421 comments on “2012

  1. By way I politics, I think that we will see a Liberal leadership challenge before the end of the year. Tony Abbott cannot sustain the momentum. He has already used all of the tricks available to him.

    We will not see a leadership challenge to Gillard. The media have overplayed their hand in this regard and IF there had been any truth to the rumours about a Rudd challenge, the continual media speculation will have knocked that one on the head.

  2. I was one of the first people to suggest that Rudd would return to the leadership in 2011. I now don’t hold much hope of that in 2012. Gillard appeared to have finished the year better than most expected. Will she keep up the momentum in 2012?

  3. Migs, I do indeed remember that. And I think that in hindsight the knifing of Rudd was a mistake. On the other hand, Rudd was not handling Abbott well – I don’t think that Kevin deals well with people who act in an irrational manner. Part of his downfall I think.

    But that’s in the past now. Gillard is a worker as we all know, she will keep focused on the job that needs to be done. Gillard also knows that this term is her last and so will want to get as much done as possible. She has 2 more big ticket items to get bedded down, then once these are out of the way I think that we will be seeing Julia’s own personal ‘wish list’ of things that she wants accomplished while she has the opportunity.

  4. In 2012 I want to see the American Government disclose the truth on UFOs and alien life form. The Chinese, Brazilian and Belgium governments have already done so. American disclosure would make the world sit up and listen.

  5. Min, I believe that the PM will still be going strong mid year.

    The question is will the Liberal Party go back to the past or will they chose someone to take them into the future.

    If Mr. Howard gets his way, it will be back to the past.

  6. Cu, I suspect that if there is a change of leader that Gillard will choose to resign before specifics are leaked to the media. However it will not be Rudd who is the next leader as Labor will not want any reminder of the knifing. My guess is either Shorten or Combet..most likely Shorten.

    One reason is that a young fresh face provides a contrast to Abbott’s tired old team of has beens. This is much the same as ’07.

  7. The world is meant to end, according to the Mayans.

    NASA added some excitement to the prophecy when they announced that there will be increased sun spot activity later in the year, but a couple of months ago they downgraded the level of activity originally expected.

    There is a strong chance we’ll now see 2013 and the planet won’t be fried to a crisp.

    It’s incredible that we honour the Mayans as outstanding mathematicians and astronomers. Yet we have no idea, or interest, how they acquired such advanced skills. Roswell might be interested to know that recent excavations of Mayan temples suggest they had contact with aliens. That’s probably how they acquired their skills; a higher life form taught them.

    Sounds too incredible? IMO more credible than suggesting the world will end.

  8. Roswell, the aliens did land here some time ago…in SA on a 42 degree day so i wouldn’t be expecting them back anytime soon 😯

  9. Miglo, that 41 is Melbourne or Sydney reporting and they always drop a degree or two for some reason!

    It was 46 in the shade…

  10. What does 2012 hold for us, Miglo?

    More of the same crap writing from the main stream media with much ‘speculation’ and denigrating of the PM.

  11. We’ll definitely hear about a leadership challenge to the PM via the media. Whether it is true is another thing.

    Tony Abbott will call for an election, Anal Jones will burst a blood vessel in his neck while calling for the assassination of Julia Gillard, Gerry Harvey will complain about something again, and more and more Liberal MPs will demand that the NBN be rolled out in their electorate.

    Doesn’t sound a lot different to 2011. Some things never change.

  12. That’s about right Migs, and don’t forget POO Pyne…. shall we keep a tally of his evictions from the House ?

  13. Migs did you know Josh Carr will be an assistant coach this year….. that’ll bring out the mongrel in ’em :mrgreen:

  14. A lot of assumptions there, Min! I think Julia Gillard is a lot stronger and wilier as a politician, and far more capable as a national leader than you give her credit for. I think her team recognise that and I can’t see her being challenged. As well, though I had my doubts at the time of Rudd’s fall, as we learned later he was a disaster of a PM and a lousy team manager. The whole country benefitted from his fall. Even the hung parliament has brought its blessings.

  15. Happy New Year patricia 🙂

    I like the idea of a minority government, which in the last day or so has been described as a ‘too close to call’ government, by another of Murdoch’s commentators.
    So far the combination of different parties has brought about more scrutiny of policies, not less, in spite of the Opposition’s refusal to participate.
    I can’t see Kevin Rudd returned as leader, and IF there is another change I’ll vote for the Greens in spite of myself!

  16. Migs, I won’t laugh, I promise, there’s nothing better than a good old cry over a movie 🙂

    I won’t even ask what it was…..

  17. Migs, you have to tell us now.

    I do not mind minority governments. I do not like it when the government has a majority in both houses. That is more worrying.

    It appears this year is going to be a rerun of the last.

    Mr. Abbott will continue with his outlandish actions, achieving nothing.

    The media will continue with the fairy tale that Mr. Rudd will arise, wiping out the PM.

    The government will continue to pass legislation, with little problem.

    The public will receive the goodies from last years legislation.

    The PM at next Christmas, will be pondering about what is the best time to call an election.

    Where Mr. Abbott will be is anyone’s guess.

  18. Too late for reading this tonight, but well worth it later.
    Frydenberg is just one more talking head that perpetuates the Big Lie about the carbon ‘tax’.
    Do all the THs actually realise that the PM announced before the election that she wanted to put a price on carbon folowed by an emissions trading scheme, or have they just jumped on the ltdnews train without bothering with any facts ??
    Adding to that, their knowledge of economics is on a par with my little Jack Russell!!
    ‘Kouk’ takes Fydenberg’s latest missive apart very nicely.

    Josh Frydenberg hopelessly wrong on some key budget and economic facts
    http://stephenkoukoulas.blogspot.com/2011/12/josh-frydenberg-hopeless-wrong-on-some.html

    Oh no – the Liberal Party is showing that the lack of understanding of the budget, the bond market and economics is broadly based, even among the new blood in its ranks. This time it is Josh Frydenberg, the Member for Kooyong who shows he cannot read the budget papers, nor understand economics and the bond market, with his Op Ed article in today’s The Australian.

  19. This is what Mr. Howard left as Treasurer.

    “..ON November 29, the National Archives Office released, under embargo until yesterday, cabinet papers for 1982 and 1983. Both years were eventful for the Australian economy. As secretary to the Treasury during them, they were also eventful for me personally……….

    …………..As the year wore on, the budgetary situation went from bad to worse; by late February 1983, when Treasury and Finance completed their usual mid-year review of the figuring, and with the federal election campaign already in full swing, it was my unhappy duty to inform Howard that our best estimate of the deficit had blown out to over $4 billion.

    On March 6, I received a call from a newly elected prime minister, Bob Hawke. My note for file records a cordial conversation during which “at no time.did Mr Hawke refer to the various apparently heavily backgrounded reports in the press regarding my own future under the incoming government”, but merely requested an urgent update on the 1982-83 budget situation. Later that day I delivered to him, and treasurer-designate Paul Keating, two minutes (copies in my possession). The first, entitled “1982-83 Budget Outlook”, responded to Hawke’s request. It showed an estimated deficit of $4.345 billion, including an estimated increase in outlays of 18 per cent over 1981-82 which, if realised, would be “the highest real growth in outlays since 1974-75”. The second, “Current Fiscal Situation and Outlook”, went further. “Because the prospective situation in that area [the fiscal position] for 1983-84 is so truly alarming, I feel that I must also take this opportunity of informing you on that topic”. “On the basis of the continuing expenditure programs of the previous government”, and a weak outlook for receipts, “a 1983-84 deficit of around $9.6 billion” was projected. Importantly, that took no account of Labor’s own election promises, estimated to add roughly $2.4 billion to the “no policy change” figure. Thus “the prospect is for a 1983-84 budget deficit of almost $12 billion, equivalent to around 6.5 per cent of projected GDP, the highest in Australian post-war history”. To sum up, “the speed and magnitude of that deterioration [in the Budget balance] is almost without precedent among the major OECD countries in the post-war period”…………..”

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/opinion/malcolm-frasers-budget-blowout-was-bob-hawkes-saviour/story-e6frgd0x-1226234375145

  20. I suspect that this ‘Howard blew it’ article from Cu’s link will quickly disappear from the ltd news pages.

  21. Pip, I will be surprised if he is around.

    There is the poker legislation and MRRT to put to bed. It would not surprise me to see the PM come up with something new on the boat trade. I believe that most are not fussed about processing onshore.

    The PM has been on the go since returning from her short holiday.

    I do believe she could have taken today off. I spent much of my life in the Smithfield area but can think of better place and way to spend new years day.

    What does she get for her efforts, a stupid question about whether she thinks she will be PM at the end of the year.

    I am sure the PM does believe she will be PM and will be doing everything in her power to remain so. What answer did they expect from her.

    Nothing about the changes that are occurring from today and putting money in the pockets of families. Nothing about the changes to child care which are far reaching, might cost a little more but provide a much better service. Childcare is now seen as more than looking after children, but also seen as a part of their education.

    Anyone would think the PM gave up new years day holiday, to exposed herself to being denigrated by the media.

    One day into the new year and nothing has changed.

    Those 30 year old papers will make good reading.

  22. Pip, same sex marriage will happen, whether the PM wants it or not. Too many support it and there is no good reason to defer it any longer.

    I believe this is one thing the Opposition would like settled before they take power. (I am not as sure as they are for that to happen).

    It will happen not necessarily because most people think it is important, but because many are sick of hearing about it.

    People today are tolerant of the gay scene without bring involved.

    As for the poker machines, I believe the clubs are on the losing end as far as the public goes. Even those who play them, believe there should be changes made.

  23. Cu, the PM also entertained the Oz and Indian cricket teams at Kirribilli yesterday.
    Yes for sure those papers will make very interesting reading 😀

    After the announcements about the tax changes putting extra money in pockets, we will no doubt be treated to more ‘Kevin’ stories or whatever ‘look, over there’ nonsense.

  24. I haven’t seen it yet Miglo, but I’m planning to and I’ll probably have a touch of ‘hayfever’….

  25. Cu, the PM will have some very rich and powerful lobbies ranged against her, beginning with the Clubs and pubs, and the Irrigators Association

  26. MIgs, just looked at the shorts. My father has an identical dog when I was a kid. It was a very intelligent dog, just like the one in the movie.

    I hope you enjoyed the movie as well as having a weep.

  27. Pip, maybe powerful opposition but I have a feeling these are issues that people make up their minds about regardless of politics. Even those who play pokies are not likely to be against some tightening of regulations.

    I like pokies, do not believe you can win. and I hate them being in pubs. I have a feeling that many have the same feelings.

    The irrigators might scream but at the end of the day, they are not the majority of voters.

  28. I would imagine that the global warming debate will rage again. More evidence will be produced confirming what we all fear, that the planet is heating up, but the Monktons, Bolts and el gordos will continue to dispute it.

  29. Indigenous Australians will continue to be disadvantaged and there will be no change to the infant mortality rates or rates of incarceration.

  30. Migs, the different banners at the top of the page are a treat!

    Thank you, Pip. Some are of photos I took myself, and others are from Min and Mobius.

  31. Pip, I realise that el gordo has a high opinion of her own opinions, but I doubt that she’ll have the backing of ltdnews. Though I’m sure they’d agree with her if her views are ever brought to their attention.

    Sadly, however, she’ll continue to be a mere voice in the wilderness.

    Tis a pity.

  32. ‘night Migs.

    another funny tweet from John Prescott to Rupert.

    Good luck in 2012. The Sky’s the limit…as you discovered in 2011 😉 #letitBSkyB

  33. I’m no good at picking the future – the proof is I’m typing this on the same computer in the same house etc as the last few years – rather than being at the pointy end of a 747 on the way back from the “the summer holidays” and thinking about “the winter holidays” due to a number of Lotto wins!

    That being said – Gillard told us this time last year of her “laundry list” for 2011 and in short the only one she didn’t get through was Regional Refugee Processing (some would say that was a good thing too). 2012 has to be her year of implementation – things like the CPRS and MRRT come to mind. Lets hope they think them through and do it right the first time. Abbott’s “Dr No” campaign seems to be running out of legs as demonstrated by polling numbers etc, and he and his minions must be attempting to create the “Series 2” Abbott (just like Holden does with the Commodore every couple of years – and for the same reason). Maybe that’s why Abbott and his Chief of Staff were working on Christmas Day :D. What will work and what won’t – I don’t have the foggiest. Suffice to say that this time next year, we’ll all be sitting at out respective keyboards, reading the tea leaves or similar (and I’ll still be on the same old  Mac) commenting that we don’t really have any idea of what 2013 will bring.

    To paraphrase a car sticker (usually on older Falcodores with too much money spent on the wheels, paintjobs and not enough on safety features) “Sit down, speak up, hang on and enjoy the ride”. Welcome to 2012 everyone – hope it brings you all the good things you wish for and happy new year.

  34. Apologies if this has been covered elsewhere.

    I hoped that during their new year messages to Australians both sides of politcis would wish us all well for the coming year in a spirit of genuine feelings without political rhetoric.

    Julia Gillard managed to do this but alas Tony Abbott could not control himself for one lousy minute to send a message to all Australians without his spiteful rehtoric and economic spin. ONe day he will realise there is more to life than the economic growth at a;ll copsts and political spin.

    The man must have absolutely no life whatsoever outside his political extremities. His message also reinforced the extremiely limited vocabulary and talking points this man is capable of making.

    For heavens sake LNP get a leader that knows when to shut the hell up over politics and actually genuinely wish the whole of the population a Happy New Year without spin, venom or political attacks.

    The other thing I noticed this morning was the words and spin that people want to see shafted in 2012. One of those was “Moving Forward” which has been attributed to Julia Gillard.

    I wish top point out that this so called spin ” Miving Forward” was actually invented by the USAs sales spin companies and was used by managment and CEO in Banks long before Julia Gillard used it.

    I am over all of the slogans, invented by US sales spin doctors, and the scripted crap, blurted out by sales employees, as though it is their own words. Anyone with a limited amount of intelligence, can see past these scripting tactics. Seems maybe the Americans have been dumbed down so much that they unable to distinguish the difference.

    The one we were scripted to use the most was

    ” I understand how you feel, others in your situation have felt that the (INSERT SALE OF SOME CRAP ITEM NOT NEEDED BY THE CUSTOMER) would suit their situation/needs.”

    Hopefully this will not happen to Aussies as well.

  35. Happy New Year 2353.
    This time next year we will still be reading the tea leaves and anticipating an ambush by the right-wing brigade…they’ll probably say that the PM lied about the ‘carbon tax’…. 😯

    They’ll no doubt still be ignoring the fact that the PM stated clearly before the last election that she wanted to put in place a price on carbon followed by an emissions trading scheme…

    They’ll probably still be relying on their focus groups telling them to say:-
    “we’ll hold the government to account”, while school prefect, Greg Hunt, continues to ignore his own thesis on climate change and warning of the high price to be extracted from ordinary punters.

    Changed man Scott Morrison will be shedding crocodile tears over the tragedies of the asylum seekers.

    Joe Hockey and Andrew Robb will continue to pretend that their budget costings assumptions were properly ‘audited’.

    The rest of the old timers on the front bench will be wheeled out occasionally to make a profound statement, then disappear into the woodwork for another few months.

  36. Happy New Year Shane.
    I’m with you, the scripted crap is past it’s use-by date, but Abbott is not capable of doing business any other way!

  37. Is there any possibility of just one ‘news’ or ‘opinion’ piece getting to the end without the obligatory meme, ‘over the election that no one really won and the carbon tax she told them would never come to pass.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/national/floods-follies-and-a-great-big-tax-that-was-the-year-that-was-20111210-1oov3.html#ixzz1iFi6s2p6

    The line about ‘the election that nobody won’ is a new addition to the armoury and appears in both ltd news and Fairfax, and the ‘white jacket’ makes another appearance. Last year some bitchy journalists had a special hashtag on Twitter – #awj, ‘another white jacket’; the fact that the PM favoured wearing white jackets was far more important than the government business of the day!

  38. If I may add some gloom, 2012 could be remembered throughout history as the year the GFC2 caused everything to go belly up.

    The signs aren’t good, and neither are the predictions from the financial gurus.

    At home, whatever Swan does in the face of it will be met with condemnation from the opposition.

    Personally, I think GFC2 is the Government’s greatest threat. No matter how well they respond, it will be twisted by the media and the opposition.

    The world is envious of our response to GFC1, yet a recent poll had the Liberals as preferred financial managers in this country. This is frightening as they really have no idea.

  39. Miglo, if people were losing their jobs, houses, families because of economic mis-management by Treasurer Swan, their would be reason to believe the Coalition and msm mantra, but it’s not happening, which suggests lying manipulating ‘journalism’, [yellow press ?], and vast amounts of push polling.

  40. Just a thought…

    “”If you think you’re too small to have an impact, try going to bed with a mosquito in the room.” -Anita Roddick

  41. John Howard hand-picked by Queen for rare honour
    http://www.abc.net.au/am/content/2011/s3400567.htm

    PETER CAVE: You heard in the interview that Bob Hawke said he inherited a $9 billion budget deficit from the Fraser government.

    Malcolm Fraser’s treasurer was John Howard – the man who went on to become Australia’s second longest serving prime minister.

    He’s now been given a personal gift from the Queen – an appointment to the prestigious Order of Merit.

    The award must have been for length of tenure as PM…. what else could it be?

