I’m embarrassed

The Herald Sun reports that the Liberal Party has been embarrassed after it tried to collect political donations to fight the Gillard Government’s flood tax as Queensland braced for Cyclone Yasi.

As North Queensland battened down, Liberal Party supporters were sent an email newsletter from Opposition Leader Tony Abbott attacking Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s proposed $1.8 billion flood levy.

Underneath Mr Abbott’s signature the email says “P.S. Click to donate to help our campaign against Labor’s flood tax”.

It links to the Liberal Party fund raising page that asks for donations of $25, $50 or more.

Mr Abbott’s office said the extra line asking for donations was added by the Liberal Party.

It also appeared to undermine a statement issued by Mr Abbott about the cyclone where he said the Coalition stood ready to support the Government in the disaster relief effort.

Well I’m also embarrassed.  I’m embarrassed that  Tony Abbott and his morally corrupt party are considered by many to be a worthy alternative government in this great country.  A party that asks us not to give an economically crippling $50 a year to help rebuild Queensland and the lives destroyed, but to simply drop a mere $50 in the mail to help his cause in destroying the flood levy – a levy implemented out of desperate need – just makes my guts churn.

Has there been any greater signal that the aspirations of this greedy ogre are above the needs of rebuilding shattered cities, towns and human life?  This is as low as picking the pockets of a dying man.

I rejoice that he has been condemned by the readers of this Herald Sun article, as shown by the comments it attracted.

But I’m still embarrassed.  And why shouldn’t I be?  This evil man is an embarrassment to the good people of our country.  I hope too that all his rabid supporters share this embarrassment.  Finally.

234 comments on “I’m embarrassed

  1. Thanks, Miglo. You’ve said it all for us. Who knows what damage this shameful politicising of Queensland’s tragedy has done to morale there?

    For days I’ve been uneasy and anxious as news of this impending cyclone with all its implications for people in Queensland became clearer.

    I’ve also been aware of a pervasive sense of guilt about my own pre-occupations with day to day to details of my life here……. We have no need to prepare ourselves and our families for the destruction which is threatening people’s lives on the other side of the continent. So what can we do to help them? Give money is the immediately obvious thing. Send loving thoughts of support?

    Even involving oneself in political controversy suddenly seems a trivial and useless occupation. If I were a believer I would pray. I certainly appreciate how Julia Gillard and Anna Bligh have refrained from playing politics in this crisis, much as the media would like them to. No wonder Gillard has not ‘come out fighting’ the Opposition on the levy as some in the MSM have urged. As she said today in response to a foolish journo’s question, this is not the time to discuss that. Now is the time to do whatever we can to help, and to plan for post disaster support.

    As citizens we can help by being willing to contribute to the cost of that, with donations and via the levy, or even simply being constructive and positive in our attitude. I’ve seen that attitude in Bob Brown in media interviews who, whatever his reservations about funding cuts has been determinedly constructive in his comments about the PM and her policies, as have other pollies of the non-right like Tony Windsor and more recently Tony Crook. Even listening to Bob Katter, bless his heart, this evening one could sense his desperate desire to find something constructive and helpful to say to all those people caught up in this storm.

    Thank God, the ABC reporting this evening so far is staying away from the politics of division. What it will be like tomorrow morning when Fran Kelly hits the airwaves, who knows.

  2. Via Pip’s link on Shane’s thread, I cannot believe the BLAND way that the ABC has reported this story. Quotes from Tony about the Libs ‘committment’ to rebuilding, then a single comment, no not about how dis-bloody-gusting and hypocritical the Libs are but that the government is going to have ‘an uphill battle’ selling the ‘controversial’ legislation.

    Come off it ABC, why is this levy ‘controversial’ surely not because media reports such as your own have CHOSEN to use the adjective ‘controversial’ to tack onto the word ‘levy’. ABC it’s not as if you’re completely incapable of expressing an opinion – after all you are of the opinion that selling the legislation is going to be ‘an uphill battle’ so what about applying the same standard to Abbott.

  3. I’ve been embarrassed since this whole political war began with tabots declaration about dams before the Floods had even hit their height. What I feel now is beyond that. Anger is probably the foremost. How small minded and selfish can a political party get. If nothing before can highlight for the population that the libs are there for themselves and themselves only, lets hope this gets through.

    I read the paper this morning, and, so far, things look as good as can be expected around the cyclone affected areas. I feel hope. Then I click on this, and my heart drops. What a snivelling slug of a human being.

    Yes, he wants us all to band together, as long as we band around him.

  4. If the MSM applied the same standard to Abbott’s grab for political donations as they did by going along with Abbott/Hockey statements that the flood levy was robbing the flood victims of donations then the headlines would read: Tony Abbott Robs Flood Victims of Donations. It could be inferred that Tony Abbott is saying, Don’t give to them give to me instead.

    The excuse that the begging bowl was put out by the Liberal Party and not Abbott personally is simply not good enough.

  5. Addendum: Imagine, the MSM would make mincemeat out of Gillard if she said, It wasn’t me who did it, it was the Labor Party.

  6. Like the dismissal of Gough this mob will do anything,say anything that will get them onto the treasury benches. The letter was mentioned on abc24 (still not worth capitals) but with hardly any comment. abbott is now lower than a snakes belly and already Loughlane who should have been dumped before this is ready to take the fall and preserve Angel abbott’s lilly white hands (he is definately not worth capitals). Thank god for the blogs opposing views

  7. The comments in the Herald are very heartening, it seems the mostly silenced rational ones have come out in force over this.

  8. July is quickly coming into focus, so the Liberal/National are in a desperate situation in trying to oust the Prime Minister Julia Gillard and her Cabinet out of Government, with 99% of the MSM backing Tony Abbott, they still can’t seem to unseat her.

  9. In regards to that Crowey, I came across this article this morning, which actually does make a lot of sense, although I disagree with his closing sentiments.

    ‘On camera all the good things about Julia’s personality die instantly, to be replaced by the level of animation she’ll have if ever recreated in Madame Tussaud’s waxworks.’

    I think there is something to that. When she is ad-libbing, she is at her best, scripted lines do not suit her.

    http://www.crikey.com.au/2011/02/01/david-williamson-labors-biggest-problem-gillards-a-ham/

  10. Tony must take ownership and aplogise publicly to the Australian people for this disgraceful display of crass fund raising.

  11. Mobius or anyone

    Can you give me the link to the slient majorities comments. I cannot seme to find it.

  12. Tom R

    Crikey is only stating what I stated over a week ago.

    Julia needs to stop the scripted stuff and attack off the cuff. Which is what she is so good at.

    So what if she does not have every statistic at her disposal at a press conference. Have a lacky there to get the info while she answers other questions.

    She is no actor, she needs to be herself.

  13. Crowey, fortunately there is down to earth Tony Windsor who said during the negotiations and since that he is not going to have his opinions manipulated nor brow-beaten into submission.

  14. Shane in QLD, love ya plays 😉

    Yes, some people have been saying this for a while now, you included. Is there a way out though, because, with the media cycle today, it is just something that she is going to have to do. Will Kate Blanchett be visiting to offer tuition?

  15. Hopefully Bob Katter will see the merit in the levy now that his electorate has been hit again, and vote for the levy instead of ideological blindness.

  16. Good topic Migs.

    Tony Abbott is a self-centred moron.

    Instead of worrying about the people in the eye of the cyclone…and those flood affected…he focuses on his bloody stupid campaign to attack the Gillard government…and expects people to cough up money for it.

    What a total absolute dickhead!

    A certain swimmer was no better yesterday…tryin’ to hog the limelight whilst others were tryin’ to get essential news out.

    Some people put their egos, pride & ambitions as top priority…this Egyptian President Mubarak is another of them…and as far as I’m concerned they need to all shut their traps, walk away from public life…and go to a Buddhist monastery or such and do some real soul searching.

    If I were a Coalition member today I would be severely embarrassed…for ever letting this ego-maniac Abbott take the reigns of power over the party…dragging them further into the sewers.

    Menzies would be turning in his his grave. Abbott better hope he doesn’t walk the night & make his way to Abbott’s residence to box his ears.

    N’

  17. “Lets hope the good news continues”

    Indeed Tom R….was relieved to hear that so far there have been no reports of loss of life.

    Early days yet tho.

    I also always think of the poor animals left behind at this time too.

    “I cannot believe the BLAND way that the ABC has reported this story.”

    Disgraceful Min. Disgraceful.

    N’

  18. She is no actor

    Neither is Abbott which is why he struggles for each word and sentence to stay on script. Whenever he is himself he brain farts or makes completely inappropriate statements or lies.

    The difference is that Gillard is drawn and quartered on every word and nuance whilst Abbott’s words and nuances are either completely ignored or excused.

  19. This SMH article was emailed to me by Media Monitors. I don’t have a link, but this is the full article anyway:

    CYCLONE Yasi is set to highlight another obscure clause buried in insurance policies that allows insurers to avoid paying claims in full when a natural disaster strikes.

    North Queensland residents were warned yesterday that sea levels could rise by as much as 1.6 metres when the cyclone hit the coast, causing dangerous waves and flooding some inland areas. But several big insurers exclude cover for this type of event, known as a storm surge, from their insurance against cyclones.

    After many flood victims in Queensland and Victoria found their ‘‘flood’’ policies excluded damage from rising rivers, fallout from Yasi could intensify the pressure on insurers to improve their coverage for natural disasters.

    The Assistant Treasurer, Bill Shorten, will meet bosses of the nation’s biggest insurers in Sydney today, and a spokesman said cyclone cover would be raised. Mr Shorten has warned the industry to adopt a plain English definition of flood cover or face the threat of government regulation. ‘‘While the government would prefer to see a private sector response, the insurance industry must be aware that the community and government now expect this issue to be resolved,’’ his spokesman said. ‘‘Insurers need to come to the party . . . or politics will fill the vacuum.’’

    Among the big insurers, AAMI’s home insurance includes damage from a cyclone or tornado, but not storm surge, defined as ‘‘an increase in sea level that usually occurs with a severe storm or cyclone’’. NRMA covers violent wind and torrential rain, but not ‘‘the increase in sea level that usually happens when there is an intense storm or cyclone’’. Suncorp, one of the few to have adopted a standardised flood clause, provides cover for a storm surge.

    A spokesman for the Insurance Council of Australia, Paul Giles, said storm surge was not universally included because it was not needed by all customers. He said the industry lacked the data to calculate the impact of disasters such as storm surges or tsunamis.

    Consumer groups, however, say insurers are bogging down the debate in pedantic definitions rather than improving their products. The principal solicitor at the Insurance Law Service, Katherine Lane, said: ‘‘We are fighting about words. The consumer just wants to know that they’re covered – they shouldn’t need a meteorology degree.’’

    After just spending (wasting) $4k on renovations to my Townsville house I guess the last thing I need is to find out it has been damaged by storm surge.

    Whatever my losses may be, I’m still happy to pay the flood levy.

  20. bacchus

    Thanks for the link. Then I certainly hope he votes the correct way for his electorate, which I have no doubt would receive sunstantial funds form the levy.

  21. Miglo ~ in your opening post I could not believe that you more or less , word to word, said what I am feeling and have said to my husband , and on other forums, since I noted Abbott’s Letter yesterday.
    Now, how embarrassing it must be for him ( Abbott) and the Liberal party not to see the irony in the news headlines today.

