Open Thread XI

We’re up to our eleventh page already. Keep talking.

Here is the link to the previous Open Thread page:

Open Thread X

389 comments on “Open Thread XI

  1. I just heard that my sister’s husband’s niece was on the cruise ship that sank. She got off on the last life raft. It was very scary, no doubt.

    Oh well, at leat Tony got a laugh out of it.

  2. Maybe the niece should send a email, saying she is glad he got some amusement out of the incident

    Wonder who the meetings are with that take up two full days of the man’s time.

    That must be the longest Mr. Abbott has stayed in one city or state in the last year or so.

    Must be important as he did not accompany Ms. Mirabella to Toyota.

  3. Holding court: Martina Navratilova makes her point on Margaret Court’s anti-gay comments

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/othersports/tennis/holding-court-martina-navratilova-makes-her-point-on-margaret-courts-anti-gay-comments/2012/01/23/gIQAHuJIKQ_story.html

    Eyebrows were raised when Navratilova’s first match in the legends’ doubles here Sunday was scheduled for Margaret Court Arena. The 55-year-old Navratilova didn’t even consider a boycott. Instead, the longtime advocate for gay rights wore a rainbow-colored patch on her sleeve as she and Nicole Bradtke beat Martina Hingis and Iva Majoli.

  4. Hi Miglo and Min, and all you other lovely writers who come to Cafe Whispers. Earlier this evening I did a very long winded comment over at the Political Sword explaining why I’m doing much less commenting at TPS and Cafe Whispers. I owe it to Miglo to explain here because it was he who first encouraged me to contribute as a writer and to do more polliepomes, so that I finally set up my own site.

    Two years have passed since then and in the middle of last year I was commenting all over the place as well as here and TPS, particularly at the Poll Bludger, which is even faster paced than here. All at once with the Christmas break and the silly season I came to realize how time consuming all that was and how my obsession with blogging had pushed aside another writing project which I really do want to finish. As well I was spending too much time at the computer and needed to get out walking more and into my garden too.

    I had become an addict! I had to withdraw! So I’ve changed my daily routine and as a result of a few upheavals over at TPS I’ve been led to make some resolutions to change. Here they are……

    1. I’ll only read Cafe Whispers and TPS as I’ve been doing recently, comment less often and follow up on fewer links.

    2, I’ll quit Pollbludger entirely and not renew my Crikey subscription. Bernard Keane gets up my nostrils anyway! I’ll rely on Lyn at TPS and you guys here for links to good pieces by people like Margaret Simons, Bushfire Bill, et al.

    3. I will write polliepomes only when really driven, and do much briefer notes on them. I hope you’ll bear with me when I copy them to here! The addict in me will still need that charge which instant feedback on the blogosphere offers to writers!

    4. I’ve gone cold turkey on the Murdoch media enquiry. I’m not reading stories about world economic crises until they really do hit home here. I am sorry that Nasking is not well but I’m relieved I won’t now be tempted by the postings he’d promised TPS on American and international events. I won’t be reading about the US Presidential race again until Barack Obama is returned to the White House.

  5. patricia

    4. I’ve gone cold turkey on the Murdoch media enquiry.

    I’m going cold turkey on the Murdoch media :mrgreen:

  6. This is a comment from an article I have linked to. It goes to great lengths to prove how bad the PM is. So any agree to the standards new set for being PM, I wonder.

    :”It’s as if the media has chosen to delete the entire history of how politics has always functioned, decided on some new political “purity” test which should apply to this government only, and judged that any compromise whatsoever now equates to “lies”, “betrayal” or worse. Do they think we are all stupid?

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/why-we-cant-trust-gillard-any-more-20120124-1qfo0.html#ixzz1kQljD9bP

    Mr. Albanese is on at the Press Club. He is sure laying into Mr. Abbott.

    Unbelievable they are leaving an Australian Day address to transfer to the State of the Union address, when questions are beginning for Mr. Albanese. It appears we can go onto the bet if we are interested.

    The Address has not even occurred yet, the President is only just arriving.

  7. Patricia, thank you for bringing us up to date with your plans.

    It is not uncommon to suffer some form of burnout as a blogger. Who hasn’t felt it? I certainly have, as has Min and Ad Astra more recently. I am sure we are not alone.

    I always smile when I see your gravatar grace our page, and I always enjoy reading what you have to offer. The blogosphere is a better place because of you.

    You are to be admired for the way you have held your dignity during times of adversity. You are a very stoic and principled lady.

    I welcome your decision to read the two best blog sites; CW and TPS. Gosh, I even agree with you. :)

    Most blog sites offer dribble or venom. Thank you for choosing us as. The two aforementioned sites are the only two I bother with these days. Great minds obviously think alike. ;-)

  8. Patricia, I have to agree with you about Bernard Keane.

    I think that it’s a matter of choosing quality over quantity and we here at the Café do indeed feel privileged that you have chosen this place for your very valued contributions.

  9. Thought that you would like to know Tone is not enclosed in all day meetings today.

    He has taken himself off to Tamworth for the day. After all one needs some respite after two days of meetings. It is hard work plotting the downfall of a PM you cannot stand.

    Wonder who was he meeting with. None seem to care but I am sure we will get the results of those meetings when parliament returns.

  10. Cu @ 12.55pm, the ABC could have shown the NPC on ABC2 but instead they’re showing a repeat of Mapping The World.

    ABC FAIL

  11. here’s an article telling us something we already knew…

    24 January 12
    Study Tracks Australian Climate Denial Echo Chamber Back to Think Tank

    http://www.desmogblog.com/study-tracks-australian-climate-denial-echo-chamber-back-think-tan

    EVER heard the one about climate scientists being a bunch of rent-seekers just out to chase taxpayers money, or the one where climate change scientists are just part of an elite left-wing conspiracy out to trample on the heretics?

    This analysis shows that the Institute of Public Affairs, an Australian neoliberal think tank, has used its access to the media as a news source to influence the public discussion on climate change in Australia. The rhetorical vision expressed by the IPA is one of hostility towards climate scientists and the scientific consensus on climate change; the IPA’s hostility is based on its opposition to proposed government regulations aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

  12. “Why we can’t trust Gillard any more”

    The Prime Minister has let us all down, particularly young people.

    Some things transcend politics and policy and the lust for power. Truth, honesty, integrity, decency and fairness are immutable values. They are the ethical substance of life. They ought to be cherished. To sell them out is to sell one’s soul. It is even worse when a leader expediently betrays these values, because it undermines the entire community.

    We have a duty to lead and inspire our young people, in particular. What are they, and indeed all of us, to make of a prime minister who judges it acceptable to blatantly, blithely break a written pledge in the name of base politics? This is what Julia Gillard has done by abandoning her poker-machines promise to Andrew Wilkie. It was a solemn, public undertaking instrumental to her gaining the trust and the numbers to form government, having come to the prime ministership through means that had already undermined her moral authority

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/why-we-cant-trust-gillard-any-more-20120124-1qfo0.html#ixzz1kR9BItgu

    http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/why-we-cant-trust-gillard-any-more-20120124-1qfo0.html#ixzz1kQljD9bP

  13. Catrching up, that was written by Michael Short,
    a senior Age editor and a board member of the Young and Well Co-operative Research Centre

    Gina will be giving him a pay-rise any day now!

  14. BSA

    I get a email that says what is happeneing each day. I think it is a News site one.

    The words are mine.

  15. Well Pip he is a self sanctimonious prig.

    There has never been a PM or leader that can live up to his expectations.

    I am sure he is going to suffer many disappointments during life.

  16. One of the Beaumont children, abducted 46 years ago from an Adelaide beach, may have been found.

    Migs, you did not read the story.

    This is a new low for the media.

  17. “JOE Hockey has called on Australians to embrace a new spirit of austerity, saying families and businesses should pay off debt to prepare for up to two decades of economic turmoil.

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/dismal-euro-debt-souring-outlook-says-imf/story-fn59niix-1226253126999

    Mr. Hockey is doing a good job of sending the Australian economy into a tail spin,

    The economy is softening and he pushes for actions that will lead to a melt down.

  18. Catching Up at 6.14
    A while ago Hockey came out with a “Bankers are people too” line, saying their needs have to be considered. With that sort of stuff & statements like you quote here, I think we’re being softened up for a major push to lower wages & conditions, in our best interests of course, as we’ve really priced ourselves too high & this sort of thing can’t be sustained you know.
    We’re seeing this sort of thing already , notably in the restaurant trade where we’re sweetly told that if owners actually have to pay their staff this will cause cost increases for US.
    Musing sullenly this morning after being cut off by a car proudly displaying a couple of Aussie flags, I reflected on the unbelievable luck the Liberals have.
    We believed & followed Howard as he told us we could spend & borrow as much as we wanted & things would never ever go south. We disdained the achievements of Labor as they kept us alone out of the GFC. We ignore the inconsistencies & contradictions of the Liberals in opposition. And now they look like being in the box seat to implement what they’ve always wanted, to convince us all that for the greater good we as individuals should pay our bills, live tight, not get above our station & consider ourselves fortunate that our betters think we’re worth employing & paying at all.
    Happy Establishment Of A Penal Colony As Far Away In The Universe From England As Was Possible In 1788 Day.

  19. I’ll put this out there – Café patrons may be able to assist…

    Daughter is planning to drive from a friends place at Browns Plains (in Logan City) to Gunnedah tomorrow (in a Suzuki Swift). Her friend’s partner is suggesting they go via the Newell Hwy – I’ve read that this is a very rough road with lots of large trucks, so the New England would be better.

    I haven’t driven on the Newell since 1979, and the New England since about 2000. Any advice from those who may have travelled these roads more recently?

  20. Bob, you are right on the money. Mr. “Children Overboard” and his friend Chris Corrigan of wharf dispute fame, and the conga line of IPA types plus business leaders, whinging about “productivity”.

    WorkChoices Mk 2 is already planned and ready to roll out.

  21. A change of pace provided by ABC’s Mark Colvin.
    The author of the Diary is either his grandfather or great-grandfather
    An excellent read.

    http://ewmanifold.blogspot.com/search?updated-min=2010-01-01T00:00:00%2B11:00&updated-max=2011-01-01T00:00:00%2B11:00&max-results=50

    Diary of EW Manifold – WWI
    Edward Walford Manifold was born on 28th April 1892 and grew up in the Western District of Victoria. Together with his older brother William Herbert (Bee), he travelled to England to join the Royal Field Artillery when World War I broke out. Day by day, this blog publishes his letters home and the entries he made in his diaries, from 1915 when he was first sent to France until 1918 when his service ends. (To follow on Twitter: manifold1418)

  22. Min, I hope Bacchus checked the weather reports for that area.

    Bacchus I’m very sorry, i did see your question and meant to check out the
    flood reports and get back to you but I was distracted ..

    Hope all is OK.

  23. Thanks Min & Pip – I was kinda hoping Shane might have been around. I think he might be very familiar with that part of the country.

    The weather has been quite OK out there Pip – all of the recent action has been coastal.

    Daughter ended up taking the New England – she texted that she’d arrived safely at about 2:30 this afternoon. No doubt she’ll have tales to tell of her first road trip when she returns on Sunday…

  24. Dollars for denial: who has funded the threefold increase in IPA revenue since 2000?

    http://watchingthedeniers.wordpress.com/2012/01/27/dollars-for-denial-who-is-funding-threefold-increase-in-ipa-funding-since-2000/

    How much does it take to fund a campaign of mis-information?

    What resources are required to deceive the public about climate change?

    Let’s ask the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA), the right-wing think tank at the centre of climate change denial in Australia.

    There is little doubt the IPA can’t hide the incline in cash over the past few years.

    Between 2000 and 2010 the IPA has witnessed a threefold increase in revenue.

  25. I’ve been looking at maps and BoM reports for the last week or so Pip – daughter only decided to actually go early this morning…

  26. And the ram- raiding looney in Rocky has been refused bail, and the reason…..

    “Sgt Dalton objected to bail for Hellier for several reasons, including the licence Hellier holds to buy explosives.”

    http://www.themorningbulletin.com.au/story/2012/01/27/ram-raider-held-in-police-custody/

    And as a matter of interest the looney was easy to find:

    “Despite his alleged attempt to hide the car said to be used in three ram-raiding attacks on Tuesday, police discovered a litany of threatening anti-government signs strewn across his front fence.” (The paper even has a photo)

  27. Fletcher to lead Opposition’s cybersafety group

    http://www.zdnet.com.au/fletcher-to-lead-oppositions-cybersafety-group-339330524.htm

    The Federal Opposition is set to develop an alternative to the government’s cybersafety policy, today announcing the formation of a taskforce of backbenchers to spearhead the issue, led by Paul Fletcher MP.

    Announced by Federal Opposition leader Tony Abbott in Melbourne this morning, the taskforce, dubbed the Online Safety Working Group, will seek to “assist parents, carers and teachers to better protect children and young people from the risks associated with the internet and social media”.

    Abbott used the announcement to take a swipe at the government’s existing cybersafety policy, which includes the controversial Cybersafety Help Button and a mandatory internet filter.

    Other Opposition parties have been known to present amendments to government legislation, then again, other governments have accepted their time in Opposition with some grace.

    Mr. Fletcher is a former Optus executive.

  28. ‘Get a gutful, then a tankful’

    Woolies The Fresh Food People under fire for 30c alcohol-fuel discount..

    Or maybe when you’ve a gutful of trying to find anything fresh at Woolies, then you could go and get tanked.

    What a sterling choice..Woolies “is offering a 30 cents a litre petrol discount coupon to buyers who buy two cases of beer or pre-mix cans of spirits.”

    http://smh.drive.com.au/motor-news/get-a-gutful-then-a-tankful-woolies-under-fire-for-30c-alcoholfuel-discount-20120127-1ql58.html

  29. Min,
    Or maybe when you’ve a gutful of trying to find anything fresh at Woolies, then you could go and get tanked. :lol:

    There is also this:-

    Big petrol chains were using “loss-making” discounting practices that put pressure on the smaller independent service stations and threatened to drive them out of business, reducing competition in the longer term.

  30. Israel announces plans to build national broadband network, increases fiber intake

    http://www.engadget.com/2012/01/27/israel-announces-plans-to-build-national-broadband-network-incr/?utm_medium=referral&utm_source=pulsenews

    Israel is home to a burgeoning tech industry, but the country’s broadband infrastructure hasn’t really been able to keep pace. In terms of broadband penetration, in fact, Israel ranks just 21st out of 34 developed nations, according to statistics gathered by the OECD. All this may be changing, however, now that the country’s state-run electric company has announced plans to create a new national broadband network. According to the AP, the forthcoming network will use so-called fiber to the home (FTTH) technology, which is capable of providing connections at speeds of between 100Mbps and 1Gbps. That would be about ten to 100 times faster than the connections most Israelis have today, and could offer obvious benefits to a wide array of businesses and industries.

  31. LOBBYISTS RULE

    Dice loaded in clubs battle

    http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/dice-loaded-in-clubs-battle-20120127-1qlgx.html

    Strong anti-poker machine legislation never stood a chance once the gaming lobby was able to put its spin on the wheel.

    In May, James Packer appointed Karl Bitar head of government affairs for his Crown casino business. Until a few weeks earlier, Bitar had been national secretary of the ALP since 2008. He previously spent nine years with the NSW ALP in various jobs, including 11 months as state secretary.

    Although Bitar said his role with Crown included responsibility for tourism (read attracting Chinese gamblers to the casino) no one doubted that his principal role was to ensure the federal government did not deliver on its promise to Wilkie.

  32. According to the AP, the forthcoming network will use so-called fiber to the home (FTTH) technology, which is capable of providing connections at speeds of between 100Mbps and 1Gbps. That would be about ten to 100 times faster than the connections most Israelis have today, and could offer obvious benefits to a wide array of businesses and industries.

    Geez Pip – don’t tell Abbott & Turnbull. They’ll be over there in a flash to tell the electric company it’s all a waste of money with no chance of ever getting a return on investment.

    If the ALP have any collective brains – they will tell Bitar to go away.

  33. Does anyone have problems with most of what is written today, Som much of it appears that all journalist are writng from the same scrpt, especally when it cpomes to the fortunes, past and presnt of Mr. Rudd.

    “is but one spectacular example of an avalanche of pieces allegedly written by Pearson – but possibly ghosted by Miranda the Devine or Piers “Akker Dakker” Akkerman – explaining how former Chairman Rudd could return to the throne of power, change policy, take a new stance on people smuggling, the carbon tax, gambling in clubs, and so end the reign of the Wicked Witch of the West.

    Happily such pieces are PP (pre gold fickle finger of fate paywall), so the pond can link to them, and readers can still frolic through them for free, therefore not violating the most offensive PP of all (Pay to read bloody Pearson?)

    Yep, it was back in September that Pearson went overboard on Rudd’s return:

    There’s a joke doing the rounds that Rudd has only one friend, Newspoll, but it’s a very powerful ally. How could Rudd convert that political capital into a return to the Lodge? He’d have to act quickly, perhaps within the next few weeks before parliament resumes, while the mood in caucus grows ever more desperate and before support gathers behind another candidate. Simply by being in the House of Representatives, Rudd is a reminder to many voters, especially in Queensland, of the legitimacy problems that dog Gillard’s leadership.

    Within the next few weeks?

    There’s a joke doing the rounds at the pond that Pearson has the predictive insight of random tea leaves at the bottom of an over-brewed cup of tea, soggy and lumpy, and it surely makes it even funnier to realise most likely it was Robert Manne writing his columns way back then …

    http://www.blogotariat.com/node/238496

  34. Cu,
    much of it appears that all journalists are writng from the same script

    That would be from the Liberal handbook of media propaganda, faithfully reproduced!

