Tony Abbott’s ‘Cone of Silence’


Those ‘of a certain age’ will remember the 60s’ TV show Get Smart that featured the brilliant writing of Mel Brooks as well as the incredible acting of Don Adams, Barbara Feldon and Edward Platt. Don Adams was Agent 86 in the US Secret Agency known as Control; Barbara Feldon was Agent 99 and Edward Platt was ‘Chief’. Their nemesis was an organisation called Kaos. Those who know the show will instantly remember the ‘Cone of Silence’, a piece of ‘high technology’ equipment. It was supposed to ensure that if microphones were planted in the Chief’s office, they would be useless. While the Cone of Silence may have been a good idea, the implementation left a lot to be desired. (For those unfamiliar with the concept – this clip explains how it failed.)



In a complete turn-around from his actions in Opposition - where appearing in an industrial setting with freshly ironed hi-vis vest was de rigueur - the Prime Minister now wants to control the information flow to the media differently. It seems, now that the LNP has won the election, the Prime Minister wants to operate in a Cone of Silence. Will it be any better than the version that people have been laughing at for decades on TV?

Tony Abbott has declared at a news conference that he will only speak as Prime Minister when he has something to say and that he won’t be feeding the 24-hour news cycle. It has also been widely reported that all interviews with Ministers have to be approved by the Prime Minister’s Office 24 hours prior to the interview. (It is ironic that the decision that all Ministers must seek approval prior to participating in interviews was leaked!)

Evidence of this ‘cone of silence’ policy can be found in three recent events:

  • Immigration Minister Scott Morrison announces that refugee boat arrivals and ‘turn backs’ will be only discussed at a weekly briefing due to ‘operational security’ rather than as the event occurs.
  • Treasurer Joe Hockey announces that the Federal Government’s finances are being investigated line by line, while having to announce a better than expected result from the last financial year.
  • Foreign Minister Julie Bishop meets with her Indonesian counterpart to discuss refugee boats and declares the meeting details will not be disclosed or discussed.
A month or so into the term of the Coalition Government, just how is this policy panning out?

After Abbott’s announcement, there had been plenty of muted supporting comment from the media: Jacqueline Maley’s ‘Don’t feed the chooks’; Barry Cassidy’s ‘Abbott wise to pull back... but not too far’; and Dee Madigan’s ‘Tone it down’.

Then on September 26, Fairfax headlined a piece ‘Abbott assures nation he is hard at work’. Perhaps Abbott realised that ‘refusing to participate in the news cycle’ could be construed as ‘nothing was happening’. Obviously this was a message the Prime Minister didn’t want to send.

And a rather interesting piece in the SMH from Tony Wright followed on 27th September:

Small factory in the suburbs? Check. Fluro jacket? Check. It is as if Tony Abbott never wanted the election campaign to end.

Mention the carbon tax? Promise to get the budget back in control? Stop the boats? Build the roads of the 21st century?

Check, check, check and check.

This report continues:

He could barely keep his hands off the containers of laundry powders and stain removers. His craving for a factory photo-op satiated, the Prime Minister offered himself to cameras and journalists for precisely the sort of doorstop he held every day of the campaign.

Scott Morrison’s clampdown on refugee boat announcements has gone equally as well.

Someone on Christmas Island has been using Twitter to advise how many people arrive on each boat. On 27 September the ABC and commercial media were reporting that 10 refugee boats had arrived since the election date, three of them since the Coalition Government had been sworn in. Over the weekend of 28 and 29 September, a news story unfolded on the commercial television networks reporting that people had drowned in another refugee boat heading for Australia. The reporters were stating clearly they were not getting comment from the Government – and that was simply not good enough.

Now that the Prime Minister and Foreign Ministers have spoken to their Indonesian counterparts, apparently the LNP policy wasn’t to ‘turn around’ refugee boats anyway:

Morrison said the Coalition had “never had a policy of towing boats back to Indonesia” and blamed “misrepresentation over a long period of time” in the media for that impression.

In late September Joe Hockey released the final accounting for the Federal Government’s 2012-2013 Financial Year where the headline was an $18.8 billion deficit (down from a projected $19.4 billion on August 2, 2013).

According to Michael Pascoe in Fairfax media:

It's yet another case of politics overshadowing economics: while newbie Treasurer Joe Hockey insinuates otherwise, the final count for the 2012-13 federal budget is an outstanding achievement, a monument to a skilled Treasury performance in very difficult circumstances.

Hockey certainly didn’t give credit to either his Department or the former Treasurer for a job well done. However, he has ‘deferred’ the surplus promised by Abbott while listing how often Swan promised the same thing.

The new Foreign Minister, Julie Bishop, met her Indonesian counterpart at the United Nations in New York to discuss, amongst other issues, the Coalition Government policy on refugee boats. According to the Foreign Minister, the conversation was private and Australia’s position was explained.

The Indonesian Government had a differing opinion – it released the notes of the discussion while stating that the policy of ‘turning back the boats’ was not supported. As reported by the ABC:

The ABC's Indonesia correspondent George Roberts told PM, the statement is a rare move from a nation that is usually much more circumspect in diplomacy.

"Even in recent history, the foreign minister has been very reluctant to speak openly and has been very diplomatic about it," he said.

"So this kind of language is quite strong and quite interesting indeed.”

While there would be little support for yet another three years of election campaigning, does PM Abbott really expect that all of the fourth and fifth estates will, now that he is in power, concede ‘there is nothing to see here and let’s move on’?

Early in October, an opinion piece by Mark Kenny reported:

In one of the lighter moments towards the end of the recent presidential-style election campaign, Labor's campaign headquarters issued a press statement configured as a faux police bulletin.

It said grave fears were held for the whereabouts of once high profile Liberals, Peter Dutton, Sophie Mirabella, and Eric Abetz.

The respective health, industry, and workplace relations shadow ministers had become almost invisible. Labor was desperate to draw them on to policy terrain usually judged as stronger for the ALP.

The crux of the article is the ALP’s claim that while disciplined media management is a positive in Opposition, it is a negative in Government. Abbott is maintaining the same management policy in Government, which leads us as the employers of the Government to believe they are doing nothing. When the inevitable ‘crisis’ happens, not only are the relevant Ministers unprepared for the attention it will place on their shoulders, they will be an easy mark for the more critical elements of the media pack.

It is often said that those that don’t remember history are bound to repeat it. Probably the most relevant example of this is the former Premier of Victoria Ted Ballieu. News reports at the time of his overthrow (who said the ALP was the only political party to turf out current leaders while in power?) suggested that a large part of the reason for his demise was his lack of connection with the media, leading to the Victorian Government becoming almost invisible. Ballieu is still a member of the Victorian Parliament – but no one outside Victoria hears anything about him.

By contrast, when the self-confessed ‘media tart’ Peter Beattie chose to run in a southern Brisbane seat in the recent Federal election nearly a decade after being Premier of Queensland he was the subject of national media coverage. Beattie knew how to participate in the media. He had been re-elected as Premier in 2001, and in 2004 in the middle of a scandal involving members of his Government – promising to ‘clean the mess up’. While publicity may not have helped Beattie win the Federal Seat in 2013, one never knows if the result would have been worse for the ALP if Beattie had not run.

Politicians in general like to control the message and in this respect Tony Abbott is no different from those that preceded him. Both Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard attempted to manage the media in different ways: Rudd by going into infinite detail when questioned and Gillard on occasions by literally standing there and taking all questions until there were no more. Both of them had good policies and decisions to publicise but limited success in crafting a story that the media accepted. Ultimately, the lack of the ability to craft and generate ‘good’ news stories about life in Australia led to their demise at the hands of the members of their own political party. In both cases there were other factors at play as well. Rudd’s apparent ‘control freak’ tendencies, and various sections of the ALP never resolving their differences with the way in which Kevin Rudd was replaced by Gillard, certainly didn’t help. It could be argued that internal tensions didn’t help concentrate the previous Government’s mind fully on projecting their message to the country.

Despite the ALP Government’s success at managing the negotiation of a hung parliament for half the time they were in power, as well as leaving a number of programs that will benefit Australia for generations, they will be remembered for a largely self-inflicted loss of the media battle.

The Cone of Silence used on Get Smart was designed to be an object of fun and derision. There are already signs that the media is treating Abbott’s Cone of Silence with the same derision. Fairfax media has been ‘crowd surfing’ recently, asking people to help them find examples of ‘travel rorts’, while Abbott would have been much happier if his contribution to the current APEC conference in Indonesia was the only news.

Will Abbott eventually find the ‘sweet spot’ between Ballieu and Beattie’s media styles?

Will he ‘trust’ his Ministers to be the ‘adults’ he claims make up his Government?

What will the media do if Abbott continues the policy of non-engagement as media control? Will the reporters and editors that have been on a controlled drip feed from the LNP Opposition for the past three years make it up, look for leaks or accept the status quo as the Coalition Government ‘turns off the easy story tap’?

What do you think?

 

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TalkTurkey

13/10/20132353 What a very good choice of topic! I don't know how Ad astra used to be able to keep finding for himself amazingly germane subjects, week after year, it seems a bit like playing chess against oneself to pick a topic and then answer it but I'm glad to see that you have the same talent. I was never very keen on Get Smart at the time, but like many things it's a lot funnier looking back. Contrarywise the real attempts to bring a Cone of Silence down on real events is very much more in the traditions of Kafka and Nineteen Eighty-Four, and in the present that is anything but funny. The Mushroom Grower's technique: Keep us in the dark and feed us bullshit. The Right's precious article of faith. Obviously the 5th Estate will see it as our bounden duty to penetrate their Cone of Silence, but I do fear that the MSM will acquiesce to the new Abborrrrttian diet of white-bread-and-milk ... They've had no guts for years now and I don't know if they really have any fire in their belly for truth at all. "It is ironic that the decision that all Ministers must seek approval prior to participating in interviews was leaked!" Thanks for a good lead Mr Railroad Man. Truth in Politics is the very foundation of genuine democracy, secrecy its very antithesis.

Ad astra

13/10/20132353 You have delighted us again, this time with your timely piece about the Abbott ‘Cone of Silence’. The Abbott machine seems to be having difficulties transitioning from its Opposition strategy to its Government strategy. Did they really believe that three-word slogans repeated mantra-like, and endless stunts in hi-viz vests, hard hats and hair-nets – drilling holes, driving machinery, stacking bananas or kissing fish, would do in government? Do they really think they can hide from the public by limiting exposure of Abbott and his ministers? Can they really believe that the ‘adults’ that adorn their front bench will be willing to be mere ciphers, echoing what their masters, Abbott, Credlin and Co. instruct them to do, unable to express their own views? While in this post election period many voters will be happy enough to hear little about politics, once parliament resumes and awkward questions are asked by the new Opposition, they will hardly be satisfied with obfuscation and non-answers, especially about the many firm ‘promises’ they made during electioneering. Moreover, the media (the chooks), hungry for stories to fill their columns, used to being on the Abbott drip-feed, will not be contented with a few throw-away lines, much less three-word slogans. They will demand plausible answers, and in their absence will make up stories that might not be to the Coalition’s liking. Already we see that the vacuum that Abbott and Credlin have created has been filled with multiple stories of the rorting of entitlements. The Coalition would have been better to fill the void with concrete policy moves. You have documented your piece with solid examples of the reaction of the media, and the simmering discontent that the Coalition’s ‘cone of silence’ has generated. Unless its media strategists have Plan B to manage the next period, that of parliamentary activity, difficult times lie ahead for Abbott and his ministers. Apart from questions about the strategic aspects of the Coalition’s media management, there is the question of whether some of the main players: Abbott, Hockey and Pyne, for example, are capable of morphing from mouthing mindless mantras to making meaningful messages that the masses can masticate. Thank you for another fine piece.

Gravel

13/10/20132353 Ah 99, you've done it again. Well done, great piece. Sadly most people have the impression that Blood Oaf was a success overseas. Media have covered his puerile mutterings as if they were the sermon from the mount. How long will they keep that up, I wonder.

Jason

13/10/20132353, Bravo! I'll digest the bulk later but well done.

Michael

13/10/2013"Puerile Mutterings" from Abbott. Oh, for a Cone of Silence then. Still, the Mute button on the TV remote control does part of a good job. The Off button even better. Good article, 2353, honing in on the essential point of The Abbott Error - it is a government without policies, except to wipe the slate clean of Rudd/Gillard Labor government legislation. Turning the clock back tends to strain the springs, until the whole device just snaps out of order. Which will leave Abbott with no time as well as no policies. My metaphors are now stretched enough for a Sunday night. Let's see the talents on the current Opposition frontbench line up against the 'you're still here?' Howard hang-ons, and that will be no contest. Labor ministers/parliamentary secretaries left every Coalition shadow speechless and floundering when they were in government - now the Abbott cabal will be continuingly revealed as talentless placeholders with the stakes so much higher - they have their sweaty mitts on power and the responsibility of delivering value and utility to Australians across the nation. Abbott's inability to phrase lucid commentary on events he's just minutes before participated in, leave alone his historical incapacity to actually understand the impact of his actions from student politics days onwards, means that Credlin and her cadré have to constantly be shepherding him away from imminent feet-tickling-tonsils disaster. When they failed before, as Opposition Leader, it could be 'laughed off' as "that's just Tony" or a "daggy Dad moment". That latitude doesn't exist anymore. He speaks for Australia - if the rest of the world hears a buffoon talking, that IS "Australia". Forget the "rest of the world"! When more and more people here 'girt by sea' hear the buffoon speaking, begin paying attention to what he's saying (or walking away from saying), then The Abbott Error is on borrowed time. Four weeks into this government, it's already smelling like the end of its days. And smells slide past cones of silence as if they aren't even there.

2353`

13/10/2013TT - Thanks for the comment. I too can't work out how Ad used to find a relevant topic to talk about each week - let alone research and write the piece to the exceptional level we became used to. The current "travel rorts" reporting gives me hope that the 4th estate will hold this Government to account but there is a lot more to be done. While looking at the TV Guide the other day I noticed that <i>Get Smart</i> is still on one of the digital channels. I also think it has got funnier over the years as it became closer to reality (or reality came closer to the bumbling of Maxwell Smart is probably more accurate. AA - Thanks you for your praise. Your comment <blockquote>Moreover, the media (the chooks), hungry for stories to fill their columns, used to being on the Abbott drip-feed, will not be contented with a few throw-away lines, much less three-word slogans. They will demand plausible answers, and in their absence will make up stories that might not be to the Coalition’s liking. </blockquote> is especially relevant at the moment where things like travel rorts, reporting of asylum seeker boats elsewhere in the world and little commentary on how Abbott "proved his detractors wrong and did well"l at APEC are in the news. Gravel - Thanks 86 - you're worth two 43's you know ;-) Jason - thanks. Michael - you should also have a go at an piece (the contribution guidelines are on the left and up a bit)! I wonder if there are a number of people working for Foreign Affairs that are being trained as we sleep tonight to go forth and repair the damage. I do like the reference to smells sliding past cones of silence - its gold. Thanks.

Casablanca

14/10/2013 CASABLANCA'S CACHE for Monday, 14 October, 2013: 42 items THE NEW LEADER ON THE BLOCK: 1. THE HON BILL SHORTEN M1.docx Published by POLITICALALERTMA Transcript of press conference by Bill Shorten following his election as Leader of the Labor Party PARLIAMENT HOUSE 13 October, 2013... http://www.scribd.com/doc/175702450/THE-HON-BILL-SHORTEN-M1-docx 2. Labor's Shorten experiment: the tale of 'Showbag Bill' Tony Wright ...the formative years of Bill Shorten moulded a man who understood how to walk with tough unionists, respect learning, rub shoulders with the wealthy and make his way pretty well anywhere, all the while denying the burning ambition that everyone could see within him. The style has got him a long way, and now comes the most crucial test - substance. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/labors-shorten-experiment-the-tale-of-showbag-bill-20131013-2vfve.html 3. Who is new ALP leader Bill Shorten? 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He invests like a woman Rosemary O'Connor In her book Warren Buffett Invests Like a Girl - And Why You Should Too, Louann Lofton, says that temperament is the key to sound investment performance and that temperament gives women an edge over men. http://www.womensagenda.com.au/personal-freedom/investment/the-secret-to-warren-buffetts-success-he-invests-like-a-woman/201310022986?utm_source=Women%27s+Agenda+List&utm_campaign=5025da43ab-Women_s_Agenda_daily_04_10_2013&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f3750bae8d-5025da43ab-30634093 RACIAL INEQUALITY 31. Sentencing with Colour MrTiedt The decision handed down by the High Court in Bugmy v The Queen is incredibly important. And it has already been the topic of a great deal of discussion, both amongst Criminal Lawyers and the community generally. But to understand it you need to appreciate some of the background. http://wp.me/p2YeRx-25H ASYLUM SEEKERS 32. Ben Pobjie ‏@benpobjie 3h In short in matters refugee and maritime and sinister/He is the very model of an Immigration Minister 33. Laughing at Islam Irfan Yusuf The show features a combination of stand-up and skits which do more than just poke fun. But not all will find Hussain's humour a blast. Writing in The Australian, Chris Kenny objected to Hussain's appearance on Q&A which Kenny described as 'highly disturbing and dangerous' and 'an apologia for terrorism'. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38279#.UlZKi7eqpZY ECONOMICS & INCOME REDISTRIBUTION 34. Life better for six in 10 struggling Australians Stephanie Anderson and Larissa Nicholson The Marginalisation in Australia: Characteristics and Predictors of Exit Over 10 Years 2001-2010 report found nearly 60 per cent of the people studied had managed to get out of marginalised circumstances after a decade. While they had not, on average, entered mainstream Australian life they had seen significant improvements to the majority of aspects of their lives. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/life-better-for-six-in-10-struggling-australians-20131013-2vh1d.html#ixzz2hcGtJmut 35. Lessons of the Hawke-Keating years mean there’s only one choice in Labor’s leadership ballot Tim Harcourt In this historic ballot for the Australian Labor Party – one of the oldest political parties in the democratic world – Labor is not electing just an Opposition leader..Labor is electing a future prime minister. Someone who understands the Australian way and the need to balance wealth creators with wealth distributors..I recommend a vote for Bill Shorten in this ballot to continue the great Hawke-Keating-Kelty legacy...It’s the Labor way. It’s the Australian way. It’s the only way to return Labor to government. http://www.brw.com.au/p/business/choice_harcourt_lessons_leadership_kZ8VVW2oKrGqivAGLYfk7L NBN 36. We are only at the dawn of an age of internet enlightenment Marcus Padley The internet is already an indispensable utility and although it may not be carried by today's conventional infrastructure its physical presence will represent the most valuable asset in the world. But like all utilities it will be earning negligible returns, and because of that the security of its performance will become too onerous for private enterprise. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/business/we-are-only-at-the-dawn-of-an-age-of-internet-enlightenment-20131011-2vdye.html CLIMATE CHANGE 37. PM Harper's 5 Stages of Grief Over Climate Change John McKay Bargaining is the third stage after denial and anger. The problem however is that Mother Nature is indifferent to Prime Ministers, Presidents and other potentates. Mother Nature doesn't do Bargaining. Therefore, faux bargaining occurs among the impotent. "Just give me this one more pipeline and I will be serious about climate change." http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/john-mckay/harper-climate-change_b_4073160.html?utm_hp_ref=tw 38. Why India Needs To Burn More Coal Bernard Lagan On October 16, The Global Mail will be co-hosting “Coal Wars” at the Singleton Diggers in the New South Wales mining hub of the Hunter Valley – and live via webcast everywhere else. This public forum, co-hosted by The Global Mail, The Australian Centre for Independent Journalism and live-stream partner Tilt Vision, will examine the impact of coal mining on the Hunter Valley, and canvass the many issues facing the community, including the prospect of more and expanded mines, and plummeting coal prices. http://www.theglobalmail.org/feature/why-india-needs-to-burn-more-coal/708/ http://tiltvision.com/ 39. A rough guide to the components of Earth's Climate System John Mason This is a basic primer on the components of Earth's climate and how and why they are important. It is aimed primarily at people who are relatively new to the subject and who wish to find out more. http://www.skepticalscience.com/news.php?n=2210 40. Choosing the power price you pay: voluntary time-of-use tariffs Gill Owen, Monash University In Victoria, households now have the option to take up time of use tariffs – if they do, they’ll pay more for electricity during peak times, and less off-peak. Taking up the tariffs will be voluntary and households who find they are unsuitable will be able to revert back to flat tariffs. But who will really benefit? http://theconversation.com/choosing-the-power-price-you-pay-voluntary-time-of-use-tariffs-18243?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+10+October+2013&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+10+October+2013+CID_c959eaa88371bc6b24ea9c960ec08d20&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Choosing%20the%20power%20price%20you%20pay%20voluntary%20time-of-use%20tariffs 41. Zero Carbon Australia Stationary Energy Plan The Melbourne Energy Institute is an access point for industry, government and community groups seeking to work with leading researchers on innovative solutions... The Zero Carbon Australia Project is a research collaboration between Beyond Zero Emissions and the University of Melbourne. http://www.energy.unimelb.edu.au/documents/zero-carbon-australia-stationary-energy-plan HEALTH & WELLBEING 42. We need to talk about this paracetamol problem….don’t we? Michael Vagg The toxicity of paracetamol is well-known in medical circles, and is certainly familiar to the majority of people who use it a lot. Strangely enough I still think paracetamol can justifiably be called a safe drug. Bear with me and you’ll see why I say this. http://theconversation.com/we-need-to-talk-about-this-paracetamol-problem-dont-we-19051 TODAY’S MAIN NEWS • ROULE REPORT — Issues of Today http://paper.li/RouleReport/1334728962 • AN EYE ON ABC NEWS: . Keeping the bastards who keep the bastards honest, honest http://www.abcnewswatch.blogspot.com.au/ • AUSTRALIAN NEWSPAPER FRONT PAGES www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm • NEWS HEADLINES 14 October 2013 http://www.hotheadlines.com.au/ #################################

Ken

14/10/20132353 Well done. I think Abbott's cone of silence will eventually backfire on him. The media now need stories to fill a 24/7 news cycle, not just a morning paper. I have read other articles which suggest this is one reason the media these days is more reliant on press releases. Abbott and the LNP played the game well as an Opposition, pouring out press releases and Abbott making sure that his three word slogans would provide the 'sound bite' for each story. But in government, he will find as Gillard did that policy is more more complex and often more difficult to explain - it certainly cannot be explained in three words. I thnk this actually provides an opportunity for Labor. Now it is Labor's turn to fill the "press boxes" with press releases calling Abbott to account.

