THE BIG BUDGET BRIBE IS HERE

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Bribe night is upon us and this will be the Coalitions major last throw of the dice to win over the voters. If they get little or no bounce in the polls even they must come to the conclusion  they are gone.

Make no mistake though they will go hard aided of course by newscorp/shockjocks and most other media companies that want to keep there puppets in power.

 

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Hang on folks and remember the main attack game hasn’t started yet.

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611 thoughts on “THE BIG BUDGET BRIBE IS HERE

  1. Aaron Patrick (AFR) says “Shorten’s verbal discipline is the reason many people find him boring, and has contributed to his relatively poor approval ratings. His predecessors struggled too.”

    No, it’s why the MSM keep on telling us he’s boring.

    Shorten does not give journalists anything to use against Labor. His amazing “verbal discipline” means he does not (or hasn’t so far) made any gaffes that could allow journalists to churn out the snark they reserve for comment on Labor leaders.

    It’s why they all produce so little commentary on Labor’s daily policy announcements, they would have to write positive articles. They just can’t bring themselves to do that.

    It’s also why we have had six years of journalists telling us “politics is broken” and “Australians are sick of politics” when they really mean “the government”. They just cannot bring themselves to be critical of their adored Coalition.

    Nick Tabakoff, in The Australian, tells us Nine has promised that The Age and the SMH will give the government “a fair go”.

    Well, derr!

    The pro-Coalition bias shown by both has increased about 200% sine Nine took over Fairfax. They always gave the ATM government a lot more than a fair go, now it’s just blatant cheerleading.

    He also pushes the myth about Q&A being so much of the left that FauxMo refuses to appear on that show.

    That tells me FauxMo has never bothered watching Q&A. If he did he’d know it leans so far to the right it’s almost horizontal. The panel is always stacked with Coalition politicians and IPA types. Tony Jones is infamous for his favouring of conservatives, allowing them to hog discussions. Ir’s always a set-up for Labor politicians game enough to appear. . FauxMo really should turn up, he’d feel right at home.

  2. Michael West has has a letter from Angus Taylor’s lawyers about the Ronnie Salt Twitter thread. It’s much the same as the letter sent to Margo Kingston. (Posted last night)

    Angus is going to need to sue a lot of journalists as well, and maybe even his own department people – the thread contains screen shots of many articles in reputable news outlets, particularly the ABC, plus information from government web sites.

  3. Israel Folau –

    The church this person attends is a Pentecostal church, so it’s no wonder his views are so offensive. It’s what this cult teaches.

    It’s also no wonder FauxMo has failed to condemn Folau, he would only say the comments were “terribly insensitive”. They belong to the same cult, they share the same beliefs.

    A,year ago the same thing happened, Folau said gay people would go to hell unless they repented. FauxMo rushed to defend Folau, saying he was “a good man” for standing up for his faith.

    Scott Morrison praises Israel Folau’s ‘strong character’ after anti-gay remarks
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/apr/18/scott-morrison-praises-israel-folaus-strong-character-after-anti-gay-remarks

    Now FauxMo is PM and hopes to retain that position he’s become very confused about standing up for the “faith” he and Folau share. This time he could only manage to splutter some trite, half-hearted comments –

    “I thought they were terribly insensitive comments and obviously that was a matter for the ARU and they’ve taken that decision,” Mr Morrison told ABC News on Friday.

    “It is important that people act with love, care and compassion to their fellow citizens and to speak sensitively to their fellow Australians.”

    https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/sport/rugby/australian-prime-minister-says-israel-folaus-attack-homosexuals-terribly-insensitive

    So there you go – barely even a flogging with a very limp lettuce leaf for Folau from a PM too weak to criticise his own church for preaching hate and too scared to once again defend Folau.

    • Looks like Josh is another Liberal too scared to use the Liberal Party logo.

      (And for the record I posted that tweet before it appeared on The Guardian’s politics live page)

  4. Bridget McKenzie was here for a brief visit over the weekend. If I had known she was coming I would have given her the welcome she so richly deserves.

  5. Journalists are such dopes.

    During today’s presser, announcing Labor’s plans to reduce waiting lists, one particular journo kept asking “If the government has been spending record amounts on health tyhen doesn’t that mean they have been a good government and why won’t you answer my question.

    Shorten tried a few times to tell this twit that a rapidly growing area needs “record funding” just to maintain the status quo, but whoever it was would not accept that answer.

    Record spending is a furphy – as the population increases a government has to spend more on health, education, whatever, just to keep things in the same place. Each new financial year will have “record spending” on essential services, but that does not mean a government is actually improving these services. This government has actually been cutting funding.

