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Federal Politics

Politics Live: September 4, 2014

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Question time: 'Palmer's piggy bank'

Labor attempts to exploit the government's deal with Clive Palmer to repeal the mining tax during Thursday's question time.

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With that, it's time for us to head home to read that committee report on developing northern Australia over a barramundi burger.

But before that, what did we learn today?

 

Thanks for tuning in and for all the comments.

Alex Ellinghausen, Andrew Meares and I look forward to seeing you again in a fortnight.

Until then!

 

Prime Minister Tony Abbott met Vidya Sagar Rao Governor of the State of Maharashtra in Mumbai. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott met Vidya Sagar Rao Governor of the State of Maharashtra in Mumbai. Photo: Andrew Meares

The PM is now at his Mumbai business lunch and will then attend a cricket clinic with Sachin Tendulkar before flying on to New Delhi.

The Senate, as the only chamber still going, is due to finish up no later than 8.40pm.

Parliament will then go on a mini-break until September 22.

 

Prime Minister Tony Abbott at a business luncheon at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel in Mumbai. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott at a business luncheon at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel in Mumbai. Photo: Andrew Meares

During the excitement in the Senate this morning over John Madigan's new found independence, a report was tabled in the House of Reps.

A committee chaired by Coalition MP Warren Entsch has been looking at ways to get Australia's north cracking. 

Among other bright ideas, it has suggested that graduates who move to remote northern locations should have their HELP debts wiped; that a special economic zone is created; and a federal northern Australia minister is appointed.

The report will feed into the government's white paper on northern Australia, due in 2015.

Entsch - who has the far northern Australian electorate of Leichhardt - has just told Sky News he expects to be knocking on Joe Hockey's door next year for some money in the 2015-16 budget.

The House has adjourned for two weeks.

The Senate - ever chatty - continues to discuss bank levies.

Greens leader Christine Milne has moved a motion that: that the Senate is of the opinion that, rather than punishing the unemployed, sick, elderly, students and families, revenue should be raised through applying a 'public insurance' levy on the big four banks that are too big to fail.

 

Speaking of question time, in the Senate, Ricky Muir asked his first question today.

He began by noting that he was fortunate to have a salary of about $195,000 for the next six years.

But post-politics, he might end up back at the sawmill on a modest wage.

"If that is the case, I worry I will not be in a financial position to be able to support my children to get the quality higher education they choose," the Motoring Enthusiast noted.

Human Services Minister Marise Payne told Muir that everything would be fine (in so many words).

"We will give students more choice, more flexibility, more opportunities."

AMEP Senator Ricky Muir during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

AMEP Senator Ricky Muir during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

In question time today, Labor spent a number of questions attacking the government about the "Australia Fund" - a so far mythical fund that would bail out struggling companies.

The Senate agreed today to set up an inquiry to consider whether such a fund should be established.

It is a Clive Palmer brainchild and is part of the deal he cut with the government over the mining tax repeal.

Lisa Cox has more of the story here.

 

More floral tributes.

More flowers! Prime Minister Tony Abbott visited Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

More flowers! Prime Minister Tony Abbott visited Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

Julie Bishop is in Wales for NATO, but Trade Minister Andrew Robb is by the PM's side.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Trade minister Andrew Robb visited Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Trade minister Andrew Robb visited Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

But now, back to India where the Prime Minister is "further strengthening education ties" between Australia and India. 

In a statement released this afternoon he has announced $3 million in funding for Melbourne University's Australia India Institute.

This comes on top of the New Colombo Plan - which offers Australian students scholarships to study in the Indo Pacific region - and a memorandum of understanding between Australia and India on technical and vocational training.

 

Prime Minister Tony Abbott visited Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott visited Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

So, the likes of Bernie Ripoll and Stephen Jones started waving two fingers instead.

(Although is Jones's gesture PG enough for question time?)

Labor MPs Bernie Ripoll and Stephen Jones during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Labor MPs Bernie Ripoll and Stephen Jones during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Don't say that MPs aren't innovative.

During question time, you may recall that Albo asked Truss to name "one" new infrastructure project that the Coalition has initiated that has a bulldozer on it today.

This lead to Labor MPs waggling one finger at Truss, until Madam Speaker decreed, "if I see any more single fingers in the air, they can leave immediately".

 

Labor MPs Bernie Ripoll and Stephen Jones during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Labor MPs Bernie Ripoll and Stephen Jones during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Open for selfies.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott indulged students with selfies at Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott indulged students with selfies at Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

Do you think these students were confused and thought Kevin Rudd had come to visit?

Prime Minister Tony Abbott indulged students with selfies at Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott indulged students with selfies at Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

And he has dropped in on Mumbai University.

(There is a new New Colombo Plan tie-in.)

Prime Minister Tony Abbott visited Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott visited Mumbai University. Photo: Andrew Meares

Tony Abbott continues his Indian travels.

He has met Governor of the State of Maharashtra Vidya Sagar Rao.

Earlier, he told the business breakfast he attended that he spent three months as a backpacker in India in 1981.

"This mysterious, fascinating, enthralling sub-continent, this world in one country ..."

He said the purpose of his trip is to "acknowledge the importance of India in the wider world, acknowledge the importance of India to Australia’s future, to let the government and the people of India know what Australia has to offer India and the wider world for our part, and to build on those stronger foundations".

Prime Minister Tony Abbott met Vidya Sagar Rao Governor of the State of Maharashtra in Mumbai, India on Thursday. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott met Vidya Sagar Rao Governor of the State of Maharashtra in Mumbai, India on Thursday. Photo: Andrew Meares

We also finish this sitting block six shy of the 200 milestone for 94as.

Unusually, Graham Perrett and Nick Champion got to stay for the whole of question time today.

(Is there more caution being exercised in the speaker's chair in the lead up to the double century? ... Because today was certainly noisy enough for more than two kick outs - and noticeably noisier than other sessions this week ... )

 

Labor MPs Graham Perrett and Nick Champion during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Labor MPs Graham Perrett and Nick Champion during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

The House hath moved on to a matter of public importance debate:

"The government's year of broken promises, cruel cuts and wrong priorities."

Albo leads the charge.

He says the Coalition breaks promises "like plates at a Greek wedding".

He really is working himself up.

(We have had to turn the volume on our TV down.)

Sure enough, we have a dixer to Assistant Defence Minister Stuart Robert on the government's support to wounded military personnel and at 3.13pm, Warren Truss calls an end to question time.

 

Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

BS has an airswing on what will probably be his final question for the sitting fortnight.

It is to WT:

It's been one year since this government began its assault on Australian families, jobs, hospitals, schools, pensioners.

No wonder Australians are angry at this government who spent every day in the past year breaking its promises.

Why should the Australian people have to pay the price for a Prime Minister who lied his way into office?

Madam Speaker asks him to rephrase it.

Shorten will not.

"Then I'll rule it out of order."

"You are a low life!"

"Grub!"

Labor MPs are not happy with Christopher Pyne.

Rishworth asks him another question on higher education.

There is a media release on his website saying that the Coalition will not raise HECS.

Why is the minister misleading people?

The Education Minister comes back by noting that her neighbour - and fellow South Australian - Kate Ellis has unfinished university studies.

"The shadow minister started two [degrees] and the taxpayer paid 60 per cent of the cost for both of them and neither of them were finished.

"So you should go back to university and finish both of those!"

Leader of the House Christopher Pyne during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Leader of the House Christopher Pyne during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Madam Speaker has had to get on her to feet to silence the House during a Malcolm Turnbull dixer about decisions to fund major projects.

The Communications Minister beams as he talks about Labor's "disgraceful public policy failure".

Labor - shock horror - rises to the bait.

"There are a few try-hards in here today, anxious to have an early mark and an get an early plane," Bronwyn Bishop says in full stern.

Labor's Amanda Rishworth asks Christopher Pyne about higher education.

You said last year that there would be no increases to uni fees. What's with the "doubling" of uni fees, then?

Pyne quickly gets into troubs with Madam Speaker for holding up a prop.

(Prop makes it sound more exciting than it really is.)

It is a flyer asking local MPs to "give a Gonski on higher education"*.

"We don't have props. No props," Madam Speaker says firmly.

Labor MPs call out "thanks Mum," in response.

 

*After Gonski backed Coalition plans to deregulate uni fees.

 

 

Leader of the House Christopher Pyne during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Leader of the House Christopher Pyne during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Truss. Acting.

Acting Prime Minister Warren Truss during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Acting Prime Minister Warren Truss during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Truss is dixered on free trade.

This leads him to observe:

"What we've got today is clearly a Leader of the Opposition representing a party that is anti-trade, anti-job, anti-growth in the Australian economy ..."

Tanya Plibersek has a super question for Hockey.

The Treasurer's scrapping of the low income superannuation contribution will mean that a woman earning $37000 a year will lose $500 every year of her working life from 2017 onwards.

Why is the Treasurer putting the interests of one billionaire ahead of more than 2 million women on low incomes?

Hockey argues that the "best way" you can help grow the pool of super in Australia is to have a strong economy with profitable business.

He goes back in history to Kevin Rudd in 2007, who said there would be no change to superannuation, "not one jot, not one tittle".

"We know that's accurate, because only Kevin Rudd would say something like that," says Hockey.

The Treasurer then points out that Labor did change super during its time in government.

(i.e. so there.)

Joe Hockey scores a magnificent dixer on how the repeal of the mining tax will repair the budget.

Tennis ace (and former Gladiator umpire) John Alexander is the asker.

Hockey praises him as a an "extremely good elite tennis player and an ordinary squash player".

Wayne Swan clearly isn't fazed that Joe Hockey has a copy of his book WITH TABS marked up.

 

We have a dixer to Justice Minister Michael Keenan on Operation Bring Them Home and then Bill Shorten has a question for Warren Truss.

Before the last election, the Prime Minister promised to create a million new jobs. 

Given now that unemployment is at a 10-year high, given that his government has done nothing to save thousands of jobs at Toyota, Holden, Alcoa and Rio Tinto, will the acting Prime Minister at least rule out using taxpayer funds to bankroll the Palmer Piggy Bank?

After a modest preamble about investing in infrastructure and ensuring the economy is strong, Truss replies:

"Since the premise of the question from the opposition is completely wrong, the substance of the question is not worth answering."

Acting Prime Minister Warren Truss during Question Time at Parliament House. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Acting Prime Minister Warren Truss during Question Time at Parliament House. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

The crossbench conch is passed to anti-war independent Andrew Wilkie.

He asks not of bombs, but booze.

Will you hold a national summit to devise a strategy to deal with alcohol abuse?

Health Minister Peter Dutton says Wilkie raises a "very serious issue".

"People can consume alcohol responsibly, but some people have drinking patterns that are clearly bad for their heath."

Dutton says the AMA is proposing a summit in October.

"I believe very strongly the summit should concentrate not just on alcohol but also frankly, the use of steroids, particularly amongst some young men."

Chris Bowen has a question for Joe Hockey.

It stays with the bank theme.

I refer to the government's broken promise never to do deals with minor parties.

Why is the Treasurer willing to cut pensions and family payments, but not rule out as I did this morning, using taxpayers' money to bankroll the Palmer piggy bank?

"All Australia asks of the modern Labor Party is to have some principles," Hockey says.

He reads out a 2009 radio interview transcript in which Chris Bowen backs the idea of the Rudd Bank.

