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Money for nothing and the clicks are free

Image from

Image from

Tony Abbott has spent $4.3 million so far to find out what we think. Apparently future policy decisions will be made dependent on Facebook likes or the number of comments for or against an idea on social media. I would willingly have told him what I think for free so the money could be put to better use.

Wait….isn’t that what we HAVE been doing? Must we really employ market research firms because the government employees that we already pay are too lazy to read? I sure don’t get paid to read their stuff. I do that in my own time, on top of my paid employment. Perhaps we should charge them if they are going to use our blogs since they apparently have millions to throw around for others to read them.

Does that mean that the feral commenters on Larry Pickering’s page will decide how we should treat asylum seekers? Should the people who comment on Andrew “did any of them do a day’s work today, or was it business as usual and welfare on tap” Laming’s page determine welfare policy?

On Twitter you can buy followers — the going rate is $13 per 1,000 new followers. On Facebook brands can pay third party companies called “click farms,” usually populated by people in low-wage nations, who will “like” their public page for pennies a click. In Facebook’s latest financial report to the Securities and Exchange Commission, it revealed that between 5.5 and 11.2 percent of its 1.3 billion accounts were fake.

In August last year we had this.

“On Saturday night the Opposition Leader’s follower numbers soared from 157,000 to 198,000. In the days leading up to the surge, his follower numbers had been growing by about 3000 a day.

Just before midday yesterday, Coalition campaign headquarters used the Liberal Party of Australia Facebook page to reveal “that someone last night began buying Fake Twitter followers for Tony Abbott’s Twitter account”.

A campaign spokeswoman later said this was done by “an individual or party, not associated with the Liberal campaign.

News Corp Australia had earlier scrutinised a sample of 100 accounts that had recently followed Mr Abbott. Ninety-nine were questionable. Some had never tweeted. Some had posted in three languages. Others tweeted gobbledygook. Almost all were based in foreign countries.

The only certifiably real account in the sample was Sportsbet.

Mr Abbott’s backing on Facebook has also exploded, allowing the Opposition Leader to recently claim “Over 100,000 ‘Likes’ supporting real change”.

The Labor campaign spokesman said: “It’s up the Liberal Party to explain the more than 100 per cent increase in Facebook likes for Tony Abbott over the past seven days.”

Is it beyond the realms of possibility that a political party could actually listen to the experts that we pay a lot of money to for their advice? Are we to be at the mercy of bogans and ‘paid by the click’ foreigners? Where is the leadership? Where is the courage to do what is in our best interests? Where is the vision for the future?

Here I was thinking that the greatest threat posed by Facebook was the bullying or seducing of our kids. Little did I know that it was to determine the direction of my whole country.

Since we bloggers are apparently going to have the power to make policy we better make damn sure we are louder than the bogans and more vociferous if not numerous than the fake followers.



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  1. Dissenter

    Fantastic BH, A travesty. Voting for the Vacuous.G
    Kaye, It will prove to be just another gimmick like dare I say Twitter.
    It will be proven to have no bearing on real polls and will fail.
    I hope. Because it is so inane. But who am I.Someone who hates the emptiness and narcissim of Facebook.

  2. Dissenter

    BH the seond meme is priceless too!

  3. Olly

    So I guess older voters don’t count!!!

  4. rangermike1

    Hey for Godsake, I am an old Voter as well. Get your head out of your arse Olly, You know not what You say.

  5. Kaye Lee


    Older voters will always count here, even if you don’t like what I am saying. I wish I could speak for our government…literally…I wish I could speak instead of our current government. I have always thought I would make a good benevolent despot. 🙂

  6. Kaye Lee


    Olly makes a good point. Many older voters are not hooked up to social media like facebook and twitter. Are their views to be ignored?

  7. rangermike1

    Sorry Olly, it was meant for Dissenter. What an absolute Nerd.

  8. rangermike1

    Kaye Lee, I do my best to promote the Labor Party, I just made a mistake, Sorry.

