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Monday 12 February 2018

I spent the weekend driving my grandchildren back and forth to a basketball tournament and as a consequence I couldn’t write my usual weekend piece. It did however give me the opportunity to cleanup my “To Read FIle.” Even with the best of intentions I never seem to get around to digesting it all. So here are a few comments, in no particular order.

The mainstream media are still in a frenzy over the Deputy Prime Minister’s personal morality, or lack of it. His appearance on 7.30 last week did nothing for those of us who believe that people in positions of leadership should be of good character, although these days it doesn’t seem to matter much. Ask Trump. For me, character does matter.

‘’In the recipe of what makes a good leader there are many ingredients. Self-awareness is one. The innate ability to know who you are and what your capabilities and limitations are. The need to have the aptitude to motivate people with your vision. Often the art of leadership is the ability to bring those otherwise opposed to your view, to accept it. It is also about delegation, empathy and understanding. It can also require from time to time the making of unpopular decisions. Decisions like going to war. However when they consistently imply the leaders own morality and spiritual beliefs they are more akin to autocracy.’’ (John Lord).

I think there is a lot more to be milked from this story yet. For starters, why was Campion moved to a higher paying position? When did the Prime Minister first Learn of the problem? Is Joyce claiming expenses on the gift of a rent free apartment from a friend? And many more.

This must be the best example of double standards I have ever witnessed, especially when you consider the unwarranted abuse consistently thrown at Julia Gillard by the Murdoch gutter press and the Sydney shock jocks. Barnaby included. Barnaby Joyce should feel blessed.

If we accept a leader’s low standards of morality then all we are doing is demeaning the position they hold. In this case the Deputy Prime Ministership.

Anyway it will only need the slightest infringement and Barnaby will be finished. He only looks a shell of his former self.

PS: My rumour expert tells me that two Labor MPs are to be outed soon.

2 So with the Senate looking as though they will reject the proposed $65 billion in tax cuts, Turnbull says he will leave the money in the budget and fight it out at the next election. I know what side of that debate I would rather be on. He will argue that by giving the big end of town a massive cut they will reinvest it in their businesses and in turn create thousands of jobs and raise wages. It well maybe that whoever wins the debate over wages might turn out to be the winner of the next election.

It’s called the “drip down theory”, originating from Margaret Thatcher. I don’t think the big banks are into employing more people. Over time when they do hit the headlines it’s for shedding them.

Sounds very simple, doesn’t it? Except that nobody seem to be in a rush to provide any evidence. With companies showing a 20% rise in profits, and wages stagnant, I would simply ask, where is the investment, where are the jobs? On top of that around 700 companies don’t pay any tax and with dividend imputation (a system by which the company pays tax at the same rate as the shareholders personal rate) only pay 10% anyway. It’s a bloody hard sell.)

3 Apparently, or so I hear, the irrepressible Miranda Divine has described those wanting Tony Abbott back as leader are called Abbott Restorationists and delusional conservatives are called Del-Cons. Apparently the Abbott Restorationists believe that Tony is the only one capable of giving the party the leadership it needs. I think that means marrying his nutters with the more rational members. Mission impossible?

On top of that I’m reliably informed that Andrew Bolt has created a formidable group of Turnbull haters, led by him of course.

4 I hope you can all get a copy of the latest GetUp! newsletter. GetUp! is now so powerful it warrants special legislation from the conservatives to stop its influence. It’s an influence, hard-won, by lawful means in a democracy. If you believe in free speech, you should support them.

5 A lot was made about last week’s Newspoll. The Prime Minister’s figures showed some improvement but The Australian said he “surged ahead” of Shorten. Ah, language. It’s a wonderful thing. It seems to me that Australians in their annual revery wake from it in a benevolent mood but cometh the month of February they are back with the baseball bats.

6 Some of us see with absolute clarity why political parties have been losing their appeal and no one wants to join them. Others would see losing their own little piece of power as anathema to them. Oh dear, the problems you have when people come together.

7 My congratulations to the Government in their attempt to create more asylum seekers by becoming one of the world’s biggest exporters of arms. It has two advantages. Firstly, the profits are substantial, and secondly, with more arms more innocent people will become seekers of asylum and our Government will be able to feed their propaganda machine. Remarkable how they can remove subsidies to the car industry but subsidise weapons of war.

8 The fight between the right and left of the Coalition continues with Dutton firing back at George Brandis over his remarks that the ultra right were trying to take over the Liberal Party. What a bloody mess they are in! I agree with a certain journalist on Insiders on Sunday who said that he was a goose. Whatever that means.

9 Question Time continues to be the bear pit it has always been. It is devoid of wit, humour, words of intelligence and those with the eloquence and debating skills to give them meaning. Mostly it embraces a maleness that believes in conflict as a means of political supremacy over and above the pursuit of excellence in argument.

10 It looks like the Government won’t refer Susan Lamb to the High Court. They have resurrected that table they used for all the economic debates and dear Susan is off it.