    ‘ Tony Abbott calls for donations to help fight (or stop) the levy.’

    I finish with saying yes,Mr Abbott ‘NO MORE BIG NEW TAXES’ . Mr Abbott will ask for donations instead..

  22. “scripted lines do not suit her”

    Is that a bad thing? I have always had a problem when trying to communicate what I do not believe or someone else’s beliefs.

    This did not auger well for me during job interviews. I found it near impossible to show my true abilities.

    Let me get involved in talking about what I believed in but was not about myself, I had no problems.

    As long as I am not talking about myself and have passion for the subject the last thing I need is scripted lines

    Scripted lines are only people not on top of the topic and have no idea of what they are saying. They appear to be distributed to Liberal Party members to use in their comments.

  23. I have this funny feeling that most people, especially those in Queensland could not care less about the levy. They are dealing with matters that are more important.

    Mr. Abbott seems to be forgetting Queensland that gave him the majority of his vote’s last election. He has no chance of getting into power unless he holds onto these votes.

    Queenslanders as I found them have no love for people from the south and are capable of judging Mr. Abbott harshly.

  24. “July is quickly coming into focus, so the Liberal/National are in a desperate situation in trying to oust the Prime Minister Julia Gillard and her Cabinet out of Government”

    What good would it do them if they unseated her. They still would have a hostile and an extremely angry senate. I cannot see them getting anything through. Their only intention would be to call another election. I am not sure where this would leave the senate.

    They need to be certain that they will get the same results that they obtained when they pulled similar stunts against Mr. Whitlam. Mr. Abbott and the rest of the present Coalition does not compare with Mr. Fraser in any way.

  25. Thankfully, so far, it seems everyone in N Qld. has survived. I’d like to welcome the three bubs who chose just that evening to embark on their life journey.
    As I followed the cyclone like everyone else and kept vigil following the drama playing out in Egypt, on Twitter, my daughter read out the abc report about mad/malevelont abbott and his ugly request and it occurred to me again that he doesn’t give a s–t about the cyclone or the flood. He knows there are only five months before the Coalition loses control of the Senate. As if we weren’t already aware of his scheming, he has now made it perfectly clear that he will stop at nothing. Henry V111 would have loved him.

  26. Speechless, absobloodylutely, speechless …

    Welcome to politics US style – no wonder New Orleans is still in ruins!

    😡

  27. I agree, TB. It could leave one speechless. Thankfully though, heaps of people are speaking out however the story has disappeared off the front page of news.com. Somebody in the Murdoch stable must have published the story without consulting his grand pooha.

    Abbott has crawled lower than a snake’s guts and most of the MSM have turned a blind eye to his disgraceful performance. Why? Because it might hurt him. And if it hurts Abbott, it will surely hurt old Rupert (in some small way).

  28. Migs, excellent points made by Girl Clumsy. Love it, “That’s right, I don’t want to help – signed……..”

    She says “And yet, I am more than happy to sling $25 towards part of a bridge, or a few centimetres of bitumen, or a bit of cabling.”

    And who uses the bridges, the bitumen etc, everyone including farmers and big business.

  29. “Tony Abbott is a self-centred moron.”

    “What a total absolute dickhead!”

    And let me add to that, a total prick, a total ignoble prick.

  30. Nas’ I hope that that one gets an outing as Costello’s rant is certainly being given the top story treatment.

    As usual, the federal government was unable to rise to the inspiring level of its citizens. It used the occasion to announce a new tax and dump several promises it should never have made such as ”cash for clunkers” – a bizarre scheme…

    http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/flood-tax-a-slap-in-the-face-for-those-who-dug-deep-20110202-1adoj.html

  31. This from “hammock” Costello:

    “This is exactly the premise of the welfare state – the state manages welfare. As it grows bigger and bigger on its tax-and-spend powers, the room for philanthropy – for generosity and for voluntary activity – shrinks.”

    Perhaps he needs to remember that he presided over the PROSPERITY STATE…the state allows the rich to get even richer. As the dynasties & corporations grow bigger & bigger on its “look the other way”, deregulate, prop up business by rebates, WorkChoices, middle class welfare & baby boom to drive spending policies, the room for the average worker to benefit shrinks as affordable services shrink…

    and the rich dictate the movements & progress of so called democratic communities by funelling moneys into political causes of their choosing…whilst abandoning workers & the disadvantaged to their debt & stress…using them as a disposable pool of cheap labour…pulling the plug on their pensions and superannuation whenever it benefits these few…as the rich & the aspirational goons play the markets like casinoes…and use the valuable life giving environment as their playpens and for profiteering purposes.

    N’

  32. Costello has one thing in common with Abbott: neither know when it’s best to keep the mouth shut. They’ve been talking too much and people are finally starting to notice the large amount of verbal manure they produce.

  33. So, Jelly Tip Custard, is out and about showing us what he would do …

    … absolutely nothing … as usual …

    Imagine … what dy’reckon, Peter?

    … ah, erm, we, er, well, if we, ahem, wait, ah, someone ah, erm will, ahm, do it … wont they?

    Spineless little prick!

  34. Abbott’s latest fundraiser for ‘a worthy cause’ is now on the SMH.

    The coalition’s attack on the flood levy has come unstuck over a party fundraising email described by Prime Minister Julia Gillard as “shocking.

    http://www.smh.com.au/national/pm-shocked-by-abbotts-call-for-donations-for-campaign-to-fight-flood-levy-20110203-1af38.html

    Also good point made on Sky, that Abbott is trying to wriggle and squirm out of it by saying that requests for donations are ‘standard practice’ however the person being interviewed has pointed out that this request is hardly ‘standard’.

    Another thought, Why try to get $$s to defeat proposed legislation? The last time that I looked it’s our elected representatives who vote.

  35. As I wrote on The Political Sword:

    …just rewatched Abbott interview.

    He was asked 9 questions specifically relating to the anti-flood levy site & emails sent out calling for donations’. Was also asked a few times if he was “embarrased”…and one questioner asked if he had been “insensitive”.

    Certainly the queries could have delved deeper…but on the whole I was surprised at the pursuance of this topic by some members of the press gang.

    However, I would say that the press pack sound less confident as a whole when questioning Abbott…some even seem intimidated. Or act as tho they are just goin’ thru the motions. The occasional journo comes across as tho they are feeding him.

    Abbott’s replies were stock crap…he reminds me of the young fellas I’d catch out disruptin’ class or thievin’…that blank stare…avoidin’ the heart of the issue…makin’ excuses by accusin’ others of doin’ same…takin’ NO responsibility…moral infants.

    N’

  36. Judging by the comments Costello’s opinion is not highly regarded by readers.

    One comment there by ‘Woolie’ pleased me particularly, commending Anna Bligh and her government for their forward planning and work throughout this disaster. I agreed. Her leadership and work alongside the Queensland police, information and rescue services coordinating with other community organisations in preparation for this unprecedented climatic event has undoubtedly saved hundreds of lives. Their thorough preparations and conscientious attention to detail throughout the past few days have been an inspiration to watch. Wonderful what good government can do working with the cooperation of its citizens! I can’t understand why there’s not more mention of this in the media. Are the MSM disappointed perhaps there’s so little drama and loss of life to report? I guess good news is no news.

  37. I was thinking along similar lines, Patricia, which led me to think about how technology played an important role in saving lives.

  38. Migs, thanks for the post and the link. Smuggles is finally being exposed for what he is; an opportunistic thug who couldn’t give a toss about the plight of flood victims of 4 states and now the extra 2 kicks in the guts for Queensland!

    He should resign, imo. He has well crossed the decency line.

    Bilko @7.35am, lol!

    Crowey @8.16am, that is my belief, too. If Smuggles can’t force an election before 1 July, he’s toast! But after today’s debacle, I don’t think forcing an election would be his best option.

    Gillard saying all the right things and people now realising that all the bullsh!t about the levy was just to make political capital out of Queensland’s and the other flood affected states’ misfortunes.

    FFS, Smuggles! Queensland has just copped a triple whammy! Get your head out of your opportunistic, sleazy a$se and help get the country up and running again!

    Shane & Tom R, absolutely right, she is so much better unscripted.

    Bacchus, I find myself in agreement with Katter and Windsor on this. The more I see and hear Tony Windsor, the more I understand why he keeps being re-elected with big majorities.

    Pip @12.42pm, he’s probably channeling Henry VIII!

    Min, how have the Cairns crew fared? I felt so thankful this morning when it was reported that Yasi had been downgraded. I hope the report was right.

  39. Wonderful what good government can do working with the cooperation of its citizens! I can’t understand why there’s not more mention of this in the media. Are the MSM disappointed perhaps there’s so little drama and loss of life to report? I guess good news is no news.

    More like they’re disappointed they can’t find anything to beat the government over the head with, patriciawa!

    Migs, thanks for the link to GirlClumsy. I thought she got her point across brilliantly and showed up all the mean spirited LIEberals and their pathetic attempts to evade our collective responsibility to rebuild our public infrastructure, no matter where.

    Snap! TB @4.41pm. Nailed him in 3 well chosen words. Tip’s brain fart has just confirmed that he thinks his sh!t doesn’t stink, but his (brain) fart gives him away.

    Just a thought, he’d be arrested in Malawi for that load of old cobblers. Any chance of shipping him over there?

  40. Jane, thank you for asking. Yes all are well thankfully, and also thankfully not as much damage done to the house as was expected. Yasi was still a 5 when she hit but has been petering out as she is moving inland.

    Good one Jane. I like the idea of shipping Abbott to Malawi.

  41. They are now throwing the attack back at Labor.

    A tale about donations and a flood of political emails

    Abbott made reference to Labor asking for political donations in its mail out and said all parties do it as standard. Yet I’m yet to find one other direct soliciting of donation funds to stop a fund for rebuilding restructure after a disaster and that canvassing of donations came after attacking the government for supposedly taking private donations away from those in need.

  42. Good news, Min. You must be so relieved.

    ME, as usual, hypocrisy abounds wherever the Smuggles Set treads. He carries a basket full of it and strews it far and wide everywhere he goes.

    Unfortunately, for reasons best known to itself, my computer would only load the first 2 paragraphs of the PM’s letter, so I was unable to read it in its entirety.

    From the little I was able to read, her letter was infinitely superior to Smuggles Look At Me! effort. I really detest that creature and all his pathetic acolytes, whatever rock they chose to hide under.

  43. At the very top was a small $ icon with no text that is next to a string of social networking icons like Facebook and Twitter. Apparently when you click through that little $ icon it will take you to a donate to the Labor party page.

    As Richard Farmer doesn’t supply a link I haven’t been able to test exactly what that $ sign does.

  44. Ah Min but the little blue $ sign is missing so it appears Labor has removed it or something else is going on.

  45. Without being able to click onto the word “Donations” on the government letter I would assume that this refers to donating to the flood appeal as the banks mentioned as alternative points of payment are also involved in collecting for the appeal.

    This then compares with Abbott’s letter which is wanting donations for his campaign against the levy.

    That’s how I’m reading it anyway.

  46. There is no word Donations on the PM’s letter, it’s not a government letter but one from Labor Connect, that leads to Labor donations.

    Richard Farmer’s point is that at the top of the PM’s letter is a series of small icons mostly linking to Labor’s social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter but there is one small green $ icon. If you click on that it takes you to the Donate to the Labor Party page.