  6. A decent article

    As a result Labor’s 2019 campaign is in one sense a rerun of 2016 – promising Labor will do more for Australians’ health – but this time with a positive slant.

    The suggestion that Labor can prevent cancer impoverishing Australians is an over-simplification, but it’s a big idea that can help it win hearts and minds for a socially useful package.

    The Coalition’s rebuttal that this represents a “black hole” in Labor’s costings is a misrepresentation of what was promised.

    Last week, Morrison suggested the government would “look carefully” at Labor’s package “because we will all stand with those who are suffering with cancer”, which “should be above politics”.

    This implied the government could try and match the $2.3bn cancer package. But it seems that may prove too expensive for the Coalition, so instead they are in search of an attack line to counter Labor’s big new idea.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/15/labor-23bn-cancer-policy-explained-does-it-promise-free-treatment

    • Unfortunately I have to partially agree with Mr First Dog. A 4 point margin is not enough because I usually give the libs 1 – 2 % above the polls on election day, it rarely rarely swings the other way.

      With krudd my reading of it was the Queensland home boy factor.

      Anyway here’s hoping I am totally wrong and we get a majority in both houses.

  7. Don’t bother reading. Here’s a taste

    With the latest Newspoll showing Labor still in the lead, but an improvement in the Coalition’s primary vote because of a drop in support for One Nation, the Morrison government went on the offensive on Monday over Labor’s health commitments, forcing Bill Shorten to defend his $2.8bn hospitals package.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/15/labor-election-ad-targets-peter-dutton-in-bid-to-cut-off-any-coalition-recovery-in-victoria

    • Cherry-picking information to give a misleading picture.

      The government (including the Nats) did pick up 1 point in their primary vote but Labor picked up 2, making both sides neck and neck on 39 each.

      That suggests Labor gained more from defecting ON voters than the Coalition gained, especially as there was no movement in the Greens primary vote.

      Why do journalists always assume ON only attracts Coalition voters? It attracts votes from both sides. Labor might not be too happy with this, but there are racists, gun nuts and bigots supporting both sides of politics.

  8. Good morning Dawn Patrollers and what a fine political specimen James McGrath showed himself to be on Q and A last night!
    And it looks like The Australian and the Adelaide Advertiser have found a way to nobble Outline.

