loading animation
Loading

Swan’s song stings the affluent and powerful

loading animation
Loading
Sunday, 11 March 2012 12:40 by Ad astra
Isn’t it a pity that no sooner had Wayne Swan introduced a debate on the growing disparity between the affluent and the rest of the community, it degenerated into mindless slogan-slinging. ‘Class warfare’, ‘the politics of envy’ were the predictable responses from those defending those specifically targeted: Gina Reinhart, Clive Palmer and Twiggy Forrest. Despite being well able to defend themselves and able to deploy their vast resources to voice their opinions, Tony Abbott was quick off the mark, followed by the bellicose Joe Hockey, with these hackneyed slogans, slogans they trot out every time they perceive an attack on the upper echelons of society. We saw them during the debate on means testing the private health insurance rebate, and more recently after the Gonski report that queried the extent of Government support given to wealthy private schools. It’s not the slogans that are so offensive; rather it is that they serve as a paltry substitute for informed debate, one we as a society need to have.

Before we get into this important subject, let’s look at what Wayne Swan actually wrote in his March 1 Monthly Essay: The 0.01 Per Cent: The Rising Influence of Vested Interests in Australia. Read it in its entirety here.

Swan begins: “A decade ago, as I waited for my order outside a Maroochydore fish and chip shop, a tall, barefoot young man strolled past wearing a T-shirt that read: ‘Greed is good. Trample the weak. Hurdle the dead.’ Those brutal lines seemed to encapsulate what was then a growing sense of unease in Australia. The world of my Queensland childhood, governed by its implicit assumptions of equality and mutual care, was being driven from sight by a combination of ruthless individualism and unquestioning materialism. Looking out for number one was not only tolerated but encouraged by a government whose agenda, particularly in industrial relations, seemed very far from the social contract, based on a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work with a decent social safety net for the vulnerable, that had served our nation so well for so long.

That is what is troubling Swan. Should we be troubled too?

Later on, referring to “…a global conversation raging about the rich, the poor, the gap between them, and the role of vested interests in the significant widening of that gap in advanced economies over the last three decades, Swan says: “This is a debate Australia too must be part of. We’ve always prided ourselves on being a nation that’s more equal than most – a place where, if you work hard, you can create a better life for yourself and your family. Our egalitarian spirit is the product of our history and our national character, as well as the institutions and safeguards built up over more than a century. This spirit informed our stimulus response to the global financial crisis, and meant we avoided the kinds of immense social dislocation that occurred elsewhere in the developed world.

“But Australia’s fair go is today under threat from a new source.

“To be blunt, the rising power of vested interests is undermining our equality and threatening our democracy. We see this most obviously in the ferocious and highly misleading campaigns waged in recent years against resource taxation reforms and the pricing of carbon pollution. The infamous billionaires’ protest against the mining tax would have been laughed out of town in the Australia I grew up in, and yet it received a wide and favourable reception two years ago. A handful of vested interests that have pocketed a disproportionate share of the nation’s economic success now feel they have a right to shape Australia’s future to satisfy their own self-interest.

“So I write this essay to make a simple point: if we don’t grow together economically, our community will grow apart.

“Of course, rewards should be proportionate to effort, recognising the hard work and entrepreneurship that create wealth and employment. We should not seek pure equality, but we do need to combat the types of disparities in opportunity that damage our society. That’s why providing more people with a good education and a decent job with fair rights and conditions should be an economic as well as a moral goal.


Referring to the many who journeyed to Australia to escape grinding poverty and inequality arising from the industrial revolution, he says: “Here they saw a chance to create a more equal society in which some of the wealth actually made it to the bottom. And they did it by vesting the role of ameliorating poverty not in an aristocracy but in a democratic state. This is the best way to understand the greatest Australian achievements of the last two centuries: a living wage, a welfare system, public health care, mass home ownership, and accessible technical and higher education.

That’s what Swan’s essay is about Tony Abbott, Joe Hockey, Gina Reinhart, Clive Palmer and Twiggy Forrest.

Yet without reading his essay, without hearing his National Press Club address, how many would know? All we hear is childish slogans and the ravings of shock jocks; we see full-page ads from Twiggy, and largely uninformed comment from journalists whose writings are light on information but redolent with rhetoric. We are being seriously shortchanged, as we so often are.

Swan quotes President Obama who described ‘rising income inequality as the defining issue of our time’. Swan reminds us that tackling rising inequality has been one of the defining issues of his political life, captured in his 2005 book Postcode. He points out that between 1979 and 2007 in the US, the top 1% saw their after-tax incomes rise 275%, while the middle two thirds saw their after-tax incomes increase by less than 40%, and that a recent Pew Research Center survey found that friction between rich and poor in the US is now a greater source of social tension than the issues of race and immigration. The trenchant opposition in Congress to legislation designed to tax the rich at a higher rate, and to health bills that provide health cover to the poor, has intensified this. Republican candidates have pledged to repeal the Dodd–Frank Act that imposed better regulation on the financial sector after the 2008 Wall Street collapse. In US politics, the rich are the beneficiaries; the poor can take pot luck. Do we want that here?

In the US, the middle class, the conduit for aspirational citizens to move through from poverty to affluence, is shrinking, as is economic mobility. The same applies in the UK. Yet in the East the middle class is growing as the poor elevate themselves to a better place.

With the hollowing out of the middle classes in much of the West, Swan fears that in Australia we are headed in the same direction, with the rich not just becoming even more affluent, but also exercising increasingly strident influence on public policy, as we saw the miners that Swan targets do at rallies protesting about the mining tax, taking out whole page advertisements in the press in opposition, and spending large sums on lobbyists.

John Maynard Keynes said that legitimacy of capitalism rests on the existence of an implicit social contract between the rich and the rest. Swan is concerned that the very rich miners are breaking this social contract.

President Obama makes a similar point when he says that well-funded lobby groups give ‘an outsized voice to the few’ by ‘selling out our democracy to the highest bidder’.

Swan points out that the vested interests that he is targeting misrepresent their self-interest as the national interest.

Let’s look more deeply at what Swan’s detractors accuse him of.

First, some, like Gerry Harvey, make the point that even billionaires are entitled to their opinion and the right to express it. Gerry, we all accept that. It’s how they do so which alarms, by using their excessive market power born of great wealth. It is the way they exert disproportionate influence, well above what ordinary folk can do, that is concerning Swan, and acting in their own interests in so doing.

Next, Joe Hockey, in his usual superficial way, says Swan wants ‘to kill the goose that is laying the golden eggs’. No Joe, he does not want to kill it, he just wants a fairer share of its eggs for the rest of us.

More thoughtful contributors to the debate argue that this nation is built on the courage and determination of entrepreneurs who take risks in order to make a profit. Of course, and they are vital to our nation. Swan does not dispute this. Economists point to the fact that our miners employ many people, as indeed they do. Miners employ 200,000, about 2% of Australia’s workers. We all know that. We also know that during the GFC the miners shed jobs faster than most sectors, far from saving us from recession.

Politicians and some economists insist that big business, such as mining, must be encouraged by tax breaks and incentives such as start up subsidies, and certainly should not be taxed higher, because they employ these workers, they create the wealth, and that wealth ‘trickles down’ to those at the lower levels of society. Indeed ‘trickle down economics’ is their principle raison d’être for supporting big business in debates about income equality. If it were not for these entrepreneurs nothing would trickle down to the masses, they say. So these pillars of free enterprise, these captains of industry, need support, encouragement, and above all they don’t need to be taxed more.

In his book Zombie Economics – How dead ideas still walk among us, Queensland University’s John Quiggin debunks many of the contemporary theories, zombie theories as he calls them, that economists still embrace, among them ‘trickle down economics’.

Despite eminent economists such as John Maynard Keynes, Adam Smith and John Stuart Mill supporting income redistribution through progressive taxation, there has been no shortage of economists who argue conversely – that we should let the rich get richer, and wait for the benefits to trickle down to the poor. These economists still exist and are still arguing that today. We hear them doing so in the context of the debate that Swan initiated. Another slogan, which is more seductive than ‘trickle down economics’, is ‘all boats rise with the tide’, implying they all rise by the same amount. It sounds eminently plausible doesn’t it, even although it is demonstrably false?

In a paragraph headed Death – the rich get richer and the poor go nowhere, Quiggin uses a telling graph of household income in the US from 1965 to 2005 which shows that while those in the top 5% increased their income by over 60%, those in the bottom 10% did not increase it at all, and even those on the 50th percentile, the half way mark, increased by less than 10%. It was only those on the 80th percentile or above that showed a substantial increase. The top half boomed; the bottom half stagnated. Not much trickle down there.

Of course these are US figures and Swan acknowledges that the disparity demonstrated there is not as pronounced here. But it is precisely these figures that alarm him. He fears that we are on a similar course to inequality here, propelled by the aggressive advocacy against public policy, such as the mining and carbon taxes, waged by the very wealthy who can afford to use their financial power to buy influence in newspapers, radio stations and through lobbyists, and subvert public policy designed to share prosperity more equitably among all our citizens. In my view he is right. Those who bother to use factual evidence to refute his contentions might find themselves in great difficulty proving their point. Which I suppose is why they resort to mouthing slogans or clinging to outmoded and debunked economic theories, such as ‘trickle down’.

In case readers think that all Swan is about is making the poor wealthier, this is what he says: “It’s not just about putting dollars in people’s pockets, but about building a better society; a society that creates wealth and spreads opportunity, a society that lifts up the worst-off and gives everyone a decent shot at a decent life.”

This is what it’s about, and Swan sees this better, more equitable society being threatened by the activities of a very wealthy few who use their wealth and power to unfairly buy influence in order to thwart good public policy in the national interest designed to ‘lift up the worst-off and give everyone a decent shot at a decent life’.

It is a disgrace that the debate about this critically important issue has been debased by slogans, superficial arguments, and debunked economic theories, and is so bereft of thoughtful, well-argued dialogue based on facts and figures. Find if you can one decent article or editorial that argues a cogent case.

What hope is there for an equitable society when the antagonists to Swan’s contentions are incapable or unwilling to mount a convincing case, and our media sit back with almost nothing to contribute but ‘he said, she said’, and trite mantras that miserably fail to address the simple point that Swan’s essay makes: “… if we don’t grow together economically, our community will grow apart.”


What do you think?

Comments (176) -

March 11. 2012 03:20 PM

archiearchive

Funny coincidence. I also spent the morning writing about Swanny. Apparently he is Australia's worst ever treasurer if the mainstream media and Joe Hockey are to be believed. I used graphs to find the truth!  archiearchive.wordpress.com/.../

archiearchive

March 11. 2012 03:21 PM

2353

Swan's opening remarks are salient.  There is a large group of (generally well to do) younger people who generally couldn't give a stuff about anyone outside their immediate circle of family and friends (and sometimes the family etc are also consigned to the bin).   From the Leninist "collectivism" to the Tea Party's "God bless you and God bless America" a tenant of their specific belief system of supporting those that are less fortunate than yourself.  The far left of the political believes that all need to be given equal opportunity, the far right has a deep belief in the religious text of their faith - all of which to my knowledge have exploration of the "do to outers as you wish them to do to you" theme.  So where did it all go wrong?

There are exceptions, the "generous philanthropic benefactor" who financially supports "The Global Mail", the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and so on - but is seems in general that as people acquire more income, generally they become more self serving.  These people also live in the same society as I do and while I certainly don't qualify for a lot of Government Benefits, I don't begrudge paying my share of the provision of benefits and support for those that genuinely need them.  That Forrest boasts that his company has never paid tax is disgusting - imagine what additional services to benefit the entire community could be provided.  Who knows Forrest et al might also benefit (because I'm sure they use Government services when it suits them).

2353

March 11. 2012 03:23 PM

2353

The end of the first paragraph should read "do to OTHERS"

2353

March 11. 2012 04:09 PM

BSA Bob

What with the miners & their business allies' massive & uncriticised assault on the government, & the opposition's version of the same, for a while now I've had the gut feeling that the conservative forces in this country see an opportunity to set back the left by a century or so.
I think this government's biggest mistake has been to play fair & assume its arguments would receive a hearing.

BSA Bob

March 11. 2012 04:09 PM

Patricia WA

What's happening with "Meet the Press" which is usually up for viewing pretty promptly.   Currently content is not available.  Are they re-recording it?  Has Campbell Newman discovered that he and partner are legally required to divest themselves of publicly owned shares within one month of election, rather than the ninety days he has promised with such generosity of spirit?

Patricia WA

March 11. 2012 04:35 PM

Patricia WA

Great thing is that Swannie's song is no swan song. He is not on the way out. He is only just now hitting his stride.   Nor is it a slogan as simple as "Tax The Rich!" or "Make Them Pay!"   His message is more important than that and could become enshrined in an Australian battle cry in the spirit of Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité! if the Murdochs, Rineharts and Palmers and allies continue unchecked here in Downunderland.

We are blessed in this country with universal suffrage, reasonable social equality and a caring community reflected in the myriad services whereby we look after each other.  All of that is threatened if a few obscenely wealthy individuals are able to distort the national debate so as to instal into government a party of their preference likely to dismantle much of that.  So perhaps it is as simple as Freedom, Equality and Mutual Care!

Who would have thought it would be Wayne who went to war to protect our democracy!  Now, how best to word what is so far a Watchcry from him, a warning of what could develop if we don't...............

I'm lost for words.  Come on Talk Turkey.  This is your strength!  A warcry for Wayne!

Patricia WA

March 11. 2012 04:35 PM

Ad astra reply

archiearchive
Welcome to The Political Sword family.  Do come again.
Thank you for the link to your very attractive site, of which I was not aware.  

I’m sure Lyn will place it on her list of sites to be monitored.

I enjoyed reading your piece about our awful high interest rates, high taxing Treasurer, Wayne ‘will-never-bring-in-a-surplus-budget’ Swan.  Your graphs illustrate what disingenuous tripe the Coalition talks.  It’s a serious case of the pot calling the kettle black.  But that is inconsequential to them.  Truth is irrelevant.  They just say whatever they like, knowing that what they say will be faithfully and uncritically echoed by a compliant media, and believed by much of the electorate who know no better.

2353
The golden rule to which the religious right claims adherence seems to disappear in a puff of blue smoke when legislation is proposed to bring to some 40 million US citizens health care cover, which they themselves enjoy.  The debate degenerates into a tirade about socialist control and ‘death committees’.  And when increasing taxes for the very wealthy so as to support the less well off is proposed, that is opposed vigorously.  So much for the ‘golden’ rule, which restated is: ‘He who has the gold, makes the rules’.

Ad astra reply

March 11. 2012 04:36 PM

Lyn

Hello Archierchive

Welcome to TPS a big thankyou to you for your comment and taking the time to drop in, we hope you come again often.

We do enjoy your blog, I also enjoy your tweets.

Tony Abbott’s Graphic Nightmare!
Yes! This is 18 Billion Dollars in YOUR pocket, not in the pocket of this Socialist, High Taxing, High Spending, Socialist Government. Money Peter Costello would have taken from you.
Wayne Swann, you are in the wrong Party. You’re a better Conservative than anyone in the current Opposition
archiearchive.wordpress.com/.../

Cheers SmileSmileSmileSmile

Lyn

March 11. 2012 04:43 PM

NormanK

Ad astra

I do apologise because the post after this one will be off topic. I had to clear my nose - a little yapping dog got right up it on the previous thread.

NormanK

March 11. 2012 04:52 PM

NormanK

Tom of Melbourne

You are an absolute classic! King of the Cherry-pickers!
Here's a little bit of rebuttal from the report you so kindly provided - have you read it?

sydney.edu.au/.../PaidMaternityReport_090302.pdf

Did you do your homework and ascertain the sum total of social security measures that apply in Australia and compare them with those in other countries against which we are ranked? Just as an example:

Even if the current (2008) Baby Bonus was considered as a de facto paid maternity leave scheme, at $5000 it equates with only approximately 9.5 weeks at current federal minimum wages.
Page xvi

See also:
Government maternity or related payments
Page 10/11

Did you examine the funding mechanisms that are in place in these 'comparable' countries to ascertain whether they are using taxpayer dollars, employee contributions, special levees (love that word - see taxes) or some other measure to pay for it?

The paid maternity leave systems for most countries are funded via social insurance schemes run by the state where employed (and self-employed) people pay contributions from their earnings into the fund and/or employers and the state also contributes to this pooled fund. These contributions may also fund other social-insurance related benefits, particularly sickness benefits.
Any direct comparisons of funding contributions should be made with caution. Cross- country comparisons are not strictly valid, as the ultimate quantum of the maternity leave benefit differs across countries. Furthermore, funding contributions should be considered in light of each country’s tax regime and other social security measures.

Page vii

I assume you read the section that dealt with the evolution of the PPL policy in Australia and noted the generosity of the current scheme when comparing it with that proposed by the Democrats in 2002.

The Australian Democrats first developed a paid maternity leave proposal for the 2001 election and tabled the Workplace Relations Amendment (Paid Maternity Leave) Bill in May 2002. The Bill proposed the amendment of the Workplace Relations Act 1996 to provide for a government-funded basic Maternity Payment and paid maternity leave. The amendments provide for:
1. paid maternity leave for 14 weeks at or around the birth or adoption of a child at the level of the minimum wage, or, at their normal wage if they earn less than the minimum wage
2. payment by means of government funds complemented by the contribution of employers (through ‘top up’ and additional payments or periods of leave) and employees (through foregone earnings and the extra unpaid leave that many take). The payment was to be regarded as normal wage and salary income for recipients so as to fall within existing tax, superannuation and other relevant laws and to preserve the employment continuity of beneficiaries.

Page 18/19

Surely you came across this paragraph and thought to yourself "well at least we've got a scheme now and it's so much better than that proposed by the then Sex Discrimination Commissioner in 2002"?

..... the then Sex Discrimination Commissioner, Pru Goward presented five options for extending paid maternity leave in April 2002.
In essence HREOC recommended a federally funded fortnightly payment from general revenue up to Federal Minimum Wage (in the order of $430 per week) for 14 weeks payable to all working women, inclusive of casual, part-time and self-employed who have worked 40 weeks of the past 52 weeks with any number of employers and/or in any number of positions.

Page 21

Or perhaps you've given thought to the "over this government's dead body" response to any PPL scheme during the Howard government as they presided over the biggest increase in government revenue in decades? No?

You seem to be accepting Abbott's epiphany - the visionary new PPL scheme that he now insists is an absolute must even though he is talking the economy down and looks like slashing spending on every other social benefit.

Gave some thought to the fact that Labor brought in a modest PPL scheme at the height of the worst global downturn in 70 years, did you? Just after making the first significant lift to the aged pension in decades and adjusting the indexing regime so that pensions need never again fall behind as they did during the Howard years.

Perhaps you read in the report how a great many other countries have had a PPL scheme of some sort for as much as 40 years. Time enough for business and society to accustom themselves to the idea and allow successive governments to slowly expand on the scheme. We have taken the first, all important step here and we should rejoice because it is decades overdue.

Let's have a look at the two funding models currently competing for supremacy in this debate. The scheme in place now uses 100% federal funding drawn from income tax, company tax and other revenue - all working Australians and viable businesses contribute towards the scheme. Anyone who doesn't pay tax is not impacted by the scheme. Every recipient across Australia, irrespective of income, receives the same amount of support.

Under the Abbott model 3000 'big businesses' will be asked to fund the scheme. Sounds alright doesn't it? I mean, who doesn't hate big business? The only problem is that these businesses are by definition commercial enterprises wholly committed to making a profit. They will protect their bottom line by increasing the price of their product or service to negate this new tax.

Who then will be paying the great bulk of this new tax? Ultimately it will hit everyone, including aged pensioners, some of whom are living at subsistence levels; everyone on a disabled pension or military pension; self-funded retirees who are not all relaxing on overseas beaches soaking up the sun, some are struggling to stay on top during turbulent times; every low income earner will pay roughly the same amount as every average income earner (regardless of whether they can afford it or not) through the increased cost of goods and services; every above average to high income earner will only pay according to how much they spend rather than how much they earn; and let's not even think about the unemployed.

Ultimately it will cause the greatest disadvantage to those who can least afford it - the bottom end of the income scale including those on welfare. Who will derive the greatest advantage out of such a scheme funded in this way? Those on middle to high incomes. This is not social equity. Pensioners will eventually recoup their losses through indexation but then where does that money come from - the federal budget. This scheme puts extra pressure on the federal budget at a time when Abbott reckons he is going to slash spending. Administering it will add to the federal bureaucracy at a time when Abbott reckons he is going to diminish the public service. It adds an extra tax burden on business at a time when Abbott reckons he is going to cut taxes. It puts upward pressure on prices at a time when Abbott reckons he is all about reducing the cost of living.

