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Malcolm’s sleep-over

This delightful exchange between Malcolm Turnbull and one of our readers was sent to us by said reader, and while we are not in the habit of publishing everything that makes its way to our desk, this one was too good to ignore. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

This week I received the following email from the member for Wentworth, the Honourable Malcolm Turnbull.

I took it upon myself to read the thing through once, noting as I did that credit was not given for the first line to any of those who had said it before, but I thought to respond to Mr Turnbull in such a way as to make sure that when those amongst us who have vied for greatness and are called to serve, do not have their utterances go to waste, falling on the deaf ears of the less fortunate and other members of the stinking masses, or consigned to the deleted items folder of our much maligned email.

Dear Thinking Voter

‘The mark of a great society is the way it treats the neediest and most vulnerable’.

On June 19, I will be joining St Vinnies in their annual CEO sleepout – business and political leaders used to warm beds will be sleeping outdoors on a chilly winter night to raise money for the homeless.

Although I will be sleeping in a warm swag, a luxury that many vulnerable people sleeping rough don’t have, this year I will be doing the sleepout in Canberra, which will be a few degrees lower than Sydney.

The campaign will raise funds so St Vinnies can continue the important work they do in helping the homeless break the cycle of despair by offering them short term crisis accommodation, counselling and opportunities for education and training.

Last year the sleepout raised $5.3 million, which funded a range of programs to help the estimated 100,000 homeless around the country.

In my own electorate of Wentworth, money raised from last year’s sleepout ensured the ongoing operation of the Matthew Talbot Food Program in Woolloomooloo, which serves three hot meals to more than 500 homeless people a day.

In addition, the money raised by St Vinnies funded:

  • The Our Lady of the Way refuge in Western Sydney, which supports female victims of domestic violence.
  • Extending the Ozanam Learning Centre model to regional centres, such as Wagga Wagga and Armidale. The Ozanam model delivers early intervention for homeless people, providing educational, living skills and recreational courses.
  • And the continuity of outreach services to assist vulnerable families, including counselling and material aid packages.

Having read the Honourable Malcolm’s missive I was urged to reach for a handkerchief and cry piteously for a few minutes about how our much vaunted leader (or at least I should say member of the leadership team for the moment), could be so selfless, could be so caring, so giving, indeed so thoughtful as to apply himself to the streets of Canberra on a freezing June night to raise money for those less fortunate than himself, those who are homeless, those who are drug addicts and drunks, those who are meaningless to the rest of us, due to their position at the bottom of the social pecking order as we know and love it, here in Australia.

And having cried, my friends, I reached for my wallet and thought momentarily of sending a small donation to the member for Wentworth to support him in his good works.

My wife came in and noted the tears rolling down my cheeks, asked me if I was okay, handed me a Scotch (Black Douglas, $54 at Woolworths), and all was well with the world.

I dried up my tears, popped my wallet back into its place and sat down to pen this responsorial missive instead, deciding to support the Smith family by making a small donation each month to help an Australian child through school ($43 – comes out on the first of each month).

Dear Malcolm,

I was so touched by your lovely email of the 4th inst, describing your selfless sacrifice on behalf of those less fortunate than your good self.

I wonder, as your staff member penned it on your behalf, whether they saw the humour of the request you were making to people like me (well actually no, not people like me, people like you), when they sent out a missive such as that, asking for other members of the Liberal party to make small donations so that they could find their way to heaven by being seen to care occasionally, irrespective their number of ties to the Jesuits.

A truly lovely thought Malcolm, truly lovely. That a man of your standing within the community could reach out in such a way, risking all in a warm swag in the company of a large number of Liberals? Your selflessness is a thing of beauty.

As I think of you now on June 19 freezing your balls off, most likely around the fire, having a much better Scotch than mine, my eyes well up in recognition of your wonderful contribution to the well-being of people who make up the lower classes.

I suppose the first and most important thought I had was for those who have been put in that situation by recent changes brought in by your own party in terms of welfare cuts.

A truly shocking picture emerges Malcolm, of people that the likes of you will not employ and who have been on benefits for longer than you’ve been driving a Rolls-Royce, having $47 a week cut from their income. This of course would include those dreadful single mothers with their multiple children, spawn of multiple fathers, trying to make ends meet on $500 a week, eking out an existence in the wilds of St Mary’s. (Not the cathedral, the suburb – it’s somewhat west of you. You may have seen it on a map).

Then, my mind was drawn to the pensioners who are no longer to be given discounts on such things as heating bills, bus travel, their glasses, their hearing aids, their continence assistants and all the other things that make life far too easy for them. That one was of particular interest, simply because so many of those poor misguided souls have voted Liberal for so long they have forgotten why.

You, Malcolm, give them a truly truly wonderful reason to vote Liberal. Thoughtfully, on one night of the year you go out and do something which will attract the attention of the press (Rupert will love you for this) so that they can come and take photographs of you lying around on pieces of cardboard raising money for the people you put in a position to require that money. Truly wonderful Malcolm.

Then again as I contemplated my joy at receiving your letter, I thought of the folk on boats leaving Indonesia for a journey across a dangerous ocean trying to seek a better life, in a country which since 1951 has been a signatory to the International Treaty on refugees. What a magnanimous man you are. Putting yourself out for those who anyone else in the world would regard as “our most vulnerable”.

Then I remembered that only 92% of them are proper refugees aren’t they? It’s important that we preserve our shores from the likes of the other 8% who somehow have had enough money to be found to be financial refugees and sent back. Oh wait. They all get sent back don’t they? Thank you for saving us from the likes of those dreadful people Malcolm.

Have you ever read the Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini? Perhaps you could get yourself a copy from an opportunity shop for $.50 and try and read it between scotches on the streets of Canberra on 19 June. I do not expect that it will change your persuasion, but it may give you a little picture of life outside Wentworth.

Last, though probably not least, I thought of the thousands of 16 and 17-year-olds you will be forcing into prostitution after they leave school. I’m sure some of your friends, perhaps even some at 2 GB and at the Herald Sun, will appreciate your efforts on their behalf.

After all these years Malcolm, we Australians do not expect much of our politicians. I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you on behalf of those who most of us would consider our most vulnerable, for your efforts on their behalf. It takes a truly special man to be able to send an email like that and not disappear in embarrassment over the hypocrisy you display.

Now Malcolm I know you’re a very busy man, and I recognise that the independent media is not a place you spend a lot of time, (though not as some cruel folks say due to the large number of big words we tend to use), due to your incredibly busy schedule investing in France, driving expensive cars, being rich and knowing very little, trying to get rid of that snakelike apparition currently keeping warm the chair normally reserved for the Prime Minister of Australia, and his dreadful pointy nosed chief of staff, so to help you out I have included at the bottom of this posting an executive summary which can be tweeted for you.

Yours most sincerely

A voter who thinks

Executive summary:

Thoughtful voter reminds Communications Minister of the need to read emails written by staff, before they are sent out, which may have elements of hypocrisy throughout.

And here is Malcolm’s response, which you will note is straight from the Tony Abbott Handbook, complete with the usual splashings of ‘blame Labor’:

Dear XXXX,

Rather than inflict yet another torrent of numbers on you about the Budget last week, I thought I would let the dust settle a little and write to you in what I hope is a more reflective voice.

