The Perfect Storm

Blogger Jason offered a profound comment on The Political Sword that succinctly sums up the brewing political storm:

If Abbott won’t provide any policies to scrutinize, then we scrutinize what we can: his character.

And what a storm it is! Some ill winds are whirling around Abbott’s character, blowing away a political facade and exposing a man bereft of leadership qualities and human decency.

Will it be the perfect storm that sinks him?

I think so.

His ferocity as a politician is as legendary as his negativity. His parliamentary performances befit the man who was once labelled ‘John Howard’s attack dog‘. He still carries that label and ferocity:

Politicians don’t come any more ferocious and brutal than Abbott. He reverted to the wild the moment he got his paws on the Liberal leadership.

His style is pure attack dog, as feral as you’d get.

That’s fine as an attack dog politician, but Tony Abbott’s credibility is now haunted by a personality that is fundamentally just as feral. Inside and outside Parliament he is an outright bully and people are startled to discover that his bullying, aggressive ways were inherent long before he became a public figure. People who might have tolerated his mannerisms as a politician, do not tolerate the same mannerisms in a member of society. Being a political troll might make you a good Leader of the Opposition but it doesn’t cut with anything else. Especially that of Prime Minister.

People are opening their eyes. The man is nasty to the core.

Over the last couple of weeks the newspapers have been awash with stories about Tony Abbott’s similarly aggressive behaviour at university, in particular his wall punching display of manhood near the head of Barbara Ramjan, the person he lost out to for the coveted presidency of the Student Representative Council. Abbott denies/can’t remember the event but regrets his constant belittling of Ramjan, and anyway, it’s just the ‘Labor dirt unit’ in action, so he says.

The real problem for Tony Abbott is not (his shallow claim that it’s) the Labor dirt unit in action, but his history of aggressive behaviour which is now under the spotlight. The man must be praying for a distraction. Cory Bernardi provided one yesterday and someone else will provide one tomorrow or next week.

But when they all blow away nothing will have changed with Tony Abbott. His inherent nastiness will be at the eye of the storm.

The perfect storm.

The dark clouds of doubt are gathering over him. I don’t think we’ve heard the last about the man who likes to throw punches.

347 comments on “The Perfect Storm

  1. Well, Abbott would know all about dirt units-that’s how he brought down Pauline Hanson after all! It was Abbott & his cronies who made the deep dark past of MP’s a critical issue-he can’t complain now that it’s backfired on him ;-)!

  2. As Laurie Oakes noted recently, Abbott has built his case for the Prime Ministership on his entire life experiences, thereby inviting us to look at his time as a student politician.
    I’m convinced that Abbott will have a much more difficult time over the next year: the Government has had a good few weeks, and is beginning to look competent. Almost. The carbon price turned out to be a fart in the ocean. The debate has turned to Labor strengths (particularly education) and I’m optimistic about the Budget (a return to surplus would be a significant blow to Abbott, as it would be announced just before the election if held late next year).
    There won’t be a single knockout blow regarding his character, but stories like this shape people’s views of him over a long period.
    The result could be a government delivering a surplus with a promise of more education funding against the backdrop of conservative state governments, people dissatisfied with Abbott and unsure of his vision for Australia. In theory it could get very messy for Abbott and the Coalition. Should be fun to watch.

  3. Poor little Tony just doesn’t seem to like the blow torch applied to his character in a manner that is mild in comparison to the flame thrower he has directed at anyone that dare oppose him in any way. What a low life. So many examples of his disgusting attitude to the poor, the sick and homeless that he just can’t brush them all off. I can see loads of soot and charring heading his way very soon. Aaah just love it.

  4. Personally, I don’t think Abbott can take much more of a battering. He’s bound to lose his cool again eventually. It’s got me beat how his party have persevered with him as leader for so long.

  5. Cu, I am beginning to come around to your way of thinking – that with Tony remaining as LOTO that Labor have a far better chance than should a moderate such as Turnbull lead the party.

  6. He certainly is looking like a dodgy time bomb and it is just a matter of time before the next outburst and he does them so well. It is almost at the stage of the game where he will be totally on edge as he will eventually have to front up and actually answer a few serious questions. That is when Julia can have some real fun with him. Useless turd that he is.

  7. Patricia, and it’s going to happen the closer to an election we get..the more questions Tony is asked, the more often he is going to either stuff up his answer..or do a runner.

  8. Min, at least he does provide entertainment., He is the biggest comedy going.

    I do not mind having him, as long as he never PM.

  9. There has definitely been a change in behaviour, as well as attack.

    Problem for Abbott, it will not work.

    By those pictures of Pyne, it is impossible for them to play by the rules. All they know, is, as the PM put it, bellow and whine.

    Bellowing that the economy is going to fail, will not stand scrutiny. Already coming undone.

  10. The bellowing and whining are all that they know due to the fact that all their time in opposition has not been spent on policy, nor on preparing the best team to potentially lead the country. The current opposition has wasted their own time and ours.

  11. Min I can’t wait to see him start to flounder big time. He has no subtlety and his wonderful opinion of himself is a disaster waiting to happen. It is so delicious to finally see some real interest paid to his backward way of thinking and his hypocrisy. The Libs are going to have to go into damage control big time and then start scrambling for their alternate leader.

  12. The PR team will no doubt have Tony the family man in the press stunts over the next couple of weeks.

    The Pyne /Bishop tag team effort of “the tony I know” was a bit of a flop, so enter a wife and 3 daughters.

  13. Patricia, like a spoiled brat Abbott believes that he can say *whatever* and get away with it..and guess what, up until now he has had a compliant media who for the most part let him get away with it. Like you, I can’t wait to see the fur start to fly.

  14. Tony is struggling, and recent efforts by Pyne & Bishop to extoll his virtues were so identically worded that the public is rolling their eyes. My concern is he wont be there next election, Labors biggest benefit is Mr Abbotts slow decline into political oblivion via stupid remarks, detected lies, verbal gaffs and affiliation with some of the dirtiest muckrakers in the media. The man who would be king is begining to look like an ill mannered stableboy with delusions of granduer, and even his followers are beginning to fade away through confusion. Must be hard wanting to defend your party and its leader only to discover that due to Coalition secrecy and avoidance of debate theres actually no policy substance to throw at Labor.
    When Abbott first started delving into backgrounds I sent him a tweet warning this opening of cans of worms would come back to bite him. And recently Anthony Albanese opened wide took himself a big chunk of Tony’s credability.
    Its the beginning of the end for Tony.

  15. You lot all have one profound similarity and that is in your confirmation bias telling you that Abbott is evil incarnate and that he will surely stumble so badly between now and the election that Gillard will be able to slip back into office by default. In the immortal words enunciated in the Castle “yer dremin”. Due soon is the budget update and does anyone want to lay odds on the budget being in the black ? It would be only the brave or stupid who honestly expects that mythical surplus to appear .
    Even The Newman factor won’t save you as the government here winds back the severity of its cuts. The boats keep coming and no amount of pie in the sky social schemes are being believed no matter how noble the idea may be. And now on top of that Gillard has once again proven what a liar she is by back-flipping on the promise to Oakshott and the Greens about a referendum on indigenous “recognition” in the constitution. The alternative bill proposed is just window dressing and it won’t will Gillard and cred with the voters either. You all seem to think that Tony Abbott is in strife here when the reality is that
    its Gillard and Labor who are still in a deep electoral hole and rather than climbing out they are furiously digging deeper each day. the defeat of those two Gay marriage bills means that the misdirection of that issue is over and now with one less fringe issue to distract the people from Labor’s performance the voters are going to have lots more time to weigh up the virtues of Labor in power and no amount of “look over there, wasn’t Tony a bad boy when he was at uni ” is going to save Gillard from the humiliation of defeat at the next election.

  16. Pingback: Dear minnions of the left, an early morning rant | Iain Hall's SANDPIT

  17. Bishop insisted that Abbott was above stunts like these. How dare these women attack her man. I assume if one of the TV staff was able to get their hands on a wide angled lens, the coalition would have trotted out Bronnie and Sophie as well.

    And so we end where we begin. After the week of alleged misogyny fallout post the Marr essay, Abbott is back to calling the Prime Minister a slag and a bag. But this time he is letting his own slags and bags do it. The coalition are clearly stepping up the assault on women by women.

    Has anyone got a name for the Coalition women’s gang.

  18. “You lot”

    Generalisations and once again, assumptions. I am proud to be seen as one of you lot on this site,

    Be aware that we are growing and might just might end up the majority.

    One never knows what the future holds.

    It is not over until those votes are cast.

  19. It is not Mr. Abbott’s behaviour at uni that worries one. It is the suspicion, back up by many more stories over the years, is that he has not grown up.

    Yep, we people might yet have the last laugh.

    If not, it will not be Australia that will be laughing either.

    As for that action on the referendum, every body that counts appears to be in accordance in what the PM is proposing. That includes the Indigenous community itself.

    It is doing the right thing that counts. To continue on blindly keeping to what you have promise, when all the evidence says it might fail would only be stupidity. The PM is not stupid.

    The PM is hoping that she is setting up process that will lead to success.

  20. As if you could offend one, I am proud to be a member of this “you lot” Would not be seen dead anywhere else.

    “I was concerned about what Cory said in the Senate last night and then when he compounded that by going unnecessarily on to radio this morning to repeat the matter, I swiftly concluded that that was one mistake too many,’’ he said.

    It suggested Bernardi’s bestiality reference was not so much wrong in principle as in quantity. Further, it revealed that the outspoken South Australian would have survived had he not gone on radio – especially as sworn enemy Christopher Pyne was already on air on that station doing his regular Wednesday morning spot.

    Asked whether Bernardi should lose his party endorsement, Mr Abbott was also restrained.

    “These are matters for the lay party. Cory is a talented politician, with much to contribute but, plainly, he has been guilty of ill-discipline, lack of judgment and he will have to do a fair bit of political penance, no doubt about that.’‘

    With words like guilt, discipline, penance, and references to the laity, one wondered if he was talking about an alternative government or a religious denomination

  21. The alternative bill proposed is just window dressing and it won’t will Gillard and cred with the voters either.

    The English language must wince when it sees Iain Hall plonking towards it.

  22. and someone else will provide one tomorrow or next week.

    It might be Swanny today. I heard on the radio that he is apparently going to make a speech bagging the crap out of the US Republicans.

    Dumb, real dumb (if the report is correct). Not that they don’t deserve being bagged, they are batshit crazy, but not from one of our leading politicians. Time and place and all that.

  23. The English language must wince when it sees Iain Hall plonking towards it.

    It’s not alone their CU, my scrolling finger feels that way too 😉

  24. Fun start to the weekend for Tony with the far right in NSW having a win over their colleagues. So all that negotiating by Sinodis that supposedly led to settlement of the pre selection debate may come to nothing.

    Meanwhile his deputy, julie bishop gets to defend herself back in WA, where she and her wa pollie colleagues have backed the eastern states and nationals rather than the wa wheat growers. So far the wheat growers reckon wa pollies agreed o back their position on free market wheat sales, bishop says they did not. enter wilson tuckey telling wa pollies they should listen to who they represent.

    Yes ‘unity ‘ both on the east coast and west coast just another matter of ill-discipline for tony to deal with during the perfect storm.

  25. To “The Perfect Storm”
    I can only hope you are never asked to do Jury duty. Why can’t people put a position without extreme bias. I read your first paragraph and then discarded the rest as mindless invective. Your comments are an insult to fair-minded Australians.
    This from a non-Liberal

  26. Agree with Curry 100% on bias.
    All this talk highlights is the choice and calibre of a Nations Leaders.
    The US recognized as one of bastions of Political Freedom & Liberty has very poor
    choices for President as a World Leader. Obama and Romney – would want
    neither. Australia is no better off.

  27. The Drum on ABC last night had an analysis of Abbott, because as has rightly been pointed out he has asked for it in asking he be judged on his whole history, and this was mentioned in the show.

    Marr and Hewson were in the studio along with an Age Canberra political journalist.

    All said you can plainly see Abbott is severely restrained having to carefully think every word, but Hewson and the journalist made this out to be a good thing and they were very surprised that Abbott had been able to keep it together for this long.

    How is that a good thing? They are admitting he’s a time bomb waiting to go off and that his minders have been able to keep the fuse from being lit.

    The journalist then went into a snow job of Abbott being a great many faceted man with complex layers and high intelligence.

    After I cleaned up my vomit the conversation went back to reality on the Abbott being paraded out not being the real one who is frothing away underneath.

    Expect more snow jobs by the media on behalf of Abbott. They have a very damaged good to prop up, one that threatens to fall apart at any moment and they need all their resources and gile to keep him together and make out he’s the darling he’s not.

  28. Of course for the Curry’s and Voyager’s similar veined negative articles on Gillard would have bought about agreement and how good the article is.

    And they go on about bias. Hypocrites.

  29. If Gillard was “clean” I’d have a balanced view. But “where there’s smoke there’s fire”. Just too much evidence so support her. I agree with Voyager – as with the USA, our choices here are not flash. Can we not produce a leader without feet of clay?

  30. The problem with Tony Abbott is that he simply does not have what it takes to become PM. Certainly via fair means and foul he might win the election, but that is as far as it goes with Tony..a vision for the country’s future..non-existent. Plus the few sparse and poorly thought out policies which he does possess are completely inadequate to address the important issues which will be impacting on Australia in the quite near future.

    Under Tony Abbott the rich will get richer and the poor and the middle classes will get poorer, which will mean a downward spiral for Australia.

  31. Curry, fortunately we are not America where the President wields considerable power. In Australia we vote for the best team to lead us, therefore even if one dislikes either Gillard or Abbott or both, this aspect is not nearly as important as: policies and who has the best and most competent team to implement these policies.

    For example, Swan voted world’s best treasurer compared with the incompetent and blustering Hockey.

  32. But “where there’s smoke there’s fire”.

    So, we have stories which, when printed in the papers, Gillard threatens legal on, so they are pulled (indicating that the writers are not prepared to stand behind their words). But when allegations are made about tabot, no such action is initiated (even though we know he is not averse to this), indicating that he is the one not prepared to stand behind his words.

    And there is a lot of smoke for him, not a one off incident.

  33. Swan voted world’s best treasurer compared with the incompetent and blustering Hockey.

    Just wanted to see it again 🙂

    It appears that Swanny is having a go at hte Repubs too

    “Let’s be blunt, the biggest threat to the world’s biggest economy are the cranks and crazies that have taken over the Republicans,” he said.

    “Despite (US president Barack) Obama’s goodwill … the national interest was held hostage by the rise of the extreme right Tea-Party wing of the Republicans.”

    “There can be few things more alarming in public policy than a political group which was genuinely prepared to see the government of the United States default on its obligations in order to score a political point.”

    All true, but I wonder at the sense of him saying this so bluntly.

  34. Iain, S&P confirmed that the Govt is on track for a modest surplus. Iron ore prices are up 25% in less than a month, and the Reserve Bank is reportedly going to pay a dividend of half a billion dollars. QE3 is starting in the USA, and it’ll be sustained over a long period of time. China has similarly stimulated its economy. That mythical surplus – confirmed just before an election – is going to pack a very powerful and very real punch.

  35. Sinodinos, Sue, his efforts have not done too well in NSW, especially in the seat of Robinson, on the Central Coast. The court threw out his efforts yesterday. Appear locals s6till have some say.