If you wish to make a case that some overseas models are worthy of replicating then let's legislate a new social insurance scheme where workers pay a fixed percentage of their income into a pool - those that earn the most, contribute the most. Then we can talk about having a 6 month scheme @ 50% pay (up to a ceiling). Until then, supporting Abbott's cynical 'Rolls Royce' scheme is talking out of the side of your mouth and ignoring the fact that this is a populist attempt to win over female voters who, apparently, think he's creepy. Big business isn't going to fund it. Every consumer will bear the cost, even those who can ill-afford it.

NormanK

March 11. 2012 05:00 PM

Lyn

Hi Ad

Thankyou big time for your article today Swan’s song stings the  Affluent and Powerful.  Your delightful pieces are a never ending story.

What hope is there for an equitable society when the antagonists to Swan’s contentions are incapable or unwilling to mount a convincing case, and our media sit back with almost nothing to contribute but ‘he said, she said.

The antagonists are at it again today, punching wildly at Wayne Swan.
I got too tired to read anymore this afternoon.

I hope you have a nice time with your daughter next week and web Monkey, no talking business alright.

CheersSmileSmileSmile

Lyn

March 11. 2012 05:20 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
I'm having diabolical trouble connecting to the Internet today via my iMac, so please be patient.  I'll respond as soon as it works again.  This message is being sent from the iPad using a separate 3G connection.

Ad astra reply

March 11. 2012 05:24 PM

Ad astra reply

BSA Bob
You are right.  Playing by Marquis of Queensberry rules is unwise when you’re in a dirty bar-room fight to the death.

Patricia WA
Swannie has indeed gone to war to fight for what most Aussies value deeply – a fair go for all.  Who would have thought this would be necessary in this day and age.  But as the Gina’s, the Clive’s and the Twiggies thrown their wealthy weight around in a way not seen until recently, we ‘have a problem Canberra’ – one that we hope Wayne can fix.  He will get no support from the Coalition, who no doubt believes he’s unhinged, or from most of the media, which seems unwilling to buy into the debate except in the most superficial and frivolous way.  The Fifth Estate must support his campaign vigorously.  We look forward to rousing verses from you and TT.  What about something like ‘Do you hear the people sing’ from Les Misérables? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWzmYhiu-zs

Ad astra reply

March 11. 2012 05:40 PM

nasking


John Maynard Keynes said that legitimacy of capitalism rests on the existence of an implicit social contract between the rich and the rest. Swan is concerned that the very rich miners are breaking this social contract.

Top point from a top post Ad...the social contract has been broken. The apologists for the wealthy greedsters such as Abbott and Hockey don't seem to give a damn...as long as they can mow down public workers...and provide tax cuts for their masters...and drive the many into the hands of a rampant private business sector...and the brainwashing of chosen church groups...and incrementally drive women back into the home to have more and more baby consumers whilst undermining the influence women have in the boardrooms and workplace (hoping parental leave scheme will incentivize women to have more babies and opt out of  contributing more at work?...have less input over time...until they eventually drop out as they watch their male peers be promoted due to consistency of influence and attendance)...

The Occupy movement arose because there became widespread recognition of the failures of rampant capitalism partially created by the governments that kowtowed to big corporate and rich man lobbyists...pushing deregulation, privatization, tax cuts, offshore incentives, upper middle class welfare, irrational and destructive booms, investment profits over rewards for sheer hard work, undermining and inappropriate funding of public services, irresponsible overseas conflicts profiting the few who sacrificed stuff all, socialist-like bailouts for companies too big to fail, far too much reliance on charities and volunteerism due to tax cuts for the rich and lack of appropriate redistribution of income, and a sense that wealth was flooding upwards whilst opportunities so hard fought for were crumbling...as privileged rich children strode casually into top universities, careers and boardrooms with barely an effort...or glance at those living more competitive and harder lives than them.

The social contract has been broken...and unless the likes of Swan and Gillard can repair that bridge, I fear the Occupy movement will be seen one day in the future as only the soft beginnings of a violent revolution...by a younger generation who felt they had no option but to fight and overthrow the corporate dynastic aristocracy...and robber barons.


President Obama makes a similar point when he says that well-funded lobby groups give ‘an outsized voice to the few’ by ‘selling out our democracy to the highest bidder’.


Swan points out that the vested interests that he is targeting misrepresent their self-interest as the national interest.

Too true.

The apologists who want to abolish the carbon price and mining tax typically refer to Swan's piece as class warfare...

the warfare I see...and many others...is the war too many rich privileged types declared on us...raping and pillaging the very rights, wages, conditions...and affordable public services and jobs...long fought for...

now that we fight back...defending ourselves, our right to be treated fairly...they whine, they holler wearing Rolex's...they threaten our democratically-elected governments w/ ad campaigns and hired bullies and buffoons purporting to be journalists and radio hosts...they put out their culture warriors who mock and whinge about a lack of free speech...

but we didn't start this war...THEY did.

They're lucky it's a centrist who is Treasurer.

Much more of their tomfoolery and greedster approach and they might find themselves dealing with a real rebel...in fact, millions of them.

N'

nasking

March 11. 2012 06:00 PM

Lyn

Hi Patricia and everybody

Links to Meet the Press:-

Part 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5

ten.com.au/video-player.htm

ten.com.au/video-player.htm

ten.com.au/video-player.htm

ten.com.au/video-player.htm

ten.com.au/video-player.htm

Cheers SmileSmileSmile

Lyn

March 11. 2012 06:13 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
Thank you for your always-encouraging words.  While we are on holiday, we will enjoy our kids and our gorgeous grandson, and spent as little time as needed on TPS.  It was fortuitous that JohnL came along with his two part piece debunking of the nonsense Tony Abbott and Christopher Pyne, and of course the MSM, notably The Oz, has perpetrated about the highly successful BER.

NormanK
Thank you for taking so much trouble to counter ToM with your magnificently argued piece, based as it is on facts and figures and reasoned argument.  I can’t wait to read ToM’s response.

Ad astra reply

March 11. 2012 06:34 PM

Patricia WA

Thanks for that Lyn!   How wrong could I be!  Just 'cos I can't find something, doesn't mean it isn't there!

Should I apologise to Campbell Newman?  Nah, after all Paul Bongiorno pointed out to him that his ninety day clearance plan was hardly matching the divestment deadline already required by Labor ministers in effect in Queensland i.e. immediately!   Anyway, where was the dramatic statement or disclosure he had promised earlier if it wasn't the ninety day deal?  

Patricia WA

March 11. 2012 06:52 PM

ian

One of the most heartening things about Wayne Swans essay is the fact that he wrote it.

Wasn't it just a short time ago that he was being pilloried, sandbagged, derided and purported to be the Governments weak link?  Julia Gillards achilles heel?

Some weakness. He is now staring down the three biggest profiteers this country has ever seen and they will be the ones to blink first. All their posturing will be seen for what it is....posturing!. All of the, admittedly impressive, apoplexic, vein in the forehead bulging, eyeball popping, red face induced choking of the righteous, billious rage of privilege will be seen as the malignancy that it is. Wayne Swan and Julia Gillard aren't going to blink first, if at all.

Let's be honest for a moment. In retrospect, Kevin Rudd allowed his Government to be too easily kicked around. Whether we like it or not his Government were a pretty easy target because it allowed the kicking to happen....and didn't they all jump on the bandwagon. That is not the case now. This Government fights back...hard. Wayne Swan would never have published this essay three years ago. It would not have been allowed. That is how far this Government, led by a strong PM, has come.

Gina, Twiggy, Clive and others may very well have the power  of wealth. They may seek to use that power in order effect change in their, and none others, interest. What they don't have is the authority of the legislature. That they seek it is undeniable. That they have allies within the parlamient is sad, dangerous fact. That their cause is championed by, for now, influential media heads speaks volumes as to the ethics and morality of the concept of a free and independent media.

Giving the billioniares exclusive rights to the authority of the national legislature must never happen. None will escape unharmed.

ian

March 11. 2012 08:10 PM

Ad astra reply

Ian
You are right.  Julia Gillard and her Government have courage.  She shows it, so does Wayne Swan and Stephen Smith. They are sick of being kicked by an antagonistic media, and are retaliating.  And the media is screaming like a stuck pig. Gina, Clive and Twiggy are screaming too and flexing their financial muscles.  But eventually fairness and justice will prevail.

Ad astra reply

March 11. 2012 08:12 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
I'm off to watch Stephen Fry's Planet word on ABC TV.

Ad astra reply

March 11. 2012 08:42 PM

Michael

You know, the rich aren't lying. It IS a trickle down effect.

The problem for society, for humanity, is that it's a gush up effect for the exaggeratedly wealthy, who then use government policies and tricks of the accounting trade to keep as much 'gushed-up' UP as they can.

The "trickle" it often seems, is just the result of inadequate wealth-leakage proofing up there in the 1% of the greatly wealthy.

Sort of a mistake that they are constantly trying to rectify.

Michael

March 11. 2012 09:08 PM

Ad astra reply

Nasking
What an insightful comment you have made.  You paint a worrying picture of how the anger of those who feel oppressed by power and wealth has the potential to boil over, as we have seen already in the Occupy movement. It has subsided somewhat, but could boil over again.  I wonder do the rich and powerful, and their sycophants, recognize the danger?

Michael
You are right, the trickle is just that, a miserable and slow return.

Ad astra reply

March 11. 2012 10:28 PM

psyclaw

NormanK
What a great analysis at 4.52pm. I think Abbott with his now declared "absolute signature policy" ie his PPL handouts has self wedged again. If the true cost is $3 billion PA as reported variously, then this really is a big new tax. What hypocrisy. Surely the corps concerned will not silently accept this impost.

It is to be hoped that the colonition does not / can not pull a swifty re the costing of their policies for 2013 and that the facts emerge after independent auditing ..... they were well bitten by their $11 bill error last time .....would they be so brazen again? Certainly, if they can.

I watched Bolt for the very first time today. Here he was calling for S Smith to resign for denigrating Kafer, and get this. He refuses to consider the Ch 10 leak that Kafer was  criticised for poor judgement (vindicating the Minister) because that info "only has the status of a leak".

Yes, Bolt said that. The man who has based his political career on leaks, rumours and innuendo. And he also castigated S Smith on the basis of character assassination (of Kafer). This from the idiot who lost his own case about abusively slandering others last year.

But there's more!!!! He raved on at length about S Smith's failure to show remorse and apologise to Kafer...... this from the imbecile who still thinks the court last year unfairly shafted him, an innocent man, for his denigration of a group of women.

But there's more more!!!! Bolt went on to describe the assertive stance of the PM and other Ministers of recent weeks as her being ill mannered and rude and a put-on. Many of us see this style as the natural and acceptable, indeed necessary style, replacing the government's too courteous demeanour up till then ...... taking Dog knows how much shite from the gallery.

In all of this he was aided, abetted and echoed by the limp has-been, Recyle Kroger. He's another one who can be relied upon to be lying whenever his lips move.

Bolt epitomises the conservo extremist ..... absolutely brazen in his lies and deceptions. I sometimes wonder if he is planfully so manipulative, or is it just that he is a politics-sociopath who has no self insight.

Either way, he is (a hindrance to.....) no a destroyer of democracy.

psyclaw

March 11. 2012 10:42 PM

NormanK

psyclaw

The more that I read about Bolt the more convinced I am that he has chosen to make a 'career' out of what he does. Along with a few other public figures, I reckon it would be foolhardy to assign any actual belief by Bolt in anything that he says or writes. He is a character in his own play.

NormanK

March 11. 2012 10:44 PM

Lyn

Hi Psyclaw

Well MTR was shut up in the middle of a broadcast by the receivers, the Herald Sun is being paywalled, we only have the channel 10 report left.  Think the ratings are not too good.

youngapprenticePBzackster:
Bolt to be paywalled! mumbrella.com.au/herald-sun-prepares-to-turn-on-paywall-77747 WHAT HAPPENED TO FREEDOM?” it is freedom!! For us from Bolt #
thereisagod

Herald Sun prepares to turn on paywall
Herald Sun’s columnists including Andrew Bolt, Mark Robinson, Terry McCrann, and Susie O’Brien will  only be accessible to subscribers
mumbrella.com.au/herald-sun-prepares-to-turn-on-paywall-77747

Cheers SmileSmileSmileSmile

Lyn

March 12. 2012 01:50 AM

TalkTurkey

Jeez Ad, sure you wouldn’t like me to write a parody of the whole of Les Mis? Smile

(It was a pleasure really, the last verse was a bit painful but!)


Comrades Of The Sword

Will you heed Ad astra's call summoning Comrades of the Sword?
It's an urgent plea to spread the Truth that must not be ignored!
Now the greedy and the rich threaten the welfare of us all,
Will you wield the Sword and answer Ad astra's call?  

Will you help in our campaign? This is a fight that we must win!
The chance won’t come again, now raise your voice above the din!
So join in the fight alongside Ad astra and Lyn!

Will you heed Ad astra's call summoning Comrades of the Sword?
It's an urgent plea to spread the Truth that must not be ignored!
Now the greedy and the rich threaten the welfare of us all,
Will you wield the Sword and answer Ad astra's call?  

Will you help to play your part? And will you write for all you’re worth?
From Darwin down to Hobart-town, from Brisbane west to Perth,  
We must help save Australia to help save the rest of the Earth!

Will you heed Ad astra's call summoning Comrades of the Sword?
It's an urgent plea to spread the Truth that must not be ignored!
Now the greedy and the rich threaten the welfare of us all,
Will you wield the Sword and answer Ad astra's call?  

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Original lyrics

When Tomorrow Comes

Do you hear the people sing? Singing a song of angry men?
It is the music of a people who will not be slaves again!
When the beating of your heart echoes the beating of the drums
There is a life about to start when tomorrow comes!

Will you join in our crusade? Who will be strong and stand with me?
Somewhere beyond the barricade is there a world you long to see?
Then join in the fight that will give you the right to be free!

Do you hear the people sing? Singing a song of angry men?
It is the music of a people Who will not be slaves again!
When the beating of your heart echoes the beating of the drums
There is a life about to start When tomorrow comes!

Will you give all you can give so that our banner may advance?
Some will fall and some will live: will you stand up and take your chance?
The blood of the martyrs will water the meadows of France!

Do you hear the people sing? Singing a song of angry men?
It is the music of a people who will not be slaves again!
When the beating of your heart echoes the beating of the drums
There is a life about to start when tomorrow comes!

[ From: www.metrolyrics.com/...-lyrics-les-miserables.html ]
Read more: LES MISERABLES - DO YOU HEAR THE PEOPLE SING LYRICS www.metrolyrics.com/...-lyrics-les-miserables.html
Copied from MetroLyrics.com

TalkTurkey

March 12. 2012 02:25 AM

Casablanca

NormanK

I have not had a chance yet to read your contribution on PPL but thought that I would provide a link to Adele Horin's article in the SMH 'To the Labour Ward in a Roller'. Horin spoke with Professor Peter Whiteford, of the Social Policy Research Centre, UNSW when writing the piece.

For those earning $150,000, it is true the maternity pay of $75,000 would represent virtually the most generous salary replacement rate in the world, Whiteford says. But only 200,000 women out of 4.5 million female employees earn more than $90,000. Many of them are older women with grown children. In other words, few women would qualify for the $75,000 that is the butt of so much criticism of Abbott's scheme.

Read more: www.smh.com.au/.../...a-roller-20120309-1upmo.html

Casablanca

March 12. 2012 08:15 AM

johnL1

I enjoyed this post, particularly the summing up in the first paragraph relating to hackneyed slogans being a paltry substitute for informed defbate, “one we as a society need to have”.

I think you also may have done everyone a great favour by the effective ridicule of that most superficial slogan  “killing the goose that is laying the golden eggs”.  I love the riposte that Swan does not want to kill the goose, he just wants a fairer share of its eggs.

Well done.

johnL1

March 12. 2012 08:34 AM

Ad astra reply

TT
Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant.  

That tune from Les Misérables has been singing joyfully in my head since yesterday when I posted a YouTube version of it on TPS – now I can put your inspired words to it.

Thank you.

Ad astra reply

March 12. 2012 08:35 AM

Lyn



TODAY’S LINKS


The Great Leap Forward  Mr Denmore, The Failed Estate
Brave and bold voices of moderation like Bolt, Devine, Akerman and Albrechtson - the spokespeople for the voiceless - have been hounded from journalism, leaving The People unrepresented  
thefailedestate.blogspot.com.au/.../...orward.html

Tone deaf and defensive, Andrew Elder, Politically Homeless
The Australian is rarely more pathetic when it tries to put one over its own readers. It reports this, it reports that, but fails to link the two as part of a whole problem within the ADF,
http://andrewelder.blogspot.com.au/

No winners in ADFA Skype sex scandal…except Abbott, James Higgins, The Politics Project
Tony Abbott isn’t interested interested in a debate. He isn’t interested in the big issues. He has no ideas about how to reform defence, about how to win over the chiefs, about how
thepoliticsproject.wordpress.com/.../

Every now and again…, James Higgins, The Politics Project
Every now and again, it’s important to remember just how much the Labor Party has achieved. And how it’s members and parliamentarians not only have faces, but passionate hearts and minds as well.
thepoliticsproject.wordpress.com/.../

Truth to power, and other delusions of the fourth estate, Ben Eltham, The Drum
The argument mounted by the Canberra press gallery and many other journalists with inside knowledge of the internecine hatreds of the Australian Labor Party is simple enough. "We were right all along," t
http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/3880222.htmlCan

Can This Man Handle The Economy, Ben Eltham, New Matilda
The Coalition’s economic weakness was again revealed on Wednesday when Hockey delivered a speech on the economy to a business forum. Besides the usual promises about cutting spending
newmatilda.com/2012/03/09/can-man-handle-economy

Attack by The Australian supports case against ‘enforced self-regulation’, MARK PEARSON , Journlaw
While I disagree with this kind of journalism and its use by a leading masthead, I think it presents a unique lesson on why Finkelstein’s core proposal for a News Media Council
http://journlaw.com/

Response to “The Australian”, Margaret Simons
The Weekend Australian’s article, published today, on journalism academics was riddled with misrepresentations and straight out factual errors, fatally undermining its central argument.
blogs.unimelb.edu.au/.../

Inquiry annoys big media, but could hurt alternative media, Jay Fletcher,  Green Left
But the News Limited and Fairfax media — which control more than three-quarters of Australia’s newspapers and has the biggest online news presence — mounted a shrill attack on the inquiry
http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/50307

News Limited attack on academics deeply self-interested ,Happy Antipodean,
The regulator is needed because of the way newspapers like The Australian operate, and of course nothing that the paper says that is at variance with the inquiry's findings can be taken at face value.I'm not a journalism teacher,yet I believe that News Limited
happyantipodean.blogspot.com.au/.../...deeply.html

Why don’t Australians ‘trust’ the media, Jonathon Oake
The paper appears in Finkelstein’s report as a bogeyman, with its biased coverage of climate change and the NBN. But there’s surely no doubt its intended target – senior professionals in
graphicmaterial.org/.../

An open letter to Mr Maurice Newman, Chairman of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Professor Michael Ashley, Faculty of Science
What has me fuming is your speech last week to ABC staff in which you accuse your senior journalists of "group-think" in favouring the scientific consensus on climate change. You refer to "a growing number of distinguished scientists [that are] challenging
www.science.unsw.edu.au/.../

Tony Abbott’s Graphic Nightmare!,  Archie Archives, The Curmudgens Magazine
keep hearing that it is the highest taxing Government in Australia’s history. That the Coalition were and always will be better financial managers than the ALP could ever be.
archiearchive.wordpress.com/.../

The Bulletin Boys, Bernard Lagan, The Global Mail
They are rivals now, each a possible Prime Minister. But in earlier times, Malcolm Turnbull, Bob Carr and Tony Abbott all were bright, young things priming their political ambition in with the
www.theglobalmail.org/.../

The Smith v ADF war. Stephen needs to win this one, The Monthly Quadrant Review
The Defence Minister is part of the Council of Ministers who advises the Crown on military issues. In a convoluted way, the ADF actually serves the pleasure of the Government via the Minister of Defence.
http://www.monthlyquadrantreview.com/

Defence is like a fox defining a chicken for a farmer, Eric Palmer, Crikey
The entrenched Defence bureaucracy has been having a field day up to this point “advising” their empty suit ministers. This is the classic tale of the fox telling the farmer the definition
www.crikey.com.au/.../

