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A post from 7 December 2016. Check out the familiarity with the same day in 2021.

One of the more pleasurable activities I ingest when I have a moment to spare is to go back in time and see what I was writing about on the same day a few years before. Often the results reveal some interesting treasures. Sometimes I want to laugh, have a giggle, or bawl my eyes out at how little we have advanced as a society.

Why? Because our present Government will never change until it gets too uncomfortable to stay the same.

Here are a few things I wrote about on Wednesday, December 7, 2016. My 2021 comments are in italics.

1 It wasn’t long ago that we had a ‘carbon tax’. One that, over time, would have become a Carbon Trading Scheme. Then the conservatives conveniently converted a statement by the then Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, into a lie. Consequently, we have lost years to tackle a life-or-death challenge.

The conservatives’ decision to repeal the carbon tax will historically be recognised as the worst public policy decision in Australia’s history.

Despite knowing it would be a political disadvantage, Labor put the good of the country before politics and proceeded with a tax. The then Opposition Leader, Malcolm Turnbull, agreed with it and, when replaced, because of his views, gave the Coalition a critical serve it had coming to them on its hopeless Direct Action Plan.

Strange as it seems, as I write on December 9, 2021, there is an article in the Guardian about Turnbull supporting independents standing in marginal seats with Climate Change as their focus.

Sometimes, change disregard’s opinion and becomes a phenomenon of its own making, with Its own inevitability. Particularly now that our politics has degenerated into the chaotic mess it is now.

2 Abbott, an Oxford graduate, would suggest that climate change a socialist plot. In doing so, he does a great disservice to that esteemed university.

But here we are years later, with the conservatives still no further advanced other than lies on top of lies.

As is predictable, the far-right members the Coalition government are screaming and shouting over something that makes perfect sense to most people but is a monumental crime of ideology to them. (Referring to the carbon tax).

Those in the energy sector and the business community generally pleaded with both parties to stop the nonsense and develop a bi-partisan plan to cut emissions over the coming decades, including a carbon price. Will Turnbull take the bull by the horns and confront the denialists? If he does, he will get public support; it will confirm his weakness if he doesn’t. He has to do it sometime, so why not now?

“Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull faces a fresh outbreak of party disunity over climate policy, with backbench MPs questioning the government’s timing, scope and tactics after a formal review of the Direct Action plan was finally announced”.

As history will show, he didn’t, and the consequences are known to one and all.

3 If profit means the end of coal, that’s the decision business will take. But science and capitalism will win the day, and nothing will stop them.

I don’t think the word “tax” will appear in any legislation.

4 Josh Freydenberg says his Government “… is committed to adopting a non-ideological approach to emissions reduction to ensure we secure the lowest cost of abatement.”

So, it would necessarily consider a carbon price. Let the market decide which technology wins at “the lowest cost” if you take that seriously, you are as silly as Barnaby Joyce.

5 As if Barnaby Joyce’s decision to move the nation’s agricultural chemicals and veterinary medicines regulator into his electorate for $250 million wasn’t enough.

Like most things this government does, it’s clear the move was never about what was best for the agricultural sector. We now find it was allegedly greatly influenced by celebrity gardener Don Burke over people in his department.

I wonder how all that went. Well, Barnaby Joyce continues to confirm he is not intellectually up to the task of Deputy Prime Minister. He needed to win his seat, and he did. That was the real motive. But $250 million.

6 Another thing I missed was this headline in The Sydney Morning Herald: “Barnaby Joyce vows LNP maverick George Christensen will become a cabinet minister.”

Sorry, I’m lost for words.

7 Senator Pauline Hanson said yesterday, when referring to party member Rod Culleton: “He’s not a team player at all. We can’t work with him; you can’t reason with him.”

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. I ask myself where the right get these people from, but I never get an answer.

8 The special Minister of State Scott Ryan has an independent review of MPs entitlements but is dragging his feet with recommendations for an overhaul. In the meantime, there is a lot of activity in the skies with charter planes doing record business.

I don’t recall seeing the results of that enquiry. Like many things, they seemed to have fallen into the abyss of terrible governance.

With the purchase of yet another property, Peter Dutton has expanded his impressive portfolio to six properties.

Thank goodness I’m not a taxpayer and not contributing to his wealth, but I feel sorry for the silly buggers who are.