  42. On the subject of the economy, there is also this opinion:

    Overall Economic Outlook

    According to the RBA the overall outlook for Australia is positive. There is an expected trend for non-mining company business activity value (currently represents 85% of the economy) to grow at an average 1.5% expected over the next two years. Compared to the mining sector, which is expected to grow at 15%, this seems small. However, collectively this all represents an expected growth of above 4.5% by Q2 in 2012 with an overall expected increase of above 3.75% over the next two years. When comparing this against the world trend this is very good news indeed!

    http://www.hirepulse.com.au/Blog/Post/Positive-Economic-Outlook-for-2012/44

  43. Hearty congratulations from all here at the Cafe are extended to the former Prime Minister, John Howard on being our latest recipient of the Queens Order of Merit.

    I even have a suggestion of where he can stick it.

  44. Migs, offspring suggested it wouldn’t fit!!

    Also suggested he could try sideways with a twist to the left. 😯

  45. I would be quite amused if Abbott were to be abducted by aliens. Snatched from his bike, of course.

  46. Roswell at 1.26
    That’s quite possible. They must be dying to examine his exotic electrical systems.

  47. 2012 has been declared the year of the farmer in Australia after that sector was one of the best performing during the GFC and did particularly well in 2011.

    The NFF is saying 2012 will be the most positive ever for the farming sector.

    Yet again the rural sector does better under a Labor Federal government, but yet again this sector will campaign against Labor and they will never vote for it even though they mostly do worse under conservative governments both Federally and at the State level.

  48. Pip I might be wrong but I though Howard was the second longest serving having to have won the 2007 election to become the longest serving one.

    Yep, the second longest: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Howard

    So the Queen is giving him a consolation prize.

    Note also that nobody can specifically detail what public service Howard did to deserve the OM.

  49. I have a feeling it will fit nicely.

    He was another that was willing to do anything to get and keep the job.

    He has the thickest hide of any politician this country has seen,

  50. Min, at uni we used to dissect rats. They are not superior life forms. It is possible the aliens might think he’s a rodent.

  51. Each year roughly 30,000 missing person’s cases remain unsolved, that stay unsolved. World wide the number is estimated to be 1.25 million. Surely not all of them are tied to a rock at the bottom of a lake.

    It is though they vanished into thin air. Or left the planet.

  52. When I was a young lad I couldn’t look at the stars without wondering if someone was looking back.

  53. Roswell, that was the ATO looking back. They watch our every move.

    But I do like your attitude. Asking questions and seeking the answers is the scientist in you.

  54. The Opposition Leader could learn something about acting in a graceful manner from out PM.

    Is the Order of the Thistle above or below the Order of Merit. Does Mr. Howard get to dress up.

    I am a little sick of being labelled a Howard hater when one says they have no respect for the man.

    I do not hate the man. Why waste such a strong emotion on one that does not count.

    I do not love the PM but I do respect her.

    Who has he served for the last 40 odd years? I say not the public but himself.

    I suggest that Mr. Howard has only been interested in being top dog, that is PM because his parents believe that was what he was born for. Not unlike Mr. Abbott.

    Mr. Howard, along with Mr. Menzies are only memorial for the length of time they held the position, not for what they achieved.

    Mr. Howard will always be remember for being one of two that not only lost government but also their seat.

  55. Cu, about ten years ago I was talking to some German tourists and asked them what they know of our prime minister, John Howard.

    They replied, that before coming to Australia, they only knew him for two things: he was George Bush’s lackie and he wouldn’t apologise to the stolen Aborigines.

    Not flattering to be known around the world or those alone.

  56. Unbelievable..I was just looking up the Order of Merit on Wikipedia and while Howard receives the Order of Merit, Nelson Mandela is only an honorary member.

    I’m with Migs about where he can stick it.

  57. I’m beginning to wonder which strings Howard had to pull to get himself this award..wasn’t he in England quite recently.

  58. Migs, not only refused to apoligised but the first thing he did was to water down the rights that Mr. Keating gave them. His excuse was that he had to save our back yards from Native Rights. We were all in danger of Natives camping on our land.

    “…The “10 Point Plan”

    The ten points were as follows:
    1.The National Native Title Tribunal holds absolute authority over claims for Native Title
    2.State governments are empowered to extinguish Native Title over crown lands for matters of ‘national interest’
    3.Lands providing public amenities are exempt from Native Title claims
    4.Mining and pastoral leases are allowed to co-exist with Native Title
    5.The National Native Title Tribunal can create access to traditional lands rather than granting full Native Title
    6.A registration test is imposed on all claimants
    7.The right to claim Native Title in or around urban areas is removed
    8.Government is permitted to manage land, water, and air issues in any site
    9.Very strict time limits will be placed on all claims
    10.Indigenous Land Use Agreements with be created to promote co-existence

    The legislation was opposed by the Australian Labor Party and the Australian Democrats. The final legislation was amended to gain the support of Independent Senator Brian Harradine, whose vote was required for the bill to pass.[1]…”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Howard#Federal_Treasurer_.281977.E2.80.931983.29

    What was Mr. Harradine paid for passing the bill. Of course that was not a bribe.

  59. Cu, I remember well the scare campaign surrounding that one..that we would have black fellas camping in our backyards.

    That mining interests would have to pay the Aboriginal people fair compensation for digging up their land would in my opinion, have been the prime motivator for altering Howard’s amendments to the original Bill.

    To me it’s a typical Howard strategy, conceal your true motive and run a scare campaign of the This Means YOU variety.

  60. That is something else that Mr. Howard had in common with Mr. Menzies, running scare campaigns.

    Remember him in his flack jacket after the Port Arthur tragedy. Mr. Howard was in his glory then. Funny there are still too many guns in the community. What would have happened if Mr. Howard did not go along with the call for stricter laws. He also was great at convincing the workers. unions were their worse enemies.

    Mr. Howard’s greatest effort was convincing us th terrorist were going to get us, and taking us to war, not to fight a country, army but an idea, a movement.

    With Mr. Menzies we had reds under the bed and the countries all the way to Australia falling like dominoes. Mr. Fraser advised us to keep our money under the bed. Mr. Hawke said this was impossible, as the reds where there first.

    Everything that Mr. Abbott does is based on creating fear. If we have money spent on welfare, it will bankrupt the country. Bosses need the ability to do what they like with workers, if not we will all end up unemployed.

    Money spent on health and education means higher inflation.

    Has Mr. Howard ever explained how he managed to get stagflation. High unemployment and high inflation. Not a bad effort.

  61. I forgot, Mr. Howard also convinced us that a few boats, full of refugees, meant our borders were no longer safe. The country was open to invasion.

  62. What does the New year hold ?

    Interest rates will rise, but if the economy does not bounce back they will go down. However they also could remain stable given that our economy is performing better than the rest of the world at the moment.

    Our Share Market will rise, however if Bank lending tightens further and the US economy does not improve then our Share Market will fall. However the Share Market could also remain stable if things plod along with no real change in momentum. It could also plummet if the rest of the worlds does as well.

    Our House Prices will boom if Interest rates continue to fall. However Housing Prices will fall if rates rise. However Housing Prices could plunge if predictions by doomsayers and a number of realists are proved correct and we adjust like the rest of the world. However prices could remain stable if things just keep plodding along.

    Our Economy will expand rapidly on the back of the ming boom and the rest of the economy will catch up to mining because mining is the best thing in the world. However Our Economy will contract if China’s manufacturing slows and they buy less from our big mining conglomerates. However Our Economy will tank as all manufacturing and processing leaves our shores, while food continues to be imported at a rate of knots. However Our Economy may just plod along if things remain the same.

    Our Unemployment Rate will skyropcket because of the big scary Carbon Tax and employers will sack their staff all over the place. However the Unemployment Rate may well go down as altenative energy sources and more and more mines and the related services come on line irrespective of the Carbon Tax or MRRT. However our Unemployment Rate may well remain the same if things just plod along as they are now.

    The above are forecasts and predictions as accurate as possible being brought to you by the following.

    All Economists
    The Oh So very Impartial Press
    The Real Estate Industry
    The ASX

    ** Disclaimer** The above forecasts are for information only and should not be acted upon without seeking independent financial advice. These predictions and Forecasts will be changed weekly as we readjust our Crystal Balls, Taro Cards, Tea Leaves and consult Rupert for his current political drive.

  63. And those same refugees were in the main from Iraq and Afghanistan. That one always stuck in my craw, that Howard would demonise people who were essentially our allies. I don’t recall one single person in the media ever making this point.

  64. The price on carbon emission will no more scare us than when the GST came into operation. The event was a big yawn.

    This will be even more so, as it is calculated the effect on the economy is many times smaller.

    Most will have extra money directly into their pockets.

    There will be no great increase in inflation.

    Most will wonder what Mr. Abbott was all about.

    All the threats are greatly exaggerated.

    How many noticed the temporary disaster tax.

    The sky will not fall in and Mr. Abbott will have some explaining to do.

  65. Cu, Abbott will hoping for the Mayan prediction to destroy the earth. As the sky is falling in and the giant waves are sweeping toward us, with his last breath he can shout that it’s all Gillard’s fault.

    Gillard’s curse is so powerful, that not even Abbott’s god could save him.

  66. “And we cannot start the New Year without congratulating John Howard for being made a member of the Royal Order of the Brown Nose by Her Majesty. He will no doubt keep it on your desk next to his boy scout woggle for Janette to dust every morning. And alarmingly, he claims it is a tribute not just to himself but to his country. No, Johnnie, it was just for you. Most of us like our honours to be Australian.”

    http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/3754948.html

    The PM has top be gracious. We do not.

  67. Cu, no we don’t have to be gracious about Bonsai and his little medal…Migs even had an idea about where he could put it!

    Our Prime Minister behaved as a PM should, while the Opposition arrogantly scoffed at the idea of the Eurozone judging our finances, deliberately ignoring the fact that it wasn’t anything to do with Euro government but was awarded by Euro Money Magazine.

  68. Bo’F has a New Year’s present for Sydney train commuters. A six per cent rise on some weekly tickets.

  69. Hi Miglo, Min and all the Cafe Contributors

    Happy New Year & Best Wishes
    to all the lovely people in the Cafe.

    Brilliant comments on here, no wonder everyone seems comfortable

    Keep up the good work you guys, you are all making a fantastic effort.

    Cheers Lyn

  70. Hello Lyn,

    I’m glad you dropped in. I meant to email you before Xmas to wish you all the best, so I’ll do it now. ALL THE BEST. xx

    I hope 2012 is another great year for you and TPS. I also hope you rest yourself up a bit more.

    Did you notice my clever little trick? Each time you click on a link or a comment in the Cafe a different picture is shown in the header. I’m a clever little sausage.

  71. Why thank you 2353.

    I believe over the next 366 days ( 2012 is a leap year) it will be just as correct as all of the so called experts who are paid a fortune to change their mind every week/day/month.

  72. A leap year indeed maybe just maybe Abbort will leap off a cliff, after which we could all sigh with relief. Happy new year to all our readers and contributors.

    My new years prediction Julia will still be PM in Dec 2012 with a more positive PPM ratio and the ALP leading the LNP in the polls regardless of Murdoch media manipulation (those same suberbs being polled week after week will soon get sick of it and retaliate) plus the NBN going ahead in leaps and bounds.
    cheers I am off to work now.

  73. Bilko and Happy New Year to you also. I am not 100% that Julia will last the distance, however I hope that I am wrong. I think that Julia’s strategy has been to get all of the perceived nasties out of the way first which will then free her up to concentrate on her ‘wish list’. However, IF this is handled badly and I do believe that the introduction of many of the government’s reforms have been badly handled publicity-wise then we will see a change of leader.

    And this is about as pessimistic as I’m going to get, apart from the fact that Gillard must start going with public opinion and support gay marriage rights. Any Bill introduced to Parliament is doomed to failure without the PM supporting it.

    Tony Abbott’s Nos will run dry due to Julia’s strategy of keeping the sweeteners for the run up to the next election. If it is something which adds $s to the average person’s wallet, Tony will be up the proverbial without a paddle if he says no to that.

  74. Interesting Stats over the last 10 years.

    Wages up by 57%
    Housing Prices up by 147%
    As a result borrowers now worse off than under 17% Interest Rates due to this massive shift which requires people to borrow an immense amount.
    NSW Residents under housing stress 15%

  75. Good morning, Shane. Is it fair to suggest that the rise in house prices was more ‘active’ in the first half of those 10 years?

  76. Good morning Roswell.

    Most definately. The amazing and in fact obscene increases were between 2001 and 2004. On the Sunshine Coast in those days you could buy a vacant house block and onsell in less than 3 months, with at the very least, a $10,000 profit.

    The government is always blamed for housing prices and shortages.

    If you actually look at the figures and the reality it was simply banks throwing money at anyone, real estate agents exploding in number,s predicting a neverending short term profit from property purchases and people believing the same and simply buying at any cost to the delight of the Real Estate Industry.

    In my opinion housing prices will have to readjust further. We are always told that there is a housing shortage due to population growth and immigration.

    If this is the case why are there so many homes up for sale and why are auction clearance rates low and why is it taking a hell of a long time on average to sell a home ?

  77. Shane, I agree about housing prices having to readjust further, but it’s going to have to be slowly and steady as she goes. One thing that I would like to see is that for future purchases that negative gearing be applied to new dwellings only. At the moment as you may have read, the Chinese are investing heavily in Gold Coast and Brisbane properties which can only make houses increasingly unaffordable for the average homebuyer.

  78. Min

    I agree the readjustment should be gradual but that is in the hands of the current owners and prospective buyers. When any sniff of fear grips a market there is carnage.

    Negative gearing should be removed from Investment Properties totally. It is a tax avoidance scheme for those who can afford to buy more than 1 property and therefore are obviously rich enough not to need to sponge tax payers assistance to reduce their income tax on a completely unrelated income source.

    Negative Gearing should stop from 1 January 2013 for investment properties and instead commence for First home Owners and replace the FHOG Grant.

    This would benefit First Home Buyers on a yearly basis. Boost home ownership and reduce the pressure on the rental sectors tenants who are facing increases on a consistent basis well above inflation due to the drop in Home Ownership and the drift to rental.

  79. Min

    I did read about the chinese. But when you have a government and the current one is to blame, that removed restrictions on overseas investors, that removed the keeping of statistics and figures regarding sales to overseas investors and that removes restrictions, dollar amouns and requirements that used to be overseen by the FIRB then you have a recipe for the total wholesale purchase of our country via the back door.

    This was terrible policy and decisions by the ALP under Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard as this is when those policies were implemented to such an extent it is now almost impossible to know the true % of foreign ownership in this country.

    It needs to be reversed and reversed now. Restrictions need to be reimplemented and the FIRB given back its teeth. The wholesale purchase of rural lands at up to 10 times the valuation needs to be halted. Overseas countries are buying up vast tracts of our farms, not to grow crops for Aussies or overseas markets. No they are growing the crops to export direct to their own countries. No sale = No Income = No Tax Paid in Australia for food grown in this country.

    Cannot for the life of me understand why these type of purchases are being permitted.

  80. Shane, I’m not so certain that you could just cancel negative gearing outright as some people’s incomes, for example self-funded retirees could be based on this.

    I remember reading somewhere that when negative gearing was originally introduced it was meant to be for new dwellings only, as an incentive for people to invest in the residential rather than the commercial market. Howard it might have been, was convinced to include existing dwellings and so this entirely defeated the original purpose of being able to negatively gear.

  81. Min

    I dont mean cancel it to those already benefiting. I mean stop any new applications from a certain date and let the others run their course. This way those currently benefiting will not be penalised and those venturing into the market will do so without sucking the teat of the taxpayer.

    I am unsure about who diod what with negative gearing, but the current government could easily say no more for investors, rather it will be for First Home Buyers and the FHOG Grant will be eliminated. In this way it will benefit the First Home Buyer each year rather than a one off grant which has simply added $7,000 to the price of homes.

    Far too many rich people are bleeding the little taxpayer dry and this includes self funded retirees. If they are self funded then they are rich enough to not require negative gearing taxpayer handouts. Retirees should be virtually debt free and the properties should be income positive, not negative upon retirement.

  82. Min
    A bit off topic but you mention self funded retirees. Interesting , because nobody else does much. They never get a mention these days in the interest rate obsession, for example. I suspect they’re regarded as being so firmly attached to the Right that they can be marginalised in the debate & still vote Right. Once in a while there’s a stand alone piece about an individual’s or couple’s plight, but this is usually referring to them having been ripped off in a scam.
    Perhaps Tony’s working on a three worder to imply that he’ll keep the payments they receive high whilst lowering rates overall. You know he’s good for it.

  83. Shane, I know from my own late Aunt that as a self funded retiree she was not wealthy by any stretch but it just so happened that as a director of the Royal Victoria Theatre Trust her late husband had substantial superannuation which disqualified her for other than a part pension.

    However, there are of course many extremely wealthy retired people who are reaping taxpayers $s. Means testing anyone…

  84. Bob, agreed Tony’s been extremely quiet on the subject and on the subject of lower interest rates entirely. Remember the one from Howard where he argued that interest rate rises were indicative of Australia’s wealth.

  85. Happy New Year to you too, Bilko.

    I’m glad to see I’m not the only person who had to go back to work today. 😦

    Christmas breaks aren’t the same anymore. They are too hectic. Where are the good old days when people actually had a chance to relax?

