Tony Abbott’s Great Big New Tax

No, that can’t be right – Tony Abbott and Great Big New Tax in the one phrase. Isn’t it Julia Gillard and the Labor Government that’s addicted to the Great Big New Tax – on Everything! Well no. Not to be outdone by Julia, Tony has his own Great Big New Tax – in his ‘Direct Action Plan’ for combating that heap of ‘absolute crap’ – global warming.

Take a look at it.  You need scroll only to page two to see that the estimated cost is $3.6 billion, which presumably will come from the ‘Emissions Reduction Fund’ it intends to establish. But the Fund has no money. So they will have to put some there. Where will it come from? Where else but from you and me, the taxpayer, $3.6 billion of your money and mine? It will not descend from the ether on the wings of a dove, or arise from ashes like the mystical phoenix; it will not come out of some surreptitiously funded treasure chest kept for Coalition purposes, or out of that mysterious source called ‘consolidated revenue’ which carries the aura of being money that somehow just arrived without pain, and from no one’s pocket.

We all know all of this is nonsense. Any money the Government has comes from taxpayers: individuals, small business and large companies, and from interest earned on funds collected. So the $3.6 billion is a Great Big New Tax, a la Abbott.

Now the Coalition will argue that it’s not a tax, it is simply redirecting money already collected. So what money is this? Is it money allocated to education or health, or border security, or defence, or infrastructure, or any other Government item of expenditure? If so, the tax you paid for these services will be ripped away from its intended purpose to fund the $3.6 billion the Coalition intends to spend on combating climate change. No sleight of hand can disguise that this a blatant tax grab – grabbing your taxes that were meant for something else and using them to combat climate change. By any measure it is a GREAT BIG NEW TAX.

But we have to combat global warming lest the planet perish and all of us with it, I hear you say. Of course we do, but recall that the Coalition has said over and again, and it’s on page one of its policy, that it would do this ‘without the need for a great big new tax.’ If you don’t believe that, take a look. It has the temerity to tell us this and then tell us it will cost $3.6 billion of OUR MONEY. If that is not a Great Big New Tax, what on earth is it? Some fictional sum that will be painlessly extracted from us or painlessly ripped out of existing programs, something none of us will notice or feel? What cynical hypocrisy is this? What sort of con job is being laid on us here? Yet have you heard one squeak from the media about Abbott’s Great Big New Tax? It’s as if they are mesmerized – how could Tony Abbott be imposing a Great Big New Tax when half of his every working day is spend cauterizing Julia Gillard and her Government for their Great Big New Taxes? They cannot see through the fog of disinformation that emits from Abbott’s mouth hour after hour to see that he does not have bags of money ferreted away to use as he pleases. He can get his money from only one source – US.

But Folks, that’s not all. A review prepared by the Department of Climate Change and released on 2 March, “…estimates the Coalition plan would force Australia to spend an extra $20 billion buying international carbon permits and would be costing households an extra $720 a year by 2020.”  

So $3.6 billion is not $3.6 billion, it is $20 billion more than that, over six times more. What a confidence trick! The best the Opposition environment spokesman Greg Hunt could do in rebuttal was to reject the review, saying it was just part of a campaign by an ‘increasingly desperate government’. What a pitiable response. He quoted no figures, made no financial arguments to dismiss the attack; he simply fell back on tired old ‘desperate government’ rhetoric because he had nothing better. You can be sure that if he did it would have been out there illuminated by Murdoch media floodlighting.

So now we have Tony Abbott’s $23.6 billion Great Big New Tax.

But that’s not all Folks.

How is he going to spend this $23.6 billion?

Unbelievable as it might be to rational human beings, he intends to use it to pay the polluters - yes PAY THE POLLUTERS!

He’ll pay them to reduce their polluting. While the Government plans to tax the polluters to dissuade them from polluting, Tony Abbott will actually pay them. So we would all be paying a Great Big New Tax so Tony Abbott could use our taxes to pay polluters!

Despite all the misinformation Tony Abbott, the Coalition and the compliant media have spread, the truth is that the Government plans to tax the polluters, not the citizens. In fact the citizens will be compensated for the rise in electricity and other affected prices, while it is the polluters who will pay, which is just the opposite of what is generally believed. The Coalition misinformation campaign has been very successful. Once established, the Government’s carbon tax will revert to a price on carbon, so the tax will be temporary.

Tony Abbott will tax the citizens so he can pay the polluters; householders will shell out another $720 per year in increased taxes, and yet he offers NO compensation to them. If that’s not a Great Big New Tax, what is it? Yet Julia cops all the flak and Tony escapes? How come?

So let’s stop all this nonsense about Great Big New Taxes. Its repetition, day after day, is primary schoolyard stuff.

Grow up Tony Abbott, concede that you are into a Great Big New Tax to fund your ‘Pay the Polluters’ plan, that no matter who tackles climate change, they will have to pay to fix the mess, that in the end the people pay, but that it is possible to ease their burden with sensible compensation, something you decline to do. You paint yourself as the champion of the people; you are just the opposite.

Folks, what do you think about Tony Abbott’s Great Big New Tax to ‘fix’ climate change by paying the polluters?

By the way, before any of you Coalition supporters try to dismantle this piece, take a long hard look at the torrent of words that emit daily from Coalition lips in pressing its disingenuous claims. You wouldn’t want to be the pot calling the kettle black, would you?

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Catching up

7/03/2011An as Mr. Robb said on the weekend, it is also a price on carbon. He did not explain how this was so. Does he mean that the public will be paying for the carbon, not the polluters.

D Mick Weir

7/03/2011ABC 24 had a live feed of Mr Abbott had a live feed of the Community Forum hosted by Senator Birmingham. I caught a this little bit from TA [i]" ... and governments, like doctors, should do no harm ... "[/i] he added some other bits about [i]'going with the grain of public opinion not against it ... less taxes ... blah blah blah ... these are things I believe ...'[/i] I refer you all to my Krugman link yesterday and the quip they will have to [i]'repeal the laws of arithmetic.'[/i]

@AndySHastings

7/03/2011Actually, the statement "Any money the Government has comes from taxpayers" isn't true. Technically, the Government doesn't require taxation to spend money. This is a hugely widespread misconception arising from the days of the Gold Standard. As we are now in the era of fiat money, the Government of Australia can spend as much as it likes without 'funding' that spending through taxation. (In fact, for us to be able to pay taxes the Govt. has to spend first so we can get our hands on some AUD to pay the taxes.) Try this link for a more detailed treatment: http://modernmoney.wordpress.com/2010/07/19/3-modern-money-facts-at-work/

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011I will also note that in the parallel universe that Tony Abbott and the Coalition inhabit, one in which the laws of Physics which are behind Climate Change aren't observed, and the laws of Arithmetic just don't add up when it comes to paying for their outlandish policies, today, courtesy of the SA Community Forum which Mr Abbott lit upon, we have had a further delusional step back from addressing Climate Change. He, the failed seminarian of the Uber Religious bent, said wtte that, "As Australia is blessed with abundant coal and gas, I can't see why we shouldn't just use it up." Yep, leave God to provide a solution to Climate Change, which you don't really believe in anyway,huh? How did this delusional man get to lead one of our major political parties? Oh, that's right, he was good with the only arithmetic that counts, Howard's Law of Caucus Numbers.

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011AndySHastings, OK, so to follow your logic(and thank you for providing the link), what would be the more appropriate thing to say about the funding black hole that is at the heart of the Coalition's Climate Change policy is that it would lead to higher interest rates and Cost of Living increases as the infaltion rate wouuld be driven up by their reckless spending?

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011Catching up Andrew Robb said several things on [i]Insiders[/i], few of which were intelligible. His convoluted talk leaves confusion in its wake. I really don't know what he was trying to say. D Mick Weir If governments should do no harm, does it count as harm when Abbott promotes the view in his SA Community Forum, as stated in FS's comment: [i]"As Australia is blessed with abundant coal and gas, I can't see why we shouldn't just use it up."[/i] Will using it up cause harm? If you believe climate change is 'absolute crap', I suppose it won't.

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011@AndySHastings Welcome to the [i]TPS[/i] family. Do come again. Your link made interesting, albeit technical reading. I am not in a position to dispute the veracity of your argument, so I won't. Whatever the technicalities, without taxes governments could not operate in the long term. The point of this piece is simply to demonstrate that Tony Abbott is into Great Big New Taxes, just as much as he accuses the Government of being. "If it's good for the goose…"

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Guys, I have just received this information from GetUp: http://www.getup.org.au/campaign/ClimateActionNow&id=1580 It is information about a rally to counteract the evil and pernicious 'Peoples Revolt' that Tony Abbott and the Anti Climate Change Action Urgers like Greg Smith and Alan Jones of 2GB are organising with a Rally outside of Parliament House in Canberra on March 23rd. I urge(lol) anyone who lives in Melbourne to make an effort to get along to the PM's Electorate Office this Saturday morning and show the rest of Australia that we are just as enthusiastic about the government taking action, on our behalf, on Climate Change. Also it would be nice to send a message to Tony Abbott that he does not have his finger on the nation's pulse, as he likes to delude himself that he does. The Fossil Fuel industry and their shills in the media and in the Opposition cannot be allowed to win this fight. Further demonstrations will be held in coming weeks in other capital cities. I know I will be going to the one in Sydney. Wow! Synchronicity. My ReCaptcha word is 'tax'. :)

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011FS I suppose nothing that comes from Tony Abbott's lips should surprise me, but the statement [i]"As Australia is blessed with abundant coal and gas, I can't see why we shouldn't just use it up."[/i] leaves me gobsmacked. How could a man who has been dragged reluctantly to even the most modest recognition of the possibility of anthropogenic global warming really believe that digging up all the coal we have and presumably burning it here or elsewhere do no harm? It defies logic, but as I have argued many times, that is of no consequence to him. Anything goes, so long as it attracts attention and support of his position. To him, truth, logic, even common sense is irrelevant in pursuit of power.

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011This just in from Twitter: [quote]66% of L-NP respondents polled believe that the government needs to act on climate change. That's very interesting.[/quote]

Augustus

7/03/2011Greetings AA, thats about it really "So let’s stop all this nonsense about Great Big New Taxes. Its repetition, day after day, is primary schoolyard stuff." When I worked in Germany in 1999,I had my clothes washed at a laundromat, I was asked what temperature did I want my clothes washed at 20, 40, 60, the price increased with temperature. I asked my colleagues about this, "Price on Carbon". So if we turn off unused appliances, lights etc, etc, then we can all become tax avoiders legally. BTW, did anyone see this article / blog http://truepolitik.blogspot.com/2011/03/carbon-costs.html

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Ad Astra, If Tony Abbott got a hold of power in this country, he'd give Caligula a run for his money, and he could fiddle while the planet burned. :)

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Aha! Thank you Peter Martin. He has found a copy of Greg Hunt's University Thesis about the best way to solve the problem of Climate Change, make the polluters pay! http://www.petermartin.com.au/2011/03/why-we-need-carbon-tax-by-coalitions.html

Senexx

7/03/2011Andy, you beat me to it. Here's my input anyway. Whilst I'm generally supportive of the political comment made here, it is more the unnamed programs that Abbott would cut that concern me. Since Andy and I at least know that the current budget is set on the quantity (of dollars) rule and thus finding the money is of consequence. (It should be set on the price rule but that's a discussion for another day) However, the following statement is categorical wrong - "Any money the Government has comes from taxpayers: individuals, small business and large companies, and from interest earned on funds collected. So the $3.6 billion is a Great Big New Tax, a la Abbott." Ask yourself how it gets to all of those places in the first place. It certainly wasn't by magic.

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011Senexx You and Andy have focussed on a statement that you assert is incorrect, namely: "Any money the Government has comes from taxpayers: individuals, small business and large companies, and from interest earned on funds collected. So the $3.6 billion is a Great Big New Tax, a la Abbott." You ask how money 'gets to all those places in the first place'. By all means edify us, but if you do, please also confirm that whatever you call them, the funds needed by Tony Abbott to pay the polluters is of the same nature (leave aside the amount) that Julia Gillard needs to fund her scheme. That is the point of the piece; the semantics of 'tax' is peripheral.

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Essential Report on Climate Change and Carbon Tax issues: http://www.essentialmedia.com.au/essential-report/

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Senex, Can you answer my proposition, which I put to Andy? Ta. :)

Acerbic Conehead

7/03/2011Great analysis, AA. It’s great to see the palpable anger coursing through your veins as you wrote this. And meanwhile, Tones is going on his merry way, delusional as ever, being a mouthpiece for the big polluters. Here he is in the shower singing their praises, doing a hatchet-job on the Guns N’ Roses classic, “Sweet Child O’ Mine”. http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=P-AYAv0IoWI :- ) I’ve got a plan that seems to me As hokey as Johnny’s GST But I don’t care if its like A Barnaby sum You see, no-one from the meejah Has the balls to call me for an eejit So there’s no chance I’ll ever get kicked out on my bum :- ) Oh...oh...oh...oh...cute tax o' mine Cute toll of mine :- ) They send up crap into the skies Cause lots of acid rain But I’ll do all I can to hide their lies And instead cause the punters pain When I’m in guvmint, it’ll be a warm safe place I’ll protect their bottom line Then I’ll tax the punters, protect the Billy Bunters The polluters will be in power :- ) Oh...oh...oh...oh...cute tax o' mine Cute toll of mine :- ) Not long to go Come on the Indos Not long to go now Cute tax o' mine!