The 2014-15 Budget is a tough one (although not the toughest we have seen), but with a combination of spending cuts and tax increases it does improve the Budget outcomes by $43.8 billion through to 2017-18. Looking further ahead it will reduce gross government debt in 2023-24 from the $667 billion it would have been had Labor’s strategy continued to a still formidable $389 billion.

While some economists have argued that the budget is not tough enough and that it should cut spending by more, they have been more than drowned out by people unhappy with the numerous cuts in spending programmes not to speak of the Medicare $7 copayment, the 2 per cent increase on the top tax bracket and the re-indexation of the fuel excise.

But the starting point for this debate surely must be the budgetary situation which we inherited from Labor.

Labor left our nation’s finances in an unsustainable state in that too much spending was locked in without the revenues to cover it. It is commonplace to say that Australia’s national debt to GDP is not as high as many other countries, but that is only because when Labor took over in 2007 we had no net debt at all, in fact there was $45 billion of cash at the bank.

The melancholy truth of the matter is that Labor ran up larger and larger deficits and thus higher and higher debt in the midst of the biggest mining boom in our nation’s history. According to the IMF, the rate of increase of Australian Government spending between 2012 and 2018 was forecast to be the highest in the developed world and the rate of increase in net debt over that period was the third highest in the world. So while most countries were cutting debt and restraining spending once the worst of the GFC was over, if Labor’s plans had been left in place we would have been charging ahead spending and borrowing more and more.

So clearly something had to be done. And our Budget has proposed a set of measures to repair the budget and return, over time, to a surplus. Now I can well understand, and respect, different views about each of the measures we have proposed.

It is reasonable to question whether this or that should be cut, or indeed whether less spending should be cut and instead more raised by increasing taxes. All of that is the legitimate grist of political debate. Or you could argue that we can take a more leisurely path to return to surplus and seek to justify imposing a heavier burden on our children and grandchildren to pay for our expenditures.

But what we have seen from Labor does not engage on any of those points. Mr Shorten simply complains – he doesn’t like any of the cuts in expenditure or any of the increases in tax or charges either. Is he in denial? Refusing to accept what is obvious to everyone else, namely that something has to be done. What sort of la-la land is he inhabiting? Are we just to keep on spending more than we receive, borrowing more and more billions, kicking the fiscal can further down the road in the expectation that somebody else will deal with it?

A responsible Opposition Leader would set out an alternative plan, one which adds up, which includes different measures, perhaps cuts less or different expenditure and raises more or different additional revenues. In contrast,  I recall very well in 2009 I proposed unpopular measures (increase the tobacco excise in fact) as an alternative to Labor’s proposal to cut back on the tax rebate for private health insurance.

Treasury analysis after last year’s change of government (in the 2013-14 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook, or MYEFO) showed that Labor’s legacy was debt of more than $34,000 per household.

MT1Budgets are about setting the nation’s priorities and investing in the people and industries that will create jobs for generations to come.

As Treasurer Joe Hockey said in his budget night speech, prosperity is earned not inherited.

The first Coalition Budget since 2007 re-directs spending to more productive areas.  Investments in our future include:

  • An infrastructure growth package of $11.6 billion – which in our city includes including spending on WestConnex, NorthConnex and new roads in Western Sydney.
  • A $20 billion Medical Research Future Fund, which will grow to be the largest endowment for medical research of its kind in the world.
  • $820 million to expand access to higher education by providing direct financial support to students studying diplomas, advanced diplomas and associate degrees.
  • A loan scheme providing loans of up to $20,000 to trades apprentices over the four years of their apprenticeship.

In my own portfolio, there will be continuing and indeed accelerated investment by the Government in the National Broadband Network, bringing total Government equity investment to $29.5 billion by 2017-18. As you know we are committed to completing the NBN sooner, at less cost to the taxpayer and consequently more affordably for consumers. And at the risk of repeating myself, we are NOT completing the NBN with “old technology”; the multi-technology design we are using is consistent with the current approach taken by leading telcos around the world including AT&T, BT in the UK, Deutsche Telekom in Germany, Swisscom in Switzerland and many, many others.

The Budget also includes $100 million of Government money which will be augmented by co-investment from carriers, States, councils and others to increase mobile coverage in remote Australia – it is worth noting here that in six years of Government and $6.5  billion of investment in the NBN Co, Labor spent not one cent on eliminating mobile black spots in regional Australia.

There are cuts to the budgets of the ABC and SBS, but they should not result in any curtailment of services or programming. We have undertaken a very thorough analysis  of both the public broadcasters and are satisfied that there is plenty of potential for substantial savings from eliminating administrative and other back office waste without impacting on the quality of the programming services to the public.

I should note that in the lead up to the Election and the Budget I made it clear on many occasions that we would endeavour to improve operational efficiencies at both broadcasters – to deliver the maximum broadcasting bang for the least taxpayer buck – and that if there were to be savings across the board, ABC and SBS could not expect to be exempt.

Yours sincerely,

Malcolm Turnbull

Is it just me, or did Malcolm miss the point.

72 comments

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  1. rochelle woodley-baker

    He most certainly missed the point!!!! His answer is a form answer and dotted throughout with mention of his portfolio.

  2. Andy

    Malcolm didn’t miss the point, because he didn’t read the response from your reader. The final email in the chain – the “blame labor” email – is a template email that all LNP members across the country are using (with minor tweaks) to send to constituents complaining about the budget. In fact, your readers response to Turnbull made it far too easy to just fob him or her off with a template.

  3. Nicole

    I am absolutely horrified at the amount of lies contained within that response, especially calling Joe’s MYEFO the Treasury’s estimates. As I hope you all know it is only the PEFO or pre-electoral economic and fiscal outlook that is the work of the Treasury and Department of Finance and is untouched by political hands. The Treasury’s estimates had Labor on track to deliver a nominal surplus in 2015 and using two different calculations, one based upon policies unchanged and the other on underlying trends and both had us back to no net debt and 1% GDP Surplus in 2024. It is rather alarming how misleading and deceptive is this government’s conduct. Shocking in fact.

  4. DanDark

    Maybe it’s called denial,
    Malcom has a bad case of denial,
    Or he is just an ignorant fool, who is insane

    If he deep down thinks that a response to an email from a thinking voter
    that clearly points out what he believed would cause clear negative
    collateral damage to people and the country, after receiving a goodwill email
    From Malcom, asking for donations for the very people they have discarded in society

    I need to get away from this country, we are drawing up plans for the ark, floating at sea for next 30 years, looks like a better option, than having our lives in these sub human pollies hands
    Cannot wait for the house to sell, it’s past dangerous now,
    how did this happen to this country and our people, it’s got me stuffed…

  5. Disabled, but not disengenuus

    So Malcolm is sleeping rough, and is Tony and Hocking? I bet they are not. I will ignore the bullshite response sent as a form letter to the correspondent, but I am interested that an increased tax on tobacco was proposed in 2009 by Malcolm. I noted to those who chose to hear that tobacco and alcohol had not appeared to be touched by this year’s budget. I mean is it REALLY a budget if we don’t put up ciggies and beer? Suffice it to say whilst Malcolm is a darn sight easier on the eye than Voldomort, Tintin or the roly poly man, he would not get my vote even if I lived in Wentworth – which I thought was a prison, but perhaps that was only on TV or there are two Wentworths?
    Please continue this correspondence and keep us all up to date with what the LNP are sending down 3rd rate broadband cables and wires. I only ask because if we all wrote to LNP members they may think their popularity was on the rise, and we don’t want that.

