Showing posts with label Abbott. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Abbott. Show all posts

Sunday, 9 November 2014

The invisible Mrs Abbott

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott arrived at the memorial service for the late Hon. Edward Gough Whitlam without his wife, as can clearly be seen in the snapshots below.

However, The Daily Telegraph reported on the same day that: There were loud boos from the crowds outside Sydney Town Hall for Prime Minister Tony Abbott as he arrived with wife Margie. [my red bolding]

Such a silly, pointless lie.

A solo Abbott on the steps of the Sydney Town Hall with attendant:

Making his way to his seat inside the town hall with attendant:

Monday, 29 September 2014

The truth about the Australian Prime Minister's address to the United Nations on 25 September 2014

Prime Minister Tony Abbott  addressed  the 69th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York on 25 September 2014 during the Opening of the General Debate.

There was the standard set image of his attendance on the UN website:

Other more animated images in the Australian media such as this:

However, there were no long shots of the audience listening to Abbott’s speech.

This is one possible reason why…..

US President Obama speaking during the Opening of the General Debate in front of a packed audience of delegates on 24 September:

This was Tony Abbott speaking during the same Opening of the General Debate with a decidedly sparse audience the next day:

Like the difference in the size of their official audiences, the messages they delivered to the world were starkly different even when both were addressing the situation in Syria and Iraq.

These were President Obama's opening remarks:

Mr. President, Mr. Secretary General, fellow delegates, ladies and gentlemen: we come together at a crossroads between war and peace; between disorder and integration; between fear and hope.
Around the globe, there are signposts of progress. The shadow of World War that existed at the founding of this institution has been lifted; the prospect of war between major powers reduced. The ranks of member states has more than tripled, and more people live under governments they elected. Hundreds of millions of human beings have been freed from the prison of poverty, with the proportion of those living in extreme poverty cut in half. And the world economy continues to strengthen after the worst financial crisis of our lives.

Today, whether you live in downtown New York or in my grandmother’s village more than two hundred miles from Nairobi, you can hold in your hand more information than the world’s greatest libraries. Together, we have learned how to cure disease, and harness the power of the wind and sun. The very existence of this institution is a unique achievement – the people of the world committing to resolve their differences peacefully, and solve their problems together. I often tell young people in the United States that this is the best time in human history to be born, for you are more likely than ever before to be literate, to be healthy, and to be free to pursue your dreams….

While these were Prime Minister Abbott's:

I’m happy to be here at your urging, Mr President. It is the weightiest of matters that brings us together today.
Right now, thousands of misguided people from around the world are joining terrorist groups in Syria and Iraq because they claim Islam is under threat and because they are excited by the prospect of battle.
But whatever they think or say, these terrorists aren’t fighting for God or for religious faith.
At the heart of every terrorist group is an infatuation with death.
What else can explain the beheadings, crucifixions, mass executions, rapes and sexual slavery in every town and city that’s fallen to the terrorist movement now entrenched in eastern Syria and northern Iraq?
A terrorist movement calling itself “Islamic State” insults Islam and mocks the duties of a legitimate state towards its citizens.
And to use this term is to dignify a death cult; a death cult that, in declaring itself a caliphate, has declared war on the world.
So, countries do need to work together to defeat it because about 80 nations have citizens fighting with ISIL and every country is a potential target….

Full transcript of Obama's speech.
Full transcript of Abbott's speech.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Has Tony Abbott finally lost the plot completely?

Unable to govern effectively at home,  Liberal-Nationals Coalition Prime Minister of Australia Tony Abbott looks elsewhere to validate his self-importance.

He spends tens of millions hunting the ocean floor for a missing Malaysian commercial aircraft, postures aggressively towards Russian Prime Minister Putin and, tries to invite himself into a civil war.

Not content with alienating various Asian trading partners, traditional allies and the United Nations, now English-born Abbott is inserting himself into the debate concerning Scotland’s independence.