  9. rangermike1

    Kaye Lee, I am a retired Electronic Engineer, I do not wish to have the likes of Dissenter telling me about a subject I know already. The “Australian” is where he should be headed.

  10. Kaye Lee

    I think Dissenter is female and she is on our side Mike….this is a hard way to communicate and we often misunderstand each other

  11. Stephen Tardrew

    All this data collection and manipulation of information reeks of fear and a lack of trust in their own values and beliefs. Constant searching for conformation and manipulation indicates somewhere deep down they have severe doubts nevertheless they covered them with aggression, assertion and pure bravado. Sometimes I look at Hockey and think he has to continually prove himself to someone. They know these are not Christian values no matter how they rabbit on. You can only fool people for part of the time. The Pope is the snake in the grass ready to leap onto the stage and deflate the whole neoconservative agenda. Confidence exudes warmth humor and intellectual acumen. Take Hawke for example. However the fearful have an Achilles heal. They are so busy looking backwards and attacking that they become blind to their own misbegotten misspeak and lies when reality eventually proves them wrong. It s really a rocky boat this coalition of the selfish.

  12. rangermike1

    Hi Kaye, I have seen that video post and it says most about Abbott. Thank You for taking the time to inform.I appreciate it.

  13. rangermike1

    Kay, if I have offended You, I am Sorry. I did not mean to upset anyone.

  14. Bill Morris

    Not a good look rangermike1, your best falls bit short of actually promoting the Labor Party.

  15. Kaye Lee

    Not at all Mike…not in any way. Please continue to contribute. We all learn from each other 🙂

  16. David Linehan

    So the lies keep coming from Herr Brandis, he ranks at the top with Abbott and Morrison. To believe the purpose of this Social Media study is for electoral purposes, is worthy of the contempt I hold all the Torys in. This, revealed hand in hand with Herr Brandis hoped for ISP supplying customer details of Movie etc downloads, is taking this country deeper into the dark place we are already in

  17. Graeme Rust

    As we already knew, abbortt has no idea how to run the country,

  18. Kaye Lee

    Good finding Heather. Same as every other audit/review/consultant we are paying for…they know what the result of their “research” must say.

  19. David Linehan

    Not forgetting Social Media is beyond Abbotts control…so far. With a ‘thing’ as evil as Herr Brandis, who is already attempting to manipulate and reform said free expression, nothing but nothing is beyond his intent to silence the almost majority, who are slowly waking up to the Tory/Murdoch evil

  20. mikisdad

    David, I agree with you completely about his intent. However, it seems to me that censorship has always failed and always will fail – no matter what device or name is used to pretend that it is something else. For that reason, despite the appearances, I think that as have been so many dictators before him, he will lose out in the end. But then, perhaps I’m just a naive old idealist. 🙂

  21. Heather

    A quick googling about Cubit Media shows that its director, Randal Killip, is an organiser of “No to Carbon Tax” and writes for Menzies House
    we will be paying him to tell the government what it wants to hear.

  22. mark delmege

    nothing wrong with facebook or twitter.. like most tools they can be used for good or bad. Personally I would prefer to trust someone who goes with their own instinct with what is good or bad than someone who either needs to manipulate opinion or poll on what is acceptable.

  23. mikisdad

    With all due respect, Tony Abbott hasn’t spent anything to find out what we think. On the basis of his talk and actions it seems to me that the evidence shows that he’s only interested in those that support his archaic, uninformed, and out of touch ideas. The reviews and the millions sent on them are duplicitous smoke-screens aimed at persuading unthinking voters that he *is* doing something and as something to point at when he is challenged about ignoring our views.

    As for Twitter and Facebook – they are not unsuccessful. Indeed, the Internet generally and the social media in particular have given an unprecedented opportunity to people to express their opinions without the filtering of editors and such. The corollary of this, however, is that alongside (and sometimes smothering the valid and worthwhile) will be a conglomeration of trivia and nonsense which, though largely harmless, is very much a nuisance and tends to unduly influence the perceptions of these mediums by those who consider them for their intellectual and valid information communication characteristics.