Lyn

7/03/2011Hi Ad Thankyou very much for your exciting, great to read article today, brilliant timing. Just when Abbott is raging like a madman, even renting a crowd of Liberal voters in Adelaide. Seems the rallies against a tax on carbon, are Abbott rallies orgainised by Liberals and Liberal voters: Here is a couple of links on topic: [b]Crikey says:carbon crew are being directed by forces within the Liberal Party and are therefore nothing more than astroturf.[/b] [i]Meet the brains behind the anti carbon tax rallies, Andrew Cook, Crikey[/i] Cejnar and crew are prominent commenters on blogs and websites linked to anti-Islam Senator Cory Bernardi, including the notorious Menzies House site, edited by former leading Young Liberal Tim Andrews. Other online vanguards like stopgillardscarbontax.com and dontcopit.com have popped up to add fuel to the populist fire. http://www.crikey.com.au/2011/03/07/meet-the-brains-behind-the-anti-carbon-tax-rallies/ More lies by Mr Abbott: Our carbon plan won't hurt families, Tony Abbott claims, Malcolm Farr, News Com he Coalition is proposing a scheme to give industries money to reduce their carbon pollution and Mr Abbott said the funds needed would be accounted for. "So there will be no increase in taxes. There will be no increase in prices. There will be no additional burden on consumers or taxpayers.'' http://www.news.com.au/national/our-carbon-plan-wont-hurt-families-tony-abbott-claims/story-e6frfkw9-1226017057193#ixzz1Fshq6r3U Abbott promises to stop 'bad' carbon tax , SMH Mr Abbott played down a reporter's suggestion [b]he was using Ms Gillard's absence in the US to "create mischief" about her carbon scheme.[/b] http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-national/abbott-promises-to-stop-bad-carbon-tax-20110307-1bke5.html

@AndySHastings

7/03/2011In reply to Feral Skeleton: "what would be the more appropriate thing to say about the funding black hole that is at the heart of the Coalition's Climate Change policy is that it would lead to higher interest rates and Cost of Living increases as the infaltion rate wouuld be driven up by their reckless spending?" I wouldn't say that, no. Inflation really only becomes a problem when the Government tries to buy more 'real resources' than are available. At the moment our economy is a long way from this state, and as far as I know the Coalition's policy wouldn't make a massive difference to aggregate demand. I would endorse the political point being made here by Ad Astra in that since both major parties refuse to acknowledge the reality of our monetary system and the implications for our economy, the Coalition's 'climate action' plan would end up being 'offset' by cutting funding from other programs (or increasing tax) in a misguided pursuit of budget surplus. Tony Abbott's rank hypocrisy has ceased to surprise me any more.

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011FS Thank you for the reference to Greg Hunt's thesis. Peter Martin is a great resource. BTW, I see he has listed [i]Tony Abbott's Great Big New Tax[/i] in his 'economics picks'. So Greg Hunt's thesis is [b][i]A Tax to Make the Polluter Pay[/i][/b]!!!! Hunt is generally agreed as the most knowledgeable person in the Coalition on climate change. Coalition members extend that to the whole of parliament. He has written a thesis with such a title yet now endorses a policy to actually pay the polluters. Has he had an epiphany or is this just another contortion that he and other Coalition members are willing to undergo to align themselves with Tony Abbott's policy line? One of the tragedies of politics is the way in which politicians abandon their cherished beliefs and principles in pursuit of the leader's agenda. Malcolm Turnbull refused to do this about the ETS. While he was crucified by his party for doing so, he was admired by many parliamentarians and much of the public for his principled stand. Greg Hunt is not of the same calibre.

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011Hi Lyn Thank you for your comment and as always, the links. I was taken by the gobbledegook in news.com.au: [i]"The Coalition is proposing a scheme to give industries money to reduce their carbon pollution and Mr Abbott said the funds needed would be accounted for. He replied "Absolutely not'' when asked at a press conference whether the scheme would add to consumer costs. "We are buying abatements from (money already in) the Budget, and we are making savings in the Budget to make those abatement purchases,'' he told reporters. "So there will be no increase in taxes. There will be no increase in prices. There will be no additional burden on consumers or taxpayers.''[/i] So it seems in Tony's mind 'money already in' is not tax at all; it is simply 'money already in', presumably having arrived by magic without pain or sacrifice on anyone's part, or can be taken from programs it was meant to fund, again with out pain, in fact without anyone really noticing. So when is a tax, not tax? When Tony Abbott says so.

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011AC You hit the mark every time. Your are right about my anger, not just at the sheer hypocrisy and bald-faced deception Tony Abbott drowns us in day after day, but that so much of the media fails to mount a challenge to his disingenuousness. Thank goodness for Fairfax and sound economics journalists such as Peter Martin who call it the way it is. Andy Thank you for returning with a further comment. Your input is appreciated.

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011Augustus Thank you for the useful link to [i]True Politik[/i] with its helpful summary of the position of the Greens< Labor and the Coalition. I couldn't reconcile the stated Coalition position of paying the polluter with the dot points: [i]“incentives” for businesses and penalties for businesses that pollute beyond “business as usual levels”.[/i] If you look at the Coalition's policy document, 'incentives' is just a polite word for 'paying the polluters'. The latter words are not to be found in the document.

D Mick Weir

7/03/2011Hi Ad re Mr Abbotts' do no harm comment. I didn't have a totally clear view of the tele when he uttered those words but I will swear that I saw a tongue sized lump in his left cheek :)

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011FS The curious feature of this week's Essential Report is that while 59% indicate they are angry with Julia Gillard's 'broken promise' on a carbon tax, and while only 35% support carbon pricing and 48% oppose it, 47% insist on the need for action as soon as possible on climate change, and big majorities favour compensation for households, farmers and business owners when a carbon tax is introduced. The people want action, but are not yet reconciled to a carbon tax as a mechanism. A big selling campaign is needed. As usual Labor is behind the eight-ball in selling its plans.

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011D Mick Weir Don't you remember: [i]"You can't take what I say as Gospel unless it's scripted - written down."[i] Was Tony Abbott working from a script? If not, that lump you glimpsed probably was lingual.

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Money already where in the Budget? Savings where in the Budget? Can Mr Abbott please explain?

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011AndySHastings, So, if I am to understand you correctly, if a government is unrestrained by the Gold Standard anymore, they can virtually print money at will, so long as they keep inflation under control and the floating value of their currency doesn't reach Zimbabwean levels?

D Mick Weir

7/03/2011Hi 'Tweety Bird' Lyn re your comment on the previous post: [i]I'm sorry, I hope you are not upset.[/i] I will never be upset by you and the great linking that you do. The content at the end of some of them may be, at times, stomach churning, but well, sometimes I just have to hold my breath and nose and go in to find out how others think. Oh and I have just come back from the shops with a bottle of phenyl to disinfect the 'puter :)

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Ad Astra, I think that the Essential Report could have been worse. A majority of all parties supporters could have thought that the PM was a two-faced liar and they never want to do anything about Climate Change ever because it will cost them. As it looked to me the results were skewed by the Liberal Party supporters figures and the age demographic such that older people were more violently opposed to doing anything or paying for anything to be done about Global Warming. The figures were also compromised by the fact that afairly significant proportion of young people were equivocal about taking action on Climate Change as well. What also surprised me was the number of people who self-identified as Greens voters who were opposed or strongly opposed to taking action. One wonders, why do they vote Green then? Anti US Alliance sympathies? :)

Senexx

7/03/2011I wont presume to speak for Andy Ad Astra, but I talk about the reality of the situation not the theorised perception of the situation. Yes, under the current (incorrect) rules the expenditure for his Direct Action Plan has to come from somewhere, it's either a levy/tax, cutting some programs, or a deficit. It is not necessarily a tax. Feral Skeleton, you ask a leading question. Two in fact since it is a run-on sentence that I had difficulty deciphering. Simply put: Inflation occurs when there is chronic excess demand relative to the real capacity of the economy to produce. So with any extra spending, if we're not producing more then yes there will be inflation and likely accelerating inflation. If we do produce more under such a scheme, inflation, particularly accelerating inflation is unlikely to occur. For a more advanced form of this, check out: http://modernmoney.wordpress.com/2011/01/10/what-is%C2%A0inflation/

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Actually, I was just reflecting on Tony Abbott's Magic Pudding Economics explanation for his Direct Action plan: [quote]"So there will be no increase in taxes. There will be no increase in prices. There will be no additional burden on consumers or taxpayers.'' [/quote] He told us, never believe a word he says as the 'gospel truth', unless it is written down. Which is how he gets away with telling bald faced lies straight to camera, I guess. :)

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011I was also just thinking, with all the lies Tony Abbott has been telling recently, it would be opportune to be monitoring Cardinal Pell's movements wrt Mr Abbott. He's probably been a very busy man lately. :)

D Mick Weir

7/03/2011Just saw Ed Husic on News24 I like 'the cut of his jib'. He speaks well and was polite but firm in dealing with the 'tosh' being put by the Liberal Scott Somebody (not Morrison). I am marking him down as a lad (oops, bloke, err um, person) with a big future in politics.

Jason

7/03/2011DMW, While you watched Ed Husic I endured another helping of Andrew Robb on Agenda who just like yesterday was as clear as a London fog!

TalkTurkey

7/03/2011For hilarity only. Just as well there's no-one of the named name. Any resemblance to anyone living or undead is purely obvious. Tune: Good King Wenceslas Toe-Rag Abbortt in a shop Filleting a Salmon: Much too busy, doesn't stop To have his hands examined! Toe-Rag has a cold this day, And his nose is snotty: Has to sneeze and catches spray - Gets his hands all gro-ot-ty! Health Inspector, do you see Toe-Rag's hands all smudgy? What is that stuff? Could it be Something off his Budgie? All this morning shaking hands, Brushy-tailed and breezy, Swapping germs with fawning fans, Now his hands all gree-ee-zy! Nothing daunted, knife in hand, [Hygienic gloves he scoffs at!] Never mind that greeblies land On the fish he coughs at! But - Someone gets to eat that fish! Lucky lass or fella! Could be you! So - make a wish! Toe-rag Salmonel-el-aaarrgghhhhhh! [Last verse slow and straight . . .] Foodies' hands should subject be To rigorous inspection, Lest they pass to you and me Abbottulism in-fe-ec-tion! Serious comment though: I really feel dismayed that Abbott gets to handle raw fish with bare hands in an uncontrolled environment. Let alone it passing without comment. If I were the fish-shop owner I think such behaviour on the part of staff would be a firing offence. (Maybe the fish-shop owner should be put on notice h/self?) "What do you think?"

John

7/03/2011Hi Ad, et al. [quote]penalties for businesses that pollute beyond “business as usual levels[/quote] is on P15, par. 5 of the Libs document. I agree wholeheartedly that "incentives" means "pay with taxpayer dollars" ie (more) business welfare :) John

D Mick Weir

7/03/2011Ad, FS I wouldn't get too perplexed with the 'inconsistencies' in the responses. When you drill down we all have some beliefs that are inconsistent with other of our beliefs. When it comes down to it, most of us, want others to take actions on our behalf that will benefit the common good, as long as we can keep doing what we have always done. Although it is a bit harsh to say it this way, if we were to be really honest with ourselves we would find that we 'pure hypocrites' and full of incosistitencies. When asked about what the government should do to save money it is a preety safe bet that most people will respond in a way that says 'cut everyone elses benefits but leave mine alone' or, for a worker, 'make the bosses pay' and naturally for bosses the reverse. Recently I had a discussion with a gay person who said "I don't want my taxes wasted on education, baby bonuses and family supplements or the dole as they don't benefit me'. I put it to him that maybe if the person who had broken into his unit had, just maybe, had a better education or had been provided with some sort of work skills training they might not of broken in and 'borrowed' his prized possessions. (A very long bow I wiil admit). A grudging maybe was his response. 'BUT it is a waste of MY taxes ..... ' Hmm, I need to think this through a bit, but there is a clue in what this person said and the belief that he still 'owned' the taxes paid to the government.

D Mick Weir

7/03/2011Jason @ 5:04 You are either a glutton for punishment or a martyr to the cause. I will go with the latter and award your two and a half gold stars * * */2 and a smiley :)

Lyn

7/03/2011Hi John Welcome to "The Political Sword" Thankyou so much for your comment, and thankyou for your excellent, informative, article on your own blog "True Politik". Link to your blog was posted earlier by Augustus above: Carbon Costs, John, True politik Most of the nay-sayers are from the Liberal & National Parties. It is a politically convenient position, allowing big-polluting supporters to continue to pollute. http://truepolitik.blogspot.com/2011/03/carbon-costs.html

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011I follow Ed Husic on Twitter, and he said he was going to be on Sky with Jamie Briggs from South Australia today. That is THE Jamie Briggs who was John Howard's principal adviser on WorkChoices before he went into parliament after taking over Alexander Downer's old seat of Mayo. That would be the same Jamie Briggs who attempted to incite hatred of Asylum Seekers when Chris Bowen allowed them to live in old Defence Force accomodation at Inverbrackie,SA. Probably the same MP who was behind the Coalition's latest Private Members Bill to make it illegal for Asylum Seekers to be allowed to live in abandoned Defence Force accomodation. That Ed Husic, parliament's first Muslim MP, didn't step up and give Jamie Briggs a Chinese Burn or a very public rasberry, is a tribute to his self control and good manners. Things which have disappeared from the Coalition's DNA.

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Aren't 'Business as usual levels' of CO2 emissions the cause of Global Warming already? So, if Abbott only wants to penalise companies whose emissions exceed 'Business as Usual levels', doesn't that mean that he advocates, therefore, 'Business as Usual'? Which, therefore, means that he doesn't really give a toss about Climate Change and his policy is, as john correctly calls it, 'Business Welfare'?

D Mick Weir

7/03/2011Hi FS, I must get over my phobia and learn about this 'twitter thing' Keep getting told it's easy but you know 'old dog new tricks' keeps getting in the road. I read somewhere parts of a speech that Husic made about refugees and bits about the money Aus gets from exports to Muslim countries. It struck me at the time as an excellent contribution to the debate. Now that I have seen and heard him in the 'electronic' flesh I am even more impressed.