  35. Min, there’s another version which involves the daughter of a Liberal donor, however, it’s just gossip at this point so maybe we should wait for the media hounds to tell us about it. :lol:

  36. Is this serious. I have no love for tattoos but most young people of both genders seem to have at least one.

    They will have trouble filling the intake.

    A proposal to ban people with tattoos from joining the NSW police force is absurd, the state opposition says.

    Under a proposal being drafted for Commissioner Andrew Scipione, prospective police recruits with tattoos would be knocked back and current officers with tattoos would have to conceal them.

    http://bigpondnews.com/articles/National-Regional/2012/01/29/NSW_police_tattoo_ban_absurd_-__Oppn_712590.html

  37. One urban myth used to be that the laws of defamation did not apply to blogs as some believed that because they were anonymous that they could make abusive and defamatory comments, that the law did not matter. No so of course.

    Mr Gibson says that such cases as Hardy’s – and a recent decision in Queensland forcing Google to release the identity of a blogger to a man he had abused online – are signs that the internet is no longer an area that can circumvent the laws of defamation.

    http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/legal-threat-to-bloggers-20120129-1qo1w.html#ixzz1ksTCRX00

  38. Indeed it is Migs. One thing is that although there are a few cases now before before the courts, most actions result in out of court settlements. The courts have indicated that there is no difference between defamation via a blog than via any other form of written media.

  39. There are a few positive advances that can be noted regarding the growth of railways as the main carriers of long haul freight in the years ahead, and for their expanding role in handling increased passenger traffic in areas of heavy population.

    The Australian Government has taken a further step forward in its planning for high-speed passenger rail between Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane by authorising additional work on its feasibility. As this railway will eventually take air traffic out of our skies and reduce congestion at our major airports, this is good news.

    AECOM has been appointed for Phase Two of the study, and will report to Transport Minister, Anthony Albanese, later this year. Let me predict that our first high-speed train will run between Sydney and Newcastle Airport at Williamtown by 2020.

    http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=13179

    More evidence that this is a do nothing government.

    Mr. Smith is now releasing an important review of the armed forces and it’s role.

    On ABC 24 if anyone is interested.

  40. When listening to Smith, it becomes very obvious as to how dumbed down the media have become. It’s refreshing to listen to some genuine issues instead of speculation about which size shoe the PM wears.

    Mind you, there is certainly room for both sort of features but it currently runs at about 80/20 trivia.

  41. Min, it appears that Midas are very happy with the advertisement that shoe achieved.

    They cannot meet the demand.

    It is extremely hard today for find a decent pair of wedge soled shoes with a reasonable heel.

    It is nice to know that at least the PM knows a good pair of shoes when she sees them.

    Now I wonder what Mr. Abbott wears.

    Sarcasm alert.

    Min, defamation laws should apply to all.

  42. I take it that this is true and we are going to see it all over the media tonight.

    Federal Parliamentary Speaker Peter Slipper says he has been cleared of any wrongdoing linked to his MP expenses.

    The Department of Finance recently investigated a complaint relating to Mr Slipper’s spending, as the member for the Queensland federal seat of Fisher, for the period from July 1 to December 31, 2009.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/national/peter-slipper-cleared-over-expenses-20120130-1qpdv.html#ixzz1kv5IFcfX

  43. Hallelujah, Penny Wong is finally once again on Sky. And not before time. Wong’s strength is her ability to role out the facts, backed up by numbers – this is something which Tony Abbott cannot deal with. For example Wong said the Liberals $70B black hole. How would Abbott answer that one? The answer is of course He Won’t..because the blankety-blank MSM never bothers to ask him!!!

  44. Min
    Abbott is at the press club today, so you can see how many questions he gets on the economy.

    i reckon the questions will run 5 to 1 , gillard and the conspiracy versus economic credibibilty.

  45. Cu, @ 5.22pm, the attacks on Peter Slipper are tied directly to the ambitions of Mal Brough who wants another crack at a Parliamentary career, preferrably in Peter Slipper’s electorate !

    This is about the “rumour” that Senator Nick Xenophon mentioned recently:-

    LNP MP Peter Slipper threatens revolt as win looms for Mal Brough by: Michael McKenna
    From: The Australian September 03, 2011

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/state-politics/lnp-mp-peter-slipper-threatens-revolt-as-win-looms-for-mal-brough/story-e6frgczx-1226128495557

    FEDERAL opposition MP Peter Slipper has threatened to join the crossbenches if an internal vote today backs Howard government minister Mal Brough to head the branch of the Queensland Liberal National Party in his electorate of Fisher.
    The veteran MP and Deputy Speaker wrote yesterday to LNP members in his Sunshine Coast seat, warning that his position as a federal LNP MP would become “untenable” if Mr Brough were elected to chair the Fisher federal divisional council.

    Mr Brough has made no secret of his intention to challenge his former parliamentary colleague in the next LNP preselection for Fisher.

  46. This little gem went straight through to the keeper…..

    Why Mal Brough flew free

    http://www.sunshinecoastdaily.com.au/story/2011/12/01/why-mal-brough-flew-free-flights-parliament/

    MAL Brough has defended chalking up nearly $19,000 worth of flights during a six-month period when he was not serving parliament.

    Mr Brough, who hopes to oust Peter Slipper as Member for Fisher at the next election, racked up $10,638.67 in personal flights and $7522.56 in family travel from January 1 to June 30 last year.

  47. Yes Sue, I remember ,and I thank google for storing old news items :grin:

    I also remember Brough’s strong man image when he was organising the NT intervention; all those facts and figures used to advantage, some of which were incorrect.

  48. This is the moron who expects to be the next Prime Minister….

    TONY Abbott missed the key economic vote of the new Parliament – the $42 billion fiscal stimulus package – because he fell asleep after a night of drinking witnessed by MPs from both sides of Parliament.

    Mr Abbott told Chief Opposition Whip Alex Somlyay that he missed five divisions on the night of Thursday, February 12 because he fell asleep in his office.

    His nap followed dinner in the Members’ Dining Room with Peter Costello, Kevin Andrews and Peter Dutton, where numerous bottles of wine were consumed.

    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/national/abbott-snoozed-through-key-vote/story-e6freuzr-1111119064644

  49. Pip at 3.15
    I’ve got that article filed somewhere, it’s a doozy ‘aint it? Why doesn’t stuff like that dent him? One other that I go on about & which doesn’t seem to interest anyone else is the great Liberal exodus from parliament when it came time to vote on Rudd’s altered boatvolk legislation. Not there they weren’t, cutting & running to avoid the unedifying spectacle of some of their number doing what the Liberals will tell you they’re proudest of- crossing the floor. I’ve rung a few ALP offices suggesting they use this but they don’t seem interested.
    Its time of usefulness has passed by now, I suppose but I think it should’ve been used.

  50. Bob If a Coalition member can throw up the fact that Brendan Nelson was offended against at some “do” or other, why not?

    POO Pyne and others are probably being sent home from their big meeting today with a list of lines to learn before Parliament resumes.

  51. According to the Clive Palmer dictionary

    the many meanings of ” Never” ……… thats NEVER, or “not recall”, or “private discussion”, or “generic basis”,

    “Asked today whether he had ever met Mr Newman to discuss the Galilee Basin project, Mr Palmer emphatically declared: “Never, never, never, never – never means never. Go check your dictionary and look what the word means. Never.
    When informed that Mr Newman confirmed yesterday he had outlined the LNP’s position on Galilee planning to Mr Palmer last year, the mining magnate said he could not recall such a meeting and he had never had a “private discussion” with the LNP leader.

    Mr Palmer then said he may have discussed the Galilee Basin on a “generic basis” in the company of others”

    Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/clive-palmer-extends-war-of-words-to-murdoch-press-20120201-1qsv4.html#ixzz1lAFm8l29

  52. Yes Miglo
    gina and clive covering from the east coast to the west coast
    tony and deputy julie the toothpicks for the mouthpieces of australia’s future

  53. Exactly Min, if it worked Woolies would not be recommending it, still if it looks good for Tony Abbott they’ll promote it, at no expense to the Coalition.

    Where have we heard that before?

  54. Pip, from your link…

    “We would support a self exclusion program that allows for third party exclusion, that could allow family members to apply to approved body to have an individual excluded, subject to privacy considerations,” Mr Curry said.

    Now wouldn’t that make for “happy families”. And how would the clubs ensure that a family member’s application was genuine and not just a cranky jilted partner or even someone just pretending to be a family member. Mr Curry’s idea is unworkable in my opinion.

  55. For any oldies in NSW with poor sight, just send your thanks to Barry and Pru

    VisionCare NSW (VCNSW) has been informed by the Department of Family & Community Services (FACS), that effective immediately the Program administered by VCNSW can only be funded within the defined FACS budget and that no supplementary funding is available.

    Accordingly the Program will cease to supply benefits from 29 February – 30 June 2012.

    http://www.visioncarensw.com.au/

  56. Also from the same link, tacked on at the end, from an organisation which is used to picking up the pieces when a gambler’s life has gone to hell.

    Meanwhile, the Salvation Army told the opposition’s gambling committee it supports mandatory pre-commitment systems or $1 bet limits.

    “We said, `respectfully we know this isn’t the coalition’s starting point, but in the long run the mandatory pre-commitment process is going to be far more effective’,” Major Brad Halse added.

  57. Basic common sense would dictate that the only ones against mandatory pre-commitment are a minority of gambling addicts and the clubs.

    Having a withdrawal limit at the clubs will help some, those who go and without thinking travel back and forth to the ATM not realising how much they have spent. However for others there is nothing to stop them loading up their wallets with cash before arriving. So that one alone isn’t the solution.

  58. So everything is perfect in the Liberal Camp.

    Under pressure … Opposition leader Tony Abbott and Shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey. Photo: Brendan Esposito

    THE fight over the car industry shows exactly why Tony Abbott doesn’t want to explain where he will make his budget cuts.

    Under pressure last January to show how he would pay for natural disaster recovery without a flood levy, he included a $500 million cut from the assistance the car makers had factored into their operations over the next three years.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/abbott-has-painted-himself-into-several-corners-20120202-1qvok.html#ixzz1lKSmLgOx

  59. “Woolies wants voluntary pokies cards”

    Does one see the elephant in the room with the above statement.

    They are willing to make changes to their machines for voluntary but not mandatory cards.

    I thought that the cost was going to destroy the industry.

  60. The problem for the Premier (Colin Barnett) now is that it has since come to light that his chief of staff Brian Pontifex was also at the pub that night, and he has been accused of urging Mr Larsson to send the questionable text message.

    It has put the Premier in a bind because he has insisted that Mr Larsson acted alone in his “silly” antics.

    Read more: http://www.watoday.com.au/wa-news/the-text-message-that-has-the-premier-in-a-fury-20120202-1qvn0.html#ixzz1lLiHzu7K

  61. Maybe tony and his No to everything is rubbing off in NSW. Armidale hospital needs upgrading, the previous nsw govt put up $10m to enable them to go in to the pie for $40 mill from the federal govt regional health grants. armidale missed out in the first round, so locals hoped for the 2nd round due this May. however, after a question from the local member, r torbay, the nsw health minister. j skinner, said they were were not offered an invitation to submit a bid. bids closed last october. But tony windsor made inquiries federally and it appears it was the state of nsw that blocked the application.

    http://www.armidaleexpress.com.au/news/local/news/business/sabotage-claim-over-hospital-upgrade-funds/2442736.aspx

  62. It is all aspirational.. How does cutting tax of the mining industry make life easier for normal Australians.

    The Green Future levy takes from the big emitters and gives back to general community. How does dismantling this tax make much difference to the bottom line.

    How does Mr. Abbott intend to deal with the high dollar and the multi-speed economy it creates.

    According to Mr. Pyne, Mr. Abbott has been once again verballed (my word) and the interviewer needs to get her facts right.

    Mr. Abbott intends to cut the PS, Is this going to be on top of the sever cuts already occurring.

    Mr. Abbott plans, aims or aspirations would be wonderful, it the economy he describes existed in Australia. If the Gillard government was a high taxing and spending government.

    Mr. Abbott’s problem is the Opposite is true.

    This government performs better than the Howard government on all levels.

    …………..EMMA ALBERICI: Christopher Pyne, Tony Abbott also delivered a speech this week outlining his vision for the country, which will involve something in the order of $70 billion in spending cuts. For most people, that would be a very scary prospect?

    CHRISTOPHER PYNE, MANAGER OF OPPOSITION BUSINESS: Well, Emma, Tony Abbott didn’t outline $70 billion worth of spending cuts at all.

    EMMA ALBERICI: But he said that his aspiration is for a 1 per cent of GDP surplus which amounts to around $15 billion. On any estimate, that would have to involve some pretty savage cuts to spending?

    CHRISTOPHER PYNE: Well, Emma, it’s important to get the facts right.

    Joe Hockey said that he was aiming for a 1 per cent of GDP surplus, that was an aspiration. Tony Abbott didn’t outline $70 billion worth of spending cuts. What Tony Abbott did say in his speech on Tuesday – and I was there – is that the Opposition, if we are elected, in an election maybe this year will do, as our number one priority, getting the budget back into a healthy surplus, delivering tax cuts by also abolishing the carbon tax and the mining tax which is an immediate tax cut to Australians, ending the spiral of spending that the Labor Party is on, stopping this constant borrowing in order to fund the Labor Party’s spending addiction. .

    ………….EMMA ALBERICI: Are you backing away then from this claim of a 1 per cent surplus because you’ve said then that that was something Joe Hockey said, but in your government he would be Treasurer, wouldn’t he?

    CHRISTOPHER PYNE: No, Emma, I just think it’s important to get the facts right on this program. So, you said that Tony Abbott had said we would have wanted a 1 per cent of GDP surplus and had announced $70 billion of spending cuts.

    EMMA ALBERICI: No, I said that …

    CHRISTOPHER PYNE: Neither of those statements were true.

    EMMA ALBERICI: I said what he said would involve $70 billion worth of spending cuts, because on anyone’s estimate you can’t achieve a one per cent surplus without some pretty drastic spending cuts or tax rises.

    CRAIG EMERSON: That’s right………..

    http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2012/s3422999.htm

  63. CRAIG EMERSON: It’s factually right, and the $70 billion not only comes from Mr Abbott but comes from Mr Hockey and Mr Robb who have both said publicly that there is a $70 billion funding task here. That is, in order to meet the various commitments that they’ve made, they have to cut spending by $70 billion.

    Not the Labor Party’s words, those words came out of Joe Hockey’s mouth, they came out of Andrew Robb’s mouth and they’re reaffirmed by Mr Abbott. Then they say that they’re going to have tax cuts in the first term. Then Mr Abbott pressed on that, says it’s an aim. Julie Bishop says it’s an aspiration and Joe Hockey says, “No, we will definitely going to do it”.

    And you just heard from Christopher adding to the confusion because they don’t know how to make this add up. They went to the last election with an $11 billion black hole. It’s blown out to $70 billion and they’re all over the place. It depends on who you talk to, as they make it up as they go along.

    EMMA ALBERICI: Christopher Pyne, the Opposition leader, your leader has promised personal and company tax cuts in the first term of a government led by Tony Abbott. If the Coalition does win the election next year, how is it possible that you will achieve these tax cuts while also vowing to scrap the mining tax and the carbon tax?

    CHRISTOPHER PYNE: Well, we will deliver an immediate tax cut Emma, through abolishing the carbon tax. The mining tax is a fraud. The numbers in the mining tax simply don’t stack up. Everybody knows that in Treasury and in the Government. That’s why they’re finding it very hard to bring it to the Senate to actually get it through because they know the figures aren’t right.

    A lot of people in the mining sector are making it very clear that BHP, Rio and Xstrata won’t pay the tax, some people say for up to 19 years. The only people who will pay it will be the small and medium sized miners. So, all the rhetoric from the Government is built on very shifting sands.

    What we’ve said is that before the next election, which is due at the end of 2013, that given the chaos that currently surrounds the Government and the moving feast that is their leadership could be any time, but before the election is held, we will announce detailed spending cuts and how we will fund tax cuts and pension rises. All of that will happen.

    But as if we are going to announce in February of 2012, 18 months before a federal election, all of our detailed policies, simply to have them stolen by the Labor Party, (inaudible) of policies on their own side.

    CRAIG EMERSON: We won’t be stealing your policies on abolishing the mining tax.

    http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2012/s3422999.htm

  64. Craig Emerson looked a different man, last night. Maybe just the tan, but there was also a new strength there, or was it just the contrast with the vapid yapping of Pyne. Still on about pink batts! Or maybe the presence of an honest interviewer giving him an opportunity to speak his mind without those interruptions which people like Uhlman cut in with in just when a pro govt p.o.v. is getting the edge.

    Emma Albericci was stunning, I thought. Straight up. I always found Ali Moore too clever by half. I never trusted her intentions when she ran those Friday night stoushes, too often trying to wrong foot the PM’s team.

  65. patricia, I switched off after a few seconds of P.O.O. Pane, and had another look just as Emma Alberici was saying goodnioght to her guests.

    Craig Emerson said ‘goodnight’. Prissy seethed, but no ‘goodnight’ from him!

    I couldn’t take too much of ali Moore either, as you said, too clever by half.

    Emma A., has a very different style. Maybe it’s because she shows integrity and a determination to give a fair and balanced account, whatever the story, unlike Moore and Uhlmann.

  66. We need more of this type of journalism.

    This is a long article that has a couple of good ideas. At least it is not all negative.

    One of them remarked privately this week that Gillard’s resilience was simply amazing. ”Even though it’s tough, we’ve got all these great things on the boil and Julia seems buoyed by all that and keen to get on with it,” the minister remarked, while acknowledging the uncertainty of the outlook.

    For her part, Gillard plays down the weight of tomorrow’s planning session.