    The Coalition cannot appears to take a trick lately.

  36. Mobius, one on the Drum last night did point out that Abbott still had to win. I love the way, all assume that this will not occur.

  37. C’mon you guys. Swan – world’s best Treasurer. He has taken Australia from a surplus of AUD $75 Billion plus the bucket of Gold in the Future Fund, to a Deficit of AUD $200 Billion and counting. Plus his much vaunted propsed surplus for this FY is more “smoke”. If this is the best, stand by Greece and Spain, we’re about to join you. I for one, can’t afford to meet the Government’s Credit Card Bill – can you?

  38. Tom, not only a lot of smoke, one can see the flames and what is burning. There is hot evidence, that just keeps coming.

    Min, the wealthy will also suffer. Their is a good chance he will send the economy quickly into free fall.

    Even last night on the Drum, they could not tell us what he is about.

  39. If Gillard was “clean” I’d have a balanced view.

    Curry are you saying conversely that Abbott is “clean”?

    And can you point out where Gillard isn’t “clean” in your view?

    Otherwise you’re offering nothing but throwaway right wing meaningless attack points.

  40. Deficit of AUD $200 Billion and counting.

    Can you point to where you got that $200 billion figure from please?

    And counting what actually?

    And the utterly disingenuous and false Greece and Spain comparison proves you are a Right Wing mouth piece and always have been.

    Thanks for coming out.

    You do know the Liberals only had $4 billion less in their stimulus package as compared to the government’s at the time, which in the size of the stimulus is peanuts, and theirs was based on the US, Greece, Spain and many other country’s model of giving huge amounts of tax relief and money to the wealthy and wealthy institutions, and we all know where that at ended up.

    Those small handful of countries that went along the Australian government method, like Canada, have all come out of the GFC with strong economies and low unemployment. The Coalition on the other hand were offering to destroy hundreds of thousands of jobs as a way of stimulating the economy.

  41. When nothing works and one is cornered, back to that “debt:. Debt which mounts to nothing in the scheme of things. Debt that was necessary to save the nation.

    The danger is that the government might stay on track, bringing the budget into balance, not debt.

    Then facts do not matter to those criticising this government.

    The PM point this out time and time again, yesterday in QT. One does need facts, to make sense of the world.

    The Treasurer and the International Monetary Fund are at odds over whether the budget should return to surplus this financial year.

    The Fund has used its latest report on Australia to raise the prospect of abandoning the planned surplus saying the authorities had “scope to delay their planned return to surplus” should the economic outlook deteriorate sharply.

    Treasurer Wayne Swan will tell a business breakfast in Sydney this morning he intends to return to surplus regardless, saying although the task “is made harder by a fall in commodity prices” a surplus is “still our best defence against the current global economic volatility and sends a clear message that we are committed to responsible fiscal policy”.

    However the IMF believes Australia’s reputation is not at risk, describing its public debt as “modest” and saying it has “monetary and fiscal space” to respond to shocks.

    It has upgraded its forecast for Australian growth this year from 3 to 3.25 per cent but warns “risks are tilted to the downside”.

    “For example, a hard landing in China would reduce demand for Australian mineral exports, worsen terms of trade, reduce household income, and could trigger a fall in house prices,” it says.

    The Fund paints a picture of an economy increasingly at the mercy of international markets saying “the increasing share of the mining sector in the economy implies Australia will be exposed more to volatile commodity prices, not only upward but also downward, as in recent months”.

    While the floating dollar can help cushion the national economy it “offers little help” to regional economies and the industries that suffer the most at the hands of international markets.

    The IMF says investment outside of Australia’s resources sector is likely to remain weak for some time and that the rest of the economy will soon face the challenge of absorbing mining industry workers made redundant as the boom comes off its peak.

    Mr Swan will tell this morning’s breakfast he is an optimist about China…. He will say his talks there have convinced him much of its slowdown is deliberately engineered.

    “We really just need to keep things in perspective,” he will say. “China is now 40 per cent larger than in 2008 so its growth rate can be 20 per cent lower for it to make the same contribution to global growth.”

    “It’s like Usain Bolt easing off a bit at the end of the 100 meters because he’s 10 meters in front and has already smashed the world record.”

    The Fund’s Asian head of mission Masahiko Takeda told reporters yesterday Australia had the ability to respond to both a deeper decline in Asian growth and a worsening European situation. ‘‘Australia has policy space to mobilise,’’ he said, noting that for the moment Australian policies struck a good balance between cutting debt and supporting growth.

    Its monetary and capital markets chief Dr Cheng Hoon Lim said ‘stress tests’ showed Australia’s banking system could withstand a five per cent drop in economic growth and 35 per cent slide in house prices.

    Mr Swan said the Fund had “lauded” Australia’s strong fundamentals and bright outlook. His speech this morning will concentrate on the United States saying the biggest threat is “the cranks and crazies that have taken over the Republican Party”.

  42. Can you point to where you got that $200 billion figure from please?

    hockeynomics 😉

    Even S&P have to play catch up with the Governmnet lol. Dumbasses.

  43. Curry, your economic illiteracy is showing. Swan didn’t take us from surplus to deficit, something called the GFC happened. Austerity in the face of an economic crisis had been tried before: it led to the Great Depression. The Future Fund – that “bucket of gold” – is the public servant superannuation fund. It’s still there. And as I made clear to Iain, the reality is the surplus is looking likely, and more spending cuts can be found (unlike Treasurers Costello or Howard, Swan has cut government spending in real terms). Comparing our debt to Spain or Greece is idiotic and doesn’t deserve a response.

  44. It’s to be hoped that this perfect storm eventuates. The latest outpouring of faux compassion for terror victims hasn’t been reported in quite the way Abbott would’ve hoped. An instance of him being taken seriously about wanting to be judged on his past? Someone on PB a while back said that Abbott’s & the right’s great advantage was their abilty to attack from absolutely any angle, even if it directly contradicted everything else they said, & be allowed to get away with it. That seems to be happening less often.
    One area Abbott matches Howard in is his preparedness to throw any inconvenient ally over the side. This once again extended to Howard himself yesterday, as his previous policy of non compensation was publicly abandoned & pilloried.
    For anyone seeking to point out the numerous examples of Howard’s sticking by colleagues in a spot of parliamentary bother, the difference is of course that Howard stuck by them in a demonstration of strength.

  45. Miglo, comments please. Is it true, that this PM and government have trouble working with the PS. Is it true that Mr.Abbott is so well liked, he will do better.

    Mr Abbott said the problem was not with the number of political staffers but the ‘misuse to which political staffers have been put’.

    ‘Australia’s public servants were highly professional if politicians trusted and worked with them,’ he said.

    ‘I certainly agree that this is a government which has often been at war with the public service. Kevin Rudd didn’t get on with his public servants, Julia Gillard has problems as well,’ he told the Nine Network.

    ‘I think the problem is the current government rather than the system as such. The current government has not been able to work effectively with the Australian public service.’

    Asked if a coalition government would slash ministerial staff numbers, Mr Abbott said all areas of government would be assessed.

    ‘We are certainly looking for savings and as you know we’ll be announcing our savings in good time before the next election and we’ll have a commission of audit in the first months of government to try to look at every dimension of government, its agencies and its instrumentalities, to see how we can do things better,’ he said.

    ‘So we’ll be looking at all these things, but I think it’s the misuse to which political staffers have been put with dirt units and so on, rather than the fact that there are political staffers as such.’

  46. Coalition to oppose symbolic pledge on indigenous Australians
    BY: PATRICIA KARVELAS From: The Australian September 21, 2012 8:58AM

    THE Coalition will vote against the symbolic pledge proposed by Labor to replace the promised referendum to acknowledge indigenous Australians in the Constitution.

    Tony Abbott says Labor’s act of recognition is a bid by Julia Gillard to lock the next parliament behind a de facto referendum bill. He has instead written to the Prime Minister suggesting they both provide statements to parliament declaring support for a referendum in the next term.

    Migs, now why did I expect that answer. Notice the picture of Abbott is another one taken at sunrise. Someone sais, he did this, hoping no on would turn up.

  47. ” Comparing our debt to Spain or Greece is idiotic and doesn’t deserve a response.”

    It doesn’t but here’s one anyway. The only people in the whole wide world who use this batshit crazy line are local right wing agitators.

  48. Tony Abbott will never be Prime Minister of Australia

    Ill discipline

    What Abbott is really about, not policy, not a vision for the country and not an inspection as to why he and his party deserve to be in government, no he and the opposition are solely about talking about the government.

    Joke, much.

  49. Abbott doesn’t need to have a vision, the PM will just steal his ideas…like on asylum seekers.

    He will keep his policies close to his hairy chest until closer to election time.

  50. So el gordo the Labor party stole the MRRT, BER, HIR, Carbon Price, Education and Health policies and every other policy, nearly 400 of them, and major reform bought in from Abbott who opposed every single one?

    And the asylum seeker policy wasn’t stolen, it was done with Abbott’s support and signature on the policy, how can that be stealing it, and it’s failing by the way.

  51. drunkslag et al
    Are you lot on this planet? We have a huge deficit because the Labor Government has spent Billions on projects that have been catastrophic failures. Stop blaming the GFC, if we weren’t in debt, think how much better off we’d we today. Take over the “RED” glasses – the debt is the biggest in Australia’s history. Is this the legacy you want to leave your children and their progeny? Is sure going to take a long time to repay. Whoops, we can’t manage that – bring on a new Government to save us from the scrapheap. Labor has done it again. Maybe they could get some advice from ANNA Bligh – she sure stuffed Queensland.

  52. Ah yes Tony and his magical mystery policies..a feat of magic, cannot be found, cannot be costed and likely to disappear at a moment’s notice.

  53. Ladies and gentlemen I give you the most profound revealing post for as long as I have been here. This equals anything the other troll has offered. Wonderful effort…
    Take it away el gordo!!!!
    September 21, 2012 @ 11:18 am
    Abbott doesn’t need to have a vision, the PM will just steal his ideas…like on asylum seekers.
    He will keep his policies close to his hairy chest until closer to election time.

    Wow the intellect, the thought process, the mind blowing revelation… the absolute nothing.

  54. Cu and,

    Is it true, that this PM and government have trouble working with the PS. Is it true that Mr.Abbott is so well liked, he will do better.

    Well let’s just say that Abbott isn’t likely to be hugely popular should he ever fulfill his pledge to sack over 20,000 of them.

  55. @ 11:27 am. Curry has thrown away all pretense of ever being anything other than a right wing zombie troll. At least that’s cleared up.

    …if we weren’t in debt, think how much better off we’d we today.

    Oh you mean with more than 200,000 additional unemployed, inflation at greater than 7%, interest rates at around the same or greater figure, infrastructure crumbling further than it had under Howard, health, education and social services all in dire straits, and all for $4 billion less of a deficit than this government produced.

    You keep making grand right wing zombie trolling points Curry but not once have you provided the evidence and figures to them back up.

    And maybe they can get advice from all the Liberal Premiers who without exception have failed and broken every promise they made.

  56. Article from Michelle Grattan.

    Abbott trying to bring discipline into the Coalition but finding it very hard.

    Abbott finds that a taut Coalition is not that easily taught

    The Nationals will always have their own agenda, which sometimes won’t match that of the Liberals.

    This week Abbott gave ”discipline” as the reason for putting Cory Bernardi, his parliamentary secretary, on another sort of bike. ”What the Australian people want from the Coalition is a strong and disciplined alternative government and I am determined to ensure that a strong and disciplined Coalition is what they get under my leadership … Cory Bernardi made some ill-disciplined comments,” Abbott told Wednesday’s news conference.
    A better description of the Bernardi remarks would be outlandish, and to many ears outrageous. He offended common sense and ordinary sensibilities. But as for being ”ill-disciplined” – well, not more than a few other Liberals.
    Bernardi was removed from his post – while Barnaby Joyce and Malcolm Turnbull remain in more important ones despite sometimes playing in a different key to the rest of the orchestra – because of the nature of his offence, the political need to get rid of him, and the ease with which he could be chopped.

    Read more:

  57. facepalm

    It’s not really Treasuries fault that hockeynomics don’t work in the real world lol

  58. @ 11.27 Curry: government debt as a percentage of GDP is not the highest it has ever been in Australia’s history. The absolute value is meaningless. It is intellectually dishonest to use that figure. The GFC has reduced the taxes collected by the government by billions of dollars. Without the stimulus, debt would be almost the same size, and that’s assuming the economy didn’t enter a recession (it would have, decreasing the amount paid to government as taxes, unemployment would rise, and expenditure would increase).
    Perhaps you would prefer leaving an economy with high unemployment and debt to the next generation? What rubbish. The Coalition would only increase government expenditure while decreasing revenue. That isn’t how you pay down debt.
    Anna Bligh stuffed up Queensland so bad that Newman has needed to sack 14000 to return to a surplus the same year as the former government predicted. Debt isn’t the issue there: it’s funding election promises.

  59. Peter Wellard @ 7:47 am

    The alternative bill proposed is just window dressing and it won’t win Gillard any cred with the voters either.

    The English language must wince when it sees Iain Hall plonking towards it.

    Thanks for the proof reading service Peter but surely you must realise by now that I am indifferent to that sort of criticism?

    I am not a natural speller and I make typos as well, so what?

    Oh and is “Peter Wellard” your real name or is it just something you made up?

  60. Miglo
    I should get the free coffee prize from the cafe,
    Just saw the news and there was “the tony i know” on his daily press stunt with the little wifey on display.
    So tomorrow it will have to be a daughter or daughters

  61. Just had to laugh at Iain’s comment, I think we all know that he is

    indifferent: not particularly good, important, etc.; unremarkable; unnotable:


  62. el gordo, I see you have not noticed, the present asylum seekers policy is not the Pacific Scheme reborn. The only thing that it has in common is the use of Nauru and Manus Island.

    These islands are only seen as stopgap and temporary solution, until the whole policy is put in place.

    As someone pointed out, it is not yet working. Will not be, until all facets are in place.

    That entails agreements with Indonesia and Malaysia for starters.

  63. No Curry, it is you that is residing in that parallel universe.

    Curry, you cannot provide the facts and data for what you believe and are saying.

    Know why. It simply does not exist.

    There are no experts that agree with you.

  64. PS. I believe that pensions and wages are also the highest in our history. That is if you use raw figures.

    If you compare like with like, the opposite is true.

    That is as percentage of GDP.

    Costello and Cando had to use shonky auditing methods to get the results they have in Queensland. The truth is that the state is not in a bad situation.

  65. I Just watching Hockey. Rerun ABC 24. Pitiable,

    Swan engaging in attacks on others. Uses documents to attack opposition.

    Government now using PS as a tool to beat up Abbott. Using PS to draft documents to attack the Coalition.

    Begging the PS to stand up to the government.

    As Miglo said, tommy rot, or words to that effect.

    Must be desperate.

    Hockey ask if it was OK for Swan to do what Howard didi.

    Labor peddlers hatred.

    Oh dearie me.

    They only talk about hate. Funny, have not heard much hate from Labor. Hockey having a hard time.

    We have to get over Cory. Yes, Mr. Hockey.

    I will make a suggestion Mr. Hockey, stop peddling gloom and doom.

    Anything else about what people are really interested in. Another shocking interview.

