The billions splurged on the form of appropriation euphemistically called “pork barrelling” makes headlines. What we don’t generally see is the disheartening flipside – the “opportunity cost” of needs unmet because of politicians’ preferences.
If you add the $90 Bn that went to the US for subs which was certainly without a tender process the total is $150Bn
Almost half of $60.2bn in federal government grants awarded over the past four years did not go through a competitive open tender process, a new report on grant spending has found.
The Infrastructure Department was unable to tell the federal government whether its plans to spend almost $400 million on car parks at suburban railway stations had merit or could even be built just days before Prime Minister Scott Morrison signed off on the promises.
My thought for the day Power is a malevolent possession when you are prepared to forgo your principles and your country’s wellbeing for the sake of it. ( John Lord )
Let’s start with NSW. On the one hand, Premier Dominic Perrottet and his new Treasurer Matt Kean are signalling that the state will lead the way climate-wise, relying on a $3 billion green hydrogen strategy to create 10,000 jobs by 2030. Without explicit details on how this policy would be developed into action, the Perrottet Government may be using the same spin as Morrison — slogans.
What role did Dutton have in “shafting” the French?
With some of the most prominent think tanks on defence and foreign policy receiving funds from companies that rely on war and threats of war, Australians are being fed vested interests masquerading as “independent” opinion, writes Dr Sue Wareham.
Morrison and Frydenberg paint themselves as being the world’s “greatest” survivors? When we are running 8th out of the pacific nations this year and predicted to be 7th in 2022 according to the IMF. That’s last out of actual Pacific nations in 21 and second last in 22. Why don’t we see these statistical hard facts on the front pages of our main stream media? Why are we treated like mushrooms?
Despite successfully containing COVID-19 in 2020, some economies in the region, including Australia, faced setbacks from an initially slow vaccination rollout, the IMF says in its regional economic outlook.
When offered the title of Pivot of the Pacific whe he was PM. Europhile Abbott turned his back preferring to build monuments in France, shirtfront Putin, become a member of NATO and hail China as his new bestie. Today he shows what a self interested Pillock he’s always been. Don’t be surprised if he doesn’t want his old job back and he’s putting on a show for Rupert. He hasn’t defended France he’s cheered Boris on and he’s giving Xi the bird. Has Australia ever seen a worse effort by an ex PM playing Statesman in it’s history?
No one can stop him. He can barely stop himself. The former Australian prime minister, Tony Abbott, seems to be everywhere, fighting the poor cause. At the very least, he is everywhere with the press cameras, the niggling concerns, the irritations that make it into the twenty-four-hour news cycle before sinking with toxic charm. He is the perfect ingredient in a stew of conflict, the agitator, the irritant.
Congress is back this week, so you can expect more of the “we can’t afford it” bullsh*t from every Republican member of Congress and two Democratic senators (Manchin and Sinema) — aimed against Biden’s and the Democrats’ social investment bill. Behind the scenes, big corporations and Wall Street are paying huge bucks to feed this hokum to the public. And the mainstream media is doing their bidding. So it should be no surprise that Americans are utterly confused and many are misinformed about what’s at stake in this important legislation, which will come to a head in the next few weeks.
A frustrated voting public is becoming increasingly louder against the Government’s lack of climate policy and endless incompetence, writes Dr Jennifer Wilson.
“There’s little point in relying on the Labor opposition to deal with this on our behalf. As Ilic noted in an interview with CNN, we have to lead because we have no leaders.
We do have power, other than at the voting booth. We have our voices. We have social media platforms on which to use them. We can’t all do billboards or organise marches, but we can support those who are willing to take on these tasks. Morrison has revealed, inadvertently, that it is in fact our voices he most fears, because if enough of our voices consistently criticise, humiliate and refuse him, he will not hold onto power. Forget the opposition. It’s down to us.”
Source: The people versus Scott Morrison
A four-hour meeting of the 21 Nats on Sunday ended without a conclusion, despite assurances from Energy Minister Angus Taylor their coal backers and fossil fuels mates would be receiving billions worth of sweeteners. Mr Joyce insists his party is “not chained to a script,” he derides modelling put up by anybody – the Business Council, CSIRO, the government, you name them – as make believe. Further undermining whatever decision the government arrives at is the sniping from former resources minister Matt Canavan, who on his arrival back in Canberra told the media scrum “the Prime Minister doesn’t have a plan, he has a dream”.
The Christian coalifate and crime cartel is running rampant The NSW Lib’s sanctification as Premier of the Brylcreemed Li’l Dabble Dooya, better known as Dominic Perrottet, a man resembling a pelican emerging from an oil spill, has re-animated conjecture about the capture of the conservative parties by religious nutters.