    ”At the start of what is our parliamentary year, and the first time we come together, we’ve got an opportunity to do a bit of work together – and we will,” she says. Asked if there could come a point where she took it upon herself to relinquish the leadership, she plays a dead bat. ”My focus is on doing the job and I just leave this chatter to one side,” she says.

    It is only then, before the final picture is taken and the recorder is switched off, that Gillard gives the strongest signal possible that she is preparing for the fight of her life.

    ”Over the Christmas period, I spent time with both Bob Hawke and Paul Keating, and you listen to the stories and the tales of how hard it can be when it’s really hard, and I think we easily all talk ourselves into the proposition that it’s never been as hard as this,” she says. ”Well, it has been hard in the past. It’s been really hard. So you keep doing it and, the more you do it, the more you gain strength and confidence that you can do it.

    ”So in many ways for me, having lived through what I’ve lived through, and endured what I’ve endured, I’ve got more confidence that I can do the next bit – and there’s something sustaining about that.”

    Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/national/after-the-tumble-and-staffer-bumble-shes-ready-to-rumble-20120203-1qxny.html#ixzz1lNJrvYZp

  67. PS. This story will be portrayed as the PM being desperate. Seeking another opinion and asking advice is seen by some as weakness.

  68. Cu, I like to think that the Prime Minister’s calm demeanour is causing indigestion for the media and the Coalition – they’ve been angling for her to behave like a hysterical female for the last year and a half.

    It would have made their task so much easier if the PM would throw an emotional tanty to prove that she’s not up to a man’s job.

    Instead we see emotional rants from the likes of Prissy Pyne and Joe Hockey.

  69. Cu, from your link, the PM is a very strong lady and that’s just “tough titties’ for her enemies.

    ”Well, it has been hard in the past. It’s been really hard. So you keep doing it and, the more you do it, the more you gain strength and confidence that you can do it.

    ”So in many ways for me, having lived through what I’ve lived through, and endured what I’ve endured, I’ve got more confidence that I can do the next bit –and there’s something sustaining about that.”

  70. Lenore Taylor might find herself in the same ship-wrecked little boat as Mike Carlton in the near future..

    Abbott needs magic to pull surplus out of a hat

    http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/abbott-needs-magic-to-pull-surplus-out-of-a-hat-20120203-1qxb0.html

    The rest of the world started 2012 transfixed by the unfolding euro zone debt crisis. In Australia, we started with some confusion about whether the last global financial crisis happened at all.

    Mostly we were worried about whether Labor would once again install Kevin Rudd in the merry-go-round of its leadership and what happened to Julia Gillard’s blue shoe.

    Gillard gave a speech defending Labor’s economic record but no one seemed to be listening. Tony Abbott sought to destroy Labor’s record in a snappy speech full of contradictory hot air.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/abbott-needs-magic-to-pull-surplus-out-of-a-hat-20120203-1qxb0.html#ixzz1lNUazS3G

  71. No, one cannot have it repeated to often. I did

    Last night’s Capital Hill was worth looking at. Did not agree with many things said, but it was an attempt to actually talk about the issues.

  72. Cu, i’ve been trying to get Capitol Hill on the ABC24 website to watch Fitzgibbon interview again, it’s not the best laid out website IMO,
    too hard at the moment !!

    Or maybe it’s just me… :oops:

  73. I’m not keen on providing links to any more leadership piffle but this one requires a response.

    Deep into the article there is this comment by Shaun Carney.

    The truth is that many MPs know what was behind Gillard’s standing-up of Wilkie, a move that has apparently surprised and disturbed many Labor voters. The move was driven by her increasingly shaky hold on the leadership and her knowledge that unhappy backbenchers were starting to drift to Rudd.

    There is no point in continuing to face into the head winds of a vicious cashed up campaign by the Clubs and pubs, and expect anything other than muck.

    The same applies to the changed MRRT legislation, which, in it’s original form, swept Kevin Rudd’s Prime Ministership away.

    The same applies to Malcolm Turnbull’s Leadership of the Liberals when he supported an Emissions Trading Scheme.

    The vested interests brigade and their media supporters are having a somewhat longer struggle to sweep this Prime Minister away.

    Groping for leadership in an hour of darkness

    http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/groping-for-leadership-in-an-hour-of-darkness-20120203-1qxsy.html

  74. Pip, I had no luck either.

    I tried last night with no luck. It must be there somewhere. Everything else is.

    Even the transcript would do. I find this one of the better programmes, not that is saying much. It has gone off a little lately.

    At least they know how to interview.

    Uhlmann has no skill whatever, as well as being a little arrogant.

  75. I believe the PM made the decision re Wilkie, because she is not interested in just going through the motions.

    Yes, that would have been the easy decision. I believe it would have also been the correct one.

    Some success is better than none. It will be easier down the track to go further. No legislation means one has to start again and it is unlikely to happen.

  76. Migs @4.57pm and Pip @5.03pm. Me either. It must be time for music. :)

    As it’s on Open Thread, then I guess that we can play what we like.

  77. Now this rumour could not possibly be true.

    Now it does have as much basis of truth that the Rudd come back has.

    Maybe it could be true.

    Nah. I do not think so. What do others think.

    With the current media-led leadership speculation regarding the ALP and its Prime Ministerial leader, it is apposite to air the rumours I have heard about Tony Abbott, the Prime Minister-in-waiting

    http://archiearchive.wordpress.com/2012/02/05/tony-abbott-is-a-paedophile-sources/#comments

  78. Sue, such a nice person isn’t she. Gina didn’t get her own way with the suppression order so now she is resorting to threats.

    And not only the children but the grandies might not be too safe either…

    MINING billionaire Gina Rinehart has raised fears about the security of her grandchildren as she tries to get her three estranged children to abandon efforts to make details of the family’s bitter court battle public.

    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/breaking-news/gina-rinehart-kidnap-fears-over-court-case/story-e6frf7jx-1226261183067

  79. Min

    something to keep a watch on, as it is a good indicator of what will once again occur under an abbott/ or any other candidate led coalition govt.

    “OUR public hospital would suffer if dragged back into private ownership and management, Lyne MP Robert Oakeshott warns.

    Mr Oakeshott raised the alarm after NSW Health Minister Jillian Skinner revealed in the media that her government was investigating the possibility of working with the private sector in planning, building and running new hospitals and upgrades of existing hospitals.

    “The previous National Party privatisation of Port Macquarie hospital (in 1991) so heavily favoured the private contractor that the independent NSW Auditor General slammed the then National Party MPs for ‘in effect, paying for the hospital twice and giving it away’.

    “The private sector reaped the benefits of this lopsided contract at the direct expense of the NSW people.

    “Not only was this a statewide financial failure, but the local community suffered the consequences through a lack of infrastructure investment, and through services, such as mental health, being unavailable.”

    http://www.portnews.com.au/news/local/news/general/mp-slam-hospital-privatisation-idea/2444003.aspx

  80. As I noticed Barbanby Joyce sitting at the table for the meeting on St George flood crisis (as the member that is okay to be there )

    What was Barnaby’s vote for the Brisbane flood levy?

    Oh dear they have just replayed an interview with him and all he did is talk about how it was affecting him. talk about me me. yes he is at a motel and will move out when told to do so

  81. Yes Sue, I watched that disgusting video, the guy said nothing about what he could achieve for the community, no request for extra funding or support.

    Joyce, Newman and Abbott are useless in a crisis.

    Compare Joyce to Rudd in the Brisbane flood crisis – get out and do something useful Barnaby.

  82. Luna, I was just thinking about that. Remember when Rudd was out there during the Brisbane floods with trousers rolled up and wear his best gum boots, and all that the media could bleat on about was it being a photo op for a challenge which was supposted to happen any tick of the clock. Fortunately for the good folk of Brisbane..Abbott didn’t attempt to ‘help’.

  83. I do not believe it. The ABC 24 is repeating Mr. Abbott’s long door stop in full.

    Mr. Abbott viewsthe Howard years as golden. I suspect that many have a memory problem. This writer appears to agree with me.

    Memories have to be selective to be attractive, as there are bits of the golden age which can never be polished, even by Mr Abbott.

    For example, the Regional Partnerships Program which ran for eight years makes Labor’s Building an Education Revolution scheme look like a a well-oiled economic mechanism of integrity and efficiency.

    The BER never funded a Queensland coastal hotel which boasted gaming and strippers, but a 2005 Senate inquiry was told that’s just what the RPP did.

    http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/it-takes-selective-memory-to-call-Howard-era-a-golden-age/

  84. Mr. Abbott said he wants to change Australia for the better. I quite like the Australia we have now. I would like to see less racism and greater community pulling together but is is not a bad place.

    I cannot see Mr. Abbott addressing racism.

    I want to change Australia for the better. That means change which reflects our best work and family values and our deepest instincts,” he said.

    Tony Abbott is a radical conservative with contradictions. His basic belief is that governments have a role of “masterful inactivity” when it comes to the operations of businesses and families, but was prepared the send in the Army when he believed there had to be intervention in failed Aboriginal communities.

    He is also from the “toughen up” school of dealing with personal hardship, but is prepared to tax big business more to pay for a generous leave scheme for struggling new parents.

    These apparent contradictions recede behind Mr Abbott’s promise to take Australia forward to a past which was not quite as perfect as he likes to remember it.

    http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/it-takes-selective-memory-to-call-Howard-era-a-golden-age/

  85. Sue, no one is going to get between Gina and her trough of money, not even the children.

    It matters not that are are far past being children and are now very mature adults that would like to control their own money.

  86. Do we really want a quick election and the disruptions it will bring fo

    Does Mr. Abbott care, I believe not.

    One problem is that an early election would put the House of Representatives and the Senate out of alignment. There cannot be a half-Senate election until August 7 next year.

    If Rudd were to take the leadership around the time of the budget in May this year and call an election for August, the two houses would be out of kilter. If he wanted to realign them, he would have to call another general election by May 2014. That would mean three federal elections in under four years.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/bets-off-for-abbott-after-a-rudd-change-20120205-1qzm2.html#ixzz1lYgnLzgc

  87. Cu, your comment @ 11.17am really needs repeating…..often

    Catching up

    I do not believe it. The ABC 24 is repeating Mr. Abbott’s long door stop in full.

    Mr. Abbott viewsthe Howard years as golden. I suspect that many have a memory problem. This writer appears to agree with me.

    Memories have to be selective to be attractive, as there are bits of the golden age which can never be polished, even by Mr Abbott.

    For example, the Regional Partnerships Program which ran for eight years makes Labor’s Building an Education Revolution scheme look like a a well-oiled economic mechanism of integrity and efficiency.

    The BER never funded a Queensland coastal hotel which boasted gaming and strippers, but a 2005 Senate inquiry was told that’s just what the RPP did.

    http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/it-takes-selective-memory-to-call-Howard-era-a-golden-age/

  88. A good news story I had missed in the press. apparently announced on a visit to Townsville

    “NBN delivers disability support services direct to doorstep

    More children with hearing or vision impairment living in regional and remote Australia will soon have access to specialist services and therapies through the National Broadband Network (NBN).

    The Government is investing $4.9 million over three years to deliver the online video-based initiative which will improve access to qualified allied health and education services for families and children with disability in regional and remote communities, where such expertise may otherwise be scarce.

    The initiative will deliver services to about 125 additional children in regional and remote Australia, building on the 100 children already supported by the Government.

    Ms Macklin said the NBN was breaking new ground in service delivery for young children with disability.”

    http://www.minister.dbcde.gov.au/media/media_releases/2012/007

  89. I thought that everyone would enjoy this short film by a mate of mine, David Bradbury. It’s on the uranium mining issues.

  90. The government has been found amiss with it’s Green Energy Future adds last year.

    The problem was in their rush to get the ads to air, they by-passed the normal tender process. It was not found that the ads were wrong or misleading.

    Mr.. Abbott was found wrong in his utterances, saying what the cost of The Green Energy bill would lead to. In other words he was found guilty of lying.

    Mr. Conroy has pointed out that the Opposition cannot prevent the Malaysian Solution being put i place and complain about the rising costs on onshore processing.

    They cannot have it both ways.

    I am sure they will, while sticking to their solutions, which experts have said will not work. They are also costly.

    Who is to blame for the present increase of asylum seekers is now academic and has no connection to the solution of what is occuring today.

    When the kitchen water pipe breaks, we do not stand in the middle of the kitchen talking about whoses fault it is, we genrally get on with fixing the pipe.

  91. Sunrise. 7 Mr Turnbull is according to them, making his run. Mr.,Turnbull, when questioned, did little to dampen down the story.

  92. I’m quite impressed with the taxi I’m traveling in. A nice late model Ford. It’s quite smooth (for a taxi) and it is immaculate inside. The best taxi I can remember riding it.

    It’s a real pity that the driver is doing his best to crash it. :(

  93. Not before time, the government is looking at the employment agencies that were established when Mr. Howard closed down the CES.
    This Should have been done in the previous government but6 we must remember that much of the Rudd wealth comes from this move by Mr. Howard.

    False records … employment agencies are lodging false claims to boost their revenue. Above, Minister for Employment Participation, Kate Ellis. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

    The federal government has started an investigation into 14 employment agencies suspected of rorting its multibillion-dollar job assistance scheme, as evidence mounts of the long-running program being routinely abused.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/national/employment-agency-rorts-investigated-20120205-1qzue.html#ixzz1lrIfemKC

  94. Hate to say it, but I did tell you so…On this basis, the December rate cut was a policy error. NAB reports today via its widest and most comprehensive business survey:

    “Business conditions strengthened in the December quarter, following a moderation in activity in the previous quarter, and were suggestive of an economy growing at around trend. The pick up in conditions in the quarter was attributable to broad-based improvements in profitability, employment and trading conditions. Forward indicators of near-term demand, including forward orders, stocks and capacity utilisation, all rose in the quarter, implying an expectation that domestic demand will strengthen a little in the first three months of 2012.”

    http://www.blogotariat.com/node/252435

  95. Has anyone notice that all the Opposition can do when talking about the economy, is deficits and surpluses.

    Surely there is more to the economy than this.

    Are they saying that there must always be surpluses, no matter what the global economy is. Are they saying that there should never be debt.

    I would like to add, for the exception of Greece, the debt that bought Europe to it’s knees was not government debt but private debt.

    A little annoying fact they gloss over..

  96. FEDERAL MPs have today voted to abolish the Life Gold Pass retirement perk for all future politicians in return for a $44,000 pay rise for backbenchers.

    The package also scraps the first-class round-the-world overseas study junket for serving MPs and will for the first time provide workers compensation cover for MPs.

    Politicians are likely to receive their pay rise in the next two months. Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s pay will increase by $114,634 to $481,000 and Opposition Leader Tony Abbott gets an extra $81,566 to $342,250.

    For the first time Mr Abbott’s shadow ministers will get an extra 20 or 25 per cent, giving them a pay rise of up to $90,000.

    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/breaking-news/free-travel-ditched-for-politicians-pay-rises/story-e6frf7jx-1226266740511

  97. There is a appropriate cartoon on this site.

    The passionate critics, including Susan Mitchell in her book, Tony Abbott: A Man’s Man, describe him as a danger to women and to democracy, especially secular democracy.

    The passionate defenders, including several senior media commentators, dismiss any criticism of his social policies as anti-Catholic sectarianism

    http://www.blogotariat.com/node/252487

  98. I hope the Age reporters get to see the papers held by the Guardian and cited in the original article.

    now stephen smith has been advised by defense there is nothing to the article. smith also noted that there were numerous parliamentary committees during the howard years that asked question of defense and nothing materialised.

    so it will be interesting to see what any further investigations by the age turn up.

    of yes and AWB downer says there is nothing to the story.

  99. AM this morning
    “MARK WILLACY: Well we just moved through a checkpoint which had eight long range patrol vehicles, west of Ramadi. There were several dozen soldiers there who wouldn’t let us stop. They were Australian SAS.

    Some refused to even say that they were Australians, they said very little. One guy said to his mate, “Hey filthy, get rid of them.” With that we were pushed through the checkpoint.

    We saw them hauling off three or four Arab men dressed in Gulf Arab attire, obviously for a document check or just to ask them a few questions.

    TONY EASTLEY: AM’s Mark Willacy in western Iraq in April, 2003.

    “EMILY BOURKE: What do we know about the exact involvement of Australian soldiers; where did that start and stop?

    EDWARD SANTOW: Our own role was quite murky. We maintained that we didn’t detain anyone at all in operations first in Afghanistan, then in Iraq, and the Australian Government made this argument that really rested on legal fiction.

    So these 66 people provide a good example of this phenomenon. What happened was a large contingent of Australian troops stopped the 66 people in Iraq and detained them. However, the Australian troops were accompanied by just one US soldier and Australia maintained that the presence of that one US soldiers meant that it was actually the United States who was detaining these people and not Australia.

    What flowed from that as a matter of law was that Australia owed no legal obligations to them and we argue that’s simply a legal fiction and designed to absolve Australia of any obligations that we might have and simply doesn’t hold water.

    EMILY BOURKE: So legal slight of hand?

    EDWARD SANTOW: Exactly yeah, it’s a legal slight of hand.

    EMILY BOURKE: Who would have crafted that policy?

    EDWARD SANTOW: This was something that we showed last year went up to the very highest reaches of the Australian Government, both the Defence Minister and the chief of the Australian Defence Force was well aware of this approach.

    The chief of the Australian Defence Force at the time also expressed some concern about whether this approach was consistent with international law.

    EMILY BOURKE: That would suggest that the Australian Government and Defence were complicit?

