Grasping at prime ministership the Abbott way

Let’s be clear from the outset. The lead up to the September 14 election will not be a respectful contest of ideas, a civil battle of policies and plans. It will be a bare-knuckle street fight between personalities, with no holds barred. The Abbott way countenances no other approach.

To seize the top job, the Abbott way is to have many lines of attack. A keen observer of the Abbott way is the source of the principles and strategies detailed below. Some may appear counterintuitive, but they work:

Feelings are more important in winning elections than rational thinking.
Capturing hearts trumps changing minds.
Emotionally laden words beat fact-based logic.


Here is the Abbott way of applying them:

Facts and logic point to the virility and robustness of Australia’s economy. So many of its parameters are laudable: low unemployment, low inflation and falling interest rates, low debt to GDP ratio, growth near trend, even rising business and consumer confidence and increasing retail sales in recent months.

Although we hear of job losses as industries affected by the persistently high Australian dollar shed workers, all except 5.6% of the workforce have jobs, historically low by any standard.

Mortgagees enjoy the lowest interest rates since the lows of the GFC, avoiding thousands of dollars a year in interest payments. Self-funded retirees who depend heavily on interest bearing investments for income complain a little, but there are not many of them; most have investments and property.

But ask the people how they are doing, and they say they are doing it tough.

Yet they live in a vibrant economy, where CPI data tell us that while petrol and power prices are up, food and supermarket prices are falling. Even where some costs have risen because of putting a price on carbon, households have been more than compensated. But ask the people about prices and they vow they are getting higher and higher, despite evidence to the contrary. It is embedded in their psyche that ‘they are doing it tough’.

Facts and reasoning, even commonsense, are replaced by the feeling that things are crook.

With such an economy, the Gillard Government ought to be miles ahead in the polls and be rated as good economic managers, but not only is the Coalition well ahead, polls show that it is consistently rated as the better manager of the economy. It defies logic.

But it does demonstrate the principle that how people feel is more important than what they think. Facts are irrelevant if there is an entrenched feeling to the contrary.

How has the Abbott way achieved this outcome?

It’s been easy. No matter how laudably the Government has been managing the economy, no matter how well Treasurer Swan is regarded in international circles, the tactic has been simply to tell everyone that the economy is tanking, that Labor never could manage money, that it is addicted to spending and debt, that it will never bring in a surplus budget, that it is creating sovereign risk, that its recent superannuation changes were 'shades of Cyprus', and that now even its coveted triple A ratings are under threat, then add that the Coalition knows how to run an economy, has done it before during the golden Howard years, and can do it again. Never mind that the economic circumstances of the Howard era and the current Labor era are radically different. People won’t even think about that if it’s not mentioned.

Which brings us to the second set of Abbott principles:

Truth is irrelevant in politics, but plausibility is not.
No matter how far from the truth, if a statement is convincing, and especially if it matches preconceived prejudices, it will be believed.
Remember Goebbels’ dictums: “If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes the truth.” and “The bigger the lie, the more people will believe it.”


The Coalition has applied these principles to its great advantage. It has created an atmosphere of distrust, even despair about the economy among consumers and businesses, and they have swallowed the gloom holus bolus. When the gloom has been challenged with the facts of a buoyant economy, it has been easy to contradict it by endlessly repeating that people are doing it tough, and exemplifying this with news stories about disgruntled families struggling to pay their mortgages and their household bills, especially power bills. It doesn’t matter if some of these families are earning $150,000 plus. With kids at private schools, a second car in the garage, and a large mortgage to pay off their McMansion; they really feel life is tough. These stories are intended to anger those who see themselves in a similar position, and to muster sympathy from those who aspire to such a position. The next step is to convince them and everyone else that it’s the Government’s fault and that they would be better off with competent managers in power – the Coalition of course.

The Coalition has been tactically clever in promoting this ‘ain’t it awful’ mindset, because it has made it difficult for the Government to counter by telling people that they are doing just fine. So Labor too has joined the ‘doing it tough’ chorus. In fact, only a few weeks back Joel Fitzgibbon said the people working the mines in his electorate on $140,000 a year were doing it tough, and a constituent on $250,000 was ‘struggling’. No amount of reminding these people about how good the economic figures are makes any difference – they remain convinced they are struggling and resent anyone telling them otherwise. So all the Coalition has to do is to repeat the ‘doing it tough’ message over and again.

Which takes us to a third set of Abbott principles:

Repetition is essential.
Never let up on sending your message, no matter how bored some may become. It might look like brainwashing, but it works.
Keep the message simple.
Ensure the message is memorable.


The Coalition has specialized in short sharp messages – opponents call them slogans. It doesn't care, so long as they stick. The message does not have to be true, or even logical, so long as it is believable and catchy.

Take the 2010 election catchphrases: ‘End the waste’, ‘Pay back the debt’, ‘Stop the big new taxes’, ‘Stop the boats’ and ‘Help struggling families’. Remember how easy it was to have the public embrace them. Who wouldn’t want an end to waste? There was no need to advance evidence of waste as already this had been done with the adverse publicity over the HIP and the BER. Who would object to paying back the debt? There was no need to show how the Coalition would do that, or even whether it might be a prudent thing to do at that time. Who would disagree with stopping big new taxes? Explaining what that meant was unnecessary as the carbon tax, vivid in everyone’s mind, was painted as ‘a great big new tax on everything’. All except a handful wanted the boats stopped to avert the risk of drowning. There was no need to say how the Coalition would do this, and at what cost. And the motherhood statement ‘Help struggling families’ was a no brainer. What fool would contradict that? How the Coalition would do this did not need to be spelt out; implicitly the catchphrase assumed it could and would.

Despite the brevity and lack of detail in these slogans, they worked a treat, because they were catchy, easily recalled and plausible, albeit superficially.

More recently, in the pursuit of a more positive image, the Coalition has used another catchphrase in its booklet: Our Plan – Real Solutions for all Australians to portray its ‘plan for the future’. Note how clever this is. ‘Real’ appeals, as does ‘solutions’! People want solutions and if they are ‘real’ what more could they ask? The fact that these words are meaningless without substance matters little. Solutions for what? How do solutions become ‘real?’ Can solutions be ‘unreal’? The meaning of the catchphrase is irrelevant so long as it sounds attractive and plausible. Substance is unnecessary. How many will read the booklet? The title is left to create the desired positive image, and it probably will.

Which segues into the fourth set of Abbott principles:

Use the ‘Humpty Dumpty’ approach – words can mean whatever you want them to mean.
If anyone challenges what meaning has been given to a word, simply say that that is not its meaning.
If anyone confronts you with a damaging statement a Coalition member or staffer has made, first deny it. If the chatter persists, insist that what was said was misinterpreted. If it continues, brush it away as ‘past history’, insist that action has been taken, and that ‘the matter is now at an end’.


For example, when the Coalition's Paid Parental Leave scheme was announced, the words ‘fair dinkum’ were used to describe it. Aussies like things to be ‘fair dinkum’; it’s a bit like ‘real solutions’. The words also had the effect of diminishing the value of Labor’s scheme; by definition it could not be as ‘fair dinkum’. To pay for it, a 1.5% ‘levy’ would be imposed on around three thousand companies with the largest profit. Everyone knew that would be portrayed as a ‘tax’, but it was easy to insist that it was a ‘levy’ and a ‘modest levy’ at that, and it would be offset by a similar reduction in company tax. The Coalition insists it is still a levy, and definitely not a tax. See how easy it is to make words mean whatever you want them to mean.

Another example is the Coalition’s Direct Action Plan to combat climate change. Note ‘action’ is a key word, one voters like, and this time it is ‘direct’, which of course makes it ‘real’. It has been easy to conceal from most voters the fact that the DAP will impose a burden of $1,300 on every household and cost taxpayers many billions every year, will require many new regulations and hundreds of new bureaucrats to enforce them, will rely on the creation of a 15,000 strong Green Army to plant 20 million trees on what semi-arable land can be procured, and on burying tonnes of biochar in farmland. By using the term ‘Direct Action Plan’ – three stylish and comfortable words – the Coalition has been able to deflect attention from details that some voters might find discomforting, and from all the negative appraisals of the Plan by economists and environmentalists, leaving them with just those reassuring words that have given the Plan a comfortable aura, words that would have made even Humpty Dumpty proud.

On the principle of brushing off damaging statements, the Coalition has managed to do that remarkably effectively over ‘Ashbygate’, and the Mark Roberts ‘slit your throat’ outburst.

This leads to the next set of Abbott principles:

To achieve any of the above, a compliant media is required.
The mainstream media in this country is the conduit for convincing the people of the veracity of what the Coalition says.
The value of having media proprietors onside is inestimable.
Be prepared to do whatever it takes to get them onside.
Foster support from the wealthy and powerful as they have influence over the media.


This has been a Coalition success story. The Murdoch media has shown its willingness to not just support the Coalition, but oppose the Government. The Coalition could not have asked for an easier ride from the MSM. The Australian and the Murdoch tabloids have been strongly supportive and ready to put the Government down at every opportunity. News Limited’s Newspoll has been used not just as a measure of support for the parties, but the results have been written up in a way that no matter what the figures show, Labor has been shown up at a disadvantage. Rupert Murdoch gave an early indication that he wanted the Gillard Government gone, and he has been true to his word. Let’s face it, the Coalition could not have been in the favourable position it is in without the help of the Murdoch media, and now with its good friend Gina Rinehart a big shareholder at Fairfax, another large media outlet is onside.

The ABC was hard on Abbott in the Leigh Sales interview about the BHP Billiton Olympic Dam deferral, but her latest interview was a soft one, no doubt the result of lots of angry protests filed by Coalition supporters against the earlier one. It was easy to avoid her questions and control the interview. The ABC too looks like coming on board.

This leads to the fifth set of Abbott principles:

It is not enough to counter your opponent’s policies; you have to counter your opponent.
Demonization of opponents, particularly leaders, is essential. It is a form of ‘shooting the messenger’.
Demonization can be achieved by accusing an opponent of some misdemeanour, over and again, no matter how remote in time.
The misdemeanour need not be of any consequence, as the object is simply to raise doubts in voters’ minds about the integrity of your opponent.
Labelling an opponent pejoratively is a sure fire method, as no matter how improbable the accusation, some of it will stick.
If a theme of malfeasance or incompetence can be established, so much the better, as each instance reinforces the others.
Even if a Coalition member is guilty of the same misdemeanour, laying it on an opponent is the best counter. For example, if you tell lies yourself, accuse your opponent of lying.
Even if journalists contradict your assertions, even if they question their validity, always insist that you are correct. Never retreat. Repeat them again and again as if you haven’t heard the contradiction.
Making the electorate angry with your opponent is essential; it is vital to build up resentment and an aura of blame, so that no matter what good things your opponent does, they will be negated by the antagonism, anger and hatred that you have generated against your opponent.
It is essential to have allies in the media before engaging these strategies.


The Coalition has been successful in employing these principles.

Julia Gillard has been demonised as a liar, and labelled untrustworthy. The Coalition was gifted with her statement about not introducing a carbon tax. We know that only half of what she actually said has been circulated, but that matters nothing. The Coalition has many video clips of her saying these words that it will use over and again in election advertising, painting her as an untrustworthy liar. No amount of logic or reasoning will erase that. It is a sure winner. And hasn’t the rehashing of the Slater and Gordon matter been effective in casting doubts on her integrity!

She and her Government have been labelled as incompetent on the grounds that she has changed her position on some issues, and has not been able to bring off some of her changes. Moreover, her Government has been repeatedly labelled as dysfunctional, disunited, illegitimate, ‘a rabble’, the worst government in the nation’s history, worse that Whitlam’s, and ‘a bad government getting worse’. This has steadily eroded confidence in the Government and Julia Gillard. It has been one of the Coalition’s most effective strategies.

Journalists do sometimes challenge the use of words, for example, the use of the word ‘illegal’ to describe asylum seekers. Although strictly speaking that is correct, it strengthens the antipathy to boat people if the word is used. Those who are antagonistic to them don’t care that it is legal to seek asylum. What they want is reinforcement of their existing prejudices.

This brings us to a sixth set of Abbott principles, which are about policies and the media:

Policy statements are unimportant almost until election-day, as an excuse for not making them can always be found, and the Government blamed for their absence.
The longer policy announcements and costings can be delayed the better. Keep the electorate guessing. Be a ‘small target’.
It is much more important to have a strong media unit than a policy unit.
A media unit sets up the leader and shadow ministers with the message for the day.
Simple messages, consistently delivered, are essential.
It doesn’t matter if the message is simplistic or at times incorrect or even inane, so long as it is delivered accurately, consistently and repeatedly.
Remember, most of the electorate is not analytical.
Messages must be plausible and memorable even if they don’t make a lot of sense.
Soft media interviews with complaint journalists are to be preferred.
‘Doorstops’ are easier to handle and wind up.
If a question is asked that is at all threatening, answer instead a preferred question, or address a more convenient subject, one endowed with more political capital.
If questions become tough or insistent, a tried and tested routine is simply to walk away.
It is better to walk away than to go on the record with an embarrassing or inappropriate answer that can be replayed endlessly.
Lengthy, hard studio interviews with probing persistent journalists are to be avoided.
Whatever you do, avoid saying anything that might ‘frighten the horses’. That can wait until after the election.
Use 'Tea Party' style public events with lots of placards and women as a background as that appeals to the people. Try to look like a nice guy, and behave kindly to women. Try to erase past images of nastiness. Insist you can change and grow into the job.


These principles have been used for over two years now, and the Coalition has got away with them.

The repeated slogans have been a winner. Voters don’t think too deeply about them, but they do repeat them on cue, like Pavlov’s dogs. If challenged, some may reflect on their veracity, but who bothers to put them right. Very few! People prefer their prejudices to a reasoned debate. Neither do voters think too deeply about new ideas, like Abbott's ‘development of the North’ and 'more dams' thought bubbles, and as they attract little scrutiny from the media, no detail is necessary so long as the ideas sound good.

The Coalition has been successful at avoiding difficult encounters with the media, and when the going has gotten tough, walking away has been a good solution. They get criticism from a few journalists for doing this, but most go along with the strategy. What can they do anyway?

The situations Abbott avoids are Q&A, 7.30, Lateline and radio interviews with astute people such as Jon Faine. Interviews with the likes of Alan Jones, Ray Hadley, Andrew Bolt, David Spears, Paul Kelly, and Peter van Onselen give the best result. They feed Dorothy Dixers, don’t come with the tough questions, and even when they try, as did van Onselen last week over the Mark Roberts ‘slit your throat’ episode, it was left to the end and meekly retreated from in the face of a firm rebuttal.

And the 'Tea Party' events have attracted a lot of publicity.

So there it is – how to grasp prime ministership the Abbott way, how to seize it from Julia Gillard, and simply slide into The Lodge, or Kirribilli! If it seems deeply cynical, that is because it is. This is the bare-knuckle approach of the man who wants to be this nation's leader, in all its gory detail.

The Coalition is well aware of hubris and says it is not taking anything for granted, but with the polls the way they are, it looks to Abbott as if he is a shoo-in for prime ministership, so long as no one puts their foot in it in the next five months and blows his flimsy cover.

This then is the ugly Abbott way, exposed for all to see; clever and successful in parts, but ugly nonetheless.

You could almost believe it had come right out of the horse’s mouth.


What do you think?

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Patriciawa

29/04/2013[b]On Yer Bike, Tony![/b] Does Tony Abbott deserve a medal, Riding on the Pollie Pedal, When what’s really in his head’ll Likely cause a major scandal? While all along the cyclists’ way The media scrum’s there every day Recording what he has to say What he really thinks he hides away. Like - how to get more and more votes? Keep counting those [i]illegal[/i] boats! That should bring in some headline quotes And keep the Greens at Labor's throats. Talk about our coast’s defences As the main event commences, Keeping up PR pretences, While calculating his expenses. He’ll claim each night for a motel, Not like Craig Thomson in Dobell, No chance our Tones will go to hell. He’s cleared that with Cardinal Pell. [u]He’s[/u] not increasing his own wealth! [u]He[/u] is helping the nation’s health, Not by preaching, but more by stealth, A good example, like himself! So it goes on, mile after mile! The ALP daren't be so vile As to criticise, swallow bile. Peta Credlin is one big smile. http://polliepomes.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/on-yer-bike-tony/

lyn

29/04/2013Today’s Links Futures of journalism by @awelder What follows here is my impression of the PIJF Future of Public Interest Journalism forum at the Old Fitzroy Hotel, Woolloomooloo, on 24 April 2013. I didn't take notes and this is not http://andrewelder.blogspot.com.au/ Tony Abbott’s mugging produces a one-sided affair by @MigloMT His nastiness is contagious to the Liberal Party and many of its members, supporters and the adoring media have been affected under his leadership http://theaimn.com/2013/04/28/tony-abbotts-mugging-produces-a-one-sided-affair/ Abbott Batting on a Deteriorating Pitch by @saint13333 @MigloMT Our AAA ranking is under threat if we do not vote LNP according to Tony Abbott. It’s a strange weird mind that suggests that the government that has worked so hard to achieve it is the one threatening to bring it down http://theaimn.com/2013/04/27/abbott-batting-on-a-deteriorating-pitch/ Walking Away by @geeksrulz Video , Tony Abbott, Scrutiny, Accountability . http://australiansforhonestpolitics.wordpress.com/2013/03/28/walking-away/ The Sawford Formula by @Mark_Graph If the Sawford formula is to believed (and the current trends continue), we will see a return of the Labor government come September 14. http://marktheballot.blogspot.com.au/2013/04/the-sawford-formula.html Liberal Party Hypocrisy by @TheKouk “the GST, in terms of its rate and scope, will have to be revisited in the medium term”. Minchin went on, “a consumption tax is the best way to address the revenue problem”. http://www.marketeconomics.com.au/2387-liberal-party-hypocrisy Why a little inflation isn't such a bad thing by Ross Gittins carrying on about the trouble they're having keeping up with "the cost of living". You can achieve that delusion only by focusing on what's happened to the prices you pay and ignoring what's happened to your income. http://www.rossgittins.com/2013/04/why-little-inflation-isnt-such-bad-thing.html Austerity slips out of fashion amid growing recession risk by @1petermartin To further cut government spending at such a time could risk recession. Overseas, the idea that government debt itself causes recession got hammered at about the same time as the Coalition’s rethink in Australia http://coffsoutlook.com/austerity-slips-out-of-fashion-amid-growing-recession-risk/ Department of the Treasury - Australian Government : Essay - Fair go under fire by @ForTraders Tony Abbott and his party too petrified to release policies, the only place to gauge their true intentions is to read the plans being drawn up by these think tanks, which seem to be doing most of their thinking for them http://www.4-traders.com/news/Department-of-the-Treasury-Australian-Government-Essay-Fair-go-under-fire--16780026/ Stop the Boasts by @backupbear Tony spends all his time rabbiting on using sound-bites, such as Stop the Boats, a platitude designed to appeal to xenophobic bogans with a narcissistic lack of humanity. http://unsane.info/stop-the-boasts/ Clive of IndieA by Tess Lawrence What you see is what you get. A self-made man-mountain who shoves it up the anal political retentiveness of the establishment. What’s not to love? http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/politics/clive-of-indiea/ Tess Lawrence Queen of the Ether the World Wide Web is the share address of the peoples of the World by @FairMediaAllian She is a champion of independent, accountable media, and the opportunities this offers for ordinary people everywhere to have their say – the Citizen Journalists. http://fairmediaalliance.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/tess-lawrence-queen-of-the-ether-the-world-wide-web-is-the-shared-address-of-the-peoples-of-the-world Habemus Media Watch Host by @Dylan_Caporn While he will be missed by many, the show must go on and eyes now turn to who will replace Jonathan as Australia’s Media Critic in Chief. Here are some possibilities: http://bodypoliticaus.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/habemus-media-watch-host/ Tony Abbott’s Character by Truth Seeker Is plain for all to see, He’s a political thug and pugilist , With shades of misogyny http://truthseekersmusings.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/tony-abbotts-character/ “Reluctant Warrior” - The martyrdom of Saint Clive Palmer. by @newsfliporg it is the plain, rational behaviour of a man with an LNP axe to grind, who feels he wasn’t given preferential treatment by Campbell Newman’s coal royalty obligation in the last State budget. http://www.newsflip.org/ NSW Government lies to electricity consumers by @Askgerbil What Mr Hartcher conceals is that personal income tax cuts averaging $520 per year were made to cover the cost of the carbon price. The Federal Coalition has promised to remove these income tax cuts http://blog.gerbilnow.com/2013/04/nsw-government-lies-to-electricity.html Tony Abbott and who should be allowed a decent education by @no_filter_Yamba http://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com.au/2013/04/tony-abbott-and-who-should-be-allowed.html Abbott Abandons Press Conference When Asked About GST Changes by @mwyres Video Fresh concerns on Liberal GST plans http://michaelwyres.com/newsdesk/article.php?hash=b11dfacddf3b0508e4f6a1bb431ae742 The Aussie Royal Commission by @1petermcc Australia is currently in the very early stages of setting up a Royal Commission into child abuse in Institutions in Australia and it naturally is going to heavily feature the Catholic Church http://1petermcc.wordpress.com/ 581 days, and occupational violence’s worse than I realised by @TaraNipe nurses have the second highest risk of occupational violence: higher than police officers and prison staff. Lower, in fact, only than paramedics http://tnipe.wordpress.com/2013/04/27/581-days-and-occupational-violences-worse-than-i-realised/ Direct Action called into question by Townville Blog Business is currently urging the Coaltion to rethink its policy. The Energy Supply Association of Australia (ESAA) has urged the Coalition to revisit its energy and climate change policy, which currently includes abolishing the carbon tax. They are instead supporting the Labor policy http://www.townsvillelabor.org/1/post/2013/04/direct-action-called-into-question.htm Tony Abbott reviews The Lucky Culture in Spectator Australia by Lucky Culture the worst snobbery is not directed towards people of lower status, he says, but towards people of different opinions. He thinks that this ‘my opinion must be better than yours’ conceit is putting at risk the egalitarianism that’s at the heart of Australians’ sense of self. http://www.luckyculture.com.au/media-library/tony-abbott-reviews-the-lucky-culture/ The revolt against the elites by @donattroppo By attacking the moral authority of progressive ‘elites,’ conservatives may end up weakening the idea of moral authority and undermining their own cause. Their libertarian allies will be happy to see them do it. http://clubtroppo.com.au/2013/04/28/the-revolt-against-the-elites/#more-22835 On Yer Bike, Tony! by Patricia wa But it seems that many of his personal expenses like an expensive new spandex outfit each year and other equipment is met by sponsors. As well, he has always claimed from the Commonwealth a daily http://polliepomes.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/on-yer-bike-tony/ Today’s Front Pages Australian Newspaper Front Pages for 29 April 2013 http://www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm

Gravel

29/04/2013Ad Astra You have summed up the last three years perfectly. It is almost sickening. The only chance I see is if Labor focus all their election program on what abbott will take from the voters, eg carbon price compo, school kids bonus, add tax take on those earning 6,000k, not getting 500 bonus for super, etc... That can be the only way to maybe get through some people, show that abbott will hurt their hip pocket.

Gravel

29/04/2013patriciawa Another of your great pome's well done, you're back on track. :-)

Michael

29/04/2013Following up on Mike Seccombe's comment about the "end of austerity" on Insiders, complemented by Peter Martin's weekend column in the Faifax Press on the same subject, I'm re-posting my item from Saturday morning. The thrust of this article and its support material fits nicely in with AA's seed piece for this thread, too. In the light of Abbott recently telling a public forum that some of the things a government of his would do economically would "hurt" the Australian people, this story from the New York Times, http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/26/opinion/krugman-the-one-percents-solution.html?src=ISMR_AP_LO_MST_FB which includes the quote "redemption through suffering" in a telling sequence, nails just how First World One Percenters worldwide share a worldview with this country's conservatives. In their ilk, Abbott's fundamentalist religiousity is married to the self-righteousness of the wealthy, and he's setting out to hurt everyone in this country BUT the wealthy. The load of economic redemption will be shared out across 99% of our population, becoming heavier the closer it reaches the bottom. Do read the article, do follow the links embedded in it - they reveal the barren hollowness at the base of what the Conservatives plan economically (and, of course, consequentially, socially) for Australia. But more importantly they reveal the electric readiness with which those who propose such plans are prepared to lie and fake figures/processes/results to ratify a 'philosophical' position based on no true ideas at all, but actually rooted in soaked-in-cologne but still nostrils-wrinkling stinking disdain, disgust, and fear of the common man, woman and child. Us.

Kate Ahearne

29/04/2013Thanks for this wonderful stuff. It seems that the tide is beginning to turn. There is something quite hopeful about recent posts here, and on 'compatible' sites. Spring is in the air. And thanks to Lyn, for noticing and listing our efforts. Kate, for Fair Media Alliance, http://fairmediaalliance.wordpress.com/

Ad astra

29/04/2013LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/LYNS-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Michael

29/04/2013Tony Abbott's review of the book The Lucky Culture in The Spectator (amongst Lyn's Links above), which rarely rises above the platitudinous relaying of the 'fair dinkum' myth of the 'real Aussie', and concludes with a quote from the book lauding the commonsense of the any local pub's front bar, should be read in parallel with this article http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-04-29/bainbridge-alcohol-advertising-in-sport/4656386 which more accurately reports on the influence of the front bar and what's served there on Australian culture. A culture that is undoubtedly one that Abbott recognises and wishes to impose as the standard - "fair dinkum" means not stepping out of line, being 'one of us', not 'getting ahead of yourself', all the other mottoes of Oz-everyman too spoken-down to to realise he's a caricature. In North Korea the partyliners mass and march in goosestep. In Australia they tune in to shockjocks, take their politics in three word slugs, and purse their lips in sanctimonious certainty that only 'business' knows how to run a country. And 'prefer as Prime Minister' a man anyone with any sense would avoid in any front bar in the nation.

Tom of Melbourne

29/04/2013Revenue up by 7%, with low unemployment, but this mob still can’t get a surplus. Not this year, or next or the one after. Gillard and Swan committed to a surplus without equivocation. They weren’t forced, they volunteered it 100+ times. They said a surplus was the best policy for the economy. Now they talk up the benefits of a deficit. Ad Astra doesn't realise that the public have no reason to believe Gillarx and Swan. Swan is a dumb bullsh!t artist, and Gillard isn’t quite as dumb.

Truth Seeker

29/04/2013Ad, another fine piece that cuts to the heart of the mendacious LNP, the complicit MSM and the character, or lack thereof, of the Abbott. The big hope is that those in the demographic of mobile users, who for the most part don't get polled, live through their mobiles accessing the internet and the social media networks, which are more and more favouring the fifth estate and the truth through blogs like ours :-) Patricia, have left my comment about your poem on your site :-) Cheers :-) :-)

ja

29/04/2013There's plenty of reason why this 'public' believes the PM and Treasurer (actual facts and graphs)- as opposed to simple statements 'we will...' with no explanation whatsoever of the 'how'. This is especially true when Joe Hockey says 'we will' and Tony Abbott says 'we won't (or vice versa) or when Tony Abbott says today 'we will' and then tomorrow says 'we won't' and sometimes seems not even to know whether he will or not. He contradicts himself - or walks away. International commentators not subjected to a daily diet of Murdoch see it and at least one country, Indonesia is already offended by the empty rhetoric. Tony Abbott has the same arrogant attitude towards them as he does to Australian voters - no regard to their intelligence and sovereignty. He appears to be ignorant of the fact that they want Australia to take more asylum-seekers. He claims to care about drownings but proposes a far more dangerous system. This is one of the rare occasions when he's attempted to show the 'how' and just illustrated the emptiness below. The other debacle 'how' was their 'alternative' NBN. Not content with describing a very poor system, they felt they had to lie about the government figures. That 'how' has been universally panned. I really enjoyed this article and the language analysis, so thank you. I'd also add that if you accuse someone it's best to include a sexual element - ironic in view of the frequent mentions of Tony Abbott in the Sexual Abuse Inquiry submission from Tracy Wilding yesterday. Offered better infrastructure and a surplus I'd be happy. Given a choice between better infrastructure and deficit or existing infrastructure plus job cuts and a surplus, I'd choose the infrastructure every time. That's what I pay taxes for - Government is not a business, there to make a profit. I agree with Kate that there are small hopeful signs. For me, one was the failure of the 'Stop the Boats' rhetoric in WA, even though that seemed to be the sole purpose of his visit. Another is actual reporting of his walking away when he can't use one of his scripted waffling 'replies'. Some rusted on LNP voters will keep mouthing the same untruths but as the election nears hopefully more undecided voters will see through it.

Ad astra

29/04/2013Hi Lyn Your links look interesting, as ever. I have a busy day today so I’ll catch them via the iPad whenever I can. Patriciawa Thank you for posting your pome. How apt it is, and what a good start it makes for the new thread. Gravel Thank you for your kind comment. When one puts together in the one place all the Abbott principles for grasping at prime ministership, it makes for frightening reading. But his day if reckoning is coming, especially if the media get onto his disingenuousness and insist on clarity and honesty – two attributes we seldom see in our would-be PM. Michael What a great Klugman article that was. The notion of ‘living within one’s means’, one the Coalition is flogging for all its worth, and one that has great superficial plausibility, needs careful analysis. What does it really mean? Of course, Humpty Dumpty style, it means whatever Abbott and Hockey want it to mean. When I’m out and about today, I’ll be thinking about that and may have a comment later. I’ll read your other link later. Kate Ahearn Thank you for your kind remarks. We are indeed a fortunate lot to have Lyn’s informative links to read day after day. We wish you well with the Fair Media Alliance.

Tom of Melbourne

29/04/2013Endless deficits don't lead to economic success. When is it approprite to bring the budget back to balance? Just repeating that you'd choose infrastructure and service over prudence demonstrates a lack of comprehension of economics.

bob macalba

29/04/2013Austin 3:16..5:03pm 28th TT beat me to it, inject it if you wish whiteant

Fiona

29/04/2013Tom of Melbourne, you obviously don't understand the economics yourself....there are times when govt needs to run debt and times for a surplus. Now is not the time for a surplus and most world economists agree....so are they all wrong and you alone are right?? Just a pit Swan fell into Howard and Costello's trap of having to say there will be a surplus...they have brainwashed everyone into believing that if the Govt isn't always in surplus it is doing something wrong....which is a crock. Howard/Costello could have done so much for Australia at a time that it was easy to get a surplus, but they just sat on it and crowed how good they were....the money is there for us, for Australia, not to just sit in a pile doing nothing. BTW did you know that they sold most of Australia's gold reserves to do this????? and the Govt is slowly trying to buy it back....can't believe their ausacity!!! and hardly anyone knows about this abuse of their position! So maybe you should dig a bit deeper Tom to find out what has really gone on. this was a great piece, pity most people reading it already know it and the others either won't bother or won't believe.

Fiona

29/04/2013*audacity sorry about the spelling mistakes lol

Kate Ahearne

29/04/2013Thanks for your thumbs-up, Ad asta. And thanks for noticing that we are here - with you. Lyn's Links are huge - such day-after-day devotion is a touchstone - something we van look at everyday, and see what's going on. Something to steer by - like the stars, which are always with us. Thanks again, on behalf of Fair Media Alliance, http://fairmediaalliance.wordpress.com/

TalkTurkey

29/04/2013Good Morning Swordsfolks, Only little bit of time atm but Ad astra your writings are like pure clean water for clarity and essential Truth. You say things so plainly, you really are our philosophical Light On the Hill, Thank you ever so. I have reposted your thread to TPS Mail recipients, they nearly all return form Thanks but still. Michael, TS, Nas, I don't reply to you enough I know but I try to keep up with you, and Thank You, and all who write here. As Ad astra always says, TPS is a kind of family, and everybody's sincere opinion is respected here. Better than an open university. Patricia you have hit the mark with your latest pome, isn't it OUTRAGEOUS that Abborrrrrtt should be PAID by a CHARITY for getting FREE PUBLICITY! Gravel Girl Now you look here! VENCEREMOS! Never Fear! :) and Kate Ahearne, Welcome, and you would be surprised how FEW of the people to whom Lyn links ever think of thanking her!

Kate Ahearne

29/04/2013Dear Gravel Girl. I'm sorry to think that Lyn's Links are not fully appreciated. She has made it possible for us at Fair Media Alliance to achieve some kind of audience. Without Lyn, I don't know where we'd be - not where we are, for sure.

Tom of Melbourne

29/04/2013Fiona, I have no idea what your qualifications in economics are, but I'll happily compare mine to yours. Gillard told the electorate that "failure isn't an option". She made yet another unqualified commitment that you and many orhers simply want to excuse her from. Federal revenue is up about 7% this year, so a balanced budget isn't austerity. It isn't paying off decades of debt, it isn't the shock that Spain, Greece etc Are suffering, it isn't the stuff that A few economists are councelling against. It is simple prudence, and no sensible economist argues against that.

Gravel

29/04/2013Kate I sincerely hope you have not misinterpreted me. I LOVE Lyn's links and catch them most every day, if not here, on twitter when she puts them up. I have also read, and do read your site, and found it very good.

ginckgo

29/04/2013Great analysis of the campaign methods; it really feels like the Liberals took a look at the list of propaganda techniques (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propaganda_techniques) and said "we'll have the lot".

Ad astra

29/04/2013ginckgo Welcome to [i]The Political Sword[/i] family, and thank you for your complimentary remark. Do come again. Thank you too for the great link you provided on propaganda techniques, which I read with a smile on my face. As you say, it looks as if the Liberals said: “We’ll have the lot!” I have bookmarked that reference.

