Poverty is relative.

Poverty and plenty. Rich and poor. These are relative concepts. Rich is someone who has more than you and poor is someone with less that you. The concepts cannot be measured, but the relativity of them can. We can measure the gap between those who have and those who do not.

The Murdoch/Abbott government seems determined to make the gap between rich and poor in Australia as wide as possible. The latest attack on the poor, up front fees for visits to a GP is a disgusting attack by a small minded little Hitler that could play havoc on the nations health. A healthy aging population is financially much easier to maintain than a disease ridden aging population. What next Abbott? Do our aged pay or die? Is this the logical result of user pays? For a developed nation keeping the population healthy, regardless of socio-economic circumstances, saves money.

Apart from the social aspects regular health checks for our elderly make a significant contribution to keeping health cost down by picking up problems at an early stage. If the disadvantaged of any age are unable to visit a GP with early symptoms it will also add significantly to our health cost. The cry from the medical profession for years has been early detection and early treatment. Treat a small problem before it becomes a big one.

Australia is fast approaching a tipping point where we must decide what sort of country we want to live in. Do we care for and help our aged and disadvantaged people or do we subscribe to the Social Darwinist philosophy that if we care for our poor and disadvantaged they will only breed more poor and disadvantaged people? There will probably always be a level of disadvantage in our society but the best way to minimise the disadvantage is to help/show how to escape recurring cycles of disadvantage. But what does that horrible little man Abbott do? He targets the disadvantaged. This can only increase disadvantage. Another three years of this and Australia will be poverty-stricken.

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Will Polls change Labour tactics on WA senate vote?

The senate vote recount in WA was a complete debacle and Labour are trying to have the original vote reinstated. One week ago that would have seemed to be the best option, but now the polls indicate that a new Senate election in WA might just be enough to bring down the Abbott Government if Abbott sticks to his threats of a new Federal election if the senate refuses to pass legislation removing carbon pricing.

It is a long shot but with the dissatisfaction of Abbott coming from all sectors of the community Labour might just get into a position in the Senate to force Abbott to put up or shut up.

A new Senate election in WA may look like a local event on the surface but it will have significant national outcomes. It could be the difference between carbon pricing or no carbon pricing and another nine months of Abbott or another three years of Abbott. What is needed is to make the push for a new Senate election in WA a national event and to counter moves by MSN to bury the issue. When WA votes for their Senate representatives WA will be voting for the whole of Australia and making your voice heard, no matter where you live in Australia will make a difference.

The Dumbing down of Australia

As a little cockney spiv arriving in Australia from East London I never imagined I would ever have a real education. I will be eternally grateful to Gough Whitlam for my free University degree. Unfortunately Australia has regressed to the pre-Whitlam days of rich airheads getting an education while the bright kids from Redfern getting shoved to the bottom of the pile.

Not all rich educated kids are airheads but for the rich it does not matter. Somehow they are dragged screaming through the private school system that has the motto “We have ways of making you learn.” Meanwhile the places where we really need education, in disadvantaged areas where education is the way out of misery, the whole community loses out and misery and ignorance is supreme. It is not ignorance born of stupidity, it is ignorance born from lack of education and opportunity.

If Australia is to progress education must come from the bottom up. Do we need more educated air-heads like Abbott and Hockey while the intelligence of the disadvantaged lies untapped?

Australia was built on brawn not brains. They have been some wonderful Australians who have shown the world our potential, but manual labour was the backbone of the economy. Things have changed. The education level of Australia has to be lifted because we can no longer rely on sheep and digging holes to make us competitive or relevant.

The education debate centres on whether we want more Abbott’s and Hockey’s air head education or do we want an bottom up educated Australia that can hold its own in an educated world.

Please don’t tell me Australia is a compassionate country

Tony Abbott has limited the number of refugees to be granted permanent protection visas for refugees to 1650 this year. This is retrospective and 33,000 refugees arriving before July first this year will have no hope of settling in Australia.

How can a country like Australia show its face on the world stage when it allows only 1650 refugees a year to stay in Australia for three years before a review of their status? Is Abbott blind to world events’? We already know that refugees from Sri Lanka will be returned to possible torture and worse under Abbott’s ‘Shit Happens’ policy. No wonder Australia stands condemned by the UN for its immigration policies.

Countries and people stand or fall by their actions. The condemnation on many fronts that Australia is earning around the world is justified. This must be the most uncaring racist bigoted developed country in the world. This is just not the country I came to love after arriving as an immigrant many years ago.

