28 Oct 2014

Canberra:- Is TPP just code for selling 'The Australian Fair Go'

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) free trade agreement is starting to take shape and may be concluded by year's end.
Should we be frightened, you bet your life, why because we are being kept in the dark.
The secrecy around the TPP is astounding the government is about to do a deal that will effect  every Australian and we are not allowed to even see even the barest detail.

The deal is set to cover 40 per cent of the global economy.
In the mean time our minister for trade is telling us nothing accept "We are trying to make as many final decisions as we can and bring this thing to conclusion.

We are dealing with major economies with much more clout than us, you can bet that when the last cards are dealt we won't come out with a royal flush, we'll be lucky if we come out with a pair of twos.

The secretive negotiations involved in the process is beyond believe, the only winners in this will be the multinationals, they are the ones that are driving this and they will be the only real winners.

This government with their unshakable belief in the free enterprise bible is not one that can inspire us to believe they will stand up for us the people.

We the consumers(we are no longer people) are just numbers that can improve the bottom line. It is no wonder that the TPP has attracted criticism for being closed off from public view.
Critics worry the deal will see the cost of medicines skyrocket and crush freedom of speech through onerous copyright laws.
We are fearful the negotiations are not in the interest of Australians. This deal could give all the power to corporations and reduce government's ability to legislate in our public interest and nothing has been said to assure us that this will not happen.
As an example the US is apparently attacking access to life-saving medicines via its push for pharmaceutical companies to have longer monopolies over brand name drugs as part of the TPP.
"This is not the intention or the outcome that will occur with this particular 21st century agreement."Says Minister Rob.

Can we believe him when everything is kept secret, I for one do not.

23 Oct 2014

Shortage of gas on the horizon for Australia. Why,Why,Why!!


When most developed countries reserve a certain amount of their gas reserves because they consider it in their interest to do so, we on the other hand sell it off as fast as we can, with no concern for our future. We don't even consider it as a national asset.

Its all about global demand, never mind what we Australians might need for our manufacturing or domestic use to stay competitive. There will come a time, and its almost here. When we hear AGL saying there is going to be a gas shortage, Soon, god forbid we'll have to buy gas overseas because we can't afford our own.

Talk about short sighted and blinkered, governments blindly let the big multinationals do what they want with no regard for the countries they milk of resources. Governments should do what we pay them for, look after their own people.

I'm not suggesting we don't sell any of our resources all I'm suggesting is that we reserve some of our resources as means of ensuring  our future, for our children.

Is this Australia or Nazi Germany. Our Esteemed Leader strikes the right to know.

The federal government is seeking to abolish mandatory reporting by telcos of the number of disclosures made to government agencies for Australians’ personal phone, location and web data.
Why they would with hold these statistics is beyond me, surely such basic information should be available to the public.
A bill will be introduced in the lower house on Wednesday that would repeal a series of reporting requirements for telecommunications companies to reveal the number of disclosures they have made each year for warrantless requests for Australians’ personal data.
All Australians should be alarmed at the push to remove the reporting obligations.
If passed, it will mean telecommunications companies can keep secret the total number of disclosures of Australians’ personal data.
This removes from us, the voters, the right to see at least the number of disclosures, we are entitled to this information as Australian citizens.

22 Oct 2014

A Whitlam era, compare today!


Written by S.W.T.Read
Based on an article by Ian Warden

Was there in Australia a Whitlam era, how far away are we NOW.

What of today's Prime minister, a Liberal Party's industrial chemists invention made in the party's laboratories from freeze-dried and eggs and DNA material harvested during the stale, forbidding Menzies' years.

The reintroduction of Dames and Knights is a glimpse of his forward thinking for Australia. The factions within the Coalition seem to choose any leader who can win.(even a drovers dog could have won this time) They don't look for true leadership qualities.

As for the Labor party, its probably Gough's fault that they try to compare his heyday to that of today's Labor Party. Now what do we have, we have small not towering figures, its truly awful. The factions always consider their own power base ahead of choosing the best talent.

They, the Labor party began in 1972 to believe that henceforth every leader of the Labor Party would have something Whitlamesque about him or herself. It was a delusion they have never found an equal.(Hawke was the nearest)
Whitlam's rise brought us such joyous delivery in the big house compared to the mundane and irritating cat fighting of the parliament today.

Today we have slow-witted Tony Abbott who can't do better than threaten to "shirtfront" those he doesn't like while Shorten seems to ignore an opportunity for a short quick jab.

If there were someone as quick-witted as  Whitlam he would fire a malicious quip and take quip-sized chunks out of a PM who used such language and it would be done with great panache.

