Open Forum: Questions Asked, Answers Needed

The popularity of the current Labor Government is perilously low.  In my opinion this is undeserved.  The team is winning but they trail on the scoreboard.

Is it low because this government has failed, or is it low because there is only a perceived lack of success?  Is it low because this government offers no vision for the future, or is it low because it is perceived they offer no vision for the future?  Either answer, the electorate sees the coalition as the preferred alternative government.

Perhaps, dear readers, one among you can come up with the answer.

138 comments on “Open Forum: Questions Asked, Answers Needed

  1. I’m going to commence by posing another question: Is Labor’s popularity so low? There was a proposition put forward I believe via Crikey (but don’t quote me) that a reason that Labor was showing low numbers in the polls was due to demographics.

    As has been constant for a long time, the under 30yrs age group veers to the left. The proposition was that this demographic is being severely under-represented in many of the polls because:

    1. home-stayers – this age group now remain at home for a lot longer than say even 7 years ago
    2. they are not at home when the polls are conducted – I believe that this is Friday nights and Saturdays
    3. and this is the relatively new factor – many young people no longer use land lines **this was the one mentioned in the article..which unfortunately I have been unable to locate.

  2. I believe another factor in Labor’s current ill fortune is the successful right wing demonisation of the Greens and tying in the Greens as being the proxy government at the moment. Labor didn’t help by attacking the Greens.

  3. Migs, I remember you saying for quite some time that the government is indeed achieving a lot but that it’s going unreported.

    Clearly Labor cannot rely on the media to achieve this as Howard could, therefore A LOT more needs to be done and this means as many government ministers as possible and I think especially the new guard such as Combet getting their faces on the small screen as often as possible.

    And the reason for the small screen is: if you look at Labor’s website there is press release after press release and not too jolly many of them ever get printed. One happy snap of Abbott in lycra and it’s front page news.

  4. But Min whenever the government does get on the small screen or they announce and do anything the media always preface their stuff with “the opposition says”. This happened many times today and more on the ABC than anywhere else.

    What this does is subordinate the government’s messages and achievements whilst raising the opposition’s standing.

    It is even worse now on the ABC as they often start political pieces with “the opposition says” on government announcements then cross to an opposition spokesperson on the item and only then do they briefly mention the government’s point of view if they do at all.

    I don’t know how you counter this.

  5. “Labor didn’t help by attacking the Greens.”

    I totally agree Adrian.

    That was an incredibly stupid thing to do.

    I think the poor polls, and sliding disatisfaction for Julia reflect the mood that she can’t be trusted.

    A couple of key examples spring to mind:

    1. The knifing of Kevin Rudd. Still a lot of people particularly in QLD are angry about this.

    2. The subsequent reward/promotion of previously unknown “conspirators” who were key architects in Rudd’s removal like Mark Arbib and Paul Howes. Reinforcing the perception that Labor under Kevin Rudd had been overthrown by union hacks.

    3. Julia Gillard’s staunch opposition to same-same marriage despite overwhelming public sentiment in favour of it. No reason given, just blind prejudice.

    4. Subsequently pandering to religious groups reassuring them of her opposition to same-sex marriage and euthenasia.

    5. An inability to articulate Labor’s accomplishments effectively.

    I once had a lot of respect for Julia Gillard but no more.

    Lindsay Tanner, who I do have a lot of respect for, must’ve seen the writing on the wall.

    Pity really. So much opportunity to do so much good in terms of ending discrimination against same sex couples, and yet Julia Gillard opts for the conservative vote.

    The fact that the greens have picked up so many votes in inner city electorates reflects how poorly Gillard has guaged public sentiment on this issue alone.

    As I said, then going about attacking the greens for being “progressive” was just dumb.

    She is becoming more and more like Margaret Thatcher with each passing day, but even Thatcher supported gay law reform.

  6. Adrian, I was thinking about this..”the opposition says” and isn’t it a pity that no journo-satirist is yet to pick up on this one. Humour is the way to take the Abbott team and their backers down a peg or several.

    Irrespective of the politics, the Abbott team is a very talentless crew, but they are given status by a media who don’t seem to notice that Abbott especially but also Hockey and J.Bishop have become almost caricatures of themselves.

    The only way to get around the trick of getting an opposition spokesperson to be the ‘commentator’ on a government announcement is to have a government spokesperson doing all or most of the announcing. If the Libs can find a spare person to appear on TV, then so should the government. Howard used to be the master of the Ground Pronouncement but it seems that recently, perhaps due to a much faster news cycle that it means spokespeople having to physically go into the studio.

  7. Reb, I have a feeling that Gillard is still listening to bad advice. Some brainless wonder seems to have advised her that Abbott will attack her for being 1. unmarried 2. an atheist. Solution, be anti equal marriage rights and keep up the funding for school chaplains. I think that this is why many people are feeling uneasy about Gillard because these particular stances do-not-compute.

  8. Julia is queer taking a conservative position on same sex marriage – most Australians are not against the idea.

    The side issue of Julia using a stick on the Greens (a lover’s spat) is of no consequence.