    In breaking news a major fire has broken out at the medieval Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, destroying one of France’s most treasured monuments. Live coverage here.
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2019/apr/15/notre-dame-cathedral-fire-paris-france-landmark-live-news
    Harriet Alexander reports that a contest over two little girls, the women who raised them and the elder child’s biological father has framed the terms for a showdown over what it means to be a parent.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/high-court-to-decide-if-a-sperm-donor-can-be-a-parent-20190415-p51e9s.html
    Michelle Grattan explains how Labor has weaponised Peter Dutton for its election campaign.
    https://theconversation.com/view-from-the-hill-peter-dutton-labors-not-so-secret-weapon-against-hunt-and-sukkar-115474
    Greg Jericho tells us that during the election campaign the government is going to make a great deal about its economic management. And yet, while the story on jobs is certainly good, on other measures it has very little to boast about. The chart on real average male full-time weekly earnings is telling.
    https://www.theguardian.com/business/grogonomics/2019/apr/16/the-coalition-boasts-about-economic-management-wheres-the-evidence
    Shane Wright reveals how the vast majority of the tens of billions of dollars the Coalition has vowed to funnel into “congestion busting” road and rail projects will not be spent until after the next federal election, prompting criticism that the Morrison government is claiming credit for infrastructure it may never deliver.
    https://www.smh.com.au/federal-election-2019/promise-now-build-later-majority-of-30-billion-infrastructure-plan-won-t-be-spent-in-next-four-years-20190415-p51e7w.html
    The social services minister, Paul Fletcher, has again dismissed calls to increase Newstart, saying the government’s current policy is “appropriate”.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/15/coalitions-newstart-policy-appropriate-and-no-extra-rise-needed-minister-says
    The company at the centre of a catastrophic scaffolding collapse at Macquarie Park that resulted in the death of one man is being sued over a separate incident in which scaffolding allegedly fell and struck a worker on the north shore. What, if anything, will screecher Cash say about this?
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/labourer-takes-company-to-court-over-construction-site-accident-20190411-p51da2.html
    The audio of an 2016 interview with Gladys Liu, now the Liberal candidate for the Melbourne seat of Chisholm, has been released after she questioned the accuracy of comments she made to the writer of a Guardian article.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/15/liberal-candidates-fake-reporting-claim-prompts-release-of-interview
    Here’s Neil McMahon’s recap on last night’s Q and A which was another Coalition train wreck,
    https://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/tv-and-radio/q-and-a-recap-james-mcgrath-s-one-way-trip-to-crazy-town-20190416-p51eh2.html
    There may be multiple trials involving prominent news editors and journalists as they face contempt of court charges, the likes of which have never been seen in Australia’s legal history. Thirty-six media outlets, editors and journalists, including staff at The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald, could face prison over allegations they breached a suppression order in reports published after Cardinal George Pell was convicted of child sex abuse charges.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/victoria/multiple-trials-possible-over-pell-contempt-case-20190415-p51e81.html
    Michael Koziol writes about the tough time Morrison had in Melbourne yesterday.
    https://www.smh.com.au/federal-election-2019/such-a-bubble-question-haunted-by-dutton-scott-morrison-dodges-liberal-leadership-demons-20190415-p51e8p.html
    https://www.smh.com.au/federal-election-2019/a-rugby-man-in-the-football-state-liberals-cling-to-hope-in-the-massachusetts-of-australia-20190415-p51edt.html
    A cynical Shane Wright talks about the out years of the major parties’ plans.
    https://www.smh.com.au/federal-election-2019/promises-of-the-never-never-in-campaign-for-dogs-20190414-p51e3m.html
    And the AFR explains that the government would need to cut spending by $40 billion a year by 2030 to afford its big personal income tax cuts and deliver on its budget surplus forecasts.
    https://www.outline.com/vrcppJ
    Labor says it will spend $200 million to boost pathology services for the elderly and people diagnosed with cancer.
    https://www.outline.com/dnkSsR
    Jacqui Maley reports that the conservative activist group Advance Australia has been accused of sexism and poor taste after it released a video of its “satirical superhero” Captain GetUp gyrating and rubbing against a poster of independent Warringah candidate Zali Steggall.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/zali-steggall-calls-on-tony-abbott-to-set-standards-after-release-of-sexualised-video-20190415-p51e7m.html
    “If our government wants to lift the birth rate then why aren’t we doing more to ease the financial burden of raising a family?”, asks Jamila Rizvi.
    https://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/life-and-relationships/why-isn-t-the-government-doing-more-to-help-millennials-afford-kids-20190412-p51dln.html
    Cara Walters reports that an Australian startup is looking to disrupt the booming solar industry with its locally designed and manufactured removable panels. The company, Solpod, has developed a new way of mounting solar panels on the roofs of commercial and industrial buildings that address some of the barriers businesses have faced in switching to solar photovoltaic power.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/small-business/australian-designed-solar-panel-firm-looks-to-shake-up-booming-sector-20190415-p51ecp.html
    In a concerning contribution Peter Hartcher warns us that the reason digital assistants such as Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri exist is not to assist you. They exist to make money for Amazon, Google and Apple. The big Japanese investment bank Mizuho predicts that these digital assistants will generate $US11 billion a year by next year.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/welcome-to-the-age-of-surveillance-capitalism-20190415-p51edn.html
    A nice interview with Chloe Shorten here by Jamila Rizvi.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6053904/chloe-shorten-i-keep-myself-firmly-planted-in-the-now/?cs=14350
    Peter FitzSimons writes about how he handles social media trolls,
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/my-three-rules-to-beat-the-trolls-20190415-p51eeh.html
    For all you masochists out there here is Amanda Vanstone’s contribution to the tax debate.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/labor-s-plans-will-hurt-many-people-who-aren-t-rich-at-all-20190413-p51dto.html
    Most Sydneysiders are more often than not better off renting rather than buying a home and investing that money elsewhere, a new study finds.
    https://www.outline.com/9zsGqU
    Elizabeth Knight tells us that with the shareholder vote looming on Australia’s biggest packaging deal to date – Amcor’s takeover of US-based Bemis – the research team from CLSA has raised a red flag about the conventional wisdom of the $7 billion union.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/is-creating-the-biggest-packaging-company-worth-the-7b-price-20190415-p51edc.html
    Following the Hayne inquiry, AMP has fallen the furthest in the Reputation Institute’s annual ranking and now sits with the big four banks among the worst performers.
    https://www.outline.com/4PBJVN
    Australia’s two biggest supermarkets are trialling new technologies to clamp down on shoplifting and incorrect scanning of items by shoppers using self-service checkouts.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/money/consumer/2019/04/15/coles-woolworths-self-service-checkout-theft/
    Joanne McCarthy is still doing a great job in uncovering the dark history of institutionalised child sexual abuse.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/child-sex-offender-given-top-welfare-job-despite-history-of-allegations-20190415-p51e8n.html
    Idiot Trump has blamed the Fed for US economic growth not running at 4 per cent and the US share market not being 10,000 points higher.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/markets/trump-lashes-fed-as-his-plan-to-install-two-fans-on-the-board-misfires-20190415-p51e9d.html
    It looks like the Mueller report might ne released on Thursday.
    https://www.outline.com/ydf7kG