  66. That interview was at 11.24. Hockey calling for a little less talk on hate.

    Miglo, did you ever feel this government was using you as a political tool. By the way, I assume from this interview, the Opposition never do anything political.

  67. Yes, they just do not get it. If the money was not spent the way and quickly as it was, we would be in the same straights as most of the western world. Our economy would not be leading theirs.

    I think, but am not sure, that Hockey believes Swan should be comparing us with China, not countries that are worse off.

    Does anyone know where those better off countries are to be found in the western world.

    Cannot make much sense of Hockey’s logic today. Sounds like a good whine to me. Does and cannot cope with criticism. At least the media is asking what he means.

  68. Paul
    if you want to be as boring as Peter Wellard then at least use a more expansive citation:
    Definition of INDIFFERENT
    : marked by impartiality : unbiased
    a : that does not matter one way or the other
    b : of no importance or value one way or the other
    a : marked by no special liking for or dislike of something
    b : marked by a lack of interest, enthusiasm, or concern for something : apathetic
    : being neither excessive nor inadequate : moderate
    a : being neither good nor bad : mediocre
    b : being neither right nor wrong
    : characterized by lack of active quality : neutral
    a : not differentiated
    b : capable of development in more than one direction; especially : not yet embryologically determined
    — in·dif·fer·ent·ly adverb
    See indifferent defined for English-language learners »
    See indifferent defined for kids »
    Examples of INDIFFERENT

    The movie was poorly received by an indifferent public.
    Was the food good, bad, or indifferent?
    It can hardly be argued, by himself or by his defenders, that he was indifferent to, or unaware of, the true situation. —Christopher Hitchens, Harper’s, March 2001

    Origin of INDIFFERENT
    Middle English, from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French, from Latin indifferent-, indifferens, from in- + different-, differens, present participle of differre to be different — more at differ
    First Known Use: 14th century
    Related to INDIFFERENT
    Synonyms: apathetic, casual, complacent, disinterested, incurious, insensible, insouciant, nonchalant, perfunctory, pococurante, unconcerned, uncurious, uninterested
    Antonyms: concerned, interested
    Synonym Discussion of INDIFFERENT
    indifferent, unconcerned, incurious, aloof, detached, disinterested mean not showing or feeling interest. indifferent implies neutrality of attitude from lack of inclination, preference, or prejudice . unconcerned suggests a lack of sensitivity or regard for others’ needs or troubles . incurious implies an inability to take a normal interest due to dullness of mind or to self-centeredness . aloof suggests a cool reserve arising from a sense of superiority or disdain for inferiors or from shyness . detached implies an objective attitude achieved through absence of prejudice or selfishness . disinterested implies a circumstantial freedom from concern for personal or especially financial advantage that enables one to judge or advise without bias .

  69. Cu, I’m not at liberty to disclose anything confidential from what I witnessed in the Public Service. As a Public Servant I was apolitical, meaning I worked with the Government of the day with disregard to my political preferences.

    But I can say this:
    John Howard was a liar.
    Joe Hockey was a liar.
    Tony Abbott was a bully.
    Kevin Rudd drove people fairly hard.
    The Liberals when in government politicised the Public Service.
    The Liberals attempted to obtain information off public servants for political advantage.
    The Rudd Government acted more professionally than the Howard Government.
    Julia Gillard was very popular with her departments.
    Many of Howard’s policies were an utter failure.
    The Labor Governments were more concerned with helping the needy in society.
    The Labor Governments had more of a focus on education and job training than Howard’s.

  70. lol, as I scrolled, I noted ian had done an exhaustive research on the ‘indifferent’. I wonder if he will extend his studies to other words, like ‘remove’ and perhaps ‘reduce’ ❓

  71. 😆 I knew that would get a rise out of him, so much like the leader of the coalition boring to death and with no special purpose.

  72. Tom R, that is too much hard work for someone like Iain, that actually means using your experience to do things and to make sure it is accurate and not telling lies, mmm that sounds a lot like Tony Abbott

  73. Miglo, the way I read it from the outside. Then working for the NSW PS for so many years, one learns to read between the lines.

    What Hockey and Abbott are now attempting to say, is that this government cannot work with the public service.

    I assume now we will see them produce a couple of whistle blowers to prove their points.

    Oh, Abbott is home in Manly today.

    One sentence to another, that have nothing in common. From economy to Glasson. In one breath.

    What happens when that half yearly is bought down, and Mr. Abbott is once again proven to be wrong. No chance of an election in the near future. Why the big effort to get rid of Rudd. Thought they would rather he stayed.

  74. I do agree with the proposition that having so many PS within the PM and other departments would be better cut back. The government only to deal with heads of departments. .

    The PS needs to be de-policalised but have no idea how this can be done,

    We have the worse of both worlds now. We should go down the USA track where it is completely an arm of government, or back to the Westminster, where they represented the public.

    Either have tenure or be completely on contract for the life of the government.

  75. I’m sick & tired of hearing Abbott constantly bad-mouthing & putting down our economy which shows to be in a very strong state compared to the rest of the world. He’s trying to convince everybody that white is black! I’m so sick of him constantly saying “this is a dishonest Government”…I’m sick of him saying “this is an incompetent Government” EVERY single time he gets on TV to brainwash the poor souls watching. If he says it long enough – they start believing. I believe this IS a very competent Government and no more dishonest than any other government before them….Abbott is just a trouble maker & a person who has big problems telling the truth who has played dirty politics for a long time…Poor Pauline Hanson and who else has he been after to get dirt on??????? now it’s “Mummy – they’re picking on me”

  76. To drunkslag and Mobius Ecko
    Check your statistics. The Gross Australian National Debt as at 30 September 2011 was AUD $208+ Billion. You tell me when it was higher. And while you’re at it, explain how this happened. It wasn’t external sources that racked-up this mammoth debt, it was typical Labor Government over-spending trying to buy votes from the cretins who rely on Government hand-outs. If you are really serious about looking forward for Australia, why not fix the financial hand-outs to our “refugees” who (84% of them) are still living on the Public Purse after more than five years living in Australia. Again, I can’t afford to keep paying this national bill for freeloaders. Clean up your own house you bunch of myopic red vision sycophants.

    BTW, get your English language usage correct. “straights” – I don’t agree.

  77. I believe we will see Tony out this weekend, driving that water truck, he has a licence for. Appears he turns up; about six times a year. Maybe mass on Sunday.

    Is it time for those little lifesavers, it is it still too early. Maybe at football tonight, in Melbourne.

  78. Miglo, I do believe the PS is now much smaller. Wonder where Abbott is going to find the cuts. Also believe the cuts have been made on genuine productivity and technology gains. Such as making Medicare refunds directly to one;s bank account.

    I am under the impression that review of numbers is on a ongoing basis. Not something one does, when one has to find money.

    I believe that Cando might have found a similar situation in Queensland, that there is no low hanging fruit.

  79. Curry here is a link,

    International comparisons of national debt

    This at the end of the article:

    In sum, Australia has negligible levels of debt (see graph) which pose little threat to the country’s economic outlook. However, Australia could be affected by the international implications posed by the G7.

    So,as compared to other countries around the world, Australia is going along quite nicely.

  80. I was going to say lay off our visitor, as he is trying to do the right thing. Looks like I was wrong, cannot help himself. Shame that,

  81. lol, as I scrolled, I noted ian had done an exhaustive research on the ‘indifferent’. I wonder if he will extend his studies to other words, like ‘remove’ and perhaps ‘reduce’

    Then he could graduate to phrases – “piss off” would be a good start Iain.

  82. I’m not aguing about where our debt level is in comparison to other nations. Your scenario is “Apples and Oranges”. My point was – when was our National Debt higher. Whatever you say, we still have to repay the debt, and it’s going to affect the standard of living of all future taxpayers in Australia. Standard Labor practice – generate a huge debt and then ask the Australian voters to elect a Conservative Government to bail them out of the financial disaster they created. When will you learn? You can’t keep living beyond your means. Oh and by the way, they are still making promises based on the Never-Never – 2014, 2020 etc. C’mon, not all Australians are idiots. Just some of you.

  83. “What is the current defict?”

    It is on they way to a surplus. A surplus that many experts believe we do not believe. A surplus that is only for political, not economic reasons.

    The damage will be lessen by the ability to rely on interest rates down, because there is still room to move in that area.

    DEFICITS AND SURPLUSES MEAN NOTHING. By the way, the word is deficit.

  84. Yes Voyager, we do know much. We have taken time to listen to the experts, and question everything we have heard and read, especially that which comes out of the mouth of Abbott and his cronies.

    it is marvellous how much knowledge one can amass.

    As the PM said, all one has to do, is look at the facts.

  85. One example this week. Hockey stood up demanding that Swan collect and present a list of where his alleged savings were found.

    Now, Swan had no problem with this, as the figures that Hockey wanted, could be found in full detail, in the budget papers.

    Swan said if he had a copy of the budget, he would table it, to make it easier for Hockey.

    That is the level of stupidity, that this Opposition have reached. Now I believe that Hockey spent a great deal of time, within the party’s room, explain the new methods of attack to his people.

    The PM and Swan then proceeded to wipe the floor with them.

    QT is not pretty for the Opposition. Not because Labor slags and bags them ass Bishop and Pyne claim, but because the PM is able to point out where they are wrong, and what the truth is.

    The biggest insult that the PM has mouthed, is that is no good them bellowing as it does not make what they say true.

  86. Get it right. Whether the Government gets the “CURRENT DEFICIT” into a “SURPLUS” or not in the current FY, does not change the real facts. We have a National Debt – the biggest in our nation’s history. When that is back in “the black”, I’ll listen to your protestations. Until then stop apologising for a pathetic incompetent Government. Whether the Opposition would be better is a moot point – certainly they couldn’t be any worse regardless of who will be PM. Hopefully, the Australian people will make the right decision – I’m glad you lot are not the final arbiters.

  87. Curry just one question. As you are so concerned about debt, tell me how the tories are going to pay for their 70 billion plus hole and counting. Thats 70 billion as confirmed by Hockey and that is without any new pre election promises or bribes to put it bluntly. Your crocodile tears for the National debt has all the hallmarks of right wing BS

  88. Hi 2353, re your message to Jason on TPS, I can assure you that he’s humbled at the recognition. 🙂

    Sometimes a simple comment can spring up and hit you, from which a whole topic can be born. Such was the case with Jason’s comment.

  89. Curry, are you not impressed with our current economic position?

    I’d say that this is a credit for the last three governments.

    In retrospect it’s good that Howard completely ignored our infrastructure needs and had plenty of money in the bank. This, along with the stimulus spending, helped stave off the GFC.

  90. Curry,

    There’s a repetitive, and boring, theme running through your every comment. It reminds me of an exchange we had here some months back with one “Geoff”. ME and drunkslag have responded appropriately and I won’t add to their remarks.

    But let me just tell you something about Greece and Spain, and why even mentioning them in this context tells anybody reading that you don’t know much about economics: Greece and Spain’s public debts are effectively in a foreign currency, the euro, and they need to acquire euros to repay their debts. That’s the hard part. Paying off their debt is going to hurt.

    But Australia’s public debt is written in ozzie dollars and we can “print” whatever is needed to repay the so-called debt. I say “so-called” because it’s only a convention that the govt issues bonds to match the deficit. There’s also a technical requirement to do with reserves and the RBA cash rate.

    We can “print” our own money because, among other things, we allow it to float freely on the international market, not always convenient. Greece and Spain could do that too back when they had their own drachmas and pesetas.

    Most of the debt on issue has been snapped up by foreigners at low yields. Forget about whether Swannie got some gong for world’s best treasurer, the fact that the rest of the world wants to park its savings here says it all.

    Neither you nor your children or grandchildren will ever have to pay off the “debt”. It’s just not how modern monetary systems work.

  91. Thanks for the proof reading service Peter but surely you must realise by now that I am indifferent to that sort of criticism?

    Maybe, but you’re not indifferent about criticising the spelling and writing of others. Like hacking into Ricky’s writing on your own blog.

    Oh and is “Peter Wellard” your real name or is it just something you made up?

    Why do you ask? Have you been googling people again?

  92. Migs how is it that we ended up with a skills shortage. Not just underinvestment but de-investment (if there is such a word), in infrastructure but plus skills training..however, Howard did saving a motza in achieving this.

  93. The friggin troll Hall has gone completely mad, stupid, nutty, weak in the head, needs assistance urgently. It was pointed out by another respected poster, there is plenty wrong with this unfortunate individual. To launch into his latest load of useless crap is proof, not that it is needed, of a very sick person.
    There are agencies available, suggest you use one or more of them before you flip completely.

  94. Dafid1 and Miglo
    With reference to the projected??? $70 Billion hole – easy. Take a leaf out of the ALP book. Just spend – that’s what they have done every time they were in Government. And when they get thrown out of Office, it will be someone else’s problem.
    Hey guys, we started off with a big bucket of gold when the ALP came to Office. Despite their spending spree, we were not too badly in debt when the GFC occurred. What are they going to do now? Yes, maybe the Iron Ore and Coal orders will help the current FY recovery, but what if China and India restrict their economies. Where to then?
    As I said before, we can’t keep living beyond our means. Spending in hope of bigger export sales will not solve our current debt problems. We need to restrict spending until we have real money in the bank.

  95. Seems when Curry challenges you , what happens is you either
    go to water or get very defensive or worse still get very aggressve.
    I asked the question a long time ago. No one has answered.
    What is our current National debt?
    Whos smart answers ( but keep it simple we are only used to running
    our own household budgets).
    I thought it was a free world we lived in . But as soon as someone asks questions they get ‘set upon by mongrel dogs,’ dogs deader than any drover Ive known.
    You are all very funny like.

  96. “In retrospect it’s good that Howard completely ignored our infrastructure needs and had plenty of money in the bank. This, along with the stimulus spending, helped stave off the GFC.”

    I don’t think Bill Mitchell would like to hear you saying that Migs (the money in the bank bit) !

    There is no piggy bank, money box, or vault where that “money” actually exists.

    There is only an entry in an electronic ledger somewhere in Treasury that shows for a number of years the Howard government spent less than it taxed.

    Weird and counter-intuitive, but that’s the reality.

  97. Curry – you are misleading in your choice of figures in two main ways. You quote the gross national debt figure. The reason this figure is the highest it has ever been is because the economy has never been bigger (we are about to overtake Spain as the world’s twelfth largest economy). The reason our gross debt has increased (and will continue to increase) is that Australian government debt (mostly Commonwealth Government Securities) is required for liquidity in financial markets. Treasury, the RBA, and other participants in the financial markets have decided to keep the CGS market at around 12-14% of GDP (all this is available in the 2011-12 Budget, see here Therefore, as the economy grows, so too will our gross national debt. But it will be offset by financial assets. Reducing gross debt would create a liquidity crisis in our financial markets. I suggest you stop getting your economics from Barnaby Joyce.
    You keep saying the debt is the biggest in the nation’s history. But you are misleading with your choice of how this is expressed. Suppose I earn $100 000 a year. Having a debt of $10 000 is only a small proportion of my income, and not a lot to worry about. But if I only earn $5 000 a year, that same amount of debt is twice my income, and something I should be concerned about. What is important is the ratio of debt to income. In this analogy, our “income” is GDP. Yes, our debt expressed in billions sounds big. But it is dishonest not to compare it to our GDP. Since federation our economy has grown: we’ve had more than two decades of consecutive growth. As a result, we can handle more debt in absolute terms.
    If you are going to start a debt fear campaign, try and base it on reality.