Fiona

29/04/2013Tom, I have to agree to disagree as leading world economists have already said Australia shouldn't be trying to regain a surplus at all costs. It is perfectly acceptable to run at a deficit in this climate. We are only a relatively small country and have been affected by the current and past world crisis, whether we like it or not, but have still weathered it extremely well, and yes I understand that Howard/Costello got the surplus, but that had to be spent and spent quickly when this went pairshaped so rapidly, so that we could come out of it so well. Our debt is relatively only a small percentage of GDP and well within acceptable levels no matter what the doomsday sayers say. And your "failure isn't an option" quote doesn't say about what...so not sure what that one was referring to as I can't remember every single speach the PM makes. Only time will tell what happens in the world economies and how that will affect ours. The worst seems to be over now, although there will still be the residual effects for some time to come. Abbott has no reason to be totally trashing the state of the economy and making people think things are much worse than they are: this is just simple scaremongering for the sake of it and does NOTHING to help the short or long term but make people unhappy and wary when they should be happier with their lot as most people out there (not all) really don't know how good they have it. They want too much and expect even more and woe-betide a govt that doesn't come up with the goods they seem to expect now. Of course there are some out there that are hurting, losing jobs and then losing their homes. Thank goodness this is only a small percentage as opposed to the US etc and I feel for those people. Tony Abbot will not be helping the lower paid workers and anyone thinking he would is crazy. If anyone works to a "class" system it is the LNP, not the ALP. Hit the little man and spare the wealthy....who after all, we are told, work SO very hard for THEIR money, as opposed to the lower paid workers....just a bunch of shirkers obviously...even the ones working 2 or 3 jobs? I am not from a high income home, would consider only middling and we are doing fine here, so anyone earning 1.5 to 2 times what we do, that compain they are badly off, really need to look at themselves.

Tom of Melboune

29/04/2013Just explain this Fiona http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WPuVm0CjbwU&feature=player_embedded Compliments of reb- http://thedailytrash.wordpress.com/2013/04/29/gillards-12-billion-black-hole/#comment-21839

Ad astra

29/04/2013Fiona I’m not sure if you have been here before, but anyway welcome to [i]The Political Sword[/i] family and thank you for your kind remarks. Do come again. What you write makes good sense. The notion of a surplus needs to be discussed in the context of the existing and predicted state of our economy. Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey live in a long-gone world, which they gaze at through their rear-view mirror. It suits their argument to pretend that nothing has changed from the halcyon Howard days, and that therefore surpluses should be the order of the day although revenue is shrinking. They must know their statements are deceptive, but that matters nothing to them in pursuit of a political advantage. The subject of surplus, ‘living within one’s means’ and the economic theories underpinning the austerity versus stimulus debate need dissection and analysis. Perhaps that is a subject for another piece.

Ad astra

29/04/2013Talk Turkey What an inspiring contributor you are. Positive, encouraging, optimistic, intellectually honest, informative, and always supportive. Thank you. [b]VENCEREMOS! Always[/b]

Ad astra

29/04/2013ja Welcome to you also to [i]The Political Sword[/i] family and thank you for your kind remarks. You are right. Both Abbott and Hockey have little to offer but slogans and meaningless platitudes, and a sycophantic media allows them, even facilitates them by slavishly echoing their empty statements. Unless there is a concerted media effort to suppress their emptiness, they must soon be called to account for their hollow statements and required to give them some substance that allows analysis. That may already be beginning. Regarding the sexual overtones to which they refer, some have attempted this over the Slater and Gordon affair, with talk about Julia Gillard’s ‘poor choice of boyfriends’, which they describe with varying degrees of disdain. It seems not to have worked so far, but there are signs that another S&G onslaught is in train.

Ad astra

29/04/2013Truth Seeker Thank you for your complimentary remarks. Wouldn’t it be a laugh if it turns out that the demographic that the pollsters are tapping is not a representative one, and that their figures are consequently skewed? I enjoyed you poem about Abbott’s character, so nicely summed up in the last verse: [i]So when it comes to character The Abbott’s sadly lacking But he thinks it doesn’t matter Cos he has the Murdochs backing And when it comes to morals The LNP’s a farce And when it comes to Tony Abbott He’s not… a PMs… arse[/i] http://truthseekersmusings.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/tony-abbotts-character/

TalkTurkey

29/04/2013Gravel & Kate, I think some wires got crossed there somewhere. I was the one who mentioned how (comparatively) rarely people Lyn links to come here to say Thanks, and yes, EVERYBODY here appreciates her work.

Tom of Melboune

29/04/2013Ad Astra said – [i]” and that therefore surpluses should be the order of the day although revenue is shrinking.[/i] You need to check some facts, because you appear to be just as disingenuous as Swan. [b]REVENUE ISN’T SHRINKING[/b], it’s growing by about 7% a year. With revenue growing so strongly, what possible excuse is there for deficits stretching out so far into the future?

Gravel

29/04/2013Talk Turkey Thanks for that, I was confused with Kate's remark, but knew something had gone skewiff somewhere, might've known it could have been one of your cheeky comments.

Frank

29/04/2013As the vast majority of voters are not interested in politics, it is so easy to lie to the uninformed. Government debt will vary from one Opposition member to the next. That doesn't concern them.Repetition is the key. As long as billions roll off the tongue they sound impressive. Labor's job is to keep replying and putting figures in context.

lyn

29/04/2013Hi Ad, Thankyou ever so much for your new article. You have again provided a delightful piece of sheer enjoyment. “Grasping at Prime Ministership the Abbott Way”. Just watched Abbott’s presser this morning , everything in your article was applicable to exactly what Abbott said. There was only one journalist again, who asked about the Coalition raising the GST. Abbott replied “there would be no change to the GST unless the State Premiers all agree”. To me that means they will increase the GST . You are genuine and correct Ad Astra [b]“ugly Abbott way, exposed for all to see; clever and successful in parts, but ugly nonetheless.” [/b] Up to states to decide on GST: Abbott April 29, 2013 - 12:08PM Mr Abbott on Sunday said the coalition supported the existing GST system and had "no plans to change it". However, asked by reporters on Monday whether the GST would need to be changed to boost revenues, Mr Abbott left it open to the states to decide. "The point that needs to be made about the GST is the GST is a tax where all of the revenue goes to the states," Mr Abbott said. http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-national/up-to-states-to-decide-on-gst-abbott-20130429-2inx5.html Gillard govt still keen for surplus: IMF April 29, 2013 - 2:42PM The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says the fact Australia's fiscal position is weaker than earlier expected is not a concern because of the country's low level of debt. http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-national/gillard-govt-still-keen-for-surplus-imf-20130429-2io9o.html Kate Ahearne, thankyou for both your compliments this morning. It is lovely to have you here on TPS. We have enjoyed your blog, your articles are a delight. We will make sure we don’t miss any. I Loved to hear you are getting some recognition from “Today’s Links” and from Twitter. Hi Talk Turkey thankyou , your appreciation is so inspirational as Ad Astra said @ 2.18pm my words and thoughts exactly “ [quote]Positive, encouraging, optimistic, intellectually honest, informative, and always supportive”. [/quote]Gravel, you are a sweetie, don’t worry we do know how much you enjoy “Today’s Links. ” I think your name has been inadvertently mentioned because of Talk Turkey’s post @ 11.06am TT’S comment to you was meant to be separate . I must tell you, yesterday I had a black screen on TPS on and off for around an hour. The problem was caused by Mr Adequate Turnbull’s no I mean Mr Broadband (Abbott’s new title) ADSL provided by Telstra. The loading of all web pages was so slow their service ADSL just will not load the pictures or the colour . :):):):)

Ad astra

29/04/2013Hi Lyn Thank you for your always-kind remarks, and your additional links. If Abbott and Hockey are to ‘live within their means’, as they urge everyone else to do, they are going to need much more revenue to cover their ‘aspirations’, or take an axe to expenditure. So, the idea of increasing the GST must be in their minds even if they won’t admit it. Both sides of politics are so afraid of any such a suggestion that they insist it is not on their agenda. Yet, more revenue is needed if the people are to have what they say they want and need, so maybe the GST is in their sights. It was good to read the IMF’s positive appraisal of Australia’s economic situation. I’m still working through this morning’s links.

2353

29/04/2013AA - you have a way with words. I was struggling to get past "Abbott is doing the longest dummy spit in history" which does't really cut it in comparison :). I do wonder if the Guinness Book of Records would be interested in listing it however! Seriously, the capability of a Nation's Government should be not the blind obedience to what they plan to happen but the measures put into place to manage when the plan doesn't happen. In this regard the current Government is doing far better than any other developed economy (we are in our 22nd year without recession), some effort is being made to reduce or eliminate the disability and education gaps as well as our positive effort in the reductions in carbon emissions. And because I can't think of an appropriate Tom Waterhouse analogy, why is it that we expect perfection in elements of this Country's public figures - such as politicians - but accept errors in i=others such as sports people? In Rugby Union circles, John Eeles was celebrated as being close to the perfect player - hence his nickname "Nobody"; because "nobody's perfect". He hasn't been equalled since (apparently) but millions still support Australian Rugby Union - otherwise they wouldn't broadcast it on TV.

Ad astra

29/04/2013Frank I agree. The Coalition has to come to grips with reality. Expected revenue is shrinking; today we have been told by how much. As was reported today in [i]The Australian: Tax revenue will shrink by $12 billion by the end of June, according to new Treasury forecasts."[/i] If it persists with its talk of surplus, Abbott and Hockey have to show how they are going to achieve a surplus when the amount of revenue that was projected by Treasury is shrinking, something that Hockey acknowledged today as he attempted to imply that it was shrinking at a rate of billions per month.

Ad astra

29/04/20132353 Thank you for your kind words. [i]"The longest dummy spit is Australian political history".[/i] so adequately describes Abbott's behaviour ever since the 2010 election.

Tom of Melboune

29/04/2013Ad Astra gets around to correcting his earlier misrepresentation with - [i] Expected revenue is shrinking[/i] [b]Revenue is actually growing by about 7% this year![/b] It is disingenuous to suggest it is shrinking, that’s just ALP crap, spin to attempt to excuse their incompetence and dishonest, failed commitments.

John Bloomfield

29/04/2013Thank you Ad astra for an eloquent and accurate article. I endorse it entirely. These forces are not only a threat to Australia, but are of serious consequence for the Earth's environment. Through denying anthropogenic climate change, frustrating and delaying effective remedial action, these forces are causing likely irreversible damage to our life support ecosystems - all to preserve their selfish desire for "business as usual" profit levels. When Goebell's techniques were used by Nazi and Fascist regimes, they were only able to be defeated by costly global armed intervention; this time it will be nature that provides the intervention -there will be no winners -just losers. The citizens of the world must be made aware of the imminent danger by the only means left available - the fifth estate; the corporate controlled propaganda dominated MSM will not, as it's not in their myopic perceived interest.

Truth Seeker

29/04/2013Ad, thanks again for your support, encouragement and kind words. :-) I am so glad that the last verse did what I hoped it would do, and I always appreciate your feedback. Cheers :-) :-)

Sir Ian Crisp

29/04/2013[quote][b]Folks [...] So please, please, please do not respond to people who come with nothing to add, but come with only pointless comments that diminish and contaminate what is otherwise sensible discourse among concerned and well informed participants. Ad astra [/b][/quote] Ad Astra, what, pray tell, do you have to add to the debate? You keep churning out turgid “Abbott is evil incarnate” pieces. The pap that you write about Abbott betrays a lazy writer. What if Abbott is just a callow young man; young and naive? Wouldn’t we in our heart of hearts forgive him and move on. Surely by now the bird of paradox’s Praetorian Guard has received the message as it has been inculcated numerous times. What worries me is that the kids here at TPS have the Kool-Aid up to their lips and they are ready to drink. Ad Astra, are you the 2013 version of Marshall Applewhite leading these myrmidons to a horrible end? Here is a sample of the “Abbott is evil incarnate” recurring theme: [quote][b]Grasping at prime ministership the Abbott way David Marr joins ‘the most successful Opposition leader’ chorus Policy making through the rear-view mirror Abbott and the Murdoch, Rinehart, Pell connection Tony Abbott, Joe Hockey, stop killing confidence When will Tony Abbott fill the gaping void in his latest slogan: Hope. Reward. Opportunity? Why does the Coalition choose to live in an imaginary world? Forty-nine questions for Tony Abbott about global warming Do Australian businessmen really believe Tony Abbott? Abbott and Hockey are endangering Australian business ETC. ETC. ETC. [/b][/quote]

KHTAGH

29/04/2013A long one this week, a more precise dissection of Abbott could only be done by a coroner. He is definitely a man of many faces, all ugly ones.

Ad astra

29/04/2013John Bloomfield Welcome to [i]The Political Sword[/i] family and for your encouraging remarks. Do come again. In my view, Tony Abbott is a grave threat to our nation. That will become obvious to us all should he become PM. I have written many articles explaining why I believe this to be the case, so nicely catalogued in a recent comment by one of our bloggers who keeps track of what I write. There are some that will cling to the hope that in office, Abbott will become a changed man, reformed from the nasty, bigoted, vengeful person he has been all his political life. In my view, they are deluded. Unfortunately, if elected, we will be stuck with him until the people reject him. A much safer option is never to elect him to be PM. As you will have read, there are just a few who comment here who will not accept the economic facts, nor accept the stark facts of a man whose malevolent record is there for all to see. I agree with you – the Fifth Estate is the only hope of revealing the facts, the ugly facts. KHTAGH You pay me a great compliment.

Ken

29/04/2013Ad Great post. Only one disagreement, some prices are increasing ahead of CPI. As a retiree on a fixed income (no investments or property), and having kept a spreadsheet of our bills since 2003 there are some stand-out increases. Insurance in particular has been increasing at something like 10% a year: and that is basic insurance for the house, the contents, and the car. Here in the ACT, water has also made a significant jump. We offset the electricity increase by instaling solar panels. While my income is indexed to CPI, I have noticed that the increase entirely disappears with the increase in normal bills, meaning I am not gaining any increase against other costs. Luckily food has not increased significantly. So from that perspective, I can understand people complaining about increases in prices. But, the leader of Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition, won't be doing anything about it, despite what people may think. In fact, when he gives in to the big end of town, prices will rise even further to boost profits. Our economic position is deteriorating and one of the main reasons is the high value of the dollar. Normally with commodity prices falling, with a slow down in China's growth, we could expect a lower dollar, making our manufacturers more competitive and better able to export. Unfortunately, with the rest of the world in so much trouble, and Oz holding a AAA rating, the $AU has become a safe haven currency and is unlikely to fall in the near term. While that may suit Abbott politically, it will severely limit what he is able to offer the electorate going into the election. Although it's bad news, it is also good news!! Michael Have to take issue with you over the "front bar". I spent my youth in both the front and back bars of many pubs in western Sydney. There I learned about Jack Lang and Red Ted Theodore, and the truth about the Burma railway (a truth that does not suit the myth surrounding it, and which I have heard only one or two historians refer to). I also learned about the death of Michael Collins. In those days, the western Sydney bars were a great place for politics and certainly not the type espoused by Abbott. I think he has it wrong. From my experience, the front bar is not the "fair dinkum" Aus that he thinks it is. There is some amazing clarity of thought when you get deeper into political issues.

2353

29/04/2013Of course those who claim that revenue has risen have facts and evidence to back their statement up and publish the link so those that choose to can independently check the data - nah - never going to happen. Secondly, is the rise in real terms or absolute numbers? Absolute numbers don't mean a can of beans - as the Dollar in 2013 won't buy as much as the dollar in 2003.

Ad astra reply

29/04/2013Ken Thank you for your thoughtful comment and for sharing your experience with rising costs of living. I agree the high AUD is a persistent problem that defies the conventional economic logic. Given the other economic parameters, it ought to be lower. Economics is complex, there are many variables, all interacting with each other. Prediction is fraught, as is evidenced day after day when the majority of economists make faulty predictions. Pulling the right levers is problematic as which are the right ones is uncertain, and the effect of pulling them is unpredictable. Running a trillion dollar economy is extraordinarily complex, notwithstanding Abbott and Hockey giving the impression that they have the answers. They certainly have their ideas about what to do, but experience around the world gives us no confidence that their ideas will work. They expect us to take them on trust on the grounds that there were surpluses in the Howard era, and so they can be repeated. There's just one problem - the world has changed.

Ad astra reply

29/04/2013Hi Lyn I've just finished your links. What an enjoyable feast. We all admire your genius in selecting such variety of material. Thank you. I'm already looking forward to tomorrow's batch.

Michael

29/04/2013This '7% annual revenue growth' meme began in a Judith Sloan column in the Australian, where it is definitely NOT described as 'strong growth', rather "just revenue in line with an economy growing around or a little below trend and with much of the growth still being generated by mining investment." In other words, disappointing, far from likely to rocket the nation into surplus, far from something that might have an economy rolling along coast to coast in good good times. Fact is, she's the one who made up "7%" revenue growth, started spreading it in a Murdoch press outlet, and then we've seen it quoted as holy writ by the likes of Abbott and ToM. In short, it's a furphy, as real as Whyalla being wiped off the map. It was a Sloan vaguely pejorative observation here http://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/columnists/no-happy-hollywood-ending-for-treasurer/story-fnbkvnk7-1226626217336 cherry-picked by the Coalition cabaleers of BS as something official, recorded, stamped and authorised by every economic authority in the land, and all it is, all it is... Is more Abbott crap. Lying misrepresentative unfounded fabricated beyond meaning merde.

Ad astra reply

29/04/20132353 There are some here that seem not to understand the difference between absolute and relative. Like Humpty Dumpty, to them words mean whatever they want them to mean.

Michael

29/04/2013Ken, hello. There are front bars and there are front bars. Any front bar that Abbott is welcome in is not a front bar likely to deliver "some amazing clarity of thought when you get deeper into political issues." Well, maybe after he's left it.

Tom of Melbourne

29/04/2013Ricky - <i>” So Tom is that supposed to impress me?</i> No, but you did suggest that I’m a genius. While I may share your view, it isn’t a universal opinion! --------- However, there are people on this site who have a better record of forecasting than Swan. TB warned of the GFC, in about 2006. I argued that a downturn was likely, but that the growth of China and the resources sector would help isolate Australia from the worst of it. Meanwhile Swan got it entirely wrong.

Tom of Melbourne

29/04/2013Revenue up, low unemployment, economic growth and [b]UNEQUIVOCAL PROMISES[/b] …and this government still can’t balance a budget. They’re a joke.

cuppa

29/04/2013Australia faces the Idiot Test on September 14. Let's see how effective the MSM/ABC have been in dumbing down the electorate.

Patriciawa

29/04/2013Hi Lyn, TT, Ad Astra and other friends. Wow, what a post, so wise and comprehensive, then followed up by a feast of further reading both here and elsewhere on other sites. I can't say I've finished even now, and I've had to leave so many things unsaid - like how impressed I am by that satire - Stop The Boasts! I bet Truth Seeker wishes he'd thought of that - I did! As Lyn knows I got to bed very late - or perhaps I should say early - this morning. I'm trying to stay awake now until Q&A so I'll know what you're all talking about tomorrow. My head is still full of all the challenges ahead of us, although my old body is needing sleep. Will we be talking about Peter Fox and the Royal Commission? All of that is outside my life experience, but I found it incredibly moving, yet strange, to see these big strong men in tears and clearly having suffered, and still suffering from their abuse at the hands of all people a priest. Is that an election issue?

Catching up

29/04/2013Wonder if Abott takes up the PM challenge today. She said if spending is all it is about, He should find it easy to tell us how much he is taking out of each department. The PM has put all on the table. Now is the time for serious debate. Yes, Mr. Abbott,as you believe it is all about uncontollable spending, time to name what you believe we can do without. List what you are going to cut.

Catching up

29/04/2013Catholic Church not doing well today at the sexual abuse enquiry.

lyn

30/04/2013Today’s Links Of Human Bondage by @MrDenmore the routine with budget stories is to wheel out Chris Richardson of Deloitte Access Economics, position him Moses-like on a grassy knoll overlooking federal parliament, and get him to dip into his bulging knapsack of mangled metaphors about various dire states of in-hockedness. http://thefailedestate.blogspot.com.au/2013/04/of-human-bondage.html Reinventing Journalism by @MrDenmore While they don't have to be "tech heads", journalists who want to reinvent themselves are going to have to learn how some of the new digital tools work. And those who make sniffy denunciations of social media, as if they are above it all, are also going to have to change. http://thefailedestate.blogspot.com.au/ Beware the one-eyed budget brigade by Ross Gittins See the spin? So what's their motive? Probably a combination of the editors' personal ideology, self-interest (I pay too much tax already, don't ask me to pay more) and a belief that tailoring your reporting to fit your readers' prejudices will sell more papers. http://www.rossgittins.com/2013/04/beware-one-eyed-budget-brigade.html Omissions in the Current Debate by Gary Sauer-Thompson That's the snake oil the austerity merchants are selling with their recession making economic package. They are using the budget deficit "crisis" as an opportunity to dismantle the social safety net provided by the welfare state. http://www.sauer-thompson.com/archives/opinion/2013/04/omissions-in-th.php#more Lessons from austerity front lines: cutting spending is not the answer by @BernardKeane Joe Hockey continues to blame the government’s profligate spending. According to the mid-year economic and fiscal outlook, spending this year will be 23.8% of GDP; it is said to be tracking a little below that. In the last Howard budget, it was 23.1% of GDP, http://www.crikey.com.au/2013/04/29/lessons-from-austerity-front-lines-cutting-spending-is-not-the-answer/ Markets go the wrong way for the fiscal freaks by @TheKouk For these fiscal fiends and Tea Party economists, this on-going ignorance of matters relating to the budget is no surprise, but it again constrains sensible debate over taxing, spending, surpluses, deficits and government debt. http://www.marketeconomics.com.au/blog Can economic weakness save Labor? by @macro_business On balance I would say that Australia’s medium term future is better suited to a competent Labor government than a Liberal government. Regardless, the challenge ahead for Tony Abbott is daunting. http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/04/can-economic-weakness-save-labor/ Abbott’s budget bluster highlights a deficit of social responsibility by @Russell_L_Marks We can see the flaws in Mr Abbott’s arguments by looking at the figures. Public debt in Australia is not a problem. The ratio of public debt to GDP is about 27%, compared with an average of about 90% for developed economies. And Australia is well down the list of http://theconversation.com/abbotts-budget-bluster-highlights-a-deficit-of-social-responsibility-13782 Federal Budget 2013: Why our unsustainable structural deficit must be tackled by @ConversationEDU With higher incomes and new technology, Australians are demanding more and more health expenditure, with most funded by governments; ageing of the population is considered to be a relatively small contributor to higher health costs. http://theconversation.com/federal-budget-2013-why-our-unsustainable-structural-deficit-must-be-tackled-13723 How the Canberra Press Gallery shut out IA by @callumdav. The Canberra Press Gallery Committee has knocked back Independent Australia and its nominee from gaining representation http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/business/media-2/how-the-canberra-press-gallery-shut-out-ia/ Privatised Health Means Public Illness by Ian McAuley, @newmatilda Two-thirds of our $60 billion revenue gap is due to healthcare spending. But the push to privatise health and move it "off budget" must be fought - or hospital stays will soon become unaffordable http://newmatilda.com/2013/04/29/privatised-health-means-public-illness Tony Abbott, the GST and SA by David Griffiths Make no mistake, these savage cuts will cause enormous damage to local communities in every postcode of South Australia. For South Australians, Tony Abbott cuts will mean http://www.australiasmassmedia.com/2013/04/29/tony-abbott-thge-gst-and-sa/ Small business to be hit by Coalition tax hike as budget hole blows out to $12 billion by Patrick Stafford This means, in order to fulfil the 3200 companies target slated by the Coalition, it needs to tax businesses in the "medium" category, of which there are 12,916 businesses. These have income between $10 million and $100 million http://www.smartcompany.com.au/tax/055294-small-business-to-be-hit-by-coalition-tax-hike-as-budget-hole-blows-out-to-12-billion.html Abbott's free ride comes to an end by Mungo MacCallum These days he has taken to waving a pamphlet (which he insists on describing as a book) entitled "Our Plan: Real Solutions for All Australians" around in a vain attempt to prove that he is not, as charged, a policy-free zone. http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/4657092.html Culture wars: battle against an undefined elite by @Jeff_Sparrow Devine's column centres on a new screed called The Lucky Culture, written by the opinion editor of The Australian.'There is a buzz around a book by Nick Cater,' Devine begins - though she admits that her consciousness of this supposed 'buzz' might be explained by the fact that 'the author is a friend' http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/4656520.html GST changes up to the states: Abbott by @BusinessSpec asked by reporters today whether the GST would need to be changed to boost revenues, Mr Abbott left it open to the states to decide."The point that needs to be made about the GST is the GST is a tax where all of the revenue goes to the states," Mr Abbott said. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/news/2013/4/29/politics/gst-changes-states-abbott Joan Evatt’s preview of #Ashby appeal by @boeufblogginon The matter of an application before the Court of Appeal to grant leave, and to consider reasons why Justice Rare’s decision in Ashby v Slipper should be overturned, will be heard this week. http://australiansforhonestpolitics.wordpress.com/2013/04/29/joan-evatts-preview-of-ashby-appeal/ SMEs in line for rude tax shock: expert by Joanna Mather, AFR But business groups oppose the Coalition’s parental plan. The Business Council of Australia said the scheme, a 2010 election commitment by Mr Abbott, “defies economic sense”. http://www.afr.com/p/national/smes_in_line_for_rude_tax_shock_cH7u57gruN5YQ7RebYasbL Foreign Aid, Asylum Seekers and Human Rights by Anna Burke The comments from Scott Morrison and others who have made outlandish claims about protocols for asylum seekers living in the community should be condemned - on bridging visas are about 45 times less likely to be charged with a crime than members of the general public. http://www.annaburke.com/news/latest-news.do?newsId=6620 Running dry on Tony Abbott by Carol Ahern @minkelCA Has there ever been an election campaign where the leader in the polls has promised to do nothing whatsoever (at least nothing within the realms of logic), http://cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2013/04/29/running-dry-on-tony-abbott/ Ignore what Tony Abbott says, listen to what he accuses others of, that’s the Real Tony by @turnleft2013 Accusations such as class warfare frequently drip from the mouths of salivating conservatives as they see the ALP give a fair-go the some of the most disadvantaged in our society http://turnleft2013.wordpress.com/2013/04/29/ignore-what-tony-abbott-says-listen-to-what-he-accuses-others-of-thats-the-real-tony/ The Doctor’s Dilemma by Mike Seccombe, Clare Blumer ' By law medical professionals must keep up their education — providing plenty of opportunities for wealthy pharmaceutical companies to help out. But do free flights, consultancy fees, free dinners and free conferences put doctors in Big Pharma’s pocket? http://www.theglobalmail.org/feature/the-doctors-dilemma/603/ Coalition to answer all NBN policy questions by @renailemay The Coalition has published an extensive document with which it appears to be hoping to answer all of the ‘frequently asked questions’ regarding its rival National Broadband Network policy http://delimiter.com.au/2013/04/29/coalition-to-answer-all-nbn-policy-questions/ Very-high speed broadband access – FTTH by Orange Com FTTx fibre-optic access can extend the available ADSL service offer to include upstream and downstream very high speed (up to 100 Mbps), with improved response time. There are different types of FTTx optical connection architectures: FTTB (fibre to the building), http://www.orange.com/en/networks/our-network/very-high-speed-broadband-access-FTTH Twitter Dictionary: A Guide to Understanding Twitter Lingo Here are definitions to more than 130 Twitter abbreviations, words, phrases, and tools that are associated with the Twitter http://www.webopedia.com/quick_ref/Twitter_Dictionary_Guide.asp Today’s Front Pages Australian Newspaper Front Pages for 30 April 2013 http://www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm

Sir Ian Crisp

30/04/2013I wonder if the bird of paradox will take up the prime ministerial challenge and ask her treasurer: “Where are the surpluses you announced?” [quote][b]The speech: Wayne Swan’s 2012 federal budget address Madam Deputy Speaker, I move that the Bill now be read a second time. Strong Economy and Fair Australia The four years of surpluses I announce tonight are a powerful endorsement of the strength of our economy, resilience of our people, and success of our policies. In an uncertain and fast changing world, we walk tall — as a nation confidently living within its means. This Budget delivers a surplus this coming year, on time, as promised, and surpluses each year after that, strengthening over time. It funds new cost of living relief for Australian families. It helps businesses invest, compete and adapt to an economy in transition. And it finances bold new policies to help Australians with a disability, the aged, and those who can’t afford dental care. [...] http://www.crikey.com.au/2012/05/08/the-speech-wayne-swans-2012-federal-budget-address/ [/b][/quote] Not long after Swan's 2012 speech he was gently woken up by the Speaker of the House and advised to get some rest. A relaxing trip overseas to Paris, Rome, London, New York, and of course Vienna was arranged.

Michael

30/04/2013Something's up in Kooweerup, the Fairfax editorials seem to have given up Gillard-bashing (and it's a trend across past weeks in an election year). http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/editorial/danger-to-the-economy-is-not-change-but-politicians-20130429-2iorp.html?skin=text-only I do NOT agree with the 'increase GST' argument in the editorial. A regressive tax is hardly efficient. It may be quick, but it's also punitive on the average and lower income earners. That's Conservative "efficiency". What would be effective is reducing hand-outs to those with no financial urgency in their lives. But we know how those pigs squeal, orchestrated by Abbott and co.

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30/04/2013LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/LYNS-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Sir Ian Crisp

30/04/2013Wow! That was quick. Not long after I reported how Swan and Gillard lied about surpluses the news is that we have a gigantic black hole. Even the financial savant Peter Martin says Gillard and Swan have adopted a new novelty: they've decided to tell the truth. [quote][b]When all else fails, tell the truth Date April 29, 2013 - 7:52PM Peter Martin [...] Now the prime minister has laid bare the whole truth. The easy days of Mining Boom Mark I are over and will not return. Company tax reached “an astonishing 5.3 per cent of gross domestic product” in the final year of the Howard government. It is now 4.5 per cent. Capital gains tax was 1.5 per cent. It is now 0.4 per cent. [...] http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/when-all-else-fails-tell-the-truth-20130429-2ioyw.html [/b][/quote] Can the kids here at TPS recall a government as incompetent as the present one?

2353

30/04/2013Rather interesting editorial in the SMH Michael. The current exemptions from the GST are a dogs breakfast (having in a previous life had to work out if some item of expenditure attracts GST or not depending on its use) so some change is needed there. There seems to be a rational discussion forming about the financial capability of Australia. It was also interesting to see ABC Breakfast repeat part of an interview between Leigh Sales and Ross Garumt (sp?) where he claimed that Howard and Costello were not the great economic managers of our time; followed by Virginia Trioli relating Costello's Audit on Queensland (and the unpopularity of its findings) with what Abbott would do if he gets his wish in September. Sensible debate is what's needed and it looks like it might happen - which will be interesting in relation to the current LOTO who doesn't seem to have a good history with debate.

nasking

30/04/2013 ARE ANY COALITION MEMBERS ON TV & RADIO PUT OUT THERE BY ABBOTT CAPABLE OF NOT SOUNDING ANGRY, PETULANT, CYNICAL, NASTY, MEAN-SPIRITED, NEGATIVE...AND/OR MOCKING? IF THIS LOT ARE WHAT EXPENSIVE PRIVATE SCHOOLS PRODUCE I RECKON THE PUBLIC SHOULD ASK FOR THEIR CONTRIBUTION BACK. WHAT A JOKE THAT ANYONE THINKS THIS ABBOTT-LED COALITION ARE A VIABLE ALTERNATIVE TO A GOVERNMENT GETTING THE JOB DONE...PUTTING IN PLACE ESSENTIAL AND NECESSARY REFORMS AND SCHEMES RELATED TO EDUCATION, DISABILITY, TRAINING, COMMUNICATION, INFRASTRUCTURE, AGED CARE, CLIMATE CHANGE, HEALTHCARE AND SO ON. WHEN ASKED THIS MORN BY VIRGINNIA TRIOLLI IF THERE WERE ANY AREAS HE WOULD IDENTIFY AS "OFF THE TABLE" WHEN IT CAME TO FUTURE CUTS, SHADOW TREASURER JOE HOCKEY HUFFING AND PUFFING LIKE SOME PISSED OFF RUGBY COACH IN A GAME HE EXPECTED TO WIN EASILY BUT SUDDENLY REALISING HIS TACTICS WERE FAILING AND HE'D ANNOYINGLY HAVE TO GET OFF THE BENCH AND DO SOME REAL WORK FOR ONCE, BLURTS OUT: "DEFENCE"... SO...OF ALL THE PRIORITIES IT SEEMS THAT ONCE AGAIN THE COALITION ARE OBSESSED WITH 'DEFENSE' SURPRISE SURPRISE. COMING FROM THE OLD GUARD LIBERALS WHO TOOK US INTO THE BLACK HOLES OF THE AFGHANISTAN...AND IRAQ CONFLICTS... WHO MANAGED TO SIGN US UP TO A DEAL ON THE F-35 THAT IS NOW LOOKING LIKE ANOTHER MEGA-MONEY SUCKING BLACK HOLE... YEP, THE CRUSADE AGAINST ISLAM...AND FILLING THE POCKETS OF THE ARMAMENT COMPANIES COMES FIRST FOR THE SHADOW TREASURER OF A PARTY THAT WANTS TO SELL OFF SCHOOLS AND SCHOOL OVALS HERE IN QLD. AND OF COURSE HOCKEY ALSO IS ADAMANT ABOUT DELETING THE MINING TAX. TELLS ME SO MUCH ABOUT WHO IS PULLING THE STRINGS OF THIS BUNCH OF RIGHT-WING PUPPETS. N'

nasking

30/04/2013 YET ANOTHER INSIGHTFUL AND INFORMATIVE POST AD...GOOD STUFF! YOU EXPLAIN IN USEFUL DETAIL ABBOTT'S TACTICS USED TO PERSUADE AND MANIPULATE PUBLIC PERCEPTION... HE IS INDEED A SHONKY CHARACTER...A WALKING PROPAGANDA MACHINE...A SNAKE OIL SALESMAN...AIDED AND ABETTED BY THE MURDOCH EMPIRE AND THEIR CLONES: [quote]For example, when the Coalition's Paid Parental Leave scheme was announced, the words ‘fair dinkum’ were used to describe it. Aussies like things to be ‘fair dinkum’; it’s a bit like ‘real solutions’. The words also had the effect of diminishing the value of Labor’s scheme; by definition it could not be as ‘fair dinkum’. To pay for it, a 1.5% ‘levy’ would be imposed on around three thousand companies with the largest profit. Everyone knew that would be portrayed as a ‘tax’, but it was easy to insist that it was a ‘levy’ and a ‘modest levy’ at that, and it would be offset by a similar reduction in company tax. The Coalition insists it is still a levy, and definitely not a tax. See how easy it is to make words mean whatever you want them to mean.[/quote] MY WIFE THIS MORNING STATED FIRMLY AND IN NO UNCERTAIN TERMS THAT SHE WOULD MUCH PREFER TO PAY A LEVY TO ASSIST THE DISABILITY INSURANCE SCHEME THAN BE HIT WITH HIGHER PRICES FROM COMPANIES AND POSSIBLE FUTURE TAXES IN ORDER TO PAY FOR WELL-OFF WOMEN TO GO SHOPPING ON ALMOST FULL PAY WHILST SOME NANNY OUT OF TONY ABBOTT'S WET DREAM LOOKS AFTER THE NEWBORN BABY. N'

Truth Seeker

30/04/2013Nas, I, like you, was pretty irritated listening to Hockey spout his usual dribble this morning, and in his/their usual fashion said absolutely nothing outside of a plethora of bluff and bluster. What a knob. It sounds like S is in good form too, with her assessment of the PPL scheme as opposed to the NDIS. LOL Loved it :-) Cheers :-) :-)

nasking

30/04/2013 THE SPRUIKERS AND GUARDIANS OF FAST AND CONVENIENT FOOD COMPANIES DO SOUND THESE DAYS LIKE THE TOBACCO COMPANIES YEARS AGO WHEN THEY TRIED TO JUSTIFY THEIR ADDICTIVE POISON AS MILLIONS AROUND THE WORLD DROPPED INTO HOSPITALS AND GRAVES: [quote]The public and the food companies have known for decades now — or at the very least since this meeting — that sugary, salty, fatty foods are not good for us in the quantities that we consume them. So why are the diabetes and obesity and hypertension numbers still spiraling out of control? It’s not just a matter of poor willpower on the part of the consumer and a give-the-people-what-they-want attitude on the part of the food manufacturers. What I found, over four years of research and reporting, was a conscious effort — taking place in labs and marketing meetings and grocery-store aisles — to get people hooked on foods that are convenient and inexpensive. I talked to more than 300 people in or formerly employed by the processed-food industry, from scientists to marketers to C.E.O.’s. Some were willing whistle-blowers, while others spoke reluctantly when presented with some of the thousands of pages of secret memos that I obtained from inside the food industry’s operations. What follows is a series of small case studies of a handful of characters whose work then, and perspective now, sheds light on how the foods are created and sold to people who, while not powerless, are extremely vulnerable to the intensity of these companies’ industrial formulations and selling campaigns.[/quote] http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/24/magazine/the-extraordinary-science-of-junk-food.html?ref=michaelmoss SHAME. TIME TO REMEDY THIS PROBLEM. WITH [b]INSIDER[/b] HELP. AND GOVT AND LEGAL ACTION...WORLDWIDE. N'

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30/04/2013nasking Thank you for your complimentary remarks and for your thoughtful comments. Your comment about the ‘angry, petulant, cynical, nasty, mean spirited and/or mocking’ Coalition members we see on TV, brought to mind Jamie Briggs on Q&A last night. It struck me that he had been thoroughly rehearsed in the Loughnan/Credlin propaganda school, and on cue emitted the spiel he had learned. He followed the Abbott principle of not answering the question asked if it was at all threatening, answering instead a preferred question, or addressing a more convenient subject, one endowed with more political capital. He repeatedly avoided the question asked by the audience or Tony Jones, and gave the viewers the words learned in his briefing in propaganda school. I found offensive his superior attitude and the sneer that often creased his face. His mean-spirited performance contrasted with Mark Butler’s openness.

