A Fig for Contempt!

Urban Wronski, with his *ahem* urbane take on the state of the rabble, is today’s Guest Poster. As always, thank you from The Pub, and please drop in for a drink soon!

Photo credit: Fairfax

Turnbull government in crisis as ministers face contempt charges and Abbott stages a revolt over Finkel

A life-threatening political and constitutional crisis is brewing for the Turnbull government this week as three Ministers of the Crown face contempt proceedings in Victoria’s Supreme Court.

No big deal; just a politically motivated, orchestrated attack on judges for being hard left activists who are soft on terror, while, off Broadway, the Coalition’s out of court settlement of a class action on behalf of all those it detains illegally on Manus Island blows the lid off its regime of secrecy, cruelty and denial of responsibility in a week where federal government with economic management in its DNA racks up a record debt of over half a trillion dollars.

Adding fat to the fire, Shadow Attorney General Mark Dreyfus QC calls on Malcolm Turnbull to explain why he publicly backed Health Minister Greg Hunt, Minister for Social Services, Robo-Claw and the War on the Poor, Alan Tudge and invisible assistant treasurer, Michael Sukkar.

Dreyfus demands Turnbull explain why, the day before last Friday’s court hearing, the Prime Minister “backed in his ministers’ comments, on 3AW, despite knowing this matter was before the court the following day”.

Helpfully he notes the court proceedings could have “potentially serious” results. “It is incumbent on the Prime Minister to explain why he thought it was a good idea to validate the criticisms.”

Turnbull waffles “… in a free society a person is entitled to criticise the conduct of the courts or of a judge,” but this diminishes a concerted attack by three of his cabinet ministers on judges over an appeal which was still sub judice and, therefore, prohibited from public discussion.

Criticising conduct might, at a stretch, include the lads’ orchestrated slagging off at judges for being “hard-left activists”, “divorced from reality,” and conducting an “ideological experiment”

It might still have to contend with the judges’ view that the comments were “unfounded, grossly improper and unfair”, but Turnbull’s gloss cannot, surely, accommodate Michael Sukkar’s slur?

“It’s the attitude of judges like these which has eroded any trust that remained in our legal system …”

It’s all part of an action packed week of diversion, denial and disinformation. Oh my, Gonski 2.0 will rip $ 4.6 billion from Catholic Schools. But, look over here. Someone’s thrown a dead moggy.

“We’ve got a judiciary that takes the side of the so-called victim rather than the side of common sense,” suppository of nonsense, Tony Abbott pipes up, helpfully, articulating the Trumpish contempt for the rule of law that features in the Coalition’s approach to government this week.

Bugger the humdrum stuff of responsible government when lads can play politics instead.

Best Crosby (dead cat on the table diversion) goes to Peter Dutton’s secret citizenship test, a solution dog-whistling a problem, which is finally revealed to include a written English language test in a nostalgic bid for the official bigotry of White Australia. Anyone can become a citizen provided he or she has a university level of written language proficiency. And if Dutton says so.

No matter that Australia has no official language. It’ll help keep the Muslims down.

Illiteracy and innumeracy or cultural ignorance have seldom held back any conservative politician, while proposed changes to the law will set up the former Drug Squad detective, an acclaimed model of fairness and openness as final arbiter. He’ll get to decide who becomes a citizen and who’ll be deported. The bill gives Dutton the power to overrule decisions of the AAT.

Creating broad executive powers with minimal review undermines the rule of law, ironically, said to be one of the fundamental values which underpin Australian citizenship, writes Sangeetha Pillai, Senior Research Associate, Andrew & Renata Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law, UNSW Law School, UNSW. Clearly, she fails to appreciate Dutton’s value to the PM.

More changes, in fact, are afoot to increase Benito Dutton’s arbitrary power by bestowing upon him a Homeland Security Department, merging several government outfits such as the AFP and ASIO in our fight against terrorism as the price of Dutto’s loyalty to Turnbull in the climate wars.

News comes this week, however, that the US style mega-department model which incorporates intelligence, police and security agencies is out of favour with the PM who now favours something akin to the bijou British Home Office, whose recent brilliant success in preventing terror, safeguarding citizens and accounting for lives lost in an entirely preventable fire in a high-rise building is matched only by its success in breaking up families in the name of immigration.

Happily, the government has far too much on its plate at present and the decision can safely wait until December when it can be announced when everyone is on holiday. Unlike the despatching of junkyard Abbott who goes barking, frothing mad over Finkel and demands urgent attention.

“Go fuck yourself” Abbott tells Craig Laundy. It’s an “ugly” bust-up, Liberal MPs report, in a three-hour session held Wednesday. All of Finkel is reduced to how we need to keep coal at any cost. Besides, coal is OK now. It’s clean and there’s carbon capture and storage. Low emission coal.

It’s clear this week that if the boys have read Finkel they have not understood a word. The discussion of the blueprint becomes an excuse to air the same stale platitudes and lies. Renewables are too expensive. We will always need coal because it’s cheap and reliable.

Reductive? Utterly deluded? Never. It’s all part of the cut and thrust of the Coalition’s richly democratic, inclusive joint party room; the fabled broad church, where any member can howl another down. It’s Liberal individualism. Abbott’s tantrum will foster party unity and goodwill.

Laundy tries to speak. Abbott prevents him by repeatedly interjecting. A slanging match ensues which leads to chaos. Government hacks speed to brief the Press gallery how it’s just a vital exercise in democracy. The Finkel fracas degenerates into another Turnbull proxy war on Abbott.

There, there, Tony don’t hold yourself back. Tell us how you really feel. Really? Never mind.

It’s enough to get any boy band back on the road. Cap’n Abbott and the Carbonistas, a gospel rock revival group are all over Canberra airwaves this week. The boys reprise “gimme that coal-time religion” a toe-tapping gospel hymn of praise to blind faith in a toxic black rock as the nation’s true salvation while still maintaining their trademark grievance and sense of entitlement.