  86. Are kids spoilt rotten these days? I’ve heard of people spending thousands of dollars on Christmas presents. Their choice, I suppose, but just wait until these spoiled brats grow up.

  87. Min
    Howard also pushed the line that increasing house prices meant increasing wealth. So long as you owned one. And as was mentioned previously, the wages & incomes required to get one of the things were decling in relation to prices.
    But that didn’t matter. Just borrow!!!! It’ll all be OK.

  88. Hi Bob, at the moment borrowing can be good, as long as you borrow against something that is tax deductible. Like an investment property. 🙂

  89. Despite dire predictions, plus the normal doom and gloom from the usual right wing suspects, manufacturing grew in December.

  90. Who’s going to win a top shelf bottle for the nearest guess to date and time for 350,000 hits?

  91. Mobius, I could rig it so that I win. :mrgreen:

    Based on the very large number of hits today, it is possible we’ll reach 350,000 by the 5th.

  92. Min

    From what you describe your late Aunts husbands superannuation would not have had debt against investment properties and therefore negative gearing would not have applied to the superannuation.

    Migs

    No doubt you have negative gearing 🙂

    Regarding spoilt brats there are a lot of them already adults in their 20s. The current crop is the second generation IMO and the next will be even worse if history is anything to do by. Most of them will also have very few real friends and experiences but have many Online Friends and Unreal Experiences via the internet and realisitc games. I do wonder what will happen as humans regress into their homes and online world. One loss appears to be the humanity for others and nature.

    ME

    I have not been watching how many hits CW grows by each day so this is purely a guess. Saturday 7 January at 2400 Hours simply because 24 and 7 are my lucky numbers.

  93. shaneinqld
    George Bush did. He got to be President.
    Miglo wouldn’d do that sort of thing.

    The bit about Bush was inspired by a Joe Bageant book I got for Chrissy & am reading. It’s called “Waltzing at the Doomsday Ball” & is a collection of posthumously published essays from 2004- 2010. Like most dated political commentary it’s…dated, but it reads well & the issues he refers to are still there & so are a lot of the people.

  94. Mobius, it’s hard to say. So far today we have 650 hits, and generally we get the most hits around 6pm. I can generate a lot of hits by linking threads on Facebook – if I had the time – and we could get to 350,000 tonight.

    Hits are updated (behind the scenes) constantly.

    A word on hits: if someone visits Café Whispers they register a hit. If they click on a different topic, they register another hit, and so on. So a person can wander around the Café and register perhaps a dozen hits.

    Visits or clicks by any of the administrators or authors do not register hits. Say, if I, Min, Pip and Shane are active here with visits and comments – and we are the only people here – then none of their clicks are recorded as a hit.

    However, if you were the only person here then your clicks will count.

    It’s logical to suggest that if the admin and author’s clicks were counted we could be well over 500,000 hits, given the amount of work we do in here.

    So it is posssible to manipulate the result. Example, you might say that we’ll reach the number at midnight tonight. All you’d need to do is spend all night clicking around the Café to ensure the 350,000 comes up as close as possible to midnight, and win the bottle of top shelf red.

  95. BSA Bob

    You are so correct George Bush did cheat. I believe in Karma and one of the Karmas against George Bush is that in the end even most of his own countrymen saw what a twit he was and what massive destruction of their economy and foreign policy is a result of his legacy.

  96. Happy New Year to all Whisperers.

    Pip, I have no idea why anybody – from this planet or other – would want to go to Adelaide

    This from someone who lives in Canberra???

    Migs, I don’t think the Myans said the world would end in 2012, I think they just ended their calendar in 2012. No doubt they thought they’d crank it up again in 2011 for another millennium or so.

    And the msm will still run their tired and tiresome leadership challenge meme-what else have they got?

    patriciawa @10pm, 1/1, I agree with your take on the situation wrt the PM. She has had a stellar year and is, imo an excellent PM, despite all the bullshit emanating from the msm. And the minority government has been a great success, as well.

    However, we’ve also been very lucky that we had three Independents of the calibre of Windsor, Oakeshott and Wilkie supporting the PM’s legislation program. It’s a pity that their electorates don’t appreciate them more.

    CU @12.24am, 2/1, I think you’ve nailed 2012.

    And @12.40am, do you think this information will cause Neil to have a nervous breakdown or at the very least give him heartburn? rofl!

    Pip @12.39am, 2/1, Very enlightening and interesting link. It seems that the Liars Party must actively seek economic ignoramuses to stand for office.

    Will one be “Stop the UFOs”?

    I doubt it, Migs.It’s bound to be some more 3 worders from the mother ship. I’ll also add my appreciation of the photos to Pip’s. They’re a delight. Perhaps we should call you the 3 Ms. Keep clicking!

    When I was a young lad I couldn’t look at the stars without wondering if someone was looking back.

    Roswell, I used to hope there was someone looking back, who’d take me for a spin around the universe. Later, I used to pray that there really was a TARDIS and a Doctor who needed another companion.

  97. Pip, not at all..Migs keeps a secret tally and we are all going to be awarded end of the year bonuses, however he didn’t mention which year…

  98. Same dog, same leg action :mrgreen:

    DP World to lock out port workers
    http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/dp-world-to-lock-out-port-workers/story-e6frea83-1226235061752

    and

    Corrigan makes his mark with POTA acquisition
    http://www.lloydslistdcn.com.au/archive/2011/04-april/19/corrigans-company-makes-new-acquisition

    Former Patrick boss Chris Corrigan has moved a step closer to re-establishing his presence in the Australian ports business following a major acquisition.

    His company Qube Logistics has just agreed to pay $106m to buy DP World’s stake in POTA Holdings.

    It gives Qube a 94.5% stake in POTA, a company which provides road and rail services to ports and also operates full and…

  99. Jane, you’re right about the Mayan calendar. People spun it around as a suggestion that the world will end. Unfortunately for them, NASA has ruined the party.

    The ending of the Mayan calendar is interesting, with some scientists suggesting that the Mayans had three astronomical time standards, whereas we have only two (day and year). Somehow the Mayans knew that the sun itself orbits another star (taking approx 24,000 years). But how on earth did they know that?

    Perhaps Roswell knows something.

  100. There is only one way we can solve the housing problem, is to increase the housing stock.

    I believe it is not prudent to rely on private investment alone for this.

    Since the second world war, up to a couple of decades, State Governments played a big part in this by providing public housing, allowing all to be housed a a cost they could afford.

    I seem to remember that the private sector began to provide much affordable housing in the growth of numerous estates that many of my generation could afford at a young age.

    I believe that the state building so many houses, help to keep the private sector prices down.

    The move away from PH, towards giving rent subsidies and home grants has not been successful in housing the needy. It has pushed the cost of housing up for all

    I do not agree with much of what Mr. O’Farrell has done, but his action in restricting the rebate on stamp duty for first home owners to new buildings might bring some change.

    The Rudd and Gillard government has made some move back to providing housing for the needy but more needs to be done.

    Rent rebates, negative gearing and grants should be abandoned or at least restrictive to new homes.

    Mr. Keating did attempt to get rid of negative gearing but the back lash was so great, he reverse his actions.

    No one wants to see us going back to housing estates such as Mr. Druitt and Campbelltown.

    The PH provided by NSW post war gave the people a choice of renting or buying, with the support of a low interest, long term mortgage.

    This gave many low income earners the chance to put their foot on the first rung of the ladder in amassing money for their retirement.

    There are two important things that need addressing this year. Housing and productivity. I believe they could be linked.

    I have seen no studies for what I have said above, it is just my impressions.

    I have also not seen many studies that back the proposition that government should not be in the job of providing homes, that they should get out of the way and let the private sector rip.

    We only have to look at the USA to see how well they provide homes for their people, and what happens when the private sector is allowed to rip.

    Yes, the action governments have been taking for the last couple of decades has been wasteful and made the situation worse.

  101. Cu, I believe that we had two things happen. One was the demise of public housing, post WW2 there were not only housing commission homes (as I am certain that you would remember) but there were soldier settlements, tramways houses etc.

    Therefore the cost of private housing had to be kept to a minimum there being competition from government and instrumentality sectors.

    Later as well as state governments investing less and less in public housng, along came as has been mentioned, easy money. It was never considered that one day the loan might be more than the house was worth.

    A problem today is that private enterprise has bought up large tracts of land zoned residential and releases it only slowly in order to maintain their prices.

    Another problem is centralisation where there is little land left surrounding most capital cities suitable for rezoning for subdivisions. Many Councils are reluctant or unable to rezone agricultural land either due to planning restrictions but also due to the exhorbitant cost of providing infrastructure and services.

  102. Work day one over and done with, fortunately I am retiring next month for the second and final time, even just working 4days a week has became too much.
    So Miglo sorry you have to continue for howeve long??.
    I was impressed with ShaneinQld’s ying/yang projections beats flipping a coin like the fiberals. May the force be with you all.

  103. A few years ahead of me yet, Bilko, but I enjoy my work which is a huge help.

    Mind you, I wish I had have joined the public service a bit earlier and had the benefit of a better super scheme. I could have retired a couple of years ago, sat on a fat pension, and gone back into the service as a contractor.

  104. Three days into the new year and ti’s already obvious that the media will just keep on going with the same tired old guff. So far we’ve already had –
    Yet more specualtion about a Rudd challenge.
    Tony Abbott whining about the NBN.
    The latest Newspoll showing a small increase to Labor disregarded -as usual.
    The Prime Minister’s positve announcements about increased funding for parents of teenagers ignored in favour of the already mentioned leadership crap.
    The latest NSW polling showing a small loss to the Coalition blown up as ‘strong support for O’Farrell’.

    And so it continues.

    Meanwhile that boring old fart Gerard Henderson has ranted about the ABC’s apparent leftie bias here -http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/abcs-leftish-drift-still-needs-to-be-corrected-by-its-deeds-20120102-1pi7q.html

    Same old same old, there’s nothing ‘new’ about 2012.

  105. “but there were soldier settlements, tramways houses etc. ”

    Forgot about the returned soldiers.

    I also forgot that in Sydney the government also released and developed land on a large scale, allowing the private sector to build and provide low cost housing.

    Do we need the large monstrous homes, with waste space and impossible to heat or cool, that are being built on small blocks that we see today. .

    Yes the long term loans could have been a problem. This did not arise, as most found, once settled, they were able to pay them off much more quickly.

    The large areas in Sydney of poor quality housing that is open for the government to intervene and refurbish. Much of this type of housing is adjacent to railways.

    Many now are moving away from the quarter acre block. High density well designed housing is the choice of many.

    We need to stop making excuses, saying it is too hard and use the imagination to come up with housing that is affordable and meets today’s needs and desires.

    There are still large scale housing being developed it the South West of Sydney, Problem is that it is beyond the reach of many.

  106. Leone, we haven’t had a good whine from Gerry Harvey yet. He’ll sell four less TVs in January and then listen to him let it rip.

    Joe Hockey hasn’t yet provided further evidence that he’s a complete dill, Pyne hasnt pranced around and Abbott hasn’t called for an election.

    Anal Bolt still needs to scream ‘Juliar’ while Andrew Bolt has yet to remind us that freedom of his speech is paramount to a democratic society. Without, which, we’ll slip into socialism.

    Yes, there’s still a few more laughs ahead of us.

  107. Catching up, my father was a soldier’s settler on Kangaroo Island.

    Opening up KI to soldier’s settlers was an experiment that went wrong. KI soil lacks cobalt, which the Dept of Agriculture knew about, and was subsequently unproductive for farming. Nonetheless they allocated farming land to returned servicemen.

    Many struggled to survive. Many went broke. Most no longer have families on the land. All the old farms have been bought by Gunns, and they have been turned into pine plantations. Our fathers would be turning in their graves.

  108. Cu, one of the best examples of minimum density housing I have seen is in Adelaide’s Tea Tree Gully. An example of what you can do with innovation and imagination.

    Many are against turning the old 1/4 acre blocks into smaller blocks and in many cases I agree as these end up being battle axe subdivisions aka selling off the backyard. These tend to upset the neighbors as evidenced by the number of objections received into Council.

    There are also infrastructure problems – for example if you add another 30% to the population especially older areas there is no way that additional children can be catered for viz schools. Such practicalities need to be considered.

  109. Miglo, the returned soldiers farming resettlement had to go wrong. They were just too small and in regions not suitable for farming.

    It was doubly stupid when in NSW at the same time, the government was merging two and three farms into one, paying the losers to get off the land.

    Many of those taking up the RS blocks had no experience.

    They were set up to fail.

    Miglo, do you have any idea how that scheme came about. I fear it might have been Labor responsible.

    Min, where i lived in Wentworthville, the area has been redeveloped successfully to much higher density. I say this because the area has wide streets, and is close to the highway.

    It can and should be done. At the same time we need to study the failures of the past. What we havenow is not working.

  110. I’m hoping that in 2012 someone produces a good toaster.

    I thought I bought one of the better brands. It has six settings. Forget about number 1. Number 2 is the equivalent of holding a lit match under a piece of bread. Number 3 burns the bread to a crisp.

    I don’t know what 4, 5 and 6 are for. Maybe they’re for use as a heater.

  111. Migs, toasters are designed so that they will cook toast on one side only thereby needing to turn them off and turn the piece of bread around. I have never found a toaster yet no matter which brand nor how expensive the brand which does otherwise.

  112. Migs

    Buy a Breville Professional 800 Series. They cost a bit extra but have 4 slices. Goes down and up itself like the old Sunbeam of years ago. You can lift and look at the toast during the cycle. It cooks crumpets a special way by heating the bottom of the crumpet slower so it does not burn. You can add a bit more cooking time at any time.

    Have had mine for 5 years with no problems and just love it.

  113. Our house has a Sunbeam with “cool touch 2” written on it. It has a variable control & works so far.
    A program on 7.30 may bode well for 2012. I only had it in the background but it seemed to be a fair enough report on poker machines in various states. One thing I thought I heard that rather took me aback was the statement that NSW has 20% of the world’s poker machines. Surely I heard this wrong? That can’t be right?

  114. Bob, I’m not sure about that number but I do know that Australia has the highest number of poker machines per head in the world.

  115. To add, I did find that In 2002, NSW alone had around 10% of the world’s poker machines and so that number of 20% could easily be right by now.

  116. Migs. there was something nice about making toast before the open fire. At least one was in control.

  117. Cu, I think Playford was the premier at the time. He was Liberal.

    As far as cooking toast, I agree, you couldn’t beat cooking over the hot coals in the wood stove. Mind you, it did make you sweat a bit.

  118. Bob,

    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/woolworths-hits-the-jackpot-with-pokies/story-e6freuy9-1226192278038
    GROCERY giant Woolworths will soon boast more poker machines than the top five casinos in Las Vegas combined.
    The companies’ hotel arm will add 32 hotels after signing a $500 million deal with the Laundy hotel group.

    This brings the total number of Woolworths hotels to 334, and the total number of machines from just more than 12,100 to 13,300.

    and
    “Pokies” roll the political dice for Australian PM
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/11/24/us-australia-gambling-idUSTRE7AN0DQ20111124

    (Reuters) – They are a silent army, formed in ranks inside clubs and hotels around Australia, desperately battling slot machines in the hope of winning an elusive jackpot.

    Australia has 197,000 slot machines, called “pokies,” the highest number of machines per head in the world. Slot machines feed 62 percent of the A$19 billion-plus annual gaming sector.

  119. Miglo, there were similar schemes in NSW. I think it may have been a Federal scheme. No matter what, they got it wrong.

  120. Found it Bob….

    » Pokies Facts & Figures
    http://www.onlinepokies.com/facts.htm

    The Numbers

    – Australia has over 20% of the worlds gaming machines
    – There are close to 200,000 slot machines in Australia
    – 100,308 of these are found in New South Wales
    – Australia’s population is 20,264,082 – one game for every 101 people
    – 38.6% of adult Australians play the pokies
    – In 2003 / 2004 gamblers lost $16.21 billion ($9.1 billion on pokies)
    – It is estimated that there are over 300,000 problem gamblers

    – The average payout percentage of pokies is 90.89%
    – Average chance of winning the jackpot playing 1 line is 1 in 50,000,000
    – Average chance of winning the jackpot playing 20 lines is 1 in 2,500,000
    – The highest jackpot you can win in a pub is $10,000
    – The average player loses $380 dollars every year
    – The average problem gambler loses $12,000 each year

  121. Pip
    Thanks for your efforts. Them’s scary numbers.
    An average loss of $380 isn’t so bad so long as you like playing the things & I admit to spending about the same on Lotto etc.
    Maths isn’t my strong point, but at a 90% or so payout & a loss of $12,000, the average problem gambler would actually feed $120,000 into the machines?
    Must away now to prepare for work. Hooroo.

  122. Two recent incidents involving big business has me wondering about why people are so willing to attack government over campaigns run by big businesses, yet not just as vociferously attack big business itself.

    First.

    The first involved Electricity Trust of South Australia (ETSA)
    cutting off electricity with no notice to significant portions of Southern South Australia under the Electricity Act of 1996.

    Those directly affected by the cutoffs have no recourse to compensation under the act.

    ETSA has stated that the cutoffs were essential for if their infrastructure had caused bush fires they potentially would have been up for millions in payouts.