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30/04/2013Michael, 2353 Yes, that editorial in the [i]SMH[/i] was a change from the usual Gillard-bashing. Maybe the tide is turning as the Government publically acknowledges the changed circumstances it faces, the Coalition is forced to face them too, and the media at last is asking Abbott and Hockey the obvious question: “What would you do?”

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30/04/2013Hi Lyn What a feast you have prepared for us today. I have a busy day ahead and can't read them now, but I'm already salivating at the prospect of working through them later in the day.

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30/04/2013Patriciawa Thank you for your kind remarks. Like you, I do like 'Stop the Boasts' - what a slogan for Abbott and Co. to digest!

nasking

30/04/2013 THNX FOR THE LINKS LYN...TOP EFFORT PER USUAL: THE PIECE FROM JEFF SPARROW REVEALS EFFECTIVELY THE BIG SCAM OF ELITISTS LIKE MIRANDA DEVINE AND RUPERT MURDOCH POINTING FINGERS AWAY FROM THEIR SNOTTY PRIVILEGED SELVES AND ATTEMPTING TO DISTRACT THE REGULAR FOLK FROM THEIR GREEDY DEEDS AND POLITICS... THIS LOT HAVE SO MUCH GALL AND ARE SO BLOODY GREEDY AND DECEITFUL THEY MAKE HOWARD HUGHES LOOK LIKE GANDHI: [quote]As it happens, Miranda Devine is the daughter of Frank Devine, the former editor of Reader's Digest and the Australian, while Nick Cater is the former deputy editor of the Daily Telegraph. Average battlers? No, not so much. But let Devine continue. [This] feels like a defining moment in the Australian narrative. For instance, when Rupert Murdoch was in Sydney recently, Cater, a senior editor at The Australian, handed him a copy as he was leaving for the airport. By the time Murdoch got back to New York he was so taken with the book he asked for 10 copies to be sent over. Leave aside the irony in the 'Australian narrative' being defined by the British journalist Cater handing his book to the American Murdoch, someone who famously renounced his antipodean heritage so he could make more money overseas. Instead, simply note that a book decrying elitism has received the stamp of approval from the most powerful media mogul of all time, a man with a personal wealth exceeding $8 billion. Now, if Rupert Murdoch, who inherited a newspaper empire from his father, doesn't belong to 'the elite', then the term possesses no meaning whatsoever. And that's the point. It doesn't - or, at least, not in the way Devine uses it. If we wanted to talk seriously about elites, we could discuss, say, Gina Rinehart. At best estimate, Rinehart's worth $18 billion. Like Murdoch, she was born into her fortune. She's not shy about bossing ordinary folk around, either - you'll recall her infamous diktat about how we should spend less time drinking, smoking and socializing and more time working. Yet rather than decrying Rinehart for 'lording over' the rest of us, Devine declared, not so long ago, that Labor politicians should have attended the recent IPA shindig so that they could benefit from Rinehart's 'entrepreneurial IQ'. Before that, she opined that the mining tycoon would do a fine job sorting out the politically 'PC brigade' in the Fairfax papers. For the culture warriors, you can be richer than Croesus and, so long as you hate the Left, you're still an ordinary battler. Again, it's all depressingly familiar. Back in 2002, Professor David Flint published a book called The Twilight of the Elites, in which he put forward the startling proposition that the defeat of the republican movement represented a blow to privilege everywhere. Once the Queen of England has been reinvented as an anti-elitist, you might have thought that the theory had reached a level of preposterousness beyond which the culture war could not possibly extend. But you would, it seem, be wrong.[/quote] ------- I WONDER IF MIRANDA AND RUPERT AND JANET AND ANDREW AND PIERS AND ALLAN AND JOHN AND DAVID AND GINA ETC HAVE FOUL BREATH...CONSIDERING THE ROT THAT MUST BE SPREADING INSIDE? FANCY ABBOTT AND HOCKEY AND TURNBULL AND PYNE AND MIRABELLA AND THE REST OF THE NEGABORE BRIGADE WORKING WITH THAT MOB OF PRETENDERS. OH YEA...[b]PRETENDERS[/b]. KEY QUALIFICATION. N'

nasking

30/04/2013 [b]Your comment about the ‘angry, petulant, cynical, nasty, mean spirited and/or mocking’ Coalition members we see on TV, brought to mind Jamie Briggs on Q&A last night... I found offensive his superior attitude and the sneer that often creased his face. His mean-spirited performance contrasted with Mark Butler’s openness.[/b] AD, AGREE FULLBORE... BRIGGS CAME ACROSS AS ONE BIG SNEERING SNOTTY COCKHEAD. ABBOTT SURE KNOWS HOW TO PICK 'EM. LIBERAL PRETENDERS. SOMETIMES REVEALING THEIR TRUE SNOTTY PUPPET SELVES. N'

John Bloomfield

30/04/2013Perhaps I'm a little cynical, but I suspect the slight change to SMH editorial attitude is more about product differentiation than political enlightenment. With the Smellygraph already occupying the right wing media sales leadership, and the imminent launching of the Guardian onto the local market they need to protect their marketshare. Profitability trumps public interest every time.

Truth Seeker

30/04/2013Ad & Nas, yes indeed, I didn't know who he was when I first started watching, but I instinctively knew that he was LNP from the self satisfied sneer and general look of him. Just another polished turd :-( Cheers :-) :-)

Catching up

30/04/2013I fully agreed With Senator Wong this morning. We can have the spine, or we can talk about the options that have to be made. If we want what is necessary to take us into the future. Do we want to invest in that future, we need to move passed fear campaigns. Fran try as she might this morning, did not divert Wong in her discussion. I believe the PM was not talking about debt yesterday. Even 12 Billion is not that great. What we should be talking about, are those structural problems within the nations' budgets, that are being hit, and will be ongoing. Fran summed it up, is Labor is addressing long term structural budget problems. When we look across the globe, it is clear that fiscal austerity makes the situation worse.

Tom of Melbourne

30/04/2013'fiscal austerity makes it worse' That is genuinely odd.in the Australian context. The austwrify experienced in Spain, Greece etc is nothing like that requirwd hwre. The objective is to reduce the deficit to ensure we don't go down that path. So far the profligacy of this government is foing in that direction.

nasking

30/04/2013 THIS IS PART OF THE REASON WHY I'M VOTING FOR THE GREENS AHEAD OF THE ALP: [quote]A left wing argument against the reforms is clear. Whilst money is applied at a system level ‒ meaning the money is given to schools and not students — the system has the real potential to act somewhat like a voucher system, increasing disparity between public and private schools. It means that money will follow students, ensuring that if the flow of students to the private system continues so will Government money. As David Zyngier points out, this has the potential to significantly increase disparity in spending: While Commonwealth funding for non-government schools rose from around $3.50 for each dollar spent on public schools, to around $5 dollars between 1997 and 2007, in the past decade government funding has increased by 112% to independent schools. Despite being touted as “school funding reform”, the government’s announcement this week in fact merely maintained the status quo. What was needed was a bolder political ambition for a fairer system, that doesn’t take from the poor to give to the rich.[/quote] http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/politics/giving-gonski-and-the-ndis-a-progressive-critique/ THE LIBERALS WILL NOT GAIN ANYTHING FROM MY VOTE... BUT WE'RE NOT GOING TO LET THE RIGHT-WING OF THE ALP SCREW US OVER AGAIN. N'

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30/04/2013nasking Do you have a link for the Devine article? Catching up It seems as if being frank with the electorate is working. Penny Wong is a good advocate and frankness is her style. Now we want to hear from Joe Hockey how he would manage the situation; his usual huffing, puffing and bluster won’t do.

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30/04/2013Folks I’m working through Lyn’s magnificent links. Don’t skip the first one. It’s as neat an explanation of the budget situation that you will read. Also read the link to Tim Colebatch’s piece in [i]The Age[/i] at the foot of that piece, and the video accompanying that article. The reality is that the expected deficit of around $15 billion is only 1% of GDP in our $1.5 trillion dollar economy, and as such is quite manageable. Of course, some in the MSM paint this as a massive problem; a ‘black hole’ into which our country will is being irreversibly sucked. It’s nonsense, as Stephen Koukoulas points out in the video in the Colebatch article and in The Kouk’s article in Lyn’s links. Some political commentators, playing at writing about economics, not only show their ignorance of economics, but of the physics of real black holes, making their metaphorical references to them ridiculous.

Michael

30/04/2013Nasking, hi. The basic amount under Labor's education reforms for all students, any student, will be the same, at public or private schools. However, short of living with a disability, very few private school kids will receive the loadings that WILL apply to many public school kids, either because that public school is under-resourced, out back of Bourke, or the student him/herself attracts loadings to assist in their education. The more disadvantaged the student's situation, the more support he/she gets. So, sure, Federal Government money under Labor will still flow to private school kids, but the Howard system that inequitably supports already advantaged students will be phased out. The "status quo" will become "quo vadis" under the new reforms, and where (quo) the money is going (vadis) is where it always should have, to the kids who need it most - kids at public schools and those many private schools that are NOT tens of thousands of dollars a year fee-chargers. The schools that do charge those rates still get to suck on taxpayers' funding, but not to the obscene degree Howard gave them.

Ad astra

30/04/2013Folks Another great article on the subject of the budget ‘black hole’, is that by Ross Gittins. http://www.rossgittins.com/2013/04/beware-one-eyed-budget-brigade.html Gary Sauer-Thompson is saying much the same: http://www.sauer-thompson.com/archives/opinion/2013/04/omissions-in-th.php The [i]Crikey[/i] article is also useful reading: http://www.crikey.com.au/2013/04/29/lessons-from-austerity-front-lines-cutting-spending-is-not-the-answer/ The Macrobusiness article provides another prespective. http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/04/can-economic-weakness-save-labor/ In [i]The Conversation[/i], Russell Marks too writes a sound and sensible appraisal of the budgetary situation and highlights the folly of going down the ‘austerity’ path that Abbott and Hockey so unwisely advocate. http://theconversation.com/abbotts-budget-bluster-highlights-a-deficit-of-social-responsibility-13782 Mungo MacCallum’s article points to the looming day of reckoning for Abbott and Co. http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/4657092.html And when the [i]AFR[/i] comes out against Abbott’s PPL, you know he’s in difficulties, but none he doesn’t richly deserve. http://www.afr.com/p/national/smes_in_line_for_rude_tax_shock_cH7u57gruN5YQ7RebYasbL The [i]Café Whispers[/i] piece is a good read. Actually, I like ‘Send in the Clowns’, but please not the Coalition ones. http://cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2013/04/29/running-dry-on-tony-abbott/ Lyn, you have once again gifted us with a delightful set of articles to enrich us. You have a genius for picking the key pieces that we need to read. You save us so much time, and collecting them all together in the one place makes for such easy retrieval later. Several will feed into my next piece. Thank you so much.

Casablanca

30/04/2013Nasking, Were you here in the early sixties when the State Aid for Catholic Schools campaign was being waged? The game changer came when the Catholic schools in Goulburn, NSW, closed and quite literally marched their primary and secondary pupils off to the local public schools. Chaos ensued and PM Menzies responded with government subsidies for Catholic Schools. In those days Catholic Schools were staffed by nuns and brothers who did not draw salaries. These days, I gather that these same schools are run by salaried staff, thus, I assume, the running costs are similar to those in state schools. I don't pretend to understand the fine details of the Gonski funding formula but I note that it seems to have support across the board from educationalists. That's good enough for me. Arguably, the Gonski reforms should staunch the flow of kids from the state school system to the Catholic systemic schools. TheNewBoilerMakerBill in comments following Mungo McCallum's Drum piece "Gillard's dream education reform appears out of reach" http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/4643388.html stated that the Gonski panel had only one educationalist on board. I was suspicious and did my research and surprise, surprise, the narky commenter was wrong when he said: [i][i]Only one of the Gonski panel (Boston) had any formal education expertise: Gonski, Greiner, Lawrence, Scales and Tannock were not even educators! Lets analyse what the Gonski report says and whether it is valid or not and then perhaps some evidence based research before we commit tens of BILLIONS of dollars![/i][/i] In my research I could not verify that Boston had ever been a teacher in the school system or a lecturer in the Tertiary system. None the less, I accept him as an educationalist. On those same criteria I would say that, at the very least, teaching experience, and high ranking positions in academia merit the claim that each member of the panel, as well as the Chair, are educationalists: Chair: David Gonski. Currently, Chancellor of the University of NSW and chairman of the Australian Securities Exchange, Coca-Cola Amatil and Investec Bank. He previously lectured in Law at UNSW. • Ken Boston AO, the former Director-General Department of Education and Training (NSW) Head of Britain's Qualifications and Curriculum Authority from 2002 until 2008 • Carmen Lawrence, former Federal Minister and Premier of WA and Director of the Centre for the Study of Social Change, School of Psychology, University of Western Australia. Psychology Lecturer at UWA and at Melbourne University. • Kathryn Greiner AO, former Deputy Chancellor at Bond University and chairman of Australian Hearing. • Bill Scales AO, current Chancellor of Swinburne University of Technology, Chairman of the Port of Melbourne Corporation and a Board Member of the Veolia Australia Advisory Board. • Peter Tannock AM, noted international educationalist and former Vice-Chancellor at University of Notre Dame Australia. Professor & Head of the Department of Education, and Dean of the Faculty, University of Western Australia. Again, I say, these are good enough education credentials with a strong dose of high level participation in business and governance. I note that David Zyngier , whom you cite, is a Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Education at Monash University and a former school principal and state school teacher. That too is good enough for me. Choice of school and choice of doctor have long been cherished freedoms in modern Australia. These tenets do not always survive the micro-test of equal funding but they do go close to equal access in this imperfect world. Declaration: I attended Catholic Schools and taught in both the Catholic and State systems. I was at school in suburban Sydney during the long drawn out campaign for State Aid for Catholic Schools and was radicalised by that experience. Spare a thought for me this week-end, as I will be attending the 50th anniversary of my Leaving Certificate (NSW Matriculation). Y-I-K-E-S!! It's about 15 years since last we met and while it is to be expected that each of us will have extra wrinkles and bumps I'm sure that the words 'You haven't changed a bit' will fly back and forth. Nasking, be careful what you wish for and make sure that your vote will go back to Labor one way or the other.

Casablanca

30/04/2013I said, [i]and high ranking positions in academia[/i]. I really should have said, ' and high ranking positions in academic or educational administration'

TalkTurkey

30/04/2013A few journos starting timidly to try to nail PiG~THiNG Abborrrtt & Snotty Joe Hockey to the floor on promises and funds. Things will get very hot for them soon, there is no joy any more for journos in chasing Labor spokespeople, who are hardening their demands that the journos do their job investigation-wise on the Abborrrtians. Note to Journos: In case you are wondering what you might ask them, you might try this: [i]Where ARE you going to get the money from, Abborrrtt?[/i]

Tom of Melbourne

30/04/2013So Gillard and Swan have 6 years to deal with the economy, they promise balanced budget/surplus... yet another broken commitment. But the best that people here can come up with is - ask Abbott some questions. Hilarious.

Catching up

30/04/2013"Where ARE you going to get the money from, Abborrrtt? " Then if he does answer. Why should we believe you? What will tomorrow's version The whine in Hocky's voice is beginning to equal that of Pyne.

Jason

30/04/2013Aa, Leigh Sales‏@leighsales2h My guest tonight is the former federal Treasurer Peter Costello #abc730 Why he would be on is anyone's guess!

Sir Ian Crisp

30/04/2013[quote][b] Michael, 2353 Yes, that editorial in the SMH was a change from the usual Gillard-bashing. Maybe the tide is turning as the Government publically acknowledges the changed circumstances it faces... Ad astra [/b][/quote] You still dabble in velleities Ad Astra. As Essential Research points out (29th April 2013) the needle is stuck on the 2PP position of Lib-NP 55 (no change) and ALP 45 (no change). Talking of tides...you appear to be drowning.

MWS

30/04/2013Apologies if it's already been linked, but I really enjoyed this piece: [quote]Tony is a hard working Aussie, doing his best to provide for his family. He has a good job, but such is the nature of his work that his income is subject to unpredictable, sharp and sudden changes. Tony’s much loved and wonderful children go to a private school and wow, those fees that he choses to pay are high. He used to have a moderate mortgage, especially given he was doing well with an income well over $200,000 per annum. Then things on the income side turned sour. Tony had a change in work status that resulted in his annual income dropping by around $90,000 – a big loss in anyone’s language. How did Tony respond to this 40 per cent drop in income?[/quote] http://www.marketeconomics.com.au/2400-a-true-story-about-a-man-named-tony

Austin 3:16

30/04/2013THE SOIN: Gillard Cures Cancer in Spare Time, Approval Rating Plummets http://www.honisoit.com/2013/04/the-soin-gillard-cures-cancer-in-spare-time-approval-rating-plummets/

Capstan

30/04/2013Evening, lefty luvvies! Want a chance to waste even MORE money than Talk Turkey has by backing Gillard's clowns to win the next election? Well here's your chance! From today's Australian: [b]Backers seek donations for Craig Thomson's defence [/b] by: MITCHELL NADIN From:The Australian April 30, 20135:39PM [i]"TWO supporters of embattled MP Craig Thomson have set up a website appealing to the public for donations to help the federal independent pay his legal bills. The website created by Mark Worthington and Rodney Allan - who Mr Thomson says he has not met - asks “friends” to help defend the former Labor MP against “wrongful charges”. Mr Thomson told The Australian that although he had only spoken to the two on the phone and had not asked them for help, he was grateful for their assistance. Mr Thomson is facing legal fees of at least $300,000 in the face of ongoing criminal and civil charges relating to his alleged misuse of Health Services Union member funds when he was the union's national secretary." [/i] Come on, folks - here's your chance to dig deep, be generous with your hard-earned (or hard-collected) money and give til it hurts to help out a great ALP stalwart who's a bit down oin his luck. He's waiting to take your money - something that he's done for years! Come on, Labour luvvies! You KNOW you want to!

Austin 3:16

30/04/2013Hey Bob, Yeah I'm a terrible fella, I want Labor to change to a leader that actually has a chance of wining the next election. Still if you all want to keep on travelling towards an Abbott government then I hope you'll be happy after the election.

Austin 3:16

30/04/2013Hey Tom, When a doctor prescribes a course of anti-biotics they tell you to keep taking them until they are all finished. They don't tell you to stop taking them when you feel well. In a similar manner the Australian economy should be supported, there's certainly nothing in either the growth or inflation figures that suggest fiscal policy should be greatly changed.

Catching up

30/04/2013"Then things on the income side turned sour." Did Abbott cut the cloth to his new income. No he did not. Tony went out and borrowed more, to ensure he could live to the standard, he had become accustom too. I am sure, that Abbott with the belief he was robbed, and the fact, he expected the PM to topple over quickly, he would be in the lodge, his income higher than ever. I do hope he did not have trouble meeting the higher mortgage payments for the last couple of years. Well, he is lucky that this PM, as bad as he says she is, has managed to keep interest rates low, or he would really be in trouble.

Sir Ian Crisp

30/04/2013[quote][b]Thanks for this wonderful stuff. It seems that the tide is beginning to turn. There is something quite hopeful about recent posts here, and on 'compatible' sites. Spring is in the air. And thanks to Lyn, for noticing and listing our efforts. Kate, for Fair Media Alliance, http://fairmediaalliance.wordpress.com/ Kate Ahearne [/b][/quote] Another TPS poor soul who dabbles in dereism. Yes Ms Ahearne the tide is beginning to turn. The tide is going out and with it all those dreams that will never be realised.

Sir Ian Crisp

30/04/2013[quote][b]2353 There are some here that seem not to understand the difference between absolute and relative. Like Humpty Dumpty, to them words mean whatever they want them to mean. Ad astra reply [/b][/quote] Amen to that Ad Astra. There are some here that don’t seem to understand the difference between fact and fiction.

Sir Ian Crisp

30/04/2013[quote][b]So Gillard and Swan have 6 years to deal with the economy, they promise balanced budget/surplus... yet another broken commitment. But the best that people here can come up with is - ask Abbott some questions. Hilarious. Tom of Melbourne [/b][/quote] Tom is correct. The bird of paradox is supposed to be the Prime Minister. She can call on the award winning Treasurer for advice. She also has financial savants Penny Wrong and David Badbreath to advise her. It is not a good look to ask Abbott for advice. That signifies that she hasn't got a bleedin' clue about which direction to take.

Ken

30/04/2013Ad A belated response to your response to my earlier post. Economists are a waste of breath. They operate very well in hindsight and are totally lacking in predictive ability - despite what they think themselves. My argument used to be that they got it wrong every decade. To explain the 70s they coined the term "stagflation" - high inflation but low growth which according to the models wasn't supposed to happen. I forget the 80s (doesn't everyone!!). But in the 90s it happened again - "jobless growth", which again did not fit the economic models. I haven't seen a word or phrase yet for the current economic problems but no doubt that will come soon. But again it does not fit the standard economic models. As I recall Bill Hayden was trained economics and once gave his definition of "waste": a bus load of economists going over a cliff with three empty seats!!!

Ad astra

30/04/2013Casablanca Thank you for checking the education credentials of the Gonski panel. It just shows how we ought not to take for granted the assertions of people who write, with an aura of authority, on any subject, in this instance about the educational qualifications of an important panel. Such writing is an indication of crass ignorance or deception, take your pick. People tell lies deliberately or are ignorant - the result is the same: the reader is misled. From your documentation, the Gonski panel is very well qualified to address educational matters and administrative issues as they affect schools. Anyway, why would the Government pick a panel of suspect qualifications, as that would immediately negate any findings and recommendations the panel made? Jason I was out this evening and missed [i]Lateline[/i]. How did Sales and Costello perform?

Ad astra

30/04/2013MWS What a telling story about poor old Tony by The Kouk! http://www.marketeconomics.com.au/2400-a-true-story-about-a-man-named-tony

Tom of Melbourne

30/04/2013[i] To explain the 70s they coined the term "stagflation" - high inflation but low growth which according to the models wasn't supposed to happen. [/i] Ignorance abounds here. It wasn’t supposed to happen under the Keynesian model, which was never universally accepted. The Chicago School provided realistic analysis. But typically here, this type of ignorance is rarely challenged.

jane

30/04/2013Another great post Ad astra. [quote]Sensible debate is what's needed and it looks like it might happen - which will be interesting in relation to the current LOTO who doesn't seem to have a good history with debate.[/quote] Or with sense, 2353.

nasking

30/04/2013 MICHAEL AND CASABLANCA, THNX FOR YOUR THOUGHTFUL RESPONSES...YOU MAKE USEFUL AND VALID POINTS. I WILL CERTAINLY ENSURE MY VOTE GETS BACK TO LABOR. SORRY AD, I DON'T HAVE THAT LINK. TO BE HONEST I'M HAVING REAL TROUBLE SEEING TODAY...THE GLARE AND FOG IS SOMETHING AWFUL. SADLY, I DON'T THINK THE VISION IN MY LEFT EYE OS GONNA LAST MUCH LONGER. THE RIGHT IS ALREADY COMPLETELY BLURRED. The headaches ARE DREADFUL.M I WILL RETURN AFTER RESTING MY EYES FOR A DAY OR SO. CHEERS N'

Ad astra

30/04/2013Ken It astonishes me that economists keep bobbing up with their predictions and are wheeled out to pontificate whenever the economy wobbles, yet get it wrong so often. Leave aside a few sound ones such as Ross Gittins, Peter Martin, George Megalogenis, John Quiggin, Saul Eslake, and Stephen Koukoulas, and all that is left is a motley bunch who seldom ever get it right, and when they do, it is more by chance than good thinking. This is not new. As far back as February 2009, I wrote: [i]The problem with economists[/i] http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2009/02/18/The-problem-with-economists.aspx And in September in the same year: [i]What value are economists to our society?[/i] http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2009/09/05/What-value-are-economists-to-our-society.aspx I have read them again just now. They are as applicable now as they were then. Sadly, among economists nothing much changes. The Hayden joke is as apt now as ever.

Ad astra

30/04/2013jane Thank you for your comment. Tomorrow is another day, a day closer to the day of reckoning for Abbott, Hockey and Co.

Tom of Melbourne

30/04/2013It is so very impressive to see all the progressives, left orientated types and humanitarians debate last night’s report on the dreadful asylum seekers! While the rest of the media may ignore the plight of these innocent people, particularly children, we’re always able to rely on sites like this to keep politicians honest. Apparently Ad Astra is a medical practitioner so he’s leading the charge, because no one in his position could possibly support a policy which [b]WHEN IMPLEMENTED AS INTENDED HAS PROVEN TO BE HARMFUL TO THE PHYSICAL AND MENTAL HEALTH OF THE VERY PEOPLE IT IS APPLIED TO[/b] Great work by TPS, as always!! (go team)

DMW

30/04/2013What a sad and shameful state this country is in ... George Megalogenis ‏@GMegalogenis 23h A #4corners report on the live cattle trade made Aussies mad.Treating asylum seekers like animals should push the same button, right? #qanda Gnossienne ‏@gnossienne5 2h @GMegalogenis I work for a Fed MP. Flood of emails after #4corners on live export. Emails today re asylum seekers = exactly zero! Shame! Our so called leaders on BOTH sides of politics should hung drawn and quartered for the way they have devalued human life.

Capstan

1/05/2013Hey fellas! What a joke! I mean - seriously. Here's Gormless Gillard et al about to see total tax revenues INCREASE this year by about 7.8% - and she is crying destitution and ruin because she thought the tax revenue increase would not be 7.8% - it would be 11.8% instaed! Where's the Idiot Village Wise Guy, de man himself - Ad Astra! Surely even YOU can see that your party are a complete bunch of economic derros, troglodytes and Neanderthals! Mate - face reality! Your bunch of klutzes and clowns headed by Gillard the Red could not buy a round of drinks in a brewery without paying $150.00 per stubby. You're all a disgrace and a total waste of time: the sooner you disappear back into the dark reaches of the mildewed caves in which you barely exist - the better.

Tsudo

1/05/2013Just one comment about 'economic management'. It's true that the Gillard government (or more accurately the Treasury Dept) have overestimated revenue growth, significantly. This has led to an expectation now of a deficit not only in this FY but possibly in the following years due to a 'structural' change in the economy (high aussie dollar -> lower profits & tax). For this the government is being lambasted etc. It's funny, because I seem to recall several consecutive years when the Howard government underestimated revenue growth significantly and kept bringing out 'surprise' surpluses that were billions of dollars over their predictions. Again treasury estimates are wrong due to unforeseen changes (rising commodity prices and capital gains due to a housing bubble). Now arguably it's better to have a surplus than a deficit - fair enough, but the fundamental ability to estimate and hit a budget target in both cases is shown to be difficult. Government and Treasury can only make the best estimate at the time with the information at hand. They can't predict the future, and with the recent financial turmoil and unconventional monetary policies of most advanced economies, it seems hardly surprising that those estimates would be easily wrong. But it seems that when Howard gets it "wrong" and generates billions of dollars of unexpected surplus he's a "good economic manager", but when Gillard gets it wrong and it's gets a deficit, it's "incompetent economic management". I don't believe you can logically have it both ways. It's more blind luck and timing than anything else. Regarding this revenue growing at 7% meme... It highlights an ignorance within the "critics"... Generally speaking, revenue will grow - due to economic growth and inflation. It's a moving target. So at the start of the year Treasury has to ask "what is our expectation for revenue in the coming year (and beyond)?". If it estimates growth in revenue to be 14%, then the budget is framed around that revenue figure (of course with inflation and population growth, expenditure would also be expected to rise, even without any explicit additional policies). So when revenue doesn't grow by the expected 14%, you're going to run a deficit. Here's the run-down: After the GFC, revenue fell as spending was reigned in and economic activity slowed (check the ABS website: 5506.0 - Taxation Revenue, Australia, 2011-12). So this immediately caused a deficit. The much maligned stimulus by Rudd was only small proportion of this deficit, and it arguably actually helped to reduce it by keeping the economy growing. While the economy is slowing, we expect revenue growth to be weak (or negative, as it was in this case). BUT, the typical business cycle is that a recession is followed by an upswing. It was the expectation of an upswing by Treasury that caused them to forecast a significant growth in revenue, which reduces the deficit significantly, in this case the expectation was a small surplus. This upswing hasn't occurred anywhere near the amount expected, so we're going to have another deficit. This isn't because of reckless spending, it isn't because the Gillard government is incompetent. It's because it's really quite difficult to predict the future. You can be assured that when Abbott gets in, he'll have the same Treasury dept use the same models and indicators to produce similarly fallible estimates of future revenue and expenditure. Maybe he'll get lucky and there will be another mining boom, causing Treasury to underestimate revenue growth. Then he can spend like a drunken sailor just like Howard on middle-class welfare and other pet projects. ;-)

lyn

1/05/2013Today’s Links Playing the clown by @awelder Abbott is not, despite Cassidy's best wishes, being judged against his own feckless past. He is being judged against Julia Gillard, who has "a grasp of detail, a self-confidence and a sense of smarts" to a far greater extent than Tony Abbott. Abbott is not "better equipped" to be Prime Minister than Gillard, there is no proof http://andrewelder.blogspot.com.au/2013/04/playing-clown.html?m=1 A bull market in AFR bias by @macro_business But just pointing that out, over and over, is not useful media, it’s biased media, aimed at removing the Labor government rather than analysing why the nation is where it is and what solutions both political parties are offering to do about it at the election http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/04/a-bull-market-in-afr-bias/ A true story about a man called Tony by @TheKouk It’s a good job Tony didn’t panic and sell his house and drag his kids out of school. Rather, he took on a bit on debt that he could easily afford as it turns out and it got him through the tough times. http://www.marketeconomics.com.au/blog Calm Down About The Deficit by @beneltham If the budget is in deficit, it must because the government is spending too much. No matter how many graphs Julia Gillard and Wayne Swan throw at us, the narrative that Labor can't manage the economy retains its tenacious hold. http://newmatilda.com//2013/04/30/calm-down-about-deficit Debt and deficit Downunder — don’t be so damned depressed! by @independentaus responses in Australia are somewhat bizarre. The reaction of some Opposition and media critics shows an immaturity and crude point-scoring that is, frankly, embarrassing to read or listen to. http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/politics/debt-and-deficit-downunder-dont-be-so-damned-depressed/ The budget deficit is just a stone in the shoe by @TheKouk There is a perception that the budget issue (and I deliberately call it an issue, not a problem) is a function of high government spending and that urgent cuts are needed to return to surplus as quickly as possible. This view is not supported by the facts. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/4/30/federal-budget/budget-deficit-just-stone-shoe#ixzz2RtjsfVql Public opinion polls do not always report public opinion by Herbert J. Gans Sociologist Herbert Gans says the news media should do a better job noting that “polls are answers to questions rather than opinions,” and that not all opinions have the same intensity — or the same impact. http://www.niemanlab.org/2013/04/public-opinion-polls-do-not-always-report-public-opinion/ Economists say both parties to blame for budget blues Video: Ross Garnaut sizes up shift in Federal budget plans (7.300) Oh, it's certainly grave, Leigh. We've been spending the temporary largesse from the resources boom since it began in 2003. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-04-29/ross-garnaut-sizes-up-shift-in-federal-budget-plans/4658884 Money, Money, Money by @madwixxy There is something hideously wrong when Thomson’s accuser, who is also under police investigation is allowed to leave to country and marry the Vice President of the organisation that condemned Thomson in their investigation, http://wixxyleaks.com/2013/04/30/money-money-money/ Report shows solar panels powering Aussie homes for less by News Mail The report also found those who did install solar panels were more engaged in the energy market, ensuring helping to reduce their own personal costs, as well as easing pressure on the National Electricity Network. http://www.news-mail.com.au/news/report-solar-panels-powering-aussie-homes-less/1847871/ Some electricity links by @JohnQuiggin2 The Australia Institute has a report out making the point that the growth in the administrative and marketing costs of electricity companies, following the reforms of the 1990s, has added more to electricity prices than has the carbon price. http://johnquiggin.com/2013/04/30/some-electricity-links/ The Bogan Century by @YosefAlbric This use of insults instead of profanities is used by another prominent Bogan, and good mate of Alan Jones, Tony Abbott. Tony Abbott also has added a fifth word to the imperatives, Power, which he seems to have an insatiable appetite for. http://yosefalbric.wordpress.com/2013/04/29/the-bogan-century/ Strategy, Gonski, Drones And, ‘The Day Of The Billboards!’ by @knarfnamduh NO Coalition continues its sloganeering, disingenuous journey to the next election. In such circumstances electioneering strategy comes to the forebrain and one begins to wonder just exactly what battle plan http://deknarf.wordpress.com/2013/04/30/graphical-manipulations-32-strategy-gonski-drones-and-the-day-of-the-billboards/ Global Super-Rich Stashing Up To $32 Trillion Offshore, Masking True Scale Of Inequality: Study The Huffington Post The study, highlighted by a recent Bloomberg News report, found that more than $12 trillion of that money was managed by 50 international banks, many of which received bailouts during the financial crisis, according to James Henry, the study’s author. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/29/wealthy-stashing-offshore_n_3179139.htmlm The Story of Our Time By PAUL KRUGMAN let’s try to reduce deficits and bring down government indebtedness once normal conditions return and the economy is no longer depressed. But right now we’re still dealing with the aftermath of a once-in-three-generations financial crisis. This is no time for austerity. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/29/opinion/krugman-the-story-of-our-time.html?_r=1& Today’s Front Pages Australian Newspaper Front Pages for 1 May 2013 http://www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm

TalkTurkey

1/05/2013http://ht.ly/kyHYX Stella Young, inspirational disabled anchor for Ramp Up, makes a passionate plea for NDIS that ought to shame the curmudgeons who quibble about paying for it. In a rich country. Dog help disabled people everywhere else, if we can't find a pittance here!