Dr Finkel has winkled out Malcolm Turnbull’s opponents en masse in what may be another crafty manoeuvre in our wily PM’s crafty plan to establish his leadership over Tony Abbott. Whatever his plan, the “sensible centre” is rendered insensible all week by Old King Coal and his chorus.

What is too silly to be said can be sung, Voltaire once observed, but even he did not foresee the Coalition’s holy coalers, its mad right-wing. All croon such complete nonsense in response to Finkel, a fudged blueprint for the future that ignores new technologies and cheaper renewables, that they reveal a damning incapacity to engage in any responsible, rational or informed debate.

Cult claims, moreover, show breathtaking levels of wilful ignorance and brazen deception. Just one example will suffice.

“Coal is by far the cheapest form of base load power,” Abbott cons 2GB listeners on Wednesday, recycling Peabody fossil-fuel propaganda. The problem is not base load but peak load but Abbott wouldn’t know the difference. Nor does he seem to know that even Finkel concedes networked renewables are more than capable of supplying cheap, reliable base-load power.

As for cheap, experts forecast a doubling in electricity prices if new coal-fired stations are built while coal is no longer seen as a form of base load even in China.

Last year China’s State Grid’s R&D chief Huang Han dismissed coal’s claim to be an indispensable source of “base load” generation. As the network operator builds out its clean power sources, coal-fired generators could only serve as “reserve power” to supplement renewables.

Incapable of little more than sloganeering, the vacuous Abbott’s role in the climate wars is to set a back-marker in our national conversation. After decades of paralysing, time-wasting “debate” the government can then achieve a compromise; build a few coal-fired power stations itself. The media is full of constructive suggestion on how the politics should be taken out of energy.

Both sides need to come to a sensible compromise; adopt at least half of government idiocy?

Coal? As even a failed former Health Minister, impossibly indulged by his crafty mentor John Howard, Abbott should know, coal poses one of the most significant health issues of our time.

While mining, transport and burning must be included in any cost calculation, coal imposes an incalculable cost on the health and well-being of those whose lives are affected, if not ruined by pollution, economic losses and environment damage to water sources, land and food production.

No-one on Coalition megaphone 2GB will challenge Abbott’s blatant lies but they could also point to huge costs in climate change and extreme weather events caused by coal burning.

Cheapest? Costs of coal are soaring across the globe. All published studies indicate that the true cost of coal is much greater than the market price. There’s complete consensus. Coal is crap, Tony.

Energy ministers and other coal lobby lackeys typically pretend coal is cheap. Yet its real costs are passed on to the long-term budgets of other departments. Even our Chief Scientist admits this.

In a Senate estimates hearing at the start of the month, Alan Finkel noted: “The actual cost of bringing on new coal in this country per megawatt-hour is projected to be substantially more expensive than the cost of bringing on wind or solar.”

Abbott has not read Alan Finkel’s work. Nor will he. His mind is made up. He and Russell Broadbent are convinced, moreover, that any emissions-lowering policy will boost power prices.

Abbott and his Carbonistas show a Malcolm Roberts’ level of scepticism on climate change.

When Senator Roberts asked if it were a scientist’s role to be sceptical, Alan Finkel replied: “All the scientists I know have a healthy degree of scepticism, but healthy is an important word there.

“You have to have an open mind, but not so open your brain leaks out.”

Doing the coal lobby’s bidding involves a type of lobotomy but the Coalition has been at it for some time. Denying reality in climate change is another proud tradition which goes back to St John Howard who squandered the entire proceeds of a mineral boom while weaseling out of any real responsibility for the environment or climate. It’s never been serious about either.

Half of Alan Finkel’s panel may be well be power corporation representatives but pandering to vested interests in energy is a long-term trend for us. In 1997 we took an industry lobby to negotiate Kyoto. As Sarah Gill notes we “comprehensively cheesed off” the European Union by demanding a free ride and, after almost derailing consensus, we refused to ratify Kyoto after all.

Gill makes the case we out-Trumped Trump in dodgy deals on climate change. Kyoto was set up for nations to agree to reduce emissions yet Australia secured permission to increase them by eight per cent. By including emissions from land clearing, we were able to inflate our 1990 baseline by 30% which made our 2012 target impossible to miss.

Direct Action dweeb Greg Hunt was fond of crowing about how we’d meet or beat our target, which amounted to 0.5% of our 1990 emissions yet our absolute emissions are rising. In 2020 they will be higher than they were in 2000. How’s that for emission reduction?

Greg’s Direct Action scam doesn’t get much airplay these days and Greg’s been shunted sideways to Health where he’s got us all on side with his declaration of love for private health insurance and how we could learn a lot from the US Health system. We’ll all heed his warning, too, on how the recent Senate easing of rules for medicinal cannabis for terminally ill patients could be fatal.

Yet Greg has voiced no regret at wasting $2.23 billion on a scheme that paid beneficiaries to plant trees that may have been planted anyway while relaxed land clearing laws in NSW and Queensland wiped out any of the gains. No apology. We understand. Taking cheap potshots at the judiciary would make big demands on your time. In the meantime, emissions continue.

As Reputex reported, last year, “the rate of annual emissions growth continues to outpace credits contracted by the [fund].” In other words, DA did less than sweet bugger all to stop polluters.

“This growth is driven by Australia’s largest emitting companies, which have … not participated in the [fund] due to the voluntary nature of the scheme, and the large up-front costs.”

Always careful with expenditure and a stickler for accountability, Captain Kangaroo, Peter Dutton, meanwhile joins Tony Abbott in continuing his government’s attack on the legal system over the momentous decision to award $70 million damages plus $20 million legal costs to 1905 Manus Island detainees in an out of court settlement this week.