NormanK

7/03/2011Ad astra Just a quick note to back-up John's one above. By my reckoning, this is from Page 14 under Operation of Fund in the Coalition Policy Document. [quote]Unlike Labor’s emissions trading scheme, businesses will not be penalised for continuing to operate at ‘business as usual’ levels. Businesses that undertake activity with an emissions level above their ‘business as usual’ levels will incur a financial penalty. The value of penalties will be on a sliding scale at levels commensurate with the size of the business and the extent to which they exceed their ‘business as usual’ levels. The value of the penalties will be set in consultation with industry.[/quote] Based on this paragraph and other references within the Coalition document might I suggest to the ALP that they refer to it as 'Tony Abbott's Business as Usual Climate Change Policy'. Anyone who is even remotely interested in mitigating climate change is not going to be impressed with the use of the term 'business as usual'. A few other quick points from the document. [quote]But because electricity consumption is largely inelastic, prices will have to rise significantly to achieve a relatively small change in consumption. So at the heart of Labor’s proposed new scheme is a fundamental economic flaw – it relies on massively increasing the price of an inelastic good in an attempt to produce a change in consumer habits.[/quote] Who says electricity consumption is 'inelastic'? The ALP policy relies on consumers altering their consumption habits but the Coalition seem to be denying that it is at all possible. [quote]Labor’s emissions trading scheme relies on extensive purchase of overseas CO2 emissions abatement to meet the 5 per cent emissions reduction target. This delivers no local environmental benefit in Australia. In contrast, the Coalition’s approach ensures that all abatement activity supported by the Emissions Reduction Fund to achieve the 5 per cent emissions reduction target will occur in Australia – delivering environmental benefits here rather than overseas.[/quote] Two things. Didn't the recent report from the Climate Change Department make mention of $20 billion needing to be spent to purchase overseas carbon permits if the Coalition wishes to meet the 2020 target? Do we in Australia not share the atmosphere with the rest of the world? No? It should be okay then if we fix the air around us and tell the rest of them to go find their own clean air. The Abbott Air Bubble will protect us. http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/climate-expert-plugs-coalition-black-hole-20110302-1bewk.html Also mentioned in that article and in general usage is that the Emissions Reduction Fund will have a budget of $10.5 billion - not sure at this stage how the difference from $3.6 billion is explained. Not quite on topic for the thread but relevant. The ALP carbon pricing scheme will have the capacity to increase our target from 5% to as much as 25% if the rest of the world gets on board. What is Abbott going to do? Throw more of our public money at the problem? What happens in his scheme after 2020? Business as usual?

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011john, I love a person who can encapsulate an argument in a few dot points and a neat table. :)

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011I don't know if everyone here subscribes to Crikey, but if you don't it is worthwhile reading this analysis of who's who in the Astroturf operation behind Tony Abbott's Revolting Liberal Party, er, 'Peoples Revolt': http://www.crikey.com.au/2011/03/07/meet-the-brains-behind-the-anti-carbon-tax-rallies/#comments

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Sorry, I forgot to add, if you can't access the article, tell me and I will cut n paste it here. :)

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Actually, I have just had a marvellous idea in the spirit of the best Mata Hari Double Agent. As I read it, there is going to be a bus of Revolting People going to Canberra on March 23rd to protest the Carbon Price from my home area of the Central Coast,NSW. Now, if I sign up to go on the bus, get a free trip down to Canberra, and then hop off the bus and unfurl a pro Global Warming action placard for the TV cameras, I might be able to do some real good for the cause. All I have to do is put up with the interminable bores and misguided fools on the bus until I get to Canberra. :)

TalkTurkey

7/03/2011Folks, ABC B/cast of Parliament t'other day, Ed Husic speaking, TWICE ABC ran the line " Ed Husic LIB "! No correction, no retraction, bloody INFURIATING! I emailed Mr H, he replied he's been called many things but NEVER a LIB ! He sounds excellent, having been libelled about his NON-religious beliefs and as result failed to gain a seat in ?2003?, but he's got his seat now.

Lyn

7/03/2011Hi Hillbilly What are you going to say, when the revolting people start saying Julier to you. Oh! dear imagine when they all talking together on the bus, repeating Abbott's, Jones, Mitchell's words. No don't do it please, I will worry for your safety.

Jason

7/03/2011FS, What about this for the protest? ABBOTT IS PROOF OF EVOLUTION – SHIT HAPPENS

2353

7/03/2011I'm confused (something my wife will attest happens regularly - but anyway), so a "great big new tax" is not a tax when proposed by the LNP. Why is it when red tribe collects money from business and the public it's a tax, when blue tribe does the same thing it has a different name, such as a PERMANENT LEVY Abbott was proposing for the Maternity Payment scheme he proposed. Hillbilly - stay away from the bus - it's not worth your intellect to be on the bus. I repeat stay away from the bus.

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011Folks While I've been mowing a couple of acres of grass you've been busy with comments. You refer to Andrew Macintosh, NormanK, via the SMH. For your information Andrew Macintosh is an environmental law and policy expert and is the Associate Director of the ANU Centre for Climate Law and Policy. He has written extensively on environmental law and policy, particularly climate change. He is currently co-writing a history of the environment and heritage portfolio under the Howard Government. He states in the SMH article: [i]''The Coalition policy is not going to be least-cost abatement - I'd say a carbon price is a far more effective way of going about things - but the government's use of the departmental analysis is misleading.'' He said the Coalition could potentially meet a significant part of the emissions target using trees - if it was prepared to shut down the native forest industry and invest heavily in reforestation."[/i], all of which is far from the plugging the 'Coalition's 'black hole'. as the heading suggests.

Jason

7/03/2011The best question today to Abbott on his roadshow in Adelaide was by one man standing at the back, who asked looking at the crowd and the time of the day (which was mid morning) where are the young people the future of the party why didn't you hold this when they could come? Answer um ah um laugh next question!

Bilko

7/03/2011Abbotts black hole is not a pit where money disappears but a cave, rather like Aladdins, where one reaches in and comes out with a handful of dosh. It is so simple I cannot understand why no one can see it. and as for this quote "As Australia is blessed with abundant coal and gas, I can't see why we shouldn't just use it up" unquote,I really think he is becoming unhinged.

Ad astra reply

7/03/2011jason Good question - typical Abbott non-answer. Bilko Anyone who makes such a statement in the midst the carbon debate deserves to be considered completely unhinged - or as is the case too often with Abbott, completely out of answers. Folks I'm calling it a day and look forward to a good evening's TV on ABC.

D Mick Weir

7/03/2011FS @ 06:00 PM And find a way home afterwards? Awe Gee that DMW is such a party pooper :)

Macca

7/03/2011The important question to be asked re: Abbbotts scheme; What percentage of the taxpayers money paid to polluters will end up in overseas dividend cheques? Suggest Greg Combet follows this up.

Feral Skeleton

7/03/2011Thank you all for your kind concern wrt my well-being should I venture into the belly of the Coalition, well, the bus of the Coalition beast. :) DMW, You have guessed right, I would probably not be allowed back on the bus once my cover was blown. Not that I am worried, I know my way to the Canberra Train station. You see, I am a resourceful person.

D Mick Weir

7/03/2011FS, and if worse becomes worst I am sure a couple of commenters here who reside in our National Capital would put you up for the night!!!!

tiffany232

7/03/2011HI, I'm still blocked from your twitter site. I know it's not deliberate. But Twitter, Facebook and Linked In are important avenues for your message.

Rx

7/03/2011All those words in that ... "policy", perhaps Abbott is lost. He doesn't usually go over three words.

Jason

7/03/2011Newspoll: 54-46 to Coalition http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/2011/03/07/newspoll-54-46-to-coalition/

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011Re Newspoll: Absolutely devastated. I got the news on Twitter last night via The Ghost Who Votes Twitter account. All I can say is that the electorate appear to believe style over substance plus a political paradigm equivalent to the sort of behaviour that goes on in the school playground is what they prefer. They don't appear to pay on results but on gimcrack one-liners. :(

Lyn

8/03/2011 [b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] [i]Abbott re-writes the laws of economics, Greg Jericho, Grog's Gamut[/i] the attendees had been invited by the office of Liberal Senator Simon Birmingham. Wow. What a stunning achievement for Abbott to find a sympathetic audience among a group of people invited by a Liberal Senator. http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/ [i]7.30 Something, Mr Denmore, The Failed Est[/i]ate Chris Uhlmann, perhaps suffering from nerves and the inevitable comparisons with Kerry O'Brien, overdid it with his interview with the minister Stephen Smith, repeatedly interrupting and rushing questions http://thefailedestate.blogspot.com/ [i]Do Watt John? Ashghebranious, Ash's Machiavellian Bloggery[/i]With all this talk about prices going up and up and stuff with the advent of carbon pricing, I had to ask myself just what is the cost http://ashghebranious.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/do-watt-john/ [i]New Paradigm Demands Better Worded Promises, Ashghebranious, Ash's Machiavellian Bloggery[/i] Abbott on the other hand received little to none of this in his own numbers. His satisfaction rising 2 percentage points and his dissatisfaction also rising by 2 percentage points. http://ashghebranious.wordpress.com/ [i]Coalition is telling lies – CarbonGate , Saynotony, Trev's Political Rants[/i] ”All I’d said was that their numbers added up, I didn’t say I supported it.” http://trevspoliticalrants.com/2011/03/07/coalition-is-telling-lies-carbongate/ [i]Andrew Bolt on Melbourne’s MTR – Love to spin but hate the FACTS ,Saynotony, Trev's Political Rants[/i] Its Funny with Bolt , when some other than News Limited says anything bad about BOLT they are from the LEFT ! but we all know that Conservatives are sore looses http://trevspoliticalrants.com/2011/03/07/andrew-bolt-on-melbournes-mtr-love-to-spin-but-hate-the-facts/ [i]Meet the brains behind the anti carbon tax rallies, Andrew Cook, Crikey.[/i] carbon crew are being directed by forces within the Liberal Party and are therefore nothing more than astroturf. http://www.crikey.com.au/2011/03/07/meet-the-brains-behind-the-anti-carbon-tax-rallies [i]We'll Keep Polluting The Air (Waves), Anna Rose, New Matilda[/i]Right-wing radio shock jocks Alan Jones and Chris Smith from 2GB and Liberal Senators Cory Bernardi and Eric Abetz have a plan that they believe will stop http://newmatilda.com/2011/03/07/how-well-keep-polluting-air [i]Carbon Costs, John, True Politik[/i] policies from Labor and Liberal-National Parties have been subject to change to suit particular political climates at the time. http://truepolitik.blogspot.com/2011/03/carbon-costs.html [i]A tax to make the polluter pay, Andrew Leigh, On Line Opinion[/i] the Multi-Party Climate Change Committee could doubtless benefit from the ideas and experience of many in the Coalition – if only they were allowed to participate. Let's hope Mr Abbott http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=11708 [i]How not to sell a carbon tax, Ken Parish, Club Troppo[/i]clarifies the government’s intentions but leaves enough qualifications to enable negotiations with “stakeholders”. How about something like this?: http://clubtroppo.com.au/2011/03/07/how-not-to-sell-a-carbon-tax/ [i]Of Heroes and monsters, Patrick Callioni[/i] With the carbon tax Gillard has shown her political stripes as a strategist; much like Howard did with the GST. http://www.openforum.com.au/content/heroes-and-monsters [i]The Carbon Tax Debate Heats Up, Robert Pearce, Embrace Australia[/i] Mr Robb and the Opposition as a whole fail to see the long term economic and environmental gain in pricing carbon. http://www.embraceaustralia.com/the-carbon-tax-debate-heats-up-9101.htm [i]Look out here they come again , Earthsign[/i] As speculation mounts about the developing structure of the carbon tax/ETS proposal being thrashed out by the Multi Party Committee on Climate Change (MPCCC) http://duggyvans.blogspot.com/2011/03/look-out-here-they-come-again.html [i]No more ignorant talk of a two-speed economy , Ross Gittins , SMH[/i] If you think you've got nothing to show for the resources boom, all you're showing is your economic ignorance. http://www.smh.com.au/business/no-more-ignorant-talk-of-a-twospeed-economy-20110306-1bjjz.html [i]Climate opinion surveys = a cautionary tale, Brian, Larvatus Prodeo[/i] University of Michigan psychologist Jonathon Schuldt led a study which asked this question: http://larvatusprodeo.net/2011/03/07/climate-opinion-surveys-a-cautionary-tale/#more-20584 [i]Opinion leaders have no right to treat leaders with such rudeness , Phillip Coorey, National Times[/i] On it went until an increasingly agitated Bolt, according to Bishop, simply hung up on her. http://www.nationaltimes.com.au/opinion/politics/opinion-leaders-have-no-right-to-treat-leaders-with-such-rudeness-20110306-1bjca.html [i]Tony’s Crystal Ball/s, Min, Cafe Whispers[/i] His prediction that the independents would see sense and install him as Australia’s PM ~ http://cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/tonys-crystal-balls/ [i]Will the Real Prime Minister Please Stand Up?, Reb, Gutter Trash[/i] It’s not Tony Abbott although you could be “forgiven” for think that it was. And it’s not Alan Jones http://guttertrash.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/will-the-real-prime-minister-please-stand-up/ [i]We all knew this was coming … Insurance Company posturing …, Bleyzie, The Eye-ball Opinion[/i] insurance’ war over the Wivenhoe Dam water releases is the afterbirth delivery we have all been waiting for. http://bleyzie.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/we-all-knew-this-was-coming-insurance-company-posturing/ [i]Newspoll: 54-46 to Coalition, William Bowe, The Poll Bludger[/i] partisans of both side would prefer that their own party be in majority government, so it would have been good to have seen how respondents http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/ [i]Poll backlash: Julia Gillard and Labor punished for carbon tax , Dennis Shanahan, The Australian[/i] JULIA Gillard's carbon tax plan has reversed public support for action on global warming http://www.news.com.au/national/labor-support-slumps-to-lowest-level-poll/story-e6frfkw0-1226017394059 [i]Labor falls to lowest ever primary in Newspoll, Kim Larvatus Prodeo[/i] [b]we still have 45% of voters effectively backing the government, and presumably some of those who’ve peeled away to the Coalition on the basis of widespread misinformation about the carbon price can be won back. [/b]http://larvatusprodeo.net/2011/03/07/labor-falls-to-lowest-ever-primary-in-newspoll/

D Mick Weir

8/03/2011Good Morning All, While Mr Abbott tells us a government should do no harm I have learnt we at the Sword are doing some good. Everytime any of us comment here we need to play ReCaptcha Bingo and guess what - it is a benefit out there in cyberspace. Craig Thomler at eGov AU has enlightened me. [b]Doing good while improving security with ReCAPTCHA[/b] [i]' ... users are presented with words that computers could not understand during the document digitalisation process. Each time a user completes a ReCAPTCHA, they are helping to decipher and digitalise the world's literature and records - preserving it into the digital age.'[/i] http://egovau.blogspot.com/2011/03/doing-good-while-improving-security.html

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011All I hope is that this poll is a wake up call to those journalists who have not been giving Tony Abbott and his cockamamie policies and positions the scrutiny that they deserve. Not the journalists who hang on his every word and would never question him but the self-styled 'serious' journalists who theoretically seek to hold both sides of politics to account for their actions and words. For too long now it has been the case that they have used criticism of the ALP federal government as a kind of pissing contest to see who could go the furthest with punctilious parsing of their every word and deed. No one wanted to be seen to be openly supporting and encouraging the Gillard government for fear of being labelled a 'Lefty journalist' by the rest of the commentariat. Well, what gutless wonders they are that they would rather not be seen amongst their peer group to be standing apart from the crowd and not wanting to be seen to be standing for something other than taking easy potshots at the ALP and Horse Race commentary.