    I think it would be a mistake to write of Twitter and Facebook. Many of the clutterers of Facebook are already leaving and Twitter is certainly conscious of the need to alter its style – however, having said that, its growth is still at a rate which would be the envy of most young startups such as it is.

  24. john921fraser


    I find that more and more "older" voters know that the Murdoch media is propaganda.

    And sometimes I am pleasantly surprised when they acknowledge it.

    As I continue to white ant Murdoch's media wherever I can.

    A murdered teenager phone hacking media baron who is not a fit and proper person to hold 70% of the Australian print media.

    The noose is tightening on Murdoch and I am only to happy to see it happen, while all the time aligning Abbott and newman with the Telegraph and Courier Mail and all of Murdoch's media.

    Lets not let Aussies forget that they were lied to by Murdoch.

    "Murdoch and Abbott / newman lied to Australians" ….. my signature at the end of "Comment".

  25. Kaye Lee


    We have a long way to go. There are people I love and respect, intelligent caring people, who get their news from MSM because that is all they have access to. I went to my father-in-law’s 91st birthday party recently and found myself arguing with him. He was repeating what he has heard from all news outlets available to him. My husband who works very long hours holds similar views. It’s all very well for me who has the time to read other sources online to say “you have no idea” but I am yelling at people that I know DO care. Murdoch has a great deal to answer for. I console myself (in a bitchy way) with the fact that he can never know the personal happiness that truth and conviction can bring.

  26. Stephen Tardrew

    john I despair at the endless invasion of negativity and manufactured fear. Without hope, happiness and communitarian values we are lost. I just want to see positive uplifting attitudes towards everyone who shares this nation and world. The overt lying and manipulation by the Murdoch press is having an extremely debilitating effect upon open communication and rational thought. The US is a prime indicator of just how far they are willing to go.Yes there is such thing as logic yet all too often media manipulation beats down the mechanism of innovative thinking and universal hope for a better life. Not that we are all going to join together and contribute to a better world but you lot are going to have to suffer regardless. What a positive uplifting attitude. What is this garbage that pulls people into fear destroying hope for a better less polluted and more sustainable world. The world is our life blood an we are its custodians. 96% of scientist accept global warming yet there is always one advocate for anthropogenic global warming and one rabid skeptic whereas the ratio is in fact 96 to 4. Forget where I pinched this from but it is a simple indicator of a loss of control of reason and logic for unmitigated opinion. It is a stark reminder that much of what we hear is equally biased and not held up to the light of day.

  27. Dissenter

    Kaye Lee, Thanks for recognising that I am diehard Labor. I too have been disappointed and still am. But I believe in constructive dissatisfaction because it is the way that Labor will evolve. Listening to ideas of members and others about key issues.
    The media trawling is much more to do with working out ways to DOMINATE the media I would think. Just consider if they can spend such amounts on that HOW MUCH CAN THEY SPEND ON PAYING THE TROLLS TO SUBVERT ALL MEDIA AND FACEBOOK TOO.
    Ps I love Facebook sites where issues are raised; What I hate is the average posting of individuals.

  28. Penny

    I was recently barred from Tony Abbotts face book page.. I can no longer comment or like any post on his page. He does not like to be challenged!

  29. winstonclose

    How Abbott and Co and their Murdoch Partners buy likes and clicks on the internet. We can no longer trust polls,many are today manipulated to convey whatever you want. Also the minions of the conservative movement continuously come up with trumped up articles by so called experts and Media programs to confuse and manipulate the public.

  30. mikisdad

    Penny, Congratulations! (I’m sure you must have really faced his protectors with some challenging commentary.)

  31. JustThink4Once

    I cannot help wondering if this revelation ties in with proposed filtering of the internet.
    Will the following words trigger the filter?
    Labor, Greens, justice, climate, union, renewable, solar, environment, science, education, marriage, fracking, unemployment, polls, Indonesia, asylum, protest, rally, soup kitchen…..