  98. Mangrove, I would be 100% positive that Migs meant this with a good dose of irony.. 😉

    Clearly if a government taxes more than it spends, then it is either over-taxing or underspending. I have the economics ability of a flea, but common sense dictates that governments are not in the business of making a profit but of setting up a mechanism where the economy self-propels…where a $ spent = 100 dollars saved, even if the value of that dollar spent takes a decade to fulfill it’s intent.

  99. Current net debt analogy, for those who insist on comparing a national economy to a family situation…

    Our national debt is analogous to someone earning $100,000 a year having a mortgage of $20,000 with $13,000 in a savings account and net interest costs of around $600 a year or $50 a month…(From Stephen Koukoulas.)

  100. Mangrove Jack, here is an interesting article on

    Deconstructing infrastructure

    It goes into stating where will the money come from to build the infrastructure we need.

    Here are the basic facts: the Business Council of Australia estimates that Australia will need somewhere between $450-770 billion over the next decade just to keep abreast of infrastructure needs. The question begs: where will this money come from?

    One only has to look back to 2005, when the economy was not far from peaking, to show that infrastructure spend from federal and state governments is not a priority. Economic modeling firm Econtech has estimated that the national gap between infrastructure demand and supply in 2005 amounted to $1.15 billion for electricity, $10 billion for road, $8.06 billion for rail, $2.6 billion for gas and $3 billion for water.

    Here is another

    Paying for Australia’s infrastructure deficit.

    Public–private partnerships have turned out to be an expensive way of plugging infrastructure gaps, writes Nicholas Gruen. The evidence shows that governments need to get back into the investment business

  101. Well Voyager your question has been answered in spades, as it was last time, but as always you will ignore it.

    Why don’t you challenge Mangrove Jack, as he makes so much sense on debt.

    And still Curry and yourself have not answered why the opposition would have been any better when their GFC package as tabled by Hockey and Robb at the time was only $4 billion less and entailed going down the same path as the US, Spain, Greece and many other failed countries.

    Those like Canada who bought in similar stimulus measures that Australia did are all doing well.

    I can only think that you wanted hundreds of thousands out of work, thousands of businesses closed down unnecessarily and more likely than not Australia in recession, which was avoided by this government.

  102. Well said drunkslag ( do you have a more euphonious diminutive ? 🙂 )

    Can I add that Commonwealth Govt Securuties are actually in short supply… that is, not enough DEBT…such that the RBA is (or has) set up special borrowing facilities for our commercial banks so they can meet the new Basel III regulatory requirements.

  103. @Miglo…”Personally, I don’t think Abbott can take much more of a battering. He’s bound to lose his cool again eventually. It’s got me beat how his party have persevered with him as leader for so long.”
    Surely you jest? In the face of Gillard’s indiscretions you guys haven’t even landed a punch on Tony Abbott! As to how the party have persevered with him for so long…The only opposition leader ever with record two-party preferred lead for the L-NP in over 70 years of the Morgan Poll might have something to do with it!

  104. What many feel free to ignore, that any new spending from this government has been offset by savings in other areas.

    Miglo pointed out that today’s PS is much smaller. Other savings have been found in introducing means testing. Along with the dumping of outdated or badly target schemes.

    This along with the MRRT, an attempt to spread super profits across the community, and the price put on carbon emission, has led to the government to be able to deliver more.

    It is about making choices. It is not about not being able to afford. Sometimes one cannot afford not to spend money, especially for essentials. Sometimes one spends money, in the hope of future profits. NBN falls into this camp.

    Not spending and cutting can lead, will lead to greater losses. Greater deficits. Not good for anyone.
    This economy has grown every year, since Howard was dumped by the voters.

    For a nation to prosper, it needs a well educated, trained and healthy workforce. It needs the infrastructure for industry to prosper.

    Most, if not all of Labor’s spending is in the fields that deliver that workforce and infrastructure.

    These are the figures that count. Not some obsession with debt, that in relation to our wealth, is minimalist.

  105. Mangrove, I would be 100% positive that Migs meant this with a good dose of irony.. 😉

    Yeah Min, knowing Migs I shoulda had the irony detector on full alert.

  106. Or perhaps Curry and Voyager may like to attempt to follow what a Nobel prize winner for economics says about debt:

    Nobody Understands Debt

    In 2011, as in 2010, America was in a technical recovery but continued to suffer from disastrously high unemployment. And through most of 2011, as in 2010, almost all the conversation in Washington was about something else: the allegedly urgent issue of reducing the budget deficit.

    This misplaced focus said a lot about our political culture, in particular about how disconnected Congress is from the suffering of ordinary Americans. But it also revealed something else: when people in D.C. talk about deficits and debt, by and large they have no idea what they’re talking about — and the people who talk the most understand the least.

    Perhaps most obviously, the economic “experts” on whom much of Congress relies have been repeatedly, utterly wrong about the short-run effects of budget deficits. People who get their economic analysis from the likes of the Heritage Foundation have been waiting ever since President Obama took office for budget deficits to send interest rates soaring. Any day now!

    Substitute Menzies House for Heritage Foundation for an Australian flavour…

  107. Voyager, comments are ridiculous. All have answered yours and Curry’s comments. All are saying, what you arer putting forwarded does not add up.

    All have given reasons why.

    Our debt is manageable. Simple as that. Debt can be good. It depends what it is spent on.

    We are not abusing anyone. We are just pointing out a few inconvenient facts, that bring into dispute what you and Curry are alleging.

    Simple, we do not agree with either of you.

  108. Dafid

    why are you such a desperately humourless fellow? There is a simple point to may citation and that is that the meaning of the word “indifferent” is more nuanced that Paul would have us believe. That you think that this is evidence of mental illness says a great deal more about your own tortured psyche than it says about me. Keep taking the meds mate because you clearly need them.

  109. MJ – the other interesting thing is the bond yields are very low. It’s a sign that markets don’t think Australia has a debt problem. Of course, some think they know better than the markets and so support… the party that (supposedly) promotes free markets.

  110. Treeman, I’m not jesting. Abbott is well and truly on the nose since his character has been placed under the microscope. He’s close to going up in a puff of smoke.

    Are you in love with him, BTW?

  111. Great piece paulwello, and a perfect illustration of where Howard/Costello failed so miserably after landing in the longest sustained economic growth in history and my biggest bug bear against them and that is allowing infrastructure to crumble away.

    My biggest bug bear against them is their neglect of skills.

    That one is my biggest bug bear as Howard was warned of a looming skills shortage early in his second term and it was then regularly raised as a concern by business and industry groups, which Howard continuously ignored until it became so bad it was making headlines, and in he jumped with a half baked scheme that failed miserably.

    There was no excuse for Howard on pretermitting skills when he was raking in so much revenue he couldn’t estimate it month to month and he had such a long period of warnings on the looming shortage.

  112. ME- I follow George Mega’s lead and break the Howard Govt up into two distinct parts: post-2001 the Government squandered all opportunity in its own political self-interest. It failed to invest in infrastructure and education, instead giving everyone tax cuts and fed inflation. This was in spite of RBA warnings. So interest rates went up. In a way, the GFC was timed well to prevent inflation rising too high.

  113. Curry avoids answering by dolling out abuse.


    Proves there is nothing there, even making lame attempts at being an abusive grammar nazi, also a tactic of someone debating with nothing and losing badly.

  114. @ Miglo
    SEPTEMBER 21, 2012 @ 3:49 PM
    I’m not at liberty to disclose anything confidential from what I witnessed in the Public Service. As a Public Servant I was apolitical, meaning I worked with the Government of the day with disregard to my political preferences.

    But I can say this:
    John Howard was a liar.
    Joe Hockey was a liar.
    Tony Abbott was a bully.
    Kevin Rudd drove people fairly hard.
    The Liberals when in government politicised the Public Service.
    The Liberals attempted to obtain information off public servants for political advantage.
    The Rudd Government acted more professionally than the Howard Government.
    Julia Gillard was very popular with her departments.
    Many of Howard’s policies were an utter failure.
    The Labor Governments were more concerned with helping the needy in society.
    The Labor Governments had more of a focus on education and job training than Howard’s.”

    As an ex Commonwealth Public Servant myself, agree you have not disclosed anything confidential in the above. You have however disclosed a naiveté that IMO dominates the public sector. You say Howard and Hockey were liars and Libs politicised the Public Service. As a student of political science and from 40 years observation of the political sector may I suggest you have a lot to learn. The Public Service has been politicised since the year dot and politicians of all colour have been gleaning information from Public Servants for equally as long.

    To all reading this blog, consider this. The reason we Australians have got to where we are today is that we have booted politicians when their use by date approached if we were lucky and afterwards if we lapsed into denial or due to donkey votes etc.

    IMHO many Australians are in denial Today. Incompetence will deliver Tony Abbott the next election for the following reasons:
    Gillard’s lies.
    Kevin Rudd was incompetent as a leader and many in his circle of incompetence are still there today.
    The AWU has much to answer for and Labor defends them because it’s life depends on it.
    Labor politicises the Public Service, the ABC, CSIRO and BOM.
    All of Gillard’s and Rudd’s policies are abject failures.

    Make my day and prove me wrong!

  115. All we are doing is supply the facts that they required, they are the ones getting abusive, aggressive and not supplying the facts to backup there opinions

  116. As a student of political science and from 40 years observation of the political sector may I suggest you have a lot to learn.

    At least I’m willing to admit when I’m wrong and to keep learning. I consider that a good trait.

  117. Could it be that many here are “indifferent” to some comments. More important and interesting things to direct out interest to.

  118. Howard and Menzies do indeed have more in common than those eyebrows and being in power much too long.

    Menzies wasted the post war boom. Howard the mineral boom.

    Neither left much to show for their long and tedious tenure.

  119. Howard spent his time dismantling the TAFE system. Undermining apprenticeships, and the emergence of private agencies that dealt mostly in worthless bits of paper.

  120. He handed the CES over to the private sector, which main achievement appears to be, making many owners wealthy.

  121. All this rhetoric is fine in economic terms. I know this may be simplistic, but no matter how you slice the salami, debt has to be repaid through income. Income that could be spent on education, roads, hospitals and other vital infrastructure. Current projects are languishing for lacks of funds. If you haven’t got the money don’t spend it. If we have the money, then let’s put a bit (a lot) away for our children’s future instead of walking away from a mounting debt. Why should we have to explain high level economics to our grand-children? Surely it’s easier to say the country has no international debt – that’s why we have a great country.

  122. All we are doing is supply the facts that they required, they are the ones getting abusive, aggressive and not supplying the facts to backup their opinions

    Very true paul – we all know what opinion is like 😉 Everyone’s got one…
    In this case, the content of the opinion offered is similar to the content of that analogy 😆

  123. Howard also undermined the production of doctors and others from the uni.

    Suggested that trades were all that was needed for most. Even here, he made it harder,

    Ignored the evidence that both trades and uni graduates needed to grow.

    Labor builds. Coalition demolishes.

  124. Catching up @ 4:40 pm

    Miglo, I do believe the PS is now much smaller. Wonder where Abbott is going to find the cuts. Also believe the cuts have been made on genuine productivity and technology gains. Such as making Medicare refunds directly to one;s bank account.

    Gee I reckon that we could lose the entire department of climate change for a start, followed by the department for the arts and all of the pointless feel good departments for “social inclusion” that don’t actually do anything of substance.

    peterwellard @ 5:21 pm

    Thanks for the proof reading service Peter but surely you must realise by now that I am indifferent to that sort of criticism?

    Maybe, but you’re not indifferent about criticising the spelling and writing of others. Like hacking into Ricky’s writing on your own blog.

    Well they are two different things I have been so often criticised for typos and spelling mistakes that I no longer feel concerned about such nit picking Thus I am indifferent to idiots like you who think they are scoring “big points” by pointing out those errors. As for Ricky’s piece it is a pretty awful piece of blogging by any standard, the arguments are confused, he uses metaphors badly and the sentences often make no sense. He may have something worthwhile to say but any reader just has to work too hard to find it.

    Oh and is “Peter Wellard” your real name or is it just something you made up?

    Why do you ask? Have you been googling people again?

    Oh I just want to know if you are one those anonymous cowards who hide behind a pseudonym to attack people who post in their own name. I suspect that you are.

    dafid1 @ 5:34 pm

    There are agencies available, suggest you use one or more of them before you flip completely.

    Its strange that you should think this because I am not the one blowing a gasket here, Maybe you need to take your own advice. Can I suggest that Yoga is very good to find the inner peace and humility that you so clearly need?

  125. Treeman, I take it, you are pulling our leg.

    Howard and state Liberal Premiers did not lead the way in politicise the public service. Who bought in the contracts and destroyed tenure.

    As they say, one can have their own opinion. One cannot have their own facts.

    Where is the PM’s lie. How many do you believe there are.

    The Opposition has more problem with the word “lie” than the government. Wonder why. They go into meltdown every7time it is uttered.

  126. Incorrect use of correct English displays disdain. Poor English language usage is a clear indication of ignorance. If you can’t get it right – turn to abuse. Go look in the mirror, fool.

  127. “All this rhetoric is fine in economic terms. ”

    Where have we used rhetoric. Go back and reread. Nothing but facts have been put forwarded.

    Maybe Rhetoric has a meaning that we do not know of.

    The only rhetoric I can see, is that we have excessive debt. Figures just do not add up. Sorry.

  128. Actually Rudd did very well during the GFC. Took guts to do what he did. Trouble is he appear to lose it after this. Labor moved quickly to avert a disaster.

    The PM has over the two years delivered all that she promised to do. Admitted not all in the same form,

    The PM is now laying the groundwork for the future of the Nation. Not resting on her laurels.

  129. Well then Curry Howard was rolling in revenue, so much so he couldn’t accurately count it, yet he allowed infrastructure, hospitals, roads, rail, ports, education all decline. So what was his excuse?

    Then we have the current government going into debt, and only four billion more than the opposition promised, and they spent on all the things Howard let decline, including skills.

    And the abuser calling others for abuse. A fine example of right wing projection.

    The clear indication of ignorance is the lame attempt at simple economics and failing badly. There is no need to look in a mirror for a fool, it’s in plain view in every post made here by the fool.

  130. Forgot about those, was it eight interest rates rises in a row.

    Forgot about everything becoming user pays. Forgot about tax cuts, that benefit the wealthy more.

    Forgot about profits being transferred from workers to bosses.

    Forgot about the widening marhin between rich and poor.

  131. paulwello
    My source for National Debt was not Wiki, but their estimate is a bit short. If you want to see some alarming figures, go to the Australian Debt Clock. The numbers are going up not down. When are we supposed to start worrying? We may not be Greece or Spain, but at the rate our debt and spending are going who knows what we can achieve. Go Swanee, go !!! You have a lot of supporters here.

  132. Bacchus, great article from the Harvard Review, explains it in a way everyone can understand, well almost everyone. 😉

  133. Time to go and change your nappy I think Curry – fear of what you don’t understand is very much a trait of a weak conservative mind 🙄

  134. In terms of “official interest rates” as opposed to mortgage interest rates, which were limited by government legislation at the time, Fraser & Howard actually hold that record Curry – you really don’t know much about economics, do you? 🙄

  135. I have been closely following politics since the days of Menzie’s. Does that make my knowledge more superior.

    Can still remember watching the black and white TV when Santamaria and Baume was on. Thought they were great. Unlike Abbott, I grew up. Even voted DLP at my first election. Oh, what a mistake was that.