Slater and Gordon, Dutton says are “ambulance-chasers”. Labor lawyers.

Abbott madly attacks the presiding judges, for siding with the victims despite the settlement being negotiated between the government’s and plaintiff’s lawyers. Dutton is in denial.

It’s no admission of liability, he claims. Rather, in the parallel universe he and his government inhabit, it is a “prudent outcome”. Certainly, it averts a six-month damages trial in which the Commonwealth and its contractors would be accused of negligence and false imprisonment.

In the real world, however, it is a momentous decision and a landmark admission of liability which blows the whistle on years of Coalition pretence that Australia’s offshore detention is the responsibility of the nations hosting our camps. It also provides direct refutation of government claims that detainees were well looked after.

Mr Kamasaee, a 35-year-old Iranian, who needed treatment for severe burns he suffered as s child, described his experience as degrading and cruel.

“I came to Australia seeking peace, but I was sent to Manus, which was hell,” he said. “Every day in the harsh sun, my skin felt like it was on fire. I was in pain every minute of every day … I cried every night until I had nothing left.

“This case is not just about me, it is about everyone who has been trapped on Manus Island. Our voices have never been listened to, but today we are finally being heard.”

No compensation can make up for the torture endured by the men on Manus. Now that the legal fiction that they are not Australia’s responsibility has been destroyed, the men should be brought to Australia immediately. PNG warns that it will close the centre permanently 31 October.

Dutton ought to resign immediately for failing his duty of care while the government needs to abandon its secrecy and explain clearly what it intends to do after the centre is closed. As in so many areas of this chaotic government, the plan seems to be to wait and see what turns up.

Backward-looking, ever desperate for evasion and diversion, the Turnbull government is beset with a series of crises. There’s more to it than nostalgia or simple coal-lust. A retreat into the past is the only option for a Coalition government caught with no policy, let alone an environment or energy policy.

It has relied instead on populist posturing on border protection and punitive detention in a regime of secrecy, unaccountability, evasion and bare-faced denial – and it has been caught out.

Time to face the music. Instead, a battle of the bands erupts as the Point Piper Set amps up its catchy Blueprint for the Future: Independent Review into the Future Security of the National Electricity Market, a concerto fantasy for two conductors in homage to Philip Glass, another innovator, whose music some find challenging because it doesn’t go anywhere.

The Turnbull government’s bastardised Blueprint for a world class electricity system, widely reviled by Carbonistas everywhere as The Finkel Review may fail to provide a political road map to allow an endangered coalition a safe exit from an energy policy highway as intended but it is to be praised at least for highlighting a terminally conflicted and out of touch government devoid of ideas or real plans hell-bent on substituting politicking for policy.

Serious questions are raised over Turnbull’s lack of leadership, finally, in his endorsement of his three ministers’ extraordinary, co-ordinated political attack on the Victorian judiciary. Any democratically-elected government which sets itself above the law; which fails to respect the separation of powers between the judiciary and the parliament forfeits its legitimacy.

There’s a better than even chance, according to some experts that Hunt, Tudge and Sukkar may help it out of its misery.

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639 thoughts on “A Fig for Contempt!

  1. Section 3 . . .

    And in more IR news the union representing electrical and communications workers has launched a legal challenge against a key element of the Turnbull government’s controversial building and construction laws.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/court-challenge-launched-against-turnbull-governments-building-code-20170618-gwtdaf.html
    Adrian Piccoli asks Labor and the Greens to “return the favour” and support Gonski 2.0.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/i-want-the-favour-returned-adrian-piccoli-urges-labor-greens-to-back-gonski-20-20170617-gwt7o9.html
    Jess Irvine challenges the men in boardrooms to loosen up and recognise the talent of women.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/its-time-for-femalefree-boards-to-be-fully-extinct-20170617-gwtbdv.html
    Nervous politicians are running a mile from activities around the parliamentary press gallery’s Midwinter Ball, in the latest fallout from Nine Network veteran ¬Laurie Oakes ’s leaking of ¬ Malcolm Turnbull ’s supposedly off-the-¬record speech. Google.
    /business/media/media-diary/hunt-for-oakes-deep-throat-deepens-as-nervous-pollies-fear-ballsup/news-story/68855f6135b2dc7d426ed5b6179f6605
    State government policies on renewable energy and “mindless moratoriums” on gas fields will be discussed at an energy ministers’ meeting as the Turnbull government tries to shift the blame for rising power prices. This is going to be a cracker of a meeting!
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/mindless-state-government-policies-to-blame-for-rising-power-prices-frydenberg-20170618-gwtckn.html
    This professor of economics pans Finkel in a big way! Google.
    /business/mining-energy/finkel-numbers-dont-add-up/news-story/6ccc0f3fc6ed4ce67dd58037e4d70eec
    The Finkel Report is not only too accommodating of the Coalition’s coal fetish, as Ben Eltham points out. It’s also too conservative from an engineering perspective because it’s constructed around a 1960s model of electricity supply, writes Ian McAuley.
    https://newmatilda.com/2017/06/18/the-finkel-report-back-to-the-future-and-the-1960s/
    Peter Dutton is terrorising, and plans to send to almost certain death, a critically ill 73 year-old who has lived in Australia for 32 years and is beloved by his remote North Queensland community.
    https://independentaustralia.net/australia/australia-display/exclusive-heartless-peter-dutton-terrorises-73-year-old-community-leader,10415
    The CPA’s “board of cronies” is about to be sued, plunging the CPA deeper and deeper into paralysis. Google.
    /business/accounting/rebels-to-sue-cpa-australia-board-of-alex-malley-cronies-20170618-gwtbv5

