Democracy being dealt a deadly blow

We have in Austrailia at the moment a stoush between the nation’s two most senior law officers – the elected Attorney General and the Public Sector’s Solicitor General.

7934748-3x2-340x227George #Brandis, the AG (pictured left), has been accused by John Gleeson, the SG, of bypassing his office in seeking on crucial pieces of legislation.

Even worse, Gleeson says Brandis misled parliament by saying the AG’s office had consulted Gleeson.

They appeared before a Senate Committee last week. That didn’t solve much.

The point is that if what Glesson alleges is true (and I seem to believe him more than Brandis, a politician) it has the potential to undermine our system of government and, the Public Service.

It goes right to the heart of what the Public Servce is about (to provide frank and impartial advice on legislation).

What’s particulatly worrying is that this fight invvolves the nation’s two highest law officers. Not a good look.

As Gabrielle Appleby, Associate Professor, UNSW Law School, UNSW Australia, said: “It is a situation with potentially serious repercussions for government under the rule of law.”

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Filed under attorney general, australia, brandis, gleeson, parliament, politics, solicitor general

Who pays for women’s sport?

Women’s sport. The media is raving on about it and how the girls should get equal pay and conditions (business-class flights).

I’m all for equality but let’s face it, I don’t see how the sports can afford it.

Netball. A sport played by four nations. Possibly the most boring competition. It seems Australia is always paying NZ (close games) or Great Britain and/or Jamaica (not so close). That’s it. Oh, yes, plus that world powerhouse, South Africa. Sure, netball attracts great crowd here but how are the other nations going to afford it? Jamaica and South Africa aren’t exactly economical sound.

Women’s cricket and soccer attracts two and a dog to their games.The skill might be there but the crowds aren’t. How long (if ever) will the gate number increase. Sponsors want to see not just bums on seats but a crowd which adds to live telecasts. It’s quite embarrassing to watch the soccer and cricket with empty grounds. Does that then affect the TV audience, which may not get too excited by the lack of colour, movement and sound only a crowd brings. If TV viewers are low, then sponsors won’t be interested.

Women’s tennis. Hang on they only play three sets, while the men play five, then they want equality.

The problem is there’s only so many hours in the day you can watch sport and there’s such a small fan base in Australia, yet everyone wants to be professional. Who’s going to pay for it?

I say get rid of all professional sport. The AFL and rugby league players don’t deserve to be paid anyway, and certainly don’t deserve any government funding. In WA, the taxpayer foots the bill for a new stadium, while all the AFL gave was less than a year’s salary for its CEO.

Sports are milking it (us). Gave up watching yonks ago, though I love the professional surfing. They have a great model (live streaming is brilliant) and they don’t ask for anything.

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The great Aussie sellout

The Trans Pacific Partnership was signed in NZ today by our Trade Minister Andrew Robb (an apt name given what is predicted to happen).

Just one part of this means that international agricultural company Monsanto (they of genetically-modified crops) now is closer to controlling pretty much all world food production.

The laws associated with the agreement say companies do not have to declare if their ingredients are G-M. The negative effects of the TPP are well documented, yet is still got through.

The “Monsanto provision” included in the bill requires that U.S. negotiators fight for rules in trade agreements that eliminate so-called “barriers” to markets, such as the labelling of GMOs. Biotechnology companies consider that such information is unnecessary for the consumers and would have a deterrent effect on their profits. This may cut across countries’ sovreignty in that they will not be able to legislate against possibly harmful organisms.

Fortunately, it still has to be approved by Parliament. Meantime, here’s some info on “the dirtiest deal you’ve never heard of”.

https://www.getup.org.au/campaigns/tpp/tpp/the-dirtiest-deal-you-ve-never-heard-of


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Kick in the arse for Abbott

Yep, 61-39 is a close vote in anyone’s maths. For Prime Minister Abbott it signals the backbenchers should not be ignored. Abbott can start by ceasing to listen to his advisers, notably chief of staff Credlin.

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Political correctness gone mad

The club I belongs to wants to make and distribute Christmas cakes and sweets to older military veterans who may be alone over Christmas.

Not an easy job, given that (a) privacy laws prevent us finding out where they are, let alone who they are and (b) we need a commercial kitchen. Maybe the local RSL clubs can put us in touch with some Vets.

Governments (and the civil libertarians that help frame these laws) certainly make it difficult to help people in a time of need.

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What is Wirrpanda thinking?

What is David Wirrpanda thinking? He’s head of an Aboriginal Youth Foundation and decides to open a Sexpo? Not only that, he’s decided to run for the Senate for the Nationals. Really, none of it fits. He’s not setting a great example for his foundation by opening a sex event. You’ve only got to read his organisation’s charter to see how it’s a conflict. I can’t imagine the Nats would to too pleased, either. Very bad strategy, David. I doubt I’d vote for you if that’s the level of your thinking.

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Barnett splashes cash to staff – The West Australian

Now here’s some real bullshit. Barnett splashes cash to staff – The West Australian

Just as WA Premier Colin Barnett announces austerity measures across the public service, right down to stationery, he give political staffers (advisors) hefty pay rises.

In one instance, chief media advisor Dix Marshall jumps $84,00 to $245,000.

As far as I’m aware, all she does is swear at people.

All so hypercritical from someone who really is seen as ‘the emperor”.

Oh yes, what was Dixie’s advice on the media storm that ensued? “Say nothing”. Brilliant advice for $245,000.

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Applications > Mac – TPB

What the? Our national carrier, QANTAS, has bowed to Islam and removed pork (and alcohol) from its menu into Dubai.

What a ham-fisted, gutless decision. 

QANTAS, you’re an Australian airline, not an Islamic carrier. 

Anyway, there are better, lower-cost airlines and I, for one, will be flying them from now on. 

Ref: http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/travel/news/qantas-pork-ban-after-emirates-deal-enrages-bacon-lovers-on-facebook/story-fn3015fd-1226613567386

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Election brochures so sanitised

Strange. We don’t have a local MP, as our sitting MP John Kobelke (a great member) is retiring. Naturally he’s backed the Labour candidate, Janet Pettigrew, whose election guff arrived this week.

Her brochure is such a predictable piece of propaganda that it makes me think twice about voting for her. There’s nothing about who she actually is; just a lot of words about how many committees she’s been on.

Every photo is the same – Janet with a local resident who’s associated with some issue she’s been involved in. All a big yawn, really. 

I’m assuming all electorate material is the same. Really, what I want is to know the person. After all, it’s a week to voting and this is the first time I’ve been introduced to the candidate. 

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What a waste of water, our most precious resource

WA’s Department of Water is reportedly wasting the resource it’s supposed to protect, according to today’s Sunday Times / PerthNow.

“More than half a gigalitre of water, enough to fill more than 230 Olympic-sized pools, was drawn illegally by users of the Gnangara Mound, but only $7500 in fines were issued,” the paper says.

Brilliant.

It’s about the Department, which is supposed to regulate / monitor WaterCorp. But both are useless, as are many Perth residents, who continue to water their lawns, our most precious resource, wasted on weeds.

The reason this is allowed is that WaterCorp research shows if Perth didn’t have been lawns it would be bad psychologically (WaterCorp won’t tell us that – it’s a secret). Well, we don’t water our corner block and it comes back green when the rain arrives.

WA has it priorities wrong. Sad to say the politicians here have no balls, otherwise they’d introduce watering bans, not restrictions. If you’d lived in places that have almost zero water, as I have, you’d appreciated the waste.

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