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I find it hard to believe that Tony Abbott simply does not know the law

For far too long Tony Abbott has said whatever he wants, whenever he wants, without a word of it being challenged.

The price on carbon became the “carbon tax”. It wasn’t a tax yet not only did his claim go unchallenged, but “carbon tax” slipped into the Australian vernacular. It is now used, widely and wrongly, to describe the price on carbon. The Home Insulation Program (the HIP) was a very successful program. Yet any discussion on it sees HIP prefixed with the word “failed”. Now who thought of that one? The Gillard minority Government was a successful government who passed how many pieces of legislation? Yet, thanks to Tony Abbott’s continual emphasis on the word “dysfunctional” in any reference to them, that’s the word frequently but wrongly used to describe it.

The biggest offender is the mainstream media who are happy to repeat the lie. “Carbon tax”, “the failed HIP” and “the dysfunctional Gillard Government” are three of their favourite phrases, one would think.

Repeating a lie is one thing. Failing to challenge it is another.

Have you noticed, incidentally, that no-one in the mainstream media challenges Tony Abbott on his repeated claims that asylum seekers arriving by boat (or attempting to arrive) are doing so illegally or attempting to break the law? They just keep assuming that he’s right (or know that he’s wrong and continue to let him repeat it ad nauseum).

Many people must really begin to wonder if it is true or not.

Well it is not.

A couple of days ago the ABC Fact Check team published an article confirming that it isn’t illegal, though they were somewhat soft on the prime minister with their title “Tony Abbott incorrect on asylum seekers breaking Australian law“. I think “lie” would be more to the point than “incorrect”. I find it hard to believe that Tony Abbott does not know the law.

In the two days since the article was published it has managed to marvelously escape the attention of the mainstream media. Perhaps they would prefer to ignore it, and why shouldn’t they? It does, after all, provide evidence that Tony Abbott has been repeating a lie – the one they seem happy to keep repeating for him.

So once again it is up to the independent media to repeat the truth. You can access the truth via the above link, or read on:

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has tried to discredit a group of asylum seekers who allege they were mistreated by the Royal Australian Navy, by claiming they were attempting to break Australian law.

Footage obtained by the ABC shows several asylum seekers – who Indonesian police say were on a vessel forced back by the Australian Navy on January 6 – being medically assessed for burns on their hands. The asylum seekers say they were burnt and kicked when the Australian Navy forced them to touch part of their boat’s engine.

The Government has denied the allegations and defended the professionalism of the Navy, with Mr Abbott asking the question: “Do you believe Australian naval personnel or do you believe people who are attempting to break Australian law? I trust Australia’s naval personnel,” he said.

Is Mr Abbott right to say asylum seekers who make the journey to Australia are attempting to break Australian law?

Last year ABC Fact Check looked at the legal position of asylum seekers arriving in Australia.

Immigration Minister Scott Morrison was found to be correct when he described people who come without a valid visa as having “illegally” entered Australia. However, Fact Check also found such people did not break any law.

While Mr Morrison used correct terminology, Mr Abbott may have overstepped the mark.

Who is Mr Abbott talking about?

Fact Check contacted the Prime Minister’s office to clarify whether his comment related to asylum seekers or crew members. People smuggling is a criminal offence under Australian law.

No response was received by the time of publication. It is therefore necessary to take a look at the context of the remarks.

It is clear from the exchange during his press conference that Mr Abbott was referring to asylum seekers seeking to enter Australia by boat without a valid visa. He was asked about the ABC report, which referred only to allegations by asylum seekers.

PRIME MINISTER: Look, I think people making allegations should be able to produce some evidence. There is no evidence whatsoever to back them up.

QUESTION: The ABC claims they have – with that video and having spoken to them.

PRIME MINISTER: Well, as I said, who do you believe? Do you believe Australian naval personnel or do you believe people who are attempting to break Australian law? I trust Australia’s naval personnel.

What Australian law are they attempting to break?

Fact Check also asked the Prime Minister’s office what law he says these people were attempting to break. In the absence of any clarification or suggestion of any unrelated criminal acts by the asylum seekers, Fact Check takes him to mean that the people were attempting to break Australian migration law.

As noted in the earlier fact check relating to Mr Morrison’s comments, entry into Australia is governed by the Commonwealth Migration Act 1958.

While it is accurate to describe asylum seekers who enter Australia without a valid visa as “unlawful” or even “illegal entrants”, it is not a criminal offence to enter Australia without a visa. Calling someone “unlawful” or an “illegal entrant” is a description of how they entered the country and determines the way authorities process them. It does not mean they have broken any law. Arriving without a visa can only result in criminal sanctions if there is some other offence involved such as falsifying a passport or forging a document.

An asylum seeker who is simply a passenger on a people smuggling vessel does not commit an offence by paying a smuggler for their passage. Section 233D of the Migration Act makes it an offence for someone to provide “material support or resources to another person or an organisation” which helps the “conduct constituting the offence of people smuggling”. However, this section does not apply if the “conduct constituting the offence of people smuggling” relates to the person that was providing that support (i.e. if the support is given by the person being smuggled).