Consumers of news singularly unprotected, Crispin Hull
It was greeted with howls of self-interested derision and affronted rage from nearly all of  the media. It would cost too much, the $12-billion-a-year industry yelped. It would destroy free speech
www.crispinhull.com.au/.../

IPA’s John Roskam misleads AFR readers, Malcolm Turnbull
as Mr Roskam knows very well, the remark he selectively quotes does not refer to the News Media Council proposal at all,  
www.malcolmturnbull.com.au/.../

Govt media regulator should be avoided, Sky News
The head of the body overlooking print media in Australia says a government regulator of the sector should be avoided
www.skynews.com.au/.../article.aspx

Prudent Fiscal Management Who's Your Daddy-, Stephen Koukoulas
Before kicking off, I must confess I don’t know what Mr Abbott means when he says “prudent fiscal management”. If it means being the highest taxing government in Australia’s history,
http://stephenkoukoulas.blogspot.com.au/

Sloan gets it wrong , Stephen Koukoulas
It’s a strange article. There was no reference at all to the Global Financial Crisis and the fact that Australia was one of few countries to avoid recession. She fails to acknowledge
stephenkoukoulas.blogspot.com.au/.../...wrong.html

Economy slows though consumers spend, Ross Gittins
To say consumers are cautious implies that when their confidence returns they'll start spending more strongly. That's a misreading of the situation. Their spending is already growing at trend.
www.rossgittins.com/.../...gh-consumers-spend.html

99 not out, Miglo, Café Whispers’
If we didn’t maintain topics and discussions of interest that attracted comments/debate, then we’d never reach the figure we are on the cusp of achieving.
cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2012/03/10/99-not-out/

Fundraising for Coal Seam Gas- Behind the Seams field reporting, Mark Bahnisch, Larvatus Prodeo
The mainstream media has not told the real stories of lived experience on the Western Downs, as communities grapple with the incredible speed of coal seam gas development.
larvatusprodeo.net/.../

The Battle for Ashgrove Tightens, Antony Green
Reachtel's sample size was 740, Galaxy's 800. Labor's lead in both polls was less than the margin of error, but having two polls that are both significantly different from previous polls that showed Newman well ahead suggests the contest for Ashgrove has narrowed substantially
blogs.abc.net.au/.../...for-ashgrove-tightens.html

More allegations over Newman's campaign fund, ABC
The Australian newspaper is reporting the developer of two towers at East Brisbane paid another $20,000 to Mr Newman's election fund.That is on top of the $50,000 in donations the paper reported yesterday.
www.abc.net.au/.../3861442?section=qld

Deep pockets,  Stumbling On Melons
It is astounding the amount of court time that has been taken up, chiefly by a combination of Mrs Rinehart’s determination to prevent the claim being brought or publicised and the determination of the media interests (including rivals, Fairfax and News, here commonly represented) to get at the story.
marcellous.wordpress.com/.../

Bushfire Bill
Posted Friday, March 9, 2012 at 11:32 am | Comment 387 The Poll Bludger

They all do this: Shanahan and Grattan are past masters, but at various times they all write about the “The Media”, as if it’s over there somewhere, not the quagmire they are standing in themselves.
blogs.crikey.com.au/.../#comment-1190470


Video


Wayne Swan talks to the National Press Club
www.youtube.com/watchv=S6G_yrEPSt0&context=C4e9da23ADvjVQa1PpcFOhGOnX-uLDzXAJFqnItOvSzG4hLFQtjBY=

Bligh, Gillard launch Qld Labor campaign, ABC
Ms Gillard, who received a standing ovation when she took the stage, told hundreds of party faithful that Queensland faces a choice between going back to the past under the LNP and seizing the future with Labor.
www.abc.net.au/.../3882396?WT.mc_id=newsmail

Mining boom hiding a soft economy , Tim Colebatch, National Times
www.youtube.com/watchv=Elhb5FK8zaE&context=C4216624ADvjVQa1PpcFOhGOnX-uLDzVuyzgcnaDkLcSMpSSnCm78=

Tony Abbott gets nailed at a Peoples Forum Carbon Tax Peoples Forum
www.youtube.com/watch

Abbott announces coalition plans, Sky News
A federal coalition government will set up a special commission to review Commonwealth public service operations and cuts costs, Opposition Leader Tony Abbott says.
www.skynews.com.au/.../article.aspx

Queensland Votes- Newman on Meet the Press, The Insiders ,  LNP leadership concerns and more
Campbell Newman has certainly been doing the rounds appearing on the Meet the Press today and attempting to redress concerns about his personal and family’s financial holdings. This will continue to plague him until he makes more definitive statements, not the same old statements said more forcefully. He also attempted to address the issue of who would be leader if he can’t win Ashgrove. Makes for interesting watching.
http://australianpoliticstv.org/

Getting to know Campbell Newman and his record as Lord Mayor
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DK-98_zk5-E

Newman will give up business if premier, Sky News
Mr Newman on Saturday told reporters he would be making a 'significant announcement' on Channel 10's Meet the Press on Sunday to address questions about his personal financial dealings and family business interests.
www.skynews.com.au/.../article.aspx

March 11, 2012: We speak to the brothers about the true story behind one of our biggest heist , Channel 9
http://today.ninemsn.com.au/videoindex.aspx

Lyn

March 12. 2012 08:38 AM

Ad astra reply

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

Ad astra reply

March 12. 2012 08:41 AM

Lyn

TODAY'S FRONT PAGES


      Australian Newspaper Front Pages for 12 March 2012

www.frontpagestoday.co.uk/index.cfm

Lyn

March 12. 2012 08:54 AM

Gravel

Ad Astra

I don't know the name of the smallest bone in our body, but on the last thread I expressed my pleasure of what Wayne Swan has done.  You have turned my support from a very tiny bone into a huge elephant.  Thank you.  Your writing is the reason I was attracted to your first ever post.

Archiearchive

I really enjoyed your graphs, and I like your sense of homour, like others here I hope you return more often.

Talk Turkey

Well done.  You fulfilled Ad's request with superb  lyrics, and the best part is I could sing the right tune.  I just love 'Les Miserables'. I saw it live in Melbourne many moons ago and have the disc which I play on long car trips, and sing at the top of my voice.

Gravel

March 12. 2012 08:57 AM

janice

Good morning all.

Just had to send some kudos to TT for his "Comrades of the Sword".  Great stuff TT Smile

Excellent article Ad astra.  I'm having trouble putting my thoughts into words at the moment (too much other stuff rattling around in my brain) but hopefully I can contribute to the discussion later.

NormanK,
I join with Ad astra in complimenting you on your response to TOM - I reckon though this person is unlikely to get his conservative mind around the points you make having formed his opinion on the three second grabs spruiked by the LOTO.  

janice

March 12. 2012 09:36 AM

TalkTurkey

Ad astra used the term
"inspired words"

You constantly inspire us all Ad.  

TalkTurkey

March 12. 2012 09:43 AM

nasking

Liberal backbencher Steve Ciobo was on Sky News this morn attacking Stephen Smith...it was pathetic partisan politics. The right-wing really want Smith gone...he must be doing something right.

Ciobo is another Liberal with little imagination...he hopes to turn the all ready bad taste Gold Coast into a Las Vegas or Macau...

When in doubt opt for the crude and glitzy style of the worst of Americana or gambling obsessed China...won't Packer and allies luv it?  Why not throw in a Dutch style red light district and some worst of Thai whilst we're at it...a few Russian mobsters...

And to think this guy lives at the coast with his family.

Perhaps we could also import Las Vegas style housing and construction booms...and crashes?

Wouldn't that be something to behold? NOT.

Thank gawd these Libs never got their hands on power during the GFC.

www.goldcoast.com.au/.../...1_gold-coast-news.html

N!

nasking

March 12. 2012 09:54 AM

NormanK

Queensland, hang your head in shame.
Bob Katter, you are a fool of the highest order.

'Gutter politics': Gay marriage attack ad prompts howls of protest
by Marissa Calligeros   Brisbane Times
www.brisbanetimes.com.au/.../...0120312-1utcj.html

NormanK

March 12. 2012 09:57 AM

psyclaw

Thanks for the links today Lyn. What a comprehensive collection ......more than enough reading for one day and full of interest.

The Rineheart link showing that she has run 11 court cases so far to pursue her goals re the family squabble bears powerful witness to the fact that money can buy so much....unlimited access tothe courts......but sadly for her, it can't buy the decision she wants.
This makes me and I'm sure Mr Swan too very happy.

Mr Denmore's article is an absolute classic and a must for all Swordsfolk.

Bolt et al behind a paywall is great news, but the price is too cheap .....should be $100 a week instead of 5 or 6 bucks ....he should be priced right out of any access.

psyclaw

March 12. 2012 11:15 AM

nasking

Norman,
I couldn't agree more. Katter has turned out to be a desperate, bigoted, attention-seeking child...whatever respect I had for him has vanished with his ongoing petulant and arrogant displays of stupidity. He makes One Nation look moderate. Perhaps Bob would better serve Qlders if he went to live in Texas or Georgia?


Katter's Australian Party's Queensland leader, Aidan McLindon, this morning refused to apologise for the ad, which he said was designed to be confronting.
"We've just highlighted something that he's [Mr Newman] said. If people want to get angry, then they've got every right to be angry at Campbell for his position on this," Mr McLindon told 612 ABC Radio.



Read more: www.brisbanetimes.com.au/.../...0120312-1utcj.html

My father-in-law in Beaudesert is the type of fella that this lot hope to gain traction with...however, speaking to him the other day I discovered he thinks McLindon is an idiot...tho he'd probably not tell him so unless he'd had a beer or twelve.

He might now tho...this stunt is plain dumb.

N'

nasking

March 12. 2012 11:35 AM

nasking

Lyn,
Superb job w/ the links per usual. So much fascinating and enlightening info...and useful debate.

I checked out the LP stuff on coal seam gas...which led to Crikey too. Widens usefully the debate.

After reading the fascinating article on Carr, Turnbull & Abbott @ The Global Mail
(so Abbott has always been a big-mouthed, opinionated, bigoted freak) I read thru the enlightening:

www.theglobalmail.org/.../

Both parts are a must.

I will be less likely to whinge about my power bill now.

N'

nasking

March 12. 2012 12:16 PM

NormanK

Casablanca

Thanks for the link to Adele Horin's article. I am not familiar with this author's work but she has immediately acquired the distinction of rubbing me up the wrong way on our first encounter. Oh well, let's say the fault lies with me.

Some of the information she provides is relevant and illuminating e.g. that very few women of child-bearing age earn $150,000 or more. Fair enough.

Let's see if I can ascertain why my fur is standing up all over the place.

His colleagues are aghast, business is up in arms, the welfare lobby is opposed, and it is hard to find women who support it either. Even the sisterhood is against him.

That's pretty damning isn't it? No-one likes it but still, it can't be all bad.
Anyone who uses 'the sisterhood', especially a woman, is not likely to cause me to purr. I don't like broad brushes and this particular expression is most commonly used these days as a pejorative.

It positions maternity leave as a workplace policy, not welfare.This is as it should be because it is normal for women workers to need time off and sustained wages when they have babies.

Mild irritation. Like many a cat before me, I can tell instinctively that I'm probably not going to like this individual.
This idea of it being a workplace policy is often said about Abbott's plan, in fact it is one of his favourite lines. I confess that I don't understand the basic contention - how is it a workplace policy when not all workplaces have to contribute to the pool of money that will fund it? If he was proposing legislation that makes it obligatory for every employer to contribute to a social insurance fund, then it would be a workplace policy.

He has failed to convince the left and right that his scheme is akin to workers' compensation or sick leave, where people are paid a replacement wage.

He has failed to convince me because worker's compensation comes from a social insurance fund to which all employers contribute. Sick leave, to the best of my knowledge, is the sole responsibility of the employer. Abbott's scheme is nothing like either of those except that it does offer full wage replacement. The content of that sentence is accurate but the juxtaposition of 'worker's compensation', 'sick leave' and Abbott's PPL is disingenuous and deliberately misleading.

Why shouldn't ordinary Australian women workers get a first-rate maternity leave policy instead of the stingy one delivered by Labor that we'll be stuck with for aeons?

Okay the reverse stroking has begun. 'Stingy' compared to what? Compared to overseas schemes that have been in place for years and are almost entirely based on different funding models whereby workers pay for their own scheme or the government taxes income at a much higher rate than we do. "Stingy' compared with what we had 12 months ago?
Who says we'll be 'stuck with it for aeons'?
Why is it inconceivable that once other social policies are bedded down in the budget that this can not be revisited and expanded upon? The passage of a little time will allow business and society to become accustomed to the idea and it will also allow a review that might suggest new and better ways of going about supporting new mothers. Baby steps.

He has failed to make the case that in Australia, more than most places, couples are reliant on two incomes given astronomical housing prices and rents.

Now I know that I'm dealing with a less than reliable commentator. I don't have the data to hand but there has been plenty of commentary that suggests that housing prices relative to annual income are not much different from what they have been for years. It's just that we are more 'aspirational' and want the four bedrooms, two cars, boat, holidays abroad and all of the other symbols that will denote us as middle class even though we really can't afford them. Most couples are reliant on two incomes because of the lifestyle choices they have made - nothing wrong with that but don't blame external forces (house prices) for the fact that many modern couples live close to the edge.

On top of his credibility problem, he has failed to provide the supporting data that might counter the most telling criticism, that its main beneficiaries are the well-off.

No, the most telling criticism is that all Australians, including the poor, will subsidise this scheme which will favour above average earners. No mention is made of the 'trickle down effect' (to borrow an expression) of a new tax on big business. I'm sure Treasury could calculate a commensurate lift in the GST that would have a similar impact on the price of goods and services. If it was couched as being the same as a 0.3% lift in the GST I wonder if consumers would be more accepting or less so.

Could our scheme be more generous? Absolutely, but it should not be at the expense of the poor and under-privileged. If you want a generous PPL scheme, legislate a social insurance scheme that spreads the burden more evenly across the workforce so that it does become a genuine workplace entitlement.

www.smh.com.au/.../...a-roller-20120309-1upmo.html

NormanK

March 12. 2012 12:18 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
Thanks for another great set of links – wasn’t Mr Denmore’s satire delectable.

I see that The Hun is going behind a paywall.  Why anyone would want to pay for its paltry and biased content is beyond me. I see that its columnists: Andrew Bolt, Mark Robinson, Terry McCrann, and Susie O’Brien, will only be accessible to subscribers.  What a relief.  Only those who give credence to their writings will pay, leaving the rest of us uncontaminated.

psyclaw
Bolt’s effrontery knows no bounds. Maybe your first diagnosis is near the mark –  a manipulative man who needs to central to every story.  As NormanK says: He is a character in his own play.

JohnL
Thank you for your complimentary remarks.  I’m glad you enjoyed the quip about the goose’s eggs.  Slogans have been stock in trade of the Coalition, and while they have been memorable and superficially plausible, will the electorate really be prepared to elect them on their slogans?  They may serve them now, but come election time?

We look forward to your pieces on the BER.

Gravel, janice
You are both a constant source of encouragement, and have been since the beginning.  Thank you.

Ad astra reply

March 12. 2012 01:16 PM

nasking

Andrew is spot on here:

At a time when Labor is supposedly bleeding internally over the leadership and the upheavals in the ministry that flowed from it, you would imagine that the Coalition - unafflicted by if not invulnerable to such ructions, apparently - would be making out like bandits with uncommitted voters. Instead, they are playing to their own base as though they, and not Labor, were in need of defending and rebuilding.

Tony Abbott's comments in defence of ADF culture (here, about three-quarters of the way down) are instructive. It's true that ADF personnel vote Coalition more than any other profession. It's also true that, while pride in the armed forces is not unique to conservatives, it is central to conservative conceptions of Australia, its (sorry, 'her') history and the purpose of government. You can understand why he'd want to represent any sort of criticism of the ADF as a swingeing assault of an institution at the core of the nation's life, one of great pride to almost all Australians, as a political maneuver to portray Labor as antithetical to the nation's values. Even so, it didn't work.

Every Federal MP who has been in office a while will have received complaints from those who had been dedicated members of the Australian Defence Force, but who had found themselves ensnared in some Kafkaesque nightmare and shunted out of what was not only their career but part of an attempt to fuse their identity with that of the nation. I would be very surprised if the office of the Member for Warringah is an exception to that.

Over many years, we have seen story after story after story about how the ADF is endemically unable to deal with the sorts of sexual harassment cases. The "rotten apple" thing becomes unconvincing after a while.

This was an opportunity for Abbott to start identifying his weaknesses and working on turning them around - particularly his standing with women, at a time when a female Prime Minister was supposedly so weak that she was a role model to nobody. By defending the ADF from any and all charges of misogyny and ineptitude, and linking such failure to "the ANZAC spirit", he has not won or retained a single vote. Nobody who is vaguely regretting having voted Labor in 2010 is convinced that they must vote Coalition at the next opportunity as a result of that effort. His whole position on that issue was not worth taking, and almost certainly did his cause some harm.

Abbott's claim that if there is no crime committed then there is no problem, and that a commander who has been clumsy is unworthy of censure, rings hollow. You don't want your leader ringing hollow. Especially not on International Women's Day: the whole idea that Peta Credlin, Julie Bishop, any female Coalition MP/Senator/candidate or even his own daughters provide civilising influences on Abbott's more Neanderthal tendencies is completely rubbished by his attempts to rally the lads to a dysfunctional status quo. Good, positive policy like this sank like a SIEV. It was dopey politics, squandering an opportunity to stick it to a supposedly vulnerable government.

Coalition supporters will tell you that Abbott is under no obligation to release his policies early, and they're right. Policy papers don't have the impact they once did, when journalists and voters would write to the offices of the respective parties requesting policy papers so that they could compare and discuss them. Policy papers these days are advertising copy made up of dot-points. They are not worth writing, let alone reading, and what little detail they have becomes non-core in the face of the inevitable post-election Budget Black Hole. The idea that All Will Be Revealed In Good Time when the policy documents are released is a joke. Every statement, every vote over the course of a term builds a picture of what a government or an opposition is like, a picture that even the most lavish ad campaign can't shake.

All that no, no, no has entered the soul of the Coalition, and has certainly coloured public perceptions of them even if they haven't quite hardened into voting intentions (more reasons why polls are crap). Policy papers promising love and sunshine from the Coalition can't and won't change that, not even with uncritical media coverage. The squandered opportunities to bring out the best in ADF personnel by casting out the worst is one example: if you're going to get rid of dud teachers, surely the task is all the more urgent with dud ADF personnel. ADF personnel don't get to choose the teams they are assigned to, they have to work with whomever they're assigned to work with: in that context harassment/bullying can be seen as insubordination. It is bullshit to assert that a creep who harasses subordinates is really a mighty warrior and must be respected as such. Tony Abbott has committed the Coalition to not improving but maintaining an ADF which is weakened by its failure to tackle the sorts of problems that have largely been addressed (if not entirely resolved) in wider Australian society. Be it on his own head, and on those who would stand with him
.

Abbott is a divisive character who oozes the bigotry and uncomfortable approach towards women you'd expect from a fire and brimstone preacher who was obviously even too unpredictable and intense for the Catholic church...a walking, talking minefield...

And the Coalition want to impose this ranting bundle of joy on the Australian people.

Makes ya wonder where their heads and principles and policies are at these days.

An irrational and desperate pattern of behavior on their part I reckon.

N'

nasking

March 12. 2012 01:20 PM

nasking

Andrew as in Andrew Elder...as linked above by the ever-dependable Lyn.

Tone deaf and defensive, Andrew Elder, Politically Homeless

N'

nasking

March 12. 2012 01:29 PM

Tom of Melbourne

Thanks for a considered reply Norman K.

I’ll provide some other thoughts regarding your points later, but this is an initial reaction.

1.  Funding models may be relevant, though the government seems satisfied to fund its scheme out of general revenue, ie it places a burden on all taxpayers, including those “least able to afford it”.

That’s ok with me, but how do you reconcile this?


2.  On this thread, Ad Astra acknowledges the need for modern version of Keynes’ Social Contract. But your argument seems to object to this, as apparently any increase in the taxes applied to “big business” will be offset by price increases which cause the burden to fall most heavily on “those that can least afford it”.

How about you choose one or the other, does “big business” have a responsibility for fulfil its social contract? Or will a social contract simply cause a price increase, disadvantaging those “least able to afford it”?


3.  Why do you object to political momentum and changes in public sentiment which cause a shift in the policies of the major parties? I’d have thought you would welcome this, particularly on issues such as climate change. Marriage equality is another issue where change in public sentiment may cause changes in the policies of the major parties, despite the personal orientation of the leaders.

