Is it that hard to sell the RSPT?

In the piece Why is a good Government down in the polls, several reasons for this state of affairs were proposed that included media malevolence, media manipulation, promises sometimes construed as being broken, less-than-perfect management of expectations, inadequate communication of policies, plans, actions and achievements, and less than clear definition of the principles on which the Government will stand firm.  This is the first of several pieces that suggest some remedies.

The last piece on the Resource Super Profits Tax, Getting some balance into the RSPT debate brought together a number of articles and documents that exposed different aspects of the RSPT.  This might have been helpful to the few who were sufficiently interested to plough through the detail, but of no interest to the bulk of the electorate who, if they want to know anything about the RSPT at all, certainly don’t want to delve into the complexities.  At the most they want a simple-to-understand explanation condensed into a few memorable dot points.

As mentioned in the piece Why is a good Government down in the polls, this Government has not done well in explaining its policies, plans and actions.  The ETS was not well explained and neither has been the RSPT.  Confidence in the merit of both has been eroded by the four-word negative Opposition slogan: ‘Great Big New Tax’.  That’s all many voters will have heard and they have naturally reacted to these policies negatively as is evidenced by the steadily falling support for an ETS, and only about 50/50 support for the RSPT, despite the latter being of such benefit to the majority of working Australians and small businesses.

The Government has embarked upon what the media and even some Government ministers have chosen to call an ‘advertising campaign’ to promote its RSPT.  In fact ‘advertising’ is a misnomer for what is for the Government, and indeed the mining industry, simply an information programme to educate people about what the RSPT proposes to achieve and its advantages according to the Government, and for the mining industry, the disadvantages of the tax from its point of view.  

Because the term ‘advertising’ has been used, a strident campaign has been launched by the Opposition and the media criticizing the Government for ‘breaking its own rules on advertising’ by having evoked ‘special circumstances’ as the reason for beginning it now, thereby circumventing the Independent Communications Committee.  Senior ministers have not evoked either of the two other reasons: ‘a national emergency’ or ‘a matter of extreme urgency’, as the Opposition and media maintain, although Special Minister for State Joe Ludwig is reported to have used the ‘matter of extreme urgency’ reason.  If that is so, and there are doubts about that, he should have been more careful and stuck to ‘other compelling reasons’, which is an accurate descriptor, as indeed there are compelling reasons for an immediate information campaign to counter the contemporary well-funded onslaught of the mining industry.  It’s another instance of the Government’s media unit mishandling what was bound to be a contentious campaign.  As a result Kevin Rudd has been lambasted up hill and down dale by the Opposition and the media for, in their opinion, breaking yet another promise, insisting that in the process he has further shredded his credibility.  

The whole episode could have been handled differently.  As the $38 million funding for the Government public information programme was already in the Budget, where incidentally it evoked no comment from the Opposition, and was therefore planned well in advance as a necessary component of the RSPT strategy, all that was necessary was to state that because of the heavily funded and pervasive campaign by the miners that was stridently spreading misinformation right now, it was necessary for the Government to bring forward the public information programme it had planned and for which it was already prepared, and that this pressing need constituted the ‘special circumstances’ that were sufficient reason for bypassing the usual Independent Communications Committee mechanism.  Talk about the Government making a rod for its own back.

So the Government public information programme began.  I haven’t seen TV or heard any radio promotion, but the newspaper campaign is less than impressive.  Although visitors to The Political Sword would likely read the full text, I expect most would glance only at the bold headings on the one page spread I read in the AFR:

A fairer tax on resources for a stronger economy

A fairer share, a stronger mining industry

Strengthening all sectors of the economy

Ongoing consultation with the mining industry, and

Get the facts.

Without the explanatory text in small print, these headings give only the most general idea of what the RSPT is all about, and certainly do not explain what the average citizen stands to gain.  Spreads in other papers have even less bold headings.  There must be a better way to inform the public. 

Why there is detail in the small print, probably far too much for most, and so little in the bold headings, may be a reflection of the mindset of senior ministers who favour detail over simplicity, probably to the chagrin of those who have been assigned the task of preparing the material.  It is a well known phenomenon in education that those who understand all the intricate details are often the least able to communicate them simply.  Moreover, a pedantic obsession with accuracy too often blunts the message.  There is a need to take a liberal approach that results in simple clear communication rather than detail that confuses.

Journalists have been singing in unison about how poorly the Government has sold its RSPT, repeating quips like ‘they couldn’t sell heaters to eskimos’, yet none, not one that I have seen, has made any suggestion about how the Government might improve the selling of its RSPT.  Frankly, they probably don’t know, and anyway its easier to criticize than give positive advice.

What follows is an attempt to capture, maybe in an amateurish way, the essential elements  of the RSPT that might ‘sell’ it to the average voter.  Your comments and suggestions for improving these points will be welcome.  Together, we might be able to assemble something that could be of value to the Government.  The dot points below are arranged in succinct lists under bold headings that could be used singly or in groups.

The central messages 

All Aussies own Australia’s minerals.

The miners are not paying enough for them in taxes.

A decade ago they paid 1 dollar in 3 of mining profits.

Now they pay only 1 dollar in 7.

We deserve a fairer share for our minerals.

The Government’s new Resource Super Profits Tax corrects this unfairness.

What’s happening now?

Miners pay royalties to the state government for what they dig up even before they make a profit.

This means they are paying during their set-up phase.

Then when they make a profit they also pay tax on that.

They pay company tax too.

The system is so complex that it is unclear what they are really paying.

They claim they are paying a lot - the Government says they aren’t.

The Government has shown they are not paying Australians a fair share.

Remember that once all the minerals are dug up and sold, there are no more.

So we need to get value for them NOW.

Some essential details about the RSPT

The RSPT is a fairer system for all.

First, it gives back to miners what they now pay the states in royalties.

Next, it allows them to deduct ALL expenses and special allowances before a profit is declared.

They pay NO tax on the first 6% of profits.

They pay 40% tax ONLY on profits above that 6% – ‘super profits’.

If they made $100 million profit, they pay no tax on the first $6 million.

They pay 40% tax on the remaining $94 million, that is, $37.6 million.

Therefore they keep $62.4 million out of $100 million profit – not bad!

All businesses have to pay taxes on their profits.

The miners should pay a fairer share.

How does the RSPT benefit ordinary Australians?

The income from the RSPT will be used to fund:

Better superannuation for all workers - from 9% to 12% of wages.  This will mean a 30 year old will have over $100,000 more super on retirement.

Easier tax returns for ordinary Australians.

For most individuals, no need to send in a tax return at all.

Automatic $1000 deductions for all.

Lower company tax - for small businesses this will occur soon.

Additional capital deductions for small businesses.

Infrastructure for business - road, rail and ports to transport its products.

The RSPT will make Australia’s economy stronger - that will benefit all Australians.

If the RSPT is blocked by the miners and the Opposition, all these benefits will be lost.

Who is running this country - the elected Government or the miners?

The RSPT helps the miners too 

The RSPT encourages miners by:
- underwriting their set-up costs by giving them a 40% rebate on their expenses,
- refunding ALL up-front royalty payments they make to the state.

Then they pay tax ONLY on their ‘super’ profits - those over 6%.

This is a fair scheme that supports miners before they become profitable.

And it taxes them ONLY when they do.

Myth-busting the many myths about the RSPT

Myth - The miners claim they saved Australia from recession.  Did they?  NO.

During the downturn they sacked over 15% of their workers - if the rest of Australia’s employers had done the same, unemployment would have reached 19%.

Myth - The  RSPT will impose 58% tax on miners.  NO it won’t.

Profits tax is paid ONLY on profits.  If no profit is made, no profits tax is payable.  That 58% figure is way too high.  It will likely be less than half of that.

Myth - The RSPT is a ‘dagger at the heart of the mining industry’.  NO it isn’t. 

It assists miners to establish new projects and taxes them only when a profit is made.  Leading economists have backed the RSPT.

Myth - Miners have said they will defer projects or take them offshore.   THEY HAVEN’T.

This threat is just part of the scare campaign.  Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton, Fortescue and other miners have made no changes to development schedules that collectively will add 200 million tonnes more for export by the middle of the decade.  

Myth - The RSPT constitutes a ‘sovereign risk’ to investment in Australia.  NO it doesn’t.

The mining sector is seeking to redefine the concept of ‘sovereign risk’ to something very different from the way it is generally understood. Typically, it is understood to relate to issues of conflict, corruption and expropriation in a country that would scare off investors, but now sections of the mining sector want us to believe that sovereign risk arises whenever there are tax changes the industry doesn't like.  It doesn’t. 

Myth -Tax on mining profits will drive up prices on everything.  NO it won’t.  

Tax on profits never do - this is basic economics.  All businesses pay tax on profits.  Economists insist the RSPT will not harm the economy.

Myth - The Government should have consulted with the miners before it announced the tax.  IT DID.

Miners made submissions to the Henry Tax Review.  THEY ASKED FOR A PROFITS TAX to replace the royalties system.

Myth - The miners are not being given a fair chance to express their views.  WRONG.

The Government is consulting with them RIGHT NOW and offering generous transitional arrangements to phase in the RSPT, WHICH DOES NOT KICK IN UNTIL 2011.

Modifications are possible, but the Government is sticking to its 40% tax rate on super profits.  That is fair to all Australians.

Myth - The tax is retrospective and that’s unfair.  NO IT ISN’T.

The miners want to pay the RSPT ONLY on NEW projects.  That is untenable - all tax changes apply to existing endeavours.  An established business pays tax on profits no matter what changes to tax rates are made - they would pay less if tax rates went down, so they pay more when they go up.  The new tax will NOT apply to past tax years.

Myth - The RSPT will reduce the value of mining shares and super funds.  NO it won’t.

The stock market goes up and down.  Recently the market went down because of uncertainties about economies in Europe.  All of the market went down, and mining shares with it.

Mining companies have unsettled the markets with their scare campaign; this has driven their own share prices down.

Despite some losses on mining shares many miners have bought millions more of their shares themselves, a sign of their confidence.

Mining shares will recover when the market does - this is happening already.

Why is the Government introducing an RSPT?

It is designed to benefit mining, especially exploration, to give Australians a fairer share of the bounty of the mining sector while our minerals last, to give benefits to working Australians, companies  and small businesses, to strengthen the economy, and to consolidate it for its long-term future.

Support it for Australia’s sake.

For those interested in further information on the RSPT, The Daily Bludge has a Mining Facts Sheet.  

So what do you think?  Clearly, to use all of the above at once would be overkill.  How would you use them?  How would you group them?  Do you think they convey the essential messages? Would they have more, or less impact than the Government’s information pieces?  Is there anything you would like added or deleted?

Finally, after we’ve all had a chance to mull over them and improve them, would it be worthwhile forwarding them to the Government’s media unit?

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Sally

3/06/2010Hi great TPS folks, This is associated with ABC watch, off the current topic, but may arise in another piece here. Apologies and Ad Astra I will read your piece this arvo once I calm down. Yesterday I read a contribution to The Drum by someone I had never heard of but noted at the end of the article was National Public Affairs officer with the Australia/Israel and Jewish Affairs Council (AIJAC), Lauren Jones. I found the article deeply offensive in its blatant and aggressive nationalism and bias, its misleading use of evidence, and its plagiarism. BUT, more offensive was its publication on OUR ABC. I’m posting this because in the early hours of this morning I woke up and became furious at this insult to my intelligence and composed a draft post for the Drum’s ‘comments’. Several hours and much contemplation later, I decided that was not the right thing to do and I want you to know why. Some time ago I posted here that the editor of the Drum is Jonathon Green. The post had a link that noted Green was formerly editor of Crikey and before that a senior editor and columnist with The Age. As I pondered this I had an insight, rightly or wrongly, into what is going on at the Drum. Green was clearly recruited to juice-up the Drum and Unleashed to make it competitive with other blogs – and THAT is precisely what this is about. This is rampant sensationalism to attract readers/bloggers. So, after much thought, I decided not to append a comment that is, in effect, guaranteeing the success of the current ‘policy’. This had NOTHING to do with ‘balance’. I would love your thoughts on this hypothesis. Thank you for a great site and, again, apologies for not allowing your article to start out with something relevant to your words. Cheers

Sally

3/06/2010AA, Again, apologies for starting out today with an ABC bashing. I’ve now read your piece but because I’m totally innumerate (seriously afraid of numbers and have had to rely on numeracy experts all my professional life) the point I have taken IN UPPER CASE from your article is – and I’m sure you are right – that the whole debate (if you can call it that) has been hijacked by use of the term ‘advertising’ rather than, as you suggest, ‘information programme’. Government as much to blame there as the Opposition. My gut feelings on your proposals are as follows: • The first point should be ‘Why the Government is introducing an RSPT’. This heralds an explanation to anyone listening/reading. • Next should be ‘How does it benefit Australians’ – this flags the electorate. (Note I say not ‘ordinary Australians’ just ‘Australians’) • Next, I think should be some comfort for all those with investments/super tied up in the industry with something similar like ‘How the RSPT will assist miners and mining companies’ (and ? others in extractive industries) • Myth-busting is brilliant and is a MUST. Keep it that short and not lots of detail. If you want detail it should be made available easily on a website. In other words, I think your ‘What’s happening now’ and ‘Some essential details’ should be elsewhere, not in a public statement/ad campaign. It’s too confusing and difficult for most (lazy) readers. Otherwise great stuff. I really look forward to all the comments you’ll get on this and how it all pans out. PLEASE do send it to all members of the Gov’t if you can once finalised (by email should be easy once you set up a mailing list). It will be too late then but might sway their public statements/face in the future. BTW do mention how many readers you have when you send it (if that is appropriate and if you can include all the links to your site from other sites). Cheers

mick smetafor

3/06/2010brilliant stuff AA.however i agree with sally that too much detail puts people off.in my experience most people seem to look for a clincher point to make up their mind so that they don't need to think about it any more,something that resonates for them personally,so i would go hard on the obvious benefits and play up the self interest of the miners over the rest of us then deal with the porkies and distortions aggressively as they surface.you have given the gov.a "rolled gold "campaign in mho.