    EDWARD SANTOW: Yes it would. Our concern is exactly that. Our concern is that the Australian Government deliberately set up a process whereby it could look the other way. There was a real kind of hypocrisy to this as well and that is that unlike the United States, Australia said very publicly that we would comply with the Geneva Conventions, that we would comply with international humanitarian law in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    And then in reality we set up this process whereby we could simply ignore those rules when it was convenient.”

    http://www.abc.net.au/am/content/2012/s3426377.htm

  100. Cu @5.12pm..thank you for the link, interesting article. One thing that made me smile was the description of Abbott’s team being Howard’s B Team. I agree. It was here at the Café many moons ago that we were making the same observation. Unfortunately the talent, with perhaps the exception being Turnbull all left. Howard of course never ever promoted anyone with any talent, lest they threaten his own position and Abbott is certainly following in his mentor’s footsteps.

  101. “”The idea that people captured by the Australians weren’t acutally captured by the Australians was a nonsense then and a nonsense now.”

    Mr James told the ABC that the Australian Defence Association had argued against that interpretation in 2003, and it was now coming back to bite the military.

    “We said at the time that was nonsense, you can’t avoid your responsiblities under the Geneva Conventions that way and it would eventually backfire on us, and these latest allegations look like part of a backfire.”

    Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/political-news/australian-link-to-secret-iraq-prisons-a-nonsense-20120209-1rpjt.html#ixzz1lrssQ2nY

  102. Sue, Neil James has been around for one heck of a long time..I don’t always agree with what he says but as far as factual information he can be relied upon.

  103. Sue, from your link.

    However, the head of the Australian Defence Association, Neil James, told the ABC radio today that the idea that Australians were not responsible for the treatment of prisoners they captured is just as fanciful.

    And running parallel to this was the Howard/Downer argument that neither was the Australian government responsible for Australian citizens Hicks and Habib.

    Therefore as Howard went along with whatever the Americans under the Bush administration were doing in Gitmo, it would not surprise me at all that they were likewise cooperating with Bush regarding illegal detention of POWs.

  104. And defense has probably been in lock down today.

    James mentioning the Geneva Convention and i told you so, in the same breath is an interesting development.

    lets hope the age does a good look back at all the commentary from that time.

  105. Monday looks to be an interesting day..and of course Abbott is still refusing to allow a conscience vote.

    THE national legislature will on Monday become the Pink Parliament with a total of four gay marriage bills being up for consideration.

    It has taken roughly a century for Parliament to formally debate the issue and suddenly it looks like happening all at once.

    http://www.news.com.au/national/mps-set-to-debate-gay-marriage-in-house-of-representatives/story-e6frfkw9-1226267019536#ixzz1lsn7VCMZ

  106. Abbotts troops won’t know whether to scratch their watches or
    wind their butts after the mess they’ve made this week.

  107. Maybe we should take a step back and look closely at companies when they begin screaming from the roof tops that htye have to cut labour.

    They just could have another agenda.

    In meetings with Alcoa management today, Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu will canvass options for cuts to power costs, payroll tax concessions and greater compensation for the impact of the carbon tax.

    Alcoa has been lobbying the federal government for more generous treatment under the carbon tax for both its Point Henry and Portland smelters, which rely on emission-intensive, brown-coal-generated electricity.

    Although aluminium smelters will receive credits to the value of 94.5 per cent of their emissions costs for the first five years of the carbon tax, Alcoa faces greater electricity costs from using brown coal in Victoria compared with more efficient black coal in other states

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/alocoa-seeks-extra-funds-to-offset-carbon-price-hit/story-fn59niix-1226267242996

  108. Remember when no one wanted these establishments. Obviously the disaster did not occur and jobs provided are probably better paid than they are use to.

    Brighton Mayor Tony Foster, who met the minister last week, has urged Tasmanians wanting to keep the centre and the local jobs it provides to contact Canberra.

    One online petition co-ordinated by a Tasmanian church generated 130 emails in a single 24-hour period this week.

    Cr Foster said he had been flooded with positive support from workers, residents and businesses and 138 Tasmanians had already signed his petition and given reasons for their support.

    But Tasmania’s politicians except Liberal senator Eric Abetz, who opposed the establishment of the Pontville centre and wants it shut have stayed curiously quiet

    http://www.themercury.com.au/article/2012/02/10/299931_tasmania-news.html

  109. The government that is too busy focussing on Mr. Abbott, to be looking after the affairs of the Nation.

    What many ignore, this government is able to deal with many matters at once, unlike Mr. Abbott, who has trouble dealing with his one issue. Destroying the Nation to get at the PM.

    The Gillard government will get about $3 billion from the big mobile phone companies in an agreement that ends a bitter row over the renewal of their wireless spectrum licences and heads off a breach that would have ­endangered services to millions of ­consumers.

    The agreement, to be announced today, clears the way for an auction later this year of additional wireless spectrum that could add another $4 billion to the federal budget bottom line and will allow the launch of 4G services for the next generation of iPhones, BlackBerrys and other devices.

    http://afr.com/p/national/labor_dials_up_billion_telco_deal_c0iKwMFjWWWLhcYt5BJRJM

  110. This is a great read for those interested

    Let me assure you, intellectual disability does not preclude you from being aware that you’re being made fun of. It doesn’t stop that kind of bullying from being hurtful. And sadly, this kind of ridicule is all too familiar for people with intellectual disabilities

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-02-08/young-disability-is-not-a-cute-little-joke/3817824

    Meanwhile, Hildebrand appears to be making a quaint little show called ‘Dumb, Drunk and Racist.’

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-02-09/woman-arrested-over-todd-river-film-assault/3821270

    A fairly confronting title you might think. Not hard to understand, then, why, when filming on the banks of the Todd River, some locals might get a bit antsy with them. (not defending their actions though, but I can see where the provocation might have come from)

    Or perhaps they had been following his twitter stream?

  111. Reeks of egotism from Hildebrand…

    Re Let me assure you, intellectual disability does not preclude you from being aware that you’re being made fun of. A couple of friends of mine when I was living at Billinudgel have Downs Syndrome. She said that he had asked her to marry him. She explained (she is the more able with the spoken word) that they were fully aware of the tut tuts from people who thought that they “wouldn’t cope” with being married. G* added, but he’s my best friend and so of course we can get married. They had a lovely wedding and only a few refused to attend. I thought it sad that there would be people in this world who would not wish this fine pair of individuals every happiness.

  112. Joe Hildebrand needs to shut up today; he’s already shown himself to be a gormless egotisitical knob…. he really isn’t clever, or funny. At. All.

  113. Miglo

    Guess what, its official, in NSW a public servant is to blame

    Report savages officials over school bus fiasco

    “Ministers have to be told the situation, warts and all,” Dr Boston said.
    The Premier says the report has uncovered serious issues.

    “As I read the report I got increasingly angry at what was clearly a lack of focus by the department on the needs of those children and their families,” Mr O’Farrell said.”

    The fact that the Barrel o’ Lies govt CUT the rate of payment had nothing to do with it.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-02-10/report-savages-officials-over-disabled-students-fiasco/3823442

  114. You can’t get much lower than ridiculing a person with an intellectual disability. That includes those who suffer from depression. Many in our society get their kicks out of bullying such people. How many people suffering from depression take their own lives? Those people who are the root cause of it should be charged with murder.

  115. Roswell, I think that goes for anyone and everyone with an invisible disability. However, there are also times when people with visible ones cop it none too sweet either.

  116. I used to think that Hildebrand was funny. But, once he started attempting to write about serious subjects, his total lack of self-awareness, and his vacuous grasp of subjects, really became apparent.

    Sometimes, jesters should just remain jesters

  117. Over the last decade or so, it seems that the numbers of Hildebrand types are multlplying, and worse, given tacit permission to behave like pricks!

  118. Tom @ 3.31pm,

    Tom R
    How long before this gets blamed on the Carbon Tax?

    Answer, at close to the speed of light?

  119. Do opinion polls poison politics?

    I believe that polls is a tool that can be either good or bad. It reminds me of another every day tool, a sharp knife. A everyday tool that can be used to create or to kill.

    This is a long article but I believe worth a read.

    February 10, 2012 – 15:20 — Admin
    Imagine this – a political world free of opinion polls seeking voting intentions and leadership preferences. What would journalists write about? Would they, as they once did, revert to writing about genuine political issues, giving their readers the facts and their well-reasoned analysis of them? Would they still be capable? Some would, for example Ross Gittins, who tells it the way it is without fear or favour. Reflect on what we have read from political journalists these last few weeks. Ask what proportion has been devoted to ‘leadership speculation’. Would it have been possible to write about leadership speculation in the absence of poll data? Is it not poll data that has been the catalyst for the speculation? If there were no data on voting intentions or the popularity of the leaders, what would journalists use to promote the idea that a leader was under threat? They may of course have heard ‘corridor whispers’ from ‘informed sources’ that there was dissatisfaction with the leader and a desire for change, which no doubt would be amplified in their journalist watering holes where groupthink prevails, but with nothing more substantial than that it would be pretty hard to mount a case that there was a serious leadership challenge. It is the so-called ‘hard facts’ derived from opinion polls that fuels contemporary questions such as: ‘How long can Julia Gillard withstand such poor poll numbers?’ or ‘How can Labor recover from such a low primary vote?’ or ‘How can nervous backbenchers in marginal seats support a leader who is so unpopular with the people?’ or ‘As she has failed to increase her popular support since last year, is Julia Gillard’s leadership terminal

    http://www.blogotariat.com/node/253415

  120. Thanks for the link Cu, it reminded me of earlier times when propaganda was used to convince the public of the ‘rightness’ of an idea, and now the same tactics are being applied.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propaganda_techniques

    Downer rubbishes Iraq ‘black site’ claims

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-02-09/defence/3820886

    enior members of the Howard government and the Defence Department are denying claims that Australian soldiers were involved in transporting Iraqis to secret prisons during the war.

    A United States military document obtained by The Guardian newspaper identifies an Australian SAS squadron of 150 men and says it was “integral” to the operation of a secret facility, known as H1, in Iraq’s western desert in 2003.

    and

    Former foreign affairs minister Alexander Downer dismisses claims that Australia played an integral role in the so-called black sites – secret prison facilities hidden from the Red Cross.

    “I think that’s likely to be complete nonsense,” Mr Downer said.

    “I don’t think the SAS would have known anything about black sites at that time and certainly we didn’t in the Australian government.

    “But we did have protocols in place.

    and

    However, Australian Defence Association spokesman Neil James says questions were being raised in Canberra concerning how prisoners were being handled.

    and

    “The idea that people captured by the Australians weren’t actually captured by the Australians was a nonsense then and it’s a nonsense now.

    “Australia does have a responsibility and it’s very difficult when you’re the capturing power to hand over your prisoners to someone else.

    “You have to satisfy yourself that they are also a complying power with the Geneva Conventions.

    “This was a case of some of the Defence Department’s lawyers perhaps being a bit too smart for their own good, perhaps at the direction of senior officials in the department, and not following time-tested military practice.”

  121. From the link above:-

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propaganda_techniques

    This is Tony Abbott’s favourite, but not only, tactic.

    Big Lie
    The repeated articulation of a complex of events that justify subsequent action. The descriptions of these events have elements of truth, and the “big lie” generalizations merge and eventually supplant the public’s accurate perception of the underlying events. After World War I the German Stab in the back explanation of the cause of their defeat became a justification for Nazi re-militarization and revanchist aggression.

  122. Ask me if I’m glad the week’s over. No, don’t ask me, I’ll tell you instead.

    YES!

    Talk about the good with the bad. After a couple of nice days down the coast I came back to a hundred spot fires at work. Why can’t people do your job for you while you’re away? :D

    It was amusing to learn that I’ve allegedly been lurking around in Canberra and visiting banks for money. :shock:

  123. Umm pr*cks and whingers? I personally would prefer pop music and wine :D Speaking of which I haven’t played any music for eons.

  124. The goodies have begun.

    The bulk of the funds will be for efficiency upgrades to infrastructure, including council buildings, stadia, education facilities, town halls and nursing homes. It will be made up of three programmes, with the funds broken down into $200 million for councils and not-for-profit and community groups, $100 million for low-income households and $40 million for small- and medium-sized enterprises and community groups

    http://au.ibtimes.com/articles/296308/20120210/gillard-government-launches-340-million-energy-programme.htm

  125. Cheryl Kernot on politics, the media and female leadership

    http://theconversation.edu.au/cheryl-kernot-on-politics-the-media-and-female-leadership-5304

    Julia Gillard has said there’s no “model” for a female prime minister in this country, but there are a number of women in positions of leadership across the globe we can look to. How would you describe the leadership styles of, say, Angela Merkel, Hillary Clinton and Helen Clark. Have they governed like a “bloke in suit”, or have they forged a new model for leadership?

    The first thing I’d say is none of those other countries has the “gotcha” media syndrome. We seem to have perfected that. American presidential campaigns have it, but the wider political discourse doesn’t have it as much as we do. We are the masters of it.

  126. Completely unknown whether or not there is any truth in this..

    @andrewbgreene 7 News @TonyAbbottMHR’s office has ordered Coalition staffers to shut down their twitter and facebook accounts

  127. Has anyone noticed that Mr. Abbott is getting a whine in his voice that sounds a little like his best mate. Mr. Pyne.

    It that black hole in the mining tax seven or ten billion. Mr.Abbott shrugs it off at nothing this morning on NSB Today. Others say the figure is 4 billion.

    Mr. Abbott was challenged on the show. It is nice to see this change in the behaviour of the media. Mr. Abbott did not appreciate the change.

  128. The PM has announced that schools will be given the power to sack teachers.

    The PM is to meet with the states to introduce the new policy.

    I wonder how Mr. Abbott will be able to say no to a policy he has been pushing for years,

    I have concerns re the new policy but research appears to back up the need for this action.

    It will need many safeguards, which I imagine is more likely if Labor introduces it and not the Coalition.

    The PM is sure keeping herself busy, introducing something on a regular basis.

  129. When listening to the clubs claiming to be victims of the government and Mr. Wilkie calling foul, we need to remember there are real victims, that are being ignored.

    Also the harm to the economy is also being pushed aside.

    It is important the the PM gets her legislation through,

    It is not the best that can be down, but it is a start.

    Maybe Mr. Wilkie should take a step back and remember the old adge, that a bird in hand is worth two in th bush.

    Bringing down a government will ensure that the problem isd never addressed.

    But one thing has been overshadowed during this time. With the unrelenting focus on the industry, and the impact on clubs in particular (as they have the most organised voice in this whole mess), we’ve lost sight of the most important aspect.

    The harm.

    People are being harmed by poker machines. This is indisputable, there is a wealth of information and statistics covering many years that proves this beyond any doubt. There are hundreds of thousands of Australians who suffer from an addiction to poker machines, and millions more who are harmed indirectly as a result.

    http://www.cyenne.com/discussion/its-time-to-speak-up/

  130. Listening to Sunrise. One of the excuses the banks are using for putting up rates is that we re not borrowing as much. The speaker said he has never seen a shoe shop put up prices when sales are dropping.

    They were also talking about deficits. It was pointed out that depict means we are paying more taxes than we are receiving back. The same speaker that made the above remark said surely we do not want to be doing this every year.

    They could have added that Mr. Abbott sees all economics as being surpluses. He speaks of nothing else, except carbon tax.

    Ditching The carbon tax and aiming for a surpluses by extreme cuts in the budget will not lead to nirvana. It will probably cause the economy to collapse.

    Mr. Abbott refuses to acknowledge the multi-speed economy and the high dollar.

    If this is true, how can he have the answer, if he ignores the causes.

  131. Cu, Wilkie on this one reminds me of Senator Fielding and his alcopops tax. Fielding had a list of demands, a couple of which could not be met eg that no sporting clubs could advertise alcohol and that this should be enacted immediately. The government stated that this was unreasonable as clubs needed time to fulfil existing contracts and to find alternative sponsors. Fielding did a dummy spit and ended up with nothing.

    Therefore Wilkie should be careful with his revenge scenario against the government. If Tony Abbott has made him any promises in order to get Wilkie’s support such as IF I’m elected, I’ll get your legislation through, then Wilkie ought to be looking at Tony Abbott’s track record. My estimation is 70/30 against Abbott keeping any of his promises once elected.

  132. The rest of this article is behind the pay wall but what we see could not be truer.

    TONY Abbott and Kevin Rudd wouldn’t be the first politicians to confuse their personal ambitions with the national interest. Yet there are occasions when the pursuit of power can hurt both the ambitious and the nation they seek to lead. This is one of them.

    It will annoy the Opposition Leader and the Foreign Affairs Minister to receive this advice, because the righteous fury they aim at Julia Gillard explodes from a deep conviction that she is embarrassing the country.

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/abbott-and-rudd-achieve-nothing-positive-by-undermining-pm/story-e6frg7ex-1226268106733

  133. Wise words, is to wait until the fat lady sings. Sadly for the Oposition this has not yet occurred.

    IF the Prime Minister stops to consider how she fared in the first week of the parliamentary year, she might be inclined to quote American author Mark Twain: “Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated”. Twain was referring to an obituary of himself which had (obviously incorrectly) been published in the New York Journal. Julia Gillard could adopt the line in response to her many detractors

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/gillards-economy-drive-exposes-libs-soft-spot/story-fn53lw5p-1226268176426

    Sadly also behind the pay wall. I notuced that Mr. Rudd’s comments were not.

  134. Min
    On a wilkie Abbott deal. if abbott has given wilkie some assurances on his pet theme pokie machines, then the bigger question is why does abbott not support the bill of the govt? remember the pm stated that a compromise type of legislation had to be developed because wilkie did not have the support of the cross benches. and wilkie would not need the cross benches if abbott said YES.

  135. Sadly, in a democracy its the role of Opposition to be negative on guvmint business and they don’t have to offer an alternative if they don’t want to.

    Just say no.

  136. Its an Open Thread.

    I’m waiting for Blue to turn up and discuss CC without links, except graphs and the like.