From a democracy view Australia is now the Fourth Reich. In a democracy rules must never, never, never be retrospective. We must never disadvantage anyone under the law by changing the rules after the event. It goes further than that. The retrospective changes effect the rules set by a previous government. That is not democracy that is fascism.

All I can say is long live the British monarchy because it is the only thing standing between us and a full on Nazis regime.

Abbott shows how gutless he is.

If any proof was needed that Abbott is totally gutless this week provided it. His decision to dump Gonski was wrong, but having made it for all the illogical and insane old reasoning I have come to expect of him at least he could have show he had the backbone to stick to his decision. Fortunately he has shown he has no backbone at all. And the poodle showed he really was a poodle. All show no substance.

If Abbott caves in to the mounting pressure over changes to the NBN and carbon pricing the way he capitulated over Gonski future looks rosier today than it did yesterday. Just keep up the pressure and we will soon be rid of this troublesome Abbott

Abbott just doesn’t get it.

Mr Abbott, you were elected Australian Prime Minister by Rupert Murdoch. The methods used were worthy of the old master, Joseph Goebbels. As Murdoch’s chosen one Abbott now enjoys protection from inconvenient truths at home because of the continuing censorship of mainstream media, but that protection does not extend into Asia

Rupert Murdoch’s may have enormous political clout in the English speaking world but that influence does not extend far into Asia. Rupert’s little boy cannot treat Asia as though they are a mob of little yellow bogans. I had thought that Australia as a country got over that sort of attitude many years ago. It seems that both Murdoch and Abbott just don’t get it. The Yellow peril and Reds under the bed days belong to an age long gone even if our retro government does not understand that.

If Abbot’s action have made it necessary to apologise to Susilo Bambang Yudhoyonothen he should do it. It is not even three months since the election and already this man has trashed Australia’s standing in the world community and this is not going to get better until Abbott gets over his ‘shit happens’ attitude towards the leaders of Asia.

He’s not the Messiah, just a naughty little boy.

Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has responded to Abbott’s letter of apology for tapping the Indonesian President’s phone by treating Abbott like a naughty little boy, and so he should. In his best grovelling pose Abbott has apparently promised “Australia will never do anything in the future that will bring disadvantage and disturb Indonesia” according to the ABC news. http://ab.co/1aVhzq7 In my memory I have never known an Australian Prime Minister having to crawl on his belly and kiss the ring of another head of state. In this case I hope Abbott feels every bit of the discomfort.

In releasing parts of Abbott’s letter to him Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has shamed Abbott in Asia in the most public and humiliating way and shown utter contempt for Australia. At home all Abbott can say is shit happens. It is unfortunate that in Asia there is little distinction between the country and its leaders and we all have to share in the contempt Abbott is generating in Asia.

My dog is not pissed off with Abbott.

And I don’t think the cat gives a fig either. Apart from those two rather self-absorbed individuals I cannot think of any one else Abbott has not pissed off. Definitely the State Education Ministers who believed that Abbott would keep his promises over education are pissed off big time.

I doubt that Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono still has Abbott on his Christmas card list. That is off course if he ever had one. Sourcing live cattle form places other than Australia where possible is Indonesia’s strongest response so far. That will definitely piss off the Country Party and Bob Catter.

Today, all over the country partitions were delivered to Liberal MP’s demanding that Abbott does not interfere with the NBN. The Nerds and Geeks are not happy, and nor am I.

There have been large demonstrations all over the country demanding action on climate change, and they look like becoming larger and more frequent. Even the GG got in on the political act (by the back door) with her support of gay rights on mental health grounds. If the GG gets in on the act it is to be hoped that Her Majesty is also not amused.

Then there are issues like Abbott condoning Torture and sending refugees back to Sri Lanka knowing torture is a real possibility. That has earned Abbott criticism from the world press (but not in Australia of course) I am now hearing ‘off shore processing’ called for what it is. Concentration camps filled with unknown, unnamed people, mostly fleeing tyranny only to run foul of the black heart of Abbott.

I am beginning to have a faint hope that I am going to have the enormous pleasure of watching the worst ever immigrant to arrive in Australia self-destruct in the most public fashion possible. Maybe there is a God.

WA needs your help to help Australia

It seems likely that there will be a new Federal Senate election in WA. We get a second chance to hold Abbott et al. accountable in the Senate. Maybe even force a new election for both houses if Abbott sticks to his promise of a new election if the legislation to repeal carbon pricing is rejected. The Abbott government is saying that if there is a new Senate election it must happen as quickly as possible before people change their minds. I can understand that reasoning.

