I can’t think of anything that Tony Abbott has going for him

Public service cuts

I don’t remember too much about Paul Keating. I do remember his arrogance, which many argue was the driving force behind his 1996 election loss. Nobody likes an arrogant politician. But I will say this about him: he was a brilliant economist and outside of politics a straight forward, normal bloke. No pretenses. You got what you saw. He had a lot going for him and his legacy is being widely hailed.

John Howard, well, I remember too much about him. What sticks in my mind the most was that he was a mean-spirited, lying little prick. I’m being honest here. But I will say one thing about him: he had some dignity. There was no way that he would have allowed his senior ministers to stand under “Ditch the Witch”signs at public rallies. He would have been silently appalled at the behavior we’ve seen from Abbott et al on that occasion.

I worked under Kevin Rudd and he was a hard task-master, verging on being a control freak. And he had difficulty grasping the concept that not everyone was as brilliant as him. But he was only doing what he thought was best – in the long run – for society’s battlers. He also had the strength to stand firm and stand by his convictions. A couple of his political decisions were monumental stuff-ups but all in all, he did try very hard to understand and deal with other people. And he listened to them.

Julia Gillard should be ashamed of whoever headed up her public relations department. She, personally, gave the impression that she was above all the criticism that she and her government faced. However, there was no way that she was above it. It was a misconception. But I’ll give her lots of credit where it’s due: she had guts and she had dignity. And having also worked for her I can vouch that she worked diligently to improve the lives of all Australians.

Tony Abbott. Well, he has nothing at all going for him. He has nothing in the bank. He is devoid of any of the good human qualities that the above are remembered for.

137 comments on “I can’t think of anything that Tony Abbott has going for him

  1. The problem is often just that – you dont think.
    Abbott has had a tough 100 days , I actually thought it would have been worse.
    After all he was handed a sewerage treatment plant that had not been
    pumped out in 6 years.

  2. KRudd “He also had the strength to stand firm and stand by his convictions.” – well what BS – what about “the greatest moral challenge of our time then? As for the rest I basically agree…….

  3. I can think of one thing: In the last broadcast for the year of “Late Night Live” (Phillip Adams’, RN), John Birmingham in interview, was happy at this lot being there, for he said, “It will be a Golden-Age for Satire… and I really should send my pay cheques to Scott Morrison, as he really writes the scripts.”
    But I have to admit when you have the likes of Tim “Twat” Wilson as a Human rights Commissioner any satire you do will be so Da-Da Surreal that it will be incomprehensible.

  4. One other unfortunate fact about Paul Keating was that he did not suffer fools. As much as any unelected citizen can get away with that, a politician can’t. Had he been able to display more of his wicked sense of humour in a way that appealed, he could have been there for another decade.

  5. Give the man credit, Michael: he does have the ability to surround himself with the worst collection of crazies in the history of our Parliament …

  6. The young have woken, the women are well on the way. It is the men that are having trouble seeing the reality, that surrounds them.

    Still it is early days yet.

    The one thing we will not see, is any DD elections.

  7. L-winder
    I mean what I wrote .
    The current Government is pumping out 6 years of old sludge.
    If you have ever been near a sewerage treatment plant you would
    fully understand if you have not just use your imagination.

  8. Then if one believes in the idealogy of the Tea Party, and the putiry of the free market. they will be elated.

    Trouble is, that not many of us believe in that invisible hand or trickle down effect.

    Most believe that government and the economy are there to serve the people, to create the environment for all to prosper.

    I do not believe there are fairies at the bottom of the garden either. We all know who Santa really is.

    For sure, not many of us believe in slogans, slogans that have any meaning, to boot.

    It appears higher taxes do nothing, not even when the economy is showing structural imbalance, because of falling revenue.

    Yes, all those tax cuts of Costello and Howard are coming home to roost. Nothing has been done, to replace the loss of revenue.

  9. Abbott believes the answer is growing the pie. Does not add up. Yes, revenues grow, but so do the cost of government essential programmes.

  10. But lawrencewinder was spot on about the source of the “sludge” – ’twas Abbott and his tawdry bunch of miscreants having the biggest tanty ever seen in Australian politics 😉 “We wuz robbed… wah, wah, wah wah.. 😥 😥 😥 😥 “

  11. One bright spot, in the sea of gloom and doom that surrounds us.

    ……..The High Court’s decision to strike down Premier Barry O’Farrell’s political finance reforms comes as no surprise. The writing was on the wall after they received a hostile reception at a hearing in November. What was unexpected was how the court reached this result.
    It was argued by Unions NSW that the law breached the implied freedom of political communication in the Australian Constitution. This freedom was first recognised in 1992, when the High Court struck down a law banning electronic advertising during election periods.
    The freedom means that laws can only restrict political communication if they are proportionate to achieving a legitimate purpose, such as public safety or preventing corruption. Where no adequate justification exists, laws are struck down as being inconsistent with the Constitution.
    The implied freedom appears to have a broad reach, but in fact has been a weak protector of freedom of speech. Repeated attempts to invoke the protection have failed. The High Court has only applied the freedom to strike down two laws in the past 21 years, the first being in 1992, and the second today..

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/comment/writing-was-on-the-wall-for-political-donations-law-20131218-2zkk0.html#ixzz2no1dJjui

  12. As a person, I should feel sorry for him as he obviously has had difficult formative years and is severely affected by some heinous mistreatment or other blameworthy catastrophe, IF NOT for all the destruction he has and IS been allowed to cause.
    What he has had going for him is freedom without appropriate criticism to do what he wants, He has had a dream run, shielded from proper scrutiny, for which we will suffer greatly. I am at a complete loss to see any virtues, RULES don’t apply to him, only to others and HE interprets them, and decides their selective application.

  13. Sorry, I cannot bring myself to feel sorry for the likes of Voyager. Cannot even bring myself to give much attention to what he pens.

    Just not worth the effort. More important matters to occupy ones time.

  14. Gillard Has Guts!

    One paper tells the truth today
    No matter what the others have to say.
    You know, about the PM being dead,
    Politically I mean. How often has that been said!

    But here she is alive and well,
    And with plenty of good news to tell.
    This picture says it all dear reader.
    We couldn’t have a better leader.

    gillard smiling

    While leakers and gossip writers go to town,
    Character assassins bring her down,
    And Abbott does his stunts and struts,
    She keeps smiling. Yes! Gillard has guts!

    I first wrote that pome for Cafe Whispers in 2011 Sadly, very few of you came out to support her. Seemed that few people, even among visitors here, thought she would survive. Well, she proved all the pundits and pessimists wrong, didn’t she? She almost completed her term of office, achieved an enormous mount of legislative reform and had it not been for Rudd’s ratting and general Oz misogyny she could have been our PM still. When I met her in Fremantle in June this year she was still standing <a href="//polliepomes.wordpress.com/2013/06/06/julia-gillard-is-still-standing/" Many more people were willing then to speak up for her and recognize her courage and ability. However, we all know what happened next.

