to do with their conservative social policies, and, as the Liberal Party have Captain Catholic leading them, more socially-conservative and Right-leaning voters have a ready-made home for their votes right there.
* Wayne swan has as much political gravitas as a fluff ball.
  
   Wayne Swan is a dead duck. And Julia Gillard isn't travelling much better atm.

   It breaks my heart to say all this. No one believes in the cause, the values and the ethics of the Progressive side of politics as much as I do(well, yes, others do, but you know what I mean). However, if the Labor Party don't shake off the fleas that are sucking their lifeblood away. The. Party. Will. Die. Which is a crying shame, because there are many fine people with the movement's best interests, and the interests of the 'Easily Forgotten People' at heart.
   I know, in my bones, exactly what the Labor Party needs to do to breathe new life into it's decaying soul. But what can I do about it? I don't have a power base within the party. All I can do is scream existentially from the wilderness of a blog.

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 08:36 AM

janice

FS,

It is depressing.  Queenslanders didn't take long to start whinging that Anna Bligh hasn't got a magic wand to wave over them to repair the damage caused by the floods and Yasi.  I was appalled to see news clips of people complaining that their house isn't rebuilt yet etc etc.  "Why isn't all that money raised not being distributed - where is my share?"

janice

May 17. 2011 08:45 AM

lyn

Hi DebbieP

I didn't miss your comment yesterday, but I did miss
saying thankyou to you.

May 16. 2011 02:24 PM
I second all the congrats to Lyn,
Hip Hip ~  cheers from me also
debbiep


Thankyou Debbie P, I am glad you enjoy "Today's Links".
Your thoughtful comments and support are very
valuable to TPS.

Cheers

lyn

May 17. 2011 09:17 AM

reb of Hobart

These visitors, who some label as trolls as they come back over and again singing the same song from the Coalition hymn sheet, in my view are best ignored, until and unless they have something constructive to say.

What a load of garbage. I've been a Labor voter all my life. I made an observation critical of Julia Gillard's stance on gay marriage and was immediately pounced upon by Feral Skeleton, Patricia, Talk Turkey and Jason.

You profess to put "politicians to the political sword,"  but that would appear to apply only to "right-wing" politicians.

So anyone that's critical of Julia Gillard "is best ignored until they have something constructive to say?"

I see that Nasking, who was once adored here, was similarly pounced upon and maligned for stating that he had become disillusioned by this government.

You talk about "polite discussion based on its merits."

That's what I was trying to do with my thoughts on Gillard's gay marriage position, but instead was just attacked here for not falling into line with the prevailing pro-Gillard sentiment.

To suggest that I am somehow singing from "the Coalition hymn sheet" couldn't be further from the truth.

I am simply expressing my disatisfaction with the current Gillard government. Something that is clearly out of bounds for discussion here.













reb of Hobart

May 17. 2011 09:21 AM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       I agree. The 'Me generation' have just grown older and whinier. Smile
Also, you'd think, if you listened to that oily presence and blight on our television screens, and professional 'Queensland boy', Karl Stefanovic, Anna Bligh should have thrown caution to the wind and just let anyone rock up to Queensland and offer to rebuild the houses. But can you imagine the hue and cry once stories about the shonks and rip-off merchants got out into the media. Led by, Karl Stefanovic and Channel 9, of course.

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 09:31 AM

janice

In fact, the vice-like grip of the Catholic Right on the ALP is slowly strangling it to death

With that statement I agree wholeheartedly.  The effects of the Catholic Right is also what is driving the Deputy Pope on the other side as well.

Knowing this, I still cannot agree with your assessment of Wayne Swan and to me he hasn't exhibited signs of being a rabid right catholic.

I must say that I have noticed, and am very concerned, about the Catholic Right's presence in all aspects of politics, from local councils right through to the Federal arena.  As well, it is quite powerful within the media.  It was the likes of the Deputy Pope who made an atheist out of me at the tender age of ten Smile

janice

May 17. 2011 09:33 AM

Ad astra reply

reb
What makes you think the paragraph you quote was referring to you, or Nasking?

Ad astra reply

May 17. 2011 09:34 AM

Feral Skeleton

DMW,
    I know, I know. Depressing, as I said. Frown

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 09:38 AM

reb of Hobart

ad astra,

Perhaps I'm feeling a bit singled out, especially after some of the over the top comments I received from some of the regulars here. Comments like "get back to the gutter where you belong".

I mean, just because I'm occasionally critical of Julia Gillard, it doesn't mean I'm a Coalition voter (as suggested by Jason).

It's a bit uncalled for, don't you think?



reb of Hobart

May 17. 2011 09:50 AM

Tom of Melbourne

With regard to Ad Astra’s editorial - May 16. 2011 08:09 PM

People here like to label.

As a matter of interest, I’m not gay, I’m not active in any gay rights campaign, but I do have a dislike of hypocrisy and an urge to point this out to hypocrites.

For example, I’ve observed Talk Turkey bandies “troll” around, applying it to anyone who posts an alternative opinion, or who thinks the Gillard Government is duplicitous or failing to meet reasonable expectations.  He clearly prefers labile to an exchange of views or perspective.

Many others just post away in mindless support of the latest ALP press release, and blaming the media for all the foibles and incompetence of this government.

This isn’t a site that values diversity or challenge. It values bland reinforcement of bland opinions.

Tom of Melbourne

May 17. 2011 09:54 AM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       Sorry, you misunderstood me, or maybe I wasn't clear enough Smile
What I meant was that, even though Wayne Swan is not himself a rabid Catholic, he nonetheless has as his power base in the Queensland branch of the ALP, the Catholic Right and the AWU, led by Bill Ludwig.

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 10:01 AM

lyn

Hi Ad

Peter Lewis is being fair maybe:

What if Labor isn't really rubbish after all?, Peter Lewis, The Drum


The Coalition has an election-winning lead, but it is two years out from the election.
The polling numbers have been stable since the announcement of the carbon
tax – proof that Labor requires a long game if it is to win the next election.

For all the focus on Julia Gillard’s falling popularity the fact remains is she
was and is and is likely to continue to be a more popular Prime Minister than
Tony Abbott. Abbott remains a polarising, negative politician who has clearly
consolidated the Coalition base, but leave many voters - particularly women – cold.

http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2693082.html

lyn

May 17. 2011 10:24 AM

Ad astra reply

reb
OK, let's call it quits and get on with discussing the political matters of the day.  You are welcome to participate.

Ad astra reply

May 17. 2011 10:33 AM

Feral Skeleton

reb,
     It was a play on the name of your blog, 'Gutter Trash'. I didn't think you wouldn't be able to see the humorous side of it. In fact, I was meaning to allude to the fact that if you want to talk about these other issues, isn't that what you have your own blog for?
  Anyway, as Ad Astra has just said, let's call it quits, because there's plenty more to discuss.

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 10:34 AM

Ad astra reply

Tom of Melbourne
Tell me what I have written in my 'editorial' that causes you respond as you did in your third paragraph: "As a matter of interest, I’m not gay, I’m not active in any gay rights campaign, but I do have a dislike of hypocrisy and an urge to point this out to hypocrites."?  

Ad astra reply

May 17. 2011 10:37 AM

Feral Skeleton

   Abbott remains a polarising, negative politician who has clearly
consolidated the Coalition base, but leave many voters - particularly women – cold.

  As Hughesy on the 7PM Project deftly pointed out last night with footage gleaned from Tony Abbott's Queensland 'tour' stop yesterday catching the lecherous one leering at a woman's breasts and licking his lips. He just can't seem to help himself.

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 10:39 AM

janice

FS,

Okay.  Some are good and some are bad but is Wayne Swan diminished in your eyes because of his power base?  Isn't it like tarring them all with same brush?

janice

May 17. 2011 10:46 AM

Feral Skeleton

  All right, I've calmed down a bit after reading Peter Lewis' article. Suffice to say, following a Progressive political party being buffeted by headwinds in the form of a zealous zealot of an Opposition Leader, and the might of the Murdoch Imperial Media Force, is one hell of a bare knuckle Roller Coaster ride.

ReCaptcha: Funations.
  Yeah right.

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 10:52 AM

janice

Tom of Melbourne,
I have never judged anyone on his/her sexuality and therefore I would ask that you do not judge anyone here and label them as hypocrits or being MINDLESSLY supporting Govt press releases.  Their,our, opinions may seem bland to you but persistently and quietly offering those opinions is not being mindless.

Reb of Hobart,

I think you are wearing a chip on your shoulder.  Perhaps it was the tone of your posts that drew unwelcome comments?  You have to remember that the written word can be easily misunderstood because we are not privvy to the poster's facial expression.  (see above where I mis-understood FS).

janice

May 17. 2011 10:52 AM

janice

Tom of Melbourne,
I have never judged anyone on his/her sexuality and therefore I would ask that you do not judge anyone here and label them as hypocrits or being MINDLESSLY supporting Govt press releases.  Their,our, opinions may seem bland to you but persistently and quietly offering those opinions is not being mindless.

Reb of Hobart,

I think you are wearing a chip on your shoulder.  Perhaps it was the tone of your posts that drew unwelcome comments?  You have to remember that the written word can be easily misunderstood because we are not privvy to the poster's facial expression.  (see above where I mis-understood FS).

janice

May 17. 2011 10:59 AM

Michael

Dear Prime Minister Gillard,

Do.

A simple word, but it is a word your government is not using to draw attention to everything it has done.

And daily continues to do.

Tell the public what is being done, because all the Opposition is doing is telling them that you do nothing, and when you 'do' something, it fails.

That is not true, but a lie repeated often enough...

Become the government of "have done, will do". Nothing is too small to inform the Australian people that their government has done for them, with them.

Tell us:

How many kilometers of the national road network have been paved this week. How many homes connected to the NBN. How many BER projects concluded.

Do it every week, a bulletin website of everything achieved in the preceding working days.

Hospital beds opened, medical technology installed, school enrolments made, teachers trained, apprentices achieving certification.

People are not aware of just how much a government achieves day by day, and you are letting the Opposition assert that your government does nothing. Trumpet the number of bills of legislation put through Parliament, moved and passed into law by your Government, no matter how 'small' a matter it might seem. It affects peoples' lives.

It also shows that the Opposition is either incapable of really opposing – actually denying your Government the passage of its legislative program; or full of hot air about how incapable you are because it doesn’t actually oppose most of the legislation proposed.

Reclaim the home insulation program for its success story as recently attested to in the CSIRO report. A million homes insulated and thus more energy efficient. The long-term diminishing of house fires in insulated homes post the program. The benefits of ceiling cavity inspections revealing existing electrical dangers in the roof. A side effect, but almost certainly a life saver.

Your government does things for the good of the nation's citizens. Tell them, don't let yourselves continue to be characterized by the negativity of the Opposition.

On another front, stop namechecking Tony Abbott. All it does is elevate him to higher product-recognition status as an alternative PM.

The public have largely forgotten all his lazy and punitive activity as a Howard Government Minister. You remember, your ministers remember, but that’s all ancient history to many voters, especially new ones. Besides, in the current situation, Abbott can characterize attacks on his record as fallacious and have no-one outside Parliament or party politics apparatus bother to check the facts.

He can characterize it as desperate personal attacks instead of matters of public record. Targeting him for his manifest deficiencies of character and aggrandising self-assessment didn’t work in the last election, it won’t work in the run-up to the next one. It simply keeps the spotlight on him.

Put him back in the ruck of a mediocre Opposition line-up, first among equal second-raters, by attacking the Coalition's negativity as coming from "the Opposition". Paint them all, indistinguishably, as shrill shouters from the sidelines who offer no policy or costings for their claims to be an alternative government.

Every time you name him, you draw attention to him, you actually put a soapbox under him.

This government is doing a good job, but you allow it to be painted as “out of touch”, “incompetent”, etc., etc., so long as you do not counter those accusations. The actual record of governing actions, of government, is strong. Stop hiding it.

"Decision and delivery" boils down to doing. Tell us what's been done, and how every thing that's just been done is contributing to what is next to be done.

The people of Australia are participants in our governing as members of a free democracy. Keep us posted.

The light on the hill shouldn't be hidden under a bushel.

Michael

May 17. 2011 11:00 AM

Tom of Melbourne

I’ve only started to post here, and have already copped plenty of labelling and experienced plenty of assumptions about my motivation.

In your editorial, you’ve commented the quality of debate “in recent times”. Perhaps you would point out any recent change other than the introduction of a few who have only recently posted here.

You’ve also made the pointed comment - It is not a forum where those riding a particular hobbyhorse can come to dominate the discussion, returning time and again in more strident fashion to press their case. “

Strange, I’d observe that the nonstop hobbyhorse here is excusing the ALP of every mistake and policy reversal.  Perhaps you haven’t noticed that one.

You then say – “I’m sure I don’t have to spell out what I am referring to.”

Perhaps you do, if you are intent on posting such ambiguous commentary, which you then suggest doesn’t apply various people who have posted here recently.

Tom of Melbourne

May 17. 2011 11:01 AM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       No, but I just think Wayne Swan was promoted beyond his pay grade because of those connections. As I said previously, if Lindsay Tanner hadn't been from the Left, with its lesser number of votes, I think he would have been the more natural and appropriate choice for Treasurer.
  Not that I don't think Wayne Swan isn't doing a great job under difficult circumstances, both in the economy in the recent past, and in the media, which just wants to tear the government down, by hook or by crook. However, I reflect on the period when Keating was Treasurer, and the media was just as hostile, especially since the Coalition had just been turfed out of office after having been there for most of the last quarter of a century, so that 'Government-In-Exile' grumpiness was still strong, and Howard was there and Murdoch was still here, and yet, through the force of their personalities both Keating and Hawke succeeded in making major transformations to this nation's economy and crafted a bright future for the country. Despite that hostility in the media.
And yes, the ALP don't have Keating anymore. However, going by what I saw on Q&A last night, maybe Bill Shorten isn't as bad as they say and possessed of nothing more than an oversized ego. Maybe he has 'The Right Stuff' that I am looking for.
  As I said before, and as Peter Lewis said in his article, the saving grace in all of this is the fact that the next election is truly going to be, bar a disaster, 2 years away. Which gives us all hope that sense will prevail in the electorate. When compared with the scary alternative.

   Lol, ReCaptcha: lower rnaFrat. Which immediately made me think that, yes, Tony Abbott is just behaving like an Uber Frat Boy, isn't he? It's in his dna it seems. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 11:10 AM

Jason

Tom,
   If as you say we do nothing but excuse the ALP, let me say sorry,but I was unaware that I had to run my thoughts past you first.

Jason

May 17. 2011 11:11 AM

Feral Skeleton

Tom of Melbourne,
                 I'm only speaking personally here, but the problem I had with your comments was that they showed an intolerance to any other point of view but your own, even when backed up with evidence, which may only have been my 'personal' evidence, but it is evidence of a completely different point of view to yours, nonetheless.
  As for my comments to Nasking, well, anyone who says they are warming to Tony Abbott cannot but help to wave a red flag at a bull and I will come charging. Smile
  Also, if you read through my latest blog, plus subsequent posts, you cannot fail to notice that criticism of the Labor Party is not beyond the scope of my comment here.

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 11:15 AM

Feral Skeleton

Michael,
        Brilliant!
Julia Gillard sure does need to learn how to use the Bully Pulpit of Office, that's for sure.
   Now, do you think you can put your post into an e-mail and send it to the good lady herself? Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 11:17 AM

Feral Skeleton

  Which reminds me of the Bob Marley song:
  'Get Up, Stand Up, Don't Give Up the Fight.
   Get Up, Stand Up, Stand Up for Your Rights.'  Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 11:27 AM

reb of Hobart

"Reb of Hobart, I think you are wearing a chip on your shoulder."

You see, this is precisely the sort of thing I'm talking about Ad Astra.

Offer a dissenting opinion in this place, and I'm accused of "having a chip on my shoulder?"

I presume, the "chip I have on my shoulder" us because I can't quite grasp the miracle of Julia Gillard....

Unlike the cheer club.



reb of Hobart

May 17. 2011 11:27 AM

Ad astra reply

Folks
Why all the doom and gloom that seems to pervade TPS recently?  We all know the polls are awful for Labor, but aren’t we falling into the very trap that George Megalogenis says journalists and politicians are, by focusing on every poll, no matter how poorly it’s carried out, and getting upset about it.  Grog’s piece in Lyn’s links this morning highlighted starkly the crass stupidity of the Canberra Press Gallery in a Gillard press conference when it focused question after question on the polls and ignored until near the end what she is proposing to do for this nation.  It’s pathetic, but again more evidence to support Lindsay Tanner’s claim that the press is interested mainly in entertainment and gotchas.

Let’s focus for a while on what this Government is achieving and is planning.  So far over 70 bills have passed in this term without a failure.  But everyone agrees that the Government needs some big runs on the board, so what’s in train?

The regional asylum seeker mechanism, whether you like it or not, seems as if it might work.  Several commentators have expressed this view in recent days, and when you hear Scott Morrison expressing concern for the welfare of asylum seekers, you can bet that is a sign he fears it may work and ‘stop the boats’.  

The carbon tax, opposition to which is causing so much damage to Labor, will likely pass this year in a form that is creditable, and when the public realizes that all the opposition to it was hot air and self interest and that there are no serious financial side effects for ordinary citizens or for business, or the massive job losses and ghost towns the naysayers predicted, they will see it for what it was – a disingenuous campaign by Tony Abbott, the rent-seekers and those whose self interest drowned out the national interest.  The same happened with the GST.  Qantas has recently complained that its fuel costs will rise because the European Union will impose penalties as Australia does not have a carbon tax, yet another reason why Australia needs a carbon tax now.

The mining tax too will come to fruition.  The mining giants have already agreed.

As the NBN rolls out to the delight of those who see their businesses and lives transformed by it, the Government will reap the accolades it deserves.  Already Malcolm Turnbull is warning the Coalition of the massive cost of trying to curtail the NBN with a FTTN system.  He can see the writing on the wall.

As each of the reforms rolls out, albeit with difficulty arising from the need to negotiate and compromise with The Greens and the Independents, the Government’s stocks will rise, and it has well over two years, barring accidents, to achieve its agenda.  Is it not possible in that time to turn around the current adverse views of Julia Gillard and her Government that currently prevail?  Look at John Howard who described himself as Lazarus with a triple bypass!

Reflect on this.  Does anyone believe that Tony Abbott can carry on his destructive negative nasty campaign for another two years, and even if this pugilist could, does anyone believe that other than rusted–on supporters will be listening?

If those who support Labor and wish it to carry out its program of reform lose heart, they become like the nervous Nellies on the Labor back bench who already, according to reports, have written off the next election.  

Labor can and I believe will turn things around and take the next election, having achieved much of its agenda and assuaged the anger that Abbott has spuriously generated about the carbon tax, the mining tax and asylum seekers.

The Fourth Estate is doing all it can to destroy Labor; the Fifth Estate must take up the cause and do its bit to counter the negativity that is spewed out daily.  Are we up to it?

Ad astra reply

May 17. 2011 11:28 AM

debbiep

hi all ~ and thanking you lyn


What I question mostly is the fact that many people who have or are turning  off labor seem to be willing to support Abbott and or the Coalition,so the polls are showing. To a politicial party who were or ARE as guilty of the same if not similiar politics- both now and in the past.


I think Giffins article is on the mark.

I am one that could condone some of Gillards policies ,but I see more faults with the Opposition. I confidently assume that they to will reverse policies and promises once in power.Or will just not give any- then there is none to break and we get a party we are not able to scrutinise

So I am more surprised in the support of the Opposition  than the drop in support of the labor government. Also I must add my comment is NOT in reference of nasking change of heart as I respect both points of view and  reasons for


BTW- 2UE is for sale , now is your chance Dick Smith, or someone similiar...  Smile

debbiep

May 17. 2011 11:33 AM

Ad astra reply

Folks

I'll be out for the rest of the day, and will reply this evening to any comments that requires a response.

Ad astra reply

May 17. 2011 11:33 AM

Tom of Melbourne

Jason, there is no need to run any thoughts past anyone. You’re welcome to your opinions.

I’m simply observing that it is pointless suggesting that this is a site that “puts politicians and commentators to the verbal sword”.   Certainly diversity of opinion isn’t welcomed, it is shunned.


Feral Skeleton  - “they showed an intolerance to any other point of view but your own,” – far from it. I was prepared to point to factual errors and narrow-mindedness. Others took great comfort in resorting to easy labelling and insults. This demonstrated typical willingness to shut down discussion.

“you cannot fail to notice that criticism of the Labor Party is not beyond the scope of my comment here.”

Yeah, very unusual too. Were you shamed into it?

This is site that supports complacency in social policy, preferring to maintain focus on the daily routine of the divide between the major political parties.
For example - was there any discussion or examination here (beyond the political implications) of the asylum seeker volte face? Have you bothered to look at the failing policy framework on indigenous issues? Do you bother to test the stupidity of the ALP structure which delivers 50% of the vote to unions, when around 10% of the population are union members?

It’s all too hard for you lot.

I’ll do you a favour, and leave to alone for a while.

At least http://guttertrash.wordpress.com/ welcomes the pointed testing of opinion and hard debate.

Tom of Melbourne

May 17. 2011 11:35 AM

debbiep


I must add also from what I feel, Due to lyns links also, I see more thinking and reasonable insight & debate of the policies of the labor government from bloggers & journolist or writers that I respect , and trust, more so than the MSM headlines and shock jocks opinions..
that in itself says it all, and the reason as to why Labor still gets my support and defence,  over the Coalition.

debbiep

May 17. 2011 11:41 AM

janice

Oh boy, you just can't win with some people.
Reb of Hobart,
I did not 'accuse' you of anything but said 'I think' you might be wearing a chip on your shoulder.  Perhaps you would prefer if I changed that to: I think you are an overly sensitive person?

FS,
I'm sorry for niggling at you but, for heavens' sake why are you trawling through the government's line-up looking for someone you think might perform better than Wayne Swan?  As for Shorten, he does not impress me much and I would like to see him spend at least a decade in parliament before I could judge him.  Again Tanner is gone - I admired the man and his work greatly but again, whilst he was a great Finance Minister I could not say with any certainty that he would have out-performed Swan.

Apologise for the double post above.  Captcha said the words didn't match so I obliged and presented the next one - it then decided to post it twice Smile

janice

May 17. 2011 11:50 AM

janice

Ad astra,

Keep the faith!  The media have feasted on tearing Labor apart ever since the 2007 election.  They have revelled in the entertainment value of helping The Deputy Pope in Waiting to pull the wool over the electorate's eyes.  As soon as the NBN, Asylum Seekers and MRRT issues are signed and sealed, they will be looking for new entertaining issues to feast on.

It is true that the higher they climb, the harder they fall and I suggest that the media entertainment dogs are already circling to topple The Deputy Pope in Waiting from his perch so that they can tear him apart and reduce him to a carcass.  The bulk of the media and nothing but a pack of jackals.

janice

May 17. 2011 01:04 PM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       You're not 'nigglimg' me at all! I see it as the cut and thrust of the debate, which some say we never have here and all simply just nod in agreement. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 02:20 PM

Feral Skeleton

Tom of Melbourne,
                 (If you're still around). Let me attempt to address your criticisms.
1. 'factual errors and narrow-mindedness'. That is your opinion. 'Narrow-Mindedness' is in the eye of the beholder, usually. Now, while you believe that nothing less than the option of a marriage ceremony for gays is enough, it is not a 'factual error' but a fact, that there are members of the gay community, as you have stated that you are not actually one of them after all, who do not believe that gay marriage is the be all and end all of their struggle for relationship equality. They are happy with the legal equality they have gained. It may not suit your argument, but my close gay friend, who is in a steady relationship, has stated to me that he definitely does not want to marry his partner because that would stop both of them having dalliances on the side.
   Now, if you mean to get out of me support for gay marriage in principle, for those that want to do it, well, yes, I agree they should be allowed to. However, I don't agree that they should be able to marry in a church because the churches do not recognise homosexuality, which I, personally do not agree with, but the church buildings, in which marriage ceremonies are held, are their property. I don't think they should be forced to open them up for gay marriages until they decide they want to. So, marriage ceremonies in a Registry Office or Public or Private Space, is as far as I think it should go.
  As for the ALP policy wrt gay marriage, well, it's a democratic party and they have to go along with the vote of their members on the floor of the National Conference, whether they personally agree with it, or not. That is a 'Fact'.
  Finally, I Have never been 'shamed' into criticising the Labor Party, by anyone. In 'fact', well before you started to take notice of this blog I had been doing just that, criticising various aspects and policies of the Labor Party in my blogs. If you care to go back into the Archives, instead of making stuff up about me.