Students at the prestigious University of Melbourne only receive the support they need during remote learning because their tutors work unpaid, says a staff member who is risking his job to blow the whistle.
There is not one reason for this biased treatment of Labor scandals as compared to Liberals. Some of it constitutes conscious bias on the part of many Murdoch journalists who set out to use their media power to smear progressive politicians. However, much of this bias results from unconscious assumptions about the differential legitimacy of Labor and Liberal politicians. In a nutshell, Labor politicians are assumed to be scandal-plagued, are assumed to be less legitimate and so when Labor scandals break, journalists say “I told you so”. Liberals, on the other hand, are taken for granted as legitimate, so are treated with kid gloves by journalists, even when involved in equivalent scandals or even more serious scandals than Labor. Media inequality leads to unequal accountability between Labor and Liberal politicians, which results in inequitable democratic accountability. Although journalists love a political scandal, they apparently love a Labor scandal more than they love a Liberal one.
The British Empire should be a fading memory. But modern-day conservatives have turned imperial nostalgia into a powerful weapon in the country’s culture wars, vilifying those who want a more honest reckoning with Britain’s historic crimes.
“We appreciate that the government has a legitimate interest in protecting bona fide national security interests, but the proceedings against Mr. Assange jeopardize journalism that is crucial to democracy,” wrote the organizations.
“In our view, a precedent created by prosecuting Assange could be used against publishers and journalists alike, chilling their work and undermining freedom of the press.”
As Common Dreams reported last month, under former President Donald Trump, the CIA reportedly discussed kidnapping or assassinating Assange, who is currently imprisoned in London’s maximum-security Belmarsh prison.
“The actions laid out in the indictment are virtually indistinguishable from common practices in newspapers around the country.”
Yahoo News first reported the revelations that officials at the “highest levels” of the agency considered attacking Assange, as well as “extensive spying on WikiLeaks associates, sowing discord among the group’s members, and stealing their electronic devices.” “In February, members of this coalition wrote to the Acting Attorney General, urging that the criminal charges against Mr. Assange be dropped,” the groups said. “We now renew that request
Beware billionaire control freaks Though not all that exceptional for egocentric billionaires, every one a self-declared know-it-all, Trump cannot abide that the populace, especially disreputable, undeserving minorities, can determine where he lives, what he does, and whom he abuses. Like other Robber Barons, Trump has the snobbish mania to make himself an entitled aristocrat, a master of the universe whose only complaint is why it took so long to award him the emperor’s throne. Like irrational anti-vaxxers, he can’t stand being told what to do – stopped only when richer, higher powers he can’t intimidate dismiss his arrogance, “We won’t remain winners if we back your serial bad investments, appalling staff choices, and vulgar, infinite presumptions.”
Weekend Wrap 17 Oct 21: COVID updates as Vic and NSW head out of lockdown, Whats Josh Frydenberg‘s problem? And Morrison is finally off to Glasgow
We voted for them and this is what they delivered NOTHING
In the last eight years of Coalition rule, there have been more than 20 different climate and energy policies, which have been announced with fanfare before fizzing into the background, or just being trashed altogether. Here’s a short rundown of what the last eight years has looked like.
As Prime Minister Scott Morrison tries to land a Coalition climate policy deal ahead of the international COP26 summit in Glasgow, Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce on Sunday ruled out supporting more ambitious 2030 targets. The current 2030 target aims to cut emissions by 26-28% below 2005 levels, and has been criticised by scientists and the international community as far too weak. But ahead of a Nationals party room meeting on Sunday to discuss changes to national climate policy, Joyce declared it “highly unlikely” he would support a doubling of the 2030 target, according to ABC reports.
NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet has announced that he and his wife Helen are expecting their seventh child. In a post on Facebook on Sunday night the premier said he had “exciting family news”. The conservative Catholic already has five daughters and one son.
“It’s not just a health crisis, it’s an economic crisis.” Dominic Francis Perrottet, a gangly colt by Gordon Gecko out of Margaret Thatcher in party apparatchik’s blue tie saddle-cloth, a heavily tipped favourite, but up in class, easily beats his lunchtime jogging pal, Planning Minister, pious Anglican and fellow anti-abortionist, Rob Stokes to the winning post in NSW’s forty-sixth premier stakes. It’s a rigged ballot, after much horse-trading, yet a novelty in a party which hasn’t voted for a leader since 2002. NSW prefers, like La Cosa Nostra, to keep its succession planning simple. Gladys is a no-show. Is she in witness protection already? Scuttlebutt from “senior Liberals” is that she’ll be parachuted into a safe federal Liberal seat. If ICAC doesn’t send her to jail.