    Cartoon Corner

    Health politics with David Rowe.

    From Matt Golding.



    On the election bus with David Pope.

    Cathy Wilcox hits home here!

    Sean Leahy has a couple for us today.

    From the US






  9. I’m late to the Newspoll party, but for what it’s worth I can’t see any good news for the Coalition in it. Forget the incremental changes in the PV, by normal preference distribution (as opposed to the special one Newspoll has decided to go with), it’s 53-47 to the ALP. Certain news outlets are furiously trying to find ways to spin it for Morrison, but the evidence simply isn’t there.

    I remain confident that there’ll be very little narrowing, because the will isn’t there in the electorate to look for ways to reward the Morrison government. Minds are made up. I’d be more concerned if the lead to the ALP was on the back of some kind of populism – that can be worn down. The lead has been hard-earned, and it’s on the back of sensible and cautious policy development with real benefit to the community. You can badmouth it all you want, it’ll still be looking good in five weeks time. Shorten’s still propagating somewhat of a small-target strategy (despite what the media says), only pushing policy areas where there’s solid support, and tiptoeing around the rest.

    Morrison is still spruiking messages that have failed to resonate in the past. The ‘million jobs created’ one failed to capture the imagination of the public, but he’s still banging on about the virtues of having a job. Yes, we know that, but we also know penalty rates have been cut and that there’s increasing casualisation of the workforce, and that wages aren’t keeping up with the cost of living. So it’s not the winner Morrison thinks it is.

    Ditto for his attempts to make this a presidential style election between himself and Shorten. Shorten’s not having a bar of that. The workload across his front bench is being spread very nicely, reinforcing that we’re voting for a party, not a person. And at any rate, the margin between Morrison and Shorten is hardly significant. Morrison’s personal approval ratings are very modest.

    Running on the economy is also a poisoned chalice for Morrison. It’s generally known now that the Budget surplus is a projection, not a reality. Not everyone knows it’s a wildly optimistic projection, but that doesn’t matter; the attitude out there is “we’ll believe it when we see it.” And shouting the word ‘Tax!’ in relation to everything the ALP is proposing isn’t cutting through either. Not the way it did back in 2013. Fool us once, etc…

    More broadly, Morrison trying to run a ‘steady hand on the tiller’ campaign is a joke. It merely highlights that the ALP have been by far the more settled party in the past five years.

  10. This is an excellent comment, something that must be in the minds of everyone paying attention to FauxMo’s false promises.

  11. This is the sort of journalism that makes me hopping mad, and, of course, it’s from Murpharoo.

    The headline spruiks Labor’s need to release a policy on the environment, right now. Somewhere in the article Ms Murphy does give a passing mention to the Wilderness Society “seeking concrete commitments from the major parties and potential crossbenchers” but mostly it’s about Labor.

    ‘Environment crisis’: Wilderness Society pursues parties over election commitments
    Exclusive: Green group’s intervention seen as a hurry up to Labor, which is yet to produce its final policy
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/16/environment-crisis-wilderness-society-pursues-parties-over-election-commitments

    Why is it always Labor that has to release their policy when some interest group or other demands?

    We have a government who so far has not managed to come up with any real policies on anything. They have no policies on the environment or on dealing with climate change yet I don’t see the Wilderness Society demanding the government reveal its policy. I certainly don’t see Ms Murphy demanding the government release a real, actual environment policy

  12. From the Guardian

    Sky News’s Annelise Nielsen said she asked participants of that senior’s forum how they found out about it, and learnt most discovered it through the local Liberal party branch.

    Quelle surprise, Not.

    • I’ve seen how the Nats and the Libs organise these meetings.They drag in people from Liberal/Nats branches up and down the coast.

      The last time they pulled this stunt here was last year for a protest meeting with Turnbull about Labor’s franking credits plans.

    • As you said, Leone

      Did Sarah Henderson’s office call Liberal party members to invite them to the seniors’ forum this morning?