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 02:43 PM

jj

News of the Greens wanting a $40 carbon price should scare the crap out of the ALP! A report that has come out today has stated that coal will remain the most cost effective way to produce electricity in Australia unless we adopt a $40 a tonne carbon price. Combet has come out and said that they will be implementing a price well south of $40; however we now know that to make a real change to the way we bahave.. we have to adopt a $40 price. If we dont, it will be nothing more than just another symbolic act.

jj

May 17. 2011 03:18 PM

NormanK

DMW @ 12.28 AM
With regard to the Malaysian asylum seeker proposal, I am trying to put together a measured response. Your concerns have not just drifted of into the ether.
It would not be fair to the subject, nor is it my habit, to offer an off-the-cuff response but I will instead attempt to cobble together a coherent explanation for why, at present, I don't hold a firm view on the merits or otherwise of the idea. I would say though that it is unfair to only entertain this as a political knee-jerk response to a long-standing dilemma. I am looking at the Bali Process documents at present and it becomes obvious that a lot of background work, involving a wide range of countries and organisations, has gone into establishing this framework.
Stay tuned and hopefully my other life will allow sufficient time to put something together.

NormanK

May 17. 2011 04:39 PM

Feral Skeleton

NormanK,
        Wow! You are one serious dude! Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 04:45 PM

TalkTurkey

Tom of Melbourne, reb of Hobart

Now how could I possibly get you two mixed up?!

reb of Hobart wrote
“Maybe a poem would help”
(which I took to be a fairly sneery sort of personal challenge, since only a few of us at TPS write pomes)
(coming as it did after what I, and several others, independently thought were some pretty ill-willed previous comments by each of the above)

So I did, it went:

“Hobart reb, and Melbourne Tom, it
Sounds to me like verbal vomit:
Seems your body still survives
But you're brainwashed like the Stepford Wives!”

In the process can you believe it, I mixed the two of them up, mis-attributing the challenge to Tom of Melbourne!
(whom I originally called by the pleasant neat diminutive of ToM)
whereupon the latter, (who has probably never mistakenly called Peter Paul in his life), gave me stick about it,
querying, and opining deprecatingly upon, my intellectual rigour.

Well ’a course, it was only the human nomenclative equivalent of a typographical error really,
so I grabbed the stick from him and wrote my new name for him with it in the Eternal Sands of Cyberspace,
                         “ Tom the Typo”.
I won’t get ’em mixed up again!

Now one of them (reb) has said
“I made an observation critical of Julia Gillard's stance on gay marriage and was immediately pounced upon by Feral Skeleton, Patricia, Talk Turkey and Jason.”

(Hey reb, you challenged me to write that pome, whatcha want? Pearls? I keep them for angels, of whom there are several on TPS.)


The other, ol’ Tom the Typo - (NOT Typo Tom ffs, it would be TT same as TalkTurkey!!!) - has said,
“People here like to label.”
[Note that word last readers, it will come back to haunt Tom.]
He continues, “For example, I’ve observed Talk Turkey bandies ‘troll’ around, applying it to anyone who posts an alternative opinion, or who thinks the Gillard Government is duplicitous or failing to meet reasonable expectations.  He clearly prefers labile (?!-TT) to an exchange of views or perspective.”’

Now I don’t think I have actually called you a troll Tom.
What I said was,
‘Please, please do drop in often!
I am writing a book, "Fun with Trolls",
and you provide superb material.’

If it sounds like it fits you though Typo . . .

Here follows an example of why I don’t think too much of YOUR intellectual rigour neither.
Another lovely li’l pome just for you. Oh and for all the other Swordies to giggle at!Smile

Tom went to the dictionary to find how to spell ‘label’
Was it ‘lab-el’, like ‘Mabel’, or ‘lab-le’, like ‘table’?
And while he was there, Wow! He found a NEW WORD!
Labile! But the way that he’s used it’s absurd!
Tom, a pittance of learning’s a dangerous thing!
Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring!
Before you spout nonsense, I’d hope that just maybe ya
Might open your mind before opening your labia!*.

*Suggest you look that word up too. It ain’t necessarily what you think!

See Tom the Typo what you do for me? You provide the grist for my “Fun with Trolls” mill!

Thanks ever so!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~`

Now I want to speak plainly about how I really feel, never mind others’ projections.

Firstly, as I have always made crystal, I am a committed Labor supporter, and an admirer of Julia Gillard in particular.

Beyond even that I am a Goodwillian, as indeed almost all the writers on TPS seem to be, whatever some few ill-willed visitors by any other name might try to imply.

Thirdly, I am very fond of this blogsite and of its regular and sincere contributors.

Sincere and goodwilled contributors I adore.
False and illwilled conspirators I abhor.

Make no mistake, my hackles rise when such as the latter rear their very unpleasant heads, and I do so on behalf of and in defence of those who might be too diffident to do it for themselves. I shall for example never forgive Limpy Crisp, whose own self-chosen puffed-up blogname I refuse to use, until he has apologised to one of our regulars, Limpy knows who, for sexist insults. I respond just as aggressively as I can when such as he insists on trollery. The alternative I suppose might be ‘censorship’ (which it really isn’t, it’s Ad astra’s own domain and what he chooses to do with any post is entirely his own decision) – but personally I’d prefer that never happened, I can and do ignore trolls after the first few times I return fire, but in the meantime I do have great fun with their like. I always said so. Once they have sneered and jeered, and sniped and griped a second time, and made their stance plain, they have declared themselves as far as I am concerned, and they are fair game by their own chosen colouration. Palest pink or bilious green, or cyanide blue, all with a yellow streak!  Me, I am happy to nail my colours to the mast, rampant red with gutsy green slashes, don’t expect me to be nice once you have declared yourself opposed to social decency or proper reason. I will then do my best to sting you any legal way I can, not that I don’t countenance alternative povs, that’s nothing but a stinking red herring typical of Abbortt and all the Rotten Right. The way they are they contribute nothing, no positives whatsoever, just cavil and harp, whinge and sneer, and it’s not like I disagree with anything positive they say, they don’t say anything positive! illwillians say nothing useful, no credit where it’s due, not even grudging praise, if it’s any kind of praise at all it’s the faint kind that is really a low and dishonest form of condemnation, just another form of lie. Well I don’t buy their ill-will and I won’t wear it. Because of the grovelling and cavilling and conniving the Labor Government has always had its back to the wall, and it's no time for fairweather or faint-hearted friends: if you even equivocate - (e.g. "warming to Abbortt", Nasking? DOG ALMIGHTY! How could you?) then you are definitely not worthy of trust nor my friendship, you are worse than proper enemy, trolls in goats' clothing. I’m glad and proud to be an Attack Turkey to the likes of Limpy, and if sameoldjj insists on ill-will, well it is asking for a good pecking too. Mostly, I don’t really care, trolls write such wet bloggery I don’t even hardly read it any more, but if it attacks povs or principles or actions or persons which or whom I support, without due reason, then I despise it and will do my best to do it in the eye. And in the process I have a lot of fun, because I really dislike trolls, commensurate with the way I really love the rest of the world, which is what I really care about, and they don’t.

There is one more point I want to make. As unbending as my stance might be, and as pointed and venomous as are my verbal spurs, yet I am one of the first to accept sincere apology, or sincerely to apologise myself where something I have said proves unfair, and to lower my hackles and strive for reconciliation. ToM (see? Olive branch?) or reb, it won’t matter if what you say is counter to my (nearly)-core beliefs, if you are really good-willed, don’t worry, we’ll all know. I have extended the same offer of courtesy to jj, in whom I keep hoping to find a tender and good heart, and just sometimes I think we glimpse it . . . As I do believe that, reb, I have seen yours before, and as I certainly have seen of Nasking.  

In the meantime I enjoy being on Anti-Troll Patrol.  

If yous can’t write something nice, try saying something clever.

Maybe a pome? Heh heh.
                          As if . . .

TalkTurkey

May 17. 2011 05:04 PM

NormanK

FS
Wow! You are one serious dude!
But you already knew that, right?
Far be it from me to write anything frivolous.
Four days to Armageddon.

NormanK

May 17. 2011 05:07 PM

Gravel

Wow, talk about Sideshow, which by the way I am picking up my copy of tomorrow.  I, like Ad Astra, have noticed a sense of panic in the conversations going on.  We have well over two years, barring an unfortunate death on Labor side of politics, to start turning things around.  

Okay, so if we don't manage that, how long would an Abbott government last?  In my thinking, only one term, as they will do a lot of things that will hurt the general population.  It may not be publicised, but the people will feel the hurt in their pockets, or the bad policies will get up their noses.

I am a very pessimistic person myself, but given the present situation, it might be good to focus on the future, and know that things will unravel for the opposition, either before the next election or not long afterwards.

Gravel

May 17. 2011 05:16 PM

TalkTurkey

Lyn said
"I keep my compliments in a golden folder"

A great big fat golden folder bursting at the seams?

TalkTurkey

May 17. 2011 05:43 PM

Jason

Gravel,
      I don't think it's panic! just a bit of frustration, Abbott at the end of the day can't be all things to all people.
There is about 5 weeks or so until the senate changes, and then Abbott is really going to need to answer how he would change any legislation because even if he were to win the next election the senate remains the same!
Simple slogans might work with his base I don't think the greens will fall for it.

Jason

May 17. 2011 06:03 PM

Patricia WA

I guess I should thank Reb, because he's helped me realise he's right.  We are an unashamed cheer squad for Julia Gillard and her government here. And for a lot of other causes, but when it comes to our Julia we gals particularly are with her all the way.  I think the fellahs are pretty happy to support her too. We barrack for her at every opporunity along with dishing out constructive advice on how we think she could get her team to lift their game.  We're not interested in brawling with fans of rival teams who come here just to stir things up.

I've had some fun with that idea this arvo, working on my photo shop skills as well.  Learned a lot more about copying, cropping etc, but I haven't managed to transfer the pictures here. If there is a simple formula for doing that I'd love to know. Meanwhile if you are interested enough you can go to polliepomes.wordpress.com/.../to see the pictures I think fit this pome.

Ad Astra's Cheer Squad

We bloggers at The Political Sword
Have been accused by disgruntled readers
Of being a leftie cheer squad.
That's true!  Here, relaxing, are its leaders!

This is how we dress on a working day.
Far left is Janice and right is Lyn,
And then there’s me, Patricia WA,
Alongside feisty Feral Skeleton.

We’re all in red. That white A makes clear
Ad Astra's the big boss. (Pictured right.)
He calls the tune, tells us when to cheer,
And moves on rabble rousers hoping a fight.
          

Patricia WA

May 17. 2011 06:03 PM

thenewjj

Jason,

Why does the senate change adversely affect Abbott? Doesnt it help him, by he no longer having to justify why he blocked this piece of legislation or that? The greens will have to battle with the greens now, and that is far worse than having to deal with the Coalition, because they cant bash the Greens! Just look at this Carbon tax stuff. Bob Brown wants the starting price to be at or above $40 a tonne. Gillard and Combet cannot bash the greens for economic insanity etc, otherwise they will withdraw their support and at the next election, once again gain even more of the vote, and possibly win a whole bucket load of inner city seats.

A change in the senate will cause the Labor party to have to bash it out against both the left and the right. At the moment, the left comes to the Labor Party's aid to prevent the right from getting what they want, because they have the power to get it. Now, the left will hold all of the power, and the Coalition has already set the trap for Gillard to look like she is being controlled by the Greens; has to wait five more weeks for the trap to slam shut!

thenewjj

May 17. 2011 06:04 PM

thenewjj

that is only, "has to wait five more weeks for the trap to slam shut"

thenewjj

May 17. 2011 06:23 PM

Jason

jj,
  For the simple reason the coalition "should" they win the next election is going to have to do something!Abbott says day after day he should be in government,but how long would he get away with saying the greens wont let me do !!!!!
He rants long and loud about Brown being the PM,yet the things Abbott campaigns about day after day the Greens want it to go further than even Labor is willing to go, carbon tax mining tax
you name it

Jason

May 17. 2011 06:26 PM

janice

to see the pictures I think fit this pome.

How could I not love your pome, Patricia.  Went to view the pics and couldn't help a little pining for a lost youth Smile  I wonder though if you might think about a cheer squad complete with pom-poms (like the footie girls).

janice

May 17. 2011 06:28 PM

Jason

jj,
  I forgot to say if Abbott was PM yes he could shut the greens out by getting Labor to vote on things in the senate!
But if it was on the things Abbott campaigned about to get Labor out of office why would Labor help?

Jason

May 17. 2011 06:39 PM

Feral Skeleton

jj,
   Have you ever thought that a majority of voters(Greens+ALP Primary Vote @ 2010 federal election), may actually be looking forward to the combined actions of these two parties after the Senate finally changes post July 1? Plus a few Swinging Voters might be swayed to support them at the next election due to the positive outcomes for the country that they will enact?
  Of course not. It doesn't suit the short term political motives of Tony Abbott and his supporters, like you.
   Mate, he's going to become virtually irrelevant.
   Let me tell you, his plan atm is to try and Block Supply by launching a No Confidence Motion over the Budget and peeling off as many Cross-Benchers as he needs to pass it.
   It's not going to happen.
   After that, and post July 1, as Mark Riley seems to have copped from one of my previous blogs( Smile ), he will be like 'The Big Bad Wolf', huffing and puffing but unable to blow the House down.

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 06:43 PM

lyn

Hi Patricia

You are so clever with your pomes, I love this one
though because we are all in it.

Those bathers of mine, the pink ones I have on in the photo. You just reminded me to get those on tomorrow, pink is my favourite colour,  I really love that particular pair of bathers.  Yes and they suit my complexion.

Talk Turkey  at  04:45 PM
gave us all a nice compliment above, I know he will like your pome and our photo:

Thirdly, I am very fond of this blogsite and of its regular and sincere contributors

lyn

May 17. 2011 06:45 PM

Feral Skeleton

Patricia WA,
            Thank You. Smile
  'Sisters Are Doing It For Themselves!'
(I really should change my Gravatar to a Nervous Nellie cartoon).

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 07:26 PM

Feral Skeleton

   This is what Tony Abbott was referring to in his Budget-In-reply speech(if you could call it that), when he referred to one way of contributing to Climate Change mitigation being control of feral animals:
www.smh.com.au/.../...-forests-20110515-1eod1.html

Feral Skeleton

May 17. 2011 08:01 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
While we have been enjoying the clear blue skies and autumn leaves in Harrietville, Bright, Mt Beauty and Bogong, you have been blogging away ceaselessly.  So here’s just a few comments.

The link that Lyn gave us to Peter Lewis’ article analyzing the latest Essential Poll (of which he is director) is heartening.  It reinforces what I posted this morning that Labor has many initiatives on the go and when they come to fruition, Labor will look entirely different from what many paint it as now –  out of touch, incompetent and dead.

Reflect on how fickle the electorate is.  A few weeks ago Anna Bligh was tops; today the people have marked her down.  It can be fickle in the other direction.  Wait and see.

janice’s comments should be taken seriously – they are sensible and moderate.  I agree with her: ‘Keep the faith’.  That is what I was trying to say in my comment this morning.

I enjoyed Michael’s rousing call to arms.  It too reinforces what I’m saying.  This is a sound government with many achievements and many more to come.  Tell us all about them.  Ignore Tony Abbott and his negativity and obstructionism.   Treat him like the troll he is.

I see there is still some caustic to-ing and fro-ing going on between some who blog here.  As some of you have responded to reb and Tom of Melbourne today, there is no need for me to do so. All I ask is that ALL of us get back to the main game and stop wasting each other’s time, and aggravating each other with personal remarks.  There are too many important issues to address for unfruitful dialogue of that kind.

Finally, it ought not come as a surprise to anyone who visits here regularly that many who blog here are supportive of PM Gillard and her Government, and will defend her and her ministers if they feel they are being unfairly attacked.  That does not mean we can see no faults, or ways of improving performance, as the comments of many here attest.  There are plenty of blogsites where PM Gillard and her Government are criticized endlessly.  If we choose to see her and her Government’s performance in a favourable light, that is but a small counterbalance to the unremitting negativity that occurs elsewhere.  So please don’t come back and tell we are mindless sycophants.  There are plenty of good minds that comment here.

Ad astra reply

May 17. 2011 09:02 PM

TalkTurkey

Uhlmann Must GO!

He interrupted Bob Brown so-o-o-o-o many times that anything Brown wanted to say was blitzed. It's a bloody disgrace and it's bloody amazing.

WHY DON'T OUR SIDE BITE BACK? Why do they just wear it?

ABC, GET RID OF UHLMANN NOW!


TalkTurkey

May 17. 2011 09:27 PM

lyn

Hi Ad

ABC is shocking, I just watched Uhlmann interview Bob Brown. Chris Uhlmann interrupted Bob brown on every question he tried to answer, Chris Uhlmann is not interested in the answers to his own questions or maybe he does not know the answers.

The continual bashing they give the Government on Poll results is menacing 2 and a half years away from an election, over and over. The glass breaking reporting was continual an in excess , pathetic reporting, probably a glass from the Reject shop or had a crack in it.

Disgraceful ABC

The above is a copy of my complaint to the ABC conducted by Getup tonight,  everybody should fill in the complaint for only takes one minute:


petition for ABC to return to its charter


We have been witnessing the inclusion of right-wing shock jocks and commentators as the main talking force within ABC's news programming. There has also been a constant demonstration of ABC's journalists adopting news items, verbatim, from the Murdoch press. Any attempt to maintain balance has been demonstrably abandoned, and when challenged, the ABC's 'apologists' cite the amount of time given to each side of the political fence as a demonstration of balance, when in fact the quality of the reporting varies greatly (and example would be the 7:30 reports recent interviews with the PM and Opposition leader by Chris Uhlmann -- the first was antagonistic and rude, the second was sycophantic and a virtual political advertisement). As a viewer and taxpayer, I am more than concerned that the National Broadcaster has become a political mouthpiece for the ultra conservatives.

suggest.getup.org.au/.../1684971-petition-for-abc-to-return-to-its-charter

lyn

May 17. 2011 09:56 PM

Patricia WA

I don't think Uhlman did much harm to Bob Brown who stayed calm and rational throughout.  Uhlman just looked increasingly like a rude kid who was too big for his boots and not winning the argument.   What a pain!

Tried phoning the local ABC - Please call again in business hours!   Isn't this their business hours?

Patricia WA

May 17. 2011 11:19 PM

Jason

FS,
  Not sure your thoughts on Bob Carr!

If a score or more of people are prepared to gather under the banner of the Australian Labor Party – battered in the polls and election results – I’m happy to turn up. So it was at Randwick-Coogee Branch, meeting at the Randwick Labor Club last night with nearby Kensington-Beaconsfield Branch joining in.

I spoke about the review into the last Federal election undertaken by Steven Bracks, John Faulkner and me. I said the proposals for rules changes and different party practices were not as important as other things, like correcting the abuses that have grown up in Labor Party ethos that were on display in the last four years in NSW.

“Whenever I heard certain people described as ‘powerbrokers’ in the caucus – and I read this on a weekly basis – I was almost ready to organise a petition to have them ritually clubbed to death in Martin Place” I told the branch. ” The electorate found it repellent. It must never be revived. It took a lot of skill and energy to drive Labor support in NSW down to the level it reached in the last election.”

I said the review had supported rules changes like a limited experiment with primaries and more direct elections for party officers. The reason was to give people more reason to turn up at branch meetings and work for the party at elections, more reason to value party membership. But they weren’t the main thing.

I said:

Put this down to the fact that I’m an old Whitlamite, but I think that the key to revival is always going to be advocacy by the parliamentary leadership, the leader and his or her front bench. The party apparatus – conference, executive and branches – is one thing. But it’s the leader and his or her office, and the front bench who are selling the party from the first news bulletin at 5:30 each day. As a party we’ve got to rediscover our capacity and zest for advocacy.

The branch was generous enough to present me with John R. Hales’ Lords of the Sea: The Epic Story of the Athenian Navy and the Birth of Democracy. Some time, not too soon, you will read a review on this screen.


bobcarrblog.wordpress.com/.../

Jason

May 17. 2011 11:28 PM

D Mick Weir

Norman K @ May 17. 2011 03:18 PM
With regard to the Malaysian asylum seeker proposal, I am trying to put together a measured response.

Thanks NK, I had intended not to comment on this until I too had more info.

Some things in FS's comment 'got to me' and I must admit I let my fingers runoff at the keyboard with my comment. I had in my mind a few things that proved that the govt. was selling the politics not the policy on this. When I checked the 'evidence' I had wasn't there. Bugger Smile

Anyway during the morning listening to Radio National I heard this:

Fmr immigration secretary discusses Malaysia solution - John Menadue - Former Immigration Department Secretary
www.abc.net.au/.../3218704.htm

Again I am rethinking. I still hold the view that this countries policies and actions on asylum seekers and refugees stink. How to achieve a change in public opinion and the stupidity of the debate is beyond me but when I hear people like Menadue little flickers of hope ignite.

D Mick Weir

May 17. 2011 11:38 PM

D Mick Weir

Hi Jason,
the difficulty with 'reviews' and changes to way the party operates have been going 'snce forever'

I have linked previously to this interview with Cyril Wyndham ALP National Secretary in the sixties. He made similar reccomendations in 1966!
www.abc.net.au/.../3185328.htm

The problem, in part, is who will ever vote themselves out of a job and a position of power? Certainly not a lot of 'power brokers'.

Would assianation work?  Smile

D Mick Weir

May 18. 2011 07:32 AM

lyn

TODAY'S LINKS


Nick Minchin: Set - top box warrior, Greg Jericho, Grog's Gamut
Now usually if you find a member of a party has previously supported a position that its party now opposes, journalists are usually all over it. I can’t see it on any media website,
grogsgamut.blogspot.com/.../...op-box-warrior.html

Mining for perspective, Greg Jericho, Grog' Gamut
Take a deep breath and ask why has BHP share price increased about 22 per cent over the last 12 months? Because it sure as hell ain’t because Tony Abbott says he will wind back the tax in 2013.
grogsgamut.blogspot.com/.../...or-persepctive.html

How Many Copies Would You Like?, Neil Cook, The Bannerman
The first and possibly the most inane is the alleged attempted rape by head of the International Monetary Fund
Dominique Strauss-Kahn – of a house maid in a swanky New York hotel. It must be big news for The Australian
www.waddayano.org/.../...copies_would_you_like.php

Addressing the malaise, Andrew Elder, Politically homeless
If the Senate condemns the Malaysia deal, then turns around and passes the Budget and the carbon tax, only the Murdoch papers will count it as a win for the Coalition.
http://andrewelder.blogspot.com/

Middle class welfare: not happy Julia, Chris Berg, The Drum
Income support should be only given to those who need it - to those whose only alternative to Centrelink is poverty.
Not to those who, facing money pressures, could reduce consumption or live in a smaller house or trade in a new car.
http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2693116.html

NBN launch: Gillard, Conroy pack Armidale bags, Renai LeMay, Delimeter
A school in the city will also be connected via fibre for a demonstration of a videoconferencing session with another school in Tasmania, where a number of residents, businesses and other facilities such as schools
delimiter.com.au/.../

The economic value of broadband , David Havyatt, Anything Goes
A new paper in The Economic Journal by researchers at the University of Munich (partially funded by Deutsche Telecom)
provides a convincing case that higher broadband penetration indeed raises economic growth rates.
davidhavyatt.blogspot.com/.../...of-broadband.html

NBN Rollout To Be Delayed By Telstra Deal, Nick Broughall, Gizmodo
Telstra has been caught up with the paperwork side of things, and the agreement isn’t expected to be put to a shareholder vote until November,
www.gizmodo.com.au/.../

Five reasons why the govt should be wary about set-top boxes, Tom Cowie, Crikey
There are already fears the rush to cash in on the tender may mirror the pink batts fiasco and attract shonky operators into people’s homes
www.crikey.com.au/.../

In defence of an honourable man, Renai  LeMay, Delimeteris not legitimate to link an innocent man with bribery and corruption charges simply to serve those ends.
As Australians, we should be ashamed to do so, and we should not tolerate the
delimiter.com.au/.../#more-15491

Agnotolgy and Santa Claus, John Quiggin
The general phenonomen of confirmation bias (paying attention to evidence that supports your belief and disregarding contradictory evidence) is well established.
http://johnquiggin.com/

lyn

May 18. 2011 08:01 AM

Feral Skeleton

DMW,
    I don't know if you caught up with these recent assessments of the government's putative policy for Asylum Seekers, but the people who wrote these articles are no Labor barrackers. In fact, Tanveer Ahmed, as a former Liberal Party candidate for Marrickville Council, more often than not gives the government a kick:
www.smh.com.au/.../...position-20110516-1eps9.html
www.smh.com.au/.../...perately-20110512-1ekkd.html

   Might I also add that I find it passing strange that the latest batch of boat-borne refugees, arriving since the change in policy, appear to be, in the majority, from Iran. Now I find it strange because I feel that the People Smugglers are testing the resolve of the government. Even though we can safely assume that there are plenty of willing Afghanis that still want to hop on a boat here, I think the PSs have decided that  refugees from the quasi-totalitarian regime of Iran will have a greater emotional impact upon Australians who care about all refugees to our shores, and so create a moral hurdle for the goivernment to jump as they turn them away and send them to another country for processing, to end up at the back of the queue, so to speak.
   On another point, as a long-time supporter of the Karen Burmese, going back to the 1970s, it fills me with happiness to see that the government wants to take a swag of them out of the squalid refugee camps of Malaysia and Thailand and bring them here for a new life in Australia.
   And they are cute as a button and beautiful Buddhists. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 08:03 AM

Feral Skeleton

DMW,
   Would assianation work?
Hmm, the 'Asianisation' of the ALP might work. They can be very ruthless. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 08:14 AM

Feral Skeleton

  Malcolm Turnbull on AM trying to make the case for Broadband over Copper delivering "very, very fast Broadband". Just not as fast as via optical fibre, huh, Mr Turnbull? Also, that Broadband via the old Copper lines is all that is necessary. Hmm.
  He didn't sound very convinced, or convincing, either. Especially when he tried to trot out the Opposition line trying to tie the Set Top Box installation with the Home Insulation installation. Of course, he referred to it as the 'Pink Batts Scheme', even though the problems occurred with the foil insulation instead.