    I held onto every word of the Whitlam saga. It made ironing and looking after four very young children a little boring. I followed the antics of McMahon. Had much time for Gorton.

    In all that time, during times when politics was fought very hard, I never heard the gutter abuse, that comers from the Opposition, as we do today.

    It was more like that boxing match, that Abbott spent his youth. You punched the hell;l out of one another. Then you shook hands. Not like not the personal hate one gets today.

    Just look at some of the photos put up in the last few days, of the Opposition. Pure hate.

    You never had the Opposition leader of the house spending his time, calling the PM slag bag and other such comments.

  136. Sorry to the newer contributors here who may not understand my dig with “little lone” – let’s just say it relates to someone who used to post on various blogs – a marshall arts expert if I remember correctly 😆

  137. Read it I did. Whether I understood the vagaries of MMT I’m not sure. Again maybe I am too simplistic in my outlook. I must have missed something somewhere, so who is going to pay my Credit Card bill? To me debt is debt. Somehow, somewhere, sometime – someone has tp pay.
    Good to see that when you can’t persuade, bring on the abuse. Bacchus stick to wine not WHINE. It’s in the dictionary.

  138. I think the Pies might win but I’d like to see the Swans win a close one.

    But who cares? I’m well on my way to being legless so it’ll be a great night regardless.

    Hate the Storm, BTW. 🙂

  139. “English language usage is a clear indication of ignorance. “

    Once again, you are wrong. It is a sign of formal education and the strata of society one lives among. No call for fancy english, when one works in a factory. filling in the bonus and time sheet is the most you will use, signing your name on the bottom line,

    It is a skill that improves with usage, but disappears quickly when the opposite occurs.

    You are a snob if you believe that.

    Abbott much believe it though, he talks to us as if we have very limited knowledge of our language. Talks as if one was addressing a three year old.

    Using that skill is one of the main reasons I like posting on blogs. My english is far from perfect, but I believe it has improved over the last couple of years. Common words no longer disappear from my brain.

  140. Re, You have however disclosed a naiveté that IMO dominates the public sector.

    I would say the opposite. Migs’ observations are as he calls them, no naiveté when you are the one who has to implement rather than theorise.

    I should add that Migs has reached a milestone and one that we are all especially proud – Migs has now written over 300 topics. Love ya’ kiddo. 🙂

  141. i dont thunk that bloggers shuld be hald acountable for typos and nispells. Bein pedandic rather thna looking ar the argumnet is in my mind coutnerprodcuive. And I have the ablity the edit my onw coments. 😀

  142. Curry, is that a replicate of that debt lorry back in the last Keating election. The one that disappear, after that debt climb quickly. Or is it the debt that every Australian found themselves swamped in during Howard’s day. The greatest in the record of the Nation.

  143. You have to pay your credit card bill Curry. You don’t provide the money to start with – the government does. As Prof. Mitchell explains in that article, and on his blog and, no doubt, in his lectures, there is a huge difference between a fiat currency system and one based on the gold standard. Those who seek to mislead (conservative politicians mainly) deliberately, or through ignorance, confuse the two, and most punters don’t have the ability to understand that they’re being mislead…

  144. NO, that record belongs to Howard, back when he was treasurer. Yes, I have observed for many decades. In those days we had something I do not want to see again, stagflation.

  145. Sea Eagles, wonder if Abbott will turn up. Maybe not, he will have to get up early to drive that water lorry, I suspect will be his stunt for this Saturday.

  146. Re “English language usage is a clear indication of ignorance. “ I personally speak extremely good English and have rounded tones due to attending Canterbury Girls’..note: the apostrophe comes after the s..because that is the Queen’s English.

    And unlike Rabbit, I have the ability to spell..

  147. handyrab there are a couple of follies to internet spelling and grammar nazis. One they would spend their entire time and life picking up mistakes on the interwebs and they leave themselves open to every mistake they make.

    In many cases it’s nothing to do with the spelling or grammar but a distraction from a losing argument or from someone who has nothing to argue with.

  148. Curry, I will let you into a little secret. The national budget does not work like your personal budget.

    Yes you have to pay your credit card off. That should be no trouble if you have the income to service it.

    From my understanding the economies of Greece and Spain are a little like your personal budget. They are using a currency that is more suited to the wealthy countries they compete with. Neither country are rich in natural resources, as Germany and others are.

    Now one cam compare those two countries with how Tasmania works within our state system. The federal system here is slanted to help the less wealthier states.

    Thus MRRT for starters.

    Spain and Greece and maybe Italy have to make choices if they are to survive. They go it alone or the European Common market look after their weaker siblings. Cutting and austerity, in my opinion has made things worse for these countries.

    Things appear different in Ireland, another country with no natural resources but a country that over the last few decades have invested heavily in their only resource, their people. This investment from the past might just be coming to their aid.,

    It is the past success of Ireland that leads me to believe the PM is on the right track with her love of education and training.

    Curry, national budgets are no near as black and white, that you would like us to believe.

  149. you really have no idea do you. Mr Curry. Your comments are all over the place like an elephant with diarrhea. Now its ok for the tories to have a black hole, jeez come to the party man, but change your diapers first

  150. Latest poll today from Morgan:LNP 50.5-ALP 49.5 , so the News Poll wasnt a rogue…those with sensitive eyes please scroll down now.and apologies for saying Mig


  151. There is also a clear code of conduct for ministerial advisers – something this government created.

    ‘In my experience people abide by the code of conduct.’

    Opposition Leader Tony Abbott said the Australian public service was ‘highly professional’ but needed politicians to trust and work with them.

    ‘I certainly agree that this is a government which has often been at war with the public service,’ Mr Abbott said.

    ‘Kevin Rudd didn’t get on with his public servants, Julia Gillard has problems as well.’

    Mr Abbott said a coalition government would have a commission of audit in its first months to look at all areas of spending, including ministerial advisers.

    My emphasis. Sounds familiar. I wonder if it will be done by Mr. Costello and his methods. I am sure he will be available, as no one else appears willing to employ him.

  152. As I said, spending money to make money, makes sense.

    As Kristina Keneally prepares for political oblivion, and John Brumby sweats it out wondering if he’ll get back in, it’s possible that the penny might drop. They should ponder this fact. Had New South Wales or Victoria funded the tollways that now thread their way through Melbourne and Sydney, those governments’ net worth would be billions higher with millions rolling into their budgets each year and debt attributable to the roads steadily falling.
    They’d be well set up for the next generation of infrastructure investment for which, as ever, the electorate clamours. •
    Nicholas Gruen is CEO of Lateral Economics.

  153. This is the USA. We would be in the same position only for Labor’s guts to spend when necessary. You spend at the beginning or at the end, No matter what, you spend. One can add to that, the fact that after every downturn, where unemployment occurs, it takes longer to get people back to work. In other words, not spending costs more,

    So yes, debt matters. But right now, other things matter more. We need more, not less, government spending to get us out of our unemployment trap. And the wrongheaded, ill-informed obsession with debt is standing in the way.

  154. Miglo! How could you?! Don’t tell me you are a Power supporter *wink*


    Don’t feel sorry for the Crows, Catching Up. They’re doing just fine 🙂

  155. Dafid @8.18pm..that is good news indeed. We’ve been saying for a long time now that once the “real Tony” is revealed and people start asking, Do we really want this person to be our Prime Minister? that the polls will start telling a different story.

  156. I was really thinking about Abbott.

    One must realise how hard it is going to be for him, when he realises he has met his match with that handbag brigade.

    Also, I did not want to see someone I have come to see as a friend, consumed with hate.

    Hockey has got that one wrong. It is the Opposition that is having problems with that horrible emotion of hate.

    Maybe we may dislike, show no respect but never hate.

  157. “It is with narrow-souled people as with narrow necked bottles the less they have in them, the more noise they make in pouring it out.”

  158. For Migs…” the frontiers man”… a.k.a. Port slurporter… 😀
    “Have you got a local mind? Broaden it! Have you got an international mind? Broaden it! Have you got a universal mind? It is not enough, because there are other universes. Broaden it! Broaden your mind till you get a multi-universal mind! And yet, this is not enough too! Broaden it! Leave your village; leave your city; leave your country; leave the earth; leave the universe; leave all the universes! Don’t let your mind to cast anchor in any port! Narrow mind is the greatest enemy of the truth! The best mind is the one which has no frontiers!” »Mehmet Murat ildan

  159. Hey guys and girls with the smarts – I asked a simple question hours ago.
    No one knows the answer.
    What is the present total Australian Gov debt?
    (the answer is not a percentage of GDP stupid!)

  160. Percentage of GDP is what counts. It’s how it’s measured and was for Howard as well, who used to use that as a brag.

    Note that Howard quickly dropped his debt truck promise of reducing the current account deficit that was supposedly destroying the country, where after being in power he went on to record record current account deficit after record current account deficit. It took Rudd to bring that down.

  161. Yes, tell us. You might not like it, but unless it is expressed as a percentage of GDP, it means nothing, stupid.

    In fact it is so small, it is of little consequences, stupid.

    No amount of name calling can change the facts, stupid.

    Now what did I achieve by saying stupid, nothing.

    You have not comprehend one word that has been written here.

    The national debt is not that big, or that important. It does not mean bad governance, It does not mean gloom and doom.

    I repeat this from above.

    So yes, debt matters. But right now, other things matter more. We need more, not less, government spending to get us out of our unemployment trap. And the wrongheaded, ill-informed obsession with debt is standing in the way

    Yes, that is about the USA, where the debt is much greater. Much greater because they did not spend the money. Did not rely on handouts. When they decided to do something, they went down the Liberal path of tax cuts, which did not deliver.

    As others have pointed out here, the Liberals would have only spent 4 billion less. The problem is, it would have been in the form of more tax cuts, which alone would not have worked. There spending would have been waste of money.

    That is why, we here care less about the present debt. It is not dangerous debt. It is not bad debt. It is not high debt.

    The only way one can compare debt or any other part of the economy from one year to the next. is as a percentage. The economy has grown every year since 2007. That in itself is a miracle when one looks at the global economy.

    If one wants to criticise our first female PM, you have to look at other areas, than the economy. Not that I believe you will find much to complain about.

  162. $235 billion according the Australian. 10-12% of GDP which the RBA states is OK.

    Now as the opposition were only going to spend $4 billion less than the government but were planning to implement policies that failed elsewhere in the world and now have over $70 billion in unfunded liabilities, that money they have promised to spend that’s outside the budget, I guess it means their debt would have been much greater than 10-12% of GDP, Australia would have had high unemployment and would probably have gone into recession.

    But it must irk the Tories so much that this government has done so well economically when they expected them to fall within the first six months and I remember they thought the GFC was a godsend as it would destroy the supposedly incompetent Labor government, instead they did most things right, so the right wingers were left with denying there ever was a GFC or making up lies about supposed failed policies, just as they lie about everything now days.

  163. “Read it I did. Whether I understood the vagaries of MMT I’m not sure. Again maybe I am too simplistic in my outlook. I must have missed something somewhere, so who is going to pay my Credit Card bill? ”

    Well, Curry, go and read it again, and again, until you get it.

    And then when you’ve got it perhaps you might be in a better position to make a useful contribution here.

    No-one is asking you to agree with everything said. But spare us, who have taken the trouble to develop an understanding of these admittedly difficult concepts, the tedium of having to continually point out why you are wrong.

    “The difficulty lies, not in the new ideas, but in escaping from the old ones, which ramify, for those brought up as most of us have been, into every corner of our minds.”

  164. paul, they understand. They are not interested in facts or truth. They believe there are enough fools out there they can confuse.

    Both Hockey and Abbott understand as well, but these truths do not fit in with their agenda.

    I say they understand, probably better than we do, as they could not be that stupid.

  165. What annoys me is that they keep bellowing about debt, as if we were not aware it exists.

    None here have done that, What has been said over and over and over, is that the debt is not large enough to worry about., Eve

    We have named authority after authority, that says we do not have a debt problem. Still they bellow on.

    In raw figures maybe, but the size of the economy is also at records high. The debt percentage of GDP is not., It is much smaller than normal.

    They are debating with themselves, not us.

    No mention of unemployment, inflation, growth or any other figures. All we hear is debt, a figure that is less than usual..

  166. ME, not only done well but have been able to pour money into education, health and training among other things. They have did this by cutting waste, means testing many benefits and re-priorising schemes, cutting those that are not needed.

    They have dealt with the many disasters that visited the whole country last year.

    They have raised productivity within the PS. Yes, they have lowered numbers, but not willy nilly, but in a ordered way.

    Yes, this PM has proven herself a good manager, that is able to deal with many things at once.

    That school that welcome the PM today, is the one that went wild over Keating many years ago. The one that treated him like a pop star. which he could have been.

  167. A regurgitation, just for the Troll(s)..
    Reproduced from the Australian Financial Review:
    That’s the “big” myth blown
    The conventional wisdom on the side of politics that is big spending and big taxing has been dramatically turned on its head with the 2012-13 budget.
    The facts in the budget papers show undeniably that the Labor side of politics is able to deliver smaller government through low spending and taxing as a share of the economy. The Coalition parties, conversely, err on the side of higher spending with the budget surplus objectives inevitably met by high tax receipts.
    The facts show that the fifth Labor budget in this political cycle has in place a quite massive 4.3 per cent cut in real government spending in 2012-13, the largest single-year cut yet recorded.
    In nominal terms, government spending falls in 2012-13 for the first time. Adding context to this extraordinary spending restraint indicates that in the three years since 2009-10 there has been a cumulative total of zero growth in real government spending, restraint only exceeded in the three Labor budgets from 1986-87.
    Not once did the Howard or Fraser governments in about 20 years in office achieve a single year where government spending was cut in real terms, while Labor governments have been able to cut real spending in five years since the mid-1980s. Viewed another way, the 2012-13 budget will see the ratio of government spending to gross domestic product fall to 23.5 per cent. This is 0.7 per cent of GDP lower than the average of the 12 Howard government budgets. In today’s dollars, that is around $10 billion less spending. What is equally striking, in the four years to 2015-16, this ratio will remain at or below 23.7 per cent, a four-year run of low spending not seen in more than three decades.
    In terms of taxation receipts, the return to trend economic growth will see the tax-to-GDP ratio rise to 22.1 per cent in 2012-13. In the prior three years, the tax-to-GDP ratio averaged 20.4 per cent to be at levels last seen during a Labor government in the early 1990s and not delivered by a Coalition government since Billy McMahon was prime minister in the early 1970s. Not once did the Howard government have the tax-to-GDP ratio below 22.2 per cent and its average tax take was 23.4 per cent.
    For the current Labor government, the tax-to-GDP ratio will, in each of the eight years out to and including the forward estimates, be below the average tax take of the previous Coalition government. If the 2012-13 tax take was equal to the average of the Howard government, Labor would be collecting around $20 billion in extra revenue and delivering a budget surplus close to 1.5 per cent of GDP.
    Rounding out the myth-busting fiscal performance of the Labor government is the turnaround in the budget bottom line of 3.1 per cent of GDP in 2012-13. This is more than double the next-biggest single-year contraction in fiscal settings and reflects both cuts in spending and some pick-up in revenue as the economy returns to trend growth. It is beyond argument Labor governments function with a lower tax take than Coalition governments and at the same time have a propensity to rein in spending when the economy is growing.
    None of the above facts deals with the philosophical issue of whether “big” government is more desirable than “small” government. That is for others to debate and most times it depends on the state of the business cycle.
    Suffice to say, the updated facts on government spending and taxing in the budget papers confirm that Labor delivers smaller government than the Coalition. This is important to recognise because it repudiates the mantra from various opposition spokespeople about this government being “addicted to tax” or not delivering “genuine savings” in terms of cuts in government spending. Nothing could be further from the truth.