    For mine that is a cop out aided and abetted by government. If ETSA invested in proper and ongoing maintenance of their electricity infrastructure then they would considerably, if not completely, mitigate the chance of their infrastructure causing damage severe enough to require compensation.

    Second.

    Genesee & Wyoming Australia own and run the rail infrastructure from Alice Springs to Darwin that was recently washed out by severe flooding.

    G & W have now mobilised to repair the damaged rail and have had to purchase heavy machinery and repair equipment to achieve this. The rub?

    They plan to add a 30% surcharge to their prices for goods going to Darwin after the goods trains are running again. I have no doubt this surcharge will remain in place long after it has paid for the repair of the infrastructure and would not be surprised if it is regularly increased as well.

    Again a major company that had not invested in insurance or preventative maintenance in anticipation of disasters is making ordinary Australians in Darwin wear the cost for their deliberate lack of planning.

    So we have major companies behaving in ways that make ordinary people wear the cost for their (deliberate cost saving) lack of planning, whilst a government will by all accounts be thrown out because through a carbon tax it’s attempting to plan for current and future damage.

    When that damage does occur and it costs business to continuously band aid because of their lack of forethought, guess who will be wearing the cost for that lack of forethought, and more than that, the deliberate campaigning by big business to stymie the cost of preventative action? It won’t be business, who will complain long and loud about governments not giving them enough assistance, and who will pass on any costs plus more onto Australians through a double whammy of surcharges and increased costs to governments.

    So the people will vote out a government who is not only planning to mitigate future significant costs to them like 30% surcharges by businesses, but is compensating them to the point most Australians will be no worse or even better off. So now guess who will complain long and loud about the cost of things being so horrendous and blaming the government for that?

    Tell me if that isn’t screwed.

  123. Möbius, ETSA went feral from the moment the Olsen Liberal Government sold it off to the Chinese. Welcome to SA – the blackout state.

  124. Tom, excellent work thank you for that. Have you been in touch with Xenophon and Wilkie about your ideas for industry accountability.

  125. Thanks Min… I have emailed both of them but there’s no guarantee the emails will actually reach them. Mind you, I’ve spoken with both Nick’s and Andrew’s people in the past… so there’s hope 🙂

  126. Tom, when I was doing a bit of lobbying I found that a phone call was the most effective method to try to get an answer. If they say, He’ll phone back say, No that’s ok I’ll wait.

  127. Joe Hockey hasn’t yet provided further evidence that he’s a complete dill

    Does he need to, Migs? Surely further proof would be overkill.

    Re poor farming on KI, Migs It was called Coast Disease due to a lack of trace elements in both KI and coastal SE soils. Pioneering research was carried out just a few kms outside Robe and led to the introduction of salt licks for stock and trace elements being added to super, which effectively fixed the problem.

    Pip, those gambling stats are very revealing. You can see why the NSW branch of Rip Off the Punters Alliance is doing everything in its power to sabotage any pokie legislation.

    Thisis the sort of stuff the government needs to make very public. I think resistance to pokies legislation would melt away if this was known. Actually, I’m surprised Xenophon and Wilkie haven’t been letting fly with these facts.

    This looks sooo wrong…Jones as Roosevelt !

    Only if we could actually give him polio, Pip!. With luck, his vocal cords would also be paralysed.

  128. Hello Tom, you’re welcome and any information about the pokie industry is also welcome. Keep up your good work. 🙂

    Twitter tweeps can follow Tom @ cyenne40

  129. Slow day for hits, Mobius. Can’t see the 350,000 coming up until tomorrow.

    If I finish a new topic and link it to Facebook we’ll get overwhelmed again, but I doubt I’ll finish the topic tonight. I thought it was about time I did another Indigenous thread.

  130. Pip, we should not forget that Mr. Abbott said Workchoices was dead etc, but at the same time he also said that he expected industry ti rise up and demand change.

    With Mr. Reith back on the scene and Mr. Corrigan re-entering business here, I am sure the Liberals will assure that happens.

    That along with the contracts under Workchoices coming up for renewal makes for a volatile time.

    We do have a government that has the expertise and ability to take the Opposition on in this matter.

    Many in the government are the ones that made Mr. Corrigan and Mr. Reith looks like fools.

    I heard one of the American candidates say that he want a strong America that is good for business etc. I have never heard the same people here or there say, they want a country that is good for workers.

    It is all about the bosses rights, nothing about workers having choices.

    The funny thing is that the greatest rise in productivity this country ever had was under Mr. Hawke’s accord. A time when workers and bosses were force to work together to get best practice outcomes.

    The worker is given no credit by the Opposition and the bosses for the cuts they took in hours and not seeking wage rises through the GFC. Many firms would have disappeared if this did not occur. The boss manage to retain their workforce when good times returned.

  131. Cu, the re-appearance of Reith a while back, blind Freddy could see what was afoot. This is a very well orchestrated campaign.

    I had forgotten Abbott’s words….I know they were, for the most part, the same few words, but he just that once told the absolute truth.
    Business is taking care of business and the Coalition at the same time!

  132. Pip, good article. BER was also about more than school halls. Pity he did not point that out.

    There is a wonderful thesis waiting to be written. One that explores how a government that does so much good is so hated.

    One that questions why the old adage of “it’s the economy stupid” no longer applies.

    We have a government that is stable, has lost no ministers and gets it;s legislation through with no trouble. This in spite of the fact it does not have a majority in either house. The success must lay a the feet of the PM and her negotiation skills.

    Unlike the battles that Mr. Howard had when he was in power, especially in his early days. Mr. Howard only lacked a majority in the Upper House.

    How many ministers did he lose in his first twelve months?

  133. Cu, yesterday I heard the maritime union rep in Adelaide say that the company has mostly casual staff which comes back to what you wrote about the contracts under Workchoices coming up for renewal.

    It would seem the company might do whatever it takes to get their way, including the same ‘lockout’ trick tried by Alan Joyce and I think another company in WA recently.

  134. Cu, the reasons for the vitriol and hatred of this government, and in particular the PM, can be laid at the door of the media machine continuing to promote the lie about the ‘no carbon tax under a government I lead’, thanks to a gotcha discussion with the ‘great’ Laurie Oakes!
    Rupert’s minions and others are simply doing their best to wipe out this government by whatever means and truth is the first victim.

  135. Pip, I am sure you are correct. They cannot wait to put the boot in.

    I am also certain that this government will be well and truly ready for them.

    If one looks at the reshuffle before the holidays, it could be interpreted as the battle plans for the fight ahead.

    I do not think workers are as stupid as the Liberal Party would like to think.

    The Liberals want to stand back a little and remember the public’s response to the Qantas dispute. It did not seem to like Qantas actions.

    Most unions and I believe workers know that much of WorkChoices survived in Fair Work legislation.

    All that changed, was that unions were allowed back into the picture.

    I have never understood how Mr. Howard got away with WorkChoices without a referendum to change the Constitution, which states that there must be a Industrial Court or some similar mechanism.

    I agree with one of the players in the Patrick dispute that said the government should have been challenged in the courts on conspiracy charges.

    Encouraging firms to transfer workers to a dummy company with no money, is at the best twisting the law, if not unlawful, at least immoral.

  136. Yes Pip, but why do people believe them. They only have to look about them to see that there is no connection between what the media is saying and how the country is travelling.

    Yes, things like electricity has gone up, but things such as mortgage payments have come down. There is more in their pockets from the government. There is very little unemployment. Yes too much is casual but one can go from job to job.

    The roads are better. Schools definitely are.

    I noticed today that Mr. Abbott has changed his manner. He appeared to be attempting to look serious. He only came across as someone giving another a lecture.

  137. Cu, your recollections of that time are better than mine; I remember Abbott announcing the guillotine of debate over Workchoices at one point, and i remember whiny Pine banging on about the guillotining of a debate recently, as if it had never been done before!

    Did Howard use an executive power or the Corporations Act ?

    It’s late but I’ll have a read of this later ..

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

    Time for sleep, ‘night Cu.

  138. Cu, Abbott ‘looking serious’ 😯 he walks like a bikie in an ill-fitting suit and talks like a year 4 student struggling to remember his lines!

  139. Cu, people believe the nonsense because they might only watch a short version of the ‘news’ or read a headline and that’s the basis of their assessments.
    They might listen to certain radio stations where they will only ever hear the opinions of the owners.

  140. Shorten won’t intervene in port dispute
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-01-05/shorten-wont-intervene-in-melbourne-port-dispute/3759736/?site=newcastle

    Federal Workplace Relations Minister Bill Shorten says he has no intention of intervening in a stoush brewing on Melbourne’s waterfront.

    Stevedoring company DP World says workers will be locked out for a further day if they follow through with a planned 24-hour strike next week.

    Reith’s friend Mr. Chris Corrigan at DP World is definitely back in the IR game.

  141. Brown slams surveillance of green activists
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-01-07/brown-slams-spying-on-environmental-activists/3762308

    Senator Brown claims coal and fossil fuel companies pressured Mr Ferguson into having the federal police spy on environment groups who protest against energy companies.

    Senator Brown says tens of thousands of dollars of taxpayers’ money is being spent having private contractors monitor activists.

    and
    AFP spies targeting green activists
    http://m.smh.com.au/environment/afp-spies-targeting-green-activists-20120106-1pogq.html

  142. Miglo asks us what does 2012 hold?

    In amongst the spin of the msm chaos agenda there are some good news stories.

    South Australian disability program to be trialled elsewhere
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2011-12-27/south-australian-disability-program-to-be-trialled/3748550?section=sa

    PETER CAVE: A trial program in Adelaide that gives people with a disability power over their own lives has been so successful it’s spreading to other states.

    The supported decision making project assigns people with a brain injury or intellectual disability a designated person who listens to them, and gives advice. That means that disabled people have more autonomy, and need less government interference in their affairs.

  143. Hello all.

    For a moment there it looked like my 2012 wasn’t going to last very long.

    My doctor prescribed a very powerful antibiotic yesterday, first of course, checking that I wasn’t allergic to penicillin, which I’m not. Picked up the script and the chemist asked the same question about allergies, and noted that this medication can have side affects.

    Took my first tablet at 7 pm. Four hours later my hands became red, sore, and very itchy. A Google identified it was the onset of an allergic reaction and should go straight to hospital. By the time I reached the hospital my chest was tightening up, I couldn’t swallow and my eyes were puffing. Blood tests showed that my sugar levels were going through the roof, among other nasty goings on.

    Next thing I’m told to roll over as I was about to have a needle in my bum. I asked if it was necessary. I was told, simply, that if I didn’t have it I was going to die. I rolled over.

    After a night in hospital I’ve had lunch, a few drinks, done my shopping and caught up with mates. It’s as though nothing ever happened.

    So here I am. You’re still stuck with me. :mrgreen:

    Happy New Year to you too, Tom R. How was the fishing?

  144. I believe that one person the MP should keep a tight rein on is Mr. Martin Ferguson MP.

    Always has been known to believe he knows best.

  145. Migs, yes we’re stuck with you..in the nicest way of course. It was luck or more likely with you, good common sense that prompted you to take yourself to the hospital.

    I had a similar event happen almost exactly the same time last year only I was silly enough to think that it would be all better in the morning. At 6am I dialed 000 and nearly died on the way to the hospital. Thank you paramedics Tweed Hospital.

  146. Glad to hear it all turned out for the best for you Migs.

    Antibiotics are a scary thing, great that they are, they also have the capacity for great harm.

    Unfortunately, many side affects are so difficult to discern until they are actually taken by the individual. I often wonder if the doctors push this line hard enough. Although, on the other hand, I hear quite often about the needless reminders and warnings from those taking them. I guess the doctors can’t win either way.

    Didn’t do any fishin’ though Migs (YAAAY, I hates fishin’) just mellowing on the beach and enjoying some time with the fam (and me coldies)

    Didn’t get much rest this arbo either. Went to some giant book sale, which took 40 minutes to get to each way

    Bought about 50 books for 50 bucks though (fill a box they said, so we did). So can’t complain. Especially in a family full of bookworms. The lady gladly overfilled the box for us 😉

  147. Hi Tom, it’s great to hear that you and family had such good veg out.

    Antibiotics should of course only be taken as a last resort and this is what Migs’ doctor did for a serious medical situation. Therefore a double whammy that it eventuated that for some unknown reason he was allergic to them.

    I certainly remember the days when antibiotics were handed out like lollies as a general ‘cure all’. And I certainly have first hand knowledge of what over prescribing can do. Son age 2 was prescribed antibiotics 22 times by the same doctor which not only destroyed all the enamel on his adult teeth but caused a break down of his kidneys requiring several emergency calls for immediate hospitalisation. The ‘problem’ was recurring colds and flu.

    It took only one trip to a different doctor to obtain the correct diagnosis of chronic exercise induced asthma.

    The first doctor was later sued, but not by me.

  148. I was prescribed penicillin from a very early age. became allergic to it about ten year ago, which is amazing after sixty years of use.

    It was not a severe allergic reaction but increased each time it was prescribed.

    Doctors do not have crystal balls.

  149. Otherwise get out of office and out of the way and let someone else take charge.

    Any idea who shaneinqld

    The only other option proved to be even more gutless than Labor on the issue.

  150. Shane diplomacy hasn’t helped so far for either the Coalition or Labor governments.

    Australian Navy v Japanese government whaling ship would be even more problematic.

  151. $30m hotel plan stalls
    http://www.themercury.com.au/article/2012/01/05/289671_tasmania-news.html

    FEDERAL Hotels has put its plans for a $30 million Port Arthur hotel on hold and has vowed not to build any substantial new projects until the outcome of gambling legislation is known

    MHR Andrew Wilkie isn’t fooled, saying:-
    “Federal Hotels’ threat to stop new investment in the state is just more hysterical scaremongering from an industry obsessed with its profits,” Mr Wilkie said.

    “It will make no difference to my push for poker machine reform, including mandatory pre-commitment on high-loss machines. The reforms target problem gamblers and the only impact on Federal’s bottom line will be a reduction in the money it harvests from these unfortunate souls.”

    Wilkie tips pokie fightback
    http://www.themercury.com.au/article/2012/01/07/290221_tasmania-news.html

    ANDREW Wilkie says he expects the poker machine industry will step up its campaign against him ahead of his meeting with Prime Minister Julia Gillard to finalise poker machine reforms.

  152. Pip, these sort of actions only go to prove that in spite of their protestations that these pubs and clubs are making their profits off the back of an addiction.

    Basic common sense here, if the threats go ahead to not build any substantial new gambling facilities this means that gambling addicts are exactly how the industry makes their profits.

  153. Pip

    Action needs to be taken and a survey ship sent by Austrlia to monitor the situation and observe and photograph during the annual whale slaughter would be a deterrent.

    I don’t really care what the coalition think about this issue, they are not in government, the ALP is in government. The ALP promised to do something when seeking government in the 2007 election and the ALP should act.

    Failure to act is not excuse by simply saying the coalition did no better.

  154. Asd you know I am a swinging voter so on a comlpetely different matter.

    Tragically 2 people lost their lives on a notorious black spot on our national highway. My heart goes out to their family and friends.

    Apparently the accident happened where one of the so called revenue/no reason speed cameras were ordered by the O’Farrell Government to be turned off.

    Apparently since the turning off the camera the residents have pleaded with the government for it to be turned back on as the traffic has once again become dangerous and speeding.

    As the coalition and media take great delight in blaming the Federal Government for the tragic deaths of workers during the insulation scheme (even though it was short cuts and poor management by businesses) will the media blame the NSW coalition and will the NSW coalition accept responsibility for the deaths as a direct result of the Premiers intervention in turning off speed cameras, (and announcing the location of those to be switched off) due to an election stunt promise.

    Also if the coalition had kept the $300,000,000 tax cuts on poker machines they gave to clubs as an election bribe, then a hell of a lot of black spots could have been upgraded on the national highway.

    Priorities seem totally out of whack to me.

  155. Headline at news.com

    HANDS TIED: Labor powerless as whalers hold Aussies captive

    As accurate as that might be, why does the headline need to target it as ‘Labor’ powerless, instead of the Government. The simple fact is, no matter who is in power is powerless(??) in this case.

    I also heard whineypiney on the radio this morning, declaring, again, that the Government MUST release these men, as they were taken in Australian waters. This harps back to my whinge the other day. Why is the opposition allowed to confuse and already difficult situation with lies? And not get called on them?

    I understand that people are upset that the Government haven’t been able to stop the whaling, but when the remainder of the world appear to think that it is OK for them to get away with it, what really can the Government do, short of outright war with the whalers?

  156. Shaneinqld,

    What ever it takes to buy themselves into government. They blame careless driving, they blame speeding but then fail to do anything about it. In spite of what you might read in the papers speed cameras are rarely revenue raisers. I know that in my neck of the woods it’s writ bold, speed cameras ahead giving people fair warning that this is a dangerous stretch of the highway. If it was solely to raise revenue then why erect the warning signs.

  157. The government can send an observation ship like it did during the first year of the Rudd Government. Most whales are caught in open ocean not ocean covered in ice.

  158. Antony G

    Today Tonight and ACA are terrible culprits at accusing speed cameras of revenue raising. I support speed cameras 100%. if you are breaking the law then suffer the consequences. Also I agree that speed camera warnings are the deterrent to shock drivers into better driving behaviour before hitting a dangerous stretch of a road or an area known for reckless driving.