  137. A little more from behind the pay wall, thanks to Mr. Bolt. Pf course it will not surprise anyone that ge does not agree.

    TONY Abbott and Kevin Rudd wouldn’t be the first politicians to confuse their personal ambitions with the national interest. Yet there are occasions when the pursuit of power can hurt both the ambitious and the nation they seek to lead. This is one of them.

    It will annoy the Opposition Leader and the Foreign Affairs Minister to receive this advice, because the righteous fury they aim at Julia Gillard explodes from a deep conviction that she is embarrassing the country…

    Gillard may lack passion and belief, but the antidote surely isn’t passionate disbelief, which is what Abbott and Rudd are offering.

    The Opposition Leader and the Foreign Affairs Minister should pull their heads in… One thing Abbott and Rudd seem to be in furious agreement on is if Gillard were left alone, even for a solitary Newspoll cycle, she would improve her standing, and they’d be yesterday’s men.

    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/megalogenis_abb

    ott_should_lay_off_gillard/

  138. el gordo, it is only this Opposition that believes it has to be negative on all things.

    Yes, the Opposition is free not to have policies. That is their call.

    The Opposition cannot then complain when they are found wanting.

    The government and the PM does not have to do what the Opposition leader daily demands she do. That is her choice.

    Please make sure you report accurately what we are saying when you make your report back to the other side.

    Pip, the trouble is the it is the only word, yesterday, today and tomorrow.

    You are right, there is more to managing a economy than surpluses and deficits.

    The question that must be asked, is this the time for a surplus or is a deficit the way to go.

    Surpluses and deficits can be arrived at by many different routes.

    The taxes can be raised. Spending can be cut.

    It one gets it wrong, the economy can go into downfall. We can have inflation, deflation or stagflation.

    We can have massive unemployment.

    Businesses can go down the gurgler.

    What we cannot do, is ignore what Mr. Abbott sees as inconvenient truths, GFC and the high dollar. The restructuring that is now occurring in our economy.

    The Clean Energy Future will add as much money to the economy as it takes out. I fail to see how ditching it will lead us to that golden age that Mr. Abbott promises.

    You know one like when Mr. Howard ruled. The time when we pay more taxes than we do now.

    It is said if this government now taxed at the rate that Mr. Howard did, we would be in surplus.

    Does one notice that there does not seem to be any support for Mr. ABBott’s plans from the experts.

  139. Yes, el gordo, Mr. Abbott can be negative and not have policies. This can also be the result.

    Not very prudent in my mind.

    Abbott went on: ”Every time they say economic management, we say” – and here he paused to allow his members and senators to chant with him – ”carbon tax,” they all chorused.

    In other words, if the government should attempt to debate the serious subject of the state of the economy, the opposition will respond with a stale scare campaign.

    The opposition went on to embarrass itself by being unable to explain its policy on its proposed budget surplus. It accuses Labor of being hopeless with budget policy but spent the week fumbling and bumbling its way through its own position. If elected, when would the Coalition deliver a surplus? And how? There were

    Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/opinion/politics/for-a-few-dollars-more-20120210-1sksf.html#ixzz1m2LEwpR6

  140. El gordo, I credited you with better thought processes than those used by Mr Abbott. Being objectionable and being obstructionist are two different things. One is a positive and the other is a negative.

  141. I lke Robb to take his place, he has a sceptical bent and will work well with Nick Minchin when he becomes president.

    The betting odds for Yabbott aren’t good, the punters are looking at Talcum again and he’s firming up slightly.

    The carbon tax debacle will sink the ALP, such a huge waste of money to styme a hamless trace gas.

  142. el gordo, I can only assume that you have not watched Mr. Robb being interviewed during the last week.

    I will say, he might have been having trouble promoting an argument that he did not agree with.

    No matter, he was shocking, on a par with Mr. Hockey.

    The only one that has shown ability and I did not agree with one word he said, surprisingly was Mr. Dutton, that is when Mr. Abbott got out of his way.

  143. After Hockey’s disastrous week I think he’s slipped down the list of leadership candidates. He may have swapped positions with Robb, whose chances must now be better. Personally, I don’t think he has a chance.

  144. It could not be that Mr. Turnbull is once again wring when it comes toi the NBNco. Where are the headlines singing this fact out. There was alittle fuss when he turned up to voiced his opinion.

    Although Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Communications Minister Stephen Conroy used a nationally broadcast press conference to emphasise that the deal was necessary, and that NBN Co had gone through an exhaustive two-year satellite investigation and procurement process, it was immediately attacked by Shadow Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who sees the deal as being too expensive. Turnbull’s core claim is that NBN Co could rent satellite capacity, instead of building its own. “There is enough capacity on private satellites already in orbit or scheduled for launch for the NBN to deliver broadband to the 200,000 or so premises in remote Australia without building its own,” Turnbull said in a statement.

    However, the truth of this matter, as far as Delimiter has been able to ascertain, is that Turnbull is incorrect on this matter — as the Coalition has unfortunately been several times over the past month with relation to other NBN matters, such as the issue of whether cutting the NBN would save the Government money, or whether broadband prices are slated to rise under the NBN.

    To ascertain the technical truth of the satellite situation, Delimiter spoke with NBN Co’s project director Matt Dawson on Friday afternoon.

    http://delimiter.com.au/2012/02/11/the-truth-about-nbn-cos-satellite-needs/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Delimiter+%28Delimiter%29

    Yes there are many more things to talk a about today that that deficit.

  145. The PM , the one that is obsessed with Mr. Abbott is out today in Queensland, inspecting the flood areas.

    She has announced that 1.9 billion was handed out this a week.

    ‘With the payment last Tuesday of $1.9 billion, now $4.1 billion in total has been advanced to the Queensland government to work through its recovery agency to help communities on the ground recover,’ Ms Gillard told reporters.

    http://bigpondnews.com/articles/TopStories/2012/02/11/PM_announces_19bn_Qld_flood_recovery_717269.html

    ,

  146. ulman actually asked this of the PM the other night. Shouldn’t he be aware of this, or is it easier to just perpetrate opposition talking points?

    Also, not really a question for the PM. Something like that would best be directed at Conroy himself. Of course, that wouldn’t happen, he will get the direct facts, which would nullify his question.

    Asking detailed questions of the PM about specific portfolio’s is nothing more than gotcha journalism. Unfortunately, he got gotched back ;)

  147. Tom R, reading this article, they actually done two years research before coming to this conclusion.

    What they have chose meets today demands and well into the future. Well for at least 15 years.

    This is what NBNco is about, meeting today and tomorrows needs well into the future.

    Mr. Turnbull is about getting it a cheap as possible with an alternative scheme that barely meets today’s needs and bugger the future.

  148. Pip, I have not seen any evidence to change my mind, have you.

    Yes it is amazing that every word the PM utters seems to be about what is good for the future.

    This from a person that has no imagination, vision or narrative to tell.

    This from a person that we all know is obsessed with Mr. Abbott and unable to deal with matters of state.

    Showing confidence and giving the appearance of all flowing over her head, because she has too..

    Now Mr. Abbott and the media must be correct, what we are seeing is a mirage.

    .

    Yes, very puzzling indeed.

    .

  149. No name calling, just listening to what they are saying and becoming very confused.

    By yesterday, Mr Abbott was reduced to saying just that the Coalition would “get back to surplus as quickly as No name possible”. But we are left wondering what is the goal of the Coalition’s fiscal policy? It started as an exercise in fiscal machismo that was supposed to stand in contrast to Labor profligacy.

    For all intents and purposes, it looks like the Coalition has to go back to the drawing board.

    The way this disaster has played out can also only lead observers to the conclusion that the senior members of the opposition frontbench don’t talk to each other.

    Meanwhile, a government which is supposed to be inept and dysfunctional, according to the Opposition, was yesterday locking itself in to delivering a surplus in the May budget (however slim).

    Its outward projections are also for small surpluses.

    http://www.afr.com/p/national/abbott_disappearing_surplus_Wffb2vPUKQrVfaWnpTSbfL

  150. If Labor can put us back in the black, then Abbott should be able to keep it there. He knows this for certain because they will dismantle the CO2 tax.

    Labor is pinning its hopes on the tax not having a negative impact, after compensating pensioners and workers…and going easy on the middle class. It’s unlikely to succeed.

    On coming to power the Coalition may possibly concentrate resources on decentralisation, but there are a lot of unknowns.

    The possibility of a European economic meltdown and the outcome of a power struggle in Beijing, may influence decisions at home.

  151. (Correct; for all intents and purposes, Coalition numerates will have to rejig their Direct Action policy, such as it is and as elapsed as it is, to fully explain how they intend to achieve their bipartisan commitment to emissions reductions, substantively and fiscally; including dismantling and remantling phases, and bang-for-buck per the available, diminishing timelines. Because that’s their pledge, and their burden of proof, as an alt-government; intent on providing a Pigovian subsidy to polluters from out the pockets of taxpaying householders, rather than clobbering the cost-of-family-living economy in these difficult balancing-act times.)

  152. el gordo, you could be correct, that is if the only problem this country is facing is the so called carbon tax.

    Sadly this is not true.

    There are many other hurdles to get over. There is the high dollar. There is the world economy. There is the structural change that is going on in the country.

    There is the multi-speed economy caused by the mining boom.

    There is the fact that this is a lower taxing government than Mr. Howard.

    It is not true that it is high spending. government. There has been massive consolidation going on.

    The PS has not grown to the extent that Mr. Hockey says..

    There is more to managing a economy than carbon tax and deficits.

    Yes, el gordo you could be correct if one ignores many facts.

  153. el gordo

    on abbott will dismantle co2 tax. what would the public think of abbott if this had been reported by the msm?

    ‘Tuvalu, but it is sinking.’ (Abbott)

    (Rudd)’ On the question of climate change, for the people of Tuvalu, the people of Kiribati, for the people in the climate change small island states, this is not a joke.

    Ms JULIE BISHOP (Curtin—Deputy Leader of the Opposition) (14:09): My question is to the Minister for Foreign Affairs. Will the Minister for Foreign Affairs advise the House of one single country—just one will do—with an economy-wide carbon tax greater than the Australian carbon tax, set at $23 per tonne and going up to $131 per tonne?
    Mr RUDD (Griffith—Minister for Foreign Affairs) (14:10): I thank the Deputy Leader of the Opposition for her question. I did notice that once the question had been asked there was an interjection, by the Leader of the Opposition, I understand, mockingly saying ‘Tuvalu, but it is sinking.’ On the question of climate change, for the people of Tuvalu, the people of Kiribati, for the people in the climate change small island states, this is not a joke

    http://www.aph.gov.au/hansard/reps/dailys/dr090212.pdf

  154. This from the Speaker, Peter Slipper, at the end of QT last week. Now I haven’t seen this mentioned in the msm but i am wondering what is the meaning or ramifications of his words. Will it, say, make it abit harder for Abbott/Pyne to stop QT ?

    “The SPEAKER: While the tally is taking place, I have noticed, progressively, with motions to suspend standing and sessional orders speakers on both sides have tended to address the issue rather than the reason for a suspension. I would like to give the House notice that hereafter I intend to strictly enforce the standing orders. So, if there is a motion to suspend, the speaker supporting that will support that motion and the speaker opposing it will oppose that motion.”

  155. Maybe the msm have realised they have backed the wrong horse. The no-alitions increasing erraticness on economic matters.

    Either way, it is noce to see facts (which have been sorely lacking in recent times) edging their way back in the conversation, and from a most unlikely source.

    The truth is that taxation as a proportion of the economy is lower now than it was under John Howard’s government. The tax to GDP ratio, 23.7 per cent when Labor came to office, is now 21.2 per cent.

    According to figures that came across my desk yesterday, had the ratio remained at the 2007-08 level that Labor inherited, tax receipts would have been $21.4 billion higher in 2012-13 than they are projected to be.

    Returning the Budget to surplus would not be an issue. The Government would not only be looking at a surplus of $22.9 billion next financial year, but would have been back in the black by more than $3 billion in 2010-11.

    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/ipad/truth-gets-lost-in-canberra-spin/story-fn6bn88w-1226268226904

  156. Meanwhile, the oo continue to re-write history, mainly by making up their own ‘facts’

    But as a stimulus spending program, the problem was that the buildings were still being constructed well after the crisis had passed. Indeed, the program was continuing when the resources industry was short of skills and was crying out for staff.

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/sugar-hit-of-fiscal-stimulus-isnt-worth-the-weight/story-fnbkvnk7-1226268187359

    Yet, from their own pages, this is contradicted with the actual facts.

    The main prop for the economy in the first quarter was the government’s national school’s spending program, which added 0.9 percentage points to GDP. Consumer demand held up, despite the impact of aggressive interest rate hikes by the Reserve Bank of Australia.

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/markets/mining-sector-investment-to-speed-up-recovery-from-slowdown/story-e6frg926-1225874550046

  157. Meanwhile, where was the outrage in their msm when this all unfolded? Sharing the same hammock I guess

    joe2

    Before Costello sold tonnes of our Gold for under $300 an ounce. Did you miss Costello the Forex trader as well, that was another billion dollar blunder.

    Much more than a billion, I would have thought.

    The damage went far beyond the low price. It caused the gold exploration industry in W.A.,very important to W.A. at the time, to be fuacked over. Which meant mining that would have come on stream not happening. This was pushed along by the size of the sale and his pronouncements about the reasons why and the future of gold. Should have stayed in the hammock.

    http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/2012/02/09/morgan-phone-poll-55-45-to-coalition-2/all-comments/#comment-1152949

  158. On the stimulus had no effect, is the fact that the economy slowed down as it was withdrawn.

    Cassidy made a couple of worrying statements this morning. His attempt to stir up the Rudd attack. His attack on the PM mentioning men in suits and his arrogant statement insinuating that the media will not give the PM a fair go, no matter what she does..

    Mr Cassidy also raised the prospect that Mr. Turnbull was ready.

    Mr. Marr asked what the PM had done wrong in the Thompson affair. Mr. Marr said that the attack by the Mr. Pyne was to blacken the PM’s name.

    The discussion, guided mostly by Mr. Cassidy spent more time ridiculing Mr. Slipper that talking about his performance.

    el gordo should be very happy with Mr. Bolt this morning.

    THE Australian economy grew at a much slower pace in the first quarter than at the end of last year as the withdrawal of Kevin Rudd’s economic stimulus to combat the GFC, surprising weakness in business investment and sluggish growth in export volumes took some of the steam out of activity.

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/economics/mining-sector-investment-to-speed-up-recovery-from-slowdown/story-e6frg926-1225874550046

  159. Catching up, Barrie Cassidy doesn’t have the odd off day where he’s attacks the government; he does it consistently therefore we are within our rights to
    accuse hiim of blatant bias. Group Think rules across the main stream media.
    It’s time for him to leave.

  160. Tom,
    Before Costello sold tonnes of our Gold for under $300 an ounce. Did you miss Costello the Forex trader as well, that was another billion dollar blunder.

    Much more than a billion, I would have thought.

    Yes it was much more!

    Australian Political Internet News Review

    WHAT’S NEW?

    PETER COSTELLO’S FIVE BILLION DOLLAR BUNGLE

    What happened to the Federal Treasury’s $5 billion foreign currency swap loss? Why hasn’t more media coverage been given to this issue, and why hasn’t the Treasurer, Peter Costello, resigned? The only reason he hasn’t is because the media gives him an easy run, presumably due to his free-market, deregulation, privatisation, big-business stance.

    http://publicinterestaustralia.freehomepage.com/whats_new.html

  161. Pip, he spends so much time at Ch 10, maybe it is time to stay there.

    He was obviously unhappy with much that was being said this morning.

    Mr. Marr is good value.

    Even MTP were challenging Mr. Abbott. .

  162. Reserve Bank’s gold sale cost us $5bn

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/nation/reserve-banks-gold-sale-cost-us-5bn/story-e6frg6nf-1225985231872

    This more recent article gives Costello one mention buried in the middle of the article.

    The ‘expert’ ex-Treasurer is still availing himself of a friendly media to offer his ‘valued’ opinion…..

    Australia could end up like Europe – Peter Costello

    Read more: http://www.news.com.au/business/australia-could-end-up-like-europe-peter-costello/story-e6frfm1i-1226252080394#ixzz1m8BngTmL

  163. Noticed that the job market has not snapped Mr. Costello since he left parliament.

    Many of the wonderful and extremely successful ministers of that time have had to rely on this government for employment.

    It is definitely a sad thing, that the private sector does not value their brilliance.

    It is a shame that they have to rely on media appearance to top up the family budget.

    One should show compassion for these people who have given up so much for our well being.

  164. Sue @ 7.48am, from your link, searching for a msm news report of Mr. Abbott’s latest brainless and cruel comment about Tuvalu is a useless exercise.

    mockingly saying ‘Tuvalu, but it is sinking.’

    Hansard and the blogs will cover it

    Mr RUDD (Griffith—Minister for Foreign Affairs) (14:10): I thank the Deputy Leader of the Opposition for her question. I did notice that once the question had been asked there was an interjection, by the Leader of the Opposition, I understand, mockingly saying ‘Tuvalu, but it is sinking.’ On the question of climate change, for the people of Tuvalu, the people of Kiribati, for the people in the climate change small island states, this is not a joke

    http://www.aph.gov.au/hansard/reps/dailys/dr090212.pdf

    —————————-

    *****Will Libs turn back Tuvaluan boats? —- October 8, 2011.—-

    Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/national/letters/will-libs-turn-back-tuvaluan-boats-20111007-1ldm6.html#ixzz1m8F7sVX2

    Will the Coalition turn back the boats from Tuvalu when they come? And will they blame its people for not planting more trees? That’s the easy but inadequate solution to climate change promised by conservative politicians, which avoids confronting the real problem – moving from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

    Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/national/letters/will-libs-turn-back-tuvaluan-boats-20111007-1ldm6.html#ixzz1m8F7sVX2

    ..