Ad astra reply

3/06/2010Sally Thank you for your comments. First, regards [i]The Drum[/i]. I suppose this is part of the ABC’s foray into news commentary and wider current affairs coverage through online outlets. This is what the Murdoch empire is objecting to, asserting as it does that this is unfair competition with the commercial media from a publicly funded broadcaster. If the ABC intends to maintain what it believes is its neutral stance politically, which of course many dispute, it seems counterintuitive to invite the purveyors of news and current affairs to write pieces for [i]The Drum[/i] that offer commentary, especially partisan or unbalanced commentary, that conflicts with their ‘on air‘ ‘neutrality’. A case in point was Barrie Cassidy’s article [i]Never mind the rules, Labor wants its ads out[/i], http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/05/28/2912524.htm?site=thedrum that lambasted Kevin Rudd and the Government about the RSPT ‘ad campaign’, which in turn carried into the next episode of [i]Insiders[/i], which was the worst example of partisan broadcasting I, and others have ever seen from [i]Insiders[/i]. I feel the role of partisan commentator on [i]The Drum[/i] and moderating a current affairs programme in a balanced way are incompatible. Expecting journalists to do both will not just stress them through the extra work involved, it will impair their on air performance. Your comments about the RSPT piece are appreciated. I take your points about the ordering of the lists and whether a couple of them might be best placed elsewhere, perhaps on a website. When I have all the comments in hand I’ll modify the lists and send them to Government ministers. mick
 Thank you too for your encouraging comments. I've a feeling that together we will get something useful out of this for the Government if they are willing to listen.

BH

3/06/2010Will read tomorrow this piece tomorrow AA when I will have more time to digest it but thought Lyn might find Tim Dunlop's piece today interesting for her links http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/stories/s2917030.htm

NormanK

3/06/2010AA, Well done. My first reading of this went through with hardly a hiccup (if you know what I mean). Clean, smooth and not too emotive. I hate to be one of the first to comment since I'm a newbie but this is my 'free time' and I have to exploit it. I wouldn't drop any of this since it is only a document you hope to give to the government and anything that smacks of advice to advertising professionals in terms of layout or presentation will be met with dismissal - they won't even read it. If it is couched in other terms like 'these are the questions we would like to see addressed in an information campaign', you might get past first base. To the specifics: The central messages  Statistics on how much the mining companies currently pay is a hole the government fell in and personally I would avoid the 1 in 3 dollars stuff. Don't get me wrong, I really love numbers but they can be made to say whatever you choose and still be 'true'. What’s happening now? 'The Government has shown they are not paying Australians a fair share.' Would it be legitimate to say 'The Treasury has shown......"? Some essential details about the RSPT "Next, it allows them to deduct ALL expenses and special allowances before a profit is declared." I know we should be keeping it simple but might I suggest '.....expenses (like exploration costs) and special allowances (such as accelerated depreciation on equipment)..... How does the RSPT benefit ordinary Australians? "....a 30 year old will have over $100,000 more super on retirement." Does this account for industry-average accumulated interest over 25 years? The larger this number can be the better. The RSPT helps the miners too  Some mention of small enterprises actually paying less tax because they don't make a super-profit. Myth-busting the many myths about the RSPT "The tax is retrospective and that’s unfair." 'The tax is unfair because it is retrospective.' I know I sound pedantic but the revised question strengthens the answer "no it isn't". Very well done. Sorry if I sound opinionated. But I am.

Lyn

3/06/2010Hi Ad Thankyou Ad, for another fantastic piece, what would we do without you. I love the new text and presentation in your column today Ad. "Is it hard to sell the RSPT", a lot of the problem lies with the Media. Instead of their gossip and cheap shots at Kevin Rudd, why don't the lazy journalists, do a bit more work, isn't it their job and responsibility to report. They are extremely interested in the negative, in their unrelentless quest to kill Kevin Rudd. You have done their work for them Ad.

Lyn

3/06/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS PART 2[/b] 24-hour news leaves no time for a break, Jonathan Holmes, ABC The Australian seems to have a particular dislike of this site - The Drum - which, it maintains, consists mainly of "digital detritus" recycled from elsewhere. http://www.abc.net.au:80/news/stories/2010/06/03/2917116.htm?WT.mc_id=newsmail No-one is blameless in the current malaise,Tim Dunlop, The drum Have we ever had a lazier, more immature leader of the Opposition? http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/stories/s2917030.htm Alan Kohler abuses his position at the ABC, OzForums, Daily Bludge The Political Sword linked, in comments http://ozforums.com.au/forums/index.php/topic,6935.0.html The government's RSPT spin is a disgrace,Alan Kohler, Business Spectator a battle it can win through advertising spin and lies, as it usually does against political opponents. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/bs.nsf/Article/mining-tax-RSPT-government-Rudd-pd20100603-62SPZ?OpenDocument&src=kgb&WELCOME=AUTHENTICATED REMEMBER Drilling into Palmer’s myths, Bernard Keane, Crikey Ah, replied Professor Palmer, that was because everyone knew the RSPT would never be implemented. http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/06/03/clive-takes-on-the-rspt-and-most-of-his-mates-in-the-process/ RSPT is not some weird tax invented by Ken Henry, Bryan Kavanagh, On Line Opinion please, miners? You’re wrong. Why don’t you instead just zero in on eliminating company taxes and income taxes? http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=10507 After the votes are counted, Peter Brent, Mumble If Rudd wins with an increased majority (the most likely outcome http://mumble.com.au/

Lyn

3/06/2010Hi Ad Now I know for sure the ABC doesn't like me. I have tried a new trick, by shortening the links, see if that works, here goes. http://www.abc.net.au:80/news/stories http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed

Lyn

3/06/2010Hi Ad NOPE.

Acerbic Conehead

3/06/2010AA, what a great article. I reckon you’ve covered all the bases and the Government media unit owes you a slap-up meal and a bottle of half-decent plonk to wash it down. I particularly like the myths you identified, which you proceed to demolish. However, I believe you have missed one out. Myth: If you stare long enough at a pie-graph, it turns into a self-saucing pie. Reality: In short, nope! Just ask Joe – after half-an-hour at the 7:30 Report Restaurant the other night, he had to borrow Kev’s sauce bottle, give it a bit of a shake, squirt some on, and then wolf down that piece of paper he was waving around. It’s been repeating on him ever since. Kev, however, is grabbing his grub on the run and not taking anything sitting down. He’s confidently broken into song, insisting he’ll not tolerate any old fare. So sing along with him as he croons his version of the U2 hit, “Crumbs from Your Table”. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oOMmuuyuD5E&feature=related $ From the deepest mine And open-cut hole We have so much to offer You want us to sell you our soul $ We provided the harbours When you needed our help Would you deny for others What you demand for yourself? $ Cool down Albo, cool off Cool down Kloppy, cool off $ Your perks, returns and windfalls We need something other Better believe it when we say we’re Not dependin’ on the crumbs from your table $ You’re far from a pretty picture Clive, Joe and Twiggy Rippin’ up the country – profits goin’ overseas With a mouth full of teeth You ate all the pie-graphs Spent a motza on your adverts – thinkin’ we’re daft $ ‘Stead of leavin’ us short-changed We need something other Better believe it when we say we’re Not dependin’ on the crumbs from your table $ The RSPT should not decide Whether the mines close Australia-wide Lay the facts bare As Wayne n’ me said, “It’s nothin’ but a scare” $ Your perks, returns and windfalls We need something other Better believe it when we say we’re Not dependin’ on the crumbs from your table

Rx

3/06/2010Lyn, Re: the broken links problem... I have not tried this so cannot say if it will work, but it might be worth a shot. The site TinyUrl.com can shorten long URLs down to manageable-sized chunks. You could try using the site to shorten your links, then pasting them into the blog. http://tinyurl.com/ Acerbic Conehead, Love your work! Thanks for consistently bringing a smile to what can be heavy topics. I've been a bit depressed with politics and the media lately, so I welcome your light-hearted contributions. Thanks.

bilgedigger

3/06/2010Thanks AC - after the usual laugh at your great contributions, I find my digestion has settled down after all the other reading I've been doing to try to catch up with current affairs. Now I can look forward to a good dinner - I understand it's to be Chinese Braised Oxtail with rice and baby bok choy with Pistachio Icecream to follow. Looking forward to more of your contributions.

Lyn

3/06/2010Hi Rx Thankyou my friend, so much for your tip. I have just had a lovely time at: http://tinyurl.com/create.php, excellent. Hasn't helped me with posting the abc links, but does shorten the link then takes me from tinyurl to the correct site. Very interesting.

Lyn

3/06/2010Acerbic Conehead You are just wonderful as normal. Your work is thoroughly enjoyable.

Acerbic Conehead

3/06/2010Rx, bilgedigger, and Lyn, thank you for your kind words. It's my pleasure to post here as this is a great site and people like you make it that way. Have a great evening, Ace.

Ad astra reply

3/06/2010LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/Lyns-Daily-Links.aspx

Ad astra reply

3/06/2010NormanK Thank you for your detailed appraisal of the dot points. I have noted your sound advice. You’re right – ad people don’t take advice from rank amateurs, although as consumers we just might have an idea of what makes sense! I’ve a feeling that with the helpful feedback that's coming in from our visitors we will have something worthwhile to offer. Lyn I don’t understand why journalists don’t put in the hard yards to create illustrative meaningful messages, which they so roundly criticise the Government for not creating. BTW don’t worry about the links if you can’t get them to work – I’ve worked out how to fix them at this end – I work from the email I receive that accompanies your post. AC I’ll add your ‘myth’ slightly embellished - [i]Myth: 
If you stare long enough at a pie-graph, it turns into a self-saucing pie from a well shaken sauce bottle. 
[/i] Another delightful ditty - you keep us sane and smiling.

HS

3/06/2010All I can contribute tonight is a slogan,which the government need in order to counter the Mining campaign line, 'Keep Mining Strong', and the Opposition's, 'Great Big New Tax'. So I propose: 'More For You, Less For Them'. Repeated ad nauseum, like the Opposition and Mining Industry lines, it might distil the essence of the debate from the government's standpoint.

Ad astra reply

3/06/2010HS You're right, it's getting too late for such an intense piece. I like your slogan - the Government really needs slogans to counter the childish GBNT. Time to retire.

HS

3/06/2010Also the government needs a Twitter account so that it can put articles like this out there, QUICKLY: http://www.businessweek.com/news/2010-06-02/copper-extends-decline-on-concern-manufacturing-growth-slowing.html Which goes to the real reason Xstrata have shelved their Qld. Copper Mine today.

HS

3/06/2010biledigger, You need to go on MasterChef! (Btw, I prefer Char Siu Pork with Baby Bok Choy, Steamed Jasmine Rice and Plum Sauce!)

HS

3/06/2010NormanK, I, for one, am glad you're opinionated. It provides more grist for our mill!

HS

3/06/2010Here's a very lucid analysis of the RSPT, from Stephen Long over at...The Drum! So, not a totally corrupt site, lol. http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/06/03/2917521.htm?site=thedrum

HS

3/06/2010Also, the government needs a Facebook page for the RSPT, so we can friend it, and them. 'Friends' are the new 21st century currency, and 'followers' on Twitter. So the government should be in that space building up their political capital. Twitter also helps in honing cut-through messages.

gusface

3/06/2010HS twitter that suggestion to as many labor MPs as possible I will retweet it from there and hopefully others too :)

jimbo

3/06/2010this is my first time commenting on this site.it has taken me a while to find likeminded people as i have been through one helluva lot of sites and thought i was the only one who saw the unadulterated bias being heaped against the labour party.this rspt b/s is amazing as anyone with half a brain can see if the mining companies are paying 1 dollar in 3 now and their 3 dollars will go to 7 dollars does the australian public really feel their share should be 1 dollar in 7 i dont think so it should be more like 3 dollars in seven.i am not surprised at all that wingnutt abbott goes along with this and backs the mining companies as he has no interest in australia or australian values as shown by his backward return to policies voted down by the australian people when they threw the frog howard out.

gusface

3/06/2010Jimbo "The people united will never be divided" We all try in our own way for a fairer society :)

jimbo

3/06/2010is channel ten owned by rupert murdoch as last night i was watching the late news when a reporter(i use the term loosely)did a story on mr rudd having a go back at the mining companies by saying they were talking rubbish and bunkum.next i see we are back at the reporter who all of a sudden has a 500 page dictionary and proceeds with a definition of bunkum which went like this bun-kum noun,1 insincere speechmaking by a politician intended merely to please local constituents,then he said rudd calling himself a liar(sounded to me to describe wingnut abbott more than rudd)but what the reporter failed to do was give the full definition as part 2 says insincere talk,claptrap,humbug.ORIGIN americanism after speech in 16th congress 1819-21 by f walker who said he was bound to speak for buncombe(nc county)in district he represented talk about cherry picking.then again today on channel 10 a woman did the financial markets which had improved but she decided to say that what the mining companies were saying was true because their share price had improved .yes they did but so did banks and some manufacturing as well as the dollar.

HS

4/06/2010AA, Peter Martin highlighted this blog on his Twitter feed today!

HS

4/06/2010gusface, I have an idea. I saw the other day that you provided Paul Howes with plenty of pro-RSPT evidence via Twitter. Well, I was wondering if you felt like setting up a new Twiiter account, containing such useful facts, to counter #MiningStrong? I have even come up with a name for it: #KeepAustraliaStrong. What do you think?