    The icon doesn’t say what’s it’s purpose is unless you hover your mouse over it. On the Labor Connect site all pages that contain that green $ icon clearly have underneath that it takes you to the Donate to Labor page.

  47. Thanks Bacchus I finally found how to get there but the $ has been removed from the copy of the letter on the Labor Party website, or it was never there and Richard Farmer got the emailed out copy that has that icon.

  48. Yes ME – Richard Farmer has reproduced the actual email he received – note the “from” and “to” at the top and the
    “This email was sent by N. Martin, Australian Labor Party, 5/9 Sydney Avenue, Barton ACT to
    richard@politicalowl.com” at the bottom…

  49. I agree ME – that was Richard Farmer’s point. Labor’s email only has an obscure link to a generic “donate to the party” page, whereas Abbott’s email has a blatant solicitation for donations to the party specifically for the campaign against the levy prominently placed at the bottom.

    The contrast is very telling…

  50. I’m with you on that one Bacchus. A direction to donate to a registered charity but a LNP fighting fund certainly ain’t charity.

  51. The Man Who’s No Big Giver

    The word had come from Tony that they should pass the hat around
    ‘Cos the cost of making ads had got away,
    Liberal Party resources had been run into the ground
    And he still had lots of bills he had to pay.
    So they sent out begging letters and they worked the phones real hard.
    So why a swing against him overnight?
    And where would all this money go from this levy by Gillard?
    Queensland floods? Not funding his election fight?

  52. Or can be sent in a plain envelope addressed to Migs c/- Café Whispers. Personally addressed cheques, cash or even postage stamps..all donations will used wisely 😉

  53. Tony Abbott is asking more in donations than what most Australians would have to pay for the levy. That’s hilarious.

    Seriously though, Tony Abbott doesn’t actually give about flood victims. He’s more passionate about political point scoring. Who is actually surprised?

  54. After being totally embarrassed about the email, in a change of heart he now says it’s quite OK to call for donations to help fight the flood levy. Is it the media’s lack of concern about the email that brought on this change of heart? Many people I have spoken to tonight had no idea about the email, suggesting that the media coverage was quite inadequate.

  55. I’m very worried about my property in Cluden (Townsville) which is one of the suburbs expected to be hit by the storm surge.

    A phone call to the insurer confirmed that the house is covered against storms, floods and cyclones, but not storm surge, even though it might be caused by the cyclone. Until this week I’d never heard of storm surge.

    Can’t get any info via the internet and phones are out so I can’t call my agent.

    If anybody knows anybody who knows anybody who knows the situation in Cluden, I’d really appreciate some word.

    But regardless of any financial loss I may suffer, I WILL STILL SUPPORT THE FLOOD LEVY AND BE QUITE HAPPY TO PAY MY SHARE.

  56. I watched channel 2 news/7.30 report last night (not sure, it seemed to blend, but admittedly, my concentration was elsewhere)

    Anyway, there was a very brief mention of the email from tabot, to which they basically said (I am paraphrasing from memory here), questions have been asked about this email, and tabot says Labor does it too, but one thing is obvious, both parties are playing politics with this event.

    FFS!

  57. Oh FFS will someone in authority please hold the ABC to account for its blatant government bashing and misinformation on the government. Here is what NineMSN reported:

    She thanked WA National Tony Crook for his support during a Wednesday press conference but refused to comment further because she was focused was on the approach of Cyclone Yasi.

    A spokesman for Ms Gillard declined to comment on the web link, saying the focus remained on the cyclone heading for far north Queensland.

    You tell me ABC how Gillard and the government is playing politics with this?

    It was not the government that revealed the Abbott request for donations and the only comment directly on it from the government is Gillard saying she is shocked and then stating she has more important things to worry about like Cyclone Yasi and Queensland.

  58. ABC Twitter is saying there is a Tony Abbott press conference in progress. No need to see it, he will defend the indefensible and turn his malfeasance into an attack on the government and blame them for it.

  59. Yeah, but of course they failed to mention that although both parties ask for donations as a matter of course; asking people to divert funds from a levy to rebuild infrastructure to a fund that the Smuggles Set can use to ensure that infrastructure doesn’t get rebuilt is unprecedented and another example of the shallow uncaring hubris of a party that doesn’t give a toss about the victims.

    I think Labour has to labour the hypocrisy angle as hard as it can without looking too opportunstic. It would serve a two-fold purpose; make Smuggles look like the cheap political opportunist that he is and highlight his hypocrisy on levies.

    Credibility shot and the rusted ons having to resort to ever more convoluted reasoning to make him look almost human.

  60. Tom R. & Mobius,

    In the few minutes I watched of ABC Breakfast News this morn the “Abbott email” episode was basically dismissed as a “side issue” by political correspondent Melissa Clarke.

    I thought Virginia Trioli gave the impression it was much ado about nuthin’.

    N’

  61. Tony Abbott in Ipswich firing line

    Shayne Neumann has taken a swipe at Tony Abbott over a verbal fight over funding for flood-affected Ipswich.

    Mr Abbott has refused to criticise a letter from him to Liberal supporters that attacked Labor’s $1.8 billion flood levy and then called for donations to help fight the levy.

    ‘‘Only a Prime Minister who is out of her depth would seek to exploit people’s generosity to flood victims to try to win acceptance for yet another new tax,’‘’ it said.

    Mr Abbott has attacked the tax stating it is unfair to impose a tax on people, especially on those who have donated to disaster relief. At the bottom of the letter is a link inviting recipients to ‘‘click to donate to help our campaign against Labor’s flood tax’‘

    The Federal Member for Blair, Mr Neumann, today accused the Opposition Leader of being “greedy and self-centred” over comments on flood funding.

    “Once again, Mr Abbott has proved that he’s more interested in political gain than helping to rebuild Queensland,” Mr Neumann said.

    “In the aftermath of two natural disasters in Queensland, he was sending out emails exploiting those natural disasters to raise money for the Liberal Party.

    “While the rest of us are digging deep to support fellow Queenslanders, Tony Abbott is asking Australians to dig a little deeper to support the Liberal Party.

    “Tony Abbott never misses an opportunity to put his own selfish political interests and opportunism first, ahead of the national interest.”

    Mr Neumann said that Australians expect their leaders to put aside their own interests at times like this.

    “Not Tony Abbott. He has shown once again that he is incapable of putting the national interest before his own opportunistic political interest,” Mr Neumann said.

    “He’s played politics from day one of this crisis, and he is playing politics now.

    “If a levy was good enough for Mr Abbott to pay for his election promises last year, how is it not good enough to help rebuild Australia after the floods?

    “With Tony Abbott’s proposed paid parental leave scheme, business would have been slugged with his 1.5 per cent levy from 2012.

    “In stark contrast, the Federal Labor Party will deliver business a tax cut from next year.”

    http://ipswich-news.whereilive.com.au/news/story/federal-member-for-blair-shayne-neumann-takes-swipe-at-tony-abbott-over-ipswich-flood-relief/

    Spot on.

    N’

  62. I’m very very pleased to see that Anna Bligh is receiving some well deserved praised from the Courier Mail. I honestly thought that I’d never seen the day when this extremely negative newspaper would give anyone from the left anything resembling a fair go.

    In years to come, Anna Bligh’s management of the Queensland flood and cyclone crisis will stand as a comparable case study in how political leaders should best handle a natural disaster.

    In the past two weeks, and particularly this week, Bligh has created a new template for political communication. It’s been based around honesty, decisiveness and plain speech. It’s been based around saying what government can do, and what it cannot do.

    http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/opinion-anna-bligh-setting-a-new-standard-for-politicians-after-cyclone-yasi-queensland-floods/story-e6freon6-1226000087159

  63. Addendum: the link above is a link to the David Penberthy article. Therefore another minor miracle, praise coming from Penberthy.

  64. Despite suffering severe personal losses – see my comment on the Arrested thread of a minute ago – I am even more supportive of a flood levy. I guess I’m now an honorary Queenslander and can only begin to imagine the hatred they must feel towards Tony Abbott. He’s low. He’s immoral. He’s disgusting. He’s unAustralian.

  65. That’s excellent news about Anna Bligh Migs. I thought that I heard something about this the other day but didn’t want to mention it just in case it wasn’t accurate.

  66. A little off topic but given Tony Abbott’s attitude and planned action being zilch in relation to Climate Change, maybe not that much.

    Interesting article from: http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/1464847/Qld-floods-'linked-to-climate-change

    “We’ve always had El Ninos and we’ve had natural variability but the background which is now operating is different,” said David Jones, head of climate monitoring and prediction at the Australia Bureau of Meteorology in Melbourne.

    “The first thing we can say with La Nina and El Nino is it is now happening in a hotter world,” he told Reuters, adding that meant more evaporation from land and oceans, more moisture in the atmosphere and stronger weather patterns.

  67. What is it with the right wing? A work colleague, when telling him that Anna Bligh said that storm surge damage would be covered mumbled “at the cost to us taxpayers”.

    His contribution might be two dollars. People have lost homes. He doesn’t care. His two dollars are more important.

  68. How morally bankrupt is this?

    Storm signs casino as new sponsor
    MARK HAWTHORNE
    04 Feb, 2011 03:00 AM

    CROWN Casino will be unveiled as the new naming rights sponsor of NRL club Melbourne Storm today.

    As revealed in The Age in May last year, Melbourne Storm opened negotiations with James Packer’s casino after its major sponsors abandoned the club for systemic salary cap rorting

    http://www.merimbulanewsonline.com.au/news/national/national/sport/storm-signs-casino-as-new-sponsor/2066663.aspx

    Packer & Murdoch families uniting again…just like w/ Channel Ten.

    Does Gillard support this team?

    N’

  69. And what would the cost be for not covering storm surge damage? For example how many people could afford to rebuild and what about the cost to the government of providing for the thousands left homeless.

  70. So, miners pay to get rid of Rudd & super profit’s tax whilst climate change devestates the planet, including Australia:

    http://www.smh.com.au/business/a-snip-at-22m-to-get-rid-of-pm-20110201-1acgj.html?comments=113

    We learn yesterday:

    Gina Rinehart, first woman tops on Australian rich list

    SYDNEY, Feb. 3 (Xinhua) — Australian energy and resources company Hancock Prospecting boss Gina Rinehart has been crowned Australia’s richest person after seeing her wealth rise 7 billion AU dollars (7.07 billion U.S. dollars) in the past year, U.S. magazine Forbes Asia released its collection of Australia’s richest on Thursday.

    Forbes Asia announced that Rinehart, the daughter of mining magnate Lang Hancock, had topped its rich list with a fortune estimated to be 9 billion AU dollars (9.09 billion U.S. dollars).

    Rinehart, 56, inherited her father’s company in 1992, becomes the first woman to be recognized as Australia’s richest person on Forbes rich list and saw her wealth skyrocket last year thanks to rising iron ore prices and exports to China.

    Also in mining, Fortescue Metals chief executive Andrew Forrest dropped from the top spot to second place with 6.9 billion AU dollars (6.97 billion U.S. dollars) to his name, while coal miner Chris Wallin entered the list for the first time with his 1.3 billion AU dollars (1.31 billion U.S. dollars), taking the 16th spot.

    Gaming mogul James Packer came in at number three with 4.4 billion AU dollars (4.44 billion U.S. dollars) after buying back into the media market with a stake in television broadcaster Ten Network.