  165. No worries Cu, Pete’s got his parliamentary pension to tide him over the rough patches.

    His bruised ego might be a different matter :lol:

  166. While we are talking Costello there is this, as a board member of “his” (not the nations)future fund:
    “AUSTRALIA’S de facto sovereign wealth fund has almost half a billion dollars tied to Europe’s most debt-ridden nations, including Greece.
    Future Fund officials told a Senate committee hearing in Canberra that the $75 billion fund, created to finance public service superannuation liabilities, currently held $178 million of debt and $315 million in shares across Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Spain and Italy.

    But its exposure to listed equities throughout Europe was far higher at $2.8 billion.”

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/the-future-funds-exposure-to-the-tumultuous-euro-zone-has-been-revealed-in-senate-estimates/story-fn59niix-1226169816538

    Yes good old costello, i will lock up my future fund so labor can never get their hands on it. So much for that idea, let PIGS waste it rather than build infrastructure. And while I’m at it i will undermine govt policy.

    This bit is even better, the fund invests in “$147 million invested in the tobacco industry and $179 million invested in weapons stocks.
    Australian Greens Senator Richard Di Natale asked how the fund reconciled those holdings with its stated policies requiring environmental, social and governance risk management.
    “If tobacco and nukes can still make the grade, the bar on ethical investment is obviously set way too low,” said Senator Di Natale said.

    “By investing in tobacco the fund is undermining the government’s own plain packaging reforms.”

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/the-future-funds-exposure-to-the-tumultuous-euro-zone-has-been-revealed-in-senate-estimates/story-fn59niix-1226169816538

    It was bloody Rudd who gave Costello a job with the future fund. Just too many coalition retirees were given an easy pay packet by rudd and the party will remember that.

  167. I agree with Mr. Marr. We should be seeing more of the lcture that Mr. Abbott gave to 12 and 11 year olds at that Catholic School.

    I am sure we would be seeing in it i detail if the person conerned was the PM.

    The idiot did not even notice, with the little we have been allowed to see, the looks of puzzlemnet on the students faces.

    I am waiting for one stiudent to say, my mum thinks you are nuts.

  168. Pip

    you had me going there on the Tuvalu comment being noticed by our press gallery, then i saw that your link was from 2011.

  169. Sue, is that right… Pete’s Future Fund has invested in the industrial military complex business ??

    $179 million invested in weapons stocks.

  170. Pip, can you enlighten me what was different from Mr. Costello striving for the PM’s job and Mr. Rudd’s

    Both are unsucessful.

    Both driven by the media.

    Both lack the guts to do it in the open.

  171. He is now committed to a budget in year one. Is that5 commitment for the day or does it have a longer lifespan.

    They blame me for everything……tears in his voice. I need a suitable funny face.

    At least that boy who would get a solar panel and put on his desk, is a little ahead of Mr. Abbott.

  172. Catching up
    Pip, can you enlighten me what was different from Mr. Costello striving for the PM’s job and Mr. Rudd’s

    You have the answer CU, :smile:

    Both are unsuceesful.

    Both driven by the media.

    Both lack the guts to do it in the open.

  173. From this mornings Insider, an important comparison

    David Marr pointed out that ASIC still hasn’t brought charges against any of the directors from the AWB scandal which hit the headlines in 2005. So that is now 7 years without action. A double standard by the coalition as the FWA is only 4 years old.

  174. I would like Mr. Abbott to talk abour structural deficts in the budget andthey way they got there.

    Mr. Reith said that Mr. Abbott’s parental scheme would be ther forever and a structural defict in the budget.

  175. Sue there was also the Abbott gaffe after the sinking of the cruise ship:-

    “This is a bit from left field mate; the captain of the Costa Concordia wants to know if you need any help with your boat policy?” the host asked.

    Mr Abbott replied: “Well, that was one boat that did get stopped, wasn’t it.”

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/tony-abbott-under-fire-for-costa-concordia-gaffe/story-fn59niix-1226249413076

    The man hasn’t progressed from his first year uni persona…..

  176. Pip

    and ciggies don’t forget the ciggies.

    govt attacks ciggies but invests in ciggies? you ask.
    no the ‘ independent ‘ costello future fund does, i will put it simply for you.

    costello future fund invests in ciggies
    ipa get donations from ciggies
    ipa attacks govt

  177. Mr. Costello did not see much wrong with Europe and especially Greece while in power.

    Future Fund officials told a Senate committee hearing in Canberra that the $75 billion fund, created to finance public service superannuation liabilities, currently held $178 million of debt and $315 million in shares across Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Spain and Italy.

    But its exposure to listed equities throughout Europe was far higher at $2.8 billion.

    The Future Fund’s new general manager Mike Burgess, fronting his first Senate estimates hearings, said the fund’s portfolio had also taken a hit in the September quarter of nearly three per cent.

    and

    Australian Greens Senator Richard Di Natale asked how the fund reconciled those holdings with its stated policies requiring environmental, social and governance risk management.

    Mr Burgess responded that the fund was “comfortable with its position as it currently stands”.

    “If tobacco and nukes can still make the grade, the bar on ethical investment is obviously set way too low,” said Senator Di Natale said.

    “By investing in tobacco the fund is undermining the government’s own plain packaging reforms.”

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/the-future-funds-exposure-to-the-tumultuous-euro-zone-has-been-revealed-in-senate-estimates/story-fn59niix-1226169816538

    Should the Speaker stand down for the health rebate means testing. Has this been the action of other speakers. is it what Mr. Windsor, that it is wishful thing on Me. Abbott part.

    it is also another effort to stir up trouble.

  178. Sue, definitely worth repeating.

    Sue
    Pip

    and ciggies don’t forget the ciggies.

    govt attacks ciggies but invests in ciggies? you ask.
    no the ‘ independent ‘ costello future fund does, i will put it simply for you.

    costello future fund invests in ciggies
    ipa get donations from ciggies
    ipa attacks govt

  179. Mr. Windsor is correct. Mr. Abbott does not have the numbers to say when a election will be called, even if he got the numbers on the floor of the house.

    Mr. Abbott could go to the GG but he would be sent back to test it on the floor of the house.

    The Independents would be unlikely to agree to this.

    Mr. Abbott would need to find grounds for an election. Throwing the houses out of kilter would make the GG unlikely to agree.

    At the end of the day politics come down to numbers.

  180. Pip and Catching up, re Barry Cassidy on Insiders. I thought there was almost a threatening tone in Cassidy’s voice as he made that comment about the media not letting the Rudd issue drop. He certainly is amongst those who have it in for the PM. Did you wonder if David Marr was referring to him or someone like him in his closing comments re. Prospero from the Tempest – the magician with a wave of his wand stirring up storms where none exist?

    PS Catching up, thanks for visiting polliepomes! That latest pome with comments about chance and opportunity is still in draft form. I pressed the wrong button somewhere. I wonder if Miglo knows how take it back to draft? I can’t figure it out. Meantime I’ve trashed it, but I’ll rescue your comment later when I’ve finished the notes and restored the post.

  181. Hi patricia, I haven’t watched Insiders yet, but Cassidy doesn’t surprise any more..he’s predictable… :mrgreen:

    What happened to all the supposedly trustworthy journalists; do they receive payment for job lots of attacks on the government?

  182. I suggest that Mr. Abbott cannot even coordinate what he himself says day to day.. Sometimes hour to hour or show to show.

    But on Sunday Mr Abbott rejected suggestions he should reshuffle his economic team, possibly promoting former leader Malcolm Turnbull or John Howard’s former chief of staff Arthur Sinodinos to the treasury or finance portfolios.

    ‘I think I have got the best people in the right places,’ Mr Abbott told Network Ten.

    ‘Joe is doing an outstanding job as shadow treasurer and so is the rest of the economic team.

    ‘Malcolm is doing a great job exposing the problems with the National Broadband Network (NBN).’

    He also rejected suggestions his economic team did not talk to each other.

    ‘My people talk to each other all the time,’ he said, before turning the accusation back on the government.

    ‘This is a government where Simon Crean can’t sit next to Kevin Rudd in the cabinet.’

    Mr Abbott said he would deliver a surplus in the first year of a coalition government.

    ‘Our commitment is to have a budget surplus in year one and subsequently,’ he said.

    ‘And we can do that based on current treasury figures.’

    http://bigpondnews.com/articles/TopStories/2012/02/12/Abbott_says_he_has_right_economic_team_717520.html

  183. Pip, thanks for the reinforcement.

    I just thought I might have has it wrong as a visitor from another site, says we always do.

    I did want to keep an open mind.

    I definitely did not want to sound vicious either.

  184. Patricia, I particularly like that one. It is somehow human, not like most of the trash we are now getting that passes for political comment.

    Yes, I was surprised at the venom, hate or something similar in Mr. Cassidy’s voice when he made the comment that the media will not let her. I believe that Annabelle was a little taken back.

    I wonder why he hates her so much. I wonder if the problem is with a lot of males, that cannot cope with having women in roles of power.

    I do not mean they hate women but cannot cope if they are able to take them on, on their own terms.

    Mr. Cassidy shows his real colours when he visits The Project and other shows on Ch 10.

    I am waiting for him to show up on the Bolt show.

    What I am really waiting for, is the PM to also turn up on the same show.

  185. Very original of Mr. Abbott. Keep the bastards honest.

    Not sure that I like his habit of haunting hospital corridors, cornering patients and visitors with his pleads to keep the rebate.

    I know how I would react, if he approach me if I was a patient or a parent of a patient.

    I do not have to put it into words do I.

    I am interested to know how others feel or what they would say.

  186. Cu, re his cornering patients. I wonder if it’s too much to hope that some enterprising journalist might seek out some of the parents of those little primary school kids he ear bashed about politics the other day. Their feed-back could make good copy!

  187. If I was Mr. Swan, I would be telling people to ditch banks, all banks. Not ditch your bank.

    JULIA GILLARD and Wayne Swan are telling Australians to dump the big banks as payback for the decision by Westpac and ANZ to sever their links with the Reserve Bank’s official cash rate.

    The Prime Minister and Treasurer yesterday urged customers to shop around for the best mortgage in the same way that they would for any other product.

    and

    Mr Swan said his reforms of the banking sector were starting to have an effect. Figures from the Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority show the growth rate in new mortgages taken out at smaller banks is twice the rate of growth in new mortgages of the big four.

    Last year, the number of new mortgages taken out at smaller banks grew 14.8 per cent.

    More below

    and

    New mortgages with the big four banks grew 7.8 per cent while the rate of growth at the next four – ING, Suncorp Metway, Bank of Queensland and the Bendigo and Adelaide Bank – grew 8.1 per cent. Treasury estimates the value of the mortgages held by the smaller banks has grown by $9.7 billion.

    Mr Swan said the government’s decision to abolish exit fees on mortgages had also given people more power.

    In the five months from July, after the government’s ban on exit fees, about 320,000 new mortgages were taken out. This is estimated to grow to 1.1 million households by the end of this year and nearly two million by the end of next year. Ms Gillard said it had ”never been easier” for customers to change banks if they were unhappy with their product.

    and Mr. Hockey once again ignores facts.

    The opposition’s treasury spokesman, Joe Hockey, ridiculed Mr Swan’s attempts to bring the banks to heel and said he expected the Commonwealth and National Australia banks to also raise rates.

    ”Since 2008, Wayne Swan has warned the banks 53 times not to go outside the movements of the Reserve Bank,” he said. ”He has been ignored on over 40 occasions.

    ”Now Wayne Swan’s advice to consumers is to simply walk down the road for a better deal. This is no use if down the road does not have a better deal.”

    http://m.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/go-on-ditch-your-bank-says-pm-20120211-1sydk.html

  188. Pip, can you enlighten me what was different from Mr. Costello striving for the PM’s job and Mr. Rudd’s

    tip had an agreement with howard to transfer over at a given time. howard renigged. There was every reason for the media to be asking questions, although, after a time, it became apparent that tip truly did live up to his name.

    As for Rudd, no agreement or anything similar exists. It is purely a fancy of the msm, who, if one were into conspiracy theories, might deduce that they, like the noalition, are looking for something, anything, to take the focus of attention away from the economy.

    Because, as oakes has finally conceded, the true economic power is in the Labor Government, the noalition are a fiscal rabble.

  189. Thanks Tom, I am inclined to agree.

    Mr. Cassidy made it very clear that the media would carry on regardless.

    What I believe what Mr. Cassidy and his ilk are ignoring, the PM is not the pushover they assessed her to be.

    Do not expect this PM to play to their script.

    We can be sure that Mr. Abbott will. There is not an original idea to come from that man inadequate mind.

    Mr. Abbott has had it laid on today by the media, and I am afraid has not impressed on any level.

  190. Patricia, I think the kids had him sized up well.

    They actually out did him in their answers.

    They were one step ahead of him.

    If I was parent, and knew he was coming, I would prime them to ask questions.

    Such as why do you hate the PM, my Nana says you do.

    If you want to enforce yourself on kids, you should stick to year twelve where they are able to hit back.

  191. PM still dealing with the affairs of state. It must be misinformation that the PM is so obsessed with Mr. Abbott, that she is unable to perform her duties.

    I wish they would say what she is not addressing.

    I also wish the PM would take weekends off.

    ‘Some of the same infrastructure has now been hit again and damages assessments will happen over coming weeks.’

    The prime minister said she would be talking to National Party Senator Barnaby Joyce and Balonne Shire Mayor Donna Stewart about the possibility of a permanent flood levee around the town of St George.

    ‘It’s something that we’ve got to consider and study carefully.

    ‘We’ve got to understand patterns of floodwaters and what protections can be provided.’

    The priority at the moment was the recovery effort, she said.

    http://bigpondnews.com/articles/Politics/2012/02/12/PM_promises_continuing_flood_recover_y_717535.html

  192. Mr. Cassidy made it very clear that the media would carry on regardless.

    The liberal stooge they had on last week said the same thing. No matter what the particapants did, it wouldn’t matter she said, as it is just too much fun (or along those lines)

    They will run with their story, regardless of the facts.

    Which is the whole bloody problem with our media. They choose not to deal in realities. And then, they complain that their empires are dwindling. All they are good for now is as public relation machines for the rich and the filthy

  193. As the goodies now start flowing.

    We heard it said this morning that the tax will cost Alcoa 40 million.

    What we did not hear was how much Alcoa will get back to make the improvements to their aging plant, so that they do have to pay into the future.

    No wonder Mr. Abbott is sounding a little toey. His time is quickly passing him by.

    Mr Arbib said when workers saw their superannuation payments rise and small businesses received upcoming tax cuts and more generous depreciation allowances “people will understand the work that Labor has done for them”.

    Labor is boosting the superannuation guarantee to 9.25 per cent in 2012-13, and 9.5 per cent in 2014-15.

    Small businesses will get a 1 per cent tax in 2012-13 – a year ahead of larger firms – and instant tax write-offs of $6500 on business assets and $5000 on vehicles.

    Mr Windsor today reiterated his warning that his minority government deal was with Ms Gillard, not Labor, and “all bets would be off” if the party changed leaders again.

    “I think it’s, you know, a highly risky strategy,” he told Channel Ten.

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/voters-will-see-benefits-flowing-from-labor-ahead-of-next-election-says-arbib/story-fn59niix-1226268826394

  194. I developed a sense with Insiders that to the extent that Gillard had it over Abbott last week then Abbott has served his usefulness and the media will be looking to Turnbull to have someone credible to champion. Notice how they went out on the lean and hungry Mal, the soon to be smiling assassin?

  195. Given that a good portion of their time is taken up with interviewing Abbott et al, then Cassidy etc do not require facts. Facts being an optional extra.

  196. Has anyone noticed that all Labor’s ministers connected to fiance have a different way of communicating what is occurring in the economy.

    I find this assuring. They are all clear in what they are saying.

    Unlike the Opposition, they are not all over the place.

    It took Mr. Abbott to commit to a surplus in the first year. He did not say how long this commitment will last. On recent history, this could change tomorrow.

    So he has come from aspirations to commitment, in that short period of time.

  197. Cu, it would seem clear that the government has a well organised plan. It should be that plan which journalists should be concentrating on.

    I know that it’s been mentioned here before, but a weak opposition doing little else but slogans and photo ops means that the government also escapes any serious scrutiny. Pink batts boo, juLiar boo does not constitute debate nor scrutiny.

  198. According to Mr. Abbott, the job of the Independents are to keep the bastards honest.

    Silly me, I thought their job was to represent their electorate, you know, those people who gave them the mandate to sit in Parliament.

    It appears now if they do not deliver for Mr. Abbott, it will be their fault if he does not achieve.

    Mr. Abbott’s idea of how politics and parliament should work is getting more absurd every day.

    .

  199. I was correct, the ABC show no sign of how the PM spent her weekend. Yes we had Mr.Abbott and Mr Hockey, no PM.

    I believe the PM spent her time in the flood areas of Queensland and NSW. At least that is what Sky showed.

    Maybe I am wrong and missed the reports.

  200. Cu, and not only to represent their electorates but to offer the best one has for the good of the nation, and the nation’s future. How naive of me, sadly it would seem that all the good moderate liberals such as Petro have now all left.

  201. Min, what makes one angry, when was he not challenge on his statement. Why was he not asked what he meant. Why is it the Independents job to keep the PM honest. Maybe someone could have said, is it not also their job to keep you in line.

    Gee, they are getting desperate.

    a stimulus spending program, the problem was that the buildings were still being constructed well after the crisis had passed.

    In fact, as history actually shows, the timing and extent of the fiscal stimulus, and, more importantly, the impact on our economy, was weighted almost perfectly, and tapered of at precisely the time the economy begun recovering, as was shown in the very paper she is writing in.