Professor Jane McAdam, director of the International Refugee and Migration Law Project at the University of New South Wales, told Fact Check Australia’s ratification of the 1951 UN Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees was also relevant to Mr Morrison’s comments.

“By ratifying the Refugee Convention, governments agree precisely not to treat asylum seekers as illegal,” Professor McAdam said.

In relation to Mr Abbott’s comments, immigration law expert Professor Andreas Schloenhardt of the University of Queensland law school told Fact Check that the last time it was a criminal offence to arrive in Australia without a visa was the 1970s. Doing so today “will not result in a criminal investigation, prosecution, or criminal punishment,” he said.

“‘Breaking the law’ is generally understood to mean committing a criminal offence; persons arriving in Australia irregularly, especially asylum seekers, do not do that.”

Professor Schloenhardt suggests that a more accurate description would have been “persons seeking to enter without complying with administrative rules relating to immigration”.

The verdict

Mr Abbott is incorrect when he says that the asylum seekers making allegations against the Royal Australian Navy were attempting to break Australian law. Australia recognises people’s right to seek asylum and entering Australia without a valid visa is not a criminal offence.

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67 comments

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  1. booboo

    If he has his way, in time it will be an offence. They’re already demonising them to the public and treating them like criminals regardless of the fact they’re already victims. He’s not morally above seeking to change laws to suit his views.

  2. Tracie

    Since people are already calling for them to drown at sea, the effects of abbott’s dictatorship has already started. According to Nazism, the threats will become worse and worse. Independent media will then be forced to stop, until the only media is that declaring abbott as the only truthful source.

    Only then can action take place, probably initially against asylum seekers and then later against those sympathetic to asylum seekers.

    After speaking to my friend who lived through Nazi Germany, he affirmed that history is indeed repeating itself, right here in Australia.

    And this is supposed to be the ‘lucky country’!

  3. doctorrob54

    Well done Michael and thank you.Slowly slowly it appears more people out there are beginning to turn away from this vile government.Whether it is due to forums such as this,constantly trying to get to the truth,or the fact people are starting to realize the negative effects Liberal policy is having on their daily lives and or their friends matters not.I think it is a bit of both.I personally want to say thanks for giving us hope and helping me maintain what sanity I have left.

  4. rossleighbrisbane

    As I wrote elsewhere, if people are breaking the law, why aren’t they being charged with anything? They’re either held indefinitely, or released into the community without any charges about “entering illegally”.

  5. Tracie

    It was never illegal. The only illegality could be the actual people smugglers who own the boats. For that, 15 years ago the government should have allowed the asylum seekers in, with the view to prosecuting the smugglers. That would have set the theme.

    I have been told that biometrics are being completed on those that have applied for permanent humanitarian visas, with the possible view of refusing the visas faster. Recently, 40 permanent visa applications were refused, shortly after biometrics were completed. These people have a real fear of persecution, with suicide bombers deliberately targeting them. There wasn’t even the typical wait time of around 3 years – the applications were filed back in September last year. The Immigration Department have declared there is no fear in those areas, no matter what evidence there is, so they refuse them.

    This is the reason why they become asylum seekers – either time, or refusal. Not that many of them are even coming here.

  6. Vicki

    So, what’s new. Tony Abbott lies all the time. People who believe his lies are either extremely gullible or they ‘choose’ to believe because they are of the same ilk as him.

  7. JohnB

    You are the one lying, Michael.
    Almost everything Abbott says or does is challenged, twisted and misinterpreted by the left and their friends in the Media.
    One of the best examples was the “shit happens” remark taken out of context by Mark Riley and celebrated by the useless trolls of the left.
    Despite this the family of the soldier who lost his life in that terrible pointless incident, did not see Mr Abbott’s comment as being a heartless reaction on the loss of their son.

    In relation to the “Carbon Tax”, it was a tax and it was also a price on Carbon. The two are not mutually exclusive and the fact that it was a Tax was admitted by Gillard. IT WAS A TAX, GET OVER IT !

    Regarding “illegals”, the facts of the matter is that attempted entry to Australia without a valid visa is not legal and the UN regulations on asylum seekers recognises this fact and explicitly addresses it by requiring that illegal activity engaged in to seek asylum should not be prosecuted.

    What’s done is not legal, however it is not to be punished when done by legitimate asylum seekers.
    Like exceeding the speed limit, not necessarily a criminal offence, however still against the law.

    You, and numerous members of the left, lie and continue to lie shamelessly.

  8. Tracie

    Eddy, the biggest lie was John Howard saying there was not going to be a GST, not Gillard’s carbon incrementals. By the way, it’s ‘their’ not ‘there’. Please consider how to use grammar properly.

    John B, I’d love to see you over there. I have extensive knowledge of those areas, due to contacts both here and over there. You tell them to their face that fleeing from persecution did not have to occur.