Many federal MPs have properties, and it doesn’t go unnoticed. It beats me why the taxpayer should have to fund their wealth.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and his wife Lucy have seven properties, including their Point Piper home, a Hunter Valley farm and a New York apartment.

Nationals MP David Gillespie has 18 properties, including 17 for investment purposes.

Liberal MP Ian Goodenough has nine – three residential and six investments.

LNP MP Karen Andrews has six investment properties and one residential.

Of course, this was in 2016. God only knows how many they have added to their portfolios. Is it any wonder they opposed Labor’s negative gearing policy at the last election?

9 The characteristic that most defines modern Australia is ‘diversity’. In an argument last week about what defines an Australian, I came up with this:

In all its forms, together with multiculturalism, it defines us as a nation. People of my generation and later should divest themselves of their old and inferred racist superiority.

We have changed for the better. It is such a pity that this great nation is being held back by those of little understanding. There is no shame in not knowing. The shame is in not wanting to know.

10 I didn’t get the opportunity to voice my view on the ‘sugar’ debate last week. The suggestion that we should tax sugary soft drinks is nonsense and unnecessary. It’s as simple as this. Science knows that the primary cause of ill-health in society is consuming too much sugar, fat and salt. Mainly in fast foods. An enlightened society that wanted to save lives would legislate to, over time, reduce the amount of these killers in the foods we consume. Problem solved. It won’t happen for two reasons. One, ideology and two, we are not an enlightened society.

11 When talking about the cost of living, I think people get confused. There is a big difference between the cost of living and the cost of lifestyle. A recent survey found that 56% of those complaining about the cost of living had taken an overseas trip in the same year. And a further 52% had reduced dining out from three to two times a week.

And in 2021, it is still a hot topic. Have you looked at your grocery bill of late?

12 On December 8 2016, Newspoll has both parties the same. The Essential Poll has Labor on 52% and the Coalition on 48%.

On December 8 2021, Newspoll for the year records Labor’s two-party lead unchanged at 53-47, from primary votes of Coalition 36%, Labor 38% (steady), Greens 10% (down one) and One Nation 3% (up one).

Yet again, Labor finds itself in the box seat to win Government. It must do so for the nation’s sake; otherwise, Scott Morrison will be emboldened or at least tempted to commit crimes against our society more extreme than he has thus far.

My thought for the day

I found it impossible to imagine that the Australian people could be so gullible as to elect for a third term a government that has performed so miserably in the first two. And it has has amongst its members some of the most devious, suspicious and chillingly corrupt men and women but they did.

 

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14 comments

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  1. New England Cocky

    John Lord, once again I find myself lost for words defending the actions of our ”esteemed” representative of the Nazional$ in New England.

    The full details of the dirty land deal that was the burning down of the former Armidale Club building and unusually convenient death of the alleged arsonist have been quietly swept under the carpet of history for the good of the local Nazional$ Party real estate investors. Indeed, the present taxation concessions on commercial property investments saw the value of that building soar well into the millions as it was sold up the chain.

    So how can making a profit in a small country town be a bad thing for the local country community struggling with self-imposed population stagnation caused by long term rejection of manufacturing industries by successive local councils in the 20+ years pursuit of the ”1961 future” preferred by the dominant Nazional$ faction?

  2. Ken

    Why o’ why dont Australians wake up to how bad the LNP have been ?

  3. Ken

    In The Saturday Paper today there is a very good article by Tony Windsor on what Independents can do to put pressure on the LNP.

  4. Phil Pryor

    When talking about memories of organised crime, one might think of stories about Capone, Ponzi, Milken, Madoff and many others who “know” that money buys everything desired from Pussy to impecunious and ambitious political perverts. Boss Tweed in USA history is a good example of the old solid political insider methods of graft, corruption and criminality, partly covered up and bleached. But, today’s world has moved on, to a corporate controlled, bloated overconsumption lifestyle, carefully organised clique parisitism of loyal insider networked faithful to the cause types. Conservatives in Australia have a huge cast of professionals who establish ways of life, patterns of behaviour, financial needs, career imperatives; so, the big gang ignores all learned aberration, such as morals, decency, ethics, honesty, and merely moves on, blundering or charging as necessary, to suit. A self appointed ruling class, this regiment of robbing rascals will dud anyone, take anything, say what is needed to front and bluff, cover arses, organise the streams and flows, live in a prosperous past while securing a greedy personal future. Politicians can be rented, leased, even bought, to rubberstamp reality but, only for them and their donors, supporters, patrons, backroom bosses. Have you been robbed, reduced, coerced, frustrated, ashamed, lately?? Living in this Australia, with a puffed up porker in office, is sickening, indecent.