Whitlam was a great leader who was in a hurry, in a hurry to make Australia part of the world, he delivered much and promised much but haste was his greatest enemy.

He took his eye of the ball, he was not a good coach, however you could say he won a premiership of ideas.

It can never be said that he was frightened or that he never achieved.

Weather he was wise to act with such haste, perhaps not.

However the Coalition's subsequent behaviour in blocking supply and forcing his dismissal does support his haste to accomplish his aims, perhaps that was his only chance to put his policies into practise. 

21 Oct 2014

CAR manufacturers block mechanics from repairing your car.

Will a new code mean less choice for Australian car owners?
There are concerns that time may be up for the independent car mechanic, with news that the automotive industry has blocked moves to allow them access to data and tools to repair modern cars.
Earlier this year the federal government sanctioned negotiations to establish a voluntary code of conduct between independent repairers and car companies that would allow access to vehicle service and repair data.
Now the group that represents car makers and importers, the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), has pulled out of the negotiations and announced that it will develop its own voluntary code of conduct for car servicing.

Gough Whitlam was once described as someone who could reach for the sky, where are such people today?

Reaching for the sky is not something we'll ever see from the batch of parliamentarians that now occupy the house on the hill in Canberra.

The courage to use their imagination when constructing policies has long been forgotten, for today its all about the latest polls. The 24 hour news cycle dictates everything.

The National disability scheme is the first innovative policy we've seen for years, do we have anyone in either party at the moment who inspires us, that really shows true leadership,no.

Where are the inspirational leaders, where have they gone, both the major parties have so many media minders they all act like ventriloquist's dummies.

Every word is analysed for its true meaning, every sentence taken apart by the minders so the media can create a story, this is what we the people are force fed with daily.

I wonder, why we do we hold our pollies with so much contempt.

If they could just be themselves, warts and all, we'd know they were real people, we know people are human and make mistakes but we don't believe people are sincere if they are sanitised, homogenised and deodorised before we see them.

Where am I coming from, well I just long for real people, politicians who can put the game playing and point scoring aside and put forward real policy, changes that are inclusive.

We have a government that is locked into a long past ideology that does not live in this century and an opposition that keeps telling us that it is not up to an opposition to put forward policies.

Am I pessimistic, yes it seems no one has guts enough to break the mold they have been cloned into, they have become politicians and their main aim is to be re-elected.

The truth is politics in this country has become bloody boring and why I write about the bloody stuff amazes me.

17 Oct 2014

Fairfax Media to get rid of more staff, the demise of a great honest newspaper group.



Fairfax Media to get rid of subeditors and photographers what's next.


Loading more work on reporters means less front line news reporting already we see newspaper groups copying news from one another. In depth reporting has become a relic of the past and as for local reporting its almost dead.

News today is cloning of the same stories by publishers, a tweak here a tweak there and they try to make us believe each story is different.

Now days you can look at news headlines in any part of the world and they are copies, sure there was an original story once, before the clones took over.

Newspapers and journalists have reached the same high level of esteem as politicians. Some people including journalists laugh at this of but it is a sad day when our press coverage has sunk to such low depths.

The newspaper owners are no longer newspaper men but accountants who live by the mighty dollar, reputation no longer counts, even quality is bypassed, its all about what sells even if its trash, all for the sake of the bottom line and increasing profits.

16 Oct 2014

Meta data and horses, what do they have in common.

Meta Data, could this horse win the race?
Its to late once the horse has bolted.

If we let this horse roam free for to long it will never be tamed again and we'll have this horse trampling or gardens and privacy forever.

Governments are easily frightened by security agencies and they feel forced to do the right thing in the eyes of the public, however they are also the keeper of our freedoms and they should look carefully before giving an open ended right to these agencies to our private information.

Too many non-security agencies in this country already have access to our private information and why they do I have no idea. the apparent lack of oversight  has not been questioned.

Proper independent oversight in relation to this proposed legislation should be ensured and also this  legislation should have a sunset clause of 5 years, no longer.

Given the amount of information these agencies may collect it is not beyond belief to one day see our MP's become so beholden to these agencies that  they could become their pawns.
Once allowed to roam free of any fences these horses could easily trample our freedoms.

13 Oct 2014

Thou shall not take my name in vain says Eric Abetz

His long past German ancestry is showing

Public servants at the Australian Taxation Office are under the hammer after being threatened with official punishment if they mention the name of Public Service Minister Eric Abetz in internal online discussions about pay and conditions at the agency.

Management have phoned rank-and-file tax officials, warning them to remove any references even if they are innocuous that mention the minister from the electronic notice boards or face disciplinary action.