    Seriously, put yourself in their shoes. Do what Atticus Finch did.

    And for the soldiers who placed their lives in danger when they went over there, I wish there was never any ‘war’. It was for all the wrong reasons, why they went over there. John Howard was the one who put them in that position. And for your information, the people over there did NOT want USA to become involved. They knew who armed the Taliban from the start – USA. Why Australia followed is due to John Howard, yet here we are still paying for it, with soldiers’ lives as well as innocent lives lost.

    You say that we are all lying – step into someone else’s shoes, for once. Stop being so upper middle class. You have enough – look at what others have had to go through, instead of seeing your own comfort.

  9. perplexed

    it’s all a smokescreen, keep the peasants occupied with the asylum seekers and they won’t pay attention to all the other stuff you’re up to that is not in their best interest. Go and ask any rabid asylum seeker hating person about the barrier reef and they probably won’t know anything about it. sigh. Keep people scared and they will feel the need to have someone protect them.

  10. scotchmistery

    Sorry JohnB if you are going to reflect Rupert Moredick-Pleeze so obviously you should be identifying yourself as one of his typists or one of his phone hacking staff or whatever it is you do. Please understand that when the independent media point out your lack of ethics as a group, you need to understand that we who read it (indi-media) and comment, are far smarter than your ‘usual’ readers who tend not to be all that bright, and generally don’t question the bullshit from the Abbort government.

  11. Eddy

    The way we conceive a lie is based on personnel views, it is a means to a end to get across there point of view, or to gain a reward in some way ie, move up in there job, con somebody, make themselves look important. We except that Governments lie, this is done with immunity from the law, to keep there jobs, to get in power, and to remain in power etc. I could go on. The previous Government lied as well to gain votes,
    The biggest lie that got them into power was when Gillard stated there will be no carbon tax, this became a nightmare for her throughout her term. This is just another point of view without bias, as most on here only have a very narrow way of thinking.

  12. Tracie

    Eddy, you definitely aren’t that great at spelling! My name is Tracie, not Tracy.

    Marrying a teacher means nothing. A couple of decades ago, I started a teaching degree. The ones learning how to teach English couldn’t spell for the life of them. And they admitted it.

    Is statistics also not your strong point? The facts and statistics are there, and they speak out AGAINST abbott’s dictatorship. These are not even just my opinions, or others’ opinions either. They are bare facts, yet you deny them at all points, as you believe implicitly in abbott, the other LNP members and murdoch. You take their word for everything, even though abbott himself once told the whole Australian public not to believe in him as he tells lies. His ACTIONS are speaking louder than his lies, and they are telling the Australian public that this is becoming a dictatorship.

    So instead of telling me not to lie, how about you look at why YOU are in such denial. We all tell you to look broader, yet you refuse. Why? What is going on within you that you can’t see any other way, than that of someone who tells everyone outright not to believe him?

  13. Möbius Ecko

    So let me understand this David Black. For six years right across all forms of the media the right wingers mangled Labor politicians and left wing commentators names, none more so than Gillards, with some being outright disgusting, but only now you have a problem with it because it’s someone here doing it.

    This site the biggest joke? Now I know you’re joking unless you think sites like Bolt’s etc. lucid fonts of serious discussion.

  14. Kaye Lee

    Azim is an Hazara who spent 18 months on Nauru before being sent back to Afghanistan in late 2002. Just four months later his two daughters were killed in a grenade attack on their home just outside Kabul. He now lives in Pakistan with his remaining family.

    “I got up and left everything, my life, my country. I consoled myself hoping that, although separated from my family, at least I would find a way to keep myself and my family alive.” – Azim

  15. Eddy

    Tracy thanks for replying, i can understand where you are coming from and your point of view. But it still remains that most lies are points of view, so people will argue forever to get there point across. Wars are points of view and which views you have to whose side you are on. Spelling and grammar have not been my strong point Tracy, but have seen me through 67 years of life without a problem and i married a teacher. So keep up your good work in getting your views across. PS Do not tell any lies or you will kill a mocking bird.

  16. rossleighbrisbane

    David Black seems unable to distinguish between articles on the site and comments on the site. However, I must suggest that he has a point scotchmistery. Please don’t call Murdoch, “Moredick” – it’s immature. Try to come up with something mature like “Juliar” or “Electricity Bill”.

  17. FSM is coming.

    My hypocrisy meter has been at max level since this moronic, neanderthal government has been in power.
    Indeed WHO is asking him these questions? Where are Labor??
    I imagine any journalist with the integrity to ask REAL questions just can not get close enough to his royal f*ckness. Besides, ask him a question he doesn’t want to hear and you will be called bias, communist, un-Australian and not on the right team..

    SEE YOU ALL IN MARCH. (Not that it will make ANY difference at all)

  18. David Black

    “Rupert Moredick.”
    That is just soooo mature!
    And the small clique of malcontents who think that they “are far smarter than your ‘usual’ readers” wonder why this site is the biggest joke since Margot Kingston’e Webdairy.