  32. Möbius Ecko

    “Combine that with an uninspiring win in Griffith and it’s a tad disturbing.”

    Totally disagree with that assertion Dan.

    The Liberals had a long and experienced popular local campaigner with considerable resources behind him, including most of the MSM as well as the full weight of both the Federal and State governments, yet only managed a relatively small swing to them.

    On the other hand Labor had a new inexperienced candidate who had a fraction of the resources for her campaign, but still managed to win despite the right wing media and Liberals saying Glasson would win.

    It was a punch in the nose to Newman and Abbott, make no mistake about it.

    Notice that when the polls went south for Abbott and the government all of a sudden out comes the Union bashing and claims of corruption indirectly linked to Labor at every turn along with lots of positive news reports for Abbott, like now where apparently he’s able to directly call on god to make it rain.

    This often happened when he was in opposition. The moment any bad news or poll came out for Abbott a media campaign would swing into action diverting attention away from the bad news, putting down the Labor government and selling up Abbott. This will never stop as long as the vested interest continue to control Abbott and want their pound of flesh from the tax payer largess he will give them.

  33. Stephen Tardrew

    Its not surprising Labor has lost ground. Playing defensive with union inquiries is toxic at the moment. Just accept the inquiry and let the facts role out. Develop strategies to counter misinformation but get on with the main game. Look like leaders with an agenda and don’t be deterred by fluctuations in the poles. It’s a reality of life but not the be all and end all. Labor has to build a new face and trust that eventually the employment numbers will dramatically play against the coalition’s agenda. But don’t get disillusioned. A strong third party would be preferable but it ain’t going to happen. We must keep the faith and continually put pressure upon Labor to move left of center to provide a counter to this continual rightist imbalance. Use hardship as a weapon of long term advantage but for God’s sake please not more of the same. Appearances are not everything but they are damn well critically important. In the long term Shorten may have to go with all of the ructions that may cause. Long term planning sometimes sucks however, at the moment, short term magical thinking will not save Labor.

  34. randalstella

    Mobius E,
    The question you raise: what can be done about the ready resort to Union bashing? The part of the electorate Abbott appeals to for Government do not pay attention to any detail, and largely could not be reasoned with.
    What can the current leadership of Labor do to counter this, minimise this effect, without hoping Abbott goes far enough to threaten wages and conditions more tangibly and personally? The voters Abbott speaks to may hardly recall Work Choices; and do not think clearly enough to associate Union bashing with any preliminary to a form of its return.
    How can these voters be told that Union representation is the strongest defence of wages and conditions? So many of them cannot even recognise or acknowledge that their own working conditions have been clearly established by Union negotiation, reacting aggressively to this fact. They support the exclusion of Unions from work sites; and even the exclusion of Unions from negotiation. That is, they support Work Choices, until it threatens them personally.

    Please discuss.

  35. mikisdad

    By the way, Kaye, – love the title of the article – got me straight in (also love Dire Straits). – if we had a prize for article titles, I’d say this one is one of the best I’ve seen on AIMN.

  36. Dissenter

    Randalstella The ACTU conference will be dealing with this 26-28 Feb Melbourne and I think it is open to all.
    I have sent an ideas package to Ged Kearney as I cannot attend. Perhaps you could do the same.
    This is AN EMERGENCY as you so rightly note. I have suggested certain campaigns and one of them is education as to para 3.
    The more of us who communicate this the better.

  37. Geoff Of Epping

    I don’t have a Facebook, Twitter, or any other kind of social media account. I am also nearly 60, a disability support pensioner and a gay man……… I guess that’s three strikes against me so i just don’t rate a thought in Abbott’s world.