  6. JulieT

    Malcolm didn’t miss ‘the point’ because he doesn’t know what ‘the point’ is, he is so far removed from ‘the point’ that it has completely disappeared from his consciousness. The same way ‘the point’ has disappeared from all of the Liberal party’s collective consciousnesses. Tony Abbott is bordering on sociopathy and the rest of his party has either caught the same disease or, as birds of a feather, have flocked together.

    The budget might well need fixing but did they have to pick so ruthlessly on the poor?

    They say they don’t want to leave “our children in debt”, but its OK to leave uni students and apprentices in debt, and pensioners, the ill, the disabled, young unemployed, single parents etc in a state of constant poverty.

    “Capitalism is the extraodinary belief that the nastiest of men for the nastiest of motives will somehow work for the benefit of all” John Manyard Keynes.

  7. Möbius Ecko

    Shorter kobymac, as predicable as Neil, Labor boo!

    Just like Turnbull’s canned reply missed the point. Deliberate?

  8. Kaye Lee

    Interesting.

    I wonder if Malcolm has actually spoken to anyone from Vinnies because they are dead pissed off that the Coalition cut $44 million from the National Partnership on Homelessness. This money was for a capital works program to provide shelter for homeless people and refuges for women and children.

    ““Today as we launch the Vinnies CEO Sleepout for 2014, there remains a great sense of unease among the community sector and the people we assist about their future,” Chief Executive, Dr John Falzon said.

    “The uncertainty remains despite the Government’s recent announcement that it will extend the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness (NPAH) for another year. Although the NPAH extension was welcome, the spending cut of $44 million to the capital works program aspect of the agreement was not. A commitment to addressing homelessness should be bipartisan. It is homelessness itself that we must cut, not the spending on homelessness,” Dr Falzon said.

    The St Vincent de Paul Society has called on the government to:
    Re-install funding to the capital works program as part of the NPAH and commit to a longer term funding agreement to give homelessness services greater security.
    Use the budget as an opportunity to invest in the National Rental Assistance Scheme (NRAS) and other means of increasing the supply of social and affordable housing and increase Rent Assistance, indexing it to changes in the average private rental costs, which, over the last five years, have seen increases 12.3 per cent higher than the CPI.
    Assess the current structure of negative gearing so that rather than increasing speculative investment Australia can actually increase the supply of affordable housing.”

    http://www.vinnies.org.au/page/News/National/Help_us_to_cut_homelessness_not_homelessness_funding/

    How about we forget the photo opportunities Malcolm and you give them back the funding they were promised…..bloody self-promoting hypocrites!

  9. Keith

    kobymac, you just don’t get it do you. The article is clearly not a suggestion that charity should not be given.

    But, the hypocrisy of a sleep over by a Abbott gang member is astounding. They kick people in the guts, and then,
    pretend to support them. If there was any attempt to support the less well off it would be for 365 days. The callous Abbott gang even recognize they will damage young people by providing emergency aide where necessary.
    There are a number of “Christians” in the Abbott gang, they are in the process of rewriting the parable of the Good Samaritan; in their version, they kick and abuse the person down and out.
    Professor Garnaut has stated that when you take all the swings and roundabouts out of the budget the so called “budget emergency” has hardly been touched. Gullible, kobymac? xOpposition Leader Hewson has also made reference to how poor and unfair the budget is. The budget and “budget emergency” have been a con job.
    A proper government would be finding more creative ways to deal with matters; rather than push ideological rubbish.

  10. Carol Taylor

    D,bnd I don’t know about Hockey but who can forget Tony’s experience of ‘sleeping it rough’ as it was when he uttered those memorable words…

    “We just can’t stop people from being homeless if that’s their choice.

    However, ‘doing it tough’ and sleeping on the streets of Canberra had me somewhat amused. I wonder which part of Civic Malcolm might choose? Perhaps outside one of the neat little bistros, maybe the one with the wrought iron art deco or perhaps the one with the circular bar and really nifty (and attractive) baristas.

    Of course people do sleep rough in Canberra, as in every city and town. However, it amused me somewhat that Malcolm chose that particular city to make his statement…going from Wentworth to Canberra? Now that really is doing it tough.

  11. Carol Taylor

    Keith to add, and as evidenced by the fact that no modelling was done to ascertain the impact of the GP co-payment. This idea therefore gets relegated to the status of one of Abbott’s brain f*rts. And as is becoming more than obvious, that Abbott and cronies are prepared to sacrifice Australia and Australians at the altar of far right wing philosophy.

    Which makes us wonder as to just how many other policies/cut-backs have not had any modelling performed as to outcomes, both social and financial. The Libs give us the impression that the answer is “most of them” due to the fact that they keep tripping each other over via contradictions without a clue, even basic details.

    The Abbott government did no modelling on how its $7 Medicare co-payment would impact on emergency departments, despite doctors and the states warning patients may inundate hospitals to avoid it.

    Doctors groups such as the Australian Medical Association have for months said a GP co-payment would cause some to delay going to the doctor, and could instead drive them into hospital emergency wards.

    But health officials have revealed they did not undertake any modelling on whether a co-payment would cause a spike in hospital visits.

    Instead they relied on analysis of the introduction of quicker four-hour targets for emergency department visits, which showed the measure did not create the feared “honeypot” for traditional GP clients.

    The revelation shocked the Greens senator Richard Di Natale, who said the four-hour access target was “a completely different scenario” from the co-payment.

    “You asked if we’d modelled what might occur with the introduction of a co-payment – we haven’t done that,” the deputy health secretary, Kerry Flanagan, told a Senate estimates hearing in Canberra.

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jun/02/no-modelling-done-medicare-payment

  12. Möbius Ecko

    “There are a number of “Christians” in the Abbott gang, they are in the process of rewriting the parable of the Good Samaritan; in their version, they kick and abuse the person down and out.”

    And as Senate Estimates discovered the other day, after taking away all they can, they are going to give back a fraction of what they took, claiming they are looking after those they kicked whilst down and out.

    In that case after they take away approximately $250 per week it turns out they’re going to give them back $400, but here’s the catch, that’s for six months and only given on meeting strict criteria.

    Also if I heard the piece on ABC News correctly the government representative said that 550,000 are going to lose the dole and get nothing, which is why they have bought in a safety net. Some safety net, $16 per week if you meet their strict criteria.

    I would like to see the government’s modelling on the impact of 550,000 young people suddenly getting nothing and being put into a cycle of permanent unemployment with no support to live. Crime and drug abuse are just two things I can see significantly increasing, but then again these are State problems so the Abbott government will abrogate responsibility for them, especially if the States return to Labor government as looks like happening for some.

  13. Lee

    “And as Senate Estimates discovered the other day, after taking away all they can, they are going to give back a fraction of what they took, claiming they are looking after those they kicked whilst down and out.”

    Even more disturbing, a significant part of the electorate will have short memories and will vote for them again because of what they were given (back).

  14. Möbius Ecko

    Sorry I forgot. Abbott is doing something about the increased crime he’s directly going to cause. He’s spending millions on CCTV cameras. Most likely the money for the cameras will come from the unemployment benefits he’s taken away that may cause the increased crime he’s purchasing the cameras for.