    The main prop for the economy in the first quarter was the government’s national school’s spending program, which added 0.9 percentage points to GDP. Consumer demand held up, despite the impact of aggressive interest rate hikes by the Reserve Bank of Australia.

    This major mistake she makes really renders most of her remaining assumptions invalid. She goes on about waste (of course, it is an oo trait) even though the report by the Auditor General disagreed with them, and, as Ben Eltham in New Mathilda quite succinctly indicated, this perception (which they continue to push) was largely due to the oo itself,

    http://newsdelimited.blogspot.com.au/2012/02/sugar-faeries-sugar-hit.html

  202. One word, bullshit and twisting of facts.

    I do not know what it is behind the pay wall but I will make an educated guess that the argument will be comprised of very few or no facts.

    THE Gillard government has lost all the political advantage of successfully steering Australia through the global financial crisis and is now picking a fight on the economy with Tony Abbott after losing the argument.

    It is clear the argument on economic management was lost when Julia Gillard announced there would be a carbon tax from July 1 this year

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/julia-gillards-economic-appeal-fading/story-e6frg75f-1226269126858

  203. Hellow Miglo! I just finished my 250th pome! Thank you! For pictures and notes go to http://polliepomes.wordpress.com/2012/02/12/chance-is-a-fine-thing-opportunity-is-better/

    Chance Is A Fine Thing. Opportunity Is Better

    Another time, another place,
    Or if they’d been a different race,
    Their youngest child might not survive.
    Well, here she is alive,
    Living in prosperity.

    This girl-child’s father and her mother
    Had no constraint to smother
    Her, or have to run and hide
    While waiting for a ride
    To hope, across an open sea.

    Their little one, weak in her chest,
    Was able still to pass the test
    For passage to Australia.
    No risk there of failure –
    An ideal migrant family!

    That child is grown and powerful now.
    I’m sure she stops to ponder how
    It happened, and what would have become
    Of her if, not a ten pound Pom,
    She’d been instead a refugee.

    Not surprising then or sinister
    She’s become a Prime Minister
    Determined not to leave to chance
    Her life’s clear mission; to advance
    Australians to fair and equal opportunity.

  204. One word, bullshit and twisting of facts.

    That’s more than one word CU, yet true none the less ;)

    On economic management, Mr Abbott is now preferred by 43 per cent of voters, compared with Ms Gillard’s 34 per cent. In August 2010, just before the election and Ms Gillard’s vow not to introduce a carbon tax, she led Mr Abbott 48 per cent to 40 per cent.

    It is classic cheery picking, and does not in fact show the recent swing back for Labor, the fact that the went so far back should be the give away.

    the Coalition led 47-28 on best to handle the economy when Newspoll last asked the question in October, so if anything I think it’s telling how narrow Abbott’s lead is.

    http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/2012/02/09/morgan-phone-poll-55-45-to-coalition-2/all-comments/#comment-1155384

    I would also guess, as has been surmised on that thread, that, (if it is asked) the 2PP will see Labor closer. It is a matter of showing the worst numbers, comparing them against Labors previous best, and crating their story that Labor is always going back. Highlight the negatives, bury the positives.

    I would keep an eye on the newspoll site, and see what comes out then ;)

    (or I would ignore it all, and just let the ineptness of tabots front bench do themselves out of a job)

  205. The question should be, can Tony deliver.

    There is no evidence that suggests he can. Tony, I am afraid is and will be found wanting.

    The Opposition’s constant nagging of Julia Gillard about her personal integrity was hugely successful over the past 12 months but it is starting to outlive its function.

    It’s crowding out Opposition responses to other issues and beginning to be a problem for the Coalition, not an asset.

    At some stage Tony Abbott has to mount a credible case for superior economic policy and the more he demands a snap election the more voters will demand to see the goods.

    http://www.blogotariat.com/node/256620

  206. Tom, plus, at least to my memory th Libs have always romped it in as being better at managing the economy whereas Labor has traditionally lead in areas such as workers rights and human rights issues.

    Therefore the fact that Abbott’s team isn’t further ahead given the continuous scare campaigns on Great Big New Taxes, is somewhat of a surprise. If Labor keeps hammering home about the $70bn black hole and what services is Tony Abbott planning to cut, then I think that we’ll see the stats improve further for Labor.

  207. Although, listening to ABC newsradio on the way to work, (yes, they ran this as their lead story??) it could be technically correct, as I don’t know if there has been direct question comparing Gillard and Abbott, it has been parties. Still, cherry picking to the extreme.

    I would hazard a guess that the leaders would follow closely the results of the party. And, recall, in the meantime, the media have waged a war against the Gillard Government, a war based on a lie told to us by the media themselves

    If the Gillard government is re-elected, the CPRS is likely to be revisited again next term, and Ms Gillard confirmed today that it remains her preferred choice for reducing emissions. In fact, with a carbon tax banished from public debate, it is now their only choice.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-election/labors-green-deal-more-spin-than-substance-20100723-10npb.html#ixzz1m90CxGqt

    Considering the lies fed to us since the election by a supposedly un-biased media, the numbers aren’t so bad. In fact, it is surprising that they are so good.

    Or not so surprising, considering the total lack of mathematical ability shown by the media’s chosen ones.

  208. I wonder how Malcolm Tirnbull will react..backbenchers supposedly are to be offered a conscience vote. I think that this one could become a bigger issue for Abbott than he would like it to be..look out Tony your Roman Catholic prejudices are on display.

    LIBERAL backbenchers will be free to support same-sex marriage legislation when it comes before the parliament later in the year.

    While the opposition front bench will be bound by the policy the Coalition has taken to the last two polls not to change the Marriage Act, The Australian understands others will be free to back the bill.

    Senior Liberals said Tony Abbott had privately conceded some Liberals wanted to vote for marriage equality. “He seems to be quite relaxed at backbenchers exercising their will if they so choose,” one said yesterday.

    Resentment remains at senior levels in the Liberals over the Opposition Leader’s unilateral decision to oppose same-sex marriage, taken after the December ALP national conference backed a conscience vote on the issue.

    .

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/free-vote-on-same-sex-marriage-for-lib-back-bench/story-fn59niix-1226269136114

  209. Just heard Fran and michelle gushing over the latest Newspoll that said Abbott better economic manager than gillard. the way they gushed about the result showed why they have lost it as reporter.

    the poll was treated as “fact”. no doubt in their mind to such a result. they did say that with all the disunity in the coalition last week over the economy, the poll confirmed that gillard will never recover. oh the shock and joy. there was no questioning by either about why that would be so, and that is the biggest worry about our msm.

    now for me i would be wondering on the poll, the questions, the pollster. in the same way that during the gfc the rating agencies were giving quality approvals to some very dodgy derivatives and look what happened there.

    is newspoll part of the news stable? newspoll is the pollster for the
    oo and we know their opinions on this govt.

  210. the poll confirmed that gillard will never recover

    When in fact, the poll clearly indicates that the Government IS recovering.

    And they call it ‘news’ ROFL

  211. Min
    craig emerson on news radio said that abbott personally telephoned the moderates, turnbull, hockey, bishop and pyne and told them they would have a conscience vote. emerson said that is why turnbull came out and declared his support for a conscience vote, then Abbott betrayed them all and declared the front bench were not allowed a conscience vote. and, as is, widely reported the liberal party prides itself on its members being able to vote with its conscience.

  212. tom r

    “news” will headline all day no doubt.
    meanwhile the corrupt news corp papers in the uk just keep giving even better headlines.

    now on fran kelly program this morning she stated that on the insiders it was said that “reporters” were being telephoned by teh rudd camp to say a challenge was on.

    now i know about sources, and how reporters don’t give them up BUT there should be no confidentiallity about the reporters being telephoned. Come on Fran or anyone on insiders name the REPORTERS who have been telephoned.

    Or reporters themselves FESS up or is this just rumors of, by and for the press gallery.

  213. here we go , our ABC is reporting the “facts”, no analysis. just a byline straight from News ltd
    Abbott preferred as economic manager: poll

  214. That’s amazing really, isn’t it Sue. I keep hearing that Australia is the best performing country in the western world. Trouble is, we don’t hear it from the right people. The information owners in this country are at pains to tell us the sky is about to fall in.

  215. On another issue:
    When dozens of private hospital staff gathered outside Rob Oakeshott’s Port Macquarie electorate office on Saturday to urge him to reject means testing of health insurance, they risked provoking the wrong response.

    He was tipped off on Friday about the protest and heard it was being pushed by the health insurance billionaire Paul Ramsay.

    Oakeshott has had a gutful of big money trying to influence politics and, if anything, Saturday hardened his resolve.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/means-test-may-not-be-such-a-bitter-pill-this-time-around-20120212-1szkm.html#ixzz1mCpt0VEG

    now I had read that the protest was organised for employees of the private hospitals in oakshott’s electorate, but this is the first i heard about the billionaire.
    there is a long history about private hospitals in oakshott’s electorate and the fights he has had to retain a funded public hospital.

  216. Sue, from your link. I thought that this was quite an admission, that the media does have the ability to force a change in public opinion. I am thinking of a number of articles produced by the OO, confected outrage that there needed to be an enquiry into the media..we’re impartial don’t you know..

    We witnessed the miners cripple the Rudd government and the gambling lobby inject such fear into the Labor caucus that it forced Julia Gillard to tear up her deal with Andrew Wilkie.

  217. Where do we go with the banks, or should I big four banks.

    Policymakers should accept that government guarantees of banks are a sine qua non for safe ‘maturity transformation’. But this taxpayer insurance has to be properly priced, or you encourage a US-style situation whereby a handful of implicitly government-backed lenders dominate financial intermediation to the detriment of competition and stability.

    When extending liquidity and insurance to banks, we don’t believe that Treasury or the RBA should rely on rating agencies. APRA ultimately monitors and controls every Australian bank’s risk, and the cost of taxpayer support should be APRA’s intrusive regulation, and thus priced the same for all institutions.

    We also believe that in preference to guaranteeing nebulous ‘institutions’, taxpayers should focus on insuring safer ‘assets’. If the Commonwealth offered a credit-wrap of mortgage loss insurance like the Canadians do, it would formally price an implicit guarantee that already exists (generating significant revenue) while leveling the competitive playing field. This would allow all banks to raise capital on similar terms and help eliminate the too-big-to-fail advantages the majors currently have. It’s also something ASIC’s Chairman, Greg Medcraft, supports.

    Finally, why not require all banks to publish a regular index of their funding costs and net interest margins to end the asinine monthly RBA rate debate. We’re surprised the majors haven’t offered to do so!

    http://www.blogotariat.com/node/256675

  218. Tom I was in a hurry to catch a bus.

    I think I meant one word, bullshit summed up what was said.

    I wanted to add the whole article was the twisting of facts.

    I believe you knew what I was saying.

  219. I believe you knew what I was saying.

    Are you trying to say that I was being a ‘smart-arse’??

    (you’d probably be right if that was the case. I’m so transparent sometimes)

    What is amazing, is the way that this story has run and taken on it’s own legs. It is the major event of the day apparently. A transparent, deliberate attempt to paint the Government with a negative brush.

    Meanwhile, the ruddstoration is in full swing. Apparently, Rudd has spoken to journos. Still, no journos coming forward. Still, a pot full of stewing sauces

  220. A new paper on CC by Nicola Scafetta suggests maybe the IPCC have been remiss. From the abstract.

    ‘The 9.1-year cycle is shown to be likely related to a decadal Soli/Lunar tidal oscillation, while the 10-10.5, 20-21 and 60-62 year cycles are synchronous to solar and heliospheric planetary oscillations.’

    Perfectly fine starting point.

    ‘We show that the IPCC GCM’s claim that all warming observed from 1970 to 2000 has been anthropogenically induced is erroneous because of the GCM failure in reconstructing the quasi 20-year and 60-year climatic cycles.

    Fair comment.

    ‘Finally, we show how the presence of these large natural cycles can be used to correct the IPCC projected anthropogenic warming trend for the 21st century.’

  221. The shock on the Deputy Opposition Leader was wonderful when asked to leave the house. The deputy leader once again warned.

    PM mentioning how she spent the week.. Only for Sky, we would not know she left Canberra last weekend,

  222. CU
    last week slipper warned bishop that he could throw her out but didn’t because he gave her some leeway as she was the deputy opposition leader. BUT that it appears was her official warning, no such leeway this week. she lasted 7 min 40 sec take out all the preamble on sorry day and it was 2 mins 40 sec

  223. Sue, I do not believe it. The PM being held to what she said in 2007.

    We are now to ignore what was said in the 2010 election campaign.

    It is unbelievable

    .

  224. The speaker asked what was unparliamentary about the word nuts.

    I tend to disagree with him, out Mr. Albanese withdrew anyway.

    Is this another broken commitment. Stretching reality a little tight, one would believe.

    The question that comes to mind, why did Mr. Abbott ditched Mr. Rudd’s Climate change leglisation.

  225. Long list of jobs the Opposition gave by the commentary.while waiting for the vote to be counted.

    Did not had a similar list from Mr. Combet, of jobs being created.

  226. Thanx Miglo.

    The communications revolution has made it easier for humanz to witness, from mobiles to utube, extraordinary goings on.

  227. Who believe the Opposition and many in the media are talking the economy down. Mr. Combet made this accusation in QT today.

    Personally I believe every word the three stooges utter, is to this end.

    Love this Gittins:

    Certainly, the belief the economy is slowing is widely held. But that’s what happens when the news is mixed, with the bad bits trumpeted and the good bits played down. Just why the commercial media regard misinforming the public in this way as good for business I’m blowed if I know.
    Do they imagine only the Labor government will suffer if they succeed in talking the economy down? Do they think it’s like ”a Martian ate my baby”? It’s just entertainment and no one actually believes them?

    The unrecognised truth is, the economy’s speeding up a little, not slowing down. That’s because we’re recovering from the effects of the bad weather this time last year. Abstract from the weather effect and the economy’s been travelling at about its medium-term trend annual rate of 3.25 per cent for the past two years or so, and is expected to grow at that rate this year

    http://www.blogotariat.com/node/256889

  228. Cu, I thought the same but no, it’s true :shock:

    It seems that the girl with the pearls is beginning to enjoy the limelight !

  229. the Medicare Rebate bill is being debated.

    One on the Opposition wanted a question barred because this was the case.

    Mr. Abbott then attempts to censure the PM over the same bill.

    I am a little confused.

    They are sure getting hot under the collar. One just said this government has never been a fan of Private Insurance, You know, she is right. PI is a con for most.

    If it is so good, it needs no propping up from any government.

    I am happy to pay for my own gym shoes, though I think the government might benefit, if it paid a little towards my Curves bill. It does keep me healthy at seventy.

    Stopped going for a few years, the worse mistake I have made in years.

    PS I hate exercised but the reality is that one needs it more at my age than when I was younger.

    I hate it that pensioners are scared into taking out insurance that they cannot afford.

    I have had three operations since I was 65. I have had extensive heart and other investigations.

    I so not have any insurance. I live in an area that bulk billing is scarce. PI will not help me in that regard.

    We also have a Super Clinic that From what I can find out about it, does not deliver. That is a matter I intend to take up with my local member.

    Two of my girls and great grandson have had serious health problems and major operations. I feel if they had PI, they would be out of pocket with th gap payments.

    They have received the treatment when they needed it.

    Not every old person has a hip or knee replacement. Most seem to have one before they retire.

    I have found the health system today very good. This goes against the popular belief. Maybe I do not expect enough from the system. What I do know, is that the medical side has been high. Maybe I am just a little patient and do not expect everything to be delivered pronto.

  230. Rudd return ‘won’t happen’, Windsor
    Sunday, February 12, 2012 » 01:19pm

    http://bigpondnews.com/articles/TopStories/2012/02/12/Rudd_return_wont_happen_Windsor_717519.html
    :lol: :lol:

    Kevin Rudd’s return to the prime ministership is about as likely as Black Caviar turning up at the Tamworth races, independent MP Tony Windsor says.

    Asked on Sunday whether any of Mr Rudd’s supporters had approached him to talk about a possible change in the Labor leadership, Mr Windsor told Network Ten: ‘No.

    ‘And I don’t think there are a lot of them.

    ‘If there are a lot of them in the building they’re very wary of me because I haven’t had one come to me.’

  231. Gina takes herself seriously because she is one of the richest women in the world.

    Her idea of developing cities in the outback deserves further consideration.

  232. Pip, I have been to the site a few times in the last couple of days. I obviously came to the wrong decision, I thought it was a send up.

    No wonder her kids are questioning her ability to function on their behalf.

    She does not see that it is up to her to pay taxes. Well, that seems to be the way of the world, we have one of the richest man in the USE, running for president paying less than 15% in taxes. Most of his income is Capital Gains which is r\taxed lower in the USA.

    I am also getting fed up with the allegations that the GFC was caused by government debt. This is not true. In the USA they having been cutting taxes and spending for decades.

    The suffered among the worse. It is mostly private debt that led to the GFC.

    Just another of those inconvenient truth.

    The vote today was 74 68. The Independents must have stayed with the government.

    I still remember a comment her father made. It was during the early days of the asbestos tragedy. Her father owned a blue asbestos mine.

    He was asked if he felt any responsibility of those dying from working in his Maine. His reply was that asbestos is needed by industry and someone had to mine it. He did not see how he could be responsible.

    Nothing has changed much. You hear many on the right saying that the only responsibility that business has is to their shareholders. According to many, this is where their responsibility begins and ends.

    It appears that not even the customer has any rights. They are there to serve their own pocket, that and nothing more.

    I remind people we do not have to use their services of buy their products if they seek their workforce or produced their goods, off shore.