    Interesting though how quickly and philosophically she has picked up the pieces of her life and found a new career. No doubt there will be others seeking out her special talents on the national and world stage. What a great lady. And a potentially great leader lost to Oz.

    As Fed up says, what we’ve got instead isn’t worth commenting on.

  15. Fed Up: True! One can occasionally thank God for the High Court. While O’Farrell appears as a level headed moderate compared to Campbell Newman et al. one tends to overlook the fact that he too is a neo-Lib, and that all of them hate and fear any form of collectivism and will do all in their power to prevent it. So today’s victory in the High Court is a victory for genuine justice – O’Farrell of course had no hope in pushing that one through – even the IPA opposed it, which demonstrates how far out of touch the whole thing really was. Still, these whacko’s keep trying so we must remain ever vigilant!
    Michael: I remember Keating very well and when I was on the dole in the early 90s due to the recession we had to have, he remained a hero. After all, the other choice was Hewson or Howard (I won’t count Downer, and I think that most others wouldn’t either)
    In hindsight however, I’m far less admiring these days, and I can’t agree with your statement that he was a brilliant economist. Don’t forget, it was Keating who began the systematic destruction of Australian manufacturing, eased the cross-media ownership laws which allowed Murdoch to gain primacy, and in many ways, Keating kerbed, paved and channeled the road which Howard and Costello comfortably drove along. His remarks in the recent interview with Kerry O’Brien that ‘they all went out and got better jobs the next day’ is the delusional bullshit of a supreme egoist.
    Keating also revels in the fact that he wasn’t tertiary educated, but that too cost Australia dearly when dealing with Asia, particularly with ASEAN. His remarks aimed at Mahatir that ‘we will also drag recalcitrants along’ soured relations with Malaysia for a very long time and effectively kept Australia from joining ASEAN. What Keating meant to say of course, was ‘truculent’s.’ Recalcitrant is a term usually applied to disobedient puppies, so when the remark reached Mahatir’s ears it translated as ‘disobedient dogs like Malaysia’s Mahatir.’ Which the Malaysian government understandably took as a typical Aussie yobbo neo-colonialist attitude. To be fair, the only PM who’s came close lately is Abbott. No doubt, we can all look forward to Tones and Julie’s scintillating diplomatic skills in the new year.

  16. What if the cure for cancer is trapped in the mind of someone who can’t get a decent education because of cuts by this government?

    What if a scientific breakthrough on cheap clean unlimited renewable energy is locked away in the mind of someone who can’t work in science because of the cuts by this government?

    What if a manufacturing breakthrough on producing clean long range pollution free cars is trapped in the mind of a young engineer who never realised their potential because of the cuts by this government?

  17. Merry Christmas Michael.
    We will continue to inhabit different political universes in 2014 I presume….
    All the Best
    Tweed in London

  18. The rabid one does have a lot going for him. He has a lot of electors, and IMHO the number is growing rapidly, going for him. With so many wanting a piece of his hide, I don’t think even he has enough hide to go round.

  19. Yes Tweed, yours based in an alternate reality of a bizzaro world and ours firmly based on a firm footing of fact.

  20. I agree with Voyages description but quite like the term Policy Vomit. It conjures up a visual of Labor and the labor legislation over the past 6 years. If you liken Labor under Rudd/Gillard/Rudd you picture a six year event based on repititive excessive nights on the town resulting in excessive consumption, empty conversation, random unplanned events, strange associations, involuntary spasms, messy trails, serving no purpose, indulgent behaviour and questionable associations, Resulting in Policy Vomit. Difficult to clean up, the offending smell lingers. Garrulous promises to never to do it again but repeats the performance at the next opportunity.
    Yup. Sums it up. Labor Policy Vomit. There is a lot for Tony to clean up.
    Seasons Greetings.

  21. Yes, they are about erasing what they consider an illegitimate Labor government of the last six years. Wonder where they got the mandate for that.

    More to the point, they are also about punishing the country for getting rid of Howard.

    Something they believe was a great error on the part of the voter.

    ….A guiding rule seems to be to undo, wherever possible, the reforms of the previous Labor government, as if the 2007 to 2013 period was one in which the Australian electorate had made a terrible mistake. As one Coalition supporter said to me, “that was when the opposition was in government”. The Howard years were good years of growing prosperity while the last six years have been years of anxiety and uncertainty. All we need to do is to get back to the policies of the Howard era.

    Supporting this view is a culture of groupthink so spiteful that those on Abbott’s frontbench seem to believe their own propaganda about Labor’s incompetence. It’s a belief reinforced by the general community impression that the Coalition is better able to handle the economy than Labor, and by an uncritical faith among many small-business people and the self-employed that a Coalition Government will look after them — as if support for the Liberal Party goes along with having an Australian Business Number.

    The Coalition has purged sources of economic advice not to its liking. Its appointments to advisory bodies and to statutory corporations, even if not explicitly partisan, have been of people prepared to ignore evidence and argument, and to hold to an unshakeable belief in the superior performance of the private sector, without regard to the economics of market failure..


  22. More

    …..The Coalition has purged sources of economic advice not to its liking. Its appointments to advisory bodies and to statutory corporations, even if not explicitly partisan, have been of people prepared to ignore evidence and argument, and to hold to an unshakeable belief in the superior performance of the private sector, without regard to the economics of market failure.

    One may argue that a newly elected government has every right to seek advice from wherever it wants, and indeed that is so, but as Machiavelli pointed out it is unwise to ignore your critics, and your critics are not necessarily your enemies.

    Most of the Coalition’s criticisms of the former Labor Government are way off the mark. In fact Labor managed the economy reasonably well and many of its policies were taking us along a path of economic adjustment. It made the right call in responding to the GFC, avoiding the waste of unemployment and closed industrial capacity. The Gillard government was dragged reluctantly to carbon pricing, but it put together a package to help the economy make a transition to a world where carbon dependence is becoming a liability..


    Abbott and his cronies, are they only ones in steps, when it comes to everything. All others are wrong. This they know, as their guts tell them so.

    Some might see things as Albanese does. Yes, one knows in your guts, that they are nuts.

  23. I wonder if Abbott’s words, saying losing your job at GMH liberates one, will haunt him, to his dying day. If not, should do so.

    He says, they are now free for better paying jobs.

    I was not aware, that a job at GMH was that low paid, or unskilled.

    I wonder what that better paid job could be.

  24. But Tweed that’s where you prove you are living in a Bizarro World. Abbott is not cleaning up anything, he’s just destroying and back flipping on promise after promise.

    What do you think of Abbott’s now long string and growing of direct broken promises, back flips and outright lies, especially after he spend so much effort in branding Gillard a liar over something that wasn’t a lie?