  15. Kaye Lee

    ME,

    The money for the cameras is coming from the proceeds of crime which previously went to the National Crime Authority to be redistributed for crime prevention programs. The government has decided instead that IT should be the recipient of the proceeds of crime.

    “The Abbott government has backed away from distributing millions of dollars in grants promised to dozens of charities, community groups and local councils under Labor’s national crime prevention program.

    Father Riley hit out at the Coalition’s decision, pointing out that national crime prevention grants were funded through the proceeds of crime rather than general revenue and were not election promises.

    ”I don’t understand this, the proceeds of crime is not taxpayer money,” Father Riley said.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/hit-and-run-on-crime-prevention-likely-20131012-2vf25.html#ixzz345bIE2ek

  16. Keith

    Carol, I saw a clip where Senator Di Natale pulled apart Sheppard’s assertion of the number of visits a patient makes on average to a GP. The number being almost half what Sheppard stated. Later, Hockey was still using the fallacious numbers later.
    With all the technology available it isn’t too great an expectation that information used by the Abbott gang would be right……but wait……haven’t they moved on, or moving on, people with knowledge?
    Rather than being rusted on; you need to be welded and bolted on to support the inept Abbott gang.

  17. Terry2

    Lee

    What a great response from Scott Ludlam to Pyne’s sanctimonious invitation.

    I believe that in Scott Ludlam we are seeing the attributes of a true representative of the people.

    Go Scott !

  18. Möbius Ecko

    Lee what they are giving back is $400 for six months to just some of those unemployed they took ~$250 per week away from. I very much doubt that any of these 550,000 will vote for this government.

    Thinking about it that $400 for six months for each of the 550,000 is not correct. The safety net of $230 million in emergency relief payments will only go to those who are in desperate straits because of this policy, so won’t go to everyone of those 550,000. It’s still a pittance but in their typical deceitful way Hockey called it a “huge” safety net.

  19. Lee

    “Carol, I saw a clip where Senator Di Natale pulled apart Sheppard’s assertion of the number of visits a patient makes on average to a GP. The number being almost half what Sheppard stated. Later, Hockey was still using the fallacious numbers later.”

    The Commission of Audit also hadn’t taken into account that there are numerous visits to a GP where patients are not actually sick or injured, e.g. for vaccinations, oral contraceptives, during pregnancy.

    This government has a blatant social engineering agenda. They are choosing their consultants from within the party, contingent upon the consultants giving them the answers they want rather than answers based upon real data. Shepherd’s response to Di Natale indicated that he is clueless and totally unsuitable for the task which was allocated to him.

  20. Kaye Lee

    What about the people who are on ongoing medication that they need prescriptions for? Most doctors won’t write a script without seeing the patient. That’s usually two visits a year per prescription taken up just getting your scripts rewritten, provided the doc gives you 5 repeats.

  21. Kaye Lee

    Malcolm is such a champion for the poor – he is even helping to organise for us to donate to charity to support the people his government has sent to the wall. This is on his facebook page, with the obligatory photo op.

    “This morning I joined Kelly O’Dwyer at the launch of One Million Donors, a national campaign to attract one million Australians to support charity through their workplace by 2020. Join the campaign at http://www.onemilliondonors.org

  22. wam moir

    well the boltones were wrong about turnbull’s support for the budget.
    ps Kobymac, the rabbott has taken ‘gullible’ out of the liberal dictionary too many liberal women were beginning to suspect their men were disingenuous.

  23. Lee

    “What about the people who are on ongoing medication that they need prescriptions for? Most doctors won’t write a script without seeing the patient. That’s usually two visits a year per prescription taken up just getting your scripts rewritten, provided the doc gives you 5 repeats.”

    It’s even worse if you’re on a drug where repeat scripts are not allowed, or repeats for less than 6 months supply is all that is permitted.

  24. Möbius Ecko

    Jeff Kennett did a similar thing in Victoria. After he gutted the State, initially to pay back previous government debt racked up because of terrible policy decisions, he promised to reward Victorians for their suffering, yet he continued to cut and burn public services and infrastructure well after the debt was gone. His tactic was then to promote charities and especially volunteers, on the face of it as an act of benevolence.

    When charities and volunteers came to the fore he would then cut public servants and money from those areas, whilst continuing to encourage volunteer work. I saw this work first hand at both a public school a relative worked for and a homeless charity I did ad hoc volunteer work for.

    There are several similarities to what this government is doing to what Kennett did, and the call for charities and volunteer work to come to the fore to address a problem the government is creating is just one.

    Kennett, to a lot of people’s and political commentators surprise, was ousted on seeking his third term. I think the people are seeing right through this Federal government just as they did with Kennett, but hopefully this government won’t get a second chance like Kennett did and blew.

  25. Kaye Makovec

    Kobymac, one point is that it is Vinnies who are using the money raised to help the homeless, not the politicians, and if any of them really wanted to experience what it is like to be homeless they wouldn’t be sleeping in a nice new warm swag but in a doorway or even on a park bench covered in cardboard, if they were lucky.
    As for charging people to use shovels? Whose shovels? The shovels belong to EVERYBODY, left right and centre, even those on the fringes.
    And where in the reply is the word homeless? All I see is the usual lies, rhetoric and slogans.

    “As Treasurer Joe Hockey said in his budget night speech, prosperity is earned not inherited.”
    Like Howard inherited prosperity put in place by Keating who planned for the future perhaps? 🙂

  26. Kaye Lee

    “prosperity is earned not inherited”….tell that to Gina, James Packer and Lachlan Murdoch.

    Or you can marry prosperity

    “As with the Rudds, it’s mostly Ms Babbage’s (Joe’s wife) money that has underwritten the couple’s extensive property portfolio.

    It includes a 200ha cattle farm in North Queensland, a six bedroom heritage-listed family home in Hunters Hill that cost $3.5million in 2004, a home in Canberra and some properties worth more than $750,000 at Stanwell Tops.”

  27. Kaye Lee

    Trading shares is such hard work

    “Turnbull’s $60 million windfall became part of corporate folklore surrounding the so-called dotcom crash of 2000. But a fellow from the other side of the political fence, former NSW Labor premier Neville Wran, received one-third of the profits, as Turnbull confirmed in November last year. The prime ministerial hopeful and his mentor and Labor Party icon, owned the OzEmail stake through their merchant bank and the profits were split. Wran got about $20 million and Turnbull the remainder.”

  28. DanDark

    Kennet destroyed this state, every time I see it’s fugly head now I have nightmares
    He gutted everything, he gutted the railways so much so
    They did not have the qualified staff to run and drive the trains
    They got rid of people, my stepfather took early retirement, he was a clerk at railways
    Then they had to re employ a lot of them, cos they couldn’t run the service safety or competently
    I know many blokes, that were rehired as a need to run the trains
    So expect when all experts are gone, we will be living in a dysfunctional society
    Vic never recovered from the death reaper Kennet

  29. Seraphine

    Those warm swags cost about $400 each – I wonder if the member for Wentworth knows this. I doubt it. And that’s the problem in a nutshell.