Lyn

4/06/2010Hi Jimbo Thankyou so much for coming to The Political Sword, please keep coming back. Ad Astra will be here soon, and he will be very pleased to see you here. Love this bit: [b][quote]it has taken me a while to find likeminded people as i have been through one helluva lot of sites [/quote][/b] Phoney Tony, wingnut Budgie is a bully, head kicker, stunt man, throwing wild punches in the air, wild statements, all over the place. The worry is some of those unfounded wild statements, appear to resonating, the MSM are acting as Abbott's army, they are not reporting the facts, or even asking Phoney Tony any hard questions, any questions at all. Remember, what the media did to Kevin Rudd in 2007, just awful.

Lyn

4/06/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] [i]MINING TAX FACTS: SITE LAUNCH, JJ Fiasson, The Daily Bludge[/i] help counter the increasingly hysterical campaign of misinformation by the mining industry against Labor’s new resource tax., http://dailybludge.com.au/2010/06/mining-tax-facts-site-launch/ [i]Was Rudd bullied At Schoool, JJ Fiasson, The Daily Bludge[/i] His only saving grace is that the people can’t stand THE BULLY and don’t want him as their leader. http://dailybludge.com.au/2010/06/was-rudd-bullied-at-school/ [i]Govt. misses paydirt mining numbers,Mungo MacCallum's blog[/i] the only real opposition has come from the financially self-interested miners themselves http://www.echo.net.au/opinion/mungo-maccallum [i]Stimulus spending keeping nation afloat ,Peter Martin, SMH[/i] Appearing before a Senate Estimates Committee, Treasury official David Gruen said if the stimulus was stopped it could ''stall the economy''. http://www.theage.com.au/national/stimulus-spending-keeping-nation-afloat-20100602- wzqr.html [i]Julie Bishop was (half) right,Brian Toohey ,Inside Story,[/i] Although this was not Bishop’s point, the practice is illegal and potentially dangerous for innocent passport holders. http://inside.org.au/julie-bishop-was-half-right/ [i]Coalition Circus Hits Town, Alex Schlotzer, The Angle[/i] the cameo performance Robb’s media advisor frantically dancing about in the back of the room deserves an applause. The dancing became more frantic the longer the “details” were being explained making for some excellent entertainment., http://theangle.org/2010/06/03/coalition-circus-hits-town/ [i]The Liberals and economic management, Mark, Larvatus Prodeo[/i] the Opposition’s bona fides much more forensically, and to recognise that their stewardship of the Australian economy would be disastrous, http://larvatusprodeo.net/2010/06/03/the-liberals-and-economic-management/#more-13406 [i]Life must be great when everything proves you right,Dave gaukroger, Pure Poison[/i]The Australian has been leading the charge against the federal government’s Building the Education Revolution stimulus, http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/06/03/life-must-be-great-when-everything-proves-you-right/

HS

4/06/2010Looks like Clive Palmer is using the ABC as his personal prpaganda machine. I have just seen an ad on ABC Breakfast advertising 4 Corners for next week on, guess what? The RSPT. The ad peddled Palmer's prevarications, with no cross promotion of the government's views. I will be watching 4 Corners closely on Monday night and taking notes so that I can make a formal complaint ASAP after the show, if needs be.

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010jimbo Welcome to the [i]TPS[/i] family. I’m glad you find the site to your liking. Do come again. Your comments about the way the Australian public is being short-changed by the mining industry are correct and this is why the Government is so determined to get a fairer share for all of us. Your mention of the Channel Ten reporter focussing on Kevin Rudd’s use of the vernacular reminds me of the protracted debate about his use of ‘fair shake of the sauce bottle’ some time ago. This illustrates the childishness of some reporters, or perhaps their immature idea of what their viewers want to hear. It’s obviously easier on their intellect to focus on Rudd’s use of words than to grapple with the complex issues surrounding the RSPT. If the reporter believes that a discussion about ‘bunkum’ or ‘balderdash’ is more important to viewers than the RSPT, what does that tell us about the standards of TV reporting on the commercial media?

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/Lyns-Daily-Links.aspx

anonymouslefty.wordpress.com

4/06/2010Pingback from anonymouslefty.wordpress.com Why’s the business lobby letting the mining companies try to kill their tax cut? « An Onymous Lefty

Sir Ian Crisp

4/06/2010Ad Astra, the reason the ETS was poorly sold was because of that crone Penny Wrong and her high priestess approach. She was a thorough Manichaean and those who disagreed with her were painted as deniers and given other derogatory terms. I suggest she join Ms Burrow and chase cars. The PM needs to articulate his RSPT and one way he can do that is by debating the policy in parliament. Does he take the opportunity to put his government’s position? No. He gags debate. Is that what is known as selling the message? When gagging debate I detected the hint of a man caught in the deep end minus his floaties. He might also like to explain why, if the RSPT is of great benefit to all of us, he didn’t introduce it before he flew off to Bali in 2007. If the PM is committed to keeping Australian riches for Australians he needs to explain why we still give money to mendicant nations like Indonesia. Why are we concerned about the cracked footpaths in downtown Jakarta? If, in your words the RSPT “is to give benefits to working Australians, companies and small businesses, to strengthen the economy, and to consolidate it for its long-term future” why then do we give our treasure to mendicant nations? Why is it OK to institutionalise a cargo-cult mentality shared by some of our neighbours but it is somehow objectionable to see other foreigners becoming rich by way of mining the wealth of the nation? It was the path to international admiration taken by our pollies that saw them shower power and pelf on the Suharto family but now it’s somehow more beneficial if our wealth stays at home. At least some of our ‘aid’ money found its way onto the gambling tables of Burswood Casino thanks to Tommy Suharto. I wonder if he drove his blue Rolls Royce (probably bought by our aid dollar) around Perth? Yes indeed, let’s keep our wealth for our own use. Ad Astra, it is comical to see the PM and his myrmidons slugging it out with the miners yet no one has seen the RSPT. Are you able to link to the legislation or is it another inchoate ALP policy?

Bushfire Bill

4/06/2010The simplest point I can think of is: [b]If miners can put their prices up in a boom, why are they objecting to the Austraian people doing the same thing, with their own resources?[/b]

Senexx

4/06/2010I do not normally spam/promote other sites but I do think the site is of relevance to the discussion. It is http://www.miningtaxfacts.com.au/ As far as I am aware it is not developed by either a Liberal or Labor member.

HS

4/06/2010Sir Ian Crisp said: '...the reason the ETS was poorly sold was because of that crone Penny Wrong... I suggest she join Ms Burrow and chase cars.' Gee, sexism and homophobia sure is running rampant in conservative circles at the moment. Might I allude to the imagery of a rabid dog chasing it's own tail whilst it froths at the mouth? SIC, if you have to resort to such base slurs, then you argument is immedialtely devalued. I also make note of the fact that Senator Wong successfully sold the ETS to the Opposition, Malcolm Turnbull and Ian Maclachlan had both agreed, as lead negotiators for the Oppositiion, to support it, but they, and Senator Wong were stabbed in the back by the reactionary conservatives in the Coalition. You cannotavoid that FACT, Sir, when laying blame. To attempt the rewriting of history by excising that fact from the assessment of the outcome, is disingenuous and duplicitous in the extreme. * 2. Question Time is not the forum for debate of the RSPT. Which is why it was correctly gagged. Another smelly red herring you have tried to introduce to say that the PM is running away from debate. As was observed by Mark Riley on ABC NewsRadio this morning, if Tony Abbott wants to debate the RSPT in Question Time, he should ask a question of the man in the glasses with the fair hair sitting oppositie him at the Despatch Box. Not try and grandstand with a stunt in QT solely aimed at getting his ugly mug on the News that night due to the color and movement the stunt generated. * 3. 'If the PM is committed to keeping Australian riches for Australians he needs to explain why we still give money to mendicant nations like Indonesia.' SIC, it's called the Foreign Aid Budget, that's why. Also, the PM has never said he wants to keep every last red cent of Australia's Budget Consolidated Revenue & other revenues such as Tax, for only Australians. Also, by calling Indonesia 'mendicant' you are betraying the Australian conservative movement's inherant elitism towards our near neighbours in the region, and, dare I say it, covert racialism. 'Why are we concerned about the cracked footpaths in downtown Jakarta? ' Could you please supply the proof of this statement, that our Indonesian Aid Budget goes to local government footpath mending in Jakarta? Or, was that statement just another one of your casually derogatory, racially-based epithets tossed off whilst looking down your nose and snearing at the Indonesians? 4. 'why then do we give our treasure to mendicant nations? ' Because we are not a greedy nation. Well, at least whilst the Coalition aren't in power. 5. 'He might also like to explain why, if the RSPT is of great benefit to all of us, he didn’t introduce it before he flew off to Bali in 2007.' Because the RSPT has nothing to do with the ETS. 6. 'Why is it OK to institutionalise a cargo-cult mentality shared by some of our neighbours but it is somehow objectionable to see other foreigners becoming rich by way of mining the wealth of the nation?' It's a matter of quantum, SIC. Compare and contrast our Foreign Aid Budget with that of the profits of the Major Mining Companies, such as Rio Tinto, who made a $40 Billion profit turnaround over the last 2 years. Our Foreign Aid Budget is not even in that ballpark. 7. 'It was the path to international admiration taken by our pollies that saw them shower power and pelf on the Suharto family' I think you'll find that it was Coalition governments that funded the Soeharto regime in Indonesia, scandalously, and I don't think they were universally admired for doing so. 'At least some of our ‘aid’ money found its way onto the gambling tables of Burswood Casino thanks to Tommy Suharto.' See above about why that is indeed, scandalous. Just as well that Labor governments and Foreign Ministers, such as Gareth Evans, encouraged the democracy movement in Indonesia. 8. 'I wonder if he drove his blue Rolls Royce (probably bought by our aid dollar) around Perth? ' No, the Soehartos ripped off their own people mercilessly. Kept the population in penury to fund their own lavish lifestyles. Our foreign aid bought food to feed the starving people of Indonesia. 9. ' Ad Astra, it is comical to see the PM and his myrmidons slugging it out with the miners yet no one has seen the RSPT.' I agree. The Mining companies' shadow play wrt the RSPT is a farce of the highest order. Especially, as you say, when there hasn't even been any legislation put on the parliamentary table as yet. The mining Industry's behaviour is thus incoherant and illogical. As was your post.

Mr Denmore

4/06/2010For Your ABC Watch segment, the national broadcaster's web news page is screeching today that 'Mount Isa Reeling after Xstrata Projects Dropped'. Really? Projects that haven't even begun yet? Call it gullible, call it malevolent. Whatever it is, it isn't journalism. http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/06/04/2917894.htm

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010Sir Ian I expect that nothing I can say about Penny Wong will change your mind about her, so I won’t try. If you think that it’s possible for Kevin Rudd to ‘debate’ the RSPT in parliament with the tub-thumping, ranting Tony Abbott and bellowing Joe Hockey, you must have a different concept of ‘debate’ than I have. There is nothing measured or logical about their approach – it is simply partisan opportunistic disingenuous bare-knuckle posturing. That’s not debating. If you have been watching QT you would have seen Rudd explain the RSPT over and again. Why would he be interested in getting into a spurious encounter with people like that? We’ve seen hours of parliamentary time wasted in recent weeks by Abbott’s stunts. Frankly, as a taxpayer, I resent the waste of 150 parliamentarians’ time on Abbott’s outrageous manoeuvres. There will be plenty of time for them to debate the RSPT during the election campaign. You say we haven’t ‘seen’ the RSPT. For what are you looking? You know the legislation will not be drafted unto next year. There seems to be enough information around for the miners to make a lot of threatening statements. You ask for links to the RSTP policy. I refer you to a paragraph in [i]Getting some balance into the RSPT debate: In the interests of balance, the link to the Henry Tax Review: Australia’s future tax system released on 2 May is here. The most recent Treasurer’s Economic Note of 24 May, which addresses ‘RSPT myths’ is here, and the Minerals Council’s 25 May document: The truth about the super tax – the myths and the facts is here. [/i] Also take a look at http://futuretax.gov.au/pages/FAQs.aspx.

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010HS I'm glad you had the patience to dissect and rebut Sir Ian's comments. Nicely done - I wonder what his response will be.

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010Sir Ian To save you the trouble of finding the link to [i]Getting some balance into the RSPT debate[/i] mentioned above, here it is http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2010/05/27/Getting-some-balance-into-the-RSPT-debate.aspx

HS

4/06/2010AA, I fully expect SIC's response to be more obfuscatory bluster. :)

gusface

4/06/2010Mr D and the twitterverse now knows of Aunties shameful beatup. they can run lies but they cant hide from the truth

HS

4/06/2010Thank you, Mr Denmore. We need to build up a solid casefile of ABC mendacity.

HS

4/06/2010jimbo, Tony Abbott even looks like a wingnut! Those ears couldn't be more appropriate.

NormanK

4/06/2010Senexx, Thanks for that link. Marvelous. Sally, I meant to drop a note yesterday. I believe you were correct in boycotting The Drum or else you would have risked adding to their statistics and reinforcing their sensationalist approach. If another considered piece offering a different point of view is not published in coming days, I think we can assume that this contentious article is an attempt to increase market share at any cost - regardless of merit or content.