What’s your problem with this?

Tom of Melbourne

March 12. 2012 01:32 PM

NormanK

nasking

I hope you won't take this poorly but it really is pointless cutting and pasting an entire article from another site. We've got the link, all that might be required is for you to recommend it or to add you own comments on its content.
I'm not trying to be unkind - it's just really annoying to have to scroll past something that is available elsewhere. Smile

NormanK

March 12. 2012 01:46 PM

nasking

Norman,
You are being pedantic. I thought it a useful article...many visitors miss some links for various reasons.

Quite frankly I'm getting tired of the cold shoulder approach of a number of regular commenters on this site...and will go elsewhere from now on. I got the message.
As did Feral obviously.

A last link...worth taking on board...particularly the last two paragraphs:

http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/3882526.html

Thnx to those who saw beyond the narrow alleyways...and made me feel welcome and respected.

N'

nasking

March 12. 2012 01:53 PM

Patricia WA

Well done, TT, especially with "Comrades of the Sword!"   You deserve every bit of praise!   Like Gravel I now can't get that tune out of my head.  Try as I might yesterday I couldn't put words to it.

I'll try again, but not with the tune, something more prosaic perhaps.   I'm obviously not of a lyrical mind.

First I have to work through all those lovely links, for which thanks Lyn.  

Patricia WA

March 12. 2012 01:59 PM

Lyn

Hi Nasking

Please don't be upset.  I enjoy your comments very much. Nasking your participation here would be sadly missed.  I have been though many days and weeks were you have been the main contributor.

In the 3 years I have been a member of TPS Ad Astra has never made any rules on this site regarding the length of commenting or pasting anything.

Your participation here Nasking is valued and we thank you very much for your very welcome input.

With regards to the person you mentioned, there were certain rules she did try to make,in accordance with herself, in so doing upset a lot of regular readers.

TPS does not have any rules apart from consideration and respect for The Political Sword and each others varied opinions.

Lyn

March 12. 2012 02:04 PM

Ad astra reply

Nasking
Please don’t take umbrage at NormanK’s comment; it is simply a comment, not a slight.  We enjoy your participation here; your Big Bear Gravatar is always a welcome sight.

Ad astra reply

March 12. 2012 02:30 PM

nasking

Ad & Lyn,
As always you are very kind and welcoming...but since I supported Rudd during the recent leadership battle I've felt like an unwanted disease...and depression has washed over me darker than I've felt for a good long time.

I do reckon Gillard has done a top job since winning the ballot...and I'm pleased for her and the government that she has room to move and establish real authority now...

Yes, I returned to this site earlier than I said I would after the Rudd loss...but felt keen to focus on Abbott and his motley crew...and read thru Lyn's useful links...and obviously the great posts and comments offered up.

I think it was a mistake...some are obviously still holding grudges and would prefer I did not contribute...the environment has generally felt very cold for me.  And my mind is not a peaceful and happy place at the best of times due to chemical imbalances. I also let you down regarding posting on the American election...something I feel regret about..but at this time I'm not at my best...my confidence s low...apologies. My brain sucks.

I think it best I took a significant break...then maybe I could manage more...free perhaps from the black dogs that too oft growl and bark in my ears...thru the fog of pain...and doubt. Will this persistent headache and back and neck pain ever go away? Too much lifting as a young man...furniture, the disabled...for stuff all income...no Super...no respect.

I'm tired, so freaking tired. Of war, exploitation...nagging, chronic pain. Teeth included.
Of being afraid I'll lose my best mate, friend, wife to cancer. Tired of waking at 4am every morning...worried, terrified.
And those dogs...they never stop howling.

N'

nasking

March 12. 2012 02:35 PM

Gravel

Nasking

Please take care of yourself and come back soon.

Lyn

Thanks for all those lovely links, it wasn't expecting any today as it is a public holiday in Victoria, so it was a great surprise.

Ad Astra

You enjoy your holiday and take care.

Psyclaw

It is great to see you back.

Gravel

March 12. 2012 02:44 PM

Ad astra reply

Nasking
Our heart goes out to you.  The suffering you are enduring is very distressing.  The black dog is awful; only those who have heard it growl, really understand.

You must do what is best for your health.  Whatever you do is OK by your friends here. I have no sense of anyone holding a grudge against you, but acknowledge that is how you feel, and that because of this you want to take a break.

Once you feel inclined to return, you can be assured of a big welcome.

We hope you feel better soon.

Ad astra reply

March 12. 2012 02:59 PM

NormanK

nasking

I'm not sure that I could have worded my remark any more politely.
Please take it at face value (and ignore it if you wish) but believe me when I tell you there is no subtext, no cold shoulder.
It would be a great loss to TPS if you were to stop contributing here.

NormanK

March 12. 2012 03:06 PM

NormanK

Tom of Melbourne

Thanks for your response. To respond to your points:

1. Funding. Taking money out of general revenue does not place any more pressure on low income earners, they were going to pay the tax anyway. The argument that it places extra burden on them would only apply if taxes were increased as a direct response to the implementation of this measure. Welfare recipients, of whom there are millions, are more likely to be living hand-to-mouth so to speak and placing a further 1.5% tax on businesses like Coles and Woolworths is going to directly impact them.

2. I'm quite sure that you would be the first to contend that the opinions of the blog owner are not necessarily the opinions of commenters on his/her site and vice versa.
Abbott's tax on big business is nothing to do with a social contract - it is a tax pure and simple. As part of their social contract big businesses should be supporting the arts, community organisations, not-for-profit welfare groups and so on, as well as paying all of the tax due from them under the law of the land. It may well be that businesses recoup their 'charitable' outlays through increases in their prices but they nevertheless have an obligation to give back to the society from which they derive their profits.

3. Where in what I have said did I object to any increase to the PPL scheme? My objection is to the way in which Abbott wishes to fund his scheme and the flagrant hypocrisy of 'over this government's dead body' Abbott's conversion to an extremely generous scheme. It is populism and it runs the risk of all populist policies that are designed in Opposition - it may never see the light of day.
I have no problem with public sentiment momentum bringing about changes to policy. I have a fundamental objection to the revenue stream that Abbott wants to use and that higher income earners will derive greater benefit without making greater contribution. If he wants to use a tax to fund it, he should have the guts to make it economy wide and not hide behind this 'social contract of big business' nonsense.

NormanK

March 12. 2012 03:21 PM

Lyn

Hi Nasking

You make me so sad with that illness you a trying to cope with. That is why I was so pleased to see you here each and everyday.

I thought your participation in expressing you concerns and opinions was doing you so much good.

Didn't you know,  I can tell by your writing, you have improved out of sight.  Don't worry about not writing the articles for TPS  that’s nothing,

you don't need any reason, it's not important, we all do what we can.  

Day by day I have seen you improve in confidence.

You are entitled to change you opinion everyday if you want to, there are no rules.
I tell you what there are a lot of my friends at home here  that still back Kevin Rudd that’s ok they can.  

As Ad said we need to see that big tough Nasking bear here, we care about you Nasking.

CheersSmileSmileSmile

Lyn

March 12. 2012 03:58 PM

nasking

You are all so kind...obviously i've allowed paranoia to infect me again...as it too oft does w/ my condition.

Norman, don't worry, I did overreact...I'm a bit of a mess right now...the father-in-law I mentioned is in hospital at this moment having a heart op...my Dad had a biggie a few weeks back and is struggling back to form...my wife has been told she must have a hysterectomy ASAP, the poor thing is only 40...so no chance of kids at all now...

And the one friend I regularly chatted with here in Qld died a few weeks back from pancreatic cancer...56...rarely drank, non-smoker...damned unfair. We sat together on his porch a couple of weeks before he passed...chatting amiably about the beautiful day, the gorgeous plants, his wonderful wife, his life in Hong Kong, scientists, existentialists, music...we covered so many topics...he felt a renewed lust and appreciation for life...felt sadly time was moving so fast...slipping from his grasp. I  shook his hand and patted his shoulder for the last time...unaware that it would be...not realizing how quickly this cancer would pounce and squeeze the life out of his wee body.  It feels so unreal...so bloody tragic. Such a waste. All that knowledge, wisdom, love taken w/ the winds of time. No more stimulating, enlightening chats. Just silence. Apart from his words murmuring somewhere in my head...an aspect.

Again, thnx for the kind, understanding words Lyn, Ad, Gravel, Norman...

I gotta find a way out of this dark place. Before it swallows me.

Later.
N'


nasking

March 12. 2012 04:17 PM

TalkTurkey

Nasking,
To your last point first:
I read John Pilger's comments, and some of the comments thereon, with some but not entire surprise. You may remember that while I have overwhelmingly supported *J*U*L*I*A*, yet with regard to some issues, notably Julian Assange's persecution, and our involvement in foreign military meddling, I have been openly critical, while on others, including certain aspects of educational assessment, and intervention in aboriginal affairs, I have made no comment, by reason of the insufficiency of information in my own head and on TPS both. I do understand why Pilger is hostile towards Gillard on the Assange front, I have quoted him myself in support of Assange but I have temporarily given up on that front, you are not an orphan when it comes to being cold-shouldered, but I also get a lot of warm hugs here, as do you too. I have given you a few bearhugs myself over time, sometimes taking the p*ss it's true, but never to the point of wanting to p*ss you off.

So go not spare, beloved Bear, but stay and share the rants!

(original:
So grow not pale, beloved Snail, but come and join the dance!   Smile                                                            (Lobster Quadrille, 'Lewis Carroll')  

I don't always read all of the longest comments, there is always more here than I can even ingest, let alone digest, here in Lyn's Links in particular, but as Neil Young says, "Well I only harvest some." But what I leave and scroll by doesn't hurt me, takes 2 seconds, column space costs us nothing here, (thanks to Ad), and you are right, some articles are particularly worth drawing attention to.  

Remember, you can always just scroll by what you don't want to read yourself. But don't scroll by TPS.

TalkTurkey

March 12. 2012 04:56 PM

Lyn

Hi Ad and Everybody

Q&A and Lateline for you:-

TAWNBPMTAWNBPM
TONIGHT ON Q & A: Min for Health Tanya Plibersek, Shadow Communications Min Malcolm Turnbull, former Farmer of... http://fb.me/17TMw3ni4

LatelineLateline
Our guest tweeter tonight on #lateline is freelance journalist and author MargaretSimons http://www.margaretsimons.com http://fb.me/1rBLMBK27

Lyn

March 12. 2012 05:00 PM

Patricia WA

DECLARING WAR IS NOT SWAN'S WAY!

Wayne Swan did not declare this war.
It was Clive Palmer crying poor
On Lateline not two years ago
When Kevin Rudd was all aglow,
Insisting miners pay more tax.
That night Clive said he’d get the axe;
Promised a miners’ revolution
To bring about Rudd’s execution.

So it was.   Twiggy and Gina
Came charging into the arena.
They roused the citizens of Perth
To claim states' rights to sell their earth.
Well known Aussie mining magnates,
Victorious,  this band of mates,
Then refused negotiations
And Gillard’s terms with corporations.

Billionaires on the back of trucks
Got Tony Abbott thinking,  “Shucks!
We’ll have a nationwide revolt!
Bring carbon pricing to a halt!”

But somehow his People’s Rising,
Urged on by his catastrophizing,
Flopped.  It did not eventuate
That he inherit his ‘due’ estate.

Abbott couldn’t make the distance,
So Clive now has to lead resistance.
The manpower of a footie team,
Plus 'National Treasure' title, seem
To enlarge him, make him bigger,
Into a massive public figure.
Ally Twiggy gets his jollies
In Canberra,  nagging pollies.

It wasn’t hard to find a part
Ideally played by Ms Rinehart.
In charge of all their propaganda,
She made sure their memoranda
Were written up,  had wide report
In her media outlets newly bought.
That’s when Swannie sounded the alarm!
“Oz beware! Our democracy could come to harm!”

Patricia WA

March 12. 2012 05:10 PM

Ad astra reply

Patricia WA
That is great verse.  Rhythmic and true.

The billionaires have declared war.  War is a dangerous game.  There are always losers – big losers and lesser ones – all lose.  And fair play and democracy is always a casualty.

Ad astra reply

March 12. 2012 05:12 PM

nasking

TalkTurkey,
that was so sweet. My heart feels abit warmer since I read all yer lovely supportive comments. Silly me, losing sight of things. I just bawled me bleedin' eyes out...for the lost I loved, the war-ravaged, the struggling, those caught up in sex slavery...for all those who miss out because a few want so much for doing stuff all..expect so many sacrifices from the many...

and for the pain I see in my lover and friends' aging faces...

over the kindness & patience you have all shown me.

It seems these tuff political days that feel like they're neverending have their toll...on rationalism, civility, the climate, the environment, on our economies, our attempts at community harmony...on truth, integrity and justice...on our security...on our individual minds...our peace of mind...too oft swept away...by fear-mongering words...threats...from on high.

Now the NSW government begins a battle w/ educators and teacher unions...

attempting via media allies to divide communities...to score political points...and find ways to sack the not chosen, the perceived dissidents...to save money...reduce spending...to bring in the corporates...and melt the power of the unions w/ shock jock and newspaper hyperbole lasers...cause chaos where once there was progress and useful debate.

Perhaps this will be the Libs Wisconsin:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2011_Wisconsin_protests

A bridge too far.

------------
BTW, I like the idea of students in QLD benefitting from the gas boom. Gettin' help to pay for uni & other training courses.

And the exchange program for students w/ Asia.

And the auto rego bein' frozen for a term.

We're lucky to have Anna here in QLD. I luv her grit, her determination, her passion...her luv for us.

She's the real thing...not in it just for the money.
I'm proud I helped promote her last election.
My wife finds her inspiring.

N'

nasking

March 12. 2012 05:16 PM

nasking

Didn't you know,  I can tell by your writing, you have improved out of sight

Lyn,
I will tuck that into my brain and hope it gives me a better sleep. You are such a sweetie.

Patricia,
what a beaut poem. Brill!

I'm off. Much to reflect on.

Peace out all. Many thnx for toleratin' the wacky bear.

This is a great blog.

N'

nasking

March 12. 2012 05:17 PM

Ad astra reply

Nasking

I applaud you.

Ad astra reply

March 12. 2012 05:19 PM

Lyn

Hi Patricia

You are brilliant, a brilliant shining light, shining down on TPS.

Wayne Swan did not declare this war.It was Clive Palmer crying poor

Well maybe Gina Rinhart will cry poor, one quarter those kids own.
Gina is also mixed up pretty closely to the Liberals it seems:-

Rinehart offered money to daughter to drop lawsuit, court papers reveal Paul Bibby and Louise Hall, SMH
newly released court documents reveal.smh.com.au has been given access to the court documents in the ongoing stoush between Gina Rinehart and her daughter Ginia on one side and her three eldest children - John Hancock, Bianca Rinehart and Hope Rinehart Welker - on the other.

Senator Barnaby Joyce allegedly attempted to convince the three Rinehart children to keep their claim out of the public eye, while Liberal MP Alby Schultz entreated them to drop their claim altogether.
www.smh.com.au/.../...s-reveal-20120312-1uu3a.html

Lyn

March 12. 2012 05:26 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
It is now easy to see why Gina Rinehart wanted to suppress details of the family trust.

Ad astra reply

March 12. 2012 06:22 PM

Lyn

Hi Nasking

Back to Andrew Elders article.  Andrew is an excellent writer and a straight talker to the point, his articles are always an enjoyable read.

Thankyou Nasking for your conversation about Andrew Elders article, after all that is what today's links are for
information and conversation.

BTW there are times when we need to paste so as to make our points especially when the article is talking about something you are passionate about.

  You should see me in the mornings, trying to self impose a limit on myself to 3 lines under each link, when I love all of what they have written.

To be honest I like taking the easy way when reading so as not to have to follow a link. Tell you where it is a problem following a link , that is on a newspaper site or  The Poll Bludger.  One invariably gets lost when using arrow back  to the original article. In fact sometimes I can’t even get back.   I make sure to put the original article on the desk top now in case it goes missing.

Cheers to you Nasking SmileSmile

Lyn

March 12. 2012 06:43 PM

2353

Nas,

No one knows what you are going through, however a family member also has had similar problems.  A couple of things to remember based on what this person has said at various times:

1. Look for the positives - the outpouring of support from this blog is one example

2. Take each day as it comes - of course some days are better than others, it happens to all of us.  After some time you begin (according to this person) to recognise the difference between when the world is out to get you and you thinking the world is out to get you.

3. Stay well rested, hydrated and eat plenty of good (not junk) food - it will help you mend (just as if you had a physical operation)

4. Don't try to get over it, just try to get on with it - what has happened has happened, you can't change or alter it in any way whatsoever.  What you can do for yourself is make sure you don't sit and think about the things you can't change and concentrate on the future.

Please don't take this the wrong way - as I said up front we have no idea what you're going through but the fact that you are posting here again demonstrates that you really are on the mend.  It's a long slow road and the only other thing I can say is best of luck - you deserve it.

2353

March 12. 2012 06:44 PM

Lyn

Hi Ad

Just goes to prove what greed will do doesn't it.  After all those court cases one would assume the family would never reconcile.
Makes one wonder what they think life is all about.  Wayne Swan only asked them to pay their taxes.

australianThe
Rinehart 'pressured' children over trust: GINA Rinehart’s eldest children say their mother put "emotional, finan... http://bit.ly/zvwlo7

abcnewsABC News
Three of Gina Rinehart's children allege she deceived them by changing vesting date of family trust without permission http://bit.ly/yuOXEb

davidlen2Dafid
Gina Rinehart owns 19% of Channel 10, 15% of Fairfax but 100% of Barnaby_Joyce!! www.smh.com.au/.../...0120312-1uu3a.htmlrinehart-s… (credit @sprocket___ at PB )

CheersSmileSmileL)

Lyn

March 12. 2012 06:49 PM

2353

By the way does anyone feel sorry for Gina Reinhart?  I would hate to have to manage a family trust worth millions of dollars and work out how to tell my children they won't get to access the funds until they were in their 90's or have to pay millions in capital gains tax Laughing.  It's also a good look for Abbott defending them from the "horrible" mining tax.

2353

March 12. 2012 07:00 PM

nasking


You should see me in the mornings, trying to self impose a limit on myself to 3 lines under each link, when I love all of what they have written.

Lyn,
You do it so well. Yer a gem.

Just read out all yer kind comments to S. They warmed her too. We patiently await the outcome of her Dad's op...he went in an hour ago.

Patricia,
I read yer poem out loud to S. She thought it strong and apt...one of yer best.

Cheers Ad.

Talk turkey,
You have indeed shown consistent principles on those issues you mentioned...I do not forget that. Good on ya.

As for the Pilger article, I must defend PM Gillard on her Afghan stance...for I did take a similar position to her based on my worries that women and children would not get adequate protection if we left too early...and girls going to school would be persecuted by these Taliban bigots and Luddites. The Cambodian experience post-Vietnam War sprang to mind.

I do believe Julia has the best intentions when it comes to Afghanistan...and will pull the troops as soon as viably possible.

N'

nasking

March 12. 2012 07:02 PM

nasking

2353,
Thnx for the useful advice.

Keep up the great work.

Until tomorrow.

N'

nasking

March 12. 2012 07:15 PM

TalkTurkey

Patricia
I think you have excelled yourself this time, what think you?
You are certainly answering Ad astra's call!
Sounds pretty lyrical to me!
What your pome says between the lines is,
The phoney war is over. We are properly embattled now.
More power to Stephen Smith, Wayne Swan and *J*U*L*I*A*,
may our writings and links on the Sword encourage them and stiffen their resolve. It is a fight we dare not lose.

Lyn
Trust you to say the nicest thing of all to our grizzly Bear,
*Didn't you know, I can tell by your writing, you have improved out of sight*  

TalkTurkey

March 12. 2012 08:15 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
Thank you all for your supportive comments to a valued member of the TPS family - our great big bear Nasking.

Ad astra reply

March 12. 2012 08:17 PM

Ad astra reply

Folks
I'm off for a good night's TV viewing on the ABC.

Ad astra reply

March 12. 2012 10:28 PM

Patricia WA

Thank you, Talk Turkey, that is much appreciated coming from you!

That wasn't false modesty in that comment - perhaps I should have said musical instead of lyrical.  You love writing variations on lyrics to the original tunes.  I can't hear tunes as I write my verses.  I'm more cerebral, so I couldn't follow Ad Astra's cue the way you were able to!