    Ultimately, the only realistic explanation of why Labor is on the slide – the carbon dioxide tax.

    Labor is losing and may need to replace Julia with Martin Ferguson if they are to have any chance of winning the next election.

  9. I heard Fairfax’ John Garnaut on the radio, I think ABC News Radio, but not sure, on Tuesday morning giving a report on the PM’s meeting with the Chinese leaders.

    In the space of less than a minute he bagged the BER, he hoped “Julia Gillard’s” diplomatic skills didn’t cause her diplomatic efforts to “blow up” on the visit to China, and finally he referred to our PM as “her ladyship”.

    With that attitude from a supposedly senior journalist, what hope has Labor got.
    Would it be a fair assumption that the Press echo chamber is full of such comments?
    Most news begins with the “fact” that the PM isn’t interested in Foreign Affairs, when in fact she said it hadn’t been her passion. There is a difference.
    I think that the government needs to spend some money on the best advertising company in the country and learn how to sell their message effectively.
    The problem is that the same media which is manipulating every line to criticise the government would be putting their hands out for the advertising fees.

    Sorry Migs, that’s not really an answer, more a rant.

  10. Here is an example of the standard practice of the journalists, making a suggestion, ie., “Julia Gillard has no interest in Foreign Affairs”, which creates the opportunity to say she “struggled to find her feet”, and repeat as often as possible this kind of mischief.

    http://www.theage.com.au/business/crude-economics-vs-common-humanity-20110425-1du3s.html

    WHEN President Lee Myung-Bak set eyes upon Prime Minister Julia Gillard in Seoul yesterday he kissed her, held her tight and clasped her hand for a fraction longer than diplomatic etiquette would normally recommend.

    We have a “very special relationship,” said Lee to Gillard, as she smiled.

    “It makes me feel as if I have known you a long time.”

    Lee’s advances were political gold for the Australian Prime Minister, who had struggled to find her feet in the short time she has been on the international stage.

    If I ever have to mention this journalist again I think I’ll just refer to him as “Garnaut”.

  11. Another technique is to attack the messenger. If one doesn’t like the message you can be certain that next will be things dredged up from the past to attack the person on a personal level.

    The obvious recent one is the attack on Andrew Wilkie and the poker machine reforms. To test this theory, at the moment we have Peter Garrett mooting reforms on funding to private schools “the axe to fall..” the headline in the OO reads. Will we now see a resumption of personal attacks against Peter Garrett?

  12. ‘I think that the government needs to spend some money on the best advertising company in the country and learn how to sell their message effectively.’

    Ahh, no. The 60 % of the electorate who think Julia is on the nose would raise a fuss knowing its taxpayer dollars are being spent to prop up the government.

    Anyway, I don’t think the government can afford to buy editorial policy at this late stage in the electoral cycle without being noticed.

  13. Howard spent bloody Millions on nothing but self promoting advertisements, but if the Labor Party try to use the media about their ACTUAL ACHIEVEMENTS which their are plenty of , the Opposition and the radio shock jocks would be screaming their bloody lungs out about taxpayers money being spent on wasted infrastructure like (Schools, Trade Apprenticeships, Health, NBN, Roads,Rail, Cyclones,Floods) plus slugging minimal taxes from the Billionaires&Millionaires Club to increase the standard of living for Pensioners and the Lowly Paid Workers, I can keep on going, but I have an appointment with my fully paid Medicare Doctor.

  14. Lee’s advances were political gold for the Australian Prime Minister, who had struggled to find her feet in the short time she has been on the international stage.

    This has come about because Gillard is actually doing very well on the international stage.

    Nothing illustrates this more than when in South Korea for the ANZAC commemoration and after she had finished her dedication they interviewed some old diggers who were there. They all said she was doing a marvellous job and one stated that even though he would never vote Labor, Julia Gillard was fantastic.

    All the positive stuff on Gillard coming out of her trip is utterly irking the media and they are doing everything they can to put here down and also put Abbott into the limelight in a positive way.

  15. Howard spent bloody Millions on nothing but self promoting advertisements.

    Crowey, try billions. In eight years he spent over $2billion on government advertising of which only a small fraction was genuine, the rest was purely party political advertising at tax payers expense.

  16. Regarding PM Gillard being exceptionally capable on the world stage: And how does the Murdoch media play it, just have a look…

    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/gai-waterhouse-hits-out-at-julia-gillards-fashion-on-world-stage/story-e6frf7jo-1226045269252

    When will our dear Prime Minister go to (Sydney hairdressing salon) Valonz?” Ms Waterhouse wrote on her blog after seeing a photo of Ms Gillard visiting tsunami-ravaged Japan.

    “She desperately needs a make-over. It wasn’t the carnage behind that gave me the horrors, but the woman standing in front of it.

    Now have a good look at the photo, in fact I’ll put it here.

    I am absolutely appalled. The Prime Minister of Australia visits tsumani-devastated Japan and how do the Murdoch rags play it? With a critique on the PM’s fashion sense. What exactly were they and the obviously very shallow Ms. Gai Waterhouse expecting her to wear..a ballgown and a diamond tiara!!