    Abbott lied to you Tweed, made you look like a tool for voting for him, used you and now will screw you to the wall without a blink in his rush to give his masters as much money in the shortest amount of time as possible, no matter what is damaged and the long term harm it causes.

  25. Has one given any thought as to why Pyne wants control of the universities from the states.

    The Commonwealth can control most of university funding and other matters now.

    The only thing they canot do, is interfere in how universities run.

    The states are inclined to leave it up to the academics. Pyne, wants to direct what is taught and researched himself.

    Is already doing so, through how researched grants are handed out. Has rescinded many research projects approved by Labor.

    I am inclined to like the present situation, where states and commonwealth have to work together. Leaves some checks and balances in the system.

  26. I noticed that Tweed and Co, still cannot tell us why Abbott is so great. Still into condemning the past Labor government.

    As I said, they say nothing worth commenting on.

  27. ME. what is more terrifying, Abbott and Co believe in what they are doing more truer, not doing.

    They actually think they are great.

  28. They bear false witness unto themselves. Abbott knows no reality. It’s all a game. He probably hasn’t done an honest days hard work in his life. All I see is a poser, sitting in a truck for the camera, pretending to be very Macho being awkward around women and offending every country he visits, riding and running, who can hardly make a sentence have a sincere message, who cannot be believed about anything. Digs dirt on people and bullies. Slogans replace thinking. This is the BEST we can do? Pull the other leg.
    We really MUST learn to pick our leaders much more carefully and not rely on Murdoch to choose them for us.

  29. The Australian economy has its challenges, but we’re better off than most other countries, Reserve Bank governor Glenn Stevens says.
    Almost six years after the global financial crisis (GFC) struck, Australia is in an enviable economic position, Mr Stevens told a federal parliamentary committee on the economy and its prospects.

    That’s despite the federal government’s revelation on Tuesday that the 2013/14 federal budget deficit had blown out by $17 billion since the election, he said.
    While the economy was currently experiencing below-trend growth, it was still “12 or 13 per cent bigger than it was” before the GFC, Mr Stevens said on Wednesday.
    The banking system is stronger now than it was in 2008 and while unemployment is higher, it remains low by historical standards and when compared with many other countries, he said.
    “I think we have a record of macro-economic success in that period that, in all immodesty I suppose, many other countries wish they had,” Mr Stevens said.
    “It’s certainly true we have a buildup of government debt and that’s a medium-term challenge for us to address but… it isn’t actually about a surplus or a deficit in any particular year.
    “Even with the debt numbers that have been put out yesterday and the projections, there are a lot of countries who would rather have that set of numbers than the ones they have.
    “I think we have problems, we have big challenges, but I’d rather have most of our challenges than the ones I see around the table with governors I sit with a number of times a year.”

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/glenn-stevens-says-australias-economy-ready-for-its-problems-and-challenges-20131218-2zkk8.html#ixzz2npEIjPHE

  30. Bravo Tweed , very well put. After 6 yrs of internal dysfunction culminating
    with 3 PM’s in 6 months it is really surprising how Abbott is even surviving
    let alone thriving.
    Super Sludges like MT and Fedup have throughout life slipped thru bypassing
    that Treatment Plant and remain very Brown, very elongated,very smelly
    and most serious a toxic Health Hazard to all.

  31. Oh look, it’s the Lunar Right Echo Chamber…currently inhabited by those two Abbott adoring troglodytes-Tweed & Voyager.Triple A rated economy, low unemployment, low inflation, low interest rates & a low debt to GDP ratio. Oh yeah, sounds like “real” sewerage to me. Meanwhile, since Abbott has come in we’ve had the collapse of Holden, the pissing off of most of our near neighbours, a blow-out in the level of debt & utter confusion over eduction, broadband & disability policy….just to name a few things. Yep, we know where the REAL source of sewerage is coming from, Abbott & his incompetent front bench!

  32. Wonder why some who personally attack, find it impossible to talk about what Abbott and his cronies are doing and saying.

    Do not even bother to explain the many, indisputable facts that are found throughout these pages.

    Then they wonder, why no one seem to give respect for anything, they write.

    Like Abbott and Co, they are so blinkered, that they actually believe they are doing OK. Believe their own spin.

  33. Yes, and no comment on Abbott’s claim he is in the business of liberating workers.

    Not only liberating, but saying they will be free of the inferior jobs they now have, and will find better.

    Wonder where the evidence is for this. The evidence seems to say, they seem happy with the jobs they are losing. In fact, they seem to want to keep these jogs.

    Well it could be, once again, that Abbott is the only one in step.

    He is dancing to his own band. One no one else can hear.

    Yes, more spin from Abbott. Spin I suspect he believes.

  34. Have just come out of the London Play Book of Mormons…….I think I now understand , Rudd/Gillard/Rudd, Conroy Swan etc …. and the Labor Party.
    …great show by the way.

  35. I don’t claim to be an expert in politics nor am I a follower of one party. I believe in voting for who is offering the best for our country, and the rare politician who actually runs the country instead of seeking votes would get my vote in a heartbeat, Abbot hasn’t been in government long and his predecessors I suppose are just as much offenders in this area as well, but I fail to understand how we can have discrimination laws yet, on the other hand, gay marriage is illegal. Isn’t this discrimination and yet “All persons are equal before the law and”are entitled without any discrimination
    to the equal protection of the law. In this respect, the law shall prohibit any discrimination and guarantee to all persons equal and effective protection against
    discrimination on any ground…”
    This is from Article 26, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Can anyone else see a contradiction?

  36. While the economy was currently experiencing below-trend growth, it was still “12 or 13 per cent bigger than it was” before the GFC

    And some are calling this ‘vomit’

    3 months in, Killed Holdens, Destroyed relationships with Indonesia and China, backflipped on Gonski, backflipped on their pathetic NonBN, and now is lining up to backflip on his one and only “policy:

    Now that is Vomitous

  37. Yes, time to forget ideology, and begin working on the real economy that exists.

    ……It is the role of economic policy makers to deal with what ever is served up to them, be it a terms of trade boom, a global banking crisis, currency mispricing or some other unforeseen shock. This is Mr Hockey’s challenge. It is one of the key reasons for him having the most important economic job in Australia.

    Unfortunately, Mr Hockey’s Mid Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook was presented in a manner more like the Cork shopkeeper’s lament rather than someone with a meaningful policy map or framework by which he would deal with the structural budget issues.

    This is a critical reason why the first three months of the Abbott Government have been so disappointing. Government policies to date have added over $13 billion to the budget deficit while Treasury’s assumption that the economy is weaker than assumed at the time of the Pre Election Fiscal Outlook has added a further $60 billion.