  30. John921Fraser

    <

    "The (Sydney) archdiocese's assets nearly doubled between 2004 and last year to more than $1 billion. In 2007, the surplus was $43.95 million, in 2006 it was $19.6 million, and last year $9.2 million, much of it coming from real estate sales. The archdiocese is understood to be the wealthiest in the country. It does not pay income tax or capital gains tax."

    Practically falling over myself to give money to churches.

    "Post-Gonski fortune to private schools" ….. The Age.

    Poor little dears.

    I wonder if Minister Morrison (the Minister for Slavery & Racism) will consider deporting the eye, the 2 lungs, the liver and kidneys that Leo Seemanpillai donated to Australians …… after all they are "refugees".

  31. Clare De Mayo

    I agree entirely with the sentiments of this post, but for accuracy, Malcolm’s ‘reply’ was no such thing. This is just his regular newsletter, sent out to anyone on his list. If the poster did indeed write to Malcolm, if seems he is yet to receive a personal reply

  32. John921Fraser

    <

    @Kaye Lee

    Lets not forget "Twiggy" Forrest.

    His inheritance goes back 100 years ( He is the great-great nephew of John Forrest, the first premier of Western Australia and includes a knighthood,Baron Forrest of Bunbury.).

    But to be on the fair side he has promised to share half his wealth with charity.

    Mind you there is a lot to be cynical about when looking at the affairs of "Twiggy".

  33. Roswell

    Clare, it seems to me that someone in his office replied to the constituent’s email by simply putting in a ‘Dear Joe Blogs’ then duly copied Malcolm’s regular newsletter in to the body. I doubt whether the receiver would have known any different.

  34. Kaye Lee

    On June 1 we read this headline with horror “Asylum seeker dies after suffering burns to 90 per cent of his body DateJune 1, 2014”

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/asylum-seeker-dies-after-suffering-burns-to-90-per-cent-of-his-body-20140601-39c4w.html#ixzz3465WneHx

    On the same day the Liberal Party posted one of its stupid graphics

    “By stopping the boats, Australian taxpayers are saving $50 million per month.” SHARE if you support real action to secure our borders and build a stronger economy.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152471802207464&set=a.173321122463.160263.13561467463&type=1&theater

    I truly cannot stand these people.

  35. DanDark

    If we think they are worried about anything people say
    That would be a no, by the way the response was considered so thoughtfully,
    I also read the Labor word 6 times
    So now they are advertising the Labor brand, because every time
    Libs use labor word, they are doing free advertising now for Labor 😉

  36. Nuff Said

    Kaye Lee,

    What about the people who are on ongoing medication that they need prescriptions for? Most doctors won’t write a script without seeing the patient. That’s usually two visits a year per prescription taken up just getting your scripts rewritten, provided the doc gives you 5 repeats.

    Indeed. Then there’s the pathology. The system seems to be discriminatory towards people based on the nature of the meds they have to take. If you’re on a drug like Warfarin, you need weekly or fortnightly path depending on the stability of your health. So, even though the co-payment may stop after 10 visits – or whatever – such people will have to fork out the maximum amount through no fault of their own. Seems pretty tough, especially when people on such a drug are more likely to be pensioners.

    But how will it all work? How will doctors and pathologists co-ordinate? Seems not even the AMA knows:

    There are a number of issues to still to be worked out in implementing these changes. In particular how GPs will identify in real time the number of co-paid services a patient has had. The AMA will keep you updated on this and more as information comes to hand.

    https://ama.com.au/gpnn/7-co-payment-proposal-how-it-will-work

  37. Peter Anson

    The reply in effect says, stuff you and everyone else…….. look at me what a wonderful person am I.

  38. DanDark

    Kaye makes me cry when I hear about asylum seekers
    I have 4 sons, and if my son came home so badly beaten, or burned
    I would not be able to on, but this gov is proud, death is a deterrent to be fully reinforced
    By monster Morrison

  39. Lawrence Winder

    The relentless barrage of “it’s all Labor’s fault….” to sidestep the actuality of the “Free-Market” IPA/ BCA devised economy they are going to institute is why it is pointless to engage with these anti-social mongrels.
    Better, direct action, double dissolution, so that the reality of what they aspire to create has to be discussed openly.

  40. Dan Rowden

    Kaye Lee/Nuff Said,

    No-one seems to know how this is all going to work in any detail. I had a stroke a couple of years ago at the ripe ol’ age of 50. Scary shit. I’m now on umpteen different drugs. Not all of them are 5 repeaters. I also need pathology each visit to the doctor. So, I’m going to be in the maxed out category, I’d assume. I have a friend who’s an old age pensioner who takes the drug Nuff Said mentioned – Warfarin. He requires a blood test every two weeks simply because Warfarin is the kind of drug that must be closely monitored. He struggles financially. We can’t even have a beer together anymore because he can’t afford it. I agree with Nuff Said that it seems discriminatory. Why should my friend have to go without just because of the type of drug he’s forced to take? It’s not like he has any choice in the whole thing. Oh, I guess he could just die.

  41. Kaye Lee

    There is supposed to be an increase in the existing co-payment on prescription medicines from January 2015 but no-one has told chemists how they are supposed to deal with this. It will involve all new software and no doubt a shitload more paperwork but they apparently haven’t got a plan on how it is to be done. Add that to the nightmare that GST loads onto pharmacies (some things GST free, some not, some could be either depending how you buy it)…hundreds of pharmacies have already closed with thousands of people losing their jobs. They were already predicting many more would close because of the moving forward of changes to the PBS – this added bureaucratic burden, along with the number of people who will now seek free advice from the chemist rather than seeing a doctor, make the whole business untenable. Welcome to online medication and warehouses where you help yourself.

  42. Möbius Ecko

    Lawrence Winder you see that across the board, from their supporters as well. Across many fora the answer to just about any question on this government’s policies or actions is almost always “Labor” in one form or another.

    Remember a couple of months ago this government bought out a booklet that was purely an attack on Labor and not one thing on their government policy or programs. It was something a desperate opposition would do, not a party in government.

    Nothing more demonstrates to me just how much of a failure this government and the PM are than their most ardent supporters not being able to defend them, except to attack a previous government and Labor as a response, and it’s this government’s and Abbott’s response as well. Abbott even does it on the world stage where in a break with convention he brings in domestic politics by attacking Labor whilst overseas.

    By the way I note that Abbott now has a new “special friend” in Harper of Canada, and Abbott’s going to use that “special friendship” to drum of business for Australia as he’s bought along a entourage of Australian businessmen.

    My question is who paid for these businessmen and did they also attend the D-Day commemorations at Australian tax payers expense? Seems to me that the age of entitlement at tax payers expense is alive and well if you are in Abbott’s special friend circles.

    Also seems every leader or important person Abbott meets automatically becomes his best or special friend, even when they don’t appear to reciprocate that sentiment.

  43. Kaye Lee

    The last time there was a sharp increase in the concessional co-payment – in 2005 – a major study in Western Australia found significant decreases in the use of some prescription medicines by pensioners. As the researchers concluded: “Higher co-payments reduce the cost burden to government, but may have unintended negative effects if costs are generated elsewhere in the health system through increased hospitalisations or doctors’ visits due to omission of medicine. Policy makers should be aware that increasing the cost of medicines to patients can impact the utilisation of medicines, particularly among vulnerable groups.”