  19. Tom

    Odd how the government did not declare their belief of the Navy’s professionalism and integrity when Indonesia’s territorial border was breached.
    That, of course, was nothing to do with LNP policies.

  20. Marfi

    So, JohnB, “Almost everything Abbott says or does is challenged, twisted and misinterpreted by the left and their friends in the Media” – damn that lefty, manipulative Sharman Stone! Remember he said that unless he’s written it down, we can’t take anything he says as ‘gospel truth’.

    With regards to asylum seekers – why is it that people who arrive by air or overstay their visas – also ‘illegals’ by your definition – are not demonised like those arriving by boat? Why does this government want to single out those in the community so that we know where they live? Soon they will be required to wear a pink jumpsuit or star of david so we can identify them. Parallels with nazism are not all that far fetched.

    We created the mess in their country – it is now OUR responsibility to look after them.

    It’s in a government’s interest to keep the population fearful and dumb. If we didn’t have dumb people, who would we send to war, or get to work for $2 an hour, or get to consume Murdoch’s trash?

  21. Kaye Lee

    We sit here in our comfortable homes arguing about semantics and the finer points of the law, whether Julia lied or not, whether the ABC should be airing stories – but we never discuss the consequences of our actions. These are people and our decisions can cost them their lives.

    The director of social justice agency the Edmund Rice Centre, Phil Glendenning, spent six years travelling the world to investigate the fate of rejected asylum seekers. Here is the story of one man he interviewed.

    Mohammed is an Hazara and a former Mujahideen fighter in the civil war against the pro-Soviet Afghan Government. After the Taliban took control of the country he fled Afghanistan but ended up in detention on Nauru. Australia sent him back to Afghanistan in 2002 and told him the country was now safe.

    “‘We turned our faces towards the defenders of humanity. And now we are grateful for the Taliban and loathe this man.? I’m a half poet, and back in Nauru, I said this about John Howard. We can’t complain about the Taliban because they were illiterate and crazy. But this man was a Prime Minister.” – Mohammed

    Mohammed Hussain, a poet who was detained on Nauru, was killed last year when he was thrown down a well by gunmen, believed to be Taliban, in front of members of his own family. His assailants then threw a hand grenade down the well and he was decapitated.

    http://www.theage.com.au/national/the-asylum-seeker-we-sent-home-to-his-death-20090402-9l57.html

  22. Dr Jeff

    Your work is excellent Michael. Well done once again. I don’t always have time to read everything that comes into my inbox but I always find time to read your articles.

    Tom, to tell you the truth, I don’t think in this day and age it was a mistake that Australian ships crossed into Indonesian waters. I believe that the Indonesian military, who Australia have been shown to be in direct contact with, needed an excuse to move ships down to the south without looking like they were doing Australia’s bidding. This, I’m afraid, is how it is done in international relations these days.

  23. Wayne T

    David Black, I don’t really see it has anything to do with ‘intelligence’, more a matter of wilful ignorance.

    I note, as many others have before, that the ‘right-wing’ critics/commenters here rarely, if ever, provide links or verifiable authentications to support whatever distorted version of the ‘truth’ they adhere to when lambasting writers and articles on this site, (unless you count those wonderful and mind-bogglingly ridiculous links to ‘Lord’ Monkton whenever the topic turns to the climate).

    JohnB, if you want to talk ‘lies’, perhaps you could point me to the location of the WMD’s, or arrange for me to speak to one of those people who so callously ‘threw their children overboard’, I’d certainly like to give them a good dressing down and a lesson in relative morals.

    You don’t have to have a long neck to be a goose.

  24. Gregory T

    I would like to offer my condolences to the original JohnB, who has made many informative and substantiated comments to these and other sites, that attempt to relay the truth. It is obvious that the JohnB who is littering this thread with MSN, Murdoch unsubstantiated crap, is attempting to discredit the original JohnB, as is the M.O. of the ultra right, neocons, who never let the truth or the truthful, be heard, less it destroy their over inflated fact free reality.

  25. Fed up

    Has anyone noticed that Abbott avoids the word ‘fire’ and its victims.
    This week when Joyce talked about the drought, Hockey, along with Abbott, played the word drought down.

    I suspect in Abbott’s mind, he fears anything connected to1eather, leads to a debate on carbon emissions.

    Abbott studied law. l believe Abbott like many others, believe it can be twisted to serve his desires.