Pappinbarra Fox

14/10/20132353, Well done indeed. I think Abott is channeling Maxwell Smart - his 'Sorry about that Chief" obsequious apology to the leaders of our northern neighbours (while not really meaning it - Maxwell style) together with his incapacity to "get" the deeper impact of his thought bubbles (indeed the thought bubbles themsleves) and his repition of short slogans (would you believe ...) are all stock antics of Maxwell Smart - the name of course is ironical - Maxwell Dumb is the take home message. But what I cannot figure out is how come a Rhodes Scholar can appear to be so shallow? So without any foundation of deeper thinking about issues and policy? So divorced from recognising the impact his actions can have on the ordinary Australians of Everytown?

42 long

14/10/2013Either he has had a hard punch to the head sometime or he paid someone to sit his rogue's collar exam. Watched his Carer's speech a little while ago. Excruciatingly uninspiring. What makes this GUY think he has what it takes?

DX2013

14/10/2013Labor and the political left is misreading Abbott just as they did with Howard after 1996 election - Howard ended up in government for 12 years. Most people welcome the respite from that exhausting daily 24/7 media performance we were exposed from last Labor government. We want our government heads down to do their jobs and to get achievable outcomes. In a short time, this new government has reduced numbers of boat peopl arrival down to 80 a week. People in two boats rescured in Indonesian water have been successfully handed back to Indonesia. In cooperation with AFP, Indonesia authority has stopped total 554 asylum seekers getting on the boats. Labor should really sit still in opposition bench learning from this gown-up government - more action, less talk.

2353`

14/10/2013Actually DX2013, Morrison announced on Friday that 111 people had arrived by boat in the week ending 4 October - and another boat arrived last Thursday. Your claim in paragraph 3 above is crap - like the rest of your post. There are also plenty of people that question the Government's advertised Christian morals and objectives when compared with their treatment of asylum seekers in particular and the less well off in general. If this Government was "gown-up" [sic], it would have announced what it planned to do with a detailed execution plan prior to the election. At the end of the day, all John Howard's Government is remembered for is GST, middle class welfare and rorts leading to a number of forced cabinet resignations. Hawke is remembered for the introduction of the modern Australian economy while Rudd/Gillard will be remembered for steering Australia through the GFC without a recession (pity the conservative leaders in Europe or the America's can't say the same thing), DisabilityCare, equal opportunity in education, NBN and in Gillard's case getting over 400 pieces of legislation through Parliament when she didn't have a majority. Which tribe of politicians are the "gown-up"[sic] side, look to Australia's future and can negotiate to obtain a desired result? I'll give you a tip - Abbott couldn't even convince Windsor and Oakeschott to support him despite they all coming from the conservative side of politics.

Bacchus

14/10/2013Your extreme right-whinge bias is showing DX2013. the vast majority of "[i]that exhausting daily 24/7 media performance[/i]" came from the tantrum throwing opposition [b]demanding[/b] attention like spoilt children. How long is it now since we've heard, "the opposition spokesman says"? "Grown-up?" I think not... :-O

2353`

14/10/2013Ken - I agree. The ALP should be demonstrating the Abbott Government's failures at every opportunity. They also need to retain some credibility so rather than three word slogans, some well constructed and well explained policy would be welcome. I do hope that I won't be writing a piece asking where Shorten & his team are any time soon. Australia deserves better. Pappinbarra Fox - staying with the Get Smart metaphor for a minute the really scary thing is that Abbott obviously believes that if he says nothing he can't get into trouble; the way he acts domestically will be reported overseas (and the reverse is also true) and that "Sorry about that" is another three word slogan really doesn't work as a strategy in international relations. Rhodes Scholars need considerable intelligence - it doesn't mean they know how to use it for the practical benefit of the COuntry.

Pappinbarra Fox

14/10/2013Words out of my mouth Bacchus - it was the Abott led opposition that generated the 24/7 hysteria. And in doing so trashed Australia, its economy, its institutions and it's standing in the global society.

Bacchus

14/10/2013"[quote]...the really scary thing is that Abbott obviously believes that if he says nothing he can't get into trouble... [/quote]" Almost agree with that 2353 - I'd say it's Peta who is keeping Tony's mouth well away from media scrutiny. Can she maintain this for three years though?

Lucy

14/10/2013Fabulous piece 2353, thank you. I love Get Smart and still call people 99 and 'yes chief'. But the 'Cone of Silence' is a brilliant metaphor. When in opposition we saw him every day and got very used to his repetitive style, so we switched off. The new tactic would work if when he opened his mouth what came out was indeed adult, considered and consistent. But it isn't. It started with his 'Australia is now open to Business" statement. He only has one woman on his front bench and uses the lame merit argument, he tells us one thing to win the election and has to kowtow to Indonesia, more kowtowing to Malaysia and his truly stupid 'act of contrition' statement. And contrary to the Murdoch press he did not shine in China. He had his ministers on a 3 word slogan chain during opposition so they got no experience handling the media, he now has them on an even tighter chain in government. 24 hours notice to speak? Why not just send out Credlin. It's a very stupid, naïve and childish way to behave. So the 'Cone of Silence & Get Smart.....perfect!

Casablanca

14/10/2013 This tweet sums up my response to The Daily Murdoch: [b]ABCnewsIntern ‏@ABCnewsIntern[/b] 5h Daily Telegraph editorial advocates a price on carbon. Without a hint of irony, repentance or self-awareness. Cool heads should rule The Daily Telegraph THERE is almost no doubt that climate change is occurring, and very little that human activity is a contributor. The debate is what to do about it.... The key, therefore, is to facilitate a market-based mechanism which does not punish producers at a delicate time for our economy but rather enhances competition and encourages new technologies that in time can deliver clean and affordable electricity for consumers. http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/opinion/cool-heads-should-rule/story-fni0cwl5-1226739197187

Casablanca

14/10/2013 Rupert TWEETS about exciting new concepts: [b]'INNOCENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY' and 'ENTITLED TO FAIR TRIAL'[/b] [u]Rupert Murdoch[/u] ‏@rupertmurdoch 9h Big media trials in London in 2 weeks. Remember, everyone innocent until proven guilty, entitled to fair trial in most countries. BUT...ONLY WHERE HE OR HIS ORGANISATION IS IMPLICATED. Thus, Julia still lied; Tony never lies; Thomson & Slipper still guilty and will remain so as long as Murdoch Editors deem it to be politic; AWU Slush fund...Economy about to crash..you get the drift.

TalkTurkey

14/10/20132353 Well said - to this DX2013 I mean. By "gown-up" government do you think he means the LNP is a bunch of kiddy shirt-lifters? Come on, they're not [i]all[/i] paedophile promoters like Abborrrtt, nor paedophile protectors like Pell! This DX2013 is a reminder that illwillians are still out there. And towards illwillians, my goodwill has run out.

jaycee

14/10/2013DX2013...: "...gown-up(!!??) government - more action, less talk." Abbott's "gown-up" antics are the problem!....and I thought he said there'd be "no suprises".

Catching up

14/10/2013Well, it appears that Abbott is honing that cone of silence to the zenith degree. Yes, two weeks of parliament, at the latest date, this year. No senate estimations, and I assume hearings until next February. Yes, silence indeed.

jaycee

14/10/2013The most enduring moto for the LNP. and it's running dogs... http://cs.nga.gov.au/Detail-LRG.cfm?IRN=47133

Catching up

14/10/2013"Rhodes Scholars need considerable intelligence - it doesn't mean they know how to use it for the practical benefit of the COuntry." I suspect the references that one can garner, carry bigger weigh. Knowing the Jesuits, I believe was of assistance. Do not know if Santamaria provided one.

Catching up

14/10/2013That speech today was a shocker, but his appearance yesterday on Garden Island was bizarre. One would have though he was the Island chaplain, welcoming the ship.

Catching up

14/10/2013jaycee, there are no surprises, except maybe, Abbott is performing much worse than one expected.

Bacchus

14/10/2013Oh I don't know CU - my expectations were pretty low! ;-)

jaycee

14/10/2013Fed Up...on Abbott...most of us have been around for many years and if we haven't learnt by now how to recognise a liar, a fraud, a bullshit artist then we will always be fooled by the likes of Abbott.......however, I don't believe the people who regularly post here are fooled at all. We all know we have a lying fraud for PM.

2353`

14/10/2013Lucy - thanks for the complimentary remarks. Maybe Credlin isn't trusted to front the media because she is female! TT - we aim to please :-) CU - I'm sure references do carry weight as well. YOu would have to hope that the Rhodes Scholar people do maintain a certain standard! However every now and again one obviously slips through the cracks - even with the best systems in place.

Gilly

14/10/2013Considering all the press conferences, media releases and doorstop interviews from TA during the election, and how much he actually had to say. There really is not much difference now.

DMW

14/10/2013hi all, eyes bin AWOL nice work 2353 Michael @ October 13. 2013 08:14 PM hows about [i]Tones Toes Tickle his Tonsils [/i]? still trawling through further comments

DMW

14/10/2013Interesting: [b]Whit Goughlam [i]‏@leftocentre[/i][/b] 51m #Abbrort #Abbnesia #Abbsentia #Abbhorent #Abbysmal Your thoughts? #auspol

Casablanca

15/10/2013 DMW, My thoughts? Very Whit-ty one liners!

Casablanca

15/10/2013 [b]Women in Federal Parliament[/b] Rosemary Crowley, Amanda Vanstone and Laura Tingle Australian Senate: Occasional Lecture Series Main Committee Room, Parliament House Friday18 October2013 12.15pm–1.30pm 2013 marks several important anniversaries for the representation of women in the federal parliament. Seventy years ago the first women were elected to the federal parliament with Dorothy Tangney elected as a senator for Western Australia and Enid Lyons elected as the Member for Darwin in Tasmania. This year is also the 110th anniversary of women winning the right to vote and the right to stand for election in Australia. To mark these anniversaries former senators Rosemary Crowley and Amanda Vanstone, and journalist Laura Tingle, will discuss how the representation of women in the federal parliament has evolved in recent decades and will highlight the impact that women parliamentarians have had on the nature, and outcomes, of political debate in Australia. http://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Senate/Public_Information_and_Events/occalect/flyers/2013/Women_in_Federal_Parliament

Casablanca

15/10/2013 CASABLANCA'S CACHE for Tuesday, 15 October, 2013: 38 items ENTITLEMENTS & FIDDLES 1. Too big for his books: Brandis Library is shelved Jonathan Swan Coined the Brandis Library by Labor staffers, Senator Brandis' $7000 taxpayer-funded bookcase, built to house $13,000 worth of taxpayer-funded books and magazines, is too big to be moved into his new Parliament House office. For the time being at least, the now empty Brandis Library will be in the office of Labor's Senate deputy leader Stephen Conroy. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/too-big-for-his-books-brandis-library-is-shelved-20131014-2viww.html 2. How would colonial leaders view expenses scandal? Benjamin T Jones An expense account was once a way to ensure average citizens - not just the landed gentry - could aspire to Australian public office. Benjamin T Jones wonders what our early colonial politicians would make of today's headlines. Although Australia has always paid federal MPs the concept is relatively new and our colonial politicians would doubtless be appalled by the regularity of entitlement abuse. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-14/jones-history-of-expenses/5020336 3. Coalition edges Labor for travel expense claims Luke Mansillo Figures show slightly higher total expenditure, but Labor MPs spent marginally more on average in 2011 and 2012 http://www.theguardian.com/world/datablog/2013/oct/14/coalition-labor-travel-expenses?CMP=twt_gu 4. Cheating’s Surprising Thrill JAN HOFFMAN Unethical behavior is increasingly studied by psychologists and management specialists. They want to understand what prompts people to abrogate core values, why cheating appears to be on the rise, and what interventions can be made. To find a powerful tool to turn people toward ethical decisions, many researchers have focused on the guilt that many adults feel after cheating. http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/10/07/in-bad-news-cheating-feels-good/?nl=health&emc=edit_hh_20131008&_r=1 LABOR 5. Labor must do more to free itself from faction chiefs Clare O'Neil, Labor member for the federal seat of Hotham The members need more say, backroom heavies less....Good reform through difficult conversations now will help us win government at the next election - and this time hold it for the long term. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/labor-must-do-more-to-free-itself-from-faction-chiefs-20131013-2vgh8.html 6. Fractious factions still to the fore Mark Kenny Shorten's win was the direct result of a strong factional order, particularly within the Right, which largely held together and benefited from a sizeable breakaway of Left mavericks. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/fractious-factions-still-to-the-fore-20131014-2vivv.html 7. Labor’s factions are as strong as ever Michelle Grattan At the caucus meeting everyone who stood for the shadow ministry was elected. And no one ran for it who had not been put up by the right or left faction, except Andrew Leigh – and he had been given the nod to get the one spot set aside for an independent. http://theconversation.com/labors-factions-are-as-strong-as-ever-19175 8. At last, ALP looks plausible Nicholas Stuart And congratulations to - Bill Shorten. Come on down! It's terrific that Labor has actually managed to achieve the installation of a plausible prime ministerial candidate as the party's new leader. With the best will in the world, and although he received the overwhelming support of the membership, his rival just wasn't the right person to lead the party. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/at-last-alp-looks-plausible-20131014-2vikh.html#ixzz2hhmXSLws 9. ALP deputy's migrant memories trigger pride Dan Harrison I don't think there are many countries in the world where someone whose parents came here with nothing but a suitcase each could aspire to being a member of Parliament, let alone taking on this responsibility that my colleagues have entrusted me with,'' she said. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/alp-deputys-migrant-memories-trigger-pride-20131014-2vixj.html 10. If it’s Labor let’s dig some dirt cafewhispers It appears that no matter who leads the Labor Party, whether in Government or Opposition, the media always manage to dredge up some mud to throw at them. http://cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2013/10/13/if-its-labor-lets-dig-some-dirt/ 11. Who are the real winners of the ALP reforms? Peter Chen While Labor's new leadership rules have put the party in a fighting position, Bill Shorten himself starts off as opposition leader with less legitimacy than he otherwise would have had. Peter Chen scans his eye over the new process to see if it was all it was claimed to be. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-14/chen-who-are-the-real-winners-of-the-alp-reforms/5019770 12. Albo, Shorten and the Democracy Baby Paula Matthewson The rump of Labor members did not prefer Bill Shorten as leader, but a favourable run in the media and a modest recovery in the polls may yet be enough to assuage their disappointment http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-14/matthewson-albo-shorten-and-the-democracy-baby/5020356 POLITICS 13. Clive Palmer's party of wildcards Joff Lelliott To fulfil its potential, the Palmer United Party needs to live up to its name and work as one. But with such a motley crew, that will be easier said than done. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-14/lelliott-clive-palmers-party-of-wildcards/5020532 14. FOI is a pillar of transparency - we can't allow it to be threatened by Abbott Joe Ludwig We're seeing signs of secrecy from the new government. We must do everything we can to hold the candle up to the Liberals and not allow them to roll government back into the shadows. International Right to Know Day slipped past this year with little fanfare. Quietly observed on September 28, the day reminds the public, the media and government of the need to maintain a vigilant oversight of government. http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/14/australia-requests-transparency-politics?CMP=soc_568 15. Forget jury duty, how about Senate duty Michael Pascoe While various business types call for greater certainty in government, the fate of government policy from next July is to be decided by an even less representative swill than usual. So here's a modest proposal to restore Senate democracy: Stop voting for it. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/business/comment-and-analysis/forget-jury-duty-how-about-senate-duty-20131014-2vhb8.html EQUALITY AND DIGNITY 16. World has a duty to stand up for dignity Michael Kirby Australians like to think of their country as a land of the ''fair go''. But, for minorities, equal dignity is not guaranteed by any overriding constitutional provision. We are now virtually alone in being a nation that does not have a constitutional charter of rights of the kind expressed in the Universal Declaration. Moreover, there are sometimes votes to be won by denying just treatment to minorities. It is then that dignity is put at risk. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/world-has-a-duty-to-stand-up-for-dignity-20131014-2viqv.html#ixzz2hhYTJyeJ 17. Equal marriage: the Coalition's true colours are showing – and it's not pretty Rebecca Shaw When Abbott spoke at a school that called homosexuality 'an abomination', I gave him the benefit of the doubt. Now that Liberals are challenging gay marriage in ACT, I fear the worst http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/14/gay-marriage-act-abbott?CMP=soc_568 GENDER EQUITY 18. Women, Work, and the Economy: Macroeconomic Gains from Gender Equity (32 pages) Katrin Elborgh-Woytek, Monique Newiak, Kalpana Kochhar, Stefania Fabrizio, Kangni Kpodar, Philippe Wingender, Benedict Clements, and Gerd Schwartz Women make up a little over half the world’s population, but their contribution to measured economic activity, growth, and well-being is far below its potential, with serious macroeconomic consequences. Despite significant progress in recent decades, labor markets across the world remain divided along gender lines, and progress toward gender equality seems to have stalled. http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/sdn/2013/sdn1310.pdf JOURNALISM, NEWSPAPERS, CLICKBAIT & PAYWALLS 19. Get out your wallets, paywalls are in Andrea Carson Newspapers that use paywalls can dispense with clickbait and prioritise content to an audience willing to pay for quality. http://theconversation.com/get-out-your-wallets-paywalls-are-in-18822 20. How the Broken Media Helped Break the [US]Government David Rohde The triumph of opinion-driven cable TV and the collapse of newspapers has created an American news media that does an increasingly poor job of informing the public. And an excellent job of dividing it. The media, of course, is not solely to blame for America’s political polarization...But an economically battered news industry in desperate need of a new business model is a core part of the problem. http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2013/10/how-the-broken-media-helped-break-the-government/280261/ 21. Why This Is Not Just 'Washington Breakdown,' in 3 Graphs (and 1 Story) James Fallows Tea Party members say they are expressing the public's will. Gee, if only there were some way to judge popular sentiment in a democracy...Ultimately, the grown-ups in the room will have to do their jobs, which in a democracy with divided government means compromising for the common good. http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2013/09/why-this-is-not-just-washington-breakdown-in-3-graphs-and-1-story/280099/ 22. The Life of a Newspaper SERGE SCHMEMANN This is the last time you will be reading The International Herald Tribune; as of tomorrow, it is The International New York Times. But weep not:...the DNA of a great paper is defined by evolution of the complex and intimate interplay of reader and editor, owner and technology. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/14/business/media/the-life-of-a-newspaper.html?partner=rss&emc=rss&_r=0&pagewanted=all 23. The Disconnect on Anonymous Sources MARGARET SULLIVAN ERIC Schmitt remembers being surprised when, as a member of a Times newsroom committee on reporting practices, he was given information about what bothered readers of The Times most. It wasn’t political bias, or factual errors, or delivery problems. “The No. 1 complaint, far and away, was anonymous sources,”... “It goes to the heart of our credibility.” http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/13/opinion/sunday/the-public-editor-the-disconnect-on-anonymous-sources.html?smid=tw-share&_r=0 ECONOMY 24. An exquisite FTA dilemma for Abbott Alan Kohler It looks like Prime Minister Tony Abbott will be putting a hard question in 2014 to Australia’s farmers and the populist Right that swept him to power: the opportunity to export food to China in the decades ahead will be immense, but only if China is allowed to buy more Australian farmland. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/14/agribusiness/exquisite-fta-dilemma-abbott 25. Joe Hockey’s economics of exceptionalism Houses and Holes A couple of quotes emanating from Joe Hockey over the weekend show just how whacky a politician can be these days. First Hockey had a sobering message for Australians: Australia needs to learn the lessons of the US budget impasse and keep government spending under control, Treasurer Joe Hockey declared... “You cannot allow entitlements to get away,” http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/10/joe-hockeys-economics-of-exceptionalism/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily+MacroBusiness&utm_content=Daily+MacroBusiness+CID_995e2605cd96c99e5f6e5bfd1148d124&utm_source=Email+marketing+software&utm_term=Joe+Hockeys+economics+of+exceptionalism 26. So this is what happened to budget transparency in Australia InfoAus In 2010, the government carried out a review of parliamentary entitlements and decided we needed more openness and transparency. http://infoaus.net/wp/so-this-is-what-happened-to-budget-transparency-in-australia/ 27. Australia is rich and on top of the world: is it time to pop the champers? Greg Jericho People should not think everyone is enjoying this extra wealth, nor that it is built on foundations that will never crack http://www.theguardian.com/business/grogonomics/2013/oct/14/australia-wealth-top-world?CMP=twt_gu 28. Confidence the key to rebalancing” Saul Eslake Business confidence rose sharply in the wake of September’s Federal election. However underlying conditions have not improved markedly and the hiring intentions sub-index continues to point to increases in the unemployment rate. Consumer confidence failed to build on post-election gains easing marginally as household concerns around their finances weighed on sentiment. http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/10/saul-eslake-confidence-the-key/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily+MacroBusiness&utm_content=Daily+MacroBusiness+CID_995e2605cd96c99e5f6e5bfd1148d124&utm_source=Email+marketing+software&utm_term=Saul+Eslake+Confidence+the+key+to+rebalancing 29. Here comes the demographic tsunami Leith van Onselen The Weekend AFR contained an interesting article contending that Australia’s baby boomer generation are finally starting to exit the workforce en masse after many delayed retirement in the wake of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC): The long-awaited surge in retirements by baby boomers is gathering pace, driven by a rebound in share prices and the property market… [...] http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/10/here-comes-the-demographic-tsunami/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily+MacroBusiness&utm_content=Daily+MacroBusiness+CID_995e2605cd96c99e5f6e5bfd1148d124&utm_source=Email+marketing+software&utm_term=Here+comes+the+demographic+tsunami 30. Ageing only one part of the workforce decline Leith van Onselen ... an interesting debate has developed over the extent to which the declining Australian labour force participation rate (LFPR) and the employment-to-population ratio (see next chart) is being caused by a weakening labour market or the ageing of the population (retirement of the baby boomer generation). http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/10/ageing-only-one-part-of-the-workforce-decline/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily+MacroBusiness&utm_content=Daily+MacroBusiness+CID_995e2605cd96c99e5f6e5bfd1148d124&utm_source=Email+marketing+software&utm_term=Ageing+only+one+part+of+the+workforce+decline 31. Risk aversion as Aussies worry over retirement” Leith van Onselen MLC have today released their quarterly Australian Wealth Sentiment Survey...According to MLC, Australians are worried about having insufficient funds for retirement and inflation eroding their savings.. http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/10/risk-aversion-as-aussies-worry-over-retirement/ ASYLUM SEEKERS 32. Refugee Boat Timeline Updated to October 13th archiearchive This list is based on what is being reported in the MSM and what I can find from a couple of specialist sites. This is to give a layman’s impression of what is going on and may say more about the MSM than the facts. http://archiearchive.wordpress.com/2013/10/13/refugee-boat-timeline-updated-to-october-13th/ CLIMATE CHANGE 33. Clive Palmer, not Bill Shorten, is the key to carbon tax repeal Lenore Taylor Timetable makes it clear the Coalition intends to win over the Senate, and that means Palmer's coal interests come into play. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/14/clive-palmer-not-bill-shorten-is-the-key-to-carbon-tax-repeal?CMP=soc_568 34. Climate change questions and answers Michael Taylor Anyone who has read Andrew Bolt, The Australian, or listened to any shock jocks such as Alan Jones recently would have been overwhelmed with the number of rabid claims that climate change is a hoax, a left-wing conspiracy theory, or that any change stopped over a decade ago. Sadly, this is the view held by our mainstream media and even more sadly, our new government. Neither seem interested in the facts. http://theaimn.com/2013/10/14/climate-change-questions-and-answers/ 35. Australia to see worse drought thanks to intensifying El Niño James Whitmore New research by the Bureau of Meteorology shows El Niño will intensify between 2050 and 2100 thanks to climate change. El Niño is a complex interaction between air and sea in the tropical Pacific which controls many of our weather patterns. http://theconversation.com/australia-to-see-worse-drought-thanks-to-intensifying-el-ni-o-19104 36. Coalition stands firm on carbon tax double dissolution threat Judith Ireland Environment Minister Greg Hunt says the option of a double dissolution election remains on the table as the Coalition stares down Labor over the repeal of the carbon tax. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/coalition-stands-firm-on-carbon-tax-double-dissolution-threat-20131014-2vhtw.html HEALTH 37. Health Check: does caffeine enhance performance? Chris Forbes-Ewan Unlike many drugs, caffeine may be taken legally by people of all ages, which helps make it the world’s most widely used stimulant. http://theconversation.com/health-check-does-caffeine-enhance-performance-18755 38. Is the incidence of dementia declining? Perminder Sachdev, UNSW It’s rare to hear good news about dementia, so two recent reports showing it may be becoming less common created a fair amount of excitement. http://sciencealert.com.au/opinions/20131110-24893.html TODAY’S MAIN NEWS • ROULE REPORT — Issues of Today http://paper.li/RouleReport/1334728962 • AN EYE ON ABC NEWS: . Keeping the bastards who keep the bastards honest, honest http://www.abcnewswatch.blogspot.com.au/ • AUSTRALIAN NEWSPAPER FRONT PAGES www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm • NEWS HEADLINES 15 October 2013 http://www.hotheadlines.com.au/

Catching up

15/10/2013Thanks once again, Casablanca

Ad astra

15/10/2013Casablanca Thank you for another informative set of links yesterday and today, so usefully separated into categories. After reading what you offer, the MSM is rendered largely redundant. I like the innovative way that you are tweeting the posting of the day’s Cache. The traffic is picking up again after the post election lull despite the invisibility of the government, the absence of parliamentary activity, and until this week, the absence of an Opposition Leader. I believe this is due to visitors coming to read the new posts and your Cache.