    Of course, it would be nice and easy to start framing fiscal policy from a starting point where the budget was already close to surplus or where the Government’s own decisions of spending $8.8 billion on the Reserve Bank and cutting the carbon price were not smashing holes in the budget numbers. But that is what Mr Hockey revealed in the MYEFO. And of course it would be better if there was a different economic growth outlook to help boost government revenue, or if tax scales, including for the GST, were a little higher or broader.

    But dealing with the alternative is the basis for Mr Hockey’s job description. As Treasurer, he was elected to make the big and often difficult decisions. Mr Hockey has to stop moaning and complaining about the economy and work to make the economy even better than the one he inherited three months ago.



  38. “But I will say this about him: he was a brilliant economist and outside of politics a straight forward, normal bloke. No pretenses. You got what you saw. He had a lot going for him and his legacy is being widely hailed.”

    Paul Keating, “a normal bloke”?

    What have you been smoking ?

    Keating was the pretentious “aesthete” (his own term) who wore the working class Zegna suits, collected French clocks and determined that the best place to see Darwin was from 35,000 feet on his way to Paris.
    He described people who lived outside of Sydney as “just camping out”, Australia as the arse end of the world and the brilliant economist gave us the “recession we had to have” without telling us he was going to do so (because he had no control over it anyway, despite his self styled brilliance).

    Keating was one of the most disgusting, divisive, sectarian politicians this country has ever seen, and those who hail his “legacy” are merely those consumed by hate, spite and envy.

  39. Just when I feel that things are bad enough in the world, no matter which way they turn or go, always comes along some people like Voyager and Tweed to remind me how self-centered, myopically selfish, greedy and inhumane some of our Species will always be and gloat how proud they are about it.

  40. “Keating was one of the most disgusting, divisive, sectarian politicians this country has ever seen.”

    That description would belong to Howard in spades JohnB, and those who can’t see that are consumed by ideological myopia.

  41. Tom R
    Are you for real? Blame current Gov for Holden shutdown .
    Well who was to blame for Mitsubitchi and Ford ?
    Reality is sadly these businesses have been buggered by many factors and I
    bet you hypocrite don’t even drive a Holden.
    Do not blame any Gov for any of these closures.
    Go to the Treatment Plant and inhale – it may bring you out of your stupor .

  42. I wonder if Abbott underatands there are many down sides to adoption, especially from overseas. It is made difficult for many good reaons.

    If one care about the kids in those countries, one should be out fighting, for our government to provide assistance to raise the standard of living in those places, so [parents have the ability to raise their own kids.

    One does ot pick up a baby, like one does a kitten or pup. One does not wander down to the local pet shop.

    Even those that breed pups and kittens, are getting particular to whom they sell.

    Yes, babies are not a fashion item.

    Mr. Abbott, be careful for this one. Do not only listen to your friends that are in your ear. Go along and talk to the experts in the field. See what they have to say.

    Saying that, Mr. Abbott you are sinking low, when you have to resort to adoptions, as a way of diverting attention from other serious matters.

    Adoption is a privilege, not a right or entitlement.

  43. Industry comes and goes. It is the governments role, to create the environment for this to happen. Yes, to provide ongoing education and skill training, that allows this to happen.

    Yes, technology is always changing.

    Mr. Abbott could have at least talked to the industry, to see if it was feasible to offer more assistance. Mr. Abbott chose not too.

    Yes, maybe it is time for GMH to go, but is this the time.

    What has faced industry is three years of a extremely high dollar, that has torn the heart out of manufacturing.

    Labor was thwarted from helping, by outrage from the mining industry, and the Opposition of the time. Greens were not much help also.

    Yes, skimming off some of those super profits from mining, which led to the high dollars, to assist those in other parts of the economy, might just have saves d some, that are failing now.

    I believe GMH were exporting some 50,000 cars before the dollars rose.

    Yes, Abbott is to blame. He prevented action being taken, to ease the effects of the high dollar over the last term of government.

    He now refuses to give assistance that could be good.

    Refuses to raise taxes, where needed.

    Believes all he has to do, is give business an open go, with no regulations or restrictions whatever. He believes the spin.

  44. No Keating was not just a normal bloke. He was a man of superior intellect, that was able to educate himself. Was admired by all that come near him, in his electorate. Maybe a little arrogant, so what.

    It is the results that count, and he delivered in boatloads.

  45. Last three PMs to be in power when Australia won the Ashes were Fraser, Howard and Abbott. The former two went on to lose the election after Australia won the Ashes.

  46. ..and the dishonesty by this government just continues on unabated.

    NBN Co board appointed by the Abbott government allowed to keep their Telstra shares.

    A more blatant conflict of interest in the business world would be hard to find.

  47. And how long can Australia survive with 844,000 on Disability Pensions?
    For you Sludges that is 1:20.
    Yep next time look around Coles or Woolies and do the count.
    Every 20th person is on a Pension – with our ageing population no
    Government can continue in this manner.

    PS Tom R pls tell all what sort of car you drive, bet it is non Australian made.
    Holden just like Ford were always going regardless.
    Toyota will go soon , Unions to blame on this one with current wage case.
    All Toyota jobs will be lost , another smart union looking after members jobs.
    NOT !

  48. The high dollar is to blame.

    Unions have worked with the industry for years. Worker productivity has continued to rise.

    Germany has high wages, along with a motor industry.

    Look again, the industry is highly automated.

    Carbon and MRRT taxes are also not to blame.

    The trouble with this Coalition, is they know the cost of everything, but the value of nothing.

    They cannot distinguished between cost and investment.

    The investment in the car industry over the decades did bring great returns to the government and Australia.

    Same goes for NBNCo and CEF. Both add to future productivity.

    Now, I fail to see how paying wealthy women to have babies add to productivity.

    These women will have babies, whether the taxpayer pays them or not.

    The future for Australia lies in smart thinking and up to date technology, not cutting wages and conditions of the worker.

    Yes in clever workers, and clever managers.

    Clever people who have the ability to pull together.

    There are bad managers, ones that are not up to the task.

  49. It appears that Abbott has abandoned an advisory group set up by Bronwyn Bishop, for overseas adoption in the Howard government.

    What was Abbott about yesterday, and his spruiking for making overseas government easier.

    Representative on ABC 24. It appears most of the delays occur in the countries the children come from. It appears these countries are not so keen in sending their kids off for adoption.

    Does the right hand in this government, know what the left is doing.

  50. VOYAGER – Brisbane – Sydney @ December 19, 2013 @ 11:38 pm
    Why thank you Voyager for reaffirming the accuracy of my earlier statement about you. You can proudly bow in appreciation of your stunning lack of Interest in anyone but those with wealth, yourself or anyone you can con a buck from.
    ‘Scuse us if we aren’t interested in you. There is enough of your misguided kind and our world will be better if we relegate you to the dustbin of evolution.