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011The government, will indeed, need to have nerves of steel and a backbone made of stern stuff to weather the Fossil Fuel industry and Big Business-backed anti Carbon Price campaign of the Opposition. Tony Abbott will do and say anything to win this battle. As has been noted, he ransacked the Liberal Party to install himself as leader because he disapproved of the bipartisan consensus to tackle the issue of Climate Change by making the polluters pay, so he will take great heart from the current Essential poll results and Newspoll too and will continue to be a political wrecking ball swinging wildly at the government. However, as has been said, the government must play the long game if they want to restore their credibility in the eyes of the electorate, or at least enough of the electorate to get them an election win in 2013.

NormanK

8/03/2011Ad astra My apologies for using the article featuring Andrew Macintosh - that was a red herring. It was only meant to show that $10.5 billion is a figure that is in wide use as the cost of the Coalition's scheme. I'm now guessing that the $3.6 billion is the estimated cost over the forward estimates and that the larger figure is the cost to 2020. So he intends to spend about $1 billion per year to salve our consciences. Or if the department estimates are correct, $3 billion per year. I see yesterday that Mr Abbott is using one of his favourite words in this regard, stating that the expenditure would come from 'savings' in the budget. Of course, one politician's 'savings' are another one's 'cuts'. Everyone approves of 'savings' just so long as they are not made by putting at risk their own pet projects or what they see as being in the long-term national interest. So I guess we will be buying climate change mitigation at the expense of foreign aid and domestic welfare programmes. Pensioners, carers and other welfare recipients won't have to pay more (according to Mr Abbott) but just don't expect an increase in income in the foreseeable future. As for Mr Abbott's statement : "As Australia is blessed with abundant coal and gas, I can't see why we shouldn't just use it up" - this is not something which can be taken seriously. In one of my early satirical pieces here at TPS I put the question 'what do you want me to say?' into his mouth and this comment falls into that category. He was trying to be liked by his audience and he knew that remark would play well. He does this all the time and it is one of the reasons that he can't be pinned down by rational criticism in this perpetual present media circus - a wave of his hand and that statement is dismissed as belonging to another time and place. Like all snake oil salesmen, he is not in the least worried about buyer regret. He only needs to make the sale once and then he can move on.

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011FS and others upset by Newspoll Let's not get too exercised by this poll, the outcome of which is not really a great surprise. Remember that a year ago the figures were reversed yet at the election the result was very close. It's a long time before the next election. Part of the problem is Labor's lamentable PR outfit that seems incapable of crafting simple messages. As Tony Abbott has so brilliantly shown, three word slogans work, and they don't even have to be accurate, or even right. Why can't Labor simply say: LABOR WILL TAX THE POLLUTERS AND COMPENSATE THE PEOPLE THE COALITION WILL [b]PAY[/b] THE POLLUTERS AND TAX THE PEOPLE.

D Mick Weir

8/03/2011NK, you seem to have 'sussed' them out. Your comment [i]'... at the expense of foreign aid and domestic welfare programmes.'[/i] has some validity. George Christensen MP, Federal Member for Dawson appears to be 'softening us up' for a cut to the foriegn aid budget. The usual warnings apply about protecting your mental and physical well being if you follow the link provided. From Menzies House: [b]Foreign Aid: A Cow of a Policy[/b] [i]'George Christensen MP argues that it's time to cut our foreign aid budget, and focus on ensuring efficient outcomes with what we do spend: .... During the flood tax debate, we found out just how sacred the foreign aid cow is when it was first suggested the government should look for cost savings from Australia’s foreign aid expenditure to fund flood reconstruction in Queensland. The reactions were so strong, so fast, and yet so baseless, one could be excused for stepping back and saying: “Holy Cow”. .... We should cut our commitment to foreign aid because, despite sounding contrarian, it is the right thing to do.'[/i] http://www.menzieshouse.com.au/2011/03/foreign-aid-a-cow-of-a-policy-.html It is a long post that takes a lot of interesting leaps [b]'We should cut .. foreign aid because, ... it is the right thing to do.'?[/b] I guess we should be re -erecting our tariff walls and instituting a white Australia policy as well.

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011Ad Astra, Sadly it is not as simple as you make out. Yes, the messaging needs to be simplified, but, alas, Tony Abbott has successfully poisoned the well of goodwill towards the Labor Party and Julia Gillard,PM, and he's not going to let up anytime soon. If you want to be really depressed and realise just how pervasive his messaqges have become, read the comments to this fairly mild Malcolm Farr article, they'll curl your hair, or make you feel very sad, at the least: http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/gillard-is-now-prime-minister-in-name-only/ Also, I just had a long conversation with my friend who is a Greens voter, and all she could say, basically, was that she was pissed off with the ALP for squandering the consensus wrt action to address Climate Change, and, she thought Julia Gillard shouldn't have lost her cool when she was interviewed by Alan Jones, she should have just copped his abuse sweet!!! Also, that Wayne Swan is a lousy communicator, which I agree with, and that the ALP need to get a new PR outfit and better salespeople to get out and sell, sell, sell, their messages and policies. So, there you go,

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011This comment from Peter Brent's Mumble Politics blog gets it about right for mine: [i]RON Tue 08 Mar 11 (09:34am) I noticed today that finally Swan and Combet have take a more deliberate approach to communicating the carbon tax issue and aggressively dismissed the Opposition’s fear campaign as nonsense. I think they have noted that the issue for them is not the carbon tax itself given that the Greens went up 2 percentage points in this recent opinion poll. It is a communication problem. The inability to communicate effectively and to counter the endless stream of misinformation from Abbott and his chorus of scream radio jocks is still a big problem for Labor . Howard used millions of taxpayers dollars to sell his reforms. He had every one of his front bench singing from the same page whilst simultatneously smearing the then Labor Opposition. That tactic obviously paid electoral dividends for Howard. Labor should take note and have Julia go on the communication warpath upon her return to our shores.. I am not happy with Julia and am by no stretch of the imagination accepting of an Abbott Government and its confused and irresponsible policy platform. I seriously believe that an Abbott led Government will be a diaster for this country that despite all of Labor’s faults is still enjoying high employment and economic growth post the GFC. It is time for Labor to do a huge demolition job on the Abbott Opposition while simultaneously explaining its policy positions succinctly and clearly through advertising. [/i][quote][/quote]

NormanK

8/03/2011FS Cheer up! 200 comments at The Punch, a quarter of them positive and most of them posted by the usual suspects squabbling with each other. Not exactly representative of the wider community. We have 2.5/3 years to the next election so you need to engage your filter which prevents 'if an election were held tomorrow' from ever getting through to your brain. :) The phrase was a nonsense two weeks out from the last election and has absolutely no meaning now. Who knows what will be the primary concerns of the voting public by the time we get to the next election. It would be nice for the sake of all our nerves if the ALP could start putting some meat on the bones of the carbon price framework sooner rather than later but this is a marathon not a sprint.

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011FS No one can or will write anything joyful for Labor about today's Newspoll. We just have to wear it and all the frustration that Labor supporters feel at the turn of events, the result of poor Labor PR and effective negative sloganeering by Tony Abbott. Peter Brent's appraisal is sound. Labor must get its PR act together quickly. Did you hear Tanya Plibersek use words on [i]The World Today[/i]almost identical to the ones I suggested above? LABOR WILL TAX THE POLLUTERS AND COMPENSATE THE PEOPLE THE COALITION WILL [b]PAY[/b] THE POLLUTERS AND TAX THE PEOPLE. Let's say this again and again and again and again…..

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011LYN'S DAILY LINKS updating has resumed today. http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/LYNS-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Patricia Lorimer

8/03/2011FS I read Malcolm Farr's piece. What disgusts me is the vitriol directed at Julia Gillard in the comments. I know you may recognise them as the usual suspects NormanK but I wonder if the voting public are having difficulty with a woman as PM. I watched parliament last week and I felt Julia did a stirling job. Whilst Labor has to communicate the message more clearly, they are still at the behest of the media to get it out there. To even contemplate TV commercials will be risky because of the way the Coalition was able to turn it into a negative when trying to counteract the Miners' advertising - 'waste', completely dismissing the huge amount of money spent on advertising by the Howard Government when selling their policies. All very depressing really.

Jason

8/03/2011latikambourke | 19 minutes ago TAbbott says he's running a 'truth' campaign and predicts Labor will run a taxpayer funded ad campaign on the Carbon Tax which he condemns. I'm lost for words!

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011NormanK I agree. The next election is a long way off and if a week is a long while in politics, two and a half years is an eternity. Labor needs to take a leaf out of Abbott's sloganeering book and work the three or four-worders to death. Two can play at that game. I heard this afternoon on the [i]The World Today[/i] a climate change spokesperson from the UK, a female, expressing surprise that we are so far behind Europe in our thinking. Of course we would not have been had the deal for an ETS between Malcolm Turnbull and Kevin Rudd came off, but Tony Abbott's ruthless destructiveness has left this country in a climate change backwater of denial and nihilism. She pointed out that the assertion that we would be leading the world with a carbon tax was nonsense, that a carbon tax has been operative in Europe for a decade and that it has not lead to loss of jobs. What Abbott spouts is nonsense but most of our lily-livered media has neither the inclination or the capacity to call his disingenuousness for what it is. The carbon tax fight is not just with Abbott and the Coalition, but with most of the media as well. We should be thankful for columnists like Peter Martin who does expose the hypocrisy of the Coalition. BTW, it should be noted that despite Labor's worst poll since 1993, despite Julia Gillards's fall in popularity, it is even now no worse than Tony Abbott's and she is still clear of Abbott in the PPM stakes. So despite everything running in his favour and against her, he is still not preferred as PM. The majority of the people simply don't want him.

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011Patricia Lorimer I have given up reading the vitriolic comments that appear on so many of the commercial blog sites. There are a group out there who thrive in subterranean slime and get their kicks from perpetuating hatred and poison. Can you imagine the state of their tiny minds when that is what the feed on and excrete day after day. I refuse to inhabit the same space. . No, it's not fair or honest or reasonable. But that is their world - let them wallow in it alone. It's depressing only if you read it.

NormanK

8/03/2011Ad astra Getting back to the thrust of your piece (and your suggested slogans), I think it would be a difficult sell to describe what Abbott & Co propose as being a tax. I've waited this long to address the issue because I had hoped that the gerbils would come up with a snappy alternative but thus far no luck. What I mean is something more like 'he will waste taxpayer dollars' or 'fleece taxpayers' or 'short-change worthwhile projects' but it needs to be condensed into one or two highly emotive words. The idea that he is taxing Australians will carry little weight since he is proposing the use of dollars already collected, in a sense, so an old tax is not as repugnant as a perceived new tax. Sorry economic egg-heads but the common man is always going to look on government budgets as money in from us and other sources, money out on public projects etc. This same common man will assume that any new tax is something which they will have to pay directly through income tax or at the cash register. The idea that big polluters pay the tax and the common man is reimbursed from this pool of money for any additional outlay as a result of price rises doesn't fit into any model with which he has had experience. Just a passing thought, how about : LABOR WILL TAX THE POLLUTERS AND COMPENSATE THE PEOPLE THE COALITION WILL PAY THE POLLUTERS AND [b]BUGGER[/b] THE PEOPLE.

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011A government trying to take action on Climate Change is like throwing pearls before swine. I have seen a simple analysis of the combined effect of the 2 main 'Taxes' that Tony Abbott is railing against, the Flood Levy and the Fixed Price on CO@ which then moves to a floating price, and it equates for the average family to 2 cups of cafe coffee per week. Gee, that'll send the economy and household budgets into a tailspin, won't it? Which is where the simple messaging must come in. If only the government made this simple point, day after day, it would hopefully embarass the nation into a resigned acceptance, at the very least, of the cost of doing something about Global Warming. However, which is to say that the comment made that Howard & Costello used to have a tried and true formula of preparing the ground with the electorate before they made a major policy announcement a few weeks down the track, is also valid. Labor need to get their messaging up to scratched, or they will be scratched by the electorate. On the other hand, they need to hold their nerve and hang in there until July 1st. Only 1 week of parliament until then. :) Which is not to say they should run away from the fight, just that they should be thankful that they will have the time to go around the country and put their side of the story, as opposed to being hamstrung inparliament by Tony Abbott's antics. Also, I'd find a new Speaker of the House of Representatives. Harry Jenkins is more use to the Opposition than the government.

Lyn

8/03/2011Hi Ad You know what sticks in my neck is the massive publicity this poll receives. Like it's 2 1/2 years until the next election, our Prime Minister is America, about to address Congress, a big event. Then we hear Channel 7 news say Julia Gillards trip to America is mared because of the bad polls, I mean really, then, when the polls go back up again they hardly say anything. They say if an election were held now Labor would lose, well, I say it's 2 and half years away, for goodness sake.

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011NormanK I can see that the purist side of your nature likes even snappy slogans to be accurate, and you can't quite accept that using money already in the budget is a tax. Well it got there as a tax. Anyway, I understand your purist feelings; the medical side of me harbours them too. But the political side of me realises that pristine accuracy is unnecessary, so long as the slogan is plausible and understandable. It doesn't have to be accurate - this is not science, it's politics. I like your alternative slogans, but prefer TAX THE PEOPLE even if the economists quibble.

TalkTurkey

8/03/2011Come on Labor, on the offensive! GREAT BIG STRONG ECONOMY! WORLD'S BEST JOB FIGURES! AUSTRALIA'S ECONOMY - THE ENVY OF THE WORLD! DON'T TRUST ABBOTT'S COALITION! ABBOTT LOVES THE SUPER-RICH! ABBOTT DESPISES BATTLERS! SAY NO TO ABBOTT'S GREAT BIG NEW TAX PLANS! Why is Labor forever on the back foot countering THEM?

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011Hi Lyn Unfortunately that's our media - always scratching around for something sensational, and if there isn't much, they make it up. Most MSM journalists are like school kids looking for a bit of tittle-tattle and revelling in passing it onto others. The 'marring' of Julia Gillard's US visit is entirely the result of their intervention. If they focused on questions germane to the visit, these relatively inconsequential events, such as an occasional poll, would never see the light of day. But for a group that finds Julia's earlobes, or handbag, or partner of great interest we can hardly expect any better.