  5. Terence Mills

    I’m waiting for somebody to come up with a list of the achievements of the Morrison government : I have tried but I’m not coming up with anything.

    They like to lay claim to their success in taming COVID but it hasn’t actually been tamed and what has been achieved was done largely by the state premiers.

    They tried in the dying days of the parliament to ram through legislation on Religious Discrimination, Voter Identity and Integrity and a federal anti-corruption commission : all failed to see the light of day and in the case of the federal ICAC they had the cheek to blame it on the opposition even though they had failed to introduce any legislation into the parliament.

    They must have done something in the last three years, can anybody come up with anything beyond Barnaby getting COVID ?

  6. leefe

    Terrence:

    They’ve set a benchmark for corruption, incompetence, inequality and arrogance.

  7. Kaye Lee

    Let’s give credit where it’s due. They got rid of the tampon tax. Only took them 20 years to make that huge concession.

    Apparently they had agonised about how to replace the $30 million it would cost the budget….which is the same amount they gifted to Fox who then got the rights to women’s soccer but, instead of showing it, charged the ABC a fee to show them instead. Nothing like being a taxpayer funded private enterprise middleman. Everyone wins.

    Except women who are still paying for sanitary products every month with no increase in Newstart, a cut in penalty rates, and no available affordable housing. How about keep the GST, use the $30 million to supply tampons and pads for free to those in need and let working women claim them as a tax deduction. I cannot believe we spend so much time on minutiae in order to make it sound hard.

    Sorry Terrence….best I can do off the top of my head.

  8. GL

    Ah, the good old, “The more things change, the more they stay the same.”

  9. Terence Mills

    Kaye

    I think that was actually in the previous term of government !

    It was hard fought as the government website notes the valuable contribution of Senator Leyonhjelm :

    During Senate Estimates hearings in February 2018, Senator David Leyonhjelm explored the option of making sanitary products GST-free by way of a determination made under section 38-47 of the GST Act. Senator Leyonhjelm also questioned the Treasury as to whether it is ‘within the power of the ATO [Australian Taxation Office] or the Minister to reclassify menstruation as a disability’, on the assumption that feminine hygiene products would then be GST-free under section 38-45 of the GST Act. Treasury’s response confirmed that such products could be made GST-free by way of a determination made under section 38-47, but it did not address the issue of classifying menstruation as a disability.

    https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/FlagPost/2018/November/Removing_GST_on_feminine_hygiene_products

  10. Kaye Lee

    Dang…..I got nothing then.

    Lots of national security and internet regulation type stuff and ever more autocratic powers for Ministers. AUKUS has a bad stench because of the lies and waste and nuclear question and is just a plan to look into maybe signing an agreement in a couple of years dunno who with or what for. Nothing will happen for decades. Not much bragging rights there.

    You can actually look at the list of each year’s bills. I tried and lost interest immediately. if there was anything momentous, you’d think one of us would remember.

  11. wam

    The government went to the polls with nothing more than’ trust us to give you more of the same’ and that was indue, rorts and debt. They government has been true to its mandate of more under indue, more rorts and more debt. But, lord, loonies polls down?? That is a worry for Albo who must be wondering how the bandit will boost his Melb and Sydney latte cash for the next election. Another caravan? A rant on climate? Perhaps an attack on spending oops that is risky maybe a rant on covid and the waste on consultancy costs?
    ps
    anyone remember how the prince of wales wanted to be qualify as a women’s thing?

  12. Terence Mills

    Well, I suppose they did get rid of the automobile construction industry – remember how they told Ford, GM and Toyota to get on their bikes and head off to Thailand, Vietnam, anywhere but Australia.

    That I suppose was really an achievement of the Abbott regime but it comes down to a coalition triumph.

    As Scotty says we’re good at digging things up but hopeless at making things !

  13. David Stakes

    Still think as unbelievable as it seems that they will get re elected next year.

  14. GL

    David,

    I keep getting people and friends calling me a pessimist because I tell them Scummo and Crony Co. Inc. will get back in again when asked. I’ve seen nothing to make me change my view yet.

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