The little book of big Liberal lies

Last November the Liberal Party released a publication called The little book of big Labor waste, which you can gain access to here. Their introduction was a bit sloppy:

The Coalition has today released a book listing the top 50 examples of Labor waste and mismanagement since the overnight coup that installed Julia Gillard as Prime Minister.

The little book of big Labor waste shows that waste and mismanagement was not just a feature of the Rudd Labor Government; it is also a hallmark of the Gillard Labor Government.

I am grateful to Jason W for exposing how sloppy it really was and allowing me to publish his responses to the claims made. It’s a bit of a read, but hard to put down. I’ve also added a few comments, which are highlighted in blue. Let’s start:

Claim: “The Rudd-Gillard Government has been the most financially reckless government in Australian history”.

Response: Really? Then why is it, that an IMF paper is reporting that Howard was far more profligate in his spending, and had made more decisions worth over a billion dollars than the Labor government, in his budget?

“In 2007, Labor inherited a government with net worth totaling $70 billion. All that has now been squandered – all gone”.

Howard achieved a surplus by reckless selling of public assets and with huge cuts. Labor had to face the Global Financial Crisis and had to stimulate the economy with spending that created the deficit.

Thanks to Labor, Australia now ha a government $147.3 billion of net debt – the biggest debt in Australian history! We are now paying almost $20 million a day in interest to service that debt.

What? The biggest debt, as a percentage of the GDP, was in the Hawke-Keating debt. Half of which was inherited from Malcolm Fraser!

In fact, under the leadership of Julia Gillard, the list of waste and mismanagement is increasing at an alarming rate. From the multiple billion dollar blow outs in the immigration portfolio to gold plated coffee machines for bureaucrats, the litany of waste is staggering.

Gold plated coffee machines? This already reeks of sensationalism.

What Labor does best is rack-up debt through waste and mismanagement – it’s in their DNA. The only way to stop Labor’s waste and pay back the debt is to change the government.

The debt is a manageable percentage of the GDP, and can be paid back within 4 years without austerity measures.

Labor’s failed border protection policies and Julia Gillard’s stubborn refusal to re-introduce the full suite of proven Howard Government policies that stopped the boats has resulted in an immigration budget blow out of $6.6 billion in the last four years. This does not include the full cost of reopening detention centres in Nauru and Manus Island and increasing the refugee intake to 20,000 people per year.

Border Protection? The boats still came during Howard’s time, they didn’t stop completely. As Malcolm Fraser noted, the only way to stop the boats is to let them in via humanitarian camps, which are cheaper to run than border patrol and detention centres.

NBN Co’s revised corporate plan reveals that Labor’s broadband policy is way behind schedule and way over budget. There has been a $4.6 billion blowout in the operating and capital expenses, and indirect operating expense – primarily staff costs – have more than doubled from $3.7 billion to $7.8 billion. In all, the total cost of the NBN has increased $3.2 billion, from $40.9 billion to $44.1 billion.

What about the coalition’s copper cable plans, which includes power exhaustive nodes, and will fail during times of flood. This investment is definitely worth the sacrifice, as it will develop infrastructure and create jobs. “Shit Happens” – Tony Abbott.

Labor is spending $69.5 million advertising the carbon tax, a tax Julia Gillard emphatically ruled out introducing before the last election.

First of all, it’s the CARBON PRICE, not a tax. Gillard did promise a carbon price. Second of all, it’s natural for a government to inform its populace of changes. This is to avoid misinformation and lies from being circulated.

Labor’s panicked reaction to an ABC Four Corners story threw the cattle industry into chaos, resulting an a $100 million assistance package. If Labor had stuck by its original decision to restrict live trade, instead of reacting to the a Get-up! Campaign, the need for an assistance package could have been avoided.

So we should just let animal cruelty reign? Of course, the subsidy is STATISTICALLY INSIGNIFICANT compared to government revenue, which stands at a total of 267 billion dollars.

Labor’s bungling of the Australia Network tender cost taxpayers at least $2 million as the Government was forced to compensate Sky News. An Auditor General report into the tender found the process “brought into question the Government’s ability to deliver such a sensitive process fairly and effectively”.

Then isn’t the flaw technically due to the process of competition, and corporate laws? Again, statistically insignificant.

The current CEO said the $100 million a year in funding was too much for the body to manage efficiently. “It is actually impossible to spend that amount of money responsibly”, he said (in relation to the Carbon capture and storage facility).

Then why had $122 million dollars already been spent at the time, with the government defending their decisions to cut funding?

Taxpayers forked out more than $30 million in market research since Julia Gillard became Prime Minister in June 2010. This is double what Kevin Rudd spent in his two and a half years as Prime Minister.

Please explain John Howard’s actions, when he paid a billion dollars to US corporations to fund their spending.

Taxpayers are spending about $150 million a year on an army of spin doctors to sell Labor policies. There is now about 1600 staff employed by federal departments and agencies in media, communications, marketing and public affairs roles. Yet again, Labor’s focus on spin over substance is coming at a huge cost to the taxpayer.

Spin over substance? Coming from the LNP, I find this comment highly hypocritical. It seems like all they do is put out misinformation and spin. Besides, without people putting out facts, anyone’s reputation can be trashed. Just look at what happened to Gough Whitlam, and MSM.

$1.3 million was spent on payouts to terminated staff immediately following Kevin Rudd’s political assassination, and a further $5.5 million following the subsequent election. Australians didn’t just wake up to a new Prime Minister on 24 June 2010; they also awoke to a massive payout bill.

There would’ve been a mass desertion, if Kevin Rudd was not voted out. That might entail a bit more payouts. $6.8 million is not a “massive bill”, compared to the total tax revenue. Much more was being lost due to the number of Public Servants who couldn’t work under Kevin Rudd. The staff were dropping like flies.

Labor’s Clean Energy Regulator, better known as the ‘Carbon Cop’, has spent $4.4 million sprucing up its new offices. This comes after it was revealed the Department of Climate Change office rent jumped $1.3 million a year to $25.2 million under a newly signed five-year lease.

Give the poor public servants a break. They’ve been instrumental in reducing emissions by 8.6%. Oh, and Howard spent $18.4 million, over all those years, to maintain Kirribilli house.

Kevin Rudd spent $1.2 million on overseas travel in his first month as Foreign Minister, after being dumped as Prime Minister. It was obvious Julia Gillard preferred Kevin Rudd out of the country, but it came as a huge cost to taxpayers.

John Howard spent $7 million traveling between The Lodge and Kirribilli house. At least Rudd achieved diplomatic progress in his travels. What has Howard achieved by traveling at such a frequency?

Labor donated $10 million of taxpayer’s money to trade unions to train upcoming union leaders in its 2011-12 budget. This followed Kevin Rudd’s union donation in the 2010-11 budget. Unions have now been fully compensated for their $20 million donation to Labor at the 2007 election.

If you don’t pay it back, it’s called stealing. I thought the LNP empathised.

Labor will spend $20 million on a propaganda campain about the National Broadband Network in a desperate attempt to paint over the waste and mismanagement of the $44 billion off-budget project.

Waste and mismanagement? The LNP’s plans involving copper wires is not suited to the present day, far too expensive compared to fibre optics, and very exhaustive to maintain. Where’s the costings for the LNP’s repeated attempts to berate the LNP in ads, smear campaigns, etc?