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011TT Hear, hear. Get on the front foot and hit their pathetic bowling out of the ground, then put them in and let a few balls whistle around their ears in between those 150 kph rockets directed to the block hole that send their middle stump wheeling.

NormanK

8/03/2011Ad astra You are of course correct. This is why I will never properly understand politics or for that matter approve of the way it operates. 'It's just politics' is as bad as 'it's only business - nothing personal' which are both excuses for reprehensible behaviour which would be unacceptable in most other walks of life. TT Love the slogans. I would go so far as : AUSTRALIA - THE ENVY OF THE WORLD

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011I'm trying to stay positive, so in that spirit I have read this article and see it as a clear-eyed perspective on the current situation: http://www.themonthly.com.au/nsw-labor-comment-mark-aarons-3087

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011How's this for a simple anti-Abbott slogan: 'YOUR MONEY, FOR THEIR MATES' To pollute 'Business As Usual'

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011FS Read Bernard Keane's sensible appraisal in [i]Crikey: Stand by for an early election...[/i]. It will do your heart good. http://www.crikey.com.au/2011/03/08/stand-by-for-early-election-calls-as-the-coalition-builds-its-lead/

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011FS The actual title on the linked page reads [i]The Coalition builds its lead[/i].

NormanK

8/03/2011FS If we are work-shopping bumper stickers, how about : 'YOUR MONEY, FOR THEIR SPONSORS' To pollute 'BUSINESS AS USUAL'

John

8/03/2011Hi, All Thanks to those who have given me some feedback. The problems for the ALP are that: 1) the initial policy of an ETS has been delayed (because they couldn't agree on the format in the MPCCC (Multi-Party Committee on Climate Change) 2) the policy changed to an "interim" carbon tax for 3-5 years at undetermined levels, and without an implementation plan. 3) without a detailed plan, it is very hard to "sell" to the public, let alone the myriad conservative-supporting media & "shock-jocks" :)

Jason

8/03/2011FS, @ 7pm I'm off to a Makin FEC meeting if there is something you would like me to share email me!

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011john, I wish the MPCCC would get a wriggle on and come up with some decisions. It's killing the Labor Party. Which may well be what the Greens want. :( Do the Greens not realise that their own brand is being trashed in the Murdoch Press while they do not have an idea to sell, just like Labor? The Right Wing commentariat can ascribe all manner of misinformation and positions to them if there is no counterbalancing pov. Just like they are doing with the ALP. The Greens may feel that they are able to bargain hard for an increased level of the Carbon Price, or % Reduction in CO2 by 2020, however, it would be folly to do so I think if all it achieves at the end of the process is one of those massive swings to the Coalition in the Senate such as John Howard got in 2004 and which wiped out many of the best Greens Senators who were recontesting their seats.

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011A glimmer of light on a dark day: http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/coalitions-hunt-for-scheme-supporters-20110307-1bl86.html

TalkTurkey

8/03/2011Did anyone wish our female correspondents Happy Centenary of Women's Day? Well anyway I'm doing so now. You done come a long way in the last century Girls, I always thought yous couldn't do no worse than us blokes, not that I want to be a toady nor a wedge, the Left needs us all. But we couldn't do without you women. Dog bless you, every one.

Lyn

8/03/2011Hi Talk Turkey That is nice of you Talk Turkey, Thankyou, for saying Happy Centenary of Women's Day. You are a nice gentleman and talented too.

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011Now I've heard it all. If Tony Abbott says he believes Climate Change is real, this is what he means(tricky as ever): [quote]Tony Abbott on climate change today "Well, I’ve always thought that climate change was real because I’ve always known about the ice age and other things which indicate that over time climate does change."[/quote]

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011Talk Turkey, Thank you for the well wishes. :) Problem is, with the rise of the religious conservativesm, we women have started going backwards again.

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011I couldn't believe my ears! I just heard Tony Abbott saying, straight-faced to camera wtte: " If there's one thing you can count on, these guys(the ALP) will use taxpayers' money to fund a massive ad campaign". That out of the mouth of the man who was a Minister in the government who spent over a Billion $$$$$$$$ of taxpayers' money on self-serving ad campaigns. He honestly thinks he can make any accusation against the government now and get away with it. I feel like crying. He is 'guiding' the nation into his 'Guided Democracy', and, like sleepwalking frontal lobotomy patients they are walking right into his trap.

sanqween

8/03/2011I would just like to inform everybody on this blog that Cafe Whispers is now acting like those mainstream blogs that block commentors. He has not spoken to anyone or spoken anywhere about this issue since his last comment on your previous thread. This is extemely unfair. My husband is still being attacked, even though he is dangerously depressed and saw a doctor today. I attempted three times to post on CW to tell them to let go of the issue. Until I took out the name Nasking the post would not go up. This obviously means that anyone who uses my husband's name, even if they are supportive, will find their posts blocked and sent to spam. This is disgraceful. Having taken out my husband's posting name, I found my forth attempt to comment did go up on the site. It did not even last 5 minutes before it was deleted. I believe this is discrimination against me as his wife who has never said anything on this issue in public. And considering this is International Women's day, tells me alot about their respect for my right to have an opinion. So the people presently controlling that blog should be ashamed of themselves. Furthermore, we know by reading the latest comments on that blog that the previous blog owner is emailing people to throw dirt on my husband and yet those people are not privy to the history of the problem. And frankly I am disgusted at the kind of pack mentality/cyber-bullying that is going on both at Cafe Whispers and Gutter Trash. I never thought that after all my husband's efforts, that people would turn on him like this without knowing the full situation. Apologies for putting this here but how am I as a concerned partner allowed to air my concerns and ask them to stop if I am being blocked on the offending website and the previous blog owner will not respond to my emails. The comment I wrote was put up at 6.50pm March 8 2011 under 'annoyed partner' and then deleted as if I am not my own person.

sanqween

8/03/2011Re: [quote]I would just like to inform everybody on this blog that Cafe Whispers is now acting like those mainstream blogs that block commentors. He has not spoken to anyone or spoken anywhere about this issue since his last comment on your previous thread. This is extemely unfair. [/quote] I meant to say that my husband has not spoken to anyone or spoken anywhere. Sorry, this whole issue has caused both of us alot of anxiety. Some people are very bitter and do not know when to Stop.

2353

8/03/2011Gillard is the one that has to turn up at the Governor-General's house and ask for an election to be held any time before sometime in 2013. The TV News tonight reported the Newspoll results as ALP 30, Greens 15, LNP 45. You would imagine that most Green votes would fall to the ALP (as the party that are closer to the ideals of the Greens) than the LNP - so the actual result is a lot closer than reported. In short, Howard suffered a similar backlash on the GST (with Beasley I think promising to repeal it). He went on to win the next election as the GST wasn't a big issue in the end. If Gillard can hold her nerve (and the ALP not "do a Rudd" again), by 2013 I reckon the Carbon Tax or whatever it's called will be an non-issue. And off topic - sanqween, you too should give it a rest. Why do you also want to destroy another blog by importing a flame war?

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011Folks Let's not get into a flame war again. Let it stop now. Please.

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011Folks I'm still trying to throw off this cough that I brought back from overseas, so I'm calling it a day. I'll be back tomorrow.

sanqween

8/03/20112353, I am aware of the fact that you are a friend of Miglo's on Facebook. The issue isn't about flame wars, it's about my rights to comment as an individual and also the fact that these people are sending emails and posting comments that are slanderous and distorting information. Not only is my husband blocked from replying to these comments on these blogs, but the same has happened to me as his wife. How would you like that? I did not realise we were living in a totalitarian state. Don't forget, we thought this issue had finished. We had decided to tolerate the distortions and games being played and just let it go. It is these people who have inflamed the situation again and left no right of reply for my husband. I remember the days when many women and indigenous people were denied that right of reply.

PatriciaWA

8/03/2011 Thanks, TT. I think yours is the first formal message I've spotted here so far. I'm happy to accept your good wishes. I'm sure many others would be too. Watching Q&A last night I had the same thought on how well things were going for women in many areas, particularly politics. Our highly respected Governor-General is a woman, and our PM, as are three out of six state Premiers. True, as often happens, one at least may have got there when it was necessary to hold the fort in a messy scenario no man was willing to take on. I can't help but admire the pluck of NSW's Kristina Keneally in this election campaign. She's said to be on a hiding to nothing but she's determinedly upbeat. I think Julia Gillard's reputation and ability is such that her gender should be irrelevant in her role as Prime Minister, however, it seems to give an opportunity to the Opposition to sneakily rustle up a particularly ferocious misogynist streak in the national character. I'm not sure that 'dog' whistling is the appropriate term to use here, but Tony Abbott is exploiting that negative trait whenever he can. I wonder how the PM's visit to the States would be being reported today had that brilliant outsider, Obama, not appeared to pip Hillary Clinton in the Democratic Presidential primaries?

BSA Bob

8/03/2011F.S. re your posts at 12.27 & 7.14 You mention Malcolm Farr's article, however I feel the inclusion of a Valdman cartoon diminishes its relevance as an impartial piece. A more reliable contributor to Ltd News' "relentless drumbeat" is hard to find. But more importantly, I almost choked on a carrot when I saw Abbott's accusation of a coming ad campaign. This was obviously one of his prepared sneers- no err, arr no head lolling & weird stares at the reporter- so we must conclude he's confident he won't be picked up to any meaningful extent. And his confidence speaks volumes about the level of commentary in this country.

2353

8/03/2011sanqween - Bit hard to be a friend of someone on Facebook when I don't have a Facebook (or Twitter) account - as I've stated on this blog previously. I suspect you are mistaking me for soemone else - in which case your apology is accepted in advance.

sanqween

8/03/20112353, Then you might want to ask a certain CW blogger not to email this kind of info: [quote]Hi... Just so you know who these people that you kindly added as friends in response to my recommendations: (name withheld) blogs as 2353 at TPS and occasionally at the Café.[/quote]

Feral Skeleton

8/03/2011BSA Bob, He always thinks ahead does Mr Abbott. Cunning as a s*ithouse rat. He would have guessed that the federal government would need to explain the Carbon Price scheme to the electorate, but he just wants to be allowed to keep spreading his s*it to 'the mob' unhindered by the facts, so he has devised a form of words to call the Gillard government on their perfectly legitimate right to advertise the facts, first.

Lyn

8/03/2011Hi Hillbilly I missed 7.30pm report last night, but watched tonight. So is that going to be the norm, interviewer, interviews interviewer. Oh! dear the show is just awful.

Ad astra reply

8/03/2011I did ask that the matters related to CW not be aired here. Please respect that.

TalkTurkey

9/03/2011Ad astra Throwing off your cough, I should just think you have. All the way to Adelaide. I've got it now. Started with several violent sneezes that made my throat feel like it had been hot-sandpapered, then the infection sank into my chest just above the sternum, choking awful coughs now without much phlegm, feels like a big boot planted firmly and heavily on my chest. Sound like you? Swordies look out for Ad's benison!

TalkTurkey

9/03/2011Ad astra said "I did ask that the matters related to CW not be aired here. Please respect that." Not being involved, but out of respect and empathy with both or all protagonists as writers and comrades with good humanistic hearts, I would like to put a cap on whatever your issue might be, as a blown oil well is capped. I have myself been involved in internecine feuds in other situations (nothing to do with blogging) that have made me feel like exploding with rage and hurt, and I would like the parties just to feel that they have been listened to with understanding and love. I don't like to think of you feeling wronged and spurned by erstwhile friends. It eats you away inside. A terrible feeling, yes I know. But the issues must be put to bed now, at least here on Ad's brilliant blogsite. There are plenty of issues of wider importance to write about, (though imo none more important than sensible dispute resolution among goodwilled allies) and I am pretty sure that Ad astra as well as the rest of us will welcome your continuing input on TPS, provided that you have put personal rancor aside. Dog, there's gotta be room for both a Bear and a Duck here.

Miglo

9/03/2011TalkTurkey, I too have the dreaded lurgie although my symptoms are less 'colourful' than yours. Mind you, every time I hear Abbott speak it certainly does feel like a heavy foot is stomping on my chest. Once I shake this bug I'll be in a better mind to offer some intelligent discussion (not that I was much good at it anyway). :)

nasking

9/03/2011Talk Turkey, wise words. The issue has been put to bed. At least from the perspective of myself, my wife & another blogger. I don't think it did any of our health any good & I apologise for the disruptions here. My focus is now on other pursuits. I have let Aa know this. My wife & I signed this email to the UN this morning and hopefully many more good people on TPS will do same to help stop Gadaffi from murdering his people. Follow the link. [quote]Dear friends, The UN Security Council will decide in 48 hours whether to impose a no-fly zone on Libya's deadly air force to stop attacks on civilians. United global pressure from people around the world has helped push the Council to a unified position before -- we need it now: As Qaddafi's jets drop bombs on the Libyan people, the UN Security Council will decide in 48 hours whether to impose a no-fly zone to keep the government's warplanes on the ground. Together, we've sent 450,000 emails to the UN Security Council, "overwhelming" the Council President and and helping to win targeted sanctions and a justice process for the Libyan people. Now, to stop the bloodshed, we need a massive outcry for a no-fly zone. If Qaddafi can't dominate the air, he loses a key weapon in a war in which civilians are paying the heaviest price. But as long as his helicopter gunships and bombers are in the air, the death toll will rise. We have just 48 hours left -- let's hit 1 million messages to stop Qaddafi's deadly attacks before it's too late:[/quote] http://www.avaaz.org/en/libya_no_fly_zone_1/?vl --------------- Cheers N'

tredlgt

9/03/2011Perhaps with carbon price explanation the MSM will actually tell the truth or give accurate coverage if an add campaign is undertaken since they will make a nice tidy profit out of it. They must miss the howard years with the easy money he gave them for all his propaganda . I know this is a double standard but climate change legislation is too important not to be explained fully and once it is the electorate will relax about it. If the MSM had already done its job a add blitz would not be necessary ,the information would already be published and the disinformation refuted.