  2. Section 4 . . .

    Amanda Vanstone writes that we should demand better from our politicians – and ourselves.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/we-should-demand-better-of-our-politicians-20170617-gwt1x4.html
    Adele Ferguson explains that the car leasing giant McMillan Shakespeare is to be hit with an $80 million class action alleging unfair and unconscionable conduct and misleading and deceptive conduct in its extended car warranty business NWC. Google.
    /opinion/mcmillan-shakespeare-hit-with-80-million-class-action-20170618-gwtesr
    The NSW Organised Crime Squad has had some good success here by nailing an unlikely lady for extensive money laundering for criminals.
    http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/the-godmother-300000-and-a-neutral-bay-apartment-inside-a-money-laundering-ring-20170609-gwo7aa.html
    Down in the engine room the Turnbull Government has hit the booster on the “Bullshitron” writes Mike Dowson.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/whatever-happened-to-the-budget,10412
    Seven West gives the rather manly-looking Roberta Williams $100000 for stuff to be shown on A Current Affair and the cops are far from impressed!
    http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/seven-west-paid-roberta-williams-100000-for-carl-williams-diaries-tv-appearance-20170618-gwthvm.html
    The Washington Post is confused over whether or not Trump is being personally investigated over ties to Russia.
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/is-donald-trump-under-investigation-trump-says-yes-his-lawyer-says-no-20170618-gwto4r.html

  3. Section 5 . . . Cartoon Corner

    Matt Golding’s take on security concerns.

    This one from Matt Golding is a classic!

    Broelman uses some Muppets characters to highlight Turnbull’s problems.

    David Rowe with Gina and her toy boy.

    From Johannes Lean in The Australian. Any relation to Bill?
    http://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/6ef862b8bf507e186b44d182fd751a11?width=650
    Jon Kudelka with a Gonski quiz.
    http://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/3b09a5943881fb7de4c7b57b5fbfee47
    Civility in America.

  4. The first two sections of the Dawn Patrol were swallowed up so let’s try again.

    Good morning Dawn Patrollers

    David Crowe in The Australian writes that the Coalition is struggling to climb out of a dangerous slump after trying to win back voters on school funding and energy prices, with the government trailing Labor by 47 to 53 per cent in two-party terms. Google.
    /national-affairs/newspoll/newspoll-turnbull-fails-to-turn-corner-with-power-battle/news-story/79ce414773ab471673e3cf1e1935f1f6
    More exposure of Chinse influence in politics in Australia. This time with a NSW Labor MP.
    http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/labor-mp-filed-documents-for-billionaire-alp-donors-chinese-business-association-20170618-gwtg5b.html
    Investigative journalist Michael West writes “As billions in black money from China continues to flood into property markets, the global Financial Action Task Force has put Australia on a watch-list for failing to comply with money laundering and terrorism financing reforms. Canberra has been dragging the chain for nine years while the powerful lawyers, accountants and real estate lobby groups keep successive governments mired in a consultation process.”
    https://www.michaelwest.com.au/australia-on-watch-list-as-china-billions-pour-into-property/
    Outspoken retail billionaire Gerry Harvey says the market has overestimated how quickly Amazon could get land in Australia, and start delivering quickly. Could these turn out to be famous last words?
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/retail/gerry-harvey-says-amazon-expansion-will-be-slower-than-expected-20170602-gwj7dg.html

  5. Section 1b . . .

    Coalition Ministers have all gone to ground when it comes to defending the Three Stooges.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/turnbull-ministers-silent-as-hinch-backs-trios-court-attack-20170618-gwtcmm.html
    Through Mark Dreyfus Labor is pursuing Malcolm Turnbull over comments he made last week endorsing criticism of the Victorian judiciary by three of his ministers – interventions which have now exposed them to contempt charges.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/jun/18/turnbull-must-explain-comments-endorsing-ministers-criticism-of-judiciary-says-labor
    Urban Wonski says that a life-threatening political and constitutional crisis is brewing for the Turnbull government this week as three Ministers of the Crown face contempt proceedings in Victoria’s Supreme Court.
    https://urbanwronski.com/2017/06/18/turnbull-government-in-crisis-as-ministers-face-contempt-charges-and-abbott-stages-a-revolt-over-finkel/
    The type of cladding used on London’s Grenfell Tower is banned in the UK, the US and Europe, a top-ranking British official admitted yesterday. Jail terms will be served I would now expect.
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/grenfell-tower-fire-government-minister-admits-cladding-was-banned-in-the-uk-20170618-gwtodn.html
    Bill Shorten is calling for an urgent parliamentary hearing into the cladding material used in Australian buildings after London’s deadly Grenfell Tower fire. The Opposition Leader believes a Senate committee inquiry into non-conforming building products should broaden its scope after the high-rise tragedy that has killed at least 58 people and put many dozens more in hospital.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/bill-shorten-pushes-for-cladding-inquiry-after-grenfell-tower-fire-20170618-gwtfk7.html

  6. Section 2a . . .

    Grenfell protesters are right. Regulations do save lives.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jun/18/brexit-europe-eu-golden-decade-merkel-macron
    The vast majority of Australians say the world is becoming more hazardous and their confidence that America will play a constructive role in global affairs has plummeted since Donald Trump became president.
    http://www.smh.com.au/national/nine-in-10-australians-agree-the-world-has-become-more-dangerous-20170618-gwtgyk.html
    Tom Switzer defends Trump from accusations of being a fascist by saying no he’s not – he’s an incompetent oscillator!
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/donald-trump-is-just-an-incompetent-oscillator-not-a-fascist-20170617-gwtba6.html
    The judiciary, legislative and media have all helped keep Trump in check. But it’s the residents of the United States whose response will matter most in the end. How to deal the final blow.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jun/18/resistance-victories-trump-mounting-final-blow
    Meanwhile Trump is reportedly so incensed at claims he is being investigated for obstructing justice in the Russia election probe that he has started screaming at television sets in the White House.
    http://thenewdaily.com.au/news/world/2017/06/18/donald-trump-yelling-tv/