    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2011-02/03/c_13718060.htm

    And now Packer & Murdoch’s lot are combinin’ w/ the Melbourne Storm…as they have w/ Channel Ten…and who else bought significant shares in TEN?

    Yep, Gina Rinehart.

    Who also now has:

    Rinehart builds stake in Fairfax to 4 per cent

    http://www.smh.com.au/business/rinehart-builds-stake-in-fairfax-to-4-per-cent-20110120-19y08.html

    So much for democracy when those who have inherited money can bring down PMs & influence elections to protect & increase their privileges.

    N’

  71. Miglo! Naughty!

    I must say though when Gina’s not smiling I remember her dad and how when she was born we were glad she was a little girl and couldn’t possibly be anything like him! For her sake as well as ours. Well, she’s a chip off the old block in every sense.

  72. I saw a story yesterday but can’t find it at the moment, I don’t think that it’s been mentioned. It was definitely in the MSM and concerned the interview with Abbott. When questioned about the levy and what he intended to contribute his answer was: I “co-hosted a bbq”.

    I thought at the time that this was obviously a very good indication of Tony’s generosity. Mind you, he didn’t organise the bbq himself or even host it all by his little lonesome he managed the supreme effort of being a co-host. I can’t help but wonder if he managed to kick in a few quid to help pay for the snags.

  73. Jason @ The Political Sword was understandably querying my view that the government might have to delay the rollout of the NBN. As I replied:

    I agree that the NBN could go ahead if we saw more redistribution of income & profits…and cuts to aspects of middle class welfare (ensurin’ we don’t put undue pressure on small business & hospitals)…but when you look at this government’s track record…and the growin’ resistance movement I just don’t see it happenin’.

    (regardin’ resistance movement see my comments above re: Gina Rinehart, Packer, Murdoch etc.)

    I reckon this government has been caught flat-footed when it comes to the growth of opposing forces owning shares in various media outlets and bodies that are used as propaganda tools to undermine theirs & alternative policies.

    The ALP have been far too slow moving…and accomodating to those who have a vested interest in screwin’ the average folk in order to protect their own wealth & privileges and build on them.

    The NBN rollout could help this situation…but the time frame for rollout & costs will ensure the opposition have plenty of time to sabotage it. And take government.

    The government might be better to focus on other key service delivery areas for now. Including dentalcare.

    And some kind of National Disaster Relief Fund to appease Independents.

    Then they can use the climate change argument/focus to get some kind of carbon tax thru in July that could also hook-into the mining boom. Whilst bringing in grants to rebuild after disasters…it’s important to look after the natural disaster affected…and delay the NBN stimulatin’ effect until other infrastructure that is immediately useful is put in place.

    Just sayin’.
    N’

  74. Bacchus, thank you for that..I think. I’m pleased that you gave me a warning. I wonder given that it’s the Liberal Party website that they could have doctored it (conspiracy theory #60,000), prettied the interview up a little.

    Under the heading of seek and ye shall find, here is what appeared in The Age.

    Asked whether he would donate some of the money to the flood victims, he avoided the question but pointed to a barbecue he co-hosted on Australia Day to raise money for victims.

  75. Miglo
    Re your post at 2pm
    The other day Ross Gittins made the point that governments are expected to have unlimited capacity to bail out absolutely anything the public demands.
    It occurs to me that the levy is a small & timely reminder that there are occasions when we must dig deeper. But perhaps we don’t want to be reminded of this.

  76. Min,
    Amazing, isn’t it, that Tony Abbott has obliquely admitted to not having put his hand in his pocket to donate to the Queensland Premier’s Disaster Appeal? Probably using some shitty justification in his own warped, tiny mind that if he gave money it would only make Labor look good in Queensland, as people get something good out of it. Ergo, the less money in the pot, the less they have to give out.
    Let me just add this bit of historicaql data. I was at Sydney University at the same time Abbott was doing his Economics/Law degree and embarking on his political career by running to be head of the Students Representative Council.
    He was the same opportunistic, Machiavellian, ‘Whatever It Takes’, pond scum then, as he is now.
    The other interesting bit of history…he had the most colourful epithets written about him on the Quadrangle toilet walls that I have ever seen! He was as polarising a figure then as he is now.

  77. BSA Bob,
    It’s just a manifestation of the Neo Con doctrine of never making the electorate pay for anything, like Wars in Iraq, whilst at the same time reducing taxes, but accompanying it all with a drumbeat to shrink government i.e. Public policy programs, instead.

  78. Feral,
    that’s you promoting the good news.

    Where is the ALP? All I hear on news analyst shows are government members fartin’ on about “black holes” & the same old stuff we’ve been hearin’ for yonks.

    This government needs to promote it’s accomplishments much better.

    As I said to you on The Political Sword:

    Feral,
    sure, you could rollout the NBN in areas of Rockhampton and other large regional towns as you repair other infrastructure…but is it going to happen?

    If the government rolls out the NBN at the pace they have super clinics & trade training centres & affordable housing then we are in real trouble.

    Particularly as I believe there will be many more emergencies for the government to deal with.
    —————–
    And you know how much I despise the Abbott-led Coalition…but I’m not goin’ to act just like a propaganda tool for a government that needs to deliver on its promises faster…and get the bloody achievement messages across better…and start thinking about the REAL NEEDS of the population on the ground.

    A single mum/teacher in my wife’s school is in the predicament where she can barely afford food & medication for her ill children because of the rising cost of rent, food, electricity, water & so on.

    That’s a bad state of affairs. And this is a woman who doesn’t gamble, smoke or go on holidays.

    These people desperately need relief.

    N’

  79. Feral @5.33pm

    The other interesting bit of history…he had the most colourful epithets written about him on the Quadrangle toilet walls that I have ever seen!

    No doubt these inspired you in your writing 😀

  80. Give Tony a break he is only looking after his constituents.

    I had it pointed out to me today that the levy was not fair. This was because most of the money came from those earning over 200.000 per year. The comment address to me went onto say that, PM Gillard did not care about people in the high-income bracket and was protecting her base.

    As I have said many times before, no one screams as loud as the well to do when you attempt to get his or her snouts out of the trough.

    We have Ms. Hancock setting up a web page not unlike the TEA Party, that is distributing a petition demanding that taxes be lowered in North West part of Australia There are many big names supporting her. To enhance her chances of success, she along with I think the fourth richest person in Australia have bought a large portion of channel 10 to enhance their ability to influence government.

    We can only hope that PM Gillard has the guts to stand up to the bullies that use their power and money to override what is good for Australia. We can only hope that the public supports her in this action. We know that we cannot rely on the MSM to do the right thing.

    Mr. Abbott is correct in that there is much fat in the budget. I do not think he meant the programmes introduced by Mr. Howard. The problem is it can be difficult to withdraw middle and upper welfare.

    I wonder if the petition he pointed out to people, is the one Mr. Anderson is responsible for at Menzies House and which I was under the impression was independent and had nothing to do with the Liberal Party.

  81. We have Ms. Hancock setting up a web page not unlike the TEA Party, that is distributing a petition demanding that taxes be lowered in North West part of Australia There are many big names supporting her. To enhance her chances of success, she along with I think the fourth richest person in Australia have bought a large portion of channel 10 to enhance their ability to influence government.

    This worries me. It really does worry me. But I refuse to accept that we are powerless against the select few who want to dabble with our lives.

    I don’t care about Afghanistan. I don’t care about Iraq. I don’t care about Egypt or the USA for that matter. I care about the people in this country and I don’t like to see them treated as a profit and loss entry on Rupert’s balance sheet.

  82. If the government rolls out the NBN at the pace they have super clinics & trade training centres & affordable housing then we are in real trouble. ”

    SuperCentres, they have to get doctors onside, no easy task. I believe they are more ob schedule now.

    I thought ther trade training centres was Mr. Howard’s and was abandon and replaced by upgrading the facilities in High Schools. I believe some schools have benefit.

    There is more low-income housing being built than in Mr. Howard’s day. I hope they have the sense to dump the first homeowners scheme and spend the money elsewhere in housing.

  83. With $9B you’d think she’d spend a few bucks on plastic surgery.

    Meeoww, Migs. although it is rather unfortunate that she inherited her father’s looks as well as his unpleasant character.

    BSA Bob @5.26pm, we’ve got the Rodentochracy to thank for that attitude!

    Nas @4.17pm, the Smuggles Set needs to get a wriggle on, because they’ve only got 5 months to force an election.

    I agree that the Labour party has been absolutely hopeless at selling any of their achievements and defending BER and the insulation scheme, both of which have been a resounding success.

    As for delivering on their election promises faster, I think we forget that they’ve only held government for 38 months and had the GFC and a very hostile Senate to interrupt their programmes. They do tend to hide their light under a bushell, though.

    I’m not advocating that they emulate Rodentochracy big noting, but to be a little less shy about letting us know where they’re at.

    FS @5.33pm, Why am I not surprised that Smuggles has very short arms when it comes to springing for a donation to disaster relief? Bit rough on pond scum, though. 🙂

  84. Migs @11.09pm, if Ms Rinehart and her scaly billionaire mates start that sort of pressure, the government must go on the offensive and make sure people realise that these ultra-wealthy people are demanding special treatment for themselves and, like the robber barons of old, couldn’t give a toss about this country or the majority of its inhabitants.

  85. CU @10.48pm “that is distributing a petition demanding that taxes be lowered in North West part of Australia…”

    I wonder if this has anything to do with the fact that the big miners have been pushing and HARD to stop fly in/fly out for workers especially in the West. They have been doing this by offering FIFO from Perth only plus in their job advertisements ‘move to the West’.

    But this is falling flat because the miners rarely if ever offer any fixed term contracts and only minor financial incentives to relocate. It’s simply not worth it for skilled workers to move, but if the north west had lower taxes THIS would be a BIG incentive.

    A win all round for the mega wealthy.

  86. With regards to the Billionaires buy-out of our media, this is why this kind of Bias in our media is bad for society.

    (‘this country’ refers to America in this case, but the argument remains valid irrespective of country. Replace beck with akerman, and off ya go)

    An increasing number of people on the left and the right in this country now get much of their media input from people and organisations that simply reinforce their own beliefs, for the Tea Party crowd that means Fox News, Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh and the like, but above all the internet is where the Tea Party lives, breathes and organises.

  87. Some people…grrrr!!! An email into Sky reads: I didn’t donate to the Premier’s fund because I knew that they’d bring in a levy. There were a number of others similar of course.

    The words self-righteous stupid fool come to mind.

  88. Watching 7 Sunrise where they were interviewing some idiot sheila by the name of Prue MacSween about the devastation that occurred in Nth Qld, and after viewing the destruction, she completely agrees with the Mad Monk that their is no such thing as climate change.

  89. “We can only hope that PM Gillard has the guts to stand up to the bullies that use their power and money to override what is good for Australia.”

    Here here CU…stand up to the privileged who have been reapin’ the main benefits of rapin’ the land…and dominatiin’ the TV, newspapers, payTV & airwaves.

    Howard & others gave them a treasure chest.

    It’s time the people got their part.

    N’

  90. “if Ms Rinehart and her scaly billionaire mates start that sort of pressure”

    They will jane…we’ve seen nothin’ yet. The attacks on Rudd are an example of what these privileged dynasties can do when they have the media on side…and an Abbott in their pocket.

