Same Song, Different Singer

Lately, it seems to be another day, another report/article comes out supporting the Gillard Government’s Carbon Tax.

This time around it is The Climate Institute, and their Climate of the Nation 2012 report.

According to this report, 28% of voters supported the Carbon Tax, with this figure jumping to 47% once it was explained to them that the tax revenue went to household assistance, business support and renewable energy.

Though I wonder what the figure would be if these people were also told the following:
* The Carbon Tax doesn’t target all industries, with the heaviest, agriculture being exempt
* The Carbon Tax doesn’t apply to imported goods, thereby making them cheaper when compared to a domestically produced item, putting pressure on our already struggling economy.
* That a majority of carbon credits that industry will have to buy  will come from overseas, also putting a strain on our economy.
* The household assistance package is distributed unfairly. If the looking after the environment is everyone’s responsibility, why should some be rewarded for it, and others penalised?
* That the Carbon Tax may not really change anyone’s behaviour. After all, they have already been compensated for any cost of living increase, so why should they do anything different?
* Or that a slaughterhouse in Queensland can simply close it’s doors for two weeks, and avoid a multi-million dollar Carbon Tax bill, which it’s competitors won’t have.

Once people have been told that, I doubt that apart from the most one eyed Labor or Greens supporter would come to realise that maybe the Carbon Tax isn’t as good as it is made out to be.

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Silence Is Golden For The Media Too

Not long after the LNP took office in Queensland, the Fairfax owned Brisbane Times set up an opinion column titled The Watcher, as an expose of sorts of the inner goings on in the new government. The Watcher’s tagline is: The Watcher knows government. The Watcher knows media. The Watcher sees all. The identities of our contributors, who are not journalists, are verified but remain anonymous.

In it’s most recent column, The Watcher, is having a dig at the lack of information that is being released by the current government, and commenting on the scarcity of The Premier’s press conferences.

The author talks about the banning of TV cameras by the speaker for nine sitting days as if it is some sort of great injustice to democracy. Even though the media will still have access to the official news feed, public gallery and Hansard. It should also be pointed out that the speaker banned independent TV cameras because they breached the Media Access Policy when they broadcast the behaviour of protesters in the Public Gallery on a recent sitting day.

Then moving on to criticize question time in Parliament as the government’s chosen method for the dissemination of information. Basically equating it to a mutual back patting session where one government politician asks another government politician a question that will allow the to gloat about how much better than the previous regime they are, with the anonymous author remarking,  “So much for robust debate on the floor of the people’s house.”

Whilst the article does raise some interesting items to ponder, maybe the media should look a little closer at their own behaviour before they start pointing the finger at others.

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Democracy. Is The Media Or The Miner A Greater Threat?

If you have been paying any sort of attention to the media or pub talk over the past week or so, you could easily be forgiven for think that we have a free and independent press in this country, and that a shareholder wanting to have a seat on the board is one of the greatest threats to democracy this country has ever seen.

Though is it really?

First of all, it shouldn’t be too strange to see that most of this is coming from the media itself, mimicked by boffins in government who like the things the way that they are. After all it is only the media themselves who believe that they are the Fourth Estate, boasting that the media’s function is to act as a guardian of the public interest and as a watchdog on the activities of government.

Putting aside any personal opinion that you may have of Gina Rinehart and her desire to get a seat or seats on the Fairfax board, lets look at this objectively and from another angle.

With the exception of the taxpayer funded ABC and SBS, and privately owned 9 Network, the other media outlets in this country are publicly listed companies. 11 out of 12 of Australia’s capital city daily newspapers are owned by either News Limited or Fairfax.

Why should we treated these media companies any differently than those other companies that are listed on the Australian Stock Exchange?

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The Case Against The States

As could be expected, and with almost predictable regularity, the debate over Australia becoming a republic is slowly starting to gain momentum again. This time it is being helped along by those who are feeling the early stages of relevance deprivation syndrome, in no part due to this country’s new found interest with the monarchy. Dr Williams’ article in The Courier Mail being the most recent case.

Whilst this discussion may be an emotive subject for the average Australian, the relevance and importance of Australia becoming a republic is of little consequence to reducing the increasing pressure that we are all under to make ends meet, whilst the far more relevant question is not even being whispered.

Do we need to have state governments?

For a relatively small nation of 22 Million people, we appear to be over governed and I doubt that there would be anyone, apart from politicians, who would disagree with it.