Its been confirmed the policy is in place saying the internal discussions on the current round of enterprise bargaining talks must remain "apolitical".

If its to remain "apolitical" why has Abetz brought it up with the management at ATO.

The minister's office said on Monday that this was a matter for the individual agency without any input from the minister, should we believe it, not on your life..
There has been a row over ATO managers trying to "censor" material pinned to traditional physical notice boards at its office.

The agency has been told by Fair Work Australia that they should not remove items unless they broke the law.

This is taking censorship to the extreme. There was a time in a European nation when this was the norm and we know here that led.

Eric should pull his head in and cop the flack like everyone has to from time to time.

11 Oct 2014

OUR AUSTRALIAN WARRIORS Deserve better than a 1.5 per cent pay rise spread over 3 years.


While the Abbott gov't bathes in the glory of another war they
are denying the forces a salary to keep pace with inflation.

They deserve better than a 1.5 per cent pay rise spread over three years and they shouldn't be asked to sacrifice leave to accept such a miserable offer.
1.5 per cent is a disgusting offer, it is insulting to the men and women who lay their lives on the line for us. This government is just plain mean, they should be ashamed of themselves. 
These men and women serve overseas, they shouldn't lose some of their leave entitlements to satisfy a penny pinching government.
Everyone deserves a holiday especially people who are willing to die for us!
Days after Australian forces were committed to Iraq, some 57,000 defence force personnel were told they will have to give up some Christmas and recreational leave in exchange for this below inflation pay rise.

8 Oct 2014

Why is Turkey waiting, its sitting on its hands while people are murdered!

"If I look the other way"
animated gif of black and white cat
"It won't happen"

The Kurds pleaded for help because ISIS threatens not only the Kurds but also the entire Middle East and the rest of the world… However the call for solidarity has since fell on deaf ears in Turkey.
Turkey’s willingness to sit on the sidelines as the West’s ‘Public Enemy Number One’ moves in next door could badly damage a country that has been something of a bastion of stability in a troubled region.
Watching the Turks stand by are Turkey’s own 15 million-strong Kurdish minority—nearly 20 per cent of the country—whose long history of insurrection against the Turkish state appeared until recently to be drawing to a close.
The ISIS jihadist group, which thrives on instability and whose long term goal is to erect a Caliphate encompassing all the Muslim lands of the region cannot believe their luck. Turkey is doing nothing, will Turkey be next.
If Turkey continues to watch a massacre take place, will that not encourage these jihadists to believe that this NATO member is a toothless tiger.

Turkey has ample military potential to eliminate this group on their border if they wish yet they are hesitant, why, what could they benefit from standing by, they are looking incredibly impotent and are damaging NATO's reputation..
Will these terrorists turn their attention to Turkey in the same way as jihadists fighting in Afghanistan went on to wreak havoc in Pakistan.

Victorian Politicians, why should we trust them?

Rich-Phillips shows us why we can't trust politicians

VICTORIAN Aviation Industry Minister Gordon Rich-Phillips’s department has poured $1 million dollars of taxpayers’ money into a private aero club where he just happens to be a member and stores his personal aircraft.
The regional airports grant was made despite serious questions about the extent of public use of the infrastructure and the fact the airfield is on Melbourne’s outer-urban fringe, it is clearly not in ­regional Victoria.
Mr Rich-Phillips confirmed yesterday he was initially approached by the Peninsula Aero Club about special funding for improvements to the facilities. Work is already under way on improving the minister’s aero club facility.
As for what he knew of the grant he claims that he had just stumbled across paperwork where the club’s name had been mentioned. This claim is almost unbelievable because of his involvement with the club,
The rules for the regional grant clearly state that any money should be for public-use aviation infrastructure.
The Napthine government does not need a minister who brings a strange smell to his portfolio. This raises serious questions to answer about taxpayer-funded grants being given to close associates.

7 Oct 2014

George Clooney to become US president, true or false.

Clooney thinks he's already got a good job, could he be tempted to take such a challenge, who knows?

Reagan did it and was successful, could we see another actor take the role, is it so far fetched.

Any comment appreciated.

Odds shorten on George Clooney becoming US president following marriage to Amal Alamuddin:

'via Blog this'

2 Oct 2014

Australian Bureau of Meteorology is lying about climate says gov'ts adviser!