This ill-considered, opinionated move made Page One of The Times on Saturday 16 August 2014:

BBC News  also reported on his interview on 16 August 2014:

He said the nations who would "cheer" the prospect were "not the countries whose company one would like to keep".
A spokesman for Yes Scotland said: "Independence seems to be working well for Australia."…..
Mr Abbott told the Times: "What the Scots do is a matter for the Scots and not for a moment do I presume to tell Scottish voters which way they should vote.
"But as a friend of Britain, as an observer from afar, it's hard to see how the world would be helped by an independent Scotland.
"I think that the people who would like to see the break-up of the United Kingdom are not the friends of justice, the friends of freedom, and the countries that would cheer at the prospect... are not the countries whose company one would like to keep."
A spokesman for Yes Scotland, which is campaigning for independence, said: "These comments have echoes of Lord George Robertson's "forces of darkness" speech in April which was widely ridiculed, even by No supporters, as one of the anti-independence campaign's most outlandish scare stories.
"The decision about Scotland's future is one for the people of Scotland to make - a point that even David Cameron asserts. After a Yes vote, Scotland will take her place as a normal and valued member of the international community - just as Australia did when she gained independence at the turn of the century."
A spokesman for Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond said: "Tony Abbott has a reputation for gaffes, but his bewildering comments have all the hallmarks of one of the Westminster government's international briefings against Scotland."
He added: "Scotland's referendum is a model of democracy, which has been cited as such internationally, including by the US Secretary of State. An independent Scotland will be a beacon for fairness, justice and cooperation in the international community - and a great friend of Australia."….

Scotland's First Minister went further in a BBC News report on 17 August 2014:

Scotland's first minister has said the Australian prime minister's comments on Scottish independence were "foolish, hypocritical and offensive".
* Snaphot from animated video Tony Abbott - Wrecking Ball

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Tony Abbott's relentless blowing of his own trumpet fails to impress most voters

This is how Prime Minister Tony Abbott and the Murdoch press spin Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 crash site negotiations since this passenger plane was downed with loss of all lives on 17 July 2014:

This is the nation and government which actually successfully arranged access to the site:

KUALA LUMPUR, July 18 (Bernama) 2014 - Russian President Vladimir Putin has given his assurance to use his influence to enable a Malaysian investigation team to enter the crash site of MH17 to commence investigations into the tragedy.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said in a telephone conversation with Putin today after breaking fast this evening, the Russian President stated that Moscow understood the need to investigate the incident.

"President Putin said he hoped Ukraine President (Petro Poroshenko) would agree to a ceasefire to enable the entry of the investigation team into the site.

"Putin said the party in control of the area wants an objective investigation to be conducted and Putin also said Russia did not have the capacity to shoot down the aircraft," Najib told reporters after receiving the call from Putin.

Earlier, Najib attended a breaking of fast with the media organised by the Communications and Multimedia Ministry at the Al-Muhammadi Mosque compound in Angkasapuri, here.

In the telephone call, the prime minister also told Putin on the need for the investigation team to be allowed into the crash site to start the investigation.

He said the investigation team which comprised Malaysian representatives should be given assurance on safety while carrying out their task.

"I also told Putin that the site should not be tampered before the team begins its investigation," he said.

Asked which party was responsible for the incident, Najib said Malaysia was a victim of an intense geopolitical conflict in the area.

"So that's the one that hangs over the whole attempt to initiate an immediate investigation," he said.

Najib said the group in control of the MH17 crash site and the Ukrainian government must agree to a ceasefire to enable the investigation team to enter the incident site as soon as possible.

"There is a commitment for a ceasefire by both parties but it should be translated into a form of an agreement, and I have informed President Putin that our investigation team has left for Kiev and I want them to be allowed into the area," he said.

On the involvement of some of the world's superpowers in the incident, Najib said the matter was very complex as they had their own and opposing views.

Najib said although he had no plans to visit Kiev on the incident, he was in constant contact with the leaders concerned.

He said today, he had received calls from leaders of several countries including Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot, New Zealand Prime Minister John Key, United Nations Secretary-General (UN) Ban Ki-moon and British Prime Minister David Cameron.

On reports that the MH17 plane was shot down and the parties involved should be held responsible, the prime minister said it needed complete investigation based on facts and solid evidence.

He said if the aircraft was shot down, forensic investigations would be able to determine it with ample evidence recovered from the aircraft.

MH17 aircraft, carrying 298 passengers and crew, was on its way from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it crashed in Ukraine, near the Russian border, on Thursday.

The Boeing 777 plane left Amsterdam at 12.15pm (local time) on Thursday and was expected to arrive at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) at 6.10am (Malaysian time) on Friday.

Of the 298 passengers on board MH17, 44 were Malaysians.

Malaysia has secured an agreement with Ukrainian separatists, who control the area around the MH17 crash site, to allow a group of international police personnel to enter the area in order to provide protection for international crash investigators.

Pursuant to the earlier agreement between Prime Minister Najib Razak and Alexander Borodai, leader of the separatist forces, Mr Borodai today agreed to allow a deployment of international police personnel to enter the crash site.