"Spare us the hypocrisy."

Liberal MP Ann Sudmalis asks Scott Morrison about the government's full suite of border protection policies.

The Immigration Minister calls Labor MPs muppets.

No one on the opposition side gets up to dispute this.

 

Immigration Minister Scott Morrison during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Immigration Minister Scott Morrison during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Available in all good book stores.

Treasurer Joe Hockey arrives for question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Treasurer Joe Hockey arrives for question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Albo has asked Truss about infrastructure.

Apart from projects that were already conceived, approved and funded by the Labor government, can he name one new project originated by the Coalition that has a bulldozer on it today?

Albo has to withdraw the term "bull dust" before Truss is allowed to answer.

Labor's Ed Husic is kicked out in the process.

"The reality is, virtually no projects were funded by Labor!" replies Truss on high-alert. 

Madam Speaker is struggling to keep control of the House.

She is yelling "acting Prime Minister! Acting Prime Minister" to no avail (so he stops talking so she can then shut the rest of the chamber up).

Labor's Julie Owens is also sent out under 94a.

(94a tally = 194)

 

 

Labor MP Ed Husic leaves under 94a during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Labor MP Ed Husic leaves under 94a during question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

First dixer is to the acting Prime Minister.

Can you update us all on the government's achievements on fast tracking infrastructure projects?

The Labor benches almost collapse when Truss momentarily refers to the East-West Link being in South Australia.

"Sorry, Melbourne," he corrects himself.

It's not like he called South Australia a country or anything.

 

First question.

Bill Shorten opts for Joe Hockey.

I refer to the government's broken promises on not doing deals with minor parties.

So will the Treasurer right here right now rule out creating a government-owned Australia Fund* or a Palmer piggy bank as a result of the government's dirty deal with the leader of the Palmer United Party?

Hockey is in full boom. 

"We're happy to deal with all minor parties, including the Labor Party ..."

In relation to the Australia Fund, Hockey said he believes businesses should rely on themselves, not taxpayer support.

He cannot resist several references to the failed Rudd Bank.

*As part of the mining tax repeal, PUP got the OK to set up an inquiry into establishing an "Australia Fund" to offer loans to struggling companies.

It is question time a la Warren Truss.

 

Acting Prime Minister Warren Truss arrives for question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Acting Prime Minister Warren Truss arrives for question time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

We are up to 192 boot outs under 94a in this Parliament*.

191 courtesy of Bronwyn Bishop and 1 courtesy of Deputy Speaker Bruce Scott.

188 are from Labor and four are from the Coalition.

Will today be the day??!

 

*Three MPs in addition to this have also been named.

 

Never fear, Philip Ruddock is here.

Father of the House Philip Ruddock greets his colleagues as he arrives for a division on the higher education amendment bill on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Father of the House Philip Ruddock greets his colleagues as he arrives for a division on the higher education amendment bill on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

In legislative news, Christopher Pyne's uni reforms have passed the lower house.

They now move on to the Senate, where their passage remains dicey.

Leader of the House Christopher Pyne during the debate on the higher education amendment bill on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Leader of the House Christopher Pyne during the debate on the higher education amendment bill on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Later today, the PM is planning to visit Mumbai University, have a business lunch and attend a clinic at the Cricket Club of India.

The clinic will be hosted by Sachin Tendulkar and Brett Lee and Adam Gilchrist will be there too.

Here's a tip, Tony: don't bowl like John Howard!

Why do I have to travel all the way to Mumbai to meet Australian businessmen?

Prime Minister Tony Abbott atrended a business breakfast with Anthony Pratt at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel in Mumbai. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott atrended a business breakfast with Anthony Pratt at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel in Mumbai. Photo: Andrew Meares

The PM has moved on to a business breakfast.

(What would a trip be without a business breakfast?)

Lindsay Fox and Anthony Pratt are there for a croissant.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott attended a business breakfast with Lindsay Fox at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel in Mumbai on Thursday. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott attended a business breakfast with Lindsay Fox at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel in Mumbai on Thursday. Photo: Andrew Meares

Tony Abbott is up and about in India.

He began the official part of his day by laying a wreath at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel, to commemorate the 2008 terrorism attacks in Mumbai.

The Taj Mahal hotel was one of the locations targeted.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott laid a wreath at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel in commemoration of the 2008 terrorism attacks in Mumbai. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott laid a wreath at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel in commemoration of the 2008 terrorism attacks in Mumbai. Photo: Andrew Meares

A trailer for 60 Minutes this Sunday has been raising some brows in Canberra today.

It promises to go "inside the Peter Slipper scandal" with a "secret plot that will ROCK the Abbott government".

It also promises "new sexual harassment claims" and "what happened behind closed doors".

Liz Hayes has talked to former Slipper staffer James Ashby.

"Finally, the whistleblower reveals all."

We have just got our mittens on the documents tabled by Madigan in the Senate earlier.

He has been claiming that his office manager Rachel Carling-Jenkins had sought Victorian Liberal preselection, two weeks after joining his office.

He has also claimed a staff member was planted in his office to undermine him.

Madigan has tabled six pages of correspondence, which appear to be mostly emails.

In one, Carling-Jenkins writes that she is considering "jumping ship" to the Liberal Party and wants a form for pre-selection.

In others, she says there is "no need for an informant anymore", that she is "happy to drag my feet" on a request from Madigan's adviser about scheduling visits to branch meetings and refers to herself as "DLP member/ spy of the month".

Michael Murphy has told Fairfax Media that Carling-Jenkins was in the office "to work for the best interests of John and the party".

DLP Victorian secretary Michael Murphy has also told Fairfax Media that the party had become worried about Madigan's office because 10 staff had been "sacked or quit" since the 2010 election.

Murphy says that the party had requested a member of the executive be placed in the office.

But denies claims by Madigan that a staffer was planted to undermine him.

DLP officials are f-urious about John Madigan's decision to leave the party.

Latika Bourke reports that DLP national president Paul Funnell has called on Madigan to leave Parliament and give his seat back to the party.

This comes as Madigan tabled documents in the Senate that he claims will give "a little bit of insight to people as to why I made the decision I did".

Senator John Madigan seeks leave to table a document in the Senate on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Senator John Madigan seeks leave to table a document in the Senate on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Still in the Senate, and LNP renegade Ian Macdonald has just offered some thoughts to the world.

He thinks that backbench senators are being worked too hard in committees, with too much travel and the like.

"I'm just making a general plea, Mr Deputy President, for us."

 

The bill to give Parliament the power to to decide questions of war (rather than the Prime Minister, national security committee and cabinet) has been defeated, 54 no to 12 aye.

The Greens, Nick Xenophon and David Leyonhjelm vote yes.

Everyone else is a no.

The bells are ringing in the Senate for a vote on the Greens bill to have Parliament decide whether Australian troops are sent off to war.

Former army member Jacqui Lambie has just given a speech saying she will not support it.

"The Greens proposition is rushed," she argues.

But Lambie says she is open to discussion about better procedures for determining how Australia goes to war.

Greens leader Christine Milne concludes the debate.

"I am fearing that we have a government that is racing into engagement behind the United States ...

"In a democracy, should the Parliament decide?"

 

PUP Senator Jacqui Lambie speaks in the Senate on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

PUP Senator Jacqui Lambie speaks in the Senate on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

What else is jumping? 

The fall out continues over the government's deal with PUP to pause the rise in super contributions.

Paul Keating has weighed in with a letter, scumbags.

"The government's connivance with PUP to spike superannuation at 9.5 per cent has little to do with the budget balance this year, or in the early out years, and everything to do with cheap ideology," he has said.

James Massola has the story here.

And economic modelling done for Fairfax Media shows the axing of the $500 low-income super rebate (after 2017) will have a much bigger effect on retirement incomes than the freeze in super contributions.

Peter Martin and Gareth Hutchens have the story here.

 

That don't impress me much.

Chris Bowen is having a Shania Twain moment.

Responding to Hockey's statement, he says there is "not enough substance".

"2000 words and very little action."

"Rhetoric isn't good enough." Bowen continues. "Words don't beat tax evasion."

Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen responds to Treasurer Joe Hockey's ministerial statement on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen responds to Treasurer Joe Hockey's ministerial statement on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

When G20 countries meet, there will be an emphasis on "tax transparency", which includes exchanging information between tax authorities.

This will help the Australian tax commissioner catch tax cheats.

Hockey "encourages" Australian residents with offshore investments to take advantage of the ATO's voluntary disclosure initiative, Project DO IT.

Hockey tells the House about the importance of foreign investment.

And that multinational businesses comply with Australian tax laws.

And that Australia needs to "stay alert to changes in arrangements used for tax minimisation in a globalised world".

Treasurer Joe Hockey delivers a ministerial statement to the House on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Treasurer Joe Hockey delivers a ministerial statement to the House on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

We will have a further update on the machinations behind the Madigan announcement soon.

But now, Treasurer Joe Hockey is delivering a ministerial statement.

It is enticingly titled "G20-OECD Tax and Transparency".

Hockey is meeting G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors later this month in Cairns.

Among other things, they will be talking tax.

A DLP man no more.

Senator John Madigan with portraits of former DLP politicians in his office after he addressed the media. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Senator John Madigan with portraits of former DLP politicians in his office after he addressed the media. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

If you weren't eagerly tuned in to the Senate first thing this morning and would like to watch Madigan quit the DLP for yourself, here is the video.

 

John Madigan quits DLP (Video Thumbnail) Click to play video

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John Madigan quits DLP

Cross bench Senator John Madigan will now serve as an independent, blaming a 'cancer of political intrigue' in the Democratic Labor Party.

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Without the DLP machine behind him, Madigan will face a tougher fight to be re-elected.

But he is not without hope.

As he tells reporters, independents Cathy McGowan and Nick Xenophon have run good campaigns.

"I can't pre-empt the success of a campaign, or the failure of a campaign."

Pins on Senator John Madigan's lapel during his press conference at Parliament House. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Pins on Senator John Madigan's lapel during his press conference at Parliament House. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Does your decision change where you sit on any issues?

"No," says Madigan. "I've always voted on issues according to my conscience."

Did you tell the party before you announced this today?

"Yes," the federal and state presidents were sent letters.

And there have been no conversations with or reactions from the party since.

Will you seek re-election when your term expires (in three years' time)? 

"Let's see what happens."

Senator John Madigan addresses the media during a press conference on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Senator John Madigan addresses the media during a press conference on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Madigan alleges that there has been a campaign waged against him within the DLP.

He will table documents in the Senate later today that detail his dispute with the party, he tells reporters.

He says he is not "at liberty to discuss" the documents.

The newly independent Senator tried to table to documents earlier this morning during his statement to the Senate.

Eric Abetz did not immediately grant him leave to do so - expressing a wish to understand what was in them first.

 

"I've been up all night thinking about it."

John Madigan is in the Senate courtyard talking about the surprise announcement this morning that he is quitting the DLP.

"It's a difficult decision.

"My feeling is the DLP has left me, I haven't left the DLP."

Senator John Madigan addresses the media during a press conference on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Senator John Madigan addresses the media during a press conference on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

The internet is a very impressive place.

Someone has already updated John Madigan's Wikipedia page:

"John Joseph Madigan (born 21 July 1966) is an Australian politician. He was a member of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP), before resigning from the party and becoming an independent in September 2014. He was elected to the Australian Senate with 2.3 percent of the primary vote in Victoria at the 2010 federal election, serving a six-year term since July 2011."