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010Mr Denmore Welcome to [i]TPS[/i]. We hope you will return. We enjoy your writings elsewhere. I have added your contribution to ABC WATCH: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/ABC-Watch.aspx

Lyn

4/06/2010Hi Mr Denmore Thankyou for commenting on [i]The Political Sword[/i], and a very big welcome to you, Please keep coming back., Ad Astra will be pleased. I like your Gravatar. Thankyou for your link to the ABC, I agree with you "[quote]it isn't journalism[/quote]" [b]best said.[/b] cheers

Lyn

4/06/2010Hi Senex Thankyou so much for your comment on "The Political Sword" a big welcome and please keep coming back. Thanks for your link, The Daily Bludge is a fantastic site, section Mining Facts excellent. I have visited your blogg, you are interesting, I will go back later for more reading, link below, sorry can't find your name for the heading. Like your Gravatar too. [i]The Resource Super Profits Tax (RSPT), A Senex View,[/i] The Abbott Opposition continues to oppose things for opposition’s sake. http://senexx.wordpress.com/

gusface

4/06/2010Lyn you are the most wonderful person :) I truly love your heartfelt greetings to new Swordians.It is such a nice place to visit and be informed.

gusface

4/06/2010Just to clear the air re Xstrata the simple fact is Xstrata is mining for Liberal votes not coal or copper bet the MSM dont say that tho

gusface

4/06/2010this just in from bernard keane http://bit.ly/9i9yfb

Lyn

4/06/2010 Good Morning to my cutest "little furry Possum friend", Gusface. Thankyou for your nice words, [i]to make my day a smiling day[/i]. EXACTLY: [quote][b]Xstrata is mining for Liberal votes not coal or copper bet the MSM dont say that tho [/b][/quote] Here, Here. Thankyou for the link: http://bit.ly/9i9yfb another new blog site for the files, excellent. Gusface, Hillbilly was talking to you about the Social Media sites, anymore info.

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010Senexx Welcome to [i]TPS[/i] We hope you will return. Your website [i]A Senex View[/i] is another that seeks to present the facts. The graph on your piece on the RSPT is very revealing, showing as it does the story behind the RSPT. http://senexx.wordpress.com/

gusface

4/06/2010 abcmarkscott RT @haydencooper: South Australian businesswoman Cheryl Bart has been appointed to the ABC Board. 3 minutes ago via TweetDeck Retweeted by you Reply Retweeted (Undo)

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010Folks I have added the Mungo MacCallum blog to the list under 'sites of interest': http://www.echo.net.au/opinion/mungo-maccallum

Sally

4/06/2010NormanK Thanks for your support of my boycott of The Drum on that particular article (others I’m happy to comment on when it’s appropriate or suitable – using a variety of pseudonyms I might add). It seems to me that the view from the top of the ABC policy hill on The Drum is that they must mirror the sensationalism of the MSM – as AA has also noted. One then wonders about the value of ANY of the contributions if the purpose is to provoke comment and, thus, increase readership regardless of the quality of the content (clearly content is quickly spread on blogs and attracts more readers if it is contentious). This is really sad: for us as taxpayers; for the ABC as a supposedly independent broadcaster; and for (serious) authors on the site as their articles are being dealt with as commodities rather than as valuable, informative contributions to a public debate on any given subject. At least on this site (TPS) you rarely read cant, lies, pompous rhetoric, self-important drivel, or blatant misinformation masquerading as ‘truth’. BTW HS, if I were you I would totally boycott SIC’s (and what a suitable acronym) comments. Save your brain for weightier matters. Cheers

HS

4/06/2010AA, An ad we can all enjoy about the RSPT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4PcQfz0MfU

Pevva

4/06/2010Thanks for posting the most lucid piece I have read so far on this issue. The govt media unit should be asking for permission to reproduce this.

NormanK

4/06/2010Hello all, I have a question for our more experienced contributors - notice I didn't say older. How often in the recent past has it been necessary for a political party to "sell" the detail of a policy proposal to the electorate before it has gone beyond the "idea" stage? If I am not mistaken, the process roughly follows these lines: Take an informed stance on a particular topic. Gauge public sentiment in broad terms on how best to approach the topic. Formulate Party policy after checking that it can be afforded, is legally sound, is practical in terms of implementation etc. etc. Take this policy to the electorate as an IDEA. (AA's earlier remarks on promises and intentions bear reading every day to remind ourselves of the difference). Obtain a mandate from the electorate to pursue this idea. Having a mandate, seek the best possible advice from experts in all of the fields relevant to its implementation. Bring together party policy and this advice and use it to draft legislation. Present this legislation to the Parliament. Depending on the numbers, negotiate with other parties to find a compromise which a majority can live with. Present the amended legislation to the Parliament. Once it has passed both Houses, inform the electorate (the public) about how it will work and what it means for them as individuals and for the country as a whole. In other words, SELL it to the public. Stand up at the next election and say - "Judge us on the implementation of this idea." Apart from the GST - which didn't have a mandate - my understanding is that this is the sequence of events (albeit naively presented by me) which put in to place all of the major reforms of the past two decades. This train of thought was prompted by a combination of SIC's criticism of Penny Wong over "selling" the ETS and concerns that the MSM wants detail on the RSPT before it is even negotiated. The ETS as part of an overall CPRS was an idea which followed all of the above steps and, if it hadn't been bundled into touch by the Mad Rabbott and company, would now be in the "sell" phase. So criticising the government as unable to sell it is putting the cart before the horse. If the question is "did we buy the IDEA of an ETS?" then the answer is "yes, at the 2007 election". We have in the past left it to the elected government using experts in the field to implement IDEAS upon which they were elected. And frankly, 98% of the population don't want anything more to do with it. The RSPT is really still only in the idea stage and if the big mining companies using a hostile media had not launched a huge misinformation campaign instead of coming to the negotiation table, would still be in the very early stages of the above process. The government had no choice but to counter the rubbish in the MSM leaving itself open to claims that they are seeking a mandate using public money. It is interesting to note the big mining companies are now claiming that they need to "counter" the government's advertising blitz. Victims, victims, victims. Have I got this wrong? I hope this is still on-topic for the thread in that we are discussing an idea and not legislation.

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010Pevva Welcome to [i]TPS[/i]. Please come again. Thank you for your complimentary remarks about this post. When we have received comments from visitors about the suggested ‘selling’ points, we will send it to the Government.

Lyn

4/06/2010Hi Ad Nasking our Bear with Reb, over at Gutter Trash, [b]spreading good cheer[/b]. Music Jukeboxz with Nasking, Reb, Guttertrash The Numbers Game I’ve got a numbers headache.The past few weeks have been dominated by [b]numbers…numbers bloody numbers[/b]. http://guttertrash.wordpress.com:80/2010/06/04/music-jukeboxz-with-nasking/

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010Folks Morgan Face-to-Face published today, but taken on 29/30 May, is 52.5/47.5 which Morgan points out is two points down for Labor from the last F-to-F two weeks earlier (22/23 May) when it was 54.5/45.5. But he doesn’t point out that a week before that (17/18 May) it was 50.5/49.5. Everyone suspected that his 54.5/45.5 was too high, so today’s figures look like the ones we might expect. Yet his heading reads [i]Election race closes – ALP (52.5%, down 2%) cf. L-NP (47.5%, up 2%)[/i]. Neither does he compare this week’s figures with the election figures in 2007, which were 52.7/47.3. Despite his long experience, Morgan regularly places too much emphasis on small movements in poll numbers and seems to ignore the MOE. What he could have pointed out is that the last F-to-F was on the high side and that today’s figures were probably more representative of the true state of affairs and almost identical with the 2007 election figures. Instead he chooses to sensationalize the numbers. The link is http://www.roymorgan.com/news/polls/2010/4506/

Sally

4/06/2010NormanK I’d love to have seen your scenario in operation in any government during most of my adult, politically-aware, thinking, life. But I fear that nothing in politics is so simple, or rational, or logical, or obvious, or... Your view is rational and reasonable and has all of the above qualities, but that is not the vicious or often irrational world of politics. For over 12 months media commentators have talked about lack of communication by the current government. Now, perhaps naively as a new government, the government is trying to ‘communicate’ its new policy (failed hopelessly so far). The Opposition and MSM are taking the line that this is a taxpayer-funded ‘advertisement’ (as AA has pointed out in this article). I think this is to be expected given the govt’s record so far and they (the govt) will have to deal with that. What follows logically is that if you communicate via an information blitz (‘advertising’), you are wasting taxpayers’ money. If you don’t, you are criticised for not communicating or lambasted as introducing yet another Great Big Tax (GBT). The answer? Maybe a bit like I hope they are doing now, and what I suggest in my comment re The Drum. The govt should continue to boycott comment on what the Opposition says in the press and what the MSM presents. And do what AA and others suggest: blitz the social networking sites, the press and any media outlet with positive messages that say very clearly, in short succinct phrases, what the govt is doing for Australians. Cheers

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010NormanK You’re right. The Rudd Government has made a feature of approaching policy formulation systematically. Kevin Rudd went to the last election indicating his intention to do something about climate change, having already commissioned Ross Garnaut to prepare a report. After the election he went through the Green Paper/White Paper process, then drew up ETS/CPRS legislation to present to the parliament. The sorry story that followed is well known. So it all started, as you say, with an idea, an intention, and ended up with legislation being finally defeated after the Opposition welshed on a deal Malcolm Turnbull had made with the Government. Likewise, the RSPT started after the 2020 Summit when a ‘root and branch’ review of the tax and transfer system was recommended. This took almost two years, after which the Government decided which of the hundred plus recommendations it would now pursue. It chose the RSPT and associated recommendations as a starting point of what will be a prolonged process of reform, and then presented its intention to implement them over the next two years. Many groups were consulted by the Henry Review team, including the mining industry, which itself asked for a profits-based tax to replace the royalties rent tax. The broad details were announced, with the Government insisting on the 40% figure for taxing ‘super profits’, but leaving open the details of implementation and transition, which are currently being discussed in consultations with the miners. So again an idea – a root and branch review – was the starting point, the Henry Report was the next stage and the consultation the current one, after which the basic elements of the scheme will be finalized and legislation drawn up in 2011 for presentation to the parliament in 2012. It is a very orderly process. Of course the miners, like they did 25 years ago over the PRRT, and more recently over the ETS/CPRS, have screamed blue murder, insisting the RSPT would bankrupt them, drive them offshore, and force mass sackings. Some are skeptical about the veracity of their claims, while some of the people are being scared by their threats. It’s about 50/50 at present. So Rudd has more work to do to win support from the electorate. The miners will probably come round and some compromise might be made. My guess is that the Government might agree to a higher threshold at which the super profits tax kicks in, but to keep the budget revenue-neutral might remove the compensatory benefits offered the miners to cover 40% of their set-up costs. You are right – if the miners had taken a more conciliatory approach to the proposed tax than going in boots and all to oppose it, we might be closer to agreement. I suspect that after the ETS deferral they felt Rudd was a soft touch who would be blown away by their savage rhetoric. They got that wrong and in the process have painted themselves into a corner from which it will be difficult to extract themselves. I imagine this is why Rudd is talking today of a protracted process of negotiation before this matter is resolved. And Tony Abbott has painted himself into the same corner as the miners. If the Government reaches rapprochement with the miners, Abbott may find himself boxed into a position from which he cannot easily retreat. Sally You are right - it is always the irrational that fouls up the logical processes that governments try to follow, and most of what seems irrational, when you look into it is not really so, but well thought through self-interest at play.

NormanK

4/06/2010SMH yesterday "Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has hinted at a whole new approach to climate change - a greener ETS, passed sooner than planned. He opened the door to passing an ETS after this year's election, and with the help of the Australian Greens, not the Liberals. "We need to make sure that the Senate becomes, shall I say, positioned in a manner which is able to deliver that change to Australia's domestic laws," Mr Rudd said. An ETS passed by the Greens would be kinder to the environment - and less kind to business - than the previous model." AAP

HS

4/06/2010AA, An interesting perspective on the shadow play at work between the government and the Resources sector. My 2c-worth, in addition to the salient points that you have made, is that I feel that the RSPT scare campaign is not having as much traction as the CPRS campaign because it lacks the core element that strikes true fear into the whole electorate-existential pain in the hip-pocket nerve that touches everyone. To my eyes the fear of the CPRS campaign really hit a home run when the figures for Electricity increases which had to be factored in, were released by the Energy companies. You could almost see the support for action evaporate overnight, and subsequent questions in various polls have confirmed that people still want action on Global Warming, but they don't want to pay for it personally via their energy bills. Hence, my theory about the RSPT. It's something that the big miners will pay, not every citizen. Which is why I think Tony Abbott was onto the angle about the RSPT factoring into everything you pay for, like a fly onto a cow pat. This is also why I think it would be advantageous for the government to make a concession and exempt things such as sand, phosphorous, and other low price resource commodities. It will cut Abbott's scare campaign off at the knees, and further distance the tax from people's everyday costs. Even though I realise that these particular products probably wouldn't attract the RSPT. Even if their extraction and sale did attract the RSPT, their elimination would probably not impact on the Budget very much.

Ad astra reply

4/06/2010Folks If you suspected all the recent hype from Xstrata is one big con, and you want confirmation, read Bernard Keanes's piece on [i]Crikey[/i] today [i]Don't feel sorry for Xstrata[/i] http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/06/04/what-you-wont-learn-about-the-xstrata-closures-from-the-media/

HS

4/06/2010Good news from Peter Martin's blog re what I spoke about earlier: 'In a Senate estimates hearing the Treasury's lead negotiator with mining companies last night held out hope of exempting sand and gravel and building products from the resources tax saying it had never been expected they would pay the tax.'

Lyn

4/06/2010Hi Ad Paul Howes comment: [quote][i]How can you make a commercial decision impacting on the jobs of miners based on a government proposal which [b]hasn't been legislated[/b], in fact draft legislation hasn't even been released, [b]which hasn't been put into parliament[/b], which hasn't even been finally negotiated? [b]It's a joke[/b],” he told ABC Radio today.[/i][/quote] [i]'Several flaws' in Rudd super-profits tax, says Future Fund chairman David Murray Joe Kelly, The Australian[/i] http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/several-flaws-in-rudd-super-profits-tax-says-future-fund-chairman-david-murray/story-e6frg9df-1225875583371

bilgedigger

4/06/2010I note with some concern that Ian Crisp appears to have mislaid his faithful companion, the Webster. I also note with some satisfaction that Ian has been outdone by HillbillySkeleton (10.31 am.) - Good work HS for this and for your further post rebutting his comments. There is a mountain of evidentiary material which gives the lie to the claims of the mining lobby and their allies, much of which is cited above. The need for a campaign to get this material out into the public arena in a pithy readable way is vital and some attempt to get through the gatekeepers of the radio talk program could be added to the list.