  17. There are people, let’s call them for what they are, idiots, who implicitly believe what Andrew Bolt states is fact, yet he has been the journalist whose been wrong more often than any other.

    From all his utter crap and proven errors on climate change, his statements on the safety of Japan’s nuclear accident and in this example the safety of flying during erupting volcanoes.

    Bolt: Alarmist models shut Europe’s air travel

    Reality: Volcanic ash air shutdown the ‘right’ decision

    But even though he is irrefutably proven wrong so often the one thing you will never see him do is admit he’s wrong. If his advice was taken on face value the results would be the death and injury of thousands, but that doesn’t seem to worry him, and so it is with climate change. Like others he makes wild and nonsensical statements at the minimum based on shonky science and often on no science at all, but asks to be taken seriously. If he has been so wrong on life and death matters like nuclear reactor accidents and the dangers of volcanic ash then why should anyone believe him on climate change.

  18. $2Billion spent. ME. if I had said that amount, I’m sure the temptation would had been to great for the likes of Neil, Ol’Sancty,scaper,ToM,Tony eta from Reb’s site crying out lies lies lies, so I thought I’d keep it moderate and say in the Millions.

  19. I’ve posted this over at at Gutter Trash, but it probably fits here too…

    The government is well and truly on the nose. Gillard is no vote magnet, but she cannot even establish her ascendancy over an opposition which the unattractive Abbott leads.
    It is on the nose for good reason, and it isn’t the fault of the media.
    It is all the fault of the government, and the overblown hyperbole they’ve indulged in.
    • “There will be no carbon tax.”
    • “We will build consensus about climate change during this term.”
    • We no longer hear about the issue being the most critical moral, social and economic issue in the world.
    • “Another boat, another policy failure”
    • “You’d turn them (the boats) back”
    • The stimulus was overblown and wasteful – unemployment was never going to get to double figures.
    • The stimulus continued long, long after it was even remotely required to achieve the objectives the government had established for it.
    • The stimulus continued for political reasons, it did not continue for the sake of the economy.
    • We are now paying the price for the excessive spending, and will continue to pay the price for a decade or more.
    • Union hacks and factional warlords, outside the parliament, knifed a prime Minister, without the prior knowledge of the ALP MPs.
    • The government promised transparency as a political lever, and is being punished for neglecting the standard.
    • Where are the health reforms so massively talked up?
    • Where are the social reforms – gay marriage for example?

    There are just so many examples of the government breaching faith with the electorate, people have stopped listening to it. All this isn’t the fault of Julia Gillard, but she isn’t helping.

    (and all this without dealing with the political consequences of her appalling dress sense, or Hyacinth the Hairdresser)

  20. Crud ToM.

    The usual guff from you and it doesn’t fit here but no surprise you chose this moment to post a list of negativities, something you have done several times before. You are up to your usual trick of diverting attention when Gillard has performed so well on the world stage.

    How about a list of Abbott’s failures ToM, I’ve never seen you produce one yet, it would be enormously long and horrifying.

    Now imagine this, Tony Abbott strutting on the world stage.

  21. Adrian, I have no intention of disrupting the good will here by responding to your silly claims that I’ve diverted attention. I’ll only point out that Miglo posed the following –

    Is it low because this government has failed, or is it low because there is only a perceived lack of success? Is it low because this government offers no vision for the future, or is it low because it is perceived they offer no vision for the future? Either answer, the electorate sees the coalition as the preferred alternative government.

    My comments are more relevant to the topic of the thread than your ramblings about media commentators and the Howard Government.

  22. Labor will continue to slide in the opinion polls all the way to the election and a change of leader probably won’t save them. I blame the Greens for this unholy mess.

  23. It is low for a number of reasons ToM, none the least being the constant negative attacks by the media that are relentless. But you only hone in on the negative aspects and then point them out to the exclusion of all other causes as well, then you bring in one of your one sided negativity lists, which by the way your past ones have been wrong on both the insulation scheme and the BER.

    This government and the Rudd one before it have done a lot of good things but you just do exactly what the right wing media want, just hone in on the negatives, no matter how piddling or even if they are actually true, making you no better than the Liberal army of zombie trolls who do the same thing but under scripted guidance.

  24. And el gordo if Labor doesn’t continue to slide in the polls will you stand up and state you got it wrong and were just making wild uninformed statements?

  25. Regarding “appalling dress sense” then presumably Sir Robert Menzies would never have been re-elected OMG those eyebrows.

  26. Crowey, Menzies is the eyebrows with Howard definitely the tracky-dacks. That man has absolutely no fashion sense..didn’t he realize that trackies made him look shorter.

  27. What I find more concerning than the slide in the polls are the tones of conversation I am starting to hear. I’m lately hearing such statements as “I’ve always been a Labor voter but never again”. Most people are also saying that neither major party is worthy of their vote.

  28. Too right, ME, we have a choice between what ToM calls Gillard’s appalling dress sense or perhaps Tony Abbott strutting on the world stage as our

    Australian Idol – Not!