Abbott adviser does not trust the Bureau of Meteorology he wants a 'warming' inquiry' 

(A warming inquiry, I can't believe it, he's got to be joking. Ha,ha,ha.......)
Its true Maurice Newman, the prime minister’s business adviser, has called for a government-funded review of the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) because he's suspicious of them showing a warming bias.
He has always questioned the findings of mainstream climate science, now he is accusing the Bureau of temperature manipulation.
He suggests they have corrupted the official temperature records by adjusting data and moving the location of temperature monitors to make it appear that Australia is warming.
Newman said that while the “BoM is a large and expensive agency, employing 1,700 people and costing more than $300 million a year to run”, it’s temperature record was “error-ridden”.
A staff member who has been at the BoM for more than a decade said the criticism of the bureau is “offensive” to employees and “It’s a kick in the guts, to be honest and it’s offensive to the professionalism and dedication that people show here day in, day out.
This government devalues science in every walk of life. The fact no-one is defending the bureau’s staff and the good work they do is a crime.” 
Ask Australians on the land what they think of the Bureau and they'll tell how much they rely on them and how high they value them, as for their integrity, it's never questioned.
So now the Abbott government is questioning the integrity of  Britain’s Met Office and Nasa in the US, who agree with the Bureau. The unadjusted data and the homogenised data shows that Australia has warmed over the past century.
Thank god we have this Abbott government
why because I was almost convinced
 that the world was round before they enlightened me.

Australia must stop making excuses on Ebola, says Medecins Sans Frontieres

We Australians are quick to go to war but won't send medical help. The excuse, we can't get them home if they catch the disease. If we can fly transport planes with arms to Iraq whats the problem?

Australia must stop making excuses on Ebola, says Medecins Sans Frontieres:

'via Blog this'

1 Oct 2014

Freedom:- Never have we been so free

Based on an article by Paul Verhaeghe

“Never have we been so free. Never have we felt so powerless.” We are indeed freer than before, we can criticise religion, take advantage of the new casual attitude to sex and support any political movement we like.
We can do these things because they no longer have any significance, our freedom is prompted by indifference.
On the other hand, our daily lives have become a constant battle against a bureaucracy, there are regulations about everything, from the salt content of bread to urban poultry-keeping and rules about what we can say(politically correct).
Our freedom is based on one central condition: We must be successful – that is, “make” something of ourselves.Here are some obvious ones:
  •  A highly skilled individual who puts parenting before their career comes in for criticism.
  • A person with a good job who turns down a promotion to invest more time in other things is seen as crazy – unless those other things ensure success.
  • A young woman who wants to become a primary school teacher is told by her parents that she should start off by getting a master’s degree in economics – a primary school teacher, why because that would be considered success.

Then we have the so called values in our culture. Yes our norms and values make up an integral and essential part of our identity.
So they cannot be lost, so we think. Well maybe not but they can be changed. That is precisely what has happened and is happening still.
A changed economy reflects changed ethics and brings about changed identity. The current economic system is bringing out the worst in us. It is capitalism gone mad, the god of privatization and big profit has replaced our ethics.
Even love these days, such as a mother staying at home to care for a child has has been devalued because it is not considered to be a good career 'its not making something of ourselves'.
Why is it that almost all work involved in caring for others is undervalued and considered to be at the bottom rung of success, whereas the greedy are held up to us as great examples.
Is this the direction in which we as humans want to head, is this the success we want humanity.
All we need is a large dose of ethics before its to late.

Tax Office is not equipped to tackle billions of dollars stolen by multinationals and others in international tax dodging.

Stop billions of dollars stolen by multinationals and others in international tax dodging.

How, fix the laws, because our laws allow it to happen.

Whats Australia doing about it, its cutting 3000 ATO staff?

When Treasurer Joe Hockey is boasting about Australia's efforts in conjunction with the G20 to close international tax loopholes,we don't have a dedicated team to fight the problem.

Money flowing between Australian companies and their foreign subsidiaries has topped $270 billion, this is more than half of the Commonwealth Budget.

Many of the ATO's most experienced staff in tracking international profits have moved to the big four accounting firms, where they now advise these same companies on how to minimise their tax.

Inspector-General Ali Noroozi warned government the loss of key ATO experts in so-called "transfer pricing" posed risks to Commonwealth revenue.
Mr Noroozi's report has been sat on since it was delivered last December and not released until June 2, three weeks after Treasurer Joe Hockey announced savage cuts to the ATO in his first budget.(open government, its a joke)

Internationally, there are government and community concerns regarding risks to revenue arising from transfer pricing which is severely eroding revenue in the countries they're earning income from. This is profit shifting on a grand scale.

The shortfall in revenue is being being made up by hurting small to medium businesses and average workers, governments who are seen to be doing nothing on this front will pay at the ballot box.

The problem is becoming so obvious even blind Freddy can see it, every time governments slug the general public instead of tackling the problem they will pay a price.

Governments of all persuasions will ignore this situation at their peril.