Michael

15/10/2013Business leaders demand Labor assist in repealing a price on carbon - http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/policy/alp-must-back-repeal-of-carbon-tax-says-business/story-e6frg6xf-1226739917194 To which I and everyone who voted FOR a price on carbon, say... FU. "Australian business" is an oxymoron, anyway. The biggest companies import foreign CEOs as a matter of forelock-tugging course. Homegrown business leaders mostly got blind-lucky when picking the right hole in the ground to dig, or through the lottery of being born to parents who did ditto.

Catching up

15/10/2013Wonder how many, sat down and thought, Abbott is getting rid of that Tax, Labor is making us pay. Suspect not. I have this horrible thought, that due to the shocking behavior of many in the Labor government, we just want them gone. How many out there, of those who voted for Abbott, and when we look at the results, not as many as thought, do not want the matter of carbon emissions addressed. Many of the protest votes went to independents and the new minor parties, not to Abbott. It was hatred of Labor, that moved the vote. I suspect, that if Abbott really believed they voted because of the so called tax, he would have ensure there were straw polls of those leaving the polling places. We would be flooded with polls, telling us, they support removal of the so called tax. I expect to see many more out in the streets. supporting CEF legislation, than supporting Abbott's proposed actions. Same goes for NBNCo.

Catching up

15/10/2013Not much heard of this 28 day old government, but Hunts first action, was to give the OK for coal seam industry to explore the Pillager Forest. I also believe Cando was given the green light, in Queensland. It appears that information gets out, in spite of Abbott locking all into the bunker. Sinodinos did not do the new 28 day old government any flavours last night. Wonder where the investigation is going, between Arthur and Eddie?

Catching up

15/10/2013If anyone feels the need to read the Australian. Open a new private window, and look at the Australian, within it.

Catching up

15/10/2013Seems to be It seems he might have plead guilty to three charges, which each carry ten years jail. Some media is staying he could get up to thirty years. I do not believe that statement is true. I say that he could get ten years for each, to be served currently. That is ten years in all.

Catching up

15/10/2013Seems to be many versions of what happened today. Sorry pushed the submit to early.

Catching up

15/10/2013Abbott having a media conference with Hunt. Much have something important to say.

42 long

15/10/2013Hunt is more believable than Tones, but isn't anyone?

Michael

15/10/2013If nothing else convinces the largely disinterested Australian public that PM Abbott is bad for this country, the religiosity of his everyday language should do so. With "acts of contrition" on the world stage, and requiring political opponents "repent" their party policies domestically, how many more catechismal adjurations do we need from this almost-priest who listened harder to his genitals than his soul? Do we really all have to participate in Abbott playing catch-up with his failure to meet spiritual standards? A whole country to be the stage for his penitence, every corner a soap-box confessional for the man who fell to the lure of the venereal? If he's so desperate to couch every struggle in terms of forgiveness and repentance, he should go on retreat, preferably somewhere with a vow of silence, and give himself at least a decade to fulfil his return to rectitude. Or, at the very least, stop demanding the rest of us play support roles in his psychodrama of self-realisation. If he wants to live every day in the unseen lycra second skin of constantly seeking forgiveness, let him run swim or bike somewhere else to do it!

Pappinbarra Fox

15/10/2013Well said Michael Thanks muchly Casablanca

Catching up

15/10/2013Well. if anyone had thoughts that Abbott might have been going around in a daze, while overseas, we can now be reassured that was the case. Otherwise why whould Abbott reply as he did today. [quote]Abbott said he could not remember whether any of the world leaders he met during his recent overseas visits had raised concerns about the government’s plan to abolish the tax, but said his main message had been that he wanted to maximise economic growth. “I am trying to remember all of the various conversations I had, there were a lot of conversations with a lot of people. I don’t have any specific recollection of anyone raising concerns … the point i made throughout my conversations … is that we are determined to put Australia in the strongest possible economic position and that means eliminating as far as we can anything that is an obstacle to economic growth and job creation.”[/quote] http://www.theguardian.com/w Yes, he cannot remember what other leaders raised with him. To busy repenting, one could say. Now wants Labor to repent. His words. Has he returned to his seminary days, and has become confused in what role he is playing. I will say playing, as one cannot take seriously. Shorten has it correct. The only mandate that Abbott has in our democracy, it the mandate to form government. Everything else depends on the numbers on the floor of each house. That is how the constitution says out government works.

Casablanca

15/10/2013Tony Abbott emerges today from his Cone of Silence with the revelation that the ultimate victory of good over evil and the end of the present Labor age requires us to [b]REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT, REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT, REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT, REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,REPENT,[/b] He must be a card carrying member of the Tea Party to come out with such an exhortation.

Ken

15/10/2013Michael You stole my thunder. I was about to say the same thing (in different words of course) but instead I will just agree heartily with your comment.

Ken

15/10/2013Catching up You may be interested that I am currently working on a piece for TPS that discusses this issue of a "mandate". I agree that the onlt mandate he has is to form a government and, even that, is actually based on 'the confidence of the House'. With his majority he has the confidence of the House (unless he creates a split with the Nationals - now that would be interesting!)but that is all he has. He said in his voctory speech that he would govern for all Australians, not just those who voted for him. So what does he do with te 'mandate' of the 46.5% who didn't vote for him or his repeal of the carbon price. A vote of 53.5% is not exactly a ringing endorsement of his call that the election was a referendum on the 'carbon tax' I won't say more or I wil be giving away too much of what I intend to say.

Catching up

15/10/2013Ken, I would like to review that one. One of my favorite topics. Even Shorten said last night, the only mandate under our democracy is the mandate to form government. Yes, each electorate elects a MP, and they are given a mandate, to sit in the parliament and act on behalf of those who voted for them. Abbott himself wrote an essay a couple of years ago, ridiculing the notion, he is now spruiking about mandates. Howard had written similar articles. Abbott could never had bought himself to vote down Rudd's ETS, if he believes what he says now.

Catching up

15/10/2013http://www.environment.gov.au/carbon-tax-repeal/consultation.html

Catching up

15/10/2013Pyne 7.30 Education. Bullshit. Gonski gone.

Casablanca

15/10/2013CU Have you got links to the Abbott and Howard essays?

Catching up

15/10/2013".......Julia Gillard to speak alongside Hillary Clinton, John Kerry and Al Gore Former prime minister to be a key speaker on panel discussion for the centre of American progress in Washington DC......." http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/15/gillard-speech-washington-hillary-clinton?CMP=twt_fd

Curi-Oz

15/10/2013Given that there is evidence that repeated physical activity is a fixation in his routine; Given his retreat to a particular style of language that may have been influential in his youth; Given that there seem to be a lack of recall of recent conversations with significant others; Given that he seems to require constant supervision; I am sure there may be other indicators, but Mr Abbott's behaviour is reminding me of the first steps my late father took as he started into dementia. If so, how sad. Especially as it is already acknowledged that the position he is in is one of great stress and responsibility, and stress is one of the accelerators of dementia.

Catching up

15/10/2013No, read about them in the last couple of weeks. Will search tomorrow.

Catching up

15/10/2013Still will not tel us how long parliament will sit. Why the secrecy? Where is the proof that the economy has been damaged? Where is the proof that CEF has not delievered psotive results? Where is the proof that DA will deliver?

TalkTurkey

15/10/2013Casablanca Seriously, I get a rush from seeing what you do for TPS and the entire 5th Estate each day, and I am so glad to see also that you are being appreciated by so many. Along with some others (including Ad astra) I Tweet your Cache often, I or at least someone should do it daily. And of people who often spend time down at The Pub, or at the Café, or any other simpatico sites, I ask, PLEASE proselytize Casablanca's work on TPS there VERY OFTEN. In view of what she does each day it ought to be the least WE can do, after all it is purely for the good of all that she does it and it is wasted on everyone who doesn't access it! As is the rest of our writing here of course, but it was always Lyn's Links that brought people back day after day year after year. Casablanca's Cache is a wonderfully worthy continuation of Lyn's golden thread, spliced seamlessly from Day 1 of her retirement, it's almost [i]miraculous,[/i] Thank You Casablanca! Michael I honour your writing, always so clear and poignant. You are a credit to TPS. CU you are a little dynamo, I love your dedication, I know how your jaw is set even never having seen you. Curi-Oz I think you are right about Abborrrrtt's mental state, I am sure it is an actual syndrome because I have met it before in one other man, excessive physicality, a driven sense of Gotta~win~at~all~costs, and you may believe me, physical violence just below the surface. Abborrrtt in recent years has resorted to flight rather than fight, but one day he will blow I reckon. Ken and Pappinbarra Fox We are all good ! It's gonna take a bit longer Comrades But NEVER DOUBT IT [i][b]VENCEREMOS![/b][/i]

Catching up

15/10/2013http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=12PN66IBoPs&feature=related

Catching up

15/10/2013TalkTurkey, yes, but I do stick that jaw out too often. Not easy to miss. Still, gives one something worthwhile to do.

Casablanca

16/10/2013 [b]REPEALING THE CARBON TAX - CALL FOR PUBLIC COMMENT[/b] The Australian Government will abolish the carbon tax from 1 July 2014. This will lower costs for Australian businesses and ease cost of living pressures for households. [b]Public consultation[/b] The Government invites submissions on the exposure drafts of the carbon tax repeal bills. The Government encourages submissions by 29 October 2013. [b]Key Dates:[/b] Tuesday 15 October 2013: Draft carbon tax repeal bills published 5pm (AEDT) Monday 4 November 2013: Final date for submissions [b]Submission guidelines in 3 easy steps[/b]: 1. Please read the consultation paper and exposure drafts. Total: 209 pages [u]The Consultation Paper[/u] • Repeal of the Carbon Tax Consultation Paper (PDF - 614 KB) | (Word - 176 KB) 42 pages [u]The Exposure Drafts[/u] • Clean Energy Legislation (Carbon Tax Repeal) Bill 2013 (PDF - 914 KB) | (Word - 416 KB) 93 Pages • Customs Tariff Amendment (Carbon Tax Repeal) Bill 2013 (PDF - 347 KB) | (Word - 211 KB) 12 pages • Excise Tariff Amendment (Carbon Tax Repeal) Bill 2013 (PDF - 262 KB) | (Word - 186 KB) 8 pages • Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas (Import Levy) Amendment (Carbon Tax Repeal) Bill 2013 (PDF - 350 KB) | (Word - 192 KB) 9 pages • Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas (Manufacture Levy) Amendment (Carbon Tax Repeal) Bill 2013 (PDF - 346 KB) | (Word - 190 KB) 8 pages • True-up Shortfall Levy (Carbon Tax Repeal) Bill 2013 (PDF - 187 KB) | (Word - 197 KB) 7 pages • Clean Energy (Income Tax Rates and Other Amendments) Bill 2013 (PDF - 209 KB) | (Word - 184 KB) 7 pages • Climate Change Authority (Abolition) Bill 2013 (PDF - 410 KB) | (Word - 224 KB) 21 pages 2. Please complete a cover sheet • Carbon tax repeal submission cover sheet (PDF - 67 KB) | (Word - 176 KB) 2 pages 3. Send your submission to the Department http://www.environment.gov.au/carbon-tax-repeal/consultation.html

Casablanca

16/10/2013 CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Wednesday, 16 October 2013: 35 items ENTITLEMENTS & FIDDLES The parliamentary entitlements issue appears to have dropped off the radar today. The attention span of the MSM is indeed short. WOMEN IN FEDERAL PARLIAMENT 1. Women in Federal Parliament Australian Senate: Occasional Lecture Series Main Committee Room, Parliament House Friday,18 October2013 12.15pm–1.30pm Rosemary Crowley, Amanda Vanstone and Laura Tingle 2013 marks several important anniversaries for the representation of women in the federal parliament. Seventy years ago the first women were elected to the federal parliament with Dorothy Tangney elected as a senator for Western Australia and Enid Lyons elected as the Member for Darwin in Tasmania. This year is also the 110th anniversary of women winning the right to vote and the right to stand for election in Australia. www.aph.gov.au/.../Women_in_Federal_Parliament 2. TANYA STEPS UP, ANNA PUSHED BACK Lucy Clark On the night that Julia Gillard gave her first interview since being deposed as leader, the very mention of Tanya Plibersek’s name brought the Opera House down with applause and cheers. There’s a lot of love for the newly elected deputy leader of the ALP. Bill Shorten the strategist knew this and early on in his campaign wasted no time saying he hoped she would serve as his deputy. http://thehoopla.com.au/tanyas-ascendancy/ 3. Anna Burke: the faceless men still control Labor Oliver Laughland "The outgoing speaker of the House of Representatives, Anna Burke, says she is 'bitter' and 'disappointed' to have missed out on a position in the shadow ministry, arguing that the decision not to give her a role 'reflects an immediate reversion to the faceless men being firmly in control'." http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/14/anna-burke-faceless-men-control-shorten-labor 4. Yes, I am bitter and disappointed. Once again, Labor failed women Anna Burke Women think effort will be rewarded, but there is no meritocracy within the ALP. The current outcome of the shadow ministry reflects a reversion to the 'faceless men' being firmly in control http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/14/anna-burke-women-labor-party 5. Conversations with Julia Gillard A more complete video of Anne Summers in Conversation with Julia Gillard at the Sydney Opera House on Monday 30 September 2013 is now available online. http://annesummers.com.au/julia-gillard-in-conversation-sydney-30-september-2013/ The video of Anne Summers in Conversation with Julia Gillard at the Melbourne Town Hall on Tuesday 1 October 2013 is now available online. http://annesummers.com.au/julia-gillard-in-conversation-melbourne-1-october-2013/ POLITICS 6. Abbott walking tricky tightrope on diplomacy Hugh White Our Prime Minister needs to think before opening his mouth, both here and abroad. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/abbott-walking-tricky-tightrope-on-diplomacy-20131014-2viqg.html#ixzz2hmCZ1ors 7. Anna Burke defends previous minority parliament to new MPs Katharine Murphy 'Leave aside politics, leave aside parties, the parliament did not fail,' says outgoing speaker http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/15/anna-burke-defends-previous-minority-parliament-to-new-mps 8. Clive Palmer's interests must be separate from the public interest Katharine Murphy The mining magnate and this parliament need to draw a line to preserve integrity and confidence in our democracy http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/10/clive-palmer-and-public-interest?INTCMP=ILCNETTXT3487 9. The Coalition Government says it will begin consultations to discuss its transition plans for the Not for Profit sector in the next few weeks. Kevin Andrews says the discussions will include the future of the charity regulator, the Australian Charities and Not-for-profit Commission (ACNC) and his plans for a Centre for Excellence as well as a national register of charities. http://www.probonoaustralia.com.au/news/2013/10/coalition-begin-nfp-sector-consultations#sthash.YCYKGkA9.dpuf POLITICS + SOCIETY 10. Punching, prodding and blocking: the opposition's changing role in politics Gregory Melleuish Australian parliamentary politics has always had a reputation for a certain rough and tumble. In the 1850s, British economist William Stanley Jevons commented on the rowdiness of the proceedings of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly. http://theconversation.com/punching-prodding-and-blocking-the-oppositions-changing-role-in-politics-19133?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013+CID_03c86a64b8ff7d338d53445cb65e4e7e&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Punching%20prodding%20and%20blocking%20the%20oppositions%20changing%20role%20in%20politics 11. Why We Need to Learn to Work Politically - Upcoming Social Leadership Australia has developed a new three-day ‘Working Politically’ masterclass to help remedy an important skills gap for people working in business, in government and in the Not for Profit sector. The skill to work politically—with a small ‘p’ and a capital ‘P’— is essential for anyone leading change or trying to influence policy, yet it is not only poorly understood but rarely taught. http://www.probonoaustralia.com.au/news/2013/10/why-we-need-learn-work-politically-upcoming-masterclass#sthash.6xZsW71H.dpuf 12. "A Letter to the Thing I Wish I Had Written" Julian Burnside A Letter to Australia's History, 20 years from now. Once I was proud of my country. In 1948, Australia played a leading role in creating the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. We had a history of being a proud, decent, largely egalitarian country. http://www.julianburnside.com.au/history.htm 13. Julia Gillard to speak alongside Hillary Clinton, John Kerry and Al Gore Helen Davidson Former prime minister to be a key speaker on panel discussion for the centre of American progress in Washington DC. "It's an honour to be invited to participate in the 10th anniversary of the Centre for American Progress, which is such an engine for progressive policy," Gillard told Guardian Australia. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/15/gillard-speech-washington-hillary-clinton?CMP=twt_fd LABOR 14. Soup in blender far too early Jack Waterford Labor must divide before it unites; it must have a hard look back and learn before it is fit to face the future http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/soup-in-blender-far-too-early-20131015-2vl15.html#ixzz2hnqujG8b 15. Bill Shorten interview: 'The old politics has to change' Michelle Grattan Bill Shorten, the Labor party’s right faction’s poster boy, won the party leadership by having a number of left-wing caucus members vote for him. Now he has the task of persuading back to vote for the… http://theconversation.com/bill-shorten-interview-the-old-politics-has-to-change-19165?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013+CID_03c86a64b8ff7d338d53445cb65e4e7e&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Bill%20Shorten%20interview%20The%20old%20politics%20has%20to%20change ENVIRONMENT + ENERGY 16. Fighting global warming requires policy, not politics Lisa Singh ... as soon as Tony Abbott was sworn in as Prime Minister, he instructed his department to prepare to repeal Australia's carbon pricing laws. Neither I nor my Labor colleagues in the Senate are prepared to allow it to happen. Carbon pollution has had a drastic effect on the world's climate, and will continue to affect our lives and the environment unless we act. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/fighting-global-warming-requires-policy-not-politics-20131013-2vgud.html#ixzz2hm7KXxNU 17. THE SENATE: MATTERS OF PUBLIC IMPORTANCE Climate Change SPEECH: Senator Lisa SINGH (Tasmania) Tuesday, 14 May 2013 ...We already have in place a scheme, which will soon be a trading scheme, that is already working well and already reducing emissions. I have just provided to you the figures on that. But because the coalition's plan is entirely on budget, taxpayers' funds will be used to pay polluters to lower their pollution. Not only is that going to hurt taxpayers; it is also going to absurdly have taxpayers giving money to polluters to reduce their pollution. It is the polluters that are doing something wrong to our environment, not the taxpayers. And yet the coalition will make taxpayers pay for the wrongdoings of polluters, who therefore will have no impetus at all to change their behaviour. They do have that impetus under the carbon pricing scheme that the Labor government has put in place. The differences are clear there. That is something for taxpayers to consider when they are thinking about government policy to reduce emissions after September. I know which one I would prefer; I know which one my family would prefer. In fact, I cannot imagine any taxpayer in the country wanting the coalition's direct action plan. (extract - read whole speech at url below) http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/genpdf/chamber/hansards/595e4e76-cff2-452f-bd37-f8094ab4d775/0087/hansard_frag.pdf;fileType=application%2Fpdf 18. REPEALING THE CARBON TAX - CALL FOR PUBLIC COMMENT The Australian Government will abolish the carbon tax from 1 July 2014. This will lower costs for Australian businesses and ease cost of living pressures for households. Public consultation The Government invites submissions on the exposure drafts of the carbon tax repeal bills. The Government encourages submissions by 29 October 2013. Key Dates: Tuesday 15 October 2013: Draft carbon tax repeal bills published 5pm (AEDT) Monday 4 November 2013: Final date for submissions Submission guidelines: 209 pages, including draft legislation http://www.environment.gov.au/carbon-tax-repeal/consultation.html 19. Abbott primed for a double dissolution on carbon pricing Mark Kenny Tony Abbott will have the first half of a constitutional trigger for a double-dissolution election in place by Christmas, after announcing plans to present his carbon price repeal legislation this year. Failure to pass the repeal legislation before July 1 would either delay the scrapping substantially, or require any legislation passed subsequently be retrospective. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/abbott-primed-for-a-double-dissolution-on-carbon-pricing-20131015-2vkvj.html 20. Clive Palmer plan for $6bn China First coalmine tests new environmental laws Lenore Taylor Department and minister to assess the impact on water before mega-mines can proceed in Queensland's Galilee basin http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/14/clive-palmer-australia 21. Fixing climate change: the future isn't what it used to be David Hodgkinson, University of Western Australia This is the last part of a series following on from the release of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fifth Assessment Report and looking at emerging alternatives to the UN climate agreement http://theconversation.com/fixing-climate-change-the-future-isnt-what-it-used-to-be-16751?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013+CID_03c86a64b8ff7d338d53445cb65e4e7e&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Fixing%20climate%20change%20the%20future%20isnt%20what%20it%20used%20to%20be 22. Mixed fuels, mixed messages: the motivations for ethanol expansion Susan Pond and Daniel Klein-Marcuschamer, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory In the lead up to the federal election, Queensland mining magnate Clive Palmer called for an increase in the number of vehicles using ethanol-based fuels, as a way of reducing Australia’s greenhouse emissions… http://theconversation.com/mixed-fuels-mixed-messages-the-motivations-for-ethanol-expansion-17821?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013+CID_03c86a64b8ff7d338d53445cb65e4e7e&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Mixed%20fuels%20mixed%20messages%20the%20motivations%20for%20ethanol%20expansion 23. Tony Abbott's claim households will be $550 a year better off without the carbon tax is outdated ABC Fact Check Mr Abbott's figure is outdated. Household bills will be lower if the fixed carbon priced is scrapped by Coalition. But they will also go down under Labor's new ETS policy. Either way, Mr Abbott's $550 figure no longer applies. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-08-28/abbott-using-outdated-figure-on-carbon-tax-cost/4912726 ECONOMY + BUSINESS 24. An FTA with China in 12 months is a big ask Remy Davison, Monash University Forget APEC. That is so 1997. Prime Minister Abbott has recently established an ambitious – not to mention exceedingly optimistic – deadline of 12 months to conclude a Free Trade Agreement with China… http://theconversation.com/an-fta-with-china-in-12-months-is-a-big-ask-18957?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013+CID_03c86a64b8ff7d338d53445cb65e4e7e&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=An%20FTA%20with%20China%20in%2012%20months%20is%20a%20big%20ask 25. China's inward focus saps growth from region, says World Bank Kok-Boon Oh, La Trobe University East Asia’s growth is slowing as China focuses on domestic demand growth from weaker exports, according to a World Bank report released last week. But East Asia will still grow faster than other regions… http://theconversation.com/chinas-inward-focus-saps-growth-from-region-says-world-bank-18998?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013+CID_03c86a64b8ff7d338d53445cb65e4e7e&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Chinas%20inward%20focus%20saps%20growth%20from%20region%20says%20World%20Bank 26. Why disaster insurance should be on the G20 agenda Rachel Anne Carter, Deakin University Australia has an unprecedented opportunity to resolve issues of escalating insurance prices caused by an uncertain climate. The time has come to curb the trend towards increased economic exposure to natural… http://theconversation.com/why-disaster-insurance-should-be-on-the-g20-agenda-18700?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013+CID_03c86a64b8ff7d338d53445cb65e4e7e&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Why%20disaster%20insurance%20should%20be%20on%20the%20G20%20agenda CHANGE, CULTURE + TECHNOLOGY 27. The science interview: Jared Diamond Gillian Tett In the next couple of years, Diamond plans to write a blockbuster analysis of how modern civilisations “manage” the process of change and crisis. Diamond’s analysis of “conflict” will also cover the less peaceful world of Washington as he tries to assess whether modern America can handle the process of change – or not. http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/2/1f786618-307a-11e3-80a4-00144feab7de.html#axzz2hch4kc5C 28. Drones to deliver parcels in Australia starting in March Adam Bender Zookal has today announced a partnership with Flirtey that will see the textbook rental startup company employing drones to deliver parcels in Australia starting this March. It will be the first use of fully automated commercial drones in the world, the companies said. http://www.techworld.com.au/article/528994/drones_deliver_parcels_australia_starting_march/ 29. Culture wars II: why Abbott should leave the history curriculum alone Tony Taylor In the last week of the campaign, some naggingly familiar comments came out from the Coalition. Then opposition leader Tony Abbott said he wanted to see the national curriculum in history changed because it was too left-leaning and underplayed Australia’s western heritage. http://theconversation.com/culture-wars-ii-why-abbott-should-leave-the-history-curriculum-alone-17925 PHILANTHROPY 30. Twiggy's $65m gift highlights philanthropy's role Julie Power Giving is 'a joyful experience'. Billionaire and chairman of Fortescue Metals Group, Andrew Forrest, explains why he has made a $65 million donation to the University of Western Australia. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/national/twiggys-65m-gift-highlights-philanthropys-role-20131015-2vk31.html 31. Australia’s Top 50 Philanthropic Gifts of All Time The Top 50 Philanthropic Gifts of All Time have been announced in Melbourne revealing a rich history of ‘giving’ in Australia and the public can now vote online to decide Australia’s Top 10 Gifts. - http://www.probonoaustralia.com.au/news/2013/10/australia%E2%80%99s-top-50-philanthropic-gifts-all-time#sthash.3cCVgBzB.Jwnusclf.dpuf 32. Why Contests Improve Philanthropy Mayur Patel Large visions. Bright ambitions. Homespun dreams. What do they have in common? Each was a project the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation never would have supported were it not for contests. http://knightfoundation.org/opencontests/ HEALTH & WELLBEING 33. Your world needs you. Ten things you can do today for NCDs. Alessandro R Demaio Here are ten simple things you can do today to start making a difference for NCDs – or Non-Communicable Diseases. http://theconversation.com/your-world-needs-you-ten-things-you-can-do-today-for-ncds-19094?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013+CID_03c86a64b8ff7d338d53445cb65e4e7e&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Break%20up%20with%20cola%20-%2010%20things%20you%20can%20do%20for%20your%20health%20%20the%20local%20burden%20of%20NCDs 34. To err is human, and to have migraines even moreso… Michael Vagg I’ve been in Italy this last week, for the EFIC Congress, which is the biggest international scientific meeting that pain types go to in a year when there is no official World Congress. On the first day of the meeting I went to a session about headache, and I came away both daunted and hopeful. http://theconversation.com/to-err-is-human-and-to-have-migraines-even-moreso-19050 NEWSPAPERS 35. Newspapers are dying, but long live the news Brian McNair, Queensland University of Technology Former editorial director of News Corp in Queensland David Fagan expressed both optimism and realism about the future of journalism in Australia when he addressed an audience of academics http://theconversation.com/newspapers-are-dying-but-long-live-the-news-19106?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+15+October+2013+CID_03c86a64b8ff7d338d53445cb65e4e7e&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Newspapers%20are%20dying%20but%20long%20live%20the%20news TODAY’S MAIN NEWS • ROULE REPORT — Issues of Today http://paper.li/RouleReport/1334728962 • AN EYE ON ABC NEWS: . Keeping the bastards who keep the bastards honest, honest http://www.abcnewswatch.blogspot.com.au/ • AUSTRALIAN NEWSPAPER FRONT PAGES www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm • NEWS HEADLINES 16 October 2013 http://www.hotheadlines.com.au/ #################################################################