    It’s important to be fully prepared for the comin’ war.

    N’

  91. “I’m not advocating that they emulate Rodentochracy big noting, but to be a little less shy about letting us know where they’re at.”

    I agree wholeheartedly jane. Me playin’ devil’s advocate gives you a wee sense of what’s comin’.

    This government needs to provide tangible evidence of its accomplishments.

    When I had a Medicare card in hand it was evidence that a system was in place.

    When I got my HECS form it was evidence that a system was in place.

    N’

  92. “I thought ther trade training centres was Mr. Howard’s and was abandon and replaced by upgrading the facilities in High Schools. I believe some schools have benefit.”

    CU, considering how informed a person you are who actually does research on the web it goes to show the government is not selling these policies well enuff.

    Where are the pamphlets informing us…so we know the exact name, nature & locations of the program?

    For yer info:

    http://www.deewr.gov.au/Schooling/TradeTrainingCentres/Pages/default.aspx

    N’

  93. Min & CU…as you know, a Tea Party style revolt in this country could really devestate this government.

    That is why it’s so important the government learns from the US example.

    That includes being CLEARER about programs & policies.

    Not doing too much at once.

    FOCUS on service delivery & needs of real people on the ground.

    Ensuring you sell your achievements/accomplishments. Tangible evidence required.

    Don’t war w/ the media…use & promote alternatives…but also provide mainstream media offers they can’t refuse in order to deliver yer message.

    Having control of spending rather than giving it over to states.

    Ensuring one tax increase leads to another tax is cut or abolished.

    To start w/.

    N’

  94. Crowey @10.34am, Prue MacSween has got form as a LIEberal groupie from way back. She took over that other super tool Stan Zemanek’s talk back show.

    She’s supposedly worked in PR, and here’s a fine example why noone with a functioning braincell could seriously consider employing her.

  95. I haven’t had a chance to read the article, but according to Shamaham, Julia Gillard is going to shelve health reform!!!!!

    Why bother to vote for her in that case? If it’s true, I’m ashamed that she would do such a thing.

  96. Nasking, have you had a read of the interview Julia Gillard had with journalist Michael Gordon of The Age, it comes under the heading of Back in the Game.

  97. Live press conference with Abbott from the devastated area in Qld.

    A shorter version of what I posted at GT.

    Abbott: Say tax as many times as is possible in a five minute press conference, spend the rest of the time bashing the government and spend 10 seconds about the devastation and people effected.

    I don’t politicise disasters, the government does. Bullshit Abbott.

  98. Crowey,
    yes. It’s a useful piece.

    I thought I’d see how strong that NBN message truly was. Going by some on here…and a number on The Political Sword we can see it is one message that has got thru…and people have at least some useful info to be able to justify it.

    But more concise, easy to recall info needs to be distributed related to the NBN. There is still some confusion.

    Ya know Crowey, after I responded to you w/ the “sound like a Liberal blaaah blaaah response”…and yer reply…I got to thinkin’ a few days ago of how inappropriate & ineffectual that reply was…and then some ideas came into my head.

    Ya don’t help a friend who smokes by feeding their habit. So to speak.

    Keep up yer analysis, critiques of the government…including concerns, frustrations, and also approval, recognition of accomplishments.

    If we become a mere mouthpiece we may help this government to lose the next election.

    I do see a determination in Gillard of late. And I reckon w/ effective communication and distrubution of tangible evidence of programs etc. she can succeed in heightening the popularity of this government.

    And if she & her crew get on the ground…listen to the people’s ideas & concerns…and play offense more than reaction. Don’t let the opposition and media own programs & turn the brands into slush.

    I think we’ve got Abbott worried. But ya don’t retain government and win the next time by just focusin’ on the negatives of yer opponent.

    Floating the dollar…Medicare…HECS…Hawke tellin’ the bosses to let the workers have the day off re: America’s Cup yacht race…those things I remember.

    Have we had a public holiday introduced by this government? Or do we just kowtow to business & productivity demands.

    N’

  99. “With regards to the Billionaires buy-out of our media”

    Tom R. thanks for the post.

    It shows why we need countering, rational alternative media to the slop that gets around by way of talkback, tabloids, occasionally payTV/cable & some blogs.

    Crikey does some fine work…some superb writers like Tim Dunlop on The Drum…a few brill blogs out there…Migs has linked many thru Australian Blog Sites…there’s New Matilda…

    but many of us know we need something like The Huffington Post.

    N’

  100. A commenter from WA on David Penberthy’s article, chided someone whinging about Anna Bligh during the recent crises. Apparently, the premier of WA waddled off to Europe on holidays during the recent floods in WA. Never gave any sign of interest in the welfare of the victims, it seems.

    Had you heard that patriciawa? There was an oblique reference to it by a commenter at another site, but it wasn’t clear what they referred to.

    Both commenters were pretty dark about it and told the doomsayers to think themselves lucky their premier was concerned enough to stay home.

    I know TB has been pretty damning of the Bligh government for good reason from what he’s said.

    But at least she did the right thing during the sh*t storm Queensland has been enduring the last couple of months and deserves a pat on the back for that, as does everyone involved in the effort to keep as many people and properties safe.

    Well done all of them. I hope they all get the recognition they deserve.

    Has anyone heard about Gillard apparently dumping the rest of Rudd’s reforms? Shamaham was the one reporting it, so I guess one shouldn’t put too much credence in it, particularly as he also hinted that she’d drop the NBN. Which would be political suicide and extremely stupid, imo.

    This is the sort of thing you’ve been talking about Nas’ and it’s the sort of stuff that is so frustrating about this government. They seem too timid and lacking in confidence in their policies! I reckon Julia should hire Nas’ FS, CU, Tom, Min, ME, patriciawa and Shane to do their PR.

    I haven’t overlooked you, Migs, but as a public servant, you have to look impartial. And you have to keep your job to pay for the repairs to your Qld house. 😉

  101. From Tom R.’s useful link:

    Disgruntled staffers and MPs talk of a growing divide between the Abbott “loyalists” and the “careerists”, as Credlin and her supporters are disparagingly referred to. There is clearly a campaign mounting to have Credlin removed, with journalists such as me being backgrounded about her supposed shortcomings.

    And so the rot begins.

    Frankly, I’d be pretty worried if I were a Coalition member havin’ the volatile, negabore Abbott & his disgruntled, confused team at the top of the ladder.

    And if he did become leader (which is like sayin’ Fred Niles or Steve Fielding will become the Premier of their States)…I think the aspirations of others like Turnbull, Greg Hunt & Scott Morrisson will be squashed…as Abbott is as good at Howard in sneakily cutting down & weakenin’ rivals.

    Makin’ them kowtow. Be gutless.

    Considerin’ how damaged Abbott is already – so many I know, includin’ Nat party voters squirm when he speaks…actually the moment he hits the screens – it’s hard to see how he will be accepted for any length of time…

    he’s already more over-exposed than Howard was in his third term.

    And no race-baiting type politics would save Abbott. There are many alternative & mainstream outlets now to counter that crap…and they are growing in number & strength…as is the public’s weariness of fear-mongering.

    If Abbott did take government at some point…there are far too many seasoned, witty, intelligent, down-to-earth Laborites now who could offer more appeal than him.

    And relying on attacking past ALP governments would not work for him…

    it would stir up memories of his own negativity & failings…his contradictory & hypocritical words…

    and the fact that he’d won means that the people forgot enuff about the failings & mistakes of the Howard government…the Iraq War…the WorkChoices…ABC Learning…the interest rate rises after dopey promises…the AWB scandal…the milk deregulation hurtin’ farmers…the list goes on…

    and so another ALP leader would be in w/ a good chance. A brand new day.

    I think Abbott is a short-term answer for a Coalition long-term need.

    He can stay as long as he likes as Lib leader as far as I’m concerned. 🙂

    N’

  102. Nas’ @ 10.47am I was talking with a person I don’t discuss politics with, being very right wing. Out of the blue he said, Abbott’s attitude towards flood victims is on the nose. Then added, It wasn’t until I heard Rudd’s farewell speech that I realized how much the government had done.

    So if it can make someone who is a rusted on have a think when they have evidence even just listed, then indeed this government does need to “provide tangible evidence of its accomplishments”.

  103. My apologies for being missing all day. I’m out and about after sleeping in until well after lunch and will hit the blogosphere later on.

  104. “It wasn’t until I heard Rudd’s farewell speech that I realized how much the government had done.”

    Ya know Min, I’ve heard a few Righties say same…includin’ my father-in-law.

    jane, great comments above. I still don’t quite understand why the government didn’t go for DentalCare at the beginning.

    Imagine holdin’ that tangible evidence of a useful program in yer hand today?

    I think it’s the lack of sell that confuses & gets to voters.

    My wife had a brill job done in her school re: BER…she put alot of effort in to oversee & plan as HOD to make sure money was spent wisely…and like many other schools she & the staff & students are happy as punch w/ the results.

    But…S’ had to contact the local papers herself & get them to come out & take pics & spread the positive message to the local community. Why wasn’t the government doin’ this too?

    She’s very grateful to the government for the funding (Howard was neglectful of these types of public schools)…but was shocked, like other teachers elsewhere, that the great works weren’t promoted.

    The ALP shouldn’t shy away from their accomplishments.

    N’

  105. Nas’ @10.52am. To me the Trades Training Centres in Schools program was one of Rudd’s best innovations as previously in order to learn a trade kids had to leave school if they weren’t academically minded.

    Just from memory, at the time Rudd said that this would assist by keeping kids in school by providing them with an alternative and so they were far less likely to end up on the dole queue. That this was a start in addressing Australia’s skills shortage.

  106. Indeed Min…it’s a useful program. Much needed.

    The school down the road has one S’ tells me…linked to local businesses and such.

    And her school has been approved. Their very excited.

    But I didn’t know it was even there. More marketing of these programs required.

    N’

  107. Absolutely Nas’, yet further evidence of the need for more promotion. I keep getting a feeling that the government might still be stuck with Rudd’s promise not to spend “unnecessary” money on advertising. And as we know from last year there were a lot of complaints about Why doesn’t the government….. I suppose when push comes to shove only parents with kids in school need the information in practical terms but then not every parent is involved in the child’s school nor reads newsletters.

  108. Thanks for the link, Tom. Once again Smuggles is being let off the hook. Will none of these MSM suck holes ever print the truth? Which is more or less what I said in my comment.

    Nas’ & Min, precisely. Nobody has any idea how much the government has done because they won’t bloody well tell us! I know Rudd promised he wouldn’t big note like the Rodent, but they’ve taken it too far.

    As suggested elsewhere, they shouldn’t leave it to the news cycle. It should be live and not able to be edited.

    Well done to S’. If there were more like her, the Smuggles Set and their running dogs like Dolt wouldn’t have been able to get away with all the lies about the BER and insulation program.

  109. The supermarkets have already tripled the price of bananas here in Canberra. Woollies have assured us they raised the price with the raise to go towards helping the banana growers. I wonder if that’s true.

    Last time bananas went up Costello used it as an excuse for rising inflation and subsequent interest rate rises. What will he say this time if it has the same affect?