Labor is wasting $67 million on administration costs to run a program to install set top boxes in people’s homes for an average of $350 each, even though Harvey Norman offers customers the same deal for $168.

The scheme is actually for pensioners, who are needy people. They most likely do not have the ability to install the top boxes, and some cannot even afford to pay for one, with what savings they have.

Labor has repaid the groups who have been the loudest supporters of the carbon tax by donating $3 million in grants to those who formed the backbone of the “Say Yes” climate change campaign, such as the Climate Institute, the Australian Conservation Foundation and Climate Works Australia.

At least they’re trying to help the environment and not dismissing climate change as “absolute crap”. What does the LNP have? A “direct-action” scheme already dismissed as a fraud by Al Gore?

$1 million was wasted holding a tax forum demanded by Independent Rob Oakeshott, another talkfest that delivered no results.

Oh really, then why is Oakeshott describing it as a success? Results includes the tax-free threshold being raised to $21,000 dollars, and an institute being set up for research into taxation. That is not “no results”.

Despite being unable to deliver a system that doctors can actually use, the National E-Heath Transition Authority still managed to spend $4.3 million on travel in 2011-12 and more than $1 million on events, conferences and dinners in five-star hotels.

Nonsense. There already was a version put out that doctors COULD use. A simplified version is now made as a beta built, and is being subject to trials.

To go with its new office, the Department of Climate Change is expected to purchase a suite of shiny new appliances for Julia Gillard’s ‘carbon cop’, including 23 bar fridges, 14 dishwashers, 26 microwaves, two ovens, two cooktops, two wall mounted range hoods and a 40-bottle wine cabinet.

Looks like the LNP is splitting hairs, there was already a point about spending on public servants. Aside from that, so what? The public servants are just going to sit there in some dingy, unfurnished sweatshop? When I joined the Public Service Howard was Prime Minister. All departments had those appliances.

Julia Gillard’s carbon tax has had an immediate impact on her electricity bills at The Lodge, with the July 2012 bill increasing 25% from the previous July 2011 bill. As the bill clearly states, there is $660 worth of carbon tax payments (including GST), some 12% of the total bill. But unlike ordinary Australian families, she won’t need to worry about how to pay for it – that will be picked up by the taxpayer.

Firstly, The Lodge is for the taxpayer to foot regardless of who is in power. Secondly, the effect of paying for The Lodge, to the taxpayer, is minimal. Thirdly, would Abbott stop whinging if he himself was in The Lodge? Fourthly, if one removes overseas travel from expenses, then Abbott actually spends FAR more than Gillard in terms of personal spending. (Gillard has to go on diplomatic trips, that’s part of her job). Abbott spends $380,000 more, factoring out travel overseas. Who’s straining the taxpayer more? What’s he doing traveling overseas, anyway, as opposition leader?

Fair Work Australia has spent more than $1.8 million on outside on outside legal and accounting advice for its investigation into the rorting of HSU funds, including $1.3 million on external legal advice, $100,000 on external accounting advice, $430,000 on KPMG’s review of the investigation.

Keep in mind, it is the LNP and Mainstream media who are pressing the charge and vilifying Thomson, so they are technically responsible for the costs.

The $1.8 million does not include the cost to taxpayers of launching FWA’s court action against Labor MP, Craig Thomson. The court action followed FWA’s findings that Mr Thomson had used FWA funds to pay for escort services and other improper purposes.

Craig Thomson’s wrongdoings were as a member of a union, not as a member of the Labor Party. All criminal persecutions should be followed through. It would be inappropriate to drop a case simply for the reason of saving money.

Labor spent $1.03 million researching the effectiveness of Julia Gillard’s taxpayer funded carbon tax advertising campaign. This follows revelations that Labor has installed a secret spin team charged with selling the carbon tax at a cost of $1 million a year.

More split hairs. The ‘carbon tax’ team is supposed to provide information to the general population, as any good government should, come time for major changes.

Labor wasted more than $5 million on its failed Malaysian deal, including $360,000 refurbishing motels in Malaysia, almost $50,000 on rent, $4.6 million in operating costs, $272,000 on its legal defence in the High Court and another $200,000 on “accrued costs”.

More split hairs. The deal was scuttled by the High Court as a result of lack of ethics in Malaysia and complaints from human rights lawyers. One cannot blame Labor for trying. Besides, the $5 million is statistically insignificant, even as a part of the immigration budget!

The number of SES level staff in the public service has blown out by 185 in the last three years. With an average SES pay level of approximately $150,000, this blowout is costing taxpayers an extra $30 million dollars a year.

There are 2850 SES level staff in total. The increase is insignificant. Those 185 SES were more than likely at the Director level and on approx $120,000 per year level before promotion, so in effect the increase is only $5.55 million.

The Prime Minister’s department and the Department of Climate Change were the biggest movers, increasing the number of SES staff from 42 to 90, and 18 to 56 respectively.

This should come as little surprise, considering that one of the key goals of the Labor Government was to tackle climate change.

The Auditor General has found that Labor’s literacy and numeracy national partnership program has produced no improvement in student outcomes, despite $540 million in payments over the last four years.

No improvement? -Primary schools achieved higher, especially in numeracy. -School participation in high school has increased. -There was an improvement in Indigenous students’ academia, albeit they are still below the results of non-Indigenous students.

Staff numbers in the Prime Minister’s office has blown out by almost 30% since Labor came to office in 2007, costing an additional $1 million a year. This is despite Labor promising at the 2007 election to slash ministerial staffing levels.

A bit of sensationalism here, the $1 million increase is NOTHING compared to the total amount spend on payroll. Most likely, those staff were already Public Servants who simply transferred over.

The Environment Department has signed a $500,000 contract to deck out its offices with indoor plants. Not to be outdone, the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations forked out more than $1 million to decorate offices with pot plants.

More sensationalism. Let’s not forget, Howard arranged for giant pot-plants to be placed around parliament, when the US president came to visit to avoid people from seeing them. I know the DEEWR building well. It would be lucky to have 800 plants in the whole building. According to the LNP’s calculations that $1250 for each plant. Wow.

Federal public servants are purchasing gold-plated coffee machines at a cost of $15,000 each. The Department of Innovation spent $75,000b on buying and installing five high-end coffee machines for its Canberra offices. The Clean Energy Regulator spent $20,000 on eight machines.

John Howard splashed $250,000 on building a gold carriage for the queen. The LNP is equally guilty of splashing cash around. The only difference is, public servants benefit from the former, and might be motivated to work harder. How anyone in the community will benefit from the gold carriage remains to be seen.

Labor has sent Origami style cardboard cut outs of a $1.4 million taxpayer funded truck to all federal MPs to supposedly help them ‘understand’ how the NBN works. The actual truck, a prime mover with a specially fitted out trailer, has been organised to travel the country to promote the NBN.

More split ends hairs from the Carbon Price advertising claims. Some areas are quite secluded. It is important that they also have equal access to information.

Government agencies are spending more than $10.3 million a year checking what is said about them in the media. This bill would pay for more than $100 (I think they meant ‘100’) full-time staff each eearning $100,000 a year.

Substantiate the claim. I could find nothing about media monitoring as a means to save face. On the other hand, media monitoring is used as a means to receive information on community issues. This is so politicians can act on said issues. Media monitoring was going on when I worked under the Howard Government. This is nothing new.