  26. Stephen Tardrew

    Lies, Lies, Lies that lead to untold suffering and vilification of those who suffer untold cruelties and live in constant fear of being homeless and nation-less. It’s not just the lies but their cruel and harmful consequences. Law! What Law? The hope that laws will absolve us from our moral responsibility is reprehensible. God and religions; precedent in law; judge made laws, are not of themselves just or moral. Arguments from law are just an easy escape for those who are blind to the truth of greed and inhumanity. The Bible is full of lies and untruths so are we to wonder that many of its advocates are lairs and con-men. Religion of love is a travesty when turned towards vilification of victims through judgement, blame and retribution. I stand by my claim that these people are fearful primitive throwbacks unable to discriminate between fact and fantasy. Progressive are under assault from a bunch of ignorant ideologues who believe in fairies yet countenance unjust wars. And the detritus and flotsam of human suffering from those wars are left to suffer further brutality by the enemy we empowered through our wars. Sometimes conservatives disgust me.

  27. jasonblog

    In a sense Australia has laid the foundation for ‘The Perfect Shit-storm’. We have a delusional fascist with a predestination complex as prime-minister. We have a dumbed down society vague & disoriented by the latest piece of celebrity culture gossip that is contributing to a serious loss of the ability for critical analysis. We have a mainstream media with a failing business model who no longer have the revenue ‘rivers of gold’ that once upon a time supported in depth investigative journalism. Fairfax & News Corp are desperate to keep their heads above water as they continue to be swamped by changing tides. We have a sustained attack on the ABC, a much needed democratic institution, because of some perceived and truly disturbingly bizarre notion that it is ‘unpatriotic’. Perhaps ‘Aunty’ should dig up Leni Riefenstahl and indulge in some rousing, inspirational, and unquestionably vigorous nationalism.

    The vilification of asylum seekers is a disgrace. Abbott may or may not ‘stop the boats’. I personally hope they are successful in preventing deaths at sea. But how Australia treats people claiming asylum and are being held in Australia’s name in mysterious circumstances is cause for concern. I suspect desperate people will simply seek even more desperate ways to escape their oppression. The underlying causes that provoke people into migration have not changed.

    The words “Tony Abbott” and “liar” are bound to become synonymous. He is after all, as they say, Phoney Tony.

  28. Simon Duprier

    I don’t find it hard to believe that Tony Abbott doesn’t know the law. I remember during the Craig Thomson affair he kept calling on the Gillard Government to refuse his vote – which led to that ridiculous flee from the house – and even that he should lose his seat, that being kicked out of the party wasn’t enough. Both demands are horrendously against the Australian Constitution and even the Westminster system of Government. A sitting member – regardless of allegations against them – is still representing a proportion of their population. To suggest that a leader should have the power to accept or decline an MP’s vote is utterly ridiculous. I’m sure many a leader wishes they could pick and choose what votes to accept so that they could always get their way but that, children, is known as a dictatorship and is generally frowned upon.

  29. diannaart

    Dunno, wot the peeps are complaining about at least Abbott replaced the Ministry of Science with the Ministry of Truth…

  30. Wayne T

    @ diannaart
    Thanks for that one, love it.

  31. Ian

    I think you’ll find it’s a case of ‘verdict, shmerdict’ when it comes to the Abbott camp.

  32. Billy moir

    The application of the half full half empty principle makes some well educated but boxed people seem nasty. When a celebrated ex-mediawatch presenter can say “there’s a chasm between the values he claims and the politics he practises” and not conclude that the man is amoral, instead wrote quite lovingly of him, Our judgement, based on his practice, may be flawed. If only there was some way to show the rabbott his effective self there may be a chance for Australia to bridge Marr’s ” chasm” but the rabbott proof fence is unbreachable. We need to change tact and, like the stock market, turn bull!!!
    ps wish the labor party was still operating because the green are loony!

  33. Angela66

    Loved this article!
    On another note:
    It truly is remarkable that people (JohnB) have to keep going back to Gillard and the lie she told regarding the carbon “pricing” and yet there is no mention of Abbott’s wholehearted support of it.

    Of course he changed his mind as soon as he knew it would benefit the LNP to do so.

  34. John Fraser

    <

    Dr Sharman has said that Abbott lied and Turnbull & Corman have come to his defence.

    SPC denied everything Abbott said.

    Australians can decide if Abbott lied about working conditions at SPC :

  35. John Fraser

    <

    Every day the pattern of Abbotts lies becomes more evident.

    "Murdoch and Abbott lied to Australians"

    And do it on a daily basis.

  36. Gregory T

    But John F, how else do you expect the Murdoch media to balance out the truth?

  37. Ian

    Slightly off-topic, but Abbott’s reaction on hearing of Schapelle Corby’s imminent release was “The Indonesian justice system um, is, ah, different from ours”.

    WTF???

  38. Roswell

    Ian, Tony Abbott loves it when things are off topic. That’s his plan too. 😉

  39. Clusterpod

    Information that is factually incorrect, that creates a negative false belief, such as the various manner and terms used by the Coalition to describe asylum seekers is morally reprehensible, ethically bankrupt and should be against the law as it is in business.

    I cannot invent terms or make statements that create a positive false belief about a product or service I offer, for example, “My product brandX will ‘flush away’ cancer from your body”.

    Nor can I do the same to create a negative false belief about somebody elses product or service, for example, “My competitor’s brandY will ‘infest’ your teeth with cancer”.