TalkTurkey

1/05/2013Lynnie You've done all that research this morning, selected the best, arranged it all and STILL you've beaten me to The Punch (which is a pun, Stella's article is published in it!) It's just getting light here in Adelaide. What time did you get up? Nasking Very sad to hear of your optical problems. Blindness is a disability too, a huge one, especially when you so love to read and write. What can be done? Talking books, what about talking 5th Estate?

Michael

1/05/2013The mindset that will vote Coalition? A woman tweeted ABC News Breakfast this morning asserting that in the light of an expanded Medicare levy to cover disability care she was "quite happy" to contribute to caring for disabled people. But then she heard on the TV news late yesterday that the dollar amount of the increase for someone on her average income would be $375 a year. "That's just robbery," she said with that figure in hand. $375 a year is $1.03 a day. That's the Abbott mindset. Come over all sanctimonious and concerned about disadvantaged fellow citizens, then complain about 'the money'. $1.03 a day for the disabled, from birth or by accident, or by bad reaction to medical treatment... Yep, "that's just robbery".

Ad astra

1/05/2013LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/LYNS-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Ad astra

1/05/2013Tsudo I’m not sure if you have been here before, but anyway, welcome to [i]The Political Sword[/i] family. Do come again. What a joy it was to read your well-reasoned comment. As you have seen, we have a few who comment here who in their ignorance run what you term the “revenue growing at 7% meme”. Thank you for bringing facts, figures and logic to the debate about the Government’s budget situation.

Ken

1/05/2013Michael One thing I haven't seen much talk about regarding the NDIS is its potential impact on litigation. If a person is disabled in an accident, I assume they will now receive care under the NDIS. While their right to sue remains, it is obvious that a court will have to take into account the fact that the majority of their care will now be covered by the NDIS and that will impact the damages awarded. In the long run that may lead to less litigation (which would be a good thing). Unless pursuing litigation locks one out of the NDIS system. That would reduce costs to the NDIS but I haven't seen anything to suggest that. Does anyone else know for certain how NDIS will operate in this regard? ToM You have revealed your credentials as a disciple of the Chicago School. Yes, its models did (in hindsight) explain stagflation but also led to the excesses (read "greed") of the '80s and have since been discredited which does somewhat the same to your economic views!!

Tom of Melboune

1/05/2013Faux concern about the disabled combined with no concern over the incarceration and dreadful treatment of innocent people, equals a site of fakes.

Tom of Melboune

1/05/2013 No Ken, I’m merely pointing out that the Chicago School is a classical model of economics, which fully comprehended “stagflation”. The original comment was stupid and ill-informed, but that’s not unusual here.

TalkTurkey

1/05/2013MSM Watchdog‏@MSMWatchdog20138s Thomson's online donation campaign (set up by 2 well-wishers whom Craig didn't even know!) http://www.2ue.com.au/blogs/2ue-blog/thomsons-online-donation-campaign/20130501-2irtx.html … If you have a few bucks to spare I don't think there could be a better way of fighting for fairness in the future of Australia. There in Craig and Zoe Thomson's shoes, but for the grace of Dog, go any of us - Such vile treatment must not be permitted. Independent Australia has passed its target $50K to stimulate Police investigation of Ashby/Pyne/Brough et al, and had its best-ever month (no surprise!) - so now Folks, if as I do you believe that Craig Thomson has been shamefully treated, do give just a little and encourage others to do likewise. Craig Emerson this morning saying exactly the sort of thing that will confound PiG~THiNG and win the election for us. And we are not yet at Ramming Speed! Thank Dog for the Fighting 5th Estate!

lyn

1/05/2013Good Morning Ad, So pleased to hear you enjoyed “Today’s Links” yesterday. There really were some excellent articles explaining the budget, plain speaking factual honest reporting. This morning I enjoyed the article in Macro Business pointing out the bias in AFR: [quote] “not useful media, it’s biased media” [/quote] I think Peter Costello made a fool of himself last night on the 7.30pm report. Costello was sarcastically scoffing & being facetious, he sounded like a misbehaving student You will notice Leigh Sales’s introduction: ( Peter Costello joins us to discuss his audit of Queensland's finances as well as the state of the national economy) Well it took about 1 second to get to National Economy as you would expect. Here is the link: Peter Costello assesses Queensland finances and national economy So let's go to the NDIS. We can't pay for our spending so we'll spend more on disability. We can't pay for our spending to we'll pay for parental leave. PETER COSTELLO: Or direct action on carbon. Hey, fellas, you're borrowing to fund the current spending. The easiest cut you'll make is the stuff you never go into. “[quote] No, no, because I've got to say to you I think Tony Abbott [/quote][quote]has [b]grown enormously [/b]over the last three years[/quote]” http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2013/s3748704.htm Hi Talk Turkey, Thankyou, tksyou. In answer to your question, my rule is up at 5am every morning except Sunday, to do this I go to bed early every night. :):):):)

MWS

1/05/2013Ken, re the NDIS and personal injury insurance. The NDIS is to pay for care and disability aids (eg wheelchairs). The Government disability support pension (DSP) will still provide income for a disabled person who can't work. The current injury insurance schemes (eg Workcover, motor vehicle accident insurance) will be on top of this - ie to pay a person an income (much higher than the DSP) if they are injured in specific circumstances covered by their policy AND to pay for their care. I don't know if the private insurance will continue to cover care costs etc as well as income, but the NDIS is not intended to pay living expenses, just costs over and above those of a normal person (eg care for showering, mobility devices etc). The Government may require people covered by insurance to take that insurance as well, and could even act on the injured person's behalf.

Ken

1/05/2013ToM Sorry but you are wrong!!

Ad astra

1/05/2013Hi Lyn Thank you for another great set of links. The Andrew Elder piece was great, as usual, and I do enjoy reading The Kouk. We have a busy day ahead and are heading back to the south coast, so I’ll try too catch up with the rest of your links via the iPad while in transit.

bob macalba

1/05/2013Lyn..again your a gem,your links are always a must read, truly appreciated..thankyou Janet..you too are a gem posting your twitter thingys,love them...thankyou cheers

bob macalba

1/05/2013Yo Austin so your here to play handbrake? now you've outed yourself good luck with that ps..backing your beliefs dont make you a 'terrible fella' wrong perhaps...but not as bad as you make yourself out,chin up cheers

lyn

1/05/2013Hi Bob, Thankyou, what a nice compliment we think you are a Gem too ♥:):) Our Janie Gypsy is a sparkling diamond. Here is a few more articles and tweets for you all to read, Ad Astra you will enjoy the tweet by Stephen Koukoulas, he gets so very frustrated with the MSM and their continued distorted reporting & of course the Opposition saying out and out lies. Stephen Koukoulas ‏@TheKouk Chaney, Sloan, Robb, Hockey, Abbott, Murray all saying Australia heading down path of Europe in terms of govt debt. It's beyond contempt [quote] Dear Mr Abbott[/quote] by Bridget O'Flynn @BridgetOFlynn When you speak of hope, reward and opportunity Mr Abbott, I’d like to know, for whom? http://oflynnbridget.wordpress.com/2013/04/30/dear-mr-abbott-2/ Mr Swan, it's simple to save $12b Tim Colebatch Many would see the tax breaks for negative gearing as negative for society. They lure investors to load up on debt to buy homes - in 18 years, negatively geared investors have swollen from 500,000 to 1.25 million - and price out first home buyers. It would be a brave government that took them on. http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/mr-swan-its-simple-to-save-12b-20130430-2ir76.html#ixzz2S08uJvbF Stephen Spencer ‏@sspencer_63 Alan Jones denounced the NDIS levy today. But in 2010 he was demanding it. http://www.nds.org.au/news/article/721 … david ewart ‏@davidbewart http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2013/s3748802.htm … Abbott Lateline interview. Not good for him I'd say. Geoff Pearson ‏@GCobber99 Abbott was asked six times would he support a levy for NDIS he would not asnwer Here is why http://ht.ly/kyC4Q :):):):)

Truth Seeker

1/05/2013Hey Swordsters, just a quickie, as I have just posted "In the Abbott's comic book, he says he'll consult experts… WTF?" http://truthseekersmusings.wordpress.com/2013/05/01/in-the-abbotts-comic-book-he-says-hell-consult-with-experts-wtf/ Cheers :-) :-)

TalkTurkey

1/05/2013Give our tax to Gina, not to me! Her needs are so much greater, can't you see! Please repeal the Mining Tax and raise the GST! And [i]Give our tax to Gina, not to me![/i] Ooh! That redhead Gillard I despise! I believe that Labor just tells lies! Rupert Murdoch told me so and he's so old and wise! And [i]Ooh! That redhead Gillard I despise![/i] I don't give a Gonski, never will! I've no school age children, and I'm not ill: Don't want NDIS, my disabilities are nil! And [i]I don't give a Gonski, never will![/i] I don't need no fancy NBN! I been used to dial-up since way back when! Just turn the dial back to the good ol' days back then! And [i]I don't need no fancy NBN![/i] [i]Give our tax to Gina, not to me! Her needs are so much greater, can't you see! Please repeal the Mining Tax and raise the GST! And Give our tax to Gina, not to me![/i] This sings to a tune but I don't know its name.

Jason

1/05/2013Kevin Rudd’s unrelenting campaign to regain power http://www.themonthly.com.au/issue/2013/may/1367364737/erik-jensen/kevin-rudd-s-unrelenting-campaign-regain-power

bob macalba

1/05/2013Dont know if this ones been up yet http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-05-01/nsw-signs-up-to-gonski/4655632?section=nsw its like they got it of utube

bob macalba

1/05/2013Got the buggers rattled, now starting to turn on their own http://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/columnists/go-to-the-bottom-of-the-class-premier/story-e6frg7bo-1226632598034

Jason

1/05/2013abc730‏@abc7302m See @SwannyDPM interviewed by @LeighSales on the Medicare Levy & budgetary pressures, on #abc730 tonight... #auspol #NDIS

Jason

1/05/2013Mike Carlton is having some fun at Abbott’s expense. Mike Carlton Mike Carlton ‏@MikeCarlton01 Tony Abbott, 1813. Look,um,we’d really like to abolish,er,slavery.But let’s wait until the er,economic,um, outlook is, er, more favorable. Mike Carlton ‏@MikeCarlton01 Tony Abbott, 1842: Look, 7 yr olds working down, um,coal mines..it’s, aaah, essential for the mining industry, and er, good for them, too. Mike Carlton Mike Carlton ‏@MikeCarlton01 Tony Abbott 1893. Look,er,I can,um, understand some women might,aaah,want to vote.But the issues would,er,confuse them.Best leave it to men. Mike Carlton ‏@MikeCarlton01 Tony Abbott, 1938. Look,aaah, I think, um, we can leave it to, er, Mr Chamberlain and Herr um Hitler to work it out between them.

2353

1/05/2013Jason, there is a theory up here at the moment that Rudd will contest and win Griffith in 2013, then resign during 2014 to lead the Queensland Opposition from outside Parliament - which will add to Newman's already deserved unpopularity sometime in the 2015 Queensland Election. I don't know if Rudd would be a good Premier - but the scenario isn;t new - Newman did the same thing. Newman may yet outdo himself - he didn't pick a safe seat to run in, the seat has a lot of public servants and their dependents (who hate Newman for the 14000 job cuts he's already done and the questions about more since Costello's faux audit has been released) and if judged by Katter & Palmer's mumblings - he's not liked in the bush either as he's cutting jobs there as well. In the meantime, the ALP need to work out how to use Rudd without threatening the PM - not an easy task I would imagine (although they turned the "surplus" argument around in under a month)

Jason

1/05/20132353, Thanks for that!I think Rudds problem is, that while he may be popular to those who don't have to work with him and only see him on TV etc,don't realise he's not a good leader of people! I think he'd be a disaster for QLD as Premier as you only have one house of parliament, and the QLD ALP might as well rebuild its parliamentary numbers with those willing to do the work! On the evidence so far I don't think Rudd has changed his ways and deep down I hope there are some that will say no! if you retire stay retired and take up a hobby or join the international speakers circut.

TalkTurkey

1/05/2013Jason Those quotes from Mile Carlton are clever and hilarious. As usual with your quotes ... They kick arse as they say. Bob The RATTLING has JUST BEGUN. This is where it gets really real for Abborrrrrtt, because the Government is in perfect position to taunt him. Our leaders each have favourite games. What are they? Can't you guess? Abborrrtt plays O's + X's. *J*U*L*I*A* plays Chess!

Ken

1/05/2013MWS Thanks for the clarification about the NDIS. It still leaves open the possibility that courts will take account that care and medical aids are covered by the NDIS. I know it doesn't cover living costs/lost wages nor damages for negligence but the cost of care over 30 years or more can be quite high and that could be reduced in damages claims. Did hear a bloke on local ABC here in Canberra arguing that it will operate like Medicare. It is likely to cover basics and if people want more they will need to take out insurance (same as private medical insurance). He did say that it does depend on how the trials work out but his explanation seems reasonable.

KHTAGH

1/05/2013I think Julia just gave that NDIS wedgie one almighty tug, I'm positive I saw Abbott's eyes bulge on the news, this a real good ploy, it's pulling Abbott in on a policy aspect & he just has to go with his negativity. I'm sure this will be the start of the end for him, people will start to see that the PM has been leading him into a trap.

Ad astra

1/05/2013Hi Lyn I caught up with your links bit by bit during the day, and enjoyed them all. I sense that there is a theme evolving along the lines that the debt and deficit story is losing some of its potency among rational economists, and that there is a heightened sense that Abbott, Hockey and Co. need to be challenged about their plans for the economy, and the rationale underlying it, that is if they know what it is. Abbott now has a dilemma to resolve over the NDIS. It will be interesting to see how he squirms his way through this. The easiest thing for him would be to agree with the Government’s legislation and take it out of the political war games, but I suspect his proclivity for opposition will prevent him taking such a rational approach. He needs to be careful he doesn’t wedge himself. I read the transcript of the Sales/Costello interview. All I can say is that Costello has not changed – he’s as full of it as ever. Always the oracle, he has never made (or admitted to) a mistake in his life, and should he have been given the opportunity to have his hands on the levers, all would have been well again. We are back at the south coast after along day. Good night.

2353

1/05/2013AA - you're right; Costello is full of it. They showed a clip of him on ABC News tonight lecturing Newman that his report should be implemented in total.

el gordo

1/05/2013'I'm sure this will be the start of the end for him, people will start to see that the PM has been leading him into a trap.' No matter, Labor is still on a hiding to nothing. The electorate can see what Gillard is doing and think her a nasty piece of work.

Tom of Melbourne

1/05/2013Ad Astra – [i]” he’s as full of it as ever[/i]” …and Swan escapes any criticism for- • Getting his unemployment forecast wrong by about 40% • Promising a surplus about 100 times and not delivering • Spending billions on home insulation and then billions removing it Swan is the most “full of it” Treasurer in modern history.

Patriciawa

2/05/2013Talk Turkey, I don't know the tune either, but it lilts along! [i]Give our tax to Gina, not to me! Her needs are so much greater, can't you see! Please repeal the Mining Tax and raise the GST! And Give our tax to Gina, not to me! [/i] Brilliant!

TalkTurkey

2/05/2013What a sense of calm has descended on TPS since true hearted Comrades realized that to avoid contact with Trolls, all you have to do is avoid contact with Trolls! I don't even read them once they have made their illwill clear, it gives me a feeling of glee to Scroll The Troll, as the Bard would have it. To think that they have wasted all that venom ..! And Folks don't forget, that is as our host Ad astra would have it too. If you do get the urge to mix it with Trolls, please remember that personal invective here is really agin Ad's wishes. We are on sacred ground here really, and it's Ad's. He is magnificently tolerant in publishing illwillians (as is best practice too imo), but acknowledging them gives them oxygen, and arguing with them is like putting out fire with gasolene. You know they're only vexatious, not subject to reason, why bother? Not even reading them is the trick. Read Lyn's Links instead.

lyn

2/05/2013Today’s Links Mr Walker and Mr Wheeler by @denniallen A power hungry monster who would do anything to get behind the wheels of power. In his raging feral mania, he has screamed and abused the Prime Minister, tried to smash his way through the democratic process — desperate to snatch the Prime Ministerial http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/politics/mr-walker-and-mr-wheeler/ Not all declines are declines by @GrogsGamut As a general rule I hate it when people start talking about total tax in nominal dollar amounts. Usually when they do they’re trying to sell you something. Like the Liberal Party is currently with this graph it has put on its Facebook page http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/drum-piecebudget-not-all-declines-are.html Gillard gets it right by @JohnQuiggin2 So Gillard has announced a proposal for a 0.5 percentage point increase in the Medicare levy, raising $3 billion a year. Abbott has equivocated so far, but has stated his support for the NDIS, which leaves him no honest options except to go along http://johnquiggin.com/2013/05/01/gillard-gets-it-right/ Why we’ll happily pay the Medicare levy (just don’t call it a tax) by Amber Jamieson and Sasha Petrova Tax purists hate levies, but the public is likely to support an increase to the Medicare levy to help fund the national disability insurance scheme because they like knowing exactly where their money is going. http://www.crikey.com.au/2013/05/01/why-well-happily-pay-the-medicare-levy-just-dont-call-it-a-tax/ Why fund NDIS? Because one day you might need it. by Stella Young @stellajyoung The levy would be an addition to the Medicare levy currently paid by Australians - an increase from 1.5 to 2 per cent. That amounts to an extra $300 per year for the average person. The Opposition has refused to rule out a levy as a means of funding the scheme, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-05-01/young-ndis-funding/4661842 Medicare levy increasing by 0.5% to fund national disability scheme – what you need to know by Patrick Stafford The Coalition has already announced its opposition to the scheme. Shadow treasurer Joe Hockey told the ABC this morning the levy shouldn’t go ahead as “business and consumer confidence was fragile http://www.smartcompany.com.au/health-and-pharmaceuticals/055328-medicare-levy-to-rise-by-0-5-in-order-to-fund-national-disability-scheme- Understanding the NDIS: Mr Hockey, it’s not that hard by @bluntshovels, @AusVotes2013 I was slightly astonished to hear the Shadow Treasurer say that no one understand the NDIS and that none of the details are known. I’m sure that came as a surprise to all the myriad of groups who have taken the time to read the legislation http://ausvotes2013.com/2013/05/01/understanding-the-ndis-mr-hockey-its-not-that-hard-2/ Funding DisabilityCare Australia by David Griffiths This reform will provide peace of mind to all Australians that if they or a loved one acquire a disability, they will be supported.It is the most fundamental social policy reform since the introduction of Medicare http://www.australiasmassmedia.com/ The delusional budget debate by @macro_business Discussion is being dominated by the loon pond that has occupied the business media and has either no idea what it is talking about or has a vested interest in seeing the LNP elected. Take your pick. The loon pond frame is set nicely by Shadow Finance Minister and austerity champion Andrew Robb at the AFR: http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/05/the-delusional-budget-debate/ Swan attacks 'reckless campaign' on budget deficit by @mikejanda Now I do think you've got to question the priorities of a business group that gives Joe Hockey a leave pass to whack a 1.5 per cent tax on its members, but then rails against a levy to support people with a disability, and I think this approach is simply heartless." http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-05-01/swan-attacks-media-and-business-for-budget-campaign/4663302 The consummate hypocrite by @MigloMT Even before this announcement, Tony Abbott has been telling us that the NDIS is only possible, or plausible, after the Government (presumably his) can return us to a surplus. http://theaimn.com/2013/05/01/the-consummate-hypocrite/ May Day May Day by @saint13333 The trials of Tony Abbott.He is by evidence and his own admission a liar of some regularity. Added to that he has a political gutter mentality and little respect for the institution of parliament and its conventions. http://theaimn.com/2013/05/01/may-day-may-day/ Thank you to AusVotes 2013′s writers and readers by @Drag0nista It is the intellect, passion and writing finesse of these people that has made AusVotes 2013 an engaging, informative and stimulating group blog on all things related to the upcoming federal election. http://www.abc.net.au/rampup/articles/2013/05/01/3749022.htm In the Abbott’s Comic Book, he says he’ll consult with experts! WTF- by Truth Seeker he/they would argue that they have listened to their own experts like; Jones, Bolt, Hadley, Murdoch, Rinehart, Monkton and the IPA, not to mention his entire front bench http://truthseekersmusings.wordpress.com/2013/05/01/in-the-abbotts-comic-book-he-says-hell-consult-with-experts-wtf/ Abbott’s image: an everyman for the every day voter by @Drag0nista Alternatively, we must choose between a ruthless incompetent and an anachronistic misogynist. Despite knowing that we are being manipulated by image-crafters like Textor and Utting into making this decision, the choice on polling day will not be any easier. http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/4661738.html THE SOIN: Gillard Cures Cancer in Spare Time, Approval Rating Plummets by @The_Soin unmarried, female, atheist, red-haired immigrant Prime Minister’s approval rating dropping almost 10 percentage points after it was announced she had successfully developed a cure for cancer. http://www.honisoit.com/2013/04/the-soin-gillard-cures-cancer-in-spare-time-approval-rating-plummets/ Ettridge/Abbott by Bob Ellis Mr Abbott where he was so secure in his suspected indemnity from prosecution provided by the Howard Government that he readily admitted his guilt to any journalist who asked. Mr Abbott even said he would do it again’ Ettridge said. ‘In interviews Mr Abbott says he knows he acted unlawfully http://www.ellistabletalk.com/2013/05/01/ettridgeabbott/ Newman, Costello, and accumulation by dispossession By @newsfliporg Voters have put into power a political party who has signed up to the catastrophic ideology of neo-liberalism; a party addicted to that project’s obsessions with privatisation, free market liberalisation, and greater job market ‘competition’. http://www.newsflip.org/ Phase out GP consultation fees for a better Medicare by @ConversationEDU known as “six-minute medicine”. You barely sit down in the consulting room and tell the doctor what’s wrong before being ushered out, script or referral in hand. This phenomenon demonstrates the financial incentives of a fee-for-service system at its worst. https://theconversation.com/phase-out-gp-consultation-fees-for-a-better-medicare-13690 CFMEU Takes To Melbourne's Streets by @BenfongBonser @newmatilda Over 10,000 construction workers marched through Melbourne’s CBD yesterday in a CFMEU-organised rally demanding greater work place safety from construction giant Grocon. http://newmatilda.com/2013/05/01/cfmeu-takes-melbournes-streets Loaded words on a newspaper front page: ‘The Truth’ by @mumbrella The Daily Telegraph does not, Dr Mumbo assumes, know its family history, based on its presentation of the Tom Waterhouse affair today. http://mumbrella.com.au/loaded-words-a-newspaper-front-page-the-truth-153104 On Yer Bike, Tony! by Patricia WA Barry Cassidy, Adele Taylor and Gerard Henderson all agreeing that Pollie Pedal was ‘campaigning genius’ as he cycles through so many marginal seats, and how it has become a huge fund raiser! That really stuck in my craw http://cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/on-yer-bike-tony-2/ Today’s Front Pages Australian Newspaper Front Pages for 2 May 2013 http://www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm

Michael

2/05/2013The chief executive of Myer says that a Disability Care levy will damage his store's profit levels, and so should not be allowed to happen. Guess you now know where you won't be shopping any time soon. http://www.smh.com.au/business/medicare-levy-rise-will-hit-myer-sales-says-ceo-20130501-2it87.html?skin=text-only

2353

2/05/2013http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/why-queensland-didnt-need-to-sell-the-family-farm-20130501-2isgw.html A rational economic analysis on why Newman is backing away from the Costello faux audit. Be careful what you ask for seems to be the story. Having said that - watch Abbott do the same thing. As the article points out Kennett did.

Ad astra

2/05/2013LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/LYNS-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

lyn

2/05/2013Good Morning Ad, I have made a mistake this morning, would you be able to fix it for me please. The link on AusVotes is incorrect it should be:- Thank you to AusVotes 2013′s writers and readers http://ausvotes2013.com/2013/05/01/thank-you-to-ausvotes-2013s-writers-and-readers/ I hope you enjoy the links today again, there is quite a lot of information about the NIDS. Don't ask me why I am waiting to see what Loto says, as can guess anyway. A couple more pieces of information for you: [quote]Tony Abbott has called on Julia Gillard to release the full details of who will be covered by Labor's NDIS [/quote] http://www.news.com.au/national-news/federal-election/tony-abbott-has-called-on-julia-gillard-to-release-the-full-details-of-who-will-be-covered-by-labors-ndis/story-fnho52ip-1226633596640#ixzz2S5Jxmofp May 02, 2013 8:40AM [quote]Abbott: failure would cap off a disappointing parliament[/quote] But Mr Abbott expressed reservations about the Prime Minister's plan to fund the national disability insurance scheme with an 0.5 per cent increase in the Medicare levy, saying it would fund only half a scheme http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/abbott-failure-would-cap-off-a-disappointing-parliament-20130501-2itbq.html#ixzz2S5IliEan :):)

Patriciawa

2/05/2013Thanks again for that write-up, Lyn. I don't know how you do it. You must read so many posts and articles to select for us your daily links and somehow you manage to find a quote which gives us the nub of each one of them and so helps us find our way into that first essential reading for the day.

Tom of Melboune

2/05/2013[i]” You know they're only vexatious, not subject to reason, why bother?[/i] Studies in the UK demonstrate that Liberal Democrats and Greens voters have the highest IQs, the next most intelligent group are Conservative voters, who are then followed by Labour, finally the nationalist parties are the least intelligent. There is no reason to think Australian outcomes would be different. The reason that people here don’t like to exchange views with those with a different political perspective is that the Labour/Labor types aren’t as intelligent. The proof is evident to anyone who reads the contributions here.

Patriciawa

2/05/2013Talk Turkey - you would understand this. Late last night, just before our last 'wee walk' which Tacker and I always take before turning in, my sister-in-law phoned from the UK to say that my oldest brother had died, after a long and blessed life. So I needed to call in to give my daughter the news. I anticipated a bit of resistance from Tacker because he always tries to boycott next door since they got a new puppy a while back who supplanted him as top dog at that address. Last night, instead of as usual turning right outside our gate he turned immediately left and proceeded to lead the way along the street and then up Gillian's driveway to her front door. Then he sat quietly until they opened up and let us in. He has never willingly done that before. Not much sleep. Too many memories crowding in. I've just made a comment over at the Cafe about the Beveridge Report and how even in the turmoil of war, politics and opinion polls were important. Even while accepting all that the Beveridge commission said needed to be done to reform the terrible social conditions in the country the Tory PM Churchill had to give a broadcast on 21 March 1943 titled “After the War”, in which he warned the public [quote]"not to impose “great new expenditure on the State without any relation to the circumstances which might prevail at the time” [/quote] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beveridge_Report Thankfully the Poms didn't listen to him, or forgot his advice, in 1945 and voted Labour in which saw the country transformed and its economy revitalised. By the way, that blessed life which my four brothers and I have all enjoyed I think came about because Clement Atlee and his new Labour government set about implementing the reforms suggested Lord Beveridge's commission. We had a dreadful start, but that was then, and the Labour Party and union movement changed everything for the better.

grodo

2/05/2013 I agree with Tom. And it serves no useful purpose putting your head in a bucket of sand and denying the obvious truth....this government has been devisive and it wasn't necessary. 'Scroll the troll' joker

Ad astra

2/05/2013Hi Lyn I've made the change to the link to [i]Thank you to AusVotes 2013′s writers and readers[/i] to http://ausvotes2013.com/2013/05/01/thank-you-to-ausvotes-2013s-writers-and-readers/ on LYN'S DAILY LINKS, but I can't change it on TODAY'S LINKS that you have already posted, as our blog engine does not allow me to edit comments. I've already started on your links but have not got far because of all the news this morning about the NDIS saga. It looks as if the Coalition will support the legislation, but of course found it necessary to quibble.

Curi-Oz

2/05/2013Condolances PatriciaWA.

Ad astra

2/05/2013Patriciawa We are thinking of you at this sad time of loss.

Ad astra

2/05/2013Hi Lyn I’ve now finished your most enjoyable links. Mr Walker and Mr Wheeler was a good read, Grog’s graphs were worth a thousand words, the piece by Stella Young so telling, and Bob Ellis’ article amusing reading. Abbott may be in real trouble on May 9 when the Ettridge case against him is heard. Truth Seeker’s piece is good reading - I enjoyed his amusing photos, and [i]Gillard Cures Cancer in Spare Time, Approval Rating Plummets[/i] is great satire. You have found another good site in ‘Macrobusiness’. Thank you for another day of informative reading.

lyn

2/05/2013Hi Ad, Thankyou for fixing the incorrect link for me. Pleased you enjoyed the links. Hi Patricia, thankyou for your lovely words. How delightful to see you and Tacker back on TPS along with your always informative posts. It really is so good to see you writing again. "Good Girl" I am so sorry to hear of your sad loss Patricia. Loto has a Conditional Yes to the NDIS levy, conditional as you would expect. Some articles for you about their Mascot's presser:- [quote]Jennifer ‏ [/quote] Glaring revelation today: Abbott passes legislation he doesn't read. He does not know what is in #ndis legislation he passed in March [quote]Jennifer ‏ [/quote]So Abbott STILL doesn't read stuff. Wants to know who is 'covered' but it is all in the legislation. Neglected homework again! [quote]Abbott says 'conditional' yes to levy [/quote] http://media.theage.com.au/news/national-news/abbott-says-conditional-yes-to-levy-4238590.html [quote] Wait over on disability levy laws [/quote]But Opposition Leader Tony Abbott vowed that the [b]levy raise would be removed if it wins the next election once the budget returns to ''strong surplus''. [/b]http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/political-news/wait-over-on-disability-levy-laws-20130502-2iuaq.html#ixzz2S6GD1Lpi [quote]Tony Abbott has called on Julia Gillard to release the full details of who will be covered by Labor's NDIS[/quote] http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/tony-abbott-has-called-on-julia-gillard-to-release-the-full-details-of-who-will-be-covered-by-labors-ndis/story-e6frg6n6-1226633596640 :):):)

Catching up

2/05/2013Why has not the press pointed out, that the levy is a way of funding the NDIS that has been passed into law. Surely the questions that Abbott has raised were addressed, when he gave a bipartisanship support to the NDIS. The levy covers funding for the next five years. Full implementation does not come into being until 2018. That is five budgets and two elections away. What else does one need to know. Who is playing politics with the announcement. From where I am sitting, the PM is ensuring that Abbott has no wiggle room to delay the NDIS in any way. It is Abbott and co that hasw suggested, it might have to wait until an surplus is achieved.

bob macalba

2/05/2013Amusing http://www.theage.com.au/entertainment/tv-and-radio/paul-barry-to-return-as-media-watch-host-20130502-2iumx.html?google_editors_picks=true imagine that moron hosting the show.

bob macalba

2/05/2013Patriciawa Sorry to hear of your sad loss.

2353

2/05/2013PWA - sorry to hear about your loss. Take care of yourself.