  168. Another cud chew Voyager…
    some FACTS:-
    Question : The standard variable mortgage interest rate was 8.55% when the Labor Government won the November 2007 election. After the June cut in official interest rates, what is the average mortgage rate of the big banks?
    A: 6.80%
    Question : How much is the annual savings in repayments on a $300,000 mortgage with interest rates at 6.80% versus 8.55%?
    A: $4,100 a year.
    Question : The June cut from the RBA saw the official cash rate fall to 3.5%. When was the last time a Coalition or Liberal Party controlled Government presided over a cash rate this low and who was Prime Minister at that time?
    A: 1965; Robert Menzies.
    Question : When was the last cut in official interest rates during the Howard Government?
    A: December 2001.
    Question : What happened to official interest rates during the final 6 years of the Howard Government?
    A: Interest rates only rose – there were 10 straight interest rate rises from a low of 4.25% in December 2001 to 6.75% by the time of the November 2007 election.
    Question : If the futures market is correct, where will the official cash rate be at the start of 2013 and what does this imply for the level of mortgage rates?
    A: Around 2.25% to 2.50% for the official cash rate, which implies a standard variable mortgage rate around 5.75% to 6.00%.
    Question : What was the average official cash rate under the Howard Government? (April 1996 to November 2007)
    A: 5.43%
    Question : What is the average official cash rate under the Rudd and Gillard Governments? (December 2007 to June 2012)
    A: 4.71%

    Q. In what year, did the tax to GDP ratio reach a record high? Which political party presided over this record tax take?
    A: 24.2 per cent of GDP in both 2004-05 and 2005-06. The Coalition.
    Q. In terms of big taxing governments, in how many years since 1982-83 has the tax to GDP ratio been above 23.5 per cent?
    A: Seven, under the Coalition. None under Labor.
    Q. In how many years was the tax to GDP ratio below 21.0 per cent when the Coalition was in government? In how many years was the tax to GDP ratio below 21.0 per cent when Labor was in government?
    A: Zero under the Coalition, Six under Labor.
    Q. In the last eight Labor budgets where the budget outcome is known (five for Hawke/Keating and three for Rudd/Gillard), how many times has the tax to GDP been above 22.0 per cent?
    A: None.
    Q. In the 12 Howard government budgets, how many times was the tax to GDP ratio above 22.0 per cent?
    A: All 12.

  169. Nothing there about great debt, The figures say the opposite.

    Voyager and Curry, it is hard to get up;set or lose sleep over something that just does not exist. T

    here is no dangerous debt.

    In fact the budget is moving back to surplus.

  170. TWO weeks ago, when Newspoll found that Labor’s and the Greens’ primary vote had slumped by 2 per cent and 3 per cent respectively, I argued that the Gillard government had lost momentum.

    On Monday Newspoll found that Labor had improved by three points, the Greens by four points and that the Coalition had fallen five points to 41 per cent. On the strength of those figures it had also lost a 10-point two-party preferred advantage, leaving both sides on 50 per cent. What are we to make of these findings?

  171. After a decade it’s official: the GST is no better than its forebears
    BY: GEORGE MEGALOGENIS From: The Australian September 22, 2012 12:00AM

    IF left to its present maddening trajectory, the goods and services tax will move from half-baked reform to systems buster before this decade is over.

  172. CU,..”LOVO, as Swan told Hockey yesterday, or was it the day before, the answer can be found in the budget.”
    … or in the cellar here at CW…… I do hope d’oh trolls realise that also…. if they need an answer to any Q: ….go to CW’s cellar …. the answers have been ‘dealt’ with before…… old news (for old views *yawn*) …….. next ‘they’ll try to call ‘it’ a tax, stoopid troll 😆

  173. CU @10.41am, is this the same Public Service which has been the subject of ongoing abuse by the Liars Party since Liealot became LOTO? Or have we imagined the smearing of Treasury by that mob of no-hopers, who have also applauded Newman’s savage slashing of Qld’s public service.

    And hasn’t Sloppy been threatening to slash public service numbers since the last election?

    I don’t know who I hate the most; the Adelaide Crows or the Opposition.

    Come now, Migs. It’s no contest-the Tingles are top of the list. Go whoever they’re playing.

    It seems clear that neither Curry or Voyager understands that chucking people out of work and then handing out tax cuts is the dumbest way to avoid a recession. For every person who loses their job, another 3 will be directly affected and up to 10 will be indirectly affected.

    People who lose their jobs stop spending which has a negative impact on the retail sector, our biggest employer. That sector sheds jobs, because of falling sales and soon you have tens, or hundreds, of thousands of people out of work, relying on the dole to keep the wolf from the door.

    It certainly seems to have escaped the Liars Party’s attention that if you don’t have a job, tax cuts are as handy an ashtray on a motor bike, which explains why the $900 stimulus payment went over their heads.

    The government wanted the recipients to buy giant tvs and other consumer goods-it kept retail workers in employment and the economy going while they rolled out the BER and HIP much faster than they had intended, to prop up the building industry and keep the economy ticking over.

    All the opposition’s bullshit about “waste” and “spending like drunken sailors” shows the depth of their ignorance, or worse still, their cynicism and lack of interest in keeping people in work and maintaining the economic health of the economy.

    It’s much easier for governments to borrow a few bucks to keep businesses functioning and people employed, than to pick up the pieces after a severe recession or depression.

    As to our level of debt, 10-12% of GDP is far less for example, than the percentage of salary people commit to mortgage repayments, yet hand wringing and donning sackcloth and ashes about the financial burden this folly will impose on their descendents is strangely absent.

    Nor is there a murmur about the unbearable financial burden their credit card debt will impose on their unfortunate descendents.

    That’s because they know they won’t be leaving a huge debt burden for their descendents, and neither will the government’s “debt”.

  174. More good points there Jane.

    Conservatives and most economists obsess over “waste” and “inefficiency” but mainly when it’s related to what they call “labour market rigidities”.

    They fret over pennies but ignore the colossal waste that unemployment represents. It’s not just the loss of national output in terms of things not made and services not provided, as formerly productive people are forced to sit on the sidelines, but the enormous long term social costs.

    Back in the 70’s 2% unemployment was deemed unacceptable. Today we pat ourselves on the back because unemployment is only 5%, and I think we all understand it’s actually much higher.

    “It’s much easier for governments to borrow a few bucks to keep businesses functioning and people employed, than to pick up the pieces after a severe recession or depression. ”

    And when you further understand that a country like Australia which is sovereign in its own currency really doesn’t even actually have to “borrow”, as understood in a conventional sense, then it becomes a no-brainer.

    Bill Mitchell talked about these issues during the week:

    “When evidence strips one back to their ideological core”

    “The simplest calculation reveals that the daily income losses alone of having that many people idle dwarf any reasonable estimate of microeconomic losses arising from the so-called “structural inefficiencies” or microeconomic rigidities (a favourite of the IMF) that have dominated public debate over the neo-liberal era.”

    “It is well documented that sustained unemployment imposes significant economic, personal and social costs that include:

    Loss of current output;
    Social exclusion and the loss of freedom;
    Skill loss;
    Psychological harm, including increased suicide rate;
    Ill health and reduced life expectancy;
    Loss of motivation;
    The undermining of human relations and family life;
    Racial and gender inequality; and
    Loss of social values and responsibility.”

    When conservatives bang on about “waste”, I ask them to try putting a price on this lot.

  175. “It’s much easier for governments to borrow a few bucks to keep businesses functioning and people employed, than to pick up the pieces after a severe recession or depression.”

    This is the inconvenient truth and fact, that many ignore. This coupled with the fact that tax cuts are expensive and just do not work.

    It has taken longer and has proved more expensive to get workers back to work, after each down turn.

    Yes debt does occur under Labor when faced with global financial crisis.

    It is also true, they leave must need infrastructure and improvements in community structures when they spend this money. We can take out minds back to the RED schemes of the Whitlam years that gave the western suburb many recreational facilities that they enjoy to this day. Merrylands Gardens and those along the Georges river, are two that come to mind.

    It is not debt that is bad. It is how one uses it that counts.

    Now, the personal budget is not the same as the national budget, but personal debt can be good. If one borrows to put to the pokies, that could lead to disaster. If one borrows to fix that roof or an extra room, leads to saving money, or increasing the value of the home. Could make for a better lifestyle.

    Debt is a part of how we live. All that counts, is one can manage the debt, One either increases income, or cuts back in other areas.

    Bellowing debt debt does not mean much. Does not mean poor governance. In fact, it means the opposite. To be effective as undermining the Labor government, one has to ignore every other good facet of the nations economy.

    Yes, Swan was right yesterday to point out that the extremist, that are called the Tea Party in the USA are a danger to the USA economy, and to our economy. Yes, Mr Swan was correct to take into account what is happening in Europe. Where hate comes into what he said, I do not understand.

    Growing that economy is what counts in the long run. Same happens in your private life, if you want or need more, one finds ways to make more money. One works harder, one get new qualifications. Mum goes out to work. One does not sit on their backside, doing nothing.

    Finally, the fact is that the national budget does not work the same as your personal budget.

    Austerity does not lead to improvement. It jst makes life harder for people, while it enriches the already rich.

    We have the republican candidate, one of the wealthiest man in the USA paying between 14 and 20 percent taxation. Many more middle to upper income earners pay none.

    These people are among the 47 percent, that it is said pay no tax at all.

    Yes, there are also those who it is said, see themselves as victims.

    Yes, Romney is correct, many see themselves as victims, for the simple fact, that is what they are. The victims of an economy where the greed of the wealthy rules.

    There have been decades of tax cuts, that has transfer the wealth from the bottom to the top income earners. What is the result, an economy in big strife. Now the wealthy see the answer as more austerity, more cuts.

    They say the proof of the pudding is in the eating. People are now eating the results of decades of tax cuts and cut backs in spending. It is tasting a little sour and is found wanting.

    We had the same under Howard. results were run down schools, hospitals etc.

    Repairing the system and infrastructure is money wasted. It is cheaper to maintain it in the first place,

    led to shortage of train workers. Lack of available professionals and so on. The roads, rails and ports do not cope with industry’s needs. The economy goes backwards.

    The market gardener does not plant his seed, saying that is all he can afford. NO he keeps on tending his crop. He waters. If not the crop dies, and there is no returns.

    The retailer today believe they have too cut workers, to survive. Funny thing happens, the profits go down more. The clever one ensures high service and finds ways of getting more through the doors. The secret could be, to have for sale, the goods that people want and will buy.

    Mayhbe moving out of that expensive shopping
    centre could be a goer. Maybe passing the print media for publicity, and using the internet, Maybe just using one;s imagination, instead of whining, we need a more flexible workforce. The truth is that you are too blind to see that is what you already have. The problem is that you do not have the imagination or skills to use it. Asking your workers might just be a start. It is amazing what those at the coal face can come up with. It could be labelled cooperation. Both have an interest in sucees of any business. Workers are not the enemy.
    This is a rambling post, a little all over the place. It does underline much that is going on.

    It is better than Abbott’s daily dose of three word boring slung together, having no relationship to one another.

    Capitalism is about booms and busts. It need to renew itself by the busts. It is up to governments. not to keep the economy propped up, but find a gentler way of allowing it to renew itself. There is a major restructure under way across the globe, and especially in this country.

    Looking to the past for a solution, doies not make sense, as there are no solutions there to be found.

    Same goes for the boat trade. What worked in the past, is unlikely to work today. The so called boat smugglers are not stupid. When things change, they find new ways. They do not sit back, throw there hands up in the air, and say we are beaten. Sometimes it might take time, but the will find new ways of beating the system.

    The most the Pacific Solution would have achieved was a pause in the boats, Howard knew this when he set out to build Christmas Island. He knew stopping those boats at the most would only be temporary. He know the longer the people were stranded in Indonesia and Malaysia, the more desperate they would become, putting pressure on for the boats to resume coming.

    Yes, I am sick of the lies and simple solutions, howls of bad government, that is coming from Abbott and his cronies.

    It is about time they began addressing the problems that face us today.

    What we need is people of vision that see the future that is opening up in our region, and how we can take full advantage of it. We are no longer too far away to benefit.

    The PM has this vision, but she cannot do it all.

    Yes, we are in the eye of the storm. All storms bring destruction, but they also bring opportunities for renewal. Are we game enough and clever enough to take hold of it.

    A stitch in times still saves nine.

  176. One of Sloppy’s stupid claims at yesterdays press conference was that ;

    Australians are not silly when comparing how Australia is in the world economy, Australians compare themselves with the better performing countries. So this is why Australia is in the gloom

    I thought at this point, come in spinner, a journalist would surely ask Sloppy

    And which economies would that be?

    But no, the msm just let him rattle on.

  177. It certainly seems to have escaped the Liars Party’s attention that if you don’t have a job, tax cuts are as handy an ashtray on a motor bike

    I’m prettu sure it didn;t escape their attention jane, they just can’t bring themselves to gove people with nothing something, that should go to those already with lots in their world view.

    And, to all the haterz out there

    GO THE CROWS!! 🙂

  178. But no, the msm just let him rattle on.

    C’mon Sue, you cannot expect these people to be asking questoins. They have deadlines to meet 😉

  179. This could get interesting. Look like Ms Westacott has been called out to provide some facts for her little rant. I hope they pursue for all it’s worth. Didn’t really she was an ex PS. Maybe just a case of a hell hath no fury ❓

    Dr Watt and the Public Service Commissioner Stephen Sedgwick would contact Ms Westacott to ask for any specific claims of “bullying” or inappropriate behaviour that Ms Westacott referred to, Mr Hubbard said.

  180. Now MJ that is what i assumed in this case. But is there any real thing as sovereign risk.

    My limited understanding that if it existed, a government providing the necessary infrastructure to allow industry to expand would head this risk off.

    Now I have seen the term used by the Coalition, when they try to put aboard the perception that this PM has put offside all the leaders in this region and has put trade at risk.

    I believe they are talking about Indonesia and China in particular. Where is the evidence that the PM does not have good relations with both.

  181. Tom r
    Ms Westacott having to back up with FACTS, never

    But lets look on the bright side, another lobbyist, the BCA in this case, have just lost some influence. Or maybe she had already lost it for them, anyway

  182. the BCA in this case, have just lost some influence

    You’re a glass half full kind of gilr aren’t you Sue. Although, I agree, and, she has done it very publicly, which should make it easier for the Government ‘moving forward’

  183. Please read my blog – How are the laboratory rats going? – for a detailed critique of this assertion.

    The historical record shows that it has failed to accurately describe what happens when governments engage in fiscal austerity. Fiscal austerity was always going to worsen the crisis, because the notion is built on a series of lies.

    Public deficits do not inevitably cause inflation, nor do they impose crippling debt burdens on our children and grandchildren. Deficits do not cause interest rates to rise, choking private spending. Governments cannot run out of money.