Casablanca

16/10/2013 CASABLANCA'S CACHE See: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/CASABLANCAS-CACHE-2013-10-15-%28Current%29.aspx

Casablanca

16/10/2013SUPPLEMENTARY LIST: Why Tanya Plibersek's appointment matters Clementine Ford But although Plibersek will have to, as the old adage goes, work twice as hard to be thought of as half as good, there’s no doubt that she’s more than qualified for the job. And while it’s a shame she hasn’t been elected to the leadership proper, I must admit to feeling relieved that she won’t be thrown to the wolves and torn apart before we truly need her to ascend to that position. http://www.dailylife.com.au/news-and-views/dl-opinion/why-tanya-pliberseks-appointment-matters-20131014-2vi78.html Nothing if not pragmatic Andrew Elder Journalists wring their hands and act all conflicted when it comes to the balance of what they report versus maintaining relationships. They are taught to do this by journo-trainers, who consider this to be a Matter of Deep Conflict, when clearly in the press gallery it no longer is. http://andrewelder.blogspot.com.au/2013/10/nothing-if-not-pragmatic.html Bill Shorten can make Tony Abbott look silly on carbon pricing Giles Parkinson The OECD says consistent carbon pricing must be the cornerstone of government actions to tackle climate change. “In our view, any policy response to climate change by any country must have at its core a plan to steadily make carbon emissions more expensive while, at the same time, judiciously giving non-fossil energy and energy efficiency an advantage at the margin. This is fundamental,” said Angel Gurria, the secretary of the OECD. http://reneweconomy.com.au/2013/bill-shorten-can-make-tony-abbott-look-silly-on-carbon-pricing-87571

Catching up

16/10/2013We need to keep in mind that the aim of CEF is to make electricity produced by fossil fuel dearer, while at the same time, fuel produced by renewals cheaper. The aim is top have clean, more efficiently produced electricity. The CEF suite of legislation, which Abbott wants to eradicate also has the structure needed to fund and assist the movement to power being produce only by renewals,. There is also assistance to industry, with cheap loans, to restructure their factories, that will lead to cheaper production costs. To remove all this, will lead to higher, not lower costs. It is not about a toxic tax. That is Abbott's fallacy. One has only to look at the list of proposed bills that were announced yesterday, to realise that. Yes, there is a cost on carbon emissions, to finance the move to cheaper, cleaner renewals fuel. All, except it seems Abbott and Co, say the most efficient and cheapest way to facilitate this, is what we have now.

TalkTurkey

16/10/2013Casablanca As always your Cache is amazing. Comrades of the Sword Have you linked Casablanca's Cache on any other sites today? - This week? - Ever? Please do, now and often, it's only fair! She is carrying forward Lyn's wondrous work in the political education of Australians wherever, and it is very important, and it is very onerous as you may well believe! My words here, and those like mine, are scant reward for Casablanca's efforts - What counts is her following! The best way you can help her, and TPS, and the Fighting 5th Estate, and this country, and the [i]world[/i], is to link her links on other sites as often as possible. Bacon and Eggs they say is a few minutes' work for the chook but major commitment for the piggy. Well it's a lot like that for us, a few moments for us to link her links just sometimes, (often please), but a big effort for her every night! No offence Casablanca with the metaphor, au contraire, major respect.

TPS Team

16/10/2013 Morning all. This a momentary experiment to see if the TPS Team can post on TPS ... as the TPS Team, and using the temporary gravatar presently used on the TPS Team Twitter account.

Catching up

16/10/2013Love it. Clive is introducing his Team Leader in the Senate. Team Leader?

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16/10/2013Casablanca What an eclectic collection you have given us this morning. As it’s blowing a gale outside and too windy to mow, I’ve read through them already. The ones on climate change were most informative (Abbott’s ridiculous call for ‘repentance’ by Labor will fall on deaf ears); the review of Jared Diamond’s books educational; the article on postal delivery by drones intriguing; and Michael Vagg’s article on migraines salutary. They illustrate the rich variety of your offerings. Indeed a degustation menu. Thank you.

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16/10/2013TPS Team Nice Gravatar!

Catching up

16/10/2013"Abbott’s ridiculous call for ‘repentance’ by Labor will fall on deaf ears);" I believe that Abbott by now, is wishing his statements did fall on deaf ears. His statements has made many angry, finding his words, at the very least, irritating.

Catching up

16/10/2013<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p>&quot;Carbon Dioxide Heats The Earth&quot;. Newspaper article from 1932 <a href="http://t.co/f23NePRh1l">pic.twitter.com/f23NePRh1l</a></p>&mdash; History In Pictures (@HistoryInPix) <a href="https://twitter.com/HistoryInPix/statuses/390065846124830720">October 15, 2013</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

Catching up

16/10/2013http://au.news.yahoo.com/a/19408705/libs-to-clear-23b-hecs-debt/

Catching up

16/10/2013"..........The Climate Institute chief executive John Connor said the survey showed that climate change and its impacts aren’t washed away by this election result, “This finding supports our and other research which has strong support for climate action alongside the uncertainty about carbon pricing as a solution. This poll was similar to others in that almost two-thirds (63 per cent) accept that climate change is occurring,” said Connor. “Climate change is complex and the solutions aren’t easy but the Coalition rushes into repeal of the carbon laws at their peril because climate change and its impacts aren’t washed away by this election result,” concluded Connor.." http://www.businessspectator.com.au/news/2013/9/9/policy-politics/carbon-tax-not-big-issue-election-poll

Catching up

16/10/2013http://images.smh.com.au/2013/10/16/4834167/randallbooks.jpg '..............Don Randall, who once described Cheryl Kernot as having the ''morals of an alley cat on heat'' and Tasmania as a ''leech on the teat'' of the Australian economy, has refused to answer questions about his own expense claims, which include billing taxpayers for travel that appears to be linked to his Cairns investment property..............." Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/don-randall-dodges-questions-over-expense-claims-for-trip-to-cairns-20131016-2vlx1.html#ixzz2hqgYEBps <iframe src="http://www.smh.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-2vlyp" width="420" height="236" scrolling="no"></iframe>

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16/10/2013Catching up This blog engine uses square brackets around tags, rather than the usual angle brackets.

Catching up

16/10/2013Will learn

Catching up

16/10/2013...............Nelson is right to resist the intellectual bullying inherent in talk of "mandates". What exactly is Rudd's mandate anyway: to be an economic conservative or an old-fashioned Christian socialist? The elected Opposition is no less entitled than the elected Government to exercise its political judgment and to try to keep its election commitments............... http://www.smh.com.au/news/opinion/promises-to-keep-in-opposition/2007/12/04/1196530675473.html?page=fullpage

2353`

16/10/2013CU @ 10.38 Three is a team in spme sport I am sure. Just can't think of one off the top of my head. Maybe curling?

Catching up

16/10/2013............Opposition, too, has promises to keep One certainty about elections is that voters always win. Political parties may not like the result or quite understand it but they have to respect it. Almost as certain is that, sooner or later, yesterday's losers become tomorrow's winners. As the reality of defeat sinks........... http://www.smh.com.au/news/opinion/promises-to-keep-in-opposition/2007/12/04/1196530675473.html?page=fullpage

Catching up

16/10/2013"......Despite complaining about Labor’s “carbon cops” while in opposition, the Coalition will now impose tough price-control powers on business as part of its repeal of the carbon price.." http://www.crikey.com.au/2013/10/16/carbon-price-repeal-coalition-sends-out-the-accc-cops/

TalkTurkey

16/10/2013I know someone who has recently been diagnosed with having had a tonic clonic seizure. I would bet that his wife won't miss this link. (She doesn't miss much!) See 3.33 on this clip. Cannabis will be seen as THE most useful medicinal agent of all when sanity finally prevails. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=ciQ4ErmhO7g&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DciQ4ErmhO7g%26feature%3Dyoutu.be&app=desktop

Catching up

16/10/2013Could the government be listening. So they now want us to design their plan. Maybe, they should look at what is in place now, and how they can adapt it, to fit in with the DA. Even the Telegraph suggested this course of action. Why does the wheel have to be reinvented again. for that to happen, Abbott will have to admit he wants to repeal more Thanh an non existent toxic tax. The federal government is calling for public input to design the centrepiece of its Direct Action plan for combating climate change. The coalition on Wednesday released the terms of reference for its Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF), the principle mechanism by which it plans to reduce emissions by five per cent by 2020. The fund is capped at $1.55 billion for its first three years and provides incentives for abatement activities that reduce emissions, like revegetation and improving soil carbon. The ‘carbon buyback’ approach promises to fund these abatement activities in Australia at the least possible cost. The ERF will work in conjunction with other green programs, like the Carbon Farming Initiative and the Renewable Energy Target, to achieve its unconditional emissions target. The government is seeking input from business and community leaders on potential sources of low-cost abatement and will consider these in a report to be released in December. It’s also looking for submissions on other key design features of the ERF, including baselines and contract arrangements. A white paper outlining the final design of the ERF will be released early in 2014. The government hopes to have the carbon tax repealed by June 30 next year and has released draft legislation on this for public consultation. The ERF would take effect from July 1. Submissions in response to the terms of reference of the ERF close on November 18. :http://www.skynews.com.au/topstories/article.aspx?id=915555&vId=4191785&cId=Top%20Stories&play=true

Catching up

16/10/2013What is happening in this country. We see two states passing laws that send or keep in jail people, virtually by passing the courts. At the same time, it appears that Queensland has not bothered to use the strict laws they already have.

Catching up

16/10/2013Does this type of sizure remind one of someone in public life. "...Absence Seizures (previously called petit mal seizures) An absence seizure causes loss of awareness for a brief period. The person stares vacantly, the eyes may drift upwards and flicker. It may be mistaken for daydreaming. First Aid for absence seizures Recognize that a seizure has occurred. Reassure the person, and Re." http://www.epilepsyaustralia.net

TalkTurkey

16/10/2013Via The Hoopla ‏@TheHoopla 37m Sometimes you’ve got to doggedly (ahem) pursue what’s rightfully yours http://bit.ly/H2OT3y (Ignore if you can the fact of our messenger's propensity to recklessly (ahem) split the infinitive ... :) ) This is good fun to watch right through, [i]Go the Doggies![/i]

TalkTurkey

16/10/20132353 said [i]Three is a team in spme sport I am sure. Just can't think of one off the top of my head. Maybe curling?[/i] Indispensable for [i]Menage a Trois[/i] !

TalkTurkey

16/10/2013 MP Don Randall Mr Scandal How does your trust fund grow? With spurious claims & shonky games & TRAVEL RORTS All-in-a-Row! RESIGN!

Jason

16/10/2013TT, Two months before Don Randall took his trip to Cairns, a trip that has raised serious questions about his use of expenses, the Liberal MP rose in Federal Parliament to pontificate on the subject of politicians' entitlements. On September 17 last year, Mr Randall told his colleagues in the House of Representatives he saw no reason to support then-independent MP Rob Oakeshott's idea of setting up an unnecessary “huge bureaucracy” to investigate misuse of entitlements. Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/don-randall-rejected-monitoring-mp-expenses-as-huge-bureaucracy-20131016-2vmmu.html#ixzz2hrlo7zte

Catching up

16/10/2013We are going to hear Nicola Roxon delivering the Button Lecture ABC 24

Catching up

16/10/2013Nicola is not pulling any punches. ABC 24

Catching up

16/10/2013http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-16/roxon-ten-tips/5026972