    The Commission of Audit recommended that the $6 concessional co-payment remain unchanged, but the Government has moved to increase it by 80 cents in 2015, over and above any inflation increase that will also be imposed. The prediction is that the concessional co-payment will be at $6.90 from January – a 15 per cent increase on the current co-payment.

    Additionally, the threshold for the concessional safety net will rise from 60 scripts to 62 scripts next year, and keep rising to 68 scripts by 2018.

    The Government says all savings from increasing PBS co-payments and safety net thresholds – $1.3 billion over four years – will be invested in the $20 billion Medical Research Future Fund, so it isn’t even contributing to making the PBS sustainable. What a joke!

  44. Dan Rowden

    Kaye Lee,

    No pharmacist should ever engage in diagnostics, beyond the treatment of individual symptoms, but I agree they will be placed under increasing pressure to do so. More and more people are going to settle for the pharmaceutical treatment of symptoms rather than have their symptomology medically diagnosed. That’s pretty scary. And, as you suggest, what about all the red tape? Everyone’s effected by this – doctors, pharmacies, pathology and imaging labs etc. It’s all so poorly conceived.

  45. Kaye Lee

    This is unbelievably humiliating. Tony Abbott said we shouldn’t use the G20 to punish Putin, saying he shouldn’t be barred. Then, his new best buddy, Stephen Harper Canadian PM, came out heavily criticising Putin. Tony quickly changes his mind.

    “Tony Abbott shifts stance on Russia, leaving door open to barring Vladimir Putin from G20”

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/tony-abbott-shifts-stance-on-russia-leaving-door-open-to-barring-vladimir-putin-from-g20-20140609-39s1v.html#ixzz346L0R0x6

    And now, before he meets with Obama, he has decided we might include climate change in the G20 talks as long as we call it “energy efficiency” instead. Gawd he’s childish.

    “Tony Abbott eyes Canadian cash for faltering projects, may compromise on climate change on G20 agenda”

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/tony-abbott-eyes-canadian-cash-for-faltering-projects-may-compromise-on-climate-change-on-g20-agenda-20140608-39r9l.html#ixzz346Llt29B

  46. Nuff Said

    Tony wants to lose his image as a rigid ideologue. Even he can change his mind.

  47. Kaye Lee

    He won’t even listen to sensible compromises suggested by his own party.

    “The paid parental leave scheme is deeply unpopular in some sections of the Coalition and Senator Williams, along with senators Dean Smith, Cory Bernardi, Ian Macdonald and Ron Boswell and MP Alex Hawke, have publicly flagged concerns about the policy.

    “Perhaps a compromise would be extending the minimum wage payment from 18 to 26 weeks, plus super,” he said.

    “Then when the economy is stronger and the budget is balanced and we are not borrowing any more money we can bring in the more generous scheme. That would be a sensible compromise.”

    But Mr Abbott on Monday said he was sticking by his policy.

    Speaking to reporters in Canada, the Prime Minister appeared to misunderstand where the opposition to his scheme was coming from, saying the government would deal cordially with crossbenchers in the Senate on the policy, but warned he expected the government’s mandate to be respected.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/compromise-on-paid-parental-leave-pleads-mp-20140608-39rgx.html#ixzz346Ommute

  48. Terry2

    I see a NSW Liberal Senator – John Williams I think – has come out with a more sensible compromise on Abbott’s PPL along the lines that equity will be achieved if all mothers are paid the same (i.e. basic wage as is currently the case) with the term extended from 18 weeks to 26 weeks plus superannuation.

    This is common sense and for those who say why can’t a new Mum have her full salary while on maternity leave then surely it is simply a matter of her employer topping up the government payment.

  49. Sir ScotchMistery

    Perhaps Tony’s legacy will be the most flip flops seen based on opinion changes caused by world leaders talking to him, even if he didn’t understand what they said.

    I am pleased at one level though – he seems to be cementing himself into the one term Tony format. Thankfully it won’t be a big effort to find things to remind folk of at the next election, as to why they shouldn’t put this bunch of lard-arses back into government.

  50. Shaun

    I have never commented on here before, but Kobymac prompted me to. I could critique what you say but no point really. Only way to respond to is say – you’re an idiot. Nothing more needs to be said.

  51. DanDark

    “I learned to give not because I have much
    But because I know exactly how it feels to have nothing”

  52. Stephen Tardrew

    Kaye there has been a state wide NSW refunding of women’s refuges and it now seems youth refuges re-tendering which basically means taking the submission of the lowest common denominator as the NGO’s fight or efficiencies to gain tender approval while emasculating services. The churches and NGO’s have not made a coherent stand against tendering which actually continually reduce the quality and number of services. When ever they want to make savings they re-tender thus continually reducing service provision. They force NGO’s into a business model that is totally inappropriate to welfare service delivery. And it is not through lack of monitoring as there are strict accountability guidelines and benchmarks that agencies have to meet including tight audit requirements. It has nothing to do with efficiency but everything to do with reduction in funding and service delivery. Both major political parties have used the same strategy in every state.

  53. Kaye Lee

    Stephen,

    I know. I was on the management committee for a homeless youth refuge. Our main funding came from DoCS. We put a lot of work into our accreditation and were passed. We used a rewards based system living skills program and were achieving amazing results both with residents and in our outreach program. This did not please the bureaucracy because we were a stand alone refuge, not tied to any church or organisation. I was threatened into giving up our auspice to a larger organisation who had FAILED their initial attempt at accreditation. The threat came in the form of…”as of Monday we will withhold your funding unless you willingly give up your auspice”. This meant I would not have been able to pay the staff or feed the kids (beyond the month or so I had saved up)..they would have again been homeless. I got a promise that all staff would be retained and handed over control. They immediately sacked our two paid part-time administrative assistants though they did keep the frontline staff and the refuge stayed open.

  54. D.Hart

    Missed the point, if speaking from a concerned citizens viewpoint..evaded the real issues if speaking from the self-serving, silver-spooned, feathery-nested & totally ‘who gives a damn’ attitude of the LNP…. Seriously, did anyone expect anything different?

  55. V Skinner

    No doubt when Malcolm’s ‘new improved NBN solution’ fails miserably as it must do and the copper network is down more than up, he will blame Labor. It seems each Liberal Government does nothing in Government but blame Labor, John Howard was still blaming Labor after 12 years in Government, I’m so over this blame game with the Liberals I doubt I’d ever vote Liberal.

    Not that I have in the last years but I have as I vote for the local MP and the policies, not three word slogans and lies.

  56. John921Fraser

    <

    The Minister for Racism & Slavery, Morrison, says family of Lee Seemanpillai cannot get Australian visa in time to attend his funeral.

    Abbott finds time to meet Murdoch.

  57. Sir ScotchMistery

    @KobyMac – another writer noted that they don’t say much in here, but I guess they read a lot.
    Over the last months I have enjoyed and do enjoy this quite left leaning space because of the few Abbott staffers who pop in to blow their tiny trumpet and get whisked away to comment on another blog somewhere that is rightly going after dear old one-term and his “chief of staff”, but seriously, if you believe what you just wrote, you are another example of a rightist throwaway lining non-thinking voter, without the nous to understand why people with a bit of bottle think “people” such as you are the reason this country is so stuffed. Not enough voters actually think. They vote liberal for no good reason.