  51. Voyager and,

    And how long can Australia survive with 844,000 on Disability Pensions..

    And what would you expect those 844,000 disabled people to do? Perhaps you would prefer the India model where begging on the streets is common..oh wait, we already see beggars on the streets here in Australia. Perhaps the millionaire mummies who Abbott wants to donate $75,000 to, might instead of using this largesse to purchase their designer pram and pay for their au pair/live in nanny, care to throw a few dollars the way of a disabled person..you know, just for luxuries such as..eating.

  52. Fed up, Abbott is likely to be highly ignorant of the difficulties with overseas adoptions, such as stolen children being offered for sale to the highest bidder. This is also to protect prospective adoptive parents. There was one very sad case quite recently where it eventuated that the child that the Australian parents had adopted was quite badly brain damaged due to substance abuse of the mother. The authorities in that country knew of this likelihood but failed to advise the adoptive parents.

  53. “What has Abbott got going for Him ” I will not be distracted by the couple of foolish supporters that think they are soooo smart knocking our legitimate complaints for this illustrious Leader, Who truly is out of his depth, Monumental stuff ups, Poll numbers slipping followed by the Predictable charm offensive . In the short time span he has (B)led our nation remember him lying low no press contact Him being sooo busy an all, Now its back to the pre election face on our TV every morning Yuk yuk yuk especially when he tries to smile, Grabbing on to anything to make The Masses like him aka freer adoption procedures , The truth being This Galah has never ever been Popular People see through him he is not a populist PM, Personally I would never believe a word out of his Mouth, As what he (Peta ) says today has a fair chance of being overturned tomorrow,Remember Pyneoccio they are keeping him shackled because of his bad press, And Finally How do you have a budget crisis and yet still Get three triple A’s during a world recession

  54. The federal government has approved the purchase of stakes worth as much as $5 billion in Australia’s power companies by State Grid Corp of China (SGCC), the world’s largest state utility.
    On Friday Treasurer Joe Hockey gave the green light to State Grid’s purchase of 19 per cent of electricity supplier SP Ausnet , and 60 per cent of energy infrastructure company SPI (Australia) Assets Pty Ltd (SPIAA).
    The approval comes just weeks after the Treasurer blocked the $2.8 billion takeover of GrainCorp by US agribusiness giant Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), citing national interest.
    Lawyers and bankers who work in mergers and acquisitions warned that decision was likely to spook some international investors who already view Australia as a tough place to do business.
    “Australia is open for business and we welcome foreign investment when it is not contrary to the national interest,” Mr Hockey said in a statement on Friday.
    State Grid has been building its presence in the Australian energy sector, buying a 41 per cent stake in unlisted South Australian electricity supplier ElectraNet from the Queensland state government’s Powerlink last year.
    As a condition of approval for the latest deals, at least 50 per cent of the new board members to be appointed to SP AusNet and SPIAA must be resident in Australia.
    SP AusNet, listed in Australia and Singapore, owns and operates elect…

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/business/china-gets-green-light-from-joe-hockey-for-5b-power-utility-buy-20131220-2zotj.html#ixzz2nzkwdyGW

    In 1994, a young Tony Abbott wrote a review of a book by an economist and a political scientist, Hugh Stretton and Lionel Orchard.
    It was the year in which Abbott was first elected to the Australian House of Representatives.
    It was also a decade since the float of the dollar.
    The review was well written. It dipped into economic and political theory, and took a swing at the idea we are all rational self-interested economic agents.
    But Abbott was not convinced the decision to switch to a floating exchange rate had been a wise one.
    ”The floating of the dollar remains an article of faith with the leadership of both main parties, notwithstanding its exceedingly dubious outcome for Australia,” he wrote.
    ”Changing the price of the dollar moment by moment in response to each transaction makes no more sense than altering the price of cornflakes every time a buyer takes a packet off the supermarket shelves.”
    The times were not broadly optimist…….

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/national/tony-abbott-wrote-20-years-ago-floating-dollar-didnt-make-sense-20131206-2ywpm.html#ixzz2nzlvKFKC

  56. Another work for the dole scheme.

    …….Green Army

    The Coalition aims to build an environmental workforce made up of 15,000 young people to undertake conservation projects.

    The “Green Army” will carry out projects such as re-vegetating sand dunes, cleaning up riverbanks, weed control and regenerating local parks.

    The workforce will work with and complement local groups such as Landcare, catchment authorities and councils.

    Projects will be tailored to local environmental priorities.

    Participants in the Green Army (initially only 17-24 year olds) will be paid a training allowance and the Government expects young people to gain valuable work skills from the group.

    The training received will count towards the requirements for a Certificate 1 or 2 in land management, park management, landscaping or horticulture.

    Full-time projects will run for up to 26 weeks in groups of 10 – nine participants and a supervisor.

    Teams will be given money to pay for equipment and materials needed to undertake a project.

    The program will begin in 2014-15 with 250 projects, which will be scaled up to 1,500 projects and a 15,000 strong workforce in 2018-19.

    It is expected to cost $50 million in its first year and then $300 million over a four-year period.

    What is the .


    Does not even seem to be planting trees yet.

    Soil sequestration seems to have disappeared. Not surprising, sconce a farmer pointed out to Hunt, it was not viable.

    So we are to have more dams in the Darling/Murray river system.

    Where does the money come from?????????????

    With CEF, we know. It comes from charging the big emitters, a charge on those emissions.

    It comes from general revenues, which Abbott seems to believe, comes out of thin air, not the taxpayers pocket.

  57. Fedup Sludge
    So typically you.
    Still miss my point – today 844,000 on Disability Pension , how many next month
    or in 6 months time. We have an ageing population means you may have to
    work till you are 75 to support the system.
    The wheels are falling off , too many people with their hand out.

  58. Voyager says this els where:

    “Can in this wonderful time of Christmas can we find something good to say?”

    Then immediately follows up with this:

    “Fedup Sludge.”


  59. @ VOYAGER – Brisbane – Sydney @ December 21, 2013 @ 7:36 am
    So your solution Voyager, is to caste them out on the street and starve to death because you want more money in your pocket. BRAVO! *slow clap*
    Is there not a depth you will not plunge to, in your race to serve your Master Mammon? No, I didn’t think so.

  60. Another misfact. It is Labor’s present scheme that delivers. Abbott’s is found wanting.

    …….The Treasurer is squinching the facts a little bit here. A 2009 Productivity Commission report into paid parental leave found hands-down that maternity leave schemes enhance productivity. But, and this is a big but, it found that the most expensive schemes do not sufficiently boost workforce participation by women.
    In other words, while maternity leave itself is a boost to productivity, Abbott’s particular scheme probably won’t be. The government would be better off making childcare more affordable, but instead the childcare rebate, which is not means-tested, is one of the tax perks that could get slaughtered…..