Casablanca

17/10/2013 CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Thursday, 17 October 2013: 46 items ENTITLEMENTS & FIDDLES 1. Don Randall dodges questions over expense claims for trip to Cairns Jonathan Swan, Lisa Visentin A Liberal MP and member of the parliamentary committee that oversees MPs’ privileges and interests has spent more than $10,000 on questionable travel and billed taxpayers for about $2500 on books that bear no obvious relation to his job, Fairfax Media can reveal. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/don-randall-dodges-questions-over-expense-claims-for-trip-to-cairns-20131016-2vlx1.html 2. The fruitless push for a Parliamentarians’ code of conduct Rose Iser The latest spate of entitlements scandals is unlikely to bring about a code of conduct for federal parliamentarians given that, for the past 40 years, multiple attempts to enact a code have failed. Since 1975, federal leaders and parliamentarians have investigated the possibility of a code of conduct but reports and proposals have never resulted in a wide-ranging code covering the behaviour of MPs http://nofibs.com.au/2013/10/16/fruitless-push-parliamentarians-code-conduct/#sthash.Ui4NRkZz.dpuf 3. PRIVATE MEMBERS' BUSINESS Code of Conduct for Members of Parliament Don Randall As I am a member of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Privileges, I can only speak in broad terms of some of the issues that I raise...This committee examined a member's code of conduct and they examined it on the basis that the parliament could not deal with members whose behaviour was deemed unacceptable. http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fhansardr%2F349cd40e-55d4-4907-8ae0-0b25b483b9b2%2F0278%22 4. Tony Abbott refuses to bend the rules on MPs' entitlements Jonathan Swan, David Wroe Mr Abbott said there would ''always be arguments at the margins'' and changing the rules would achieve nothing. ''I'm not proposing to change the system . . . You don't want members of Parliament to be prisoners of their offices,'' he said. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/tony-abbott-refuses-to-bend-the-rules-on-mps-entitlements-20131010-2vbm0.html 5. Former A-G brokered deal for HSU's Williamson to turn against mistress Jared Owens The 60-year-old former Health Services Union general secretary, awaiting sentencing on three counts of fraud and one count of recruiting a man to hinder police, agreed to the terms as part of a previously secret $6.7 million settlement struck under the mediation of Labor attorney-general Robert McClelland. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/policy/former-a-g-brokered-deal-for-hsus-williamson-to-turn-against-mistress/story-fn59noo3-1226741264598?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+TheAustralianNewsNDM+%28The+Australian+|+News+|%29 LABOR 6. Roxon slams 'rude and dysfunctional' Rudd Judith Ireland Former attorney-general calls Kevin Rudd a "bastard" in a scathing attack on former PM. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/nicola-roxon-launches-scathing-critique-of-bastard-kevin-rudd-20131016-2vmyn.html 7. Rancour tarnishes Bill Shorten's victory Mark Kenny, Chris Johnson Disquiet within the parliamentary Labor Party over the leadership contest and selection of the shadow ministry is threatening to boil over, with some MPs furious about the public presentation of harmony while in reality, the process had been ''brutal and treacherous''. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/rancour-tarnishes-bill-shortens-victory-20131015-2vkwr.html 8. Ten housekeeping tips for a future Labor government Nicola Roxon Having recently "swapped the cabinet table for the kitchen table", former attorney general Nicola Roxon offers Labor tough advice on the lessons of the last six years of government, including the mishandling of the Rudd dismissal and the “bastardry” of the former prime minister’s treatment of Julia Gillard. The following is the text of her John Button Memorial Lecture, published in full, exclusively on The Drum. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-16/roxon-ten-tips/5026972 9. Nicola Roxon says Kevin Rudd was a 'bastard' who deserved his removal Katharine Murphy Former attorney general unleashes eviscerating attack on ex-PM in lecture on lessons Labor should learn from its time in power...The former prime minister, Roxon said, was “great at the cut through and then struggled at the follow through”. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/16/nicola-roxon-says-kevin-rudd-was-a-bastard-who-deserved-his-removal 10. Winners and losers Peter Mares PODCAST | Bill Shorten discusses Labor factions, parliamentary career paths, and winners and losers in this interview with Peter Mares recorded in 2006 http://inside.org.au/winners-and-losers/#sthash.zjkEjgKY.dpuf 11. A peace that passeth (almost) all understanding Frank Bongiorno The Labor leadership contest might have annoyed some factional warlords, but it’s helped the party to avoid messy post-election recriminations. http://inside.org.au/a-peace-that-passeth-almost-all-understanding/#sthash.uzALNj6g.dpuf 12. Kevin Rudd protege Maxine McKew turns on her former mentor Jonathan Swan The "central premise" of Ms McKew's book remained, which was that "the entire history of this last six years could have been very different had people held their nerve and not chopped Rudd's head off in 2010". http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/kevin-rudd-protege-maxine-mckew-turns-on-her-former-mentor-20131016-2vlh4.html 13. It's time to recover from the Labor addiction Michael Gawenda The leadership addiction, from which labor has suffered for at least the past six years, like any addiction, cannot be cured overnight and certainly not while Kevin Rudd remains in the caucus with, on the face of it, not much to do for the next three years as a humble back bencher. This is not an ideal circumstance for treating an addiction, one symptom of which is compulsive leaking to journalists. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/16/politics/its-time-recover-labor-addiction 14. Former minister tells “bastard” Rudd to go now Michelle Grattan As Labor’s recent period of extraordinary internal harmony shatters, former cabinet minister Nicola Roxon has excoriated Kevin Rudd, forensically detailing his bad behaviour and declaring he should leave parliament for Labor’s good. http://theconversation.com/former-minister-tells-bastard-rudd-to-go-now-19261 POLITICS 15. Mollifying Malaysia Clive Kessler Tony Abbott apologised to Malaysian PM Najib Tun Razak for scandalising Malaysia in the pursuit of his own partisan political goal of creating a political deadlock, a paralysing impasse, in an effort to make Australia ungovernable by his political opponents. Is an apology now due only to Malaysia? An apology to the Australian people might also be in order – and one, too, to those who were pilloried for trying to promote the Malaysian plan despite Malaysia’s acknowledged imperfections. http://inside.org.au/mollifying-malaysia/#sthash.qjyXi95H.dpuf 16. Abbott may face $4bn bill and legal confusion if carbon tax repeal is stalled Lenore Taylor Clive Palmer’s voting bloc could withhold support for legislation unless Coalition meets demands to refund businesses http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/16/abbott-repeal-carbon-tax-stalled 17. US Senate Women Lead in Effort to Find Accord Jonathan Weisman and Jennifer Steinhauer In a Senate still dominated by men, women on both sides of the partisan divide proved to be the driving forces that shaped a negotiated settlement. The three Republican women put aside threats from the right to advance the interests of their shutdown-weary states and asserted their own political independence. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/15/us/senate-women-lead-in-effort-to-find-accord.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&smid=tw-nytimes&partner=rss&emc=rss&adxnnlx=1381918687-bvUQa+ToFFh5zBonqOqTLQ& 18. China picks a fight with the Tea Party as US government default looms Adam Pasick The Tea Party politicians who are taking the US government to the brink of default are getting some heat from the land where tea began. Chinese Vice Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao, anxious that a US default that would affect China’s $1.28 trillion in US Treasurys, lashed out at “the attitude of the Tea Party,” in a press briefing on Tuesday—and the Tea Party lashed right back. http://qz.com/135894/china-picks-a-fight-with-the-tea-party-as-us-government-default-looms/ 19. Q&A: The US debt ceiling explained Former Republican Senator Alan Simpson, co-chair of Mr Obama's Debt Reduction Commission, recently told Fact Check presenter John Barron that the gridlock will only be overcome when the markets put more pressure on Congress by "asking for more money for their money". A credit rating downgrade would have that effect and is a distinct possibility. The US's AAA credit grade has been placed on a "negative watch" warning for a downgrade by Fitch Ratings. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-16/us-debt-ceiling-explained/5025578?WT.mc_id=newsmail 20. Keep it simple, Sinophiles John Lee Despite some pre-election predictions that he would be an embarrassment for Australia in the neighbourhood, he has started well with our most important trading partner, even if there will be more difficult issues and days ahead. But friendly words are one thing. The lingering question is whether Abbott will possess the skill and nuance needed to achieve a stable and constructive relationship with Beijing over the next few years. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/16/politics/keep-it-simple-sinophiles?utm_source=exact&utm_medium=email&utm_content=463406&utm_campaign=pm&modapt= 21. Rupert Murdoch and Tony Abbott: is a post-election catch-up on the agenda? Katharine Murphy Neither PM nor Malcolm Turnbull will say whether they plan to meet the media mogul during his trip to Australia. The News Corp chairman publicly backed Tony Abbott’s bid for the prime ministership in 2013 – and there was considerable political controversy during the campaign about coverage by the News Corp tabloids. http://www.theguardian.com/media/2013/oct/16/rupert-murdoch-and-tony-abbott-is-a-post-election-catch-up-on-the-agenda ECONOMY 22. No easy revenue raisers up the Coalition's sleeve Greg Jericho Without any Telstras or Commonwealth Banks to sell off, Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey will need to make tough decisions if they are to get Australia out of debt... http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-16/jericho-our-economy-could-do-with-a-check-up/5023366?WT.mc_id=newsmail 23. Is there still a budget emergency? (12 pages) John Daley The Australian government budget is not in cardiac arrest on the operating table, needing a triple bypass to keep it alive. We do not have that kind of emergency. But Australian government budgets are unfit, overweight, and smoking–and now they have high blood pressure and chest pains. Most worryingly, the patient has gone into denial and is eating more cheese http://grattan.edu.au/static/files/assets/50962fa6/534_speech_press_club_JD_budget_emergency_131009.pdf 24. Robert Shiller’s Nobel should help the world accept (and improve) imperfect financial markets Miles Kimball With the world still suffering from the 2008 financial crisis, it is good to see Nobel prizes going to three economists who have set the bar for analyzing how stock prices and other asset prices move in the real world: Eugene Fama, Robert Shiller, and Lars Hansen. http://qz.com/135705/robert-shillers-nobel-should-help-the-world-accept-and-improve-imperfect-financial-markets/ 25. Lessons from the Economics Nobel. We're less expert than we think Peter Martin Whether you’re standing in a queue at the supermarket, wondering whether to change lanes on the Harbour Bridge or making a big decision such as whether to buy or sell shares, take some time out of your day today to give thanks to the winners of this year’s Nobel Prize for Economics. http://www.petermartin.com.au/2013/10/lessons-from-economics-nobel-were-less.html 26. Privatising HECS debt Matt Cowgill One proposal that has backing in the financial sector is to convert the $22.6 billion in HECS debt held by 1.6 million Australians into a financial product. In a process called securitisation, the responsibility for HECS debts would be bought by the private sector and then sold to investors. http://mattcowgill.wordpress.com/2013/10/16/privatising-hecs-debt/ 27. Fitch threatens to axe the United States’ AAA rating Simone Foxman Fitch Ratings agency just made good on its promise to reevaluate the United States’ credit rating if American politicians didn’t get their act together. Today, it officially put the US on “rating watch negative,” warning that it will slash the country’s prized AAA rating if politicians don’t raise the debt ceiling in time to avoid a technical default on the US’s liabilities. http://qz.com/135768/fitch-threatens-to-axe-the-united-states-aaa-rating/ VALUES & ETHICS 28. Deeper democracy magic from before the dawn of time: could democracy be undemocratic? OnlyTheSangfroid ...we are taught that democracy is the single best protection of the weak and vulnerable ever. It’s synonymous with freedom, with liberty, and with justice. If a State is undemocratic, we immediately recognise that it’s illegitimate. We are so deeply indoctrinated with love for democracy in the Anglosphere that it clouds our judgement regarding issues of social justice and the virtuous political state. http://ausopinion.com/2013/10/16/deeper-democracy-magic-from-before-the-dawn-of-time-could-democracy-be-undemocratic/ 29. Shorten's Catholic background Ray Cassin The truth is that these days even being a practising Catholic, rather than the nebulous 'of Catholic background', conveys nothing about the course a politician will choose on issues of conscience. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38371#.Ul6oqreqpZY GENDER INEQUITY 30. Gender pay inequality is still holding Australia back Nareen Young Should women demand to know what their male colleagues earn? Nareen Young says 'yes'. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-16/young-gender-pay-gap/5026096?WT.mc_id=newsmail 31. To all the women in science … please stand up! Olivia Carter As a woman interested in improving outcomes for women I feel like I am about to betray “the cause” by suggestion that any – even the smallest degree – of responsibility for the under-representation of women in science should be taken by the women wanting to be in science. http://theconversation.com/to-all-the-women-in-science-please-stand-up-19191 32. Why Are There Still So Few Women in Science? Eileen Pollack Last summer, researchers at Yale published a study proving that physicists, chemists and biologists are likely to view a young male scientist more favorably than a woman with the same qualifications. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/06/magazine/why-are-there-still-so-few-women-in-science.html 33. Women in TV science: time to shift out of Top Gear Sue Nelson Women have been left on the sidelines as a laddish, macho presenting culture takes over. Nowadays, it appears you can’t do mainstream popular science unless you’re fishing from the same pool of men. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/10350039/Women-in-TV-science-time-to-shift-out-of-Top-Gear.html RACIAL INEQUALITY 34. Race in the dock Kieran Finnane A murder trial in Alice Springs held up a mirror to the town’s dealings with issues of race, and the inter-racial dynamics turned out to be not nearly as clearcut as might be expected http://inside.org.au/race-in-the-dock/#sthash.ztUnv22L.dpuf FORMAL AND SUBSTANTIVE EQUALITY 35. Welfare doesn't cause poverty – it is necessary for more equality John Falzon Social spending, regardless of the screams of blue murder from those who have enough, helps build greater equality. Well-targeted spending is an investment in the health of the nation http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/16/welfare-doesnt-cause-poverty-it-is-necessary-for-more-equality? 36. Two Australias: A report on poverty in the land of plenty (20 pages) St Vincent de Paul Society National Council In an environment where it is popular to blame people for their poverty, I urge you to salute these people for their courage and to have the humility to listen to their stories and to learn from them. The truth told by the people on the margins speaks louder than the lies told about them. http://www.vinnies.org.au/files/VIC/Two%20Australias%20-%20A%20report%20on%20poverty%20in%20the%20land%20of%20plenty.pdf 37. My accidental apathy Megan Graham I'm ashamed to say that I almost never interact with poor people. I like to think that I care, that I humanise the issue in my mind, that I don't ignore it like so many do. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38370#.Ul6p-LeqpZY 38. The Real Reason for the Fight over the US Debt Limit Mark Thoma This political dispute over the debt limit is, plainly and simply, about the size and role of government. In particular, it’s an attempt by Republicans to use undue fear about the debt to scale back or eliminate spending on social insurance programs such as Medicare, Social Security, Obamacare, food stamps, and unemployment compensation. And it’s no accident that this attack on social insurance coincides with growing income inequality. http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/Columns/2013/09/24/Real-Reason-Fight-over-Debt-Limit#sthash.lxO8nahn.dpuf ENVIRONMENT + ENERGY 39. More Americans die from car pollution than car accidents Christopher Mims Some day our descendants will marvel that we ever lived in cities filled with emissions direct from the tailpipes of cars. A new study from MIT suggests that in the US, 53,000 people a year die prematurely because of automobile pollution, compared to 34,000 people a year who die in traffic accidents. http://qz.com/135509/more-americans-die-from-car-pollution-than-car-accidents/ 40. Wandoan – thriving or dying? Either way, a new name is in town Annie Kia As a citizen, I knew I had a responsibility to make an effort to understand these new technologies. I listened to YouTube lectures by Tony Ingraffea, a Cornell mining engineer and came to understand the relentless logic of this industry: progressive replication of a gas contraption across landscapes. CSG involved not just gaswells in close proximity, but pipes, roads, compressor stations, treatment plants and wastewater ponds. http://nofibs.com.au/2013/10/16/wandoan-thriving-dying-either-way-new-name-town-anniekia-reports/#sthash.TYWouGsf.dpuf 41. CSG: something for everyone Sarah Moles My groundwater education began in 2006 when I was appointed to the Qld Great Arteisan Basin Advisory Council (QGABAC). And it was at that table that the unconventional gas industry first popped onto my radar. http://nofibs.com.au/2013/10/10/csg-something-everyone-molessarah-reports/#sthash.a6j65I4w.dpuf 42. How to stop the repeal of the Clean Energy Package Simon Copeland The battle lines have been drawn. Tony Abbott has now released the draft legislation to repeal the carbon price. With The ALP and Greens standing firm with a strong ‘no’ to the bill, the next year will be dominated with the question, will the Clean Energy Package survive? http://ausopinion.com/2013/10/16/how-to-stop-the-repeal-of-the-clean-energy-package/ 43. It’s ‘Pollution’ stupid Ed Butler The debate around climate change has become so polluted (sorry) by partisan rhetoric and so confused by those seeking to retain the status quo that the very phrase ‘climate change’ simply beds down in people’s minds pre-existing confusion and apprehension – around cost, jobs, uncertain science, you name it. http://ausopinion.com/2013/10/16/its-pollution-stupid/ HEALTH 44. Human Brain Project: Henry Markram plans to spend €1bn building a perfect model of the human brain Mark Honigsbaum Henry Markram tells how his son's autism fired his ambition to unlock the secrets of consciousness by using 'big data' to trace the electronic signals that zing between neurons http://www.theguardian.com/science/2013/oct/15/human-brain-project-henry-markram? THE MEDIA 45. Rupert Murdoch’s sixtieth anniversary and the hazards of longevity Rodney Tiffen Rupert Murdoch may have set a world record for longevity in corporate governance, but his reputation would stand higher if he had retired ten years ago. http://inside.org.au/rupert-murdochs-sixtieth-anniversary/#sthash.jfw5MbT1.dpuf 46. The first-ever hashtag, @-reply and retweet, as Twitter users invented them Zachary M. Seward Twitter is pretty simple, but it started out even simpler. The 140-character messaging service launched on March 21, 2006 with no way to send a reply or retweet someone. And it certainly didn’t have hashtags. http://qz.com/135149/the-first-ever-hashtag-reply-and-retweet-as-twitter-users-invented-them/ TODAY’S MAIN NEWS • ROULE REPORT — Issues of Today http://paper.li/RouleReport/1334728962 • AN EYE ON ABC NEWS: . Keeping the bastards who keep the bastards honest, honest http://www.abcnewswatch.blogspot.com.au/ • AUSTRALIAN NEWSPAPER FRONT PAGES www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm • NEWS HEADLINES 17 October 2013 http://www.hotheadlines.com.au/ #################################################################

Casablanca

17/10/2013A few more links Defend strong climate action Greens Petition http://campaigns.greens.org.au/ea-action/action?ea.client.id=1792&ea.campaign.id=23239&ea.tracking.id=grns ON POINT: The repeal bill, 2014 timing and the FY15 windfall ‘game’ - ...a breakdown of the scope of the Coalition’s draft legislation... with analysis continuing to indicate that the earliest point of repeal of the carbon tax is likely to be October-December 2014, mid way through the FY15 compliance year, unless a compromised outcome is negotiated in the current Senate prior to June 30 2014. http://www.reputex.com/publications/latest-research/insights-articles/on-point-the-repeal-bill-2014-timing-and-the-fy15-windfall-game/#sthash.AoJVp8Iu.dpuf I Am Very Angry The pundits are claiming it was a mandate for Tony Abbott to freely enact all his Democratic Labor Party, Catholic and “let’s reward our big business contributors” thought bubbles. http://archiearchive.wordpress.com/ just JenRed ‏@JustJen64 13h #auspol @TonyAbbottMHR SACK RANDALL NOW .. 6 copies of Lazarus Rising in December XMAS SHOPPING @ TAX PAYERS COST. https://twitter.com/JustJen64/status/390320342171779072/photo/1 Weddings, Parties, Anything Spread Sheet https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AkbQG9GSsv-bdHZRVm9kX1VVRnl2c01Ub0I5NGNMN2c&usp=drive_web#gid=0

Janet (j4gypsy)

17/10/2013Morning all, and the wondrous Casablanca has by stealth in the night dealt another blow to political illiteracy. Thank you :). Here's a piece from [i]New Matilda[/i] that tucks neatly into 2353's 'Cone of Silence' metaphor, and takes it frighteningly further: [b]Abbott Puts A Gag On Australia[/b] by [i]Costa Avgoustinos[/i] ...Academics wishing to freely criticise the Coalition government may be hampered by a new policy of defunding research it deems “ridiculous”. Catriona Jackson, chief executive of peak research body Science and Technology Australia, said that, “Australians should ask: Do we want politicians picking and choosing which grant proposals deserve funding?” Indeed, how is our government to be kept in check if our best minds are afraid to criticise it lest it hurt their livelihood? ...The Coalition government has also promised to cut funding to anyone who merely expresses support for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign. This is a campaign aimed at ending Israeli apartheid in a similar way to how boycotts, divestments and sanctions were used to end South African apartheid in the 1980s – non-violently through economic pressure. ...Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are being silenced in their own communities (with the planned abolition of “scores of statutory indigenous governance bodies") and in the courts (with the planned cuts to Aboriginal legal services). Debate on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement has been conducted secretly, but leaks reveal it might infringe on Australian internet users’ rights. Tony Abbott’s own ministers have also had their permission to talk to the media without approval from the Prime Minister’s office curtailed. https://newmatilda.com/2013/10/16/abbott-puts-gag-australia

2353`

17/10/2013Good find Janet - given some of the professed beliefs of the current Federal Government; politicians picking and choosing research proposals based on their "educated" opinions is dangerous. Abbott is to an extent following the lead of such notables as Newman and O'Farrell. Here's whats coming next . . . Ironic much? That in the same week the Premier decides to get tough on bikies – which is to say, the week he tells some other actual tough guys guys in the police force to generate some good headlines for him by getting tough on bikies – he also announces plans to license a money printing operation to an incomparably larger and more ruthless shakedown racket. http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/comment/blogs/blunt-instrument/bikies-would-be-ashamed-of-states-casino-push-20131015-2vjbl.html#ixzz2hvDTT1ij The Queensland government's "medieval approach" to criminal justice runs the risk of sending the state "back to the days of being a colony" where detention was at the Governor's pleasure, claim legal stakeholders. The Queensland Law Society and the Catholic Prison Ministry have separately expressed concerns about recent changes to the state's law, which limit the power of the judiciary to make its own decisions. Catholic Prison Ministry coordinator Dave Martin said the government's plan to send "high risk" offenders, ruled by a jury to be "vicious lawless associates" to an extreme maximum security prison was "against the basic human rights of prisoners". "This is a medieval approach to criminal justice, bikies sentenced to imprisonment in maximum security units will have no access to rehabilitation opportunities and will exit the prison system traumatised and in some cases entirely unfit for reintegration into mainstream society," Mr Martin said http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/queensland-medieval-in-its-legislative-agenda-20131016-2vmqc.html#ixzz2hvDrOcj6 All the while Newman is announcing the "good" (read vote buying) news and is usually at the other end of the state when there is some scandal - such as his "hand picked" ex-DG (& LNP powerbroker)that lasted months before being sacked & invesitigated by the CMC. Apart from that the attitude is move along please - nothing to see here.

Catching up

17/10/2013Wonder what happen to the concept of separation of powers in this country, between the judicial and government. [quote]Separation of Powers: Parliament, Executive and Judiciary The Australian Constitution is the set of rules by which Australia is run. The first three chapters of the Constitution define three largely separate groups – the Parliament, the Executive and the Judiciary – and the roles they play in Australian governance. The power to make and manage federal law is divided between these three groups. This division is based on the principle of the 'separation of powers'. Under this principle, the power to govern should be distributed between the Parliament, the Executive and the Judiciary to avoid one group having all the power. Each group should work within defined areas of responsibility so that each keeps a check on the actions of the others[/quote] http://www.peo.gov.au/students/fact_sheets/separation_powers_parliament_executive_judiciary.html

Pappinbarra Fox

17/10/2013Catching Up, Quite true but the concept has been eroded in parliaments adopting the westminister system (not the US which has its own troubles) - in Qld for example they abolished the House of Review. But also the separation between the law makes and the Administration of those laws was never complete. For a while the idea of Ministerial Responsibility was used to ensure some separation - and Ministers were to report to parliament. That concept has been completely eroded since about 1998 after JWH lost a flurry of Ministers. And now, under Abbott, the idea of parliamentary review is stalled if parliament does not meet very often.

Catching up

17/10/2013When politicians take on the powers of the judiciary, it always end up in injustice and disaster. One only has to go back to the Howard government, where ministers interfered, and we the taxpayer end up paying comprehension to the victims. The ones that come to mind, was Dr. Haneef, The Philippine lady, Ms. Solon and the Australian citizens they locked up in a refugee centre,. Then we can move onto, all the young boat people, they declared to be adults, locking up in a adult prisons. We have no ides of the number of Afghans, they declared to be Pakistanis, then sending them to that country. We have no idea of the fate of many. Anytime, any of these cases get near a court, the minister is found to be mistaken. Most of the legislation, that the states are introducing will be thrown out, as unconstitutional. What I cannot understand is why more are not up in arms. It is the action, of those, who believe the have the power of dictators, and do not believe in the right of law. I have great problems with mandatory sentence of any type. That is the role of the judge or magistrate. The politicians make the law. The judiciary arm administers it. That is the way it should be. The process should be open and transparent. No cone of silence needed.

42 long

17/10/2013With all the MSM complicit in protecting them they shouldn't need to pervert the concept of justice any more than they have done so far. The overkill betrays their aims. BAD government. Be vigilant under threatening circumstances. We are in dangerous times.

Casablanca

17/10/2013 Janet Love your comment that I had[quote] dealt another blow to political illiteracy [/quote]with the Cache. It did indeed put a smile on my face. Thanks for the New Matilda link. Adam Bandt also picks up on the conservatism of the conservatives in his Guardian article which is a must read: [b]By repealing the carbon tax, Tony Abbott is failing to protect his people[/b] There’s nothing new about conservatives slowing down the pace of reform, offering paternal protection and preserving the status quo. Some might say that’s what defines them. http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/16/by-repealling-the-carbon-tax-tony-abbott-is-failing-to-protect-its-people?

Casablanca

17/10/2013CU That was a useful link that you provided to the Parliamentary Education Office www.peo.gov.au/.../...ent_executive_judiciary.html You may have noticed the several articles at the Flagpost that I have linked in the past. These are provided by the Commonwealth Parliamentary Library. http://parliamentflagpost.blogspot.com.au/ Another good link appears on the individual Members and Senators APH webpage. I refer to the link: Browse all speeches (Hansard) which appears on the left of screen on the individual parliamentarian's web page. This link has come into its own with citizen sleuths seeking out information about parliamentarians and their sometimes sanctimonious and smug pronouncements which belie their attitude to entitlements. http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au http://www.aph.gov.au Thus, at item 3 in today's Cache the link http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fhansardr%2F349cd40e-55d4-4907-8ae0-0b25b483b9b2%2F0278%22 was to a speech by Don Randall where I discovered that he, the latest miscreant in the entitlements saga, is actually a member of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Privileges. Hollywood couldn't write a better script.

TalkTurkey

17/10/2013Janet our Gypsy Rover said in one of the best comments ever: [i]Morning all, and the wondrous Casablanca has by stealth in the night dealt another blow to political illiteracy. Thank you :)[/i] And Janet's work is even less obvious but I just want people to know, it is just as important. There are some beaut blokes around the Sword but gee the sheilas are great workers. Thank you all. I always said that women would win us the election - but that was while *J*U*L*I*A* was PM. Women will win us the NEXT election.