    The age of entitlement was an invention of the right. It is held up as something that is gone for the less well – off, as was opined in the article which in your nonsense you demonstrated you either didn’t read, didn’t understand, or an admixture of both. Ask Gina (hang on while I steal my kids money) Rinehart. Ask Twiggy (my grandfather was a premier and ended up with far more than he could ever explain) Forest. Ask Clive (I believe in dinosaurs) Palmer. Educated at the foot of the most corrupt politician this country has ever seen.

    Ask Arthur (I don’t remember anything) Sinodinos what he thought the $20 Million was for? Earned you think? Assistant treasurer? LOL.

    Now go out and make the tea, and remember he doesn’t like it too hot in case it permanently sets that purse-lipped sneer in place until the next election.

  58. Clare De Mayo

    Actually Roswell, I doubt there was even that much ‘effort’ in replying. The OP must have been on Malcolm’s list
    (or some associated list) to get the notification of the sleepout, so he would automatically receive Malcolm’s newsletter. If by some strange email anomaly he received the sleepout notification unsolicited, then by way of writing a comment he has signed up to the list. My only point being that no effort whatsoever was made to reply to the real concerns of a member of the voting public.

  59. vilasini

    The entire doctor visit issue is a minefield if you ask me. AMA has sewn up their business with care plans. The federal government gives general practitioners certain amount of money for every care plan that is made for patients with chronic illnesses, as well as children’s immunisations. To satisfy the conditions of payments the patients have to visit the GP’s regularly for check ups. You all might have noticed how it is really hard to get in to see a GP when you are sick….the appointments, which are more often than not five minute appointments and double booked, are booked with the people on these care plans. A lot of the work is done by the practice nurses on wages, and the money goes to the doctor.The doctor often only write the prescriptions and orders diagnostic tests. These plans are basically giving doctors money for doing the job that they should be doing, but has caused an increase in GP visits. It is a lot about user pays medicine and less reliance on public health systems. But it is still the community health services that are going into the homes and tying a lot of the services used by people together. So the co-payment will help to pay for the care plans that help doctors do what they should be doing in the first place.

  60. Edward Colclough

    Malcolm Turnbull, is/ was privileged and ‘lucky’ too, an astute ‘speculative businessman’, with ‘surprising’ friends and mentors as well. He has made a fortune outside politics, yet, his current position, doesn’t preclude him from enhancing it in the future either.

    Our current treasurer, Joe ‘Billy Bunter’ Hockey is a far cry, and living ‘flip-flop’, from the vocal student of his privileged youth. He’s married into wealth, and decadent ease.. and regularly displayed its effects by lolling and guffawing around on the front benches.
    He is surrounded, and keeps company with a pack of equally vocal, insipid, vicious, loud-mouthed, and obsequious Trolls, and cowardly Orks, and Gremlins.
    Ms Babbage may be well heeled.. and she’s also Joe Hockey’s wife.. BUT, she is also very high up in the hierarchy of the Deutsche Bank here in Australia too.

    This ‘highly regarded’ German financial institution, that in January, 2014, reported a €1.2 billion (US$1.6 billion) pre-tax loss for the fourth quarter of 2013.
    This came after their analysts had predicted a profit of nearly €600 million.
    This financial Institution has been ‘bailed out’ to the tune of €700 million, with more apparently to come.
    Its executives, like those in the US financial playpen, across the Atlantic pond, have carried on as ‘normal’.. and, like a true predatory megalodons are cruising, looking for unwary and stupid prey to feast on.

    Why mention this seemingly irrelevant fact ??
    Why.. because Deutsche Bank, to the great surprise of many, was announced as one of three financial institutions, to be ‘entrusted’ with the “Sale” of Australia’s Medibank Private.

    There seems to be, if somewhat tenuous and speculative.. a rather uneasy link of commonality, to the gruff, and boisterous mouthings and antics of our current federal treasurer, doesn’t it ??

    Why is it.. , that governments are always so keen to sell off institutions, established by, built from and supported by public funding that ensure the wellbeing of the nations’ communities and its citizens ??
    These ‘executive’ decisions are so often proclaimed and enacted, after a little back room ‘creative book-keeping’ to demonstrate the “benefits” of doing so.
    The very recent gross understating of the value of Great Britain’s Royal Mail, by those ‘charged’ with setting up and selling off that iconic asset.. the obscene ‘private’ profits made and the fees charged, coupled with the paltry pittance finally returned to the public purse, after the ‘forced’ sale, of an ‘unviable public asset’, is a salutary warning that few heed.
    Britain’s National Health Service {NHS}, may not be perfect, BUT, it is light years ahead of anything that the very best American national medical healthcare infrastructure has to offer.
    Yet, it too, is destined for the same breaker’s yard and procedure.

    Yet here in Australia, we seem, to all intents and purposes, keenly, blindly and fixatedly determined to replicate the trails of excesses, woes and misery, blazed by David Cameron’s UK administration, by entrusting the wellbeing of this nation and her citizens, to the mesmerising tappings of Anthony “Blind Pew” Abbott, and his ‘merry band of cutthroats and pirates’.

    The privilege of making your own mistakes, is exactly that.. NOT, as seems to be our wont, observing the failures, debacles and shortcomings of others’ efforts, and then replicating the same bloody mess yet again, whilst arrogantly declaring that we’ll never fall into the same quagmire of ineptitude.
    Stupidity, is approaching a problem, applying the exact same failed ‘solution’, and expecting the outcome to be different.
    It didn’t work before, and it won’t work, no matter how meticulously, diligently and assiduously you reapply the failed ‘solution’.. the outcome will still be the same.. failure.

    Sir John Monash, steadfastly demonstrated courage, faith and confidence in his men.. openly communicated the needs, the objectives and the expectations of them.. and insisted, that his subordinates do the same.
    What is more, he truly ‘served’ his men.. he saw to their wellbeing before conflict, during conflict, and after conflict, and to their repatriation and reintegration into their communities at the end of conflict.
    He was more professional, than regular ‘professional’ military officers.. even today, he is still regarded as the very best general and commander, ever thrown up by the obscene slaughter of WW I.
    The supreme irony is and was, that he was an engineer, a civilian, and not a ‘conditioned’ member of the arrogant cadre of military elite.. he gave credit and acknowledgement where and when it was due, and gave encouragement, praise and support where it was needed.
    Wherever possible, he sought to think and act outside ‘the box’ in order to achieve an objective, in short order with minimal ‘fanfare’, and most importantly, minimal losses.
    He meticulously planned it, conveyed and communicated it, and then upon initiating it, ensured the necessary support, with every single means at his disposal, to achieve the desired outcome.
    He came from a generation of citizens, that when Australia needed leaders and men of courage, and he, along with many others, unquestioningly answered the call.
    However, the thing that also distinguishes him, like many others amongst his generation.. he continued to ‘lead’ and ‘serve’ his fellow citizens and nation by example, upon his return right up until his passing.

    Our governments today are top heavy with ‘legal eagles’, ‘speculative and opportunistic’ trolls, and surrounded by an ever present shoal of sycophantic lamprey and remora minions, busy covering their own arses, and getting ‘fat’ at the expense and efforts of others.
    Prior to ‘selection’, many of these ‘representatives’ spoke with passionate and fervent declarations, of the injustices and wrongs that should be addressed and ‘righted’.
    Yet upon attaining, and being entrusted with ‘responsibility’, have promptly stick their snouts in the trough of the ‘public purse’, transforming themselves into a clone of ‘Jabba the Butt’.. a compliant party hack of the Hutt species.
    The oft public stance declared, and the actual path taken by Midnight Oil’s lead singer readily springs to mind.