    We women do not like it
    When Abbott comes on tele,
    Showing off that he’s so fit.
    The sight of his flat belly
    Simply makes us have to spit.

    Prancing on the beach all bare,
    Does not impress one little bit.
    We shrink from all that body hair
    And budgie smugglers whose tight fit
    Tells the world how little’s there.

    Not that he needs a large tool kit,
    Or one at all, to be PM.
    For that he’ll always be unfit.
    He only knows how to condemn;
    Tear things down, turn everything to shit!

  29. patricia, that’s going to keep me laughing all day; it reminds me of the revolting Madame Thenardier, from Les Mis, referring to Monsieur Thenardier. Hand waving in a southerly direction, she whispers “not much there”.
    Gentlemen, just to be clear, this unkind chatter refers only to nasty, objectionable, right-wing politicians.

  30. Miglo. After the experience we have had here in Qld with both Labor and the LNP, one selling off our assets, and the other not even knowing what day of the week it is, I’m incline to agree with those that say neither of the major parties are worthy of their vote.

  31. el gordo, I second what Crowey said, Howard spent billions advertising nothing in particular. There wasn’t anything to boast about, but it did distract from the fact that he did bugger all to improve infrastructure, hospitals, schools, etc.,

  32. ‘So the Left Wing el gordo now shows his true colours.’

    In the beginning Labor dallied with the Greens out of political expediency and it became addictive.

    This growing dependence seemed harmless and it appeared to be a safe marriage. Not a bad look and the people thought it worthy, so what went wrong?

    It is the single issue of climate change. The young have been indoctrinated up to the age of 30, but they forgot about the old codgers with long memories who recognized a sham marriage.

    ‘Most people are also saying that neither major party is worthy of their vote.’ Interesting point, Migs. It may be the time for new political formations, away from the Westminster system.

    Thank the gods we have a robust democracy and active Third Estate.

  33. Miglo, this is the main reason for the bad polls. The same daily drivel from ltd news goes like this:

    Abbott talks carbon as Gillard courts China

    Guest columnist Ben Packham From: The Australian April 27, 2011 6:26AM
    Tony Abbott celebrates a year since the CPRS died as Julia Gillard woos resource-hungry China

    PM’s Diary: Julia Gillard is in China where she will meet today with president Hu Jintao. Back home, Acting Prime Minister Wayne Swan will stand up this morning to discuss the latest CPI figures, which are expected to show the impact of floods and Cyclone Yasi on fruit and veg prices.

    Tony Abbott is in Whyalla visiting a OneSteel plant to discuss the impact of Labor’s carbon tax. The trip follows warnings from SA AWU state sec Wayne Hanson that industrial towns like Whyalla would be “wiped off the map” by the tax.

    The PM goes to China to meet with their leaders, and Tony Abbott goes to…..WHYALLA

  34. Patricia to add to your visual, on ABC 24 this morning they had to show Tony at Christmas Island lifting weights. The reporter than added that Tony had then flown on to some mining town where he was seen at a bar drinking shots and chatting up a blonde. Apparently the drinking of shots was because during the election campaign he was photograhed drinking a shandy, not a good look. But I ask “chatting up the blonde” is this the “action man ” or “family man “at leisure in a mining town?

  35. Someone else is on this topic:

    http://www.canberratimes.com.au/news/opinion/editorial/general/hairy-chests-on-villawood/2145355.aspx

    Hairy chests on Villawood
    BY JACK WATERFORD
    27 Apr, 2011 04:00 AM

    Chris Bowen is sending a message to News Ltd and it is that the media giant can call the shots, at least until ABC listeners complain.
    We are back in the business of sending messages about refugees. Not to people fleeing war and oppression, these are just the pawns. It’s messages to staff at Rupert Murdoch’s News Ltd newspapers. And shock jocks. And to the people they are conning about there being a serious crisis to refugee entry administration and our immigration detention system

  36. Pip, I agree that Howard spent taxpayer dollars in praise of himself, to help stay in office, but that has been par for the course.

    Bob Carr was Premier of NSW for a long time and used his journalistic skills to get positive coverage, most of the boofheads these days don’t have a clue.

  37. el gordo, “It is the single issue of climate change. The young have been indoctrinated up to the age of 30, but they forgot about the old codgers with long memories who recognized a sham marriage.”

    The “old codgers” were indoctrinated to believe that the Liberals would save them from the Russian invasion.

    Are you an “old codger” or a young Liberal?

  38. el gordo, it’s ok for John Howard to spend government revenue to sing his own praises and “it’s par for the course”.
    I suggested that the government spend to advertise their achievements to the public.

    “sing his own praises”, or, the govt., advertises to inform the public of it’s achievements in an effort to combat the lies from ltd news and their copy cat, the ABC. Big difference.

  39. While on the topic of scripted guidance for Liberal trolls, beware of “inclusive statements” such as “everyone in my street will never vote Labor again” or “I was a Labor voter but will not support them again”. These are scripted blog comments aimed at the less intelligent voter who wants to conform to some non-existent “group”.

  40. Sue @ 12.21pm I can assure you it wasn’t me 🙂 Exactly..Abbott scratches his derriere and it’s front page news, Gillard goes to China and here comes the tag line about something Abbott said.