I've just been enjoying this by Mungo McC about the class war. If you haven't seen, it's well worth a visit!  

www.abc.net.au/.../3883720.html?WT.svl=theDrum

Nasking, many thanks to you and yours for your comments on my pome.  Nice to think it brought a smile at a difficult time.  Well done you to keep focussing on your writing and beyond your own physical difficulties.  

Patricia WA

March 12. 2012 10:47 PM

Lyn

Hi Everybody

This is good at last, Julia up 3 points

geeksrulzIntrepid Geek
Rudd Bounce for sure Smile RT GhostWhoVotes: Newspoll Preferred PM: Gillard 39 (+3) Abbott 37 (-1) qanda

Lyn

March 12. 2012 11:02 PM

Miglo

Hi Nas. Sorry to hear about your run of bad luck. Take care.

Miglo

March 13. 2012 01:19 AM

Casablanca

Zero tolerance for ritual humiliation
Michael Mullins March 11, 2012.

When a cocktail of such factors [namely,violence, alcohol and substance misuse and mental health problems] is placed in the hothouse environment of a military academy or university college with a tradition of robust behaviour, there is a certain inevitability in the result. But this need not be the case if those in charge are prepared to take decisive action to stop behaviour that has been tolerated in the past.

www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=30453

Casablanca

March 13. 2012 08:12 AM

Lyn

TODAY’S LINKS



News Limited PM bash- 2 days after 2 years of Ruddmania, Utherssay Com
The campaign to destabilize the Australian government and to disrespect, denigrate and delegitimize the Australian Prime Minister is a blot on Australian journalism, an abrogation of the responsibilities of the fourth estate, and a disservice to those who trust journalists are reporters on events and not players in the political process.
http://utherssay.com/

How the lobby door spins for Swan’s vested mining interests, Graham Readfearn
Analysis of political donations by Crikey journalist Bernard Keane has found a sudden and significant shift in donations to the Opposition from mining companies, who gave more than $3 million
www.readfearn.com/.../

Social Media, Inert and Hopeless, Wayne Brooks, Curiosity and Challenge
Rare are those with actual points, conscientious comment, active causes and unbiased productive thoughts designed to benefit others. And when they post a decent comment the moron fringe attacks
wrb330.wordpress.com/.../

The politics of envy and old-fashioned class warfare, Mungo Maccallum, The Drum
Twiggy Forrest, the fourth richest person in Australia and the 173rd richest person in the world, say he has not yet paid any tax at all on his mining interests; but he plans to this year, the cheque is practically in the mail – unless, of course, his accountants can find a way out
.http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/3883720.html

Why Independent Media Must Survive,Mary Kostakidis,New Matilda
The ABC has come under sustained pressure to ensure they deliver balance and be less dogged in holding power to account. While it has always been criticised by governments of both persuasions, the Howard era finally saw in the changes in style at the public broadcaster that would bring joy to the heart of many a politician.
newmatilda.com/.../why-independent-media-must-survive-0

Malcolm Fraser: Stephen Smith is right on ADFA, Malcolm Fraser, The Conversation
I would support Stephen Smith when he indicated it was an error of judgement to continue with charges unrelated to this particular incident when this overriding dramatic, and unfortunate Skype
theconversation.edu.au/malcolm-fraser-stephen-smith-is-right-on-adfa-5795

Misogynists Attack Defence Minister, The Interpretor
Fondly gazed upon by two adoring female federal MPs Julie Bishop and Michaela Cash, the intrepid Leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition, Tony Abbott launched another thoughtless diatribe at the Gillard
theinterpretor.wordpress.com/.../

ABC FOI setbacks won't draw sympathy from the chair , Open and Shut
Three years ago Mark Scott showed a glimmer of interest in the context of the FOI reforms being floated at that time, in negotiating a modification of the special exemption,
foi-privacy.blogspot.com.au/.../...w-sympathy.html

What to do about Rupert?, John Quiggin
Australian daily newspapers are owned by News Corporation, which routinely prints lies, uses its power to demand, and receive, politically favorable treatment and, at an international level, engages in systemic corruption including fraud, bribery of public
johnquiggin.com/.../

RBA Supports Ongoing Increase in Gross Government Debt, Stephen Koukoulas
It looks like Australia's GDP will grow at around 5.5% or so over the long run. This means that gross debt WILL rise by 5.5% per annum over the long run. For the next decade or so, it means
www.stephenkoukoulas.blogspot.com.au/.../...s.html

Abbott'audit will find all the cuts he won't make,Ross Gittins
And we all remember John Howard's first budget, in August 1996, included the most extensive collection of spending cuts and savings in living memory. "As the Howard government demonstrated,
www.rossgittins.com/.../...l-find-all-cuts-he.html

A tale of two economies – Greece and Iceland, Bill Mitchell, Billy Blog
Last Friday (March 9, 2012), the Greek government effectively defaulted on its public debt after the required minimum of 75 per cent of private creditors agreed to the so-called “haircut” or debt
bilbo.economicoutlook.net/.../p=18609&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm

Tough budget. Is Swan having us on, or, Peter Martin
New finance department figures released late Friday confirm Treasurer Wayne Swan’s claim that tax revenue is falling behind. They show revenue of $180.9 billion in the first seven
http://www.petermartin.com.au/

What’s in store for quality newspapers?, Upstart
Hoping to work in print journalism in the future, I thought it was in my best interest to see where quality newspapers are headed. The seminar began with Professor Robert Manne questioning:
www.upstart.net.au/.../

The Daily Telegraph editor Paul Whittaker interviewed by Mumbrella editor Tim Burrowes
talks about the tabloid's new design and focus as well as giving his views on the Finkelstein inquiry and newspapers having an agenda. Interviewed by Mumbrella editor Tim Burrowes
www.youtube.com/watch

Rinehart's hired media help, Andrew Bolt behind the wall, Angela Priestly, The Power Index
Andrew Bolt behind the wall. Our No. 1 Megaphone's blog is still free to visitors, but his regular newspaper column's been put behind the News Ltd paywall. The reason is simple, according to Bolt: "If we don't charge for it after years of giving it away
www.thepowerindex.com.au/.../rinehart-s-hired-media-help-andrew-bolt-behind-the-wall

Will you pay for you news Online? A lot has happened over the last week, Robbo, Aussie Criminals and Crook
A major topic for those of us that read the news and or newspapers online every day is the fact the Herald Sun here in Victoria has started charging a subscription fee for full access to
aussiecriminals.wordpress.com/.../

ONLY ON VEX: Bolt blasted for denying his right-wingedness and its role in MTR’s downfall, Chuck Berry-Wright, Vex News
Whether it was because of lack of funds, poor management, or simply the lack of a true conservative and right wing cultural mind
www.vexnews.com/.../

Starting Wars Is Not Swan’s Way, Patricia wa, Pollieomes
indeed a war going on and it was a media war I had myself watched being declared by Clive Palmer on Lateline on May 7th, 2010, just after Swan, with the then PM Kevin Rudd, had first introduced  
polliepomes.wordpress.com/.../

We’re the voice Miglo, Café Whispers
many bloggers consider themselves ‘citizen journalists’ and believe they are better suited to provide the diversity that today’s democracies need, yet which are often ignored by
cafewhispers.wordpress.com/.../

Put your money where your mouth is on dental health reform, Cassandra Goldie, On Line Opinion
In recognition of the current funding climate the Dental Council has proposed options that can be scaled up or phased in over time. They provide stepping-stones on the path to a universal access system.
www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=13359

Joyce questioned over Rinehart intervention, ABC
Nationals Senator Barnaby Joyce says there was no financial motive behind his intervention in the multi-billion dollar Rinehart family feudFederal Independent MP Tony Windsor says the intervention is extraordinary and is questioning what motivated it.
www.abc.net.au/.../3884972

Who’s Afraid of Gina Rinehart-, Readings
Should we be afraid of Gina Rinehart? Or would Fairfax benefit from a strong proprietor after years of drift? What, if anything, does this mean for the future of independent journalism in
www.readings.com.au/.../who-s-afraid-of-gina-rinehart

Gina RinehartIs Our Rightful DemocraticLeader,Benjamin Marks,
As long as the voting public is filled with envy, politicians will continue to act destructively, and at Gina Rinehart’s expense. Even if she is sinful, and I’m not convinced that she is,
www.ginarinehart.info/.../

ONE’S ROYAL Inheritance  Wendy Harmer, Hoopla
On the other side of that is the very long and dismal history of spoilt and profligate offspring who take the family inheritance and piss it up against a wall in an ingenious variety of ways
http://thehoopla.com.au/gimme-money/

Big data and the end of theory?,  Delimiter
It is quite likely that you yourself have been the unwitting subject of a big data experiment carried out by Google, Facebook and many other large Web platforms. Google, for instance,
delimiter.com.au/.../


VIDEO


Media Watch Episode 06, 12 March 2012
www.youtube.com/watch

Afghan civilian deaths raise questions for Australian troops, 7.30pm Report
The killing of 16 Afghan civilians by a US soldier raises questions for the Australian troops based in Afghanistan
www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2012/s3451579.htm

Rinehart family feud details released, Lateline
www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2012/s3451699.htm
Monday 12 March, 2012

Katter, Kony and the Climate, Q and A
http://www.abc.net.au/tv/qanda/txt/s3446198.htm

Posts from the ‘Daily Fix’ Category
australianpoliticstv.org/category/daily-fix/

Children were warned by Rinehart, Sky News
www.skynews.com.au/.../article.aspx

Katter admires gay half-brother, Sky News
www.skynews.com.au/.../article.aspx

Money Minute Channel 9March 12, 2012:
Finance editor Ross Greenwood offers some valuable finance
  video.au.msn.com/.../x56snim

Lyn

March 13. 2012 08:16 AM

Lyn

TODAY'S FRONT PAGES


          Australian Newspaper Front Pages for 13 March 2012

www.frontpagestoday.co.uk/index.cfm

Lyn

March 13. 2012 08:24 AM

Ad astra reply

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

Ad astra reply

March 13. 2012 08:53 AM

nasking

Thnx Patricia & Migs,
Slept w/out waking last night, first time in ages. S's Dad came thru the heart op w/ flying colours...such a relief...is feeling much better his artery has been unblocked. S looked far more at ease this morn after chatting to him again. Opening up here yesterday (apologies for derailing thread) helped enormously...as did the supportive comments and good news...and seeing S's face less strained. The whole family are getting together on Sunday for a BBQ in a park...should be good. Good old Aussie BBQ.

Fancy after such a rough period for the ALP Gillard overtakes Abbott as preferred PM in the latest poll...good on her...

The people just don't want that ranting bundle of joy. Smile

Turnbull is a far more attractive candidate as evidenced by his performance and the reception on Q&A last nite. Tanya Plibersek was brilliant as ever...she really thinks her answers thru...a wide thinker getting on w/ the job. Great choice for Health minister.

Lyn,
Thnx for the links...will start reading soon.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 09:31 AM

psyclaw

It seems that Barnaby Joyce is on the way to being outed as more than  a mere disciple of his much quoted Joh. He appears to be well down the track as a practitioner of the Joh method.

Clearly on the evidence at hand so far he is in the middle of a "pass the brown paper bag" exericise in his relationship with Ms Rinehart.

On AM just a while ago he said that they were mates. On questioning about the length of his mateship his answer was "for 5 years.... no probably a bit less".

This begs the question about how we become "mates" and there is only one answer ...... by proximity. We are joined to our mates by being neighbours, by meeting through mutual acquaintances, by shared interests, by workplace experiences etc etc.

So how is it that in the past 5 years, BJ and GR have become mates. On the evidence available (and Joyce did not point out any other more benign reason when asked on AM) this friendship seems to be based on workplace experience with a powerful spicing up by shared interests.

BJ resents the MRRT and the former Super Profits policies of the government, as does GR. This is a shared interest. BJ is a Joh-methodology type. This too is a shared interest. BJ is a politician of inferior gravitas; GR wants to control politicians and BJ types are lambs for the slaughter. Another mutual interest.

And so it seems that in BJ's workplace as a politician, these two have crossed paths and allowed their "crossing" to linger longer ......4 or 5 years so far.

What's in it for GR? Well it's not beyond the realms of possibility that BJ is a putative deputy PM. He'll easily roll the useless Truss whenever he can gain a seat in the House and would be an asset in GR's hands (like putty).

The real question though is what's in it for Joyce. About that we can only speculate. The darkest interpretation is that their relationship is already makes regular use of a brown paper bag courier service travelling regularly from the West to the East.

The kindest interpretation is that in the depths of BJ's mind there is an alive (but maybe subconscious) cognitive effervesence or awakening that there is life after politics which needs to be catered for.

Either way there is no doubt that Joyce, flat earther that he is, has been sucked into a conflict of interest by a powerful, influence seeking lady. Friendships between mining heiresses in the West and small time regional accountants in the East don't just "happen".

Hopefully some investigative, nousy journo will give us the opportunity to watch it unfold.

psyclaw

March 13. 2012 09:33 AM

Lyn

Good Morning Nasking

So gald you had a good nights rest.  Sleep is a wonderful healer for worries.

Thankyou for telling us your Dad is ok.

You mentioned Turnbull. people are saying he is shaping up to take over the Leadership.  He certainly doesn't apprear to be the type to sit wishing, hoping dreaming for too much longer.

Thefinnigans
The performance of Malcolm Turnbull last night on #qanda was masterful . He ripped into Abbott mercilessly without trying

SmileSmileSmileSmileSmile

Lyn

March 13. 2012 09:42 AM

Lyn

Good Morning Psyclaw

Barnaby Joyce is very suss:

Here is some information:

Joyce role in Gina Feud, The West Australian

Last June, Senator Joyce was flown to India by the mining billionaire to take part in the sumptuous three-day wedding of a prominent industrialist in Hyderabad.

Mrs Rinehart flew Senator Joyce and Liberal Party deputy leader Julie Bishop in her private jet to the Reddy family wedding.

The Reddy family company, infrastructure behemoth GVK, was seeking a controlling stake in coal mines owned by Mrs Rinehart's Hancock group.

The sale went ahead three months later, significantly increasing Mrs Rinehart's wealth.
au.news.yahoo.com/.../

Cheers

Lyn

March 13. 2012 09:45 AM

Ad astra reply

Folks
I've a very busy day ahead so you won't see much of me today.

Enjoy Lyn's Links.

I'll soon be getting on the road to Melbourne - I'll be back this evening.

Ad astra reply

March 13. 2012 09:48 AM

Ad astra reply

Nasking
Great news that you slept well and father-in-law is OK after his surgery.  Have a happy day.

Ad astra reply

March 13. 2012 10:00 AM

Michael

Anyone who watched Q&A last night saw once again why the argument that Malcolm Turnbull is PM material is so thin.

The man trundled out primary school parables, swung in the wind trying to avoid being tarred with the Abbott brush of nonsensical and brutish policies, but fell into line each time, and simpered like a Jane Austen simpleton every time anyone in the audience stroked the ego that falling into bed with Godwin Grech so manifestly exposed as bloated.

Michael

March 13. 2012 10:19 AM

nasking

Thnx Ad,
Have a great time w/ your family.

Mungo's piece @ The Drum is beaut & spot on:


But the good news is that the miners continued to make profits. Sure, most of them went overseas, but we mustn't be parochial. And this is where we come back to the true altruism, wonder and beauty of Gina, Twiggy and Clive, as we may dare to call them, because they are actually our own people - they are Australians. And that means that when they rape and pillage, devastate and plunder our resources the profits stay here - apart from those that they spend on luxury imports, or overseas holidays, or other minor trinkets to reward their selfless efforts as they continue to be the driving force of our economy. Well, aren't they?

Well no, actually: mining employs less than 2 per cent of the work force compared to 3 per cent in agriculture and 9 per cent each in manufacturing and building; by far the largest employer is the services sector. And mining in 2010 contributed less than 5 per cent to Australia's Gross Domestic Product; even back in 1900 it was worth 10 per cent. Not really such a big player at all.

What the mining industry is really good at is making profits for itself: in 2010 mining profits totalled 33.4 per cent, compared to just 6.5 per cent for manufacturing. Of course, to do so much as raise one's eyebrows at these figures is to indulge in The Politics of Envy and Old-fashioned Class Warfare.

And it should not be forgotten that riches bring their own problems. As one letter writer to the Sydney Morning Herald explained to bemused readers a few years ago, the reason the rich need more money than the poor is that they have greater expenses. Indeed: very few of the poor face the costs associated with maintaining ocean going yachts, private Lear jets, holiday houses on the French Riviera, and the other necessities of life associated with the likes of Rinehart, Forrest and Palmer.

So fortunately an understanding government has come to their aid, and, reasonably enough, the struggling miners are right up there at the front of the queue; to deny them their rightful position would be no more than The Politics of Envy and Old-fashioned Class Warfare. The total value of the subsidies they receive is hard to quantify, but it can be said that in 2009-10 export grants, the diesel fuel rebate, apprentice subsidies and a few other bits and pieces ran out at over $1.1 billion. This is more than $200 million more than manufacturing, which you will recall employs far more people for far less profit, and is regularly lambasted for demanding protection, received in the same period.

But the miners give it all back in tax; I mean, they're always whingeing about taxes and Tony Abbott says he'll repeal the great big new Resources Rent Tax, so they must be paying heaps. Well, mustn't they?

Well no, actually. The miners get a tax break just about every time they breathe. All exploration, all development and operation of sites, transport, environmental measures including rehabilitation, 125 per cent on research and development, fuel tax credits and plenty more, probably including the cost of their anti-government advertising, are deductions. Twiggy Forrest, the fourth richest person in Australia and the 173rd richest person in the world, say he has not yet paid any tax at all on his mining interests; but he plans to this year, the cheque is practically in the mail – unless, of course, his accountants can find a way out.

And in any case, he contributes to charity: why, he has found jobs for quite a lot of the Aborigines whose land he has appropriated for mining. And Palmer donates heaps to the Liberal and National parties, and even Rinehart, the richest of them all, might be a bit mean with her kids but spends a fortune on lawyers and has even bought a slice of the Channel Ten and Fairfax media empires - now that's showing real concern for the needy.



It's worth reading the entire article if ya get the chance...see Lyn's handy links above.

Wouldn't it be sad if our mining barons couldn't afford to add more to their Pleasuredomes? I guess Gina's kids are right now trying to tunnel their way in...
All part of the great soap opera 'All in the Rinehart Family'.

Everybody join in..."Money makes the world go around"....

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 10:21 AM

Lyn

Hi Everybody

Grog reports:

GrogsGamutGreg Jericho

Am guest tweeting for Lateline tonight. So instead of my usual tweeting about Lateline I will be "officially tweeting" about Lateline

SmileSmile

Lyn

March 13. 2012 10:36 AM

TalkTurkey

From Graham Readfearn (on Lyn's~Links of course!)
'Nationals Senator Barnaby Joyce says there was no financial motive behind his intervention in the multi-billion dollar Rinehart family feud. . .

They also reveal another Coalition MP - Alby Shutlz - urged the children to drop the case altogether.

Federal Independent MP Tony Windsor says the intervention is extraordinary and is questioning what motivated it.

"I don't think one cent has ever been donated to me by Gina Rinehart or Hancock Coal," [Joyce] said.

Senator Joyce is a close friend of Ms Rinehart, and insists he was trying to be a peacemaker.'

AND

'Analysis of political donations by Crikey journalist Bernard Keane has found a sudden and significant shift in donations to the Opposition from mining companies, who gave more than $3 million in 2010/11 to the Opposition compared to only about $100,000 going to Labor.'

KICKBACKS FOR CONCESSIONS!

Crooked as Richard Nixon.

TalkTurkey

March 13. 2012 10:48 AM

nasking


Sleep is a wonderful healer for worries

Lyn,
Isn't it just...I feel like a new man this morn...it's a lovely morning here in the Sth East of Qld...went out in the garden...plants flourishing, Lorikeets chomping away on the natives and bird seed...finches chirping merrily..took in the warming rays of the sun to increase seretonin levels...superb.

As for Turnbull, I'm beginning to think Ad is right when he says the Libs will not let him back in this term...Abbott and his followers are ruthless and desperate types, as we've seen by their approach to the carbon tax previously...and how they took Malcolm out...they have some very loud influential shock jock and newspaper supporters...and a few very wealthy mining barons & other business types on side.

As for Joyce (thnx for the apt reminder) he's not what he plays as a role...yer typical Qld cow cocky type worried about the common man...he's really the rich man & woman's puppet from NSW....I reckon he's conned the regular folk.

I don't know about you, but I sure as heck don't get invited to mining baron and other rich toff weddings...and feel I can intervene in a Rinehart family dispute. Yer right Lyn to think there is something suss about Barnaby .