    Politics today is filled to overflowing capacity with these self serving no-hoper wannabes.. there is a decided dearth of true leaders, characters of honour, principle and most importantly, integrity, that can be entrusted to do “the right thing”, in the service of the people of their communities and nation.

    Personally, I don’t give a damn what your private or personal life might be.. but, should you ever run for, or seek public office, and do THAT job to the very best of your ability, with honest courage and integrity, in the ‘service’ of your fellow citizens of this nation.. then you have my full ongoing support in such an endeavour, with just the occasional gentle cheeky reminder to ‘lift your game’ in the other areas too. 🙂

    Cecil Rhodes was far from being a paragon of civic or social virtue, or humanistic aims or ideals.
    Yet we tend fawn over the scholastic acolytes of his ‘legacy’, and entrust these modern day ‘lepers’ with high office, and esteem.
    Bob Hawke’s recent mouthings about Australia should willingly taken on the position of global garbage dump for the nuclear waste of the world, is a good example.
    Then as now, his coiffured ‘good’ looks and public bon vivant charm, is a façade, that has always hidden a less than a savoury character and poor leadership material.
    David Cameron of the UK, and the antics of his administration, is a shining ‘1st class’ example of it.
    Here in Australia, we, the people of this nation, have foolishly entrusted a ‘2nd class wannabe’ with the tiller of the ship of state. This Anglophilic, walking ‘foot in mouth’ dolt, has firmly set course, like a character from Moonfleet, steering for an illusionary safety beacon set on wreaking sands, in treacherous waters.

    I once thought Malcolm Turnbull a far better man than he currently stands.. I was mistaken.. he has proven himself no better than his party’s current leader.
    He has, steadfastly refused to step up, to consciously don a mantle of leadership, to openly warn of follies and dangers of ‘policy’ from both his own and opposing parties, to publically offer and more importantly, openly seek other solutions to the underlying needs of this nation and her people.

    DanDark is wont to lament the effect of Kennett on Victoria.
    Yes, Kennett was a bastard, but then, you truly knew where you stood with him.. he wasn’t a ‘yes’ bunny.
    Little mention is made of the fact that Victorian treasury LIED to him as to just how much money was in the kitty prior to the state election.. he based his election strategy and ‘promises’ accordingly on the information supplied, and lost.
    Then, we got Stevie Bracks, “Victoria’s MOST popular Premier”, in 18mths, the state of Victoria saw over 800 committees and commissions that delivered absolutely nothing, but totally emptied the kitty in their ‘jobs for the boys’ studies, and deliberations.
    Popular Stevie then jumped ship, into another cushy position.. leaving the borer riddled hull of SS Victoria to first mate Brumby.
    Very few know, that under Brumby’s tenure, the corporations that had bought up the state ‘utilities’, approached the Victorian State government to buy them back, at markedly less than they paid for them.
    Something that John Brumby could not entertain, because Victoria’s kitty was bare !!
    Just maybe, Jeff Kennett was not such a bastard and idiot after all.
    He had, and always has had faith in the people of his community, and yes, could and can be arrogant and brash.. but name me one state or federal politician that would quietly take out a 2nd mortgage, on his own personal property, to help sustain a unique Australian company in difficult times ??
    Jeff did.

    The current lack lustre crop of State and Federal representatives with few exceptions, are truly a cabal of cane toads.. and like that imported pest, a poxy blight on this country.
    They are overpaid, overindulged, underworked, irresponsible and deem themselves accountable to no one for their vindictive thuggish antics and behaviour, toward each other.. or the citizens of the nation they purport to represent.
    More and more they choose to ape the slime that oozes from Capitol Hill in Washington DC, known colloquially as the American Congress.
    The televised parliamentary procedures demonstrate that daily on a regular basis.

    This state of affairs, is as a result of Australia’s citizens being ‘bored’ and disinterested in politics.
    Bemoaning the fact that the wellbeing of their way of life, social standards and democracy, is actually commensurate with the care and effort that THEY are prepared to put in.
    They’ll bitch and moan, grumbling and resenting the fact, that THEY are obligated to regularly vote and take part in the process and demonstrate a commitment to the wellbeing of this nation and ALL her citizens.
    Far too many, are more intent on the progress of their footie team, or some other pathetic ‘sporting’ team and its code, studying the bottom of a can or bottle, or ‘going bush’, rather than very closely examining, and questioning, the manipulated muppet-like antics of their prospective state and federal representatives.. let alone following up afterwards, by closely scrutinising, questioning and demanding and ensuring the ‘service’ promised, when these bastards have been elected.

    We truly have the government we deserve.
    Remember, be sure to pass the lubricant, because unlike them, YOU are going to need it !!

  61. John921Fraser

    <

    @Edward Colclough

    Not a bad summation.

    Although I believe you have seriously overestimated Kennet.

    Are you a former ADF person by any chance ?

  62. Sir ScotchMistery

    @Clare details Mayo
    Hi Clare,
    Right in most counts. I am on one of his lists wearing one of my online privacy hats. The email is a standard one that goes to all his correspondents.
    My response was put up prior to actually getting a reply from him but the last time he sent one I did get a response from him but it didn’t address the issues raised in my response.
    I will post his response, if I get one.

  63. Jason

    @Sir ScotchMistery

    It’s good to see the AIM Network rising above the tabloid sensationalism of the Murdoch Media.

  64. Disabled, but not disengenuus

    @ Dan Rowden For the person you know who is on warfrin. There is a newish blood thinner called Rivaroxabin with a commercial name of Xarelto. It is not for everyone, however taking it means you do not have to have a blood test every 2 weeks or so, and it is not so sensitive as Warfrin which often has to be adjusted up and down. The downside is that if you take this new drug it has a longer half life which means that prior to operations you have to stop taking it some time ahead of the operation. This is also not a cheap drug, it costs about $40.00 on the pbs but if you have a pension card it comes down and the script lasts a couple of months. Sadly, this is the alternative my family have had to choose as we had to consider 4x$70.00 per annum if co payment goes through, so we chose the blood thiner which required less visits to the doctor/specialsits, less blood tests and less script repeats. So even if the budget has not been passed, we are adjusting our lifestyle. And we are one of the knowledgeable families, ie, we read up on pros and cons before we condemn or congratulate.

  65. margaret millar

    How gallant and self sacrificing of Malcolm- a multi millionare! Wow!!to sleep out for half an hour ( i suspect that will be all)
    In his high cost cold proof sleeping bag!!To show his crocodile tears of sympathy for the homeless and unemployed !
    Such hypocrisy! ! Such flamboyant showmanship! l am so fed up it makes me want to vomit!!..
    I notice that he voted for all Abbotts nasty cuts to workers and cuts to the unemployed
    and to the waiting period of 6months before they can even apply for the dole!
    He did not even speak against any of these! He voted whole heartedly for them! Such Humbug!!! (to quote Dickens)

  66. Pingback: Malcolm’s sleep-over | you said it...

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