Lyn

5/06/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] [i]Xstrata is just playing chicken with the Government, Tony Maher, The Punch[/i] If 3,250 jobs never existed, can they still be used to batter a government over the head and frighten the bejesus out of mining communities? That’s what Swiss mining giant Xstrata is testing this week., http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/xstrata-is-just-playing-chicken-with-the-government/ [i]Why's the Business Lobby letting the Mining Companies try to kill their Tax Cut?, Jeremy Sear, An Onymous Lefty.[/i] Are they really that hostile to Labor that they’d rather see them defeated by the Liberals http://anonymouslefty.wordpress.com/ [i]What if the Mining Industry back down? Mark, Larvatus Prodeo[/i] the government, not Tony Abbott, is the government and that the odds are that the government will still be there after the next election. http://larvatusprodeo.net/2010/06/04/what-if-the-mining-industry-backs-down/ [i]Rudd has more to worry about than miners' bluster, Peter Hartcher, National Times[/i]. In the government's defence, we have had a hopeless opposition for the first two years http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/rudd-has-more-to-worry-about-than-miners-bluster-20100604-xksc.html [i]Rudd needs to prove his mettle in tax fight , Laurie Oakes, The Daily Telegraph[/i] The mining row is Rudd's chance to show some steel. And he is going flat-out to exploit it. " http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/opinion/rudd-needs-to-prove-his-mettle-in-tax-fight/story-e6frezz0-1225875666337 [i]Miranda & NeilvsGreen-eyed Monsters And Incompetent Elves, Jeremy Sear,Pure Poison.[/i] Sod you lefties, corporate Australia doesn’t like your desire to rein in its power and provide decent public services, http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/06/04/miranda-neil-vs-green-eyed-monsters-and-incompetent-elves/#more-6236 [i]What is a Liberal, Senex, The Daily Bludge[/i] How many Liberals are there in the Liberal Party of Australia? They could probably be counted on one hand., http://dailybludge.com.au/2010/06/what-is-a-liberal/ [i]The opposite of alarmist, Tobias Ziegler, Pure Poison[/i] the issue gave him a chance to attack the only politician on the planet who might be as hopeless as Kevin Rudd: http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/06/04/the-opposite-of-alarmist/#more-6298 [i]Rupert Murdoch reveals iPad newspaper app sales figures as Steve Jobs rejects 'nation of bloggers' , Fran Foo, The Australian Business[/i]. I" don't want to see us descend into a nation of bloggers…I think we need editorial oversight now more than ever," http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/media/rupert-murdoch-reveals-ipad-newspaper-app-sales-figures-as-steve-jobs-rejects-nation-of-bloggers/story-e6frg996-1225874602477

HS

5/06/2010lyn, Could you please add this Shaun Carney piece to today's links: http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/shallow-discourse-20100604-xkni.html It offers some sage advice and a scary scenario wrt democracy in Australia.

Ad astra reply

5/06/2010LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/Lyns-Daily-Links.aspx

Lyn

5/06/2010Hi Hillbilly Here it is: [i]Shallow discourse ,Shaun Carney, National Times[/i] the elected government wants to change the tax system and an important,powerful, cashed-up section of industry wants to frustrate it. http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/shallow-discourse-20100604-xkni.html

Ad astra reply

5/06/2010HS, Lyn Shaun Carney's article added to LYN'S DAILY LINKS: http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/shallow-discourse-20100604-xkni.html

Sir Ian Crisp

5/06/2010“SIC, if you have to resort to such base slurs, then you argument is immedialtely devalued.” ~C’mon HS, you are a luvvie aren’t you. You must remember the redhead from Ipswich. When she was touting her visceral politics we all learned how to play the man and not the ball. A fish and chip shop person…a dopey Queenslander…stupid woman…and other ‘base slurs’ as you call them. As a good luvvie I’m sure you joined in. Why can’t I play the man and not the ball in the case of that horrid crone Penny Wrong? We also get this at TPS: “The crisp with the enormous chip on his shoulder in particular pleases me no end. The endless stream of shop worn phrases and purloined half truths masquerading as fact that pepper his missives is at turns comical but ultimately pathetic. Anyone who looks at political websites will be familliar with the type. Specious and spurious logic handcuffed to reams of semi-literate doggerel are spewed upon fellow posters with beguiling speed which is designed to look like intelligence. Only people with a similar style of intelligence are taken in. That is as it should be. The rest of us can laugh mockingly, smugly, arrogantly and with a modicum of scorn and derision that is reserved for the most pig ignorant amoung us. Sir Ian Crisp, take a bow.” That from the vituperative DM. Again, why can’t I join in? Surely the ALP luvvies can let others play. <-> 2. Question Time is not the forum for debate of the RSPT. Which is why it was correctly gagged. ~Question Time belongs to the people of Australia as does the Parliament. It is not a possession of Rudd or Abbott and it’s not up to them or their ridiculous timetables. <-> 3. Also, by calling Indonesia 'mendicant' you are betraying the Australian conservative movement's inherant elitism towards our near neighbours in the region, and, dare I say it, covert racialism. 'Why are we concerned about the cracked footpaths in downtown Jakarta? ' Could you please supply the proof of this statement, that our Indonesian Aid Budget goes to local government footpath mending in Jakarta? ~“commence repairing more than 2000 kilometres of national roads and replace 4,500 metres of steel truss bridges. Poverty is a serious challenge in Indonesia - seven per cent of the population of 242 million live below the international poverty line of US$1 a day.” http://www.indo.ausaid.gov.au/aboutausaid.html ~HS luvvie, 242 million people. I wonder why they have abject poverty? A little thinking music please HS. And don’t ask me to pay for their lifestyle. ~Out comes the ever reliable ‘R’ card right on cue. How to shut down debate 101. The last bastion of a luvvie without an argument. <-> 4. Because we are not a greedy nation. Well, at least whilst the Coalition aren't in power. ~It has nothing to do with being greedy. Perpetuating the myth that you can keep having kids and someone else will pay for them leads to a cargo-cult mentality and a nation forever cast as needing eleemosynary assistance. <-> 5. Because the RSPT has nothing to do with the ETS. ~I never said it did. Hell, RSPT even uses different letters of the alphabet. My point was if Rudd’s cardinal imperative was to initiate the RSPT and depauperise Australians he could have done that and then said something like “…right, that’s out of the way. Now let’s remake that classic movie ‘Road to Bali’. Who wants to play Bob Hope?” <-> 6. It’s a matter of quantum, SIC. Compare and contrast our Foreign Aid Budget with that of the profits of the Major Mining Companies, such as Rio Tinto, who made a $40 Billion profit turnaround over the last 2 years. Our Foreign Aid Budget is not even in that ballpark. ~Foreign aid is killing mendicant nations. Zambian-born economist Dambisa Moyo says it’s time to rethink aid to Africa. “Between 1970 and 1998, when aid flows to Africa were at their peak, poverty in Africa rose from 11% to a staggering 66%.” http://www.bravenewtraveler.com/2009/03/26/is-foreign-aid-killing-africa/ <-> 7. I think you'll find that it was Coalition governments that funded the Soeharto regime in Indonesia, scandalously, and I don't think they were universally admired for doing so. ~Paul Barry: Nuanced and balanced? (referring to the The Australian’s Greg Sheridan’s observations about Paul Keating’s book) Paul Barry asks: “So did Keating condemn Suharto, the man he calls father, for corruption and human rights abuses?” Keating makes an unapologetic defence of his friendship with Suharto. He praises Suharto, showing leadership in the relationship with Australia. (The Australian 10/3/00 p3) http://www.abc.net.au/mediawatch/transcripts/s120156.htm ~C’mon HS, it was Saint Paul calling Suharto ‘Father’ and not Downer or some other Lib. The sickening displays of obsequiousness by Hawke when in the company of Suharto led to a unique fix. Hawke’s name was written on the souls of his shoes because he was so far up Suharto’s anus observers needed to know which one was Keating and which was Hawke. <-> 8. No, the Soehartos ripped off their own people mercilessly. Kept the population in penury to fund their own lavish lifestyles. Our foreign aid bought food to feed the starving people of Indonesia. ~And where did the money come from for road building and other projects? And who owned those road building companies and construction companies? A little thinking music perhaps for you HS. The aid money from Australia took a circuitous route but it ended up in you-know-who’s pockets. It’s a lot like the comedy of the Liberal’s shop front ‘Greenfields Foundation’ and the ALP’s shop front ‘Evatt Foundation. Both get treated very well in every federal budget. I wonder if that money given to them in the budget finds its way to any Australian political party? WHACK! and THUMP! Sir Ian slaps himself for even thinking ill of our fabulous political system. <-> 9. I agree. The Mining companies' shadow play wrt the RSPT is a farce of the highest order. Especially, as you say, when there hasn't even been any legislation put on the parliamentary table as yet.The mining Industry's behaviour is thus incoherent and illogical. As was your post. ~Isn’t there another party in the mining debate? Isn’t it the government? Doesn’t it look just as incoherent and illogical? *Ad Astra, I enjoy the cut and thrust of comments here at TPS. I would ask you to let the comments flow even when they contain passion. The vituperation by the ALP’s vaginaocracy represented here at TPS by HS and DM adds a lot of spice and does not concern me. All I ask is that I be allowed to follow the same rules.

Sally

5/06/2010HS PLEASE don’t buy into this SIC stuff. A well known and highly respected author and erstwhile academic once chastised me for using ‘sic’ which in his opinion was a ‘nasty little word’. He was right. Just ignore it as you would/should sensationalist reporting that has no other objective than sensationalism. Otherwise, may your mind and talents run free on this site.

Ad astra reply

5/06/2010Gravel has had difficulty posting this comment on [i[TPS[/i], so I’m doing if for her. Lyn If you hadn't included the Shaun Carney article I would have suggested you did. It is the first article that expresses what most of us here have been saying about who is going to the run the country. It is a great shame that the media will not take this on board and think about the future of any Australian government if the Mining Companies win this fight. Gravel The Carney article is included in LYN’S DAILY LINKS at the top: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/Lyns-Daily-Links.aspx

HS

5/06/2010Sir Ian Crisp, Yawn. Re Pauline Hanson and base slurs: 'As a good luvvie I’m sure you joined in.' No, I didn't actually. I criticised her policy stance wrt each and every issue she canvassed support for, but I never once descended to an ad feminem argument, or character assassination based upon her back story or appearance. I know it may not be a manner of political response you are familiar with, and thus you find it impossible to believe that others do not behave as you do, that is, in a reflexively derogatory manner with a dagger aimed at the heart of a person's character, but that's not how I roll, sweetie. * 'Why can’t I play the man and not the ball in the case of that horrid crone Penny Wrong?' Play away, SIC, but us adults will analyse the policy not the person. * As for Daisey May's personal character assessment, plus analysis of your contributions, well, I'll leave it up to her to respond to your complaints about it. * 2. So, you agree with me? Good. Question Time is not Stunt Time. * 3. ~“commence repairing more than 2000 kilometres of national roads and replace 4,500 metres of steel truss bridges.' No mention of 'cracked footpaths' there. * 4. '~It has nothing to do with being greedy. Perpetuating the myth that you can keep having kids and someone else will pay for them leads to a cargo-cult mentality and a nation forever cast as needing eleemosynary assistance.' You mean like Tony Abbott's overly-generous Paid Parental Leave Policy? I agree. Those conservative Christians, and the followers of any religion should heed the lessons of overpopulation. Which is why I also believe that the Foreign Aid Budget should be used to pay for contraception and abortions. As a good global citizen. * 5. 'My point was if Rudd’s cardinal imperative was to initiate the RSPT and depauperise Australians he could have done that and then said something like “…right, that’s out of the way. ' Except it's not out of the way, and thus he needs to keep prosecuting the case for it. Once the case has been successfully made, then he needs to get the legislation for it through parliament. So, I don't think he'll have much time for leisure in Bali anytime soon. In fact, that was the last time he had a big win on the global stage, which was what I was referring to, the Climate Change conference in Bali where he ratified Kyoto. * 6. '~Foreign aid is killing mendicant nations. Zambian-born economist Dambisa Moyo says it’s time to rethink aid to Africa.' Exactly. Which is why the Rudd government have facilitated aid that is enabling of the societies that the aid is given to. It is used to generate job-creating enterprises, to build schools in order to educate the local population, and, as much as possible, is not just handed over to the corrupt regimes that have diverted aid for their own benefit in the past. * 7. Conveniently forgot these guys wrt Suharto I see? Australian Prime Minister Robert Menzies visited Indonesia in 1959. Australian foreign minister Paul Hasluck visited Indonesia to meet Suharto three times between August 1966 and January 1968, before Suharto's formal appointment as acting President. Suharto visited Australia in 1972 and met Prime Minister William McMahon. Prime Minister Gough Whitlam met Indonesian President Suharto at Central Java in 1974. The leaders again met at Townsville in 1975. Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser met Suharto in October 1976. Fraser offered de facto recognition of the Indonesian annexation of East Timor, which was followed by de jure recognition in 1979. Note I have left in the meetings that Gough Whitlam had with Suharto, because I'm fair and balanced. :) I was also not able to find any eveidence of Bob Hawke's visits with Suharto to substantiate your coarse assertions in regards to him. * 8. 'And where did the money come from for road building and other projects? And who owned those road building companies and construction companies? A little thinking music perhaps for you HS. The aid money from Australia took a circuitous route but it ended up in you-know-who’s pockets.' So, your specious argument thus becomes, because the money ended up in the Suharto family's coffers, after the roads that the people got to travel on were built, it should never have been thus proffered and the people should have ended up with no infrastructure? SIC, are you as fat as, and with as large a personal jet in your possession as, Clive Palmer? Because that's how your personal philosophy, as evidenced by your comments, is making you out to be. 8b 'It’s a lot like the comedy of the Liberal’s shop front ‘Greenfields Foundation’ and the ALP’s shop front ‘Evatt Foundation. Both get treated very well in every federal budget. I wonder if that money given to them in the budget finds its way to any Australian political party? WHACK! and THUMP! Sir Ian slaps himself for even thinking ill of our fabulous political system.' Aha! You're a Libertarian. And let the Devil take the hindmost, huh? 9. '~Isn’t there another party in the mining debate? Isn’t it the government? Doesn’t it look just as incoherent and illogical?' No. I believe the government is soldiering on manfully in the face of a concerted campaign of disiniformation, obfuscation, bluster and downright lies, dressed up with feel good advertising from the Mining Industry. As is their right as the government of the people, for the people, against the unelected, plutocratic mining companies. * 10. 'The vituperation by the ALP’s vaginaocracy represented here at TPS by HS and DM adds a lot of spice and does not concern me.' It only comes your way when you deserve it, SIC. As I just like to keep the playing field level, and beyond the petty distractions that some may proffer as reasonable comment.