11 Malcolm Turnbull has much in common with John Howard. Howard has admitted in the past that he never truly understood Indigenous problems. In walking out of a meeting 15 minutes early Turnbull has shown the same attitude. In my lifetime of following politics I would hate to guess at how many billions of dollars have been spent on Indigenous affairs, including the Closing the Gap strategy. It was supposed to achieve health parity by 2030. It won’t happen. Together with the perception that he turned his back on the
Uluru Statement from the Heart, it is not a good look. His early writing as a journalist for the Bulletin also suggests an unsympathetic view of our Indigenous brothers and sisters.

12 The Banking Royal Commission commences today and is expected to report in 12 months, which is ridiculous but it’s what this Government does?

13 The December quarter retail sales figures turned out to be very unhealthy and had it not been for the release of the new Apple iPhone in November they might have been a disaster. It’s retail sales that makes the economic wheel go around.

14 Jim Molan’s stupidity in posting ISIS videos on his Facebook page was about as stupid as The Greens’ response.

15 Labor’s announcement of an ICAC policy hasn’t had the response I thought it might get. This week’s polls might prove otherwise.

My thought for the day

“Life is about doing things. Not having things.”


  1. pierre wilkinson

    Hardly Normal campaigned heavily to reduce overtime rates and stop wage increases and now laments the downturn in consumer spending. They can’t spend what they don’t have, Hardly!

    And why is Baarnaby still the Deputy PM? Have the Nats a death wish alongside their partners in corruption and collusion or is just their general ineptitude in everything which makes them incapable of realising that Baarnaby is a serious liability?

  2. New England Cocky

    I look forward to the return of RAbbott and his sacking together with the other members of this lNP misgovernment that claimed to be better financial managers and double doubled the financial deficit, killed off the automobile construction industry and attacked the poor, the sick, the weak and the defenceless.

  3. Cassandra

    Trickle down/drip down economics. Give me strength. To add to Pierre Wilkinson’s comment – Gerry Harvey – his business downturn – couldn’t happen to a nicer guy. Harvey has made other comments about social welfare recipients which not only show a callous disregard for human life but also a poor grasp of successful economic approach. Which begs the question; how did he REALLY become so wealthy?

  4. wam

    1 ps do you mean outed as in gay? or as in incompetent? or as in sacked? or as in resigning? or as inflagrante?
    The media knew the sex and controversy sells but were silent during the election. Why??? Could be Labor did no stirring? Your rumour and burke could be the deterrent???

    11 Still no movement on protection of women or from the 10 years of the stolen generation or from closing the gap(rejection of Uluru accorde) but gov compensation for the abuse by churches? The bastards collect squillions of gov money whilst they abused, we paid for the royal commission and now we pay the victims. Something crook in tallerook??(the abc this morning seemed to suggest the church is hiding its wealth in front of compensation??)

    14 jim is a soldier. I know many soldiers from the vietnam era and one is labor. I play golf and the modern soldiers 20s – 50 in the club are racist, sexist and rich. They have no respect for ‘old, full of shit commies like me’.

    just a thought??
    Look at my lamborgini I told my workers. if you work hard next year I can buy a rolls royce.

  5. Keith

    It was silly of the Greens to attack Molan. Whether true or false, it is bound to put people offside. One principle that does appear clear is that the lives of civilians are of no importance in modern warfare. The incursion into Iraq by Bush junior has been a huge mistake which has carried on till now. President Bush senior, had the sense to leave Iraq; even though he could have completely destroyed the Iraqie regime.
    Guerilla warfare creates ugly situations where foreign powers intervening do not know who is a friend or a foe.
    The result of modern guerrilla warfare is the creation of huge numbers of refugees. Citizens are put in a difficult situation of wondering who can they trust … their government or the equally unpalatable guerrilla fighters.

    Turnbull was virtually forced into creating a Royal Commission into Banks, the scope has been widened to take into account superannuation with a limited timeframe for the Royal Commission to operate; so far, it might be considered to be the Clayton’s version of a Royal Commission. Hopefully, I’m completely wrong. Abbott’s Royal Commission was a huge waste of public resources; being a publicly financed witch hunt which virtually came up with nothing.

    In relation to Get Up, it would not be able to exist if citizens believe that government decisions are being made in the interest of all citizens. Also, if administrative thuggery is not perpetrated against people unable to defend themselves; then, groups would not be highly critical of a corporation orientated government.

    But, at the apex of all matters from my point of view is climate change, if there are no real efforts to mitigate or adapt to climate change; then, everything falls apart anyway. Turnbull talks about the risks created by terrorists; they amount to nothing in comparison to where we are at with climate change. I wrote about it a week ago, and since have come across further worrying references. The title is derived from the fact that it is impossible to keep up with all the science research being carried out.

  6. helvityni

    The Right wing politicians are not interested closing any gaps, they are into widening them….