Speaking of suss...dya get the feeling there was something odd about that horrid ad campaign by Katter's lot?...

Seemed strange to me that the unpopular Singleton and Palmer should fund Katter's party...and then we see an ad attacking Newman...in turn illiciting some public sympathy for Newman at a time he's struggling...and lo and behold, who comes out and attacks the ad and defends gays but Andrew Bolt...

Just as the Herald Sun announces it's going behind a paywall...and hero Bolt can be read if ya pay.

I think Tanya Plibersek had cottoned on to some of the Bs last nite on Q&A when she pointed out how strange it was that the sympathy was being directed by many towards Newman rather than those gay people who re damaged by such bigoted stuff.

Tricky dick stuff by the softly spoken scumbags if ya ask me.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 10:55 AM

nasking


KICKBACKS FOR CONCESSIONS!

Crooked as Richard Nixon.


Talk Turkey,
Didn't see yer comment until I refreshed...talk about synchronicity. Smile

Spot on!

Bad stuff on the Coalition's part.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 11:08 AM

nasking


Either way there is no doubt that Joyce, flat earther that he is, has been sucked into a conflict of interest by a powerful, influence seeking lady. Friendships between mining heiresses in the West and small time regional accountants in the East don't just "happen".

Hopefully some investigative, nousy journo will give us the opportunity to watch it unfold.


Psyclaw,
Indeed.

This does not look good for Joyce. There's more to this than meets the eye...or that which flows from the mouth of the oddball Joyce...

Something stinks...this puppet on a string gives off a bad odour.

Didn't Joyce back protecting some wealthy cotton station up here in Qld that sucked in heaps of water?

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 11:36 AM

NormanK

nasking

I'm glad your father-in-law had a positive outcome and it's great to see you back in fine voice.  Smile

NormanK

March 13. 2012 12:03 PM

nasking

This from William Bowe @ Poll Bludger:

The incurably spin-happy Australian is selling this as “Wayne Swan’s attacks on the nation’s billionaire mining magnates (having) failed to lift Labor’s electoral support”, despite the figures offering no basis of any kind for making such a claim.

Truly pathetic on the part of The Australian...I'm surprised any of their crew can standup straight considering how much they SPIN these days. Bunch of clowns on a roundabout...some of them.

There's no way the public has had time to digest properly the Swan sting yet...nor the ever-widening tsunami it has set off ...

As for the polls...hard to take them seriously at this point...but you get a sense that the public wants the government to get on w/ the business of governing...which in fact they have been doing effectively the past few weeks bar the leadership battle interruption - it's one reason I pushed for a ballot this far out from the election...either get Rudd in and go for it blitzkrieg style...or get a real sense of how vulnerable he is...and give Gillard a desicive victory and move on...whilst providing the government w/ enuff negatives to know exactly what they will be up against the next year and a half. I reckon they are well prepared now -  Abbott is floundering, his team are confused (Greg Hunt lost it this morn on SKY Agenda raising his voice and blowing off and the highly talented and calm Craig Emerson accusing him of being "a fraud" a number of shrill times)...

The government have survived the battle well...they're holding on and can still win this...especially w/  such useful policies...

But they will probably have to give up on the surplus budget effort real soon...they gave it their best shot...but the world economy and desperate investors in our dollar and this over-the-top mining boom has worked against them...

Far better they help stimulate the struggling small & medium-sized businesses...and provide funding for useful frontline services and dental/disability schemes than worry about emulating that old hammock prone Scrooge Costello.

Let's face it, those NSW and Victorian  liberal  Scrooges are unlikely to do enuff...too busy wanting to divide communities and score political points...whilst playing apologists for toxic industries...and attacking the carbon price like Abbott carbon copies.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 12:06 PM

TalkTurkey

Nasking
Funny that

Especially since the moment I posted it I wished I'd said
Crooked as Al Capone
[For the alliteration and pehaps humour, because Al Capone wasn't nearly as bent as Richard Nixon who was a real arch-criminal with no evident likeable qualities at all Smile]

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

Swordsfolks this Turkey is predicting that Labor will begin its charge today . They have no reason to hold back, and every reason to attack. They have a huge supply of ammo and the ground forces to fire it.

Here's what *J*U*L*I*A* et al should do in QT from now on:

1. Answer their idiot questions with ONE-SENTENCE ANSWERS!
No opportunity for POOs, each answer can be a complete response but a slap in the face for the Coalons.

2. Answer thoughtfully-penned DOROTHY DIXERS in full (because that way Slipper can't say Ministers aren't being relevant.)

(

Let's go, Labor!
Hit 'em high! Hit 'em low!
Hit 'em with the old ALBO!

(N.B. I am also an expert adviser to AFL Umpires btw. Smile )

TalkTurkey

March 13. 2012 12:09 PM

nasking

Thnx Norman,
I've been highly impressed by your comments related to Abbott's flawed and opportunistically timed Paid Parental Leave Scheme...yer a deep thinker and highly articulate. Certainly an asset to this great blog.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 12:14 PM

Gravel

Nasking

What great news you had for us today with your father in law, and also a good nights sleep.

I would like to think the media would do some investigating into B Joyce but I certainly wouldn't hold my breath.  

I am looking forward to QT this afternoon.  I do like your scenario Talk Turkey....we will have to wait and see.

Gravel

March 13. 2012 12:15 PM

nasking


Swordsfolks this Turkey is predicting that Labor will begin its charge today . They have no reason to hold back, and every reason to attack. They have a huge supply of ammo and the ground forces to fire it.

Totally agree TT,
Give 'em broadsides from a number of ships...keep them confused.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 12:31 PM

nasking

Cheers Gravel,
I always look forward to yer contributions.

I'm also looking forward to Question Time...the Coalition will predictably mock and cackle and smile like ventriloquist dolls...but we know beneath the surface lies confusion and doubts...

I really feel now we can win this next election...it will be bloody tuff...but Gillard is growing stronger by the day...the addition of Carr is so beneficial...

Really dug the Independents' push for more funding to increase cancer screening...my wife's uncle died at Xmas from bowel cancer...he was a fireman, real beaut bloke, lots of fun...but he drank a lot of beer, ate a lot of red meat...and smoked...the cancer got into his liver and lungs too. Such a sad ending for a vibrant, brave  public servant.

only in his sixties. Crickey! It really has been a tuff year.

Yep, more cancer screening...preventable healthcare...a life saver.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 12:41 PM

nasking

This from ABC AM linked to by Lyn:


Documents released by the court show Senator Joyce wrote to one of Ms Rinehart's children, warning her against airing the issue through the media.

They also reveal another Coalition MP - Alby Shultz - urged the children to drop the case altogether.

Federal Independent MP Tony Windsor says the intervention is extraordinary and is questioning what motivated it.

"Why would a member of Parliament actually write to someone's children, advising them not to take legal action against a relative?" he said.

AUDIO: Listen to the AM story (AM)
"The only thing that I can see is that the lady in question happens to be the wealthiest woman in Australia, and obviously there must be some sort of tie-up between these people in the Liberal Party and the National Party or whoever, as to their involvement."


I like Independent Tony Windsor...I trust him...he like many of us obviously thinks there is something suss going on re: Joyce and Rinehart.

And the Coalition's relationship w/ this wealthy mining baron(s).

Sacrificing THE MANY to stay in bed with THE FEW.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 01:14 PM

Casablanca

Bob Carr settled in with ease at a door-stop this morning. He likened Abbort to a cheapskate hypnotist in a run-down circus. He mentioned that he had thought of this analogy over breakfast
before his first day in the Senate.

I think that the press will be back for more. Already the clip has been run several times on ABC24.

Joe O'Brien said this morning that he was so pleased to be able to get back to talking about policy after the ructions of the past few months. No mention that the leadership ructions notwithstanding the Government has been progressing legislation at a great rate. Good on you Joe, you haven't blotted your copybook with Limited News.

Casablanca

March 13. 2012 01:14 PM

NormanK

Two things worth re-inforcing with regard to government revenues over the short-term (forward estimates).
It is a common glib criticism levelled at Wayne Swan and Labor that they can't 'save' money when Australia is enjoying a huge mining boom and historically high terms of trade thanks to resource exports. The implication, of course, is that if they are not saving this windfall then they must be spending (wasting) it. On the face of it this sounds like a reasonable criticism and is trotted out by Abbott and Hockey with monotonous regularity - and that won't end any time soon.

There are two problems facing Swan in terms of mining revenue and company taxes more generally.
As Peter Martin points out (when quoting Wayne Swan):

Losses accumulated during the global financial {crisis} were being used to cut current taxable revenue “impacting severely on revenues, and more severely than the Treasury had forecast”.

So there are still lingering effects of the GFC (and natural disasters) impacting on the federal government's revenue stream from companies even though they might outwardly display steadily increasing profits.
Once this write-down of losses peters out there will be a return to healthy revenue from company tax (all things being equal).

The second factor affecting revenue at present is the more critical one of mining companies being allowed to claim concessions on investment and exploration and depreciation deductions.
From Peter Martin once again:

Mining companies were paying much less tax than expected, providing one fifth of all company profits but paying just one-tenth of all company tax, primarily because of depreciation deductions flowing from the investment boom.

It is for this reason that Twiggy Forrest hasn't paid any tax up to this point. He might have clever accountants but he is not actually avoiding paying tax. His company was still in the investment and exploration stage and this attracts significant write-offs to encourage new activity. He will start to pay tax this year and as more projects come on-line and have their start-up investment written off, he will pay more and more tax.

So although there are tens of billions of dollars being poured into the mining sector in terms of investment and exploration, little if any of it is currently flowing into the federal coffers. This makes it difficult for the government to offset the acceleration of one sector of the economy by using general revenue to prop up or stimulate other sections that are falling behind. Hence the MRRT to provide a reduction in company tax for small business and generous capital investment write-offs to promote expansion and regeneration in small businesses. It is a way of instantly cashing in on the mining boom and stimulating the struggling non-mining sectors.

The truly depressing aspect of all of this is that if the Coalition were to win the 2013 election they will inherit the steadily increasing income from Mining Boom Mach II and the return to trend of company tax payments once GFC- and natural disaster-related write-offs cease.

Add to this the productivity lifts that will slowly flow from Labor's initiatives in training and employment and the Coalition will 'miraculously' transform the federal budget within the first two years of their term. If Hockey is the new Treasurer he will vaunt his clever manipulation of his almost-famous levers and give no credit to the hard work and perseverance of Swan and Labor.

It is worth noting that Hockey and Robb are well aware of the factors affecting government revenues at present and are also aware that Labor is reining in spending at an unprecedented rate.
(What Abbott 'knows' is anybody's guess - you certainly would not want to rely on what comes out of his mouth as an indicator of his level of awareness of economic forces)

So when Hockey and Robb attack Labor and Swan for reckless spending and profligate waste, it is pure political opportunism that is not based on the realities of the situation. Nothing new there because that is what oppositions do but it does dishearten me to think that six years of hard work will be handed over to these clowns and they will be ideally situated to claim credit for the upturn when (if) it comes.

If past experience is anything to go by, with regard to this new-found prosperity and its use to lift social equity, it will be a case of "wall meet urine".

www.petermartin.com.au/.../...weak-so-its-new.html

NormanK

March 13. 2012 01:29 PM

nasking

This article @Huffington Post looks at the tragic shootings in Afghanistan yesterday and points out that the crazed soldier had served multiple times in Iraq before being sent to Afghanistan, had received a head injury previously. Apparently post-traumatic stress syndrome is widespread, understandably.

www.huffingtonpost.com/.../...ldier_n_1339775.html

It seems we have yet another victim of Bush's ill-conceived war in Iraq...who has taken his frustrations and temporary madness driven by acute shock, paranoia and anxiety out on so many poor innocent Afghan civilians...

It makes you wonder about the type of macho, hate-filled, gung-ho type of training he received on base...apparently a number of other crazy, brutish, disastrous events have occurred related to the camp he trained in...

And it gives one pause in relation to extended "boots on the ground" campaigns...particularly when it's only the average Joe and Jill expected to sacrifice...whilst the rich get tax cuts...

And soldiers were expected to buy their own protective equipment...disgusting.

America has managed to create its own Terminators...sick from sacrifice, sick from army culture, sick from training, sick from the attacks by equally sick and crazed Taliban and Muslim extremists.

I'm pleased that Smith is looking into the army training culture here...I still think about that poor Afghan family attacked by the SAS blokes. The fog of war...

Bring the boys back home soon...

And ensure our defense forces are less all boy benefitting zones...a woman's influence can be balancing sometimes.

Aussie lads need to learn more respect for women...and some women/girls need to learn to respect themselves and their abilities more...

The ocker media here doesn't help...
N'

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 01:39 PM

TalkTurkey

Just spare a thought for staunch Swordsman Jason Obelix today:
yet again as one of the Noble Two Hundred he has gone to give a whole armful of his special blood containing Anti-D, for the saving of babies' lives whose mothers produce antigens which put their newborns at risk . . . Jason had to have his blood specially treated somehow before he started producing Anti-D, not quite sure of my medical facts here, Ad would understand the details I'm sure, but I do know that Jason does this EVERY FORTNIGHT, because he has daughters who may need Anti-D blood someday. It is no small commitment he has made and it makes him more of a Living Treasure than Palmhair will ever be.  

TalkTurkey

March 13. 2012 01:44 PM

nasking

Excellent points in yer comment
@ 1:14 pm...

Just like Howard benefitting from the hard work and reforms of the Hawke & Keating governments, Abbott & Hockey would be the beneficiaries of this govt's efforts...if they won the next election.

So they could get right back into their hammocks and reap the benefits.

A good reason to make sure they don't get that opportunity.

Peter Martin is an enlightening and useful  economic analyst.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 01:45 PM

nasking

That should read: Norman,
Excellent points...

nasking

March 13. 2012 01:51 PM

nasking


Ad would understand the details I'm sure, but I do know that Jason does this EVERY FORTNIGHT, because he has daughters who may need Anti-D blood someday. It is no small commitment he has made and it makes him more of a Living Treasure than Palmhair will ever be.  

Well said TT,
Good on ya Jason.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 02:06 PM

nasking

What the heck is Campbell Newman thinking?...he wants to put young crims in boot camps...America has seen terrible abuse of kids in boot camps:

www.google.com.au/search

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 02:29 PM

Patricia WA

Michael, I thoroughly agree with you about Turnbull.  He is indeed thin in more ways than one!    What a shallow man!

Patricia WA

March 13. 2012 02:52 PM

DMW

Noted economics commentator Annabel Crabb, oops, strike that.

Annabel Crabb is not noted for for economics commentary however she makes a fair fist of it and reminds us of some fine economic management by John Howard in this article:

End times for the addictive politics of easy money
www.abc.net.au/.../3884184

I will never forget March 1, 2001, when John Howard – unpopular, making heavy weather of the GST, and harried beyond belief over rising petrol prices – called a press conference.

His announcement was truly startling.


Recalling history can be very helpful.

DMW

March 13. 2012 03:13 PM

nasking

Bob Carr, David Bradbury and Graham Perret very useful out there today.

PM Gillard responded well to the initial carbon price and mining questions.  Was impressed. Be useful to throw in the odd joke/humorous observation...the people like a lightening of mood once in awhile...nothing like gravitas w/ addition of a quick wit.

Julia sure knows her stuff...she can launch into a detailed defense of a policy/scheme...and then go after the cracks/flaws in the Coalition approach/policies w/out glancing at notes. fiery stuff.

I like Jenny Macklin...she obviously gives a damn about THE MANY... she's naturally at ease w/ people on the ground from diverse cultural backgrounds...I like watching her mingle...showing concern, good humor, listening, empathising...getting the message out.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 03:44 PM

TalkTurkey

Bears get really active after a bit of hibernation eh! Smile

Coalons comprehensively smacked in QT today. Smith Plibersek Macklin and Gillard all gave much better than anything the dopey Coalons could spit at them. Smith in particular is gold. He is rightfully and staunchly defending his attitudes and condemnatory of retired "Defence" spokesmen. More, more and more fire please!

TalkTurkey

March 13. 2012 03:48 PM

nasking

Useful, passionate and sincere answer by Stephen Smith to the Coalition's low blow questions...considering this defense minister has demonstrated enuff courage to see the troops in Afghanistan 4 times it gives you an idea of his commitment to the troops...

For a minister to be attacked so viciously because he is attempting to improve the military culture and because he was attempting to protect the interests of a young, vulnerable woman off the back of an unfortunate episode, gives me a pretty good idea of the type of culture Tony Abbott would like to preserve w/in the military.

interesting how boofhead culture grew exponentially and flourished under the Howard government...the same we're seeing demonstrated by some in the QLD LNP...defended by Newman...and the bumbling approach of the Katter party...can you imagine how the footy fellas and other more testosteroned blokes attitudes will devolve if this lot get into power?...

Or Abbott federally...

It will be like OPEN SEASON on women, gays, nerds, intellectuals, the easily bullied...like an Australian frat house.

I've met some real nice polite footy blokes...but something about the environment created by the Howard government seemed to give the red light to boofhead frenzy...

As we had under Jo and his ocker white shoe brigade here in QLD many years ago...it's a smarter, more tolerant state now...I'd hate to see it devolve.


Patricia,
At least Malcolm is a darn site more mature and tolerant and wider thinking than some of the boofheads that Abbott & Joyce and the ockers in News Ltd, Ch.9,  cock jock radio cater to.
Just saying.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 03:49 PM

NormanK

nasking

With regard to abandoning the budget surplus in 2012/13, I can't see that Labor will do that. I said some time ago (before last year's MYEFO was published) that Swan would have at least $5 billion in 'savings' up his sleeve or else he wouldn't continue to be so upbeat about attaining a surplus - despite media attempts to find meaning in individual words that he and the PM have used in relation to this.

In the MYEFO documents Swan pulled a couple of swifties by bringing forward expenditure ear-marked for 12/13 and including it in 11/12 so that this year's deficit blew out even further (at minimal political cost). This could be seen as an effort to protect whatever it is that he has up his sleeve.

It might be more accounting jiggery-pokery but I suspect that come Hell or high-water the May budget will predict a surplus. Department Heads will be well aware of the austerity that is going to come to bear over the next two budgets and they will have made sure that their stationery cupboards are full to overflowing.

Finding 3 or 4 billion dollars to put in the bottom drawer in case it is needed throughout 2012/13 should not be that difficult - it is only about 1% of the budget. I just hope that there are modest stimulus measures in the May budget for the construction industry in South East Australia. Infrastructure spending from the MRRT and the shot in the arm of small business with the company tax cut and capital expenditure write-off should boost most other industries.



DMW

See? It's not that hard to be an economics commentator. All you need is a bit of jargon and an opinion.


And a whole lot of front. Laughing

NormanK

March 13. 2012 03:59 PM

nasking


Bears get really active after a bit of hibernation eh!

LOL...needed a feed...and to growl and roar a bit.

Have a goodie TT...enjoyed yer comments...

BTW, there was that synchronicity again...didn't see the Smith comment until I refreshed...we must be sharing a carriage again on that train I wrote about awhile back. Smile You and Norman and a few others have been good and informative company today. Lyn's papers kept us busy too. Next station...Dinner Preparation...somewhere in the NeverNever. Smile

Cheers,
N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 04:24 PM

nasking

Norman,
You could be right...Swan helped get us thru the GFC...perhaps he and Penny can pull a surplus outa the hat...

But I wouldn't blame them if they had to change the forecast...

They've weathered plenty of hyperbolic abuse so far...and they're still there...underdog but close enuff to pip them at the post...

I think the public would understand if they had to delay the surplus by a year...knowing how bad the EU stuff got...and the frightened rush by investors to grab the Aussie dollar...Swanny can't be blamed for wanting to build public and business confidence...when others were talking the economy down...but if the needs of the many are to be met then it's more important we sacrifice the surplus...rather than sacrificing essential public services and delivery...and to fix the areas neglected by the previous Howard government.

Let Abbott and News Ltd and shock jocks squeal...it's them who were the apologists for the Howard neglectful era...

Deliver to the people...do what really needs to be done...what a real ALP government would do...be not afraid...stride boldly forward...admit to human failings...do the right thing by the people...don't be caged by an Abbott-like slogan.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 04:49 PM

Patricia WA

Nasking, re Turnbull, you're right!   Compared with those boofheads he looks quite sane.   But remember he is still an ex-financier, a Liberal, a Roman Catholic and not a person of great depth.  And anyway we certainly don't want him carried into the PM's office on a wave of relief that he isn't Abbott!