      This morning’s seniors’ forum was an open invitation. We had flyers and posters all over Drysdale and the North Bellarine. It’s in stark contrast to the Labor Party, which is in hiding when it comes to older Australians. We’ve seen from the retiree tax that the Labor Party has deserted older Australians – that was very evident today – and I’m incredibly proud to be standing up for older Australians in Corangamite”

      (That’s not a no)

      Scott Morrison steps in, when a journalist makes the point that a lot of the room seemed to be Liberal party members:

      Well, there’s nothing wrong with that, you know…! It’s actually legal to be a Liberal member in this country and vote for the Liberal Party. It was great to see some of them there.”

      https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/live/2019/apr/16/federal-election-2019-tax-health-labor-liberal-coalition-morrison-shorten-politics-live#comments

      There would have been a lot of vetting at the door or earlier.

  13. Add to that the difference between Shorten, who listens to questions, gives thoughtful answers and often chats to people with difficult questions afterwards, and FauxMo, who just yells at his invited audience like a preacher at a revival meeting.

    • I quite like the self-serve check out although I know others who won’t use them on principal that they should be employing someone.
      However my biggest problem is that :
      1. I don’t buy many avocados so very little chance to put them through as carrots
      2. I always seem to double scan at least one item
      3. You have to be careful not to scan the code on your reusable bag as the system will make you pay for it again.

      But I do like the noise it makes as you scan items, HI lets me do it as she spent a lot of her early years as a check-out chick and more lately a librarian.

    • I refuse to use a self-service checkout.

      If Colesworths offered me a discount for doing it myself then I might be interested – only “might”.

      They are saving wages by not employing as many staff and I’m not getting any benefit from that saving, I’m actually doing the work of paid staff and getting nothing for my efforts.

      Coles here employ a lot of uni students as checkout staff. Most live in student accommodation very close to the shopping centre that contains that supermarket, making it very easy for them to walk to work. You get to know them and can ask how they are getting on with whatever their course is. It’s so much nicer than listening to a scanner beeping at you.

  14. Gaffe?

    Scott Morrison has seized on Bill Shorten’s claim he will not introduce new taxes on superannuation, claiming he “must have forgotten” Labor’s plan for changes that will bring in $34bn in revenue.

    The hiccup in the Shorten campaign on Tuesday distracted from Labor’s claim the Coalition will have to cut $40bn a year from social spending to pay for its tax cut package.

    Labor’s campaign centres on its promise to increase social spending and deliver more sustainable budget surpluses, due to revenue measures such as its plan to raise $34bn from superannuation.

    The Labor policy promises to undo Coalition changes by lowering the high income threshold to $200,000 and the annual non-concessional contributions cap to $75,000 from 1 July 2019.

    On Tuesday Shorten was asked if he could “rule out new or increased taxes on superannuation”.

    He replied that Labor has “no plans to increase taxes on superannuation”, apparently taking the question to refer to any further changes after the plan to raise $34bn.

    “We have no plans to introduce any new taxes on superannuation,” Shorten told reporters in Adelaide. Asked to rule it out, he replied: “Sure.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/16/bill-shortens-super-gaffe-distracts-from-coalition-cuts-claim

  15. President Trump Called Former President Jimmy Carter To Talk About China

    President Trump called former President Jimmy Carter for the first time this weekend.

    Carter revealed that news during his regular Sunday school lesson at his home church, Maranatha Baptist Church in Plains, Georgia, on Sunday morning.

    Earlier this year, Carter sent Trump a letter with some advice about managing the U.S.-China relationship. Carter oversaw the normalization of diplomatic relations between the two countries 40 years ago.

    On Saturday evening, Trump called Carter to talk about it. It was the first time they’d spoken, Carter said. He said Trump told him that he is particularly concerned about how China is “getting ahead of us.”

    Carter said he agreed with Trump on this issue.

    “And do you know why?” Carter said. “I normalized diplomatic relations with China in 1979. Since 1979, do you know how many times China has been at war with anybody? None. And we have stayed at war,” he said. (China and Vietnam actually fought a brief border war in early 1979, weeks after U.S. relations with China were normalized.)