  110. Another positive story for Gillard: Back in the game

    One of the last polls asked about preferred leaders within Parties and Abbott is a distant third with Hockey first, Turnbull a fair way behind and Abbott way behind Turnbull. If anything says that the people know Abbott that does when even his own can’t nominate him as their favourite for leader. He’s only there at the behest of the regressives of the extreme right within the Party and they just role him out as Mr Negabore to keep the core faithful happy.

  111. Thanks for that , ME. Shows Shamaham was, as usual, fishing and bullshitting. Let’s hope the government can go forwqrd with confidence and blow Smuggles out of the water.

  112. Jane, my personal feelings about the article and other recent supportive ones is, It’s nice to have someone on our side.

  113. “Live press conference with Abbott from the devastated area in Qld.”

    Just watched a recording of it…Abbott & QLD LNP leader Langbroek (or whatever his name is) did nought but play political games.

    Bligh lately makes the LNP leader look piss weak. And how dumb of him to pick up Mr. Negabore’s infection…negaboritis.

    More finger-pointin’ & blaming from Abbott….

    then he has the audacity to talk about sittin’ down w/ the government as tho he thinks the public are stupid and can’t see he’d rather spend time criticising than being bi-partisan on emergency issues.

    The man is a fraud.

    Glad he copped it from a fella drivin’ past.

    The rot sets in. Abbott must lay in the bed of his own making.

    “One of the last polls asked about preferred leaders within Parties and Abbott is a distant third with Hockey first, Turnbull a fair way behind and Abbott way behind Turnbull.”

    Interesting Mobius. Frankly, I forget about Hockey ’cause he has a habit of bringin’ the wreckin’ ball on himself.

    But obviously others think the jovial Hockey is an improvement over the negabore Abbott.

    My Mum seems to dig Hockey.

    jane, you make many a valid point.

    “Shamaham”…LOL.

    “Last time bananas went up Costello used it as an excuse for rising inflation and subsequent interest rate rises. What will he say this time if it has the same affect?”

    Migs, I’m sure he’s lyin’ back in his hammock right now tryin’ to come up w/ some BS. 🙂

    “I suppose when push comes to shove only parents with kids in school need the information in practical terms but then not every parent is involved in the child’s school nor reads newsletters.”

    Very true Min. And it wouldn’t hurt the average voter to know what’s goin’ on in their community that is money well spent.

    I liked those pamphlets we used to get from the Beattie government. I felt informed.

    N’

  114. Nas’ I used to like Hockey when he was a friend of Kevin Rudd. Rudd is one of those people it seems that brings out the best in others, in spite of what stories might have been told about him.

    However once Howard put his foot down firmly on Hockey’s neck and demanded that old Joe toe the line and I place it from when little Johnny told Hockey to not attend Kevin’s daughter’s wedding – and in spite of being best mates, Hockey obeyed his master.

    IMO when you have an excellent friendship which was previously above party politics you put that friendship first. It was acceptable before when Howard was boss, so why suddenly change you mind? The rest we know, Hockey has been a snarling shrivelled echo of once was Jovial Joe.

    A thought, everyone has always blamed Howard for Hockey’s sudden change..just maybe Hockey was never the Jovial Joe that he was given credit for.

  115. “Rudd is one of those people it seems that brings out the best in others, in spite of what stories might have been told about him.”

    Yea Min, I liked Ruddy…he annoyed me sometimes…but at least people are gettin’ to see the more carin’, articulate side now.

    Howard did Hockey no favours gettin’ him to try & sell WorkChoices.

    Hockey was like those premiers ya hand over to…leavin’ them the crap, cleanin’ up jobs when ya know the end is probably near.

    He needs to be his own man.

    Not kowtow when thrown the rotting intestines of a bad alternative budget announcement…and take the fall like some dumb patsy.

    N’

  116. Nas’ re WorkChoices, it did seem like a revenge scenario against Hockey didn’t it 😉

    However, I think that it will be when hell freezes over that the right of the party relinquish the power that Abbott brings him. I think that Abbott and the conservatives made certain of that for example when kept as many of the old guard as he could after he took over from Turnbull.

  117. LOL MIN.

    And good point.

    The Moderate Libs are a gutless lot. You’d think they’d have more nous. Could outwit the far-right.

    Even Reagan did eventually.

    N’

  118. Crowey
    Re your post at 10.34.
    I only saw a bit of that.
    Was she the woman in the blue dress & blonde hair? I’m glad she’s not my next door neighbour. Didn’t she also decry the politicisation of the floods & then say that she agreed with Abbott that the NBN should now be stopped?

  119. Actually it’s Turnbull I can’t figure. He was white anted at nearly every turn by the regressives in the party, they really screwed him over. It got so bad that in the morning he would say something to the press or announce a proposed policy and within two hours someone from within the party would contradict him.

  120. Migs @5.12pm Let’s face it. When bananas were more expensive under a Liberal government it’s one thing but this time it will be all That Woman’s Fault..dump Gillard. Labor doesn’t know how to manage the economy.

    Bananas will always be cheaper under a Liberal government.

  121. Abbott on Insiders this morning going on and on about tax again this morning.

    Lying through his teeth about Labor being addicted to tax and not once did they ask him about all the taxes and increases bought in when he was in government.

  122. ME/Crowey, how else would the ABC want to start off the new year other than giving Abbott some free kicks? 2011 is starting up exactly where 2010 left off.

    This year is going to be ugly.

  123. I spoke to a long-time friend last night, a pensioner in rural NSW and staunch Labor supporter. Although last night he was quite livid towards Julia Gillard.

    As a listener to local radio and a reader of the local rag, he was led to believe that every Australian would be paying $5 a week towards the flood levy. Naturally he would be livid if that’s what he’s been fed by the local media.

    He was dumbstruck to learn that he’s been fed total bullshit and relieved to learn that he will be spared the levy.

    That’s not the only bullshit the local media has been spreading. They’re informing the good residents that any donations they made towards the flood has been a waste of money given that they now have to pay the levy.

    Totally unacceptable.

  124. At last, an article that is so close to the truth it should be our national anthem. Mike Carlton’s Flat-earthers, it’s time for a cold shower is a gem, starting with:

    PARDON me for pointing out the bleedin’ obvious but for those who have not been paying attention much of the planet has been devastated by extraordinary weather in the past year.

    We have had our floods in eastern Australia and, as the doughty Anna Bligh called it, the most terrifying cyclone of all. Floods have also swept China, India, Pakistan, the Philippines and southern Africa, killing thousands and leaving tens of millions homeless.

    Kenya is suffering a long drought that threatens widespread famine. A vast area of South America is also in severe drought, although record January rains in Brazil triggered mud slides that killed more than 700 slum dwellers near Rio de Janeiro.
    Advertisement: Story continues below

    Massive and unseasonally early snow storms pummelled Europe and North America before Christmas, taking more lives, and this week again the US has been hammered by what the US National Weather Service called ”a historic killer blizzard”.

    Given this catalogue of global disaster, would now be a good time for the climate change flat-earthers to shut up and listen, do you think? Just for a day or two, or even five minutes?

    They won’t, of course. The global warming denialists ignore the great body of world scientific opinion. When the Queensland catastrophe leaves the headlines the local lot will be at it again, barfing up their crackpot notions.

    And deeper into the article:

    The third lot of climate denial ratbags are those tabloid media pundits cynically banging the populist drum to drag in the hordes of bogan nongs out there.

    These are people who believe they are beset by a cabal of lefties, Greenies, gays, femi-Nazis, Muslims, venal and incompetent public servants and latte-sipping intellectuals conspiring to deprive them of all they hold dear, like their inalienable right to own a jet-ski and to name their children Breeyanna and Jaxxon.

    To them, climate change is another part of the plot. They are beyond help.

    It feels good to laugh at the right wing air-heads. They really are becoming the laughing stock of intellectual Australia. Which reminds me of a joke.

    Q: How do you make a right-winger laugh on Monday?
    A: You tell them a joke on Friday.

    They just don’t get it.

  125. Barry Cassidy has lost what little bit of Honesty and Integrity he had left, and has turned into a low life gutter journalist.

    Indeed, Crowey. I think it’s the company he keeps. That is, while he keeps on inviting bogan luddites like Bolt and Ackerman on the show his credibility will remain at zero.

  126. Actually, I didn’t think insiders was too bad this morning. Granted, he didn’t push tabot on his non-answers, but, this just allowed him to ask more questions which he was unable to answer. I particularly liked when he said that they couldn’t put forward their savings as finding cuts in the budget are extremely difficult, to which it was pointed out that he had recently said it was easy. He failed to enlighten us on that piece of hypocrisy too. And his dissembling over the fund-raising email was interesting to watch.

    Basically, insiders has been much worst than it was today. But I think most of that can be attributed to the woeful performance of their guest. He really is losing the plot

  127. To be honest Tom R I didn’t watch it knowing Abbott was on and have only caught sound bites on ABC News24.

    That’s actually good to hear.

  128. Hmmm…I reckon Cassidy did a pretty good job of gettin’ stuck into Abbott…Abbott made some errors because of the pressure he put on him by way of follow-up questions.

    sanqween thought same.

    Ya coulda knocked me down w/ a feather…I’m not used to Cassidy givin’ the Righties a grillin’.

    Speakin’ of “wooden”…I reckon Abbott’s nose coulda reached the camera’s like Pinocchios he told so many porkys.

    We know he read the entire email asking for donations.

    N’

  129. “Actually, I didn’t think insiders was too bad this morning.”

    Agree Tom R. It was not a good one for Abbott at all.

    The rot has set in.

    Lenore Taylor & Dennis Atkins were pretty balanced all up.

    Not Nikki Sava…but she’s a Liberal hack. Worked for Costello…but even she acknowledged there are rumblings in the Coalition camp.

    When Cassidy pressed Abbott on whether people should give to the needy flood victims or the Liberal Party, Abbott stuffed up completely.

    A disaster. It’s a MUST watch.

    sanqween yelled at the TV:

    “He’s stuffed it…after all that lack of sensitivity…can ya believe how selfish & ambitious that man is?…he can’t tell his supporters just to give to the flood victims!!!…tells ya everything about him…defines the man…it’s all about him, him, him!!!”

    N’

  130. Love it 🙂 Yet more criticism for Tony Abbott.

    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/weather/abbott-levy-response-hamfisted-liberals-20110205-1ahmp.html

    FACTIONAL tensions are rumbling in the Coalition with MPs divided on Tony Abbott’s performance during the flood crisis as the Opposition Leader attempts to shrug off an embarrassing fund-raising gaffe.

    And..

    Mr Abbott delivered an own goal last week when an email bearing his signature was sent to Liberal Party members pleading for donations ”to help our campaign against Labor’s flood tax” on the same day category-five cyclone Yasi was bearing down on towns in Far North Queensland.

    Abbott’s actions have been appalling and has provided to everyone with yet another indication of the type of person he is.

  131. In his efforts to politicise the floods Abbott just gets more ridiculous as this year ticks by.

    Unable to articulate what cuts to the budget he would make to pay for the infrastructure rebuilding in Queensland, he has now stated that the government should give interest free loans to all business effected by the floods.

    That turns out to be $100,000 to just about every business in Australia as just about every business in one way or another is effected. Of course he hasn’t said how the government will pay for this but I guess it’s supposed to again come out of the money saved from scrapping the NBN.

    Then he wants to scrap the water buy back to save money for the rebuild because now there’s so much water in the system. Again he shows how little he understands about business and market forces, and I’ve lost count of how many times he’s shown this.