TalkTurkey

17/10/2013Every Comrade should know this story! HON PETER COLLIER (North Metropolitan — Minister for Energy) [5.33 pm]: Prior to question time I was talking about the separation of powers and my strong feeling that the proposed select committee will compromise the separation of powers within Western Australia. There is a bit of a problem when we blur the lines of responsibility in the different levels of government, and when one level encroaches on another, we go down a very slippery slope. I just draw the house’s attention to the following article to reinforce what I have just said on the separation of powers. The article from Oz Politics, under the heading “Separation of powers”, reads — Introduction The doctrine of the separation of powers had a celebrated moment in the history of Queensland politics. It occurred in December 1988, at the Fitzgerald Commission of Inquiry into Possible Illegal Activities and Associated Police Misconduct. In spite of his 19 years experience as the Premier of Queensland, the by then retired Sir John Bjelke Petersen was unable to explain the doctrine to the Inquiry. Quite simply, the ex-Premier had no idea. Evan Whitton (1989: 184-185) reported part of the exchange as follows: Michael Forde (Counsel examining Sir Joh Bjelke Petersen): What do you understand by the doctrine of the separation of powers under the Westminster system? Sir Joh Bjelke Petersen: The Westminster system? The stock? Forde: The doctrine of the separation of powers under the Westminster system? Bjelke Petersen: No, I don’t quite know what you’re driving at. The document? Forde: No, I’ll say it again. What do you understand by the doctrine of the separation of powers under the Westminster system? Bjelke Petersen: I don’t know which doctrine you refer to. Forde: There is only one doctrine of the separation of powers. Bjelke Petersen: I believe in it very strongly, and despite what you may say, I believe that we do have a great responsibility to the people who elect us to government. And that’s to maintain their freedom and their rights, and I did that—sought to do it—always. Forde: I’m sure you’re trying to be responsive to the question, but the question related to the doctrine of the separation of powers or the principles — Bjelke Petersen: Between the Government and the—Is it? Forde: No, you tell me what you understand. Bjelke Petersen: Well, the separation of the doctrine that you refer to, in relation to where the Government stands, and the rest of the community stands, or where the rest of the instruments of Government stand. Is that what—? Forde: No. Bjelke Petersen: Well you tell me. And I’ll tell you whether you’re right or not. Don’t you know? So folks ...... ? How do you . . ? . . No nobody else did neither with Bjelke. Howard learned heaps from him. Never know anything. Bafflegab. Journalists (*the Chooks* to Jo) have NO IDEA of how to deal with it.

Casablanca

18/10/2013 Petitioning Australian Federal Police [b]Australian Federal Police: Prosecute Tony Abbott for the serious abuse of his entitlements[/b] https://www.change.org/en-AU/petitions/australian-federal-police-prosecute-tony-abbott-for-the-serious-abuse-of-his-entitlements/sponsors/new?aftersign=true

Casablanca

18/10/2013 CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Friday, 18 October 2013: 55 items ENTITLEMENTS & FIDDLES 1. Bowen open to expenses inquiry; questions Randall expense claims Louise Yaxley To claim parliamentary sittings in Melbourne is disingenuous. The Parliament hasn't sat in Melbourne since 1927. The claim of electorate business in Cairns is problematic for him. I think he owes people a much better explanation than the one he's provided so far and if he won't give it, Tony Abbott should. http://www.abc.net.au/am/content/2013/s3870862.htm 2. Travel expenses: Labor MP asks AFP to investigate Tony Abbott Katharine Murphy ‘Public has the right to expect that all MPs are treated equally,’ MP says as Coalition comes under increasing pressure. Mitchell has asked the AFP commissioner Tony Negus to investigate the claims for weddings and other personal expenses made by Abbott and Brandis, which have been the subject of public controversy. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/17/rob-mitchell-asks-afp-investigate-expenses 3. AFP called on to look into Abbott, Brandis wedding cost claims Mark Kenny, Daniel Hurst, Heath Aston Expenses claims by Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Attorney-General George Brandis have been referred to the Australian Federal Police, and a senior Liberal has been urged to resign by one of his colleagues as the expenses scandal continues to dog the government. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/afp-called-on-to-look-into-abbott-brandis-wedding-cost-claims-20131017-2vpqx.html 4. Lib MP should face police over expenses Tom Allard, Analysis West Australian Liberal MP Don Randall should be lawyering up and preparing for a full investigation by the Australian Federal Police http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/lib-mp-should-face-police-over-expenses-20131016-2vmzx.html 5. PM under pressure on expenses claims Jonathan Swan, Lisa Visentin and Tom Allard Prime Minister Tony Abbott is refusing to take action against a Liberal MP who has spent more than $10,000 of taxpayers' money on questionable expenses including travel that appears to be linked to his Cairns investment property. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/pm-under-pressure-on-expenses-claims-20131016-2vn7y.html 6. Abbott expenses 'fraudulent' says Latham (01:24) Tony Abbott should be charged with fraud after claiming expenses to go to the weddings of Peter Slipper and Sophie Mirabella, says former Labor leader, Mark Latham. 17/10/13 http://media.theage.com.au/national/selections/abbott-expenses-fraudulent-says-latham-4836867.html 7. Weddings, Parties, Anything Spreadsheet Updated 17 October 2013 https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AkbQG9GSsv-bdHZRVm9kX1VVRnl2c01Ub0I5NGNMN2c&usp=drive_web#gid=0 8. Disclosure Log - Documents released by Finance in response to Freedom of Information requests From 1 May 2011, under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act), agencies are required to publish information in documents provided in response to FOI requests. http://www.finance.gov.au/foi/disclosure-log/index.html LABOR 9. Nicola Roxon on Kevin Rudd: How do I hate thee? Let me count the ways Peter Hartcher Nicola Roxon has supplied a 6000-word answer to a question Kevin Rudd sometimes asked his colleagues – why does she hate me so much? Labor has been as fervent in denouncing Rudd for the past three years as it was silent in acquiescing him in the preceding three years. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/nicola-roxon-on-kevin-rudd-how-do-i-hate-thee-let-me-count-the-ways-20131017-2vo90.html 10. Bob Carr took voters for a ride when he promised to serve full Senate term Lenore Taylor Almost 1.4 million people in NSW voted him in, but five weeks after his election win, Carr looks set to vacate his Senate seat. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/17/bob-carr-voters-ride-senate POLITICS 11. Abbott Puts A Gag On Australia Costa Avgoustinos Tony Abbott's government is hushing up academics, human rights defenders - even their own ministers. Whose right to free speech do they actually stand for.. https://newmatilda.com/2013/10/16/abbott-puts-gag-australia 12. Ten Takeaways From The Great G.O.P. Cave-In John Cassidy President Obama won. For once, he held firm, and it worked. The G.O.P. lost, and so did the Tea Party. Both saw their approval ratings fall to record lows. http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/johncassidy/2013/10/ten-takeaways-from-the-great-gop-cave-in.html 13. Suspense! Action! And a Hollywood ending Alan Kohler Surprise, surprise. America’s politicians have struck a last-minute deal to avoid default. The nation breathes a sigh of relief. Markets rally. White teeth are displayed before banks of microphones. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/17/economy/suspense-action-and-hollywood-ending?utm_source=exact&utm_medium=email&utm_content=468003&utm_campaign=pm&modapt= 14. Obama signs bill raising debt ceiling AAP, with a staff reporter and Dow Jones United States President Barack Obama has signed a bill ending the two-week US government shutdown and extending the Treasury's borrowing authority. His signature follows passage of the bill through the US House of Representatives in a 285-144 vote, after the Senate earlier passed the bill 81-18. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/news/2013/10/17/us-economy/obama-signs-bill-raising-debt-ceiling?utm_source=exact&utm_medium=email&utm_content=468003&utm_campaign=pm&modapt= 15. Palmer's everything Shorten could wish for Rob Burgess With the Coalition wedded to a hard-line stance on the budget, Clive Palmer's push for carbon tax compensation could handball significant political leverage to Labor. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/17/national-affairs/palmers-everything-shorten-could-wish [Paywalled] 16. Kevin Rudd loyalists hit back after Nicola Roxon's 'bastard' attack on former PM Emma Griffiths Kevin Rudd supporters within the Labor Caucus have slapped down a scathing assessment of the former prime minister, saying the comments should be kept "behind closed doors". Includes links to video & transcript of Ms Roxon's Lecture. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-17/rudd-supporters-take-issue-with-roxon-attack-on-former-pm/5028256?WT.mc_id=newsmail 17. Forget the Tea Party, we need a new Party in Australia – The Link prestontowers I have had some involvement with progressive politics over the past little while. What my involvement has taught me is that it’s perhaps time for a change in politics, the time is ripe for a new party to be formed that could be a home for a number of political active people currently in other parties but feel constrained by the rules, structures, policies and other members of that party. … http://ausopinion.com/2013/10/17/forget-the-tea-party-we-need-a-new-party-in-australia-the-link/ 18. The Coalition and the mandate myth Max Atkinson | 10 October 2013 It would not have impressed Edmund Burke — the father of conservative political philosophy — who said this betrays, rather than serves, constituents. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38344#.Ul_cObeqpZY 19. Abbott Government: Mandate? What Mandate? clarencegirl Someone needs to remind Prime Minister Abbott that the combined first preference vote of all four political parties (Liberal, Liberal-National, Nationals, Country Liberals NT) which form the current Coalition Government only came to 42.85 per cent of all ballots cast at the 7 September 2013 federal election. http://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com.au/2013/10/abbott-government-mandate-what-mandate.html 20. Repent or Go Back to the Polls The Hoopla Get out of my way on the abolition of carbon tax or it’s back to the polls we go, is the threat from Prime Minister Tony Abbott. http://thehoopla.com.au/repent-go-back-polls/ 21. Workers' rights: Australia's dangerous narrative of progress Sarah Burnside Pressure is currently being placed on the new government by the business community to 'reform' the industrial relations system. We need to remain alert http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/17/workers-rights-australias-dangerous-narrative-of-progress 22. Canada shames Australia on CHOGM boycott Michael Mullins | 13 October 2013 Canada's conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper has put Australia to shame by confirming that his country will boycott next month's Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Sri Lanka over human rights concerns. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38338#.Ul_edbeqpZY 23. For Obama and Boehner, Weakness Is Strength Cass R. Sunstein In a negotiation, you might well have more power if you are powerless. Strength can be weakness, and weakness can be strength. Since 2011, these principles have been playing a significant role in conflicts between President Barack Obama and the House of Representatives. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-10-14/for-obama-and-boehner-weakness-is-strength.html 24. Coming out on top: negotiation theory and the US government shutdown Becky Batagol .... various news articles attempted to explain the shutdown and debt ceiling negotiations in terms of game theory or the Cold War, alongside advice from negotiation experts which proposed solutions to the standoff. Much of this analysis radically oversimplified the complexity of the specific circumstances of the negotiation process and oversold the predictive power of negotiation theory. http://theconversation.com/coming-out-on-top-negotiation-theory-and-the-us-government-shutdown-19264 25. Childish behaviour drives Americans to drink - and not tea Paul McGeough All references to the childish behaviour of Republican congressmen picking a fight they could not win are unfair – to the children of the United States. Especially given that as these brawlers licked their wounds on Wednesday, some eagerly looked ahead to the next fight – just a few months from now. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/world/childish-behaviour-drives-americans-to-drink--and-not-tea-20131017-2vo8l.html 26. Repent, or “I didn’t expect the Spanish Inquisition!” rossleighbrisbane PRIME Minister Tony Abbott says Labor should “repent” for its broken promise to introduce a carbon tax by passing his laws to axe it before ¬Christmas. http://theaimn.com/2013/10/17/repent-or-i-didnt-expect-the-spanish-inquistion/ ANTI-POVERTY WEEK 27. Ways of knowing people in poverty Andrew Hamilton In writing on poverty there is often tension between a hard-edged realism and spiritual or romantic fascination. The tension suggests that neither attitude is sufficient. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38367#.Ul-jsreqpZY 28. Prioritising homelessness Cec Shevels | 14 October 2013 Australia has been experiencing high levels of homelessness for more than a decade. Our country has also been experiencing a shortage of affordable housing during this period. There is an obvious connection between the two. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38343#.Ul_biLeqpZY 29. Father Bob, dissident prophet Tim Kroenert | 16 October 2013 In Bob We Trust (PG). Director: Lynn-Maree Milburn. Starring: Bob Maguire, John Safran. 102 minutes Plus Official Trailer of 2.02m This is an appealing narrative for a secular public that has become disillusioned with institutional religion, especially due to the sexual abuse crisis and inequitable practices regarding marriage and the role of women within the hierarchy. ECONOMY + BUSINESS 30. Why miners will backflip on tax John Menadue ... in the political argy-bargy over Commonwealth mining taxes, the states have seized the opportunity to substantially increase mining royalties. Some miners must be wondering whether they took the right course in opposing the RSPT, in which taxes are levied on the profitability of the enterprise rather than royalties based on the value of the output. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38377#.Ul-2p7eqpZY 31. Should the HELP debt be sold? Andrew Norton The government is now hosing down yesterday’s speculation that the accumulated student HELP debt will be sold. http://andrewnorton.net.au/2013/10/17/should-the-help-debt-be-sold/ 32. “Hockey: No plan to privatise HECS debt” Leith van Onselen I’d like to think that yesterday I (along with Matt Cowgill) scored a small victory in getting the Federal Treasurer, Joe Hockey, to state today that the proposal to sell-off Australia’s HECS debts to the private sector is “not current Coalition policy”, despite the usual MSM echo chamber. http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/10/hockey-no-plan-to-privatise-hecs-debt/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily+MacroBusiness&utm_content=Daily+MacroBusiness+CID_0fe16abf021997cd21f11c9c5115638d&utm_source=Email+marketing+software&utm_term=Hockey+No+plan+to+privatise+HECS+debt 33. Tougher land scrutiny won’t jeopardise China trade deal, says Liberal MP Michelle Grattan As Nationals fear an Australia-China free trade agreement might water down proposed tougher foreign investment scrutiny of land and agribusiness takeovers, new Liberal MP Angus Taylor has dismissed as “dross” suggestions such a compromise would be needed to secure a deal. http://theconversation.com/tougher-land-scrutiny-wont-jeopardise-china-trade-deal-says-liberal-mp-19253 34. Executive pay pain won’t go away Julie Walker The controversial two-strikes law for shareholder voting on executive remuneration is now in its third Australian AGM season. The rule requires companies to put a motion to shareholders to “spill” the board if the remuneration report receives a “no” vote of 25% or more at two consecutive AGMs. http://theconversation.com/executive-pay-pain-wont-go-away-18696 35. Overburdening the confidence fairy Houses and Holes The growing bevy of consumptionista really are kidding themselves about Australia’s future growth prospects. Equities analysts, market and official economists relying on a consumer rebound to drive growth need a wake up call and yesterday Macquarie Bank produced a chart that does it for me: Take a long hard look at this growth forecast and its [...] http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2013/10/overburdening-the-confidence-fairy/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily+MacroBusiness&utm_content=Daily+MacroBusiness ENVIRONMENT + ENERGY 36. By repealing the carbon tax, Tony Abbott is failing to protect his people Adam Bandt While much of the rest of the world is moving forward with action on climate change, Tony Abbott is taking Australia backwards. There’s nothing new about conservatives slowing down the pace of reform, offering paternal protection and preserving the status quo. Some might say that’s what defines them. http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/16/by-repealling-the-carbon-tax-tony-abbott-is-failing-to-protect-its-people? 37. Carbon repeal's cost? All in the timing Tristan Edis The Abbott government has announced...that they will let the carbon price, or tax, run its course for this financial year, but has made the bold pronouncement that: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/16/policy-politics/carbon-repeals-cost-all-timing 38. Time to change how the IPCC reports? Kevin Trenberth This week, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released the outcomes from Working Group I (WG-I) of the Fifth Assessment Report on the physical climate change. The IPCC has issued four previous assessments, in 1990, 1995, 2001 and 2007. Should there be another one in 2019? Or should IPCC reports evolve along with its findings and the state of the climate? http://www.skepticalscience.com/news.php?n=2237 39. Lower bills won't happen, say experts Peter Hannam, Mark Kenny Experts have rejected claims by the federal government that household expenses would be significantly smaller after a repeal of the carbon tax. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/lower-bills-wont-happen-say-experts-20131016-2vn3r.html 40. Should we move species threatened by climate change? A collaborative effort by several academics Climate change is one of the greatest threats the world’s animals and plants are facing. In fact the world is facing an extinction crisis, which should concern all of us. The major problem with climate change is not so much that climate is changing, but that it is changing faster than species can move or adapt. http://theconversation.com/should-we-move-species-threatened-by-climate-change-19265 41. Australian endangered species: Tinker frogs Clay Simpkins South-west of the port of Gladstone in Queensland lies Kroombit Tops National Park, housing many plants and animals, some of them unique. The reserve includes steep escarpments with wet, rainforest gullies. http://theconversation.com/australian-endangered-species-tinker-frogs-19022 42. The key to fighting climate change is in the land Penny van Oosterzee Australia could lead the world in combating climate change. Wouldn’t you like to believe this was true? Actually though, Australia has a world-beating model to deal with climate change. But I’m not talking about energy efficiency programs. I’m not even talking about taxes or an emissions trading scheme. I’m talking about the land. http://theconversation.com/the-key-to-fighting-climate-change-is-in-the-land-18409 43. Repealing the carbon tax: hidden costs and unanswered questions Rosemary Lyster There are reasons Australia has a price on carbon. Let’s recap. The IPCC has released its Fifth Assessment Report stating that the increase in atmospheric concentrations of CO2, methane, and nitrous oxide is unprecedented in the last 800,000 years. http://theconversation.com/repealing-the-carbon-tax-hidden-costs-and-unanswered-questions-19203 44. Business may keep paying carbon price if repeal fails David Twomey The Environment Minister in Australia’s conservative Liberal-National government, Greg Hunt, has refused to say if business will continue to pay the carbon price after next June if the government’s repeal bills have not passed. http://econews.com.au/news-to-sustain-our-world/business-may-keep-paying-carbon-price-if-repeal-fails/ GENDER INEQUALITY 45. The myth of merit and unconscious bias Jennifer Whelan The presence of only one woman, albeit a high profile one, in Tony Abbott’s cabinet has prompted renewed calls for the introduction of quotas to ensure greater numbers of senior women in government. And with the 2013 AGM season well underway, resolving issues surrounding gender inequality in leadership roles is a hot topic. http://theconversation.com/the-myth-of-merit-and-unconscious-bias-18876 ASYLUM SEEKERS 46. Boat carrying about 60 asylum seekers arrives at Christmas Island Judith Ireland Fairfax Media photographs show a boat carrying men, women and children who appear to be of Middle Eastern and African descent arriving at the island on Thursday..Under a new communications regime imposed by the Coalition, the government no longer announces or confirms each boat as it arrives. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/boat-carrying-about-60-asylum-seekers-arrives-at-christmas-island-20131017-2vokx.html 47. Australia's asylum seeker vergogna Kerry Murphy 14 October 2013 Over the last month, over 200 asylum seekers have drowned at sea on their voyage. If they had been intercepted while at sea, or made landfall, they would have been taken to an island for identification and screening. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38358#.Ul-s4reqpZY CULTURE 48. Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming Neil Gaiman A lecture explaining why using our imaginations, and providing for others to use theirs, is an obligation for all citizens. It's important for people to tell you what side they are on and why, and whether they might be biased. http://www.theguardian.com/books/2013/oct/15/neil-gaiman-future-libraries-reading-daydreaming 49. Notes against a closed-fist mind Peter Bakowski 3 poems. When writing Bakowski keeps in mind the following three quotes: 'Use ordinary words to say extraordinary things' (Arthur Schopenhauer); 'Writing is painting' (Charles Bukowski); 'Make your next poem different from your last' (attributed to Robert Frost). http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38357#.Ul_dg7eqpZY JOURNALISM 50. Journalism, not dead but barely alive Barry Tucker 15 October, 2013 Guess what? Newspapers are dying but journalism is not dead. Yes, the debate, even among intellectuals and academics, is as boringly obvious as that. http://truthinmediaresourcecentre.wordpress.com/2013/10/15/journalism-not-dead-but-barely-alive/ 51. We still want to consume news – but tastes are changing Stephen Harrington Earlier this year, the ABC’s managing director Mark Scott announced Australia’s public broadcaster would begin a search “to find creative ways to deliver news to children and teenagers” http://theconversation.com/we-still-want-to-consume-news-but-tastes-are-changing-19098 52. Guerrilla Journalism – bypassing the spin of billionaires and re:creating a new left media turnleft In ‘The Art Of War’ Sun Tzu talked about taking your enemies strengths and making them into weaknesses...The same can be seen with the current media landscape, old media versus new guerrilla media. http://theaimn.com/2013/10/16/guerrilla-journalism-bypassing-the-spin-of-billionaires-and-recreating-a-new-left-media/ HEALTH 18 October 2013 53. Medical journals refuse to publish tobacco-funded research Isabelle Knight and Reema Rattan Editors of journals published by the BMJ Group will no longer consider publishing research that is partly or wholly funded by the tobacco industry, the journals have said in an editorial published this week. http://theconversation.com/medical-journals-refuse-to-publish-tobacco-funded-research-19201 54. Viewpoints: can you be healthy at any weight? Anna Peeters and Tim Olds Today’s Viewpoints: can you be healthy at any weight? Tim Olds argues we can; while Anna Peeters outlines why we shouldn’t give up on keeping our weight in check. http://theconversation.com/viewpoints-can-you-be-healthy-at-any-weight-18539 55. The Rising Cost of Musculoskeletal Conditions in Australia. (72 pages) Arthritis & Osteoporosis, Victoria This isn’t 'just another report’ full of new statistics–it’s the story of a much bigger issue. There are already 6.1 million Australians with musculoskeletal conditions. It’s affecting productivity, placing an enormous burden on the health system and causing pain and disability. http://www.arthritisvic.org.au/Useful-Information/About-Us/A-Problem-Worth-Solving/APWS.aspx TODAY’S MAIN NEWS • ROULE REPORT — Issues of Today http://paper.li/RouleReport/1334728962 • AN EYE ON ABC NEWS: . Keeping the bastards who keep the bastards honest, honest http://www.abcnewswatch.blogspot.com.au/ • AUSTRALIAN NEWSPAPER FRONT PAGES www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm • NEWS HEADLINES 18 October 2013 http://www.hotheadlines.com.au/ #################################################################

Casablanca

18/10/2013 [b]If not now, when?[/b] Ed Butler Sydney is aflame. In October. In Spring. ...if we can’t talk about climate change when fires are tearing across half of New South Wales, fires that have been burning on and off since late August (that’s winter, for those keeping track), fires that are burning through yet another record-setting heat wave, then when on earth can we? On the day, and the two days prior, we had our government furiously making its case to rip up the laws Australia has in place to tackle the problem of a rapidly heating planet. On Thursday, Tony Abbott was still making his case that the ALP join him (“repent”, I believe the word was) in removing the laws that were so hard to instate in the first place. http://ausopinion.com/2013/10/17/if-not-now-when-2/

TalkTurkey

18/10/2013Cannabinoid receptors in the brain This is all true. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aVS9QIzTT7k

2353`

18/10/2013Thinking of coming to Brisbane when the G20 is on next year? This might change your mind. http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/canadian-warning-about-brisbanes-g20-20131017-2vpuo.html

Catching up

18/10/2013No concerns yet from Mr. Abbott about NSW fires. I believe he is too busy another stunt in Brisbane, with Mr. Cando.