    The NSW Government should hang its head in shame at the turning off of speed cameras which were designed to keep areas of our roads safe, all to appeal to the hysteria of the media and speed nuts who think it their right to drive and act like maniacs on our roads.

    We need more cameras, not less as road rage and dowright dangerous and violent acts against careful drivers are becoming common place.

  159. I am a little confused what having a boat in the south would have changed the situation.

    Would they been able to stop th protesters getting on the Japanese boat. I suspect not.

    As for speed cameras. I believe this is not the first fatally after the cameras were removed.

    If people want to speed and need extra police on the roads to drill some sense into them, let have the cameras to pay them.

    I believe the cameras should be upgraded to a level that they record speeds over distances of a few kilometers.

    Why is it now a every day occurrences to have cars colliding with houses.

  160. Having a boat in the south would allow the situation to be monitored rather than relying on reports from the protestors or the Japanese.

    Having a bost in the south would enable filming of the slaughter to be taken and shown around the world each and every year.

    Having a boat in the south would display to the Japanese that we do take our whale sanctuary seriously as we have a presence.

    Having a boat down south would ensure the Japanese actually keep out of our waters otherwise verification by our own vessel can be undertaken.

    Having a boat down south may just persuade the Japanese to be a little bit more cautious in their actions and also the protestors as well.

    Having a boat in the souith would demonstrate that we really do want whale slaughter to end in a highly visible way rather than to so called behind closed doors negotiation rot that has happened for so many decades I am over it.

    Time for visible as opposed to violent action.

  161. CU

    Distance Speed Point to Point Cameras have been placed on the bruce highway for 14km from north of Brisbane from the Beerburrum Exit to the Landsborough Exit. They work on the time for each vehicle to do the distance and commence issuing fines from last week. During the trail and installion adjustment phase some vehicles were clocked at an average of over 160km over the 14km distance.

    Bring more of them in, I say. I was overtaken by 2 motorcyclists and a car, all on double white lines over the weekend, with the car sticking his arm out and giving me the finger and his fist for a few kms after honking my horn as he damn near hit 3 cars head on.

  162. Shane having a boat there might do much good.

    How would it be any different from now for the three who boarded the Japanese boat?

  163. CU

    The three may not have deemed it necessary to board the boat if the Australian Government was active in the area of whale slaughter by having a ship down there observing and watching and recording the facts.

    As they have said, they did it because Australia seems to lack any determination or public profile in trying to stop this slaughter.

    Having a boat there would do much good and would also show that we are not going to simply be screwed by a foreign government.

    The Gillard Government needs to grow a backbone on this issue and at the very least have a boat observing the very action we are trying to stop. Otherwise we are simply paying lip service.

  164. Shaneinqld,

    I bit of personal responsibility clicks in here. These people know that they were likely to be arrested by the Japanese.

  165. Antony G

    I totally understand personal responsibility and taking responsibility for your actions and they will face those actions. Inaction by this government is the reason for the action taken by these Australians who will be responsible

    My beef is with the government which is simply paying lip service to stopping the slaughter of whales. I am not a rusted on labor to the death supporter. I am a swinging voter and as such will roundly criticise the Gillard Government when I deem they have not acted the way they should.

    This issue was one that the ALP used to its advantage in the 2007 election. The ALP now needs to get some guts and take some positive action instead of the pussy footing diplomacy that still sees thousands of whales slaughtered every year.

    For the benefits of a boat down south I refer you to my previous comment.

  166. Shane, as I mentioned previously our Navy has ONE vessel with icebreaking capabilities. If it’s in the same condition as the rest of the fleet, chasing Japanese whalers may not be an option.

    There is also the fact that it appears (from at least one report) that the event occurred in international waters. Not a scrap that Australia can do about what is basically a civilian rather than a military action.

  167. Min

    I have never seen the Japanese whaling ships breaking ice, but rather hunting and slaughtering in open icefree waters.

    International waters or not, I don’t care. A ship down there following the whaling fleet just like the Japanese are following the protestors and vice versa, would be a good public display of our opposition to whaling.

    I do not advocate military action. I advocate visible following and filming of the hunt. Are you telling me this simple task is beyond any vessel that our country owns ?.

    What do you call the Japanese sending refitted and repainted boats that have military weapons on them to support the whaling murderers if not military action.

    Not a scrap that Australia can do about what is basically a civilian rather than a military action. Sorry Min but that comment is not true and a cop out, you don’t have to have a military incident for a government to take any action. The military are used for all types of incidents.

  168. Speaking of Military Action my nephew left for Afghanistan last week for his tour of duty. I wish him a safe journey, tour and return. He is 23 or 24 next month and over 6 1/2 feet tall.

    I managed to catch up with him over Christmas. Apparently the only way you can make contact is over the internet as mobile phones were not permitted to be taken.

  169. Shane, Attorney General Nicola Roxon said today that the Australian government presented their submission on the whaling issue to the International Court of Justice in 2010, and the Japanese have to present their submission by March this year.

    The wheels turn very slowly!

    Also, the law of the sea is that the Japanese ship is sovereign territory, and the three Aussies could find themselves in a Japanese Court, like Mr. Bethune did last year. I think he was charged with trespass.

    Our government has asked for assurance that the three are being treated properly, and to speak to the three but no luck so far.

  170. Tony Abbott has called for a patrol boat to “keep the peace, in a manner of speaking”. Min made a very good point. Do we have a ship to spare that is capable?

  171. Shane, the ship still needs icebreaking capabilities. Remember when the government sent a ship out last time, it had to be refitted with plating to it’s hull. I should have expressed that better, not so much pack ice but drift ice.

  172. Government can’t contact whaling activists: Roxon
    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/whale-watch/government-cant-contact-whaling-activists-roxon-20120109-1prbd.html

    •Australians may be subject to Japanese law
    •Door open to talks
    The federal government says it does not know the whereabouts of a Japanese whaling security vessel holding three Australian activists and has been unable to make contact with the men.

    Attorney-General Nicola Roxon says the government is doing what it can to help the three men aboard the Shonan Maru No.2 but the matter has become a diplomatic issue.

    Shane, I do agree, ideally, the slaughter of the whales should be filmed for the world to see.

  173. Pip

    Irrespective of your comments there is absolutely nothing at all stopping the Asutralian Government sending aship down south. Absolutely nothing at all. They have been just as lazy as the Coalition in this regard despite playing to emotions at the 2007 election.

    Min

    If the government does not have a ship capable of icebreaking then what on earth are we doing down in the antarctic amongst all the ice claiming sovreignty. In addition the government hires all types of machinery and equipment from private companies for all types of duties including border patrol, so why can’t we send a ship down south.

    Sorry, but the excuses are very lame indeed and seem to be nothing less than spin.

  174. Shane, I do agree, ideally, the slaughter of the whales should be filmed for the world to see.

    So Pip why hasn’t the government hired a ship and sent it south each year during the hunt, which is in the summer when most of the ice has melted. Filmed the slaughter and presented it to the world via the Internet.

    No military action there but rather a hard hitting expose of the cruelty of this senseless killing without breaching any laws or rules. If the Japanese get offended or embarassed who gives a toss. Sometimes you need to offend or embarass to instigate long overdue change for the better.

  175. Shane I’m still agreeing with you. 🙂

    Activists on ‘hunger strike’ aboard Japanese ship
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-01-09/activists-on-hunger-strike-aboard-japanese-ship/3764234/?site=newcastle

    But Federal Attorney-General Nicola Roxon says Australia has limited legal avenues to pursue the release of the three activists because the men boarded the ship while it was outside Australian territorial waters.

    She says it is possible the men could be taken to Japan and charged.

    Ms Roxon says the Government has asked to speak to the men, but so far has not been able to.

    “The legal options are quite limited when this occurs outside Australian territory and outside territorial waters, we can’t simply enforce our will upon a boat which is flagged to another nation,” she told a press conference this afternoon.

  176. The news I saw said the protesters had boarded the ship, cutting through barbed wire to do so. They seemed keen enough to get on board, & now they are. If the vessel was in international waters, & l is registered in Japan & sovereign territory they’ll no doubt be subject to Japanese law & that’s all there is to it. One word for boarding a ship on the high seas uninvited is piracy. Their purpose is obviously to get noticed & bring the whales’ plight to our attention. They’ve done that, but in doing so they’ve put their bodies & freedom on the line & must now face any consequences. To do what they’ve done & then say “well, can we go home now?” is a bit fanciful, as is the notion that the government should obtain their release immediately.

    Most of the ensuing local controversy will just be today’s round of the “Get Gillard” theme. “Keeping the peace” sounds OK , but how would it be done?
    Australia’s best bet would, as proposed here, be to send a vessel to obtain evidence of exactly what is happening down there.

  177. My point has nothing to do with the people who boarded the Japanese vessel other than to say they may not have resorted to these tactics if our gutless government had sent a boat down south for the last 4 years since the ALP used the whales as an election booster.

    The Gillard Government but more so the ALP deserve a rev up for their abysmal performance in mantaining the rage publicly. As for the activists they will face the consequences of their actions.

    Still absolutely no excuse for not having a ship sponsored by the Australian Government to monitor, gather, record and display this terrible and unwarranted travesty against nature on an annual basis.

  178. Shane, this is not the first time this has happened. Last year a man actually served time in a Japanese prison. Did the government have a boat there then. I believe so.

    These men were well aware of the consequences when they boarded the boats.

    Mr. Abbott said an Australian boats could keep the peace.

    What does he mean. Does he mean if we had a boat there, they would have stopped the men boarding the boasts

    Do you believe that an Australian boat should forcibly remove the men from the Japanese boat.

    Who do you think would win that one in court? I believe the Japanese would have a open and shut case.

    I believe the protestors have made a bad move.

  179. It was 30 years ago today that I married my first wife. I could never have made a bigger mistake if I tried. After eight years of marriage we finally parted.

    It was 20 years ago today I went out to celebrate that it was 10 years since I married that monster and that I was no longer married to her. What happened that night? I met freak number two.

    There’s something about the 9th of January that lets the loonies out.

  180. CU

    I think you had better re read my comments.

    I have said the protesters will face their consequences. This does not absolve a gutless government who used whales at the 2007 election from not doing more in a visible presence while the Jpanese continue to slaughter whales. I will not simply roll over and accept excuses.

    Mr Abbott may think like I do that the protestors may have not resported to their tactics if the Gillatrd Government had some intestinal fortitude and went down there every single year with a ship to film and shadow the Japanese.

    Are you positive the governmnet had a boat down there last year or are you using guess work ?.

  181. Catching Up at 8.02
    You should know by now that Mr Abbott is not to be asked what he means when he says anything. That sort of thing has been known to reduce him to lengthy bouts of head wobbling, a hideous sight I’m sure you don’t want to be responsible for inflicting on the nation again.

    Though it is interesting, isn’t it, how having a patrol boat in the Southern oceans would’ve prevented these three from boarding a boat off the West Aussie coast, I guess our young men & women in uniform are just that good.

    By all means send a boat with a few cameras down there, though there’s enough footage of that sort of thing about already to interest anyone who’s likely to be interested. But you don’t want a patrol boat in there actively mixing it. It’d be smack in the middle of a situation coppers the world over fear & dread- the domestic. Both sides itching to take a swing at the other with them in the middle getting it from both.

    Ultimately legal & more restrained & less grandiose moral pressure is what’s needed.

  182. Bob, if they’re thinking of deploying any of the patrol boats out of Cairns or Darwin then they’re out of luck. The story is that Howard purchased 2nd hand hulls from the Yanks and had them refitted at huge expense. Unfortunately a number of the hulls are now warped. During one sea test all that the boat would do was go around and around in circles.

  183. Ultimately legal & more restrained & less grandiose moral pressure is what’s needed. Just for how much longer do you propose to continue with this utterly useless type of action while thousands of whales go to slaughter.

    10 years ? 20 years ?, just when do propose to accept that diplomacy has failed in this instance. When the whales go the way of the dodo, or when the beloved and all perfect ALP actually decide to do something ?.

    Time for criticism of the government over this issue, by those of us without biased political glasses, has arrived.

  184. Min at 8.45
    If the circles are big enough it could be used to patrol around the coastline, only in one direction of course.
    Sounds about right though, they could possibly be stored in the same paddock as the Sea Sprites where they could talk over old times.
    Going around in circles reminds me of a story I was told about J Edgar Hoover, though I don’t know for sure if it’s true. Anyway the tale has it that he was once involved in a traffic accident where the vehicle he was in turned left across the line of traffic & hit another car. Once he became important enough to have a driver, he absolutely forbade him to ever make left turns, & so the main requirement for his drivers was to know how to get around big American cities making only right hand turns.

  185. That’s ok Shane. I must apologise not being as decisive on this issue as I would like to be. If it’s ok I’ll try to catch up with some research. It’s just me, I like to have all the facts and I believe there are some things happening behind the scenes which haven’t been made public just in case it causes the Japanese to dig their heals in..which of course they are prone to do.

  186. Bob, son started off on the Sea Sprites, then to the Gulf with HMAS Toobroke aka Tobruk and is now up north.

    Love the story about Hoover. 🙂

  187. Good for you Shane. I remember when Migaloo (hey that name bears a resemblance to someone), Byron’s famous whale was thought to be In danger..being albino and therefore highly visible.

    The thing which I dislike the most is the sheer hypocrisy of the Japanese still keeping up the charade of scientific research.

  188. shaneinqld
    Firstly I think we can dispose of Mr Abbott. He demands a vessel because there isn’t one, if there was it’d be one more boat he’d stop citing extravagance or something.
    Diplomacy’s got a way to go it’s true but the alternative is to attack & subdue their fleet. Having tried something similar themselves in the not too distant past the Japanese would know that doesn’t work in the long run.

  189. I did a quick google, and found that the Government have not been idle in this. It appears that it is more a case of typical court proceedings taking an excruciatingly long time.

    Nevertheless, progress appears to be being made.

    The Australian government filed a written submission at the International Court of Justice in Netherlands calling for an end to Japan’s Antarctic
    ..
    The submission from Australia will remain confidential until Japan has submitted its counter-memorial arguments, which it must do by 9 March 2012. Oral arguments will take place at a hearing shortly thereafter.

    http://en.mercopress.com/2011/05/09/australia-submits-japan-s-antarctic-whaling-program-to-the-international-court

    As hard as it is to take, sometimes it is best to just let the wheels of justice turn as they do.

  190. Shane, I am not sure they had a boat when the other man was taken back to Japan.

    I know that they sent a boat down to get evidence, which has been placed before the courts and is waiting for a decision.

    Shane what would a boat had done.

  191. Thanks BSA Bob, I hadn’t caught that on the news (I gapped out a bit while it was on, so missed large chunks).

    I just assumed they would ignore all that and get onto showing bits of abbott spouting off 😦

  192. Tom R
    For once they didn’t give Abbott much airplay, though one of the boarders’ partner was on, giving a fair impersonation of a Plains Indian & demanding that Gillard DoSomething! The ABC mention may have been on 7.30, which played a straight bat to the whole affair I thought. Chris’ night off?

  193. Government in talks to free whaling activists from ship
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-01-08/government-in-talks-have-anti-whaling-activists-released-from-s/3763002

    and..

    Japan to hand activists to Australian authorities
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-01-10/kyodo-whaling-activists/3764806

    Three Australian anti-whaling activists being held on a Japanese ship after they snuck onboard at the weekend will be transferred to Australian custody, Japan’s Kyodo news service is reporting.

    According to reports, Japanese government sources say criminal charges will not be laid against the three men because they did not cause injury to crew members of the Shonan Maru 2 or to the body of the ship.

    Japanese government sources say they will consult with the Australian Government on the transfer of the three men.

  194. will be transferred to Australian custody

    They must have heard about the armada of conservative pollies about to launch an assault on them in ‘black rubber’ 😉

  195. Tom, thank you for that link – that everything must remain confidential until the 9th March. This relates to the information that I was trying to locate, and so explains why I couldn’t.

  196. Black rubber that is now preferred by Mr. Abbott somehow excites or terrorises the imagination. Not too sure that it is any better than the speedos it is replacing.

    Mr. Baillieu seems to be saying that one can makes allegations or propositions without supporting facts or evidence.

    If he wishes what he says to carry weight, must expect some evidence or facts to be presented.

    It appears that the Japanese are spoiling the Oppositions fun by returning the three men.

    Could it be that quiet negotiations behind the scene, produces better outcomes than threats and breast beating in public.

  197. Mr. Abbott this competed in a race in Victoria. Once he reached the beach, he raced flat out, as if the devil was after him, past those who were moving at a more leisurely pace.

    Next he was working with some young kids in the surf at Manly when the shark alarm sounded. Once again he left the water as if the devil was after him, leaving the kids in his wake.

    What makes a man feel he has to beat all, including young children and old men.

  198. Min, ghoul is a perfect description.

    I know I cringe whenever I hear him reply to tragedies.

    He is one of the most self centred man I have seen. He is not conscious of the feelings of those around him.

    His behaviour is so obsessional in his desire to be PM that all judgement goes out the window.

    Yes, his behaviour is ghoulish.

    To make matters worse, his answers are not appropriate or make sense.

  199. Probably because:
    a) by having a big surplus he could tell the country what a great economic manager he was; and
    b) when he did spend money he only spent it on buying votes.

  200. Min, there is a dishonest poll on the site asking if the upgrading of the road more important than broadband.

    It is dishonest because there is no black and white answer. Both are important.

    The roads have been neglected over more than two decades.