The cost of renting and furnishing houses in the community for asylum seekers is costing on average $9,100 on average for each house, almost 30% more expensive than the original estimate of $7,100 for the average family of five.

Splitting hairs again. Paying for asylum seekers to come in via humanitarian camps, and providing for them, is still cheaper than putting up border patrol, detention centres, running processing centres, etc.

Senate estimates revealed that Senator Conroy spent $525,719 to select 11 ABC and SBS directors. At about $50,000 for each position, Senator Conroy appears to have created an incredibly wasteful and expensive process to fill ABC and SBS board vacancies.

Nice copy and paste from The Australian there. (See my comments below this post). The new process is merit motivated, as opposed to being picked by the Government of the day. If picked by the Government, the system would be prone to nepotism. The new system is instrumental to avoiding bias in broadcasting (Murdoch Media is enough).

Goverment bureaucrats sold two billiard tables for $6000 and then promptly stumped up $100,000 to investigate whether the sale was value for money.

Pure sensationalism. Where’s the evidence? Good question.

Labor has paid more than a half a million dollars for a questionable accounting scheme for Kenya. The $550,000 tender has been awarded to the Clinton Foundation for designing a national carbon accounting system. The Foundation’s expertise is not in carbon accounting but in HIV/AIDS which provides practical assistance for developing countries.

A mathematician, not a climate scientist, discovered the greenhouse effect. What’s your point? Beside which, aid to combat HIV/AIDS is still for a noble and worthy cause. It certainly isn’t worse than employing a catering company do to your budget costings.

While most people run blogs at no cost; Julia Gillard has spent $53,000 running two that will run for about three months. The blogs feature little more than articles about Australia-Asia relations and just one reader has bothered to make a comment.

Before making such comments, and referring to tabloid journalism, please release the costings for Tony Abbott’s blog.

One of the two blogs doesn’t even allow readers to comment – a staple of online blogs. Taxpayers are forking out for a fulltime editor and a part time assistant to run one of the blogs.

Yes, and on blogs that can comment, the amount of harassment and hatred from LNP supporters is astonishing. Abbott’s blog will block you, if you so much as make a dissenting comment.

Labor has handed out a $72,000 grant to the Auburn Community Development Network to host an ‘enviro tea salon’. Thanks to the funding, participants can now take part in “a weaving workshop” using “native Lemandra grass”. Participants will be ” . . . encouraged to share their energy efficiency tips in exchange for free seeding, re-potted into a recycled cup sourced from local businesses”.

Handing out money to help spread environmentalism isn’t such a bad idea. Besides, I thought that the LNP supported businesses. So why are they complaining about local businesses being benefited by the move? They should have given the money to John Howard’s brother.

Projects included $197,302 for “Sending and responding to messages about climate change: the role of emotion and morality”; $314,000 for a study to determine if birds are shrinking; and $145,000 for a study of sleeping snails to determine “factors that aid life extension”.

1. The money given to the research council, is for the research council to allocate.

2. Research about climate change, and its effect on humans isn’t a waste, it’s good preparation for the future.

3. Birds shrinking? Forgot a word there. It’s actually “Bird populations shrinking”. I was hoping the birds would shrink.

4. Aiding life extension sounds like a means to improve on medical science.

What waste occurred?

Hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars are going to promote the carbon tax to toddlers as part of Labor’s multi-million dollar carbon tax campaign. The Department of Climate Change has provided grants for:

1. $150,000 to Dirtgirlworld Productions Pty Ltd – producer of children’s television program popular with toddlers.

2. $200,000 to Green Cross Australia to run carbon tax ‘Show and Tell’ programs in primary schools.

What? If you actually check, they are merely schemes to promote environmentalism. It is absurd to think that they can peddle it into a children’s show. The most they can do is promote environmentalism, and that’s about it. Show me some video proof, or is this just more sensationalism?

Labor has handed the Australian Council of Trade Unions $93,000 to teach union officials how to sell the carbon tax to their members.

Bullshit. Even in your excerpt, the aim was stated to be “to provide information about climate change and energy reduction policies”. The carbon price is part of the set, but that doesn’t mean it comprises the whole of it!

Labor has spent $110,000 in six months on media monitoring for the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service, while at the same time cutting vital funds from frontline border protection services.

WHAT CUTS?! Oh, rescinding Howard’s inhumane plans? As mentioned above, media monitoring is a means to keep up to date on potential issues.

$600 million of Australia’s foreign Aid program is being spent on developing climate change “leader’ in the Pacific, making DVDs and writing policy briefs for overseas bureaucrats on climate change.

Spreading a message about the environment is a noble cause, considering the effects of global warming and climate change. To me this sounds very subjective in the way the LNP has presented this. They are clearly hoping that th reader interprets it as though the whole $600 million is going into making DVDs and writing policy briefs.

Public servants from the Department of Climate Change spent $3.1 million on overseas travel in 2010. This equates to about $250,000 a month. 86 staff travelled first or business class during 2010, taking more than 250 individual trips to cities such as Paris, London, New York, and Madrid. Reasons for travel included “energy efficient discussions”.

Discussing environmental issues is, as repeated above ad nauseum, a noble cause, considering the world we live in. When I worked for the Howard Government, senior public servants always flew first or business class. It was part of their salary agreement and used as a lure to get satff onto Australian Workplace Agreements.

The endless rotation of Speakers during this Parliamentary term will leave taxpayers with a bill of almost $100,000 in portrait costs. Former Speaker Peter Slipper is set to be immortalised on the walls in Parliament House with a portrait costing taxpayers $30,000.

Peter Slipper is a member of the LNP. That was, before Gillard instated him as speaker. Really, who cares about this? Perhaps when and if the LNP win office they can have the portraits done away with. Replace them with photos.

This follows the recently completed $30,000 portrait of Harry Jenkins, who Labor removed as Speaker in favour of Mr Slipper. After Mr Slipper’s resignation, a third Speaker was installed, guaranteeing the need for at least one more $30,000 portrait.

It’s no wonder he resigned, the LNP stabbed him in the back (note the terminology) and vilified him over sexual harassment for 8 months, before the supreme court threw their case out, for it was a scam. The LNP is to blame here, for ruining Slipper and forcing his resignation. If the Opposition didn’t drive Jenkins mad then this cost could have been avoided. And they are being a bit too speculative in claiming Labor had Jenkins removed. I thought he resigned.

Taxpayers will be forced to foot a $200,000 bill for the Department of Climate Change to contemplate how it brands itself.

What? Go substantiate your claims, with a reliable source. Again, more sensationalism.

Labor blew $60,000 on designing a “Nationa Carbon Offset Standard” logo – a logo experts say has no ‘wow’ factor.

Oh look, the LNP is getting desperate, and using more sensationalism. Labor was able to reduce emissions by 8.6%, with the carbon price. What will the LNP achieve, with their “market mechanism” scam? What logo experts?

Labor Ministers have breached their own rules on pork-barrelling after approving grants in their own electorates at least 33 times without properly telling the Finance department. And on 11 occasions, grants were approved by Ministers that government agencies recommended should be rejected! As Education Minister, Julia Gillrad approved grants to three schools in defiance of recommendations y her own department.

Don’t know what you mean by “properly telling”. It’s like saying that 90% of asylum seekers show up without papers, when papers specifically refers to passport. Here’s some good examples of pork-barrelling, Liberal style.