    The empirical world is continually spitting out data that allows us to judge the veracity of these claims and counter-claims. Since the onset of the crisis, the neoliberal narrative has run into some inconvenient facts. Interest rates remain low. In most of the developed world, inflation is falling and where it is rising, it is due energy and food costs rising rather than excessive deficits.

    But what about Ricardian Equivalence? Should we not be seeing private sector confidence and spending rising by now – especially in the UK which is now 3 budgets into austerity and in Ireland which has been hacking away in the name of Ricardo since early 2009?

    The evidence that the British government’s theoretical model is wrong is compelling. The economy is now back in recession and consumer and investor confidence is low and private spending remains subdued.

    Larry Summers agrees that the evidence produced over the last several years has not supported the British government’s approach:

    A long article that is worth reading. Note we on this site do not deal in generalisations and false assumptions. We go looking for explanations of why the Global economy is till going downhill. A crisis that is par with the 1930]s depression. History show that it was finally put to bed because of the spending that occurred in WWW2. That is an solution I do not wish to see repeated. Why did the recovery occur. Money was spent.

    The money spent was raised by government bonds, that is debt. Money that nations did not have, was spent.

  184. t is well documented that sustained unemployment imposes significant economic, personal and social costs that include:

    loss of current output;
    social exclusion and the loss of freedom;
    skill loss;
    psychological harm, including increased suicide rate (which I will return to later);
    ill health and reduced life expectancy;
    loss of motivation;
    the undermining of human relations and family life;
    racial and gender inequality; and
    loss of social values and responsibility.
    Many of these “costs” are difficult to quantify but clearly are substantial given qualitative evidence.

    It is just plain madness to ignore these huge costs and then go about pursuing policies designed to reduce small costs (if they exist). A further problem is that in pursuing these micro costs the government almost always will increase the macroeconomic costs.

    We also know that the losses encountered during a prolonged recession reverberate into tortured recoveries and that the damage that unemployment causes spans the generations.

    Even before the crisis hit, these costs in most countries were huge as policy makers began using unemployment as a policy tool rather than a policy target as the obsession with inflation-targetting took hold.

  185. Tom r
    yes definitely glass half full
    2 other lobbists come to mind
    The MCA, who have come to realise they would have been better off with the original mining tax
    ACL, whose leader thought to support the senator rather than the flock

  186. Yes, Swan was correct to make his comments yesterday. What they do, hurts us.

    Do not understand how Hockey sees only hate. Is the Opposition becoming that paranoid that see any criticism of their side, as the world out to get them.

    All I am hearing is teacher he is picking on me. He is threatening to hit me. Truth is that they are afraid they have lost fight and are on the way to losing the battle.

    The US Tea Party movement could cause an American recession which would have worldwide consequences, Trade Minister Craig Emerson says.

    His assessment comes after Treasurer Wayne Swan made a speech accusing America’s Republican Party of harbouring cranks and crazies, as the US Congress is stopped from resolving its budget problems.

    Dr Emerson says by December of this year if something isn’t done, then that could lead to a contraction in the US economy of up to five per cent, he told ABC Television last night.

    Dr Emerson says that’s a deep recession and would have global consequences.

  187. Tom R
    this morning i read an article about the PM linking with bloggers. the great aspect is that once again we have the old medium versus new medium for contact with our pollies. lobbyists versus blogs/facebook/twitter etc. you don’t have to have money to “buy” influence.

  188. Sovereign risk CU is when there is a chance a country may default on redeeming bonds it has issued, or reneging on the interest payments.

    But Liberal party mouthpieces have expanded that definition to include situations where the government might change the rules that govern mining royalties and such.

    It is actually impossible for a country that controls it’s own currency to default. If the Australian government borrowed in a foreign currency however that could change. But we don’t do that.

    There’s a real risk at the moment that Greece, Spain etc however could default because they’ve surrendered sovereignty of their currency to the ECB.

    But the level of ignorance in the political discourse in this country, under-pinned by an equally ignorant financial press, makes it easy to get a fear campaign up and running based on falsely conflating the very different monetary arrangements.

  189. Thanks MJ. We need that explanation, as I believe the Opposition is trying to set it up as another bogey word, the same as the word debt.

    It is wonderful that we now have the web. It allows people to be educated, and more important to challenge what is said by politicians..

    Therefore cancelling that deal with that Dutch fishing boat does not lead to sovereign risk.

    That makes the Oppositions stories a little dull.

    I believe they also claim, that pausing the live cattle trade to Indonesia would also lead to a similar fate.

    By the way, if the agencies that the growers were paying to protect the trade, where doing their jobs, the cruelty to those animals would not have occurred. That was what they were employed for.

    Of course the Opposition once again blames the PM for the disaster. No real harm was done.

  190. …………When Parliament resumed in August after the winter recess, the opposition kept up the attack, but its enthusiasm seemed to wane. The daily average number of questions fell to four.
    Then, on the last sitting day of August, something changed. Abbott’s first question to Gillard was about mining and he didn’t trouble her about the C word all day. That was August 22.
    He hasn’t asked her about it since. True, he hasn’t had many opportunities. After her father’s death, Gillard took leave from Parliament. But even when Abbott had the chance again on Wednesday, he didn’t take it. He asked her about the budget.
    And the Coalition as a whole asked the government an average of just one question a day about it in September.
    What’s happened? It’s very clear. The carbon tax has been in place for nearly three months now, and Australians are finding that it’s not the fearsome End of Days that the Abbott of Doom had foretold.
    Australians lived in fear before the tax arrived – ……

  191. This is why Abbott has lost the war as well as the battles since the last elections, He has run his race, and is found wanting.

    It is now a more equal playing field. May the best one win.

    Abbott made two mistakes. First, he adopted a short-term tactic for a long-term contest. Calculating that a minority government was inherently fragile, he ran a ramming strategy at Gillard. Hit her hard enough, often enough, on her weakest point, and the government would fall in six months to a year.
    If this had been right, Abbott’s exaggerations and fearmongering never would have been exposed. But the government lasted long enough to implement the tax. For Abbott’s credibility, this has proved too long.
    Second, Abbott’s calculation of a quick-collapsing government led him to think that a negative approach was enough. Intellectually, Abbott and his team recognised that they needed to offer the people a positive vision under an Abbott government. But they never managed to deliver it.
    So by running so hard, and so angrily, and so single-mindedly on an attack mission, Abbott made himself unpopular and had nothing to fall back on. In effect, it was an all-or-nothing plan. And it has now gone wrong.
    Like a plucky soldier who dashes out of the trenches to attack an enemy machinegun, his furiously determined attack might win him a VC for bravery, but will he survive long enough to enjoy it?
    Still, his loyalists see evidence of Abbott maturing in adversity. His environment spokesman, Greg Hunt, uses another military analogy.
    Hunt compares Abbott to US special forces: “As US Navy SEALs go through their training, they’re put through a series of tests of increasing difficulty. As they pass each level, it’s called an evolution. Tony has gone through two important evolutions in the last two weeks.”…

  192. As I said, the new bogey word.

    As the PM said, bellowing does not change facts.

    One was his decision on the supertrawler. By deciding to stand against the government’s ban, “Tony didn’t hesitate when it was recommended to him that we stand by the principle of not allowing sovereign risk – that underlines our positions on foreign investment, on carbon tax, on the mining tax, and now on fishing.

  193. The exsistential question to “them” is; if a policy falls in the mainstream can we hear it. Thus; if a troll bleets in blogasphere can anybody hear?

  194. Love the way they are trying to present Swan as a bully. One look at the man, and it just does not ring true. This after years of presenting him as a weak man.

  195. At the best, one can call Abbott PC very shallow.

    Listening to Romney being described. He does not believe in taking from one to another. Believe the poor whinge and expect to much. He paid 14% tax. Those who he is complaining about paying none, pay more that this in other taxes on everything they buy.

    Now the USA have had low taxes for decades. Does not appeared to have helped the economy. In fact the opposite is true. The country is going backwards. There are more in poverty. There are more run down deserted towns and cities.

    Not a nice picture at all.

    It is time, I suspect, for the wealthy to start pulling their weight, and give something back to the country and those who helped them amass their wealth.

  196. Do we want the USA economy. Do we want their debt.

    That debt by the way could be wiped out today, if all pulled their weight.

  197. CU very pertinent point about the Dep PM. He is, outside of question time a very quietly spoken gentle man. I had the pleasure of being at a function he attended few months back, when polling was grim. He never appeared downcast, spoke of the time when his economical plans would be appreciated by the electorate at large and renewed his confidence and respect for Julia Gillard. He received a long standing ovation by an audience that included not a few business leaders in the Sth West. Hockey treats the Treasurer with scorn, he knows Swanny has his measure so resorts to abuse, which is reciprocated in kind as required in the House.
    I wont mention Abbotts economic knowledge, a 7yr old would embarrass him. Notice he never engages Mr Swan but the PM is continuously hammered with questions about the economy. Thats the difference between Abbott the fool and Ms Gillard the intelligent one.

  198. Are you guys kidding? “if everybody pulled their weight”. Why should they? Where’s the incentive? The government keeps giving them welfare – why get a real job? Look at our “illegal immigrants”. Government statistics say 84% of arrivals for the last five years, are still living on hand-outs. And this while Australians who have paid their way all their working life are struggling to stay alive. C’mon guys there are a lot of “squeaky wheels” in Australia that are getting no oil. Sto wasting money on ridiculous projects, stop the public sector growth. When the crunch comes, they won’t vote Labor – Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia and the Northern Territory have all soiunded the warning. Fix the big problems now.

  199. CU,said …”Do we want the USA economy. Do we want their debt.
    that debt by the way could be wiped out today, if all pulled their weight.”

    Warren Buffett tried to wake his countrymen out of their fiscal malaise, but alas the Tea-Party has done a white-wash…….
    “The measure says federal income tax forms would include a box alongside the following text: “By checking here, I signify that in addition to my tax liability (if any), I would like to donate the included payment to be used exclusively for the purpose of paying down the national debt.” ………………..
    “If Warren Buffett wants to give, then H.R. 6410 allows him to give to his heart’s content,” Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp said yesterday during floor debate, referring to the bill number. The Michigan Republican said the bill “makes it easy for those who want to donate money to the Treasury for debt reduction to voluntarily do so, without raising taxes on entrepreneurs and job creators.” ………….. yup, I can see the Gordon Geckkos line’n up now to pay extra ‘tax’…..stoopid Yanks them Republicans, ‘greed is good ethos’ is biting them on the bum….. again…. stoopid like a rabid skunk (all froth and stench *phew*)

  200. Curry, I was referring to the USA, I believe that was clear. Yes, if their millionaires paid a little more tax, the country would be in a better shape.

  201. Oh for fuck sake Curry, don’t be so ridiculous.

    Government statistics say 84% of arrivals for the last five years, are still living on hand-outs. And this while Australians who have paid their way all their working life are struggling to stay alive.

    First can you point to where I can find that government statistic?

    Second, struggling to stay alive, now I know you are a joke.

    Did you know that there was a greater amount of working poor and people struggling under Howard’s so called boom than under the current government.

    The greater amount of disposable income and people saving is because this government spent on them with stimulus during the GFC, something the opposition wanted to stop as they wanted the stimulus to go to the wealthy in tax cuts. Howard didn’t spend for he people but gave them massive handouts, that is middle and upper class welfare, a welfare that makes that going to the less well off in our society look like peanuts, but I guess you have no problems with the well off getting government handouts.

    This government is fixing the big problems, many left by Howard.

  202. LOVO. looks like Curry has swallowed the bullshit.

    Have not met many that like living on welfare or being out of work. Live among them. Lived on welfare. Married to a no hoper. Used the opportunity, which Whitlam gave us to get to uni. Paid good tax for the rest of my working life. Funny, that did feel good.

    Much better than being on welfare. Most take the opportunity, if they get one.

    A clever country gets all it’s people working at full capacity.

  203. By the way, those so called not victims in the USA are paying more in taxes than Romney. They are just not paying income tax, as they do not have income, or as is more likely are on wages so low, they do not reach level high enough to do so.

    This is the result, and the same has occurred here, is progressive income tax being replaced with many regressive taxes.

  204. Why do you ignore the facts we give you Curry?

    Why do you think it’s necessary to lie and distort to make your points?

    Is it that you don’t have anything to argue with but Abbott mindless three word slogans that have no basis in fact?

    ” …stop the public sector growth.”

    We have posted the data here many times. Government was much much bigger under Howard and most past Liberal government than Labor ones. But hey, you just on living in your make believe world created by Liberal leaders who bullshit through their pores as they slash and burn for no good reason except as a power trip and control.

    As has happened every single time in the past, the Liberals will screw the States they rule so much that they will be voted out and replaced with long term Labor governments, who will become incompetent and indolent the longer they remain in power, but the memory of how bad the Liberals will ensure that bad Labor governments are preferable to terrible Liberal ones any day.

  205. Just for the record, I don’t think I have listened to or read any political statements from any side of politics. It’s all crap usually. They all lie to save their miserable hides. I’ll finf the stats on immigration. Don’t you people read? Oh yes, if its critical of the ALP it must be wrong. I don’t know how you lot live on the side of a hill, be careful it’s a big slope and a long way to the bottom. Live a lie, die explaining.

  206. 84% after 5 years. Still waiting for the source Curry? I just spent half an hour looking and found nothing resembling that figure, though I’ll keep looking a little later.

    Public sector growth under Howard as compared to Rudd/Gillard, waiting?

    Constant lies by Abbott and opposition, not a peep from you but you accuse the ALP of lies that don’t exist.

    So far most of the lies and bottom of the slope stuff here has come from you.

    And you are wrong about if it’s critical of the ALP it must be wrong. Either you don’t read posts here or deliberately choose to ignore inconvenient truths. Your trouble is in attempting to make up criticisms where they don’t exist and you do so by regurgitating Abbott three word slogans that have been proven to be bullshit. Regurgitated bullshit is still shit no matter how many times it’s spewed up.

  207. Curry, here something else for you to ignore…again (LOVO @11.52)
    In nominal terms, government spending falls in 2012-13 for the first time. Adding context to this extraordinary spending restraint indicates that in the three years since 2009-10 there has been a cumulative total of zero growth in real government spending, restraint only exceeded in the three Labor budgets from 1986-87.

  208. Wow! What an incisive comments. Did you dredge that from the cesspool your brain (not sure about that) lives in, perhaps no brain and just a gutter-borne mouth. When you have something intelligent to say come on back, but flush first.

  209. Yes LOVO, no matter how may facts and sources you give them showing that the previous Federal Liberal government was a very high spending large one and a high taxing government whilst neglecting infrastructure and services, even though it was raking in record amounts of revenue due to the longest sustained economic growth in global history, they ignored them so they can spruik mindless bullshit three word slogans that are not based on any facts or reality.

  210. As a person who had access to Centrelink databases I’m not aware that the date of arrival into this country was ever recorded, as was the date of citizenship. The country of birth was recorded though.

    Also, a brief look at the Social Security Act would reveal that one must be an Australian citizen to obtain Centrelink benefits.

    So like the others here, I look forward to your legitimate link to back up your claims.

  211. ‘The government keeps giving them welfare – why get a real job?’

    Disappear the minimum wage, take away welfare from newly arrived immigrants and the economy would get a lift.