Lyn

9/03/2011 [b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] [i]At last, Andrew Elder, Politically Homeless[/i] At last, we have a Prime Minister who regards political capital as an asset to be risked in pursuit of further gains, http://andrewelder.blogspot.com/search?updated-min=2011-01-01T00%3A00%3A00%2B11%3A00&updated-max=2012-01-01T00%3A00%3A00%2B11%3A00&max-results=24 [i]Shock: negative newspoll for labor, Jeremy Sear, Pure Poison[/i]declared that this represents THE END OF THE GILLARD GOVERNMENT, we suspect Pure Poison readers might have a more nuanced view. http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/ [b]The Coalition builds its lead,Bernard Keane, Crikey[/b] Opposition to push for an early election, on the basis that the plan for a carbon price should be put to the sort of electoral test the Prime Minister, http://www.crikey.com.au/2011/03/08/stand-by-for-early-election-calls-as-the-coalition-builds-its-lead/ [i]Its time to deflate Abbotts Scare Campaign – Expert downplays carbon tax price rises , Saynotony, Trev's Political Rants[/i] It’s up to the Prime Minister to go to Yarralumla and call an early election if that’s what she wants to do http://trevspoliticalrants.com/2011/03/08/its-time-to-deflate-abbotts-scare-campaign-expert-downplays-carbon-tax-price-rises/ [i]Why a Gender-Quota System of Employment is a Terrible Idea, mjwill91. Standpoint[/i] It smacks of government unfairly interfering in the free market. What next? An Equalisation of Opportunity Bill? Who is John Galt? . http://standpointau.wordpress.com/2011/03/08/why-a-gender-quota-system-of-employment-is-a-terrible-idea/ [i]Give Us Something To Talk About, Martin Jones, New Matilda[/i]the Opposition functioning as a party of, well, opposition, their medium- and long-term goals for this country are opaque. http://newmatilda.com/2011/03/08/give-us-something-talk-about [i]The five hundredth post, Andrew Elder, Politcally Homeless[/i] I was a moderate liberal who could no longer remain in the Liberal Party, http://andrewelder.blogspot.com/2011/03/five-hundredth-post-all-writers-are.html#comment-form [i]Grasping the Conservative Nettle, Neil Cook, The Bannerman[/i]It's not often that I'll give miscreants like Bolt any virtual oxygen on this blog, http://www.waddayano.org/blog/2011/03/grasping_the_conservative_nett.php#more [i]Professional idiot Andrew Bolt , Darryl Mason, The Orstrahyun[/i] Fact-checking, like spell-checking, has never been a priority for Bolt in his rush to get out his latest conspiracy soaked rantings, http://theorstrahyun.blogspot.com/ [i]Can Abbott keep his carbon captures?, Alister Drysdale, Business Spectator[/i] Welcome to the Tea Partyists. The Murdoch media is salivating, not letting a fact get in the way of a dodgy headline. http://www.businessspectator.com.au/bs.nsf/Article/Julia-Gillard-Tony-Abbott-carbon-tax-polls-pd20110307-EPR7J?OpenDocument&src=rot&WELCOME=AUTHENTICATED [i]A Pending Class Action against – “Telstra/Bigpond” … waiting to happen …Belyzie, Eye-Ball Opinion[/i] [b](Hervey Bay) is served [/b]by an exchange that can never and will never be able to deliver ‘ADSL 2 (+)’ speeds http://bleyzie.wordpress.com/2011/03/08/a-pending-class-action-against-telstrabigpond-waiting-to-happen/ [i]Mr Turnbull, what is going on here?, Renai Lemay,Delimeter[/i] Malcolm Turnbull and his wife Lucy looking … extremely uncomfortable, while a man who appears to be from the South Korean parliament http://delimiter.com.au/2011/03/07/mr-turnbull-what-is-going-on-here/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Delimiter+%28Delimiter%29 [i]Of a motley bunch of insiders, from Gerard Henderson via foam-flecked shock jocks to that unseemly minion, the anonymous editorialist... Dorothy Parker, Loon Pond[/i] You see the right wing commentariat can carry on like this because it's their birth right, to be outrageous ponces. But anyone else who gets uppity ... bring on that anonymous editorialist, sledging away http://loonpond.blogspot.com/ [i]The Peasants Are Revolting, The Art Neuro Weblog[/i]Liberal Party jumping up and down to the tune of climate change Denialistas, which is a bit like running immigration policy http://artneuro.wordpress.com/2011/03/08/the-peasants-are-revolting/

Feral Skeleton

9/03/2011tredlgt, There is speculation that one of the reasons the Press Gallery has been so hard on Both Kevin Rudd's and Julia Gillard's governments was because they decided early on not to advertise as much in the local media as Howard had done. The media moguls were mighty peed off, so the story goes, and are exacting their revenge.

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011Folks When I retired last night I feared that the flame wars were flaring again, and pleaded that they not resume. So I was relieved this morning to find that good sense had prevailed and that CW folks were commenting here again. I thought as I awoke this morning that the way of restoring conversation among those at CW was for them to come here and comment, not on the discord there, but on the current thread, a suggestion I see the always-wise Talk Turkey has already made. So it was a great pleasure to see you commenting here, Nasking and Miglo, on the theme and other contemporary matters. [i]TPS[/i] can offer a healing hand; I hope you both, and any others at CW who wish to comment here, will continue to do so. There are so many matters that need our attention that we cannot afford the time to be in conflict internally. Nasking, you write about the situation in Libya and seek our support, which I feel sure you will receive. So please return, you Nasking and Miglo are old friends, as are reb and min. We can all be friends here.

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011Folks Did you see Ali Moore's interview with Tony Windsor on [i]Lateline[/i] last night about the carbon tax? If not, I suggest you check it at http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2011/s3158759.htm Both the transcript and video are there. As I watched this experienced politician, I thought that this is how a good politician behaves. He was balanced, sensible, even-handed, being critical of both Government and Coalition, and prepared to call it the way he saw it. Here was a politician who knew his facts, who used reason to make his points, who was familiar with his electorate and the views of the several different sectors of that electorate - farmers, miners, businessmen and townspeople. Here was a politician who could think beyond his electorate and indeed this nation to the global aspects of climate change. Here was a politician willing to answer Ali's many questions directly, without obfuscation, without ums and errs, and in a lucid manner. As you review the interview, contrast it with recent interviews of Tony Abbott. Ask yourself how different the interview would have been if it had been Tony Abbott, not Tony Windsor answering Ali's many questions. When you do you will see the difference between a politician genuinely interested in the issue at hand and sincerely committed to resolving it to the benefit of all, and an opportunistic, destructive, poisonous person hell-bent on inflicting continuing damage on the Government for his own political advancement. The contrast is striking and frightening, and in a way sad, because Tony Windsor shows us how good it could be. This morning Tony Abbott made a rare appearance on Jon Faine's morning show on 774 Melbourne radio. His performance was typical. Among the ums and errs, look! and other Abbottisms, there was the usual staccato responses. Under considerable pressure from Faine, Abbott faithfully repeated his lines. His climate change direct action would not cost taxpayers any extra tax or expense, but would be funded out of budget 'savings'. He deflected suggestions that his savings were shonky, and left the impression that the 'savings' would affect nobody, no programs, because they were 'savings', money that never needed to be spent. He then launched into his usual tirade about Government spending, the BER, pink bats, and so on, pressing the point that this Government was all waste and mismanagement. He said that Julia Gillard was guilty of taking credit during her US visit for the fine state of our economy, insisting that this had nothing at all to do with Government action, but was due to past reforms. He refused to give any credit at all for anything this Government has done. He was at his characteristically negative and destructive worst. There were only a couple of questions and a couple of comments after his departure, none positive for him. He was followed by a previous Liberal premier of Victoria, Robert Doyle. The contrast was obvious. Doyle was articulate, believable, on top of his brief and sensible. Someone phoned in to ask why ex-politicians perform so much better that contemporary ones. Folks, we are saddled with arguably the worst Opposition Leader in living memory. Nasty, unremitting in his criticism, uncharitable, disingenuous, willing to perpetrate deception so long as it suits him, light on plausible policy, the effrontery to push dodgy policy, negative, and persistently corrosive of confidence in the community with his incessant scare campaigns. This man is a menace to the economic health of our nation, yet is largely unchallenged by the media. To have him as PM is too horrible a situation to contemplate. As for the ABC, it chose to highlight in its news Tony Windsor's view that introducing the concept of a carbon tax without the detail was a mistake, but did not reflect Windsor's comment about Abbott's opportunism. One pleasing aspect of the interview was the disdain for Abbott that Windsor clearly feels. There seems little likelihood that he will ever support him.

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/LYNS-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

tredlgt

9/03/2011abbott makes me think of billy big ears ,I'm not sure why just that both are/were pretenders with nothing to add to the future of Australia but willing to destroy or belittle any one or any thing to obtain top job and prove how useless they really are. I hope abbott fails to get top job but I will accept he has proven that he would be as useless as PM McMahon.

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011Folks Several here on [i]TPS[/i] have commented that they have a nasty cough. Currently there is a whooping cough (pertussis) epidemic in Australia. Currently it is reported in the Sunshine Coast in the [i]Sunshine Coast Daily[/i] where you will find a sound account of the illness: http://www.sunshinecoastdaily.com.au/story/2011/02/26/epidemic-hits-coast-whooping-cough-sunshine-coast/ Some feel that the reluctance of some parents to immunise their infants against pertussis has led to a diminution in herd immunity in the community that has facilitated its spread. The congenital wisdom is that while this generally is a disease of un-immunised infants, it is also afflicting adults whose childhood immunity has declined. The cough can persist for weeks and from personal experience is tiring and debilitating. Antibiotics can shorten the illness. If any of you have it, you have my empathy.

Feral Skeleton

9/03/2011Ad Astra, Thank you for your considered and insightful analysis of the Jon Faine/Abbott interview on Melbourne radio this morning. I would be interested to know what was Faine's summing up of his experience with the Opposition Leader, or was he too diplomatic to make plain his feelings? I wonder if 7.30 have renewed their requests for an interview with the Opposition Leader, and whether he is still avoiding them as well? It's pretty much straight out of the Sarah Palin Media Strategy book wherein you concentrate your interview time with sympathetic supporters in the media, and, as the rest of the media is duty-bound to report your words they have to make do with the results of these mutual admiration society gabfests. Which, of course, allows politicians such as Tony Abbott to control the message 'religiously'. :) The thing I find most fascinating about it all is that such narcissistic manic megalomaniacal politicians as the above-mentioned have the public eating out of the palm of their hands and the populace never seem to tire of these political charlatans, no matter how many times they are publically exposed as having less clothes on than any egomaniacal Emporer. Fascinating. I guess it has a lot to do with their own unflagging self-belief. A shameless self-belief I would add, however, such a tireless belief in the rightness of one's cause appears to be enough to convince some people. Also, it has that corrosive effect that, on impressionable minds, gives licence to thoughts that are more than a little bit naughty if you were talking to a child about having them, but when one of our so-called 'Leaders' gives adults a licence to think that way it lets people off the leash of propiety and responsible thoughts which should guide their behaviour. Sadly. It's not just Australia, of course, which is suffering at the hands of such irresponsible politicians. A lot of the Right Wing, in the absence of any humanistic policies or ideology, are resorting to the politics of grievance and greed. In France there was another example of the 'Silo-isation' of thought in the community, wherein an internet poll in the lead-up to their Presidential election next year found that the winner was a charismatic woman of the Far Right, the wife of Jon Marie Le Pen and mother to his children(very similar to the Sarah Palin mould). Why is this so? You would think that such a person's beliefs would be abhorrent to most people. A lot of comes down to the resulting effect of our increasingly self-selective information sources on the Internet, such that people are now surrounding themselves with like-minded souls only, plus this new culture of evangelising around the internet with e-mail campaigns in order to convert the vulnerable increases their numbers. They gain in strength, like any opportunistic infection, and before you know it, they are a boil on the bottom of our political process. :) So, it's about time that the Progressive side of politics searched for equally articulate spokespeople, campaigned hard against the intolerance and greed ethos, and let politicians, such as Mr Windsor, know how much we appreciate them.

Augustus

9/03/2011Well folk's, according to Bernard Keane, Tony Abbott is only debating himself, the article is worth the read. Tony Abbott goes mano-a-mano on climate change and a carbon price with his toughest opponent yet -- Tony Abbott. http://www.crikey.com.au/2011/03/09/climate-change-cage-match-abbott-debates-abbott/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+CrikeyDaily+%28Crikey+Daily%29

TalkTurkey

9/03/2011Re the nasty cough: To my surprise mine has abated a lot. For 36 hours I felt horrible, raw sore throat and deep painful cough, a bit strange-headed too, but apart from much-less-frequent coughing I am left with a bit of a squashed chest and a lot of aches. So anyone else getting the Lurgy, nil desperandum, it might blow over fairly rapidly. Ad astra I hope yours is improving. ******************************************************** So Pauline Hanson is ba-a-a-a-a-ack . . ! . . Well let me say this, she is not the worst. (For a start she's a Ranga!) But she has worked hard in her life, she is a genuine battler, and I'd trust her long before I'd trust Toe-Rag Abbortt, and compared to Bernasty and Morriscum she is almost lovable. She is not intellectually clever, she is plainly under-educated, (but I think she's a lot wiser than she was back then), and she is not devious, which is how she got into legal strife years ago. She had at the least the humility to ask that iconic question "Please explain?", unlike her mentor Bjelke-Petersen, who knew it all, "Don't you worry about that!" and who made an exact science of not understanding the principles of the Westminster system of the separation of powers - a science honed to a finer edge yet by Howard Reith Andrews and their ilk. But she's still a rallying personality for xenophobes, not someone I'm ever likely to see eye-to-eye with. The Murdoch press though will use her as a convenient whipping-post in order to make others of the Rotten Right seem moderate. Which they aren't. I almost hope she gets elected though, there are ways the Left might find her useful too. And she is nobody's lick-spittle, her albeit abrasive views are at least her own. I do have the feeling that PH might yet have an epiphany, if she were ever to find genuine personal love . . . (Lots of luck!) I have no such feeling about the Poodle, Abbortt, or most of the Coalition front bench. *************************************************** "the always-wise Talk Turkey", Ad astra?! (blush) - Shows how much YOU know! But thanks, eh. Great to see the reconciliation of good friends. Fuzzy feeling. Love that word reconciliation btw - a "getting-back-together of hairs"!