  41. Lunalava, I agree. I was bailed up one time by someone claiming to be a swinging voter who then proceeded to repeat verbatim every Liberal Party slogan in the book.

  42. Although Julia Gillard leads Tony Abbott by a country mile as the preferred Prime Minister, there are sections of the media who fail to observe this. From Polls come and go, and so do leaders Niki Savva wrote yesterday:

    A diary meeting six weeks ago planned Abbott’s visit to Christmas Island, well before the rioting at Villawood. Alice Springs was slotted in later and Whyalla was added after the Australian Workers Union said last week a carbon tax would wipe the steel city off the map. Last month Abbott wrote to the Prime Minister suggesting they go to Alice Springs together. She spurned him, miffed that he had briefed this newspaper about the letter, so – as he did last week on mental health and two weeks ago on welfare to work – he has proceeded with his strategy to trump her and remake himself.

    Trump her. Is that his plan, or is that the journalist’s wish?

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/commentary/polls-come-and-go-and-so-do-leaders/story-e6frgd0x-1226044649356

  43. Migs, from your link.

    While the monarchist, conservative opposition leader is visiting town camps discussing his proposal for a second intervention, the republican prime minister will be getting done up to the nines for the royal wedding.

    There’ya’go Abbott is doing something serious while the PM is dressing up in a frock.

  44. Miglo, “remake himself” ?? Whatever for, he think he’s perfect PM material already.

    Nikki Savva is a regular contributor of Liberal hype.

  45. Min, maybe they could swap so Tones can go to the wedding. The PM can go to Whyalla and he can dress up to the nines in a frock 🙂

  46. And the conclusion made by Nikki Savva is “They will want to ditch the policies or ditch the leader.”. Then it’s most definitely wishful thinking. There is no chance whatsoever of this happening, the reason being that Labor did both with near disastrous consequences. They will not do it again.

  47. Mining camps are rough and ready for anything, but I think they would have second thoughts when it comes to Tonie(Abbott) in a frock.

  48. ‘I suggested that the government spend to advertise their achievements to the public.’

    Fine if they are cruising along, but it would be counterproductive at the moment.

    If Martin Ferguson took over and rearranged his front bench based on ability, Labor might win the next election.

    They would have to scrap the CO2 tax and then they could legitimately advertise this great achievement. Highlighting how much money they had saved the taxpayer.

  49. I can say without fear of contradiction that Abbott’s trip to Whyalla to sing songs with the union is nothing but a pathetic exercise in brown-nosing.

    From the party that hates unions, hates unionists and would screw them with Workchoices given half a chance, to now pander them is simply shameful.

  50. I see that our Prime Minister has graciously decided to provide an answer to Gai Waterhouse’s asinine comment about How to Look Cool In A Tsunami Zone.

    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/gai-waterhouse-hits-out-at-julia-gillards-fashion-on-world-stage/story-e6frf7jo-1226045269252

    “These were truly moving events, and I don’t want any collateral debate to distract from that.”

    However, as I am not quite as gracious as our PM, here is Gai in all her glory..OMG what was she thinking pink floral is so passé (groan!).

  51. The most depressing thing about that story Min is the question the paper asks it readers

    ‘Does the PM needs a make-over?’

    Shouldn’t the question be more about how disgusting the comments were in the context they were made?

    We just watched the story on the news. It was so banal. Yea yea, jules is swanning arounf overseas, yea, looks like they’re loving her, and she’s raising all the right issues, boooring. DID YOU SEE WHAT SHE WORE?!

    Our media are not improving, they are devolving.

    You wanna know why Labor are doing badly in hte polls, this one episode highlights it perfectly. All the average person gets to see is Julia is a frump on the world stage (in their opinion anyway)

    Min, that photo belies the articles claims about the alleged ‘impecable’ taste

  52. Grog has a way with words as well.

    So the big news today was obviously that fashion doyen Gai Waterhouse had criticised Julia Gillard for looking drab while touring the Japanese towns that had been utterly destroyed by the tsunami.

    And I have to say, Gai is on the money. How dare the PM of this country not turn up at a scene of devastation without a beaut looking fascinator and a frock that would pass muster in the mounting yard on Cup day?

    http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/

  53. Eddie, that sounds like Mungo alright. Never get him started on religion nor the monarchy or you’re in for a good ear-bashing!

  54. Tom, I agree this is exactly the purpose. Gillard does her job as PM and so the media concentrates on the trivia..her frock.

  55. ‘Gillard does her job as PM and so the media concentrates on the trivia’

    Or, in the case of Swan, he does his job, and the meeja just M.S.U.

    ‘Banana inflation trips up Treasurer

    Wayne Swan once dubbed it the “banana alibi” — but the nation’s lunchbox luxury is being fingered once again for feeding inflation. ‘

    when the actual contents of the story says, quite clearly,

    ‘Commenting on the CPI results yesterday, Mr Swan said the Reserve Bank tended to “look through those temporary spikes” when deciding whether to raise interest rates. “I think it’s been obvious to anyone who has been out shopping, when they’ve been putting the fruit and veggies in the shopping trolley, that there has been a tremendous impact from these natural disasters on prices at the checkout,” he said.