The campaign does not have to be a re-run of the last one. Already we have experience of the double-dealing, censorship and non-action that goes with the Abbott government and this should be enough to mount an entirely new campaign against Abbott. This is not a WA issue. What happens in WA will effect every Australian in some way. Please help it a national campaign so West Australians hear what is happening in the East.

Abbott will probably try to keep it local to WA because of the isolation of WA and the lack of real information making its way across the Nullarbor. Usually the results of a national election is known before WA polls close. This time it is different. This time WA could determine the future of the Abbott Government. Please help make that future very short.

Reply from Malcolm Turnbull on NBN.

As part of the campaign to persuade the coalition government to go ahead with the Labour NBN scheme emails have been sent to Malcolm Turnbull.

Here is the standard reply from Malcolm Turnbull with comments by myself inserted in italics. Before that another issue.

The following quote comes from the coalition NBN policy statement.

“To put further downward on prices, the Coalition will unshackle the competitive telecom market that Labor has tried to stamp out, and reduce the cost of the NBN to prudent levels.”

For this read “give the NBN to Rupert Murdoch.”

This Is Malcolm Turnbull’s letter.

If you wish to contact Malcolm Turnbull his emails address is Malcolm.Turnbull.MP@aph.gov.au

MT

Thank you for writing to me about the Coalition’s plan to deliver better broadband to all Australians sooner, cheaper for taxpayers and more affordably for consumers.

YA

Under the coalition scheme the user will have to pay $5000.00 for the final connection. If you add all the $5000.00 together the quoted cost by the coalition becomes just another con.

MT

The Coalition has been very open and transparent about our broadband policy that we took to the election. It is available online here: http://www.liberal.org.au/fast-affordable-sooner-coalitions-plan-better-nbn.

Unlike Labor we do not regard technology as an ideological, or even political, issue. The objective which we should all share is to ensure that all Australians have access to very fast broadband as soon, as cost effectively and as affordably as possible.

YA

But the broadband must be adequate. The coalitions policy says speeds of 25-100 megabits/sec. We are now at web 2.0 and 25 megabits is barely enough. Web 3.0 is just beginning. This is the era of 3D printing where it will be able to order and item on line and you home printer will print it for you. The US military is already trialing war zone 3D printing so they can print equipment at the battlefront and not try to deliver ordinance under difficult conditions. This technology is going to take enormous power and even the labour scheme will need to continuously updated to keep up with Technology.

MT

While fibre optic cable to the home (FTTH) does indeed offer the prospect of the highest possible speeds that has to be weighed up against the cost and time of deployment versus alternative technologies, the service levels offered by alternatives and the value or utility of those service levels to consumers.

YA

With same things, like the NBN must be right or it is no use at all. The Coalition plan is already out of date. An almost good enough scheme is no good at all.

MT

The Labor NBN plan took these factors into account when it decided that 7% of Australia would not get FTTH because of very high cost of deploying it in less populated areas. 

YA

The coalition has no answer to this problemeither. It needs some serious research and the answer will probably not be cheap.

MT

Labor’s mistake was never to undertake a cost benefit analysis of the project let alone weigh up the cost effectiveness of alternative technologies. 

From that initial mistake, Labor has done everything it could to conceal the fact that the project is missing all of its targets – after four years less than 2% of the fibre build has been completed. At this rate Australians will be waiting decades for very fast broadband.

YA

There is no cost benefit in something that doesn’t work. MT knows that the beginning of a project is where the bulk of the work is done with very little sign of progress. The ends brings it all together

MT

But unlike Labor we do not propose simply to make claims about the project. We will ensure that there is conducted an open and transparent audit of the project and a thorough cost benefit analysis.

YA

We saw with the coalition policy costings at the resent election they can never be open and transparent about anything.

MT

We will make sure that all Australians know how much it will really take in dollars and time to complete the project on the current design and then how much can be saved by making changes to it including on the lines set out in our policy. We will also ensure there is a clear disclosure of what alternative technologies mean in terms of service levels and relate them to both current and projected demand.

I know there are some people who say we should build FTTH regardless of the cost. It is important that Australians understand what those costs really are and what the alternatives are.

YA

The alternative is a disaster if it isn’t done properly. Yes it is will be expensive, but we must avoid another Collins Submarine debacle.

MT

Every public infrastructure project has to be carefully and honestly analysed so that governments, and citizens, can weigh up the costs and benefits. 

This information is vital for the public to be fully informed and our redesign of the project will reflect this information.

The NBN debate is not over but the Coalition will ensure that from now on it is at least fully informed. 

YA

I agree with MT that the debate is not over.

Regards,

Malcolm Turnbull