Saturday 21 November
1. Whether those of us on the left of politics like it or not it has to be recognised that as Marius Bensen puts it:
“The Australian public has been watching Turnbull in different roles on the public stage for decades, but it looks like his performance as Prime Minister is the most acclaimed to date’”.
For years now Australians have been complaining about the quality of our leaders and the revolving door quality of it. In the absence of a Whitlam-like figure has Turnbull maintained the rotation?
2. A wooden boat has neared Christmas Island and been boarded by the navy, sparking speculation it could carry asylum-seekers. Will they really just tow it back to sea, wave goodbye and shout “safe journey”? Is that what they call saving lives at sea?
3. Clive Palmer is advocating that only the Church should have the right to marry people. Everyone else gets a civil union. Now that’s equality for you.
4. Yesterday I wrote that Scott Morisson said he was back on track to a surplus. But what is the importance of a surplus?
In the past 79 years we have had 12 of any significance. Once by Ben Chifley, three times by Bob Hawke, and eight times by John Howard, who shared another with Rudd, who was elected during the 2007-08 fiscal year. The surpluses by Howard came from an unprecedented, never to be repeated mining boom and the sale of public assets.
5. The Arts community was stunned when the Abbott Government announced earlier this year it would redirect $104.7 million from the Australia Council to a new fund administered by the Arts Ministry. New Communications and Arts Minister Mitch Fifield has come up with new guidelines for the distribution of funds but is it just a rebrand or a meaningful plan?
6. On a not so newsy day here is something to think about:
“The gross national product does not allow for the health of our children, the quality of their education, or the joy of their play. It does not include the beauty of our poetry or the strength of our marriages. It measures neither our wit nor our courage; neither our wisdom or our learning; neither our compassion nor our devotion to our country; it measures everything, in short, except that which makes life worthwhile” (Robert Kennedy 1968).
7. The weekly poll aggregate reading now has the Coalition well ahead of its position at the 2013 election, with Bill Shorten’s personal ratings continuing to sink. The latest is 54.4-45.6 to the Coalition
8. It says much about the decline in American society when an individual of dubious character like Donald Trump could even remotely be considered worthy of standing for the highest office. Suggesting that some citizens should wear something that identified them as somehow different from other citizens is obnoxiously outrageous in the worst possible way. American freedom?
9. In a week and a half the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will begin in Paris. Delegates from 195 countries, plus representatives from countless companies and NGOs, will come together with the avowed goal of reaching an agreement on climate and emissions. I dare to hope that I will never have to say this again:
“In terms of the environment. I wonder what price the people of tomorrow will pay for the stupidity of today”.
All up, there will be more than 40,000 attendees. That’s a lot of delegates, but what they’re trying to achieve is a colossal enterprise that will affect the billions now living and all those who will ever be born.
MY THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
“Free speech does not mean it should be free from ethics. Like truth for example”.