    Why can a politician representing their electorate, and governing the nation, get up and label people “illegal immigrants”, “people smugglers” or “baddies”.

    It is creating a negative false belief. That terms that define or promote these false beliefs then enter the vernacular should be of great cause for concern.

  40. James

    It’s pretty obvious they are using similar tactics to those used in the election campaign – drum up misinformation, fear and scapegoating on a minority (asylum seekers) and the people’s attention is fixated on that.

    Unfortunately the majority of Australians are not involved enough in the political discourse. It is quite obvious that Murdoch media supports a Liberal government – resulting in free market and crushing employee (and human, environmental, equal) rights.

    It’s the neo-liberal way – give power to companies and assume they will act ethically and not take part in greedy acts that make the upper class profit.

    My fear is that we are heading in the direction of a form of nationalism and fascism with Abbott. Presenting the asylum seeker issue like an invasion is ridiculous! Claiming that the national broadcaster is unpatriotic is ludicrous! He can try and spin it any way he wants but he knows that the average person will read it as nationalistic doctrine – “aussie pride” so to speak…

    Our country goes backwards and forwards. This is just one of those backwards eras. Let’s not forget our first piece of Federal legislation was the White Australia Policy. History will repeat (as it ALWAYS does…) Abbott will probably last 2… maybe 3 terms. He will inflict social damage upon the average person whilst they will continue to believe he is saving the country from an Indonesian invasion and ensuring business prospers (aka Rhineheart’s piggy bank).

    And then PM Plibersek will come to the rescue… unless he bans opposition parties… but I doubt it’ll go that far haha.

  41. Chris Crash

    And where is the opposition in all this. Passive, compliant and shit scared. Let us not forget, Abbott is now PM due to Labor’s ineptitude, inability to put together a resonable response to outright bullshit and their own absolute disloyalty to themselves and their electorate.

  42. Roswell

    Two or three terms, James. You just sent a shiver down my spine.

  43. Rob

    @Kaye thanks, your stories regarding the plight of the sent-back ones. These posts are quite effective in reawakening compassion for the human cost and encourage us to help true Asylum seekers. Shalom

    @Marfi your statement: “It’s in a government’s interest to keep the population fearful and dumb. If we didn’t have dumb people, who would we send to war, or get to work for $2 an hour, or get to consume Murdoch’s trash?” It is comments like these that I find hardly bearable as if Australia is a gold toothed bogan who doesn’t know anything but beer. Of course you are a reliable witness of how dumb & fearful we all are.

  44. scotchmistery

    Apologies to those dressing me down for calling Rupert that. I am sorry, especially since at his age, it’s likely not to be true.

    David, as opined by those with a more cultured tongue than I and likely a more nuanced approach to responding to morons such as yourself, it was indeed immature of me. Please note, I am not apologising to you. In fact I have no idea why Peta even let you say anything in here. Most of us think she is best described as someone Tony Abbort is desperately keen not to upset, which of course means you and yours are being ruled by that tight lipped, pointy nosed small titted cow.

    🙂

  45. Jack Tarr

    > Chris Crash, you’re absolutely right mate. The architect of Abbott’s rise to a position beyond his ability and intellect is Billy Shorten who wanted to be taller than he really is also. He and a few cronies scuttled the best opportunity for this country by undermining Julia Gillard just because he could. He then ignored the peoples vote and blindsided Albanese in a naked display of ambition and greed we only expect from these clowns now dancing on Australia’s democracy….

    C’mon Bill Shorten, you wanted the top slot and you have it so let’s see you earn your salary.

    Australia is waiting for its deliverance..

  46. Fed up

    Abbott is wrong when he says asylum seekers are committing illegal acts by coming to this country.

    One can have a law, making it illegal for people to attempt to enter without necessary docunenbtation.

    When is comes to asylum seekers, they are exempted. Not liable for that act.

    Many pieces of legislation have exemptions built into the,

    Nothing rare or unusual about that.

  47. olddavey

    JohnB
    February 6, 2014 • 7:41 am

    You are the one lying, Michael.
    Almost everything Abbott says or does is challenged, twisted and misinterpreted by the left and their friends in the Media.

    JohnB,
    I don’t know what planet you’ve been on since the election but almost every time Abbott or his minions open their mouths they either tell a lie, make a gross exaggeration or just make fools or arseholes of themselves.
    If you can point us to something they have said doesn’t meet these criteria please feel free to let us know.

  48. JohnB

    @scotchmistery “Sorry JohnB if you are going to reflect Rupert Moredick-Pleeze so obviously you should be identifying yourself as one of his typists or one of his phone hacking staff or whatever it is you do. Please understand that when the independent media point out your lack of ethics as a group, you need to understand that we who read it (indi-media) and comment, are far smarter than your ‘usual’ readers who tend not to be all that bright, and generally don’t question the bullshit from the Abbort government.”