Prime Minister Najib has today spoken to the prime ministers of the Netherlands and Australia, and the three grieving countries have agreed to work closely together in deploying police personnel.

68 Malaysian police personnel will leave Kuala Lumpur for the crash site on Wednesday as part of the international deployment.

Under the original three point agreement brokered between Prime Minister Najib and Mr Borodai last week, the Ukrainian separatists agreed to:
1. transfer the black boxes to Malaysia;
2. handover the human remains to international officials;
3. and grant full access to the crash site for international investigators.

So far, international air crash investigators have been unable to properly deploy across the vast crash site in eastern Ukraine and collect evidence due to ongoing security concerns, including continued military activity. Malaysia calls for an immediate cessation of all military activities in and around the crash site.

Malaysia is concerned that these security concerns are preventing full and unfettered access to the site, and therefore a proper, independent investigation from being carried out. Moreover, Malaysia is particularly concerned that some human remains may still be at the crash site.

Malaysian officials are discussing the details of the police deployment with the Netherlands and Australia. Malaysian Foreign Minister, Anifah Aman, has been speaking to his international counterparts and officials from the Ukrainian government on the legal and diplomatic framework for the deployment.

Malaysian Transport Minister, Liow Tiong Lai, has been leading on the MH17 investigation, working closely with the head of the investigation in the Netherlands.


“I am deeply concerned that international investigators have been unable to properly deploy to the crash site because of the volatile security situation. It is imperative that we deploy a full team of investigators to ensure that all the human remains are removed from the site, identified and repatriated. Everyone who was on board MH17 must be afforded proper dignity and respect.

“We also need a full deployment of investigators to have unfettered access to the crash site so we can understand precisely what happened to MH17. I hope that this agreement with Mr Borodai will ensure security on the ground, so the international investigators can conduct their work.

“Three grieving nations have formed a coalition to secure the site. Through our joint deployment of police personnel, the Netherlands, Australia and Malaysia will work together to achieve justice for the victims.”

Because Australian voters are not stupid, Tony Abbott relentless media releases, interviews, press conferences (and News Corp’s shameless propaganda on his behalf) since the downing of Flight MH17 have fallen on somewhat deaf ears when his overall performance is considered and fails to significantly improve the overall Coalition position :

Snapshots from The Daily Telegraph poll of 1,400 people across Australia conducted on 23-25 July 2014 by Galaxy Research

This Newspoll telephone survey conducted for The Australian between 25-27 July 2014 is based on 1,157 interviews across Australia excluding the Northern Territory.

Monday, 21 July 2014

MH17 and the reason why Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott will trade on the personal grief of so may families around the world

When a Malaysia Airlines plane went down in March 2014 with all passengers and crew lost Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott made the most of the political opportunity that tragedy presented.

With the loss of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 on 17 July 2014 it would appear that he is again attempting to insert himself into the very real grief of so many families around the world:

And this is the reason why he has seized this opportunity:

The Age, Nielsen Poll, 21 July 2014

Things must have beeen going badly for Tony Abbott - he went back to touting his fire fighting credentials

This is Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott allegedly taking part in a scheduled hazard reduction burn at Cottage Point in Ku-Ring-Gai National Park on Sydney's north shore.

Cottage Point has an enclave of approximately 52-60 mostly holiday and luxury homes.

One can see in this posed photograph that Mr. Abbott is wearlng the only the only stained uniform of the three people pictured.

In fact the only item of uniform not heavily stained are his protective googles.

Remarkably for someone presumably so smoke and oil affected, Mr. Abbott's face is also almost as fresh as if he was just walking into a media conference in Canberra.

There were reportedly only 27 volunteers attending this controlled hazard reduction which probably took place somewhere within a 352 hectare section of the 154 sq km park - so it was not a large burn.

One has to wonder if Mr. Abbott's media team went looking for an old unwashed uniform and helmet belonging to another firefighter, so that the Prime Minister could be snapped looking as though he had actually been fighting a fire.

Six days later in yet another spin cycle Prime Minister Abbott was able to insert both himself and his daughters into the private grief of so many families:

Snapshots from The Age, 20 July 2014

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Peta Credlin said to have denied FOI request re Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott's citizenship status

Tony Magrathea‏ who tweets as @dickybeacholdie had this to say on Twitter on 17 July 2014:

My foi request for Abbotts form RN, renounce British citizenship has been denied by Peta Credlin. Home Office [U.K.] still looking.