Truth Seeker

2/05/2013Patricia, very sad for you and your loss, so condolences to you and your family.

TalkTurkey

2/05/2013Patricia A melancholic thing indeed the loss of a sibling. My sympathy. But your post had 3 parts, the sad news first, the uncanny touching Dog story next (and I have the odd one of my own) and your near-palpable defiant clenched fist in defence of the Left at last. Thanks for those stories. Isn't it good to be able to write your feelings out here!

Sir Ian Crisp

2/05/2013I see the bird of paradox, the pathological liar, was at it again today. After saying she would not increase the Medicare levy she has decided to do a backflip and increase the Medicare levy. What a liar she is. As if that wasn’t bad enough she had to use some poor wheelchair-bound people as props to announce her NDIS. What can we expect when the bird of paradox announces an increase in defence spending: will she be toting an AK-47 or make the announcement from inside a tank? What a disgrace this alleged woman is. Now Abbott is onboard with the NDIS and both he and the bird of paradox are in a competition to reach the high moral ground first. How sad and pathetic they and their alleged political parties are. It has taken until 2013 to enshrine in legislation a real chance to offer care and hope for those with a disability. Imagine that...2013 and we are finally seeing action. It’s revolting to think we have deprived disabled people of proper support and the money that should have been used for that has been diverted to fund the frivolity and stupidity of multiculturalism since about 1970. English classes, a plethora of government literature in 20 odd languages, interpreters provided to those who seek some form of government assistance, community grants...and on and on it goes. Here is but one example: [quote][b]In 2007–08, $32 million was provided for migrant community services. A total of 332 funding agreements provided settlement services under the SGP and CSSS.[/b][/quote] Just think of the billions that could have been spent more correctly.

jane

2/05/2013I'm very sad to read of your brother's death, patricia, but it must be of some comfort to know that his life was a blessed one. Animals are remarkable, aren't they? Tacker has his sixth sense well honed, I think. WRT the mean spirited, spiteful whinging and whining about NDIS funding from the Liars side of politics, if they are all sooooo concerned about the financial burden of the increased Medicare levy, why aren't they all up in arms about the $1,300/year to fund Liealot's daft and wasteful DAP? And none of these snivelling cowards like Matt Young seems to have the wit to know that one can be disabled in the blink if an eye by a stroke, a sporting or vehicle accident, the bite of a mosquito or any number of easily contracted illnesses. I'd make any sort of a bet that in the event of such a disaster, creatures like Young would be squealing loud and long for everything he could get, while begrudging other sufferers any help. In any case, I would have thought that as disabilities are health issues, funding for the NDIS would come under the Medicare umbrella. As for the snivelling about the rate of the levy, it has been pointed out the medicare levy, like income tax, is levied on income. For an increase of $300/year, you must be earning $72k. Yet another misleading factless storm in a Liars Party teacup.

TalkTurkey

2/05/2013Dear Dorothy Dix, Here's a *funny* conversation I've just had with that well-known wit raconteur interviewer and supporter of Ruddstoration Phillip Adams. Apparently apropos of nothing at all, he Tweeted this odd message: Phillip Adams‏@PhillipAdams_11 May [i]Once said Aust. looked like a big bum hovering over the cold toilet seat of the Antarctic. Syd & Perth on the hips,Adelaide the sphincter[/i] To which I as a Croweater replied [i]Hilarious. Oh yeah, irony.[/i] Then David Horton‏@watermelon_man said to PhillipAdams [i]sort of like the arse-end of the world Phillip?[/i] So I replied to watermelon_man (and PhillipAdams) [i]Arsehole is as arsehole sees. I see a bouquet, [b]a wombat on its back,[/b] a lot of things, none scatological[/i]. To which Phillip Adams said [i]TalkyTurkey you see Oz as a [b]dead wombat?[/b]that's more lyrical than a big bum?Don't think you pose urgent threat to Dorothea M ....[/i] IS THAT WEIRD OR WHAT?! So I TalkTurkey‏ replied [i]PhillipAdams You think everything on its back is dead? [b]On yer back![/b][/i] Dorothy, was I being unnecessarily acerbic do you think? ;-)

Tom of Melbourne

2/05/2013Bizarre and nonsensical. Proof of my comment at 10.09.

LadyInRed

2/05/2013My sympathy Patricia on the loss of your brother.

2353

2/05/2013Interesting "comment of the day" which has been displayed on the Brisbane Times site since around lunchtime today. It links back to the Ross GIttens piece that was discussed here yesterday. [quote]We have one of the most unequal income distribution in the developed world spurred on by an upper middle class welfare system that does nothing to promote productivity or general economic growth. Gillard has to be brave and ignore the "shock- jocks" and take the super concessions away from those who should never have received it in the first place. Toby[/quote] Quite accurate and not supportive of any Government in the past 20 years.

Patriciawa

2/05/2013Many thanks to all of you who have expressed your sympathies to me. I guess I had hoped first thing this morning that in talking about how fortunate the lives of my brothers and I have been after a very shaky beginning that it might be understood that I was not in mourning and not in need of commiserations. Obviously though I've had too little contact with death of either close friends or family. It's been extraordinarily comforting to read all of your messages and to appreciate how social forms have developed to meet needs we may not be fully aware of ourselves. Thank you again.

DMW

2/05/2013I am not into, or on,orthcia express Facebook myself but I thought you should be informed of this fact: [i]Nobody has [u]EVER[/u] had a Facebook Status celebrating a NSW State of Origin win[/i] Bloody Gloating Banana Bender informed me of this.

Casablanca

2/05/2013Another instance, it seems, of Abbott not having an eye for detail and/or not bothering to read his briefs. [b]Open slather for penalised doctors after Abbott gaffe invalidates panel[/b] April 3, 2013 Harriet Alexander Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/open-slather-for-penalised-doctors-after-abbott-gaffe-invalidates-panel-20130402-2h4sm.html#ixzz2S8mBgxD6

Capstan

3/05/2013So what's happening in Labour La La Land at the moment? How much worse can it get for the most incompetent, useless and spendthrift government Australia has ever seen? You'd think that with all the lies, all the waste and all the sheer stupidity evidenced and manifested over the years by Gillard's rabble of lemmings that arrogance would be the last affliction visiting any of this government's ministers. But NO! How wrong am I! Just when you'd think nothing can get any worse for Gillard - along comes swaggering big-head Mark Dreyfus who refuses to obey the law by turning off his frigging mobile phone on an aircraft that was taking off - just like everybody else. One law for the little people - another law for Gillard and her ministers. His pig-headed, stupid refusal to obey the law of which HE is the custodian was so blatant and contemptuous of the safety of everybody else on that plane that the Captain of the aircraft deemed it necessary for the AFP to be called - which they did, upon the aircraft's arrival at its destination. Dreyfus MUST be charged - his arrogance is breathtaking, condemnable and unacceptable. His stupidity is fully in keeping with all the other stupidity demonstrated on a daily basis by this government of fools, spivs and charlatans. And his rightful punishment at the hands of the law must be demonstrated as clearly for all as will be the terrible punishment this government is dealt in September at the hands of the people. Now let's see you turkeys on this pathetic ALP fan club try to defend him!

lyn

3/05/2013Today’s Links Australia is NOT an economic basket case by @independentaus investing to ensure jobs and growth are secured during a severe time of hardship is the responsible thing to do. The irresponsible thing to do would have been to cut expenditure, in a reckless aimless slash and burn mentality, now exhibited horrifyingly in my state of Queensland, http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/politics/australia-is-not-an-economic-basket-case/ Howard’s golden age: a history lesson by @MigloMT Many Australians are aware of how the Howard Government’s poll-driven rhetoric is reshaping the Australian psyche. But they don’t know how the poll-driven policies are reshaping Australian government http://theaimn.com/2013/05/02/howards-golden-age-a-history-lesson/ The Guardian announces further appointments including blogger Greg Jericho’ by @mumbrella The British newspaper has this morning confirmed the appointment of commentator Greg Jericho as its economics writer, political scientist Simon Jackman ahead of the 2013 Federal Election. Jericho and Jackman join http://mumbrella.com.au/the-guardian-announces-further-appointments-153328 Department of the Treasury - Australian Government : Coalition clangers 9: Abbott repeats his growth myth by @ForTraders saying: What we need to do essentially is restore stronger economic growth.The only problem with Mr Abbott's statements is that Australia has been growing strongly for 21 consecutive years. http://www.4-traders.com/news/Department-of-the-Treasury-Australian-Government-Coalition-clangers-9-Abbott-repeats-his-growth--16805581/ Disability Levy Serves The Common Good by @beneltham Gemma Jones in the Daily Telegraph, for instance, furnished her readers with this lamentably unbalanced piece, which presents the Government's decision to introduce Disability Care as a “broken promise", largely ignoring the fact that the scheme itself is longstanding Labor policy http://newmatilda.com//2013/05/02/disability-levy-serves-common-goodhhhh Coalition support for levy just a step along the road to an NDIS by @ConversationEDU The remaining A$3.5 billion will still need to be found from other sources.And Abbott has promised that a Coalition government would scrap the Medicare levy when the budget returns to a strong surplus. http://theconversation.com/coalition-support-for-levy-just-a-step-along-the-road-to-an-ndis-13890 Incorrect reports on income taxes by Press office The Daily Telegraph, Adelaide Advertiser and news.com.au have today misled their readers with a thoroughly inaccurate claim about personal income tax. http://ministers.treasury.gov.au/wmsDisplayDocs.aspx?doc=pressreleases/2013/058.htm&PageID=003&min=wms&Year=&DocType=0 Uren: Abbott promises threaten Budget by @macro_business given the lack of coverage and the liklihood of regime change, is an excellent analysis by David Uren of The Australian looking at Tony Abbott’s much larger spending promises http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/05/uren-abbott-promises-threaten-budget/ The strange politics, and sensible economics, of the NDIS levy by @BernardKeane http://www.crikey.com.au/2013/05/02/the-strange-politics-and-sensible-economics-of-the-ndis-levy/ ASHBY v SLIPPER APPEAL HEARING. Full Court of the Federal Court by Joan Evatt, @boeufblogginon Today was the first day of a two-day hearing by the Full Court of the Federal Court. Justices Mansfield, Siopis and Gilmour are concurrently hearing both the application http://boeufblogginon.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/ashby-v-slipper-appeal-hearing-full-court-of-the-federal-court/ Abbott and Hockey condemn National Disability Insurance Scheme to limbo if Coalition wins govern by @no_filter_Yamba The Opposition Leader has still not given his unconditional support to the levy and continues to misrepresent known details of the National Disability Insurance Scheme. http://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/abbott-and-hockey-condemn-national.html Budget smudget by @fakeedbutler This is how ludicrous the debate has become. The carbon price is not a tax. It is not intended to raise revenue, but to properly price an externality. The purpose of the carbon price is to, funnily enough, create an incentive for heavily polluting companies to lower their http://ausvotes2013.com/2013/05/02/budget-smudget/ The Press Gallery contemplates reform: Join the conversation by @margokingston1 I feel that compliance with an ethical code is the main signifier of a journalist, and must be strengthened as part of our effort to save the profession/art/craft from extinction. http://australiansforhonestpolitics.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/the-press-gallery-contemplates-reform-join-the-conversation/ Special report: Australia's carbon budget hole by Tristan Edis The Coalition’s budgeting for 85 million tonnes of abatement from soil carbon is completely unrealistic at any price, let alone $10 per tonne. To make matters worse there isn’t any feasible alternative that might come to the rescue of its budget costings http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/5/2/policy-politics/special-report-australias-carbon-budget-hole#ixzz2S7iJvFHl Son Of A Gun by @madwixxy As I reported is a previous article, shootings in NSW have spiralled totally out of control in NSW since the Coalition took office. http://wixxyleaks.com/2013/05/02/son-of-a-gun/ Politicians… Watch My Lips Guest Post: by Pollywatcher, @turnleft2013 Abbott did his usual number carrying on about how bad the government is, how the PM has been overspending, and how, if he is elected he will have to fix the problems. He has a plan you know. http://turnleft2013.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/politicians-watch-my-lips-guest-post-pollywatcher/ The Dole Bludger Myth and Government Policy: ‘Support the System that Supports You’ by Paul, @KenParish1 dole bludger has haunted our political folklore since the Whitlam years of the 1970s. In, I think, 1973 the Whitlam government outraged the editors of the major Australian newspapers by doubling the dole and not long afterwards, http://clubtroppo.com.au/2013/05/02/the-dole-bludger-myth-and-government-policy-support-the-system-that-supports-you/ How climate scientists are being framed by @readfearn To turn the public off climate change, right-wing media is blaming scientists for hurting kids and being puppets of totalitarianism http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/planet-oz/2013/may/02/how-climate-scientists-being-framed Retailers outraged over tax hike as Myer weathers backlash for levy comments by @YolandaRedrup Retailers are up in arms about the federal government’s new Medicare levy announced yesterday, saying it will limit consumers’ discretionary spending and impact confidence http://www.smartcompany.com.au/tax/055355-retailers-outraged-over-tax-hike-as-myer-weathers-backlash-over-levy-comments.html Today’s Front Pages Australian Newspaper Front Pages for 3 May 2013 http://www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm

nasking

3/05/2013 THE FACT THE MURDOCH EMPIRE IS GOING AFTER MARK DREYFUS IS VERY TELLING. HE MADE A MISTAKE ON A PLANE. HE APOLOGISED. TONY ABBOTT HAS NOT TOLD THE TRUTH ABOUT THE ANTI-ONE NATION SLUSH FUND...NOR HIS INVOLVEMENT IN THE SLIPPER AFFAIR...ETC ETC... WHEN ARE THE MURDOCH PEOPLE GOING TO BE HONEST ABOUT ABBOTT... AND STOP [b]PERSECUTING[/b] THE LIKES OF MARK DREYFUS? LOOK BENEATH THE GLOSS AND THE BS AND YOU WILL SEE THE MURDOCH CONARTISTS AND THEIR NEO-CON AND LIBERTARIAN MATES FOR WHO THEY TRULY ARE. NOT SURPRISING THEY ARE LOVED BY WHITE SUPREMACISTS, RED NECKS...ETC. N'

nasking

3/05/2013 PATRICIA, SORRY TO HEAR ABOUT THE LOSS OF YER BROTHER. SENDING HEALING KARMA YER WAY. N'

nasking

3/05/2013 USEFUL LINKS LYN...CHEERS! FROM: Howard’s golden age: a history lesson By MIGLO: [b]Natasha Stott Despoja gave us a history lesson of Howard’s golden age. Abbott wants to recreate it. If we haven’t learned from history . . . it will be repeated.[/b] INDEED. ABBOTT AND TEAM ARE 24-7 SCHEMERS OF THE WORST KIND...IF THEY CAN WORK OUT WAYS TO TAKE FROM THOSE WHO HAVE NO OR FEW VOICES...IN ORDER TO GIVE TO THEIR MASTERS AND SO CALLED 'WEALTH CREATORS' THEY WILL. WEALTH CREATORS...CORPORATIONS ARE PEOPLE...FREE TRADE...ERA OF ENTITLEMENTS...I CHUCKLE WHEN I HEAR THIS CRAP. IT'S A RIGGED SYSTEM...MONEY FLOODING UPWARDS... AT LEAST DISABILITYCARE WILL HELP REDIRECT THE MONEY A BIT...TO DO THE RIGHT THING. BUT ABBOTT MUST BE WATCHED WITH A MAGNIFYING GLASS...NOT TO BE TRUSTED. NOT NOW. NOT EVER. N'

nasking

3/05/2013 [b]The Guardian announces further appointments including blogger Greg Jericho[/b] CONGRATS GREG! OR SHOULD WE SAY GROG? :D LOOKIN' GOOD. HOPE THEY GRAB TIM DUNLOP. AND MARGO KINGSTON. PETER WICKS? MR. DENMORE? I READ THESE COMMENTORS REGULARLY. N'

nasking

3/05/2013 MILLIBAND MUST BE DOING A GOOD JOB IF HE'S PISSED OFF THIS MUCH THE MURDOCH EMPIRE'S [b]DYING SUN SHINES WEAKLY OUTA BLACK HOLE[/b] LOT: [b]The paper gave a damning indictment of Labour, saying Ed Miliband's recent public outings were shambolic and claiming that the party was "still in complete denial about the economic mess they created when in power".[/b] http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2013/may/02/sun-refuses-back-party-local-elections WE ARE OF COURSE REFERRING TO THE UK TABLOID [i]THE SUN[/i] (LOL)...OWNED BY [b]HE WHO MUST BE OBEYED...OR THE BIG SOOK RUPERT WILL SET HIS RABID DOGS ON YA [/b] N'

nasking

3/05/2013 BACK LATER IN DAY...EYES PERMITTING. BEEN TOLD NOT TO READ TOO MUCH...EYE STRAIN DUE TO REDUCED CLARITY OF VISION. LITTLE BETTER TODAY BECAUSE I TOOK TIME OFF, RELAXED EYES. CHEERS TT. N'

Ad astra

3/05/2013LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/LYNS-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Tom of Melboune

3/05/2013Nasking on Mark Dreyfus - [i] HE MADE A MISTAKE ON A PLANE. [/i] No he didn’t. He deliberately disobeyed an instruction from an authorised airline safety officer. There are specific regulations about the use on aircraft, and they are in place because the signal can interfere with the aircraft radio and navigation systems. Dreyfus was specifically instructed, and big noted himself. [b]IF THE ATTOURNEY GENERAL CANNOT WILLINGLY COMPLY WITH A SAFETY REGULATION, WHO SHOULD?[/b]

bob macalba

3/05/2013NASKING DONT OVERDO IT BIG BEAR, REST THOSE EYES LOTS OF BIG BATTLES AHEAD AND YOUR INSIGHTS AND COMMENTS WILL BE VERY USEFUL, ALWAYS READ YOUR STUFF AND FIND THEM HONEST AND FROM THE HEART, LOOK AFTER YOUR HEALTH FIRST THOUGH CHEERS

Catching up

3/05/2013How do you know he deliberately used the phone. Did you listen to the whole interview on the ABC. It appears that it is not dangerous to have mobiles on now. The truth is, they are being over careful. Nothing wrong with that, but it is not a hanging offence. Yews, one should obey rules, but have you ever forgot about your phone.

Catching up

3/05/2013The real announcement today is the Defence White paper. Getting riled up, and accusing someone of not turning their phone off will not divert attention from that. Another good performance from the PM. Now accused of bringing props in for the launch. One can only laugh. Is it also true, the PM can also outdo Abbott on the props as well.

MWS

3/05/2013I have read Tristan Edis' article in Climate Spectator this morning (form Lyn's Links) and the second part here: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/5/3/policy-politics/special-report-hunt%E2%80%99s-back-envelope-foundations-direct-action He writes: [quote]"The reality is that the Coalition’s Direct Action budget costing is built upon an incredibly optimistic back of the envelope foundation stone."[/quote] I remember that John Howard's "back of the envelope" calculation of $10b for the Murray-Darling scheme. Could somebody re-write the LNP pamphlet to show each page with an "envelope" watermark? There would be plenty of room, as the so-called policies have no detail. Also from the same article: [quote]In conjunction with Ben Rose’s optimistic assessment of 20 million tonnes of abatement from soil carbon, this suggests the Coalition would have spent up all of its $1.2 billion budget plus a bit more ($25 x 59m = $1.475b) and would still fall 81 million tonnes of CO2 short of its 5 per cent emission reduction target.[/quote] My condolences to Patricia NASKING, HAVE YOU CONSIDERED TEXT TO SPEECH PROGRAMS FOR THE BLIND? APOLOGIES IF I'M TELLING YOU HOW TO SUCK EGGS.

Tom of Melbourne

3/05/2013Catching Up, on every flight the crew directs passengers to switch off their mobiles. The crew (approved safety officers by CASA) walk along to see whether people have complied. Dreyfus refused. He was reminded again and again refused. So the Attourney General considered himself in a rule free class, above the rest of the travelling public. Aircraft engineers state that mobiles can interfere with navigation and communication systems, but this differs between aircraft. Do you know more than the aircraft enginers?

Catching up

3/05/2013The minister has apoligised. Story in the media, different from that on the ABC. Wonder how often the pilot has taken this action. If what was said by the pilot on the ABC, there must be hundreds every day. Maybe some believe reading emails not the same as talking. Still it does not warrant the outcry of some. It seems to be a regulation, that thanks to new technology, has out grown it's used. Yes, years ago, the phones did affect safety. Does not appear to be the case today. I suspect their is a little truth, but has been greatly exaggerated to harm the minister. The fact that the story found it;s way into the public arena, makes one think. Yes, it should not happened. Is it a sacking offence, I believe not. Do we have the true story, I suspect not.

Tom of Melboune

3/05/2013Catching Up - [i]” It seems to be a regulation, that thanks to new technology, has out grown it's used. Yes, years ago, the phones did affect safety. Does not appear to be the case today.[/i] I don’t think you have any idea what you’re talking about. Whereas Aircraft Engineers may have a better idea – [i] Australian Licensed Aircraft Engineers Association secretary Steve Purvinas said yesterday Mr Dreyfus' mobile phone could have interfered with navigation systems. Mr Purvinas said mobile phones were banned during take-off because they could affect radio altimeters.[/i] Catching Up, I travel on an aircraft about twice a week, usually just Melbourne to Sydney or Brisbane return on the same day. That’s about 100 flights a year. I have NEVER observed any passenger refuse to turn off their mobile when requested. You never fail to mindlessly defend the ALP, regularly just making stuff up. Dreyfus big noted, considered himself more important than the rest of the travelling public, but he’s the Attorney General and disregarded safety regulation. Read more: http://www.news.com.au/travel/news/attorney-general-mark-dreyfus-apology-for-air-incident/story-e6frfq80-1226634242956#ixzz2SBoM7rfs

Jason

3/05/2013Insiders ABC‏@InsidersABC3h #insiders on Sunday: @JuliaGillard joins Barrie Cassidy. Panel @JacquelineMaley @farrm51 @frankellyabc .. Lots to talk about!

cuppa

3/05/2013Hi Catching Up, Please do not respond to the Fiberal trolls. Thank you.

2353

3/05/2013Some troll said [quote]Catching Up, I travel on an aircraft about twice a week, usually just Melbourne to Sydney or Brisbane return on the same day. That’s about 100 flights a year. I have NEVER observed any passenger refuse to turn off their mobile when requested. [/quote] Well I travel on planes frequently as well and I see people leave their phones on without interference from the flight attendants. Your point is what exactly? (sorry cuppa - but crap like that deserves rebuttal).

Tom of Melbourne

3/05/2013Which airline? No doubt you're aware that the procedures vary with aircraft type, age and the avionic system.

Jason

3/05/2013 Posted on May 2, 2013 by Mark Latham Posted in Opinion on May 2, 2013. It takes a fair bit to offend me these days but Nick Cater’s new book The Lucky Culture and the Rise of an Australian Ruling Class has done the trick. It is an infuriating and fundamentally dishonest attempt to demolish everything Labor might reasonably stand for this century: action on climate change, support for the Hawke/Keating economic model, ongoing higher education expansion, Whitlamite service delivery and sensible human rights safeguards http://chifley.org.au/opinion/the-culture-wars-legitimate-battlefield-or-just-another-sneaky-right-wing-attack/

Capstan

3/05/2013You bunch of jerks are as predictable as Pavlov's dogs. Dreyfus broke the law. Repeat after me, Naskin and Catching: [b]Dreyfus broke the law[/b]. He [b]refused [/b]to turn his mobile phone off, despite having been requested to do so on a number of occasions - and to the extent that the Captain of the aircraft felt compelled to call the Federal Police - which is what happened. All your collective crap that you offer as some sort of excuse for Dreyfus's condemnable behaviour is exactly that - condemnable crap. If Abbott had done this - you would be howling for his head on a plate - and you would be right in so doing. Your defence of Dreyfus is defence of the indefensible. Your attempts to ignore what Dreyfus did show that you, collectively, have just as much respect for the law as does Craig Thomson and Julia Gillard: none at all. No-one is above the law. That includes Thomson, Dreyfus, the NSW branch of the ALP - and Gillard herself. Craig Thomson broke the law and will get what is coming to him. Julia Gillard should be very nervous about the ongoing investigations into the AWU matter - if she is proven to have lied about signing the affidavit, she will get what she deserves. And now BigHead Dreyfus should now get what he deserves for thinking he is above his very own laws. The ALP is full of crooks, liars, spivs, conmen and thieves -as is being demonstrated every day in the NSW enquiry - and as shall be proven in the Royal Commissions yet to come, after Tony Abbott is swept into power. I can hardly wait.

nasking

3/05/2013 CHEERS bob macalba...I WILL BE MORE CAREFUL NOW...BECAUSE I BOTH BLOG AND USE FACEBOOK MY EYES GET VERY TIRED THESE DAYS. THNX FOR THE SUPPORTIVE COMMENT. I ENJOY READING YER INSIGHTFUL COMMENTS TOO. HISTORY WILL SHOW WE WERE GENERALLY ON THE SIDE OF GOOD, FAIR AND USEFULLY PROGRESSIVE...WITH A DOLLOP OF TRADITIONAL COMMON-SENSE AND WAYS THAT REMAIN VIABLE. MWS, ACTUALLY I HAVEN'T...HOPEFULLY WON'T REACH THAT POINT...BUT...I WILL DEFINITELY LOOK INTO IT. THNX FOR SUGGESTION. ANYONE ELSE GET THE FEELING THE COALITION AND ITS SUPPORTERS ARE GETTING A WEE BIT WORRIED? I STILL CAN'T GET OUTA MY MIND THAT VISION OF JOE HOCKEY GOING BALLISTIC OVER THE INCREASE IN THE MEDICARE LEVY FOR DISABILITY CARE...NOT ONLY DID HE COME ACROSS LIKE SCROOGE BEFORE THE GHOSTS VISITING...BUT HE SOUNDED LIKE HE REALLY HAD NO IDEA OF WHAT HE WAS DOING... [b]PERHAPS HOCKEY WAS PUT IN THE SHADOW TREASURER POSITION TO MAKE TONY ABBOTT LOOK BETTER? IT HASN'T WORKED...THEY BOTH COME ACROSS AS ECONOMIC MORONS...TWEEDLE DUMB...AND TWEEDLE DUMBER.[/b] N'

Michael

3/05/2013Barrie Cassidy seems so determined to push forward his 'Abbott has been demonstrating the "smarts" to be PM' thesis that he'll tie himself in knots to make the fragile case. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-05-03/cassidy-ndis-agreement/4666798 Will he try again actually talking with Prime Minister Gillard on Sunday Morning? Just quietly, line up the three of them, I know who I reckon has the biggest 'smarts' amongst the trio, and the 'smarts' in question don't come with a scrotum.

nasking

3/05/2013 PRESENTLY DOING THE ROUNDS ON FACEBOOK...THOUGHT IT MIGHT BE APPRECIATED BY MANY ON THIS SITE: “[b]Conservatives say if you don't give the rich more money, they will lose their incentive to invest. As for the poor, they tell us they've lost all incentive because we've given them too much money.[/b]” ― George Carlin SPOT ON. CYBER-CARLIN LIVES! N'

nasking

3/05/2013 THIS GOT ME THINKIN' OF ABBOTT AND HIS 'VOLUNTEER OBSESSION'...AND THE PRESENT UK TORY 'BIG SOCIETY': "[b]Have you ever wondered why Republicans are so interested in encouraging people to volunteer in their communities? It’s because volunteers work for no pay. Republicans have been trying to get people to work for no pay for a long time[/b]." - George Carlin AMEN! N'

Patriciawa

3/05/2013Thank you, Nasking, and other friends for your kind thoughts. I am finding the contact with other members of the family in WA with our plans to celebrate what would have been Len's 85th birthday later this month is very comforting.

nasking

3/05/2013 IN MANY WAYS TRUE...BUT I WOULD ADD 'ADDICTED NAIVE VOICELESS CONSUMER': "Once you leave the womb, conservatives don't care about you until you reach military age. Then you’re just what they’re looking for. Conservatives want live babies so they can raise them to be dead soldiers." - George Carlin N'

nasking

3/05/2013 PATRICIA, GOOD TO HEAR. KEEP WELL. ENJOYED THE POME. MY CONTRIBUTION: [b]TONY ABBOTT CYCLED HARD HIS ECONOMIC PLANS MERELY LARD ENUFF TO GIVE A CORONARY TO THE NATION LET'S SEND HIM TO THE SPACE STATION[/b] N'

Patriciawa

3/05/2013 Nasking, you may say [quote]CONGRATS GREG! OR SHOULD WE SAY GROG? [/quote] but I don't think the Rupert will be smiling, do you? Remember how they had a big go at him? Even 'unmasked' him.* http://blogs.theaustralian.news.com.au/mediadiary/index.php/theaustralian/comments/what_does_grogs_gamut_look_like/ Didn't do him a bit of damage, simply established his reputation more firmly as a very credible economics commentator and honest journalist. [b]Jericho Stands Firm In Battle With Murdoch*[/b] Dear Grog, what is it about you That someone at News Limited Is so very keen to out you, To somehow have discredited, What you say and what you do. At first they tried by naming you. But you wouldn’t be inhibited. They found no way of shaming you, Or getting you prohibited From publishing your point of view. Now, with malice quite unmerited, They’ve informed us, with a sneer or two, That your picture’s now exhibited Where everyone can look at you. So we followed up and visited........ There you were unmasked, ‘unveiled.’ Your face, for which we’re grateful, Grog, As Ralph Fiennes look-alike has failed. It does, however, reflect what’s in your blog; That honest clarity which has murky Murdoch media nailed. http://polliepomes.wordpress.com/2011/05/21/murdoch-battles-with-jericho/

Catching up

3/05/2013"Qantas staff had told one of the country’s top lawmakers to stop using his phone during the flight for fear it could interfere with the aircraft’s systems. But he refused and the airline staff called for help from the AFP mid-flight. “The AFP has been advised of an alleged incident on board a flight from Sydney to Brisbane on 23 April 2013,” an AFP spokesman said. “The incident involved a passenger allegedly failing to comply with the directions of crew.” Did you witness this incident on the Qantas flight? Call our newsdesk on 9292 1226 or email news@heraldsun.com.au But when the aircraft landed the airline had withdrawn its complaint “The AFP responded to a request for assistance from the airline when the flight landed at Brisbane Airport,” the AFP spokesman said. “On arrival the airline advised no assistance was required.” The Attorney-General's Office has confirmed the incident happened. Mr Dreyfus denies that he ignored repeated requests to switch his phone off. His office said he was asked once by flight staff to turn his phone off but not by the captain, though the flight deck was informed of his conduct, 3AW reported. Qantas has remained tight-lipped, saying it does not comment on individual customers.." Read more: http://www.news.com.au/travel/news/attorney-general-mark-dreyfus-confronted-by-airline-staff-after-he-fails-to-turn-off-his-phone-on-qantas-flight/story-e6frfq80-1226633709549#ixzz2SDX0hNrR Minister denied not obeying instructions. Minister apologized at the time. I remember Mr. Abbott pulling up in his car, just outside Canberra. He was met by some high ranking NSW police officers, for one of his stunt. Abbott pulled up and parked in a Disabled parking spot. The car remained there, while Abbott proceeded with his stunt. The car was still there when he got back in the car. To rub salt into the wound, there were other spots available a few metres away. Yes, that was breaking the law. Why did not the police act. Just stop making mountains out of molehills and get on with what is important today. Suspect Defence White paper interest more.

jane

3/05/2013Crapstain, I take it you will shortly be calling for the resignation of Liealot, for his role in raising the slush fund to prosecute Pauline Hanson and then lying to the AEC and the Parliament about it? I believe there is a court action wrt this. Then we've got Liealot, Prissy, Brough, Hockey etc attempting to pervert the course of justice, or do you not regard that as a crime? Arthur Sinodonis and who knows how many other Liars who were involved with Obeid? Or do you think their involvement in his corrupt scheme is a mere detail and should be waved away? What about AWB? $300m to bribe a foreign dictator whose country the war criminal Howard would shortly invade. WRT Thomson, it may have escaped your notice, but FWA has dropped the cornetto case against Thomson. They must have had some convincing evidence. Bwwwahahahahaha! Gillard-they've been trying to manufacture a case against her for 20 years, but have got zip, no matter how hard they twist and turn. All you cretins have got is a fistful of ifs-if only Gillard HAD done what we'd like her to have, if only the witnesses we've dredged up weren't found to be liars, crooks and spivs, if only Larry Pickering isn't a conman and criminal, if only all the S&G "revelations" had been provided by someone who actually knew what they were talking about, everything would be OK. Frankly, I think a judicial enquiry or a nice Royal Commission into AWB, Liealot's slush fund and Ashbygate would be very informative and a delight to behold. And who knows, there may be a case of a war crime to be answered by the Rodent? I think war crimes, perverting the course of justice, slush funds while serving as a government minister and bribing a foreign dictator with public monies, just for starters, are far more indicative of a culture of corruption, criminal behaviour and spivvery. Behaviour which you and the rest of the barrackers think is unremarkable and acceptable. Says a great deal about your moral compass, or lack thereof. BTW, I have flown with 3 different airlines recently and passengers were told they could turn on their phones after the plane was in the air. I was quite surprised, but things change, phone technology advances rapidly. We're even allowed to leave phones on in hospitals, these days. Having said that, Dreyfus should have turned his phone off when asked. NAS' @7.29AM, THE MURDOCHRACY IS SOOO PREDICTABLE, ISN'T IT? "SHAMBOLIC", PROBABLY MEANS MILLIBAND IS ON THE RIGHT TRACK. LOL I ALSO HOPE THE GUARDIAN GIVES MARGO KINGSTON, TIM DUNLOP, WIXXY AND MR DENMORE THE NOD. THEY DON'T GILD THE LILY AND YOU CAN RELY ON THEM TO BE TRUTHFUL AND PRESENT THE FACTS. I DON'T MIND CRITICISM OF THE GOVERNMENT SO LONG AS IT IS FACTUALLY BASED AND NOT JUST A REGURGITATION OF IPA & MENZIES HOUSE PROPAGANDA. LOOK AFTER YOURSELF AND SAY HELLO TO 'S FROM ME. YOU ARE A PAIR OF POWERHOUSES. LOVELY TO SEE YOU COMMENTING, BUT DON'T OVERDO IT. WE NEED YOU IN TOP FORM AS WE GET CLOSER TO 14/9. REST THOSE EYES. I AGREE WRT HOCKEY. HE'S ALL OVER THE SHOP; ALWAYS HAS BEEN, BUT HE MUST BE GETTING RATTLED. I WONDER WHAT'S COOKING WITH THE LIARS?

nasking

3/05/2013 THNX JANE...BEST TO YOU AND YER HUBBY TOO. WONDERFUL TO SEE YER STILL EFFECTIVELY STICKING THE BOOT IN TO THE LIAR'S PARTY. I'LL PASS ON YER BEST WISHES TO S'. [b]I ALSO HOPE THE GUARDIAN GIVES MARGO KINGSTON, TIM DUNLOP, WIXXY AND MR DENMORE THE NOD. THEY DON'T GILD THE LILY AND YOU CAN RELY ON THEM TO BE TRUTHFUL AND PRESENT THE FACTS. I DON'T MIND CRITICISM OF THE GOVERNMENT SO LONG AS IT IS FACTUALLY BASED AND NOT JUST A REGURGITATION OF IPA & MENZIES HOUSE PROPAGANDA.[/b] COULDN'T AGREE MORE. TOO MANY IN THE MSM COME ACROSS LIKE LIBERAL THINK TANK PROPAGANDA MACHINES THESE DAYS...SURE, THEY'LL DEVIATE OCCASIONALLY TO GIVE PERCEPTION OF BALANCE...BUT WE AREN'T FOOLED. AS FOR THE UK RESULTS...SO FAR TURNED OUT AS I HOPED...WE'VE GOT SOME USEFUL LABOUR GAINS...BUT WE NOW HAVE A STRONG UK STYLE TEA PARTY IN UKIP...NOT GOOD FOR THE TORIES...LET THE FUN AND CHAOS BEGIN. THE RIGHTIES NEVER LEARN. N'

nasking

3/05/2013 LOL...CHECK OUT THE SPIN BY A TORY IN THE UK: [quote]One Conservative MP has already responded to the election results by urging David Cameron to strengthen his stance on Europe. (See 7.37am.) Now another, Sarah Wollaston, has identified cronyism as Cameron's problem. Speaking on the BBC, she said that the Conservatives were addressing the voters' concerns about immigration. But, she said, Ukip were capitalising on the public's dislike of the political class. It was unfortunate that ... what [people] saw at Westminster was more examples of patronage. We saw Ed Miliband promising a job to his brother if he ever became prime minister. We saw more examples of that sense of people giving jobs to their friends. We've got to address the issue of patronage because it's undermining the confidence that people have in politics and politicians. [b]Huw Edwards (rightly) pointed out that she was not really talking about Miliband; she was actually referring to Cameron, and his habit of handing out top jobs to Old Etonians and other chums. Wollaston (rather unconvincingly) said she was talking about "all parties".[/b][/quote] AND NOTE THIS: [b]More from Labour HQ. A source says the party did better than in Harlow and Hastings, winning seven out of eight seats, than it did in 1997. Labour thinks it is doing well in the areas that will be battleground seats in 2015.[/b] http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/blog/2013/may/03/local-elections-2013-live-blog AND: [b]Labour holds David Miliband's South Shields seat as UKIP come second in by-election and Lib Dems lose their deposit in humiliating SEVENTH place[/b] Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2318651/Labour-holds-David-Milibands-South-Shields-seat-UKIP-come-second-election-Lib-Dems-lose-deposit-humiliating-SEVENTH-place.html#ixzz2SDw9XdVJ WELL DONE Emma Lewell-Buck. N'

Capstan

3/05/2013Yup - just as predicted - all the Labour luvvies here at Rustville go into paroxysm to prove that arrogant Dreyfus is not guilty of breaking the law when he has just broken the law. You are all truly pathetic. Hurry up, election - I really REALLY want to post on this toxic blog the morning after.