The existence of three levels of government is restricting the economic growth of this country, and wasting tax payers money due to the duplication and triplication of responsibilities.

Funding for roads, health and education are a prime example of this. Looking at roads in particular, each level of government has particular roads that they are responsible for. All of which are in a state of disrepair.

How many State Government approved projects though out the country, have been canceled after they were rejected by the Federal Government?

Two examples from Queensland over the past few years come to mind straight away.
In 2009 we saw the Traverston Dam Project, which had been approved by the Bligh Labor Government, rejected by then Federal Environment Minister Peter Garrett.
And more recently, the Alpha Coal Project approved by the Campbell Newman led LNP Government, and delayed by the current Federal Environment Minister, Tony Burke.

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Public Question To Dr. Paul Williams. Re: Australia’s Republic Debate

Below is a copy of the email that I sent Dr Paul Williams, Senior lecturer at the School of Humanities on Griffith University’s Gold Coast campus, three days ago.

At the time of publishing this post, it still has not been replied to.

Whilst I am not naive enough to think that he would personally respond to my email straight away, I am sure that there would be someone in his office that would be able to set up an autoresponder to say something along the lines of “Unfortunately Dr Williams is unable to immediately answer your email, though he does appreciate you contacting him and will respond to your email when he is able to”

Then again, I received three of these emails from former ALP Lord Mayoral Candidate Ray Smith, and never got a reply.

I’d also like to point out that the use of the term educate Australians is Orwellian double speak for tell Australians this is what is going to happen so you may as well agree with it. Aren’t we currently being educated about the ETS/Carbon Tax?

Good morning Dr Williams,

I refer to your article that appeared in today’s The Courier-Mail, titled “Republic debate should not be forgotten”
http://www.couriermail.com.au/ipad/republic-debate-should-not-forgotten/story-fn6ck620-1226391567257

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The Big Announcement

By now most of the readers of this blog would be aware that in 2013 I will be throwing my hat in the the ring of election madness as a candidate for a Senate seat in Queensland.

Why after all these years of having a go at they way politicians govern, would I possibly want to become one of them?

The answer is simple really, though a little bit corny too. I am doing this for the people of Queensland, and Australia in general. We have all been mislead and hoodwinked by the current crop of politicians for far too long, and a complicit media further perpetuates the deception. So much for their position as the Fourth Estate.

I can no longer sit idly by commenting on things after have happened or raising awareness before they do. So now I am asking the people of Queensland to vote me into a Senate seat, and into a position to stop the continual deception from happening.

When we learn about politics and voting, at first we are taught to be cautious and be wary of what they say. Then as time goes by we start voting for the politicians based on the party they represent, not what they can do for the electorate. The level of caution that we first displayed, should be repeated every time that we put pencil to paper and vote for someone.

The political party game that is being played has let us all down at both the State and Commonwealth level, and has let us down in a big way.

We have seen a Carbon Tax/Emission Trading Scheme become law because the leader of the Federal Australian Labor Party made a deal with The Australian Greens to form a minority government. This is despite her promise to the Australian people that there would be no ETS in a government that she leads, and the fact that a majority of Australian’s actually voted against the ALP.
In Queensland we have seen the virtual annihilation of the ALP at the last State election, due in no part to the perceived arrogance and mistrust in the party’s former leader.
In NSW, legislation has been passed to allow shooting in National Parks after the government did a deal with the two members from The Shooter’s Party, to allow their privatisation bill to pass.

So why should Queenslanders vote for me?

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Republic: To Be Or Not To Be?

This question alone is usually enough to get even the most sedate politically apathetic person fired up, and happy to voice their views on the subject.

Very rarely will you hear anyone say that they don’t have an opinion on the matter or really care one way or the other, with people being either for or against the idea.

There are those who believe that the time has now come for Australia to cut ties with the United Kingdom and take it’s rightful place on the world stage as an independent sovereign nation.

Whilst those on the other side of the fence support our current system believing that there is no need to ‘fix’ that which is not broken. Asserting that it has served us well in the past, and will see us through into the future.

Can either side claim to be right in this discussion, and if so, which one?
In this two part post, I will discuss the arguments and reasons put forward by both sides, starting with the pro-Republic side.

Australia isn’t an independent nation without becoming a republic.
This is statement couldn’t be further from the truth, because Australia became an independent nation on any one of the three dates listed below.

10 Jan 1920 – As a member state of the League of Nations.
Article X of the Covenant of The League of Nations guarantees soveriegn nation status when it became part of international law

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