  38. dafid1

    My fears precisely JT4O..if Brandis thinks for a second those who don’t take his every word as the Gospel truth, are fooled by his pathetic explanation for this intrusion into another aspect of out lives, he can take a running jump.
    He said the reason for his proposed censorship of ‘downloading movies’. is the harm being done to the Australian Film Industry. What absolute nonsense.
    Not even the most casual observer of the internet believes Australians spend their time pirating Australian movies, whether they be made here by Australians with 100% cast and crew, or local actors involvement in overseas offerings etc.

    There are not enough of such films to absorb 1% of downloads, not 1%. Nor the number of good films not available elsewhere . Such is the contempt in which Brandis holds most of his fellow Australians.
    No Brandis being the liar, the creep, the ultra Conservative, (Liberal my backside) he is, this is a sinister attempt to snoop, to watch, to check on what we are doing in our every day lives.
    I hope ISP’s have the courage, as they did with Conroy’s much milder attempt to censor the Internet, to tell this Govt to get lost, they will not do their dirty work for them. Its not their place to police peoples viewing habits for this or any Govt.

    Incidentally yes I have been guilty of the odd download when all else has failed, YouTube is a wonderland of nearly everything, but I’m hardly a serial offender.
    Brandis would be well served as would we the public, if he was to engage in ensuring movies, TV Shows and the like were easily available at an affordable price. If he ensured free to air channels were to screen many of the imported shows faster than a year sometimes more behind their showing overseas.
    But that’s not really your agenda is it George?

  39. Stephen Tardrew

    Dissenter it was suggested previously by a poster that Labor needs to disengage from the union movement and I reacted with indignity. However the problem is always to think laterally for long term goals. After ruminating long and hard about it, as a life-long unionist, I began to see the merits of such an approach. We are the unions and do not need Labor to hold our hands. An independent union movement may be just what is required. It may also free up Labor to be less defensive and less captured by never ending union bashing that simply neuters the political debate. More of the same means less chance of creative solutions. Unions can still choose to support Labor however they would benefit from, at least, the appearance of independence. Gives me a degree of anxiety but I am willing to try anything at the moment to eliminate Abbot and his cronies.

  40. john921fraser


    @Dan Rowden

    Should we be disappointed in the result in Griffith ?

    Ms Butler came from nowhere and had an 8 week election campaign.

    Glasson had been running an election campaign (non stop) for 18 months and had Murdoch's support.

    As well as $millions from the Liberals in support.

    Dissappointed ?

    Humbly suggest you sit down and ponder your own words.

  41. Dan Rowden

    It’s a rather contentious issue, this notion of Labor distancing themselves from the unions. How much can they afford to alienate their financial support base? If they don’t distance themselves financially, as well as politically, will the move give them any real political traction? I suspect not. If they do distance themselves financially, they are pretty much screwed. It’s a dilemma with fairly big horns.

    Personally I think Labor has a debt to pay on this. I think they should tough it out, stand their ground and be proud of their origins, traditions and affiliations and remember just whom they support. Distancing themselves from the unions on any level will play into Abbott’s hands. It will give weight to the notion that the unions are bad news. This can only serve to make the path to changes in workplace conditions all the easier for the Government. In the eyes of folk who don’t think too deeply about these things, if the unions lose credibility then their arguments do too. Then the Government’s job will be that much simpler.

    Frankly what Labor needs most right now is to get someone from the Left back into the leadership.

  42. john921fraser


    @Dan Rowden

    If Labor had a Leader with a bit of fire he/she would be countering with businesses going broke, developers going broke, financial planners stealing peoples super (with Abbott making it easier for them) but to do that Labor has to get past Murdoch.

    To do that Labor should be releasing policy across sites like The AIMN, Twitter and FB.

    And then release it 6 hours later to Murdoch with some small additions.

    Just enough so that the MSM has to publish.

    Because the "fire" will spread through social media.

    No shortage of people have seen it happen through SPC, March in March etc etc

  43. diannaart

    Labor has distanced itself from the Greens – after successful denigration by the Threatened-by-environment-Lobby (I think this covers everyone from mining, logging, finance sector, self-interested wealthy and minions).