Casablanca

4/05/2013And from Mike Carlton: [i]Plus there was Peter Costello. Like some rheumy old rocker still carting his act around the country RSL clubs, croaking his half-forgotten hits to a tinny backing track, The Smirk appeared on ABC TV's 7.30 to remind us what a fabulous treasurer he had been. Turns out he doesn't like levies either. Or spending on anything at a time like this, really. That would be the same Peter Costello who, in 1997, flogged off most of the nation's gold reserves at the bottom of the market. He got about $305 an ounce for it. Just over a decade later, gold hit a high of about $1,900 an ounce. Costello's incompetence cost the taxpayer $7 billion, give or take. You'd get a lot of disability insurance for that.[/i] Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/comment/hold-your-horses-theres-plenty-more-to-come-20130503-2iybr.html#ixzz2SEuqeLt6

nasking

4/05/2013 PERHAPS ABBOTT WOULD BE BETTER FOCUSING ON HIS JOB RATHER THAN USING A CHARITY BIKING EVENT AS A COVER TO DO ELECTIONEERING?...SENATOR JOHNSON LOOKED STRESSED AND CONFUSED TO ME: [quote]When asked whether he would like to see new Collins Class submarines, Senator Johnston said, "I wouldn't want to go back near Collins if it was the last thing on earth that we had to do, I think Collins has been a very expensive disaster". But when asked about the fleet, Mr Abbott offered a different opinion. "I think that the Collins have had their moments, but the military personnel that I speak to tell them (sic) that when they are operational the Collins are a very effective piece of kit, so the problem with the Collins is keeping them operational," he said. Mr Abbott has been participating in a charity bike ride this week and made his remarks after stopping to hold a media conference. "As you can appreciate the white paper has only been released a couple of hours ago and I haven't had much of an opportunity to study the detail," he said. When asked if Senator Johnston was wrong, Mr Abbott said, "My shadow minister is a fine minister and he's doing a terrific job."[/quote] http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-05-03/coalition-gives-differing-scorecards-for-collins-class-subs/4668260 WHY DO I GET THE FEELING PLENTY OF SHADOW MINISTERS WOULD LIKE RING ABBOTT'S NECK AND REPLACE HIM IN THE NOT TOO DISTANT FUTURE? N'

nasking

4/05/2013 [b]That would be the same Peter Costello who, in 1997, flogged off most of the nation's gold reserves at the bottom of the market. He got about $305 an ounce for it. Just over a decade later, gold hit a high of about $1,900 an ounce. Costello's incompetence cost the taxpayer $7 billion, give or take. You'd get a lot of disability insurance for that. [/b] OUCH! MIKE CARLTON KICKS COSTELLO RIGHT IN THE NADS...AND DOESN'T HE DESERVE IT...THE SMUG MANIC PRETENDER. GOOD STUFF CASABLANCA! N'

nasking

4/05/2013 A HEARTFELT LETTER TO YET ANOTHER GREEDY WELL-OFF SCUMBAG THAT IS TONY ABBOTT'S MATE...CONSIDERING ABBOTT PURPORTS TO 'GIVE A DAMN'...SEEMS TO ME HE GIVES A DAMN ABOUT A LOT OF SELFISH BIG-MOUTHED RICH DICKS WHO DON'T SEEM TO 'GIVE A DAMN' WHEN IT REALLY MATTERS. SEEMS ABBOTT'S A PRETENDER. I JUST DON'T TRUST HIM. N Victoria ROLLISON: [quote]I am also grateful that my life has not been touched by the difficulties of disability. Yet, if I was to find in my future that, for instance, I had a child with a disability, I don’t think my first concern would be that this child might cost me more money, and reduce the amount of cash that I could spend at Myer. Thousands of Australians have been looking after themselves or loved ones who have a disability, buying all the expensive healthcare and equipment needed to give them a life that’s nowhere near as privileged as most of your customers, without the government offering them the support that it has always been able to afford. Hence why Gillard’s Labor Government has introduced the National Disability Insurance scheme. But rather than applaud this social policy, you whinge to your investment banker crowd that the policy is going to hurt your shareholders. How pathetic a human being you are. When I think of your shareholders, somehow I don’t manage to conjure the sort of pity that I have for people who are prisoners in their home due to a disability, or for their carers who have been by their sides their entire lives. Giving up trips to Myer. Giving up everything for their loved one.[/quote] http://theaimn.com/2013/05/03/an-open-letter-to-bernie-brookes/ THIS ONE FELLA WHO WON'T BE VISITING MYERS TO BUY HIS WIFE GIFTS ANY TIME IN THE NEAR FUTURE. IF THIS BERNIE CHARACTER IS REPRESENTATIVE OF THE MYERS GROUP MENTALITY I'M STEERING CLEAR. N'

lyn

4/05/2013Today’s Links An Open Letter to Bernie Brookes by @Vic_Rollison your buddy Tony Abbott, what are your thoughts on his plans to fund his inequitable-middle-and-upper-class-welfare-election-bribe paid parental leave with a 1.5% increase in the company tax rate? Myer will be paying that I would think. http://victoriarollison.com/2013/05/03/an-open-letter-to-bernie-brookes/ Shadows on the press gallery wall by @awelder In fact, I'd suggest the only way to improve the standard of Australian political journalism, the only way to give it a future, is to take it from the feebly grasping hands of the Press Gallery Committee http://andrewelder.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/shadows-on-press-gallery-wall.html?spref=tw Ashby appeal: Slipper’s turn May 3 by Joan Evatt , @boeufblogginon http://australiansforhonestpolitics.wordpress.com/2013/05/03/ashby-appeal-slippers-turn/ Ashbygate leave to appeal: Day 2 by Ross Jones, @independentaus http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/politics/ashbygate-leave-to-appeal-day-2/ Rob Oakeshott speaks to IA by @davrosz INDEPENDENT AUSTRALIA supports Independent non-partisan politics and is against Australia’s party political duopoly and so, in the run-up to the September Federal election, we will be looking at a range of independent politicians and candidates http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/politics/rob-oakeshott-speaks-to-ia/ My Twitter interview with #Ashby’s media adviser by @margokingston1 http://australiansforhonestpolitics.wordpress.com/2013/05/03/my-twitter-interview-with-ashbys-media-adviser/ Towards a Better funded NDIS by @andrew_whalan Then yesterday Tony Abbott changed his mind. He said he would support the levy conditionally. However, Joe Hockey late yesterday had still not come on board and was still expressing misgivings. http://andrewwhalan.com/2013/05/03/towards-a-better-funded-ndis/ Are renewables doomed to failure in Australia by @GilesParkinson The American-born Nahan is a former executive director of the conservative, pro-market, anti-renewable think tank, the Institute of Public Affairs, which is so intertwined with conservative policy making that many Coalition politicians refer journalists to the IPA for comment on issues such as energy and climate. http://reneweconomy.com.au/2013/are-renewables-doomed-to-failure-in-australia-47501 Open Letter to Andrew Bolt by @EmpoweringFem I challenge the author to provide a tape of Julia Gillard PM using the word ‘promise’. Provide evidence, otherwise I call you out on your first lie in the article. http://eleana108.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/open-letter-to-andrew-bolt/?blogsub=confirming#subscribe-blog The double standard of the Leader of the Opposition by @no_filter_Yamba Yet another example of Australian Leader of the Opposition’s view that it’s all right when he or the Liberal Party does it but a sin if someone in the Labor Party does the same thing. http://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/the-double-standard-of-leader-of.html The Contrarian Consensus by David Griffiths The consensus Contrarians believe that the Prime Minister has been unfair to poor Mr. Abbott – a defenceless, hapless and victimised male. What the Prime Minister has done is to force Mr. Abbott to consider supporting a Medicare levy http://www.australiasmassmedia.com/ Financial Review Sunday makes debut on Channel Nine this weekend by @mumbrella Breaking business, investment, finance and political news and in-depth market analysis has found a home each Sunday morning on the Nine Network with Financial Review Sunday, live at 10.00am AEST. http://mumbrella.com.au/financial-review-sunday-makes-debut-on-channel-nine-this-weekend-153712 Why the ABC Should Be Privatised by Quadrant Online Under an Abbott government, budget cuts will most certainly be on the legislative agenda if only to save tax dollars. But privatisation—or at least rationalisation—of the public broadcaster remains a sound policy option. If the ABC is sold off and capital is returned to the federal budgets, http://www.quadrant.org.au/magazine/issue/2013/5/why-the-abc-should-be-privatised The NBN in April: It's game on as Coalition policy finally bows by David Braue NBN news in April was the Coalition's long-awaited launch of its alternative NBN policy, which bowed with a glamorous dog-and-pony show at Sydney's Fox Studios where opposition communications spokesman Malcolm Turnbull was joined by PM aspirant Tony Abbott to lay the party's cards on the table. http://www.abc.net.au/technology/articles/2013/05/03/3750898.htm Today’s Front Pages Australian Newspaper Front Pages for 4 May 2013 http://www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm

Sir Ian Crisp

4/05/2013[quote][b] Nasking on Mark Dreyfus - HE MADE A MISTAKE ON A PLANE. No he didn’t. He deliberately disobeyed an instruction from an authorised airline safety officer. There are specific regulations about the use on aircraft, and they are in place because the signal can interfere with the aircraft radio and navigation systems. Dreyfus was specifically instructed, and big noted himself. IF THE ATTOURNEY GENERAL CANNOT WILLINGLY COMPLY WITH A SAFETY REGULATION, WHO SHOULD? Tom of Melboune [/b][/quote] You're wrong this time Tom. May I politely remind you that only members of the public break the law. Our MPs are in a special category because when they are found to have apparently broken the law it's put down to "an honest mistake". Gibbering on your mobile AFTER being asked to turn it off by a member of a plane's aircrew is covered by the "honest mistake" excuse. You or I would be facing charges but MPs are immune to such a fate. Tom, cast your mind back to the MP Mick Young and his attempt to smuggle a teddybear through customs. When caught the gallant Mick Young blamed his assistant for not completing the customs declaration form properly. Then we had the dill (my father thinks the MP's name was McKellar) who tried to smuggle a colour TV into Australia by declaring it to be a black and white TV. Fancy the country being run by people who don't know the difference between a colour TV and a black and white TV. Should MP's be subjected to an IQ test?

Ad astra

4/05/2013LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/LYNS-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

TalkTurkey

4/05/2013Good morning Everyone. Casablanca let me thank you as representative of all the staunch clever sensible caring people who write on this site but to whom I rarely reply. I feel a bit guilty about that but the only person that can do that is our host. Ad astra the way you keep replying so diligently to all us footsoldiers is a matter of awe to me. You, and Lynnie. What a pair. What a set of links today, and every day, can any of us remember what it was like to get our news off the newspapers? Take that Rupert. Stick your newspapers up your cell walls as far as I'm concerned. Gee I'm a slow writer compared to the rate of developments wrt federal politics. I keep half-writing biggish comments on e.g. *J*U*L*I*A* or Van Nonselen or Ashbygate and then something happens that sort of discombobulates my whole narrative. As they say. So I've got some stuff on ice waiting to catch up, and already too big. But lately the somethings have all been good anyway. Keep watching the Do[ugh]nut Comrades. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tzV-8TofHTw (Sorry to do that to you!) But Double the Fist Folks, Be sure [i]WE ARE ON TRACK![/i] [b][i]VENCEREMOS![/i][/b] :)

Paul

4/05/2013Lynn, Fiona, if that's your attitude to to (other peoples') money and debt then I'm glad neither of you are anywhere near the Public purse. Surely even you can see that a surplus is all about minimizing future debt obligations when things turn south as they are starting to visibly do now. At least with your attitudes you are keeping good company with Dick "deficits don't matter" Cheney. Your comments conjure up a mental fantasy picture of 1944 and the German media wondering whether it was really necessary to focus on just winning the war, ideas of "victory" looking somewhat outdated and all that. (Sorry, Godwin's Law made me do it).

Ad astra

4/05/2013Paul I think you are a new commenter, so welcome to [i]The Political Sword[/i] family. Do come again. You refer to 'Lynn' in your comment, but look as I did, I couldn't find any comment about debt from Lynn, nor from our very own Lyn of Lyn's links. You will be interested in the piece that I will be posting tomorrow evening: [i]Living within our means, Hockey style[/i].

bob macalba

4/05/2013Paul...9:10am mate tory propaganda...useless here, to many folk come here with IQs over 50..try news ltd

lyn

4/05/2013Hi Bob, :):):):):):):)

bob macalba

4/05/2013Morning Lyn,.excellent collection reading material again this morning, thankyou.. enjoyed reading Vic.Rollisons open letter..magic, shame the buggers i say too, as for the comment by paul...i think he might be lost so i hope i might have helped him in some way cheers

Ad astra

4/05/2013Hi Lyn Like bob, I enjoyed Victoria Rollison's piece. So astutely written and acerbically flavoured! I'll work through the rest of your informative links as the day goes by. Again, like bob, I couldn't find what Paul was referring to when he mentioned Lynn.

MWS

4/05/2013I recommend this article in Lyn's Links to all Sandgropers who don't know who their new Energy Minister is: http://reneweconomy.com.au/2013/are-renewables-doomed-to-failure-in-australia-47501

Tom of Melbourne

4/05/2013It’s hilarious the way Jane, Catching Up etc think they know more about aircraft safety and avionic systems than Steve Purvenas, Federal Secretary of the aircraft engineers union. [b]This is the very same Steve Purvenas that they barracked for during the damaging dispute with Qantas, so while they thought he know plenty then, now they’re willing to dismiss his actual knowledge of his technical discipline![/b] It is typical of mindless barrackers, disregard actual knowledge when it is politically inconvenient.

Pikiranku

4/05/2013Phew! It's hard work catching up on the reading material around here if you take a couple of days off! You're a hard taskmaster, Lyn! (Just kidding, of course - you're totally wonderful. And so is our favourite Gypsy. The info you provide is amazing. As TT said, we've forgotten what it's like to read newspapers.) Did anyone watch Lateline last night? The Kouk and Judith Sloan had a few differences of opinion about the current state of our economy and the merits of our government's approach. Judith Sloan actually asserted at one stage that it was better to have a recession than a deficit! I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Surely even Abbott/Hockey/Robb would shudder at that statement (even if they secretly supported it). I'm still waiting for the headlines: "Prominent conservative economist and LNP supporter believes recession better than surplus". That would surely frighten the horses!

GordonWA

4/05/2013MWS wrote: "I recommend this article in Lyn's Links to all Sandgropers who don't know who their new Energy Minister is: reneweconomy.com.au/.../are-renewables-doomed-to-failure-in-australia-47501 " Thanks MWS but this Sandgroper knows only too well the insidious tentacles of Mike Nahan (IPA creep). Here in WA we have 2 right wing newspapers (The West Australian Monday to Saturday, and the Sunday Times) both are a waste of good trees. The right wing media here gave space to Nahan for years to spout his IPA nonsense as if it was some neutral objective academic analysis. With the press here continually pumping out a constant stream of right wing opinion it is little wonder that WA is a conservative state. Now we have Nahan as Energy Minister (the mind boggles!) Every one should read that frightening article.

Ad astra

4/05/2013Pikiranku I saw that interview too, and was horrified but not surprised to hear Judith Sloan say what she did. I reference that interview in the piece that I will post tomorrow evening: [i]Living within our means, Hockey style[/i].

Austin 3:16

4/05/2013Hey Tom, You have to watch what those "studies" show, in the USA some of them show a negative correlation between conservatism and cognitive ability. ;) Oh and below is what we call a "link" it indicates the study I'm talking about actually happened...... http://ebiquity.umbc.edu/blogger/2009/04/25/conservatism-and-cognitive-ability-are-negatively-correlated/

Tom

4/05/2013Why doesn't Julia Gillard also apply a company "levy" of 1.5% against bigger companies but instead use it to fund Gonski. This would be a good way to pit one policy that favours the wealthy (earning up to $150K) against one that favours others not able to afford private schooling. No one could then complain about the fact that she is adding to Company Tax as this no different to what Abbott is doing. In fact, there would be a good argument for this in that a better educated public would provide much better employees for the work force so it could be seen as an investment by companies. Rudd used the clever approach of matching most policies with Howard but then differentiating on those that really mattered.

lyn

4/05/2013Hi Ad , Pleased you enjoyed Victoria’s article as I did. Good news your IP provider is working again for you. I know Melbourne is inadequate thankyou Mr adequate Turnbull. Bob good morning . You spotted it I think Paul lost his Blog way or got lost on his way to a blog. Thankyou Fiona for genuine thoughtful informative posts, I agree with every word you said. Fiona’s comment was April 29. 2013 10:53 AM excerpt: if the Govt isn't always in surplus it is doing something wrong....which is a crock. Howard/Costello could have done so much for Australia. Fiona’s second brilliant comment @ 1.53pm excerpt: It is perfectly acceptable to run at a deficit in this climate. We are only a relatively small country Pikianku, thankyou, I get so delighted when you enjoy our “Today’s Links, makes me search longer with gusto. I think it would be a wise move if the Liberals distance themselves from Judith Sloane . Nasking you are being delightful everyday, thankyou for all your work we do appreciate you very much. Talk Turkey thankyou to you :):) GordonWA , Hi to you. But did you see they refer journalists to the IPA for answers to their questions. The IPA have furtively and gradually, infiltrated the whole county. Couple of tweets regarding IPA:- Wendy Bacon ‏@ @renew_economy article on Nahan is very important, reminding me of why we need to focus on interests behind coalition Mike Carlton ‏ The Tory campaign to kill off the ABC hots up. Watch Abbott go for it. http://www.quadrant.org.au/magazine/issue/2013/5/why-the-abc-should-be-privatised … David ‏@davidlen2 abcmarkscott doing groundwork for LNP/IPA/NewsLtd/Foxtel to move ABC to the right ready for sell off. http://bit.ly/155Z1mM Barry Tucker ‏@btckr IPA list is still on its website. http://www.ipa.org.au/publications/2080/be-like-gough-75-radical-ideas-to-transform-australia … PS: Don't trust anyone!!! [quote]IPA agenda to re-shape Australia, by Barry Tucker [/quote] These [cuts] include cancelling the first stage of the National Disability Insurance Scheme, abolishing Fair Work and Safe Work Australia, almost halving the general research budget, cancelling all Commonwealth housing programs, eliminating foreign aid and the Human Rights Commission, slashing 23,500 public service jobs, abolishing agriculture, forestry and fisheries programs and privatising the ABC and SBS. “No wonder shadow finance minister Andrew Robb keeps telling us the Coalition have all their policies ready to go http://thesnipertakesaim.wordpress.com/2013/03/02/ipa-agenda-to-re-shape-australia/ Tony Abbott said Barry O’Farrell was bribed for signing Gonski, wonder what he will say about Denis Napthine signing the NDIS. [quote]Victorian Premier Denis Napthine close to tears as he agrees to Gillard's National Disability Insurance Scheme [/quote]An emotional Dr Napthine, who has an autistic son, was on the verge of tears as he described the personal significance the NDIS had for him and his family. "As a person, as a family member, as a carer, as somebody who's worked in the disability area, and as a politician, I'm very, very proud to be here today as a Victorian, with Victoria signing up to the full disability care system from 2019 and the lead-up to it," Dr Napthine said. http://www.heraldsun.com.au/federal-election/julia-gillard-gets-victoria-to-sign-up-to-ndis/story-fnho52jj-1226635124784 [quote]Our samizdat years by Independent Australia [/quote]Murdoch, a crook, derided by the House of Commons as ‘unfit to run an international organisation’, owns eighty percent of our newspapers and vigilantly decides what is in them, including Newspoll. And, as in America, where his pollster Rasmussen always showed Romney inexplicably doing well, he shows Abbott ahead still though he has lost policy round after policy round in the past two months and been repeatedly accused of criminality. http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/politics/our-samizdat-years/

Catching up

4/05/2013I just repeated what a leading pilot said. Sounded like he knew his business. Did not claim to have any knowledge of how mobiles etc. affect planes. As he gave examples, I felt he might know what he is talking about.

Tom of Melbourne

4/05/2013Catching Up declines to accept the advice of the head of the aircraft engineers union, and continues to hold that it was fine for the Attorney General to breach air safety regulations. Catching Up can always be relied on to defend the political interests of the ALP, even when they’re indefensible. ---------------- USA political parties are quite different, no Lib Dems, Greens off the radar, Democrats entirely different to the ALP. No comparison to be drawn. However, in the UK genuine progressive parties attract the smarter voters (Lib Dems & Greens) next Conservatives - who have higher IQs than Labour. How embarrassing for Labour, to be dumber than Conservatives.

nasking

4/05/2013 YEP... MARK LATHAM: [quote]From a Western Sydney perspective, two of the more aloof institutions in society are corporate boardrooms and the high arts. Whereas Sydney’s workers commute in trains and traffic jams, the top end of town gets around in helicopters and private planes. Business executives invariably belong to exclusive clubs, having established a lifestyle by which they avoid the chores of cooking, housekeeping and caring for their children. This is an existence forged on the anvil of institutionalised wealth and elitism. The mega-rich also work hard to separate their cultural interests from suburban folk. By any objective test, classical music, opera and ballet are insufferably boring. They have no social worth other than in the treatment of sleeping disorders. But that’s how the elites like it, safe in the knowledge that people below their station in society are unlikely to join them in the jewellery-rattling rows of the Opera House. Their abstraction from ‘ordinary people’ is secure. If the business elites have earned their wealth honestly and they choose to live this way, I bear them no envy or ill-will. My own creed is that no one in the economy should accept more money than they can possibly consume, that too much materialism destroys lives by dragging people away from the bedrock emotions of love and family. Adele Ferguson’s recent biography of Rinehart is a case study in this dilemma. I make this point about big business and the high arts to highlight one of the sharp contradictions in Cater’s book. He claims to have found elitism in Australia’s left-of-centre parties, the ABC and universities but is silent about the arts and the private sector. That’s because his lifestyle is embedded in these institutions. His outlook is so condescending he does not contemplate for a moment the possibility of faults in his own cultural genre. As a senior editor at The Australian, Cater is part of the narrow, intolerant right-wing culture of News Ltd. His friends and associates, even his partner, are part of the corporate media elite. Two days before the launch of Cater’s book, it was announced that Rupert Murdoch was receiving a $4 million pay rise, taking his annual remuneration to $28 million. For Cater, privilege of this kind does not require analysis, it is part of the natural order of things (‘the virtues of wealth’). In defining most left-wing beliefs as culturally unAustralian, he has no problem with The Australian itself being owned and controlled by an American – someone who thought so little of our country and its culture he renounced his Australian citizenship. [/quote] LATHAM SPOT ON. CUT THE CRAP MURDOCH EMPIRE PRETENDERS AND CLONES...RUPERT AND YOU WOULDN'T BE CAUGHT DEAD VISITING WHERE I LIVE IN LOGAN...LET ALONE LIVE HERE. YER BULLSHITTERS...PRETENDERS...DECEIVERS... ABBOTT AND HIS ELITE CATHOLIC PRIVATE SCHOOL MATES JUST YER PUPPETS...YER MESSENGER BOYS AND GIRLS... AND THE PEOPLE ARE SLOWLY BUT SURELY CATCHING ON... N'

nasking

4/05/2013 LYN, GREAT LINKS. TOP JOB. CHEERS! N'

Catching up

4/05/2013Tom, is it really that important. Another victory for the PM. Victoria signs up. Big praise from the premier.

Tom of Melbourne

4/05/2013[i] Tom, is it really that important.[/i] Then stop defending the indefensible. You’ve disregarded the statement of the head of the aircraft engineers, you’ve denied it was serious, you pretended that it aircraft don’t require such regulation. You just continually make up stuff. Dreyfus, as Attorney General willfully disregarded air safety regulation. I tend to think that’s indicative of arrogance and contempt for the person charged with the authority of looking after the public on board aircraft. But you continually seek to deny that.

nasking

4/05/2013 [b]Judith Sloan actually asserted at one stage that it was better to have a recession than a deficit! I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Surely even Abbott/Hockey/Robb would shudder at that statement (even if they secretly supported it). I'm still waiting for the headlines: "Prominent conservative economist and LNP supporter believes recession better than surplus". That would surely frighten the horses![/b] Pikiranku, I'VE ALWAYS BELIEVED TONY ABBOTT AND JOE HOCKEY WITH THE HELP OF THEIR MEDIA MASTERS AND MATES ARE PLANNING TO TAKE US INTO A RECESSION IF THEY WIN GOVT... THEY WILL PLACE THE BLAME ON THE ALP AND USE THE DEFICIT ARGUMENT TO WORK WITH LNP STATE GOVTS TO CREATE A SO CALLED 'MORE FLEXIBLE WORKFORCE'... THEY WILL UP THE GST...AND BROADEN IT...SAYING THE ECONOMIC DIRE STRAITS CAUSED BY LABOR CALLS FOR IT... THEY WILL DO A KENNET STYLE SCREW OVER OF PUBLIC SCHOOLS...ADD A TOUCH OF UK TORY OUTSOURCING...AND USE A RIGGED ALTERED NATIONAL TESTING REGIME AND INSERTED PRINCIPALS TO SCREW OVER SCHOOL MANAGEMENT...SHOVE THE UNDESIRABLE TEACHERS INTO HOLDING POOLS AND COUNTRY SERVICE WHERE THEY MUST ADAPT OR DIE... I FORESEE THEM FINDING AN EXCUSE FOR RAMPING UP THE MILITARY AGAIN...AND SHOVING UNEMPLOYED YOUTH, JUVENILES (CAUGHT ON BOGUS DRUG CHARGES ETC) AND POOR INDIGINEOUS LADS INTO THE MILITARY...OR SEVERE COMMUNITY SERVICE WITH A RELIGIOUS OR CORPORATE EDGE. THEY WILL USE THE ORCHESTRATED RECESSION TO INCREASE EXTREMISM IN POLITICS...PARTICULARLY THE ANTI-IMMIGRATION MOVEMENT...NOT UNLIKE UKIP AND THE TEA PARTY... AND THEY WILL USE EVERY MEASURE POSSIBLE TO WEAKEN THE ROYAL COMMISSION INTO CHILD ABUSE...THE INVESTIGATIONS INTO DRUGS & GAMBLING IN SPORTS...AND MANGLE THE NBN... THEY WILL TRY TO CREATE A COMBINATION OF LAS VEGAS AND FLORIDA AND TEXAS UP NORTH... YOU WON'T RECOGNISE AUSTRALIA AFTER NINE YEARS. N'

Austin 3:16

4/05/2013Hey Tom, Hmm still can't find that link hey - why is that ? You wouldn't be gilding the truth a tiny bit would you?

nasking

4/05/2013 ANGRY ANDERSON IS ANOTHER PRETENDER...HE MIGHT HAVE TATS AND PLAY HARD ROCK...BUT IF HE'S WORKING WITH THE NATS THEN HE'S WORKING FOR THEN 'MAN'... BECAUSE THE NATS SOLD OUT THE LITTLE FARMER, THE AVERAGE WORKER YEARS AGO... THEY SUPPORTED THE HOWARD GOVT... AND THE HOWARD GOVT SUPPORTED FACTORY FARMING...AND PUT IN WORKCHOICES... ANGRY LOOKS PRETTY DUMB STANDING FOR A PARTY THAT SUPPORTS THE ABBOTT TURDS WHO IN TURN SUPPORT RUPERT MURDOCH AND GINA RINEHART AND THE [b]WE DON'T GIVE A CRAP ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENT GANG[/b]...AS LONG AS WE CAN DIG DIG DIG. GIVE ME A CALM COLLECTED PETER GARRETT ANYDAY...WHO GIVES A DAMN ABOUT EDUCATION... AND DOESN'T EXPECT EVERYONE TO TURN INTO A VOLUNTEER SOCIETY WHILST THE RICH GO "[b]KERCHING KETCHING THANKYOU VERY MUCH...NOW WE GET TAX CUTS BECAUSE YER DOING PUBLIC SERVICE FREE".[/b] I WONDER HOW ANGRY LIVES? FORTNIGHTLY PAY BY FORTNIGHTLY PAY? NOT NOR DOES HIS MATE RAY MARTIN. N'

nasking

4/05/2013 Should be: [b]ANGRY ANDERSON IS ANOTHER PRETENDER...HE MIGHT HAVE TATS AND PLAY HARD ROCK...BUT IF HE'S WORKING WITH THE NATS THEN HE'S WORKING FOR THE 'MAN'...[/b] BTW...MR ANTI-CARBON PRICE ANDERSON...WAS HE RUNNING AROUND TAKING THOSE 'DITCH THE WITCH' SIGNS AND OTHER ABUSIVE CRAP DOWN...??? NO. ANGRY IS JUST ANOTHER PUPPET PRETENDER. N'

Tom of Melbourne

4/05/2013Get over it Austin, find it yourself if you're so interested, try Google. However, comparisons with the USA are spurious. Without Lib Dems, Greens etc, progressives understandably vote Democrat. Even I would vote for them in front of the Republicans. The US Democrats are nothing like the chain dragging, corrupt union dominated, self interested ALP.

Jason

4/05/2013ToM, Keep showing that glass jaw!

Austin 3:16

4/05/2013Hey Tom, Aww gee is being called out on your BS upsetting to you. Imagine the tears I'm shedding. Generally speaking ol mate the person who advances the claim has the evidentary burden to establish that claim. In common parlance it's called putting up or shutting up. You might want to give it a try. The USA has the likes of tea party candidates / Nader etc that the Brits don't have. We have the likes of "Joh for PM" / Kater / Pauline Hanson et al that they didn't have. (however analogous you want to make the claim) Either you can make a comparison from one Westminster style democracy to the other or you can't. If you can then the USA is as valid basis for comparison as the UK. And the longer we're having this chat the more I think it applies my conservative ol chum.

Tom of Melbourne

4/05/2013For example- http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/blog/2008/nov/03/greenpolitics-liberaldemocrats It helps explain why ALP voters who populate this site are so lacking, as distinct from genuine progressives

Austin 3:16

4/05/2013Aww gee Tom imagine my surprise when the first link you put up doesn't really make the claims that you've been making. Who would have thought it Tom. Gilding the truth is one of the very nicest was to put it. Or can we establish that a conservative political leaning is negatively correlated to literacy as well? Based on a very small sample size of one I think we can. PS I "tried Google" as you put it some time ago, part of the reason this is so darned funny.