Patricia WA

March 13. 2012 05:16 PM

Ad astra

Jason
Your blood, with its supply of Anti D, is worth bottling!  Anti D has prevented so much Haemolytic Disease of the Newborn.  Bravo Jason.

Ad astra

March 13. 2012 06:13 PM

nasking

And anyway we certainly don't want him carried into the PM's office on a wave of relief that he isn't Abbott!

Patricia,
I think the strength of the government's policies will ensure that. The real SELL has now begun...the government has some excellent salesman out there now.

The voters will WANT the policies to continue, not be undermined...will WANT the protections, especially w/ Libs in Victoria, NSW & elsewhere...will WANT the upcoming Disability Insurance, NBN, preventative healthcare & Dental schemes and tax incentives to work if need be...will WANT a government free of mystery black holes...will WANT a rational, calm, determined, measured ever-maturing into the job leader not a ranting negative unpredictable weathervane like Abbott...will WANT appropriate, sensible cuts & means-testing not slice and dice Abbott austerity measures...

if Turnbull is silly enuff not to let Abbott implode at the next election he's not half as smart as I think he is.

He probably will be PM oneday...he has to be patient...and wise.

Abbott will fight like a shark...keep going manically like a shark...if he smells blood he'll attack like a shark...

but he also scares many of the public like a shark...it's in the eyes...and the attitude...and the history...he's left a trail of blood and corpses, so to speak...

and he has already taken the bait...we only have to wait and hit the target...at the right time.

KABOOM!

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 07:00 PM

nasking

I love the music w/ the show Capital Hill...it 's soothing. Kelvin Thomson did a great job...the Howard govt had a black hole in '96...it led to uni students etc getting it in the neck...aged care in the neck...

So true.

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 07:07 PM

2353

When reading the article linked to this post - remember that until 12 months ago Newman was the Lord Mayor of Brisbane, Quirk was his deputy and Newman resigned one day after the action would have required a by-election for Lord mayor.

www.brisbanetimes.com.au/.../...0120313-1uy0f.html

The CMC confirmed this morning it was examining claims against Greg Bowden and Steve Whitehouse, who were accused last week of running a development company while working for Brisbane City Council when Campbell Newman was lord mayor.
"We are currently assessing whether there is or is not any official misconduct," a CMC spokeswoman said this afternoon.

And the LNP wants us to vote for the same standard of accountability throughout the state.  NormanK's comments o teh white shoe brigade above are particularly relevant

2353

March 13. 2012 07:18 PM

Lyn

Hi Jason

You are a champion a distinguished member of TPS congratulations for your noble spirit.

You mentioned before and Talk Turkey had told us what a, praiseworthy, outstanding, commendable commitment you have made.
Going every fortnight to donate your special Anti-D blood to save so many babies.

CheersSmileSmileSmileSmile

Lyn

March 13. 2012 07:20 PM

nasking


Malcolm Fraser: Stephen Smith is right on ADFA @the Conversation...

Worth reading...see Lyn's links above.

At least some Libs...or should I say former Libs, have integrity.

How did the Coalition evolve into a One Nation- style rabble w/ American Republican-like protectors of the greed is gooders?

Look at the Qld LNPers and ya see the same thing happening...

Pushed to the extreme by loopy minor parties...and vested interests...particularly resource barons and media barons...

I recall the American Republicans pushed by the Tea Party almost taking the country over the cliff not long ago...and damaging economic progress in the process...

Hmmm...

N'

nasking

March 13. 2012 08:31 PM

Dan Gulberry

Didn't Ayn Rand finish up on welfare?

PS - thanks to Lynn for putting links to <a target="_blank" href="http://bit.ly/A6QU7Q">The Daily Derp</a> on this excellent site, and to Ad Astra, keep up the good work.

Dan Gulberry

March 13. 2012 08:33 PM

Dan Gulberry

Oops, sorry for the html stuff up above. Please feel free to fix/delete as needed.

Dan Gulberry

March 13. 2012 09:04 PM

Lyn

Hi Dan

Thankyou for your comment, no need to hide your pretty face, we don't care if you stuffed up.  I would hate to count how many times I have done worse.

You are doing so well yourself with The Daily Derp,congratulations , take a bow,

The Daily Derp by Dan Gulberry
Where too much derp is barely enough


The Alan Jones led Direct Democracy (“We Want Our Country Back”) petition is a major failure.

This petition is another of Jones activist failures. Does anybody remember the “Truckers Blockade Of Canberra” last year? You’re forgiven if you don’t. When the promised convoy failed to materialise, Jones blamed the ACT Police for stopping the truckers (or as they known on Twitter – truckwits  ) at the NSW/ACT border, which was vehemently denied by the Police
thedailyderp.net/.../

CheersSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmile

Lyn

March 13. 2012 09:28 PM

Ad astra

Folks
Thanks for you many interesting comments.  I managed to catch the first hour of QT,  What a fizzier.  Julia Gillard floored them with her answers.  The first question was about the carbon tax - Tony Abbott must believe he can squeeze some more mileage out of it.

I noticed today that well over half of those polled by Essential believed that the wealthiest individuals are using their wealth to try to influence public opinion and government policy to further their own commercial interests, and only a quarter disagreed. Over a half agree with the mining tax and about a third disagree.  So as he won’t get much joy from the minerals tax, the carbon tax is all he has to cling to.

Ad astra

March 13. 2012 09:34 PM

Ad astra

Dan Gulberry
Thank you for your comment and your blog.  Do keep coming back.

This blog engine uses square rather than angle brackets around tags.  You can also paste links directly into the comments box. There is no need for the 'a href=' attribute.

Ad astra

March 13. 2012 09:44 PM

Ad astra

Folks
Anyone interested in the full Essential Report for this week will find it here:

essentialvision.com.au/category/essentialreport

Ad astra

March 13. 2012 11:34 PM

DMW

nasking,
due to other lives I have only just caught up with toing and froing of the last couple of days.

You (and all Swordsters) may find this posted by Seth Godin today helpful.

With NormanK's indulgence I will quote it in full (Seth's posts are often short and sweet) Smile

The mathematical impossibility of universal delight
sethgodin.typepad.com/.../...niversal-delight.html

Jack Nicholson calls it, "rabbit ears."

If you're hyper-aware of what others are thinking, if you're looking for criticism, the unhappy audience member and the guy who didn't get the joke, you will always find what you're seeking.

For it to be any other way, you'd either have to be invisible or performing for a totally homogeneous audience.

Invisible is an option, of course. You can lay low, not speak up and make no difference to anyone.

That's sort of like dividing by zero, though. You'll get no criticism, but no delight either.

As for finding a homogeneous audience, good luck with that. The one thing that's true of all people is that they are different from one another. What delights one enrages the other.

Part of the deal.

DMW

March 13. 2012 11:58 PM

DMW

NK @ 3:49 PM
something in the back of my mind is saying something like ... more front than Myer ...

However, without blowing my own trumpet (too loudly), I note I am in good company:

Brilliant. Annabel Crabb on what's gone wrong  Peter Martin
www.petermartin.com.au/.../...b-on-whats-gone.html

... now all I have to do is find a way to draw attention to some erudite and informative comments by the Sword's resident economics commentator Tong

DMW

March 14. 2012 12:43 AM

NormanK

The chair recognises D Mick Weir on indulgence.

It's going to take a while for me to live that down, isn't it?




I love Seth.

NormanK

March 14. 2012 12:50 AM

NormanK

Watching the poll watchers can be a fascinating pastime. A few observations on the outpouring of wisdom we witnessed yesterday.

Swan's billionaire-bashing fails to stop Labor fall but Gillard wins reprieve in latest Newspoll
by Matthew Franklin     The Australian     National Affairs

WAYNE Swan's attacks on the nation's billionaire mining magnates have failed to lift Labor's electoral support .....

Ah, Swan tried to gee things up a bit but failed. Jockey whips horse.

While Labor's support sank to 31 per cent - its lowest level since late in January - the Coalition's primary vote also fell - from 45 per cent to 43 per cent.

OMG! OMG!! Oh My God!!! It's Labor's lowest level since ........ omg ..... since late in January!!
Oh, wait. It's the middle of March so it's Labor's lowest level since ... about six weeks ago.

The Coalition's vote of 43 per cent was its worst this year, after it hit 46 per cent in early February and 48 per cent last November.

What? No analysis of what Tony Abbott did or didn't do to cause this massive dive in the polls - down 5% since late last year? Apparently Tony Abbott doesn't actually do anything - the polls just rise and fall around him because Gillard is the moon that drags them around. Pack slowly overtakes leading horse.
www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-fn59niix-1226297629987

Leadership brawl sparks drop in Labor vote      SMH

Ah, so it was Labor's in-fighting that caused the slump? It's always good to be able to point to something and say: "cause and effect". Horse stumbles.

Gillard’s Labor Party Sinks in Poll as Australia’s Mining Tax Vote Looms
by Jason Scott     Bloomberg News

So it is the 'looming' mining tax that dragged Labor's numbers down?
Not if you read the article. Horse traps itself on the rail.
www.businessweek.com/.../gillard-s-labor-party-sinks-in-poll-as-australia-s-mining-tax-vote-looms

Voters turning away from both major parties
by Philip Hudson     Herald Sun

Oh good! It's nobody's fault really - folks are just fed up with federal politics. That's a relief. A muddy patch in the track - the whole field slows.

Labor slips but Gillard edges ahead
Sky News

What does this mean? The jockey is ahead of the horse? How's that gonna look in the photo?

Attacks on magnates a bit rich for some
by Matthew Franklin    The Australian     Opinion

WAYNE Swan appears to be turning off voters by attacking billionaire mining magnates.
www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-e6frgd0x-1226297623883

The author's name seems familiar. Didn't he write something for the National Affairs section?
This is a slight variation though. Horse resents whip.

NormanK

March 14. 2012 08:08 AM

Cuppa

Funniest comment I've heard in recent times was Abbott criticising Labor for what he called "relentless negativity".

Have you noticed how often right-wingers do this sort of thing? That is, accuse their opponents of what they themselves (right wingers) are infamous for?

I've noted it to be such a common behaviour that I've dubbed it Right-Wing Projection - Right-wingers projecting their own behaviour/motives onto their opponents.

Yesterday there was a guy on Twitter running around like his hair was on fire, screaming that the carbon tax was going to KILL the economy and KILL us all, calling people 'STUPID' (capital letters in the indicated words) all over the place. A right-wing moron - classic projection behaviour.

Keep your eyes open for the accusations that right-wingers throw about at people on the Left. Very often it's a clue that points striaght to their own rightist shortfallings. You could hold a mirror in front of their face and say, "You're really describing yourself!". Factoring in right wing projection can be a useful tool to work out where some folks are coming from.

Cuppa

March 14. 2012 08:13 AM

Lyn

TODAY’S LINKS

Things Are Different Up In Queensland, Ben Eltham, New Matilda
Bligh has so far burnished her credentials as a strong campaigner, pulling back some of the LNP’s lead in the polls and continuing to perform impressively in front of the cameras.  
newmatilda.com/.../things-are-different-queensland

Cart before the horse, Ash, Ash’s Machiavellian Bloggery
Imagine that. Not one single elected member of their party was worthy to be leader. Further, they opted to ignore the choices the public had voted for and opted to nominate an unelected candidate.
ashghebranious.wordpress.com/.../

MargaretSimons:The Oz misrepresented me,Margaret Simons,Crikey
In other contexts, I have consistently argued for freedom of speech, including in the recent controversy over a court judgment against Andrew Bolt. The other factual errors in Stewart’s report  
www.crikey.com.au/.../

Bob Katter’s pixellated degenerate art show, What the cat dragged in
I am truly baffled by the pixellation of the two royalty-free stock-agency photos* Katter’s party bought and used in its now-infamous campaign video. The two photos don’t show anything ruder than the upper bodies (originals have been cropped to delete the waists)
http://paulwatson.blogspot.com.au/

CRAZY LIKE A FOX: Bob Katter’s “epic scam on Australia’s political and media elite” revealed, Vex news
has “pulled off one of the most epic scams on Australia’s political and media elite in living memory. They have given him a prominence in the campaign way out of proportion to the 4% statewide vote
www.vexnews.com/.../

Money talks. And no one has more than the Pilbara’s iron lady, Paul Barry, The Power Index
John Singleton thinks it's been a success, telling Good Weekend with typical frankness that he and Rinehart, "Have been able to overtly and covertly attack governments ... because we have people
www.thepowerindex.com.au/.../201202261079

In the frame: Bob Katter’s controversial campaign ad might violate copyright,David John Brennan, The Conversation
In the KAP anti-gay marriage advertisement the photographs are altered in two ways. First the lower parts of the photographs are cropped so that it appears that the men might be entirely naked.
theconversation.edu.au/in-the-frame-bob-katters-controversial-campaign-ad-might-violate-copyright-5821

Direct Democracy Petition Is A Major Failure, Dan Gulberry , The Daily Derp
The Alan Jones led Direct Democracy (“We Want Our Country Back”) petition is a major failure.The Direct Democracy (DD) site is trying to attract 100,000 signatures for the following:This is a Petition
thedailyderp.net/.../

Enough of these zombie ideas: let’s be bold, John Quiggin
Labor’s leadership struggle, reminiscent of the Howard-Peacock battles of the 1980s, has raised justified complaints that personality conflicts have obscured the need for a new reform
johnquiggin.com/.../

German hypocrisy and lunacy, Bill Mitchell, Billy Blog
Many economies in Europe are declining fast and unemployment is rising because they have imposed fiscal austerity on vulnerable economies. Spending creates income. Cutting spending destroys
bilbo.economicoutlook.net/.../

PRODUCTIVITY, WHAT DOES IT MEAN, Catching Up, Café Whispers
For the country to reach the productivity needed to make bosses wealthier, the boss has to have full control. The right to treat workers as they do all their other inputs to the company
cafewhispers.wordpress.com/.../

Kony 2012 the bastard offspring of the liberal elite, Brendan O'Neill , The Drum
This viral hate campaign against Joseph Kony, the mad and elusive leader of the Lord's Resistance Army, seemed to come out of nowhere, speedily marshalling an online army of angry youth who used
http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/3886358.html

Chasing Turnbull's NBN alternative ,Vincent O Donnell, Technology Spectator
Like all of the Opposition’s analysis of the NBN, the rhetoric is seamless, the detail non-existentAfter the address, I drew Turnbull’s attention to the recent figures reported from the FTTH
technologyspectator.com.au/.../chasing-turnbulls-nbn-alternative

Murdoch exec Brooksre-arrested in hacking probe:reportReuters
Reuters) - Police arrested Rebekah Brooks, the former News of the World editor and close associate to Rupert Murdoch, for a second time on Tuesday in a new round of detentions in Britain's phone-hacking scandal, Sky News reported.
in.reuters.com/.../britain-hacking-arrests-idINDEE82C06S20120313

Brooks among new hacking arrests, Sky News
Six people have been arrested as part of the investigation into phone hacking in the British media, The Metropolitan Police said five men and one woman were arrested in various locations in and around Greater London on Tuesday morning. It said their premises were being searched.
www.skynews.com.au/.../article.aspx

Video

Lateline
Six journalists, reportedly including former News International chief Rebecca Brooks,

have been arrested by detectives investigating phone-hacking allegations in the UK.
http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/

Finance Minister delves into mining tax and budget talk, 7.30pm report
Finance Minister Penny Wong reacts to questions on how the Government is hoping to legislate the mining tax in this sitting fortnight and preparing for what will be one of their hardest budgets.
www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2012/s3452574.htm

The Drum Tuesday 13 March, Tim Palmer
In this episode, Tim Palmer speaks to author and broadcaster Sarah MacDonald, The Australian's economics correspondent Adam Creighton and writer Benjamin Law.
www.abc.net.au/.../3887296

Ex-defence minister offers support to Smith, Brendan Nelson
www.abc.net.au/.../3887420

Posts from the ‘Daily Fix’ Category
australianpoliticstv.org/category/daily-fix/

Smith denies SAS involvement in covert operations in Africa, Sky News
Defence Minister Stephen Smith has dismissed as untrue reports that an SAS squadron was involved in secret operations in Africa. Troopers from the secretive Victorian-based SAS 4 Squadron mounted dozens of operations during the past year in nations including Zimbabwe, Nigeria and Kenya
www.skynews.com.au/.../

Bob Carr to Tony Abbott
au.news.yahoo.com/.../

Queensland Votes: Attack ads,
candidates’ intros galore and that ad
This post is dedicated to the television ads (the ones that make it on-air and those that don’t), the ‘virals’ and whatever we come across from the Labor Party, the Liberal Party, the Greens, Bob Katter’s Australian Party and whoever else is uploading content; including the various mainstream media outlets. Each day we’ll post a new ‘Queensland Votes’ with that day’s contributions.

australianpoliticstv.org/.../

Newman cops serve on Cairns election trial
While pitching for the north Qld vote, LNP leader Campbell Newman found not all locals were pleased to see him
www.abc.net.au/.../3887434?section=qld

ABC presenter stood aside over Katter TV ad
An ABC presenter has been stood down for her involvement in a Katter's Australian Party state election TV ad targetting gay marriage
www.abc.net.au/.../3887440?section=qld

KONY 2012
KONY 2012 is a film and campaign by Invisible Children that aims to make Joseph Kony famous, not to celebrate him, but to raise support for his arrest and set a precedent for international justice.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4MnpzG5Sqc

Lyn

March 14. 2012 08:21 AM

Lyn

TODAY"S FRONT PAGES


Australian Newspaper Front Pages for 14 March 2012

www.frontpagestoday.co.uk/index.cfm

Lyn

March 14. 2012 08:28 AM

Lyn

Good morning Cuppa

Good to see your bright yellow gravatar here this morning.

guy on Twitter running around like his hair was on fire, screaming that the carbon tax was going to KILL the economy and KILL us all, calling people 'STUPID'

He was a troll do you think. Their here there their everywhere.

Wish the Government had as many scouts out there in every crack and groove, don't you.

CheersSmileSmileSmileSmileSmile

Lyn

March 14. 2012 08:36 AM

Michael

Bad Abbott

It's beautifully ironic that Shouldabeen and his civilian compatriots in the Coalition are relying on the opinion of retired General Cantwell for their attacks on Stephen Smith.

"cant" - noun: hypocritical and sanctimonious talk

"well" Not 'well' at all. Merely repetitive, and in typical Tiny style, attempting to beat down the person he's haranguing with his cant, rather than espousing how an alternative government would address such issues (outside of apple pie and motherhood bs about the 'nobility' of every individual in uniform).

Why? Because, in the absence of policies, he can't.

Michael

March 14. 2012 08:50 AM

Ad astra

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

Ad astra

March 14. 2012 09:12 AM

Cuppa

Hello Lyn,

Yes, I suppose he could have been a troll. Either way, he was working through the Liberal songbook: unions, carbon tax, lying Gillard, debt. The cliches we've all heard a million times. The Liberals certainly have a lot to thank the media for: brainwashing the masses with their memes.

Cuppa

March 14. 2012 09:24 AM

TalkTurkey

Knowing how we all like acknowledgment, I always feel less than appreciative when I fail to welcome authors to The Sword. Lyn and Ad hardly ever miss welcoming new or less-common writers, but believe me you are always read and appreciated. That is one advantage of a not-so-huge site. So to archiearchive and Dan Gulberry and Cuppa in particular on this thread,- I've seen Dan and cuppa elsewhere, archie is new to me - welcome and hope to see you more here. And to others whom I/we may have missed greeting, my apologies, but to all contributors of goodwill, a warm welcome on behalf of the rest of us. It goes without saying, but it goes better with. "Everybody needs encouragement." Smile  

TalkTurkey

March 14. 2012 09:53 AM

Lyn

Good Morning Talk Turkey

Talk Turkey that is such a nice post , you writing to our friends at  neighboring blogs and bloggers
Cuppa, Dan and Archie , Bill, James Higgins, Wayne Brooks, etc. etc.  They are all so supportive  I love them all.

I am a bit worried about this report though, I am hoping Craig is OK:

Craig Thomson taken to hospital , James Massola

EMBATTLED Labor MP Craig Thomson has been taken to hospital and will not attend federal parliament today.

The Australian Online has learned the Labor MP fell ill last night and applied for a parliamentary "pair", which was granted.

www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-fn59niix-1226298933717

Lyn

March 14. 2012 10:01 AM

2353

This is a good look for Abbott & Hockey -> [b]Coalition blocks tax cuts for big business]/b]
www.brisbanetimes.com.au/.../...0120313-1uyk9.html

2353

March 14. 2012 10:12 AM

DMW

Thanks to Laura Tingle for pointing to this rather, umm, I think the right word is, extraordinary, cartoon.

www.afr.com/.../cartoon_gallery_david_rowe_1g8WHy9urgOIQrWQ0IrkdO

DMW

March 14. 2012 10:14 AM

nasking


Funniest comment I've heard in recent times was Abbott criticising Labor for what he called "relentless negativity".