  7. Section 2b . . .

    The French president Emmanuel Macron’s new centrist movement has won a large majority in the French parliament, according to the first official results. It looks like he’ll get 355 of the 577 seats.
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jun/18/emmanuel-macron-marches-on-majority-french-parliament
    Merkel and Macron are planning for a ‘golden decade’ and won’t let Brexit negotiations derail them.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jun/18/brexit-europe-eu-golden-decade-merkel-macron
    Michelle Grattan wonders whether the Greens’ education spokesperson Sarah Hanson-Young will let teachers’ unions bully er party over school funding.
    https://theconversation.com/will-the-greens-let-the-teachers-union-bully-them-over-schools-funding-79645
    Australia’s largest privately owned cold storage company has been stopped from transferring workers to a new labour-hire company to avoid negotiating a fresh enterprise agreement. Shades of the old Patricks Stevedores conflict here.
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/workplace-relations/cold-storage-company-blocked-from-locking-workers-out-of-bargaining-20170529-gwfdq6.html

  8. The Oz says Fizza has tried to win back voters with energy prices.

    Pfffft! to that.

    ‘Energy prices’ is a real loser. Fizza waffles on about prices falling, but anyone who has to pay their household bills knows they just keep going up. NSW consumers will have to find the money to pay for 20% price rises coming in on 1 July. No-one has made any definite promise on lower prices, it’s all pie-in-the-sky nonsense. “Trust us and we will fix it”. Yeah, sure …..

    We’ve heard these phoney price cut lies before, from Abbott. We are still waiting for that $600 (or was it $800) cheque/price cut/gift from Santa that Abbott promised would arrive when he ‘axed the tax’. Instead prices went up, as they have every year since then. Do they really thiink we are all dumb enough to fall for that rubbish again?

    And the bastards want to cut the lousy little clean energy supplement, worth a meagre $14 maximum a fortnight from pensions and welfare payments!!!!!! This puts the most disadvantaged further behind. A $350 power bill every quarter might not sound like much to those who pay much bigger family-size bills and are on an average wage or better. To a pensioner or someone on DSP or Newstart or a sole parent existing on family payments it’s a huge problem. Once you pay the rent and the power bill you have next to nothing left to buy food, put petrol in the car (if you can afford one) or pay your other living expenses.

    How is all this supposed to give Fizza a poll boost?

  9. Jonathan Pie’s latest, an angry reaction to the Grenfell disaster. So much of this applies to Australia as well.

  10. Saw a comment elsewhere that sums up what the leaders did about the Grenfell Tower.

    Theresa May: I can’t visit the Grenfell Tower Fire survivors because security something something!!!

    Queen Elizabeth II: Hold my crown.

    • Why would a cafe owner need a 457 worker anyway? Since when has there been a shortage of Australians willing to work in cafes? These visas must be handed out like packets of Smarties.

      I suppose I know the answer. it’s better to import staff who will have no understanding of Australian work conditions and can easily be exploited, rather than employ an Australian who is going to demand an award wage and won’t be easily conned.

  11. I have been watching the ABC news about the ‘incident’ in London where a ‘car collided with’ the crowd coming out of a mosque. ‘The car ‘ drove into the crowd. The man was arrested at the scene and is being assessed for mental health issues. One person has died (passive voice) and it seems to be after a collapse from a health condition.: People were helping him when the car (wtf, did it not have a driver?) ran over him crushing him and entangling a helper in its wheel badly injuring the young man. (It was timed for when the people were leaving the mosque btw)

    And now it is a officially a ‘counter-terrorism’ incident. The announcer said it was now a ‘terrorism’ incident but the spokesman for the police? quickly corrected that to a ‘counter-terrorism’ investigation.

    A bystander being interviewed said the driver (wow the van had a driver? I thought the van did it all.) said it was a white male who yelled’ Kill me I want to kill all Muslims ‘

  12. And so it came to pass

    Q: Will the Prime Minister now commit to work with Labor in the national interest to end the policy paralysis which continues to mean higher electricity prices for all Australians?

    A: Increased power prices is all Labor’s fault

    Q: Why is the government cutting the pensioner energy supplements and giving millionaires a tax cut?

    A: Labor banked the savings from the energy supplement

    Q: This document from the PMO confirms a $22bn cut from schools, why is the government giving millionaires a tax cut in 12 days time?

    A: You used to support needs-based funding. Turnbull quotes Ken Boston, Gonski panellist. Someone on Labor’s frontbench suggests something less than flattering about Boston. Fizza babbles on about Renaissance Papacy (the Inquisition)

    Q: Plibersek asks about school funding cuts, for disabled students.

    A: Labor lies.

    Q: When will the PM admit his cuts to Catholic schools threaten choices?

    A: Labor lies.

    Q: Will the Prime Minister now admit to the Australian people, and every member of this House, that he’s cutting funds to Catholic schools?

    A: Labor lies (and this little gem from Josh The member for Scullin may be interested to know that, under the Turnbull government’s plan, there are 46 seats…ah schools…)

    Q: Media reports state that the Parliamentary Budget Office has confirmed that the Government’s cutting $3.1bn from Catholic schools. The Department of Education data shows the government is cutting $4.6bn from Catholic schools.

    A: https://youtu.be/K8E_zMLCRNg

    Q: It’s reported that 151 public schools in the Northern Territory will have their funding cut because of claims by your Government that they are over-funded. Prime Minister, is that correct?

    A: Let me cherry-pick a school or two in the NT.

    Q: How is it fair that this Prime Minister is cutting $22 billion from schools at the same time he’s giving millionaires a tax cut?

    A: There’s all this extra money we’re giving to education.

    Q: How is it fair or needs-based that the Prime Minister is cutting $846 million from public schools in New South Wales over the next two years alone, but is giving the elite Kings School an extra $19 million over the next 10 years?