    The action that is being taken to repair this accumulated damage cannot be done faster than what is occurring now.

    The NBN spending has nothing to do with the money available to spend on roads.

    There is I believe record money now being spent on roads.

    Once again a smart sounding slogan that means nothing as a reply.

    When in government, one does not have the luxury of dealing with one thing at a time.

    I do not know how Mr. Abbott will cope, as dealing with more that one thing at a time appears to be beyond him.

  201. I thought we got past this fifty years ago. Apparently I am wrong.

    “…Teaching migrants about deodorant and waiting in line will help them integrate better into Australian society, a coalition MP says.

    Cultural awareness training should also be given by employers bringing skilled migrants into Australia under the 457 visa program, the coalition’s citizenship spokeswoman Teresa Gambaro told The Australian.

    In an interview with the newspaper, Ms Gambaro said she was concerned……………”

    http://bigpondnews.com/articles/National/2012/01/10/Teach_migrants_about_deodorant_says_MP_705597.html

  202. I wonder if we will see the point raised that an NBN will potentially decrease the numbers of users on the highway, therefore contributing to the safety.

    In regards to the libs continued politicisation of tragedys, I wonder why this hasn’t been followed up on

    Well, according to his tweets (on p1 of this thread) Abbott has a hc license. This entitles him to drive ordinary semis, but one needs an mc license to drive those big b-double rigs he was photographed poncing around in.

    http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/2012/01/09/newspoll-quarterly-breakdowns-3/all-comments/#comment-1122887

    (I haven’t read further on the thread yet to see if anything is forthcoming, my guess, just a photo op)

  203. Firstly I think we can dispose of Mr Abbott. He demands a vessel because there isn’t one, if there was it’d be one more boat he’d stop citing extravagance or something.

    Sounds like rusted on ALP banter to me. I support no party and therefore am happy to agree with Mr Abbott when I deem it to be correct. In this case ( and it is very rare) I agree that a boat should have been sent down.

    As hard as it is to take, sometimes it is best to just let the wheels of justice turn as they do.

    Rubbish. do you support this same stance with the tyrants and dictators of countries around the world. Do you support the action of the people to use unlwaful means to dispose of the dictators in muslim countries or would you prefer they go to the countries court and appeal the dictator.

    Sometimes it is better to take sterner measures to get your point accross because the law is an ass and needs a kick up the arse. People around the world are taking action into their own hands to achieve results and freeedoms, or would you rather they remain under a dictator and no human rights for another 20 years ? Whales are being slaughtered and it is time to stop.

    Shane what would a boat had done.

    Please refer to my response at 10.57am which is in bullet form giving responses to this question.

    Could it be that quiet negotiations behind the scene, produces better outcomes than threats and breast beating in public.

    Regarding release of the protestors I agree, however everyone here seems to think I am demanding the government take action to release the protestors and this it totally false. If the time was taken to read my comments it would reveal that I want the government to take more visible, yet peaceful action down at the whale breeding sanctuary to stop the slaughter.

    Some say we have enough footage of the killing of whales. Well I disagree, do we simply stop talking about it and let it happen. Do we not show any more human slaughters because we had enough during Hitler. Do we stop showing victim persecutrion because we have enough footage. Do we stop showing environmental disasters because we have enough footage. Honestly that is just rubbish.

    The rush to defend inaction simply shows the refusal to admit that this government does absolutly anything wrong and is never accountable for anything.

  204. I agree that a boat should have been sent down.

    I am with you on that one Shaneinqld. If for nothing else but to keep the media focus on the issue. I really cannot understand why the Government won’t do it, although, I guess you could argue that they are trying to keep the Japanese on side while the court case continues. Doesn’t help the whales down there now though.

    I wonder though, when did tabot start asking for the boats to go there? I know it has been a wish of the Greens all along. Did howard send any there when tabot was in the ministry?

  205. PS, why did not Mr. Howard fix the roads during the twelve years he was in power.

    Because he was a slash and burn PM who was obsessed with creating budget surpluses to give tax cuts to the wealthy and have funds to buy votes at elections.

    The problem is, massive tax cuts to the wealthy, skews the tax burden to the poor and decimates government revenue, over the long term, to the detriment of services and assets.

    I do regret voting for him once the whole agenda started to roll out. I hope the Democrats also regret their reduction to irrelevance after they jumped into bed with Howard over the GST.

  206. Tom R

    I agree I am not silly enough to think that Tony Abbott is simply playing politics by saying send down a boat. He would do or say anything that would score points. Sickening really.

    But I do have the nouse to say he is correct because that is what should have been happening year after year. You are correct the media forget so very quickly unless the story is here and now.

    As for the Howard government this is one time when I say get over Howard. What he did or did not do for whales is irrelevant. Whales did not stop dying when the ALP won in 2007, so responsibility for protection of the whales since 2007 rests with the current government. That government is the ALP and the ALP played the whales as an election issue, so face up and act.

  207. You are ignoring that over the years, the actions taken have done little to stop the killing.

    It may irk some, including myself but sometimes the legal course is the only way to go.

    Maybe we could go to war with Japan but I feel that might be a little extreme.

    Maybe pulling back a little may lead to the result we want.

    I believe that whale meat is becoming less popular in Japan. It will be the market in the end that brings a end to this trade.

    Bullying people often puts their back up and leavrs them nowhere to go. Pride comes into play.

    There are only two options that have any chance of working. One is the legal system, the other the market.

  208. I say get over Howard

    You may well say that, but remember, the ALP are the ones who finally instigated court action against the whalers, and, as is seen, it is going to take years to go through.

    Now, just for a moment, imagine if this had started under the howard Government. We might be at a stage now where the court was actually making a decision, and closer to ending whaling for good.

    No, I don’t think I’ll forget, or forgive. Especially when the current mob, most of whom were around back then, cry their crocodile tears and profess a great caring or understanding.

    Sorry, it might not be happening as fast as you want, or as obviously as you want, but the simple fact remains, Labor are keeping to pledge to stop the whales, and are one of the few countries in the world willing to do so.

    It also appears that they are doing this while maintaining strong diplomatic relations with Japan. Strong enough to secure (allegedly) the release of the three individuals, something no-one even considered possible yesterday.

  209. You are ignoring the power of film and public awareness to change government action.

    You are ignoring the fatc that legal courses sometimes go nowhere and take far too long. Maybe the total extinction of whales during the never ending legal course is acceptable to yourself. It is not to me.

    You are being ridiculous suggesting we could go to war with the Japanese. What utter hysteria.

    Do you suggest the freedom fighters in countries around the world that are disobaying the laws of their couontries, pullback ?

    Whale meat may be becoming less popular, however Dodo is even less popular becuase they have been hunted to extinction by greedy human beings. I would rather we take action now to ensure the whales do not go the same way.

    Markets do not stop the trade, government laws and extinction does.

    If you call filming slaughter in international waters and following the murderous armada in international waters as bullying then lets bully some more.

    The are three options. Legal, Market and Media/Public Pressure.

    Freedom for many from dictatorship did not happen via a legal or maket change, it happened via media and public pressure.

  210. Tom R,

    We have a situation where Tony Abbott regularly blames the Labor government for inaction. The truth is that the government cannot repair the results of the Howard governments inaction overnight. While Tony Abbott regularly spouts off that it’s all the current government’s fault I think that it is warranted that it be drawn to public attention that the situation may not have occurred in the first place should Howard have addressed important issues instead of wasting money on his Howard-Handouts.

  211. The are three options. Legal, Market and Media/Public Pressure.

    Sorry Shaneinqld, I think only the first two are a real option. I read somewhere that the more you try and pressure the Japanese to do something, the more they push back. It is in their culture to lose face (that is a simplistic portrayal of the description I read, it is a complex issue)

    That really only leaves two options, and, since whale meat is already hunted at a price that is not marketable, then I guess that leaves only one option.

  212. Tom R

    I agree it should have started under Howard, well it actually should have stared even before that.

    Howard never used it as an election tool. The ALP did.

    Good to see the whole worlds problems are now the fault of John Howard. Now I see the unbelievable bias. It is John Howards fault that the whales are still dying almost 5 years after he lost office. It is John Howards fault that we do not have a ship down there monitoring the situation.

    I agree he has a lot to answer for but this is now simply 100% ridiculous hatred and buck passing and spin.

    Yes I am disappointed that it is not happening faster because the current ALP government can do more quickly and easily. Defence of it is unacceptable.

  213. Sorry Shaneinqld, I think only the first two are a real option.

    If that is the case then why are you all so hysterical about media bias if it does not alter and achieve outcomes. ?

    Do you think the Japanese have never changed what they do or plan as a result of media/public pressure ?

    So because they have a culture different to ours we should just turn a blind eye to the mass slaughter and only operate behind the scenes according to their culture while thousands of whales are slaughtered ?

    Many cultures believe in the mutilation of womens gentials, yet a few have spoken out against their culture under the threat of death. Do you suggest they all simply accept their culture and try to change it behind the scenes without the media attention and books they have written ?

    Do you think the stoning to death of women in Iran under their culture and the media reporting which helped stay the execution of a number of women was not worthwhile. Or should we simply go and ask the Iran Government to stop stoning its women to death and hope they say yes.

    The media and people are a powerful force to achieve change, irrespective of cultures, be that good or bad.

  214. Shane, and eating whale meat isn’t even part of the Japanese culture except for a few coastal villages. The consumption of whale meat was introduced by General MacArthur to feed millions of Japanese who were on the verge of starvation after WW2.

    The current situation is for commercial purposes only. At least inroads have been made in this regard, doubtful if anyone these days believes in this form of ‘scientific research’.

  215. Shane, I do not ignore the power of public opinion. What I did say, there has only been limited success up to now.

    “You are being ridiculous suggesting we could go to war with the Japanese. What utter hysteria.”

    I think your answer is bordering on hysteria. Go back and read what I said. It was clearly tongue in cheek, and I did finish off with that it would be extreme action.

    “Do you suggest the freedom fighters in countries around the world that are disobeying the laws of their countries, pullback ?”

    Do you consider this cause on par with what has occurred in the middle east where people have put their lives on the line to get rid of dictators and put in place democracy.

    I am seventy, and if you know a little of history, protesting was a way of life back in the seventies and eighties. It did help bring the war in Vietnam to a end. It also helped that the North Vietnamese were winning.

    As for the market not working. If there is no buyers for whale meat, then believe me, the trade will end.

    Also we should remember it is not that long since whaling was seen as legit. We do kill animals for meat. I also believe that even many Japanese now find it not appropriate to kill whales.

    One thing that we did learn from protesting, we never get all we want. We never get it when we want.

    Some countries see horse meat as OK.

    I do not believe in whales being killed.

  216. PS. I believe only for the money from the tsunami fund, they would have had trouble getting enough money for this years whaling.

  217. Notice Shane, that in all of your examples above, those who have achieved change from speaking out have been from within the culture. As Tom R points, it may well be counter-productive to apply external pressure to the Japanese to halt all whaling – the call must come from within the culture…

    Australian ships taking video footage of the slaughter may well do no more than outrage more Australians and cause the Japanese to harden their stance, achieving absolutely nothing useful…

    Perhaps a more effective approach may be to quietly agitate within the Japanese population – at universities and schools – to grow a groundswell amongst the Japanese themselves for change?

    As it stands now, about 83% of the population doesn’t eat whale meat anyway – the government has had to resort to “selling” the meat to schools at 1/3 of the market price to reduce stockpiles. Surely a local change of opinion could be grown from this background?

  218. Min

    I agree, but even if it was their culture, if the species is under threat then hunting should stop.

    I think absolutely everyone knows that this is no research operation. What other species on the planet do we do research on by slaughtering thousands of them. When we do research we usually only kill a couple of them for scientific and medical anaylsis. This shows everything we need to know about the species. After that we observe them in their natural habitat. We do not harpoon and kill them while observing them.

  219. Howard never used it as an election tool. The ALP did.

    And they are delivering on that pledge.

    I can live with the fact that howard didn’t do anything, that was his platform (although I will recall it at will as a reminder of the 12 wasted years). I cannot abide the crocodile tears of the present mob pretending they are what they aren’t, and not being called on it.

    All of a sudden, the libs

    care about whales
    care about asylum seekers
    care about mothers
    care about infrastructure

    What a load of hypocritical bullshit. They never did when they had the opportunity to do something about it.

    Labor called them on them all, and are delivering (or attempting to) on them all.

  220. As for the market not working. If there is no buyers for whale meat, then believe me, the trade will end.

    It runs at a massive loss now, and is subsidised by the state, so the market has not stopped the slaughter at all.

    Yes we do kill animals for meat. Most of those are now purposely bred for that specific purpose. This is totally different to slaughtering wild animals which do not need to be killed to feed a population.

    Perhaps a more effective approach may be to quietly agitate within the Japanese population – at universities and schools – to grow a groundswell amongst the Japanese themselves for change?

    This is a good idea and how do we do that, without having up to date footage and evidence of the slaughter and barbary by sending a ship down and filming the events taking place to show to the university students ?

    Vision is a powerful tool.

  221. As it stands now, about 83% of the population doesn’t eat whale meat anyway – the government has had to resort to “selling” the meat to schools at 1/3 of the market price to reduce stockpiles.

    This totally debunks the maket option.

  222. CU, a little bit of “license” has been taken in reporting of the “Tsunami aid money going to whaling” meme. The money allocated has come from the Japanese government’s allocation of their own funds for tsunami recovery, not as implied, from donations.

    Still worth knowing about, but an important distinction – we are being manipulated by the media again, only this time by those with an anti-whaling agenda…

  223. Shane listen, there are signs that the killing of the whales is coming to an end.

    The market is shrinking. The Japanese are a proud people with a long culture. As Min said, not many eat the meat anyway.

    Encourage the Japanese people to say we do not need whale meat.

    Yes keep up the fight against it and let the world know how brutal it is.

    Acknowledge that sometimes it takes time to get what we want.

    Maybe this is our governments reading of the situation at this time.

    Pulling back sometimes is not giving up. It is giving the other party room to move and hopefully come to a different decision.

    We did kill and harpoon them at one time.

    The reason we stopped was because it was no longer economical.

    We also came to the conclusion that it is wrong.

  224. Is anybody aware of the uproar that comes from overseas about the killing of kangaroos?

    And how successful has this been in stopping culling of the kangaroo population? Australian culture takes much more notice of what opinion comes from OS than do the Japanese (or even the Americans for that matter), and still we don’t stop killing kangaroos because some well-intentioned activists in other countries demand that we do…

  225. The market is shrinking. The Japanese are a proud people with a long culture. As Min said, not many eat the meat anyway.

    Their quota this year is larger than last year and they are also going to take whales from the endangered list.

  226. On horses – who is aware that Australia slaughters and exports horse meat to Japan and Europe?

    Are they bred for the purpose. Or are they hunted for the purpose from horses that were introduced. We have no endemic horse species in Australia. Horses are an introdcued species to this environement. Whales are in their own environment.

  227. One thing that I find quite ironic is the numbers of Japanese who come to Australia to go whale watching. But perhaps that isn’t fair on individuals who may indeed go home and protest about their own country’s actions.

    I am against eating both ‘roo and duck.

    However in spite of the opinion of a majority of Australians the Victorian government has increased the killing season for ducks this year, the sole reason being to pander to a lobby group. Same as Japanese whaling I think.

  228. “Good to see the whole worlds problems are now the fault of John Howard. ”

    Shane, sadly that is true. it was Mr. Howard that hooked up with Bush and Blair and took us into two wars.

    Those wars led to a big increase in refugees coming to the country.

    it helped push up the price of oil. It must have a deferential effect on the economy, as all other wars have done. Wars do cost money, lots of money.

    Yes, Howard would have served us better if he kept his nose out of other countries affairs.

  229. I am against eating both ‘roo and duck.

    So am I.

    CU

    While I agree the wars were wrong it is good to see you have your ALP blinkers on. Especially when the ALP also supported and still supports the Afghanistan war.

  230. Shane how long do you think the Japanese government and people are going to support propping up a trade that produces meat nobody wants.

    I noticed that the Japanese are willing to let the three go, as they have harmed no one. Different attitude to last year.

    If one looks carefully, you could say that the Japanese are using the no injury as a way to save face.

    I believe saving face is very important to the Japanese.

    The PM by her quiet diplomacy has allowed the Japanese to come to this decision.

  231. Shane at least the Afghanistan war had the support of the UN. I do not support either.

    As Mr. Abbott keeps telling us, the Opposition is not government. When Mr. Howard was in power the same applies.

    Why do we have to bring all these other red herrings into the debate.

    We are talking about whaling and the best way to stop the trade.

    We are talking about whether it is worthwhile for the government to go to the not inexpensive cost of sending a boat this year.

    You say we need videos etc. Is not Green Peace doing that.

    The matter is before the courts with results expected in March.

    Shane I do empathise with the anger and distrust you have with the trade. It is brutal and wasteful. At least in the past, the whole whale was used for what at that time, necessary uses.

    Today’s world has replaced what the whale was used for.

  232. Especially when the ALP also supported and still supports the Afghanistan war.

    The Afghanistan conflict is an entirely different scenario to the Iraq war, Shaneinqld, and shouldn’t be compared in the same way.

  233. Shane how long do you think the Japanese government and people are going to support propping up a trade that produces meat nobody wants.