Back on Madigan - we are expecting him back in the Senate shortly to table some documents relating to claims there has been an internal campaign against him in the DLP.

He will then hold a doorstop.

 

There's not an election for two years ... but that isn't stopping the daily campaigning.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten tours the Canberra Institute of Technology. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten tours the Canberra Institute of Technology. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

The Labor leader then attacks the government's "cowardly deal" on superannuation - that will "rob" 9 million Australians of thousands of dollars in retirement savings.

(By freezing super contribution growth for seven years as part of the deal with PUP to get the mining tax repeal through).

"That's a shocking deal."

Are you going to reverse the government's changes?

"There's not an election for the next two years unless the government has said something to the contrary."

Shorten is asked for his reaction to the Madigan news.

"I don't know what on earth is going on in the DLP," he says.

He describes the DLP as a "small party that seems to have just got smaller".

"It's up to Senator Madigan to explain ... we will work with him as an independent Senator just as we did as a DLP Senator."

 

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten tours the Canberra Institute of Technology on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten tours the Canberra Institute of Technology on Thursday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

The Senate moves on to discussing the Greens' bill that would "provide for parliamentary approval of overseas service by members of the Australian Defence Force" (i.e. parliament's OK to go to war).

Meanwhile, Bill Shorten's doorstop at the Canberra Institute of Technology has begun.

 

What does this mean for the crossbench?

Perhaps not too much in practice.

As the sole Democratic Labour Party Senator, Madigan was already his own man - although he has had a tendency to caucus with Xenophon.

Rebadging himself as an independent will not change that.

The government's leader in the Senate, Eric Abetz, says he sends Madigan his "best wishes".

 

Madigan says it is with a "heavy heart" that he announces his resignation from the DLP.

He will continue his term as an independent Senator.

"I remain committed to DLP values.

"I remain committed to supporting manufacturing and farming.

"I remain committed to the sanctity of human life."

Then DLP Senator John Madigan in the Senate in July. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Then DLP Senator John Madigan in the Senate in July. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Madigan tells the Senate that someone employed in his office began running a disinformation campaign.

Phrases like "political intrigue" are being thrown around.

"I've sought a plausible explanation," the DLP Senator says.

 

But, Madigan says that it has become "apparent" to him that the DLP's own worst enemies are "within its own ranks".

Something is brewing here, kids.

Madigan stands, and says that since he was elected in 2010, he has been "acutely" aware of his position as the first DLP Senator elected to Parliament in decades.

 

 

Already this morning, Madigan and independent Nick Xenophon have been on ABC Radio, saying they don't like the way they are being treated by the government.

 

The Senate bellz are now ringing in their soothing manner.

We have word that DLP Senator John Madigan is going to make a short statement immediately after the prayers.

He will also "table associated documents".

What could this be about?

 

Somewhat less exotically, Labor Leader Bill Shorten is at the Canberra Institute of Technology campus out at Fyshwick to "discuss the Abbott government's broken promise on jobs".

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten tours the Canberra Institute of Technology in Canberra. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten tours the Canberra Institute of Technology in Canberra. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

He has been greeted by a glorious bouquet of blooms.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott received flowers on arrival at Mumbai airport on Thursday. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott received flowers on arrival at Mumbai airport on Thursday. Photo: Andrew Meares

It is very early in the morning in Mumbai (still not 5am yet!), but Tony Abbott has arrived in India.

 

Prime Minister Tony Abbott arrives at Mumbai airport on Thursday. Photo: Andrew Meares

Prime Minister Tony Abbott arrives at Mumbai airport on Thursday. Photo: Andrew Meares

Acting Prime Minister Warren Truss follows Pyne.

He too has a bill to introduce.

This one is the Infrastructure Australia Amendment (Cost Benefit Analysis and Other Measures) Bill 2014.

This will include a requirement that Infrastructure Australia does evaluations of proposals that involve Commonwealth funding of at least $100 million.

(This relates to the government's proposed Asset Recycling Fund - that seeks to provide 15 per cent funding boost to state governments if they sell of an asset and then reinvest the money in infrastructure - and over which there has been significant quibbling in the Senate.) 

If Truss is feeling the burden of his added prime ministerial responsibilities, he is not showing it.

He reads out the amendment in a low and steady voice. A bit like he was reading a shopping list as a bedtime story.

The bellz have rung.

The House is sitting.

And it begins with Christopher Pyne introducing the Fair Entitlements Guarantee Amendment Bill.

He is presenting it with his Eric Abetz hat on (as the rep for the Employment Minister in the lower house).

This bill deals with the basic payment scheme that covers entitlements if people lose their jobs due to the liquidation or bankruptcy of their employer.

It will cap the threshold of redundancy entitlements to 16 weeks' pay. This will make the scheme sustainable and address the "moral hazard" that "overly generous" redundancy payments create, Pyne argues.

Pyne says that the government still expects businesses to pay up - it is not the taxpayer's responsibility.

 

Welcome to Thursday in Canberra.

The House is due to sit from 9am and the Senate will follow at 9.30am.

According to the House Daily Program, we should see Christopher Pyne's university reforms (deregulate or perish!) pass the lower house before question time.

The Senate is due to debate the End Cruel Cosmetics Bill, which prohibits "developing, manufacturing, selling, advertising or importing into Australia of cosmetics, or ingredients in cosmetics, which have been tested on live animals".

 

Tony Abbott is in Mumbai and Julie Bishop is in Wales ... which means Warren Truss is left with the keys to the national ute. (Metaphorically speaking.)

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Sort comments by:
  • davemac - i've got a prediction for you that you'll like. Last Newspoll had the 2PP at 49-51 in favour of Labor.

    Even though the government has had a couple of strong weeks, i'm predicting a poll drop for them in next week's poll.

    Such is the cyclical nature of polls with their margin of error, i reckon the government might drop a point or two and the 2PP will open up.

    Hope i'm wrong, let's see what happens.

    Commenter
    Hacka
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 5:36PM
  • Those Labor fingers in the air was quite a funny stunt. But given all the red and green tape laid down by Labor, the thought of getting a major infrastructure project from the drawing board to the bulldozer stage within 12 months isn't too easy in Australia any longer, so i'm not sure it was a valid point.

    About the only thing Albo opened in six years was a few envelopes - can't recall anything bigger than an extension to the Hume Highway, so if he's trying to push Labor infrastructure credentials, he might have to find some evidence.

    The white elephant NBN is no such evidence.

    Commenter
    Hacka
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 5:17PM
  • "More choice, more flexibility, more opportunities" my foot. Less choice, less flexibility, less opportunity and more debt, more like. But on one thing Marise is right. I don't think, that now that Ricky has been a politician, he need worry about his own or children's future.

    Commenter
    Pluto
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 5:04PM
  • Every time an Australian Prime Minister and trade minister go on a selling trip abroad I get an uncomfortable feeling that Australians will come out second best, however these ministers try to spruik it.

    Commenter
    Pluto
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 4:48PM
  • The Indian people seem to be enjoying Mr Abbott's visit even more than Ms Gillard';s trip.

    Commenter
    Puzzled
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 4:42PM
    • Hopefully Abbott can stand on his feet a lot longer than Darling Jools did.

      Commenter
      Smack
      Location
      City of the Fallen
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:52PM
    • They know about their relative negotiating skills.

      Commenter
      The Banker
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:54PM
    • That's probably because they haven't a clue who he is.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:58PM
  • Tony Abbott at Mumbai Uni. Pity he can not step foot on any Australian University without a security detail, the riot squad and a secret entrance.

    Commenter
    Let the crusades begin.
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 4:37PM
    • But he can visit a school without copping a sandwich.

      Commenter
      adrian
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 5:45PM
  • Speaking of promises, It’s amazing how quick the other side forget, "This budget delivers a surplus this coming year, on time, as promised, and surpluses each year after that, strengthening over time," Mr Swan told the Parliament. And this from Julia Gillard “There will be no carbon tax under the government I lead” and there’s lots more where that came from, let’s not be overly pious.

    Commenter
    Peter G
    Location
    Drummoyne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 4:31PM
    • That government got thrown out for those broken promises and the current government specifically said "vote for us because we don't break promises".

      Commenter
      The Banker
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:40PM
    • Ohhh pulease stop rabbitting on about budgets being a broken promise. Since when? They're called forecasts for a reason. So...if one thing of Joes budget goes wrong that's a broken promise as well?

      WS's mistake wasn't in what he did as treasurer - it was getting sucked in by the goading from the Libs to feel like he had to announce a surplus, when clearly we were a few years away from that - for a variety of reasons.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 5:00PM
    • Sorry Banker, that government got thrown out because it was totally inept and Labor will not get in for at least three terms, just to make you sleep better and feel good about it all, The Coalition is there until 2017 and while some things don't go as planned because Labor are being an obstructionist opposition, they will wipe Labor off the map next election, they won 90 seats this time and are there for the long term, you can bank on it.

      Commenter
      Peter G
      Location
      Drummoyne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 5:07PM
    • Oh please. If you must spin, use the whole quote, not just the bit cherry picked to suit the lie.

      Commenter
      Fed up with lies and spin
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 5:39PM
  • 190 penalties to 4 in this parliament. I know many Australian places where the referee would be run out of town if their bias was that obvious. Deloris has certainly done her best to kill off the myth of the fair go and in doing so made a laughing stock of herself as well as tarnishing any small legacy she may have left Australian politics.

    Commenter
    RTP
    Location
    Sawtell
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 4:30PM
    • So should the referee turn a blind eye to bad sportsmanship and loutish behaviour to make sure the penalty count is even with the side doing the right thing?

      Commenter
      Nulla
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 5:06PM
  • Bronwyn Bishop is an absolute disgrace with her disgusting bias towards the Labour Party. What a lousy model for anyone who aspires to be a politician. She should be barred from the house forever. She has bludged on the public purse for far to long for very little in return for our tax dollars.SHAME ON YOU.

    Commenter
    Johnno
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 4:26PM
    • And oh my my, don’t “we” miss Anna Bourke Johnno, the perks of power, ooh and before I forget, how can we leave out the wonderful Peter Slipper, what a balanced speaker he was Johnno.

      Commenter
      Peter G
      Location
      Drummoyne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:39PM
  • There is still something weird going on with the thumbs up/down icons on this page just like yesterday? You press them and nothing happens.

    Commenter
    Daniel
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 4:20PM
    • Yep same again, perhaps we're giving the wrong signals.
      But I've tried both the peace sign and the bird yet neither work.
      Oh well quite an entertaining day though and I didn't even need to watch the circus.
      Spring is in the air and all this other TV news has put a spring in my step.
      Ironic Karma is an Indian word.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:33PM
    • You need self gratification from thumbs on a news website??? Dude...let it go...get outside for a walk.

      Commenter
      Sick of the left
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:45PM
    • @sick : spin doctor clowns go into overdrive fudging the votes especially in Murdoch's propaganda sites. Enjoy.

      Commenter
      Sick of wasting tax payers money on pathetic spin
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 5:44PM
  • A country girl-----offer it up.

    Commenter
    helena
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 4:13PM
    • Sorry, I've just got back from town.
      clues perhaps?
      Google Ashbygate There's a long and entertaining investigation on the fifth estate.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:20PM
  • Re: "The Coalition breaks promises "like plates at a Greek wedding" (Albo).