    A: Piccoli loves Gonski 2.0.

    • What Piccoli ‘loves’ or thinks is irrelevant. He’s now a mere NSW backbencher and his opinions don’t count.

      Maybe Fizza doesn’t know ……..

  13. Kathy Jackson gets an additional 94 charges, making a grand total of 164 current charges.

    She also got told off for attempting to wander off to the loo during her court appearance without first asking permission.

    Jackson told off for loo trip during court
    https://au.news.yahoo.com/vic/a/36041435/kathy-jackson-back-in-court-over-hsu-funds/#page1

    Former union leader Kathy Jackson faces 164 criminal charges
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/workplace-relations/former-union-leader-kathy-jackson-faces-164-criminal-charges-20170619-gwtzlj.html

  14. Q&A
    Monday 19th June at 9:36 pm (66 minutes)
    James Paterson, Linda Burney, Jane Goodall, Peter Kurti, Rachel Botsman: Guest host Jeremy Fernandez is joined on the panel by Liberal Senator James Paterson, Shadow Human Services Minister Linda Burney, Primatologist Jane Goodall, Research Fellow Peter Kurti & Author Rachel Botsman. #QandA

    I’d like to watch but I think Jones, Paterson and Kurti would drive me up the wall.

  15. Things are going really well for Trumble

    One Nation has dealt a blow to the Turnbull government’s hopes of getting a clean energy target through the parliament, confirming it will vote against it in the event the Coalition has to try and broker a deal with the crossbench.

    The Turnbull government is under pressure from industry stakeholders to reach a bipartisan position with Labor on the Finkel review as a first resort to end the decade-long climate wars, and to give investors policy certainty.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/jun/19/one-nation-confirms-it-will-vote-against-clean-energy-target-in-senate

  16. Tlbd – Agree that Fernandez is good.

    He seems that he’s managed to work his way into the position of ‘go to person’ whenever one of the main players in the ABC’s ‘brand’ programs are not available.

  17. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    And those mongrel UK white supremacists carry on like pork chops as the imam of a Finsbury Park mosque has described how he intervened to protect a suspected terrorist who had just driven a van into a group of Muslims!
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/finsbury-park-hero-imam-stood-between-alleged-terrorist-and-angry-victims-20170619-gwuewq.html
    Mark Kenny declares that voters are turning off Turnbull and he is approaching the danger zone.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/browned-off-and-switched-off-malcolm-turnbull-nears-the-danger-zone-20170619-gwtz2r.html
    According to an ex-ambassador to China says that there is a lack of cohesion between Defence and DFAT over China policy.
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/defence-now-driving-australias-china-policy-says-former-ambassador-20170619-gwu56k.html
    Turnbull’s facing a war on two fronts with respect to Gonski 2.0 as the left-leggers are up in arms.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/a-war-on-two-fronts-turnbull-faces-internal-rebellion-over-schools-20170619-gwu3nf.html
    Paul Bongiorno writes “The Prime Minister must hate Tuesdays in sitting weeks. That’s when he faces the joint party room, and backbenchers get to vent their views. This sitting fortnight – the last before the six-week winter break – has been marked by headlines talking of revolts. Revolts over energy policy in the first week, revolts over education funding in the second week.”
    http://thenewdaily.com.au/news/national/2017/06/19/tuesday-revolt-turnbull/
    Simon Benson writes that the powerful Catholic education sector has officially declared a loss of confidence in the Turnbull government on the eve of a crucial Coalition party room meeting that could decide the fate of the schools funding package. Google.
    /national-affairs/education/confidence-in-liberals-lost-over-education-reforms-say-catholics/news-story/aad9e513684213448d09702e5d457185
    Michelle Grattan says that Liberal backbenchers are getting arced up over the issue.
    https://theconversation.com/liberal-backbenchers-arc-up-on-behalf-of-catholic-schools-79696
    The Australian has it in for Turnbull. Dennis Shanahan says that the first attempts are being made to discount Malcolm Turnbull’s own benchmark of leadership failure — 30 losing Newspoll surveys in a row. There is disaffected grumbling from those within the Liberal Party trying to lower the threshold for leadership removal by claiming it will be fewer than 30. Google
    /opinion/columnists/dennis-shanahan/disaffected-libs-keen-for-pm-to-walk-a-shorter-plank/news-story/51885026e4de19541ddd9e1ba72f5dbd

  18. Section 2 . . .

    One of Labor’s biggest backers, the giant shop assistants union, will be subject to a parliamentary inquiry over wage deals that have cost workers hundreds of millions of dollars. Fair enough. Let’s shine some light on it.
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/workplace-relations/shoppies-union-face-senate-probe-over-wages-scandal-20170613-gwq277.html
    Ouch! Business leaders and one of the world’s top economic experts have savaged the federal government’s visa changes, accusing them of threatening the economy and labelling foreigners as barbarians.
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/business-leaders-former-wto-chief-slam-turnbull-governments-visa-changes-20170619-gwtxya.html
    The Minerals Council of Australia has stepped up its lobbying efforts for a new coal-fired power plant to be built in Australia at a meeting with Coalition MPs on Monday. And we worry about political donations from China!
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/minerals-council-steps-up-coal-lobbying-as-agl-calls-for-end-to-political-gridlock-20170619-gwu60q.html
    Meanwhile a concerted push by federal Nationals to build more coal-fired power plants as part of the Turnbull government’s energy policy overhaul has been given the thumbs down by voters, according to the latest Guardian Essential poll.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/jun/20/nationals-push-for-coal-fired-power-leaves-voters-cold-in-guardian-essential-poll
    This SMH editorial says that the brutal industry that awaits young children and teenagers taken into custody in that jurisdiction has been exposed over the past eight months at hearings in Darwin, Alice Springs and various communities.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/smh-editorial/an-end-to-a-brutal-industry-that-awaits-young-offenders-20170619-gwtzkg.html
    John Passant explore whether the Grenfell Tower fire represents “corporate manslaughter” as one British MP has alleged.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/is-the-grenfell-tower-disaster-corporate-manslaughter,10416
    Greg Jericho explains the link between weakened unions and slow wages growth and their effect on the economy.
    https://www.theguardian.com/business/grogonomics/2017/jun/19/higher-wages-would-be-nice-mr-lowe-but-weak-unions-make-it-unlikely
    What lessons did Jeremy Corbyn’s stunning performance in the recent UK elections have for Australian Labor? Tim Robertson weighs in on Sam Dastyari’s latest thesis.
    https://newmatilda.com/2017/06/19/australian-politics-101-all-voters-are-idiots-and-other-pearls-of-wisdom-from-sam-dastayari/
    Nicholas Stuart writes that Trump’s chaotic, personalised decision-making and highly impulsive style is provoking an international debacle in Qatar. He says he’s diplomatically incompetent.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/qatar-embargo-reveals-donald-trumps-diplomatic-incompetence-20170619-gwtrdo.html

