Archive | January, 2014

Tax expenditures – we’re number 1!

27 Jan

If Abbott and Hockey are determined to find and fix the ‘budget black hole’ tax ‘expenditure’ is the place to start. In other words, middle class welfare.

We are all dead.

This chart in a new IMF staff working paper caught my eye:

IMF tax expenditures

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Shipping Oars

27 Jan

Abbott has his own agenda and it is hard to understand, other than it is based on short term profit and religious ‘ostrich’ head burying, i.e. blind faith in non-science.

The Australian Independent Media Network

shipping oars

Tony Abbott’s brief sojourn in Davos left most of us cringing and somewhat bemused as to the purpose of his journey.  He met with some Australian big business leaders and delivered a speech that had nothing to do with the stated priorities of the forum – the problem of increasing income inequality and the economics of climate change.  Le Figaro noted Abbott’s address as a footnote, quoting him as calling for more free trade, an idea that was a long way from the agenda – très loin de la thématique – of earlier gatherings.  In fact, Tony left before any of these meetings took place.

But he did fit in a few personal meetings.

With Peta Credlin glued to his side, Abbott showed his ignorance of geography and total ineptitude at small talk when meeting with World Economic Forum founder Klaus Schwab.  Tony had lined up for his usual…

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Tin foil mitre

27 Jan

The arguments used by Pell – and oft repeated by Abbott – are breathtaking; literally if we don’t act on biosphere change.

The Australian Independent Media Network

george pell

Increasingly in my investigations into climate change denial “experts” I am coming across the name of George Pell – yes – the Cardinal. Having looked briefly for his credentials in this area, I can only find studies in theology.  Regardless of this lack of any scientific qualifications, Cardinal Pell has been quite vocal about his view on climate change over the years.

Pell stated in his 2006 Legatus Summit speech:

“Some of the hysteric and extreme claims about global warming are also a symptom of pagan emptiness, of Western fear when confronted by the immense and basically uncontrollable forces of nature. Belief in a benign God who is master of the universe has a steadying psychological effect, although it is no guarantee of Utopia, no guarantee that the continuing climate and geographic changes will be benign. In the past pagans sacrificed animals and even humans in vain attempts to placate…

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An Open Letter to Cory Bernardi

6 Jan

Sadly, some political parties do have them. Dangerously, most of the right wing in current Australia are them. Bernardi is extreme in his views, but he isn’t alone and that is the truly worrying truth. Many are saying he has gone too far this time, is outed by his own extreme dogma, but let’s not forget that much of this was known before he wrote Conservative Revolution, he’s been demoted from the junior front bench of opposition by Turnbull and forced to stand down as adviser to Abbott and still he stands proud, determined and utterly unchecked in his extremes, which are unpalatable to most. There is no condemnation by Abbott, no distancing by Abbott, in fact, no public statement by Abbott. One must, therefore, conclude Abbott agrees. Even if he comes out tomorrow, next week, eventually to refute Bernardi or downplay Bernardi, his tardiness can be seen as nothing short of agreement and of complicity. I’m disgusted in the Bernardi’s views, and I’m deeply concerned for Australia with this lot of government politicians, so many of whom are purveyors of extreme and who seemingly want to suppress everything and everyone that is not personally believed in by them, and/or which does not turn a profit.

The Australian Independent Media Network

Cory and Sinead BernardiDear Cory Bernardi,

Before you ignore this letter like all the other outraged mail you must be getting in response to your book, The Conservative Revolution, you should know that this is not a letter of grievance. It is one of congratulations. I want to congratulate you for your honesty and your commitment to your ideals, which you are obviously unwilling to hide whether you’re causing yourself and your government political pain or not. Well done Cory. Brave man.

I also want to congratulate you for forcing this honesty onto Tony Abbott. Some in the media are already reporting that Abbott is distancing himself from your published work, but when you actually scrutinise what Abbott has said, he’s done nothing of the sort. Today, through a spokesperson mind you, Abbott released this statement:

“Senator Bernardi is a backbencher and his views do not represent the position of the government”.

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We can afford $25 million for a Royal Commission, but not $9 million for indigenous legal aid.

3 Jan

Abbott’s promises will be kept when hell freezes over, or maybe – probably – not even then.

The Australian Independent Media Network

IMG_0458

“THE Abbott government will strip funding from the peak Aboriginal legal aid organisation and policy positions in its state affiliates, but has moderated the extent of cuts to at-the-coalface services following an outcry from the indigenous community.

The Coalition today will announce the defunding of the peak National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services and all law reform and policy officer positions within each state and territory affiliate, saving $9 million over three years.”

The Australian, Dec 17, 2013

“FORMER Labor government ministers, including former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, will be compelled to give evidence as part of a $25 million Royal Commission into the botched roof insulation program.

The Abbott Government will announce the scope of the judicial inquiry, which will be led by prominent Brisbane lawyer Ian Hanger and will be asked to report by mid-2014.

In a move designed to expose the role played by…

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