The Department of Parliamentary Services has spent about $2.4 million on “staff related and training” purposes – up $470,000 on the previous year. The Department’s annual report reveals the classes include advice on “getting a good night’s sleep”.

Sensationalism again. I thought staff training was important. The advice forms a PART of the whole training program. All the LNP seems to do is take a minor part of a scheme, and blow it up to vilify the scheme. Departments are required to spend an ex percentage on their entire salary budget on staff training. I remember when in the Public Service under Howard, the Government paid for people to have weekly massages because of getting sore bcks from their seating.

The Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet spent $650,000 on training workshops in Julia Gillard’s first 15 months as Prime Minister. The department has spent thousands of dollars hiring performance coaches, some of who boast of improving emotional intelligence and ‘putting the lights on’.

More sensationalism? Give her a break, most jobs have training workshops. Abbott spent far more, as mentioned above, than Gillard on a personal basis. All footed onto the taxpayer. If those coaches can improve emotional intelligence and ‘putting the lights on’ I think they should be contracted by the LNP. Where the Department of PM&C got the job done for $650,000 I think there might be a cost blowout working on the Opposition. I’d guess somewhere close to $100,000,000,000.

Julia Gillard has received a new $66,000 hot water system at The Lodge, equivalent to replacing hot water systems in about 20 ordinary homes. And the new system isn’t even solar!

Yes, and the lodge is a 40 roomed mansion. The hot water system wasn’t ordered by Julia Gillard, it was ordered by the Department of Finance, after safety concerns. At the same time, they had to remove asbestos and improve on other safety issues. The actual water systems cost $32,000. The LNP just added all the costs! The water systems are Australian built, high efficiency systems, as mentioned in that article! I thought the LNP supported local business. Did John Howard break the last one?

Over $20 million has been wasted on administration costs to deliver new homes in Aboriginal communities under the Strategic Indigenous Housing and Infrastructure Program. Yet again, Labor has been shown to be incapable of implementing a program without wasting millions of dollars in the process.

Did they get the job done? Yes, they did. So what’s the problem?

Taxpayers are forking out $2022 for each tonne of carbon dioxide saved under Labor’s Green Precincts Fund. This is compared to the $23 a tonne carbon price under the Labor/Greens carbon tax.

Sources, please?

Labor has splurged $15 on a dozen ‘demonstration’ projects under the program, including a grant to Cate Blanchett’s Sydney Theatre Company to reduce their energy bill by $98,000, but cost the Australian taxpayer $1.2 million.

I thought the LNP already covered, and attacked a few of those schemes. Sources, please, for the claim about the Sydney Theatre Company.

Thanks Jason, great work.

Having looked through the Liberal book I was astounded to see that approx 90% of these claims were lifted from Murdoch media sites (namely The Australian and The Daily Telegraph), or from fluffy Liberal media releases. Simply amazing.

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74 comments on “The little book of big Liberal lies

  1. You’d need a set of volumes equivalent to the Encyclopedia Britannica to list all the lies the Liberals have told over the years.

  2. “There” introduction was a bit sloppy? Or was it “their”. Now I’ll go back and read the article. Please, you self- styled journalists, learn the difference between there and their and to and too. It’s bad enough with ignorant liberals around.

  3. Jan, it is a shame that you are so pedantic, that you miss the content. Even the so called professionals have typos.

    Migs, have you noticed, they must have had to learn what is in the book off by rote.

    Any time they talk, it is, word for word, from the book.

    As one young person, rudely told Pyne last week, there you go again, once again answering from script. I want to hear what you have to say.

    The figures for NBN have been found to be lies. There is extra cost buying oit Telstra, but in the long run, that will be recouped. Construction is catching up and nearly back on track.

    What about that lounge, that Mr. Howard loved so much. What was the cost of that. I will give Rudd one thing, he could not get rid of it quick enough. How much did it cost the taxpayers. to allow Mrs, Howarth the luxury of living at Kirribilli.

    I am sure the advertising agencies have suffered a loss since the departure of Mr. Howard. Might not have been a friend to the workers, but if one was in advertising, one did well.

  4. “Labor’s panicked reaction to an ABC Four Corners story threw the cattle industry into chaos, resulting an a $100 million assistance package. If Labor had stuck by its original decision to restrict live trade, instead of reacting to the a Get-up! Campaign, the need for an assistance package could have been avoided.”


    The PM answered this one the other day. The PM said action had to be quickly taken. If not, those against the trade might have grabbed traction, If this occurred, and as we live in a democracy, they may have obtained enough support, leading to the industry being closed down for ever.

    The government’s action prevented this, and the trade quickly resumed.

    What is also left out of the story is the anger should have been directed at those people.

    There were no panic, just quick, appropriate action.

  5. I heard Mr. Combet give two example of how meat processors have greatly saved on their their power bills with the assistance they have been given,

    One over 60%, the other in the 30’s%.

    They will recoup their money within three years.

  6. Howard redecorating the VIP Jets for $120,000 and removing the long range fuel tanks for his extra luggage.

    This morning AM reported one of the Government’s leased 737’s had had a long-range fuel tank removed to allow more space for luggage.

    But at the request of the Air Force the tank was put back in again and the total cost of the reversal was more than $100,000.

    Or planning to spend nearly half a million dollars renovating his personal, private dining room that was only cut back because of the backlash as he was telling.

    The opposition can’t speak. First look at Newman’s profligacy on himself and government members whilst he slashes and burns everything else. Abbott has praised Newman and said his spending and cuts are justified.

    Then Abbott and the opposition have said they want to bring back the Howard era, so they want to bring back this: Australia’s most wasteful spending came in Howard era

    …and this:

    The report examined 200 years of government financial records across 55 leading economies and identified only two periods of Australian ”fiscal profligacy” – both during Mr Howard’s term in office – in 2003 at the start of the mining boom and during his final years in office between 2005 and 2007.

    Mr Howard said government spending as a percentage of gross domestic product declined during his term.

    The Grattan Institute economist Saul Eslake said Mr Howard’s statement about spending declining as a percentage of GDP, while technically true, was irrelevant and misleading. Mr Howard rode two booms – in mining and household spending – and as a result raked in ”extraordinary” amounts of income during its last two terms.

    During that period the Howard government had increased spending ”in real terms” at a faster rate than any other government since the Whitlam years.

    Over time, however, the revenue surge and the discharge of government debt saw Howard emerge in another guise – as a big spending conservative. This spending was financed by an overall increase in the taxation burden. The long-run trend in Australia’s tax/GDP ratio is upwards and Peter Costello is Australia’s highest taxing treasurer.

    In a recent analysis former treasury officer and fellow at the Centre for Independent Studies, Robert Carling, after adjusting the numbers to take account of the changed arrangements flowing from the GST, finds that tax revenue for the Commonwealth’s own purposes has risen by 1.5 percentage points to 20.5 per cent of GDP over the 11 years of Howard’s Government. He also finds that the Howard/Costello turnaround from budget deficit to surplus over 11 years has been achieved more by raising revenue than by reducing spending

    Makes a lie of the Howard government being austere and not profligate. It also shows they were a big taxing government, more so than the current government who went through a GFC that Howard never did.

    You don’t have to look hard to see all the waste and rabid pork barrelling during the Howard years, years Abbott wants to go back to.

  7. And how much long suffering taxpayers’ cash was squandered in the production of the Rodenrt’s Racist Fridge magnets and mouse pads?