    Well there’s the typical response from the holier than thou hypocrites who are certain of their intellectual superiority.
    It’s a pathetic copout to accuse me of being a Murdoch typist or criminal.
    Now, get this, I am not a Murdoch fan, I have never worked for his organisation.
    As for the “indy media”, well it’s generally known to be merely agitprop drivel with no credibility, objectivity or relevance.

    I am quite capable of reading between the lines of the MSM and political bull and I most certainly don’t agree with every policy of the Abbott government. The difference is that they are vaguely competent, unlike the train wreck of the ALP who couldn’t even decide whose turn it was to be Prime Minister.

    @Tracie “The facts and statistics are there, and they speak out AGAINST abbott’s dictatorship. These are not even just my opinions, or others’ opinions either. They are bare facts, yet you deny them at all points, as you believe implicitly in abbott, the other LNP members and murdoch. You take their word for everything, even though abbott himself once told the whole Australian public not to believe in him as he tells lies. His ACTIONS are speaking louder than his lies, and they are telling the Australian public that this is becoming a dictatorship.”

    There is no Abbott “dictatorship”, the closest we came to a dictatorship was the ALP’s proposed media “supervision” of the press and their Internet censorship proposals. Abbott showed at least some “honesty” when he admitted the most believable political promises were the researched policy ideas in print, rather than off the cuff remarks, kinda like Gillard’s “no carbon tax” promise, or a dozen other half Labor policies, both verbal and printed. There is no LNP dictatorship and their won’t be and I have no idea why you’d think there is, unless you are an absolute idiot.

    @David Black “And the small clique of malcontents who think that they “are far smarter than your ‘usual’ readers” wonder why this site is the biggest joke since Margot Kingston’e Webdairy.”

    WELL SAID !!

    @Marfi “With regards to asylum seekers – why is it that people who arrive by air or overstay their visas – also ‘illegals’ by your definition – are not demonised like those arriving by boat?”
    Someone who has a visa and overstays is not “illegal” at the point of arrival, THEY HAVE A VISA !
    They are, of course, breaking the law by overstaying.
    The difference between the boat arrivals is that they HAD A FREAKIN’ VISA, have had their identity and origin established.
    Of course, if they overstay without good reason, then they should be subject to the appropriate sanction.

    @Wayne T “JohnB, if you want to talk ‘lies’, perhaps you could point me to the location of the WMD’s, or arrange for me to speak to one of those people who so callously ‘threw their children overboard’, I’d certainly like to give them a good dressing down and a lesson in relative morals.”

    WMD’s, we know he had ’em, we know he got rid of them.
    Children overboard ? Yep, a total cockup on that one, but we’ve seen since that some will use similar tactics to avoid being turned around since there have been numerous instances of sabotage. Scuttling or setting fire to a boat with children on board is WORSE than throwing them overboard while scuttling.

    @Jasonblog “. We have a delusional fascist with a predestination complex as prime-minister”
    Actually the deluded nutters are those of the left which go on the attack on blogs like this, calling for the GG to sack the PM, using lies and deceit to report YouTube channels or report official Facebook pages as fakes.
    The extremist leftards have no concept or appreciation for democracy.

    @GregoryT “I would like to offer my condolences to the original JohnB, who has made many informative and substantiated comments to these and other sites, that attempt to relay the truth.”
    I have been using the identity “JohnB” for over a decade, in various forums. It’s not an uncommon name and initial and there is the likelihood of someone having a similar identifier. I can generally be distinguished from some of the others by my use of logic, reason and commonsense.

    I hope you’ve learned something.

  49. Bacchus

    They are, of course, breaking the law by overstaying

    Unlike asylum seekers arriving by boat who HAVEN’T BROKEN ANY LAW. (http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-01-24/tony-abbott-incorrect-on-asylum-seekers-breaking-australian-law/5214802)

    I can generally be distinguished from some of the others by my use of logic, reason and commonsense.

    LOL – “logic, reason and commonsense” like “WMD’s, we know he had ‘em, we know he got rid of them.

    That one sentence alone discounts your entire diatribe.

  50. Fed up

    “When has he ever said something that wasn’t challenged by everyone on social media?”

    That is the point of the article, on the fifth estate or social media, the criticism is great.

    Not so on the MSM of the fourth estate.

    Why is this so?

  51. Tracie

    JohnB thanks for telling me I’m on drugs, just for having experienced, listened and understood other peoples’ stories. It’s really refreshing to know that you enjoy putting people down like that. You remind me of a few people I no longer have in my life, due to bullying.

    I’m not the only one calling this a dictatorship. There is no honesty in the train wreck of what abbott is doing. He is making this country unpalatable for those who come from overseas. That’s clear cut racism. You obviously don’t speak to asylum seekers. Let me enlarge on how they feel – unwanted and confused. They thought they could live a peaceful life, but the racism is coming all too quickly out into the open.

    Why? What is your fear of them? They are people, and lives are lost because of attitudes such as yours.