  7. helvityni


    “It was silly of the Greens to attack Molan”

    The Coalition does nothing but attack Labor and the Greens, yet they ( the Coalition) get elected to lead us… To attack is their mode of operation…

  8. etnorb

    Well said Mr Lord! I could not have done it any better myself. Yes this whole inept, lying bunch of right wing, flat earth, so called “liberals” (I use this term lightly!), just continue on their merry way, bashing EVERYTHING the Labor mob have done, will do or want to do! I, or should I say EVERY “right” thinking ( NOT right-wing!) person in Australia can only hope that Talkbull & his cronies DO NOT get re-elected! As for Barnyard he should be kicked out of Parliament for the “destruction” lies & anything else we can think of! He & his mob’s comments on Julia Gillard etc when she was in the Parliament really showed just how horrible, nasty & mean-spirited they all are! Good riddance to bad rubbish I say!

  9. stephengb2014

    Calling Molan a coward was indeed stupid (who ever might say it) the RWNJ supporters do not have the intellectual capacity to understand.

    Molan did exactly what this government is about – stirring up division and fear – so calling him a coward, played right into their narrative.

    Oh dear oh dear, must be the oldest trick in the political book and Bandt waded in on it front and centre.

  10. Keith


    Attacking war veterans doesn’t go down well. I’m thoroughly sick of politicians carrying out personal attacks, generally.

  11. Kronomex

    The B. O. arm of the LNP will being going into overdrive to try and control the fallout from Joyce and his behaviour now spilling over to implicating Turnbull, who will be absolutely desperate to stop losing his one seat majority. Again. The LNP will have to rethink the possible run for an election later this year as they try and clean up this latest debacle. Things are are only going to get worse for them.

    The Donald is considering handing over the International Space Station to his corporate mates. Well, that screws it big time.

  12. Roswell

    Enjoyed that, John.

  13. diannaart

    Adam Bandt needed to apologise and did.

    Jim Molan needed to apologise and?

    Being a right-wing authoritarian, racist thug means never having to say you’re sorry.

    @ Keith

    Climate Change is to RWNJ’s what Voldemort is to Harry Potter and friends.

  14. Florence nee Fedup

    More likely to use money for updating technology, leading to more automation, fewer jobs. #auspol

  15. Chris

    “”Allegedly the boat has been unload [sic] one tonnes of narcotics in Australia, but the local authority did not manage to capture them,” said Brigadier-General Anjan Putra from Indonesia’s National Narcotics Board (BNN).

    A team from the BNN, the Indonesian Navy and customs has been looking for the boat since early December”

    “and says it is the same type of vessel used to transport a similar-sized shipment to Western Australia last month.”

    “A shipment of more than 1.2 tonnes of methamphetamine was seized at Geraldton harbour shortly before Christmas.”

    It seems ‘they’ let at least one boat and shipment through according to the story. Who’s profiting ?

  16. guest

    I have no personal knowledge in any detail of events in Fallujah, but just recently I saw a news item from the USA about a soldier who was speaking about Justice for Fallujah. He spoke about the destruction of the city, the tactics used and the possible use of nuclear weapons.There was no mention of Molan personally; the news item was from a USA soldier’s point of view. And there is a movement in the USA questioning what happened in Fallujah which can be found online.

    Furthermore, there are those who roundly criticise the Coalition’s “Stop the Boats” program – shrouded in secrecy, but widely controversial.

    The ISIS video is another matter.

  17. Chris

    “Coca-Cola & Nestlé are in process of privatizing the largest reserve of water in South America, the Guarani Aquifer. Beneath Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay & Uruguay it is the 2nd largest aquifer in the world. This sort of global resource hoarding should not sit well with anyone”

  18. Chris

    “On Friday, the Coroners Court heard police misled the public in the lead-up to the siege, when they told the media Clavell had shot at officers during an incident in 2004.

    It heard the judge who sentenced Clavell to a term of imprisonment over the incident, which involved a police pursuit in a stolen car, found Clavell had never pointed the gun at officers.”

    “He defended the decision to launch a media campaign to find Clavell, and said it proved “vital” to tracking him down.”

    “It heard while Clavell had been “co-operative and civil” when talking with the officer, detectives at Holden Hill were undertaking covert strategies to try and locate him.”

  19. V

    Re Point 14 – Molan’s madness and the Green response.

    Firstly, the war in Iraq was illegal. So Molan’s involvement in commanding the ‘Coalition of the Willing’ in Iraq means he is a war criminal. Molan was also in overall command of the siege of Falluja. The UN has already cited numerous human rights abuses over the 6 days the siege lasted. Water, food and medication was cut off to all 250,00+ residents of Fallujah for 6 days! The Greens questions regarding Molan are completely legitimate. Molan needs to face the Hague and be tried for his war crimes and human rights abuses.
    The rubbish, defence that any critique of the ADF or its members is sacrilegious, is a sick joke. Particularly as Australia is one of very few nations who DO NOT report civilian causalities from military actions.

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