    Carter said the United States is “the most warlike nation in the history of the world” due to a desire to impose American values on other countries, and he suggested that China is investing its resources into projects such as high-speed railroads instead of defense spending.

    https://www.npr.org/2019/04/15/713495558/president-trump-called-former-president-jimmy-carter-to-talk-about-china

  16. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    David Crowe on the apparently semantic gaffe on superannuation from Shorten yesterday.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/bill-shorten-sparks-political-firestorm-with-superannuation-tax-claim-20190416-p51ery.html
    And Shane Wright says Labor has a policy vision but that doesn’t mean it gets a leave pass on the detail.
    https://www.smh.com.au/federal-election-2019/labor-has-a-policy-vision-but-that-doesn-t-mean-it-gets-a-leave-pass-on-the-detail-20190416-p51eos.html
    This is a very good contribution from Ross Gittins who is looking at Australia’s standing in many measures.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/the-great-diversion-election-arguments-about-tax-20190416-p51ej6.html
    Felicity Caldwell reports on the radio face-off between Dutton and France yesterday.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/dutton-goes-face-to-face-with-labor-opponent-following-disability-furore-20190416-p51eqz.html
    Labor has launched a ground campaign targeting the annual $40 billion spending cuts needed to deliver tax cuts and surplus budgets.
    https://www.outline.com/EtZgNg
    “Why would rational voters believe talk of hundreds of billions and 10-year timeframes?”, asks Michelle Grattan.
    https://theconversation.com/view-from-the-hill-why-would-rational-voters-believe-talk-of-hundreds-of-billions-and-10-year-timeframes-115578
    Katharine Murphy examines Morrison’s “a fair go for those who have a go” mantra.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/17/the-meaning-of-morrisons-mantra-about-getting-a-fair-go-is-clear-its-conditional
    Tony Wright prick’s Morrison’s bubble.
    https://www.smh.com.au/federal-election-2019/scott-morrison-is-forever-blowing-bubbles-but-bubbles-tend-to-pop-20190416-p51ek7.html
    And Paul Bongiorno says that unlike the boy in the bubble who depended on his hermetically sealed dome to keep him safe from life-threatening infection, Scott Morrison’s bubble is killing him. He pretends the coup of last August that delivered him the prime ministership is now of interest only to other inhabitants of the political bubble – the Canberra press gallery.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/national/2019/04/15/bongiorno-sukkar-morrison-bubble/
    David Crowe tells us how Coalition candidates are being urged by the IPA to endorse a conservative manifesto that includes selling the ABC, slashing the company tax rate and pulling out of the Paris agreement on climate change.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6065300/coalition-mps-urged-to-sell-the-abc-and-support-a-flat-tax-in-ipa-call/?cs=14231
    The plan to increase the superannuation guarantee to 12 per cent will cut the pay of workers by 2 per cent and hit low-income earners the hardest, the Grattan Institute says.
    https://www.outline.com/b6cLVb
    Julia Banks has slammed the Liberal party’s candidate for the seat of Chisholm, accusing her former colleague Gladys Liu of “abhorrent and misleading” comments about LGBTI people.
    https://www.smh.com.au/federal-election-2019/completely-abhorrent-julia-banks-slams-former-liberal-colleague-liu-20190416-p51ek1.html
    Sam Maiden looks a the role “trust” will play in this election.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/election-2019/2019/04/17/election-morrison-shorten-trust/
    The Reserve Bank of Australia says a rate cut would be appropriate if the unemployment rate started to trend up, which some economists are forecasting.
    https://www.outline.com/fnub6r
    Fergus Hunter reports that Tanya Plibersek faces a potential clash with the states over their spending on public schools, putting billions of dollars at stake in funding renegotiations should Labor win government next month. She has flagged that if elected, Labor would crack down on federal-state funding arrangements that allow states to count costs such as transport, capital depreciation and spending on regulatory bodies towards their education funding contributions.
    https://www.smh.com.au/federal-election-2019/labor-faces-showdown-with-states-over-school-funding-accounting-tricks-20190414-p51e15.html
    Dana McCauley tells us that analysis of official data shows Australians are paying more for healthcare than most other developed nations, forking out $34 billion a year on out-of-pocket health costs.
    https://www.smh.com.au/federal-election-2019/missing-out-on-basic-healthcare-australians-spend-34-billion-a-year-on-out-of-pocket-health-costs-20190415-p51ebe.html
    According to Sarah Martin the Greens will push Labor to back key parts of its new environment strategy – including a $2bn nature fund – in exchange for crucial support of the opposition’s climate change policy in the Senate.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/17/greens-propose-supporting-labor-climate-policy-in-environment-deal
    Pallavi Singhal writes that major changes to funding including the abolition of a $1.2 billion fund for Catholic and independent schools and introducing strong consequences for universities that don’t raise ATAR requirements for teaching degrees are part of new recommendations from the Grattan Institute for the next Commonwealth government.
    https://www.smh.com.au/education/cut-catholic-and-private-school-fund-raise-teaching-atars-grattan-20190416-p51em4.html
    Jennifer Hewett writes that the health of Australia’s education system is crucial. Sadly, the prognosis is not positive – and proving ever more resistant to expensive treatment.
    https://www.outline.com/mvRVbh
    The Guardian tells us that despite questions in the Senate, calls for papers and freedom of information requests, mystery still surrounds the reason the former agriculture minister Barnaby Joyce chose the companies he did for almost $200m of water buybacks in 2017.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/17/questions-over-companies-chosen-for-200m-of-murray-darling-water-buybacks
    Within 24 hours of the federal election being called some Australians began receiving application forms for postal votes. The mostly unmarked envelopes didn’t come from the electoral commission, but from local candidates and political parties which enclosed information about their policies and an addressed reply-paid envelope.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/17/political-parties-postal-vote-mailouts-spark-concerns-voters-could-be-misled
    The state government is facing a serious political challenge from the CFMEU, over a dispute with Victoria Police.
    https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/cfmeu-pressures-andrews-government-over-police-dispute-20190416-p51et3.html
    John McDuling explains that News Corp’s global chief executive, Robert Thomson, has used a speech to intensify his criticism of digital giants while taking aim at “muck-spreading” by media rivals of the Murdoch family.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/news-corp-ceo-lashes-tech-giants-and-the-new-york-times-20190416-p51eox.html
    Andrew Leigh has backed Singapore’s pro-business regulatory model to crack down on corporate misconduct without stifling innovation.
    https://www.outline.com/yGEmTX
    The Commonwealth Bank will reimburse millions of dollars to about 8000 staff after underpaying wages and other entitlements due to errors in its systems.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/banking-and-finance/cba-to-reimburse-staff-millions-in-botched-pay-20190416-p51eq9.html
    Zoe Robinson outlines the youth homelessness problem.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/homelessness-crisis-young-people-are-not-faceless-statistics-20190416-p51eii.html
    Clancy Yeates says that swings in the housing market can have important implications, but the property market is not the economy.
    https://www.smh.com.au/money/investing/the-housing-market-is-not-the-economy-20190409-p51cfr.html
    It seems Bernie Sanders got the better of FoxNews at a forum it organised.
    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/apr/16/bernie-sanders-draws-enthusiastic-cheers-in-surprising-fox-news-town-hall
    More than 20 schools in America, including Columbine High School, have been placed on lockout after police officials said they were investigating “a credible threat possibly involving the schools”.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/world/2019/04/17/us-schools-on-lockout/
    I think Bupa has earned nomination for “Arseholes of the Week” with this revelation. The ACCC seems to think so too,
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/consumer-affairs/bupa-overcharged-thousands-of-aged-care-residents-for-extra-services-20190416-p51ejl.html