    Unions have been demonised for years to the extent they are to blame for closure of manufacturing to floods, droughts, fires and the cost of everything. Labor is now distancing itself from unions.

    Who is smiling now?

  44. Quint

    I’ve spent some time trawling through the detritus that is Abbott’s FB page in recent months. It’s like a car wreck I can’t stop gawking at some days. The flag wavers are generally the same on most posts, spouting the typical drivel, nothing unexpected. Of the several comments I’ve made myself, only one has been deleted. The one where I explained that most of the 270,000 odd ‘likes’ were bought and paid for was taken down within six hours.

    What is most telling in my opinion is the most ‘likes’ that have come for a particular post in the last three months was for a congratulatory message to the Aussie cricket team after winning the Ashes. A little over 20,000 cybersouls deemed that worthy of a click.

  45. Dan Rowden

    John Fraser,

    @Dan Rowden

    Should we be disappointed in the result in Griffith ?

    Feel however you want to feel. I feel hugely relieved. But yes, I also think we should be careful of how much of a positive slant we put on it. Seems to me the ground Labor had made in the Polls (in a broad federal sense) was quietly fading in the background of the bi-election. I don’t see how a trend toward the LNP on primaries can be a good thing, especially in the face of the nature of this Government.

    Ms Butler came from nowhere and had an 8 week election campaign.

    That’s absolutely true. It was also a traditionally safe Labor seat. It was also the first time in two decades that a swing toward an incumbent Government has happened in a bi-election. Relatively unknown candidates are not exactly unusual in bi-elections.

    Glasson had been running an election campaign (non stop) for 18 months and had Murdoch’s support.
    As well as $millions from the Liberals in support.

    True enough. Factors on both sides.

    Dissappointed ? Humbly suggest you sit down and ponder your own words.

    I shall indeed ponder my words, as opposed to the ones you wish to put in my mouth. I did not use the word “disappointed” at any time.

  46. Dan Rowden

    John Fraser,

    @Dan Rowden

    If Labor had a Leader with a bit of fire he/she would be countering with businesses going broke, developers going broke, financial planners stealing peoples super (with Abbott making it easier for them) but to do that Labor has to get past Murdoch.

    Agreed. I said Bill wasn’t the man for the job and I think thus far that judgement is proving sound.

    To do that Labor should be releasing policy across sites like The AIMN, Twitter and FB.

    Absolutely. Fairfax is proving pretty decent also, but they’re in a tiny war of sorts with News Corp so that might be a factor in their seeming reasonableness. Shorten’s use of Twitter is absolutely piss poor. Dumb Abbott-like photo-ops and not much more. Labor can diversify their message just as the media itself has diversified.

    And then release it 6 hours later to Murdoch with some small additions. Just enough so that the MSM has to publish. Because the “fire” will spread through social media.

    Yes, I think it entirely advisable to exploit the natural competitiveness of the MSM. Make them work for it for once.

    No shortage of people have seen it happen through SPC, March in March etc etc

    The energy of those two dynamics has been undeniable. I think the jury is still out on their ultimate success, but it’s something Labor should be watching closely. With regard to SPC, Coles, Aldi and IGA sure as hell did.

  47. john921fraser


    @Dan Rowden

    But you continually use semantics to attack people on this site.

    What's the difference between "disappointed" and "uninspiring".

    Are you now splitting hairs between "uninspiring" and "disappointing".?

    Always argumentative.

    On trivialities.

  48. john921fraser


    @Dan Rowden

    Your second post to me appears to be saying :

    "I agree"


    Is that so difficult ?

    Mind you I would not want to take away your right to reply …. in the most verbose way.

  49. Kaye Lee

    I just saw an interview with Abbott on some farm and someone asked him about the $900 million present to Murdoch from the ATO. He did the pollie shuffle….”I will have to take that question on notice as I know nothing about it”

    As it appeared in MYEFO I find that VERY hard to believe…or do they just not bother Tony with that numbers and money stuff? Am I to believe that none of his advisers read the paper or do they only read Murdoch papers?