Ad astra reply

5/06/2010Sir Ian Whilst it seems you regard yourself as somewhat of a literary guru and therefore entitled use unusual words or even to create them, please don't offend us by generating new words such as 'vaginaocracy' to cast a slur on two of our female bloggers. You diminish your argument by using such an offensive sexist term. Even 'luvvie' is a reflection on your attitude. I shudder to contemplate what term you would have used if the bloggers had been male. You seem to enjoy the cut and thrust of argument here, but let's be courteous to each other and avoid pejorative character labelling. Leave that to the intellectually destitute.

Ad astra reply

5/06/2010Shaun Carney’s article is well worth studying. http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/shallow-discourse-20100604-xkni.html His starting point: [i]”What we have with the resource rent tax battle is pretty simple: the elected government wants to change the tax system and an important, powerful, cashed-up section of industry wants to frustrate it.”[/i] sums up the current thrust of the RSPT debate. Referring to the mantras ‘working families’ and ‘Great Big New Tax’ he comments: [i]”The tendency towards verbal infantilism is so ingrained in our politics that it's not even remarked upon in the media. Politics is more and more about marketing, and less and less about ideas. It's just a given.”[/i] How true. This seems to be a product of the obligatory media requirement of seven-second ‘grabs’ for TV and radio bulletins, and politicians’ slavish compliance with the media’s demands. Carney correctly concludes: [i]“This all comes at a terrible potential cost. Our political system is at a crucial juncture: can it still function effectively or will it go down the American road, where there are no agreed facts, only rejection and abuse, and the legislative process becomes dysfunctional? What is at stake in the resource rent tax controversy is the authority and legitimacy of not just this government, but any Australian government.”[/i] That is the tragedy – our way of governing this country is under threat. He ends by saying [i]“ What we've seen so far this year is the political contest coming to a sort of standstill - or perhaps that should be a stand-off. Neither of the major parties and their leaders is getting a decisive endorsement from voters, according to the opinion polls. Up to one in four people are parking themselves away from the major parties. This is why the mining companies' assault on the government's legitimacy - its right to set taxation - is so important. If the companies prevail, it will be a powerful sign that our political system is fragmenting, getting weaker, and governments in the future will be reform-free zones.”[/i] Carney is right – we should be very afraid.

Sally

5/06/2010Good afternoon TPS bloggers, A little light relief. This afternoon I had a few free hours – always a treat for me. I had a chance to read the June copy of The Monthly. The lead story was a Don Watson piece on Obama. Beautifully written, as you would expect. Watson’s words had a certain resonance with our current PM’s predicament. I quote with a few options for readers in brackets: On election night in the US: It was a bad night for neo-cons, neo-liberals and neo-Hobbesians, the last being those wiseacres in and around the now-crumbled Bush [read Howard] administration who had been inclined to justify the “muscular unilateralism” of recent American [read Australian] policy by reference to Thomas Hobbes’s Leviathan. The neo-Hobbesians maintained that, being a good country and by far the most powerful in a dangerous and disordered world, the United States should be Leviathan – the “sovereign governor” “to keep them all in awe”, as Hobbes put it. Watson’s final words: He can’t solve the country’s problems, of course. They are simply too big and too many. The euphoria has long gone. The Right insists he’s a socialist and soft on [enter your favourite issue], and the Left declare him meek, naive and unprincipled. AA, on another issue, your recent defence of HS re SIC was commendable but left me wondering about ‘cut and thrust’ stuff. I guess you – and some of your savvy contributors - have to decide whether this site is a ‘blog’ for anyone (SIC included), or a blog for those who are committed to your stated purposes. I have no problem with ‘cut and thrust’ (SIC’s words), if it must be described that way – perhaps dialogue/argument would be better – but I do have a problem, as I do on The Drum, with interminable ravings from those who seek to demolish the values/ideological leanings/purpose of particular articles (in your case a website). This is the intended nature of such websites, ie sensationalism. Is that what you want? I don’t have an answer. Just want you to pause and consider and possibly tell readers what your editorial policy is? Thanks for a wonderful site and home.

Ad astra reply

5/06/2010Folks Did any of you see the full page MCA ad in [i]The Weekend Australian[/i] today. If not, do take a look. Can you make head or tail of the graphic that occupies most of the page? Talk about the Government communicating poorly. The words say: [i]“When will the Government start telling the whole truth?”[/i] The text at the foot of the page, headed ‘Paying a fair share’ reads: [i] “To sell you its new mining tax, the Federal Government will only talk about the state royalties the industry pays. But that’s not even the half of it. We pay company tax – based on our profits.”[/i] Everyone know that, and the Government has talked about it; in fact it has pointed out that company tax for miners under the RSPT will fall from 30 to 28%. What the ad doesn’t mention is the very generous deductions mining companies enjoy that reduce company tax by reducing the amount of profit on which company tax is paid. Read about them here: http://www.ret.gov.au/resources/Documents/resource_taxation/Company_Income_Tax_and_Other_Taxes.pdf The ad goes on to say: [i]”So as our industry has grown, so has the amount we put back into Australia. $21.7 billion in the last year. $80 billion in the last decade. Together they make us the highest tax paying industry in Australia,”[/i] Now what does that imply? It sounds as if these billions might have been paid in taxes, doesn’t it? But is that so? Or have the billions been ploughed back into their mining businesses, from which they can anticipate more profits? The ad is quite unclear about this, possibly purposely so. The text goes on to say “We support genuine tax reform”, expresses a willingness to consult, asserts ‘Misinformation’ in a heading and insists [i]“The Government has to tell you the whole story.”[/i] No doubt the ’whole story’ they want told is on their website. You may wish to read it at: http://keepminingstrong.com.au/ It seems that partial information and misinformation will plague the RSPT debate because all sides are prepared to obfuscate to make their points. What hope does the ordinary citizen have? This is why this piece on [i]TPS[/i] pleads for a compelling Government information campaign to begin right away to set the record straight before the miners convince the public they are a poor down-trodden industry unfairly targeted by the Government with an unreasonable tax that will kill that goose which is laying so many golden eggs. If only we saw more of those eggs returning to support our nation’s prosperity and growth instead of bulging miners’ business and personal coffers.

Sir Ian Crisp

5/06/2010Ad Astra, please provide your definition of consistency. Could you also explain why you only become disturbed when 'others' are under attack but you don't seem very disturbed when those 'others' are dishing out unadulterated crap. As you know I have never complained once about the juvenility of some comments here at TPS and I'm sure you'll back that statement. I am not complaining now. I'm just asking you to provide your definition of consistency. It's a bit late to be asking for courtesy. You didn't call for courtesy way back when TPS's resident amateur psychiatrist/psychologist/tarot card reader tried her best to pigeonhole me so why are you upset now? What happened to that comment by the way? HS luvvie, you're struggling now. Sally, ever thought of starting your own blog?

Lyn

5/06/2010Hi Ad thankyou for your very interesting, enjoyable comments this afternoon. I am getting tired of the Media continually saying Kevin Rudd is spending your money, they say it over and over. Well I thought, once tax is paid, it is the [b]Governments money[/b], it's not "your money at all". Mark at Larvatus Prodeo agrees with you, as he says who "Governs Australia": [i]Who Governs Australia, Mark, Larvatus Prodeo[/i] [b]What is at stake in the resource rent tax controversy is the authority and legitimacy of not just this government, but any Australian government[/b]., http://larvatusprodeo.net/2010/06/05/who-governs-australia/#more-13412

NormanK

5/06/2010AA, Thanks for your response there was a lot there that I didn't know. I was going to keep my trap shut today but ............. one of the questions I was hoping to have answered was - Why does it matter what the public thinks at this stage of policy formulation? I would argue that it doesn't matter one bit except for perceived pressure of the type which the mining companies are currently trying to exploit. Any decent government will resist this pressure. This may be naive but the reason I singled out the ETS in my earlier comment was that at the crucial moment, just before it was torpedoed, I seriously doubt that many people understood it - in fact as far as I know the compromises negotiated with the Liberals have never seen the light of day. If the torpedo had missed, the ETS would be legislated and the government would then, and only then, have to inform us of its content (sell it to us) as part of its bid to be re-elected. If they failed to sell it and lost government, then the new government would have a mandate to do whatever it wished with it. If we allow talk-back radio and the other MSM to influence policy in its formative stages, how on earth will any reform come about? There will always be scare tactics from vested interests no matter what the proposal contains. If weekly polls drove policy, we would be machine-gunning boats one week and rescuing them the next. I'm not sure if I am being clear but surely the time for the public to express its opinion on a policy is at an election. I'm not saying we should go to sleep between elections but nor should government be poll-driven. With my rose-coloured glasses firmly in place, I think the ALP has got a foot in each camp at the moment - catering to OUR desire to have a say and be kept informed of both sides of the story; and just plain digging their heels in and doing what they - the elected government - think is right for the country. They WILL be judged at the ballot box but in the mean time they MUST get on with what they think is right regardless of fickle inaccurate polls. To be frank, a gag on the media on the RSPT until such time as negotiations are completed would advance the cause.

Ad astra reply

5/06/2010Sally This website has evolved without an editorial policy being spelt out. In presenting articles I have attempted to stick to verifiable facts, all the facts, to quote sources, and have tried to separate fact and opinion. I have asked those who comment to do the same. Several times I have made a plea for logical argument and asked all to eschew personal remarks; shooting the messenger always seemed to me to be counterproductive. Some sites seem to be prone to this; we don’t want that here, but just a few, and you know who, ignore this. The orientation of many who blog here is similar, but we do have contrary views expressed. They are welcome so long as courtesy is exhibited and respect shown. Dialogue/argument might have been a better descriptor than ‘cut and thrust’, but what I feel is essential is the chance to argue a point of view from the facts as we know them, accept a counter-argument, and continue the dialogue until some agreement is reached or it is agreed to disagree. I’m glad you feel at home here and look forward to your continuing comments.

Lyn

5/06/2010Sir Ian Crisp Ever thought of starting your own blog????????, you could call it "Crispy Two Shoes" be good because then you could really give everybody some cheek, and make all your visitor's wear out their Webster's. unadulterated crap juvenility,vituperation ,vaginaocracy,depauperise , obsequiousness ,eleemosynary ,vituperative. Good God! if I went around town using words like that, people would say to me "You're a raving lunatic". It's all gobblegook anyway.

Ad astra reply

5/06/2010Sir Ian You’re upset. You feel that I’ve not protected you from the slings and arrows of other bloggers. How about we call it quits and get on with sensible political discourse. Next time you feel upset about a term aimed at you that you consider to be derogatory, please say so.

Lyn

5/06/2010Hi Ad The Polls: [i]Galaxy: 52 -48 to federal LNP Queensland, William Bowe, The Poll Bludger[/i] Liberal National Party leading 52-48 on two-party preferred compared with 50.4-49.6 in Labor’s favour at the 2007 election. http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/ [i]Galaxy federal voting intentions: 52 to 48 Queensland, Peter Brent, Mumble[/i] Note that Abbott and Rudd are neck and neck on preferred PM. http://mumble.com.au/

janice

5/06/2010[quote]THE Federal Government didn't bother to tell its Environment Minister Peter Garrett about a decision to delay its emissions trading scheme (ETS). Mr Garrett was left out of the loop about the decision and its announcement. He says the first he knew about it was when he read it in a newspaper. http://www.news.com.au/national/environment-minister-peter-garrett-left-out-of-ets-loop/story-e6frfkvr-1225875847713 [/quote] The above was reported on ABC 7pm news almost verbatim. I wonder what Peter Garrett really did say.

Lyn

5/06/2010Hi Janice Here is the video clip of Peter Garrett, talking to Peter Van Onselen, Saturday Agenda. [i]Peter Van Onselen talks to Peter Garrett,VIDEO[/i]http://player.video.news.com.au/theaustralian/#1513849125

Ad astra reply

5/06/2010NormanK The reason the RSPT is in the situation it is in, is that both parties have dug in their heels, and the miners have decided to fight the tax. They say they believe in a fairer tax system, but that means paying less tax. They believe they are paying too much already or at least enough. Their campaign is well-funded and intense. The government has no option but to try to counter it, but so far the miners seem to be winning the battle for the minds of the people, as evidenced by the polls. The Government has a lot of informing and educating to do. While it would be better if timeout could be called, the media won’t be party to that while such good copy is in the offing.