The form Mr. Magrathea is referring to is here.

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Memo to Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott from an ordinary voter

Dear Mr. Abbott,

Let me assure you, sir, that I would never accuse you of defending the status quo.

Since first entering the Australian Parliament in 1994 you have made it abundantly clear that you would like to see this country revert to the cultural mores and social conditions of 1920s Britain and, latterly made it obvious that you believe the nation would be better served by emulating the dominant politics of 1930s Germany rather than the democratic rules sent down in our own Constitution.

As you say you are here to rescue us and want to be seen as a reforming prime minister, I will do my best to spread this message and let other voters know in what direction your rescue and reforms will lead us all.

I hope this assists you.


Wednesday, 16 July 2014

This was the Australian Minister For Women on 8 July 2014

We admired the skill and the sense of honour that they brought to their task [Australian Prime Minister and Minister for Women Tony Abbott on the subject of Japanese servicemen during World War Two, 8 July 2014]

Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal on the subject of the estimated 20,000 Chinese women and girls raped by Japanese soldiers in Nanking between 13 December 1937 and 10 January 1938:

Click on images to enlarge

Australian War Memorial Second World War Nurses:

A month later, as Japanese soldiers advanced towards Singapore, the Australian nurses in the region were ordered to evacuate. Seventy-two nurses embarked with hundreds of patients and civilians aboard the Empire Star and the Wah Sui. They finally made it back to Australia, having suffered heavy bombardment on the way.
Not so fortunate were the 65 nurses, evacuated, along with many civilian women and children, on the SS Vyner Brooke. Twelve lost their lives when the ship was sunk, and 21 of the survivors were executed on Banka Island; the remaining 32 became prisoners of war. The captured nurses hoped their non-combatant status, symbolised by their now tattered uniforms, would protect them. It did not. For the next three and a half years, they were kept as prisoners under appalling conditions. Eight died in captivity.

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Meme of the Week

Thanks to Clarrie Rivers for passing on the meme

Thursday, 10 July 2014

'The prime minister's personal rating has fallen sharply in all states and every demographic group'

SBS News 7 July 2014:

Voter support for the federal government has dropped three points to 37 per cent, but more heavily in stronghold states Western Australia and Queensland, according to the latest Newspoll.
In findings being attributed to displeasure with the coalition's first budget, government support in WA has slipped six points to 40 per cent and by four points to 37 per cent in Queensland.
Men are generally continuing to back the government, but its support among females has dropped two points to 35 per cent, according to the results published by The Australian.
There has also been a significant fall in backing from older voters, with support among those aged between 35 and 49 tumbling three points to 34 per cent, and among those 50 and older falling from 48 per cent to 45 per cent.
Tony Abbott has also taken a hit, with only 38 per cent of voters in the prime minister's home state of NSW preferring him in the top job, compared to 42 per cent who say they'd back Bill Shorten.
The prime minister's personal rating has fallen sharply in all states and every demographic group.
Nationally, he is preferred as prime minister by 37 per cent of voters (a drop of four points) while nationwide approval for Mr Shorten has jumped from 36 per cent to 41 per cent.
Newspoll here.

Political Humour: wee Johnny strikes again!

From my email Inbox this week:

Tony Abbott was visiting a Sydney primary school and the class was in the middle of a discussion related to words and their meanings.

The teacher asked Mr Abbott if he would like to lead the discussion on the word 'Tragedy'.

So our illustrious leader asked the class for an example of a 'Tragedy'.

A little boy stood up and offered: 'If my best friend, who lives on a farm, is playin' in the field and a tractor runs over him and kills him, that would be a tragedy.'

'Incorrect,' said Abbott. 'That would be an accident.'

A little girl raised her hand: 'If a school bus carrying fifty children drove over a cliff, killing everybody inside, that would be a tragedy.'

'I'm afraid not’ explained Abbott, 'that's what we would refer to as a great loss'.

The room went silent. No other children volunteered. Abbott searched the room.

'Isn't there someone here who can give me an example of a tragedy?'

Finally, at the back of the room, little Johnny raised his hand and said:

'If a plane carrying you and Mr Hockey, Mr Pyne and Mrs Bishop was struck by a 'friendly fire' missile & blown to smithereens, that would be a tragedy.'

'Fantastic' exclaimed Abbott, 'and can you tell me why that would be a tragedy?'

'Well', said Johnny, 'it has to be a tragedy, because it certainly wouldn't be a great loss, and it probably wouldn't be a  bloody accident either!