    Because of the abundant water it’s currently relatively cheap so now is the time to buy it. If in the next year or two we start into another sustained dry, water will become expensive.

    Can the Liberal Party put this country out its misery and get rid of this buffoon asap.

  132. Can the Liberal Party put this country out its misery and get rid of this buffoon asap.

    He really is following Howard as an unflushable turd.

  133. “Because of the abundant water it’s currently relatively cheap so now is the time to buy it. If in the next year or two we start into another sustained dry, water will become expensive.”

    Indeed Mobius. Good points.

    This was also pointed out by Lenore Taylor on ‘Insiders’.

    How can Abbott accuse others of being short-sighted & thinking short-term by not building enuff dams in QLD…and then he turns around and recommends we rob the water buyback scheme during this flood period…when we could be in for another drought or water shortage period just a few years down the road?

    The man’s inconsistency is worrying, to say the least.

    N’

  134. “Yet more criticism for Tony Abbott”

    Thnx for the useful quotes & link Min.

    The rot has indeed set in.

    I imagine Hockey & Turnbull camps are whispering animatedly & grinning madly behind closed doors.

    “There goes Tony…yesterday’s man…but he doesn’t know it yet…the bighead”. Knives sharpened…placed in easy to get to office cabinets & desk draws.

    N’

  135. The Adelaide article certainly didn’t pull any punches
    “shameless, gutter-politics”. Surely this couldn’t be the end of Abbott’s ‘honeymoon’. One can but hope that the media is able to sustain the momentum, hopefully these type of stories online will obtain the desired number of clicks so that we can look forward to many more of them in the future.

  136. Migs @12.05pm. LOL!!

    Although it’s a pity Mike Carlton is so oblique. I particularly liked the last para.

    Read the Sunday mail article and was very pleased. She tends to get up a few people’s noses and i’ll expect the usual huffing and puffing from the usual suspects.

    On the whole the Advertiser hasn’t been anywhere near as bad as the OO and some other Emperor Rupert publications.

  137. Man that Adelaide Now piece doesn’t pull any punches whilst the ABC one is gentler.

    Who thinks Abbott is really on the nose with just about everyone even his own?

    Abbott has said within the next few days they will release details of what they will cut to pay for rebuilding Queensland and this will be interesting. I think he doesn’t realise how important it will be to get this absolutely right because unlike the $11 billion black hole this proposal probably will be scrutinised and reported on.

    Also Abbott has forgotten another promise he made late last year in the midst of strong criticism about his constant negativity, and that was before parliament resumes he would be more positive and the Coalition would release sound policies. Haven’t heard hide nor hair from Abbott about any of this yet and parliament is less than a week away.

  138. You know Abbott is in real trouble when I travelled around some of the blogs and forums I frequent and only a tiny handful of the hardcore wingnuts were sticking up for him or disagreeing with the flogging being dished out.

  139. Mobius, the Adelaide piece certainly is a ripper. It’s an excellent start in my opinion, Abbott in negative impression territory so that when he does release his cuts and slices they will (hopefully) be far more likely to be scrutinised.

    I can’t for the life of me imagine how even the rusted on Abbott fans can find any sort of justification but then they’re just following their leader. Abbott could easily have diffused the situation via an apology but of course an apology coming from Abbott is never going to happen.

  140. Sound policies and a more positive attitude. Pants on fire again, Smuggles?

    Min & ME, he’s left it far too late for an apology; in fact in view of the fact he okayed the email what can he say?

    I suppose he could be honest (bwwaaahahahaha!) and say it was a lack of judgment, but to admit that means even the rusted ons might start questioning his fitness to be opposition leader, let alone PM!

    And of course just further confirmation for us that he’s a waste of space!

    Now all Labour has to do for the next five months is NOT STUFF UP

  141. I noted the obviously setup video pieces on ABC news of Abbott helping out in North Queensland, sleeves rolled up to elbows but strangely not getting a single piece of dirt on his shirt or pants after supposedly help unload a flatbed truck of bags of ice and in a separate vid grab help clear a huge pile of tree branches.

    It is telling though that whilst several printed media organisations have finally begun to highlight Abbott, apart from Insiders the TV media are still being very good to him. Channel 9 and ABC News yesterday could not have shown him in a more positive light with Channel 9 taking Abbott’s word on an attack on the government as being gospel and not pulling Abbott up on an obvious mistruth. Not one mentioned Abbott’s negativity but all were complimentary that Abbott is to bring out ways of making cuts without having to bring in a levy. They are already setting up to praise Abbott’s suggestions without having seen them and of course without any scrutiny. As it was with his $11 billion black hole it will be up to organisations like Crikey and the government to pull his policy apart.

  142. Latest Newspoll not too good for Labor and Gillard down a bit whilst Abbott is up.

    Something just doesn’t ring right with this poll especially considering the overwhelming 55:41 support for the levy.

  143. It also appears that the polls splattered everywhere in the aftermath of Gillard announcing the Flood Levy may have been a little of the mark.

    Or is it the latest poll that has it wrong. Man, I’m getting confused. That wouldn’t be their aim would it?

    http://www.news.com.au/national/labor-takes-a-hit-but-voters-back-levy-newspoll/story-e6frfkvr-1226001160648

    ‘A new survey shows the prime minister has won popular backing for her $1.8 billion flood levy.’

    The rest of the poll isn’t so good for Labor, but there is a long time to go yet, and tabot’s (and the liberals as a whole, who stood behind him) hypocrisy has yet to sink in fully yet.

  144. I have run out of toner, can someone please ask the honest coalition members of parliament if they can forward me a few cartridges. Afterall they spent $300,000 stocking up on ink after being told to be ruthless by their party in snouting the public taxes before a cap was going to be placed.

    I am closest to Peter Slipper, who was the third biggest claimant so you may wish to ask him first.

    As they spent more than double the amount on 1 single item, namely ink. Does this mean they are doubly dishonest than the ALP members of parliament.

    Further releases under FOO laws could be very interesting indeed for the so called non wastage coalition.

  145. The poll changed when the floods and torrential rain happened in VIC and SA and lesser so in TAS.

    The NIMBY syndrome disappeared because it suddenly was in their own backyard.

    The coalition politicising the floods and the levy have been shattered by mother nature herself.

  146. I think this newspoll would have had to have been run last week wouldn’t it Shane, which would have been before the rain hit the lower states?

  147. Tom R

    Not sure about the poll date.

    Rain hit VIC and TAS the week before last as well didn’t it.

    In that case the next poll will be interesting.

  148. true Shane in QLD.

    Its probably just that I want to believe that we are not that shallow. And I really don’t think we are. I think we are led more by the media, and in this case, common sense, along with a few articles that pointed this common sense out started to appear.

  149. Min
    Just to say I agree with your 7.40 comment that for Abbott the supreme opportunist, the future doesn’t seem to exist. He appears able to combine this with an expectation of an eternal afterlife. I think people who can manage this sort of separation on the level he obviously does are truly dangerous.
    I’ve long regarded Abbott as one of the truly dangerous ones, the sort who would simply salute & press the firing button, fly his plane into an enemy ship, etc, & in short obey any order regardless of its obvious consequences.
    And now he’s giving the orders. Please God he doesn’t get to give many more.

  150. I just heard Tony Abbott on the radio state.

    The people of Victoria and Queensland have suffered enough without having to suffer a number of new taxes.

    I thought there was one levy. Can someone enlighten me on the other taxes.

  151. Tom R. & Mobius…I reckon the Abbott result is odd, to say the least. I’m just not hearing a positive word from anyone I phone (have conservative families on both mine & my wife’s sides)…

    it seems a strange coincidence that another News Ltd poll should happen to pump up Abbott at another obvious crisis period for him.

    Remembering that Abbott worked as a journo for that lot in previous years.

    I can see no indications in the community, nor on blogs, TV or radio as to why Abbott’s popularity would be rising rather than plumetting.

    And as one commentor on Crikey’s Poll Bludger speculates:

    If the libs are as far in front as the Newspoll suggests and Abbott has not sustained any real damage as per satisfaction and PPM why are the libs rumbling ?

    Perhaps they have polling of their own that shows a different story or perhaps they think they have a chance of government with the indies once Abbott is gone ?

    I have no real idea but would be interesting to see a few more polls first.

    http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/2011/02/06/newspoll-44-32-to-coalition/#comments

    The Gillard poll also seems a bit extreme. I wonder who they are polling? Interesting how it fits into News Ltd, ABC Howardista camps attempts to do a Rudd on her.

    I was impressed by Gillard on Meet The Press…feisty, determined, articulate, less pompous/reserved…yet the odd captivating cheery moment…like the modern outfit & colours too.

    I reckon once Gillard’s back in the parliament saddle will see her more comfortable…and those popularity polls will rise again.

    Good news on the flood levy approval rating.

    Greens are apparently steady at 14%.

    Not that you’d know that by some of the news commentary. Until Mobius put up that link I had no idea what the figures were. C’mon Melissa Clarke on ABC Breakfast…more details.

    And good on Hockey for doing what the lyin’, gutless, stubborn as a mule Abbott couldn’t do.

    Apologise for the insensitive email. Accept blame for one of the dumbest, most selfish acts in recent political history.

    W/ his standing up to the banks…rather than kowtowin’ to corporates, like Abbott does (think miners & Murdoch) Hockey is finally provin’ himself to be of leadership material.

    He still bellows too much tho & scare-mongers and threatens draconian cuts that worries many…the way the UK public has been worried.

    N’

  152. BSA Bob, I agree completely. Abbott, the supreme egotist with his god providing his self-justification. The egotist part shows in his inability to relate on a personal level with others with the mateship displays being nothing more than window dressing. Even his mateship displays are all about winning.

  153. Min,
    interesting comment at Crikey’s Poll Bludger:

    According to Samantha Maiden at the Sunday Mail today, the Coalition has ‘secret research’ that found voters were overwhelmingly opposed to the floods levy scheme because of a lack of trust in the Gillard Government’s fiscal management”

    I think people are startin’ to get an idea of who the sh*t stirrers are…interestin’ how many of these negative & assassination of reputation campaigns come out of News Ltd…or start w/ cock jocks.

    I think Tom R. said somethin’ similar on another thread.

    “I thought there was one levy. Can someone enlighten me on the other taxes.”

    Shane,
    imagine accessin’ Abbott’s dreams:

    “AND YOU MOSES TONY SHALL STAND ATOP THE MOUNTAIN HOLDING ONE ENGRAVED STONE TABLET…AND ROAR ITS MESSAGE OUT TO ALL WHO WILL LISTEN

    THOU SHALT NOT IMPOSE GREAT BIG NEW TAXES

    GREAT BIG NEW TAXES

    GREAT BIG NEW TAXES

    TONY! THE NEXT FLOOD I PROMISE YOU WILL BE ABLE TO PART THE WATERS.
    STOP SULKING.”
    N’

  154. I agreed w/ a flood levy because I thought it a simple message to spread.

    People like simple to understand…most of them.

    Look at the complications that came w/ selling the ETS & Health Reform.

    Too complex to explain to a busy, fatigued, tech & TV bombarded, sometimes (unfortunately) apathetic public.

    Gillard might be onto somethin’ here w/ changing the health funding…focusing on hospitals.