“Privatize everything. Abolish help for the weak, the solitary, the sick and the unemployed. Abolish all aid for everyone except the banks. Don’t look after the poor; let the elderly die. Reduce the wages of the poor but reduce the taxes of the rich. Make everyone work until they are ninety. Only teach mathematics to traders, reading to big property-owners and history to on-duty ideologues.” And the execution of these commands will in fact ruin the life of millions of people,” writes Alain Badiou in Capitalism Today, (2012, 13).
“It could be a page from Dom’s secret diary. It certainly fits federal Coalition “policy”.
Who is Morrison intent on protecting?
Without severe penalties, political corruption in Australia will continue to flourish, writes Alan Austin.
Tesla is flying high in Germany: In September, more electric Tesla Model 3s were registered in the country than leading domestic models, such as the BMW 3 Series, Audi A4 and Mercedes C-Class combined, business news magazine WirtschaftsWoche reports, citing data from the Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA).
To some, it seemed hypocritical for evangelicals to support Donald Trump — not exactly a Christian-family-values figure. But his strong evangelical support was the culmination of the embattled cultural politics that gave rise to the modern evangelical movement.
Evangelicals’ identities are rooted in their calling, their task, which is to return America to its Christian origins, because only then will God give this nation his blessing. Evangelicalism, remember, has been this way since World War II. They’ve always had this special mission.
Of course, they will never achieve their task, because their version of America was never real to begin with. But it is an incredibly powerful way to rally the troops, mobilize conservatives, and make them feel like they have lost something that is rightfully theirs — that this is our country, we were once at the center of things, and what needs to happen is that we need to be back in charge because then we can Make America Great Again.
As Julian Assange prepares to face a British court for possibly the last time, threatened with up to 175 years detention in a US supermax prison, his biographer, journalist Gary Lord, explores the latest bizarre twists in the US effort to extradite the Wikileaks founder and the silence of global media.
It was not for everybody, but the shock advertising tactics of the Australian comedian Dan Ilic made an appropriate point. Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison, a famed coal hugger, has vacillated about whether to even go to the climate conference in Glasgow. Having himself turned the country’s prime ministerial office into an extended advertising agency, Ilic was speaking his language. The language was promoted through sponsored imagery in Times Square, New York, with advertising space purchased by a crowdfunding campaign of considerable success. Billboards featured the prime minister as a “Coal-o-phile Dundee,” mercilessly mocked Australia’s climate policies and responses to the murderously scorching bushfires of 2020.
Federal policies remain firmly fixed on keeping fossil fuels in the energy mix and expanding coal and gas production. It recently approved several new coal mines and announced subsidised and expanded gas production. Gas is a fossil fuel that also needs to be phased out if we’re to have any chance of keeping warming to 1.5℃. The Morrison government is also increasing funding for carbon capture and storage, a policy aimed at continuing the use of fossil fuels. This is despite the country’s largest such project, the Gorgon venture off Western Australia, failing to reduce and store carbon emissions at the rate originally promised. The annual Climate Transparency analysis, released on Wednesday, shows Australia has some of the G20’s highest per capita emissions. It is the only developed country in the G20 with no price on carbon, yet ranks the fourth highest for risk of economic losses from climate impacts.
Kooyong’s own Harvard wiz-kid needs to go.
It turns out the very business lobbyists who stood to benefit most from JobKeeper were regularly advising the Government on JobKeeper. Callum Foote and Michael West report how $40bn was squandered and the role of corporate spinners Business Council of Australia and AI Group.
This article could once have been about Australia if it weren’t for the LNP
Portugal has the world’s highest COVID-19 vaccination rate, with 85 percent of the population fully vaccinated. Its success drew on a strong public information campaign — but it couldn’t have done it without a free national health care system that has won massive popular trust.
Baseless claims of anti-Semitism and allegations of hypocrisy have been leveled for decades at anyone who rejects the fiction that Israel is a normal state.
On Friday, some thirty militant Israeli squatters on Palestinian land in the West Bank attacked Palestinian farmers harvesting olives from their orchards at Salfit. At the same time the Israeli occupation army blocked other farmers from reaching their olive orchards near the large squatter settlement of Ariel, built on land stolen from Palestinian families. So reports al-Quds [Jerusalem] and the Associated Press. Fall is harvest time for Palestinian olive growers. Murad Ishtiwi, a Palestinian activist against the Israeli government project of settling squatters on other people’s private property, told al-Quds that the Occupation forces attempted to stop the farmers from the hamlet of Yasuf near Salfit when they sought to reach their land near to an Israeli squatter outpost. They were shocked that a large band of squatters from Rahalim, allegedly abetted by the Israeli army, attacked and beat the farmers, injuring four of them. The Israelis then made off with the olive harvest.