    Cartoon Corner

    Cathy Wilcox on the Notre Dame fire.

    And great work from David Pope on the fire.

    From David Rowe also.

    From Matt Golding.





    Simon Letch and the oldies demographic.

    Andrew Dyson’s view of election promises.

    Fiona Katauskas has had enough already.

    Jon Kudelka sorts Clive Palmer out.

    Some bile from Zanetti.


    Sean Leahy on the fire.

    This gif from Glen Le Lievre gives Dutton a serve.

    Jon Kudelka searches for a reason for the Notre Dame fire.
    https://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/e9a686ce623456ad2c51367f06c7a2c5?width=1024

    From the US






  17. A dodgy decision in the Federal Circuit Court –

    James Cook University professor Peter Ridd’s sacking ruled unlawful
    Physics head dismissed after criticising scientific research about climate change impact on the Great Barrier Reef

    Peter Ridd, who was the head of the physics department at the institution from 2009 until 2016, took legal action against his dismissal.

    Judge Salvatore Vasta ruled on Tuesday the 17 findings made by the university, the two speech directions,
    “Some have thought that this trial was about freedom of speech and intellectual freedom. Media reports have considered that this trial was about silencing persons with controversial or unpopular views,” Vasta said in his judgement.

    “Rather, this trial was purely and simply about the proper construction of a clause in an enterprise agreement.”

    The judgement noted Ridd had been in trouble with university management for contacting a News Corp journalist and making media appearances on Sky News after dark claiming he had breached a code of conduct

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/apr/16/james-cook-university-professor-peter-ridds-sacking-ruled-unlawful

    Peter Ridd is a member of the IPA, which funded his legal action. Here’s their statement on his win –
    https://ipa.org.au/publications-ipa/peter-ridd-wins-biggest-victory-on-free-speech-in-a-generation

    It gets worse.