  19. Section 3 . . .

    An education expert at the Grattan Institute warns of the damage that will be wreaked on public schools should the unions get their way on Gonski.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/nsw-schools-could-be-60-million-worse-off-due-to-union-stance-on-gonski-20-20170619-gwu3kw.html
    Andrew Street looks at the prospects of working until 70.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/view-from-the-street/who-wants-to-keep-working-until-70-20170619-gwu2z8.html
    Clancy Yeates writes that carbon dysfunction is driving electricity costs up and up. Wrecker Abbott has a lot to answer for IMHO.
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/comment-and-analysis/carbon-dysfunction-drives-surging-electricity-bills-20170618-gwtqqw.html
    Finkel Review aside, a new Bloomberg report illustrates the impact of renewables and battery storage on fossil fuel generation will soon be crushing and inevitable.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/renewables-and-storage-will-crush-coal-way-ahead-of-finkels-forecast,10418
    How and why America is being ripped apart by a rigged voting system. Google.
    /opinion/columnists/the-rigged-voting-system-thats-dividing-america-20170618-gwtoex
    Peter Hartcher expresses concern over the development of a “terrorist caliphate” on our doorstep in the Philippines.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/the-socalled-caliphate-is-closer-than-we-thought-20170619-gwu4rv.html
    A suspected terrorist has died after ramming a car carrying weapons and explosives into a police van as it drove down Paris’ famous Champs Elysees avenue.
    http://thenewdaily.com.au/news/world/2017/06/20/champs-elysees-terror-attack/
    The Federal Government’s controversial intervention in the Northern Territory has been exposed as a multimillion-dollar failure that only worsened the abuse of Indigenous children.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/child-abuse-reports-double-since-northern-territory-intervention-20170619-gwu3vl.html
    Blasphemy is still a crime in Australia. It shouldn’t be!
    https://theconversation.com/blasphemy-is-still-a-crime-in-australia-and-it-shouldnt-be-78990

  20. Section 4 . . .

    Matt Holden gives Red Symonds and Mia Friedman a good spray. We’re not all white, thin and middle class he reminds them.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/memo-red-and-mia-were-not-all-white-thin-and-middle-class-20170619-gwts22.html
    Once-infatuated Trump supporters are now tuning out.
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/two-years-ago-trump-supporters-couldnt-look-away-now-theyre-tuning-out-20170619-gwudbx.html
    Further down the gurgler for former Coalition sweetheart Kathy Jackson.
    http://www.theage.com.au/business/workplace-relations/former-union-leader-kathy-jackson-faces-164-criminal-charges-20170619-gwtzlj.html
    Farmers and ski resort operators are watching synoptic charts with growing anxiety as some of the highest pressure readings in a decade reveal an autumn that is refusing to let go. We’ve had no winter rains here yet and the pastures are becoming stressed.
    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/weather/remarkable-high-pressure-shielding-much-of-australia-from-winters-wrath-20170618-gwtqzo.html
    Which fast food outfits have the unhealthiest offerings?
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/consumer-affairs/experts-urge-government-to-expand-health-star-ratings-to-fast-food-restaurants-20170619-gwtsy1.html
    The world of Sydney skinheads is coming into view during a current inquest.
    http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/skinhead-gang-bragged-about-bashing-an-american-around-the-time-scott-johnson-died-20170619-gwu4ky.html

  21. Section 5 . . . Cartoon Corner

    Cathy Wilcox springs the Three Stooges.

    Ron Tandberg with a ripper on Catholic schooling.

    David Pope and The Greens’ Gonski 2.0 negotiations.
    http://www.smh.com.au/photogallery/federal-politics/cartoons/david-pope-20120214-1t3j0
    Ugly work from Alan Moir!

    David Rowe takes us into the playground.

    Beautiful stuff from Ron Tandberg.
    http://www.smh.com.au/photogallery/federal-politics/cartoons/ron-tandberg-20090910-fixc.html
    Andrew Dyson with Julie Bishop Glorious Foundation. Clever.
    http://www.smh.com.au/photogallery/federal-politics/cartoons/andrew-dyson-20090819-epqv.html
    Mark Knight toes the News Ltd line on political correctness.
    http://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/3edc4778a6e70f2ea503f2f3e1bc3ae3?width=1024
    Pat Clement puts the gun amnesty into modern perspective.
    http://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/6e34b0d1b600a66b11ec9e9814defb84