  52. randalstella

    JohnB. Very hostile. But vague.
    Abbott is “vaguely competent”?
    Abbott “showed at least some honesty” when he admitted that what he said could not be trusted? This can only be a very vague “honesty”. Someone concerned for clarity would call it evasiveness. He was caught out – too incompetent even to have an answer on his deceit, and his lack of substance.
    This was no show of virtue, or courage. He showed himself a moral and intellectual runt. Not for the first time. And the lesson, his abject concession, meant nothing to him. Deviousness is his principle, his resilience; his protection of his hatred. He would be entirely lost without it. He knows and uses no other way. Any time he is challenged he goes all vague, as if this corrects the repeated re-appearance of aggression. He would like to smash the questioner in the face. He goes mute. At Davos he was the political thug required to give a speech. It was repugnant. It was stuffed with old one-liners which everyone knows are code for reaction and inequity. He does not even possess the wit to dissemble better than this. The complete absence of eloquence is not conscientiousness, but its sworn enemy. The speech was a disgrace in the name of this country.

    You are also very vague.
    Your “use of logic, reason and commonsense” is not apparent. It is an absurd claim, and it is also belligerently evasive.Your hostility is very evident. But you are mainly vague on substance. You voted for Abbott on an impression, on no objective evidence – if your belligerent posts here are any guide. You like his aggression towards people; his contempt for the powerless. You like how he picks out enemies and targets them relentlessly, with no concern for fairness or accuracy. You like how he runs off to pea-brained shock-jocks to utter his weasel words; and appear restrained compared to their vomit. You like how he shirks the issues to play the tough guy. You like how he is not going to let any fact or logical argument – or even any exposure of his deviousness – get in the way of that agenda of hate and punitiveness. You like how he is almost inarticulate with barely suppressed motives, choking up halting words which fake social concern.

    People here are dismayed and disgusted that this deplorable oaf is PM of this country. They are right to be.
    There is no doubt that Abbott appeals to a deep flaw in the Oz cultural psyche – the thug cop archetype; one dedicated to forcing obedience and dominance; one which is intent on destroying this country’s heritage of equity. The asylum seekers are an easy target. Easy targets are relished. The ploy is to go on as if ‘boat people’ are undesirable, to be rid of. But the reality is that from Tampa on, the reaction has been a fiendish relish of them. Howard and Abbott have lived off them. It has changed the political landscape into one suited to people like you. It has done untold damage, and will continue to. And is proud about it.
    In time, someone else will be required to pick up the pieces – just as mummy does for the vicious, spoilt boy. Mummies should stop doing it.

  53. Michael Taylor

    Tracie, I noticed JohnB’s reference to drugs so I deleted it, along with other personal abuse towards commenters here. He will be blocked from commenting if he repeats this performance.

  54. Tracie

    Thank you Michael. It was really offensive and I’m grateful you defended me in this manner.

  55. davidgrayling

    I think that Tony appearing not to know much is not an act at all. I don’t think he knows much about anything. I think he is an imposter, a complete fraud, and, resultantly, a danger to our country.

  56. Dan Rowden

    Firstly, Tony Abbott is not the Government. The Government, in a broader sense, most certainly knows the laws; that’s how they manage, with the assistance of various legal persons, to distort and micro-manage them. They rely on the belief that it’s the general populace that has no understanding of the laws, and that belief is largely accurate. However, in terms of the educated and – in this context an increasingly autodidactic “Left” – it’s becoming a dangerous belief.

  57. Michael Taylor

    You may have noticed that there has been a poster going by the name of JohnB. This happens to be the name of two distinct posters here. The JohnB who has suggested that another poster is a drug user has now been blocked from commenting. If you see JohnB commenting again – fear not – it is the ‘nice’ JohnB.

  58. JohnB

    Thanks Michael, (Feb2 2:46pm)
    THAT JohnB lives in a distinctly different universe to mine – I found his comments repulsive and wish to disassociate myself from his views.

  59. randalstella

    There are many rancorous dills, who use ‘argument’ to cause trouble. There are the Right-wing ones, who are obvious pests..
    But watch out for the ones who call themselves progressive, and preach insularity and unanimity. They are the biggest danger to this site.

  60. Fed up

    Repeat of the NPC Paul Howes.

  61. Fed up

    Are we to believe that Qantas and other airlines are going to do regular maintenance here, when they have their main maintenance depots overseas.

    MacFarlane lost it with Katter. Gave up the pretence of givning the government ridiculous stance. Truss now trying.

  62. Fed up

    Abbott has just returned to his seat. Assume he has been in deep discussion with Peta.

  63. Fed up

    The whine is back in Hockey’s voice.

  64. Umberto Ledfooti

    On the contrary, I find it rather easy to believe that Abbott doesn’t have a clue about the law.

    Why would he, if his university assignments were ghost-written – which I have heard being alleged by someone whom, unlike Abbott, is not an inveterate liar?

    In fact, Abbott doesn’t have much of a clue about anything. Especially the definition of ‘honesty’.

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