    I don’t know do you ?. They have a stockpile so they hunt even if the meat is not required for the current year.

    I don’t care about the protestors, they are responsible for their own actions. Release of them by the Japanese is nice but totally irrelevant to the actions they are taking in the antartic.

  234. Sometimes you just have to laugh or you end up crying. Whilst I’m a whale lover I had to laugh at some old car stickers from yesteryear:

    Land rights for gay whales.

    Feed uranium to the whales.

  235. You say we need videos etc. Is not Green Peace doing that.

    Have you seen a recent release of pictures by Green Peace.

    Why can’t our government be doing it as well.

    The expense of sending a boat would be negligible in comparison to most of the other policies implemented and money well spent in my opinion.

    I have done nothing but comment on the whaling, please point me to the red herrings I am throwing into the debate, other than examples to refute claims of culture or protesting, which are perfectly valid examples, to point out to others the hypocrisy of the attempt at justification of the unjust.

    I see on this site daily referrla back to the previous government blaming them for everything under the sun and I agree that there are some things to hold them accountable for.

    I am also individual enough to know that this government is not perfect and blame free, yet many on here fail to realise this and seek justification of aboslutely every policy, initiate, word, action and deed as though it is gospel, and that in my opinion is unhealthy conformity.

    The ALP used anitwhaling in its election platform. The ALP need to act. The current action is not stopping slaughter.

    Do you think the Japanese will save face if the international court determines their hunting of whales is illegal anymore than if we film their activities ?

  236. On my limited knowledge of the Japanese population’s attitude to whaling, it’s more a question of “meh”? Most I’ve come across don’t give it a passing thought – less so even than Australians think about kangaroo culling.

    Also worth considering is the main source of the total sum of information they see in their newspapers and on TV regarding whaling (and mostly ignore) – I believe this would be from government agencies.

    Jumping up and down here and having protesters boarding ships in the Southern Ocean just invokes another round of propaganda being released to the media in Japan, extolling the “virtues of those brave whalers in the Southern Ocean, fighting against all odds to overcome the unreasonable barriers the evil protesters are placing before them”…

    Maybe, just maybe, the government IS acting in effective, behind the scenes ways to achieve outcomes. I understand (and agree with) where your desire to fight whaling with all your might comes from Shane – I just don’t agree that your approach would achieve anything positive, but may actually have the opposite effect…

  237. Bacchus

    I agree with not boarding vessels. I have stated that many times now. I disagree with not taking any alternative peaceful visible action.

    For how long now have the efforts been made to stop the whaling, how many years of diplomacy and head bowing and committee holding and for want of a better word “two shoes crawling” will we undertake.

    I dont agree that it could do more harm. Will you take the same angle if the ALP decide to send a ship next year ?.

    I will be very interested to see what comments are put forward here if that ends up being the case.

  238. If that happens Shane, I’ll watch the NHK news with son to translate for me and see what the effect is in Japan where it actually matters, not in our local media. Any move to send a ship by our government would, IMHO, just be pandering to the local activists who want us to be seen to be doing “something”, even if it achieves absolutely nothing…

    I’ll also ask my (Japanese) daughter-in-law to ask her relatives and peers back in Japan what they’re hearing and what their attitude is – I very much suspect it will be one of being barely aware that the Australian government had done anything, and if they have any awareness, not really caring…

  239. MP Teresa Gambaro is ON THE NOSE!

    Liberal MP defends migrant hygiene comments
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-01-10/liberal-mp-defends-migrant-hygiene-comments/3765424

    A Liberal MP has been accused of trivialising the issue of multiculturalism with her comments that new immigrants need to wear deodorant on public transport and wait in queues without pushing in.

    The Opposition’s spokeswoman on citizenship and settlement, Teresa Gambaro, was quoted in one media report this morning as saying: “Without trying to be offensive, we are talking about hygiene and what is an acceptable norm in this country when you are working closely with other co-workers.”

  240. Hygiene lessons will help migrants integrate: Coalition
    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/immigration/hygiene-lessons-will-help-migrants-integrate-coalition/story-fn9hm1gu-1226240326959

    Surprise, surprise, Dog-Whistler-in-Chief, MP Scott Morrison also rates a mention.

    Ms Gambaro’s comments came a day after Coalition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison told The Australian temporary immigrants were not integrating into the broader Australian community. Mr Morrison said the government’s multicultural strategy was failing because it was too obsessed with “symbolism” and government-funded English language courses were not teaching immigrants properly.

    The Immigration Minister, Chris Bowen, yesterday hit back at Mr Morrison’s criticism of multicultural policy. “It’s a bit rich for Mr Morrison, who has previously said he doesn’t like the word ‘multiculturalism’, to now be criticising a landmark policy to further strengthen our multicultural programs and help to ensure government services respond to the needs of migrant and refugee communities,” a spokesman for Mr Bowen said.

  241. Pip, and from your link:

    “When you have the talk [from Ms Gambaro] about the need for education, for informing migrants about the need to wear deodorant or queue up, let’s be clear about the kind of migrants we’re talking about here,” council spokesman Dr Tim Soutphommasane said.

    “This is from the list of prescribed occupations [under the 457 skilled migrant visa] – chief executives, managers, engineers, accountants, designers to name but a few. We’re not talking about the great unwashed arriving on Australia’s shores.

    This reminds me of Migs’ topic “Consensus Reality” – this time it’s that all migrants are unhygienic and rude.

  242. Twitter has a hash tag #stopthepong

    Tweeps saying
    “any response from Abbott”

    another suggested Gambaro “should spend a day in a Brisbane classroom with Year 10 boys”

    “latest Liberal Three Word Slogan will be for the next election – Stop the Pong”

    “Gambaro’s Seafood we know who else owned a fish and chip shop”

  243. Bacchus your comment

    I’ll also ask my (Japanese) daughter-in-law to ask her relatives and peers back in Japan what they’re hearing and what their attitude is – I very much suspect it will be one of being barely aware that the Australian government had done anything, and if they have any awareness, not really caring…

    Bacchus your suggestion

    Perhaps a more effective approach may be to quietly agitate within the Japanese population – at universities and schools – to grow a groundswell amongst the Japanese themselves for change?

    What do you propose we use, to show the University students our side of the argument, if we do not have up to date footage of what their whaling ships are doing in the southern ocean ?

    How do you propose we obtain that up to date evidence, without sending our own ship to investigate ?

  244. (Given Scott Morrison’s prior bleatings about ‘special’ ablutions facilities being made available to the Others as an archetypal instance of failure to integrate, one can only assume that Australian hygiene and cuing standards remain the global acme, per Gambaro’s statement; and ponder no more the necessity, normality, or ideality of, erm, deodorant as generic NLP coverall.)

  245. No sign of Tony Abbott at the Lockyer Valley commemorative service – no sighting of him anywhere so far today.

  246. We must do something about old Italian migrants who eat too much garlic. It is offensive to share a lift with them. Garlic eaters should not allowed citizenship. They should be subjected to a breath test first.

  247. Communities gather to remember deadly floods
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-01-10/toowoomba-remembers-deadly-floods/3764968

    Hundreds of people have attended an emotional memorial service in Gatton, west of Brisbane, to remember those who died in last year’s flash floods.

    Prime Minister Julia Gillard, Governor-General Quentin Bryce and Premier Anna Bligh were among dignitaries who spoke at the service.

    Marking the anniversary of last year’s disaster, they remembered the 19 who died and those whose lives were changed forever.

  248. Shane, here is a good one..for once. This is from about the same time last year, hopefully the same thing will happen this year.

    Japan announces to immediately cease with the hunt for whales, due to relentless actions by Sea Sheppard

  249. Another tweeter pointed out that on the day of the anniversary of 35 deaths in the Queensland floods and the rebuilding of the State, Libs are concerned how migrants smell.

  250. Why does it need to be up to date Shane. Any of the existing footage from the last 10 years is all that’s needed. The trick is getting a foothold in a very conservative culture to engage in activism.

    Those already doing something are having a small modicum of success (see link below), but extra (low-key) assistance from International organisers is probably needed to get a more effective grassroots campaign going.

    Just on the marketing option discussed earlier – I found this from 2010:
    http://www.greenpeace.org.au/blog/?p=2888

    Post by Junichi Sato, Executive and Programme Director Greenpeace, Japan

    Worth a read and a look at the ABC report linked in the article for those interested. The last 30 seconds of Mark Willacy’s report are especially relevant to discussions here…

  251. Oi Roswell, I resemble that remark – I might not be “an old Italian migrant”, but I looovvvve garlic. I could almost have it on my cereal in the morning 😛

  252. Shaneinqld at 8.29
    It’s not “banter” it’s dead serious. Abbott will advocate whatever’s not happening & oppose what is so far as this government’s concerned.
    It’s interesting that his standard line on serious action on climate change is that nobody else is doing much so why should we, & yet this country alone should send a ship down there to “keep the peace”. If the ship stood by while the opposing forces got stuck into one another he could join the press in saying what a useless gutless government this is, & if the ship did something & push came to shove he could join the press in saying what a clumsy offensive government this is.
    Perhaps Mr Abbott should be asked for a (written) commitment that he would have a Whalephone, like he’ll have for the refugee boats, & superintend operations from land.
    Sending any sort of boat down there sounds pretty good in a feelgoody sort of way & as I said somewhere up there I wouldn’t mind if some more evidence were obtained by that means, but whatever happens will be filtered through our media for domestic political consumption. It’s worth repeating here that any action of this current government will be criticised.

    The bad news is that it’s gonna take more than a single patrol boat & some gory pictures to change this. As others said above, diplomatic & legal (& unfortunately slow) pressure’s the way to go.

  253. Bacchus

    It would need to be up to date or the whaling industry will simply claim it as outdated old footage and not representative of this years activities. As so many industries claim, until recent footage surfaces to prove otherwise.

    As you said the Japanese are probably only hearing what the whaling industry wants them to hear or a half baked story.

    I agree with the getting a foothold in a very conservative culture.

    Need to start somewhere.

  254. So it seems the boarders are about to be released.
    Will we see “Gillard government & new A.G. Nicola Roxon secure early release of boarders”?
    I don’t think so.
    If they can’t think of a negative way to spin this it’ll be yesterday’s news by this evening.
    And no more talk of Saving the Whales from the media until they’re needed again.

  255. BSA Bob

    It is banter in my opinion. I have no doubt Tony Abbott is looking for political gain but I agree a boat should be down there.

    The rest of your attack on Tony Abbott may well be true but I don’t really care. I care about whales, you seem to care more about what Tony Abbott is going or not going to do or say with the boat if it goes down there.

    I care about a boat being down in the southern ocean and agree it is a good thing to do.

    On this issue I join in and call this a gutless government, something almost everyone on this site seems unable to do no matter how overwhelming an issue is.

    Tony Abbott is not responsible for the actions of the government since 2007 on the whaling issue, the ALP are.

    How do you know a single patrol boat and some gory pictures will not achieve anything until it is tried ?

    I would have thought ideas and alternatives are part of a good blog and website, but apparently only if they are also part of the ALP policy platform at the exact given time they are being discussed and remain subject to change if our party deems necessary.

  256. It is with great pleasure that I announce our new Café Menu:

    Cheesy Garlic Bread
    Creamy Zucchini and Garlic
    Garlic Prawns
    Garlic Mushroom Ragout
    Roast Lemon and Garlic Drumsticks
    Barbequed Pork Chops with Garlic

  257. Bacchus

    Thanks for the link to Greenpeace it was a very interesting article. Yet it takes private organisations to push for action rather than government agencies.

    Looks like I should vote for Greenpeace rather than the ALP if I want action on whale hunting.

    This is a paragraph from your link

    The fleet is ailing, each year the agencies voluntarily catch less whales that they cannot sell or afford to keep storing. The stockpiled meat and the lack of revenue means the ships cannot be maintained or replaced without even more substantial injections of public money and the government should not do so given that these recent admissions are clearly just the tip of the iceberg.

    Yet the hunt and killing goes on and the ships have been maintained and repainted with the injection of public money from the government.

  258. Shaneinqld at 1.05
    Message received & acknowledged.
    There are two separate issues here it’s true but sending a boat down there to do Something won’t achieve much for the reasons I & others, I believe, have stated. And Abbott will make as much political hay from it as he can & it would be a good idea to care as he’s a destructive prat who’s not on the record as saying much at all on this long standing issue & wouldn’t provide much comfort to the cetacean community if he were PM. They don’t vote.
    Another issue involving critters has arisen locally, as one of our cats has to go to the vet with a suspected abscess.
    Will be pleased to talk later.

  259. Pip

    Thanks for the link it was also very interesting. Here is a paragraph.

    Australia filed its detailed submissions in the case in May 2011, and in March 2012 Japan will submit its counter-memorial. We will then have to wait for the ICJ to set a date for the hearings, and then wait some more for a judgment.

    So what happened between 2007 and May 2011 ?.

    I wonder how long before the IJC sets a date for the hearings after the Japanese lodge their response.

    I ownder how long we will have ot wait until the ICJ make their determination.

    From the writings it also seems the IJC issue very wishy wahsy decisions which palacate or benefit both sides at the same time.

    I wonder how many whales will be slaughtered as we wait for the legal case while failing to do any visible protest.

    I wonder just what will happen when Japan simply ignores the ruling like it has done over many of the current rulings it is blatantly ignoring (as that is the basis of our case to the ICJ)

  260. BSA Bob

    Firstly look after your cat and I hope everything is ok with him/her.

    If you read my comments oyu will find that I have no liking of Tony Abbott at all, we agree on that issue. But neither am I an ALP lap dog.

    My opinion is my own sourced from information and assessment by myself. I may be right or wrong but I am not a politcial lacky.

    Tony Abbott has suggested we send a boat down. that is on the record and has been filmed. This can used against him if he at any future time complains about a boat being sent.

    Funny that we should not send a boat because Tony Abbott might use it to his advantage and get media publicity and turn it against the government. Yet when I suggested the government was wrong in having a cabinet shuffle at the same time that they actually had some positive traction in the media and should have waited until the new year I was criticised for expecting the government to shutdown just because Tony Abbott and the media might turn it on the government. Now apparently the government should not do something because Tony Abbott and the media might turn it against the government.

  261. The government has needed to send a customs vessel to collect the protestors.

    The protestors should be billed for the cost of this collection.

    Just as I think anyone who places themselves in a situation of their choice which requires assistance should be billed for the cost.

    Those in an unfortunate circumstance beyond their control is a completely different matter.

  262. On reflection, the “charged and convicted” makes more sense if the PM meant it would happen in Japan.

    Earlier today, federal Attorney-General Nicola Roxon confirmed Japan would be releasing the three Australian protesters.

    “We are pleased that the Japanese government has made a decision that these three men won’t be charged and will be released,” she told the Nine Network.

    “But we can’t be confident that that will happen next time if people take action, take the law into their own hands.”

    Because the incident took place in international waters the federal government had been limited in what it could do besides diplomatic dialogue with Japan about the three, who could have been charged with trespass.

    “Good diplomatic work has delivered a good outcome,” Ms Roxon told Nine today.

  263. Pip

    Bugger all is right, but also there was even bigger bugger all from 1996 to 2007 from the previous government as well.

    Some might think i have it in for the current government but I would be just as voiciferous (probably even more so) if the Coalition were in government, because they were not even taking the ever so slow attempt at legal action.

    I saw an snippet on the Sea Shepherd and it is all volunteers and receives no government funding whatsoever. Yet there are nut cases who claim it uses taxpayers funds.

    In addition they receive over 1,000 volunteers to man the ship to head south to defend the whales.

    Imagine what they could achieve with half a dozen ships. They would have the crew for free to start with.

  264. I thought we left behind the urban myths that only Australians shower daily and drench ourselves in deodorant.

    I still remember the conversations that was had regularly, back about the time her parents would have come to this country, of how the Greeks and Italians had beautiful tiled bathrooms but never used them.

    Yes, it was the Greeks and Italians along with the pommies that were targeted.

    it was not only that they were on the nose, but the smell of garlic on the breath made one gag.

    The second allegation did hold some truth. The trouble is that the problem laid with us, not them.

    The funny thing is that one does not notice the smell of garlic today. This is because we have adopted garlic as something wonderful to add to food and no longer noticed the smell.

    I think the lady’s comment belong in the past. They are childish and unnecessary.

  265. Shaneinqld
    Thanks for your concern for my cat The feline is to spend a night in hospital & undergo a minor surgical procedure, the principal lasting damage will be to my bank account.

    Alas, Tony Abbott has been filmed doing & saying many contradictory things which aren’t held against him. But I think we’re in danger of digging ourselves into a rut over this. The point I’m making is simply that whatever the Gillard government does it’ll be criticised, & Abbott will be there to help. This doesn’t imply that the government should hold off doing anything simply because he’s said it should, I don’t think they are. A boat down there would be fair game for all sides. As I said last night, a copper in the middle of a free for all domestic.
    I won’t disagree with you as to whether a boat should be sent to gather evidence, I’m less confident than you as to whether it’d be much use but wouldn’t mind giving it a try or being told why not. My angle on this is admittedly more political than yours, but I think everybody here likes whales & disapproves of what’s happening.

    I agree that the repatriated pirates should be charged for the cost of their rescue, perhaps some of the many volunteers & friends they have could chip in? The analogy of rescuing yachties put up by that captain guy (forgotten his name) doesn’t hold water. The required comparison would be for a yachtie to hack down his mast, bash a hole in the hull & say “come & get me, hurry up it’s nearly dinner time.”