Jason

4/05/2013Tom of Melbourne, Then on the last line was your column Did not vote/None of the above - 99.7! Now we know why you're such a dumbarse!

Tom of Melbourne

4/05/2013Of course it supports exactly what I said. Greens & Lib Dems are most intelligent, then come Conservatives, followed by Labour and then the Nationalist parties. Imagine the embarrassment! Labour voters are dumber than Conservatives. But genuine progressives are significantly smarter than both. There's more of it about if you care to look. But there's also plenty of evidence on this very blog.

nasking

4/05/2013 THE fact ABETZ attacks the mindset of those traumatised by cancer tells you a lot about the lack of empathy and mean-spiritedness and insensitivity of this present Coalition...remembering Abbott's attacks on Bernie Banton and John Brogden: [quote]Last year, your State, Queensland, was the beneficiary of a new Headquarters for the ABC. The ABC rightly moved their Brisbane Headquarters because of a concern over a cancer cluster. At the opening of the new Headquarters, the Chairman of the ABC, a former distinguished Chief Justice of New South Wales, told the assembled, and I quote: “a few weeks ago this building was cleansed in a traditional smoking ceremony and bad spirits were expelled. As the Governor-General and the Managing Director of the ABC have highlighted in their address, we are here today because of the cancer cluster that was identified at our former premises. In these circumstances, the smoking ceremony could not have been more apt.” Really? ‘could not have been more apt’. And yes, you heard right ‘the building was cleansed ... and bad spirits were expelled’. On reading this speech, I thought I would take myself along to Senate Estimates, to ask a few questions of the ABC. You might imagine the gush of words to which I was subjected. All devoid of providing a meaningful response to my many questions one of which was as to whether a Christian blessing ceremony had been contemplated. It was clear it had not. I was told all sorts of things, that it was a “symbolic ceremony”, there is a “strong connection with the indigenous community”, the staff allegedly thought “it would be good” and I was told it was a “lovely event”. [b]At a cost of $500 to the Australian taxpayer I might add. I am not sure if it was necessarily a “lovely event” for them. Or indeed for the overwhelming majority of Australians that identify as Christian, let alone the indigenous community....[/b] As Cardinal Pell so poignantly observed in The Spectator on 3rd April, 2010, ‘a person who believes in nothing can only believe in himself, and self-belief implies that anything is possible. What do lies, cheating, harm and swindling matter’. That quote came to mind when I learned of the Girl Guides leadership seeking to remove reference to God, Queen and country from their promise, the former pledge being “to do my duty to God, to serve the Queen and my country...” Instead, Girl Guides were to pledge to promise that ‘I will be true to myself and develop my beliefs’, whatever that might mean. So I pose, what happens, if my belief is communism? What happens if my belief is the caste system where some people are deemed to be less worthy than others? Or simply my belief system is well – self-centred. I believe the Girl Guides have gone back to the drawing board, thank goodness. The consequences of rejecting our Christian belief system would change the face of our society - make it unrecognisable and less civilised. So as regrettable as these three quick examples are ranging from our ABC to the national curriculum to the Girl Guides, it does put a spotlight onto the unthinking and deeply corrosive trend in our society to deny our culture and heritage, a trend which needs to be challenged and arrested. The role of the Christian Lobby in this regard is to be applauded because it reminds society of its traditions, and the basis of our culture.[/quote] http://abetz.com.au/speeches/address-to-the-australian-christian-lobby-conference-brisbane NOTE HOW IT ALWAYS COMES DOWN TO MONEY FOR THE COALITION... UNLESS IT'S FOR THEIR CHRISTIAN WARS...OR FOR TO TURN WOMEN INTO POOR BABY MACHINES...OR TO PAY FOR THE RICH TO GET FREE SERVICES...OR WHEN THEY COME UP WITH YET ANOTHER DOPEY SCHEME TO TRY AND BUY RURAL AND REGIONAL VOTERS...OR WHEN THEY WANT TO AID MR. MURDOCH...OR THEIR OTHER RICH SUPPORTERS... FIVE HUNDRED MEASLY DOLLARS TO HELP A BUNCH OF TRAUMATISED PEOPLE FEEL BETTER...BIG FCKN DEAL... I BET ABETZ OR ONE OF HIS COALITION MATES SPENDS MORE THAN THAT FARTING AWAY IN SOME HOTEL SOMEWHERE ON ONE DAY OF ELECTIONEERING... WHAT A WANKER! SEEMS TO ME ABETZ WANTS TO PUSH RELIGION DOWN EVERYONE'S THROAT TO CONVINCE THEM TO WORK MORE FOR FREE WHILST THE LIKES OF PELL, RINEHART, MURDOCH AND ALL THOSE LIBERALS AND NATS ON COMPANY BOARDS SUCK UP THE MONEY. AMAZES ME HOW WELL THESE CARDINALS DO FOR THEMSELVES...NICE GIG IF YOU CAN GET IT...ALL PAID FOR BY THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF VATICAN SHONKY BANK ACCOUNTS...MONEY HARVESTED FROM THOSE WHO TRUSTED THEIR KIDS WOULD BE SAFE IN THE HANDS OF THESE MYTH BELIEVERS AND PERPETUATORS...THE SAME ONES WHO STOPPED AFRICANS AND OTHERS FROM WEARING CONDOMS LEADING TO AIDS EPIDEMICS ETC... AND THEY CAN USE THEIR CHRISTIAN SOLDIERS TO FIGHT YET MORE WARS FOR THEM AND THEIR CORPORATE MATES WHO PROFIT HANDSOMELY FROM WAR. AS FOR THE ABC...IT HAS BECOME MORE AND MORE CORPORATISED SINCE HOWARD AND MURDOCH'S LOT INFILTRATED IT...AND DOPEY CHRISTIAN CRUSADING RUDD LET MARK SCOTT HAVE FIVE MORE YEARS AT THE TOP... THE WORST DECISION...EVER. N'

Jason

4/05/2013ToM, Get ya hand off it old son you'll go blind! Self praise isn't going to convince me your smart! Smart arse yes but otherwise just another intellectual pygmy

nasking

4/05/2013 THE AUSTRALIAN LIBERTARIAN VOTER MOVEMENT THAT THE MURDOCH ETC CAMP ARE SO DESPERATELY TRYING TO CREATE IN ORDER TO END UP PAYING LESS TAXES AND GAINING MORE READERS/AUDIENCE: [b]I HAVE A GUN...BAD TEETH...NO FLUORIDE IN THE WATER 'CAUSE I BELIEVE IT'S A CONSPIRACY... MY KID JUST BLEW THEIR HEAD OFF BECAUSE THEY GOT A DISEASE NOT SEEN IN THIS REGION FOR YEARS BECAUSE I DIDN'T GET THEM IMMUNISED...I KNOW IMMUNISATION IS A GOVT CONSPIRACY... I WORK FOR PEANUTS...NO LITERALLY...PEANUTS...BECAUSE GOD AND TONY ABBOTT AND BARNABY AND ANGRY TELL ME I SHOULD VOLUNTEER MORE... I DON'T PAY TAXES...IF I CAN HELP IT...I SURE CAN'T WAIT THO FOR THE FLYING PALMER DENTAL SERVICE TO GET OUT HERE SO I CAN HAVE THESE ROTTEN TEETH PULLED...JUST WISH I HAD NICE GLEAMING TEETH LIKE ALL THEM WELL-OFF CITY FOLK AND THEIR NANNIES... MAYBE IF I GO AND BET IN THE CASINO ON THE COAST USING MY NANNA'S GOLD TOOTH I CAN BUY MYSELF A PLAN TO BUILD A SHELTER FOR THE COMING GOVT LED APOCALYPSE... MY GUN WILL COME IN MIGHTY HANDY...KEEPING THE RATS AWAY FROM MY KID'S BODY...AS I CAN'T AFFORD TO PAY FOR A FUNERAL...SURE WISH I HADN'T PAID FOR ALL THAT FUNERAL INSURANCE YEARS AGO INSTEAD OF PUTTING IT IN THE BANK...WHEN THAT TWENTIETH BIG FLOOD AND STORM CAME AND WIPED OUT MY CROPS AND HOME I COULDN'T KEEP THE INSURANCE GOING... AND THERE AIN'T NO WAY I WAS GONNA TAKE A HAND OUT FROM BIG GOVERNMENT AFTER THE FLOOD... THEY WOULD USE THAT AS AN EXCUSE TO COME AND GET MY GUN...FROM MY COLD DEAD HANDS... NOW WHERE DID I PUT MY BIBLE? THE MURDOCH DAILY RAG.[/b] N'

MWS

4/05/2013I feel that $500 for a "symbolic ceremony" (is there any other kind) is much better value than the notepads that my (Liberal) MHR has just posted me. Good to see that the printing and postage allowances are being used now that the election is approaching. And I won't forget to thank John Howard, who increased the printing and postage allowances for MPs, and let them roll-over the first two years allowance into the election year. I wonder if all the other candidates have the funds to post out notepads with their photo on? Isn't Australia the country of the fair-go and equal opportunity? Not when Howard could see a political advantage.

42 long

4/05/2013Good stuff Nasking. Abetz is surely revolting. I recall the vids of HIM verballing the FWA staffers. he as a lawyer would know that evidence obtained by such methods is not accepted. He sure seems like a chip off the old block with Uncle Otto. Brandis and Abetz. Revolting in the extreme. Do they interfere with the normal processes of the Law? Do they indulge in trial by media? Do they fail to separate the state from the judiciary. DOG help us when the potential corruption their example indicates comes upon us. Zimbabwe will look like a paradise, a shining pillar of justice. Those who pay the Piper CALL the tune. Everyone ( who cares to look and think) knows who calls the tune for the LieNP. Just look who funds them. And THEY regard it as an INVESTMENT that will pay off.

nasking

4/05/2013 MWS AND 42 LONG...ABETZ IS JUST A REGULAR BLOKE SPEAKING FOR THE AVERAGE AUSSIE: [b]Abetz is a Christian and a member of the Christian Reformed Churches of Australia. Throughout his political career he has been variously associated with conservative groups, including the Association of Christian Parent Controlled Schools, Salt Shakers, Focus on the Family, Lyons Forum, Endeavour Forum, Family Council of Victoria, Fatherhood Foundation, Australian Christian Lobby, Australian Family Association and Right to Life Australia.[/b] Wikipedia MAKES YA WONDER HOW HE HAS ANY TIME TO DO THE WORK HE'S PAID FOR??? STILL, AT LEAST IN THOSE GROUPS MENTIONED HE'D BE GETTING AND PROMOTING A WIDE AND ROUNDED VIEW OF AUSTRALIA AND THE BIG ISSUES...EH? N'

bob macalba

4/05/2013Wonder if this will get reported in a positive way here in oz? http://www.dw.de/climate-negotiators-inch-closer-to-global-pact/a-16790521 only through the Fighting Fifth though i imagine

bob macalba

4/05/2013A song for those who worship or aspire the stuff http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JkhX5W7JoWI with lyrics so ya can sing along, 'money, so they say,is the root of all evil too-day'

jane

4/05/2013NAS' @3.14PM, CATER BELIEVES THAT MOST LEFT-WING BELIEFS ARE UN-AUSTRALIAN. I DISPUTE THAT. LIKE ALL RIGHTARDS, HE PROJECTS HIS UN-AUSTRALIAN SMALL MINDED MEANNESS OF SPIRIT, LACK OF EMPATHY AND COMPASSION ONTO THE LEFT. HOWEVER, I DON'T AGREE WITH LATHAM THAT THE ARTS ARE JUST FOR THE ELITE; AS FOR THE REST, HE'S SPOT ON. I THINK IT'S A LAY DOWN MISERE THAT THE FIRST THING THE LIARS WILL DO IS PUSH US INTO A RECESSION IN THEIR FUTILE AND USELESS QUEST FOR A SURPLUS AT ANY COST TO ORDINARY AUSTRALIANS. THEY'LL MAKE SURE THE WEALTHY DON'T SUFFER ANY INCONVENIENCE BY GIVING THEM MASSIVE TAX CUTS. ANGRY ANDERSON IS JUST ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF A LIARS PARTY TWAT WITH AN OVER DEVELOPED SENSE OF ENTITLEMENT AND ARROGANCE. DOESN'T GIVE A TOSS ABOUT THE LITTLE WO/MAN OR THE THE ENVIRONMENT. ABETZ IS A PIECE OF WORK, ISN'T HE? THE GREAT CHRISTIAN? WHINING ABOUT A LOUSY $500 TO HELP PEOPLE DEVASTATED BY A LIFE THREATENING ILLNESS. I NOTICE ALL THE GOD BOTHERERS IN THE LIARS SEEM TO HAVE THE SAME MEAN SPIRITED, SPITEFUL ATTITUDE TO ANYONE LESS FORTUNATE THAN THEMSELVES. ANYONE LESS IN TOUCH WITH THE TEACHINGS OF JESUS THAN THIS MOB OF SELF RIGHTEOUS HYPOCRITES YOU'D BE HARD PUT TO FIND. NOTHING AT ALL CHARITABLE ABOUT THEM. AND @7.05PM, JUST THE ATMOSPHERE RUPERT AND THE LIARS ARE TRYING WITH SOME SUCCESS, TO CREATE.

jane

4/05/2013ToM, on 3 separate airlines, passengers were told they could turn their phones on after the plane was in the air, apparently in complete defiance of Steve Purvenas, whose name was never mentioned, btw. Perhaps you should write a strongly worded letter to the airlines to set them straight. Meanwhile, airline passengers will continue to turn their phones on if the pilot tells them it's OK. Alternatively, you could actually read what is posted. Might save you from looking like a twat.

jane

4/05/2013For all the Liars whingers with very short memories who are squealing like stuck pigs about the increased medicare levy. http://pbs.twimg.com/media/BJVO-VlCIAEvBI2.jpg

Tom of Melbourne

4/05/2013Jane you obviously don’t understand aircraft avionics. Some aircraft may have integrated avionic systems that allow the use of mobiles without interference. Other aircraft don’t. There were various categories of avionics – electrical, radio, instrument. Rather than having different systems and procedures for use of mobiles depending on aircraft type, age and avionic systems, some airlines may simply device not to allow use of mobiles during take off. That’s basically what Steve Purvenas was saying. But he’s only an aircraft engineer, so he may not know what he is talking about. Perhaps you should stick to issues you know more about, such as abusive names for people who disagree with you.

Jason

4/05/2013Perhaps you should stick to issues you know more about, such as abusive names for people who disagree with you. ToM shall I call your mother or will you take a teaspoon of concrete and HTFU?

jane

5/05/2013ToM, I think it's you who lacks understanding. Whether you and Steve Purvenas like it or not, there are airlines which allow people to use mobile phones once their aircraft have taken off. That he is an aircraft engineer is not pertinent to that fact. Neither is a lecture on aircraft avionics. You obviously need to brush up on reading comprehension, starting with reading what is posted, not what you imagine has been written.

nasking

5/05/2013 SADLY, THERE IS MORE THAN A DOLLOP OF TRUTH IN THIS: WEEKEND EDITION MAY 3-5, 2013 COUNTERPUNCH [b]Welcome to the Age of Murder.Gov The Game of Drones[/b] by JEFFREY ST. CLAIR [quote]In a chilling 16-page dossier known simply as the White Paper, one of Obama’s statutory brains at the Justice Department cites the 1969 secret bombing of Cambodia as a legal rationale justifying drone strikes, deep inside nations, against which the United States is not officially at war. This startling disclosure is drafted in the antiseptic prose of an insurance adjuster announcing the denial of a claim based on a pre-existing condition. Yet, the bombing of Cambodia (aka Operation Menu), which involved more than 3,000 air strikes, was almost universally acknowledged as a war crime. Now the Obama administration has officially enshrined that atrocity as precedent for its own killing rampages. Since Obama’s election, the CIA has overseen nearly 320 drone strikes in Pakistan alone, killing more than 3,000 people, [b]as many as 900 of them civilians[/b]. [b]Among the dead are at least 176 children. Assassination was never this easy, never so risk-free.[/b] George W. Bush was mocked by liberals for calling himself the Decider. Bush deployed this pathetic bit of oil slang to defend himself against accusations that Cheney and his coterie of Neo-Cons were calling the shots in the Iraq war. But was Bush’s posturing any more absurd than the image of Obama piously consulting the homilies of Aquinas, as he personally checks off the names on his drone kill list and watches streaming videos of the writhing bodies shredded by Hellfire missiles? Bush’s murderous psyche at least presented presented itself for analysis and explication. Perhaps W’s blood lust stemmed from a Freudian fixation on Saddam’s pathetic attempt to off his father in Kuwait City. Perhaps it was warped by spasms of subconscious guilt over allowing 9/11 to occur on his watch. What, however, is the driving force behind Obama’s savagery? Unlike Bush, who tended to show revealing glimpses of emotional strain, Obama operates with the icy rectitude of a political sociopath. In Obama’s game of drones, the atrocities in the name of empire seem consciously geared to some deep political algorithm of power and death. [b]The Left remains largely insensate to the moral and constitutional transgressions being committed by their champion, leaving only the faintly ludicrous figure of Rand Paul to offer official denunciations against these malignant operations. For his troubles, Paul’s admirable filibuster against the nomination of John Brennan, master of the drones, to head the CIA is ridiculed as an exercise in paranoia by the likes of Frank Rich and Lawrence O’Donnell. The professional Left, from the progressive caucus to the robotic minions of Moveon.org, lodge no objections and launch no protests over the administration’s acts of sanctimonious violence against the empire’s enemies. Worse, they behave like political eunuchs, offering groveling tributes and degrading supplications to their Master, even as Obama defiles their ideological aspirations. The president has offered us a master class in political mesmerism, transforming the anti-war Left into supine functionaries of the imperial management team[/b].[/quote] http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/05/03/the-game-of-drones/ IMAGINE THESE DRONES IN THE HANDS OF TONY ABBOTT AND CREW...NOT A PLEASANT THOUGHT. WHEN DID THE GAGGING BEGIN? I HAD NO PROBLEM STICKING IT TO THE OBAMA ADMIN OVER THE EXTENT OF 'THE BAILOUT'...AND THEIR EFFORTS TO CORPORATISE EDUCATION...AND THE TREATMENT OF SO CALLED 'ILLEGALS'. JUST BECAUSE WE KNOW THE ALTERNATIVE IS EVEN MORE UNPALATABLE...DOESN'T MEAN WE SHOULD CONVENIENTLY BURY OUR PRINCIPLES...AND EMPATHY FOR VICTIMS. NOR IGNORE THE GROWING SECURITY APPARATUS...AND CORPORATISATION OF WAR. WE DO SO AT OUR OWN PERIL...AND THAT OF OUR INTEGRITY. N'

nasking

5/05/2013 [quote]NOTICE ALL THE GOD BOTHERERS IN THE LIARS SEEM TO HAVE THE SAME MEAN SPIRITED, SPITEFUL ATTITUDE TO ANYONE LESS FORTUNATE THAN THEMSELVES. ANYONE LESS IN TOUCH WITH THE TEACHINGS OF JESUS THAN THIS MOB OF SELF RIGHTEOUS HYPOCRITES YOU'D BE HARD PUT TO FIND. NOTHING AT ALL CHARITABLE ABOUT THEM.[/quote] G'DAY JANE! I AGREE WHOLEHEARTEDLY. THERE IS SOMETHING SOFTLY SPOKEN SCUMBAG ABOUT THIS LOT...FAUX SINCERITY...THAT [b]'MY NARROW WAY OR THE HIGHWAY' FANATICISM[/b] ABOUT THEM... REMINDS ME OF THOSE [i]FAMILY VALUE [/i] REPUBLICANS IN AMERICA...TOO OFT FULL OF CRAP...RAGING LIKE HOMOPHOBES AND LOYAL HUBBIES ONLY TO BE DISCOVERED PLAYING FOOTSY IN THE TOILETS...OR SHACKED UP IN THE BED OF A MISTRESS. ONE THING I CAN'T STAND IS POLITICIANS MORALISING...AND ACTING LIKE PROVERBIAL SAINTS IN ORDER TO DUPE THE VOTERS...WHEN YA KNOW THEY'RE REALLY JUST SNAKE OIL SALESMAN SELLING YOU A BS STORY WHILST THEY BUILD YET ANOTHER HIGHWAY OF GOLD FOR THEIR MASTERS. SURE, I'VE COME ACROSS THE ODD CHRISTIANITY SPRUIKER WHO HAS A MODICUM OF EMPATHY FOR OTHERS, DEMONSTRATES USEFUL ALTRUISM, DOESN'T SOUND LIKE A BIGOTED LUNATIC ON A MISSION... BUT I CAN SAY SAME ABOUT SOME WHO DIP MORE THAN THEIR TOE IN VARIOUS OTHER RELIGIONS AND MOVEMENTS... THE IDEA THAT CHRISTIANITY AND ITS VARIOUS CEREMONIES SHOULD DOMINATE ANY PROCEEDING BECAUSE OF THE MISCONCEPTION IT HAS UNIQUELY CHANGED OUR WORLD FOR THE BETTER TENDS TO IGNORE THE FACT THAT MANY REFORMERS HAD LITTLE CHOICE BUT TO REFER TO THEMSELVES AS 'GOOD CHRISTIANS' IN THE PAST BECAUSE CERTAIN MONARCHS AND OTHER INFLUENTIAL AND RATHER THREATENING CHARACTERS DID NOT TOLERATE WELL OTHERWISE... NOR SHOULD WE IGNORE THE FACT THAT DEMOCRACY AND CHRISTIANITY HAVE MINGLED WITH PLENTY OF IDEOLOGIES...RELIGIOUS AND SECULAR VIEWS AND LIFESTYLES VIA TRADE, WAR, MIGRATION AND SO ON. IT'S PRETTY ARROGANT TO THINK THAT THE SUN SHINES OUTA YER BUTT IN A UNIQUE WAY WHEN IN FACT YER CRUSADING WAYS PICKED UP MORE THAN CHATTEL, A TAN AND STOMACH BUGS...LANGUAGE, MATHS, ARCHITECTURE, RECIPES YOU NAME IT...MIGHTA BEEN ADDED TO THE HORSE AND CART AND COURT TOO... AND LET'S FACE IT...LIKE MOST FANATICAL MOVEMENTS CHRISTIANITY SPREAD MORE THAN GOODWILL AND FAB IDEAS... ASK ALL THE RODENTS AND BIRDS FEEDING ON THE MASS OF STINKING CORPSES LEFT IN THE WAKE OF CHRISTIAN CRUSADES. JUST SAYIN' N'

Michael

5/05/2013Ross Gittins reminds us here just how little real economic intelligence resides behind the Costello smirk. http://www.smh.com.au/business/cutting-tax-comes-back-to-bite-years-down-the-line-20130503-2iyd7.html?skin=text-only

nasking

5/05/2013 JUST REFLECTIN' ON THE UK LABOUR RESULTS...AND SURGE OF UKIP...NOT UNLIKE ONE NATION IN THE 90s...AND THE TEA PARTY PRIOR TO THE AMERICAN MID-TERM ELECTIONS... PM GILLARD OF AUSTRALIA HAS PUT ASYLUM SEEKERS IN NAURU AND MANUS ISLAND DETENTION CENTRES... HAS TARGETTED THE MISUSE OF 457 VISAS TO PROTECT AUSSIE JOBS... HAS BEEN HARD ON DOLE RECIPIENTS AND SINGLE MUMS... HAS NOT GONE THE DIRECTION OF KEVIN RUDD'S 'BIG AUSTRALIA'... HAS REDUCED OVERSEAS AID... HAS FOCUSED ON REDIRECTING MONEY TO THE AVERAGE WORKER RATHER THAN THE WELL-OFF... YET HER POLLS AREN'T MUCH DIFFERENT THAN UK LABOURS. AT LEAST THE PAST FEW MONTHS. SO...IT GOES TO SHOW YOU THAT THE VOTING PUBLIC HAVE GONE XENOPHOBIA LOOPY... IN THIS TIME OF GLOBAL WOBBLY ECONOMY...LOTS OF UNCERTAINTY...SENSE OF INSECURITY ABOUT JOBS...AUSTERITY MEASURES...CUTS CUTS CUTS (LET'S NOT FORGET THE GILLARD GOVT HAS MADE CUTS TOO...AND THE UK LABOUR PARTY WAS BIG ON OUTSOURCING)... VAST CHANGES TO COMMUNICATION...SOME PEOPLE DON'T ADAPT WELL...SOME START SUCKING UP THE FLOOD OF LIBERTARIAN AND CYNICISM ABOUT THE ROLE OF GOVT MESSAGES ON THE INTERNET...FORGETTING THAT EFFECTIVE SERVICES NEED TAXES TO PAY FOR THEM... ...PREVIOUSLY BEING SPOILT BY CREDIT SPLURGES AND HOUSING BOOMS (UNREALISTIC EXPECTATIONS AND IRRESPONSIBLE CONSUMPTION LIKE THE WORST OF ADDICTS...AND SPOILT CHILDREN)... AND A OFT MORALLY BANKRUPT MEDIA THAT BENEFIT FROM FEARMONGERING AND DOG WHISTLING.... AND MAYBE...GLOBALISATION AND SO MUCH OUTSOURCING HAS MORE THAN A LITTLE TO DO WITH IT... CHANGE AIN'T EASY...CHANGE TAKES EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT AND PLANNING...CHANGE COULD USE A MORE RESPONSIBLE MEDIA. AND LESS GREEDY FCKERS AT THE TOP TRYING TO MANIPULATE PUBLIC PERCEPTION AND ESSENTIAL REFORMS FOR THEIR OWN BENEFIT. FRANKLY, I'D RATHER SEE UKIP WIN A FEW SEATS AND THE PRESSURE COME OUT OF SOME ANGST-RIDDEN VOTERS EARS... THAN SEE A CIVIL WAR. ONCE THE VOTERS IN LABOUR AREAS REALISE THEY ARE GETTING MORE EFFECTIVE SERVICES...AND THEIR COMMUNITY IS MORE HARMONIOUS AND JOB PROTECTED (PROVIDED LABOURITES IN THE UK PROVIDE SUCH AND STOP ACTING LIKE CORPORATE THUGS AND PRETENDERS AND SNAKE OIL SALESMEN) AND THOSE IN THE UKIP COMMUNITIES GET LOTS OF CODSWALLOP, CONFUSION AND BIGOTRY LEADING TO DIVIDED COMMUNITIES AND CRAP SERVICES BUT LOTS OF HAPPY REDUCED FEES RICH...THEN THE VOTERS WILL WAKE UP. STILL, ONE NEVER KNOWS IN THIS DAY AND AGE...MAYBE SOME OF THE UKIP TYPES WILL SURPRISE US WITH THEIR NEWFOUND SENSE OF EMPATHY AND LOVE OF SERVICES. BE INTERESTING TO SEE IF ANY HOLIDAY IN EUROPE AND BENEFIT FROM CHEAP HOTELS AND DELICIOUS FOOD...AND AFFORDABLE BEER AND WINE. AND HOW MUCH THE TORIES LUV RUPERT RIGHT NOW. ONE THING I NEVER LIKED ABOUT TOFF POMS WAS THEIR SPINELESSNESS AND PROPENSITY FOR BROWN-NOSING THE WORST OF INFLUENTIAL CHARACTERS WHEN THINGS WEREN'T GOING THEIR WAY. GLAD THE WORKERS GAVE THEM A KICK UP THE BUTT. JUST WISH THE WORKERS COULD SEE WHAT A FRAUD RUPERT IS. N'

nasking

5/05/2013 MICHAEL, THNX FOR THE LINK...ROSS GITTINS IS A SMART FELLA...MAKES SENSE: [quote]Increasingly, economists are realising our governments mishandled the revenue windfall from the first phase of the resources boom, spending too much of it and saving too little. Not only did John Howard allow government spending to grow at Labor-like rates in the noughties, but Costello responded to the temporary boost in collections from company tax by cutting income tax eight years in a row (though, to be sure, the last three of his cuts were actually delivered by Labor). Usually, income tax is cut only every three years or so, and cut close to an election so voters haven't forgotten it happened. Does it surprise you that cutting income tax so much can reduce its revenue-raising power today and in coming years? It shouldn't. The Australia Institute has used the well-regarded Stinmod micro-simulation model to estimate that, had the income-tax scale for 2004-05 still been in use last financial year, 2011-12, collections from the tax would have been almost $39 billion higher. Now, you may object that we couldn't have gone for all that time without any tax cut. Since our tax scales aren't indexed for inflation, we need regular tax cuts just to counter the effect of bracket creep. Fair point. So next the institute compared the actual tax scale in 2011-12 with the 2004-05 scale with its tax brackets indexed up to allow for all the inflation in between. It found the indexed scale would have raised an additional $25 billion. So Costello's many tax cuts cut the real rate of income tax - on the strength of a surge in company tax collections that proved to be temporary. Think how much smaller the budget deficit (and the accumulated debt) would be now had he limited himself to offsetting the effect of bracket creep. (Remember too that, particularly in the years before the global financial crisis, his decisions to spend rather than save the tax windfall from the resources boom obliged the Reserve Bank to raise interest rates higher than otherwise, to prevent this recycling from causing inflation.) It's worth noting that the successive tax cuts were biased in favour of the better-off, with the cut-in point for the top tax rate trebled to $180,000 a year. As a result, the value of tax cuts going to the top 10 per cent of income earners exceeded that of the cuts going to the bottom 80 per cent. If that doesn't convince you responsibility for the present and future state of the budget has to be shared between Labor and the Coalition, [b]remember the other irresponsible revenue decision Costello made when the government was temporarily flush with funds: making income from superannuation totally tax free for people 60 and over. Even at the time, economists warned this handout to the better-off was unsustainable - and so it has proved[/b].[/quote] EVERY TIME MY WIFE AND I SEE THAT SMUG PRICK COSTELLO FARTING ON ABOUT THE NEED TO PRIVATISE AND CUT I GET THE URGE TO CHUCK THE TV OUTA THE ROOM... AND S HAS MORE THAN A FEW LESS THAN COMPLIMENTARY WORDS TO SAY ABOUT COSTELLO THE SMUG MANIC. N'

nasking

5/05/2013 A PARTY FOR THOSE WHO ARE SUICIDAL...GRUMPY...SQUIRM AT CHANGE...GET CREEPED OUT BY NON-WHITE SKIN...AND YEARN FOR THE GOOD OLD DAYS THAT AIN'T COMING BACK?: Another example of the disconnect in action is the dismissal by many politicians and commentators of Ukip's rise as the consequence of a temporary protest vote. For many voters, the party's policies matter a great deal, albeit a number are already becoming unstitched. The immigration cap of 50,000 a year is under revision, for instance. [b]But on other issues, Farage is clear about his goals, if not about the means to achieve them. He has said he will oversee the UK's withdrawal from the EU, increase defence spending by 40%, install smoking rooms in pubs, bring back grammar schools and cut taxes. The price tag is elusive. Critics say his aim is a mythical Britain of the 1950s reclaimed.[/b] http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/may/04/local-elections-ukip I WONDER HOW MUCH BIG TOBACCO HAS A HAND IN THIS? THE ARMAMENTS INDUSTRY OBVIOUSLY HAS A HAND UP HIS DERRIÈRE. OH JOLLY GOOD! GRAMMAR SCHOOLS...WHY NOT OLD CHUM...NOTHING LIKE GETTING BACK TO THOSE GOOD OLD BUNTER DAYS...LOTS OF LATIN AND FOOD PARCELS IN THE MAIL...AND SUSPICION OF DARKIES. I SAY... GOD REALLY IS AN ENGLISHMAN... IT'S FARAGE!!! N'

nasking

5/05/2013 ONE OF THE MOST INSULTING SET-UPS BEFORE AN INTERVIEW WITH A PM I'VE EVER SEEN...INSIDERS HAS HIT AN ALL-TIME LOW. THAT CHOOK CRAP RIGHT AFTER THE PATHETIC SYCOPHANTIC SUPPORT FOR ABBOTT BY FRAN KELLY OVER A VAGUE GAMBLING-RELATED PROMISE MADE BY THE WEATHERVANE WAS A DESPICABLE, APPALLING, A DEFINITELY BIASED PIECE OF WORK. YOU'D EXPECT THAT KIND OF CRAP FROM THE SHOCK JOCKS. ABC YOU HAVE LOST THE PLOT. I'D LIKE TO KNOW HOW MUCH THESE BIGWIGS LIKE FRAN KELLY AND BARRIE CASSIDY HAVE BEEN OFFERED TO ENSURE THE GOVT LOSES SO THE CONTINUATION OF THE CORPORATISATION OF THE ABC CAN CONTINUE... I BET THEY'VE BEEN OFFERED A PACKET TO BE CELEBRITIES IN A FUTURE SEMI-PRIVATISED ABC. N'

nasking

5/05/2013 GOOD ON THE PM FOR FIRING UP AND ARTICULATING HER AND THE GOVT'S POSITION EFFECTIVELY DURING THAT INTERVIEW. STACE AND I WERE CHEERING HER ON BY THE END OF IT. YOU GO GIRL! FFS! IT'S ABOUT TIME THIS HARD WORKING, EFFECTIVE NEGOTIATOR GOT SOME CREDIT. ENUFF MISOGYNY AND CORPORATE PANDERING MSM...GIVE THE WOMAN CREDIT!!! N'

Tom of Melbourne

5/05/2013Jane, you’ve just been blathering on about use of mobiles once an aircraft reaches cruising altitude. Fine, some of the avionic systems aren’t required at that point. {b]1. Steve Purvenas spoke about the danger of using a mobile during take off. 2. That arrogant dolt Dreyfus, used his mobile during take off[/b] So your point is? Just give up Jane, and stick to insults, that’s where you show your capability.

Tom of Melbourne

5/05/2013Jane, you’ve just been blathering on about use of mobiles once an aircraft reaches cruising altitude. Fine, some of the avionic systems aren’t required at that point. [b]1. Steve Purvenas spoke about the danger of using a mobile during take off. 2. That arrogant dolt Dreyfus, used his mobile during take off[/b] So your point is? Just give up Jane, and stick to insults, that’s where you show your capability.