Trump’s Narcissistic Personality Disorder on full show “it’s all about me” statement
“If we don’t solve the Presidential Election Fraud of 2020 (which we have thoroughly and conclusively documented), Republicans will not be voting in ’22 or ’24. It is the single most important thing for Republicans to do,” Trump argued.
Trump has taken Goebbels to a whole other level of lying.
There’s so much to contemplate in this development: the humiliation – if the federal government was apt to feel such a thing – of a state government appearing to unilaterally end quarantine arrangements (the responsibility of the federal government) and overseas arrivals caps for starters It looked for all the world as if the state government was running the joint. Perrottet the premier of Australia. Just as Scott Morrison has been dubbed the prime minister for NSW. Before Perrottet’s announcement, we had heard nothing this week from the PM since Monday – when he emerged out of The Lodge to once again try to share in the joy of (and credit for) the end of lockdown in NSW.
The Reserve Bank of Australia has declared that the Government cannot hide from a net zero future today as state and territory governments around the country make plans without Federal guidance. In response, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has told journalists that he has accepted the RBA’s challenge and looks forward to showing the country he can and will hide from it. “Right now, my cabinet is looking for a dead cat,” he said.
Australia is both one of the wealthiest and – in too many ways – one of the most backward countries in the world. We have manufacturing facilities which could be revived to build EVs and the knowledge to ensure that re-charging is readily available. We also have a Coalition government which appears to lack any ability to plan for a viable future. Today, schoolchildren are demanding that governments take action as a matter of urgency, as their whole future is at stake. In the very near future the existing government will draw on the selfish instincts of the electorate to seek a further term in office. I am deeply unenamoured with the alternative government, but would still rather vote them in, than risk seeing the future for my grandchildren and their children destroyed by the selfishness of those currently at the helm.
Don’t sleepwalk into a fascist Australia
We need to be vigilant, active and politically switched-on if we are to avoid scenes like those in Rome recently where fascist mobs ransacked a union headquarters and terrorised working-class and diverse communities. We had a taste in Melbourne with the attack on the CMFEU headquarters and violent rampages around the city. Now the mobs are planning another street rally in late November. We have to fight back, or they will overrun our city.
This was part and parcel of Morrison’s National Quarantine Plan which he financed to be placed with the cooperation of Dan Andrews. Now Josh Frydenberg seems to be saying Victoria is the uncooperative outlier. How incompetent are these clowns as leaders and negotiators.?
Morrison capitulates to the Queens demands and Frydenberg declares it’s proof of Australia’s goodwill in cooperating at COP26. If the media doesn’t criticize this bullshit we are expected to believe it’s true when it’s patently not what happened. Did Frydenberg bullshit his way through Harvard too?
Victoria’s purpose-built $200 million quarantine facility still has a role to play in the pandemic, experts say, however it won’t be as crucial as anticipated due to high case numbers and vaccination rates.The Mickleham “centre for national resilience” for incoming travellers won’t be ready until the end of the year, however there is a risk it may become a white elephant if Victoria relaxes quarantine rules.NSW’s move to effectively end quarantine for most travellers by opening international borders to those who are vaccinated from November 1 has raised questions over the purpose of the facility being built in Melbourne’s north.
As much as it pains me and no doubt Andrew Bolt he’s only runner up to the worst of the worst at Sky. He never seems to get a gong for anything. The 80-year-old from Sydney beat him by lengths and Rown Dean was also near to making him an also-ran.
Sky News has just spent the Day 2 of News Corp’s climate action campaign showing worrying statistics that suggest an alarming number of Australians are misinformed on climate change and the facts regarding the importance of climate action, leading to the network asking how the so many Aussies could be so misinformed on such a serious issue?We know it could be hard for Sky News to find these since they have scrubbed the pushback against climate action from the transcripts of their coverage, here are our picks of some of the best possible culprits to blame for this situation.
My thought for the day Lying in the media is wrong at any time however when they do it by deliberate omission it is even more so. Murdoch’s papers seem to do it with impunity. ( John Lord )
Many people fear carbon credits will be used to avoid reductions in the production of fossil fuels. And when you hear Energy Minister Angus Taylor assuring people in the coal, oil and gas industries that they “have a great future”, it makes you think such fears are warranted.