    They were so popular, Hyacinth had to crotchet a border around them and try to flog them at car boot sales. Same old Liars lies and smear.

  8. On the set top boxes..I remember Gerry Harvey’s claim on this one, that he could do it for half the price. He was responded to by Senator Conroy who said, Feel free to tender for the job..good on you if you can do it for half price. I guess that Harvey might just maybe, perhaps have been big-noting himself, perhaps a bit of free publicity for Harvey Norman’s..god only knows, they need it.

  9. I know the DEEWR building well. It would be lucky to have 800 plants in the whole building. According to the LNP’s calculations that $1250 for each plant. Wow.

    Migs, what were you growing in those pots. :mrgreen:

  10. The actual truck, a prime mover with a specially fitted out trailer, has been organised to travel the country to promote the NBN.

    It’s actually a small information caravan, parents and kids were having a ball during the school holidays going inside to have an experience of the NBN which is due to start up in this area quite soon.

  11. Min @ 9.32pm, a bit like the trailer which does the rounds in country areas so that country people can speak to officers from Centrelink, and other departments to clarify any queries they might have.

    We set our youngest son’s application for the Disability Pension in train thanks to a Centrelink officer who steered us through the paper work.

    To be be able to speak face to face with a officer is infinitely more helpful than long waits on the phone being transferred thither and yon.

    People deserve to have access to factual information about the NBN, not unsubstantiated Liars party spin. It’s a very good move, imo.

  12. Personally I think that comparing the ALP under Rudd/Gillard to the LNP under Howard is not clever – Howard lost 5 years ago and the claim can be easily refuted using a variation of the “that was then, this is now” defence.

    It’s much cleverer comparing Gillard’s Federal Government to the LNP States or to Abbott’s LOTO expenditure as CU has done above. The data is current, it is comparable and there is plenty of data that suggests that Newman and O’Farrell are not that open, accountable or thrifty.

  13. If you go to the link I provided (CU’s image is from there) above, the full story is there. That image doesn’t give justice to his real and more recent spending. The story gives a bigger picture.

  14. Abbott must have one hell of an office, andyrob. And I hope he keeps it for a few more years yet.

    I’m sure some of the taxpayers won’t mind.

  15. A comment at the bottom of a couriermail.com.au piece

    simmo of Bris Posted at 12:20 PM Today

    http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/timid-tony-abbott-tenders-tiny-target/comments-e6freon6-1226575659257?pg=2

    Tony Abbott could never front the media and tell the truth about what his party stands for or he would never get elected. That being to shovel money to the very rich at the expense of the vast majority. So far all he has come up with is a cut to company tax, attacks on refugees, a promise to abolish the education bonus millions of families rely on and a bunch of slogans. That combined with enormous support from the media should get him over the line. The many great achievements of the Gillard government, brilliant economic management, increasing the tax free threshold to benefit millions of people, fair education policies, a carbon tax on big polluters that is vital to Australia’s future growth in the world energy arena and many other clever and fair initiatives never see the light of day and are carefully ignored or rubbished by the mainstream billionaire owned media.

    PS: Highly recommend the CM piece by Paul Syvret: Timid Tony Abbott tenders tiny target http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/timid-tony-abbott-tenders-tiny-target/story-e6freon6-1226575659257

  16. Cuppa, that is fairly damning stuff coming from the Murdoch media, plus an almost unknown event..some recognition of the achievements of the Gillard government. I shouldn’t imagine that the msm has grown a conscience but rather, they do like a close contest (it’s good for business).

  17. Min,

    that is fairly damning stuff coming from the Murdoch media

    Paul Syvret seems to be a bit of a maverick at News Limited. I follow him on Twitter, his bio reads, words to the effect, believer in social justice and equality. He’s a deputy editor or assistant editor at the Courier Mail. Good on him for standing up, going against the groupthink, and speaking the truth that 90 per cent of his colleagues don’t dare to do. I’ve great respect for Paul Syvret.

  18. If you think this is a comprehensive lengthy list just wait .
    The List for labor will make the Old and New Testement seem brief.
    Just goes to show how much of our money is wasted by Canberra by both parties.

  19. If you think this is a comprehensive lengthy list

    I think the point of the article is that it isn’t comprehensive voyager 😉

    It is simply a loose assortment of unfounded claims.

    But you realised that already, didn’t you 😉

  20. Cuppa, one has to wonder how Syvet has managed to survive at the Courier Mail..it seems a lifetime ago that people such as Tim Dunlop resided at news.com.

  21. A “favourite” from the Liberal Handbook is,

    Labor continues to make lavish promises with no idea on how to fund them, with estimates showing there to be $120 billion of unfunded promises.

    What!..only $120 billion..chicken feed compared with the Liberals’ unfunded promises.

  22. Looks like they’re using Right Wing Projection with that rubbish claim Min.

    The term now is ‘hockeynomics’ Cuppa

    Gross misinformation does little to further debate

    Sadly, yesterday’s front-page article (“Labor’s $120bn blowout”, AFR, August 30) – which I was not given an opportunity to respond to – is a deeply misleading, slip-shod and unbalanced piece of journalism that diminishes the quality of economic debate in Australia.

    http://www.afr.com/p/opinion/gross_misinformation_does_little_kGuQvxo6Ch6TLHgWOlu30H

  23. This has been around the block a few times – but it is relevant here where we are “mythbusting” the LNP claiming the high moral ground.

    During the term of the Howard Coalition Government . . .

    * Minister Jim Short was forced to resign for failing to divest himself of financial interests in his area of ministerial responsibility.

    * Industry minister John Moore was exposed for his shareholdings in technology investment and share-trading companies.

    * Parliamentary secretary Brian Gibson lost his job because of a conflict of interest.

    * Small business minister Geoff Prosser was running three shopping centres while he was a minister and he was forced to resign. [Geoff Prosser resigned in July 1997 following the disclosure that he was a shopping centre landlord while he was responsible for commercial tenancy provisions of the Trade Practices Act 1975.]

    * Resources minister Warwick Parer had massive share interests in a coalmine and in other resource companies; he stayed, in breach of the ministerial code.

    * Acting minister for communications Peter McGauran forgot that he owned 70 poker machines.

    * Employment services minister Mal Brough promoted training courses which were actually Liberal Party fundraisers.

    * Industry minister Ian Macfarlane was involved in a complex scam to rort GST rebates from Liberal Party fundraisers.

    * Aboriginal affairs minister John Herron kept up his practice as a surgeon, in breach of the code.

    Mr Howard himself was found to be in breach of his own code when he failed to resign as a director of the Menzies Research Centre.

    Mr Howard misled the parliament over meetings he had held with ethanol producer Manildra’s boss – massive Liberal Party donor Dick Honan. It was eventually proved that the meetings did occur, and three weeks later the government increased trade penalties against a Brazilian ethanol producer.

    And there’s more:

    * Parliamentary secretary Warren Entsch’s concrete company won a massive government contract in breach of the code.

    * Peter Reith was appointed as a consultant to defence contractor Tenix immediately after resigning as defence minister.

    * Health minister Michael Wooldridge signed a $5 million building deal for the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners and days later, after resigning as health minister, was employed by the college as a consultant.

    * Senator Coonan, as Minister for Revenue, avoided paying a land tax. She was then exposed and forced to resign as a registered director of an insurance dispute resolution company operating from her own home.