Tom of Melbourne

5/05/2013 [i] ...GIVE THE WOMAN CREDIT!!!
[/i] Oh, I do! I give her well earned credit for- • Promising a surplus, and then breaking the promise. • Locking up 6000 people who have committed no crime, except seeking our protection • Breaking a range of commitments regarding her carbon policy • Breaking her written word to Wilkie, the agreement that allowed her to become PM • Appointing a proven sleaze as Speaker to avoid the consequences of her dishonesty • Having “complete confidence” in Thompson, just before she didn’t Plenty more great reasons to have huge confidence in Gillard. None of them are actually related to her being a woman.

Jason

5/05/2013ToM, Still bitching like the old Queen you are! Perhaps I'll see you this week while I'm in Melbourne!

nasking

5/05/2013 A LOT OF PEOPLE ON FACEBOOK PRETTY PISSED OFF WITH THE 'INSIDERS' PROGRAM FOR INSULTING THE PM BY USING THAT LIBERAL CHOOK AD PRIOR TO THE INTERVIEW. DEFINITELY SHOCK JOCK BIAS STYLE. CASSIDY AND TEAM SHOULD BE SACKED ON THE SPOT. NOTICE HOW THIS EPISODE INSTEAD OF GIVING THE PM AND GOVT CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE DID LITTLE BUT SPRUIK ABBOTT...DUMP ON THE GOVT...CONTINUE TO FART ON ABOUT LABOR MEMBERS HAVING LOW MORALE...HOW HOCKEY WOULD PROBABLY BE THE NEXT TREASURER... WHILST JULIA AND SWAN WERE DUMPED ON BIG TIME DURING THE TALKING PICTURES SECTION. AND...EVEN THE INITIAL CRITICISM OF ABBOTT'S ELITIST PAID PARENTAL SCHEME WAS DOWNPLAYED AS MALLEY PROMOTED IT AS A SOMETHING WONDERFUL. LET ME TELL YA...IF SHE THINKS THAT PEOPLE LIKE MY CHILDLESS WIFE AND HER COUNTRY MUM ARE GONNA BE ENTHUSED ABOUT ELITE WOMEN IN THE CITY GETTING HUGE PAYOUTS TO HAVE A BABY WHILST THEY GET STUCK WITH THE BILL FROM THE COMPANIES THAT GET HIT BY IT...SHE IS KIDDING HERSELF. DYA THINK THAT THESE WOMEN AREN'T ALREADY FED UP WITH HAVING TO DEAL WITH THE FALLOUT FROM THE LAST COALITION EXPENSIVE INTRUSION INTO MATERNITY WITH THAT LUMP SUM BABY BONUS THAT SAW HEAPS OF YOUNG, POOR, SOMETIMES MENTALLY UNSTABLE WOMEN HAVE NUMEROUS BABIES THAT THEY HAVEN'T GOT THE STABLE RELATIONSHIP, CAREERS AND MENTAL MATURITY TO LOOK AFTER PROPERLY? N'

nasking

5/05/2013 MY WIFE WAS SO OUTRAGED BY THAT CHOOK AD AND THE DISRESPECTFUL WAY THE INTERVIEW WITH THE PM WAS FRAMED SHE ACTUALLY CONTACTED 'INSIDERS' AND GAVE THEM A PIECE OF HER MIND... THAT'S RARE FOR S. IT'S BEEN A LONG TIME SINCE I'VE SEEN HER SO RILED UP... I THINK THE COMBINATION OF SEEING THE PM UNFAIRLY DUMPED ON AND GIVEN LITTLE CREDIT AFTER HER HARD WORK THESE PAST WEEKS...AND WATCHING COSTELLO SMUGLY CALL FOR CUTS AND PRIVATISATION IN QLD...ADD THE SYCOPHANTIC PROMOTION OF ABBOTT ON HIS BIKE WHICH SHE SEES AS NOTHING BUT AN OPPORTUNISTIC USE OF A CHARITY RIDE TO POLITICALLY CAMPAIGN...HAS MADE HER SIT UP AND TAKE NOTICE... SHE IS VERY ANNOYED WITH THE MSM AND LNP RIGHT NOW. YOU CAN MAKE A COMPLAINT HERE: http://www.abc.net.au/insiders/contact.htm N'

Ad astra

5/05/2013nasking I agree that it was poor taste to broadcast that 'chook' ad on Insiders, thereby giving the Coalition a free run of their ad. How stupid and thoughtless of Barry Cassidy to run it; presuming it was thoughtlessness and not a deliberate pro-Coalition tactic. Did you notice too how he persisted with his opinion that Julia Gillard had made a tactical error by insisting Tony Abbott come on side with the NDIS before she presented the legislation to parliament, although she had the numbers to get it through without the Coalition's support. I thought her answer was a sound rebuttal of Cassidy's opinion, but he pressed on as if he had not heard her, which I attribute to Cassidy's ego getting the better of him. He wanted his opinion to be acknowledged as right, at least in the eyes of his viewers; did he really expect the PM to agree with him? It is regrettable when a person's ego is so large that that person's opinion cannot be changed by the evidence, as was the case this morning with Cassidy. Notwithstanding his opinion to the contrary, Julia Gillard's tactic worked - she got what she wanted. Of course the knockers will disagree. Who cares -let them. Thank you too for all your strong and informative contributions to this post. You are great source of interesting news and views from here and overseas. I was thinking this morning that visitors here get such a gourmet diet - Lyn's splendid links six days a week and the comments that you and others make day after day.

Catching up

5/05/2013Jane we can ignore the fact that the minister denied that he refused to turn off his tablet or whatever it was. Must be true, the MSM said so. The police turned up, but were told they were not needed. It is said he wanted to read his emails. Unless I am wrong, one can read what is on the machine, without being connected to the internet. Might be wrong there. Then the pilot I listened to, would not know what he was talking about. talked about serious incidents, but said they all occurred back in the distant past. Not that if that matters. What is at question, do we take at face value what is reported in the media. What is not necessary, is personal abuse for daring to see things in a different way. There are always more than one side to any story. The minister has rejected the story as told. PM giving very strong speech in Queensland at this moment. Has Cando in her sights. Yes, regulations should be obeyed, even if they no longer relevant. I suspect, that in this case, the minister did do the right thing. He did apologized for any trouble caused. As I said, not a hanging offence. Well they have to work harder to divert. The PM appears to be getting through with her message. I suspect people might be starting to listen, and might just like what they see.

Catching up

5/05/2013Yes, Insiders might have reach a new low, but it matters not. It gave the PM the chance to get her message across, which she is doing effectually. Just listen to a speech she is giving in Queensland. The PM is speaking with great emotion. Sounds like she means what she saying. Yes, let the media rile her a little more. The PM appears to be at her best, when up against that brick wall. Abbott goes to pieces in the same situation.

Ad astra

5/05/2013nasking Thanks for the link to ABC [i]Insiders[/i]. I have just now sent this message: [i]I thought that running the 'chook ad' an Insiders this morning was insensitive and stupid, especially as the PM was a guest. Moreover, it gave a free run to what I consider to be an offensive and childish ad. If the ABC is supposed to be ad-free how can it justify running this highly political ad. Please don't tell me that it's not advertising but journalism! That would add insult to injury. I often admire what Barrie Cassidy does on Insiders, but this morning was not one of his good days.[/i]

Miglo

5/05/2013Nas, it's a pleasure to see you fired up again.

Jason

5/05/2013bushfirebill From Bushfire Bill May 5, 2013 at 1:04 pm Gillard’s double-bluff last week was brilliant. 1. First, she bluffed Abbott into into DEMANDING a new tax be legislated for immediately; 2. Then when he dared her to legislate before the election – not believing she would – she said “Yes please.” “Curses, foiled again!” I don’t she she wanted to go to an election arguing for a levy at all. That was a statement made more in sorrow than in triumph, in my opinion. Levies (even ones for all the right reasons) are just not popular, whether we here like it or not, That has to be faced. It plays into Abbott’s “New Tax” mantra – unless he can be bluffed into trying to make out it was all his idea in the first place. All that crap the pundits wrote about “handing Abbott the agenda”, “more political clumsiness from Gillard” encouraged Abbott to go one step too far in answering her double-bluff. Given that levies are unpopular, the best way to avoid having to go it alone on one is to get the other side supporting it, nay DEMANDING it (all the while getting them to believe you’ll never cave in). But Gillard DID do it, and in the space of just a few days, trapped the Coalition into performing a 180 degree about face, in the meantime consigning Joe Hockey to the dressing sheds for an early shower. Incidentally, has anyone seen Joe since Abbott’s backflip? I thought not. It must have been humiliating to the Avuncular One for Abbott to whip the carpet out from under his “Death Duties, Television Licences reintroduced, Tax On Puppies” Festival Of FUD. There’s also the likliehood that Abbott was panicking. He has a set-piece campaign on Boats, Batts, Debt and Carbon arranged with the media, and didn’t want Gillard to hijack his cunning stunt by introducing cripples and disability loafers into the mix. That would not have done at all. The Myer boofhead moaning about how the money could have been spent in his over-priced, under-staffed shops didn’t help, either. For the past two and a half years Abbott has been about the precincts of the nation spruiking three-word slogans. That’s been enough to get him to where he is in the polls, as the pundits can’t get over how something so shallow can produce so much noise and alarum. The first signs we’ve had of him sobering up that he might be in with a chance – a serious chance, not just a Newspoll chance – have been his backtracks on just about everything, the latest being his aspiration (now) to slow boats down… and be disappointed if he can’t… (he’ll be disappointed? What about the darkie-hating punters who expect sinkings, drownings and shirt-fronting of nig-nog Indonesian presidents pour encourager les autres!) Abbott is nervous. I wouldn’t say scared just yet, but nervous definitely. He has told us what the election will be about. It’s all benn mapped and planned, down to a “T”. Last week was the first sign of panic. He was brought to the edge of the electoral abyss by Gillard and baulked, flip-flopped, backed-off, hesitated at the starter’s gate… call it what you will. It’s a sign of how easy it may become to derail his campaign. Just come up with something that isn’t in the plan and threaten to make it an election issue and Abbott could well go to water again. Perhaps I should make that item 3. of my “What last week achieved” list? “3. Scared the shit of of Tony Abbott and revealed just how inflexible his election strategy really is.” http://pbxmastragics.com/2013/05/04/where-have-all-the-labor-voters-gone/#comment-48039

Tom of Melbourne

5/05/2013Just a couple of examples of Catching Up just making up stuff about aircraft safety, when she clearly knows absolutely nothing about it- [i]”It seems to be a regulation, that thanks to new technology, has out grown it's used. Yes, years ago, the phones did affect safety. Does not appear to be the case today.“
[/i] Both statements are completely wrong. Which is quite typical.

Catching up

5/05/2013Poor Tom, much always have the last word, even over comments that mean little. I have not given an opinion, just repeated what some in the know have said. All I have done, is challenge whether what was reported in the media was factual or not. The question is, is the minister guilty as charged. My opinion is that he is not. Did he need his apparatus turn on but not connect to the internet, to read his emails. Suspect this was the case. Tom, there have been many more important things that have occurred in the last few days. The media in general have not even proceeded with this non story. My point is, it is much ado about nothing. I know it is hard for you to acknowledge that the PM is hitting many home runs at this time, while Abbott is languishing on the sidelines. Abbott is fast becoming more irrelevant as each day goes by. It is common for announcers to comment after each of Abbott's stunts, that he has said nothing new.

Jason

5/05/2013Both statements are completely wrong. Which is quite typical. Yet the other day we had this! May 3. 2013 02:02 PM Which airline? No doubt you're aware that the procedures vary with aircraft type, age and the avionic system. Tom of Melbourne So which is it?

Tom of Melbourne

5/05/2013
Here are actual facts Catching Up- • Dreyfus specifically ignore the announcement to turn his mobile off • A passenger told him of this requirement • He ignored this • A cabin crew member told him • The cabin crew were so concerned that they told the aircraft captain • The captain was so concerned that he called the police Then you (as always) leap to some bizarre conclusions that you know nothing about, such as those I’ve outlined above. Made up stuff about mobiles not affecting aircraft safety. Simply stating that the regulations were no longer required. Catching Up, you regularly make stuff up, and then get all upset when this is identified. Stop sooking about it, and try the truth.

Catching up

5/05/2013Tom, please stop flogging a dead horse. What you have written is nothing more than unfound allegations in the media. The minister denied the story. The police were sent away. The plane took off. I also noticed the media called for any witness. Have not seen any story that tells us, any came forwarded. It the matter is as reported, there had to be witnesses. Tom, the story is not worth this much energy. If t6hat is what you want to believe, so be it. Personally, I have no idea who is telling the truth. Neither do you. Just saying, things are not always as they seem, particularly when it comes to our MSM.

Catching up

5/05/2013The question I would ask, how often does that captain call the police. I am sure similar incidents would happen on a regular basis. By the way, the police were told they were not needed. Yes, they did turn up. One could question the motive of the captain, could one not. One could wonder how such a minor event, found it's way into the media.

Catching up

5/05/2013Bushfire. One hundred percent agreement. That picture of Abbott with that mother and her question suns all up. She asked what HE was going to do. He stood there stuttering as usual. That was when he announced we would have to wait until the next morning, for an answer. Yes, the PM picked the time well. While Abbott was on the bike, raising money for carers. At a time the PM well knew he would be using the disabled as a backdrop for his stunts.

Michael

5/05/2013Anyone around here use the term 'twerp' lately? It just came to me that's exactly what Abbott is. A twerp. To the max, a twerp.

jane

5/05/2013ToM, that IS the point. Your gibbering on about an aviation engineer clearly has absolutely nothing to do with my comment. It shows that as usual you just can't be bothered to read what's written which lets you think you can get on your hobby horse du jour and career all over the country spraying your snide, irrelevant bovine excrement far and wide. When you bother to address what commenters actually say, you might get some respect and engagement. You also chose to ignore the fact that I said that Dreyfus should have switched off his device as requested.

jane

5/05/2013Jason, BB's comment was right on the money. Liealot is both completely unable to think on his feet and has at best only a superficial knowledge and understanding of any of the shadow portfolios, including his own. And the only policy that we're (and most likely he is) aware of-that pig's breakfast Fraudband Turnbull has cobbled together from rubbish bins. Anything else is just a fistful of three word slogans, which are pretty hard to elaborate on. That's why he runs away from any questions on policy or other matters. He can't deviate from Credlin's script. Ad libbing and flexibility are not in his DNA. However, we do know he is lazy, incompetent, inept, arrogant and inefficient by looking at his history in the Rodent government. He had two Ministries; Emplouyment, Workplace Relations & Small Business and Health & Ageing and was a complete flop at both. He was also Leader of the HOR and Minister Assisting the PM for the Public Service and once again failed to cover himself with glory. We also know, however that when it comes to devious, mendacious corrupt behaviour and big noting he aces the competition. He almost makes the Rodent look honest. This is the information that the msm have been busily burying, instead of providing voters with, so that they're at least aware of what they'll be saddling the country with if they vote 1 Liars.

Tom of Melbourne

5/05/2013Catching Up - there are 2 issues here- 1. The actions of Dreyfus in disregarding an air safety regulation 2. Your behaviour in being dishonest or ignorant about aircraft safety, with your comments – [i] 
”It seems to be a regulation, that thanks to new technology, has out grown it's used.
 Yes, years ago, the phones did affect safety. Does not appear to be the case today.“
[/i] You routinely make up “facts” that are either ignorant or dishonest. Then you gloss over them. [b]Your comments that I’ve quoted above are either dishonest or ignorant. Which is it Catching Up?[/b] ----------- Jane, you original comment – [i]” I have flown with 3 different airlines recently and passengers were told they could turn on their phones after the plane was in the air. ‘
[/i]..which is a red herring. Dreyfus was using his phone on take off. Hence I’ve chosen to ensure you have the correct information.

Catching up

5/05/2013Sorry Tom, one issue. Some unproven allegations have been made in the media. Allegations that the minister disputes. Does not matter how you twist what I and others say. Have you noticed, you are the only one interested in the subject. Do not see many coming to your support. You are going around in circles, saying nothing new.

Catching up

5/05/2013Maybe we should be thanking the likes of Insiders for allowing the PM to put her true mettle on show. They just reinforce how on task and focus the woman is. They show her ability to be on top of all topics. No question throws her.

Tom of Melbourne

5/05/2013No Catching Up, you chose to debate the subject, and now demonstrate your willingness to continue. You also demonstrate your willingness make up stuff about aircraft safety, and I simply pointed out that your comments on that subject are either [b]dishonest or ignorant[/b]

Catching up

5/05/2013No Tom, It was you that raised the topic. Raised it is such a way, that all that was written was proven fact. I pointed out to you, that was not so. Even posted what was said elsewhere. There are only allegations, no proof. Maybe it is true, maybe not. You wrote s if the minister was guilty of all that was written. Obviously that is not true. You and all your ilk, do this everytime. Try to turn it back on all those who dare to dispute what you say. You raised the topic. I voice my disagreement with what you have written.h

Tom of Melbourne

5/05/2013No Catching Up. You always try to move the issue when you get caught [b]either being dishonest or ignorant[/b], you’re trying that again now. Your comments on aircraft safety were wrong, and made up. But as always you obfuscate about this, that’s your form.

Patriciawa

5/05/2013 <blockquote>I'D LIKE TO KNOW HOW MUCH THESE BIGWIGS LIKE FRAN KELLY AND BARRIE CASSIDY HAVE BEEN OFFERED TO ENSURE THE GOVT LOSES SO THE CONTINUATION OF THE CORPORATISATION OF THE ABC CAN CONTINUE... I BET THEY'VE BEEN OFFERED A PACKET TO BE CELEBRITIES IN A FUTURE SEMI-PRIVATISED ABC.</blockquote> Yes, I've had that thought flit across my mind about Cassidy and other ABC stars before and dismissed them as unworthy. But not after today. What an appalling production, almost as if the entire crew had been warned by management that they had better 'get Gillard' this time or they were for the chop, just as Kerry O'Brien got the chop from 7.30. But they didn't get her, did they? Prime Minister Julia Gillard was magnificent, and I think that Cassidy was ashamed of himself; he seemed to me to be looking more down at his sheaf of papers than the camera at the end there. If he wasn't ashamed, he should have been. And what about Maley commending the government for their recent focus on policy?!? Am I mistaken or wasn't it generally agreed to by the panel that all the recent debate around the NBN, Gonski and now NDIS were evidence of a determination by the government to get down to some work at last? As if there's been no legislation achieved in past few years and no opportunity for them to comment on it.

Patriciawa

5/05/2013Sorry, Nasking. I always forget the so easy formatting for blockquotes here, and then I didn't ascribe those first two paragraphs to you. Apologies.

Catching up

5/05/2013Tom, what was I caught out on. There has been allegations made, that the minister disputed. Many said that mobiles and like are probably not the problem they once was. Just repeating what I heard a leading pilot say. Yes, Tom there are two versions in the media. Maybe the truth lies between. What I am also repeating, what does it matter. It is you that is demanding, your version be accepted as truth. One needs to question all that one reads in the media, is what I am pushing. They have a proven history of getting much wrong. Now, maybe I missed something, and you witness the whole incident. Tom, I challenge such stories as many become accepted as truth when they involve Labor MP's Tom, why do you put so much effort into such remarks. Why keep pushing this insignificant barrow. The only opinion I have on the whole matter is that one cannot accept what is written in the MSM as gospel truth, as you do. I am not even challenging what you have said. Just pointed out, there are other views. I am challenging the fact, that you take what is written in the MSM as fact. I am happy to keep going all day, as I have plenty of time to waste. Will not do so, as it becomes boring and tedious for other readers. There is nothing left to say. Goodbye Tom. You will have the last word, but I will ignore it.

Tom of Melbourne

5/05/2013Catching Up said – [i]Tom, what was I caught out on.[/i] You said – [i] ”It seems to be a regulation, that thanks to new technology, has out grown it's used.
 Yes, years ago, the phones did affect safety. Does not appear to be the case today.“[/i] Both comments are wrong. Both made up. Both are typical of your commentary – either ignorant or dishonest.

jane

5/05/2013NAS' @9.44AM. YOU & S' ARE ON FIRE! THE CONTINUED BOVINE EXCREMENT COMING FROM THE TOADIES AT THE ABC, DOES MAKE YOU WONDER WHAT INDUCEMENTS THEY'VE BEEN OFFERED, THOUGH. I CONFESS I DON'T WATCH OFFSIDERS ANYMORE. BAD FOR THE HEALTH & THE TV SCREEN FROM WHAT I GLEAN HERE. LOL Tom, I stand corrected. I was under the impression that Dreyfus was using his phone while the plane was in flight. Thank you for the correct information. Patricia, it's not your thoughts that are unworthy, rather the subjects of the thoughts are unworthy.

nasking

5/05/2013 [quote]Yes, I've had that thought flit across my mind about Cassidy and other ABC stars before and dismissed them as unworthy. But not after today. What an appalling production, almost as if the entire crew had been warned by management that they had better 'get Gillard' this time or they were for the chop, just as Kerry O'Brien got the chop from 7.30. But they didn't get her, did they? Prime Minister Julia Gillard was magnificent, and I think that Cassidy was ashamed of himself; he seemed to me to be looking more down at his sheaf of papers than the camera at the end there. If he wasn't ashamed, he should have been.[/quote] PATRICIA, INDEED. LIKE AD I HAVE RESPECTED SOME OF BARRIE CASSIDY'S PAST EFFORTS...BUT MORE AND MORE OVER THE YEARS I'VE BEGUN TO WONDER IF THE LIKES OF HIM, FRAN KELLY, LEIGH SALES, CHRIS UHLMAN, TONY JONES AND A FEW OTHERS HAVE BEEN OFFERED A DEAL BY MARK SCOTT OR THE LIBERAL PARTY IF THEY HELP SABOTAGE THE GILLARD GOVT... THE ONGOING BASHING OF THE GOVT HAS ALMOST REACHED MURDOCH EMPIRE AND CHANNEL NINE AND SHOCK JOCK LEVELS. IT JUST DOESN'T MAKE SENSE...UNLESS THERE ARE OTHER FACTORS INVOLVED THAT THE PUBLIC ARE UNAWARE OF. IT IS ODD TOO THAT WE RARELY SEE A REPLACEMENT FOR THESE HOSTS APART FROM VIRGINIA TRIOLI WHO ALSO DOESN'T SEEM TO MIND BASHING THE GOVT CONTINUALLY. I DON'T EXPECT THEM TO BE GOVT SPRUIKERS...BUT I DO EXPECT THE GOVT TO BE TREATED FAIRLY...AND FOR ABBOTT'S POLICIES TO BE EXAMINED WITH THE SAME LEVEL OF SCRUTINY. USUALLY I SEE/HEAR CYNICISM AND MOCKERY WHEN IT COMES TO PM GILLARD LED POLICY ANNOUNCEMENTS AND ACHIEVEMENTS... BUT APOLOGIST STUFF RELATED TO ABBOTT AND HOCKEY AND PYNE AND JOYCE...WITH ADDED GOOD CHEER AND STUFF LIKE 'TONY IS REALLY SURPRISING EVERYONE...HE'S GROWING...HE CARES DEEPLY ABOUT THIS ISSUE...TONY IS A NICE FELLA WHEN YOU MEET HIM'....BLAAAH BLAAAH BLAAAH... IT'S LIKE 'INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS'...THE SANE RATIONAL NATURALLY CURIOUS AND INVESTIGATIVE JOURNOS HAVE BEEN REPLACED BY ABBOTT SYCOPHANTS WHO DETEST PM GILLARD. GOOD ON JULIA FOR FIRING UP...NOT LETTING THE INSULTING CHOOK AD AND GRUMPY CASSIDY GET HER DOWN. MY RESPECT FOR HER ABILITY TO OVERCOME ADVERSITY HAS RISEN IMMEASURABLY. WHEN UNDER THAT KIND OF PRESSURE ABBOTT USUALLY WILTS...STUMBLES. THAT KIND OF PRESSURE ON HIM THO IS...RARE. SADLY. N'

nasking

5/05/2013 AD, SO PLEASED YOU MADE YER FEELINGS CLEAR TO THE 'INSIDERS' PROGRAM...I HOPE MANY OTHERS CONTACT THEM TOO. MIGS, CHEERS...KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK AT THE CAFE, ON FACEBOOK AND ELSEWHERE...I OFT SHARE YER WORK ON FACEBOOK. [b]Liealot is both completely unable to think on his feet and has at best only a superficial knowledge and understanding of any of the shadow portfolios, including his own. [/b] JANE, AGREE...ABBOTT CAN BE SURPRISINGLY SLOW THINKING - RESORTING TO THE SAME CRAPPY SLOGANS - WHEN PUT UNDER PRESSURE... HE IS TERRIFIED TO DIVERT FROM THE SCRIPT... ACCEPT WHEN THERE IS A CHANCE FOR AN EGO BOOSTING PHOTO-OP... THIS GUY REALLY CRAVES ATTENTION...AND NEEDS TO BE ADORED. NOT UNLIKE MANY DICTATORS THRUOUT HISTORY. ONCE THEY GET INTO POWER THEIR INSECURITIES AND CHIPS ON SHOULDER AND VULNERABLE EGO CAN MAKE THEM OVERLY-SENSITIVE AND PARANOID...LEADING TO BULLYING AND BAD DECISION MAKING. ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY ARE CRITICISED...AND COME UP AGAINST RESISTANCE TO THEIR IDEAS. WHICH ABBOTT WOULD...IN THE BUCKETLOADS. N'

Capstan

5/05/2013Hullo lefty tossers and assorted grubs. Here's the headline I just read in The Australian: [i]"Epic election rout is just the beginning for Labor"[/i] The article then reads as follows: [i]"It's going to be far, far worse than most people think it will be," says one of several party officials who spoke to Inquirer this week. "It's going to be a bloodbath," says another. "On the party's polling and the published polling, we are looking at the loss of 35-40 seats," says a third party official. "But when you look deeper, we're facing a wipeout in some of our safest seats." The consensus is if an election were held today, Labor would lose 35 to 40 seats - more than half its 72 seats (including Craig Thomson's seat of Dobell). This would leave Labor with just 32 to 37 seats in the House of Representatives. "As I go around the states, I struggle to tally Labor winning more than 35 seats," says a party official.[/i] BWAA! HAAA! HAAA! HAAA! HAAA! HAAAAAAAAAAARRRR! Hey Turkey Boy - wanna little bet on the election? I'll give you odds of ten to one on a bet that Labour will [b]lose [/b]the next Federal election. Odds of ten to one! Come on, mate - you KNOW you want to! Wassamatta, mate? Short arms and long pockets? I say again: BWAA! HAAA! HAAA! HAAA! HAAA! HAAAAAAAAAAARRRR! It's always a pleasure coming onto this curious little site of oddballs, misfits and terminally deluded rusted-ons.

nasking

5/05/2013 TONY ABBOTT RECKONS HE'LL EVENTUALLY DUMP THE DISABILITY CARE LEVY IF HE GETS IN... THAT DEMONSTRATES HE'LL PROBABLY USE ACCOUNTING TRICKS AND DEBT SCARES TO EVENTUALLY LESSEN THE MONEY GOING TO DISABILITY CARE... BUT IF HE DOES KEEP THE FUNDING UP YOU CAN IMAGINE THE EXTENT OF THE CUTS HE'LL MAKE TO THINGS LIKE HEALTHCARE AND EDUCATION... THIS IS THE HOWARD GOVT HEALTH MINISTER WHO TOOK A BILLION DOLLARS OUT OF HEALTHCARE. NOT TO BE TRUSTED. N'

nasking

5/05/2013 [b]THE AUSTRALIAN...HEART OF THE LIBERAL PARTY.[/b] THE OCCASIONAL USEFUL STORY...TONS OF BS. HYPERBOLE, GOVERNMENT BASHING, UNNAMED SOURCES, DISTORTED POLLS...WORKING OVERTIME TO MANIPULATE PUBLIC PERCEPTION...FILLED WITH RUPERT TOADIES...TABLOID MUCK TOLD WITH GRAVITAS AND PRETENCE OF BALANCE... COURTESY OF THE MURDOCH EMPIRE. N'

nasking

5/05/2013. "Epic election rout is just the beginning for Labor" YOU'D EXPECT THAT KIND OF HYPERBOLIC CRAP FROM A TABLOID RAG LIKE THE UK'S THE SUN...OR THE DAILY TELEGRAPH. THE MURDOCH EMPIRE HAVE REALLY LOWERED THE OZ INTO THE GUTTER THE PAST FEW YEARS...NO BALANCE...NO DIGNITY...LITTLE INTEGRITY LEFT. SHOWS THE DESPERATION OF THE OLD FOOL AND HIS CRONIES TO KILL OFF THE NBN...AND GET ABBOTT GOVT TAX CUTS. THE EMPIRE MUST BE TOPPLING IN SLO-MO. N'

Tom of Melbourne

5/05/2013Bizarre conspiracy theories abound, this time from Patricia – [i] almost as if the entire crew had been warned by management that they had better 'get Gillard' this time or they were for the chop, just as Kerry O'Brien got the chop from 7.30. 
[/i] Honestly, this is just nonsense. If Patricia was told to indoctrinate school children, would she comply? But typically, Nasking is always keen on a conspiracy to explain legitimate journalism – [i]” I'VE BEGUN TO WONDER IF THE LIKES OF HIM, FRAN KELLY, LEIGH SALES, CHRIS UHLMAN, TONY JONES AND A FEW OTHERS HAVE BEEN OFFERED A DEAL BY MARK SCOTT OR THE LIBERAL PARTY IF THEY HELP SABOTAGE THE GILLARD GOVT...[/i] Hilarious, that people take themselves seriously.

Ad astra

5/05/2013Folks There is a documentary on Murdoch at 8.30 tonight on SBS.

Pikiranku

5/05/2013We've gone from "totally dedicated" to "once in a blue moon" watchers of The Insiders, but watched it this morning to see Julia and hear what she had to say. She was very impressive and as informative as she could be, given the limitations of the questions asked of her. As usual, she was clear, strong and articulate. I thought that Jacqueline Maley was just plain dishonest, hiding her grab for middle-class welfare behind a cloak of self-righteous feminism. Almost made it impossible to argue with her without being exposed to an accusation of mysogyny. I, too, was disgusted by the free plug for that stupid and tasteless headless chooks advertisement. Did they really have to play the entire thing? I think not. And the Talking Heads segment was disappointing, too. Surely there are some better cartoons around than the ones they featured there. Though I did enjoy that acronym they mentioned: MAMILS - Middle Aged Men In Lycra. That's good! Nasking, I was interested and saddened by the article you reproduced this morning on Barack Obama. It seems even the best of American presidents have feet of clay. It reminded me of that other much-loved and lionised Democrat, JFK, and his reprehensible role in taking the USA into Vietnam.

Patriciawa

5/05/2013We on the blogosphere are way ahead of main stream media! We were on to mamils in 2010. Check out Cafe Whispers for this post on [u]Tony Abbott as Mamil[/u]which is appropriately illustrated. I even made a contribution with a pome! http://cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2010/10/09/httppoliticalowl-blogspot-com201010-html/ I woke up this morning feeling brain dead With no inspiration, not even a shred. Why did I say I would write for this thread? My favorite color has always been pink! Connect it with Abbot? I must need a shrink! So am I excused if I have a re-think? There are very few words rhyming with mamil. An obvious one which comes up is the camel. There’s also a net or a trap called a trammel. But none have inspired to any degree. Besides, we should show respect to the dromedary - He’s much better looking than Abbot. Agreed?

nasking

5/05/2013 PIKIRANKU, SADLY, I BELIEVE THAT OBAMA HAS BEEN PUT IN A 'NO WIN' SITUATION...THE PRE-EMPTIVE STRIKE BY BUSH HAS BEEN AN EXPENSIVE TACTICAL DISASTER...PLANS IGNORED, CORPORATES PERMITTED TO FEED THEIR GREAT MAWS...LEAVING OBAMA WITH FEW OPTIONS IF HE IS TO DEAL WITH TERRORIST THREATS...WITHOUT RESORTING TO FULLBORE LAND INVASIONS...WHILST GRADUALLY REDEPLOYING TROOPS...AND ENSURING THAT THE TALIBAN EXTREMISTS, AL QAEDA ETC KNOW IN NO UNCERTAIN TERMS THAT IF THEY FCK WITH AMERICAN CITIZENS AND INFRASTRUCTURE THEY WILL PAY. THIS MEANS AS COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF HE HAS TO RESORT TO USING ALTERNATIVES RECOMMENDED BY SOME OF THE BEST MILITARY STRATEGISTS...AND WITH MOST KILLING AND DETERRANCE MACHINES THERE WILL TRAGICALLY BE INNOCENT CASUALTIES...PARTICULARLY IF THE ENEMY IS USING FAMILIES AS HUMAN SHIELDS AND MISINFORMATION TACTICS AS PART OF THEIR RESISTANCE AND PROPAGANDA WAR. THE FOG AND SICKNESS AND DESPERATION OF WAR EH? N'

Pikiranku

5/05/2013Sorry, Patricia! In 2010 I was still back in the dark ages reading the Poll Bludger and hadn't discovered the joys of your literary talents! And I didn't mean to imply that they'd presented this acronym on The Insiders as something new - it was just something new to me. My heart goes out to you at the loss of your brother too. Even though I'm sure you'll all find plenty to celebrate in the life that he's managed to live, it's still a sad time. We're all with you.

jane

5/05/2013[quote]Here's the headline I just read in The Australian[/quote] Whoda thunk it? Crapstain is using Rupert's rag as an impeccable source-of Liars propaganda. NAS', AS I'VE OBSERVED BEFORE, LIEALOT IS A BIGNOTER, ATTENTION SEEKER AND MEDIA WHORE. OR HE'LL BE A MEDIA WHORE AS LONG AS THEY HANDLE HIM WITH KID GLOVES.

Ad astra

5/05/2013Folks I have just posted [i]Living within our means, Hockey style[/i]. http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2013/05/05/Living-within-our-means-Hockey-style.aspx
What does two plus 1 equal?