  22. Trouble posting again. Let’s try sections 1 and 3 again.

    Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    And those mongrel UK white supremacists carry on like pork chops as the imam of a Finsbury Park mosque has described how he intervened to protect a suspected terrorist who had just driven a van into a group of Muslims!
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/finsbury-park-hero-imam-stood-between-alleged-terrorist-and-angry-victims-20170619-gwuewq.html
    Mark Kenny declares that voters are turning off Turnbull and he is approaching the danger zone.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/browned-off-and-switched-off-malcolm-turnbull-nears-the-danger-zone-20170619-gwtz2r.html
    According to an ex-ambassador to China says that there is a lack of cohesion between Defence and DFAT over China policy.
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/defence-now-driving-australias-china-policy-says-former-ambassador-20170619-gwu56k.html
    Turnbull’s facing a war on two fronts with respect to Gonski 2.0 as the left-leggers are up in arms.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/a-war-on-two-fronts-turnbull-faces-internal-rebellion-over-schools-20170619-gwu3nf.html

  23. Section 1b . . .

    Paul Bongiorno writes “The Prime Minister must hate Tuesdays in sitting weeks. That’s when he faces the joint party room, and backbenchers get to vent their views. This sitting fortnight – the last before the six-week winter break – has been marked by headlines talking of revolts. Revolts over energy policy in the first week, revolts over education funding in the second week.”
    http://thenewdaily.com.au/news/national/2017/06/19/tuesday-revolt-turnbull/
    Simon Benson writes that the powerful Catholic education sector has officially declared a loss of confidence in the Turnbull government on the eve of a crucial Coalition party room meeting that could decide the fate of the schools funding package. Google.
    /national-affairs/education/confidence-in-liberals-lost-over-education-reforms-say-catholics/news-story/aad9e513684213448d09702e5d457185
    Michelle Grattan says that Liberal backbenchers are getting arced up over the issue.
    https://theconversation.com/liberal-backbenchers-arc-up-on-behalf-of-catholic-schools-79696
    The Australian has it in for Turnbull. Dennis Shanahan says that the first attempts are being made to discount Malcolm Turnbull’s own benchmark of leadership failure — 30 losing Newspoll surveys in a row. There is disaffected grumbling from those within the Liberal Party trying to lower the threshold for leadership removal by claiming it will be fewer than 30. Google
    /opinion/columnists/dennis-shanahan/disaffected-libs-keen-for-pm-to-walk-a-shorter-plank/news-story/51885026e4de19541ddd9e1ba72f5dbd

  24. Section 3a . . .

    An education expert at the Grattan Institute warns of the damage that will be wreaked on public schools should the unions get their way on Gonski.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/nsw-schools-could-be-60-million-worse-off-due-to-union-stance-on-gonski-20-20170619-gwu3kw.html
    Andrew Street looks at the prospects of working until 70.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/view-from-the-street/who-wants-to-keep-working-until-70-20170619-gwu2z8.html
    Clancy Yeates writes that carbon dysfunction is driving electricity costs up and up. Wrecker Abbott has a lot to answer for IMHO.
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/comment-and-analysis/carbon-dysfunction-drives-surging-electricity-bills-20170618-gwtqqw.html
    Finkel Review aside, a new Bloomberg report illustrates the impact of renewables and battery storage on fossil fuel generation will soon be crushing and inevitable.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/renewables-and-storage-will-crush-coal-way-ahead-of-finkels-forecast,10418
    How and why America is being ripped apart by a rigged voting system. Google.
    /opinion/columnists/the-rigged-voting-system-thats-dividing-america-20170618-gwtoex

  25. Section 3b . . .

    Peter Hartcher expresses concern over the development of a “terrorist caliphate” on our doorstep in the Philippines.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/the-socalled-caliphate-is-closer-than-we-thought-20170619-gwu4rv.html
    A suspected terrorist has died after ramming a car carrying weapons and explosives into a police van as it drove down Paris’ famous Champs Elysees avenue.
    http://thenewdaily.com.au/news/world/2017/06/20/champs-elysees-terror-attack/
    The Federal Government’s controversial intervention in the Northern Territory has been exposed as a multimillion-dollar failure that only worsened the abuse of Indigenous children.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/child-abuse-reports-double-since-northern-territory-intervention-20170619-gwu3vl.html
    Blasphemy is still a crime in Australia. It shouldn’t be!
    https://theconversation.com/blasphemy-is-still-a-crime-in-australia-and-it-shouldnt-be-78990

  26. Excellent

    Labor’s shadow cabinet met last night. They discussed immigration minister Peter Dutton’s citizenship bill, which would see permanent residents wait four years instead of one for citizenship applications. It would also see a tougher English test, which Labor has characterised as university level English. Labor is set to reject these two aspects.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/live/2017/jun/20/labor-set-to-reject-wait-for-citizenship-and-tougher-english-test-politics-live

  27. How on earth can he say this stuff with a straight face?

    I think Pants on Fire Pezzullo is trying to persuade other countries to take the ‘certified, ticketed’ refugees stuck on Manus Island and Nauru by telling huge porkies about Australian generosity. Yes, we take refugees, (but not from our own camps) but the government he works for cut the numbers and still has not reached Labor’s target.

    The rest of the world needs to step up on refugees: immigration boss Mike Pezzullo

    Department secretary Michael Pezzullo said Australia was among three refugee “superpowers”, along with the US and Canada resettling up to 100,000 people a year, but warned global efforts were failing to keep pace with an estimated 1 million “certified, ticketed” refugees currently awaiting a new home through official channels.

    “It’s less than 10 per cent of the demand. So globally, something has to happen,” he told the Crawford Leadership Forum at Australian National University on Monday night.

    “We’re showing leadership, the Canadians are showing leadership, and the US still has the largest program in the world, notwithstanding recent changes to their program size. So the rest of the world has to step up.”

    Mr Pezzullo would not comment publicly on Australia’s humanitarian intake, which is increasing to 18,750 a year,……….

    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/the-rest-of-the-world-needs-to-step-up-on-refugees-immigration-boss-mike-pezzullo-20170618-gwtqh2.html

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