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 08:42 AM

Ad astra reply

LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Ad astra reply

May 18. 2011 08:49 AM

Jason

DMW,
   I see your point on reviews! However when the "party" that has a membership that is ageing,shutting sub branches due to a lack of numbers,and I guess what other organization do you pay to be a member of where you have no say?
if the "power brokers" are right and the rank and file are wrong why are we doing so poorly at both state and federal level?
But with a national membership of around 38,000 Collingwood in the AFL has 70,000 here in Adelaide the crows have 50,000 I would think we aren't in the greatest of shape to piss what's left of our members off!

Jason

May 18. 2011 10:16 AM

janice

blogs.theaustralian.news.com.au/.../

My comment made it on page 6.

janice

May 18. 2011 10:40 AM

jj

I thought the interview on the 7:30 report last night was an excellent one. It is about time that the Greens get some propper scrutiny... and Chris Uhlamn finally did it last night.

He displayed just how shallow and economically illiterate the Greens really are. Bob Brown said that he wants to shut down the coal industry, and yet he also wants to impose a tax that reaps the benefits of a long mining boom, to fund the things that he wants! It is a total contradiction! If he supports the mining tax it shows that he supports the longevity of the mining industry!

Bob Brown also got caught out with his pathetic, "its the Murdoch press's fault", line when Uhlman quoted him. IT WAS BOB BROWN'S OWN UNEDITED WORDS! Brown accuses Abbott of running slogans; well at least Abbott's dont get totally shred to pieces by statements he made in the past.The Greens talk about being a party of convictions and idealists... what Bob Brown showed last night is that they are a shallow and nonsensical party instead.

jj

May 18. 2011 10:45 AM

NormanK

janice
Well done. You've just saved me some time. I had just started putting together a comment prompted by Sinclair Davidson who broke the camel's back with this remark:
this government has proven to be incapable of selling anything
Gillard and Swan: meet the fiscal incredibles
http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2693118.html

Your comment over at JTI is much more lucid than the rambling rant I was starting to put together.
blogs.theaustralian.news.com.au/.../

I agree wholeheartedly, janice. The filter which currently exists between any output by the government and the resultant reporting of it is so glaringly obvious that one wonders if one is witnessing reality.
Whenever the question is asked 'why do you think it is that your message is not cutting though?', I want to ask the journalist - 'cutting though what'? Cutting through the noise of normal life as you seem to imply? Or cutting through the spin, misinformation and outright untruths perpetrated on a largely unsuspecting public by journalists such as yourself?
How do you cut through the obsessive fascination with the accidental breaking of a glass (which probably collapsed of its own accord as anyone who has 'picked up glasses' in a pub will attest) or the noise of a possible Prime Ministerial engagements?
Lindsay Tanner must smile wryly to himself every single day.

NormanK

May 18. 2011 11:02 AM

janice

NormanK,

I don't think it would hurt if you put in your bit as well Smile

I am just so sick of everybody and his dog wailing that the govt is lousy at getting its message across.  And, just like JTI they've started to say that the people are no longer listening to the Government.  Damned if I know how the people can "listen" to what isn't given a run long enough for it to reach people, because anything the government says is so damned quickly replaced with the soundbites emanating from the lying tongue of the wanna be Deputy Pope.

My wish before I depart this life is to get the opportunity to "interview" these so-called journalists and shock jocks and subject them to the same stuff they've been dishing out to our PM and her government.

janice

May 18. 2011 11:12 AM

Ad astra reply

janice
Bravo - so very well said. And JTI's response indicates that he acknowledges the validity of your opinion.

His statement "Some argue that a hostile media makes the government’s job nigh on impossible but good governments drive the agenda to the media, not the inverse." is facile.  How does he suggest that good governments can 'drive the agenda' in the face of the Murdoch media hostility we see every day, and its clear intent to bring the Gillard Government down?

Has JTI too been caught up in the prevailing groupthink about the Government's 'communication problem'?  You wll recall that 'groupthink' was the topic of my first blog piece, on Possum Box in June 2008, and you were one of the first to comment.  It seems that what we recognized then is still alive and well, and has grown into a menacing adult.

Ad astra reply

May 18. 2011 12:07 PM

Jason

thenewjj,
        As the swords reporter of all things in the seat of New England,were there any riots, lynch mobs,any public anger apart from the few LNP members, at the turning on of the NBN today?Or were they more than happy to be getting state of the art infrastructure?

Jason

May 18. 2011 12:11 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
We'll be out for the rest of the day enjoying te sunshine and the beauty of the countryside,

Back this evening.

Ad astra reply

May 18. 2011 12:14 PM

Patricia WA

Well done, Janice, and very well said!  Jack the Insider agreed with you too,  which means he read your comment carefully.  Having it printed in full indicates that how much it was appreciated.  

Patricia WA

May 18. 2011 12:16 PM

janice

Ad astra,

I think JTI comes up with the type of piece like this one is to keep his right-wing bloggers as well as his colleagues happy.  I don't think he indulges in groupthink judging by some of his answers to his bloggers.  Sometimes I think he writes this stuff to draw out his bloggers thoughts because often he gives them a 'correct the record' answer.

I've just watched the turning on of NBN in Armidale on ABC24.  The Coalition naysayers should be rounded up and made to sit, watch and learn from the speeches of Quigly, Conroy and our PM.

And, I must say I am just green with envy and am thinking seriously of moving to Armidale Laughing:  

janice

May 18. 2011 12:22 PM

janice

Oh dear, I forgot to mention Tony Windsor's contribution to the opening ceremony.  He gave the best speech I've ever seen from him and he looked every bit like the cat that has just swallowed a bowl of cream.  He mentioned that the PM, Tim and he enjoyed a wonderful day and evening yesterday and was profuse in his thanks to the PM and Senator Conroy.

janice

May 18. 2011 12:34 PM

Feral Skeleton

Ad Astra,
         Exactly right. How can the government 'drive the agenda to the media', when the media are the equivalent of a Bulldozer pushing them back in the reverse direction?
  Not only that, but you've got a media that will give space and time to every crackpot theory that the Opposition can come up with on a daily basis to spoil the government's message. Like today, wrt the NBN switchon, Simon Birmingham is allowed to use the backdrop of parliament to spout his anti-NBN message, that basically amounts to, "We could have done it in half the time, for half the price." Not one sceptical question from the media followed.

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 12:41 PM

Feral Skeleton

  And I will not be watching Joe Hockey's Blackguarding of the Gillard government, in reply to their Budget last week, from the National Press Club. The Autumn weather here in Sydney today is too warm and inviting, unlike the critique of the Budget that I am expecting from the Coalition's Treasury spokesman. Life's too short to waste an hour of it listening to their fact-free political pablum one more time.

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 12:43 PM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       I'm still not up to Page 6 yet, but I will get there eventually, and I know it will be worth wading through the diatribinous weeds to get there. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 12:46 PM

Feral Skeleton

NormanK,
        I second janice's emotion. Wade into JTI's blog with your own comment. The more he gets from us sensible individuals, also known as 'the grown-ups in the room' ( Smile ), the better it will be for the overall tone of the blog. Or, is that 'Anti-Tone' tone? Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 12:53 PM

Feral Skeleton

   See what I mean?
   Middle class welfare: not happy Julia, Chris Berg, The Drum
Income support should be only given to those who need it - to those whose only alternative to Centrelink is poverty.

   Attacked from the Right for being too generous with 'Middle Class Welfare'; attacked from the Abbott and Murdoch Right for not being generous enough with 'Middle Class Welfare' because the Gillard government dared to freeze the indexation of one payment for a couple of years to families on >$150,000/year, and, of course, criticised from the Left for not bringing in socialised Dental Care. And yes, I say 'socialised' Dental care because that's how the Right & their media lickspittles would automatically portray it. Sheesh!

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 01:38 PM

NormanK

E-mail to Senator Conroy - what are the chances of the message getting through?
Yep, thought so.
Senator Conroy,
As an excited backer of the NBN may I respectfully suggest that every time you have the microphone, you point out that the system will ultimately be one for which the user pays. Yes, it is government-backed but only those who make use of its facilities will contribute to its construction. As someone who is relatively active on blogs and the comments sections of news stories, I feel I need to point out that one of the main objections to its construction is the idea that 'taxpayer dollars' are being pumped into it.
Please, could you point out at every opportunity that those who choose not to take up the NBN will not be paying for it.
This is a very important distinction which is not being made anywhere near often enough.
Good luck to you and I look forward to your next press conference.

NormanK

May 18. 2011 02:11 PM

Jason

FS,
  Pollytics | 40 seconds ago

Peter Martin just nailed Hockey to a cross he'll be carrying for quite a while

Jason

May 18. 2011 02:37 PM

Feral Skeleton

NormanK,
        Good Luck to you too in getting a response from Senator Conroy. Smile
  Now, are you going to be in the ambit area for the next switch-on of the NBN around Townsville?

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 02:56 PM

NormanK

FS
The trial in Townsville is limited to parts of one suburb (from memory) selected because they satisfied parameters that NBN Co wanted to explore i.e. population density, road layout, combination of domestic, commercial and public buildings, that sort of thing. So, no sadly we will have to wait.
To be honest, I'm a bit altruistic on this subject. I'm excited about the 'idea' and the benefits it will bring to a lot of people. As things stand, I've got bugger all to complain about with regard to broadband (if only all the kids would stay off it after school).

Jason
What a tease you are! More information please.

NormanK

May 18. 2011 03:24 PM

Jason

Normank,
       Peter Martin (theage) and Andrew Probyn (wa times) at the Press club both asked Joe to account for his Dodgy figures of the $50 billion that he and the opposition claim they've had since the last election!
Probyn asked why there seemed to be double counting going on and nothing added up?and really didn't believe what Hockey was saying after he accused him of getting questions from the Labor Party,peter Martin the same.
A lot of the journos didn't seem "happy" with what Joe was saying, even Gratten was looking for answers Sam Madien said she didn't believe the answer  he gave on how much the NBN would cost to cancel contracts only because he didn't,It was a poor preformance by Joe!That said will they report their displeasure? time will tell I guess

Jason

May 18. 2011 03:45 PM

Jason

SHADOW treasurer Joe Hockey today stumbled over claims he miscalculated spending savings, simply saying they were right "at a point of time''.
Mr Hockey declined to acknowledge what appear to be double-counting of cuts and said firmly: "We stand by our numbers.''

He bristled when queried about his calculations during an address to the National Press Club in Canberra, replying to last week's Budget.

However, Mr Hockey did not directly counter the claims and was left looking embarrassed and unable to respond.

The issue is important as the Opposition has said it would be able to return the Budget to a surplus early by imposing tougher cuts on spending, and has accused the Government of not being vigorously enough in the economic statement released last Tuesday.

A reporter put to Mr Hockey that part of the $52 billion the Coalition had said it would cut from spending included $1.7 billion from Labor's proposed company tax cuts, which were to be funded by a higher mining tax.

However, the Coalition would not proceed with the mining tax so the saving was "illusory''.

Second, the Coalition would increase tax on large companies by 1.7 per cent to cover a paid parental leave scheme, but then proposed a 1.5 per cent cut in company tax to be funded by a freeze on public service recruitment.

However, that saving had already been allocated to the Coalition's Direct Action plans on climate change.

Third, the Coalition's a claimed public service blow-out of 20,000 staff since 2007 included a boost in military and reservist numbers.



"Our numbers stack up. Our $52 billion stack up from last year( during the election campaign),'' said Mr Hockey.

"You could have asked that question any time over the last 12 months if you thought there was double counting. Our numbers are accurate and we stand by those numbers at a point of time.''

Part of Mr Hockey's problem was that the Opposition has imposed a rigid policy of concentrating exclusively on Government economic policy without offering any alternatives of their own.

This limits the shadow treasurer's participation in the Budget debate.

However, he strongly question's the economic credibility of the Budget and underlined previously announced Coalition policies.

Mr Hockey said a Coalition in government would make the long overdue step of reducing housing costs, which were among te highest in the world.

"The Australian dream of owning your own home is fast becoming a financial nightmare,'' he said. "And a big impediment to building more housing is Australia's poor regulatory environment.''

He pledged "critical'' reform of construction industry regulation and planning to "address te housing affordability crisis''.

Mr Hockey said middle Australia was angry because the Government was making the transition to the resources boom economy more difficult.

"The annual pre-Budget rhetoric about a `tough Budget' made people even angrier,'' he told the NPC.

"It reminded Australians of of the waste by this Labor Government in Pink Batts, school halls, solar panels, and $900 cheques that they and their children will now have to pay off.''

www.heraldsun.com.au/.../story-e6frf7l6-1226058319155

Jason

May 18. 2011 04:00 PM

NormanK

janice
Your wish is my command. This is a bit longer than it was this morning and a good deal more tame.


In a soon to be published book, former CFO of Munchy Crunchy Breakfast Cereals, Lyndsay Tanner laments the poor quality of journalistic practices in contemporary Australia. He lays out in minute detail the pitfalls and hurdles encountered when his company attempted to release a new product into the highly competitive cereal market.
Munchy Crunchy launched a campaign to try to gain a share of this highly lucrative market with the announcement that it would be putting Crunchy Flakes on to supermarket shelves from Day 1 of the media blitz.
Unfortunately for the public relations people, shareholders in Munchy Crunchy had voted overwhelmingly in favour of a moratorium on new advertising campaigns for the coming financial year so Crunchy Flakes would have to be marketed by word-of-mouth and mainstream media exposure.
Undeterred, the company signed up rising football star 'Jason' to be the face of the new product and mapped out a media strategy which would hopefully see it feature prominently in newspapers and on television over a period of several weeks.
Day 1
Jason appeared on a morning television programme to promote the health benefits of Crunchy Flakes when eaten daily in conjunction with a healthy diet of fresh fruit and vegetables. In his nervousness at appearing on national television without a football jumper on, Jason accidentally tipped a bowl full of Crunchy Flakes and milk into his lap. An understanding director immediately went to an ad break which featured, among other things, an ad for a rival corn-based breakfast cereal (which we can't name for legal reasons). Said unnameable cereal is manufactured by an unnameable parent company which is part-owner of the TV company (unnameable) which ran the Jason interview. Jason's spill and subsequent lap-dance went viral on the internet and every major broadcaster ran the footage but without mentioning Crunchy Flakes by name as this would be seen as being in breach of their code of ethics.
Today Tonight took a different angle on Jason's lap-spill by contacting his football coach to see whether he was willing to endorse the product and encourage his players to switch to it. The normally outspoken 'Dicko' was reluctant to speak on camera but did eventually say - "Nah, stuff that! They might as well eat the freakin' box as eat that pile of (bleep)".

Day 2
Newspaper headlines:
'Eat the box says coach'
'Cardboard better than Crunchy Flakes - Dicko'
At a press conference, nutritionist Niki Savva provided incontrovertible empirical proof that Crunchy Flakes contained twice as much nutritional value as its nearest big brand competitor because the manufacturing practices were vastly superior and resulted in a product which contained more unprocessed ingredients.
Under questioning from the press gallery Ms Savva could not assure them that Crunchy Flakes did not contain any genetically modified grain and ultimately had to concede that it may indeed contain GM grains but that she had no proof that this was the case. She also could not provide a guarantee that no child would ever choke on a Crunchy Munchy product.
In their evening edition, The Daily Cereal (Australia's only breakfast newspaper, with significant reach in metropolitan areas and syndication rights around the country) ran with the headline: "Crunchy Flakes - slug genes for your kids". The article made much of the fact that Munchy Crunchy was once a subsidiary of US-based multinational Makem Dumpem (later taken over by state-owned Chinese conglomerate Fakem Dumpem). In 1998, Makem Dumpem launched a vigourous campaign in favour of GM grains, in particular a form of corn which had a gene from the common garden slug inserted to help ward off pests. Public backlash caused Makem Dumpem to withdraw its support for the new GM corn and the new strain was never released for widespread planting.

Day 3
Newspaper headlines:
'Choke on this - slugs for breakfast!'
'Coach slugs Crunchy Flakes'
'Are slugs crunchy? Choking news'
On The Bolt Report, Andrew Bolt. never one to shy away from a controversial subject, had self-proclaimed marketing guru Mark Latham as a guest to evaluate the merits or otherwise of the packaging of Crunchy Flakes. "Too much emphasis on reds and yellows", deduced Mr Latham, "customers are more likely to buy products which have blues and greens as their predominant themes." A Crikey investigation later showed that Mr Latham's most successful marketing campaigns have been for toilet cleaners, 'green' household products and long-life milk. His one foray into breakfast cereals involved Lime Bubbles. This campaign is infamous in advertising circles as one of the most short-lived in history.
Opposition Leader Tony Abbott is asked at a press conference what he thinks of Crunchy Flakes. He was reluctant to either endorse or criticise Crunchy Flakes declaring that a 'conflict of interest' prevented him from being more forthcoming. It seems the Liberal Party of Australia receives large annual donations from a certain, unnameable, Christian-based breakfast cereal manufacturer with interests in publishing and television.

Day 4
Crunchy Flakes is removed from sale.

Mr Tanner concludes his book by saying that, in his opinion, in the current media environment it would be easier to sell a federal budget than it is to sell cornflakes.

NormanK

May 18. 2011 04:30 PM

Feral Skeleton

NormanK,
        For someone as tech savvy as you seem to be, you are starting to make me think you are about as tech savvy as Tony Abbott! Surely you could cobble together another 'puter mit Internet, plus WiFi connection, so that when the kids get home you can use said 2nd computer, and they can fight over the other one? Or, better still, why not just have a computer for each member of the family, connected to the 'Net? It saves a lot of arguments at our place. Plus a big fat download limit of 45GB. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 04:35 PM

janice

Oh NormanK - 10 stars for that Smile  Don't know that more than 2 of JTI's regular bloggers would even be able to compute that piece.  BTW, a tip if you do send in a comment, to avoid having your piece published with no paragraphs, at the end of each paragraph press 'enter' type a 'full stop' press enter and then start the new paragraph.

janice

May 18. 2011 04:38 PM

Feral Skeleton

Jason,
      You know what I reckon? The Coalition will just ignore the NPC session this afternoon, just as they have ignored the Treasury analysis of their election costings and 'Carry On Up the Khyber Pass' of the electorate, like the comedy troupe that they are and as they have been successfully doing thus far; and getting up the nose of the government, which they have also been successfully doing. That's all that counts to them, the politics, not policies. They have none worth a damn!
   Laurie Oakes has got them sussed:
www.dailytelegraph.com.au/.../story-e6frezz0-1226055589326

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 04:44 PM

NormanK

Two misunderstandings. That doesn't happen in online conversations does it?

janice
My comment was always intended for TPS. I don't go to JTI very often but I have trouble imaging something like Crunchy Flakes getting a very warm reception.

FS
I knew as soon as I typed it that it might be misleading.
Like our illustrious PM, I am unmarried and childless. My remark referred to a marked slow down in speed starting at around 3.30 PM and going through to about 9.00 PM. Often 9.00AM is a bad time to do anything serious as businesses kick in.

NormanK

May 18. 2011 05:21 PM

Feral Skeleton

NormanK,
        Ah, I get it. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 05:39 PM

lyn

Hi Ad

Further to Jason's excellent reports and links, thankyou
Jason

Seems it's getting pretty juicy when Joe Kelly has an
anti article about Joe Hockey's performance at the National
Press Club today:


Joe Hockey fails to answer claims of double-counting of proposed budget savings, Joe Kelly, The Australian

JOE Hockey has been unable to refute alleged double-counting of proposed opposition budget savings as he laid claim to superior economic management credentials in a speech to the National Press Club today.


when queried on alleged costing errors, Mr Hockey was unable to address the specifics of the question and accused the journalist of getting his material from the government.

The reporter challenged Mr Hockey over "illusory” savings, suggesting he'd allocated the same savings from proposed public service cuts to both climate change measures and a company tax cut.

www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-fn8gf1nz-1226058351679

Joe Hockey left stumbling over budget figures , Malcolm Farr,
Herald Sun

SHADOW treasurer Joe Hockey today stumbled over claims he miscalculated spending savings, simply saying they were right "at a point of time''.

He bristled when queried about his calculations during an address to the National Press Club in Canberra, replying to last week's Budget.

However, Mr Hockey did not directly counter the claims and was left looking embarrassed and unable to respond.

Part of Mr Hockey's problem was that the Opposition has imposed a rigid policy of concentrating exclusively on Government economic policy without offering any alternatives of their own.

This limits the shadow treasurer's participation in the Budget debate

www.heraldsun.com.au/.../story-e6frf7l6-1226058319155



Cheers

lyn

May 18. 2011 06:22 PM

Feral Skeleton

   Can't wait to read Grog's analysis, complete with graphs no doubt, lol, of Hockey's speech and Question and Answer session today at the NPC.

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 06:34 PM

Feral Skeleton

  Whilst it is admirable that Jack the Insider printed janice's comment on his blog, it is comments like the following, that he also sees fit to print, that make me glad that I don't bother reading it anymore(except when janice gets a guernsey of course!):
   eddie
Tue 17 May 11 (02:54pm)

Gillard is much worse off than the polls reveal. She is seen on the street as a joke. Everything she has touched has turned to shit, her crocodile tears, her ‘all the way with LBJ’, she is seen as a pathetic fraud. People always respected Howard. Noone respects Rudd or Gillard.
Her creepy boyfriend and his musing on Sunday of possible marriage, the Gillard freak show never ends. Next she’ll probably announce she’s pregnant or she’s going to have a kid by a surrogate. Outside of Canberrs everyone laughs at the freak.
The momentumbuilding against her is like a tidal wave.

   Disgusting. Absolutely disgusting.

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 06:36 PM

Jason

Or this tweet lol!

mfarnsworth | 13 minutes ago

Stephen Long on Hockey: "The numbers are more over-cooked than the chicken at a Liberal Party fundraiser." #TheDrum

Jason

May 18. 2011 06:42 PM

janice

My comment was always intended for TPS. I don't go to JTI very often but I have trouble imaging something like Crunchy Flakes getting a very warm reception.



Sorry to mislead you NormanK - I didn't really think you meant that 10 star post for JTI's blog for the reasons I stated.  My tip was for your consideration just in case you might put a comment in there :}

janice

May 18. 2011 06:49 PM

janice


FS,
I scroll past the disgusting comments and only read those I know usually make sensible comments (even if they are conservative thinkers).  There aren't many to read so it doesn't take too much of my time Smile

janice

May 18. 2011 06:57 PM

Sir Ian Crisp

"I shall for example never forgive Limpy Crisp, whose own self-chosen puffed-up blogname I refuse to use, until he has apologised to one of our regulars, Limpy knows who, for sexist insults".

Gobble, I have no trouble sleeping at night.

Sir Ian Crisp

May 18. 2011 07:01 PM

lyn

Hi Jason

I just watched "The Drum" and I enjoyed that Juicy  
analogy from Stephen Long..   I am having a juicy
time aren't I.  Thankyou for the tweet.

Cheers

lyn

May 18. 2011 07:06 PM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       I agree, I will always read sensible comments from conservative thinkers, but there are so many new names that I'm not sure who's who and so sometimes I come up against the sort of thing I exerpted above. It just makes me want to cry. Especially on Julia's behalf.

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 07:09 PM

Patricia WA

I should never have bothered disagreeing with Bolt about Uhlman interviewing Brown - which he headlined as "Brown Filleted!"   Bolt again printed my comment,(Patricia WA of Beaconsfield, WA, 18 May 11 (02:05am) just so he could print twelve more comments directly disagreeing with me!

Interesting that they all start the same, addressing me by name.  Astonishing the lengths to which some people will go to rationalise their own point of view.  Hang on   Do I do that too?   Reassure me, NormanK.