Martin Spalding

18/10/2013Casablanca - great set of links as usual, picking up where Lyn left off in terms of quality. But I notice you have linked more than once to the 'ABC News Watch' blog site. This is a fringe climate denialist site run by Marc Hendricx, a moderately well-known geologist & climate sceptic in Aust. He routinely trots out the kinds of arguments you see on Watts Up With That, Bolt, Lomborg & the like, and buys into the whole ABC left-wing bias furphy. For examples of his work check out the ABC Drum site. I read a number of the pieces on his blog & found them staggeringly biased & full of questionable logic. What do others think?

Michael Taylor

18/10/2013TT, thanks for that piece on JBP and the separation of powers. I have the transcript somewhere in one of my university readers and have been looking for it for years. Do you think that I can find it? No. You've saved me a lot of trouble. 2353, congratulations on another great post. TPS has unearthed another talented writer.

Catching up

18/10/2013It appears there is not going to be any wages rises for the staff of this government, for those who followed Abbott from Opposition. Most are upset, as they believe extra work and responsibilities, deserve extra wages. the same as their bosses are getting. on becoming ministers. I believe they might have a point. Talk about a self centred government. We get the shadow ministry, today, I believe. Time for Shorten, also to get his messages out re the fires.

Catching up

18/10/2013They say that Abbott is not taking questions at his PC in Brisbane today!!!!!!!

2353`

18/10/2013CU - right again. [quote]Tony Abbott was at the Executive Building on George Street this morning to sign a memorandum of understanding with Premier Campbell Newman designed to cut green tape. The MOU effectively hands the state government the power to make environmental approvals. Mr Abbott dodged journalists, appearing only for the photo opportunity before leaving rather quickly.[/quote] http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/brisbane-live/brisbane-live-friday-october-18-2013-20131018-2vqq8.html#ixzz2i27sn6ug

2353`

18/10/2013Migs - thanks for the high praise. I'm flattered.

Catching up

18/10/2013Abbott has got the message, is now on ABC 24. Looks and sounds false as usual. No questions it seems.

Catching up

18/10/2013Abbott has a big problem for a PM. It appears he can only deal with one matter at a time.

42 long

18/10/2013Quick to insinuate character flaws or worse in other people but quick to avoid scrutiny of himself. Is he scared we will find out he is a FRAUD with no real substance to him? A fifth rate actor.

Catching up

18/10/2013Abbott turning up in Wimmalee shortly. Wonder if there will be nay q and a

Catching up

18/10/2013Wonder if Abbott will turn up, in full gear.

Catching up

18/10/2013Well he gas taken his jacket off. Abbott, that is at Winnalee.

Catching up

18/10/2013Will take a couple of questions.

TalkTurkey

18/10/2013 Michael T I'm glad that I was able to help you find that transcript of Bjelke being quizzed on the doctrine of the separation of powers - what a disgrace that this man was allowed to lead Queensland for any time at all let alone many many years. And let us never forget that his replacement of a deceased Labor Senator with "Independent Labor" Fielding brought down Gough Whitlam's government. But I'm surprised you have had trouble finding the document, all I did was Google a few words - Bjelke-Petersen Separation of Powers maybe, I forget - but it took me there instantly. I have great faith in Google~Magic, I often find the words to obscure songs, or verse or prose, just by using a few distinctive remembered words. Here's an example ... I just pulled out of the air (literally!)to see if I could. I haven't read Tom Sawyer or Huckleberry Finn since my early teens but I remember Huck saying these words, "I catched a catfish ..." so I Googled that and there it is! catched - Wiktionary en.wiktionary.org/wiki/catched‎ [i]I catched a catfish and haggled him open with my saw, and towards sundown I started my camp fire and had supper. Then I set out a line to catch some fish for ...[/i] The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Chapter 8: Page 2 - SparkNotes www.sparknotes.com › ... › The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn‎ We all appreciate of your visits and kind words. That is lovely to hear from one of the best blogmasters of all. Thanks Migs. So then I looked up Duckwit and I found that too. ;-)

TalkTurkey

18/10/2013Deeply sad for all the people who have lost homes or been hurt by the Fires. I'm personally sadder still for the loss of habitat which will now become rotten foreign-weed-infested land for the rest of the time life exists on poor raped Earth. I'm saddest of all for the species which today will become forever extinct. No, maybe I'm sadder even than that for people like myself, and the many who feel as I do, who have long foreseen the degradation of our Planet, who have tried to resist it in ways far too tiny, and who daily see our predictions coming true. I'm probably sorriest-of-all for us - with for example Dr David Suzuki and ex-Senator Brown near our philosophical head - because the people who have been blissfully unaware of impending Doom haven't had any pain hitherto, and won't until it comes to get them ... and the poor animals going extinct as I speak don't have to suffer long neither ... Only us poor sentient wretches with a mind and a conscience, and a love of Dog. Here's a funny thing: from my experiences of Mormons and Adventists at my door, I have a vastly better knowledge of the Bible than they do! - Well not vastly maybe, but they mostly have very little at all. But just because I'm non-theist doesn't mean I discount all the predictions in the Bible ... I'm'a post this now but I'll follow up on that last mysterious statement later on. Sooner or later anyway. Fight on Comrades. That's all we can do. And, Respect to the firefighters doing their best as I write.

Casablanca

19/10/2013 CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Saturday, 19 October 2013: 35 items ENTITLEMENTS & FIDDLES 1. Rob Mitchell's letter to Commissioner Tony Negus Request for investigation of claims by Senator Brandis http://www.scribd.com/doc/176774787/Rob-Mitchell-s-letter-to-Commissioner-Tony-Negus 2. 'Trust-me Tony's' silence on expenses is curious Mark Kenny When Tony Abbott wasn't casting the election as a referendum on the carbon tax or border security, he was framing it as a referendum on trust...Restoring trust in government, voters were assured, was the bare minimum Australians were owed after the multiple breaches of the Rudd/Gillard period...It is jarring to see how quickly the public's reasonable expectation of probity in its political representatives has been superseded by the reflex to secrecy and self-protection in the new political class. Mr Abbott's reluctance to reset the standards and be seen to prosecute fraudulent behaviour, suggest the government has already switched to putting its own political interest above those of voters. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/trustme-tonys-silence-on-expenses-is-curious-20131017-2vpjm.html POLITICS 3. NDIS is not above politics after all Dr George Taleporos Before the recent federal election, both Labor and the Coalition stated that the NDIS is a policy issue that is above politics. However, recent events indicate those declarations may have been wishful thinking. http://www.abc.net.au/rampup/articles/2013/10/17/3871334.htm 4. Air of secrecy as Treasury rules against releasing Hockey brief Markus Mannheim Late on Friday, the Treasury said it would reject requests to access the Coalition brief, or ''blue book'', which it gave to Mr Hockey last month. It said making the secret brief public might damage its relationship with the new Treasurer...The document is a comprehensive presentation of the main economic and policy challenges facing Australia and the federal budget. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/national/public-service/air-of-secrecy-as-treasury-rules-against-releasing-hockey-brief-20131018-2vsrm.html#ixzz2i4sfj4BP 5. Tony Abbott confuses himself with myself, says Bill Shorten Mark Kenny "Mr Abbott confuses himself with myself," Mr Shorten said in Canberra, after Mr Abbott had predicted that Labor would crumble and allow the repeal bills through because the carbon tax was a negative for it. "It is important that we have a principle that the future of this country can't be mortgaged or delayed, that's why we believe putting a price on carbon pollution is important." http://www.canberratimes.com.au/national/tony-abbott-confuses-himself-with-myself-says-bill-shorten-20131018-2vsij.html 6. Suddenly, I just stopped being a left wing moron and learned to love Tony (but in a totally acceptable blokey way)! rossleighbrisbane It hit me today. I was listening to the ABC whine on in their lefty way, while reading the positivity of Liberal’s “Real Solutions” and I had the epiphany. We approach things all wrong in this country, but thanks to.. http://theaimn.com/author/rossleighbrisbane/ 7. The Link – Not the Party For Me prestontowers I rarely write follow up posts, but I feel as though the reaction to my previous post about “The Link” requires me to do so. In that blog post, I laid out the approach and policies of a possible new “Left” party. Many believed that I was saying that I wanted to start such a party or be the part of such a party. ‘Nothing could be further from the truth. http://ausopinion.com/2013/10/18/the-link-not-the-party-for-me/ 8. Jacksonville 61: A licence to print money Peter Wicks [Kathy Jackson presumably] is trying to seek immunity from prosecution from the mountains of allegations against her and immunity for Michael Lawler for his alleged involvement. This cannot be allowed to happen at any cost and, if it does, it will be a sure sign that the corruption goes all the way to the top of the Liberal Party, given Lawler was appointed by Tony Abbott himself, and George Brandis and Eric Abetz have been involved throughout the ordeal. http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/politics/jacksonville-61-a-licence-to-print-money/ 9. A farewell to arts: on philosophy, ARC funding and ‘waste’ Martin Davies The Coalition – among others – have been recently taking aim at the worth of certain Australian Research Council (ARC)-funded projects. Verbal jousting around the value of philosophy as a humanities discipline has followed. Battlelines on these issues have formed, but as usual the truth lies somewhere in the middle. I suggest that the debate needs to mature a little. http://theconversation.com/a-farewell-to-arts-on-philosophy-arc-funding-and-waste-19064 10. Armed neutrality presents no conflict of interest Nicholas Stuart Armed neutrality has suited New Zealand and might be right for us as well. Unfortunately the forthcoming white paper won't even consider this possibility. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/armed-neutrality-presents-no-conflict-of-interest-20131018-2vsiv.html#ixzz2i5aaTKOj PARLIAMENT 11. Roo Poo and Who’s Who in the Senate Zoo Sarah Capper It was perhaps the moment in which I found myself googling “Ricky Muir” + “poo” that served as the final straw in realising the need for Senate reform. Not that I needed much convincing – the new Senator-elect from Victoria from the Palmer United Palmer Motoring Enthusiasts Party is just one of several fresh faces in the who’s new in the Upper House zoo. http://nofibs.com.au/2013/10/18/roo-poo-whos-senate-zoo/#sthash.6IkKzO2s.dpuf 12. Senior Abbott staffers furious after being told they will not get pay rise Andrew Greene Several Coalition staff members have told the ABC's AM program it is another example of the power wielded by Peta Credlin in Tony Abbott's office. AM has spoken to several disgruntled staffers who have accused the Prime Minister's Office of ruthlessly exercising power and "shafting" them. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-18/senior-abbott-staffers-furious-over-no-pay-rise/5030372?WT.mc_id=newsmail 13. Boomers v Gen X: how the Tony Abbott and Bill Shorten teams compare ABC Bill Shorten has hailed his shadow ministry as an example of "generational change", heavy on Generation X representation. Here is how the Abbott ministry and the Shorten shadow ministry match up on age and experience. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-18/abbott-ministry-versus-shorten-shadow-ministry/5031906 LABOR 14. Shorten Is Right, The Left Must Start Again Geoff Gallop Bill Shorten wants Labor to 'start again'. If he's serious, the party must resume its place at the head of a left movement that includes the Greens... In some ways it’s been an exciting time for those of us on the democratic left... A useful starting point might be some serious thinking about strategy – and that goes for the other half of the left, the Greens, as well. https://www.newmatilda.com/2013/10/14/shorten-right-left-start-again 15. Clearing the air Andrew Elder Nobody is listening to the party formerly in government now that they've been defeated - unless, of course, when somebody within that former government wants to have a crack at someone else within it, which makes it compelling in a way that the decisions of the new government apparently aren't. . http://andrewelder.blogspot.com.au/ 16. Fixing Australian Labor Party doesn't start with shouting from the rooftops Mike Carlton Labor behaved itself in the customary manner after the shadow cabinet was announced. Which is to say that the losers, or most of them, seized every media opportunity to bemoan their fate, to attack the machinations of the faceless factional bosses and to otherwise trash the system which had got them there in the first place. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/fixing-australian-labor-party-doesnt-start-with-shouting-from-the-rooftops-20131018-2vs3g.html 17. Labor's carbon tax bind: surrender or die fighting Mark Kenny She's offered it only within the confines of the government, but word is Peta Credlin has some world-weary advice for rookie Labor leader Bill Shorten: if you're serious about making Labor competitive again in 2016, you best swallow hard, take a deep breath, and turn your back on carbon pricing. And you best do it now. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/labors-carbon-tax-bind-surrender-or-die-fighting-20131018-2vs3h.html 18. Kevin Rudd: Labor needs to shut up, grow up and move on Matthew Franklin Here's some news for federal Labor: No one is interested in your boring, nasty bickering over whether or not Kevin Rudd is a bastard. Is Rudd difficult to work with? You bet. He can be chaotic. He can make staff and colleagues feel enormously frustrated. But if Labor has learnt anything from losing power last month, it should be that voters have no interest in its tawdry internals. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/kevin-rudd-labor-needs-to-shut-up-grow-up-and-move-on-20131017-2voy8.html#ixzz2i5bxWAqr 19. Grattan on Friday: Roxon’s “household tips” for Labor have some messages for Abbott too Michelle Grattan Tony Abbott is no doubt enjoying former minister Nicola Roxon’s blast against her old political boss Kevin Rudd. It has brought the attention back to Labor in an uncomfortable way for the opposition. http://theconversation.com/grattan-on-friday-roxons-household-tips-for-labor-have-some-messages-for-abbott-too-19302 ECONOMY + BUSINESS 20. Why isn't Abbott acting on the 'budget emergency'? Stephen Koukoulas Tony Abbott has wisely left Australia's fiscal settings exactly as they were under Labor, putting the lie to his hysterical pre-election economic rhetoric, writes Stephen Koukoulas. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-17/koukoulas-budget-emergency-fiction/5028770 21. Counting the high cost of the US shutdown So US government staffers are back at work, the debt ceiling has been raised and a quick slide back into recession has been avoided. But the 16-day federal government shutdown has nevertheless cost the world’s largest economy dearly. There are the detrimental economic effects...Then there is the harder-to-measure intangible impact on confidence. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/18/economy/counting-high-cost-shutdown?utm_source=exact&utm_medium=email&utm_content=471440&utm_campaign=pm&modapt= 22. Coalition correct with election budget forecast, but clouds looming Peter Martin The Coalition has received a clean bill of health on its election costings, with the Parliamentary Budget Office finding that if anything it understated the boost they will give to the budget. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/coalition-correct-with-election-budget-forecast-but-clouds-looming-20131018-2vsdx.html ENVIRONMENT + ENERGY 23. Carbon tax repeal is a free kick Sara Phillips The propose legislation to repeal the carbon tax has been released. It gives one of the parties a free kick, but the question is which one? http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-18/phillips-carbon-tax-repeal-is-a-free-kick/5030930 24. Direct Action already behind schedule Tristan Edis On Wednesday the new Abbott government issued its first document detailing its plans for the Direct Action Emission Reduction Fund – all one page of it....OK, there were really five pages. A cover page with pictures of people planting trees, followed by a blank page, then a page outlining the process for consultation, and then a page about confidentiality, followed by the final page. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/17/policy-politics/direct-action-already-behind-schedule?utm_source=exact 25. Charts make IPCC easy as ABC Tristan Edis The recently released Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report on the physical science of climate change contains such a wealth of information... But what does it all mean? The IPCC in their anxiousness to present all the evidence can at times leave us stranded without a clear guidepost as to what we should or need to do about global warming. 26. Confused about the new IPCC's carbon budget? So am I. David Spratt ...media attention focused on a conclusion from the Summary for Policymakers that the world had emitted just over half of the allowable emissions if global warming is to be kept to 2 degrees Celsius (2°C) of warming... Unfortunately, because many people think if you have a budget you should spend every last dollar, the "carbon budget" message could be interpreted as saying there is plenty of budget left to spend 27. The definition of ‘data’ Katherine Marchment I am finding it hard to understand the argument that there is ‘no data’ available for the impacts of CSG in regions around Australia. Farmers who have bores have always constantly checked them. In Central Queensland, this task is usually carried out on a regular basis by jackeroos. This is done to ensure the drinking water supply for stock and humans, and also to calculate available water for irrigation. http://nofibs.com.au/2013/10/18/definition-data-katherine-marchment-reports/#sthash.3dXBdoT7.dpuf 28. Outdoor air pollution leading cancer cause: WHO AFP "The air we breathe has become polluted with a mixture of cancer-causing substances," said Kurt Straif of the WHO's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). "We now know that outdoor air pollution is not only a major risk to health in general, but also a leading environmental cause of cancer deaths." http://www.canberratimes.com.au/environment/outdoor-air-pollution-leading-cancer-cause-who-20131017-2vq0z.html? 29. If not now, when? Victoria Rollison While Abbott organises his government to repeal Labor’s Carbon Price, and while he bumbles around trying to make his Direct Action Policy look even half plausible, something he has failed to do in the previous six years, the news headlines are all about New South Wales bushfires. http://victoriarollison.com/2013/10/17/if-not-now-when/ 30. Is the Abbott government fiddling while NSW burns? David Holmes For the Abbott government, it has emerged that talking about climate change during a “natural” disaster is taboo. Of course, how “natural” the NSW fires actually are is the issue here, as we witness over 100 separate fires across NSW. These fires are the likes of which have never been seen in the month of October anywhere in Australia, let alone this close to population centres. http://theconversation.com/is-the-abbott-government-fiddling-while-nsw-burns-19339 31. Coal executive turned climate change activist fights for seat on BHP board Oliver Milman Ian Dunlop seeks shareholder support, accusing fossil fuel industry of 'stuffing up' effective action. "You simply can’t do business in a world with 4C of warming." www.theguardian.com%2fbusiness%2f2013%2foct%2f17%2fcoal-executive-turned-climate-change-activist-fights-for-seat-on-bhp-board ASYLUM SEEKERS 32. Morrison confirms 'incident' on Manus but won't provide detail Samantha Hawley during the briefing it was revealed there'd been an "incident" at the Manus Island detention centre, which saw staff evacuated this morning to a navy vessel. Little is known about what happened and Mr Morrison refused to go into details. http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2013/s3872318.htm THE INTERNET 33. Internet Activity, Australia, June 2013 ABS Contains details of internet activity supplied by all Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in Australia. It includes information on internet subscribers and their type of connection, the type of user (business/household), the volume of data downloaded, the speed of the internet connection and the location of the subscriber (by state or territory). http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/8153.0?OpenDocument HEALTH 34. Living in an i-world: a new way to think about work-life conflict Brenton Prosser Australians are spending more hours at work than ever before and contribute more unpaid overtime each year than their annual leave allowance. While workplaces can be beneficial to emotional well-being, poor work environments and high levels of work-life conflict are associated with reduced mental health.… http://theconversation.com/living-in-an-i-world-a-new-way-to-think-about-work-life-conflict-16605 35. A backward step for community health in South Australia Fran Baum There’s a growing body of evidence from all over the world showing that health is influenced by all kinds of social factors. But one of the best Australian initiatives embracing this approach was recently irrevocably changed in Adelaide. http://theconversation.com/a-backward-step-for-community-health-in-south-australia-18889 TODAY’S MAIN NEWS • ROULE REPORT — Issues of Today http://paper.li/RouleReport/1334728962 • AUSTRALIAN NEWSPAPER FRONT PAGES www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm • NEWS HEADLINES 19 October 2013 http://www.hotheadlines.com.au/ #################################################################

TalkTurkey

19/10/2013WHY doesn't the Federal Government deploy ARMY AND AIR FORCE to fight the fires? WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY ??? [i][u][b][i]WHY?![/i][/b][/u][/i]

TalkTurkey

19/10/2013Casablanca Your links are my Link to the political world. Ever since I first came to TPS I have been able to rely on first Lyn's, and now your links to make me better-informed than I had ever been. (But about 5% as well informed as either of you two!) I am in awe of what you do. Never has there been a political archive such as your column, there's huge activity everywhere on the 5th Estate but you tie it all together forever. Fie on Murdoch.

KHTAGH

19/10/2013It is great to see we have so many talented people to pick up from where Ad Astra & Lyn left off , TPS has gone through a transition that make government changeovers look positively inept. CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Really does make the MSM redundant & obsolete. 2353 I like your comparison with get smart & Abbott, he makes Maxwell Smart look like a genius in comparison. Hockey's hypocrisy knows no bounds, then again like Abbott, he will run from both scrutiny & press conferences to avoid hard questions. http://theaimn.com/2013/10/19/hockey-to-lift-debt-ceiling-by-33-and-the-hypocrisy-level-to-an-all-time-high/ Where the hell is the bloody media in this country? They didn't mind kicking the crap out of Julia every chance they got & now when they actually have something juicy to report on with a truly hopeless government they start a collective naval gazing exercise. TT thanks for the info on bees a week or so back, I do read TPS everyday & yes I have known about those bloody chemicals being pumped into the environment & the result, unfortunately unlike the realisation with DDT & the Bold Eagle the pesticide companies are so powerful that we wont wake up until it is too late, just like Climate Change. No bees = basically no food, the only crops that will be left will be cereal crops, corn, wheat, rice, barley rye etc. Recapture is getting positively spooky = [b]USAFail now [/b]

Ken

19/10/2013TT Why didn't they call in the Army, Air Force etc. Because the Army (it now appears) started the big fire near Lithgow!!!

Catching up

19/10/2013This government is using the forces in their fight against bikies and asylum seekers. Yes, in the past, one expected the forces to turn up at floods and fire. Missing at this time. Maybe Mr. Abbott, a few more fire fighting helicopters would be better than the drones you intend to buy, to attack a few desperate people who get on leakiness boats to get here.

42 long

19/10/2013Perhaps bringing in the Army would only highlight the reduction in resources that B.O'Farrel caused with his cost cutting measures. Other firefighters have already come from interstate. Under the extreme heat and wind conditions I don't think they can do a lot But when the conditions are more favourable something can be done with more resources.

2353

19/10/2013[quote]TT Why didn't they call in the Army, Air Force etc. Because the Army (it now appears) started the big fire near Lithgow!!![/quote] Oooops! KHTAGH - A relative of mine actually suggested comparing Get Smart to Abbott's government was a sign of someone with a warped sense of humour. However the comparison is valid - but Get Smart was played for laughs, unfortunately Abbott seems to be serious. There is probably enough material around since the article was written for a "Part 2" - which is a sad reflection really.

cornlegend

19/10/2013The bi election in Miranda NSW. Labor needs a 21% swing. Have gained a 22.25 % swing Abbott, be afraid, be very afraid of a DD.