  212. Mobius Ecko
    I can honestly say I have NEVER used a Liberal slogan or any of Abbott’s words intentionally in my life. Don’t accuse me accordingly. I do not belong to the Liberal Party, I haver belonged to ant political party. In fact I have voted ALP, Lib and DLP in my lifetime. I vote on policies and performance not on personalities.
    I am looking for my immigration stats. I’ll finf the source – so standby.

  213. el gordo

    Let’s do it. Get them off their collective bums and generate some productivity. No complaints from me.

  214. The report which contains the data released by the Immigration Department was published in the Australian on September 18. Article by Judith Sloan titled “End the boat people-Centrelink Cycle”. All the numbers are in there.

  215. Full of shit as usual el gordo,.

    Since you made the statement el gordo how about telling us what percentage of the economy does welfare to newly arrived immigrants take up considering they go onto a reduced welfare that is not part of Centrelink?

    Also ell us how much the economy will improve by getting rid of he minimum wage and how much productivity will fall by?

  216. Well that Australian article lies right up front with just it’s headline.

    Boat people given asylum here do not go on Centrelink but are given a special payment that is lower than the dole plus a small allowance that acknowledges their circumstances. The payment and allowance is still well below what they would get from Centrelink.

    Looking up the rest now.

  217. ‘Let’s do it.’

    It would take a charismatic leader (a brave man indeed) to abandon the minimum wage and force those who want to live here to fend for themselves.

    There is nobody in public life (that I can see) who would even dare float the idea.

  218. Wow! What an incisive comments……” Well thanks”……… Did you dredge that from the cesspool your brain (not sure about that) lives in,………..”yep” 😀 ……. perhaps no brain and just a gutter-borne mouth….”yep, again, though I still spend an inordinant amount of my time in the gutter, quite often before the gutter is even there”( I make curbs,gutters and footpaths for a living 😉 ) When you have something intelligent to say come on back,……. here I am, and I say this ” Julia Gillard will go down in history as one of the best PM’s this great country has ever had..” ……………………… ..but flush first…….. dont you mean *scroll the troll* first 😕

  219. Refugee achievements

    From: The Australian
    September 20, 2012 12:00AM

    Increase Text Size
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    Judith Sloan is right to think people may regard her analysis of the employment outcomes of refugees as “heartless and ignorant” (“End the boatpeople-Centrelink cycle”, 18/9).

    She misread the report she quotes and doesn’t understand the skilled migration program aims to fill skills gaps and the refugee program aims to save lives of people facing persecution.

    The report on settlement of new arrivals surveyed people during their first five years in Australia (not after five years) and showed 36.5 per cent were employed or in business, 14.6 per cent unemployed and 46.7 per cent studying (a quarter of them also employed), with others caring for family or retired.

    If Sloan knew any newly arrived refugees, she’d know that this finding is consistent with refugees’ shared goals to learn English, improve skills and start working as soon as possible

    Why does the Right and especially Ltd News journalists have to keep making things up to put forward an argument, ones that are specious at best but mostly downright deceitful.

  220. Curry,

    Rabid right-wing rhetoric as usual from Ms Sloane…

    How about we go to the source of the figures:

    Click to access settlement-outcomes-new-arrivals.pdf

    Humanitarian migrant households are far more likely to be in receipt of Centrelink payments than other streams. Around 85% of Humanitarian entrants’ households are in receipt of Centrelink payments, while around 28% of Skilled migrants’ households make use of Centrelink payments.

    Length of time in Australia analysis indicates that the proportion of Humanitarian entrants’ households in receipt of Centrelink payments decreases slowly over five years.

    It must be understood that Centrelink payments are not only unemployment benefits but also include Youth Allowance, Austudy and child care rebates.

    So what does this all mean? 85% of all refugees’ households who have arrived in the last five years receive some payment from Centrelink. Not after five years, but total up to five years – significant difference.

    Many of these Centrelink clients are receiving assistance to study either trade or university qualifications. Many others are working and in receipt of child care rebates, the same as any other working parents.

    Chart 11 in the document is telling:
    4-5 years after arrival, we have 39.4% employed, 12.6% unemployed, and 48% retired, caring duties, full time study, voluntary work, etc.

  221. “I can honestly say I have NEVER used a Liberal slogan or any of Abbott’s words intentionally in my life.”

    I’m sorry Curry. It was that some of your meretricious statements were close to or nothing more than reworded Abbott and opposition slogans and talking points, none of which have been based on facts, for which Abbott is finally being made account.

  222. Judith Sloan says it it all. Curry if you want full blown critique of the lady, visit Quiggan. He is talking about a debate he had recently with her. That one is definitely back in the last century. Far back.

    I do not trust one word that lady utters. Not many others do as well.

    No, stats will do.

  223. We settle that argument early last century with the Harvester decision and it is enshrined in the Constitution that workers in this country are entitled to a fair wage, It is what the country has been built on.

    The master, servant outlook has long been sent to the dust bin, long, long time ago,

    Workers in this country fought hard for a fair deal. They showed Howard that were not going to give it up.

    This is one thing, I believe that Mr.Abbott does understand, unlike most of his cronies. It is one thing that Santamaria would have taught him well.

  224. The low wage that the USA have, which has not gone up for more than two decades has not helped their economy.

    Yes, Mr. Swan is correct to direct our eyes to the economy of the USA and the living conditions of a majority of its people.

    Even access to low wages of the illegals have not helped.

  225. ‘The Job Guarantee wage provides a floor that prevents serious deflation from occurring and defines the private sector wage structure.’

    We are heading towards serious recession…deflation won’t be easy to keep in check.

  226. el gordo, our economy is among the best in the world. What are you talking about.
    The USA has gone down the path you are asking for, and it looks like collapsing, taking us all with them.

  227. ‘The low wage that the USA have, which has not gone up for more than two decades has not helped their economy.’

    That’s true, its been a scemozzle (sic) from beginning to end. The flood of cheap labour coming over the border dampened prices, which helps keep inflation under control. Then came the GFC and now half of the US is suffering on welfare.

    I blame Greenspan for everything.

  228. el gordo are you as much an expert in economics as you are on climate, which means you know nothing?

    Oh, sorry, a troll. Should have picked it. A nonsense single sentence inflexible statement based on nothing but made to illicit responses so as to waste time and not for the purpose of engaging in real debate or offering real insight or lucid talking points.

  229. Curry writes…’Just for the record, I don’t think I have listened to or read any political statements from any side of politics. It’s all crap usually.’ …Do you expect anyone to believe such an extraordinary statement, you wont mind if I call you a fekin liar will you.

  230. Half may not pay income tax, but they would also pay a much higher proportion of their income in indirect taxes than Mitt’ mates 🙄

  231. Including him, it appears el gordo, pay little or no taxes. 14% for a billionaire does seem a little low. .

    It is wrong to say the poor in the USA do not pay taxes. They do. What they do not pay is progressive income tax, as they earn no wage.

    They pay equal or more in relation to Romney.

    In the USA, as here, progressive income taxes have been replaced with such regressive taxes as the GST.

    Not sure that those illegals get welfare.

  232. I have no idea what el gordo is saying. It bears no relation to any economics. I have studied.

    Just grab words that sound good. Problem is, they are meaningless.

  233. el gordo, you could be correct about Greenspan. I have a feeling he might just agree with you.

    Personally, I blame the belief that all greed is good. This has caused more damage than we will ever know. Romney does not believe, he said today, in the redistribution of wealth, He theretofore does not believe we live in an society and all carry some responsibly for the well being of all.

    He believes in the survival of the fittest.

  234. Bacchus the whole was a specious argument and as with some things the Right put out there to muddy the waters and belittle those lest able to defend themselves, there’s a grain of truth.

    But as soon as you break down the figures you find that the argument is not all it was made out to be.

    The really stupid thing about Romney’s attack is that it was also an attack on the Right, those who would have voted for him.

  235. “I don’t think I have listened to or read any political statements from any side of politics. It’s all crap usually.”

    I do. I listen to the lot, even put myself through listening to the likes of Sloane and Bolt.

    How can one make comments on what the government or the Opposition is doing and saying, if one does not listen.

    That could account for the many cuckoo comments they are making, especially today, that have no connection to reality or commonsense..

  236. In the old days, both in the US and Australia, migrants came to work and flee a hopeless existence. If there was plenty of work and a scarcity of labour, then they got better pay or went back home if things didn’t go their way.

    In the same breath I have the audacity to say that the Tamils coming here are primarily economic refugees.

    ‘A group of 18 Sri Lankan men detained on Christmas Island chose to return home rather than be sent to Nauru for processing, in a move the federal government is claiming as a major victory for its tough new asylum seeker laws.

    ‘The men – most of whom arrived after the government announced the new policy – were sent back to Colombo on a charter flight this morning.’

    Read more:

  237. Also Cu the poor who Romney dissed pay more State tax than the wealthy, who hardly pay any. Planet America on ABC broke down the figures, and it’s a disgrace.

    The sad thing is that this is the way the Federal and State Liberals want to take us here.

  238. el gordo, they have not been accepted as refugees. What is the problem. They are now back home. I assume, telling all they know not to come.

    That does not mean that some among them might just be in danger if the returned. I assume that some that made the choice to go on to Nauru are among those.

    Yes, the boats are still coming. Appeared to have slow a little. Many have less than twenty asylum seekers. That in itself I believe is a change.

  239. el gordo, the only ones that went back home in those days where the pommies. Some went and came more that once, to the distress of their families.

    Towards the end of last century, we had ,many that returned to retired. Some idiot come to the belief that their pension, which most earned should stop if they did.

    f they stayed here, we would be paying for their health and possibly nursing homes. Yes, them going home saved us money. Because of the bigotry in this country, this was stopped.

  240. We can see now why the Opposition was so angry with what Swan had to say yesterday, the same as when he put the blow torch to two or three mining giants.

  241. I wasn’t thinking of the large European migrant intake after WW2, populate or perish, but the late nineteenth century when free market forces were operating.

  242. The current Government does provide support for new migrants which goes unnoticed by the media; it provides job-readiness training, as it does for all unemployed.

  243. [“I don’t think I have listened to or read any political statements from any side of politics. It’s all crap usually.”]
    CU.. that statement from the cold curry indicates it speaks with fork tongue or is why it spurts so much crap..I’ll go with combination of both

  244. “Sticks and stones ….”. Whether you all like it or not, I choose not to listen to the daily ramblings of politicians and left wing loonies like yourselves. I am smart enough to know that the Government is composed of liars, cheats, criminals and largely very unsavoury and untrustworthy scoundrels. I have better things to do with my time. So it’s Cafe Whispers to the “round file” until a balanced view is forthcoming. Enjoy yourselves while you can. Either the Mayans stopped the calendar intentionally, or the Libs (not necessarily Abbott) will get you at the Election. Good Luck and good Rugby, Wallabies.

  245. Judith Sloane was on the Drum recently when another discussant raised the issue of Romney’s “47% gaff” at a $50,000/head Republican fundraiser.

    Sloane reacted, and shrilly claimed that Obama also had $50,000/head fundraisers.

    A 3rd discussant, on her other side, calmly explained to Sloane that the $50,000 fundraiser wasn’t the issue, that it was the insult to the 47% that was the issue.

    Judith Sloane is a seriously stupid woman.

    When she’s on the Drum she has my undivided attention.

    CU, I’ll check out Quiggin for those comments on Sloane.

  246. Do not worry Curry, if Abbott does win, we can sit back and enjoy watching all out predictions coming true.

    We will have plenty to keep us occupied.
    Maybe a little reading would not go amiss while you are away. You might just learn something,

  247. I’ll miss Curry, he was a useful tool.

    We know there are a lot of lurkers (no crime in that) who come here to read, but who never comment.

    The Curries (and there have been a few now) drop by, make their silly comments, but in doing so, give us the opportunity to address issues that are obviously floating around the bigotocracy.

    Facts eventually put them all to flight.

  248. Don’t fret. Curry will continue to lurk, shaking his head and waving his arms around at our comments. He may even froth at the lips. But he’ll resist the temptation to post.

  249. ‘We know there are a lot of lurkers (no crime in that) who come here to read, but who never comment.’

    Actually MJ they may only be ‘bots’, which is no bad thing in itself.

  250. Curry with chips on he/it/shims shoulder(s)……
    Hi, EL Gordo……….. 😎 , umm, thanx….. (you humans) 😆
    ….. but enough of that, down to the nitty gritty’s…. are you… Voyager…. Curry’n Iain part of the same ‘cell’…… (see Curry I can ask Inteligitimate queshions) 😕

  251. When ever I’m out and about I always encourage ratbagz to visit the kaf and trash….Curry sounds like Wow at another place.

  252. Unbelievable. A second Ltd News article I have found critical of the opposition, and this time something all media should be scrutinising them on, policy.

    Devil in detail of Tony Abbott’s grand plan
    by Samantha Maiden The Daily Telegraph

    But while much has been made of Abbott’s alleged problem with female voters, any pollster will tell you Labor’s climb back from rock-bottom approval ratings started long before the Liberal leader was accused of punching the wall on either side of Barbara Ramjan’s head in 1977.
    This stoush with a female political rival at university was revived in a Quarterly Essay cover story called “Tony Abbott: Political Animal”.

    But many insiders think Abbott’s problem is policy, not politics.…/story-fncynkc6-1226479414534

  253. For those who credit polls this far out from an election, and an illustration to the wingnuts who for the last year have been jumping on every single one and making out they were Armageddon for the Labor government.

  254. Möbius, wonders never running genuine scrutiny of Abbott’s policies. It no wonder that right whingers like to pretend that Tony has none..policies that is..

  255. Tony Abbott is finished

    Can the writing really be on the wall for Abbott.

    Definitely if the media hold Abbott to account, all media, not the small snippets currently doing it, and those media attempting to do a snow job for Abbott on the Australian people are also held up to account.

    Abbott cannot stand up on his own like Gillard can. He absolutely needs the media for cover and to allow him to get away with whatever he wants. Once that doesn’t happen, unlike most other leaders, he has no answers and falls in a heap.

  256. Now this is a storm blowing in from the west

    ‘WA is the largest wheat exporter in Australia and farmers have profited from a less regulated system.

    But the Coalition will not support Labor’s bill, believing it is more important to preserve Coalition unity and support the Nationals’ in deferring the debate.

    That is the message Deputy Opposition Leader Julie Bishop took to the state council and the deregulation motion was not able to be raised.
    Others in the Coalition are furious, accusing Federal Liberals of stifling debate.

    Former Federal Liberal MP Wilson Tuckey has promised to ramp up the deregulation campaign.

    “As it is now in Western Australia and within the Western Australian Liberal Party the blood will keep flowing and will be deeper on the floor in four weeks time than it would have been had they dealt with it today,” he said.

    It is understood the motion will be formally lodged for discussion at the next state council meeting.

    Understandably, many WA grain growers are unhappy with the shift in party policy.

  257. dafid 1, poor old Curry is just suffering from the usual Liars Party delusions.

    Geez, Curry. Perhaps you could enlighten us wrt any government MPs who have criminal charges pending, like the LOTO for defamation, Slagabella and the alzheimer’s lawyer’s estate, M J Fisher now resigned after her second five finger discount arrest, Sean Edwards misleading and deceptive conduct and the others too numerous to mention.

    Sue @12.36pm, how tragic that there is dissent in Liars ranks. 😆

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