  233. Feeding homeless to be banned by Tory-run Westminster council

    THEY spent much of the run-up to the election trying shake off their image as the nasty party.

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/feeding-homeless-to-be-banned-by-tory-run-westminster-113433#.TzhVDchSQ04.twitter

    THEY spent much of the run-up to the election trying shake off their image as the nasty party.

    But a heartless group of Tories have ­revealed their true colours by banning charities from running soup kitchens for the ­homeless.

    Conservative Westminster council in Central London also wants to make it an offence to sleep rough – while slashing £5million of funding to hostels.

    Astonishingly, town hall chiefs claimed soup kitchens only “encourage” people to sleep on the streets.

    Westminster council, one of the richest in the land, wants to bring in a bylaw making it an offence to “give out food for free”, punishable by fines. The twisted move blows apart David Cameron’s Big Society boast that an army of ­volunteers will flock to help those worse off.

    ***** Remember this?

    Bible bashing the homeless, Abbott style

    http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/bible-bashing-the-homeless-abbott-style-20100215-o2tj.html

    I was in Canberra last week and had the opportunity to ask Opposition Leader Tony Abbott whether a government under his direction would continue with the Rudd government’s goal of halving homelessness by 2020. His answer was no.

    In justifying his stance, Abbott quoted from the Gospel of Matthew: ”The poor will always be with us,” he said, and referred to the fact there is little a government can do for people who choose to be homeless.

  234. el gordo, check what the lady is saying.

    She wants an Australian government is along the lines of Singapore.

    The lady want to import cheap labour, as she needs it. She does not want them to stay.

    The lady does not believe that unions or health and safety in an concern of hers.

    The lady wants the northern half of Australia to be taken out of the tax system.

    Ii suspect the lady would accept a dictator, as long as they left her alone

    The lady will not even give up the money her father left her children in trust.

    They are now mature adults and he has been dean many years.

    Wealth does not and should not give one power. It should not exempt one from their responsibilities to the Nation that made their wealth.

    The ore she is tearing out of the ground does not belong to her.

    Her vote is worth no more than mine.

  235. Yes, Pip, it is a choice.

    Do not see to many educated, skilled, healthy people with no mental illness or non addicts out there.

    We do see many young people running from homes of extreme abuse.

    I feel that once you get to that stage it is near impossible to turn one’s life about.

    Mr. Abbott might not care about the unworthy poor in his eyes, but he is quick to look after the worthy well to do.

    They need rewards for their goodness, which of course they choose.

  236. “The 2011 climate year, then, as judged from both media coverage and new scientific literature, has confirmed the existence of two entirely parallel universes of climate thought.”

    Bob Carter

  237. el gordo, money only buys power if we are silly enough to let that happen.

    The mining industry exercised their power but they only succeeded because too many of us listened to them.

    We need to be aware, what is good for the powerful, is rarely in our interest.

    At the end of the day, they need our vote to succeed.

  238. Pip @4.44pm..and wasn’t there something from Abbott where he described it as some homeless people wanting to live on the streets as a lifestyle choice. Yep, especially in mid Winter…

  239. The argument today is that the PM is not allowed to change her mind and are demanding that she stick to a 2007 commitment.

    At the same time, Mr. Abbott is allowed to change his mind at his whim when it comes to climate change. Maybe some one can remind me how many positions has Mr. Abbott had in this regard.

    What gets me is that they appear to be serious.

    What has occurred since that first commitment is that the rebate has blown out to a dangerous level and the commitment was made in the last campaign to address this blow out.

    That was in 2010 for those who do not remember the last election.

    If the PM did not address this matter, the PM would be breaking a commitment.

  240. Cu @4.48pm, this reminded me of the American tradition of philanthropy, based on tithing. One of the few good things which the fundamentalist Christian religions brought to America..sadly now in severe disrepute.

    I think that it was Dick Smith last year, who suggested that such a tradition should become far more the norm in Australia. Given the number of multi-millionaires which Australia boasts, the $s given to charity by them are slim pickin’s indeed. Australia seems to have the opposite tradition..pay as little as possible, get away with as much as you can, and the poor b*gger who doesn’t have the $s..that’s his tough luck.

  241. Gina’s “poem” is so bad that a part of me still thinks this is all some sort of joke.
    But if it isn’t, we just may be in for an interesting ride. The whole issue will probably die in the bum fairly quickly but the gal strikes me as someone who wants her opinion heard. The ridicule may also kick it along, in either case it’ll be interesting to see how much brute force is deployed to look after her.

  242. Gina is buying media influence to make her dreams come true, which you will find on ANDEV.

    Not sure about some of her ideas, nouveau capitalism or laissire’ fare capitalism? Don’t talk to me about cheap Timorese labour.

    ‘The creation of a ‘Northern Economic Zone’ that will offer tax advantages to attract and retain individuals and companies.

    ‘The creation of attractive towns or cities in these remote zones away from capital cities, that attract people and support businesses for the long haul.’

  243. I kinda agree with this writer that there must be a lot of stupid people out there.

    The problem saying this does not throw any light on why the polls are giving the results they are, when it comes to the economy

    Surely there is a professor or some honour student who is willing to investigate why so many feel this way.

    …And this morning we had what was to my mind the cherry of moronity (??) on top of the sundae of stupid that is Australian political reporting. A Newspoll was reported that stated that Abbott was viewed by the “people” (I hope to god I never meet someone this stupid…they’d be lucky to be able to stand upright) as being able to handle the economy by 43%-34%. I don’t know what country these people live in, or what cave they’ve been living in for the past 12 months, but this just blew my mind.

    And the final kicker was that Joe Hockey was viewed as being the equally preferred Treasurer as Swan! This just made my morning…how anyone could see Joe Hockey of the missing $70in, the non-audit audit, and the flick passed budget reply as being any remotely close to competent is a really…………

    http://sprayoftheday.wordpress.com/2012/02/13/the-great-unhinging-now-with-extra-stupid/

  244. Is this some of the jobs that Mr. Combet is talking about.

    Coles is investing $35 million in the Broken Hill Plaza shopping centre, with a supermarket, Target store and up to 3,300 sq-metres in speciality retail space.

    The investment comprises a 4,200-square-metre Coles market-style supermarket, a 3,800-square-metre Target store and up to 3,300 square metres specialty retail space ‘bringing an exciting new retail hub to the Broken Hill community’ Coles said in a statement on Monday.

    http://bigpondnews.com/articles/Finance/2012/02/13/Coles_invests_in_Broken_Hill_centre_717932.html

  245. I don’t think that we’ve yet had Mungo’s take on the health insurance rebate…

    The Opposition says that the reason the Government plans to means test the private health insurance rebate is simply that it wants the money, and the Opposition is quite right.

    The Government does indeed want the money so that it can spend it on something useful, rather than on the stupid, wasteful, inequitable, unconscionable rort that is private insurance for the rich.

    http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/3826920.html

  246. I would like to say, the Menzies scheme was found wanting, that led to the original Medibank to be so well received.

    I had four kids at the time and no way could I find the money for Private insurance. I lived in fear of the children getting sick. When they did, because of lack of money, I had to make the one lot of medicine go three ways.

    It was the doctors that were the problem. Broken arms etc. I could deal with.

    I was born 1941 with a extreme cleft palate and hare lip. My mother fought the funds all the way to get the treatment I needed. Looking back, she went without a lot to ensure I did. She manage to ensure I entered Wade House, the private part of The Children’s Hospital. It surprised me to find public wards just as good later in life.

    When John Howard introduced the scam in 1999 it had two clear purposes: to undermine Medicare by strengthening the private system at the expense of the public system, and to lock in the votes of the well-off – especially the so-called doctors’ wives with whom he was having a little trouble. This was at least consistent with traditional Liberal policy, which has always been to oppose and attack public health wherever and whenever possible.

    It goes back to the 1950s when Robert Menzies’s health minister, Earle Page, set up the health insurance scheme which endured, unchallenged, until the advent of Gough Whitlam. Page was himself a very successful and wealthy surgeon and his principal aim was to secure and improve his own privileged position. He was vehemently opposed to the public health system. Public hospitals, he argued, posed unfair competition to private hospitals, of which he happened to own several.

    http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/3826920.html

    Medicare needs to be protected at all costs. Going back to the past, should not be an option.

  247. El gordo I should imagine that she has been there and done that with everything that money can buy and so it now trying for some excitement with the power and influence thing. Gina’s problem is that, at least to my mind everything that she does is minus any finesse whatsoever.

  248. And regarding the link..just a rehash of the old stale stuff that has been doing the rounds for at least a year. Note how there are no citations provided. In such cases any article should be treated as having the credibility rating of a flea.

  249. Well what about the Greens being Red?

    ‘The DSP was the first Marxist party in the world to orientate actively to the green movement.

    ‘The DSP read the significance of the rise of Green Party in Germany and reshaped its political orientation towards a Eco-socialism perspective.

    ‘The main consequence of this was the creation of Green Left Weekly in 1991 which has consistently pursued an environment agenda in its pages. The DSP has also been a consistent participant in environment campaigns.’

  250. But wait, there’s more….

    By Terry Townsend in the Democratic Socialist Perspective (DSP)

    ‘Al Gore’s film, An Inconvenient Truth, has helped dramatise for a whole new generation the enormity of the global environmental crisis we face. Global warming is just the latest manifestation of the environmental crisis of capitalism, a crisis of such enormity that the web of life of the entire planet is at risk of fundamental degradation and with it human civilisation itself.

    ‘The scale of the threat posed by industrially induced global warming, and the short time in which we have to take meaningful action to prevent the potentially catastrophic consequences, makes the issue of global warming and how to seriously combat it arguably the most urgent question facing humanity.’

    Yep….Marxists Watermelons.

  251. El gordo, It’s all in the application. The ideals of Eco socialism I believe to be worthy ones, but this is just one of many isms and all have varying degrees of success in their practical application. For example one can use the ideal of equality to either raise up the masses or to bring down the exalted. I prefer the former.

  252. Just finished watching 4 corners. i don’t think that one will rate as an award winner, as there wasn’t much in it.

  253. Charlie believes in it and so does Julia.

    ‘THE Gillard government has $10 million left in its war chest for an advertising campaign to back the introduction of the carbon tax in the months leading up to its introduction on July 1.’

    The Marxists are over the moon.

  254. El gordo is that figure current? I seem to remember the figure of $10m being bandied around by the opposition sometime early last year I think it was.

  255. Sue, perhaps the next question will be the rumour (as per The Courier Mail), that it is really Oprah who is dead and not Whitney. I kid you not, that is an article in today’s piece of sh*t Mail.

  256. Easy enough to get behind the pay wall. This was provided here by Patricia. Click onto the article, copy and paste the URL into Google search and up comes the entire article.

  257. Matti Vooro has a guest post at Watts on how the sun may effect our atmosphere.

    ‘Similar event happens in the Atlantic as indicated by the AMO. The longer solar cycles means fewer solar active periods or maximums and less heating 9 years later.

    ‘A series of short solar cycles in a row will cause more frequent heating and the PDO and AMO will both turn positive or warm simultaneously causing what we now refer to as global warming.

    ‘The extended global cooling happens when there are series of longer solar cycles with lower maximums. Co2 seems to have little or negligible effect on these large natural cycles.

    ‘Natural cycles will always dwarf any minor warming from manmade greenhouse gases.’

  258. Gee when eg mentioned the Sun, I thought she was talking about the arrests of the Murdoch journalists on corruption and bribing of public officials.
    And Murdoch is one of the key supporters of climate scepticism. And the authorities still haven’t caught the people who hacked into the emails of climate scientists and then distorted the facts. oh what a muddle i am in when eg mentiond The Sun.

  259. After watching QandA last night, I am amazed at the level of ability that exists in the Coalition. The party is extremely lucky to have the the likes of Senator Kroger, from Victoria. The wisdom she showed is beyond belief.

    I do love the yells of class welfare when they are lost for an answer. Yes, it does show the superiority of the Coalition.

    Yes, since Mr. Howard’s day their has been politics of envy in this country.

    The envy of the well to do for the benefits that are handed out to the needy and less well off.

    The belief that the because they are rich, generally followed by the belief, this is because of their own hard work ad application, they also deserve handouts.

    One only has to listen to the screams of “it not fair” when threatened with any withdrawals of upper middle class welfare.

    I fail to see that the bottom end of the income scale have to pay for the crimes of the wealthy and powerful as is going on in most countries in dealing with the GFC.

    We hear the screams from that government spending has caused the problem, and cutting back on supporting those in need is the answer.
    This after decades of cuts in spending and lowering of taxes.

    There have been massive transfer of the share of profit, from the worker to the boss.

    Could it be the greed and debts of the more powerful that has created the economic mess the world is in. Has not this always been the case in times of economic crisis.

    We had the Great Depression, where the solution was seen as taking from the lower income earners. They paid the price with lower wages and cut in benefits. The event that appeared to bring economical well being was the intervention of WWW11. This in the long run bought back prosperity.

    Now these economic crisis appear to affect all countries, regardless of their social welfare schemed and level of wages.

    Look at the battle going on in the USA, where the rich are refusing o pay their fair share of taxes and demanding that the poor be denied more.

    Yes, their is class envy, it is not from the poor but from those who should know better.

    What is being addressed by this government, was mentioned before the 2010 election, is the fact that a unnecessary rebate that flavours the wealthy and blowing out, is being means tested. The rebate is not being ditched.

    Why should this raised so much anger from the Coalition, that have no problem in cutting welfare in other areas.

    Senator Kroger was struggling to defend the Coalition position. Mainly because their is no defence.

  260. Cu, we also have the situation that it is the middle and lower income earners who keep local businesses churning. This debate came up during the time of Rudd’s stimulus package where it was shown quite clearly that upper income earners would spend the $s on luxury imports, whereas the lower to middle classes buy necessities.

    Therefore to provide even more money to the wealthy and deprive the lower income earners has the effect of reducing money back into the economy – especially the local economy.

  261. eg
    Not for Rupert and James with a case being brought to america.

    And if you would like some information about Rupert Murdoch and climate sceptism read this page
    The Climate Killers
    Meet the 17 polluters and deniers who are derailing efforts to curb global warming

    http://weirddream.com/

  262. ‘Since then, however, Murdoch and his media operations have become the nation’s leading source of disinformation about climate change.’

    Rupert meant well, but his editors are independent of his charms.

  263. Min, another furthy is beginning to raised it’s head again.

    The furthy that the wealthy provide most of the taxes that provide welfare.

    This was not true 20 years ago, and I suspect less true today.

    Most of the money for lower income earners come from their own sector.

    We have years of the upper income earners paying less. Mr. Manne remind one last night, that there was a time when income tax for the wealthy was up to 80 percent.

    What is true, that the lower income earners are likely to pay every cent of tax, that they should. They do not have the means or power to invade this payment in any way.

    Every time we hear of a benefit for those in need, we hear the whinge from those who miss out. such as I don’t have kids, I miss out, it is not fair. I work hard for my money. I deserve something too.

    It is sickening the whines of those who have no need for assistance. They whinge instead of thanking their lucky stars that they are in the position they are.

    Yes, class envy is well and truly alive.

  264. Once again cherry picking and half statements. There was nothing new revealed last might. It appears the push was o for maybe a couple of weeks but more likely less.

    There is no evidence that the PM did not k\make her mind up until the last moment.

    One can know or talk about something, without making up ones mind. .

    It was unclear what role Mr. Richardson played, but he would only admit to less that a week.

    Now that we have the Rudd incident out of the way, I assume that the ABC is now working on the dumping of Mr. Turnbull and the rise of Mr. Abbott. After all the Opposition demands equal time, any time as a right. There is much that happened then and since that I am interested in.

    The Prime Minister’s office last night responded to Four Corners by releasing a full transcript of her interview in which she persistently denies deciding to confront Rudd until the night of June 23.

    The rest of the program revisits events with some historical additions that add to our knowledge without shocking or surprising. One titbit that raises eyebrows is an assertion US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called Australia’s man in Washington, Kim Beazley, a fortnight before June 23 and asked about the likely leadership change and its impact on relations between the countries.

    However, the claim is not backed with evidence.

    http://www.couriermail.com.au/ipad/party-games-speech-claim-corners-pm/story-fn6ck620-1226270157699

  265. I know that I am a cynic when it comes to banks.

    Is it unreasonable to suspect there is more going on with the four big banks this week.

    It is not possible that they are colluding together to give this government a warning to pull back or they will play a big price.

    We have them announcing small interest rate times that seem to infer we will and can do as we like.

    Added to this is the job cuts when the four a making record problems.

    Cannot but help to think that there is a stench in paradise.

    There was a massive move of people moving their mortgages in the last quarter.

    Up to 50,000 took this action.

    I am not generally into conspiracies but in this matter it makes sense.

  266. CU @9.20

    a number of news organisations mention a “full” transcript of the PM interview on 4 corners but none of them have printed it. I cannot find a copy and unless I can read it for myself I do not trust what is being reported.

  267. Interesting Mr. Oakeshott introducing new bill renaming the Malaysian solution I suspect.

    The independent MP Rob Oakeshott introduced to Parliament yesterday his own offshore processing bill, which he said could be a ”circuit breaker”. The bill would allow the transfer of refugees to countries that are members of the Bali Process, a regional forum on people smuggling.

    The Immigration Minister, Chris Bowen, said the government would examine Mr Oakeshott’s bill and seek legal advice before finalising the government’s position.

    ”The government welcomes Mr Oakeshott’s initiative and his constructive approach to this issue in the face of Tony Abbott’s constant negativity,” Mr Bowen said. ”This is exactly the kind of constructive approach the government hoped would be shared by the Coalition.”

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/a-third-of-asylum-seekers-to-live-outside-detention-20120213-1t299.html#ixzz1mJPCToXn

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