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011FS Jon Faine was quite persistent in hammering Tony Abbott for answers and challenged him over his 'savings' several times. But Abbott fobbed him off. Faine did not summarise at the end to any extent as he had Robert Doyle next. My impression was that Faine was unimpressed with Abbott's responses but couldn't be bothered pushing him any further. He certainly did not feed him Dorothy Dixers. Abbott has unfailing self-belief and unlimited bravado, but that may leave him in limbo as eventually only sycophantic interviewers will give him the time if day. I have just now sent a note of commendation to Tony Windsor. His email is Tony.Windsor.MP@aph.gov.au Augustus That was a very amusing article in [i]Crikey[/i], showing as it did the multiple positions Tony Abbott has had on climate change. [i]Crikey[/i] has not let him get away with his gross inconsistencies, but I expect the MSM mostly will.

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011TT It's good that your cough is already resolving. Whooping cough characteristically goes on and on for weeks. It will be interesting to see how Pauline Hanson goes. Will she draw votes from the conservative side? I agree that whatever her idiosyncratic views, she pales into insignificance when compared with the nasty, bigoted views of Bernardi, Morrison and Abbott. I too am pleased that old friends at CW seem to be moving toward reconciliation.

Augustus

9/03/2011Ad Astra, I found the inconsistencies of Abbott's position's to be rather alarming, like the dog that chases a car until he catches it, then what does he do?. He went to the polls touting he was a politician of conviction. I remeber tears ago when Keating was PM, he was being interviewed during the recession we had to have, I have forgotten the question but I still distinctly remember the answer, "Why would I put myself into the political wilderness if it wasn't good for the country"

nasking

9/03/2011"TPS can offer a healing hand; I hope you both, and any others at CW who wish to comment here, will continue to do so." Cheers Ad astra. If Tony Abbott ever gets the leadership in this country then I believe we will see the same kind of Arab, particularly Muslim, hating politics we are now seeing in France & Berlusconi's Italy. And it won't stop w/ Muslims. I am hoping that Australia becomes a beacon of light for tolerance & rational thinking...so those in Europe, who are once again falling into the Fascist & racist & intolerant old ways that has led to far too many conflicts & deaths, will be able to see that multiculturalism & sensible policies w/ an empasis on compassion & desire to understand the needs & cultures of others not only works...but can take a country down the road to a productive & more secure future. Sadly, to spoil the positive efforts of decent Australians,I see that Pauline Hanson has emerged from her dark place again throwing another fear shadow across this country... it does not surprise me...when the Coalition need to feed on the likes of One Nation parochial & xenophobic politics it is always Pauline, Oldfield, other shock jocks & some in the Murdoch empire who ride in w/ the goods. Will Australia ever escape its 'White Australia policy" past? A legacy that reverberates still today...clutched in the weathered hands of the withered at heart. Hopefully the farmers & business people will again wake up to the destructive politics of Hansonites, insolent, loopy & profiteering shock jocks...and Tampa episode creators. We live in the Asia-Pacific region. Not the UK, not Europe. Our neighbours scrutinise us w/ memories of negative colonial/empire intervention in their lives... to be far too angry white & anglo-saxon on expressing our views and policies...& acting all superior will see a reaction by these growing, fast developing nations that will not benefit our reputation...and in the long run, trade & general relations. These negative, "superiority" attitudes unleashed by the Hansons & Oldfields & some in the Coalition will also increase Aboriginal suspicion, mistrust...and eventually anger. Do we want to head down the South African & Zimbabwean roads to explosion? It's time all Australians recognised where we live...and ignored the old xenophobic cranks & bigots who pretend they are spitting venom and past wrecker policies for the good of the country...leave them to their cobwebbed rooms where they belong. I shall leave you to yer good fight. Shine light where sinister shadows fall. Cheers N'

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011Nasking Cheers to you too Nasking. I can understand you having a jaundiced view of Pauline Hanson with her past history. Time will tell whether her xenophobia has diminished. She has strong competitors in the Coalition in the most racially divisive stakes with Bernardi and Morrison backed by Abbott. It's not a pretty picture. People should watch carefully who they vote for.

Miglo

9/03/2011Swordsfolk might be interested in the video I posted asking whether it was Pauline Hanson standing behind Tony Abbott. It can be found in comment number 1 under the 'Meanwhile' thread. It sure does look like Hanson to me. "What's the go?", I asked myself. http://cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2011/03/01/meanwhile/

Catching up

9/03/2011"Actually, the statement "Any money the Government has comes from taxpayers" isn't true. Technically, the Government doesn't require taxation to spend money. This is a hugely widespread misconception arising from the days of the Gold Standard. As we are now in the era of fiat money, the " Are you saying it is a fallacy that the blocking of money bills did not bring down Whitlam. Are you suggesting he could have continued to govern with money from taxation. I am a little confused, in spite of not being that bright, but clever enough to know there is something wrong in what you are alleging. I know a government caqn borrow, but it has to be paid back, by what I assume by the taxpayers.

Catching up

9/03/2011Is Labor putting the cart before the horse? They have put forwarded a framework to be discussed, by the general public, what is wrong with this? Mr. Windsor, has pointed out that this is all it is, that within the document is many “if” and “could”, meaning that there is room for even the framework to be refashioned. Mr. Windsor, suggested, even ruling out the tax and going straight to a form of ETS. The Opposition has gone off at a fast pace, condemning something that does not exist at this time. The Opposition has little to say about the framework or what should be in it. The Opposition has set up a straw-man and is using that to scare the general public, especially the most vulnerable in society. It makes my blood boil seeing the fragile aged getting up at his meetings, nearly in tears, saying they cannot afford any rise in electricity. He knows, no matter what is adapted by Labor, these people will not be worse off. I am not sure how they will fare under his proposed scheme. PS, does anyone believe that Mr. Abbott, the Opposition would last long if he won power. What we do not know, if who he is repalced with will e better or worse.

Lyn

9/03/2011Hi Ad Thankyou for your welcome trusted, medical advice on this cough that is going around. I have had a cough now for around 6 weeks, but only at night, very annoying and upsetting, just seems strange only starts when I lay down. We have made an appointment to have the immunisation needle next week. Honestly, this MSM is just taking the whole cake, yesterday the headlines said Tony Abbott predicts, the Governemnt will run an ad campaign for the carbon tax, so now since this morning and on ABCC 24 right now, they are all talking about an ad campaign. Must be ,journalists reporting on predictions, or what might happen. I even saw them play a clip of something Julia Gillard said about Howard advertising, while she was in Opposition. We know MSM have always reported on speculation, but Abbott predictions, must be bottom of the pit. PM open to a tax ad spend, Danielle Cronin, The Canberra Times Prime Minister Julia Gillard is open to spending taxpayers' money to explain the contentious carbon tax after a poll showing support for Labor has http://www.canberratimes.com.au/news/national/national/general/pm-open-to-a-tax-ad-spend/2097713.aspx Cheers

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011Miglo That does not look like Pauline to me. Anyway, having dobbed her in many years ago, she would not want to be seen in the same room as Abbott. Catching up That statement you quote was made by Andy and backed by Senexx. I can't fathom what it means in the practical terms we non-economists understand. We know governments can print money, but sooner or later doesn't it have to come from taxes or revenue generated elsewhere? Anyway, I can't see how Tony Abbott can pretend that his budget 'savings' somehow did not eventually come from taxes, and how his 'no new tax' slogan lets him off the hook. Will the people feel that ripping tax monies out of their designated programs to fund his direct action policy is not taxing them at all? If he makes good the tax monies removed from other programs by increasing taxes, is that a tax? It seems to me he is behaving like a card sharp whose sleight of hand leaves everyone in wonderment but disillusioned. It is not Labor that is putting the cart before the cart, it is the Coalition, News Limited and the likes of Coles, all of whom believe they can calculate the effects of a carbon tax before they know what it is. That anyone would give credence to such blind estimates is testimony to the depth of the facade of deliberate confusion being spread by these self-interested people, and the ready gullibility of much of the population.

Jason

9/03/2011Catching up, They created a vacuum that was light on detail and long on short sightedness that just made it easier for Abbott and his followers in the media to sprout anything they wanted to! What should be a winner has for the moment blown up in our face,and until there is a bit more than a "frame work" Abbott can tell all the crap he likes,because unless your a political junkie people believe what he says as they do the shock jocks! What some of the advisers need to remember is don't talk to "us" that go on political blogs etc we may know what's going on the vast majority don't! Abbotts people know it so why don't Labors?

TalkTurkey

9/03/2011We are just over one-sixth of the time until Christmess, . . . just as we are just over one-sixth of the time until the next scheduled federal election. Dog help us! Panic stations! If this was an Aussie Rules game, (which it is!), we would only have about 6 minutes left in the first quarter. And we're 8 points down! Damn! We're done for! Hang on . . . 1. I do not think that any of the Indies is nor ever was going to defect. I do think they are all persons of high principle and firm resolve, and I am sure they are ever-more-convinced that Abbort would be a disaster, as he is daily confirming to them. 2. While there is undeniably a fair chance that a Government Member - or more than one, indeed - will become incapacitated during this parliament, the chances are also high that a Labor-held seat would be held by Labor in a by-election. Even if the polls were running against us at the time, there would still only be a very small proportion of seats which would be vulnerable. (There is also the reverse possibility, of course, a Liberal death and a Labor win, but Labor's already in power so that wouldn't change anything much.) [Aside: I can't help thinking that Labor could do very well out of a by-election in, say, a year's time: provided the Government had got some good legisaltion through, which it will, and that it didn't lose the seat of course, the scrutiny it would entail would provide an ideal opportunity for JG to skewer Abbortt - not to ignore a possible disaster of course!] 3. But if a worst scenario happened, a Labor loss or the unthinkable Indie defection, what then? Bedlam! Tony Crook, what would he do? If he had any sense he would jump across to save Australia from the inevitable unworkability of the rest of the Parliament. But if he didn't,(Oh or even Turdball might instead, I'd call him Turnbull instead then!)- then what would we have, not a hung parliament, but a strangled one! Abbortt wouldn't have the numbers in the Reps, the Senate will never let him have his wicked way anyway, he would have forced Australians to an unnecessary premature and divisive election, whaddya reckon Aussies would think about that eh? So if you're a few bucks down on your credit card, well, it isn't quite Christmess yet, the kids might get their iPads yet . . . A few points down at quarter time, Ma-a-a-a-a-ate, we've had a few bad bounces, the wind's been against us too, but we got real champions on our side. Hold your nerve Swordies, bit of luck we'll have the breeze in the next quarter too. All that matters is the final siren. Up there Cazaly, in there and fight!

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011Hi Lyn You are wise to consult your doctor about your persistent cough. Whooping cough is more prevalent than most people realize. What you describe about the MSM is becoming the norm. If they haven't got a story, they will simply make it up, and of course spending taxpayers money on advertising is always great story that they can beat up, with Tony Abbott urging them along, into an 'ain't it awful' anti-Government tirade. As I've said many times here, in politics truth is irrelevant. All you need for a beat up is a made up story based on assumptions or presumptions or anyone's guess, or if all else fails, thin air.

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011jason Why Labor is so inept, and continue to be so in PR, is a mystery to me. It's not rocket science as Tony Abbott has shown. All you need is a plausible, brief and memorable story and you're on a winner. In fact Labor seems to make every misstep there is in its PR. They could do no worse than to sack their PR unit. Even if they did not replace it, they would still be better of because they would make fewer mistakes. A really good PR unit could make all the difference. What's holding them back?

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011TT A good analysis - let's not get exercised about an election. Labor is in for the long haul.

Lyn

9/03/2011Hi Ad Wonder if Mr Abbott will turn up for this challenge: Seems Abbott has been to the steel works, spruiking lies today. [quote]Tony Abbott has been challenged to turn up to a Melbourne steel plant tomorrow morning at 10 am - to debate the AWU leader, Paul Howes, about carbon price. “ I am challenging Tony Abbott to return to the same site and debate the issues with me. I want him to stop his fear-mongering hysteria and start talking about the truth to the workers at One Steel. “ The Coalition is playing a wrecking game appealing to crass populism.[/quote]http://www.awu.net.au/807912_5.html

Jason

9/03/2011AA, I was helping a friend get his "multi combination" licence today with driving lessons, and it struck me that the only time he's interested in politics is the day before election day if that! The "frame work" that Labor put out means nothing to him but he hears what Abbott says. As you said it's not rocket science and lets hope Labor soon realises they don't need to talk to the "junkies" it's the "man" in the street they need to convince, but the biggest stuff up was the PM saying she wouldn't introduce a carbon tax then turn around and do it! she probably could have got away with "I've seen new data and for that reason I've had to change my mind etc it sort of stops the "lie" claim! It would've sidelined Abbott for a while and we would've been on the front foot! That's what I would've done!

Macca

9/03/2011"In fact Labor seems to make every misstep there is in its PR. They could do no worse than to sack their PR unit. Even if they did not replace it, they would still be better of because they would make fewer mistakes. A really good PR unit could make all the difference. What's holding them back?" FWIW, My take on all this; Maybe, just maybe, the Govt may wish to treat the average, intelligent Australian with respect. They may be banking on the fact that we are intelligent and, over time, will seek the truth of the arguments put forward....and I believe as a people we will. Let the rentseekers. naysayers and inbred squatters have their rant. They are close to boring repetition already. Let's be honest. How many of the well dressed , well tanned, brilliantly teethed talking heads speaking with a pleasant, yet slightly effete gravitas, are credible to any thinking person? This debate will be decided on the truth of the arguments.

2353

9/03/2011Was out and about this morning and heard the start of Madonna King's show on 612ABC Brisbane. Her question for the morning "Do you know someone that will be unemployed because of the Carbon Tax?" Considering that noone knows the details as yet - how can this question be asked with a reasonable expectation of a factual answer? Opinions please - is it worth complaining to the ABC as the question was certainly not balanced?