    Banana prices, however, will not bend the RBA’s judgment when it next meets to ponder raising rates. The Australian Bureau of Statistics yesterday said banana prices would not be included in the CPI data sent to the RBA.’

    So, Swan actually declares that they will ignore these temporary spikes, quite unlike howard and costello, who blamed everything on banannas, and apparently, Swan has fallen for the same trick???

    Also, contrast this, where the reporters are onto the case that spikes like this are generally ignored, with the way the price of banannas were reported back when costello was sleeping at the helm, and how they ‘had such a devestating effect on the rest of inflation’.

    You wanna know why Labor are so far behind in the polls, the main reason is the constant misrepresentation of facts like this by our media. Of course, there are other issues (yes, Labor couldn’t sell a beer at a barbie), but this is the most influential of all. Unfortunately, when all you get is one story, that is generally what you think is going on.

  56. Tom, I was just reading an article about this.

    Prices are determined by supply and demand. That means you can have two types of inflation, price rises caused by excess demand or price hikes resulting from restricted supplies.

    The one that hits the RBA’s alarm bell is inflation caused by excess demand, by people spending more money. That’s not what we have here at the moment.

    And author Ian Verrender’s 2nd sentence is his opinion and one which I agree with 100%.

    Once again, the fear mongers out there have been delivered a good headline but unfortunately the analysis is way off the beam.

    http://www.theage.com.au/business/ignore-the-halfbaked-rates-analysis-20110428-1dxea.html#ixzz1KlNCZHKW

  57. Yes Min, the only people who want an interest rate rise more than the media are the libs. And every time that they are proven wrong, they emerge without any egg on their face, when in fact they should be covered in the stuff.

    But, I guess, if they keep saying it, sooner or later they’ll get it right. Even a broken clock is right twice a day 😉

  58. ‘may I quote you’

    Just keep the references up to date 😉

    (mind you, I have no idea who I stole it from lol)

  59. Min @9.39am 27/4, advice on fashion from Gai Waterhouse, ffs? What’s the world coming to? Has dear old Gai looked in the mirror lately?

    And Gillard’s job is to be PM, not some f’cken model, super or otherwise. Her outfit looked appropriate for the occasion, maybe a little severe for her colouring, but she was visiting a disaster site, not going to the Academy Awards.

    Min, all Gillard has to do to stop any further criticism of her dress sense is have that photo enlarged and whip it out at every opportunity.

    I love the current crop of shite that Gillard has broken all these promises from the LIEberal trolls who were so completely relaxed and comfortable with Mr Core and Non-Core Promises and his never-ending lies and obfuscations.

    One of the silliest things the government did was let the Smuggles Set and Emperor Rupert get away with trashing the BER and Insulation Scheme.

    By not getting behind Garrett and getting stuck into the Smuggles Set for their frankly libelous labelling of Garrett as a murderer, they let theworld and his wife think they were weak and ineffectual.

    Had they pounced and savaged the Smuggles Set, this sustained and dishonest campaign by the Smuggles Set and the Murdochracy would have been nipped in the bud.

    The fact that the employers in all four insulation deaths have been found responsible has only rated a mention in the obits columns, when it should have been given front page status, shows the utter contempt the media has for the truth and for the lives of the four victims and their families.

    They are a disgrace and hopefully in a month’s time when the Smuggles set loses control of the Senate, perhaps something will be done to rip power from Emperor Rupert’s claws.

    And I still think the government should not renew contracts for ABC staff who report lies, gossip and innuendo as fact. No references should be given apart from the less than glowing “satisfactory performance” kiss of death.

  60. There you go..one for all the fashion police who have been critical about Julia’s choice of frock…enough fashion labels there to fill an online website!

    Looking smart as she left London’s Royal Garden Hotel, Ms Gillard emerged in an Anthea Crawford navy skirt, Carla Zampatti navy camisole, and a creamy, silver jacket by Perth designer Aurelio Costarella.

    The Australian leader carried a bag by Alan Pinkus who also designed her navy shoes.

  61. Last Monday a Newspoll was published which put support for a Republic at 41% its lowest in 17 years. As they say there is nothing like timing – how surprising a poll conducted around the time of the royal wedding shows increased support for the monarchy.

    Personally all I can think of is thank goodness all the gushing is over or is it…? I guess we can “look forward” to more of the same as next comes speculation about a New Monarch for Australia. This of course won’t happen (in fact I hope that it never will) around the time when the old Queen goes to her greater glory, and then only if Australia can stomach Charles and Camilla as our monarchs, and then after Wills and Kate (maybe delete Kate by then) and then it will be little Prince Murgatroyd’s turn.

    Disclaimer: I watched the wedding coverage to see the frock and to enjoy our PM beautiful and elegant in her all-Australian outfit.

  62. “Disclaimer: I watched the wedding coverage to see the frock and to enjoy our PM beautiful and elegant in her all-Australian outfit.”