    Is Albo actually saying the Coalition are crackpots?

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 3:46PM
    • Pen, Albo must have been thinking about that one for a long time. Recorded forever in Hansard for all the future Albo's to practice with. Legacy the AlP style.

      Commenter
      enough is enough
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:08PM
    • Coalition lies & obfuscation are recorded in Hansard as well so we know you will never read it.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:13PM
    • FYI @EiE

      It's called wit.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:13PM
    • You mean 'nitwit' - best check for typos before you press send

      Commenter
      enough is enough
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:17PM
    • A much better effort from Albo given his earlier "In your guts you know he's nuts" offering or passing off of selected quotes from American movies as his own

      Commenter
      Smack
      Location
      City of the Fallen
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:20PM
  • Re: “Why should the Australian people have to pay the price for a Prime Minister who lied his way into office?” (Shorten)

    Then, “Madam Speaker asks him to rephrase it.”

    Err, Thank you for indulgence. Madam Speaker. It is my understanding that the term liar springs from the Old English leogere "liar, false witness," agent noun from Anglian legan, West Saxon leogan: that is a person known to "be untruthful, and to lie."

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 3:36PM
    • The House hath moved on to a matter of public importance debate:
      "The government's year of broken promises, cruel cuts and wrong priorities."
      Albo leads the charge.
      He says the Coalition breaks promises "like plates at a Greek wedding".
      or was that the Senators gift of Australian made crockery to the Parliament dining room to promote Australian manufacturing.

      Commenter
      Koel
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:55PM
    • A mandate won on lies is no mandate at all and only in politics is it not actionable by those affected. In the business &/or civil world you would be sued for damages and agreements rescinded.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:06PM
  • 3.09: Never mind Kate Ellis going back to uni - I think Chris Pyne is missing the cut and thrust and intellectual rigour of university politics and secretly wants to be back in the thick of it.

    Commenter
    David D
    Location
    Ettalong Beach
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 3:30PM
    • He doesn't want to be back at Uni, he completed his degree and is now a Minister. Kate Ellis on the other hand couldn't complete either degree she started but still expects the taxpayer to pick up 60% of the cost.

      Commenter
      Nulla
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:03PM
    • Yes @Nulla - I'm happy to pay my fair share of that- take it that you aren't?

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:14PM
    • And Pyne Got his for free!!

      Commenter
      Amro
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:26PM
    • Can you use intellect and Christopher Pyne in the same sentence.

      Commenter
      Johnno
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:28PM
    • Nulla he misses all the name calling, tongue poking and.....hang on , you are right. He has QUESTION TIME!

      Commenter
      david D
      Location
      Ettalong Beach9uni chips & gravy)
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:34PM
  • @322

    Albo I just love that line. Total corker mate!

    Commenter
    Daniel
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 3:24PM
  • Is QT over yet, must have dozed off as soon as Wazza.........zzzzzz..........

    Commenter
    davemac
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 3:16PM
  • Let's hope we never have a Speaker as bad as this one again; question time is a farce. She is an absolute disgrace.

    Commenter
    jofek
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 3:05PM
    • Come on, you wouldn't deny @Hacka, @EiE @hodster and @Sarah of C their fun would you?

      It's equivalent to the school bully having his mates hold someone down and punch them, while the teacher looks on and cheers the school bully on, and then sends the guy getting punched to detention.

      But any win is appreciated by this sorry mob.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:11PM
    • I think that you will be writing those lines a lot more over the next two years. In fact you'll probably be writing them over and over.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:13PM
    • I thought she could have given Pyne for the prop the boot. That would have been hilarious.

      Commenter
      Sarah of Carnegie
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:15PM
    • The Opposition should boycott QT and leave it to the gov't to answer all of the dixers that it likes. In the meantime the Opposition could use the time o/wise wasted on QT to give press conferences pointing out one gov't stuff-up after the other that would be lapped up by the media for the evening TV news. Properly conducted they could start the election campaign to unseat this gov't as Abbott did with the last one.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:17PM
    • Pluto, I think someone needs to say it each day the Parliament is sitting and I figured I'd stick my hand up today.

      Commenter
      jofek
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:17PM
    • Totally agree. She is totally partisan. Such a joke!

      Commenter
      Daniel
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:25PM
    • Oh dear.. why do you all have a problem with a strong, experienced, intelligent woman?

      Commenter
      Puzzled
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:28PM
    • @Puzzled, but not strong enough to be her own woman. You do remember the telecast where Pyne gestured for her to stand up to quiet Parliament after a speech by Labor was greeted by applause and she obediently stood up. Impartiality is a concept she does not understand.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:33PM
    • Puzzled is there one in the LNP?

      Commenter
      Pieron
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:34PM
    • @Puzzled. We like strong, experienced intelligent women, especially those who are able to exercise the role of Speaker and carry out the duties of that role in an equitable way. Now this particular strong and experienced woman, for some reason, has decided not to do this. So Puzzled I remain puzzled.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:34PM
    • Puzzled, I don't - I have a problem with the Speaker.

      Commenter
      jofek
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:02PM
    • jofek - Sounds like you don't know the Speaker in her current form very well then.

      Commenter
      Smack
      Location
      City of the Fallen
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:10PM
    • Smack, sounds like you have your eyes closed and your headphones on.

      Commenter
      jofek
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:51PM
    • Yes, let's blame the umpire shall we ?

      Perhaps if Labor behaved like anything other than spoilt school kids, their for and against yellow cards stats might be a little more balanced.

      Commenter
      Hacka
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 5:26PM
  • 2:58 First signs of the cracks appearing. 60 minutes must have him rattled.

    Commenter
    Wise One
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 3:01PM
  • 2.58 the prop, so it wasn't a flyer for 60 Minutes.

    Commenter
    A country gal
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 3:01PM
  • Surely the 3 MPs who were named counts towards the 200.

    Otherwise it's someone hitting a 6 and saying that they still haven't his a boundary.

    Commenter
    The Banker
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:59PM
  • And clearly we have a government that is anti-trade, anti-job, anti-growth in the Australian economy ..." So Warren suggest you make up get with the program or stand aside and let Barnaby have a go.

    Commenter
    Wise One
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:58PM
  • 2:47pm: Once again of Treasurer of gross ineptitude cannot answer a question like an adult, grow up Joe or stand down!

    Commenter
    Pieron
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:52PM
  • Labor would do well to have Catherine King write all of their questions....she appears to be the only one with a talent for asking "closed" questions.

    I blind man could drive a B-double through most of the Opposition's offerings.

    Shorten's are the worst of all. Bill, don't write your own speeches and have someone else draft your questions - you are never going to be good at that type of thing.

    Just some friendly advice from one of your supporters, please don't take it the wrong way :-)

    Commenter
    Peter Cain
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:50PM
  • John Madigan should step aside as he doesn't belong in politics. Morality, ethics and principles are not wanted and of little use in parliament. Bring in someone else that we can rely on not to tell the truth and we'll all feel better then

    Commenter
    Tucky
    Location
    warragul
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:49PM
  • 2:41 Once again Joe stumbles at the net fails to answer the question with his serve hitting the net for match point LNP downed again.

    Commenter
    Wise One
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:48PM
  • Christopher Pyne looks very solemn in QT. Perhaps it's in anticipation of 60 Minutes on Sunday night.

    Commenter
    What have you Doane?
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:44PM
    • Just hope it's not sabotaged and the cupboard gets a mention.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Six months
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:57PM
  • Poor old Ian Macfarlane. He gets as much air-time in Cabinet as the Science Minister gets. And he is listened to with the same level of attention and enthusiasm.

    He should get out for different reasons to Hockey - he is a decent man with a mind for good policy whose reputation will be thoroughly trashed by association.

    Commenter
    Peter Cain
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:42PM
  • For those applauding Pyne's bill to deregulate universities and make it much more expensive to get a uni education just remember one little thing.Those who exit uni with a huge debt and go into professional life in law, medicine or whatever field where they can charge their own fees for service, they will be looking to recover the cost of that education and pay off their debt as quickly as possible. They will hike their professional fees accordingly. Good luck then in finding a specialist surgeon for that urgent life-saving operation charging a fee you can afford. Your funeral will cost less.

    Commenter
    mitch of ACT
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:40PM
    • Possible too, but the best reason it is a very bad idea is that the loss in our intellectual property from discouraging people to study will cost the entire country many times more than the few million that the government will save.

      Commenter
      QED
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:46PM
    • Thanks mitch...when im looking for a surgeon to give me my life saving surgery i will remember some random guy on the interweb telling me that i wouldnt be able to afford it because a student had to pay a bit more in uni fees.Wont i have learnt my lesson then eh?? Then again given that we live in a thriving western economy with healthy competition keeping prices inline and a great public healthcare system as well as my very good private healthcare fund i really dont think its going to be a problem. But thanks for the hyperbole.

      Commenter
      hodster
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:10PM
    • @hodster don't forget we live in a capitalist economy. These professional people are a monopoly. There are barriers, set up by themselves, to entry from outside. Undercutting each other is frowned upon. As a monopoly they will charge what they like. If you can't pay you will go without. What colour flowers would you like on your casket.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:29PM
    • thanks for setting me straight Mitch... You are clearly a bit of a sage on these matters. Your talents are wasted sitting on here moaning about stuff when you could be out there solving all of the worlds problems... go, be free, good luck and thanks.

      Commenter
      hodster
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:52PM
    • @hodster, at one time I did work in a policy area for govt's of both colours. What is happening in gov't now would never have seen the light of day. But then we weren't so blinded by ideology.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:11PM
  • @218

    Is this guy just in there to hurl abuse and make jokes? Seriously.

    Commenter
    Daniel
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:36PM
  • 2:18pm: Looks like Joe is finally getting the hint!

    Commenter
    Pieron
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:36PM
  • 2:24pm: As usual our inept treasurer is unable to answer a question in parliament. He tackles question time like it is budget time, illogical, stupid and mean!

    Commenter
    Pieron
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:35PM
  • 2:18

    Have a read Joe - you might learn something.

    Commenter
    davemac
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:31PM
    • I doubt it. Keating book maybe.

      Commenter
      Sarah of Carnegie
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:35PM
  • So Tony has gone to India to sell them Uranium and coal but they have told him they have gone solar. Do we have any solar technology to sell them? Of course not, that stuff is good for nothing according to Tony. Tony strikes again.

    Commenter
    GOV
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:25PM
  • Joe, if you quit now and get out of the parliament we might have forgotten what a truly, truly awful Treasurer you are in about 10 years time.

    Leave if for another 12 months and it'll be a complete chapter in the history books.

    Commenter
    Peter Cain
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:23PM
    • Hockey must despise the workers. He tells Holden to get lost and that will cost tens of thousands of jobs. He want to shut down the renewable energy industry and that will cost thousands of jobs. He freezes the super contributions for up to 9million workers. He has a lot of explaining to do. Strange behaviour for a Treasurer trying to manage a Budget where PAYG taxes from the working man & woman are the biggest single line item.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:30PM
  • Hacka in a library trying to work out synatax?

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:21PM
  • Call me a hack, but I'm not convinced by Warren's response to Albo's question.

    As an aside Madam Speaker is being Madame Speaker - no surprises there.