Have you noticed how often right-wingers do this sort of thing? That is, accuse their opponents of what they themselves (right wingers) are infamous for?


Cuppa,
Indeed...not dissimilar to News Corporation commentators and a certain mogul referring to the competition as "the elite"...

now, wasn't that former News of the World editor Rebekah Brooks smooching w/ PMs David Cameron and Tony Blair we saw on ABC Breakfast this morning?

And how many PMs have felt compelled to visit Rupie at his headquarters...too many I reckon.

Just the common woman and man doing the right thing by the people...that's our Rebekah and Rupert.

BTW, did Abbott ever work for a Murdoch comman man paper?

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 10:27 AM

Lyn

Hi 2353

Not good at all, thanks for the link.  

But look what Andrew Robb said before, they are always doing before and after this mob, they should run a beauty salon, make more sense than their front bench.

ALEX KIRK: But given the opportunity to support a one per cent cut to the company tax rate, as a separate piece of legislation, would you support it?

ANDREW ROBB:
We went to the election supporting a tax cut for all of business.

www.andrewrobb.com.au/.../...-AM-29-March-2011.asp

Lyn

March 14. 2012 10:34 AM

nasking

From Ash's blog (thnx for the link Lyn):

According to the polls, Newman has a struggle and not much time to address it. And if Newman dips out, then the LNP will be in deep do do. You see, when they decided to nominate Campbell Newman to the lofty height of leader of a party and a prospective premier, they had all basically agreed that there was no one sitting MP worthy of being party leader.

Imagine that. Not one single elected member of their party was worthy to be leader. Further, they opted to ignore the choices the public had voted for and opted to nominate an unelected candidate. And if he fails to win Ashgrove, he will continue to be unelected.

So what do they do now?

A vote for the LNP could be a vote for a party with no head
.


No head indeed.

And as it looks like the body of LNP candidates are pretty useless...and compared to Anna Bligh they come across like a bunch of boofheads who like to get legless at the hotel...

I guess we're just left w/ a bunch of asses.

N'




nasking

March 14. 2012 10:43 AM

Lyn

Good Morning Nasking

But look it has got worse for CanDo by the day:

QLD corruption watchdog looking at Campbell Newman donations
donations, linked to developer Philip Usher, were made before the Newman-led council approved a controversial development at Woolloongabba.

www.news.com.au/.../story-e6frfku0-1226298971770

CheersSmileSmileSmileSmile

Lyn

March 14. 2012 11:10 AM

Lyn

Hi Everybody

Who's unhinged:-

PaulBongiornoPaul Bongiorno
Tony Abbott says the relentless negativity must stop. He was referring to government attacks on the Opposition!

joeobrien24Joe O'Brien
Abbott: the relentless negativity must stop abcnews24
geeksrulzHipstermatic Geek

Dr NO says:" The relentless negativity must stop" #ROFL#auspol abcnews24

Lyn

March 14. 2012 11:20 AM

nasking

Good morning Lyn,
I'm not surprised that Newman is so close to property developers ...it's a problem w/ many mayors and councillors...that long embrace...one of the reasons I was a bit wary of Newman, particularly after the last two trips I took to Brissie, not having been into the city for years, I was struck by how claustrophobic I felt...it's not the spacious place I used to enjoy walking through...the development in places seems haphazard...and rather ugly. At times I felt like I was in some fascist bureaucratic nightmare land...must be Newman's army background coming thru.

I just don't feel I can trust him to do the right thing for all the people...Anna Bligh, and previously Peter Beattie, we're/are useful centrists...hearing Newman prioritizing funding for private schools and police tells me he's pretty biased.

He also lost a good deal of my respect when he embraced that Liberal extremist Tony Abbott.

A couple of mths ago I wasn't too worried about Newman...that's changed significantly now.

GO ANNA, QLD CENTRIST.

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 11:55 AM

nasking

Liberal Jamie Briggs was on SKY NEWS AGENDA this morning...what a great frontbencher he'd make:

In September 2011 Briggs called for a return to individual contracts as part of Australia's industrial relations system despite Abbott ruling it out of Coalition policy...

and in October 2011 Briggs called for a discussion in relation to the GST being applied to fruit and vegetables which Abbott also ruled out of Coalition policy
.

(Wikipedia)

The depth of the Liberal party is awesome.

No matter where you look on those benches you'll always find someone willing to screw over the workers and the average consumer...

But hey! as long as the mining barons and certain media moguls are looked after...who cares RIGHT?

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 12:13 PM

nasking

So Abbott wants to oppose the mining tax...and now this obstinate and mining baron sycophant will extend this morally bankrupt approach to voting against a tax cut for larger companies...

As a mortgage holder who could use an interest rate cut...and less pressure being applied to banks so they don't feel compelled to continue increasing rates...I'm thinking that Abbott will now have put those future cuts at risk...

Particularly as he seems to support rampant, unleashed mining and subsequent  profiteering...putting pressure on the dollar, exports...and other industries/sectors.

It's not surprising we got 10 interest rate increases in a row under Howard, Costello and Abbott.

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 01:16 PM

nasking

Mitt Romney in an interview w/ CNN's Wolf Blitzer arrogantly stated Rick Santorum

is at the desperate end of his campaign.

This senior Bush & Mormon-backed moneybags acts like such a bloody patrician...

The term patrician (Latin: patricius, Greek: πατρίκιος) originally referred to a group of elite families in ancient Rome, including both their natural and adopted members. In the late Roman Empire, the class was broadened to include high council officials, and after the fall of the Western Empire it remained a high honorary title in the Byzantine Empire. Medieval patrician classes were once again formally defined groups of elite burgher families in many medieval Italian republics, such as Venice and Genoa, and subsequently "patrician" became a vaguer term used for aristocrats and elite bourgeoisie in many countries.

(Wikipedia)

He thinks this Republican nomination should be handed to him on platter...

The way News Corporation expects to be treated...

Won't that be a beaut combination if Romney wins the presidency?

Add those who have oft taken America hostage...big oil, the Israel lobby, Saudi shareholders...and some financial organizations including Citigroup...

And you've got herself a real treat...

GW Bush and the War on Terror equals corporate profits thru the roof, moolah flooding upwards, wages stagnate, infrastructure neglected, civil rights diminished, media morally bankrupt, New Orleans abandoned, a population poisoned in oh so many ways...respect for America turns to dust...economy collapses.

You ain't seen nuthin' yet...

Bring on the patrician!

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 01:31 PM

nasking

Interesting:

Those who claim that the world remains “awash” in oil are technically correct: the planet still harbors vast reserves of petroleum. But propagandists for the oil industry usually fail to emphasize that not all oil reservoirs are alike: some are located close to the surface or near to shore, and are contained in soft, porous rock; others are located deep underground, far offshore, or trapped in unyielding rock formations. The former sites are relatively easy to exploit and yield a liquid fuel that can readily be refined into usable liquids; the latter can only be exploited through costly, environmentally hazardous and often result in a product which must be heavily processed before refining can even begin.

The simple truth of the matter is this: most of the world’s easy reserves have already been depleted — except for those in war-torn countries like Iraq.  Virtually all of the oil that’s left is contained in harder-to-reach, tougher reserves. These include deep-offshore oil, Arctic oil, and shale oil, along with Canadian “oil sands” — which are not composed of oil at all, but of mud, sand, and tar-like bitumen. So-called unconventional reserves of these types can be exploited, but often at a staggering price, not just in dollars but also in damage to the environment.

In the oil business, this reality was first acknowledged by the chairman and CEO of Chevron, David O’Reilly, in a 2005 letter published in many American newspapers. “One thing is clear,” he wrote, “the era of easy oil is over.” Not only were many existing oil fields in decline, he noted, but “new energy discoveries are mainly occurring in places where resources are difficult to extract, physically, economically, and even politically.”


www.counterpunch.org/.../

The entire article is worth reading, particularly the stuff on the Canadian tar sands...

It seems to me that too many American drivers and politicians have now got their heads stuck in the sand...

America it seems is no longer destined to be visionary and leading the way.

N'




nasking

March 14. 2012 01:38 PM

nasking

The Republican party's cheap oil dream:

http://m.youtube.com/results?q=bp%20oil%20disaster

becomes someone else's nightmare


We won't get fooled again...RIGHT?

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 01:46 PM

BSA Bob

An interesting headline in the Australian this morning from the reliable Franklin/Uren combo; "Greens put business tax cuts at risk." So, all the business tycoons who read TPS, you now know who to blame if you don't get them. The Coalition's voting intentions? Why don't we all talk about something else!!!?

BSA Bob

March 14. 2012 01:58 PM

nasking

Gingrich is helping the patrician Romney to get into power...by staying in the race.

It's hilarious watching the conservative screw over the conservatives.

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 02:21 PM

nasking

I bet Romney likes these guys:

http://zfacts.com/koch-brothers

More moneybags...and patricians.

BTW , Fox News has spent an inordinate amount of time lately attacking Obama over gas prices...

Surprise, surprise.

Didn't Rupert Murdoch predict cheap oil prices under Bush?

http://zfacts.com/p/35.html

I guess ya gotta collapse an economy to get cheaper gas prices...eh George & Rupert?

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 03:32 PM

nasking

Pretty low and desperate stuff in parliament today...the ever-ranting angrily Abbott was joined by that other mean-spirited spinmeister Scott Morrison accusing the government of incompetence related to border security due to illegal gun-related arrests in NSW....

Apparently the Gillard government is partially responsible for the latest drive-by shooting incidents in Sydney and they haven let the good people of that Sydney down...

Hmmm...

So were John Howard and his team just as culpible when it came to the many shootings and obtaining of illegal guns during the years 1996 - 2007...going by that logic?:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melbourne_gangland_killings

This is really oddball and irresponsible stuff on the part of an increasingly panicked Coalition led by a nut job it seems...

I'd hate to see the Libs, certain media and top NSW police pursuing this dopey accusation together...it would bring to mind cooperation between certain pollies, newspapers and the police in the UK...

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 03:40 PM

TalkTurkey

GrogsGamut | 5 minutes ago (On QT Live Twitter)

MT @Sally_Jackson: On Media Machine: Who's the Best Australian Blogger of 2012? Judges incl. me & @marinasgo http://t.co/j5FVGVij

This-all needs pondering! . . . Speak now Folks.

TalkTurkey

March 14. 2012 04:01 PM

Cuppa

Nasking,

The Noalition can go about this low line of spin, confident in the knowledge that their proxies on the talkback radio field will catch the ball and run like hell with it.

For a party that preaches self-reliance, they're awfully reliant on most of the mainstream media to do their dirty work for them.

Cuppa

March 14. 2012 04:26 PM

NormanK

The new word to look for as it spills from the lips of the Opposition's finance spokespeople is 'quantum'.
In the last six months, when speaking of income tax cuts, Tony Abbott has reaffirmed the Coalition's commitment to delivering them but the "exact quantum is yet to be determined".

In recent days the talk of Company Tax rates being reduced has brought forth the disclosure that the LNP remain committed to delivering a cut in the Company Tax rate but the quantum is yet to be determined. It will be a 'modest' cut - presumably less than Labor's 1%.

It is entirely conceivable that at the 2013 election Abbott & Co will commit themselves to repealing the carbon pricing legislation and its attendant cuts to income tax and then promising a more modest personal tax cut to be funded from general revenue. I will be interested to see how they word this commitment in such a way that it can't be described as a relative tax increase i.e. the income tax regime under Labor will be more generous to individuals (regardless of funding source) than the LNP one.

At the same time they will have to explain why they are cutting pensions - an especially vexatious task given that older Australians (aged pensioners, retired veterans etc.) are considered as being part of their core support base.

With Company Tax they promised a 1.5% cut during the last election but are unwilling at present to recommit to that same level. Could it be possible that they will find themselves in a position where they promise to repeal the MRRT and as a consequence have to bump Company Tax back up to 30% or 29.5% because they can't find the funds to maintain the cut in their first couple of budgets? A Coalition government raising Company Tax on small business is not a particularly good look considering that they are traditionally meant to be the 'party of business'.

Tony Abbott and the Coalition now find themselves trapped in a crush - a slowly converging pair of fences forcing them into a narrow and confined space. Once they are corralled they will find it almost impossible to break out of their prison even if someone does come up with 'out-of-the-box' policy initiatives. Their ability to speak wistfully of wide-open plains of verdant pasture being made available to the Australian people will be curtailed by their incapacity to take voters on a tour of this promised paradise.

The most ironic aspect of this situation is that the Coalition are assisting in the construction of the crush and the holding pen. A change of leader, with an accompanying promise of a new direction, is the only way that they will be able to break out of this suffocating tunnel.

NormanK

March 14. 2012 04:30 PM

nasking

Culpable not culpible...doh!

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 04:54 PM

nasking


For a party that preaches self-reliance, they're awfully reliant on most of the mainstream media to do their dirty work for them.

Cuppa,
Indeed.

They remind me of the Republican party that lectures on the evils of big government...and then spends a trillion on badly executed and unnecessary wars...

And Tony Abbott sure doesn't mind pocketing taxpayer's money to pay off his mortgage...the likes of him and previously professional politician John Howard have certainly hung around long enuff to see the benefits of government pay...

Perhaps that's why Abbott doesn't understand the pain caused by the mining boom and high dollar to small business...and why they need a tax cut off the back of a mining tax.

Perhaps Abbott is preparing for that hammock left behind by Peter Costello...we know Hockey will reject it, preferring a sturdy bed to sleep in during his time as Treasurer.

Let's hope Grumpy and Sleepy never get the chance to be idle in power.

Even longtime politicians in the ALP recognize when small business needs nourishing..and the gaping maws of Gina Rinehart and Clive Palmer need less monetary food...

It's time the mining barons went on a profits diet.

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 05:10 PM

nasking

Norman,
Speaking of 'quantum'...perhaps Abbott should quantum leap into the past...the 50s might suit him better...

After his austerity measures and cuts to clean energy programs, the NBN, online healthcare, the mining tax and many other schemes...and heaps of money directed towards conservative businesses and religious practices...with the addition of missionary-like attitudes towards indigenous people...not to mention open season on women and gays...it's gonna feel like we all quantum leaped back to the past.

Been there, done that. Thnx to John Winston ("Is this an Optus?") Howard.

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 06:02 PM

Lyn


Hi Everybody


Some tweets during question time today.  Tony Abbott blames Julia Gillard for drive – by shootings.    Somebody said the media should not report such maniacal ravings
but you will see below , by Ben Packman The Australian already has:-
farrm51Malcolm Farr
Two Gun Gillard blamed by Libs in NSW and Fed parls for gun weapon smuggling and Syd drive-by shootings. Morrison links her to 60 shootings.

grumpyMichaelMichael Lee
barryofarrell vanOnselenP Your mate Abbott so desperate for the Lodge keys he's really gone off his head qt shameful display today.

vanOnselenPPeter van Onselen
Watching QT on Foxtel IQ delay...what on earth is Abbott doing with this suspension debate: linking drive by shootings to boats? God help me
HenryIXLHenry
LaurieOakes I hope u expose this nonsense from Abbott on CH 9 tonight. These SSO's are getting ever more farcical.

mwyresMichael Wyres
And now Bronny...that's five... #qt

Simon_CullenSimon Cullen
Bronwyn Bishop been booted too... #qt

gordongrahamGordon Graham
Slipper's like a banshee on a rampage today #94a #qt

davstorm75david appleby
5 down! slipper on fire, anyone left to ask questions?

BernardKeaneBernard Keane
Erm, Bronwyn marched. It's a massacre. #qt

externallylawsExternallylaws
Wasn't that Bronnie? #qt

justinbarbourJustin Barbour
Who will manage Opposition business for the next hour now? #qt

BettyBowersMrs. Betty Bowers
Loser Newt about to speak. Behind him: Asian dude, Woman and Black guy. Pan to audience: All fat white dudes. #Props

Margy011Margaret
4 down SOS looks doubtful today Will be no Opposition members left #qt

swrightwestozShane Wright
At this rate the coalition will have 18 people chucked out by the time #qt wraps up just after 3pm

justinbarbourJustin Barbour
Bronnie chucked. #qt

gordongrahamGordon Graham
Bronwyn booted #94a #qt

MediaMookNeil Walker
Christopher Pyne called Wayne Swan a "scumbag"? The same guy who threatens legal action over insults (but pretends he doesn't).

BernardKeaneBernard Keane
Briggs marched #qt

mwyresMichael Wyres
And now we have four kickings... #94A #qt

AshGhebraniousAshGhebranious
Mayo goes off to have a ham, cheese, tomato, and mayo sandwich #qt #fourdown

externallylawsExternallylaws
There goes the Mayo!! #eggslookinglonely #94a #qt

meadeaamanda meade
Nice profile of Fran Kelly http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/-1uxoe.html

Simon_CullenSimon Cullen
Jamie Briggs now down for the count too #qt
2FBSStephen C
Come on Slipper just punt the lot of them. #qt

mishaschubertMisha Schubert
Julie Bishop asks Bill Shorten if he will direct the head of Fair Work Australia to cooperate with the cops. It's independent, he says. #qt

SpaceKidetteSpace Kidette
Bishop brings up Thomson police investigations but no mention made of Can-Do and his police troubles. #qt #qldelection #auspol

GrogsGamutGreg Jericho
At some stage Julie Bishop might ask a real question about foreign affairs. But I doubt it #qt

Tony Abbott blames Julia Gillard for Sydney handgun crimewave , Ben Packman
This government's incompetence on border protection is not just about boats, it's about guns as well,” Mr Abbott said.
www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-fn59niix-1226299531059

Lyn

March 14. 2012 06:06 PM

Cuppa

In relation to Ad Astra's launch post, I note that Clive Palmer will be Chris Uhlmann's guest tonight on their 7.30 program. I'm sure @cuhlmann will make him very welcome.

Cuppa

March 14. 2012 06:32 PM

nasking

Kinda hilarious when a former Howard minister accuses a government of being incompetent when it comes to weaponry and putting lives at risk...

AWB Scandal anyone?

Who mighta put the lives of the Iraq invasion force at risk by looking the other way?...ensuring Saddam had extra cash to buy defense goodies.

I thought Jason Clare sounded very calm, efficient and reasonable in his response to Abbott & Morrison's accusations...

This might be the 'bridge too far' for ranting, do anything say anything Abbott...I'm sure some in his party are squirming and embarrassed by this latest insane campaign to distract from the no no no no no on mining tax problem.

N'

N'

nasking

March 14. 2012 08:08 PM

2353

Gillard should be happy that Abbott and Brown won't support the tax cuts for large business.  Surplus anyone?

Just listening to Abbott on the news - anyone define "modest" tax cuts that Abbott promised under his plan?

2353

March 14. 2012 08:28 PM

Jason

Nasking @ March 14. 2012 03:32 PM

Hi N,
    "Pretty low and desperate stuff in parliament today"
I couldn't agree more!But I fear the worst is still to come.

The "back bench" seem to have that smell of "death" about them where they know that at the end of next week as the parliament rises for 5 weeks they have to go back into their electorates and face all of their "business backers" who as the opposition tell us day after day how hard they're doing it! and explain how they don't think they need a "tax cut" now! but on the off chance the coalition gets elected next year they will offer a "modest tax cut" whatever that is as well as get charged the 1.5% Levy for the "PPL".

Nasking sit back and get the popcorn ready! between now and July one  the opposition will explode.    

Jason

March 14. 2012 08:31 PM

Ad astra

Folks
I have just posted another erudite piece by JohnL titled: Nonsense of $8bn BER ‘waste’ claims exposed, which does indeed expose the deception and lies that surrounded the campaign to demean the Building the Education Revolution program.  Enjoy.

http://www.thepoliticalsword.com

Ad astra

March 14. 2012 09:28 PM

Tom of Melbourne

[i]”But remember he is still … a Roman Catholic …”{/i]

As long as we know what we’re dealing with here.

Tom of Melbourne

March 14. 2012 10:08 PM

nasking


The "back bench" seem to have that smell of "death" about them

Jason,
I couldn't agree more.
I've noticed some of the old guard Libs who hit the various news and current affairs shows are looking like death warmed up...

I reckon if Abbott's loony performances go on much longer they'll end up six feet under from stress.

N'

nasking

Comments are closed