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/joe-hockey-gives-frank-analysis-but-remains-coy-about-budget-cuts-20131220-2zqpd.html#ixzz2o4AdeWj4

  61. So, people choose to be disabled. Could not the present work environment, have no place for many of these people.

    Does only the healthy, educated middle upper class have a right to the fruits of this society.

    I note, you mention those in a store, lining up to buy food. Do you realise they might be contributing to your shares or well being, by having the means to exist.

    I still believe in the notion of a civil society.

  62. No, when it comes to this government, I canot find anything good. If I could, I would cut and paste it.

    Now, I have not heard the visitors say anything good about this government either.

    It appears, they are still struck back in the past, with a Labor government that is long gone.

  63. Voyager, take the time to listen. Then maybe you better giver it a pass. as you are not interested in justice or a equitable society.

    You and I, are not playing on the same field.

  64. Fedup Sludge
    Quite simply the huge growth in Disability Pensions and the like is totally
    unsustainable. Already we have seen the pension age raised from 65 to 67-
    Please explain this one , but make it brief!
    The number of entities paying their way v payout to the above cannot
    continue at current rates. Australia does not have the money to do so.
    Christmas 2013 might be turkey but camp pie or bully beef in the future for

  65. Well as the pension age rises. one will see more on the disability list. Simple truth is that all are not in the same state of health, when they reach that age.

    This is especially true, for people who have relied on brawn to make a living.

    Same goes for jobs that require agility, both mental and physical. along with stressful jobs.

    Many others are willing to keep working, but find that employers by pass them every time, for people who are fitter.

  66. “The number of entities paying their way v payout to the above cannot
    continue at current rates. Australia does not have the money to do so.”

    This is nonsense at the most basic level Voyager, and I’m sure it’s been explained to you many times.

    That you seem incapable of “getting it” probably explains why you will always be a conservative.

    “Not all conservatives are stupid but most stupid people are conservative”

  67. Voyager/Tweed : Your ideas are verging on Eugenics. Do you at least recognize that we have a moral responsibility for those less fortunate than others or are they simply useless bottom feeders which should be exterminated?

  68. What concerns me, is the belief that those above retiring age, should be exempted from paying their fair swearer of taxes, no matter how wealthy they are.

    This was a Legacy left by Howard.

    Seems to be based on the belief, because they paid taxes all their lives, they are entitled to relieve something back, as they do not qualify for the pension.

    I do not see what age has to do, with paying ones fair share of taxes.

    Even the wealthy get good return on the taxes they pay during their lifetime.

    The first thing I would love to see go, is the Senior Card which most businesses proudly support, while at the same time, refusing to recognized the Pension Concession card.

    One you can get, long before retiring, regardless of income. The other, is strictly means tested.

    Business claim they will not recognise this card, as single mothers get it. Pointed out, mine has aged on it.

    This card was recognized widely, before Howard’s Seniors card was created.

    Yes, I can get the card. No, I will not, as I believe it creates am entitlement, that one does not have to pay their way, when reaching a certain age. As if this generation of taxpayers owe them.

    What I do, is not visited stores or business that do not recognise the Concession card. Does make it hard, when looking for a hairdresser.

    Income, not age should indicate what taxes one pays.

    Income, not age, should decide what concessions and rebates one gets from they government.

    All should be based on needs.

  69. PS. I am sure that most of our visitors, if old enough, use that card with enthusiasm, regardless of their income.

    The sense of entitlement in this day and age, will not be found among those on low income, but among them that can survive on their own.

    Labor did attempt to turn much of this around, but Abbott and Co are rapidly putting back in place, middle/upper income earners welfare.

    At the same time, to pay for i, they are cutting back benefits from those on low income, and high needs.

  70. It is not about not having the money. It is about what a government decides to spend, or better still invests the money in.

    We are still being held back, not by lack of money, within the country, but the structural imbalances bought about by Howard’as continuous tax cuts, mostly to higher income earners and big business.

    Cuts, given out of the mining bonanza, that did not last.

    Super profits gone, leading to a high dollar in it’s wake, destroying the rest of our manufacture industry.

    It is called investing in the future of this country,. If not, we will indeed be the poor white trash of Asia.

  71. We are still being held back, not by lack of money, within the country, but the structural imbalances bought about by Howard’as continuous tax cuts, mostly to higher income earners and big business.

    Actually, we’re being held back by “deficit hysteria”, a deeply ingrained but totally wrong belief that the government must “live within its means”.

    With unemployment steadily increasing it’s painfully obvious we are living well below our means.

    Here’s a link to a great video Edward Eastwood posted in The Abbott form of Social Engineering


  72. Seems the Media are on to the Unsustainability of Disability Pensions and their
    growth. At $800 per fortnight it is being plundered by too many.
    Quite simply abuses must be stopped Sludges. Time for fair play for those
    in genuine need .

  73. Please Voyager, and I already know you won’t put up mouth, give us the stats and data on all this rorting going on? You know simple things like percentages and amounts.

    Go back to Howard and Bishop the elder when they cracked down on this and see the outcome if you can’t think of places to look.

    You like most of the right on this, but most of all the decrepit and morally corrupt right wing media and shock jocks, bring this furphy up every time things are going well politically and you need a bashing post that is marginalised and can’t fight back. Other are asylum seekers and those on the dole.

    It’s always the weakest and most in need in society you pick on, being the cowardly bullies you are, and always couched in faux concern for their well being when in reality you couldn’t give a toss as long as it gets points for your side.

  74. Sorry that should be; “every time things are NOT going well politically.”

    Let’s face it, things are going woefully for Abbott and his followers and those who prop him up need every distraction they can find.

  75. At $800 per fortnight it is being plundered by too many.

    Apart from the curious non sequitur I wonder what “too many” is ?

    We know that $800 is “too much”.

    Clearly we need to cut the DSP and euthanase a few rorters to get back to “sustainability”.

    Actually, it’s bloody hard to rort the DSP but if corporate welfare is your thing (I’ll spare readers the list) welcome to wingnut heaven where you can fill up your boots.

  76. Exactly MJ. They are so predicable in their inane wingnuttery and trot out the same baseless nonsense over and over.

    Howard did the same thing, blaming the “bludgers” and “rorters” for the cuts he was engaging in, but Howard came undone by his own meanness.

    For starters we all know the only proven rorters to an extent greater than the so called bludgers are the Liberals and Nationals, even to the point of being caught out many refuse to step down or pay pack what they rorted, none greater than Abbott.

    So for a starter if Voyager was genuinely concerned about money being taken away from those who really need it he would be calling for Abbott to stand down and face criminal charges.

    In Howard’s case after promising a crackdown on welfare rorting, and putting Bishop the elder in charge of it, the result came back that a tiny percentage was being rorted out of a huge sum, and that to recover that tiny percentage would cost more than what was being rorted, so Howard quietly abandoned his promise.