    * Wilson Tuckey, then Minister for Regional Services, Territories and Local Government, heavied a state police minister on behalf of a family member.
    http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2003/08/22/1061529333629.html

    * Parliamentary secretary Bob Woods retired from politics when he was under police investigation for travel rorts.

    * Communication minister Richard Alston’s family trust held Telstra shares.

    * Peter Costello, the Treasurer, appointed Liberal Party megadonor Robert Gerard to the Reserve Bank board despite being told by Mr Gerard that he was involved in a 14-year long tax evasion dispute with the Australian Taxation Office.

    * Three ministers – John Sharp, David Jull and Peter McGauran – were forced to resign as a result of travel rorts involving false claims, mismanagement or cover-ups.

    * Parliamentary secretary Bill Heffernan was forced to resign over fabricated claims against a High Court judge.

    What else have we had over the past 10 years? Ten years of public policy failure. A partial – very partial – list would include:

    * the massive pork-barrelling of the $1 billion Federation Fund program;

    * the scandal over the budget leak about MRI machines;

    * the development of a culture of assumption and denial in DIMIA while Mr Ruddock was minister for immigration, which the Comrie report called failed, catastrophic and dehumanised; the wrongful and scandalous deportation of Australian citizen Vivian Alvarez Solon;

    * the wrongful and scandalous detention of Cornelia Rau at Baxter detention centre;

    * the utter incompetence of veterans’ affairs minister Dana Vale over roadworks at Anzac Cove;

    * the rorting of the $500 million Regional Partnerships program, with massively disproportionate grants being allocated to coalition seats – not to mention the Tumbi Creek and Beaudesert Rail scandals under the same program; and

    * support for the training of scab labour in Dubai to work on the waterfront and the use of dogs and security guards in balaclavas during the waterfront dispute as waterside workers were sacked under the cover of darkness with the loss of all entitlements and, in some cases, personal possessions.

    Of course, the Prime Minister introduced the GST after promising he never, ever would.

    * The Howard government have sponsored many attacks on the independence of the judiciary and the courts, including repeated slurs by Senator Heffernan in this chamber and in Senate estimates.

    * They scrapped the free Commonwealth dental health scheme for low-income people.

    * They put back the cause of reconciliation irrevocably by refusing to say sorry to the stolen generations.

    * They blurred the line between church and state by the disastrous appointment of Archbishop Hollingworth as Governor-General of Australia.

    Within days of coming to office, the Howard government sacked six departmental secretaries and have since politicised the public service so that officials will never offer frank and fearless advice. In fact, the government have encouraged a culture where advice of any kind from a public servant is not welcome.

    * They have increased government staffing of ministers and parliamentary secretaries from 293 when they came to office to 430 now, many paid above the salary range.

    * They cynically manipulated public sentiment about asylum seekers for political advantage.

    * They refused to sign the Kyoto protocol to deal with our greatest global environmental challenge – climate change.

    * They sponsored attacks from the former communications minister Richard Alston and from government backbenchers over alleged ABC bias while making partisan appointments to the ABC board.

    * They introduced draconian industrial legislation to strip away the hard-won rights of Australian workers.

    * They introduced the flawed Pacific solution, which has seen detention centres on Nauru and Manus Island remain open without any detainees.

    * They have allowed an Australian citizen, David Hicks, to be held overseas without charge or trial for more than four years and left him to face a highly flawed tribunal process without making any efforts to ensure he will have a fair trial.

    Then there was the dithering over preferences to One Nation, giving succour, as a result, to Pauline Hanson and tacit approval of her racist views.

    * There was the billion dollar bungling of major defence upgrade and acquisition projects.

    * There was the massive blow-out of $2 billion in the Commonwealth’s consultancies bill.

    * There was the complete fiasco of the family tax benefit debt trap, which has slugged millions of Australian families with over $1.5 billion in debts
    .
    * There is the fiasco of child-care shortages and the broken promise of the government on the child-care rebate.

    * We have had the Minister for Health and Ageing, Tony Abbott, presiding over private health insurance premium hikes, which have totally absorbed the government rebate.

    * We have had the plunge in bulk-billing rates and the breaking of the health minister’s promise not to increase the Medicare safety net threshold.

    We really have seen 10 years of sleaze, deception and manipulation. We would be here all night if I had time to list every sorry exploit of the Howard government, but I do not. A mere sample includes:

    * National Textiles, the company headed by the Prime Minister’s brother, Stan Howard, which was bailed out by the government to the tune of $4 million;

    * the infamous Peter Reith telecard affair; and

    * the lies and deceit of ‘children overboard’

    Then this nation was committed to war in Iraq on the basis of faulty intelligence about weapons of mass destruction while the government claimed that they were not aiming for regime change in Iraq.

    But when the government’s claims about weapons of mass destruction proved false, of course regime change became the justification for the war in Iraq. Never before has an Australian government sent our troops to war and lied to the Australian people about the reason for doing so.

    We had Federal Police Commissioner Mick Keelty heavied for doing no more than stating the obvious about the increased terrorist threat in Australia after our involvement in Iraq.

    * We have had public servants and senior defence officers forced to take the blame over the government’s denials about their knowledge of the abuses at the Abu Ghraib prison.

    * We have had an unprecedented amount of public money splurged in advertising campaigns – as the Auditor-General has reported – to promote Liberal Party policies in the lead-up to the last three federal elections when the Howard government was in office.

    * We have even had the government write the name of the Federal Liberal Party into electoral legislation on 33 occasions to strip the Liberal state divisions of public funding. They even now use the parliament for their own dirty factional work.

    Despite the farcical denials that we have heard about Senator Hill’s appointment, he is about to become the 18th former Liberal Party politician to be appointed by the Howard government to a plum diplomatic post.

    Mr Howard perverted the accepted definition of an election promise. He broke promises willy-nilly but just redefined those broken promises as ‘non-core’ promises.

    What about the Nixonian leaking of a classified document to Andrew Bolt in order to politically assassinate its author, Andrew Wilkie, while not vetoing the leaker from contesting a Liberal Party preselection ballot?

    We also had a situation where Mr Howard’s government engineered the sleaziest of deals with a former Labor senator, Mal Colston, to promote Colston to the deputy presidency of the Senate in return for Colston’s vote on crucial legislation. How low can you go? Just recently, we had the unprecedented gagging of public servants before estimates committees.

    Kickbacks to Saddam
    Mr Howard himself, his senior minister, and his entire government have turned a blind eye to kickbacks paid to Saddam Hussein’s regime to ensure wheat sales. At the same time, we had Mr Howard self-righteously proclaiming that Saddam Hussein is a ‘loathsome dictator’. They turned a blind eye to our single-desk wheat exporter, who practically became the banker of the Baath Party in Iraq. Who knows where that money ended up? Who knows what it paid for?
    What we do know is that, under the government’s own terrorist legislation, if someone acts recklessly and funds turn up in the hands of terrorists, the guilty party is subject to life imprisonment. You go to jail and they throw away the keys if you recklessly engage in an action under our terrorism laws where financial resources end up in the hands of a terrorist. Let us see what happens in relation to the Howard government, which has acted as Saddam Hussein’s banker.
    Of course, all these sins mean nothing to the Howard government. After all, how can they repent what they cannot recall? This government, and its hand-picked sycophants, suffers from the worst case of collective amnesia in medical and political history.