Patricia WA

May 18. 2011 07:10 PM

Feral Skeleton

  I notice that the ABC's only takeout from Joe Hockey's NPC address today was him saying, "When I saw her turn on the NBN I thought,there goes $18 Billion walking out the door" They thought that low slur from Hockey more 'newsworthy' than the exposing he suffered, finally, at the hands of the economics journalists.
   See, I told you it would all be airbrushed from history.

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 07:21 PM

Jason

FS,
  Stick a video in if they are still in use,as the repeat of the Press Club is on at 5am!Skip the speech and go to the questions!
Also wouldn't you think that an opposition that demands an election be called every day, would have come up with something better than "our dodgy figures were right at a point of time''.
What next?

Jason

May 18. 2011 07:31 PM

janice

I'm kicking myself at the moment because I foolishly allowed my doctor to talk me into trying Mobic to ease my arthritic pain.  Anti-inflammatories and me have never got along and swallowing them has always ended in grief.  However, I was desperate for relief at the time, especially since I have carpal tunnel syndrome affecting my left wrist (which was badly broken and which never healed properly some 20 years ago)was so painful and weak that I could barely use it.

Anyway, the mobic did give me the relief I desperately needed and knowing my adverse reactions to anti-inflammatories I only used it sparingly.  I had taken 10 capsules in a four week period before my mouth became sore (felt as if I had scalded the inside of my mouth) and the skin across the back of my shoulders felt like a bad case of sunburn. I also had a few other niggling symptoms that told me something was wrong. So I trotted back to see the doctor and discovered my BP was soaring which was a bit of a shock.  All these are side-effects of Mobic.

Needless to say I have consigned Mobic to the garbage bin (actually gave them back to the chemist for disposal) while I take the BP medication to get that back under control, and hope that the other symptoms disappear when the Mobic is flushed out of my system.  

Sorry to bore you all with this but it needed to come out and all of you are too remote from me to hit back.  I am just so angry with myself.

janice

May 18. 2011 08:19 PM

lyn

Hi Janice

You could never be boring even if you tried.

I am very very sympathetic with you regarding your adversity
to Anti-inflammatories.  I love voltarin tablets they work
fantastic for me.  But the Doctor told me not to take them
because they are no good for your kidneys and liver.

Anyway the specialist operated - carpal tunnel on both
wrists which worked for approximately 10 years.

One hand started going numb, I mean really really numb, last year, mainly when I was asleep. Three months ago I invested in a new computer mouse, the most expensive I could find, the numbness has stopped now.

Is there something you are doing frequently every day.

Ad Astra might tell you something, I know he is a great believer in vitamins, also one of my friends told me she
has had great success with fish oil capsules taken daily.  

lyn

May 18. 2011 08:35 PM

lyn

Hi Ad

Our good friend David Horton has just posted the below
article:

best wishes to you David.


From Ghent to Lexington, David Horton, The Watermelon Blog
I am physically pretty ok, and improving it seems, I hasten to add, but it does deplete you mentally as much as anything. Even a stone can be worn away by a drip of course, and I am not made of stone.

Will aim to get something up tomorrow, but just wanted to post tonight really to say a warm welcome to all the new visitors this month. The response to the blog in several recent months has been heart-warming and encouraging. I hope all the new visitors have discovered something of interest,
something to like; and my old faithful visitors have continued to be amused, bemused and at times stimulated. There is nothing like an audience, as my dinner guests over the years have discovered
(sometimes to their horror), to get me to perform.

davidhortonsblog.com/.../

lyn

May 18. 2011 09:04 PM

BSA Bob

F.S. at7.10
I just came on to say ABC TV obviously think Hockey did badly, as they omitted any reference to his address, you've beaten me to it. Except for the NBN swipe, one of the few figures he used as he had none of his own.

Jason at 7.21
Absolutely. Allowed to shift position at will. One of their greatest inconsistencies, & the've got some great ones. Ready to take the reins at an instant's notice, just vote us in folks, we'll have a look round & think of something.

BSA Bob

May 18. 2011 09:10 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
While we have been enjoying the autumn leaves. I see there has been a lot of political activity.  As there is no TV in this cottage and radio reception is appalling – the best station is ABC Adelaide and that’s scratchy and intermittent – I have gleaned only fragments of news.  So I’m grateful for your running commentary.

It was gratifying to see that some journalists (mainly from Fairfax) had nailed Joe Hockey on his ‘savings’ which we all know are shonky, and that he blustered unconvincingly through his answers.  When News Limited journalists like Malcolm Farr report this, could it be that they are finally tired of his bluster and bull and will call him for what he is, a fiscally incompetent liar.  

Did anyone challenge him to show why $18 billion will walk out the door when the NBN is switched on in Armidale?   That is sheer nonsense.  I see he could not say how much it would cost to halt the NBN if and when they got into power, something Malcolm Turnbull has warned the Coalition about.  Yet the Coalition reiterates its intention to scrap it.

The problem in trying to analyze what Joe is saying is when we attribute any veracity to his utterances, or logic.  We keep looking, knowing we will not find it, only disingenuous claptrap and lies.  He and Tony Abbott and Andrew Robb will say anything they please, correct or otherwise, to make a political point.  Analysis is useless, especially when most of the media unquestioningly and uncritically parrot what they say.  We need more probing such as we saw today from Peter Martin, Michelle Grattan and Andrew Probyn, and more reporting of Hockey’s deception in both the Fairfax AND News Limited media.

Sooner or later the scales will fall from journalists’ eyes and then from the publics’.  Once they accept they have been conned, Joe will really be knee-deep in a mess of his own making.

NormanK
I did enjoy your story of the marketing of Crunchy Flakes.  Why aren’t you writing original pieces for TPS?

Ad astra reply

May 18. 2011 09:11 PM

janice

Hi Lyn,
Thank you for sweet caring reply.

My carpal tunnel problem stems from the fact that arthritis has got into the wrist.  When I broke it all those years ago, instead of referring me to an orthopaedic unit to have it pinned etc, the surgeon decided to have a go at fixing it himself - the 'fix' failed and I didn't find out for a few years when an Xray was done for something else.  I've been managing quite well with an obviously crooked wrist where a bone or two is not attached to anything!  For a couple of years I've got by using wrist supports etc but have two numb fingers and now it has become extremely painful and there is weakness to the extent that I often lose my grip on things and drop them.

I'm afraid I'm one of those people whose body refuses to tolerate most drugs so have problems even with anaesthetics.  That is why I'm so angry with myself for ever taking an anti-inflammatory which have caused me so much grief in the past.

As you say, Ad astra may have some advice for me.


janice

May 18. 2011 09:14 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
Ad astra’s only advice about the use of anti-inflammatory drugs and vitamins is to find a good family doctor and ask her or him.  Prescribing is more complex than it might seem as there are many factors to be taken into account before putting pen to prescription pad, or fingers to the keyboard to print a prescription.

There is nothing to match a good family doctor who knows the patient for this type of advice.

Ad astra reply

May 18. 2011 09:22 PM

Ad astra reply

janice
Your story reinforces what I have just said to Lyn.  I hope you soon recover from the side effects of your anti-inflammatory and can find a medication that improves your arthritis without upsetting you, which unfortunately is not always easy.

Ad astra reply

May 18. 2011 09:48 PM

Jason

Grog is up!
grogsgamut.blogspot.com/.../...r-saudi-arabia.html

Jason

May 18. 2011 09:51 PM

Feral Skeleton

BSABob,
       Big lulz. Smile
'Just vote us in and we'll think of something'.

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 09:58 PM

Feral Skeleton

janice and lyn,
               As a former Pharmacist, and co-sufferer, me with Fibromyalgia, and a broken joint on my middle finger which I was unaware of until the arthritis made it look wonky; and also with heightened sensitivity to many anti-inflammatories, might I just say that, after much trial and error, Celebrex works for me, and there is a new, stronger form of Panadol, called Panadol Osteo, which might help those with sensitivities to other anti-inflammatories.
   However, as the good doctor AA advises, go along to a trusted GP and talk to them about it. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 10:04 PM

Feral Skeleton

BSABob,
       Actually, that would probably be, 'Vote us in and the Murdoch Myrmidons will think of something for us.'...We'll just Vogue our way through it:
www.heraldsun.com.au/.../story-e6frf7l6-1226058319155
(The photo shows Joe throwing the correct pose for the camera, though. Smile )

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 10:06 PM

Feral Skeleton

Ad Astra,
         You'll have to be happy with NormanK's original work whenever it appears, because he is not one for deadlines. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 10:20 PM

NormanK

Patricia WA
I wish I could reassure you but I'm afraid I can't. I really can't.
To a greater or lesser degree we all see what we want to see and hear what we want to hear. 'Want' is not necessarily the most appropriate word to use, sometimes it is more like 'programmed'. Programmed by all of our life experiences, our predispositions, prejudices and what we think we've learned, both at a conscious and an unconscious level.
Let me give an example. I am a theatre lighting designer by profession and many a long few minutes were wasted early on in my career arguing with directors and choreographers over what they understood to be 'red', for example. First of all, the English language, for all of its marvellous subtlety, makes it difficult to convey a clear definition of what we believe to be a certain colour. So backwards and forwards it would go, usually resulting in references to objects in the room. "That's red". "No no that's more like magenta - this is a pure red".
I very quickly learned that the best way to avoid this type of thing was to make sure that I had my colour swatches (like fabric swatches or colour charts but made up of gels which are a bit like thick cellophane) with me and to not argue over what the other person wanted to call a particular colour but to simply note down its number and remember for future reference that 'this' is what that person thinks is 'red'. No judgement can be made as to the correctness or incorrectness of their interpretation of 'red' - it just is. Not to say that their opinion can't change over time and with differing experiences, only to say that for that particular individual it is valid.
An entirely different type of conversation would ensue if I was talking to an artist (painter) or a set designer. Many a long hour has been spent amicably debating the subtleties of 'blue-greens' and 'mauves' and so forth.  Working with light is almost diametrically opposed to working with paint and yet the two arts come together in a stunning display of synchronicity when there is a clear understanding of the final objectives (and turn to mud when there is lack of understanding on one side or the other or both). Success often entails a certain amount of compromise, a desire to at least understand and respect the other person's craft and sufficient goodwill to understand that if the designer gets praise, some of it belongs to you and vice versa.
The great advantage with artistic endeavour is that once you have completed your training and paid your dues as an apprentice, no-one can ever rightfully dictate to you just what you understand by 'red'. That understanding is one that you have come to through your own journey and provided it doesn't inhibit your ability to interact with others, it is an understanding that is 'valid' for you.
Interpreting the Bob Brown interview is a bit the same. If you more or less like Brown and more or less don't like Chris Uhlman then your reaction will reflect those predispositions. If you dislike Brown intensely, you will cheer Uhlman on regardless of whether you may have been  ambivalent to him beforehand. If you really like Brown but dislike Uhlman, that was a terrible interview. If you are indifferent to both then you probably wouldn't be able to see what all of the fuss is about. Each of those interpretations has its own validity.
The best we can do is try to remain consciously aware of our predispositions, allow them to influence us in the moment but deliberately take them into account when reflecting on our reaction to the event. It should be the difference between a knee-jerk reaction and a considered response. It is one reason why I try very hard to avoid posting comments when I'm angry at something just after learning about it. If, upon reflection, I find that I have given as much benefit of the doubt as I reasonably can and I'm still angry (sad, happy, dismayed, whatever but anger is the most destructive) then probably that is the reaction that best suits me.
I hope this is in some way helpful Patricia. Your's was a valid response, as were those of other people provided due consideration has been given to inbuilt prejudices.
I hasten to add that I'm not referring to the presence of facts or otherwise - that is an altogether different kettle of fish.

In writing the stuff above about working with set designers, the penny just dropped as to why I abhor on-line confrontations where emotions play too big a role.
In the absence of colour swatches and paint charts, if both parties in a conversation can't agree on a mutually desirable means of interacting then the conversation is going to turn to mud. Reaching a mutually desirable means of interacting requires compromise from both parties. To paraphrase Skyhooks - 'compromise is not a dirty word'.

NormanK

May 18. 2011 10:40 PM

Patricia WA

I was interested in the discussion about drugs, anti-inflammatories etc. and to hear from Lyn that Ad Astra is a great believer in nutrition and vitamins.  The secret, as he said, is to find a GP you can trust.

I agree wholeheartedly with that.  Even vitamins shouldn't be taken without  your 'trusted GP' getting a lab assessment from a blood sample on exactly what your deficiencies are. I think it's called 'orthomolecular medicine.' I've been blessed in finding a GP who does that for me on an annual basis.   My health has improved dramatically since I have followed the nutritional and vitamin regime he prescribes.  I'd always been a great believer in fresh fruit and veggies, drinking lots of water and getting reasonable exercise but a few years back I was definitely slowing down, tired and much less competent.  

I put that down to the inevitable result of aging.  So I retired from full time work and moved from NSW to live here close to my family.  In looking around for a good GP I was actually warned off one because 'he's got a thing about vitamins and it'll cost you a bomb whenever you see him!'  So I thought I'd give him a try!  What a difference in my energy levels!  Sounds silly, I know, but my nails grow at twice the rate they did a few years back and my hair, though still white, is much healthier and responds well to a good cut. It was great to find that even at my age I could feel and look a bit younger again.

Mind you, like Lyn, I have to be careful about the cut and color of my bikinis.  

Patricia WA

May 18. 2011 10:57 PM

Feral Skeleton

   Some early Grog:
grogsgamut.blogspot.com/.../...r-saudi-arabia.html

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 11:04 PM

Feral Skeleton

  When you are able to listen back to Joe Hockey's Q&A session today from the NPC, you begin to see more clearly how Tony Abbott is carrying the Coalition on his bony shoulders. Hockey's answers to the questions were positively feeble:
australianpolitics.com/.../...ply-speech-2011.html

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 11:16 PM

Patricia WA

Thank you, NormanK, for taking the time to write to me at such length.  There I was busy thinking about vitamins and there were you imparting all that sound advice.  I do understand about compromise and I like to think that somehow over the years I have learned to accept other people's point of view more readily. I also learned to keep my political opinions to myself during the working day which made the management role a lot easier.  

I used to be a passionate combatant on issues of social justice.  Our Hillbilly Skeleton reminds me of myself many years ago.  Although I even now share her frustration when people of an opposite persuasion just won't see sense, I do now understand how too strong a partisan stance can be very destructive.  A good example of that was on 7.30 this evening with the Wilderness Society pulling out of negotations with the timber industry over logging native forests in Tasmania.  Julia Gillard's input from there was wise, i.e. When negotiations seem at an impasse is not the time to leave the table.   The Greens it seems are staying the course.

We've seen here very recently how bitterness (your mud?) can result when people refuse to compromise. There's no way forward.  I imagine that so much of the 'selling out' that Julia Gillard is accused of is simply the frustration of disappointed expectations by some parties when she seeks to find a workable compromise.  It helps one understand how she has this calm response to so much criticism from all sides.  After a lifetime at negotiating tables I imagine she would share views on perspective.

Patricia WA

May 18. 2011 11:17 PM

Feral Skeleton

  When the Coalition MPS 'Rabbitt' on about the lack of a mandate for a Carbon Tax, why don't the journos throw back at them the fact that John Howard had no mandate for WorkChoices either? Or when the Coalition MPS talk about cuts to the Public Service point out the fact that the Public Service under Howard grew faster than under any other government? Or the fact that the Howard government also rode to Surplus on the back of China?
Or when Hockey speaks about the ALP federal government spending more than it takes in, about the fact that Peter Costello left the Budget in Structural deficit? Or the fact that when Hockey says that the government hasn't implemented the Henry Report that John Howard didn't implement for over a quarter of a century the recommendations of the Campbell Report he commissioned? Or why, when Hockey talks about policies he favours or implemented, he sounds like a big spending, big government socialist, especially his latest phraseology wrt government "greasing the wheels" of the economy?

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 11:20 PM

Feral Skeleton

  Oops! Joe admits that Howard presided over higher inflation.

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 11:24 PM

Patricia WA

Sorry NormanK - Last line there should read that

I imagine Julia Gillard would share your views on perspective and compromise.

Which is interesting.  You, an artist in theatre lighting design. She a lawyer and politician.  

Patricia WA

May 18. 2011 11:24 PM

Feral Skeleton

   Did anyone see if Joe Hockey's Press Secretary was up the back of the NPC doing that cutting motion with his hand? Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 11:27 PM

Feral Skeleton

  The Liberals DO NOT deliver lower unemployment than the ALP, as Joe Hockey claimed.

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 11:32 PM

Feral Skeleton

NormanK,
         But can you prove that Black is White? Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 18. 2011 11:33 PM

BSA Bob

F.S. at 11.20
Two bits today I liked were Hockey saying that the only year his mob were in structural deficit was their last one (they would naturally have corrected this if they'd been re elected) & something like "we believe in a needs based welfare system, it's just that everybody needs it." That's not an attempt at a quote, but I think it's pretty close.

BSA Bob

May 18. 2011 11:48 PM

D Mick Weir

Jason @ 09:48 PM
Grog is up!

An economists response:
'Market forces are coming into play here. With the rise in inputs and a flattening market response, beer needs to reposition itself so that it cam go up and appeal to a more upwardly aspirational segment of the market.

An Opposition MP's response:
'Under this government the price of everything is going up. They will always tax And Tony Abbott will stop it.

True Blue Aussie Response:
'Bewdy I'll nip over and share one or three with you.'


Oh you mean Mr Gamut has posted another fine contribution? How silly of me to use my Mr Abbott glasses and misinterpret what you said.  Smile



D Mick Weir

May 18. 2011 11:55 PM

D Mick Weir

NormanK @ 10:20 PM
Excellent work. You have nailed it.

Trick question:
The primary colours are Red, Blue and which other colour?

D Mick Weir

May 18. 2011 11:57 PM

TalkTurkey

Damn, damn, damn.
I just lost a post I really would've liked to go through. I'll write about it later but it's too late now. Turnbull has done his thing now. I'll explain later, in the meantime I want to know if this goes.

Anyway who saw Turnbull on Lateline? I sure did.

TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 12:19 AM

Jason

DMW @ 11:48 PM
FOSTER'S will cut up to 50 jobs from its Abbotsford brewery in Melbourne, blaming increased competition and rising costs for the losses.
The company yesterday informed employees of the proposed redundancies, which represent about 16 per cent of the workforce at the site.

The company said the cuts were designed to improve the performance of the brewery.

"Increasing local and international competition combined with increasing costs, for instance, significant increases in raw materials, mean Abbotsford Brewery has to improve its performance," a spokeswoman said.

"There is potential for around 50 redundancies through a voluntary program."

EWIN HANNAN
www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-e6frg6nf-1226058530023

Jason

May 19. 2011 12:26 AM

TalkTurkey

DMW
Careful here about yer primary colours.

Show yer hand Bro and then if yer not real knowledgable I'm'a trump ya.Smile

Go on then, what are these "3" of which you speak?

"A little learning is a dangerous thing" as I said yesty.
(Alexander Pope, C17th Age of Reason Poet, An Essay on Criticism)
But in this case if I can tell you something you don't already know you'll be delighted. One of the prettiest and most explanatory things I ever found out.
But show us your colour cards . . .  

TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 12:26 AM

NormanK

D Mick Weir
Additive or subtractive?

FS
But can you prove that Black is White?
No, but I can make black appear to be white and white appear to be black. Will that do?

NormanK

May 19. 2011 12:47 AM

TalkTurkey

Swordsfolks,

It has been a Very Good Day for *J*U*L*I*A* Labor, and a conversely Very Bad One for the Abbortt Coalition.

Anyway now I'm going to write on Outlook, in its original form afap, what I had nearly finished before on TPS and which disappeared when I was about to post it. Then I'll paste it to TPS afresh. But it's a pity, because what I said before was before Turnbull's "massive spray" on LateLine last night -'fact I didn't even know TB was about to be Tony Jones's guest tonight. But it was PRESCIENT then, and now I can't prove it!
Never mind, it still has a point to my writing it, as I think you'll see. It will need a new ending now though.    

TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 06:55 AM

janice


Thank you Ad astra and Lyn.  I didn't mean to put you on the spot Ad astra.

Thanks also to FS for your sensible advice. I don't even tolerate paracetamol very well so even that is not a solution for me.

I'm afraid I'm up the creek without a paddle so will just have to do what I've always done and use some self-hypnosis and stop feeling sorry for myself, says she very bravely. I am a believer of the "mind over matter" thingy and as my dear departed mother used to say "you'll get over it or under it as the case may be".

I feel better now that I've had a good whinge so thank you all for listening. Laughing)

janice

May 19. 2011 08:12 AM

lyn

TODAY'S LINKS


Joe packs his bags for Saudi Arabia, Greg Jericho, Grog's Gamut
Probyn so perfectly skewered Hockey that Hockey could only respond by getting shouty and accusing Probyn of getting his question from the ALP. The whole session ended with Peter Martin essentially asking
http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/

On journalism and fish milkshakes, Tim Dunlop, The Drum
It would improve if they stopped framing stories as ‘he said/she said’ fairytales where nonsense is given equal weight
to fact in the name of ‘balance’.  ABC Radio would raise the quality of its output simply by remembering that
‘The Opposition said...’ is not news
http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2718976.html

Gasping for breath, Andrew Elder, Politically Homeless
if the government plug away at the economic fundamentals they can and will turn their fortunes around. Abbott and Hockey just can't keep up
andrewelder.blogspot.com/.../...-today-we-saw.html

NBN goes live on mainland, The Armidale Express
Meanwhile, Opposition Treasury spokesperson Joe Hockey was telling the National Press Club in Canberra that the Coalition remained committed to scrapping the NBN.
www.armidaleexpress.com.au/.../2167560.aspx

NBN hits the mainland , SMH
"It stands to radically change the way we live, the way we work, the way we study, especially in rural and regional Australia, which has so often been forced put up with second best."
www.smh.com.au/.../...mainland-20110518-1esjd.html

The NBN Is Officially Alive In Armidale, Gizmodo
roughly 4,882 premises – including the University of New England – are included in the first release site
for Armidale, although only a fraction of them are currently online with the NBN.
www.gizmodo.com.au/.../

Joe Hockey’s Budget Reply Speech, Australian Politics. Co
Video and Prepared text of Joe Hockey’s Address to the National Press Club.THE WRONG BUDGET FOR THE TIMES
australianpolitics.com/.../...ply-speech-2011.html

A Quick reminder: Tony Abbott talks our his arse, Rober Merkel, Larvatus Prodeo
Touring the Ford factory at Geelong, Mr Abbott said a $30 carbon tax would add $412 to the price of a car and could lead to the end of the motor manufacturing industry in Australia.
larvatusprodeo.net/.../

Roll Over, Galileo, New Matilda
This carbon tax debate is almost completely out of hand," Alan Jones told his 2UE listeners yesterday. The coal and car industries aren’t getting anywhere with their negotiations — and anyway "why these
http://newmatilda.com/2011/05/18/roll-over-galileo

Bolt Report commits a furphy taxation, Clarencegirl, North Coast Voices
Ergo, the very people Bolt is bashing contributed to the hospitals he would likely access should he fall ill.I won't even mention the fact that Bolt appears not to realise
http://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com/

Tony Abbott – politician for sale, Barry Everingham, Independent Australia
Surely his anxiety is the future of tobacco industry funds being given to the Liberal party, which since 2004 has totalled $1.7 million (that we know of).
www.independentaustralia.net/.../

Liberals side with Big Tobacco? ,Gary Sauer-Thompson , Public Opinion
Abbott sides with Big Tobacco! That is where the relentless attack Gillard and her government on everything they do has lead him. So where is the political advantage in being seen to side with Big Tobacco?
www.sauer-thompson.com/.../liberals-side-w.php

Quigley and "gobbers" David Havyatt, Anything Goes
There is a perverted logic in arguing that a recruitment process should have identified a matter about someone for which they were NOT being investigated
http://davidhavyatt.blogspot.com/

Bolt reveals "how the media works" in his experience, Jeremy Sear, Pure Poison
Bolt pretends that it’s him who’s asking “tough questions” and it’s the powerful Greens who are holding the media hostage,
blogs.crikey.com.au/.../#more-10175

Conroy on NBN launch, Australian Politics TV
Video ABC, federal government, interview, national broadband network, NBN, Stephen Conroy
australianpoliticstv.org/.../

Press conference with Det Supt Brian Hay, Stilgherrian
head of the Fraud and Corporate Crime Group of the Queensland Police Service in relation to the arrest of Fairfax journalist Ben Grubb.
http://stilgherrian.com/

Tough Love or Kindness - a taxing dilemma, Ross Gittins
Tony Abbott and the Liberals have attacked these measures, condemning them as ''class warfare'' and ''the politics of envy''. Abbott has yet to say whether he will oppose them in the Senate, but his
www.rossgittins.com/.../...ess-taxing-dilemma.html

Live and let live - as long as it's elsewhere, Peter Martin
demand for housing in Melbourne is from people wanting to live in inner and middle suburbs.But resident opposition has blocked many redevelopment plans to house them.
http://www.petermartin.com.au/

RBA Board in disarray, Christopher Joye, Aussie Macro Moments
Glenn Stevens runs Australia's central bank, which is our single most important financial institution. It is
the backstop for the entire banking system, and exerts a decisive influence over the path of Australia's
$1.4 trillion economy. Stevens gets paid about $1m per annum
christopherjoye.blogspot.com/.../...ggerheads.html

Independent Rob Oakeshott says setting a carbon price is the priority, Independentinspections. Com
“We are now down to the raw, pragmatic, political end of the spectrum of how we get something through this parliament,” he told ABC Radio.
http://independentinspections.com.au/blog/?p=145

Senate Report highlights Tony Abbott's flawed Wild Rivers agenda , Media Newswire
“If the Coalition’s Bill was implemented, it would put 40 wild river ranger jobs at risk,” Ms Jones said. “Simply put, and as stated by the Committee, this Bill is worse than the first one introduced by the Coalition last year
http://media-newswire.com/release_1150027.html


Reading


In praise of The Book Grocer,  Tim Dunlop, B Sides
We have just moved to Melbourne.  Our books are still in storage, including the inevitable pile of unread ones. But you can't buy an iPad 2 for love nor money in Melbourne at the moment
tjd.posterous.com/in-praise-of-the-book-grocer

Supporting calls for Senate inquiry into a fairer distribution of health, Melissa Sweet, Croakey
The people are not declaring class war. The people are not envious. The people represent a caring compassionate community. Why won’t governments recognise that and draw on it?
blogs.crikey.com.au/.../

Time to put the clown hats away, Giles Parkinson
No, we’re not talking about Tony Abbott’s standing green army; although it is extraordinary to think that this idea still gets traction among the cynics, sceptics and ideologues that are attracted to the Opposition Leader’s peculiar brand of carbon demagoguery.
www.climatespectator.com.au/.../time-put-clown-hats-away

New solar product captures up to 95 percent of light energy , Nano Werk News
can harvest the heat from industrial processes and convert it into usable electricity. Their ambition is to extend this concept to a direct solar facing nantenna device capable of collecting solar irradiation in
the near infrared and optical regions of the solar spectrum
http://www.nanowerk.com/news/newsid=21372.php

lyn

May 19. 2011 08:27 AM

TalkTurkey

This isn't the post I mentioned last night, which I still haven't managed to rewrite, but it does relate to Malcolm Turnbull: I hope some of you have seen what he said to Tony Jones last night? Basically he is a sprung plank on the Liberal boat! This morning the Coalition will be in a state of panic, Turnbull WILL turn his back on the copper network any minute, you just watch, he looked awful last night, like he's lost all patience with Abbortt and he's not going to take it any longer. He looked sick and tired. He must be planning a spill or a sinking.  

TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 08:52 AM

lyn

Hi Talk Turkey

I watched lateline last night, Malcolm Turnbull is
stuck in the middle.  Turnbull said he is in favour
of dismantling the NBN, he said if he was the
Government he would do Broadband much more cost efficient,
in other words the old harpage of Cost Benefit Analysis,


Torn Turnbull reopens climate change wounds, ABC
He told Lateline last night he would not be drawn on how many billions the Coalition's policy would cost taxpayers, saying he would leave it for the Opposition's climate change spokesman, Greg Hunt, to identify.

"A direct action policy, where the government or industry was able to freely pollute, if you like, and the government was just spending more and more taxpayers' money to offset it, that would become a very expensive charge on the budget," he said.

www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2011/05/19/3220796.htm

lyn

May 19. 2011 08:55 AM

Ad astra reply

LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 09:12 AM

TalkTurkey

Janice
I've been loving your posts except for the ones where you tell of your pains and probs, where you have all our sympathy and best wishes. "Get over it or under it"? Your Mum was sort of Old School eh!

DMW NormanK's post immediately after mine last night re colour gives you a hint about what I meant too. There are two sets of colour primaries, the additives Red-Blue-Green as in your colour TV, and the subtractives, Magenta ('hot pink')- Cyan ('Guy Mitchell Blue'!!!) and Primrose (mid-yellow), as are the inks in your printer. When you 'add' beams of all 3 of the former on one area you get white, and various mixes give the entire spectrum; when you start with a white surface and use Magenta Cyan and Primrose in full intensity they produce
"process black", while various mixes likewise give the full spectrum. They are called 'subtractive' because each layer of colour you add cuts down the amount of light reflected from the original white surface. When I discovered this I showed a friend who air-brushes T-shirts, he used to use dozens of different inks, so he changed to just using 3 (plus aniline black) and he gets any colour he wants.

DMW You probably knew this, NK certainly does, but I wanted to share it with others.

As an example I only used 3 coloured pencils (Staedtler nos. 1 (yellow) 20 (magenta) and 37 (cyan) to create the original of my gravatar, plus much else.

Bring Back Maxine I saw your post on PB last night, top comment. Come back here Bring Back Maxine!

If the MSM had any decency they would be ripping into Abbortt and R.S.Hunt this morning but they have all but buried Turnbull's dummyspit. It won't stay buried though.  


TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 09:13 AM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       So just take mega doses of Fish Oil capsules then. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 09:14 AM

nasking

I like what I saw in Armidale yesterday.

Still pissed about the Malaysia swap.

Anyone who thinks they can ridicule & bully contributors into changing their views, including bashing teachers & their families who criticise aspects of government policy, is being foolish.

Malcolm Turnbull's comments on Lateline have ensured my wife & I will not vote Green then Liberal.

If the Coalition are primarily climate change sceptics w/ a dodgy quick exit plan who are not willing to take the NBN to yer home...well, then we have no use for them.

Labor has had a better week...getting out there more effectively...clearer messages...but still has more to do to earn our vote back. At present we intend to vote Green and then exhaust out vote.

Greens should not be taken for granted by Labor voters. Nor should teachers.

N'

nasking

May 19. 2011 09:21 AM

Ad astra reply

Folks
Following up on Lyn's post about Malcolm Turnbull on Lateline, if you missed it, the transcript and video is here: www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2011/s3220679.htm

The transcript is interesting, the video is absorbing.  He has tipped a bucket on the Coalition's Direct Action Plan for climate change.  Questions for the pundits: How will the media report it?  How will Tony Abbott react?

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 09:47 AM

janice

Fs,
I'll give it a go - thanks. Laughing:

So Ad astra, what do you think Malcolm is up to?  I have been getting vibes that the worms are starting to turn and Malcolm's interview reinforces my feelings that there is a stirring happening within a number of heads.

Then I read a comment the other day (heaven only knows where) that Ita Buttrose took someone to task for asking her opinion about the PMs woeful fashion sense.  Apparently Ita ended her admonishment with words to the effect that she is angry about the treatment of our PM and the disrespect she is shown by journalists, and said our PM should be addressed as Prime Minister on all occasions.

janice

May 19. 2011 10:08 AM

Feral Skeleton

  The money paragraph from Tim Dunlop's article:
    For example, the quality of political reporting would skyrocket if less attention was given to the endless dissection of polls.  Things would improve if journalists stopped interviewing each other, especially about trivia.  It would improve if they stopped framing stories as ‘he said/she said’ fairytales where nonsense is given equal weight to fact in the name of ‘balance’.  ABC Radio would raise the quality of its output simply by remembering that ‘The Opposition said...’ is not news when all the Opposition said was that something the government did was bad.

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 10:39 AM

Feral Skeleton

   I think the point that needs to be made here about the most important political news over the last 24 hours, viz:
* The mainland switch-on of the NBN
* The Hockey NPC Post-Budget SNAFU
* Turnbull dumping a bucket of merde on the Opposition's CC policy,
  is that the media hasn't actually 'buried' them per se, though they appear to have played a very dead bat to all of them. No, I think what is the more salient point is that they have not sensationalised any of it in the way that they would do if they chose to make them their particular bete noir. As they are doing with the 'Carbon Tax' to the exclusion of a discussion about how it is interwoven with Global Warming and Climate Change; and the 'Set Top Box' cause celebre, which totally ignores all the relevant facts of the matter, like the fact that Nick Minchin called for such a program 2 years ago, and it has been successfully rolling out ever since without incident ever since with Tony Abbott voting in favour of it then; also spuriously questioning Mike Quigley's bona fides as a way of tarnishing the lustre of the NBN; pushing the 'If China can make us, China can break us' meme, even though there is absolutely no proof of such a thing happening anytime soon; and finally, the tommy rot and nonsense that families on >$150,000/year aren't well-off enough to have a sliver taken off their Family Tax Benefit Supplement Payment.
   It just appears increasingly obvious that the 'News' is in the eye of the Editorial gatekeeper.

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 10:45 AM

Patricia WA

TT, agree about Turnbull last night - tired and looking very old.  He just could not seem to spout out all the Coalition lines for them.  I woke up early this morning hoping to see the Commentariat going crazy over that intervew. The dailies don't seem  to be running with it though does ABC News feature it front page.  I hope you're right and that it won't stay buried by the Coalition.  Like AA I'm  waiting to see how Abbott reacts. Maybe then we'll see how the media report it. Why couldn't the just respond to the interview?  It was a first rate, real story.  Almost Shakespearean in potential.

  

Patricia WA

May 19. 2011 10:46 AM

Feral Skeleton

Talk Turkey,
            I sympathise with your chagrin at losing a valuable comment into the internet ether(well, you and I think they're valuable anyway Smile ). Instead of writing in Notebook, what I have done when I had little faith in the comment box, was to just Copy & Save it before I hit 'Post Comment', then, if it got swallowed up, I still had to to try and submit again. Sometimes even, I have had to close the site and open it up in a new tab and repost again with my saved comment, whereupon it mostly goes through OK. Sometimes there are real problems, like with Grog and Andrew Elder recently, and they needed to be fixed up from their end, though still I found a workaround that worked about half the time. Other times, like sometimes with TPS, you just get an error message, and then you just have to wait for the problem to be solved elsewhere again.
   Paitience and prudence are a virtue with the internet I find. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 10:48 AM

Feral Skeleton

janice,
       Buy the 'Odourless Fish Oil Capsules'. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 10:49 AM

nasking

In regard to the carbon price, we worry that the ALP is not as convinced about climate change as The Greens and will put up a piss weak price w/ heaps of compensation for polluters.

And many people who didn't put one ounce of effort into changing from coal-powered energy to renewables etc. over the last few years will be rewarded w/ compensation...whilst those who have a household income over 50-60 grand and have put the effort in will get screwed over and be expected to cop the bulk of the cost.

Frankly, my wife & I are getting sick of seeing the rich & the irresponsible being bailed out time & time again.

And we are far from being the only ones to feel that way.

We don't mind paying another 15-40 bucks a fortnight if it achieves the desired goal...much more renewable/sustainable energy...but if the price is too low and the irresponsible & apathetic get much of the compensation, then we'll be pretty pissed.

If yer gonna reform then have the courage to get it right from the start. So far the ALP are all talk & hot air. Trying to play both sides of the fence.

N'

nasking

May 19. 2011 11:29 AM

NormanK

nasking
It's good to see you back. I hope your health is improving.
Somewhere above I remarked to D Mick Weir that I am wading through a sea of documents on the Malaysian deal. Time permitting, I will put together a synopsis of what I have found.

As an interim report can I just say (without using up the time and energy of quoting sources) that the more I read on this subject, the more convinced I become that this is only one plank in an ever-expanding framework which is being worked on by regional governments in conjunction with other governments world-wide and under the sceptical and critical eye of the UN and a large number of NGOs.

The Bali Process was started by the Howard Government and has grown to become a significant body dedicated to addressing the modern manifestation of irregular migration - refugees, asylum seekers, victims of people trafficking and so on.

When viewed within the broader context of what is trying to be achieved (and this may become a model for the rest of the world) the current reporting of the Malaysian deal sadly falls within the lazy habit of forcing every new announcement into an already existing narrative. No imagination or charity of thought that this might actually be the start of something big and good.

My reservation as I started my research was centred around 'what happens to the first people sent to Malaysia?' and until details are announced, it continues to be so. But I am not going to condemn a plan simply because at this point I don't know the details.

This scheme is coming under international scrutiny and unless one believes the Gillard government to be completely suicidal, it is not unreasonable to think that they will settle on oversight measures which will be rigid and accountable.

Getting the UNHCR into Malaysia where it can closely monitor that government's activities is surely a good thing.

The last point I would make is that this is nothing like the Pacific Solution where 'these people' were shipped off to some remote island - out of sight, out of mind and out of reach of appeal processes.

If the primary aim is to stop people getting on leaky old boats, this might very well work. It is not about being unwelcoming to asylum seekers. The so-called 'bad deal' of a five to one swap gives the lie to that.

On the carbon price, you should be rejoicing in the fact that you have already put in place your own household measures for mitigation.

The household compensation package will, of necessity, be relatively simple in design. If your neighbour has the same income as you but has made no changes to their lifestyle they will fairly quickly discover that the measures you have implemented are saving your household money and that you are pocketing those savings.

If as you say you have taken steps already then you will make a modest profit from the compensation while your neighbour only breaks even.

My best guess is that around $150,000 will be the cut-off point at which compensation either stops or begins to ramp down.

Reassure your loved ones - you will be compensated and may very well be better off.

Extra spacing just for you nasking.

NormanK

May 19. 2011 11:32 AM

lyn

Hi Janice

Off topic but necessary yack, yack.

Like you I hope I didn't put Ad Astra on the spot, I don't
think so.  Just as Patricia said it's harder getting the
message across in text than talking to people, just goes
back to perception of the reader.

Back to the fish oil.  My daughter has told me to take

"Fish Oil 1000MG Omega 3"

Now she says the Omega 3 is important, don't buy Omega 5,
it has to be Omega 3.

Woolworths have them in a large plastic container, 400
capsules not sure of the price now, as had mine for 6 months
or so.  I take 4 a day.  I think $10.00 or $20.00.

As Patricia said you can't beat fresh vegies. I bought an electric Tefal Steamer last year. It has 3 baskets.  
I just put, carrots, celery, capsicum, pumpkin, corn,
peas, beans, cabbage in other words everything in together.
Takes 25 mins for a full basket to steam at the last 8 minutes
I put the broccoli and spinach on top.  The steamer is about
40 or 50 dollars to buy.
Like Patricia my hair is thick and silky, grows very fast,
the hairdresser comes every 3 weeks,  I am not making
excuses for my typo's, but I have very long nails that are
incredibly strong.

One more thing I need to tell you, 12 months ago I bought
an electric foot massager.  It sits under my computer has 5 speeds, the vibrations go all over your body.
Absolutely fantastic, available at chemists everywhere. Really good for your knees, ankles, all joints.

The other excellent vitamin pills are, B complex and vitamin E
capsules.  I use capsules because they are easier to swallow.

I am worried about your pains Janice, so see how you go. The massager is available at Aldi's I believe for $49.00 but $200
for the chemist one, which is more complex ,like they have other added stuff like pulse cords for your arms, neck and shoulders.

Take care, cheers

lyn

May 19. 2011 11:38 AM

Ad astra reply

NormanK
Thank you for your erudite exposition on perception, brilliantly illustrated from your experience as a lighting designer.  We should read it over and again to keep our feet on firm political ground.  I repeat my question of yesterday: ‘Why are you not writing original pieces for TPS?’  One on perception would be a good place to start.

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 11:43 AM

Ad astra reply

janice, HS
While we continually look for straws in the wind that foretell a change of fortune for PM Gillard and her Government, in the fullness of time it might not be an exaggeration to mark May 18 as a turning point when the Abbott-led opposition began its decline.  I’m with you both on this.  

Yesterday we saw the switching on of the NBN in Armidale among fanfare from supporters including Tony Windsor who said: "Distance will be irrelevant in terms of education, health, aged care, business opportunities, location." and indicated it was time we got over the cost of the scheme.  Meanwhile Joe Hockey was reaffirming the Coalition’s intent to scrap it in government, while Malcolm Turnbull on Lateline expressed strong support for fast broadband but said the Coalition could do it cheaper.  Joe Hockey said the Government was giving Australians a Bentley when a Commodore was all they could afford.  Not such a smart analogy; given the choice, who would not pick a Bentley, especially when the government is paying.  The Coalition’s intent to ‘demolish’ the NBN is looking more inept by the day and the minister whose responsibility to do that has not got his heart in it.

Yesterday, May 18, we saw Joe Hockey give his budget speech to the NPC.  It is said to be no worse than last year’s, but it was during questions, more pointed and searching that usual, that Joe stumbled, blustered and became tetchy, even accusing one journalist of asking a question on behalf of Labor.  Several of his answers to key questions about double counting and black holes in the Coalition’s ‘savings’ were unconvincing, obfuscatory, and at times disingenuous.  Journalists there seemed to have prepared their questions well, and were dissatisfied with the answers, especially when Hockey fell back on the weary old ‘we stand by our numbers’. Several reported his discomfiture and ineptitude in their columns.

On May 18 Malcolm Turnbull appeared on Lateline and virtually bagged the Coalition’s Direct Action Plan to combat climate change by implying that its only virtue was that it could easily be halted if global warming turned out to be a myth or Australia decided to take no action on it.  Among other things he said: ”The Coalition's policy, as laid out by Tony Abbott and Greg Hunt, involves spending taxpayers' money, taking out of the budget, so many billions of dollars, to pay farmers in particular ... and declining to comment on the DAP he said: ”…you should ask Tony Abbott or Greg Hunt about it.  It is what it is. It is a policy where, yes, the Government does pick winners, there's no doubt about that, where the Government does spend taxpayers' money to pay for investments to offset the emissions by industry..  There it is for all to see and hear, the extreme difficulty Turnbull has in embracing the DAP over an ETS.  There will be unease in the Coalition today, but whether this festering abscess will erupt in the media depends on what the media wants.  I sense though that once such an abscess gets to such an intense state of inflammation, rupture soon follows.

So here we have three significant events that place Coalition policies, positions and statements in a poor light.  Will it bring about a decline in Coalition fortunes?  I sense it might, but you’d have to ask the Murdoch press.

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 11:58 AM

nasking

Norman,
I am digging deeply into my selfish side when it comes to money.

I wanted to understand how the Murdoch media think.

It's not hard being a scumbag. You just cater to yer fears, worries & tight-arsedness. Put everyone else second. It's about survival. Stuff all empathy.

When it comes to asylum seekers tho I could not get as selfish as the Murdoch types & shock jocks. That obviously takes a special kind of selfishness...something related to being a total fear-mongering sod based on doing the bosses wishes and in turn being hand a bag of coins for yer despicable acts on a regular basis.

It's good to see that the man w/ a career full of integrity, Bob Brown, has the courage to take on the Murdoch media & speak to truth...Brown is Gandalf to Murdoch's Sauron.

What does that make Samantha Maiden...and the other faux sincerity types like her?

And who was the squealer from 2UE?

N'

nasking

May 19. 2011 12:10 PM

lyn

Hi Ad

I don't think Malcolm Turnbull will be too happy about
his finances being splattered in the paper.  They never say anything about the logging though do they.


How Malcolm Turnbull made his fortune in the heady dotcom boom days , SMH

OzEmail and WorldCom split the difference on the company price. That was the moment the lawyer, who would become the federal opposition leader, reached the point he had been striving for. He had engineered the sale of OzEmail for $520 million and in the process had achieved his aim of making himself very rich indeed and winning a spot on that esteemed rich list.

Kate Askew's book Dot.Bomb Australia: How we wrangled, conned and argie-bargied our way into the new digital universe, will be out tomorrow. (Allen & Unwin, $35.)

www.smh.com.au/.../...oom-days-20110505-1e9kr.html

lyn

May 19. 2011 12:31 PM

janice

Oh Lyn, you are an absolute darling Tweety Bird!  Thank you.

I absolutely live on steamed vegies. Red meat once in a blue moon, fish and chicken fairly often as well as fresh salad vegies. There is no alcohol, sugar or added salt in my diet, I use an olive oil spread sparingly on my morning toast.  No dairy other than a tasty cheese and only about two eggs a week. My one vice is coffee because my stomach ejects tea almost as soon as it hits the bottom.  I think my diet is a healthy one. I also take short courses of vitamin B complex which I find help to overcome such things as a head cold or a dose of 'flu.

I will give the fish oil a go - if it does no good, at least it will do no harm.

Thank you PatriciaWA as well - sorry I missed your post and had to go back looking for it when Tweety mentioned it Smile


janice

May 19. 2011 12:39 PM

Feral Skeleton

Nasking,
         The 'squealer' was 'Andrew from The West Australian', being His Master's Voice'(Kerry Stokes, Big Gina, Twiggy, Mitch Hooke). Bob Brown knocked him into a cocked hat. My son and I were cheering the man of integrity on.
   As for your question about the situation the Asylum Seekers will find themselves in when they get taken back to Malaysia et al(which now includes PNG, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia), if you were also just listening to the PM's Press Conference from Adelaide, you would have heard a journalist ask her about just that topic. To which she replied, wtte, "Don't be silly, of course we are working towards making sure they will be looked after properly when they are taken back to another country for processing and putting to the back of the queue."
   As I said yesterday, there are 3 main reasons I support this policy.
1. It attempts to bust the People Smuggling Racket, in concert, it appears, with the UN and other countries in the region and the world.
2. Australia will end up taking 5 times more Humanitarian Asylum Seeker cases for resettlement here.
3. I am a passionate supporter of the Mong and the Karen, who have languished in Thailand and Malaysia for too long as wealthier Middle Eastern/Central Asian boat-borne Asylum Seekers have pre-empted them in getting to Australia and claiming Refugee status.
   All measures which are in stark contrast to Tony Abbott's Nauruan Penal Colony Solution.

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 12:43 PM

Feral Skeleton

lyn,
    Ouch! I don't expect Mr Turnbull will be at the Book Launch then? Smile
   Ad Astra is right, May 18 is the date we started to hear the wheels coming off the Coalition jalopy. Smile
   I wonder if an enterprising journalist will ask Mr Turnbull how many employees OzEmail had when it first started up compared to customers?

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 12:46 PM

Feral Skeleton

  Lulz from Twitter:
   Simon_Cullen Abbott says the cost of Weetbix will go up under a carbon tax. Govt says Oppn's climate policy would cost avg household 12,000 Weetbix

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 12:48 PM

nasking

I wonder if those who wet their beds nightly over the thought of China oneday invading Australia ever think about the amount of iron ore from here that is going to this capitalist authoritarian state and how much of it is being used for building weaponry?

Is our coal heating their barracks? Driving the machines that build their weapons?

Are we helping to build the juggernaut?

Profiting from feeding our future conqueror?

Yet Abbott and friends seem quite willing to nourish the miners and their cosy relationship w/ the dragon.

It seems fear-mongering can be overcome by moolah.

Perhaps the government should buy out the Murdoch media? Should a national paper called 'The Australian' be left in the hands of one man & his family...and their libertarian views?...or should 'The Australian' be a public organ...proudly representing the bulk of Australians...not just the bed wetters & Coalition hacks?

N'

nasking

May 19. 2011 12:52 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
What a fantastic set of links you have provided us with today.

Grog as usual was admirable, this time in the forensic way he dissected and cast into the waste bin some of the more ludicrous statements Joe Hockey made in his NPC speech when trying to make out Australia was not doing so well on its national indebtedness.  Grog seems to be able to dig out relevant figures, tables and graphs to argue his points with the devastating skill of a top barrister.

It really is worth a leisurely read to take it all in. grogsgamut.blogspot.com/.../...r-saudi-arabia.html

Then there was Tim Dunlop’s On journalism and fish milkshakes.a superb piece of writing about journalism from a journalist.  Everyone who has argued here that the media are exercising far too much control over what is promulgated through the media would enjoy his every word.  FS has already quoted some of them; the two sentences that resonated most with me were: “ You could almost say it is the key insight of the social media age: that politics cannot be understood separately from the way in which it is reported. And if that is the first, then the second key insight of the social media age is this: journalists don’t like criticism.

The perceptions that journalists bring to their reporting that NormanK so beautifully explained in his comment, their biases and preferences, profoundly influence how they see and report a story.  We have said this persistently but if Tim has got it right, the journos don’t want to listen – after all what would we amateurs know; they are the professionals!  He concludes with this advice to them: “ Just remember, we are your customers,..”  

Elsewhere Tim writes: ” For example, the quality of political reporting would skyrocket if less attention was given to the endless dissection of polls.  Things would improve if journalists stopped interviewing each other, especially about trivia.  It would improve if they stopped framing stories as ‘he said/she said’ fairytales where nonsense is given equal weight to fact in the name of ‘balance’.  ABC Radio would raise the quality of its output simply by remembering that ‘The Opposition said...’ is not news when all the Opposition said was that something the government did was bad.”  Bravo!  