    But most of all this claim of bludging and rorting is made against the most marginalised, notice they never attack big business and the wealthy who also rort the system, so as to use it as an excuse to make further cuts under the guise of helping them. As I stated earlier it’s also a distraction raised whenever the Liberals are doing badly.

  77. The media are falling in line re the disability question, as always the allegations have been repeated many times, going back decades.

    Funny, there is never any evidence, never any proof. just the gut feelings of many.

    Just the media, doing the bidding of this government and it’s backers.

    Same stories are out there, in regards to New Start. Bringing back mutual obligation,

    Anyone that has to apply for the Disability benefits, know how damn hard they are to get.

    Maybe, it little easier when one is approaching pension age, as a gap measure.

    MJ, agree completely, the debt or deficit hysteria is something this country can do without.

    Sadly, as it is all this government has, plus MRRT and the big toxic tax, is not going to go away.

    Can someone explain to me the meaning of sludge, and what does it say, when used on this page. Must mean something, as it is being used by a certain commenter, on every occasion he can.

  78. Can someone explain to me the meaning of sludge, and what does it say, when used on this page. Must mean something, as it is being used by a certain commenter, on every occasion he can.


    As usual when a wingnut makes an unfathomable slur or accusation against others, it’s more than likely to be Right-Wing Projection.

    The repetition of this particular slur almost guarantees it.

  79. Yes cuppa, their narrow minds come up with a single simplistic word or thing and they repeat it over and over thinking they’re clever, when it’s really the opposite. After all they have a great example to follow in a simplistic idiot that’s their leader.

  80. ME. the meaning on this occasion, eludes me.

    Could he mean, the sludge that is going to emerge with the many mining and other operations being approved whiteout consideration of the damage they could do to the environment.

    Yes, I do see plenty of sludge arising down the track.

    One for starters.

    “Kakadu haunted by toxic sludge”

    To the Jawoyn people of southern Kakadu, it is known as buladjang, or “sickness country” – pockets of land not fit for regular habitation.
    It was here, they believed, that the creation ancestor Bula ended his travels and left his spirit underground. Only recently have scientists found a correlation between mineral deposits such as uranium and the location of major Bula sites.
    The Ranger uranium mine, north of the Jawoyn, unleashed its own kind of sickness last Saturday when a leach tank burst, spilling 1 million litres of highly acidic uranium slurry that engulfed the mine and breached containment lines..


    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/environment/kakadu-haunted-by-toxic-sludge-20131213-2zcvp.html#ixzz2oC0l20IX

    Maybe it could come from the Palmer operations. Who knows.

    One thing for sure, when all regulations and protections are thrown over board, there will indeed be plenty of sludge.

  81. Can someone explain to me the meaning of sludge…

    I think it’s a bit like a ‘tic’ Fu 😉 As he turns his head, he hears a sloshing sound in his ears, and is compelled to say “sludge” in recognition of the thick, soft, wet viscous mixture of liquid and solid components that sits in the place most people have a brain 😆

  82. As the polls continue to move against the LNP we’ll see an increase in the sludge index.

    Our friend is an earlier harbinger.

  83. A 1/3 of Disability Pension receipiants claim mental health reasons.
    This has been the major growth area.
    Do any of you possibly smell a rat?
    Or do you just blindly payout.
    Sludges you are all naive or stupid and I’m sure you that you trat your own money
    with more respect.

  84. I call BULLSHIT voyager! We should just accept your mindless, made-up assertions, just because?

    How about you go away and don’t bother coming back until you can substantiate what you allege?

    By definition, your behaviour is that of a simple troll (with simple being the operative word) 👿

  85. Voyager, have you ever met anyone that suffers from mental health. Believe me, one is incapable of work.

    I take it, you believe that any psychological illness are in the mind of the suffer. Sorry, it is about a lot more, than being unhappy.

  86. Looking back over your comments Voyager I’d say you might be heading for some kind of breakdown yourself.

  87. MJ, if so, will be poetic justice. At least he will find out, how little control he has over his life.

    Now, today we have a Royal Commission, lead by a solitaire, experience in complaints settlement, to look into the decision making process of the Rudd government.

    If legitimate, will comae to the same conclusion as the previous eight inquiries, that Garrett was not responsible for the deaths.

    In fact, it will show, that Garrett put into place, new regulations, that made the retrospective installing of installation much safer.

    Abbott and his mob are setting precedents, that previous Coalition governments are going to curse him for.

    Abbott, once again, appears to have fallen for his own spin. One should never call for Royal Commission, unless one is sure of the outcome.

    Many over the years have delivered results, that was not expected by those that set them up.

    This one, in particular, seems to have been set up in haste.

  88. Back to the states. A great success. Not sure for whom.

    .The O’Farrell government has defended spending almost $100 million on a police insurance policy which returned less than $135,000 to injured officers.
    The Greens and Labor say the payment, part of a controversial Coalition policy to slash police compensation costs, has lined the pockets of one of Australia’s largest life insurance companies at the expense of frontline officers.
    But the government says its reforms are ”an unquestionable success” and the insurance deal is ”value for money”.
    John Robertson
    Said the reforms were “saving money at the expense of injured or traumatised police”: NSW Opposition Leader John Robertson. Photo: Ryan Osland
    The NSW Auditor-General’s latest report into law and order shows the government paid a $99.9 million premium to TAL last financial year, despite the insurer paying only $133,471 in claims..

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/nsw-the-premium-state-100-million-sum-for-a-133000-payout-20131222-2zt46.html#ixzz2oF1tvWH7

  89. It appears the appointment of Tim Wilson, was not a replacement, but a new position. Brandis has not given extra money for his wages, as is the norm.

    ……Tim Wilson’s appointment as human rights commissioner could lead to cuts to a program on school bullying as the Australian Human Rights Commission accommodates his six-figure salary without any extra funding from the government.
    The incoming human rights commissioner, who is due to take up his position in February, will be paid about $320,000 – a sum equal to that of his fellow commissioners, though less than the commission’s president, Gillian Triggs.
    On Sunday, Professor Triggs said Mr Wilson’s salary would have to come out of the commission’s annual budget of about $25 million.
    ”This really does squeeze the commission,” she said.
    Professor Triggs said she and the other commissioners would meet in January to decide where cuts would come from to make room for Mr Wilson’s salary but suggested an anti-bullying program and a program on education for older Australians might be in the firing line.
    She said that an inquiry into asylum seeker children held in detention would still go ahead.
    The commission had not anticipated it would have to pay Mr Wilson’s salary as new appointees usually came with extra federal government funding, a spokesman said. The commission also had no funding set aside for the position as it has recently been filled by commissioners also performing another r…………

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/national/tim-wilson-human-rights-commission-cuts-on-cards-after-george-brandis-appointment-20131222-2zt3l.html#ixzz2oF3GFzA9

  90. How could experience installers reputations be be affected, if they followed state health and safety regulations?

    ………The inquiry will also investigate the affect the program had on the reputation and profits of long-standing home insulation businesses.
    Heading the royal commission is barrister and commercial dispute resolution practitioner Ian Hanger, QC.
    Mr Hanger has until June 30 next year to provide a report of his findings and recommendations..