    Commenter
    Jason of Goild Coast
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:20PM
  • I think I've just witnessed the most pathetic single performance in 20+ years of watching QT and another 10 on top of that of listening on the radio.

    Hockey's answer to the first question he received today was it.

    He looked and sounded as nervous as a cat on a hot tin roof. He's been put on notice by someone and in typical Hockey fashion he is buckling under pressure.

    A no-hoper standing out like a beacon in a sea of no-hopers. What did we do to deserve him as Treasurer?

    Commenter
    Peter Cain
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:13PM
    • Penance.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:21PM
    • “What did we do to deserve him as Treasurer?”

      We allowed Labor and the Greens to go on a debt fuelled spendathon, Peter. That’s what.

      Commenter
      Molotov
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:59PM
    • Molotov - you mean the budget emergency that suddenly isn't one?

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:06PM
    • That mendacity doesn't fly anymore, Molotov. Give it up.

      Commenter
      BC
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:09PM
    • Davemac – call it what you want. It’s $1bn a month in interest.

      BC – the best way to avoid massive public debt is to act while the debt is smaller and manageable. Only adolescents fail to appreciate this.

      Commenter
      Molotov
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:12PM
    • @molotov and thanks to the spending by labor to stop the economy falling into the deep recession that affected the rest of the world, we still have a functioning economy to pay that debt and the interest bill. Without that spending we would still have the debt from the massive support that would have to have been given to the army of unemployed and the loss of revenue from taxes. Read up on what caused the Great Depression, failure of govt's to spend to support their economies. We won't make that mistake ever again.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:20PM
    • OK then Molotov - here goes:

      A concocted budget emergency designed to let the Libs feel validated about breaking a whole lot of election promises and then coming out with an unfair budget which sticks it to the less well off meanwhile most economists agree that Aust has navigated the GFC very well and have a relatively low amount of debt as a % of GDP which is not to say we have a medium to long term issue but which won't be addressed by policies with no vision like freezing super, ignoring climate change, killing the clever country by hiking uni fees and crippling the NBN and bogus charges on health which will end up in higher hospital funding required all brought to you by a bunch or ideologues with as much vision as Stevie Wonder.

      How's that?

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:24PM
    • Mitch of the ACT – Australia had virtually no sub-prime exposure. That’s actually what saved us from the GFC. But you go ahead and believe that it was pink batts and expensive school halls if you like.

      davemac – How’s that? A bit beside the point really. To fix debt in the medium-term actually requires doing something in the short-term. That's what the government is doing.

      Commenter
      Molotov
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 4:40PM
  • Bad start for Billy - he's telling porkies again.

    Abbott ruled out negotiating with the cross benchers to form government, he never said he wouldn't talk to them about policy - why wouldn't he ?

    People have all seen through that one Bill, much like the claims of $80 billion black holes that don't exist.

    Commenter
    Hacka
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:11PM
    • It was nice to see Albo get to ask a question today.

      Commenter
      Sarah of Carnegie
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:21PM
    • Watching 60 Mins this week Hacka?

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:23PM
    • Hacka, you are relying on one quote where Abbott said he wouldn't do a deal to form a minority Government. Abbott is on the record many times attacking Labor for doing deals with independents and minor Parties and insisting he would not do deals. You want me to start cut and pasting them or do you want to go find them yourself?

      Commenter
      jofek
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:35PM
    • Sorry Hacker, after the bagging Abbott gave Palmer in the lead up to the election the moral ground would be to avoid having legislation passed that is tainted with any hint of Palmer. Just showes Abbott and Co have no morals.

      Commenter
      Wise One
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:36PM
    • Jofek -so what - Bill's relying on one misquote.

      Commenter
      Hacka
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:56PM
    • I'll try again - easy to google the many quotes that TA made about this, and they don't back up your position too well @H.

      For some reason the mods won't let me post a link.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:08PM
    • jofek - it would be nice of you to provide some evidence occasionally to support your claims, so yes please, a link or two could be handy.

      Commenter
      Hacka
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 5:06PM
  • Will Tony have to pay $7 to attend a clinic at the Cricket Club of India?

    Commenter
    Pluto
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:09PM
    • It'll be our shout.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:26PM
  • NIck Champion going to miss his Gold Star. Maybe he wants a Swannie instead.

    Commenter
    Sarah of Carnegie
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 2:04PM
    • Maybe he's timing it so he does get the 200th sin binning.

      Commenter
      Lewis
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:13PM
  • WELCOME TO INDIA, TONES.

    Tis the land of climate change responsibility and opportunity for like minded investors. Err, as anyone seen a solar panel anywhere?

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:58PM
    • It's a shame Abbott didn't hang around to meet the Spanish Foreign Minister who is visiting Australia championing solar energy Spain is a world leader in solar energy the Minister said RE is the way of the future. Perhaps Spain isn't one of our friends.

      Commenter
      Amro
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:18PM
    • Amro

      Spain is what we should and could be and more as we have the highest solar radiation in the world. Spanish CSP has led the world for almost 20 years while flounder unable to meet a patheticly inadequate RET.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:26PM
    • You don't have to convince me Pen I lived in Portugal for three years recently and even they have more villages running on RE than we do, their neighbour Spain is impressive, not forgetting their high speed rail. But then Abbott would just say but their broke, yeah but they will have a better future.

      Commenter
      Amro
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:35PM
    • @Amro. I see Tony as Don Quixote and Joe as Sancho Panza. Can't you?

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:18PM
    • http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2013/04/14/1858811/is-70-renewable-power-possible-portugal-just-did-it-for-3-months/

      Some interesting reading on what Portugal achieved.

      Commenter
      Amro
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:53PM
  • Gosh, is Philip Ruddock still there? Probably giving Morrison some pointers on immigration and making sure that the team does not flinch on its opposition to same-sex marriage.

    Commenter
    Pluto
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:50PM
    • Gosh is Wayne Swan still there? Probably trying to gather together more half-swannies to top up his parliamentary super.

      Commenter
      Nulla
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:56PM
    • I wonder why he didn't go at the last election.

      Commenter
      Sarah of Carnegie
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:06PM
    • @Nulla. Ha ha.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:07PM
    • @2.10. At least Truss instinctively corrected himself unlike Tanya

      Commenter
      Piped Piper
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:13PM
    • Forgotten but not gone.

      Commenter
      gobsmack
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:14PM
    • @2.07. Is Shorten serious with going on about Tony promising no deal with minor parties? In hindsight Tony was foolish to say that but Shorten has basically spat in the face of those who voted minor parties to represent their views and interest by carrying on with this supposed broken promise.

      Commenter
      Piped Piper
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:17PM
  • Re: ‘The higher education bill.”

    Err, shouldn’t that read: The higher education restrictions bill?

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:45PM
    • Its a disgrace what Pyne is trying to do to Tertiary Educaon. Its already nearly impossible for the middle class to access University as it is.

      Commenter
      Daniel
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:47PM
    • Pen asked my MP Broad after his call yesterday why they have Catholic Ed providing education at the Xmas Is DC. He didn't expect me to know we have Govt Primary School already on Xmas for the locals. Attempted to say Catholic Ed would provide secular Ed for the predominately Muslim students. He says they won the Tender.
      I wonder was there a Tender or why not use Govt Ed.
      Jobs for the Boys and get that Bible happening wherever possible.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:58PM
    • For the Liberals it's all about taking Australia back to a time before Whitlam. The good old days, when "ordinary people" did not go to university except on a scholarship. "Ordinary people" went to tech schools and vocational schools and did apprenticeships. Apprenticeships, remember them? Useful for when Australia still had a manufacturing sector and could provide training and jobs for young people and new migrants. Not any more.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:06PM
    • “Its already nearly impossible for the middle class to access University as it is.”

      Daniel – given that the majority of university students ARE middle class and have access to a generous taxpayer provided loan scheme, what evidence do you have to make that ludicrous statement?

      Commenter
      Molotov
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:13PM
  • What do you reckon @Hacka - with Pyne's changes thru the house, halfway to another 'win' that will see a return to education for the rich, and a windfall for some unis at the expense of others? With the increase in loan rates I think a lot of the next generation will never own a house in the cities, as they will have massive HECs debts hanging over theor head. Ohh happy days.

    Commenter
    davemac
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:41PM
    • @davemac. If those with a uni education under the Pyne plan have any sense they will take their expensive qualifications and huge debt and go o/seas to live & work. The rest of us will wallow in our ignorance.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:54PM
    • Struggling to see what all the fuss is about davemac. It's fair that students pay for much of their education - so the jump from 40% to 50% is reasonable.

      There's more sponsorship places meaning more spots for those getting the marks but struggling to afford uni.

      And given it's all HELP funded, students get to pay back their debt over time.

      And in deregulating, fees may go up or down. There's also nothing wrong with having premium degrees / universities for those prepared to pay, they'll get it back in salary in theory.

      So what is all the fuss about, why all the protests ?

      Or maybe the students are just upset we have a conservative government now.

      Commenter
      Hacka
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:56PM
    • "massive" hecs debts... looks like you have swallowed the Labor line ... let me guess that you will not see a dwindling of uni admissions and the middle class will still have a same percentage of representation. in those numbers. More shrill exaggeration from the left and it doesnt take much to get the sts out there waving their banners...funnily enough though when labor CUT education/uni they werent so keen!

      Commenter
      hodster
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:02PM
    • @H - not the first time you struggle to see why a lot of people aren't happy with much of Joes stinking budget.

      Don't have a major prob with 40->50%, but as I written before, the best unis will be ramping their fees way up. There is evidence overseas of the effect this has.

      There is no guarantee of a salary once you graduate, and women will take time off to have kids (I know, I know they are only ever teachers and nurses) therefore the fees and the increased interest adds up.

      There's also the modelling that shows the country and metro unis will be worse off.

      And @hodster - I don't swallow lines from any party. I make up my own mind, and haven't really given what Labor has said about it much notice. Bad policy is bad policy.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:17PM
    • Totally agree Hacka and so does Labors little darling the man himself David Gonski.

      Commenter
      Augie
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:38PM
    • Well Gonski partially agrees, but certainly not with the interest rate hike.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:03PM
  • I must confess that the public response to Joe's budget makes me think of the crowd chant to the Angel's 'Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again?'.

    Commenter
    Gigondas
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:40PM
    • Ha ha ha, straight to the featured comment with you.

      Commenter
      Lewis
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:58PM
  • Is Phillip Ruddock still in parliament - I honestly thought he had retired!

    Commenter
    davemac
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:38PM
    • I reckon he will step aside for Barry O'Farrell at the next election.

      Commenter
      The Banker
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:51PM
  • While Abbott is hitting them for six in Mumbai Shorten and Milne are still looking for the cricket amongst the grass. No it's not a rare and threatened insect!

    Commenter
    enough is enough
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:37PM
    • My good friend eie, I'm concerned. I think the pressure is starting to tell, or else you've caught a case of IAD (ineffective analogy disorder). Perhaps you should go and have a nice calming cup of tea.

      Commenter
      Gigondas
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:55PM
    • Oh dear oh dear what was you writing yesterday about Indian solar? Oh dear. Caught out by dear old Pen yet again.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:00PM
    • Pen, show us some happy snaps of this mega solar farm. A picture tells a thousand words, could save you and us some reading time.

      Commenter
      enough is enough
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:09PM
    • Yes and we know what the Indians think about Aussie cricketers.