    He was also asked about reports that suggest droughts will become more common due to climate change and he used the old …we’ve had droughts before and we’ll have them again. This man frustrates me sooooo much!

  50. randalstella

    It would not be proper for Labor to try to distance itself from the Union movement.
    Furthermore, it would be worse than useless to try; because Abbott’s mob would paint this as furtiveness anyway.
    It more than time for Labor to take initiative on such things, and not wait for the next onslaught from their enemies.
    How do you appeal to crucial ‘swinging’ voters so wretchedly susceptible to propaganda that it merely requires Abbott to bang the Union can for them to come running?
    Forget reason; that is ‘a longterm plan’.

  51. Dan Rowden

    John Fraser,

    Questioning something someone has said whilst using words they never used is not an acceptable way to communicate. I choose my words carefully. If I meant disappointed I would have said that. Yes, there’s a difference in meaning between “uninspiring” and “disappointing”. Consult a dictionary.

    I did not feel disappointed by the Griffith result, but I was also uninspired by it and feel that it was so. It’s not my fault if your vocabulary sucks.

    It’s just my view on Griffith. I can happily accept that we probably have a glass half-full, half-empty sort of thing going on.

    As to your other post – why should I simply say “I agree” when I had relevant points I wished to add? If you want people to simply passively agree with you all the time, buy a puppy.

  52. Dan Rowden

    Kaye Lee,

    I just saw an interview with Abbott on some farm and someone asked him about the $900 million present to Murdoch from the ATO. He did the pollie shuffle….”I will have to take that question on notice as I know nothing about it”

    I can think we can reasonably place that one in the category of “outright and despicable lie”.

  53. randalstella

    John Fraser,
    Drop it will you? There are important things to discuss. You do not have to be 100% in agreement to have a discussion. Indeed what would be the point if you were?

  54. john921fraser


    @Kaye Lee

    Australia bleeds money to Murdoch.

  55. john921fraser


    Oh poor little Dan Rowden …. doesn't like people putting words in his mouth,.

    Poor little Dan Rowden.

    Semantics is your stock in trade.

    With absolutely nothing to add to someone's elses comment.

    Just like looking at your own words.

  56. Roswell

    So Abbott knows which government departments provide milk for their employee’s coffee and how much it cost the tax payers, but knows nothing about $882M of tax payer’s money going to Murdoch.

    The man should be running a dairy.

  57. john921fraser



    With a tourist attraction.

    He could have Matthias running it …. seeing as how he was born in the chocolate capital of the world.

  58. Kaye Lee

    On the Labor/union thing… I said on another post, I would like to see a ban on paid political advertising like they have in the UK. The only problem with doing that here is that the Murdoch press will give Abbott advertising for free in every headline and article written so we would also have to address media ownership and their responsibility to inform the public.

  59. diannaart

    Kaye Lee

    Be prepared to be further frustrated because staying on slogan works and continues to work. Abbott has a thick enough hide to simply ignore inconvenient messages such as the $882 M prezzie for Murdoch question.

    Keep it simple, keep it consistent and keep it going. The following article from The Conversation illustrates the successful formula quite succinctly:

  60. dafid1

    Some very good idea and suggestions being made from contributors. Do any forward them to Labor leaders? They obviousl6y need all the help they can get. Were i in the position to, I would be considering the future of the current advisers to the Labor Leader and Shadow Ministry. Whatever they are offering, it isn’t working.

  61. dafid1

    KayeLee any chance of a link or the source of that i/v with Abbott and his ‘denial of knowledge’ of the $900 million payout to Murdoch. Thats a blatant lie again.