    Not according to Virginia Trioli this morning.

    She canned the way the PM looked after a guest commentator praised Gillard and said that Julia had done Australia proud. Trioli was having none of that of course and criticised her jacket and looks. Trioli did this whilst wearing a dress similar to one I remember my long deceased grandma wearing when I was kid. Also what do you expect when Trioli said that in her household last night all the men were gushing over the men’s uniforms at the wedding.

    Of course if it had been Abbott who had gone to the wedding, Trioli would have been gushing all over him as she does when she goes on about Tony.

  63. At least you and I have taste Mobius. I thought that the PM looked stunning. And as for the fashion police, Gillard wears one button jackets due to the fact that she is short waisted…full stop.

  64. Carrying on the theme of everything negative for the PM, I grabbed this from the ltd news site as the PM made her appearance

    6.57pm Governer General Quentin Bryce has arrived in a striking fuschia number.

    6.55pm Julia Gillard and Tim Mathieson have arrived at the Abbey. Cue some very dignified milling about with an usher.

    6.49pm Sometimes-It girl Tara Palmer-Tomkinson has on a spectacularly blinding electric blue frock. Evidently not a fan of the less-is-more principle.

    6.47pm New dads Elton John and David Furnish arrive, grinning from ear-to-ear.

    It’s as if they have direct orders not to say anything positive whatsoever about the PM.

    Meanwhile, yabot can be knocking back shots in a bar and ogling other women and comparing their attributes with the PM and he is just a ‘Top Bloke’. (according to his worshipping media pals)

    Funny, I thought the term was sexist pig?

  65. Tom, wasn’t the usher an Australian..hence the “milling”, but of course news.com wouldn’t dream of mentioning that detail.

  66. Looking at this graph of the Vostok ice core which proves beyond reasonable doubt that temperatures lead increases in CO2.

    In particular 250,000 years ago there is a glaring example. I cannot see what all the fuss is about.

  67. Mobius, I’m getting the impression that denialists – when faced with evidence that breaks down their argument – shrug their shoulders and say ‘it’s nature doing its thing’ and bemoan that we can’t do anything about it anyway.

  68. No Min, they just move onto the next meme and when they reach the end of the denials they go back to the start and go down the list again.

    The old if you say something that isn’t true often enough then it becomes true. In this case it fails because the science doesn’t care how many times it is denied it just is. That is what the deniers just can’t get straight whilst the rest of the world and their leaders move on.

  69. Well, 250,000 years ago it didn’t amplify. But can anyone tell me why the Holocene is different to all the other interglacials?

  70. Look it up el gordo, you seem to be able to cherry picklook up all the stuff you need to support your flawed belief.

  71. Hmmm….it’s less like a mountain peak and more like a tableland. So the question I ask, why is it so?

  72. Migs do you remember the climate change sceptic, note sceptic not denier, that used to be on blogocrats who used similar a similar tactic to el gordo of cherry picking very complex historical climate events or current theories and threw them back at you with simplistic questions to answer.

    You could spend hours going through things and giving links and sources only to have them ignored and another inane question on a complex climate subject thrown back. He would also ignore anything you asked of him or picked him up on, same as what el gordo does.

    This bloke had a real angst against the BOM.

    Big difference to el gordo was that he was intelligent and had a background in science of some sort and came up with some lucid and valid points.

  73. Don’t get yourself in a knot, Mobius, this has nothing to do with human induced global warming and everything to do with civilization.

    As far as I can see nobody has ever questioned the extraordinary timing of the Younger Dryas which plunged the world back into 2000 years of ice age conditions before temperatures began to rise again at a more modest pace.

    There is debate about the cause of the YD, with an extraterrestrial link the most likely.

  74. ‘As far as I can see nobody has ever questioned the extraordinary timing of the Younger Dryas’

    ‘There is debate about the cause of the YD, with an extraterrestrial link the most likely.’

    ?????

    Next meme please 🙂

  75. Then why are you asking for detailed and complex scientific answers on climate in a non-science forum where there are no climate scientists or experts in the fields?

  76. ‘Then why are you asking for detailed and complex scientific answers on climate in a non-science forum where there are no climate scientists or experts in the fields?’

    Cos when he asked it on a science forum, he got detailed answers.

    I don’t think they gelled with his pre-conceived notions 😉

  77. I do remember a couple of them, Mobius. Sherlock comes to mind, as does chalks, please no!, SCM of Canberra; dontknowitall; the latter 5 being nasty pieces of work. I think dontknowitall was banned by Tim for his repeated suggestions that lefties and Labor politicians be put to death.

    Nice type.

  78. El gordo may have accidentally stumbled upon some truth with the suggestion that civilization itself may be contributing to global warming.

    I use my old home town of Port Augusta as an example. The last time I was there – 15 months ago – it reached 50C. Let me tell you that 50C is hot. Damn hot. But as old locals are I kept hearing the old story ‘you should have been here yesterday’. Apparently it used to be a much hotter place, but there was never the suggestion that the planet is cooling down. To combat the heat the council planted thousands of trees in and around the town. It has been scientifically proven that trees can reduce the local temperature.