Lyn

5/06/2010Hi Ad Grog with the CFMEU’s advert. [i]The Best Advert Yet for the RSPT, Grog, Grog's Gamut[/i] given all the bull being sprouted by the mining companies of late, they’ve gone the humour route. And they have found there is plenty to laugh at: http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/

Ad astra reply

5/06/2010Folks Do take a look at the CMFEU mining tax ad. It's just the sort of ridicule the miners need: http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/

Beerme

6/06/2010Hahaaha! Thanks for linking the vid - pure gold. I definitely wouldn't mind seeing that several times on TV.

HS

6/06/2010From Larvatus Prodeo: http://larvatusprodeo.net/2010/06/04/what-if-the-mining-industry-backs-down/

janice

6/06/2010Hello Lyn. Thanks for that video link. I was feeling a lot of anger towards Peter Garrett and wondered why he would say, (as reported on ABC news) that he only found out about the ETS being deferred through the newspapers. The intent of the reporting is obviously to instil the perception that Garrett is miffed about being sidelined by Rudd and Cabinet. Perhaps this is another item for ABC Watch.

Lyn

6/06/2010Hi Janice The ABC have reported word for word, what Peter Van Onselen reported. See, when you watch the interview, Peter Garrett answered, about the leak to The Australian newspaper. Peter Van Onselen has pounced, by distorting Peter Garretts words, twisting the context in his report,the bootstappers have joined in, full on. Did you see yesterday, Tony Abbott, when asked about Peter Garrett not being in the loop, said the country is being ruled by a gang of four, so run all the bootstrappers run, they are reporting this morning the country is ruled by a gang of four.( 4 being Kevin Rudd, Wayne Swann, Julia Gillard and Lindsay Tanner). Gang of four relates to something about communism, not sure of the story, Janice, you or somebody else may be able to enlighten me. Garrett left out of Rudd's 'gang' on ETS backflip , Peter Van Onslen, The Australian Mr Garrett's admission is further evidence that major decisions in the Rudd government are made by the so-called "gang of four" and are not considered or reviewed by a wider circle of ministers before they are announced. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/garrett-left-out-of-rudds-gang-on-ets-backflip/story-e6frg6xf-1225875832909 Garrett first heard of ETS shelving in newspaper, ABC "This is a Prime Minister who doesn't trust his own cabinet ministers with decision making." http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/06/05/2919194.htm

Lyn

6/06/2010Hi Ad Thankyou, to Jeremy Sear for putting up a link to "The Political Sword" with a wonderful compliment. [b]ELSEWHERE: The Political Sword wonders Is it that hard to sell the RSPT? and does some excellent myth-busting[/b] [i]Why's the business lobby letting the mining companies try to kill their tax cut. Jeremy Sear, An onymous Lefty[/i]the mining companies’ shamelessly dishonest fear campaign http://anonymouslefty.wordpress.com/

Lyn

6/06/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] [i]The Best Advert Yet for the RSPT, Grog, Grog's Gamut[/i] given all the bull being sprouted by the mining companies of late, they’ve gone the humour route. And they have found there is plenty to laugh at: http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/ [i]I'll sell anything but Kevin Rudd - John Singleton , The Sunday Telegraph[/i] make advertisements for Opposition Leader Tony Abbott with the slogan: "I'm not Kevin Rudd, I've got cauliflower ears and I don't talk gobbledygook." http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/national/ill-sell-anything-but-kevin-rudd-singo/story-e6frf7l6-1225876016325 [i]RSPT: the Facts V Liberals fiction. kate Lundy,[/i] The liberals have made the extravagant claim that the RSPT will increase all prices http://www.katelundy.com.au/2010/06/05/rspt-the-facts-v-liberal%E2%80%99s-fiction/ [i]Israel and Palestine, Andrew Elder, Politically Homeless[/i] a Hamas racketeering organisation; an Israeli government that is disingenuous at its best (fleeting) moments; a United States that is not sufficiently engaged to even hear such voices,http://andrewelder.blogspot.com/2010/06/israel-and-palestine-i-believe-that.html

Sir Ian Crisp

6/06/2010Sir Ian Crisp Ever thought of starting your own blog????????, you could call it "Crispy Two Shoes" unadulterated crap juvenility,vituperation ,vaginaocracy,depauperise , obsequiousness, eleemosynary ,vituperative. Good God! if I went around town using words like that, people would say to me "You're a raving lunatic". It's all gobblegook anyway. Lyn Lyn, it’s not me moaning. It’s someone with the name Sally. By highlighting those words you have merely reinforced my argument about consistency. In case you were having a blonde or senior moment here are a few others: Empathy, Homeric, epiphany, diligence, Dante’s hell, purloined, masquerading, missives, specious, doggerel, modicum. Lyn, I did not use those words but there use somehow didn’t aggrieve you. Dare I say it but if you went around town using words like that people would say to you: “You’re a raving lunatic”. Attention Lyn! Has anyone seen Lyn? Double *bump* for Lyn.

Lyn

6/06/2010Sir Ian Crisp Ok, you got me, I am blonde, I'll cop the "double bump" on my blonde head. I must say I do admire your use of words, and you do add an interesting opinion to our place "the Political Sword. As Ad said, don't get upset, we appreciate you anyway, your still my friend.

vote1maxine

6/06/2010Hi Lyn Re Gang of Four Why doesn't Peter Van Onslen call policy making by Abbott, Gang of One or Dictatorship decision making? Does he just ignore the PPL Tax or Phoney's thought bubble on $10,000 for stay at home mums. He is just a bootstrapper without credibility. If the four were in the Liberals he would no doubt call them a dynamic "Kitchen Cabinet". He writes for the Tea Bag Rag The unAustralian which isn't even worthy to be found hanging behind the door of an outback thunderbox.

Ad astra reply

6/06/2010LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/Lyns-Daily-Links.aspx

NormanK

6/06/2010Ad astra, Thanks for your indulgence. I realise that I am a babe-in-the-woods here and your patience is appreciated. My "media gag" suggestion was of course theoretical and of no use in the real world. Hopefully, Mr Rudd and company can maintain a blind eye and a deaf ear to this polling nonsense and get on with the business in hand. There is only one poll that matters and so on. The comments and links provided here are of immense value as research tools. Thanks.

Lyn

6/06/2010Hi vote1maxine ([quote]He writes for the Tea Bag Rag The unAustralian which isn't even worthy to be found hanging behind the door of an outback thunderbox)[/quote] Vote1maxine, I see Peter Van Onselen now writes for the Courier Msil in Glenn Milne's Possie. I have noticed the new method now, is to set up a Liberal interviewee or two, Peter Van Onselen will pretend to bag Phoney Tony and the Liberals (so Fake), giving the interviewee's an opening to bash the Government. Andrew Bolt and Steve Price on MTR, Andrew Bolt taking the part, of saying a few tiny things in favour of the Government, then Steve Price knocks the Government, (fake, fake). David Speers, Kieren Gillbert & Ashley Gillan on Sky Agenda, have all adopted the same method. The saying "gang of four" came directly from Tony Abbott's mouth, the bootstappers gleefully run wild, rubbing their hands together, a new line to damage the Government.

HS

6/06/2010SIC, 'HS luvvie, you're struggling now.' Please explain? :) Nay, SIC, it is you who is struggling if that is the best you can come back into the fray with. I counter your attempted distortions of the facts, and selective misrepresentations of complex political history with an analysis of your contributions, and you seek to humiliate and denigrate me with puerile affectations such as referring to me as 'luvvie'(and if we could see your face you would probably be seen to be sneering as you said it, you supercilious man in search of an argument). I'm not struggling, I haven't even raised a bead of sweat yet.

Macca

6/06/2010When crocodiles are snapping at you're arse it's hard to remember that your original intention was to drain the swamp. This is the position the Prime Minister finds himself in....or does he? The mainstream media would have us think so. I believe that, yet again.they have grossly underestimated the Pm and the Govt. The mining industry especially so. Are they they so stupid as to believe that Messrs. Rudd,Gillard,Swan and Tanner would not know how many crocodiles are in the swamp? How strong they are? What their collective weaknesses are? How they were going to react to proposed RSPT? If they haven't given any thought to any of the above they don't deserve to, nor should they be, in control of billions of shareholders dollars. IMO the opposition, the miners and the Murdoch morons have been suckered big time. Why? Because the Govt now has a narrative, remember the complaints about them not having one?. Well now they have and it's a ripper. This election wont be fought on the economy, health, climate change or Kevin Rudds competence. There will be one message. The Liberal Party believes that the taxation regime of the Australian nation should be decided in international boardrooms. The democratically elected Labor Govt of the Australian nation does not. I believe, in the not to distant future, crocodiles will still be snapping at arses....however, they wont be Kevin Rudds or his Govt.

Gravel

6/06/2010Ad Astra thank you for posting my comment, I hope this one comes through. And thank you for distilling that Shaun Carney article. I would not even know how to try and start to do what you and many others here are capable of. I am patting myself on the back today because I didn't watch any of the usual political shows that are on every Sunday morning. I have become so disillusioned with the reporting that I am trying to find a radio station that doesn't do politics and we are discussing in this house what news channel to watch. I know this is totally off topic but I would appreciate any suggestions.

Lyn

6/06/2010Hi Gravel You are a such a nice person, please don't worry the Labor Party, is huge, much bigger than us, the Labor machine in monstrous. I know they have been a bit annoyingly quiet, seem to give Phoney Tony a lot of rope, but you wait and see. Bruce Hawker of Hawker Britton has been commissioned as the Labor's campaign manager, according to Sky News this morning, he gives me a lot of confidence. You asked for suggestions, well! just get on your computer and come here to the Political Sword, Ad will always talk to you. [i]Advice for Abbott from the war room, Michael Owen, The Australian 15th May 2010[/i] Mike Rann celebrated his re-election for a third term in SA, he praised Bruce Hawker, director of lobbyist firm Hawker Britton, for his advice to allocate all resources to retain marginal seats, allowing safe seats to suffer in the belief they could withstand the swing. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/politics/state-politics/advice-for-abbott-from-the-war-room/story-e6frgczx-1225866712151

Acerbic Conehead

6/06/2010AA, there are three rival ‘Gangs of Four’ running around, and each is claiming sole ownership of the moniker. To plan how they are going to force the other two gangs to stop using their name, they are meeting in separate rooms in the Canberra Primary School’s newly-built (under the BER scheme) multi-purpose centre. The ALP ‘Gang of Four’ is made up of Kev, Julia, Swannie and Lindsay, and the Opposition ‘Gang’ comprises Tones, Warren, Julia and Joe. The third ‘Gang of Four’ includes Clive, Albo, Klopps and Twiggy. In the ALP room, the discussion is just starting. Lindsay: Jeeze, these new rooms are something else, aren’t they...All the mod-cons – even a fridge and a sink... Kev: Yeah – that’s why they call us four the kitchen cabinet...heh...heh... Swannie: Really? I thought we booked out a room with a sink so that Julia could wash up the cups at the end of the evening...hee...hee... [Julia, who in private would make the Whomping Willow at Hogwarts look like a shrinking violet, delivers an expertly-aimed rabbit punch to Swannie’s privates, causing him to experience so much pain, he staggers outside to give them a rub. Meanwhile, the Gang of...Three...begins their meeting] Kev: Now comrades...let’s get the ball rolling... Lindsay: Wow, Kev...I haven’t heard that one for a while – do we still call each other ‘comrade’? Kev (sighs): I was being ironic – didn’t you hear Clive calling us communists the other day... Julia: Huh – he can talk...He sells so much stuff to the Chinese, he may as well be on their Politburo...ho...ho... Kev: Well, anyway...Before we discuss how we can force those other two parcels of dopes to stop using our name, I’ve just received an application form from Peter Garrett to join our Gang of Four...he reckons it could then be called, “Jive with the Five”... Lindsay: In his Dreamworld...heh...heh... Julia: Yeah, if he’s to rub shoulders with those in Power, tell him he’s gotta show a lot more than Passion...hee...hee... Kev: Yeah, I’ll remind him Surf’s Up Tonight, so he should get his board out and stick to what he’s good at...haw...haw... [just at this moment Swannie, now able to walk again, re-enters the room] Swannie: Guys...when I went outside to...erm...get a breath of fresh air, I stood outside one of the other rooms and overheard the Opposition Gang of Four at their meeting...You’ll be glad to know they have decided not to call themselves the Gang of Four anymore... Lindsay: So let me guess – they’re now the Gang of Bores...hee...hee... Swannie: No...actually they’ve decided to call themselves the Gang of Yore – they talked about bringing back the good old days – WorkChoices...pork-barrelling...speaking Aramaic just like Jesus did...riding around on bikes... Julie: Huh...everybody riding around on bikes – sounds like those commo Chinese...hee...hee... [suddenly, Kev’s lap-top springs into life, announcing the arrival of an email. It is from Clive, the leader of the third Gang of Four, meeting down the corridor. Kev reads out the message.] Kev: Dear rival Gang of Four – in view of your persistent usage of our copyrighted moniker, we demand that you change yours immediately...In fact, as a gesture of our good negotiating faith, we are prepared to suggest to you a new name, totally in keeping with your present approach. Why not call yourselves the RSPT Gang instead? Swannie: Brilliant! I can just see the TV ad now – “Go with the RSPT Gang – prosperity or hang!” Kev: Yeah, I’ll just email Clive back and tell him of our marketing plans... [down the corridor, the news is met with a clinking of glasses, well-charged with Moet] Clive: Well, ‘comrades’, I think we’ve won another battle in the war...heh...heh...And Twiggy old chap – why don’t you send off that press release to our friends at the ABC... Twiggy: Oh, you mean the one that mentions, “The ALP ‘Revolutionary Socialist Proletarian Trotskyite Gang’ threatens to hang anyone who refuses to pay more taxes”...ho...ho... Clive: Yeah, that’s the one...Sheesh – when will those losers learn who the real bosses are around here...