  62. dafid1

    KatyLee I hasten to clarify my blatant lie comment, is from Abbott not your good self i meant of course. My bad…

  63. Kaye Lee

    dafid I saw the clip on ABC 24. It was from a property at Broken Hill. The denial came in questions asked by the reporters after Barnaby Joyce, Sussan Ley, Tony Abbott and 500 million flies gave a press conference out in the paddock. I have seen parts of the clip replayed on ABC 24 but they have not included the questions at the end.

  64. Roger Hawcroft

    @randallstella – Thank you, I fully agree with you – there are more important things to discuss and we can all do without John Fraser’s personal vindictiveness. I personally find Dan Rowden’s comments to be generally illuminating and to add to the discussions here.

    If people choose to write and wish to be understood then it would be useful if they used the language appropriately, particularly if they are going to use it to criticise someone else. “Imminent” and “eminent” no more mean the same than do the now well quoted “affluent” and “effluent”. Neither is “disappointment” the equivalent of “uninspiring”. “Disappointment” is about the failure of something to reach expectations; “uninspiring” relates to a failure of something to motivate or enthuse. One is effectively about the past or perhaps the present – what has happened or is happening, whereas the other is about the future and hopes for what could be.

    It is sad that so few commentators or authors can accept criticism in a positive way; that so many people don’t think it matters what words you choose to use or how you put them together; and that so many take umbrage at any criticism whatsoever and simply begin throwing rocks.

    Yes, your admonition to John should probably have been enough but there are those who would label it as patronising and question your right to make it. I’m not one of them. My own view is that those who happily misuse the language and who resort to any excuse for their failings are much more of a nuisance on these forums and more “troll” like than those recognised and labelled as such.

  65. Kaye Lee

    And now for today’s good news…

    Hunt and McFarlane just announced a “review” of the renewable energy target and industry. The whole conference they kept talking about how much the RET adds to electricity bills. Here we go again.

    When McFarlane was asked about the huge hike in gas bills he said oh that’s due to the wholesale price going up because we are exporting it. Not our fault.

    They are REALLY pissing me off.

  66. mikisdad

    May I second that!

  67. mikisdad

    I’ve said my piece, John. It remains my position. Were you to read rather than rant, you would see that it is a valid one. Unlike your own. As I don’t wish to turn this forum into a personal debating space, should you wish to comment further in relation to what I think or don’t, please contact me directly at and I will be happy to discuss whatever with you.

  68. john921fraser


    What's to discuss?

    If what I have posted to you is untrue then say so.

  69. Stephen Tardrew

    Thanks tp those who answered my question about decoupling the unions from Labor. As I noted I had doubts and I think you are exactly right. We must press ahead with all vigor and accept that it is not a good strategy.

  70. Stephen Tardrew

    John and Dan I think you both make great contributions. I don’t get it. There are more important things to worry about. Bit of the old assertion aggression thingy. Assertion is being clear and precise about differences: aggression is personal attacks. Common mates we have a real enemy to attack.

  71. john921fraser


    @Roger Hawcroft

    Is this what you mean :

    "After watching the dynamic with “Revo” unfold here over the last couple of articles commentaries I have to wonder why a conservative of any stripe would ever bother to post or debate anything at this place. The treatment and attitude he’s received is just ridiculous. He’s currently being accused of every intellectual and moral misdemeanor that is, in reality, being directed at him." …. Dan Rowden

    or do you mean this :

    "I have every right to criticise. How dare you suggest otherwise." ….. Dan Rowden.

    What a difference a day makes when it comes to someone else criticising Dan Rowden …. but then he has always displayed this type of behaviour.

    "personal vindictiveness" or the truth ?

  72. dafid1

    Thanks for the info KayeLee, I’ll keep an eye out for it.

  73. Kaye Lee

    The things that make you go hmmmmm…….

    No-one expects the Spanish Inquisition (cue Brandis, ASIS and the AFP)

  74. Michael Taylor

    Is it any coincidence that there have been 12 attempts to hack my personal Facebook account since this was initiated? Just asking.

  75. Pingback: Achievements of the Abbott Government To Date | The Sauce

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