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Over 9 months since he was sworn-in as Australian Prime Minister, Tony Abbott and the Coalition Government he leads are increasingly unpopular with voters

The Australian 1 July 2014:

Support for the Abbott government is now 10 points below its election-winning vote nearly 300 days ago, with the Coalition not making any headway since the budget in selling its tough fiscal message.
The latest Newspoll, conducted exclusively for The Australian, shows voters have shifted to the Greens, Labor and independents.
For the fifth consecutive Newspoll, Labor is ahead of the Coalition in two-party terms and would comfortably win if an election were held today.
Based on preference flows from the last election, Labor has a 10-point lead in two-party terms to be ahead 55 to 45 per cent, the same result as in the first poll after the May budget. It marks a 7.5 percentage point swing since the election and the Coalition’s equal worst result in four years.
Voter dissatisfaction with Tony Abbott has reached the highest level since he became Prime Minister, 62 per cent, and is his worst personal result since November 2012….
Today’s Newspoll shows the Coalition’s primary vote fell two points in the past fortnight to 35 per cent, its lowest level since 2009 when Mr Turnbull was leader. It was 45.6 per cent at the September 7 election.
Labor gained one point in the past two weeks to 37 per cent and is almost four points higher than its disastrous election defeat.

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Quote of the Week

His [Tony Abbott’s] image as a bumbling, misogynistic, homophobic, environmental vandal is now so entrenched that every time something – anything - happens his lengthy list of past stuff ups, terrible policies and wrecking ball politics comes back to haunt him. In short, everything Abbott touches now appears to turn to custard, and that’s not going to end anytime soon given the length and breadth of Abbott’s indiscretions. [New Matilda, 15 June 2014]

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Nine months in office and Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott's disapproval rating stands at 61% according to Newspoll

Only nine months in office and Tony Abbott is fast turning into the most disliked Australia prime minister for decades, if the latest Newspoll is any indication

The Australian 17 June 2014

Saturday, 14 June 2014

The world moves on and leaves Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott lagging far behind

This was Prime Minister Tony Abbott addressing the Minerals Week 2014 Annual Minerals Industry Parliamentary Dinner on 28 May 2014:

You see, the main difference which I'm sure you know but which I suspect many of our people have forgotten, between the modern and the pre-modern world is energy consumption and it is our destiny in this country to bring affordable energy to the world.
It's particularly important that we do not demonise the coal industry and if there was one fundamental problem, above all else, with the carbon tax was that it said to our people, it said to the wider world, that a commodity which in many years is our biggest single export, somehow should be left in the ground and not sold.
Well really and truly, I can think of few things more damaging to our future.

This is where major investors and much of Australia diverge from his worldview……….

Excerpts from the Australasia Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) June 2014 BRIEFING NOTE- Fossil Fuels, Energy Transition and Risk:

In this briefing note, the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) explores regulatory, market, technology and reputational risks resulting from the transformation of global energy markets – with a focus on the implications for Australian fossil fuel investment.

Executive Summary – The Structural Decline of Coal?

 A key theme emerging in the global energy markets relates to the increasing debate on the topic of cyclical verses structural decline in the thermal coal industry.
 Evidence continues to mount that investment in renewables, distributed solar and energy efficiency combined with regulatory change is continuing to erode the traditional demand base for thermal coal.
 This is a well established trend in developed countries like Germany and the United States. Germany's coal demand was down 11% year on year in the March quarter of 2014. President Obama's use of the Environmental Protection Agency's ability to regulate air pollution combined with record solar installs and a resurgence in US wind installations to see the same end spells the progressive decline in U.S. coal demand. The Environmental Protection Agency forecasts coal demand will fall 30% by 2030 due to its emissions rules.
 Further, the evidence that China is pursuing an energy policy that is based on more of everything except coal continues to increase. The US$400bn Russia-China gas transaction is
a case in point. The doubling of China's solar target to 70GW by 2017 is another. A trebling of China's installed nuclear capacity by the end of next year is a third example.
 India is the last major bastion of growth in imported coal demand, for now. India's new Prime Minister Narendra Modi aims to kick-start investment and remove domestic growth impediments. Coal India Ltd aims to grow domestic coal production 6% over the next three years if logistics impediments are removed. If Modi is successful, more imported coal is not needed. Additionally, we question why India would lock in imported fossil fuel inflation when domestic renewables provide a more commercial solution that is able to be rapidly deployed without undermining India's current account deficit.
 Global financial markets continue to facilitate an increasing flow of capital to renewable energy. The growth of the U.S. "YieldCo" listed renewable equities sector and the global Green Bonds initiative illustrate this trend. Divestiture trends also show the increased focus on the risks of stranded fossil fuel assets….