    Which in fact it is in my part of the world. Catch you later.

  266. BSA Bob

    Have you thought of Pet Insurance to assist with the wallet drain ?

    I know your point regarding Gillard being criticised if she does or doesn’t. I made the same point regarding the cabinet reshuffle and was roundly dismissed by most on this site for suggesting that the reshuffle should not have been done because of political mileage being taken by Tony Abbott, yet now ther same excuse is being used to defend the government for not acting.

    While I acknowledge this is a left leaning blog site. I had hoped that the people who comment here have their own individual minds in realtion to decisions taken by either sides of politics, but it seems that I could be mistaken.

    Regarding sending a ship down south. Maybe it could have got the evidence that the Sea Shepherd has provided to the government of irrefutable evidence of a Japanese whaling boat inside or 12mile territorial waters. Our government has now informed Japan that their whale slaughter boats are not welcome in our waters.

    How embarassing this morning that a private charity funded vessel trying to save whales is required to provide the evidence to our own government of infringement in our territorial waters by a country that is slaughtering whales.

    I maintain the government is gutless and needs to get a bcakbone and do what they promised. A ship down south woulkd greatly assist the cause.

  267. yet now ther same excuse is being used to defend the government for not acting.

    I didn’t see anyone using that as an excuse Shaneinqld, although, as I have just been reminded on the media thread, my eyesight is lacking somewhat 😉

    I know that I have stated that they are in fact acting (the court action), although, I still think having a boat in the area is probably a prudent thing to do.

    But, like I said, I have probably missed someone else’s comment. It seems to have become my NYR 😦

  268. somehow I think you enjoy the debate

    Well, obviously wasting his time here. I have heard that this site is for nodding heads only 😉

  269. Shane, we already have a ship down south being ACV Ocean Protector. It is my belief that the Ocean Protector is the only vessel that Australia has, Navy and Customs capable of patroling the Southern Ocean.

    Australia, due to the years of neglect and to a large extent the fact that resources were spent on John Howard’s pet projects eg tanks suitable only for desert warfare – we clearly and urgently need, well an entirely new Navy.

    For example, HMAS Tobruk was supposed to be pensioned off about 10 years ago, she is now serving out of Darwin as no replacement was ever organised, or at least not in a timely manner. Defence Materiel was a complete disaster under John Howard and it will probably take another decade to even come close to fixing it.

  270. Tom R

    I suggest you see an optometrist 😉

    The evidence gathered by the Sea Shepherd is irrefutable that a boat is needed down south.

    If nothing else than to gather intelligence of infiltration of our sovereign waters by our own government by the whale slaughter boats.

    The only country losing face in this is Australia as we are shown to have the inability to monitor and keep out vessels from our territorial waters that slaughter whales of which this country is against. Right Now the ALP Gillard goverment is to blame.

  271. Shane, we already have a ship down south being ACV Ocean Protector. It is my belief that the Ocean Protector is the only vessel that Australia has, Navy and Customs capable of patroling the Southern Ocean.

    Only because it was forced to go down there to collect the protestors. Absolutely nothing to do with surveillance or information gathering.

    Once again lets blame John Howard. The ALP gave us the disastrous submarines did they not ?

    What in gods name has stopped the ALP from leasing a ship and sending it down each year. The government leases and contracts out many areas of operation including aerial surveillance of our waters, particularly in the north. Sorry Min but this is once again ALP scripted blame game spin.

  272. Migs

    I do enjoy debate but it does become frustrating when political blindness becomes glaringly obvious from those who accuse the other side of doing exactly the same thing. That is not debate that is simply trying to justify a negative aginst the beloved party by spin and hypothesies.

    There is just as much political spin and “look over there” actions on this site as any other.

    What I do find amazing in the short term memory loss of rusted on supportes of either side of politics who use an excuse to refute a point and then use exactly the same excuse to the opposite effect. As though the reason is somehow now miraculously differnet due to our beloved party changing its mind or altering course.

  273. Migs

    I do enjoy debate but it does become frustrating when political blindness becomes glaringly obvious from those who accuse the other side of doing exactly the same thing.

    That’s how I feel with Neil.

  274. I suggest you see an optometrist

    Thanks Shaneinqld. After a quick trip there, I think you might be referring to BSA Bobs statements

    In which case, I’ll leave it to him.

  275. Brown snubs PM over forestry dispute
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-01-11/brown-dumps-gillard-meetings/3767020

    Greens leader Bob Brown has called off his routine meetings with Prime Minister Julia Gillard in a stand-off over her handling of Tasmania’s forest peace deal.

    The Prime Minister and Senator Brown have held regular meetings since Ms Gillard was handed power after the last election.

    But he says Ms Gillard has not kept her word on protecting native forests under the $276 million federally funded agreement to end most native forest harvesting signed more than four months ago.

  276. Be quick to read this, before the redaction is redacted

    Teresa Gambaro
    http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Teresa_Gambaro&oldid=470566761

    Teresa Gambaro MP (born 29 November 1958) is an Australian politician and member of the Liberal National Party.

    JOB OPENING: Senior Immigration Armpit Sniffer

    The Liberal Party of Australia are a leading provider of homophobic, bigotry and hypocritical services specialising in the management of immigrant bashing in Australia, and currently have opportunities in our Citizenship & Immigration division for registered armpit sniffers with 3 + years solid experience to join our busy and friendly team anywhere in Australia.

    THE POSITION:

    Reporting to the soon to be Immigration Minister, Ms Teresa Gambaro, you will be primarily responsible for undertaking corporate immigration work associated with the Australian body odour legislation working with deodorant organisations in sniffing all migrants and migrants-to-be across Australia. Responsibilities include:

  277. Shane, sometimes it’s difficult to understand why people share differing opinions, no matter how much logic and evidence we throw at them. Don’t worry, there’s someone out there who agrees with you, even though it might not be 100%.

  278. Don’t worry, there’s someone out there who agrees with you, even though it might not be 100%

    Not on this site 😉

  279. You’d be surprised, Shane. We have hundreds of visits a week from Facebook contacts, and whereas very few of them post a comment, there are hundreds that don’t. But at least they are reading what is written here and many of them then link back to the Café from their own Facebook group or page. It’s fair to assume that many of them agree with you 100%. They just don’t say so.

  280. (I’m still concerned that the Australian Government’s conservation-based defence of the whales doesn’t extend to anathematisation of indigenous subsistence slaughter or banning counterthetical commercial fishing for cat- and dog-food purposes within the overlap of sovereign Australian territorial waters and whale migratory paths. Other than those minor quibbles, I’m on-board with anyone who agrees with the fundamental platform of Sea Shepherd ethics advisor, Tom Regan.)

  281. Migs @1.04pm included of course is our new person Chris T*. We’re always guaranteed of an excellent and informed debate when he is onboard. Not that I agree with hardly a scrap of what Chris says. 😉

  282. Shaneinqld If you’re around
    Having just put up something about whales, etc on another thread I thought I’d better acknowledge your earlier post to me. But I reckon we’ve run this into the ground. Be assured I’d like to see whaling stopped & would be support moves to that effect, but they do have to be effective as opposed to fleetingly spectacular as we’ve seen over the last few days. And I don’t oppose having our boat down there, it’s just that I think it’d need magical powers to do all that’s expected of it & it’ll inevitably be portrayed as some sort of failure when it doesn’t display these.
    Things seem to be quietening down lately here, if not in the Southern Ocean. Whales are cute, but we’ve had a few days of them & there’s other things looming for our media crew to complain about.

  283. BSA Bob

    But I reckon we’ve run this into the ground.

    Of course because it is not the ALP being praised and congratulated, otherwise we would be singing it from the rooftops for years.

    Things seem to be quietening down lately here, if not in the Southern Ocean. Whales are cute, but we’ve had a few days of them & there’s other things looming for our media crew to complain about.

    That must the winner of the “look over there” comment of the week.

    So lets just get back to denigrating John Howard. Finding bitter and nasty names to call Tony Abbott or other Opposition Members of parliament while standing up and demanding that the opposition and media give more respect to our PM and parliamentary process and stop calling them names.

    The hypocrisy is becoming glaringly obvious.

  284. the opposition and media give more respect to our PM and parliamentary process and stop calling them names.

    Exactly Shaneinqld

    Because we should be setting the example in an online blog for them to follow in their professional capacity 😯

  285. Now Australia can do something about it, not a possibility while the Japanese are in International waters.

    A JAPANESE whaling ship has defied high-level Australian complaints to stay in the waters of World Heritage-listed Macquarie Island.

    The harpoon-equipped whale hunter Yushin Maru No.3 was still there late yesterday, hours after the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, said the ship was leaving.

    ”I’m aware that there has been one vessel which I’m advised has been in Australian territorial waters and I’ll advise that it will leave Australian territorial waters,” Ms Gillard said.

    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/whale-watch/whaler-ignores-call-to-leave-australian-waters-20120111-1pvfn.html#ixzz1jC3IiGBU

  286. Because we should be setting the example in an online blog for them to follow in their professional capacity

    Why not ?

  287. Now Australia can do something about it, not a possibility while the Japanese are in International waters.

    They can do something !!!!, they can send a ship down to film and follow the slaughter armada. That is actually doing something.

  288. Why not ?

    Because this an online blog, a place to express our frustrations and let loose.

    They are doing it in their professional capacities.

    I do not deal with clients in the same way that I deal with people on blog sites (as much as I sometimes would like to).

  289. Shaneinqld at 8.10
    “but I reckon we’ve run this into the ground” We have, this argument’s going round & round in circles, that’s obvious.

    “Things seem to be quietening down lately here….” That was an observation on the media interest, & I think the meaning’s clear.

  290. Sorry Shane, but film what. Send our one and only customs vessel which patrols the southern oceans to film the Japanese doing what we already know they are doing – killing whales.

    I would say that organisations such as Greenpeace and the Sea Shepherd organisation are the experts in this matter.

  291. Min

    They can film it each year. It is called in your face reporting on issues that people deem important.

    Should we no longer film the plight of any animal or refugees or decimation of forests because we already know what is happening.

    As for Greenpeace and the Sea Shepherd, the ALP went to the election on this issue, now you want to just put it all back on the volunteer organisations as their responsiblity. Sorry, not this independent thinker.

  292. We have, this argument’s going round & round in circles, that’s obvious.

    I can say the same about most issues regarding the previous government on this blogsite, but they keep getting regurgitated more often than a person on epicac.

    I am just as entitled to regurgitate and agitate and bring up an issue important to me time and time again like any others. Or is this now only permitted by the rusted on one sided ALP supporters of this site ?

    If

  293. Because this an online blog, a place to express our frustrations and let loose.

    They are doing it in their professional capacities.

    So in other words lets just throw manners away and become arrogant, nasty, bitter and twisted. Lets throw respect out the window and lets do this for all the world to see. Becuase we are not longer in our professional capacities. 🙄

    Wonderful examples of self control and respect for others we are showing to younger generations.

  294. So let’s have a look at this article.

    Yesterday the federal government confirmed the Japanese whaling fleet would again head down to the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary.

    A joint statement from Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd, Attorney-General Robert McClelland and Environment Minister Tony Burke condemned Japan’s whaling program.

    Which was countered by Paul Watson..

    Sea Shepherd founder Paul Watson is dismissing tough comments from the Australian government on whaling as “just talk” that will achieve nothing.

    Which brings us to the factual information which Tom I think it was, brought up early in this debate.

    Legal action against Japan by Australia began in the International Court of Justice last year.

    To which Mr Watson countered that any legal action would be a waste of time as the Japanese would just ignore it.

    To my mind the only possible course of action is that the International Community agrees to delete the ‘excuse’ of killing whales for scientific purposes. At present Japan bribes smaller and poorer nations to agree to and to indeed increase it’s legal quota.

    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/whale-watch/government-condemns-japanese-whaling-20111005-1l93g.html#ixzz1jCQRwBWD

  295. Min

    Irrespective of court action. It is a well known fact the Japanese do not want the Sea Shepherd or any other vessel to watch and film them slaughtering whales. They do not want footage of it shown around the world.

    The sending of a ship down to the antarctic to follow and film the slaughter each year would be a deterrent and quite possibly save the lives of a number of whales. Inaction in this case is not acceptable.

  296. “Irrespective of court action. It is a well known fact the Japanese do not want the Sea Shepherd or any other vessel to watch and film them slaughtering whales. They do not want footage of it shown around the world.”

    They do more than take pictures and videos. They also physically prevent the whales being caught.

    Last year they gave up, without their quota being filled.

    I am a Labor supporter and proud of the fact, that happens to agree with the PM.The government does not have the legal power to throw their weight around on the open seas.

    The PM has acted appropriately as soon as the boats entered our waters. The dialogue will now be directly with the Japanese government, not the whalers.

    This PM does not believe she is the deputy sheriff in the southern hemisphere as a former PM did.

    Governments, like individuals do have to work within the law.

    We may think we know all that is to be done, but I suspect we do not know what is in the mind of the government.

    The government has come to the conclusion that sending a boat is not the best action to take, because it is expensive and will achieve nothing.

    Shane, I understand and respect your point of view. I have looked at the facts and come to a different conclusion.

    Time will prove who is correct. I suspect neither of us will be one hundred percent right.

    PS, I suspect with modern day technology, the government does not need to physically follow a boat to know where it is on the ocean.

  297. Any action to stop the Japanese slaughtering whales needs to be internationally coordinated. We cannot act alone and expect permanent results. Too many countries are happy to sit on their bums and do nothing.

  298. Shane, spend every weekend for the rest of the summer at Alexandria Bay. After this, notice how much notice you take of naked flesh…

    Constantly putting any images in people’s faces just hardens them to the images, whether they be naked flesh, or shocking images of animal deaths. It very quickly loses it’s shock value…

    Once again, the response needs to be targeted and well thought out – not just “gut reaction”, do whatever you can think of, often counter-productive, action…

  299. Any action to stop the Japanese slaughtering whales needs to be internationally coordinated. We cannot act alone and expect permanent results. Too many countries are happy to sit on their bums and do nothing.

    I agree to a point, how many actions are going on around the world for the betterment of the world by individuals and not governments that governments are totally ignoring ?

    How many small people groups are fighting for human and environmental rights when their governments should be in there assisting them as well ?

    How many people are being bashed, vicitmised, made homeless, shot, starved etc etc by there own governments who are trying to take action without the world assistance.?

    Where is the world action against Mugabe as one simple example ?

    The UN is an abject failure on Human Rights and protection. It is an abject failure for the environment and the planet. It has failed in so amny areas on so many levels it is no wonder so many distrust the UN.

    I believe in a UN, but not the one we have, which is so manipulated by greed and money, and voting along religious and cultural lines rather than humanity lines. When votes can be bought, just like they are at the IWC then this organisation can no longer be relied upon to act in the best interests of the world.

  300. The carbon tax ‘treatment’ by the msm will continue in 2012.

    Australia’s carbon tax can benefit commercial electricity consumers
    http://antinuclear.net/2012/01/12/australias-carbon-tax-can-benefit-commercial-electricity-consumers/

    Australia’s Carbon Tax And Commercial Electricity Customers , Energy Matters, 4 Jan 12, “……..While carbon tax relief for Australian households has been well publicised, the situation for commercial customers has received less coverage.

  301. Bacchus

    By taking action how many whales has the Sea Shepherd and the volunteers saved over the last number of years.?

    By not sending a boat down south and by going through international courts and appeals how many whales have been saved ?

    If it hardens people so much why do we have images af starving people on our television each and every year appealing for donations?

    If it hardens people so much why do charities show the poor and suffering eahc and every year for their fundraising ?

    If it hardens people why do they send celebrities over to starving countries each and every year for updates and new footage ?

  302. Yes Shane, and how many people take no notice because the images are virtually the same as they’ve been seeing for decades. Those images of starving and dying people certainly no longer affect me to the same extent as they did 30 years ago…

    The Sea Shepherd is more successful than a government ship could be, simply because of the shock value they bring – not just of the whale slaughter, but of what the whalers are doing to try to thwart them – that’s what’s causing the media interest, not images of dying whales we’ve seen a thousand times…

  303. I believe in a UN, but not the one we have

    Probably the most succinctly put comment that I have heard in regards to the UN

  304. What you said at 1:27 pm X 110% Shane, but therein also lies part of the problem – there is so much pain and suffering in the world, people get compassion fatigue – the images have lost their shock value, probably because we see these images almost daily on our TVs. 30 years ago, we had to rely on reporters returning from their visits to Ethiopia, editing their films before we saw the images. They still had the capacity to shock deeply…

  305. Yes Shane, and how many people take no notice because the images are virtually the same as they’ve been seeing for decades. Those images of starving and dying people certainly no longer affect me to the same extent as they did 30 years ago…

    Bacchus If they did not work they would stop using them. Yet we see them year after year. That must prove they work because donations keep rolling in.

    You think a government ship following the whaling ships and recording their every move and action would not be media news ?.

    I disagree.

  306. Shane and Tom, one thought on the subject of the UN. This was formed on an honor system, of good will to help ensure peace in the world. A series of failures in this regard and then the USA’s undermining of the UN via the invasion of Iraq to name one instance.

  307. I do not believe it is the UN that is the problem.

    It is the powerful countries that over ride it and follow it decrees whenever it suits them.

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