    What are the bywords of the Howard government? ‘I cannot recall,’ ‘I don’t recollect,’ ‘I wasn’t informed,’ ‘I can’t remember,’ ‘I have no recollection of that.’

    NOTE: This is an edited excerpt of a parliamentary speech by Senator John Faulkner, 22 March 2006

  24. 2353, thank you for that..indeed frightening that so many of the former Howard government are likely to get a 2nd chance should Tony Abbott become Prime Minister.

    A less than personal favourite of mine is Philip Ruddock who, after being advised that children were sewing their lips together as a sign of protest proclaimed that children “these days” are often into body piercing. Likewise Tony Abbott seems completely oblivious to anything/everything except his own personal ambition. He (unfortunately) shows the same character traits in his holier than thou statements against others who do not reach his exulted standards.

  25. Perhaps the focus should be more on what is the current LNP have got to offer.

    What has been done, said or spent etc is really irrelevant (unless we are rebuting to LNP trolls’ crap) and cannot be changed. “Yesterday has gone”.

    I would like to see a focus on pushing the the current LNP to open their mouths and provide some real policies (cough) so we can comment and/or question their reasoning. This should also involve pushing the MSM to start asking the probing questions, which they seem to lack the ability to do, currently.

    The FUTURE should be the primary focus (and that is the same for all politicians and the MSM) as that is where we are heading and I want a decent FUTURE for me, my family (wife and step children) and my childeren (and theirs).

    Perhaps when the trolls come a shouting we should start asking them about their friends’ (LNP) beliefs for the future of this damb fine country of ours, instead of getting dragged down to their level of muck throwing.

  26. Lavinia would like this one spread far and wide..

    Lavinia Projustice
    THIS SUMMATION BY ALAN AUSTIN IS SPOT ON! PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO READ! WE HAVE TIME BEFORE THE ELECTION TO PROVE THIS AND GET THIS TRUTH OUT THERE TO THE OTHER LOT! I AM STARTING TO DO THAT NOW BY POSTING THIS EVERYWHERE ONCE I GET PERMISSION FROM ALAN!!
    ANYONE ANY OTHER IDEAS! WE HAVE TIME TO DO THIS THANKS TO THE PM.

    Alan Austin There are two Australia’s.
    One is reasonably informed and knows the Rudd-Gillard period has had the lowest rate of ministerial sackings in the Westminster world since 1820, that the Australian economy is now healthier than it has ever been, that it is now the healthiest economy in the world by far, that taxes, interest rates and unemployment are lower now than during the Howard years, that the rate of deaths in the insulation industry during the stimulus implementation fell to a quarter of the rate of the Howard years, and that the only MP to be forced from Parliament as a result of criminal conduct in the current term is a Liberal.

    They know also that that the carbon tax is effectively reducing emissons and meets the spirit of the PM’s commitment “make no mistake – I am determined to put a price on carbon” if not with her preferred option.

    The other Australia believes the PM is a serial liar, that climate change is a hoax, Labor has destroyed Australia’s economy, the stimulus spending was a fiasco, that Peter Slipper is a Labor MP, and that ministerial resignations are rats deserting a sinking ship because that is what they are told to believe daily by Fairfax, Murdoch, the ABC and Macquarie Radio.

    The election outcome will depend on which group is larger.

  27. And in other news, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples Recognition Bill 2012 has just been passed by Parliament.

    The bill: provides for the recognition by the Parliament, on behalf of the people of Australia, of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples; requires the minister to cause a review of support for a referendum to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the Constitution; requires the minister to present a report of the review to Parliament; and ceases to have effect two years after its commencement.

    http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Bills_Legislation/Bills_Search_Results/Result?bId=r4943

  28. From your link Min

    Opposition Leader Tony Abbott said Australia now had an opportunity to do what should have been done 200 or 100 years ago.

    Yet, just a couple of months ago, not 200 years, we still had some fools thinking that the convicts were the ‘first’ Australians.

    The first lot of Australians were chosen by the finest judges in England

    http://www.tonyabbott.com.au/News/tabid/94/articleType/ArticleView/articleId/9041/Remarks-at-City-of-Holdfast-Bay-Australia-Day-Awards-and-Citizenship-Ceremony-Adelaide.aspx

    And people actually want this walking, talking disaster to represent us on the world stage 😯

  29. Tom, plus Abbott basically telling the Tent Embassy that their services were no longer required, that equality thingy..well, it’s basically “job done”.

    Well he did say that diplomacy wasn’t his forte, nor economics, nor industrial relations, nor………..

  30. Min @ 10.37
    That’s great! I saw that a day or so back, probably the original post. I think it was a comment after Mungo McC’s effort on the Drum site. I’m too distressed about that to actually go back to what he wrote to check.

    As far as the Recognition bill you mention, I gather a small number of coalition MPs turned up to watch. Is that right?

  31. Tom R @ 10.53
    And that superlative effort from Abbott was almost entirely ignored. As was his rewriting of 150 or so years of American history some months ago.
    But today we read, if we’re that way inclined, Michelle Bloody Grattan exulting over some slip or other Gillard made in attributing one of the numerous reports or whatever she’s obliged to keep in her head to someone else.
    This Grattan piece is her latest contribution to the Conversation. I saw it mentioned on PB. The mentioner advised against reading it. I ignored his advice. He was right & I was wrong.

  32. Bob, I didn’t see the original but the film clip on the ABC seems to show a number of empty Coalition seats. For my own self, the recognition of Aboriginal and TSI languages is important as no longer will little children have their knuckles wrapped for speaking “heathen” languages.

  33. Preseident Obama has raised their minimum wage to the grand sum of $9 per hour. Waiting for the outcry that he is sending the country into disaster.

    The next election should be about whether we continue to allow the trend of the last few years, across the western world, of those who can afford, not paying their way.

    We need to reverse the class envy of the rich. That is, the belief they are entitled to the same benefits that are handed out to the poor and lower income.

  34. Paranoia or further lies?

    “Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has imposed a travel ban on Coalition MPs heading overseas, saying they need to be prepared for an election at any time.

    Prime Minister Julia Gillard has already announced September 14 as polling day, but Mr Abbott believes she will call the election sooner if it suits Labor’s interests.

    “No overseas trips,” Mr Abbott told colleagues at a meeting in Canberra this morning. “Be ready, be visible and be in Australia.

    “Each one of us has to be a person of the people and for the people in the lead up to polling day.”.”

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-02-12/abbott-imposes-travel-ban-on-coalition-mps/4514362

  35. Rabbott:

    “Each one of us has to be a person of the people and for the people in the lead up to polling day.”.”

    Yeah, and as soon as the election is finished (whatever the outcome) they can go back to their standard role: being lackeys for billionaires, barons and multinationals.

    Champions of the Overdog.

  36. Wonder what Mr. Abbott is going to say, when the revenues for the MRRT begin rising, which is likely to happen, When one looks at how fast the spot prices are rising.

    Damaging the industry, how does that computes with the continuing record investment in the industry.

  37. “Be ready, be visible and be in Australia.

    Hilarious. He runs away from the Today Show and wouldn’t let Turnbull on the show either.