      Commenter
      gobsmack
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:16PM
    • @EiE

      Train to reality town leaving in 5 minutes. All aboard.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:58PM
  • Apart from all the naval gazing in this column today, has anyone read anything in the left hand column about the delegation to India, surprisingly not, let’s give Tony Abbott a yay for the day, he has taken industry leaders to India to work on the promotion of Australia, funnily enough, they (India) also have a few quid to invest in mining that was pulled off the table while there was a mining tax and crap government.

    Commenter
    Peter G
    Location
    Drummoyne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:35PM
    • Ah yes, naval gazing- a great pastime. I could look at a guided missile frigate all day.

      Commenter
      Gigondas
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:51PM
    • @Peter G, "naval" - "navel"
      India, let's see, that's where all of the outsourced Australian jobs go to and where we import tons of goods manufactured under appalling conditions. India, that's where Adani, the company digging up and exporting all of that coal from QLD through Abbot Point to pollute the atmosphere & the Great Barrier Reef is based. India, that's the country that is being accused of having very lax standards on the use of uranium. And we are going to sell them more of it.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:52PM
    • Yes thanks Mitch, we do ship "tonnes" of coal to India and a great trading partner they are, so what would you have us do? not export, what sort of economic modelling is that, or do you have another agenda.

      Commenter
      Peter G
      Location
      Drummoyne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:49PM
  • Judith, FYI that's Sam Walsh behind PM Abbott.

    Commenter
    enough is enough
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:34PM
  • Poor Tones: “India puts the accelerator on Solar Energy generation through giant Solar Farms after new government focus. India is also looking to start a reverse auction for buying up to 1000 MW of solar capacity from developers through a reverse auction process. The new Indian government under a new ruling dispensation has decided to go with a fresh approach and is looking to procure 1000 MW of solar power through a new procurement process, which will correct the deficiencies found in the last process.”

    Enough is enough is once again shown to be inarticulate on such matters. So, will Tone be able sell more Palmer coal or was the carbon tax repeal a waste of time? Will the mining tax repeal save us after all? Well not if India has anything to do with it.

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:32PM
    • Will it located next to any of the dozens of new coal fired power stations or the dozens of new nuclear powered power stations?

      Commenter
      enough is enough
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:53PM
    • EiE you should see the magnificent new solar farm opened yesterday just outside Canberra, with another one nearing completion. Thousands of homes will be powered by renewable energy without polluting the environment. Joe will explode with fury when he has to drive past them. Not a coal-fired power station in site.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:14PM
  • Yes, Abbott shouldn't bowl like Howard nor bat like Hawkie for that matter.

    But i'm very confident that Abbott will be able to stand on his own two feet in India, and what a line up of cricketing royalty he gets to meet too.

    Commenter
    Hacka
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:31PM
    • Can't bat, can't bowl, can't lie

      Commenter
      Abbott is a silly mid on
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:47PM
    • @Abbott is a silly mid on. Are you sure? Australia has just sent its best liar on tour.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:59PM
  • What western Uranium sales is dong to to people in India is an utter disgrace. Abbott should not be there selling Uranium to them at all!

    Commenter
    Daniel
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:29PM
    • Don't worry too much, "India is becoming a world leader in nuclear technology due to its expertise in fast reactors and thorium fuel cycle. Within a short time the new thorium fuel developed by, US, UK and Japanese scientists will soon be available in commercial quantities with the aim of replacing uranium fuel rods. In fact thorium can burn most of the uranium fuel rod nasties as fuel.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:53PM
    • Pen, you are breaking ranks with the Sea Patrol Party. No Nuclear power, remember that?

      Commenter
      enough is enough
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:16PM
  • 1:23pm:

    Somehow I doubt if Tony Abbott bowls like John Howard.

    Commenter
    Lewis
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:29PM
    • I don't think anyone does - he actually hit himself in the foot - right? Still Hawkey had his glasses rearranged all over his face in another PM/cricket mishap.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:42PM
  • A secret plot? Oooh I love secret plots!

    Commenter
    Sharron
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:14PM
    • So does Christopher Pyne!

      Commenter
      About time
      Location
      QLD Strawberry Farm
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:17PM
    • Saucy plots are even better.
      Senate won't vote on the UNI reforms till after.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      The Cove
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:36PM
  • The sky just went very dark here in Canberra as an enormous swarm of flying pigs flew over, unleashed by the gov't saying that cuts to the super guarantee levy would end up in workers' pay packets. http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/super-delay-would-almost-inevitably-mean-higher-wages-treasurer-joe-hockey-defends-deal-with-clive-palmer-20140903-10bp2g.html
    Now I have to bring in my washing and do it all over again. Those pigs make a hell of a mess.

    Commenter
    mitch of ACT
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:13PM
    • Constituents get the ice bucket challenge with frozen superannuation contributions.
      Voters 9.5% for seven years, Pollies 12% check your pneumonia symptoms; rapid breathing, breathing difficulties, fever, general malaise, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, headache, chest pain, cough , blue colouration of the skin around the mouth caused by lack of oxygen.

      Commenter
      Koel
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:25PM
  • Seems there's been limited coverage of Greens Senator Whish-Wilson's rather informative speech yesterday in the Senate.

    Said WW - “I think we need to find better words than ‘terrorist’ and ‘terrorism’ because, to me, this implies a very one-sided view of the world,”.

    Err Senator - is there something you know that the rest of the world doesn't that would categorise these IS thugs as anything other than terrorists ?

    Commenter
    Hacka
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:10PM
    • no hakky? it's not something the good senator alone knows - it seems the good senator has read more than the Murdoch press and understands that not all conflicts are populated by "goodies " and "baddies" and that the word terrorist is bandied about like an accusation of heresy in the inquistion - Gaddhafi's opponents were "terrorists", Assad's opponents are all "terrorists"? does hakky think that the russian separatists are seperatists in a burned over territorial dispute or "terrorists" as the Ukranian govt rebukes? Does hakky care for nuanced geopolitical analysis, oronly "goodies and baddies" analogies?

      Commenter
      rod steiger
      Location
      toukley
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:23PM
    • one man's terrorist is an LNP's vote winner

      Commenter
      GW
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:31PM
    • Hacka, weren't these "ÏS thugs"the "Goodies"in Syria not that long ago? So once they cross the border they become the "Baddies" is that some weird LNP logis we are supposed to swallow like election lies?

      Commenter
      Pieron
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:32PM
    • Exactly, when one decapitates an innocent captive or blows up the runners at the finishing line of a marathon race one cannot be classed as a terrorist.

      Let's just be ultra-PC and call them "slightly peeved individuals".

      Commenter
      Rodrigo
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:47PM
    • Pieron - given that they had their roots in Al Queda, i'm not sure if they were ever goodies.

      But what a bizarre line to run by the Greens - they're not exactly in touch with public opinion on this one, and offer themselves up as a laughing stock.

      Commenter
      Hacka
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:48PM
    • how credlinesque hakky - all about public perception (viewed through the prism of Murdoch press cataracts) rather than intelligent debate

      Commenter
      rod steiger
      Location
      toukley
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:53PM
    • But wait, wasn't Bin Laden (Al Quaeda) funded ages ago by the U.S. and considered "goodies" back then? Maybe "baddie" is simpy whoever is against the U.S. at the moment?

      This is nowhere near as simple as your simpleton binary thought processes might suggest.

      Commenter
      One Man's Freedom Fighter
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:00PM
    • Rodrigo
      The IS were freedom fighters in Syria not so long ago. And the US was arming them. They weren't called terrorists then!
      And the Kurds are branded terrorists across the border in Turkey. Why are we arming them?
      The Shiites are considered terrorists in Saudi Arabia and in Georgia. Yet we are backing them in Iraq.
      The Taliban were allies until they suddenly became terrorists in Afghanistan.
      I think we need a new set of definitions.

      Commenter
      Steve
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:05PM
    • hey roddy how can anyone in all seriousness take the side of the ridiculous senator in this regard. Surely even the most rabid anti government fanatic would actually say that a group of people that routinely behead individuals and murder whole villages in cold blood because of their religious beliefs are terrorists.. But you agree that you dont want to hurt their feelings by calling them that???? WOW!!!

      Commenter
      hodster
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:13PM
    • it's not a question of feelings shodster, it's a question of some very very rudimentary historical knowledge and some intelligent understanding of motivations and responses to conflict, eg the use of land mines, cluster bombs, drones as well as person to person atrocities - i think the ones whipping up feelings about white hats and black hats are those wrapping themselves in the flag (soon to lose its St Andrew's Cross)

      Commenter
      rod steiger
      Location
      toukley
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:31PM
    • Hacka, You still didn't address the post, the IS were "ggodies" in Syria now "Baddies"in Iraq. Do you think Tony has border deficiencies or are you that accustomed to lies and illogical Tony rants you are totally blind.

      Commenter
      Pieron
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:41PM
  • I was wondering when we would hear about Ashby and that confected scandal. Im not too worried though as it was all linked to the Liberals!

    Commenter
    Daniel
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:07PM
    • Daniel it's not the confected scandal. It's what went on behind the scenes. Been a Taboo subject (no pun intended) in the MSM. read IA articles.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:12PM
    • Im not sure I agree it has been taboo. The Daily Telegraph for a while had stories on this garbage everyday nearly. It was meant to ber a distraction as usual.

      Commenter
      Daniel
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:15PM
    • If it's what I think Daniel there might be some rosier cheeks than usual.
      Hope they paid him enough to really talk.
      Go google as recommended.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:20PM
    • For sure. Google is a valuable tool.

      Commenter
      Daniel
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:21PM
  • ['...Paul Funnell has called on Madigan to leave Parliament and give his seat back to the party...']

    I think Funnell's got a point.

    Madigan was elected to the Senate under the DLP banner, albeit he only secured 75,000 primary votes.

    If he, for whatever reason(s), considers he can no longer serve his Party, he should consider his position.

    At least he's got a trade to go back to if he were to do the right thing.

    Commenter
    Jason of Gold Coast
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:04PM
    • Right, the way Peter Slipper gave back his seat to the Liberals instead of becoming an "independent".

      Commenter
      Rodrigo
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:42PM
    • Except he was elected to represent his State, not his party

      Commenter
      MD
      Location
      Parts Unknown
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:34PM
  • 12.58 Finally.
    Is Pyne the star !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Haven't watched 60 Mins in years, but. I'll be glued this week.

    Commenter
    A country gal
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:02PM
    • Damn, I'll be away. Maybe on the internet?

      Commenter
      Lewis
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:21PM
    • Lewis if the Trailer is anything to go by it will be. This has made my day.
      Just hope it's warts and all and they don't over edit or let them be got to.
      Knowing this lot they'll be doing their best to avoid the damage and at all costs.
      Perhaps a shuffle is not far off.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:07PM
  • So now we have 'Officegate' care of the DLP. Sounds like a rerun of McTienan's time with Gillard trying to smoke out Rudd.

    Commenter
    enough is enough
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 1:00PM
    • Ashbygate should be much more entertaining.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:22PM
  • With the avalance of Rudd-Gillard-Rudd era books literally flying onto the shelves at the moment, perhaps John Madigan should write one himself to document the re-rise of the DLP and life as a cross bencher.

    It would certainly be more interesting and historically accurate than such tomes as describing good fights.

    Commenter
    Hacka
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 12:48PM
    • Here's a quote from a book which seems pretty relevant Hacka....