He could have added that we are tired of the media playing ‘the endless game’ as if politics was a sporting contest: “Will Muscle-Man Abbott beat the Red Queen? And by how much?”

Read it all at: http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2718976.html

Then there was Andrew Elder’s Gasping for breath. He dissected the Coalition attitude to plain packaging of cigarettes and Joe Hockey’s NPC speech and went on to say” The economy and health are major issues, and the Coalition simply do not have any answers. You don't need big visions in Australian politics but you do need to get the basics right, and look like you can be trusted to get them right. The Coalition don't have that. That's why they don't have inexhaustible resources to keep at the government, to duck and weave and attack from different angles - because frankly, if the government plug away at the economic fundamentals they can and will turn their fortunes around. Abbott and Hockey just can't keep up.

He gave us a delightful acronym for Tony Abbott – FUD – fear, uncertainty and doubt.  We could align Abbott with Elmer Fudd if we added ‘deception’.  But Elmer was quite a likeable character so let’s stick to FUD – Tony FUD Abbott.  And before anyone objects, is that as bad a JULIAR?
andrewelder.blogspot.com/.../...-today-we-saw.html

And there were many others Lyn, about the NBN, Abbott, Bolt, another sound article by Rodd Gittins, this time on welfare: www.rossgittins.com/.../...ess-taxing-dilemma.html a good article by Peter Martin on housing, http://www.petermartin.com.au/ where you will also find the interview of Malcolm Turnbull on Lateline and an informative comment about the Budget and the Westpac Melbourne Institute survey, as well as a lot of other reading.

Again thank you Lyn for giving us so much to reflect on and comment upon.

PS, I wonder how the piece on how Malcolm Turnbull made his money got into the press at all.  What was the motivation?

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 12:58 PM

TalkTurkey

THE LIBERAL LIARS ARE #***ed!

It's all blowing up in their faces!

REMEMBER: Last weekend, FS and many others despairing of Labor!

Yesterday, HOCKEY BLOWS UP at Press Club Lunch!

Meanwhile Gillard Conroy and the genial wise co-saviour* of Australian democracy Tony Windsor look terrific at NBN launch Armidale! Kids smiling, *JU*L*I*A* having a ball, all good.

Last night on LateLine, Malcolm Turnbull was amazing! I don't even know how to describe him last night - tired, weird, sick of it all, but defiant re his earlier stand on climate change (and it's NOT just that, it's related matters too), especially he knows he's gazzumped on NBN and he didn't believe what he was made to say by Abbortt anyway. He dumped on Hunt good.


*(Co-other IndepandAnts but most especially Bob Oakeshott the most courageous of all for his stand. Australia can never thank him in particular enough. Because I think we've really won now.)

Today, BOB BROWN BITES BACK! Never such a poke at the Murdoch media in all my life! Bob has given notice that he's not going to take it any more! Another one spitting the dummy at Abbortt! HOORAY BOB! ENCORE!


ATM the PM in Adelaide jubilant, glowing, on my TV! YUMMM!
As I write she's about to take questions.

YOU CAN'T HEAR THE #***ING QUESTIONS AGAIN!

But you can sure hear HER! IN CHARGE! Whoopeee!  
"A very important 24 hours in Australian politics" says she.
Slingshots a rude (inaudible) question straight back at one journo, denying its veracity outright. The tide has turned, NOBODY's gonna take it any more!

Rang Penny Wong's office 1 minute ago re inaudible questions  to ask them there to complain to Conroy about the ABC failing in their charter -
Told woman that the questions were inaudible. Flat denial: "Well I can hear them!" (She said she had the ABC PM interview on 'in the background') Ichallenged her to tell me if she could hear the nextr question, "er sort of" BULLSHIT! she couldn't it wasn't audible and my hearing is GOOD. So then I got "Complain to the ABC!" about 3x + "I can hear that you're passionate about this" until I rang off. NFG.  

Abbortt on presser at inSanemporium now.
They are Seventh Day Adventists isn't it?
And they are tax-reduced or is it exempt?

Abbortt still makes me sick. Hollow. Witless. But he's GONE.
The Media is starting to get the taste of HIS blood.

Oh yeah the British (Conservative) Government has done a big thing for the world but most especially for the Australian Government. Even that blonde sycophant Melissa on ABC24 can see that. Abbortt is behind the curve now.  

Oh yeah and there are other Asian nations interested in taking refugees for processing (don't like that term much but oh well),and you know, Australia MUST do SOMEthing! Even I am not proposing an open borders policy, I wish there were FEWER people EVERYwhere) (and I'm betting there WILL be by 2050!) But the refugees are a fact of savage times, and they don't vaporise, so I think Bowen is doing the very best thing that can be done. The Government will be able to use its influence then to insist on proper standards of refugees' temporary incarceration, and that must be seen to. But it sounds like a rational strategy in an intractible situation, to which there IS no perfect solution anyway.  

Aw gee it's midday.

Well finally for now then, one more point. NormanK said wtte effect that 'red' is in the eye of the beholder. (No pun intended.) But it really doesn't impinge on my hostile and immediate condemnatory comments regarding the boorish ABC bully-boy Uhlmann: repeated deliberate disruptive interruptiveness is everywhere reviled in civilized society, and his effort on Bob Brown was the worst EVER in my experience. I didn't need any time whatsoever to see red then!
- And Bob Brown's finally lashing out at such as he shows just what he thinks too. Bravo Bob.

Recaptcha: chaplains, tornin (little pieces?)
  

TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 01:13 PM

nasking

"The 'squealer' was 'Andrew from The West Australian', being His Master's Voice'(Kerry Stokes, Big Gina, Twiggy, Mitch Hooke)."

Feral,
the man is a dipstick looking for a cheap story. He represents everything wrong w/ our shonky media these days. Putting the public interest last for personal gain. Licking the talons of his masters...a snarky sycophant.

As for the Malaysian stuff...I doubt the PM can guarantee their safety...I can't help but feel the 800 are going to become sacrificial lambs.

I like the idea of more asylum seekers bein' resettled...but I can't shrug off this feeling that sending the 800 to Malysia will end up disastrous. One returned refugee beaten to death and the humanitarian effort is tainted...the Murdoch media & friends & copycats feeding on it like scavengers on entrails.

To think that we are willing to send back the courageous...those willing to suffer the journey of raging seas...and cope w/ the fear of possible oblivion, already having been subjected to gawd knows how many trials and tribulations on their long journey from their homes searching for the new land...to be turned back after such a journey...by a country willing to take in just about any millionaire that waves the dosh...no matter how privileged and boots on the desk they are...it sickens me at heart.

What foul creatures have we become in this country that we are willing to slap down courage & conviction & hope...in order to appease bed wetters...whilst we lick the boots of the mighty who pay their way thru the ENTRY GATE.

If that's the "middle" then call me a "Green clown"...I'll wear the costume proudly...knowing I'm not part of the wicked carnivale that this way comes.

N'

nasking

May 19. 2011 02:30 PM

Ad astra reply

TT
I love your enthusiasm and share it.

nasking
Welcome back.

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 02:33 PM

nasking

So, the strength of the Coalition's Real Action plan is that it can be "unwound quickly".

So, if the economic times call for "austerity measures" does this mean that Abbott/Hockey's programs for healthcare & broadband rollout can also be "unwound quickly" too?

How can anyone trust the Coalition now when it looks like they offer promises/plans based on buying voters rather than their real beliefs?

Not good. Turnbull has let the cat outa the bag...and no contortionist acts by way of media interviews by Liberal pollies & other bitter politicians spurned by the voters can change that.

The Coalition are not "true believers"...they are merely actors on a stage.  

N'

nasking

May 19. 2011 02:45 PM

TalkTurkey

Ad astra
I love your enthusiasm too! What else is there? All else is pallid insipid and lukewarm!

TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 02:56 PM

nasking

Cheers Aa.

The long & winding road. Smile

Immersing oneself in the psych & environment of yer enemy can be quite thrilling...but calls for a real act of catharsis once you enter the land of light again.

Still, sometimes it's useful to show the government what dwells in darkness...so they know what to expect...and why creatures become so deformed.

I would kindly remind other bloggers & contributors who know me to judge me on the entirety of my output...and not forget that sometimes there is method in the madness. Smile

BTW, how pathetic is the American ABC news to promote some poor delusional, brainwashed kid who thinks he's seen heaven over a great thinker like Stephen Hawking?

If only we had a time machine so we could send the young lad back to 1665 London...so he could witness firsthand what prayer did for those w/ plague.

Then have him meet Gerhard Domagk & his team in 1932...and then  Ernst Chain, Howard Florey, and Alexander Fleming...learn about antibiotics...

then send him back to the 1860 Oxford evolution debate...

so he may put foolishness to bed.

N'

nasking

May 19. 2011 03:00 PM

lyn

Hi Talk Turkey

You won't like the blogg site of this link, but like me
you will think it's a juicy read:

Treacherous Turnbull
Andrew bolt nails MP Malcolm Turnbull’s treachery.
No one is asking Malcolm Turnbull to repudiate his global warming faith. But the Liberals are entitled to ask that, as is convention with front-benchers on both sides, that he stick to talking about his own portfolio and stop running down his team’s collective position in others.

Yet here he is on Lateline, where he spelled out at length his admiration of the British Conservative Prime Minister’s much more extreme (and utterly unachievable) global warming policies

Normally, this is a sackable offence, especially for a repeat offender.Update:

Some coalition members are becoming restless.

COALITION MPs have condemned Liberal frontbencher Malcolm Turnbull's critical assessment of the party's climate policy, describing him as a "disgrace" and "off on a frolic".

Why the Liberals let the member for Goldman Sachs back into the tent is just mind boggling.

Andy Semple


www.menzieshouse.com.au/.../...erous-turnbull.html

lyn

May 19. 2011 03:03 PM

NormanK

lyn
Further praise for the messenger. The article on 'nantennas' brought most welcome news - almost as good as Turnbull pouring a bucket on the DAP.
New solar product captures up to 95 percent of light energy
Efficiency is a problem with today's solar panels; they only collect about 20 percent of available light. Now, a University of Missouri engineer has developed a flexible solar sheet that captures more than 90 percent of available light, and he plans to make prototypes available to consumers within the next five years.
http://www.nanowerk.com/news/newsid=21372.php

It is advances like these, which we must be ready to embrace at very short notice, which make it imperative that we move to a renewable energy economy. In some ways it doesn't matter what renewable we use in the very short-term because the reduction in dependence on dirty energy means we will be better placed to quickly exploit this type of advancement.
Go you good scientists.

NormanK

May 19. 2011 03:16 PM

Jason

Hi Lyn,
      I put on the tin foil hat and went to menzies house to have a read,and such is the outrage of this "treachery" so far 7 thats right seven have made a comment,Bolt on the other hand has 191 comments!
On a more pleasent note I'm off to the community cabinet meeting this evening in my seat of Makin.

Jason

May 19. 2011 03:16 PM

lyn

Hi NormanK

Glad you liked that article.  I thought it was incredibly interesting.

Go you good scientists.

We would never do without the valuable, amazing work of
the scientists.

NormanK your comments this morning are delightful as usual,
but somehow more so this morning, something good has
happened to inspire the best ever in your brilliant brain.

Is it the work you are doing on the Malaysian deal?

My reservation as I started my research was centred around 'what happens to the first people sent to Malaysia?' and until details are announced, it continues to be so. But I am not going to condemn a plan simply because at this point I don't know the details.


Norman K In my links, I think it was over the last weekend in the reading section, there was a link to a horrifying story
on what happens in Malaysia, wonder did you read the blog.

Ad Astra I see, has asked about your writing for TPS again,
are you saying anything, not putting you on the spot of course ,
(not much).

Cheers
Lyn

lyn

May 19. 2011 03:26 PM

lyn

Hi Ad

Our TPS friend David Horton seems to be getting
better everyday.  I see David has had a few get
well wishes in his comments on his article yesterday:

Here is David's article today for our enjoyment:

Blowing in the wind, David Horton, The Watermelon Blog

The environment needs the old Hippocratic oath applied to it – first do no harm. After that make all the profit you like. Henry Bolte believed in the reverse, but then he believed in hanging people too. Times are a changing, aren’t they?

davidhortonsblog.com/.../

lyn

May 19. 2011 03:58 PM

Patricia WA

Lyn,  Bolt may describe Turnbull as treacherous but isn't this a better fit?

Turnbull Malcontent?

What is the reason for his discontent?
What troubles lie in his bosom buried?
Is Malcom Turnbull now a man intent
On casting off a burden too long carried?

Is acceptance of that poisoned chalice,
That task to destroy the NBN,
Which Abbott offered out of malice,
Causing him to wish he could resign again?

He knows that pulling up established fibre
Reminds of books once by fascists burned,
Sure to alienate many a subscriber,
Have voters back to ALP returned.

So he contradicts his colleague, Joe,
Clearly speaks against the party line.
This has his audience spellbound to know
Does the ‘Honorable’ Mal want to resign?

Last night, world weary, mood odd and strange,
Head and heart still loyal to an ETS,
Loath to back Abbott’s craziness on climate change,
One sensed, if asked directly, he would have answered, “Yes!”

Patricia WA

May 19. 2011 04:11 PM

Ad astra reply

Patricia WA
Thank you for your clever poem – I think you have really hit the mark.  Remember the glimpses of Malcolm Turnbull’s face when watching Tony FUD Abbott’s Budget speech in reply.  It portrayed dismay, even disgust.  I think he has had enough of the conservatives that threw him out, and the fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) Abbott spews out every day.

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 04:19 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
Thanks for the link to ‘nanowerk’.  It illustrates what magic lies ahead. It is only the unimaginative who cannot envisage the future.  FUD Abbott is constrained by his conservatism and lack of imagination in so many areas.  He cannot see the enormous potential for FTTP very fast broadband, and will not see the danger of pollution.  David Horton comment on his Watermelon blog about Henry Bolte, could just as easily apply to Abbott.

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 04:27 PM

Ad astra reply

nasking
I read your message.  You are back, literally.

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 04:39 PM

Ad astra reply

Jason
The Menzies House website still has only seven comments and not all are anti-Turnbull.  Andrew Bolt is obviously livid at Malcolm Turnbull putting a spoke in the wheel of the Coalition that Bolt is promoting so fervently as the next government.  As I have no yearning to check how many comments are adorning Bolt’s blog now, I’ll leave it to you to keep count.  You must have stronger stomach than I have - I turned off Bolt's blogs ages ago!

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 04:40 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
We're out for the evening but will be back tomorrow.

Ad astra reply

May 19. 2011 07:17 PM

janice

Below is a comment I lifted off JTI's blog - just for your interest.

darren of Brentford
Thu 19 May 11 (02:10am) An open letter to Joe Hockey:
Dear Joe, we know youre a bit dim and all that but do try and keep up. The government had a shot at equalising the economic mess caused by the mining boom. It was called the mining rent tax and it was a good idea. Ask Ken Henry if you dont believe me. He probably knows a thing or two about economics. But your guys screwed the pooch and blew it all up. Good politics for Tony but bad economics. Apparently a year on youve started to get a dim appreciation of that fact. If you were a little bit informed about these things you would have known that a fair while ago - but look where not knowing anything about the economy has got you. The very top of the ladder! The secret of your success is that youre just like Santa Claus - fat and jolly and enjoys handing out unnecessary gifts to middle class kiddies. And everyone likes Santa Claus, so everyone likes you. So why start having a clue now when youve done so well with the schtick so far?!
And heres another little tip, Joe, keep it quiet though. Its this: if you go handing out money to all the kiddies then they spend it on stuff. And that makes all that stuff more expensive. So after a while all the boys and girls find that they cant afford that stuff anymore. Then the middle class kiddies get unhappy and you have to fire up donner and blitzen and prancer and dancer and ......that other one with the red nose - and go and deliver even MORE presents. That ringing any bells there Joe? Gee, judging by the size of the space between your ears those ringing bells must sound like being inside f.....ing Notre Dame at Matins. And here’s my final bit of advice to you, Joe; its time to go old son. Time for that big political rest at the north pole. Youve done your time. Youve proved youre not up to it. Time to go, Joe…

janice

May 19. 2011 09:01 PM

TalkTurkey

What a beaut day, watching at last the Coalition get a dose of what they have handed out to the Government for years!

I was going to rewrite the post I lost last night, but the water under the bridge started flowing so fast that it's far out to sea now. Instead I'll just explain and precis what it was about, because it was so germane at the time,it blows me out now!

It was an Open Letter to Malcolm Turnbull MHR.

I started in Attack Turkey mode, telling him that really I didn't hold him in high esteem, indeed the reverse.

I mentioned some of the many things he has been involved in which stamp him as perfidious and, yes, quite despicable.

He profited hugely by a giant clear-felling logging operation in, erm, I forget which poor country, but I don't forget the dirty deed.

As ?chairman? of the republican movement organization, he was in my opinion Howard's stalking horse to sabotage it, running with the hare and hunting with the hounds, (O my mixomametafors!)so here we are still thinking of the #***ing QUEEN as MUMMY!

He was ?chairman? of AusFlag, the organisation trying for a fair flag design, and they ended up asking him to resign! I don't know why but I'll back my judgment it was something pretty low.

Then years later he joined the OTHER SIDE, I forget their title, who want to keep the present flag! No bull! (well, TURN-bull, yes) So now, not only Mummy Queen, we still have to fly that alien striped nappy as our flag!
Just to stroke the sicko fancy of the born-to-rule-and-be ruled privileged Right.

Then there was the way he bullied his way into Parliament, using his grotesque ill-gotten wealth as a bludgeon to remove the popular and resentful local sitting Member, Peter King, in a member-stacking coup which Anthony Green, if memory serves me, called 'amazing'.
  
And of course there was the Goblin Grech affair. Here I told Turnbull that not only was he a very stupid dirty low-down lying creep, but also, along with that miserable spiteful failure Abetz, that imo he was guilty of criminal conspiracy, fraud, incitement to procure illegally-accessed Government documents, and all in all he ought in a fair Australia to be behind bars for a pretty fair stretch.

But at least he got rolled as LOTO, as he so richly deserved.

BUT . . . Then I rearranged my plumage and changed my tone. I said it was a classic irony that the creature that succeeded him would be this unspeakable wrecker Abbortt. Even the Liberals couldn't believe what they'd done (by ONE VOTE!) and have had their hearts in their mouths ever since, if truth be known, knowing that the fool could crash and burn more or less anytime.

So they have clustered close around him like a protective coating to prevent that happening, which has made the situation ever worse, because when he finally does blow up,  he's going to take a lot of colleagues' reputations with him, like fragments flying from the shattering shell of a big bomb. I could name many of those persons right now, and so, Dear Reader, can you. They will be no loss, they are moral maggots in the rotting coalition corpse. But they will splatter spectacularly, I predict.  

But oddly enough, I told Turnbull, for all his perfidy and stupidity, I think that he is of better stuff than all those Abbortt sycophants, of whom he has kept pretty-well clear. He is intelligent more than he is stupid, and he understands more than he has been able to give voice to on Abbortt's front bench as official wrecker of the NBN. Which btw was the dumbest thing, surely, he's ever done, letting himself be sucked into that poisoned chalice. He knows the facts on climate change, he knows we must have accounting for carbon pollution, and he has in general an ability to comprehend stuff. Unlike Abbortt. And completely unlike Abbortt too, he was prepared to put his position on the line on a matter of principle. An iridescent Turkey feather for that!

So for all his faults, I say, there is something in Turnbull to work with. He has stumbled and bumbled, but had he been in Government, in a portfolio that suited his undoubted talents, he might have been a great success. And he might yet, if things go all his way from now on.  

There's the nub of it: If he wants to achieve anything  worthwhile, he has to make a clear and plain break with the Rabid Right. He must manifestly espouse decency and reason. And there is only one way for him to start, and that is by resigning from his toxic ersatz portfolio, and going to the back bench, admitting the failure of the Coalition's idiotic campaign against the NBN, and trying to contribute something useful in such matters as how to handle refugees, and coping with climate change and carbon pollution. He would immediately draw a lot of support from the sensible parts of his party and from the People. He might even become Prime Minister in a respectable Government one day. But not if he stays put. I was encouraging him to jump.

All this I was about to send as an open letter to Turnbull less than 24 hours ago as I write. But sink me, he gazzumped me, almost right on top of when I wrote that Open Letter to him and lost it to cyberspace, and now it is all redundant, he has already moved!

And Labor has had such a great day! The whole political landscape has changed since I wrote that lost letter.  

Abbortt is a dead duck that is just too stupid to know it.

Malcolm Turnbull, redeem yourself!

Australia, oddly enough, needs you!
            

TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 09:02 PM

D Mick Weir

NormanK @ 12:26 AM
Apologies for dely in replying, have only just extricated myself from that other life.

Eleven and a half out of ten for the correct answer to that question Smile

TT @ 12:26 AM interesting both of you commented at same time!
NormanK came up trumps with his answer Smile

D Mick Weir

May 19. 2011 09:07 PM

Feral Skeleton

   Going back to read everyone's contributions made since my modem went on the blink. I don't know what the future holds. I hope the gods are smiling on me. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 09:19 PM

lyn

Hi Talk Turkey

I am so glad your comment didn't go out to sea this time.
Brilliant work, thankyou Talk Turkey.

along with that miserable spiteful failure Abetz, that imo he was guilty of criminal conspiracy, fraud, incitement to procure illegally-accessed Government documents, and all in all he ought in a fair Australia to be behind bars for a pretty fair stretch.

Who could ever forget "Utegate", Turnbull was so sure he
was going to have Kevin Rudd sacked, ego over brain sure.

Well I make my cup of tea and lined up for the 7.30pm report,
nice and comfortable, ready to hear a well prepared report on the daily happenings of the Turnbull Bucket Tipping.

First, Syria, next, Peak Oil/Fuel prices, next, Queens speech in Ireland (I really didn't mean to say the Queen was boring)
next the highlight! a Circus.  Nothing not a crumb, not a morsel, not a whisper, of Turnbull dumping on his leader.
No interview, what a show.

Can we stand our ABC  "no we can't".

lyn

May 19. 2011 09:21 PM

BSA Bob

Amusing to watch Abbott in front of the WeetBix Wall saying Turnbull was in agreement with his rag of a policy & then request any questions but not on THAT subject. Arrogant sod. I remember during the election an ABC announcer cheerily told us that Gillard had to answer 15 (or was it 16?) questions about her & Rudd before getting onto policy discussions. Tony obviously lacking that sort of courage.

BSA Bob

May 19. 2011 09:24 PM

D Mick Weir

Jason @ 12:19 AM
never good to hear about people losing jobs.

It does illustrate a dilema though. I want low beer prices AND I want to protect jobs. Hmmm, which is more important? Most people would think of their own best interest and would probably go for cheaper beer.

D Mick Weir

May 19. 2011 09:44 PM

Feral Skeleton

   I'm enjoying Andrew Bolt's discomfiture at being wedged between the rock of David Cameron's Conservatives in England and their brave stance wrt Climate Change policy, and the hard place Malcolm Turnbull put the Coalition in last night on Lateline.
   Comes a time in some men's lives, ie Abbott & Bolt, when their words ring hollow, as they have been exposed as 2-bit Emperors without clothes.
  

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 10:00 PM

Jason

Youngest Daughter(12) and went to the Community Cabinet tonight! in my seat Of Makin.
A fairly good night, some people shouldn't be allowed to vote, but there didn't seem to be the angry folk  that Abbott says are out there.
Not one question on the "broken promise" mainly questions about the big three jobs, health and education.
Although on woman did draw the attention of the PM to how we should stop immigration as it had failed just about everywhere and "they" just weren't "like" us she said in her Scottish brogue.
Despite that and another woman worried about the "one world government" a good night.

Jason

May 19. 2011 10:09 PM

Feral Skeleton

BSABob,
       Of course the invitation to the Sanitarium factory for Abbott came in the wake of the government's Budget move to start taxing the profits of the money-making enterprises of the Prosperity Gospellers, such as Hillsong Church(Gloria Jeans), and the Seventh Day Adventists(Sanitarium). Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 10:19 PM

Feral Skeleton

PatriciaWA,  
           'He knows that pulling up established fibre
Reminds of books once by fascists burned,'

  For mine, your best lines ever.
They have such a resounding resonance that, like the best of Shakespeare, they can be savoured by the brain again and again, as the ramifications of those lines rebound along all the tangents that spring from them.

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 10:37 PM

TalkTurkey

DMW said
"TT @ 12:26 AM interesting both of you commented at same time!
NormanK came up trumps with his answerSmile"

erm . . . DMW . . .
                     Which answer was that?

TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 10:40 PM

D Mick Weir

FS @ 10:09 PM
Gloria Jeans owns Hillsong?
I think that is another urban myth. I would need to check back but as I much as I recall is that GJ's was started by to members of Hillsong. It is now a franchise business and, to the best of my knowledge, you don't have to be a Hillsong member to buy a franchise.

D Mick Weir

May 19. 2011 10:52 PM

Feral Skeleton

DMW,
     Elders of Hillsong Church are the Franchisors of all Gloria Jeans outlets.

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 10:53 PM

D Mick Weir

FS,
I should have gone straight to Wikepedia before I wrote the above. Seems I was wrong.

Gloria Jean's Coffees was founded by Gloria Jean Kvetko in 1979 in Chicago, USA.
...
In 1995, Nabi Saleh and Peter Irvine,[1]former Managing Director of advertising agency DDB Needham, visited the United States to sample the Gloria Jean's Coffees brand. Saleh and Irvine identified the opportunity for this brand in Australia, purchasing the international licensing rights from Diedrich Coffee, Inc.
...
Nabi Saleh and Peter Irvine are prominent, active members of Hillsong Church.
Gloria Jean's Coffees used to sponsor what was a Hillsong-related initiative Mercy Ministries, a pro-life charity.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gloria_Jean%27s_Coffees

And that last sentence probably explains why the urban myth arose.

D Mick Weir

May 19. 2011 10:55 PM

Feral Skeleton

  jj has been unusually quiet these last 24 hours. Smile

Feral Skeleton

May 19. 2011 10:59 PM

TalkTurkey

FS
I liked Patricia WA's rhyming 'fibre' with 'subscriber'.
I wonder how many times that's ever been done?

TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 11:03 PM

D Mick Weir

TT,
technical point I guess, NK didn't answer the question but he asked the right question of my question. i.e. Additive or subtractive?

I did type that before I had time to continue reading comments and getting to your comment @ 09:12 AM

Note I did preface the question with Trick question Smile

D Mick Weir

May 19. 2011 11:24 PM

D Mick Weir

I've been musing on the latest 'turn' by Mr Turnbull.

MT must be very confident of his position on the oppososition frontbench to be saying the sort of things he has been saying over the last two days.

Brendan Nelson was leader for 9 months after the election of Rudd. It has been about nine months since the last election. Maybe the numbers are starting to align for MT.

Hmm, methinks it is time for a cup of tea so I can read the leaves Smile

D Mick Weir

May 19. 2011 11:27 PM

TalkTurkey

DMW
I thought I must have missed something.
Actually there was only one answer to your question, it wasn't really tricky. It was 'green'. But you thought we'd say yellow didn'ya! That's what most people are mistaught.

And also that there is a secondary colour called 'indigo', the i in roygbiv, which was royal purple, a dye made from Nile shellfish which I believe were fished to extinction in ancient times. Could be wrong about that. But ROYGBV is closer to a convincing colour spectrum.

I am fascinated by our colour perception. We are blessed to have it. Most mammals see only a couple of colours, some only b/w. We have two kinds of light-sensitive receptors in our retina, rods and cones; rods only interpret light or not-light, and then we have two kinds of cones, some sensitive to red-end light, some to blue-end, and the reason yellow seems so bright is that it switches on both types of cone! Ain't it wonderful, and I do mean that sincerely.
"Momma don't take my Kodachrome away!" (Paul Simon)

TalkTurkey

May 19. 2011 11:46 PM

D Mick Weir

Bleedin' tea bags, they really make the art of reading the leaves difficult.

Anyway, I saw a butterly and a pig in the leaves. So it looks like pigs might fly.

Mr Turnbull lasted for a little over year after Nelson. Will there be someone else to lead the opposition before Turnbull gets another go? But, who?

D Mick Weir

May 19. 2011 11:55 PM

D Mick Weir

TT,
that Roy G Biv bloke sure did mess things up.

When you look at it you can see why people think yellow is a primary colour. In subtractive mixing red minus yellow = orange, yellow minus blue = green and so R o Y g B possibly causes some of the misconception.

Just a thought

D Mick Weir

May 19. 2011 11:55 PM

TalkTurkey

DMW
My brother used to be a pig who made the butter fly . . .

TalkTurkey

May 20. 2011 12:41 AM

Patricia WA

TT - I shouldn't think many people are writing verse about fibre optic cable and subscribers thereto!   Nice to think it could have been a world first though! Gee, your mind takes you into some funny places!

Only three possibilities presented - tiber - scriber - cyber -  of which I thought the last had the most potential, cyber space and all that.  Then suddenly subscriber fell onto the page.  Just when I was cussing that Caesar had crossed the Rubicon and not the Tiber!'

DMW - Had the thought occurred that Turnbull might be hoping that Abbott will push him off his front bench, or someone move to expel him from the party?  Great way to end his parliamentary career, on the cross benches, as a martyr for the environment.   Eventually he'd become an Aussie saint or better still live on to be our first Republican President.

Patricia WA

May 20. 2011 01:19 AM

TalkTurkey

O Boy

"Abbortt backs Turnbull on Carbon Price"

He reckons Turnbull supports him!

How can he say anything else?

His is a lose-lose end game.

Abbott's Budgie will be much reduced!Smile

And not in a nice place right now!Smile

Poor little thing!Smile

Very seriously: How quickly Abbortt's house of cards is collapsing! and we still have more than 2 years and 3 months left to huff and puff and blow it down. Should be plenty!

I've said before that we mustn't be too effusive in our praise of Turnbull. He is still very much the Enemy. But he is not a mug, and if we had to live under a Coalition government let it not be Abbortt's. Just seeing TA squirm and get ousted will be shangri-la won't it! Then it can only be TB won't it, there's no-one else really, Hockey's a joke, Morriscum will try, so will R.S.Hunt, none will have >1/2 the party first vote, the latter two would only take the coalition further from its almost sensible core, which is where TB is. Whoever it is - and I'm pretty convinced that Abbortt is mortally wounded, even if he dies a slow death (which would be delicious and most helpful to the Government cause) - we must be ready to switch our attack, new boss will be not the same as the old one but still an enemy. If Abbortt is still there though, we'll devour him. Not that there's much nutrition there, he's hollow.

I think that the Fifth Estate is a significant part of the Force that is stiffening the resolve of *J*U*L*I*A* and Bob Brown, and Windsor, and other Government warriors, to take the MSM on, and to bring Abbortt down.

We're Magic! Never believe it's not so!

Is there any better feeling than chadenfreude?      

TalkTurkey

May 20. 2011 09:51 AM

Ad astra reply

Folks
Apologies for the TPS server being down since early morning.  It's working again now and ready for your comments.

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 10:08 AM

lyn




TODAY'S LINKS

Who decides what's news?, Andrew Elder, Politically Homeless
Greg Jericho is a better writer than Annabel Crabb. He explains important issues in an interesting way.
Crabb is flippant about everything, great or petty,
andrewelder.blogspot.com/.../...ws-further-to.html

Just Desserts….With Cream & Nuts, Neil Cook, The Bannerman
The Australian makes an issue of there being just a “magnificent seven” clients signed up in Armidale.
As if that’s the result of the best sales job Govt, NBN or the individual ISPs could manage
www.waddayano.org/.../...ssertswith_cream_nuts.php

Fair and Balanced. The Conscience Vote
one journalist repeatedly interrupted Brown, describing his answers as ‘political gobbledygook’. She didn’t preface this with the phrase, ‘With respect, Senator …’, which usually accompanies a criticism.
consciencevote.wordpress.com/.../

Oh Terry – Herpes and the Herald Sun Dave Gaukroger, Pure Poison
Government policy is now to be rated by comparisons to sexually transmitted diseases in the Herald Sun. Terry’s reason for this colourful comparison?
blogs.crikey.com.au/.../

The Brown Approach, Richard Farmer, The Stump
Goodness knows what the headline writer had in mind because Bob Brown’s only promised return is to Canberra.
http://blogs.crikey.com.au/thestump/

The Media Can't Be Trusted To Tell The Truth", Darryl Mason, The Orstrahyun
one of the biggest problems gouging away at the credibility of mainstream media today is not solely a lack of journalists,
or highly skilled journalists, but the Deadline Now! atmosphere of 24 hour breaking news on TV, on radio, and online.
http://theorstrahyun.blogspot.com/

Party line or Lateline? Turnbull’s Tory temptation, Andrew Macintosh, The Conversation
It’s going to be a big issue and there’s still going to be a divide between Turnbull and the more conservative side of the Liberal Party.It’s going to be one of the issues that lies behind
theconversation.edu.au/.../party-line-or-lateline-turnbulls-tory-temptation-1965

Fingers Crossed, The Libs May Not Be Able To Destroy The NBN After All, Nick Broughall,  Gizmodo
Make no mistake though – if the coalition can’t cancel the network and it does get completed under their leadership, they’ll do everything they can to take credit for it…
www.gizmodo.com.au/.../

Will Turnbull put his money where his 3G is? David Braue, ZNet
If Malcolm Turnbull takes out that bloody iPad one more time during an NBN interview, I'm going to break something.
www.zdnet.com.au/...-where-his-3g-is-339313929.htm

Give Armidale numbers a chance, says Conroy, Renai LeMay,Delimiter
Conroy said NBN Co’s approach was “responsible and sensible”, and it was “a shame” that some sections of the media didn’t recognise this.
delimiter.com.au/.../

Hunt’s climate policy just blew out 30%, Bernard Keane, Crikey
It’s time the Coalition stopped messing about with this rubbish and acknowledged Turnbull’s essential point, that at the moment it isn’t interested in doing anything about climate change.
www.crikey.com.au/.../

Carbon chatter everywhere and not a drop of commonsense, Everald Crompton, On Line Opinion
If she does get the carbon tax legislation passed, Abbott will be in real trouble. If he threatens to repeal it,
he will lose the next election because Gillard will be able to campaign on the massive economic
www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=12047

Former Lib leader Hewson urges strong action on carbon and rebukes Abbott , Tina Perinotto, The Fifth Estate
He described Mr Abbott as “one of the most negative people I know” on economic and political issues such as climate change.
http://www.thefifthestate.com.au/archives/23993

UK to cut emissions by 50% by 2025, Amber Jamieson, Rooted
deliver this transformation and the government has to got to work in partnership with business, with investors to create the right framework for growth.”
blogs.crikey.com.au/.../

Brown brands News the ‘hate media’ in presser salvo, Tom Cowie
Brown said Rupert Murdoch’s mob were part of the “hate media” and had to take responsibility for debasing the national climate change debate.
www.crikey.com.au/.../

This Is Not A Kid-Friendly Policy, New Matilda
Bowen’s announcement that some children and families are being moved out of detention and into community accommodation is welcome — but it’s far from the majority that he promised last year.
newmatilda.com/2011/05/19/not-kidfriendly-policy

What is central bank independence?, John Quiggin
To paraphrase Clemenceau, monetary policy is too important to be left to central bankers.Governments will inevitably held responsible for the outcomes of macroeconomic policy,
http://johnquiggin.com/2011/05/19/9813/#more-9813

mr no..., Gus, Your Democracy
Gus: Amazing!!! By just being a miserable little shit, Abbott gets points!... Sure the print media, the
shock jocks and the TV channels are doing everything
http://yourdemocracy.net.au/drupal/node/12497

lyn

May 20. 2011 10:18 AM

Ad astra reply

LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 10:52 AM

TalkTurkey

PatriciaWA

just for you:

Poor Caesar was blocked by the Tiber
So he increased his dietary fibre;
Then some digital massage
Assisted his passage
'Cross the Rubicon, and right up the Khyber!
                                        
                Smile

TalkTurkey

May 20. 2011 11:26 AM

Feral Skeleton

Money quote from 'The 5th Estate' link about Dr Hewson's speech:
   He described Mr Abbott as “one of the most negative people I know” on economic and political issues such as climate change.

“Now there’s the guy who blew the GST, so I can speak with some authority.” Instead of policies, Mr Abbott relied on slogans, said Dr Hewson: “No carbon tax, no boat people.”

Feral Skeleton

May 20. 2011 11:28 AM

NormanK

Ad astra
If we may perhaps look back to 18th May 2011 as the day the Coalition finally started getting the scrutiny it deserves, we might also mark the day of Tanner's book as the start of a fight back against the media.
Having missed it yesterday, I just watched a highlight package over at Crikey of Bob Brown's press conference yesterday where he tore into the press, in particular The Australian.
www.crikey.com.au/.../
What a hoot!
Plenty of other people far more skilled than I will ever be have offered comment on this event so I won't try to compete but I do feel compelled to remark on the great good humour Brown showed while putting the boot in. So much more telling than an angry rant.

On a personal note, thank-you to TPS and all of its marvellous followers for a year of education and elucidation. Today marks one year since I first got up the courage to add a comment. I'm sure glad I did.
Thanks Ad astra.

NormanK

May 20. 2011 11:33 AM

lyn

Hi Ad

This is an interesting study, considering the Coalition
believe the Abc is biased towards the Government:

Study finds ABC bias leans towards Coalition, The Age

While for most outlets the statistical standard error made bias difficult to detect, ABC television news was significantly slanted towards the Coalition.


The finding challenges a claim made by Mr Costello, who, writing in The Age, last week called for more conservative voices on the ABC, claiming that everyone on the conservative side of politics believes ''the ABC is hostile territory''.

www.theage.com.au/.../...lition-20090902-f8gm.html

lyn

May 20. 2011 11:46 AM

David Horton

Ad you will find my latest, somewhat inspired by some of the debate in this thread, of interest davidhortonsblog.com/.../. Advice to Julia Gillard no less.

David Horton

May 20. 2011 11:48 AM

lyn

Hi Norman K

And we are sure glad we gotcha.

lyn

May 20. 2011 11:49 AM

Gravel

It is great to see how the mood has changed here.  Wonder if it is just that finally there has been a minute amount of bad press for the opposition or if something else is happening?

Jason
I watched the Community Cabinet last night, it was really good, everyone (politicians) looked relaxed and laid back.  Responses to the questions were very good. Loved the huge applause Julia got after that silly woman ranted on about Multiculturalism in Australia.

Gravel

May 20. 2011 11:58 AM

Ad astra reply

Folks
Ever since I read HS’s piece, I have asked myself “If I had to invent a political party I wished to support, what would be its basic tenets?”  Her piece draws us to fundamental questions about how our democracy ought to be governed.  So I’m having a shot.  As this is a comment, not an original piece, it must be fairly brief.  It will give you something to chew on until I post Acerbic Conehead’s next piece this evening.

If I had to reduce the basics to a few words, I would want a party that enshrined Freedom, Prosperity and Fairness as its guiding principles and objects.

Freedom goes almost without saying in our country – freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, freedom to practice one’s chosen religion, freedom to express sexual preference, freedom to elect a democratic government.  Recent events in the Middle East have demonstrated how precious these freedoms are.  Dissent, riot and bloodshed have been the outcome of the suppression of freedoms by autocratic and oppressive rulers.  Some are willing to die for these freedoms.  We are fortunate that we largely enjoy these freedoms.  Freedom of the press is crucial in a democracy, but it comes with responsibilities - responsibility to report accurately, responsibility to give a balanced account, and responsibility to exhibit fair play.  Many would say that much of our media is abrogating those responsibilities today.  The issue is how this can be countered in a democratic society where suppression of free speech is anathema.  There are no easy answers.  

I want a party that values and respects all these fundamental freedoms and protects them for us all.

Prosperity is multi-facetted.  It depends on the fertility of the land and seas, on water, on climate, on the atmosphere, on what can be produced from these elements, on what lies beneath the surface, and on how mankind manages these resources.

Prosperity depends too on how educated the populace is.  Education unlocks initiatives in all areas of endeavour, whether they are in agriculture, mining, manufacturing and ancillary industries, the service industries, infrastructure, transport, commerce or science.  The children of our nation are the nation’s future.  I want a party that cherishes our young people and gives them every opportunity to reach their potential.

I want a party that promotes education for all so that every citizen has the opportunity to gain the education, training and experience needed for a fulfilling and rewarding occupation, to the limit of the individual’s capacity.  I want that to be affordable to all sectors of the population.  I want discrimination in education to be absent.  I want an education system that is efficient, highly competent and transparently accountable to those who use it and fund it.

To achieve the high productivity that a prosperous nation requires, there needs to be efficient management of manpower and its distribution, so that the properly trained workers are in the right place for employment, and have the right skills.  This necessitates careful population management throughout the nation.  I want a party with a coherent population policy

For a workforce to perform well and for all citizens to attain their full potential, good health is a vital ingredient.  As not all enjoy good health, provision must be made for the ill and disabled to achieve whatever they can, whatever they wish.  The object is to attain the optimal.  For this a strong, effective and efficient health and welfare system is needed.  While medical science brings health benefits to us almost daily, the basic thrust of a good health system ought to be at the primary care level where preventive care plays such a prominent role.  While spectacular cures and repairs are rightly applauded, it makes more sense, for individuals and the economy, to prevent disabling conditions in the first place.  This requires attention to be paid not only to physical illness but to mental illness and substance abuse, which is now such a scourge, especially among the young.

Those who are unable to work because of illness or other circumstances and therefore unable to earn a decent living, need support financially, emotionally, and therapeutically to enable them to live a dignified life free of poverty and homelessness.

I want a party that provides the needed healthcare and social support and welfare.

In our globalized world, prosperity depends more and more on international trade with countries where we can sell our commodities, manufactured goods and agricultural products.  Much of our wealth depends on exporting iron ore and coal to countries in need of it, which are prepared to pay a premium for it.  

For this to occur we need free markets that can properly determine the price of commodities, goods and services.  Because the Efficient Markets Hypothesis has failed the world with the GFC, government regulation of markets and financial institutions is needed, the extent of which is the subject of vigorous debate.  I want a party that gets the balance right so that free markets can bring us the prosperity we desire but without plunging us into the abyss of recession and unemployment.  

I want a party that supports a Neo-Keynesian approach that supports the economy when recession and high unemployment threatens as the private sector retreats, and that withdraws that support as the private sector returns.

I want a party that fosters international relationships and trade, and makes equitable free trade agreements with trading partners to our advantage.

This in turn requires security arrangements with our neighbours, our trading partners, and our allies in the US and Europe.  We also need to support developing and poorer nations with foreign aid not only for humanitarian reasons, but for the world’s food security and to ease political tension.  

This extends to accepting our share of those seeking asylum from war-torn lands, treating them with respect and protecting their dignity, while at the same time taking definitive action against those who would exploit them – people smugglers.  This is not an easy task, but I want a party that will do what is necessary and what can be made to work.

All of these objectives need the support of efficient and effective communications.  Superfast broadband such as is planned with the NBN will revolutionize education, healthcare, agriculture, business and industry and bring hitherto unknown benefits to all of mankind.

Since the media is the most influential communications mechanism, I look for one that reports accurately and fairly, that provides the people with the important information needed for a peaceful and successful society and that serves all the people, not just vested interests, the powerful and the moneyed.

Underpinning all these aspirations is the need to protect the environment.  Climate change is happening and threatens the health of our planet and all that lives in it.  I want a party that accepts the reality of global warming, which takes timely action to reverse it, even if that is to our cost, and which protects all other aspects of our natural environment so that we can gift it to future generations.

Fairness is the vital underpinning attribute of a party I wish to support.  Without it, the other two - Freedom and Prosperity will reach only the chosen, the privileged or the fraudsters.

Fairness extends to equal opportunity in education, in access to the best healthcare, to the workplace where industrial relations need to be fashioned to give balanced fairness to the employee and the employer.

Fairness must govern the welfare system, so that everyone gets their entitlements but those seeking to defraud the system are restrained.

There needs to be fairness in the banking system, the tax system, in commerce and industry and in every aspect of human endeavour.

Fairness needs to underpin the policing system and legal system that should be without corruption of any sort.

Fairness needs to permeate the political system, which at present seems beset by much unfairness and adversarial behavior.

Fairness and tolerance towards those of different race, colour, religion and belief is central to peace and security in our nation.

I want a party that is fair to all, that promotes fairness, that eschews pandering to the privileged, the wealthy and the powerful.  I want a party that hears the small voices.


To some of you that may read like a collection of ideals that almost anyone might assemble.  But isn’t that what ‘vision’ implies?  This is my vision.  What is yours?  And what political party in Australia seems to live up to this vision most closely?

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 12:18 PM

Ad astra reply

NormanK
So a year has gone by since you joined us.  You have been most welcome here. In that year you have added many thought provoking contributions and illustrative comments; the one on colour perception was a gem.  One day I hope we can entice you to write original pieces.

I missed the Bob Brown interview as we have no TV here in Harrietville.  I look forward to viewing it soon.  Thanks for the link.

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 12:21 PM

Feral Skeleton

  It's simple. Tony Abbott is a political bomb thrower. He's got together with his WA Homies and concocted a bomb plot to blow a hole, potentially, in the Labor Party's Budget Bottom Line.
   As Tony Abbott has tellingly stated today(but he was trying to use the statement to cast the federal government as weak as a result):
"The Budget Surplus is entirely hostage to the State Governments."
  Which says to me that he knows that the WA State Liberal Government is trying to hold the federal ALP government "entirely hostage", as he has obviously planned as he tries every which way but loose to make real the Coalition's constant refrain that the ALP will never bring in a Surplus, especially before the next election.
  By the way, Western Australians DO NOT own the resources that are in 'their' ground, as the Liberal Party State government of WA says, Australians own the resources that are in Australia's ground, whatever artificial boundary lines they fall on either side of.

Feral Skeleton

May 20. 2011 12:22 PM

Ad astra reply

David Horton
Thank you for the link to your new piece.  I do like your idea of fireside chats a la Roosevelt.  I hope PM Gillard takes it up.

davidhortonsblog.com/.../

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 12:25 PM

Feral Skeleton

NormanK,
        Happy Anniversary! Smile
I'm sure glad you got up the gumption to post comments too.

Feral Skeleton

May 20. 2011 12:32 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
Thank you for the link to the study of media bias, which supports what we have been saying for ages – the ABC is biased toward the Coalition.

www.theage.com.au/.../...lition-20090902-f8gm.html

I enjoyed reading through your links this morning.  I was taken with Andrew Elder’s demolition of Anabel Crabb and Marius Benson in Who decides what’s news andrewelder.blogspot.com/.../...ws-further-to.html

I’ve never read anything as uncomplimentary as that.  No doubt they will shake it off as uninformed criticism by an ‘amateur’ of ‘professional’ journalists, who, after all, are the ones who know what’s news!

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 12:56 PM

Jason

AA,
  For you ABC Watch!
The problem as Uhulman sees it! "Uhlmann said viewers "tend to watch an interview with their political goggles on. They see and hear what they want to see and hear. I had a fiery interview with Abbott not so long ago; in tone, they weren't that far apart"


Petition hits ABC for shift to Right

MORE than 1000 people have signed an online petition complaining about the ABC's political coverage, with many saying a tough interview by 7.30 anchor Chris Uhlmann with Greens leader Bob Brown is evidence of a lurch to the Right.
The petition to "get the ABC back to its charter" appeared on a website owned by lobby group GetUp! some weeks ago.

It says the ABC has become a "mouthpiece for political conservatives" and is "a sad version of (Rupert) Murdoch's Fox News".

Many of the signatories say Uhlmann is the problem.

Uhlmann pushed Senator Brown hard on Monday, as to whether he wanted to phase out the coal industry, and how he'd counter the associated loss of jobs, industry, investment, and income, if that were achieved.

Uhlmann told The Australian he "approached Bob Brown the same way I approach any other politician, and that is to try to be devil's advocate.
"I thought I gave him every opportunity to answer the questions, while trying to keep him on the point".

One signatory to the petition said: "Chris Uhlmann interrupted Bob Brown on every question he tried to answer."

Commentators on the OzPolitics blog disagreed, saying: "Bob Brown (was) destroyed by Chris Uhlmann on 7.30."

Others thought Uhlmann had to go in hard, with one saying: "If the Tudors had listened to this kind of thing (phasing out the coal industry) then England would still be a sheep-infested shithole with a GDP of five sparrow farts and a giant turd."

7.30 executive producer Michael Carey said the program received "a good number" of calls about the interview, "just as we used to do, when Kerry O'Brien did a tough interview".

Uhlmann said viewers "tend to watch an interview with their political goggles on. They see and hear what they want to see and hear. I had a fiery interview with Abbott not so long ago; in tone, they weren't that far apart".

One letter on the 7.30 website said: "Again I found myself irritated by Chris Uhlmann's constant interrupting of his guest. It is not a dialogue, but more an opportunity for Uhlmann to impart his own (predictable) views."

The petition yesterday topped the GetUp! "Hot list of popular topics, with more than 1000 signatures, and 530 comments".


www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-e6frg996-1226059241013

Jason

May 20. 2011 01:27 PM

NormanK

FS
I may have to correct you about who owns the mineral resources in the ground. I recalled this coming up during the RSPT debate because the Rudd government had to be careful how it framed the legislation so that it did not contravene the Constitution.