Catching up

19/10/2013That swing could be as high as 26%

cornlegend

19/10/2013Two-party-preferred vote results as of 8:17pm – 16/18 booths reporting swing % Brett Thomas LIB 10,044 43.11 -27.89 43.43 Barry Collier ALP 13,256 56.89 + 27.89 56.57

TalkTurkey

19/10/2013Miranda poll results astounding! LNP receives a pounding! Let them hear our cheers resounding: Onward the ALP!

Casablanca

19/10/2013 Better still, Miranda is within the Federal electorate of Cook where the sitting member is one Scott Morrison.

Casablanca

20/10/2013 CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Sunday, 20 October 2013: 29 items ENTITLEMENTS & FIDDLES 1. Indulged rorters: the black and white facts Jack Waterford Outside Aboriginal affairs, the call is for deregulation, and purposive governance. In Aboriginal affairs, as ever, we turn things on their head, as often as not to prove that it's the same rules for all. Other than for politicians, their parties and trade unions, of course. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/indulged-rorters-the-black-and-white-facts-20131018-2vskx.html#ixzz2i9Xjy3Pw 2. Pollies pay back $20,000 in claims Bianca Hall According to published figures, politicians have repaid more than $110,000 of taxpayers' money spent on perks since 2005, including $20,820 in the past three weeks. But the figure is likely to be just a fraction of the money repaid, with the Department of Finance saying it will not comment on the use of entitlements by individual senators and MPs. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/pollies-pay-back-20000-in-claims-20131019-2vtvp.html 3. Decisive action needed on expenses Bianca Hall Tony Abbott has fronted the media in doorstop interviews a handful of times, making good on his vow to moderate his media appearances and ''take politics off the front page''...But there's also a difference between slowing the pace of government and trying to shut down debate by refusing to respond to legitimate questions. ttp://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/decisive-action-needed-on-expenses-20131019-2vtcg.html POLITICS + PROTOCOLS 4. Scope of eligibility for NSW bushfire compensation " reduced by Federal Government Social Security (Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment) Determination 2013 (No. 5) - F2013L01814 http://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2013L01814 5. Compare who can claim for disaster payment. ALP v Libs http://www.twitlonger.com/show/n_1rq00om 6. Palmer is the fly in Abbott's snake oil Paul Malone PRIME MINISTER Tony Abbott's announcement last Tuesday that he planned to abolish the carbon tax from July 1, 2014, is the first move in a complex negotiation process for the abolition of the tax. The government could easily have set January 1, 2014, as the termination date for the ''reprehensible'' tax but by having it apply for the full financial year it gets $6.5 billion to help cover its budget black hole. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/palmer-is-the-fly-in-abbotts-snake-oil-20131019-2vtq9.html#ixzz2iBcFivXz 7. Time period between election date and first sitting date Sophia Fernandes It is up to the government to decide when parliamentary sittings will commence following an election, provided that the first sitting day is no later than 30 days from the date of the return of the writs. The shortest time period is 31 days in 1969 and the longest time period is 94 days after the 2001 election. There is no clear pattern between the election date and the first sitting date... http://parliamentflagpost.blogspot.com.au/2013/10/time-period-between-election-date-and.html 8. First speeches Janet Wilson With the 44th Parliament due to open on 12 November new members will be making their first speeches in the opening weeks or months of the new parliament. The Chamber departments provide detailed notes for the guidance of new members when they are preparing their first speeches; this brief contains more general information and some historical background. http://parliamentflagpost.blogspot.com.au/2013/10/first-speeches.html 9. Lest we forget: the purpose of war is not war itself Hugh White By failing to talk about why we fought in Afghanistan, we have wasted soldiers' lives. Forty Australian soldiers have so far been killed in action during Australia's military operations in Afghanistan. This is not a very big number, compared to the tens of thousands who died in the great wars of the last century. But it is surely big enough to impose an obligation to think about the cost represented by that number - not just 40 lives, but 40 circles of life-shattering bereavement - and to ask for what purpose that cost will be borne by those on whom it falls, and whether it has been justified. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/national/lest-we-forget-the-purpose-of-war-is-not-war-itself-20131019-2vu04.html ECONOMY + BUSINESS 10. Hockey To Lift Debt Ceiling by 33%, and the Hypocrisy Level to an All-time High. rossleighbrisbane “Total debt is expected to peak at $370 billion by April 2016.” Now I know that there are various ways in which it can be argued that our net debt isn’t as high as the figures being thrown about. And I am well aware that relative to GDP, Australia is very well off compared to the rest of the world. Economics is rarely ever straightforward, so I don’t want to be distracted from the main point here by all the intricacies of Australia’s debt. http://theaimn.com/2013/10/19/hockey-to-lift-debt-ceiling-by-33-and-the-hypocrisy-level-to-an-all-time-high/ 11. Australia's second class of insecure workers Lisa Heap WorkChoices might have been comprehensively rejected at the 2007 election, but the insecurity it represented is still a reality for Australia's casuals and contractors. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-18/heap-australias-second-class-of-insecure-workers/5029022 12. Downsizing may not be the right answer John Collett Baby boomers looking to fund the retirement savings gap by downsizing the family home are likely, in many cases, to be clutching at straws. Boomers have seen the value of their homes rise steadily over the years. And for most, their houses will be worth much more than their super. But there are some reasons for thinking that the downsizing strategy may not be all that it is cracked up to be. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/money/super-and-funds/downsizing-may-not-be-the-right-answer-20131015-2vjch.html#ixzz2iA0vrgVm 13. Murdoch survives vote at AGM Peter Mitchell A shareholder-led revolt to dump Rupert Murdoch as chairman of his new TV and film conglomerate 21st Century Fox has failed, but the mogul's sons Lachlan and James suffered ego-bruising protest votes. Murdoch will retain the chairman and chief executive roles at 21st Century Fox, which includes the Fox TV network, the 20th Century Fox film studio and other jewels of his global media empire. His sons will also sit on the 12-member board. http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-world/murdoch-survives-vote-at-agm-20131019-2vszr.html?skin=text-only 14. Tea Party's carefully laid plans didn't follow the script Paul McGeough ... the craziness in Washington .. was not an act of spontaneous political combustion. Down to the finest detail it was planned as an insurgency in the first weeks of Barack Obama's second term...the circuit-breaking deal, is good for only a matter of months. The budget becomes a flashpoint again as early as January; ditto the debt ceiling in February. http://www.smh.com.au/world/tea-partys-carefully-laid-plans-didnt-follow-the-script-20131018-2vsb7.html?skin=text-only 15. Brothers grim left legacy of mischief Paul McGeough How instructive at a time when Washington has not been working, for Stephen Kinzer to pop out another book to give us a stunning window into a period when DC thought it was working very well. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/brothers-grim-left-legacy-of-mischief-20131019-2vtcf.html#ixzz2iBr4gN89 16. China frets as US counts debt fallout Tom Allard and Philip Wen This is a crisis that remains unresolved. Its genesis lies in the very nature of the US political system. The impact is on its economy, the ultimate source of US power. For many, it is another signpost, pointing the way to US decline...Certainly, its great rival - and economic partner - China is mightily unimpressed, even as it flexes its muscles. A commentary carried by China's official news agency Xinhua, argued it was time ''for the befuddled world to start considering building a de-Americanised world'', including finding a new international reserve currency. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/world/china-frets-as-us-counts-debt-fallout-20131018-2vsd4.html 17. Hockey looks to Asia as the US stutters Tom Allard Treasurer Joe Hockey has expressed doubts the world has seen the last of the US debt impasse as he urged the United States to get its house in order and signalled a renewed focus on opening more markets in Asia as a response to ongoing instability. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/hockey-looks-to-asia-as-the-us-stutters-20131018-2vsdy.html LABOR 18. The woman most likely Erin O'Dwyer If Labor is to make its way out of the political wilderness, deputy opposition leader Tanya Plibersek will be a key player. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/lifestyle/the-woman-most-likely-20131015-2vkj2.html 19. Labor is amusing us all to death Rob Burgess Journalists should be able to milk all this political jockeying for days, and ignore pesky little things like the tension in Coalition ranks over foreign ownership of farmland, conservative governments in Queenland and WA planning to hang on to the royalty hikes they made within Labor’s MRRT framework, or an exodus of young homebuyers from the bubbling housing market. Who needs all that. Newpapers are for the personal bile and political subterfuge of Labor. Always have been, always will be. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/15/politics/labor-amusing-us-all-death ASYLUM SEEKERS 20. Manus Island asylum seekers locked in during detention centre 'incident', reports say Natalie O'Brien Asylum seekers on Manus Island were told to ‘‘wear your shoes and take care of your lives’’ as security guards at the detention centre reportedly locked them inside and then ran away during an ‘‘incident’’ at the centre on Friday. Witnesses have recounted the terrifying moments when they saw all the staff leave the centre, lock the gates and run with packed bags towards an Australian navy ship, leaving the detainees alone and unguarded for two hours. http://www.smh.com.au/national/manus-island-asylum-seekers-locked-in-during-detention-centre-incident-reports-say-20131019-2vtmh.html?skin=text-only 21. Boats will be stopped, Abbott says Tim Dornin Prime Minister Tony Abbott says the arrival of asylum seekers by boat has dropped dramatically since the election of the coalition government. But Mr Abbott says he's under no illusion that people smugglers will continue to test the commonwealth's resolve to stop the flow of boats. The prime minister told the South Australian Liberal Party annual meeting in Adelaide on Saturday that in the month since the government was elected arrivals were running at just 10 per cent of the worst level under Labor. http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-national/boats-will-be-stopped-abbott-says-20131019-2vt2w.html?skin=text-only 22. AFP was told doomed asylum seekers were on their way Natalie O'Brien Australian authorities were warned that people in Melbourne and Lebanon were helping to organise boatloads of Lebanese asylum seekers to travel to Australia, weeks before a boat sank off the coast of West Java, killing dozens of people including many women and children from one Lebanese village. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/national/afp-was-told-doomed-asylum-seekers-were-on-their-way-20131019-2vtl1.html 23. Minister wants boat people called illegals Bianca Hall Immigration Minister Scott Morrison has instructed departmental and detention centre staff to publicly refer to asylum seekers as ''illegal'' arrivals and as ''detainees'', rather than clients. The directive has been criticised as a ''profound'' shift by a leading asylum seeker agency, which says the new terms are designed to dehumanise people....The Press Council of Australia recommends that the media not use the terms ''illegal immigrants'' or ''illegals'', saying they could ''reasonably be interpreted as implying criminality or other serious misbehaviour''. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/minister-wants-boat-people-called-illegals-20131019-2vtl0.html HUMAN RIGHTS 24. This map shows where the world’s 30 million slaves live. There are 60,000 in the U.S. Max Fisher We think of slavery as a practice of the past, an image from Roman colonies or 18th-century American plantations, but the practice of enslaving human beings as property still exists. There are 29.8 million people living as slaves right now, according to a comprehensive new report issued by the Australia-based Walk Free Foundation. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2013/10/17/this-map-shows-where-the-worlds-30-million-slaves-live-there-are-60000-in-the-u-s/ JOURNALISM 25. Happy News Mr Denmore We still need this sort of journalism. You can dress it up, of course. After all, it has to be engaging to be effective. But not everything can be light and fluffy and funny. Indeed, most of the best reporters I've met are prickly, driven and anti-social people. It's their work that we need most. The biggest questions at the moment are how we pay for it and how to frame it in an innovative way without http://thefailedestate.blogspot.com.au/trivializing it. 'Happy News' is no substitute for the real thing. 26. Hunt deplores 'politicising' of a tragedy David Wroe Amid concern among scientists and environment groups that the ferocious fires before the start of summer were part of a pattern of increasing extreme weather events, Mr Hunt's office dismissed questions about the need for a more ambitious climate policy. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/hunt-deplores-politicising-of-a-tragedy-20131018-2vsgf.html 27. China's short march to carbon pricing Frank Jotzo & Dimitri de Boer16 Oct, 10:48 AM7 China’s expert community expects that the country will have a national emissions trading scheme and possibly a carbon tax by the end of the decade, and that the pilot schemes will all go ahead in the near future. Environment Minister Greg Hunt recently said “… the Chinese and the Americans who are the central part of any agreement both have a very strong view. The most heartening development in the past two years has been China's growing commitment to action from its paramount leadership.”.. He is right. And the difference is that while the United States rely on direct regulatory intervention in gas markets and power generation, China is poised to introduce carbon pricing. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/16/policy-politics/chinas-short-march-carbon-pricing?utm_source=exact&utm_medium=email&utm_content=473553&utm_campaign=kgb&modapt= 28. Sydney fires caused by people and nature Ross Bradstock Even without the official tally it looks like the fires that started yesterday in Blue Mountains will be the most costly in terms of property since 1968. But how have they come about? http://theconversation.com/sydney-fires-caused-by-people-and-nature-19327?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=The+Weekend+Conversation&utm_content=The+Weekend+Conversation+CID_aa0de0d1ac85bed7cd37cea4ff87cd6a&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Sydney%20fires%20caused%20by%20people%20and%20nature 29. We know what starts fires; are we brave enough to prevent them? Janet Stanley Yet again we are seeing tragedy unfold in NSW, where more than 90 fires are currently burning. Yet, as with many issues of profound importance, as a society we seem unable to make the links between conditions and events in order to take preventative action. http://theconversation.com/we-know-what-starts-fires-are-we-brave-enough-to-prevent-them-19323?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=The+Weekend+Conversation&utm_content=The+Weekend+Conversation+CID_aa0de0d1ac85bed7cd37cea4ff87cd6a&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=We%20know%20what%20starts%20fires%20are%20we%20brave%20enough%20to%20prevent%20them TODAY’S MAIN NEWS • ROULE REPORT — Issues of Today http://paper.li/RouleReport/1334728962 • AUSTRALIAN NEWSPAPER FRONT PAGES www.thepaperboy.com/australia/front-pages.cfm • NEWS HEADLINES 20 October 2013 http://www.hotheadlines.com.au/ #################################################################

TalkTurkey

20/10/2013Not a word about the Labor whitewash on @ABCNews24 News so far this morning. And in worse news: http://www.theherald.com.au/story/1848433/the-ocean-is-broken/ :(

jaycee

20/10/2013Isn't it interesting how the MSM conversation will go to extreme lengths TO AVOID direct connection of the combustible volatillity of bushfire fuel with the drying-out of the landscape due to climate change (and believe me...where I live, I experience it!)and heads to "safe-ground"....who are they trying to convince...surely not those who have eyes!? The "group-think" stupidity in the MSM. has reached plague proportions!

TalkTurkey

20/10/2013Just for joy! http://www.flixxy.com/friendship-has-no-boundaries.htm

Catching up

20/10/2013http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-17/burnside-people-of-letters/5027666 It seems that Abbott is to roll out independent schools across the nation. Yes, Abbott was very careful to say, he would keep Gillards funding but never once said he supported Gonski. Did not do so, from day one. This policy has not shown any great improvement, wherever it has been put in place. Yes, giving control of schools to parents, leads to the government being able to blame them, if the school fails. Has failed in the UK. Definitively not debated by Abbott. One can expect a similar announcement when it comes to health. Not too sure, if the likes of Palmer will support this one. When one looks at the Miranda and Indi results, it tells one, that if Labor focuses on grassroots campaigns in each electorate, the numbers can be rapidly turned about. Next campaign needs to see the leader, not flying around the country for photo ops, far away from people each day. They need to get out, shake hands in every electorate. Shorten needs to begin now. Yes, turning up for branch meetings, walking the shopping centres. Forget the media stunts. Back to grass roots, is the way to go. Convince the grass roots you are capable of running the country, the rest will look after itself. Lot cheaper as well.

Catching up

20/10/2013It appears that the Labor swing was because voters are upset with new rail timetables. Similar anger on the Central Coast.

Casablanca

20/10/2013 As I commented last night, the State Electoral District of Miranda is within the Federal electorate of Cook where the sitting member is none other than Scott Morrison. Cook has an enrolment of 104,128 electors - roughly the same number of electors in the two and a bit state electorates that are within Cook. I grew up in Cronulla and cast my first vote in the electorate of Cook so I thought that I would check up on what has been happening back there and whether the Miranda win had implications for Cook which had once been a jewel in the crown of the ALP. The Federal seat of Cook includes two other state electorates in addition to that of Miranda, namely Cronulla and Heathcote. The former NSW Labor Treasurer, Mike Egan, held the seat of Cronulla from 1978 - 1984. Apart from Egan's tenure the seat has been Liberal since its creation in 1959. In Miranda, the electors have alternated Liberal and Labor giving each member at least two terms. Barry Collier, the victor in this weekend's by-election, served for 12 years but did not re-contest the 2011 election. However, the early resignation of the Liberal Minister for Sport, Graham Annesley saw Collier re-enter the political fray to re-contest and win his seat back with a 27% swing. Premier Barry O'Farrell has been at pains to say that the Liberal loss in Miranda was due to strictly local issues like train timetable changes, local Liberal Council cronyism and disgust at the mid-term resignation of the Liberal elected at the 2011 election. However, the ABC and indeed, the Murdoch press, reported that there were other more potent issues that had a broader resonance. The Australian reported that, [quote]'Unionised firefighters from Sydney's Sutherland Shire protested during the day at station-closing budget cuts by the Coalition government led by Premier Barry O'Farrell outside by-election voting booths in the city's south. Flyers reading ``Stop O'Farrell's fire station closures: Put the Liberals last'''[/quote] were handed out by firefighters dressed in their fire-fighting gear. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/nation/labor-reclaims-nsw-seat-of-miranda-in-big-by-election-swing/story-e6frg6nf-1226743104901?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+TheAustralianNewsNDM+%28The+Australian+%7C+News+%7C%29#sthash.avki8NKi.dpuf The Saturday night ABC news carried vision and comment consistent with the report in The Australian. The other factor that surely led to the big swing in Miranda was that Barry Collier had retired at the last election with no scandals on his CV. That good record is something of a rarity these days, especially in NSW. The adjoining state seat of Heathcote has been an inglorious one for the ALP. Although only a small part is included in Morrison's electoral boundaries it is worth looking at closely. Rex 'Buckets' Jackson who represented the area for over 30 years was a Minister in several portfolios in the Wran Government. He later served 3 years of a 10 year jail sentence for accepting bribes for the early release of prisoners when he was Minister for Corrective Services. Heathcote was won by the LP at the last state election with something like a 23% swing. The win was against Paul McLeay, former Minister for Mineral & Forest Resources in the Keneally Labor Government. He resigned after admitting to using his office computer to access porn and gambling sites. Paul is the son of Leo McLeay, long serving Member for Grayndler & later for Watson who was Speaker of the House of Representatives. At the very least, Labor needs to re-think their selection processes. Heathcote has one of the highest percentages of tradespeople in the state - the electorate includes the mining areas of Bulli and parts of the industrial city of Wollongong. If Labor cannot hold onto its natural constituency then they are in terminal decline. David Marr writing of the death in 2012 of Rex Jackson said, 'The Jackson name never went unmentioned in reports about the corruption and the collapse of Labor in the Illawarra'. http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/time-runs-out-for-disgraced-prisons-minister-20120101-1ph9s.html#ixzz2iBNzqH45 The Liberals have held the seat twice - 1988 to 1991 and 2011 to the present. The ALP held the Federal seat of Cook. from its creation in 1906 until 1969. The LP held it for one term from 1969-1972. The ALP won it back in 1972 but lost it in 1975. The Liberal Party has held it continuously since 1975. Scott Morrison was parachuted into the seat in an acrimonious Liberal pre-selection stoush and has held the seat since 2007. Cook adjoins the Royal National Park which regularly goes up in flames so it did not surprise me that the firefighter's protest on Saturday had an impact at the ballot box. Whether that translates to a belief in climate change and/or opposition to the new Federal Government's sanguine assessment of climate change I cannot say. There was another protest on Saturday that was not so widely reported. Minister Morrison's electorate office, which I assume is in Cronulla shopping centre, was the scene of a protest over his harsh approach to asylum seekers. Hopefully, the ALP can tap into some of the antipathy to the NSW Government and to Morrison's harsh and hysterical policies and bring Cook back to its roots. ps. The fact that Labor lost Cook for the first time in the election of 1969 when I cast my first vote is co-incidental.

Catching up

20/10/2013Time for Labor to ditch the presidential type of campaigning, where the candidate, especially the leader is kept away from people. Miranda, and Indo has proven, that is where elections can be won. Yes, the power could lay in the grass roots. not national campaign. Yes, each MP, out on the streets, in their communities every weekend. That is how I first came to join Labor. Yes in those days, Laurie Ferguson was seen everywhere. Got to know him, then joined Labor I just looked at my local paper from yesterday. Thought I would see what they had on the fires. Not a word, even though they were still burning yesterday I live on the Central Coast, have seen the fires burn along the boundaries on the estate I live on, but nigh a word in the Express Advocate. .

Catching up

20/10/2013Things are no better. State of Emergency called in NSW. Runs for thirty days. Fire chief said this is as bad as they have seen for fifty years. Yes, there is a big differences, Those fires occurred in December through to Funerary. Not in September. We need to keep in mind, these fires first began over a month ago.

Catching up

20/10/2013<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p><a href="https://twitter.com/TurnLeft16">@TurnLeft16</a> Check out this list of the defining characteristics of a fascist regime. Ring any bells? <a href="http://t.co/iBny6U4wkE">pic.twitter.com/iBny6U4wkE</a></p>&mdash; Scepticatplay (@scepticatplay) <a href="https://twitter.com/scepticatplay/statuses/391806458850836480">October 20, 2013</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

Catching up

20/10/2013Sorry, I have used the wrong brackets again.

Janet (j4gypsy)

20/10/2013Wow, Casablanca. That's a fantastic bit of research on the seats of Miranda and Cook. Thank you. (I don't suppose you'd like an extra job - official fact-checker for TPS? No? Ah well, we'll have to twist other arms :-).) Catching-up: couldn't agree more: elections are won at the grassroots, in local communities first and foremost. It's always 'geographhy and demography', as one of my politically tragic mentors has been trying to drum into me for years.

Casablanca

20/10/2013 Janet, thank you. Funny that you should mention it but extra jobs are not on my list at the moment. (lol) I agree that 'geography and demography' are potent forces in politics. As mentioned, Morrison was parachuted into Cook amid much opposition within his own party. The outgoing Liberal, Graham Annesley was an outsider too. Barry Collier was a local solicitor & barrister with close links to the community in Miranda (the seat and the suburb). Both major parties have played fast and loose with 'geography and demography' to the detriment of grass roots democracy.
I have two politicians and add 2 more; how many are there?