    Salvatore Vasta is the brother of Liberal MP for Bonner Ross Vasta, renowned denier of climate change. Sal was appointed to the Circuit Court in 2014 by George Brandis. At the time he was described on Richard Ackland’s “Justinian” site as ” …. a lovely fellow and an enthusiastic employee of the Office of Director of Public Prosecutions.

    But he is unlikely to know his way to the Federal Circuit Court, let alone have a working knowledge of family law, immigration, bankruptcy and the other kinds of wheat ground at that mill.”
    http://justinian.com.au/archive/hey-its-christmas.html

    It all makes you wonder.

  18. Look at the happy, smiling faces at FauxMo’s so-called “town hall style” meeting yesterday.

    A bunch of Liberal Party members invited to this lecture and, no doubt, promised a free morning tea, who do not seem very happy with FauxMo. Were they all wondering why Malcolm wasn’t still PM?

    • Not to mention the quite closed postures of a lot of the males in that picture. and the worried hands of several of the women.
      Interesting, I wonder what other audiences Mr Morrison has faced recently looked like?

  19. Razz’s Mum is visiting. Very neutral as regards voting. A swing voter. Has no idea how this election will turn out. Her mobile rang yesterday evening. As she is hard of hearing, and refuses to wear hearing aids, has her phone on speaker. It was a robbo call from sukker. She just hung up. She lives in Croyden. My question is, is that in Deakin? I don’t know where to go to find out.

    • It is in Deakin.

      How to find out what is in an electorate and other information –

      Google “electorate of whatever” Among the top responses will be an AEC site – “Profile of the electoral division of whatever”. Click on that and it will give you everything you need to know, including links to maps showing the entire electorate.

      Sometimes, depending on the electorate, you will get a list of places in that electorate, other times you will need to look at a map. Deakin is one that needs a map.

  20. Jim Molan trying to do what Lisa Singh did in Tasmania last time, but as we know Tassie voters are used to that sort of tactical voting thanks to Hare-Clark, and NSW ones are not. Jim will struggle to get those BTL votes.

  21. The ABC has their election Vote Compass up again.

    https://votecompass.abc.net.au/

    I took the test and, as always when I do these things, came out a dead-set Greens voter, sharing the exact Greens position on the results chart.

    Pfffft

    I would never, ever vote Greens, I never have.

    I don’rt agree with Labor policy on a few things, but that doesn’t mean I see the Greens as an alternative to Labor.

  22. It’s not really a current issue as such, but it’s on my mind at the moment. If, as assumed, the ALP get back in, one of the things being called for is a reform of Question Time. The call is to reduce the number of Dixers as they end up just allowing partisan ranting against the Opposition. That’s not been my experience.

    Back under the Gillard government, Dixers were very useful. They were an opportunity for a Minister to put some reasonably complex information out there regarding their portfolio. More recently, we did see Julie Bishop do this every now and then as Foreign Minister. That kind of behaviour was commonplace prior to 2013. It was the questions from the Opposition that were a waste of time, as the majority of those were simply repeated and petty attempts at gotchas. As far as I can tell, it’s not the Dixers that are the problem, it’s the attitude of particular parties.

    I don’t think there’s an easy answer to it, myself. The Coalition are always going to treat QT as a chance for petty partisan politics, whether they are in government or opposition. They’ve always treated Parliament as a battle of rhetoric between themselves and the ALP, rather than a seat of governance. Until you change that, QT is always going to be a horrible experience.

    • Aguirre,

      Perhaps emulating the UK model, with weekly (when sitting) PM’s question time.

      Something, surely, has to be better than we have at the moment!

    • Paul Keating brought in a system where he only had to turn up for QT two days in a sitting week, but it didn’t last long.

      When Turnbull was still a member of the opposition – must have been about 2012 – he had a brainfart about the PM only having to do the one day per sitting week thing. It never happened, and by the time he became PM he had forgotten all about it.

  23. From the Indonesian election today, my friend in Java says that with 75% of the vote counted, it seems like Jokowi has won a second term as President with 54% of the vote.

    I’m somewhat glad to hear that, because his opponent, Prabowo Subianto seems like a figure similar to that of Bolsonaro of Brazil or Duterte of the Philippines. Someone that was anti-democracy and trying to appeal to the religious-nationalist part of the electorate.

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