Mineral and petroleum resources are owned either by the Commonwealth Government or the state/territory governments. The Commonwealth Government owns resources found outside the first three nautical miles from the territorial sea baseline (referred to as 'beyond coastal waters’). The state and territory governments own resources found onshore and out to three nautical miles from the baseline (referred to as 'coastal waters’).

The Commonwealth Government is responsible for setting national policy, including fiscal, monetary and taxation policy and foreign investment policy.

State and territory government responsibilities include managing and allocating mineral and petroleum property rights, land administration, and regulation of operations (including environmental, and occupational health and safety).

http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/0/D92AFED55BF16AB2CA256CAE0015DA36?opendocument

This is why the federal government sought to tax the profits of the mining companies rather than to 'charge more' for access to the resources.
Although the question of states increasing royalties might prove troublesome for the Commonwealth it should come as absolutely no surprise to them and if they don't have measures to combat/offset such rises then they are really really dumb.
It may be that the review of the GST carve-up will address some of WA's concerns, in fact the review was probably set up in anticipation of just this occurrence where WA is twisting Canberra's arm for more GST.
This can and will be resolved but in the meantime Abbott & Co will no doubt make hay.

NormanK

May 20. 2011 01:35 PM

NormanK

Ad astra
Isn't it curious how these moments of synchronicity occur? David Horton's piece on fireside chats sits very well beside your beautifully laid out vision of what you would like a political party to stand for. If Julia Gillard adopted David's approach, she could do worse than to use you comment as a source when it comes to addressing 'why' the government has taken a particular course of action.
What a lovely coincidence.

NormanK

May 20. 2011 01:39 PM

TalkTurkey

Dear Swordsfolks,

I only started reading and writing blogs at all just after The Election, (TPS is the only one I've ever sent posts to thus far), and I acknowledge my status as a pretty upstart johnny-come-lately. (My first post was on September 14, a congratulatory Open Letter to *J*U*L*I*A* - Dog that's hard to type, try it! - co-incidentally following Ad astra's identically-titled one on the 13th.) Nevertheless I could not help but to have grown as a bit more informed political observer and confident commenter since then, with so many vibrant clever simpatico people to stimulate research and appreciate thoughts in words. To all You who have written funny and clever and deep musings here, Thank You All, Aa and FS and Lyn of course most especially, with special sincere mention of NormanK who helped me so much to get my pretty gravatar up, which gives me so much pleasure each time I see it here, because I know it gives You-all pleasure too. (As it does indeed to see the NasBear yet again, and Daffy, and all the other familiar escutcheons here.) Sad to say NormanK recently got very cross with me and sent me to Cupboardry, I can only hope he has forgiven me, as he, I know, sees it, because of course he is a principal contributor and wizard here, and because he helped me personally of course.

I have indeed raised a few other hackles here: on the WikiLeaks/Assange issue, and the Libyan Intervention, matters on which btw I have written a good bit more but never posted, not that I am afraid of being an unpopular dissenter on emotive and divisive issues but that for the moment there is one core issue alone that we have had to address, viz., the state of our State. Abbortt and his Hate Media have never relented for a second, and we Lefties in Australia have had our backs to the wall every day, just fighting our little relatively-trivial battles in the most trubulent*Smile global times I can ever remember, wars and oil volcanoes and floods and tsunamis all the way up to bloody nuclear disasters! Yet palinly** Smile we can only really fight for our own turf, that is what Ad astra and TPS are all about, and I am happy with that, we can't do anything about global issues if we don't have full control of policies in Australia. It's all we can do, and I know that many Swordies try to help achieve good governance with every fibre, sorry PatWASmile, of our being.  

*Smile*(sic! True! That was a genuine typo!!! Smile
**Smile FFS So was THAT! What's Going ON?!!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

To get to the point - at last -

In what you might well view as the most narcississississistic  project in the universe, I've decided to (try to) collect all my posts since I've started writing here, and those of all the Swordies who have replied or to whom I have replied! Thanks to the Sword's elegant archiving, (gee I forgot to mention Web Monkey's critical input here, it is your Monkey Wrench WM that keeps our cosmic wheels on, thanks always on behalf of All), and thanks too to the distinctiveness of gravatars, my own posts are easy to find, the to-and-fro personal-to-me posts of others take a bit more looking, but I'm pretty adept at picking TT or Talk Turkey (properly, TalkTurkey, they're different see? )in a post by now! They jump out of the page at me!

I've only done a month or so so far, it takes quite a while, and it's only for my own interest, but it is a kind of running history and it reminds me of my own evolving thinking and writing in this amazing local political situation and on this wonderful medium. In less than 9 months I know that my own posts alone, printed at 12 point, would probably fill at least a ream of paper (500 pages) - and then I think of what FS and Lyn and Ad astra have written since they started, Dog Almighty, we're talking Shakespearean volumes by those three!

Well, I've only got 9 months to do, it's not impossible but I reckon the sooner I start the better. Thank you all and especially those of you who have stimulated my reading, and most especially of all, those who have replied to my own writing. As Lyn our beloved Tweety-Bird will attest, it's wonderful to have one's work appreciated, and as far as concerns those few who would rain on our parade here, especially on yours truly TalkTurkey, lemme tell yous, in my genuine persona as LiarBird, I have waterproof feathers, and I love to learn the noises you make and taunt you with your own brayings, as long as I also amuse the 99% of sincere Goodwillians who find haven here, in The Political Sword's commodious sheath.

DMW, was that last bit not an INDIGO patch?!        

TalkTurkey

May 20. 2011 02:17 PM

Ad astra reply

Jason
Thank you for your contribution to ABC Watch, which I’ll add as soon as I can work out how to add to the new LYN’S LINKS ARCHIVE file.

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 02:30 PM

lyn

Hi Ad

I could post Jason's link  to ABC watch on "Todays Links" tomorrow if you would like me to.

Cheers

lyn

May 20. 2011 02:31 PM

Ad astra reply

NormanK
Thank you for your kind remarks about my attempt to craft a vision for this country.  I do like David Horton’s ‘fireside chat’ idea, and agree that PM Gillard would need to overlay her chats with her vision for Australia.  She would need also to chat about specific issues and explain clearly why her Government was doing what it is, or proposes to do.  

David Horton advises a retreat from negative comment about Tony Abbott and his Opposition, and I agree that if that was all she offered, it would spoil the chats.  However, I believe there is a place for comparing her Government’s policies with that of the Opposition, which must lead to some negative comment, which I believe would be quite legitimate.  To give one example, she could emphasize that the Government’s carbon tax is a tax on the polluters while the Opposition scheme pays the polluters.

Anyway, long may you come here to share your wisdom.

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 02:48 PM

Ad astra reply

TT
You are taking on a mammoth task, but I’m sure you will find it rewarding.  Looking back not only highlights the evolution of one’s thought, but also enables one to see how accurate prognostications have turned out to be.  Your comment prompted me to look back through the TPS Archives (in the menu on the top panel) looking for a piece I wrote about Tony Abbott on 10 December 2009 not long after his election as Opposition Leader, but well before Julia Gillard became PM.  Apart from the change of PM, I doubt if I would change more than a few words.  The pugilistic politician is here: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...c-politician.aspx

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 02:55 PM

TalkTurkey

NormanK said
"Isn't it curious how these moments of synchronicity occur?"

I would like him to read what I've just posted about him in particular, and I didn't know as I wrote it anything about his anniversary let alone his mention of sychronicity!

And btw I commented yesterday about my Open Letter to Turnbull and his to-the-minute-synchronous dummy-spit, What's Going ON?! as I also said just above.

A bit of Magic I think eh Lyn! Never believe it's not so!

It feels like we've been watching a showdown game of Aussie Rules, the Guvnors are kicking against a 4-goal wind, and all this first quarter the bullies on the CoalGrubbers team have been trying to injure our players, using every dirty trick, elbowing noses and biting earlobes, tripping and head highs, the lot, and the MSM-biased umpires are letting them get away with everything, free kicks and 50 metre penalties against us!

We were almost a rattled team in the last few minutes . . . We were what, 8 goals down 26 minutes in!

But here's a replay of the then in the last 2 minutes! - - -

Now Sloppy has the ball - He spills it! - He's really hopelessly out of form . . . Ball picked up by Turnbull - OHHH he's kicked the WRONG WAY! The skipper Abbortt looks furious! Turnbull doesn't look at all comfortable in the back pocket, what do you think Bruce?
. . . And the ball goes out of bounds at half forward for the Guvnors, first time it's been past centre for us.

OOH look, there's something going on near the centre, Bob Brown our left flanker is arguing with the umpires, ohhh just listen to the cheers from the crowd, they know these umpires have been giving the Guvnors a raw deal so far and Bob Brown is arguing back! The umpires look gobsmacked, first time I've ever seen this, What about you KG?

Now there's the throw-in - Conroy gets the tap down to Gillard - smart handpass to Windsor - There's the kick! . . . It looks good! - GOAL!

Suddenly the Guvnors have begun to look like a different team! They're still 7 goals down but the Coalies seem to have blown themselves out in that frantic first 28 minutes, they look unsettled and disorganised, the Guvnors appear to have their tails up, as the ball goes back for the centre bounce . . . with 2 minutes of the first quarter to go.

And in the next quarter the Guvnors will have the wind behing them. I don't see what the Coalies can do from here to match the superb skills of the Guvnors, what do you think Bruce?  


And Oh, Swordies, don't it feel GOOO-OOD to see the Guvnors taking the fight up to the Coalies at last!

Go the Guvnors!


    

TalkTurkey

May 20. 2011 03:04 PM

NormanK

Ad astra
What a pity that we are coming to the end of a thread - David has opened up an interesting proposition, we'll just see if the conversation dies a natural death.
I would disagree with the need for fireside chats to include negative comparisons between the government's proposals and that of the Opposition. There will always be opportunities for Gillard and her Ministers to advocate their own policies and practical solutions (and compare them) in Parliament or during press conferences much as they do now.
What captured my imagination was the idea of spelling out the 'why' of doing something in an atmosphere devoid of point-scoring and where Gillard need not necessarily even address the nuts and bolts of 'how' she was going to do it.
I might struggle to make this point but it strikes me that all too often the current government assumes that because they believe that what they are doing is 'right' that they can carry the population along with them or that time will prove them correct. It may very well do so but in the mean time if Joe Public doesn't know 'why' the deal with Malaysia (for example) is a good one then they are going to focus on the 'what' and 'how' without taking into account the bigger picture and as we have seen they are going to be less charitable about delays etc.
Fireside chats could spell out the foundations upon which policies have been built and act as a reference point when the inevitable 'whats' and 'hows' emerge in the public discussions around them.
They might also put to bed accusations of a lack of vision.
I would even argue that the fireside chats be as devoid of politics and political references as possible. Restrict them to the Prime Minister of a country keeping her electorate abreast of what she is thinking and why she is embarking on a particular course of action or not.
To a very small degree Q&A does this now. Have a think about how many of the questions are 'why' questions.

NormanK

May 20. 2011 03:24 PM

Patricia WA

Talk Turkey, responding to your poetic offering.  Many thanks for the laugh.  I'd have sent this off to you earlier, but I got caught up with Lyn's links and comments since TPS came back on line. Lots of great reading there, particularly Ad Astra's vision thing.  No disrespect, AA!  Very impressive.

Just as well, cos the last two lines of my pome for TT needed to wait to pass the blue pencil test of a friend.  Just been ticked off, for approval I mean, with my asterisk I thought necessary for the last word considered redundant.

<b>Oh, What A Feeling!</b>    

<i>Schadenfreude?</i>
If that means embroider
The joy of good news
With further abuse
Of those whom we've beat
By making them eat
Not just humble pies,
But all of their lies,
Pretend they’re delicious,
To give us malicious
Delight,
Too right!
Specially if it
Means Abbott eats shit.


Patricia WA

May 20. 2011 03:32 PM

Patricia WA

TT - my perfectionist won't let me send a gift with the bow tied incorrectly.

Oh What A Feeling!  

Schadenfreude?
If that means embroider
The joy of good news
By further abuse
Of those whom we beat
By making them eat
Not just humble pies,
But  all of their lies,
Pretend they’re delicious,
To give us malicious
Delight.
Too right!
Specially if it
Means Abbott eats shit.


Patricia WA

May 20. 2011 03:51 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
I’ve just watched Bob Brown’s press conference on YouTube.  It’s an ABC production of excerpts.  It is fascinating.  If you haven’t seen it, witness the all-so-fragile glass jaws of so many journalists, particularly News Limited ones.  One female journalist was particularly assertive and rude; she pressed him on his position in the negotiations at the Joint Parliamentary Committee that is considering climate change, and when he responded that it was a negotiation and he would get the best possible outcome, she still came back pushing him for his position, which he declined to state as he was still in negotiations. That didn’t stop her from accusing him of not answering questions.

There was an aggressive journalist (who I think was Michael Pachi from Fairfax radio) who kept coming back, but Bob dealt with him disarmingly.

The one voice I could recognize was Hugh Riminton, who was one of the few to ask a courteous question.  Brown confirmed with Hugh that he was indeed taking on the media. Good!

www.youtube.com/watch?v=OydmiPg6j9M&NR=1

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 03:58 PM

janice

And Oh, Swordies, don't it feel GOOO-OOD to see the Guvnors taking the fight up to the Coalies at last!



Sure does Talk Turkey.  

Ad astra,

I think Malcolm Turnbull has exposed the Direct Action plan for what it is.  Don't know how true it is but someone reported or tweeted that coalition MPs have been told to clam up and not answer questions re CC and/or Turnbull's statement.

Nice to see them back pedalling furiously.  NBN is now dead as an issue for them and now, Turnbull has put the kybosh on the Carbon Tax issue, so now only the Asylum seeker issue is left for Abbott to yell about.

I don't get the Financial Review, but Poll Bludgers who do, have posted excerpts of Laura Tingle's article on Hockey and the budget reply.  It was pretty scathing by all accounts.

janice

May 20. 2011 04:25 PM

TalkTurkey

Ad astra said

"TT . . . Looking back not only highlights the evolution of one’s thought, but also enables one to see how accurate prognostications have turned out to be.  Your comment prompted me to look back through the TPS Archives . . ."  

Yes indeed, Ad astra. It was your very first post, on September 13 2008, which first enthused me to follow this blogsite, and which has been the light on the hill here for me. You have never deviated one h from the ideals and aims you enunciated then, and neither have the great majority of posters hereon. Here is the beginning of that first post, which btw once before I had the cheek to post in full as a reminder to all of us.

"Welcome to The Political Sword blog
Saturday, 13 September 2008 16:04 by Ad astra
This is the first posting of The Political Sword blog. Its focus is Australian politics.It is intended to give expression to those who have opinions about contemporary political events.  In particular it will provide a forum for exposing deception among politicians, bureaucrats and commentators."

BTW Ad astra you received 1 (ONE) comment to that first post!Smile

Those few who come here to jeer and sneer and snipe and gripe (love those sounds!) serve only to remind us of what we are up against and why we won't ever give in to them.

Like you Ad I find it remarkable how little I would change in anything I have said before. That is actually very reassuring, to find that oneself is fairly constant, unlike weathercocks like Abbortt.

PatriciaWA I love that last poem of yours bow and all best of all, it is so staunch and I relate so grrrrnnnnhhhh! to it, yeah, wouldn't you like to stuff their lies in faecal frankfurter form down their gobs eh! But best of all, just be in power over them, that's what they really hate! And GLOAT!

Shouting out our battlecry of
           SCHADENFREUDE!

As my big bro has been known to say -

        "In defeat, malice -
               In victory, REVENGE!"

But only because they're so malicious and vicious themselves.  If they were as decent as the rest of us I wouldn't feel that way. (Let alone actually force the Frankfurter, which is a lot different.)

TalkTurkey

May 20. 2011 04:42 PM

Ad astra reply

NormanK
I agree that spelling out the ‘why’ of Government actions and policies is essential.  How would PM Gillard do that without reference to the alternatives offered by the Coalition?  The voters will have to choose between the two.  In doing so, making some negative appraisal of the Opposition’s alternative would seem to be unavoidable.  I would be interested to know how she might handle any given policy issue in a fireside chat.  Why not pick one and outline for us how she might proceed.

I’m about to post a lighthearted piece by Acerbic Conehead to take our minds from the heavy stuff we’ve discussed all week, but I’ll leave this thread open for further comment.

Patricia WA
Thank you yet another clever poem

janice
Yes it is good to see the Coalition backpedalling after all Tony Abbott’s forward pedaling in an attempt to destroy all Labor wants to do.

TT
Thank you for reminding me of that first post.  I hope we can stay true to our ideals here on TPS.

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 04:49 PM

lyn

Hi Ad

Do you think this means war:

This is just an excerpt of some of the article, much more evidence and links on the site, sorry you have to go there
to read the rest:

Compassion For Turnbull: He Just Wants His Balls Back

Malcolm Turnbull has again managed to anger his colleagues, thanks to his comments on the Coalition's Direct Action climate policy on Lateline this week


You see, there is plenty of evidence to strongly suggest the - somewhat embarrassing - true reason why Malcolm Turnbull so fervently believes that an emissions trading scheme is the best way to address global warming.

SMH, Oct 18 2007 -

Turnbull Accused Of Deceiving Directors

Consider the subsequent $450+ million lawsuit brought against the key players in the HIH collapse... including named defendant, Malcolm Turnbull:

Wall Street Journal (via The Australian), Sep 17, 2008 -

One time banker done with HIH, but scandal isn't done with him

The Australian, Sep 19 2008 -

Malcolm Turnbull has one less immediate distraction, after a Supreme Court judge yesterday acknowledged that a big civil court case in which the new federal Liberal leader is an individually named defendant could be settled by early December.

Consider only a few years after the collapse of HIH, even as those legal proceedings were being prepared, Malcolm Turnbull’s (again, questionable) takeover from Peter King as the Liberal candidate for the seat of Wentworth gave him a ready-made entrance into Parliament in 2004.

The Telegraph UK, Feb 19 2010 -

Here comes the next bubble - carbon trading

Forget CDOs and other inventions of the great credit bubble. That’s all old hat. Investment bankers are moving on to an area of securities trading that is potentially even more lucrative, and what’s more, even has a social value – saving the planet. Or supposedly so, anyway.Finally, consider that less than a month (less than 9 days*, in fact) after announcing his intention to retire from politics ...

Malcolm Turnbull, the former Goldman Sachs Australia chairman, named co-defendant in a $450+ million lawsuit, and beneficiary of a “confidential” settlement made on his behalf by his former employer, believes so strongly in Australia having an emissions trading scheme for a very good reason indeed.

But I personally harbour the gravest of doubts that “saving the planet” has anything whatsoever to do with it.


www.menzieshouse.com.au/.../...his-balls-back.html

lyn

May 20. 2011 04:50 PM

Jason

Hi All,
      In case you haven't caught up with the news, this could be the last thread we post on!And I thought the election was still two years away.

Doomsdayers put faith in Apocalypse now redux

If you have seen the billboards while driving to work, then you will know tomorrow is Judgment Day - well, that's according to US evangelical broadcaster Harold Camping.

He predicts that on Saturday, May 21 an earthquake will strike, triggering the start of the apocalypse. Christians will disappear to safety, leaving sinners behind until the world comes to an end exactly five months later.

www.abc.net.au/.../3222323.htm?section=world

Jason

May 20. 2011 04:56 PM

David Horton

Thought I would post here my response to Norman K I gave over at Watermelon for those who haven't had a look at the "fireside chat" "peace with the Greens" post. It summarises what I was saying more verbosely -

"I was trying to get Julia away from that high school debating style she adopts in public. I am sure she must be much more personable in private otherwise she wouldn’t be were she is. She needs to explain the philosophy she has, and how that differs from Abbott’s, she needs to draw on social democrat history, and she needs to speak directly to the public, not through the poisonous Murdoch filter. Easy eh?

Oh, and the Greens and Labor have been at each other since the Greens began to gain strength. No love lost in either direction, mainly I think because they are so similar. No love lost between Nationals and Liberals either of course, but somehow they have made it work amazingly well, and the left side of politics needs to do the same, otherwise we are potentially faced with Abbott exceeding Howard’s record and heading after Menzies. A bit of humble pie in both directions is better than that prospect."

And AD I don't think she should avoid criticism of Liberals in general Abbott in particular. it is just that this seems to be always her first response, and that negativity helps to validate Abbott's and also comes across as un-PM-like.

Oh and finally, on an interesting couple of days (a long time in politics), I find the journalist push-back against Bob Brown, "oh Greens need to take criticism, undergo examination, toughen up" bizarre. Have the people making those comments read no Murdoch (or Fairfax) Press in the last ten years? Listened to no shock jocks, no National Party politicians, no business leaders? The tirade against the Greens, the misrepresentation of policies, the attacks on parts of policies taken out of context, have been unprecedented in Australian political history.

David Horton

May 20. 2011 05:06 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
I have just posted A day can be a lifetime by Acerbic Conehead that will bring back nostalgic memories mixed with  his typically clever satire.  Enjoy.

www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...e-a-lifetime.aspx

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 05:22 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
That looks like one big effort to discredit Malcolm Turnbull who has put a spoke in the wheel of the Coalition’s climate change policy.  So it’s ‘shoot the messenger’ all over again.

Jason
We’re all done for!

David Horton
Thanks for your additional post with which I am in accord.

Wasn’t it good to see Bob Brown giving the media bullies a taste of the nasty medicine they dish out every day to politicians.

Ad astra reply

May 20. 2011 05:35 PM

NormanK

Ad astra
How ironic that you watched a YouTube video posted by someone who thought they were promulgating evidence of a Brown meltdown.
Perhaps a piece on perceptions and preconceptions would be topical. Smile
More self-justification from our robust press gallery.
Harden up Greens, the game is changing by Chris Uhlman
But many of the questions asked by the Murdoch Press are perfectly reasonable and when any politician deliberately avoids reasonable questions they should be called on it.
www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2011/05/20/3222324.htm

NormanK

May 20. 2011 06:09 PM

Jason

AA,
  the oz it seems has nothing better to do so it comes up with!

What does Grog’s Gamut look like?
I can't put the photo up, so you will have to look yourself.
blogs.theaustralian.news.com.au/.../

Jason

May 20. 2011 06:38 PM

lyn

Hi Jason

Jason look how nasty they are, they are being nasty
because Grog's brilliant column with his photo was
posted on the Drum.  Jealousy is a curse.

OUR favourite blogger, besides Tim Blair, is doing his own personal dance of the veils over there at The Drum. First, he confirmed his name. Now you can look upon his face..  

lyn

May 20. 2011 06:55 PM

Patricia WA

Amazing, isn't it?  Menzies House doing all the dirty work for the ALP!  In the event Turnbull should ever become leader of the Opposition again there's some juicy stuff ready for Laborto use in an election campaign.  

Patricia WA

May 20. 2011 07:04 PM

Patricia WA

Jason.   I think Grog looks a bit of all right.  The thinking woman's sex symbol!   His earlier gravatar seems to have disappeared. A profile shot of some movie star?  'Lean, dark and dangerous to know?'  Does anyone have it stored anywhere?  I was thinking of doing a little pome for him on his 'Coming Out' and that name is eluding me.  Maybe it'll come to me on my walk.

Patricia WA

May 20. 2011 07:34 PM

Jason

Patrica WA,
          I'll take your word for it! that he's "a bit of alright"
Didn't he use the mile high club actor Ralph Fiennes?

Jason

May 20. 2011 09:38 PM

Ad astra reply

NormanK
The media is out full flight in angry denial at Bob Brown’s assault on its spurious virtue, and Chris Uhlmann has joined the throng.  Two outcomes are possible – an all out campaign to shoot the messenger so they can go on doing as before, or, sadly less likely, considered reflection on their behavior that brings about change for the better.  I suspect the latter might occur despite the media’s best efforts to avoid it.  Criticism stings, avoiding it is more comfortable.

Jason
Who knows what The Oz is up to pointing out that The Drum has published Greg’s photo, and most of his piece.  As Andrew Elder said, (and I agree) Greg is a better journalist by far that Annabel Crabb, who also writes for The Drum.  She will not be impressed in having her superior publishing in the same column.  As Lyn says, jealousy is a curse.

Patricia WA
I see that publishing Grog’s photo will do him no harm!

Ad astra reply

May 21. 2011 12:26 AM

TalkTurkey

Folks,
I don't think splitting the threads is a very good idea. I don't know what the rest of you think but I'd like to hear. I'm putting this on the other one too.

TalkTurkey

May 21. 2011 08:28 AM

Feral Skeleton

  I had to make it 327 posts because that is my lucky number. Smile
Lol. ReCaptcha is on fire this morning: CIS 'Centre for Independant Studies'. As if.

Feral Skeleton

Comments are closed