    And the government having more control over the money bein’ spent…the Obama government found it difficult ensurin’ the stimulus moneys got to the people by way of the States.

    Some of the insulation & BER probs were because of the funding goin’ thru State bodies.

    N’

  155. Whoops apologies Nas’ & Migs, I probably should have put my recent comments around Abbott’s response on this thread.

    Oh dear, it seems that there trouble in paradise (says Min gleefully :))

    Headline: Lib plea for cash to fight flood levy wrong: Hockey

    Federal shadow treasurer Joe Hockey admits the Liberal Party erred when asking supporters to donate money for the campaign against Labor’s planned flood levy.

    The admission has prompted the government to demand Opposition Leader Tony Abbott do the same and apologise.

    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/weather/lib-plea-for-cash-to-fight-flood-levy-wrong-hockey-20110207-1aj2c.html

  156. Hi everyone, isn’t it a funny thing that Abbott’s email has in the last day or so become “the Party email”. Just a slight alteration and he’s off the hook.

  157. Indeed, Pip. It was much the same when Howard was pressed about his claim of interest rates being lower under a Coalition government. When they kept going up he denied making the claim with weasling words that it was the party speaking, not him.

  158. Abbott or ‘the Party’ doesn’t matter as when push comes to shove he is the leader and as the leader he is responsible and especially for something that had his signature attached. But as Migs says Abbott takes after his mentor Howard.

  159. “AND YOU MOSES TONY SHALL STAND ATOP THE MOUNTAIN HOLDING ONE ENGRAVED STONE TABLET…AND ROAR ITS MESSAGE OUT TO ALL WHO WILL LISTEN”

    I wrote @ 11.32 am.

    Seems it inspired a thread on another blog.

    Cough.

    N’

  160. “Moses the giver of the law plus the Messiah…at least in Abbott’s own imagination.”

    and

    “I’ll chuck in a Joseph and raise you a John the Baptist.”

    Min & Migs,
    If McDonald’s had an archbishop Tony would be it.

    N’

  161. “Here’s a bloke who should be embarrassed: Former President George W. Bush has cancelled a visit to Switzerland, where he was to address a Jewish charity gala, due to the risk of legal action against him for alleged torture”

    So Migs,
    no Jewish Mission Accomplished.

    Bush did a Toblerone in his shorts.

    N’

  162. I really wish he had have taken the trip. I understand that there are a number of persons from the Bush administration who similarly find the need to stay at home.

  163. Now if Tone is Moses and the Messiah, who would Hockey be. Friar Tuck? Or is it Tryer F.. whoops did I say that 😀

  164. Migs, I’ll see your John the Baptist and raise you a Virgin Mary.

    I really wish he had have taken the trip. I understand that there are a number of persons from the Bush administration who similarly find the need to stay at home.

    With the Rodent along for company and to hopefully share a gaol cell..

  165. News for Abbott’s budget cuts will probably be released throughout today, but here is what we have so far.

    “…cuts to the schools building program, GP super clinics and water buybacks”

    “$373 million cut in foreign aid to Africa”

    It seems that Bron isn’t happy about this amount being ripped from her portfolio and wants cuts to come from elsewhere. This one surprises me not at all, after all who cares about all of those brown and black people in Africa..no votes to be won there.

    Schools building program? All the ‘important’ schools already have everything they need. Super clinics? OMG no. These are meant to encourage bulk billing. I mean to say we’ve got to encourage private health insurance by making access to GPs and specialists as expensive and as hard to come by as possible.

    http://www.theage.com.au/national/lib-row-on-budget-cuts-20110207-1ak5l.html

  166. “AND YOU MOSES TONY SHALL STAND ATOP THE MOUNTAIN HOLDING ONE ENGRAVED STONE TABLET…AND ROAR ITS MESSAGE OUT TO ALL WHO WILL LISTEN”

    Crap Nas.

    I normally agree with most of what you state and some of it is inspired but you really are full of it on this one.

    I’ve thought about Moses-Abbott and how I could tie it into a post many times since Abbott came onto the scene and reb’s Charlton Heston as Moses bit was elysian.

    Note that reb didn’t so much as paint Abbott as Moses on the mountain but related it to the movie with Charlton Heston and Charlton Heston playing Abbott with other Coalition members being played by famous classical Hollywood actors.

  167. Min, looks like the opposition are having a bit of difficulty opposing. Those ‘easy’ savings trumpeted by tabot don’t appear to be that easy, even for those who have been shown to be less than honest with their budgetry figures.

  168. TomR, Abbott changed his tune on the easy bit the other day, when he contradicted his previous statement on it being easy by saying savings would be difficult to find.

    Haven’t the link at the moment, but it was posted here or over at GT.

    Of course, as normal the media didn’t lambast him for yet another of his frequent contradictions, and media commentators are Gillard bashing at the moment because of the Newspoll based on a statement Abbott made about her being wooden when the real reason is that the media continually takes up Abbott’s contradictory points as gospel to bash the government with.

  169. I watched ABC news last night, and was quite dissapointed with the way the new oversight committee into disaster spending was introduced as ‘to prevent teh same mistakes that were made with the BER and insulation schemes’, and then highlighting that it was to stopp the waste. I also noted Gillards comment was cut off, as I had heard it on the radio just prior to it. On the TV, they played this piece

    ‘”I have learned some things rolling out major construction projects [such as the Building the Education Revolution] …’

    what they left out was the remainder, which to me was telling in the light of their introduction to the story

    ‘ and I would remind you that in many thousands of projects, complaint rates were at 3 per cent,” she said.’

    (text taken from http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2011/02/07/3131939.htm?site=news )

    It also appears that this is a meme that will continue, that the government is admitting these earlier projects were ‘wasteful’ and they will not repeat them. I hope the party comes out strong to rectify this, else they will be tarred with this perception for a long time.

  170. ‘Abbott changed his tune on the easy bit the other day, when he contradicted his previous statement on it being easy by saying savings would be difficult to find.’

    Yes, it was on Insiders, and he was actually pressed on this. I’ll stick with the easy one at the mo, as the hard one didn’t appear to be scripted 😉

  171. Mobius, you’ve made yer views clear. Decided not to remain impartial. I’m sorry you feel that way. But I’m used to bein’ criticised for standing up to that particular blogger by those he dazzles. And receiving no public support.

    Considering the ongoing support I’ve given you here & on GT (and deservedly so) where you’ve been flayed alive on more than one occasion I guess I expected better.

    I obviously deceived myself.

    It wasn’t a pattern of behaviour by that particular blogger I woulda said nuthin’. Two other bloggers have said same to me.

    Some are far too competitive & selfish in this game if ya ask me.

    I’m working on another post now so it matters little at this point.

    BTW, thankyou for the compliments w/in the attack comment.

    And I would sincerely luv to see you post…I believe you are a talented writer & superb researcher.

    N’

  172. Migs time and time again when Abbott has to negotiate anything, even within his own party, he fails, yet the MSM and apparently over 50% of the population want this man to negotiate for us on the world stage.

    If anything illustrates how much of a failure this man is as a leader it’s his inability to negotiate reasonable concessional outcomes on anything. This is because he always wants everything his way or noway which is always confrontational. It is also the reason the Liberals hide him away as much as possible only to wheel him out for carefully scripted wooden media pieces.

  173. Tom, Sky are playing the same game with commentators complete with a sneering tone to their voices ask questions such as You don’t want this to go the same way as the BER rorts, do you.

    Talk about a loaded question. Yes I do… or, No I don’t…

  174. Migs, Sky are being so lay back about Abbott’s ‘strife’ that they resemble little puppies waiting to having their tummies tickled.

  175. Tom R
    Re your post at 9.43
    I saw the TV piece you refer to.
    To cut Gillard off in such a manner can only be deliberate misrepresentation.
    Never thought I’d see Aunty sink to that.
    Oakes on 9 ran the standard “waste” mythology in his reporting.
    Re Abbott; I remarked on TPS that he won’t be picked up for ditching his phony “bipartisanship” the instant it suited him. He now has pretty much what he asked for, a lib numbers man liasing with the government & he’s been allowed yet again to run the “Labor can’t manage money” line unmolested.

  176. Pip, I could not help but agree with you 🙂 I’m actually getting a wee bit suspicious about Hockey’s motives in suddenly standing up against Abbott. He did the same when he decided to contest the party leadership position..that is, started to get himself into the newspapers by putting forward opinions opposing that of his leader.

  177. I note the oo is not afraid of putting words in Gillards mouth, while fastiduously ignoring exactly what she did say, which exposes the lie of what they are attempting portray.

    ‘In an attempt to lift Labor’s policy-delivery credentials, the Prime Minister also admitted she had learned from the waste linked to Kevin Rudd’s $42 billion economic stimulus program, including parts of her own $16.2bn Building the Education Revolution.’

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/julia-gillard-vows-no-repeat-of-ber-waste-over-flood-and-cyclone-recovery/story-fn59niix-1226001815174

    I wonder how many media outlets will follow suit. I’ll have a stab, all of them!

  178. Hockey is hohoho-ing like a warped and twisted santa claus…a fund for Disaster relief? that’s what the budget is for.

  179. I’ve just been watching Julia on Sky giving the tribute to the soldier recently killed in Afghanistan. The emotion was overwhelming and my heart went out to her as she struggled several times to control her voice but couldn’t contain her tears. A very moving moment. Let’s just hope that those with a sarcastic bent will hold their tongues.

  180. From Facebook friend: “Indonesian Govt donated $1m to Qld flood relief fund and now Tony Abbott wants to cut their aid funding for schools and foreign aid to Africa . . . oh and of course stop the NBN”.

  181. Migs, it will only reflect on themselves..no doubt the same lousy one’s who have said that because they’ve donated 50cents that they don’t want to pay the levy or why should I pay I don’t live in Qld.

  182. “Hockey is hohoho-ing like a warped and twisted santa claus…a fund for Disaster relief? that’s what the budget is for.”

    Just watched their press speech on Sky Digital Min…Hockey was attrocious…not a great performance. He seems intimidated by Abbott.

    Abbott came across like an automaton…what an excruciating negabore he is.

    “A very moving moment.”

    Watched a snippet on ABC 24…moving indeed. We forget that Julia has had alot of pressure on her of late as PM, coordinating emergency funding…running the country…not just politicising & sniping like hammock Abbott…havin’ been to some of these disaster-struck areas & spoken to the scared, traumatised…she’s probably kept the pain under the surface until now.

    N’

  183. You can bet your bottom dollar she’ll be condemned for it.

    During the Qld floods she was criticised for not being emotional enough, while on the other hand, a tearful Bligh was condemned by the RWDBs for being too emotional to be a leader.

    There’s no middle ground.

  184. Min, @ 12.27pm [8th] I think Hockey and Robb are falling over each other in their desperation to show what clever fellas they are.. maybe they can see a chance to further their own ambitions. Pity for them is they’re not very convincing. Hell, even POO Pyne wants to have a crack at a promotion. While the mad Abbott is giving character assessments of the Labor govt., there are threats close behind him.
    I heard a little of his “condolence” speech while I was driving a while ago and all I remember is the bit about being “a government in waiting”. Silly bugger can’t help himself really.

  185. Pip, Abbott seemed to rouse himself out of his usual stupor to make himself seem semi-sincere, at least he did in his praise of Gillard but went downhill rapidly after that.

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