  38. Cuppa, I thought that was a great article by Paul Syvret too. In fact it encouraged me to continue with the draft pome Miglo had inspired me to yesterday on his Invisible Man article. My post includes quotes from Syvret and Miglo, but also pulls in that discussion on Q&A with Tony Jones weighing in quite strongly. As well, of course, there are bloggers like Victoria and psyclaw. It’s important that people like them and yourself keep this topic going. It seems to have been dropped in main stream media today. Or have I missed something? If so, let me know at http://polliepomes.wordpress.com/2013/02/12/that-damned-reclusive-liberal/

    Yes, Miglo. Do you think he sees the irony in his advice to his team? Be visible!

  39. The PM address today regarding Indigenous Recognition was from the heart. Tony Abbotts response was from notes. this is the dill that said on Aussie Day that the first people into Australia were boat people (i.e. convicts) yet he has the gall to stand up in Parliament this morning and profess his support of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait people. This man is so Politically Illiterate its frightening.

  40. I noticed for the first time this year, Mr. Abbott looked relaxed, not harass. Wonder why.

    Maybe he is beginning to believe his own spin again.

    I have a feeling that the majority of Australians does not follow or have interest in politics for most of the government term. As the elections approach, they begin to take interest.

    I believe that many have taken on board the perceptions that prevails in the community.

    I also believe that once they look closer, they are going to find there is a big disconnect between that perception, and what this government is about.

    They will look more closely at what Abbott has been saying. at the negativity he has been projecting, and find little has any basis.

    They will see, thatr the ecomony is travelling well. That the sky has not fallen.

  41. We now have Ms, Bishop doing her best, with negativity, put the sovereign risk of this country in danger.

    Yes, they love talking down the economy.

  42. Another disconnect? Why, If we have one of the best economies in the worls, is this so.

    ……..A new survey shows Australia is bucking a global trend of people trusting both their country’s Government and business leaders.

    The Edelman Trust Barometer monitors trust across government, business, non-governmental organisations and the media on an annual basis across 26 countries.

    This year’s Barometer found trust improved across the four institutions in every country except Australia, where they all lost ground.

    One thousand Australians were surveyed as part of the global poll, showing the credibility of government leaders here, has dropped four percentage points over the past year – to just 30 per cent.

    Australian business also fared badly, with 46 per cent not trusting corporate leaders to tell the truth, and only 32 per cent having faith that a CEO is a credible source of company information.

    The overall Edelman Trust Index for Australia declined to 39 points, from 40 points last year.

    In contrast, the index for the UK rose to 43 points from 35 points, in the US it increased to 45 points from 40 points, and in Japan it was up to 35 points from 32 points……..

    http://www.skynews.com.au/national/article.aspx?id=845170

  43. Sovereign risk to the industry!

    …………………..Alumina workers in the outback Northern Territory town of Nhulunbuy are cheering news that mining giant Rio Tinto Ltd will maintain operations at its Gove refinery.

    A statement on Wednesday from Rio Tinto subsidiary Pacific Aluminium, which runs the plant, confirmed the decision.

    ‘Pacific Aluminium’s alumina refinery in Nhulunbuy will continue operating as planning, approvals and delivery of the gas to Gove project progresses,’ the company said.

    A question mark over the refinery and bauxite mine, which was losing Rio about $30 million each month, has plagued the town since the announcement of a review into the operation.

    It recommended the plant be mothballed – a decision that would have impacted heavily on the town’s 3800 residents, many of whom work at the refinery.

    Dave Suter, from the Nhulunbuy Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said word the refinery would remain open was given to workers about 10am (CST) at a meeting at the town hall..

    http://www.skynews.com.au/national/article.aspx?id=845300

  44. He said the decision made by his company would double the size of the domestic gas market, drive further investment in gas exploration, increase long-term gas supply, attract new industries and create jobs for Territorians.

    Now Rio Tinto has agreed to keep the plant open, Mr Mills says about 700 more workers will be needed to help get the gas to Gove.

    ‘A $1.2 billion project is now likely in the Northern Territory,’ he said in a statement.

    http://www.skynews.com.au/national/article.aspx?id=845300

    As I say, Coalition rhetoric does not compute with reality.

    It appears that it might just be the prices of ore that drive the industry.

  45. If I was a member of the Coalition and Abbott stated: “Be ready, be visible and be in Australia.” my own personal response would be WTF!!!!!!!!!

  46. Patricia B, as Tony Abbott stated that the Tent Embassy’s job was done and inferred that they could just get themselves off the front lawn of Parliament House, I very much doubt that Tones has a single clue.

  47. Jason’s done a great job of exposing those Liberal lies point by point. And as Miglo and Min demonstrate Abbott shows himself up as as phony time and again in even those few words of advice to his team. But everything about him is phony, isn’t it? But then…….

    I Do Not Trust Abbott! Never Could!

    I could not, ever, trust this louse.
    I would not want him in the House.
    I’d rather see him in a box
    Or ridiculed in public stocks.
    Yes, there he could his budgies wear
    And everyone could come and stare
    As we all threw bad eggs and jam
    At phony Tony, fork tongued sham.

  48. I thought the worst was Howard
    Till came Abbott the cur and coward
    Liar is his middle name
    Lying is his shameful game

    Kept aloft by putrid press
    Never called to make redress
    His stammers and recourse to slogans
    Makes him sound like a dumbed-down bogan.

  49. Well rhymed, Cuppa! You should write more of it!!

    Though I do it more for emotional expression. It helps me vent my spleen. You may have other ways of dealing with Abbott, the cur and coward whose gall at accusing the PM of lying is just outrageous..

  50. Patricia, I hear you got the cast off, that’s great, and was that a celebratory rhyme?
    Regardless, nice one 😎 Well done 😀

    Cuppa, it must be contagious 😀 well done too 😀

    Cheers 😀 😀 😎

  51. WHAT A DISGRACE IS GILLARD

    “The defence minister Stephen Smith was speaking directly to every proud and anxious family in Australia about the young men and women who are serving us in Afghanistan.

    The very least our elected representatives could do during that report is to at least feign respect and interest.”

    H/T Michael Smith

  52. “The very least our elected representatives could do during that report is to stay sober at least feign respect and interest.”

    There, fixed it for you.

  53. I suppose we will now have the PM in bed with Albanese.

    I believe that tape could be doctored.

    Why is the scene where the PM pats Albanese on the shoulder, repeated all the way through the video..

    What it shows to me. A relaxed PM who gets on well with her ministers.

    It also shows the lady might have a sense of humour, unlike those who are ever ready to criticise her every action.

  54. There was a poet from W.A.
    Who knew how to rhyme
    so they say
    Then along came a Cuppa
    showed us she’s no duffer
    with verse worth a supper….with bread
    then Min took a chance
    …did a little dance
    but sucked on a sauce bottle…. instead ….. 😀

  55. Thanks for the kind words, Patricia, Miglo, Truth Seeker and LOVO. 😀

    Treetroll,

    The very least our elected representatives could do during that report is to at least feign respect and interest.”

    If the conservatives had any respect for the people they purport to represent they would be open about their agenda to transfer wealth from those who need it most to those who need it least.

  56. Pingback: How Julia Gillard is going to be a sure-fire winner* « Iain Hall's SANDPIT

  57. Make sure you get out to vote in September. And we can keep Australia on a policy strong foundation and keep Andrew Bolt in a Job. Because If Abbott wins the Election Andrew Bolt won’t have a TV show anymore.

  58. Pingback: $8.8 million isn’t a lot of money, but apparently $66,000 is! – Written by MICHAEL TAYLOR | winstonclose

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