NormanK

9/03/2011Mmm. Time for a little bit of devil's advocacy here methinks. This might get up a few noses but I believe there is a bit of inconsistency here. Firstly, if we agree (and I think we do) that Julia Gillard is one smart cookie and that Greg Combet is not without his own intelligence, it is a little unkind to dismiss as foolhardy the course of action that they have decided to embark on with the release of the carbon price policy. I wish that I could say that I know what is in their minds but I don't. However, it is hardly fair to not give them the benefit of the doubt just because WE don't understand the strategy. For all that we know, events may be unfolding in the manner of their choosing - after all you don't have to be Einstein to figure that Abbott would do what he is doing. I could speculate on Labor's possible plan but it would still only be uninformed speculation. I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt for now. Secondly, two and a half years out from an election a poll is completely irrelevant to likely outcomes and at best reflects the public mood [i]today[/i]. Australian voters have shown how volatile they can be in their attitudes (look at last year) so there is no reason to believe that this ground can not be regained. If there is a good time to take a hit in the polls, then surely this part of the electoral cycle is it. Thirdly, for the last twelve months many of us here, myself included, have been calling on the ALP to stop chasing the polls and just get on with implementing good policy. Now that they have embarked on that course of action, here we are fretting like nervous Nellies over the drop in the polls. Yes, perhaps they could be advocating the policy in a more meaningful manner but as TT attests, it's early in the game and who knows what the next play will be. Lucky last, quite a few commentators around the blogs and in the press have questioned the timing of the framework release because it took the initiative away from the government just when they had the Coalition doing a bit of internal squabbling and the polls were looking a bit better. I have to ask - what better time to use up a bit of political capital than when you are ostensibly in front? Would it have been better to wait until they (Labor) were down in the polls and then take another hit? There was always going to be a backlash over announcing a price on carbon, especially with Tony Abbott as Opposition Leader. In summary, it's early days yet and we either want Labor chasing the polls fortnight by fortnight or we don't. Also, we either have faith in Labor's leadership or we don't.

BSA Bob

9/03/2011Macca at 6.57 I too think the ALP assume that people may actually engage with what's being said, although it doesn't seem to be doing much good. 2353 at 6.59 Nothing else is balanced either. I was going to put this up as a short piece anyway. 9 news tonight Gillard doing OK in Washington BUT.... then a shock-horror announcement about the dread possibility of government advertising- selective quotes from last night's Gillard 7.30 appearance. Cut to Abbott prophesising all sorts of catastrophes producing no evidence at all, no querying whatever of any of this by his 9 support crew.

Jason

9/03/2011Normank, I suppose that having all foms of media saying day in day out you lied is a good stratagey but whatever you say from now on should also be a lie? I suppose Windsor who said we might not come to any agreement is also a good stratagey to go and waste political capital just on a maybe in this term? Is it time we took stock of the past and learnt that under Rudd we stuffed up selling a message! I stand by what I said it's not the political junkies they need to reach out to it's those who answer the poll questions on the phone! and acording to the papers I saw last night Labor has a total membership of 40,000 members,Collingwood football club has 70,000 or even here in Adelaide the crows have 50k

2353

9/03/2011Jason, I agree. I'm not (and probably will never be) a member of a political party so I haven't "signed on" to a set of political beliefs. While I prefer Gillard to Abbott, it doesn't necessarily follow that I would give my first preference to either of them. The ALP has been hopeless at sending a message since Tim Gatrell (sp?) gave up the National Campaign Manager's job. Unfortunately that was just after the 07 election from memory. While burning a bit of capital over an issue like carbon trading is probably quite clever when there is two years until a Federal Election is scheduled - Gillard will really be coming from behind if the ALP doesn't get its act into gear. It's using up political capital unnecessarily to just stand up and say we're doing it - without having the PR campaign ready to go that will catch the public's attention and diffuse the "no new taxes" argument that they had to know was going to come from Abbott.

Ad astra reply

9/03/2011Folks Thank you for your comments about Labor's PR performance.  Of course we are looking in from the outside and wondering what they are up to, as jason, macca, 2353 and BSA Bob query.  There may be a well-laid plan as NormanK suggests, one that is too subtle for us to discern.  Well it's also too hard for Chris Uhlmann on tonight's 7.30. I wish I could muster the same confidence as you NormanK, but you may well be right that there is better planning than we suspect.  I would still like to see Greg Combet the main spokesman, and Wayne Swan kept as quiet as possible.  Combet always makes sense and is calm and logical. And I still feel that Labor could have countered Tony Abbott's scaremongering with some scaremongering of its own along the lines suggested on this blog - Abbott will PAY the polluters while YOU foot the bill.  Have you heard a comment from the media or Labor that Abbott will PAY THE POLLUTERS?  Why haven't we heard this again and again??? Anyway, let's hope Labor's PR looks up soon. Hi Lyn Let's hope Abbott turns up for the Howes' encounter.  I bet he squibs it. Folks, I'm packing it in for the night.

Feral Skeleton

9/03/2011Well, I took all your concerns to our local member, the delightful Deborah O'Neill, tonight and made sure she got the message that, if any advertising campaign is to be launched it needs to be AFTER the details of the policy have been released, otherwise Tony Abbott will run with the line that it is simplya propaganda campaign by the ALP; they needed to decide on those details toot sweet so as to begin to counter the Abbott/Liberal Party shills disinformation campaign; it needs to be emphasised that industry can and should be modernised by this policy; and finally that some snappy slogans need to be formulated. Good enough? :)

Catching up

9/03/2011"They created a vacuum that was light on detail and long on short sightedness that just made it easier for Abbott and his followers in the media to sprout anything they wanted to" Jason I could accept that if what Mr. Abbott, the Opposition Leader and the media were making allegations that included the word “could”, “maybe”, or “likely,” not “will”. To me if you say something will happen, knowing you have no evidence, you are lying. There was no evidence because what was released was a framework, nothing more, nothing less. A framework that included the words “if” and “could”. A framework that was open to change. A framework that the community is invited to comment on. The framework is a part of the process leading to the details being formulated after community and industry consultation. Mr. Abbott has the right, dare I say duty to comment on the framework. If he is of a mind, criticise it but not comment or criticise on something that at this stage is only in his mind. What he is saying could down the track become fact. It is not now.

NormanK

9/03/2011Jason & Ad astra I know where you are coming from and I did mention playing devil's advocate. The accusation of lying was always going to play against Gillard from the moment she decided to phase in the ETS but the question might be - would it have been better to ride that particular wave at the same time as trying to explain the detail of the carbon price thereby losing that vital opportunity because we all know which story the press would have run with? I agree Windsor did the cause no favours by expressing uncertainty instead of keeping his own counsel on his reservations. I do wonder though whether those particular comments were aimed more at his own constituency than the public at large. Like it or not his political future is inextricably linked with Gillard's so it would take some radical falling out for him to shift away completely on the ETS. What I was hoping, in my optimism, was that the next round of information release will indeed be aimed at the politically disengaged and can be done free of the 'lying' storm. Greg Combet is one of the sources of my optimism, as is Julia Gillard. Wayne Swan is not. I can only agree that Labor should be exploiting every avenue of attack against Abbott while it sees off this initial hysteria at the same time.

Jason

9/03/2011NormanK, You may well be right! I at the moment don't have a lot of faith in the back room leaders,and I think what was tried under Rudd was such a success we went from a majority government to minority! At the moment Labor couldn't sell water to a thirsty man, and that was repeated over and over with our federal member last night! Either I'm wrong or our message and delivery is wrong!

NormanK

9/03/2011FS & Jason Knowing that such direct contact is being made gladdens my heart. 2353 [quote]Opinions please - is it worth complaining to the ABC as the question was certainly not balanced?[/quote] Go for it if you have the time and energy. Such conjecture is deplorable.

Feral Skeleton

9/03/2011I think it's reprehensible that Chris Uhlmann appears to believe that because his wife is an MP for the Labor Party, that he has to be seen to be antagonistic to the ALP at every turn such that no one in the media or the Coalition can accuse him of bias.

Jason

9/03/2011FS, Maybe if some in the media just asked questions about what ever the subject matter was, instead of looking for "john Hewsons " cake in every question we might do a lot better! Journos are no different to the rest of us unless you work for fox news! But Uhlmann et al should be as tough on whoever he interviews period! PS To all ABC staff Old Richard Alston is no longer in office or his claims of bias just get on and do what you do!!!!

TalkTurkey

9/03/2011(Just for fun, mind!) Search "flame warriors" Wonderful caricatures, and a reminder of just how important our little feuds will look in 100 years!

D Mick Weir

9/03/2011NormanK, you have, once again, set the upper and lower gerbrils churning :) I can not provide a source for this but somewhere I read that if you listen to someone long enough they will usually contradict themselves. (Can't recall exactly how long, but somewhere about 18 minutes I think). So it doesn't surprise me that any of us would make contradictory comments. However your point is well made [i]'... Julia Gillard is one smart cookie ... to dismiss as foolhardy the course of action ... embark on with the release of the carbon price policy.'[/i] The question (and answer) on timing is most likely right the more I think of it. My dilemma at the moment though, is that, I can only see (and hear) [b]the madness in the method[/b] and not the other way around. Either way, please keep up the advocacy of the horned one.

D Mick Weir

9/03/2011Hi all, for any of us that have contradicted ourselves with our comments it seems we are in [i]good(?!?) company[/i]. In tonights post Grog has this line: [i]Today Kelly got out his quill and set forth on making some points, and in the process completely confused and contradicted himself.[/i] http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/2011/03/spectre-of-democracy.html The major difference may well be that, at least we don't confuse ourselves.

Patricia WA

10/03/2011Norman K - yours @ 7.10 pm. I agree, let Abbott go wild on the framework! Well, he hasn't stopped there, has he? He's invented whole heap of data, figures, prices' impact.....you name it! So he can spew up a cause for revolt out of thin air? So what? He would have done exactly the same search and destroy operation on their real fully realized scheme. Now they can come back and rebut him, take the wind out of his sails and then release what they want to while he's out flat.

Lyn

10/03/2011TODAY'S LINKS [i]The Spectre of Democracy, Greg Jericho, Grog's Gamut[/i] I guess journalists having to remember what was said in Parliament would be just as hard as remembering what was said in a press conference. http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/2011/03/spectre-of-democracy.html [i]The End of the Affairs, Mr Denmore, The Failed Estate[/i]ABC television and now, Leigh Sales interviewing Chris Uhlmann on 7.30 about HIS interview with Julia Gillard). http://thefailedestate.blogspot.com/ [i]The Opposition says, Jeremy Sear Pure Poison[/i] they might as well rename the ABC News “The Opposition Says”, since nowadays it seems to be their default method of opening any story about Australian politics. http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2011/03/09/the-opposition-says/#more-9291 [i]Niki Savva: Gillard's success is assured, Andrew Elder, Politically Homeless[/i] imagine you were real newspaper editor, rather than the meat-puppet occupying the job at The Australian http://andrewelder.blogspot.com/2011/03/niki-savva-gillards-success-is-assured.html [i]The lunatic right: polled to steaming point, Barry Everingham, Independent Australia[/i] Poor Tony, sniffing victory and egged on by the shocks jocks and the tabloid pontificators http://www.independentaustralia.net/2011/politics/the-lunatic-right-polled-to-steaming-point/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=the-lunatic-right-polled-to-steaming-point [i]Tumbling Dice, Neil Cook, The Bannerman[/i] why is the conservative extreme so spitefully arrogant, so vehemently irrational in its approach to everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, our democratically elected Government seeks to achieve? http://www.waddayano.org/blog/2011/03/tumbling_dice.php#more [i]When Even The Rusted-On Lose Grip,Ben Eltham, New Matilda[/i] The Coalition has lost the plot, throwing the switch to vaudeville in Parliament with a series of apoplectic speeches http://newmatilda.com/2011/03/09/when-even-rustedon-lose-grip [i]Carbon Price, Alex Schlotzer[/i] the ridiculous misinformation being espoused by big business and the Opposition; http://alexschlotzer.wordpress.com/2011/03/09/the-carbon-price/ [i]Memo to Julia: You don't have a carbon concensus, Peter Martin[/i] Abbott is behaving like a vandal. While saying he is concerned about energy prices he is wrecking http://www.petermartin.com.au/2011/03/memo-to-julia-you-need-carbon-consensus.html [i]Just when we need it the most, The News With Nipples[/i]basic of basic Google searches and point out that the Howard Government spent $2 billion on advertising: http://newswithnipples.com/2011/03/09/just-when-we-need-it-the-most/ [i]Climate change cage match: Abbott debates Abbott, Bernard Keane, [/i] CrikeyToday in Crikey, Tony Abbott debates one of his most formidable opponents on the issue — Tony Abbott. http://www.crikey.com.au/2011/03/09/climate-change-cage-match-abbott-debates-abbott/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+CrikeyDaily+%28Crikey+Daily%29 [i]greenhouse reform: lie + tax , Gary Sauer Thompson, Public Opinion[/i] It is the political media--as distinct from journalism that lie to us and then forgets it is a lie. http://www.sauer-thompson.com/archives/opinion/2011/03/greenhouse-refo.php#more [i]Money can Ease the Pain of Disability, Ross Gittins[/i] Did you know there's an expensive policy proposal Tony Abbott isn't opposed to? http://www.rossgittins.com/2011/03/money-can-ease-pain-of-disability.htm [i]Pauline Hanson is trying to steal a NSW job,Dominic Knight[/i] getting her locked up, like Tony Abbott did. (To read about the Australians for Honest Politics trust, try and decipher this awesomely illegible SMH page). http://www.domknight.com/pauline-hanson-is-trying-to-steal-a-nsw-job/ [i]The Ghost of Racism Past Returns-again,mjwill91,Standpoint[/i] Pauline’s long time ‘enemy’ and one time vanquisher Tony Abbott has come out in defense of her today, http://standpointau.wordpress.com/author/mjwill91/ [i]The Returnification of Pauline Hanson, Reb, Gutter Trash[/i]The gutter politics we’re seeing – in particular, from Cory Bernardi and Scott Morrison – can’t last, http://guttertrash.wordpress.com/2011/03/09/the-returnification-of-pauline-hanson/

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10/03/2011LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/LYNS-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Jason

10/03/2011Tim Dunlop today In short, we live in a world where truth and reality are deemed to have a leftwing bias and therefore must be leavened with rightwing talking points in the name of balance. http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/44926.html

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10/03/2011Folks I have just posted another delightful piece of satire by Acerbic Conehead: [i]It Ain't Half Hot Mum[/i]. http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2011/03/10/It-Aint-Half-Hot-Mum.aspx

Pinky

10/03/2011Ad, Lyn and the gang, * sigh * if only... Regulators Reject Proposal That Would Bring Fox-Style News to Canada Too bad Australian tv/media doesn't have Canada's "no lying" laws http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-f-kennedy-jr/fox-news-will-not-be-moving-into-canada-after-all_b_829473.html
How many umbrellas are there if I start with two and take 2 away?