Deutsche Bank and HSBC both Agree Not to Finance Abbot Point Coal Expansion

Deutsche Bank confirmed at its AGM in Germany that it will not fund any coal export port expansion. Co-chair Juergen Fitschen said:
"As there is clearly no consensus between the Australian government and UNESCO regarding the impacts of the Abbot Point expansion on the reef we will not consider financial applications of an expansion".

At HSBC Holdings AGM in London, the company was asked to match Deutsche Bank's commitment not to fund the Abbot Point port expansion adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef. In response, Chief Executive Officer Stuart Gulliver said it was "extraordinarily unlikely it would go near it."….

Investor Responses – Australia

AMP Capital introduces fossil fuel screening
AMP Capital announced it will screen out companies with a material exposure to fossil fuels in its Responsible Investment Leaders (RIL) range of funds, in response to client demand. This fund will now screen out companies that have more than a 20% exposure to mining thermal coal, exploration and development of oil sands, brown-coal, coal-fired power generation, transportation of oil from oil sands or conversion of coal to liquid fuels/feedstock. AMP Capital Head of ESG Research Ian Woods said: "The Charter of Operation requires the RIL funds to avoid investing in companies with a material exposure to activities that have a high negative social impact including the production and manufacture of tobacco, nuclear power (including uranium), armaments, alcohol, pornography and gambling."

Hunter Hall Ends Fossil Fuel Investments
Hunter Hall Investment Management announced it will exclude investments in fossil fuel companies. Hunter Hall's Ethical Investment Policy excludes investment in companies directly involved in tobacco, gambling, armaments, uranium, nuclear energy, cutting down old growth forests and intensive animal husbandry. CIO Peter Hall said: "The decision to exclude investments in fossil fuel companies is a natural addition to our existing list of exclusions."

Retail Australian Investors Express Concerns over Fossil Fuel Investments
Concerns about coal and gas projects on the Great Barrier Reef and other protected areas are putting banks and super-funds at risk of losing customers, with 67% indicating they would choose a bank or superfund that doesn't invest in fossil fuels over one that does, a new survey from Lonergan Research has found. The nationwide survey of 1300 randomly-selected Australians shows that 77% are concerned about their bank or super fund financing coal and gas projects in or near the Great Barrier Reef and 72% are concerned about their bank or super fund financing coal and gas anywhere in Australia. Australians are also concerned about the long-term risks involved in investing in fossil fuels with 76% believing the risks associated with these investments are growing and 75% believing that Australia has too many eggs in the mining basket

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott appears to nod off at D-Day commemorative ceremony at "Sword Beach"

Tired? Emotional? Suffering a bit of a hangover? Slipped a tranquilliser by an increasingly desperate entourage?

Or did those D-Day commemorative speeches become rather boring with no mention of his 2014-15 Federal Budget measures or the fact that Australia was “open for business”.

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Prime Minister Abbott is out of the country so, as expected, another little bombshell dismantling a fair and equitable Australia is exploded

An Abbott government push to allow private health insurers to cover GP visits would create a US-style two-tier health system and drive up doctors' fees, experts warn.
The Sun-Herald has learnt Health Minister Peter Dutton told senior health sector sources in private meetings he is keen on the idea of allowing private insurers into GP clinics. However, any change would require amendments to legislation.
Under the current Medicare system, all Australians - whether they are public or private patients - can expect similar quality of care when they visit their doctors.
Experts say changing this to create two classes of GP patients would revolutionise Australian healthcare and potentially undermine Medicare more than the government's proposed $7 co-payment.
The revolution has begun quietly through controversial trials undertaken in Queensland.
Medibank Private members are receiving guaranteed appointments within 24 hours and after-hours home visits.
An expansion of such trials which would provide superior GP services to private patients could endanger Australia's world-class healthcare system, Australian Medical Association president Brian Owler said.
"It would be a fundamental change in the way that general practice is funded," Professor Owler said, adding the AMA was open to insurers being more involved in primary healthcare but the government needed to proceed with caution.
"If people go too far or the role of private health insurers is unchecked then, yes, it could have very significant consequences and produce greater inequity. We have a good healthcare system in Australia and the US model is not one we should be trying to emulate.''….