HS

6/06/2010You have to take the rough with the smooth in this debate, so it would thus be worthwhile to include this commentary on the RSPT debate from Mark Kenny: http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/alls-not-fair-in-politics/

Lyn

6/06/2010 [b]Hi Ad[/b] I thought SO, as I said in my comment at 7.51am [quote]Gang of four relates to something about communism, not sure [/quote] Well here it is, the proof of why Phoney Tony thought of GANG OF FOUR: [i]The 'Gang of Four' was formed by Mao Zedong's wife Jiang Qing (1913-1991), the Shanghai [/i][i]Propaganda[/i] http://www.iisg.nl/landsberger/g4.html

HS

6/06/2010Tony Maher of the CFMEU has put up a good article about the RSPT: http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/xstrata-is-just-playing-chicken-with-the-government/

FFreddy

6/06/2010HS further on the Mark Kenny article it appeared in the sat. edition of the Adelaide Advertiser complete with an adjoining full body length shot of MK with his arms folded. Very strange indeed and worth a look. However on the other side of this shot was a box containing six dot points which explained the working of an RSPT in simple to understand terms without opinion which is probably the first I've seen of this type. Credit where it's due and just goes to show what they can do if they are inclined to. Turning further on read the L.Oakes article. Usual stuff 95% self-serving drivel 5% useful insight but to the side of this article was another box which was basically a nasty piss-take on Rudd's verbage. Like you said the rough with the smooth.

HS

6/06/2010FFreddy, I think Mark Kenny is a closet Rudd government supporter. Either that, or he has seen the future under a Coalition government, and he doesn't like the look of it, so he will be doing his best to help the ALP out with sage advice. You've got to wonder sometimes when you take in the commentary from the MSM whether they are fulfilling the tenets I outlined in my last blog, as impartial observers of the Australian political scene, or they are just partisan hacks. I think I can safely say that they mostly fall into one or the other camp these days, with a small subset that float between the two. As for example, Dennis Atkins of the Courier Mail is wont to do. What I think will be interesting is to wait for the election to be called to see how the various sections of the MSM cover the election campaign and the gaffes that Tony Abbott and other prize contenders in the Coalition will no doubt make. Therein hangs a telling tale, I think. Which is not to say that members of the Rudd government won't also have stumbles along the way, but we all know how they will be covered, mercilessly.

HS

6/06/2010Acerbic Conehead, We will fight them at the Comedy Club! We shall storm their barricades with gales of laughter! We will never surrender our sense of humour, or the ability to laugh at the dunderheads who seek to destroy us who fight the good fight on behalf of those who cannot muster a satirical sideswipe! More power to your arm, Acerbic C.

Ad astra reply

6/06/2010Folks I thought today's [i]Insiders[/i] was a big improvement on last week's disgraceful 'let's knock Rudd at every turn' episode. Having written a blistering comment to the ABC last week, today I wrote: [i]"After last week’s Insiders I wrote to you protesting about what I believed was the most shamefully partisan and biased episode of Insiders I have ever witnessed. So far I have received no response. "I write to say what a marked improvement there was today. "First, having three females instead of alpha males was a good start, and picking Misha Schubert and Lenore Taylor, two of the most balanced journalists in the MSM, improved the quality of the panel no end. The session was moderated well and the discussion was balanced and informative, with viewpoints from all sides being presented. Barrie Cassidy’s interview with Bob Brown was good viewing although he mostly avoided asking the tough questions. "If Insiders was to continue in this vein, I feel sure many more would watch it. I hope that those who were turned off after last week will return in anticipation of a more even-handed and less partisan approach than that to which we were subjected last week."[/i]

Gravel

6/06/2010Thanks Lyn I hanging in there with all you great people. I get a bit stressed out with the media and am going to ignore it for while and just rely on you lot to help.

gusface

6/06/2010Sir Ian someone curdled the cream? Tea dammit man and make it snappy :)

Acerbic Conehead

6/06/2010AA, Tones is getting worried that Cleavage Clive and his well-endowed mates are going to strike a deal with Kev and cut him out. He is whistling in the dark and pretending he’s still a player. So, give him a break by singing along to his plea to the fat cats, based on Queen’s “Fat Bottomed Girls”. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-D99n9f3vU4 :- ( Are you gonna take me home tonight? Ah down beside that coal-fire light Are you gonna let it all hang out? Fat bottomed boys you make the mining world go round :- ( Hey I’m just a skinny lad Some say a bit of a cad But I knew a wheeze before I left the seminary Love child of ol’ Honest Johnny He was so cunning and canny Wasn’t long til he made a bad boy out of me Hey hey! :- ( You’ve been diggin’ in the sand Makin’ a motza across the land Gettin’ pot-bellied, makin’ squillions everyday Like it’s goin’ outa style So look on me with a smile And I can shower Rudd with some more bile :- ( Are you gonna take me home tonight? Ah down beside that coal-fire light Are you gonna let it all hang out? Fat bottomed boys you make the mining world go round :- ( Hey listen here While I’m cyclin’ all alone Like a skinny bag of bones Your spare-tyre’s as big as Billy Bunter’s (I tell you) So it would give me heaps of pleasure If you gave me some of your treasure Before Ruddy grabs it all with his RSPT :- ( Oh you gonna take me home tonight (Please) Oh down beside that coal fire-light Oh you gonna let it all hang out? Fat bottomed boys you make the mining world go round Fat bottomed boys you make the mining world go round Get on my bike and ride Fat bottomed boys

Acerbic Conehead

7/06/2010HS (03:10 PM). Thanks for your message. I'm glad you enjoyed my story of the three Gangs of Four. Certa bonum certamen. Ace.

Lyn

7/06/2010Good Morning Acerbic Conehead, Thankyou for cheering up my morning, your faithfull contributions are an asset to the Political Sword. [quote]I can shower Rudd with some more bile[/quote] Phoney Tony's bile didn't go do to well yesterday : Hugs and heckles as Abbott digs himself a hole , Jessica Maher, SMH Mr Abbott could not resist a dig at the federal government's proposed mining tax. http://www.smh.com.au/national/hugs-and-heckles-as-abbott-digs-himself-a-hole-20100606-xn88.html

Lyn

7/06/2010[i][quote][b][u]TODAY'S LINKS[/u][/b][/quote][/i] [i]LIBS TAKE THE LEAD, 53 - 47, JJ Fiasson, The Daily Bludge[/i] In my view, it can be boiled down to two things. The first is the sustained and [b]insidious war that News Limited has been waging against Kevin Rudd,[/b]http://dailybludge.com.au/2010/06/libs-take-the-lead-53-47/ [i]Nielsen: 53-47 to Coalition,William Bowe, The Poll Bludger[/i] Rudd’s approval rating is down four points from a month ago to 41 per cent and his disapproval is up three to 52 per cent – http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/2010/06/06/nielsen-53-47-to-coalition/ [i]At last - some good communication from the Government about the RSPT, video Peter Martin[/i] http://petermartin.blogspot.com/ [i]Video and Transcript - Resource Super Profits Tax[/i] It’ll mean that when mines make high profits… their tax will be higher. But if profits fall… so will their tax. , http://www.futuretax.gov.au/pages/trans_RSPT.aspx [i]Rudd: an anti-politics campaigner no more? The Piping Shrike[/i] a program like Insiders can give serious thought to Chris Pyne’s bizarre suggestion that the move by voters to the Greens represents a stepping point on their way to the Coalition http://www.pipingshrike.com/2010/06/rudd-an-anti-politics-campaigner-no-more.html “[i]The Great Slow-moving Revolution in Politics,Reb, Gutter Trash[/i] As the major parties start losing power it’s incredibly important that individuals start playing a role, http://guttertrash.wordpress.com/2010/06/06/the-great-slow-moving-revolution-in-politics/ [i]Entitled to your opinion III, Andrew Elder, Politically Homeless[/i] Loughnane, Credlin and O'Reilly are clowns and must be punted this side of Christmas http://andrewelder.blogspot.com/2010/06/entitled-to-your-opinion-iii-this-is.html [i]GANG OF FOUR[/i] Mao Zedong now gave his support to the Gang of Four http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CHINAgang.htm [i]The Rudd gang of four ,Lenore Taylor, The Australian, [b]9th Nov.2009[/b][/i] Like Rudd, former prime minister John Howard dominated his government and ran an office that centralised policy formation. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/features/the-rudd-gang-of-four/story-e6frg6z6-1225795556696

Phillip

7/06/2010You say: "If they made $100 million profit, they pay no tax on the first $6 million. They pay 40% tax on the remaining $94 million, that is, $37.6 million. Therefore they keep $62.4 million out of $100 million profit – not bad!" But - you have forgotten about company tax - they pay another 30% tax on the $62.4 million so they end up keeping only $43.7 million and paying $56.3 million in tax.

Lyn

7/06/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS PART 2[/b] [i]If Kevin gives us Tony, I’ll never forgive him,Jeremy Sear, Anymous Lefty[/i] Tony Abbott, the shameless liar and vicious social conservative, representative of the most corrupt and dishonest multinational corporations raiding this country http://anonymouslefty.wordpress.com/2010/06/07/if-kevin-gives-us-tony-ill-never-forgive-him/ [i]Open Thread June 7 -11, Jeremy Sear, Pure Poison[/i] Q&A has Chris Bowen and Scott Morrison, as well as Kevin Sheedy, Heath Ducker and Samah Hadid. http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/06/07/open-thread-june-7-11/#more-6315 [i]Spotlight the Spin, Tigtog, Larvatus Prodeo[/i] is it just about “winning the news cycle” for this week only or is a longer play building strategic momentum? http://larvatusprodeo.net/ [i]Campaign countdown: it just got a lot worse for Rudd, Leo Shanahan, The Punch[/i] The SMH’s political editor Peter Hartcher describes the result as genuine “death threat” from the electorate http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/Campaign-countdown-it-just-got-a-lot-worse-for-rudd/ [i]It's me or him, Rudd tells voters, ABC[/i] So the challenge for me and for the Government is to work harder into the future. http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/06/07/2919672.htm

Ad astra reply

7/06/2010LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/Lyns-Daily-Links.aspx

Sir Ian Crisp

7/06/2010Ad Astra, I am not upset about your lack of protection. I don’t care what others say about me because I enjoy the cut and thrust caper. I am wound up at your lack of consistency. I will try one more time to din my concerns into your ears (or eyes). DM said: “The crisp with the enormous chip on his shoulder in particular pleases me no end. The endless stream of shop worn phrases and purloined half truths masquerading as fact that pepper his missives is at turns comical but ultimately pathetic. Anyone who looks at political websites will be familliar with the type. Specious and spurious logic handcuffed to reams of semi-literate doggerel are spewed upon fellow posters with beguiling speed which is designed to look like intelligence. Only people with a similar style of intelligence are taken in. That is as it should be. The rest of us can laugh mockingly, smugly, arrogantly and with a modicum of scorn and derision that is reserved for the most pig ignorant amoung us. Sir Ian Crisp, take a bow.” A very annoyed and disturbed Ad Astra said: “.............................”. Sir Ian Crisp said: “Ad Astra, I enjoy the cut and thrust of comments here at TPS. I would ask you to let the comments flow even when they contain passion. The vituperation by the ALP’s vaginaocracy represented here at TPS by HS and DM adds a lot of spice and does not concern me. All I ask is that I be allowed to follow the same rules”. A very annoyed and disturbed Ad Astra said: “Whilst it seems you regard yourself as somewhat of a literary guru and therefore entitled use unusual words or even to create them, please don't offend us by generating new words such as 'vaginaocracy' to cast a slur on two of our female bloggers. You diminish your argument by using such an offensive sexist term. Even 'luvvie' is a reflection on your attitude. I shudder to contemplate what term you would have used if the bloggers had been male”. Now do you see Ad Astra? It’s called BLOODY CONSISTENCY.

Ad astra reply

7/06/2010Folks Those of you who were disheartened by the Nielsen poll today might find this afternoon's Essential Report reassuring. It has the TPP at 52/48 for Labor, up one point from last week. It does show however that the miners are ahead in the PR war with the Government. http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/files/2010/06/Essential-Report_070610.pdf

Sally

7/06/2010Hi TPS people, Gosh, Mr Palmer thinks he may have overstated his case! I wonder why? http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/06/07/2919984.htm?section=justin I wonder who encouraged him? I wonder who advised him? I wonder what impact the CFMEU ad had on his advice/announcement? I wonder what liberal media advisers make of this? I wonder what the current gov't will do with it? Too many questions and no time to think further on such substantive matters. known as

Michael

7/06/2010Here's a very good example of how Tony Abbott will most likely screw up the Coalition's chances in an election campaign, when events like the one reported here will be happening three or four times a day, offering him multiple opportunities to make the same mistake of misjudging his 'crowd'. http://www.smh.com.au/national/hugs-and-heckles-as-abbott-digs-himself-a-hole-20100606-xn88.html Keating warned Rudd that Turnbull "lacks judgement". The concept of judgement totally escapes Abbott. "Mister Negative" will have nothing to say that is not bad-mouthing, and this will sink him. And the Coalition. If this style of behaviour doesn't, and he is elected PM, Australians will get exactly what they voted for. Chaos.

Sally

7/06/2010Addendum: Has anyone noted how apolitical The Drum is today? Worth a thought. As above on C. Palmer, one wonders why? someone called

HS

7/06/2010Sally, Do you think that the commentariat might have realised that they cooked Kevin Rudd's goose and overegged the pudding on the RSPT? Surely they aren't so stupid as to not realise what the ramifications of an Abbott government are? Surely?

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7/06/2010Folks I've just posted [i]Who's winning the RSPT debate?[/i] http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2010/06/07/Whoe28099s-winning-the-RSPT-debate.aspx

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7/06/2010HS I think you may be right. Many journos like to play the 'let's have a close contest' game at election time, but if a possible outcome is Abbott and his paper-thin team, the sensible ones may be thinking again. [i]Four Corners[/i] will be interesting tonight.
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