      “It’s odd that the Iraq war should still trumpeted as a monumental moral failure just when the country looks to be recovering.”

      Battleline P157
      Tony Abbott

      Yep a real visionary old Tone

      Commenter
      Librarian
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:57PM
    • @ Librarian:

      That's a hoot, indicative of the intellect of Dear Leader - sorry Ben C of Canberra; I'm a serial offender.

      Commenter
      Jason of Gold Coast
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:19PM
    • I've found "Battlelines" to be very useful. My copy, given to me by someone who should have known better, is still in its wrap but is parked usefully under a wonky cupboard to steady it. Every so often I have to kick it back into place as it seems to want to crawl out from under.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:25PM
    • @Librarian, I am impressed someone stayed awake long enough to read Battlelines!

      Commenter
      Pieron
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:27PM
    • Hacka

      As you're in a reading mood no doubt you remember these Abbott classics from Battlelines.

      One virtue that the Jesuits never quite managed to incoulate in me was humility.

      If there is one contribution that I would most like to make to our national life it would be to stop knocking our country.

      Of course the NHS is generally preferable to the US system.

      In the 1980, the Liberal party opposed medicare because it meant socialised medicine. In practice that's not how medicare has worked out. Private medical practice has flourished under medicare because it is a system for paying doctors bills, not for employing them. Medicare has kept medical treatment affordable. Medicare has turned out to be a managed market, the best practical way to have affordable treatment and efficient service delivery.

      Hope you are enjoying your roast lamb these days now that you can afford it.
      Mint jelly. mmmmmmm

      PS As a book, Battlelines is well written and an easy read. Its not often that a PM or would PM gives us a written manifesto. It is certainly worth a read to find out what his gospel actually is. I recommend it to all bloggers and journos here if you haven't read it.

      Commenter
      Windmill
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:39PM
  • Christine Milne understands that by the Kurd’s taking possession of the city of Kirkuk. Beneath Kirkuk is one of Iraq’s largest oil fields, located adjacent to the Kurdish region, hence the oil rich city is focus of the main prize of Kurds: the quest for Kurdish independence, and so with all things of a religious bent Kirkuk is the Kurdish Jerusalem. This is what Australia has given arms for, yet the disputed status of Kirkuk’s vast oil reserves is a major obstacle to any attempt by Kurds to divide the country’s oil revenues equitably. Basically Australia has done nothing but stir the hornet’s nest that is the dubious authority of who owns Kirkuk.

    Welcome to Near East tribalism Australia. And you did it with eyes wide open. Idiots.

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 12:47PM
    • That's the problem Pen, also faced in Afghanistan.. If you get rid of one mob, how can you be certain that the new mob aren't as bad or worse?
      The IS are considered so extreme, even Al Qaeda want nothing to with them so they have to be defeated.
      I can't imagine the Sunnis or Shias will want the Kurds have first dibs on Kirkuk

      Commenter
      stevek
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:09PM
    • We should just call you Kermit Pen, you are as green as green can be and just as irrelevant. So what do we do mate, let them cut their throats and stand on and watch. Australians are companionate and fair and will jump in and help the downtrodden and misfortunate and I am proud of that. Put your politics aside for one minute.

      Commenter
      Peter G
      Location
      Drummoyne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:18PM
    • stevek

      You miss the point Al Quaeda is financed by Sunni Saudi Arabia, whereas IS is backed by Iran and Hezbollah of Shiite factions. The two are incompatible.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:19PM
    • Then you are better informed than I am Pen but I am by no means an expert, only going by what's reported on Fairfax and ABC, my main news sources.
      I wasn't aware of who was backing who; just that Iraq is a big political mess brought about or exacerbated by the 2003 invasion.

      Michael Ware, a journo who spent considerable time in Iraq, was insistent on The Drum that IS must be defeated at any cost.

      Commenter
      stevek
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:33PM
    • @Pen. Sorry mate. Cant let that go without correction. IS is not backed by Hezbollah and Iran. IS broke away from Al-Qaeda and was funded by Saudis and Qatar in Syria before they became too big to contain.

      Commenter
      Piped Piper
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:39PM
    • Piper

      "Iran and Hezbollah have built a 50,000-strong parallel force in Syria to help prolong the life of the Assad regime and to maintain their influence after his fall, Israel's military intelligence chief has claimed.

      Major General Aviv Kochavi said Iran intended to double the size of this Syrian "people's army", which he claimed was being trained by Hezbollah fighters and funded by Tehran, to bolster a depleted and demoralised Syrian army."

      Wrong again, Piper.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:12PM
    • @Pen. That force was set up to prolong the life of Assad. Assad and Hezbollah/Iran have been fighting side by side against ISIS not with. Geez can't even get the basics right.

      Commenter
      Piped Piper
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:35PM
  • Well the Libs/Nats might not agree with Milne's motion but Broad has just spoken responsibly on RN.

    Commenter
    A country gal
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 12:26PM
  • If only Joe pursued the corporate tax dodgers with as much ideologically fuelled enthusiasm as he pursues low income ‘leaners’, perhaps our budget would be soon be, to channel my inner ACDC, back in black.

    Commenter
    Gigondas
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 12:22PM
    • Or my inner Stones "I see you Red door but I want it painted Black".

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:34PM
    • Gal

      I prefer Can't Get No Satisfaction, All The Way Down, All Sold Out, and All About You.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:52PM
    • Pen, " Let it Bleed"......We all need someone to "lean" on.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:09PM
  • 12.10 Renegade backbench Senators.
    To coin a new cliche, they could " Do a Madigan".
    Senate would be interesting then, even more so.
    C'mon, be brave.

    Commenter
    A country gal
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 12:18PM
    • "Do a Madigan" - good one ACG.

      But, even though he's resigned from his former beloved Party, I somehow don't think his social values will change all that much.

      But he's got the gig for another five years, so who knows(?).

      Commenter
      Jason of Gold Coast
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:35PM
    • Jason, meant if a few Renegade Libs jumped they wouldn't have to vote with the Party line and that could really play havoc on numbers. They won't though.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:15PM
  • ['...blaming a 'cancer of political intrigue' in the Democratic Labor Party.']

    So things haven't changed since the days of Vince Gair(?) - former Ambassador to Emerald Isle.

    I'm so pleased that the Party that kept Labor out of power for so many years is no longer represented in the Parliament.

    Good for you, Senator Madigan, even though your Senate vote was, well let's call a spade a shovel, a wee small.

    Commenter
    Jason of Gold Coast
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 12:07PM
  • @11.51. I hate to say it but I agree with Sen Milne. Rushing to conflict at the whims of the U.S. which is acting on emotion rather than using rationality without regard for what consequences it will have on the region. The cynic in me says that she is playing politics.

    Commenter
    Piped Piper
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 12:00PM
    • Ask yourself which geographic region has more arms per head of population than the Near East? The answer is none. Can more arms solve the problem when Iran and Saudi Arabia support their own brands of terrorism? In essence Milne is as usual is correct in her thinking.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:12PM
    • PP, it's the PM playing politics. Milne is right it should be a Parliamentary decision.
      MP's and Senators represent the Nation, one PM's views do not.
      Can't we learn from history rather than repeat it.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:20PM
    • There's where Australia's double standard comes in, we want to be a good global citizen except when it comes to refugees and boat people. Milne has always stuck to the party line except for the fuel excise..

      Commenter
      Tim
      Location
      Inner City
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:21PM
    • Tim

      If you concentrate when reading Green's Policy Document you will understand why Milne was and still is against the fuel increase. Unfortunately for most it takes a little lateral thinking.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:06PM
    • What a strange day its been - @PP with some positives about the Greens, me being nice to Joe and @Hacka, @Lyn and @ACG being very nice to each other.

      I like it.

      @EiE - care to join the party?

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:10PM
    • Will Abbott follow in the footsteps of Howard by bowling to a bunch of school kids?

      Commenter
      Piped Piper
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:27PM
    • Well Pen...I'd say the US has more guns...but whatever Google tells you is no doubt gospel. I just hope the media and political scientists critic in public the Greens policies at the next elections shave some public debate about it so the public can see how little clue they have about running a country in the year 2014. It would be hilarious !!!

      Commenter
      Sick of the left
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:28PM
  • 11.08: *Stay alert*....looks like Stumbles Hockey hasn*t updated his fridge magnets for a while..

    Commenter
    David D
    Location
    Ettalong Beach (thanks little johnny)
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:58AM
  • Thank goodness the Greens are not responsible for matters of national security.

    Commenter
    dexxter
    Location
    melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:56AM
    • If only, think of the $80 billion wasted on F35 flying lemons? Yes I did state $80 billion. This is the cost of 100 flying lemons over 30 years. That is provided they don't go into combat and become falling coffins.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:16PM
    • Thank goodness the Greens are not responsible for anything

      Commenter
      B.W. from the Shire
      Location
      Cronulla
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:52PM
    • Thank God the Greens are not responsible for much.

      Commenter
      Catherine
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:56PM
    • I think even The Greens are grateful they're not responsible for anything. This way they can continue not acting responsibly.

      Commenter
      Lewis
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:08PM
    • BW and Catherine

      Welcome to Abbottism's climate change? Enjoy the climate for your kids they won't be so lucky.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:09PM
  • @1151

    The Greens are so right here. And running into a protracted war with obviousloy no clear timelines and outcomes especially when we are being told domestically we cant afford anything and the "national credit card is maxxed out". Abbott needs to get real!

    Commenter
    Daniel
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:54AM
  • Re: Hockey’s claim, "Stay alert to changes in arrangements used for tax minimisation in a globalised world".

    Err, exactly for how many years, Joe, until the cows come home?

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:42AM
    • I would like to see a type of "GST for companies" as a replacement for profits tax. ie remove the company tax completely and introduce say 4 or 5% tax on turnover / consumption / expenses. OK, I am no economist or accountant, but to those here who understand this more .... could this work ? Particularly to take our cut from the multinationals working out of tax havens ?

      Commenter
      taxpayer
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:18PM
  • There is a requirement that if a senator dies in office, then the appropriate state government is obliged to appoint a replacement from the same political party.
    There should also be a requirement that if one resigns from the party which the electors voted in, then the state government should do the same and appoint a replacement from the same party.

    Commenter
    Max
    Location
    Stafford Heights
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:38AM
    • The Constitutional amendment was only for cases of "casual vacancy" - Senator Madigan is not dead, and can not be replaced until the end of his term or removal for misconduct.

      The law also says States have to choose from the Party of the deceased Member - but they don't have to accept the nomination, and can leave the spot vacant.

      Commenter
      BC
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:47PM
    • States appointing replacements for casual vacancies from the same party is not required by law. This is just the general convention followed by all states.

      Commenter
      Lewis
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:03PM
    • Lewis - I think that was changed by referendum in 1977.

      Commenter
      BC
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:37PM
    • BC, I'm going by something I read on Anthony Green's blog when Bob Carr was appointed to the senate.

      Commenter
      Lewis
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:55PM
  • Joe - if you can do something about the multi-national co. tax rort you will go up in my opinion, and I'll buy you a box of cubans.

    Who knows, one day you might even be in the same class as Wayne S - worlds best treasurer.

    Commenter
    davemac
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:36AM
  • EIE, John P., and Peter G.