  91. Hey Sludges the Disability Pension number has increased by 20%
    in the last decade . Remarkable growth and growing as we speak.
    You make feeble excuses for abusers, I do not walk away from those
    with a genuine need.

  92. Voyager as we age our bodies and minds can wear out, it is not surprising that the DP figures have risen as the older folk are now living longer. 20 years ago people died around 65 so it was expected that once retired they would only draw the pension for a few years, not like nowadays, when the pension can be drawn for 25 years plus. It is also not surprising that mental illness has increased over the past 10 years as life is more stressful now than ever in the past. So you think you could live on $400 a week, even without having to pay rent, this is borderline poverty.

    Work out your own bills and you will see that in order to cover gas, electricity, water, telephone, rates, car and home insurance, registration, one needs at least $200 a week. And this is based on the lowest estimates of around $30 per week for these services. So this only leaves $200 for rent and food.


  93. Hey Sludges

    Stop moving your head around voyager – that should stop that annoying sound in your ears 😆

    Disability Pension number has increased by 20% in the last decade

    Link? Context? Of course not – just right-whinge hyperbole 🙄

  94. It is very instructive to compare the approaches of Labor and CONservative administrations to Disability Support Programs.

    Labor seeks to enable disabled persons towards a better life – assisting those who can work to be able to do so.

    CONservatives seek to punish those receiving benefits for being disabled…

  95. Voyager post facts and sources, please he’s a mouthy right winger and lives in an alternate reality where real facts and honesty are an anathema but lies and distortions by the right are facts.

    Lot’s of data here to crunch through in just one source of many I found: Statistical Paper No. 10 – pdf – Department of Social Services (pdf)

    I suppose if you take certain groups and types you can get whatever percentage increase you want.

    The number of DSP customers has been steadily increasing. In 1991, when the Disability Support Pension replaced the Invalid Pension, Sheltered Employment Allowances and Rehabilitation Allowance as part of the Disability Reform Package, the number of customers was 334 234. The average annual growth since 1991 has been 4.4 per cent.

    The total proportion of those on a disability pension to the working age population is around 5%.

  96. the Disability Pension number has increased by 20% in the last decade

    The number of people in the population aged 50-65 has increased 27.9% in the last decade.

    See, I can post meaningless, out of context figures too voyager – difference is, I can substantiate mine from reputable sources 😉 (In this case, the ABS rather than from Jones, Hadley, Pickering, Akerman, The Daily Terror or Bolt).

  97. What do the right wingers think of Abbott’s latest broken promise, and why aren’t they speaking out against all his previous ones and his lies, after all they were strident on claiming broken promises and lies by the previous government that were mostly beatups, but are now mute on a constant string of real broken promises and lies by Abbott.

    Surely they are not tacitly admitting they’re hypocrites?

  98. What the so called Pink Batts fiasco showed up, was not government incompetence but the perilous and dangerous places our roof cavities are.

    Also the state of our electricity laws that allow dangerous down lights to be installed. Pink Batt’s themselves cannot catch alight.

    Yes, we do have safety switches, but generally only for power, not lighting. Time for it to be compulsory for all homes and all buildings to be fitted with safety switches, that turns off all power, when danger presents itself.

    Many enter this space for many reasons.

    Installing Pink Batts in itself, is mainly commonsense. Should not need any great training. Have done it myself.

    They were establish firms, that have work in the field for many years, that employed those young men. They were employers that should have known better.

    In fact, I believe they all worked in the electrical trade.

    I know, it was two young electricians, that installed the batts in my roof.

  99. By the way, they did not turn off the power. To make it worse, I have down lights, and a steel framed house.

  100. Neither a spokesman for the Health Funds, or Minister Dutton available to comment on the biggest rise in fees since 2005.

    No negotiation period either. Seems they ask, and Dutton obliged.

  101. This Royal Commission can, and I suspect will take on a life of it’s own.

    If it goes Abbott’s way, he will finding himself paying out big money to the installers.

    Many, along with their lawyers, filled that court today.

    If Labor and the unions win, there will be new regulations and laws that protect the worker.

    ….CTU assistant secretary Michael Borowick said the inquiry’s sole focus should be worker safety.
    ”The community has no appetite for a costly political witch hunt at the expense of constructive outcomes on safety for workers,” he said on Monday.
    ”The ACTU calls on the Royal Commission to recommend the introduction of industrial manslaughter legislation, tougher penalties for employers that breach existing legislation and increased resources for regulators.”
    He believes industrial manslaughter laws – making it a crime when an employer’s action or inaction causes a worker’s death – could change community attitudes to reckless negligence in workplaces.
    Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has also written to the government asking that the royal commission focus on workplace safety.
    The first Royal Commission hearing is to open in Brisbane on December 23. Former government staff and ministers are expected to be called.
    Deaths arising from Labor’s home insulation scheme:
    • October 14, 2009: Matthew Fuller, 25, is electrocuted laying insulation sheeting in the ceiling cavity of a house in Meadowbrook (Qld). He had started work with company 12 days earlier.
    • November 18, 2009: Rueben Barnes, 16, electrocuted laying batts in the ceiling cavity of a house at Stanwell (Qld). He had started with the company 21 days earlier.
    • November 21, 2009: Marcus Wilson, 19, dies from hyperthermia complications after installing batts in a St Clair (NSW) home in 40 degree heat.
    • February 4, 2010: Mitchell Sweeney, 22, is electrocuted laying insulation sheeting in the ceiling cavity of a home at Millaa Millaa (Qld). He had started at a new company a week earlier..

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/commission-begins-into-insulation-deaths-20131222-2zsw5.html#ixzz2oHwgI3Jn

  102. More than a century ago a Polish economist/statistician made a name for himself predicting the number of cavalry soldiers that would die as a result of being kicked by their horses over a 20 year period.


    Double the number of horses, or houses, and you can expect utterly predictable consequences.

    Not much comfort for the families of those who died, but a reality check for those seeking to make some warped kind of political mileage from their grief.

  103. “As interesting as the urgent emergence of these problems under Labor was their previous neglect. Insulation-related fires and electrocutions had been beneath the public radar for a long time, probably decades, and they only received news attention because of the political conflict surrounding the government’s scheme. The beguiling narrative of government blame and total failure owes quite a bit to a media that pursues controversies with little curiosity about history and a defiant innumeracy that treats every event as unique, and in the process presents a lop-sided causality and simplistic moral absolutism.”

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