    Now let’s look at what’s happening in the Amazon region: Massive deforistation. Look at what happened in the Mediteranian in the Middle Ages: Massive deforistation for the timber to be used in ship-building. The area has never recovered.

  79. Let’s begin a revegetation program, where ever we can in a CO2 enhanced environment.

    The Denialti believe it may be divine providence (or just a very interesting coincidence) as the world reaches the end of the Holocene – with so many mouths to feed.

  80. It was none of them Migs. He was rather pleasant and raised some excellent debating points but he did have the habit of cherry picking complex scientific topics and than asking detailed questions of ordinary posters who he knew couldn’t give an answer, then using that to put down AGW.

    Anyway it doesn’t matter as I was only reminded of him by the way el gordo trolls.

    And Tom you are so right as to why he doesn’t ask scientific questions on AGW on scientific blogs.

  81. That isn’t true Mobius, where do you think I get my education? You should get out more.

  82. El gordo re “where do you think I get my education should get out more.”

    El gordo, just in case you haven’t noticed the phrase ‘you should get out more’ doesn’t carry a huge amount of weight here..

    I really and sincerely do believe that you can do better than the phrase ‘you should get out more’. Speaking as a person who would like to get out more than less..el gordo, just go for it.

  83. ‘El gordo, education or information?’

    As I pointed out a while ago, it was neither, as he asks the same questions here as he did back at deltoid, and links to the same failed sites as he did back there, funnily enough sometimes even telling us not to use the same source of evidence to dispel these myths as was used there. As I just said, it must be due to its confronting nature (ie, it exposes his ideology in all its failings)

    Which is why I would rarely bother addressing his whinging, it’s all been taken care of before. That doesn’t mean, however, I won’t resist from partaking in a bit of sport here and then. As far as I’m concerned, deniers deserve it.

  84. ‘I withdraw the comment ‘you should get out more’.’

    And I’d just gone outside too 😦

  85. JohnD or something like that ME? Always raised the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) or some such thing?

  86. I thought that I might play this one again..

    Being a lyrics person, the soft and mellow ones, but with more than a little soul..

    ..for your time will come yes your time will come can you lay me down in meadows soft and green and can you lay me down and talk to me of things like stars that burn into the night and moons that turn with purple lines that’s what I want…

  87. Tom and el gordo..by some amazing moment of sycronisation I also posted the song Stop Your Fussin’.

    Bacchus you’re excused..as long as you play a song for me 🙂

  88. I’d rather Bacchus sing a song. My guess is he’d be a bit like Dean Martin.

    Drinking and singing at the same time. 😆

  89. I’d rather Bacchus sing a song

    I can guarantee you wouldn’t Migs – my kids* cover their ears, begin screaming and crying, and leave the house if I start to sing :mrgreen:

    * my “kids” are both in their 20’s 😆

  90. I’m about to open a 2001 Wynns Coonawarra Cab Sav

    That’d be right – open a nice one while I’m on a self-imposed dry spell 😦 Enjoy Migs & reb…

  91. Another glass! Better make that another bottle. Bacchus and Min are in singing moods. Reb and I’ll just sit back and keep topping up our glasses.

  92. Bacchus, yes ran into him while filling up the 1931 Bugatti Royale Kellner Coupe at the local servo.

  93. Thanks Migs, however I’ve actually opened a Coonawarra 2008 Cab Sav. 🙂

    *sorry about that Bacchus*

    First day back at work for me tomorrow after ten days in Penang.

    I have to say, I really enjoyed this trip. I didn’t check my work email once! Which ordinarily I’m inclined to do on a daily basis while on holiday – which kind of detracts from being on leave.

    As Migs and Min know, I was nearly mauled to death by a killer monkey at Penang Botanic gardens.

    Feisty little buggers. One minute looking all cute and cuddly and the next they lunge at you going for the jugular.

    I thought it would be fun to get one as a pet, you know, you could train it to fetch you drinks and snacks as you both watch TV, but not anymore…

  94. That’s him Bacchus. He knew how to debate that’s for sure and had a fair bit of knowledge behind him.

  95. Reb, we really felt for you during the aftermath of the monkey-almost-mauling. Migs of course offered alcohol as the solution. A song? A big plate of monkey…somethings??

  96. Min,

    I was one of the lucky ones. This other guy just bought an ice cream, and in the next instant one of the monkeys quickly jumped on him, grabbed the ice-cream and ran off.

    The poor guy nearly had a heart attack – he was screaming and everything.

    The same genes as Coalition voters, these monkeys must have.

  97. Of course, I didn’t run and scream like a BIG GIRL with my hands in the air when I was attacked, no siree, not me, not at all, not one bit…

    *Ahem*

  98. Reb, if a guy was screaming after he had his ice-cream pinched by a monkey..and in Penang..then clearly your conclusion is without doubt correct..he was a Coalition voter.

  99. Reb you mean Been beat up and battered round, been sent up, and I’ve been shot down, but baby you’re adorable handle me with care.

    But on the other hand I miss you babe and I don’t want to miss a thing.

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