    There seems to be a delusion amongst you that dear old Pen supports the Labor Party when in fact nothing could be further from the truth.

    If you take the trouble to read my post on superannuation wealth transference instead of jumping into the feathery cloud of assumptive conjecture you would understand that all I have done is try to show an approximation of the amount of wealth transference from workers to be retained by employers, mine owners, big business and overseas conglomerates. Nowhere do I indicate any support for Labor this is manufactured by your own over fertile minds.

    Wealth transference to these sectors has also been achieved by repealing the carbon tax, repealing the mining tax, increasing subsidies and by creating negative wage growth. Not to mention the continued allowance of corporate tax evasion practices.

    Clearly the likes of Hacka and EIE and others extoll these unfair policies, which to my mind creates an unfair society and the consequences that they bring. You will also note if you take the trouble to check Abbottism is now ruling over the greatest rate of unemployment since 1994: “total of 2.641 million (20.8%) Australians unemployed or under-employed” (Morgan research), this too aids Abbottism’s policy of negative wage growth.

    Clearly there is a systematic plan of massive wealth transference being conducted by Abbottism from working Australians to the wealth sector. This policy is in line with the opinions of the likes of Gina Rinehart and others who wish to undermine the prosperity of Australians by creating negative wages growth and more poor people.

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:34AM
    • Pen, with all due respect, your post's become a little bit too long and I kind of get lost in them, I like your style and its all good debate but please be a little more economical with your words.

      Commenter
      Peter G
      Location
      Drummoyne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:08PM
    • There is only 300 words or less, is it my fault that you suffer from retention deficiency?

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:23PM
    • I think the word your looking for is waffle. Just because you write long winded posts doesn't make them any more informative than someone who manages to sum it up in 25 words.

      Commenter
      Sarah of Carnegie
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:31PM
    • Stick with the explanations Pen, gives me something to think about rather than a three word slogan to chant mindlessly.

      Commenter
      fizzybeer
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:31PM
    • Pen, at 300 words, that's 297 more than LNP supporters are used to as far as having thinks explained to them.

      Commenter
      Mr Burns
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:32PM
    • Pen, ignore the sillyheads. Love your work, I find it very informative and a good base from which to pursue research. Never, ever dumb it down for your audience. If they care enough to understand, they may take the time to educate themselves.

      Commenter
      bridget
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:56PM
  • So Bowen thinks there was no tax avoidance between 2007 and 2013. It only became a problem after Sept 2013? No wonder the Australian voters have had a gut full of of spin and deceit from the ALP.

    Commenter
    enough is enough
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:32AM
    • Same will happen to the LNP if they talk spin and do nothing. Most likely outcome. Don't bite the hand that feeds you.

      Commenter
      Wise One
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:52AM
  • Joe is introduced as the treasures ipso facto he must be. Well start acting like it Joe. Close the loopholes or stand down as treasurer. Bowen is absolutely right.

    Commenter
    Wise One
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:31AM
  • Hockey 11:08. You are introduced as the treasurer so get of your rump and close the loopholes. It's your Job sunshine.

    Commenter
    Wise One
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:16AM
  • All those saying the individual can put in to make up any perceived loss through the delay in reaching the 12% target (to which the Coalition agreed): certainly, but this lets the employer off the hook for putting in the amount agreed to IN PLACE OF WAGES FORGONE. So it's a blatant rip-off, pure and simple, shifting capital directly from workers to plutocrats.

    Commenter
    JohnH
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:15AM
    • What absolute nonsense! Labor is angry because their union bosses won't be able to double dip by pushing for both a super rise and a wage increase. Workers can use the extra money to pay their bills, reduce their home mortgage or invest in super, depending on their circumstances. It's called choice!

      Commenter
      Airato
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:51AM
    • That’s the Spirit John, don’t give any quarter to the employer, don’t let them off the hook as you put it. The beauty of the system is, we, the employers manage to weed out little trouble makers like you, we love the givers who deserve every penny we pay over the award and help them where we can above and beyond the call of duty or what we are obliged to do, but for people like you, we call them the poison pill in our business and we weed you out before you pass on your far leftward leaning ideologies and just frankly, a lazy approach and take take take attitude.

      Commenter
      Peter G
      Location
      Drummoyne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:13PM
    • @Peter G, wasn't me who agreed to the system on behalf of employers. Wasn't me who reneged on the deal on behalf of employers. And it has nothing to with whether or not a worker is in a union (I'm not, by the way). Got that?

      Commenter
      JohnH
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:24PM
  • The Senate election process needs urgent review. Apart from the independent fruit loops we keep electing, there's the problems that people like Maddigan get elected "above the line" for a party, but can resign, become independent, or join another party, and serve out 6 years. If they resign from the Party they should resign from the Senate.

    Commenter
    Len
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:04AM
    • Very good point, Len: if it has been the protocol for the major parties to have one of their people replace one of their senators when one dies or has to leave the Senate, why should it not be so for all parties? Better still, make it a statutory requirement.

      Commenter
      JohnH
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:53AM
    • Agree Len. John Madigan, having won a six year gig in the Senate standing as a DLP candidate, now decides that he doesn’t like the DLP anymore and dumps them. This is the same guy who drones on about the government not negotiating with him in good faith. Andrew Wilkie was a member of the Liberal Party, then became a Green candidate, then became an Independent. Ricky Muir did the dirty on the Motoring Enthusiasts even before he stepped into the Senate. Jacqui Lambie started off volunteering for the ALP, then joined the Liberal Party, then quit the Liberal Party, then ran as an Independent, and then decided that she needed Clive Palmer’s cash, so she joined PUP. These people split more than the Judean People’s Front.

      Commenter
      Molotov
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:56AM
  • Saw the link to his Wikipedia entry and thought his birth year of 1966 must be a typo. Can he possibly be only 48? I would have guessed something closer to 68.

    Commenter
    MattPP
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:00AM
  • @1057

    Such a sad picture isnt it? This is politics however.

    Commenter
    Daniel
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 11:00AM
  • Are we talking about our Australian Government? Respectfully, if in talking them all down you sound wise, you are actually discrediting yourselves. The point is, democracy doesn't work. UK embraced modernism, now politicians are leaving for new Independent Party. The nation has to rebuild for the sake of her people, and is the same here.

    Commenter
    Tellitso
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:49AM
    • Yep, and it is for the betterment of our Australian society and our government, that we talk them down, round and upside down on a regular basis. When they, politicians, become sequestered inside the House of Parliament, inside the party-room and socialise only with each other, they are more than likely to believe in a very narrow view of society and the world. They are likely to make decisions that impact on our lives for the worse. Based often on a narrow ideology. We are here to remind them with whatever literary means, polite or vulgar, at our disposable, that they are accountable.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:07AM
  • Madigan seems to me to be a sincere and ethical man, who will not tolerate anything untoward. All the poor man needs to do is learn how to read the bible so he can put all of his religious mumbo jumbo on abortion where it belongs: into trash.

    One would think that a 7 billion world population would tell him something about plagues.

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:46AM
    • Emphatically agree pen, it's that policy and his euthanasia policy that I only disagree with him on, and passionately.
      Besides those two policies he truly does have the nation at heart- unlike so many others.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:56AM
    • No... he's reading the bible correctly on abortion fine. Jesus is for the protection of the weak, and who is weaker than a child still in the womb.

      Commenter
      Stuart Southwell
      Location
      Newcastle
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:41AM
    • Show me where in the bible is the word abortion. On the other hand we have,

      "Ephraim is smitten , their root is dried up , they shall bear no fruit: yea, though they bring forth , yet will I slay even the beloved fruit of their womb" (Ho. 9:16).

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:06PM
  • @10.00am - As I recall the Government did say something contrary, they would seek a double dissolution if forced to do deals with minor parties. They have obviously acted contrary to that though. It is in step with their general contrariness to most issues, like Mary, they seem happy sit and watch the garden grow, though the maids are distinctly lacking in their case.

    Commenter
    billy boy
    Location
    Neverland
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:37AM
  • @10:02. An evocative pic in so many ways! When you are digging, in Hockey-speak, does that also make you a lifter?

    Commenter
    Pluto
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:36AM
    • Don't you lean on a shovel as well, so that makes him a lifter and a leaner?

      Commenter
      Pieron
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:43AM
    • True. But, in the Hockey way of thinking, such a person, i.e., a person (particularly a young person) leaning on the spade for any length of time, said person must vote Labor. Because, by their very nature all Labor voters have an inclination to be leaners.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:51AM
  • The Democratic Labour Party is not the same party as the Democratic Labor Party, which disbanded in 1978. Several members who did not accept the decision to disband formed the new DLP, but the media persist in acting as if it is the same party. It is philosophically similar but not in all policy areas. For example, the new DLP’s opposition to land rights for Aborigines (“No land rights for ‘nomadic’ people: MP”, 16/9/2010) would break the hearts of those active in the original Democratic Labor Party, especially that of the late Ben Nona, the DLP candidate for Cook in the 1972 Queensland election, a Torres Strait Islander and a representative on the National Aboriginal Conference. Land rights were a key DLP policy. Frank Dowling, the DLP leader, went to the 1973 state election calling not only for land rights for Aborigines, not only for negotiation on royalties, but also for the protection of their sacred sites (“Plan for a Better Victoria”).

    After the disbandment, the officers of the Victorian DLP, with one exception, went back to being ALP supporters (three of the seven becoming members), a fact that makes all the nonsense about the DLP being inside the Liberal Party so entertaining.

    One of the problems the new DLP has its size. In 1977, the Victorian DLP had 13,571 people on its donors list. The Victorian DLP thought that 13,571 was not viable and decided to disband. When it made that decision, Jim Brosnan, the state secretary at the time said he did not want the DLP to be run from someone’s kitchen table. The new DLP is tiny and thus susceptible to takeover attempts and petty disputes.

    Chris Curtis
    (Vice President, Victorian Branch, Democratic Labor Party, 1976-78)

    Commenter
    Chris Curtis
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:36AM
    • Thank you for informing us.

      Commenter
      Lewis
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:55AM
  • Australians should demand a better class of politician.

    A person who is educated in Australian law, science, ethics, and can read, write, and give speeches.

    A professional who is proud to do their job.

    So unlike the rabble we have now.

    Commenter
    ij
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:31AM
    • Pay peanuts, get monkeys. The private sector is much more lucrative.

      Commenter
      billy boy
      Location
      Neverland
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:41AM
    • That sounds like a well-rounded person to me. But with the state of education imminent under the Pyne reforms, I don't think such an individual will be on the horizon any time soon.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:41AM
    • @ij:
      Educated politicians? Heaven forbid that we would have a ruling class unable to communicate with the rabble that elected them. Vote 1 to keep the current uneducated rabble we now have.

      Commenter
      JohnC
      Location
      Gosford NSW
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:47AM
    • You just eliminated labor and the Greens.

      Commenter
      Peter G
      Location
      Drummoyne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:03PM
  • Isn't it time Peta rechecked the Minister for Women and best friend to Indigenous Australia's diary and flight plan.
    We sort of forgave him for first saying he'd be in remote Australia in a Community during his first week in Govt.
    Then he said it would be the first week of this September, yes this week.
    Perhaps Air Force One got Mumbai mixed up with Nhulunbuy in the flight plan.
    He's such a silly sausage, always making idle promises he has no intention of keeping and thinking we just forget.
    Not to mention Indigenous Australians were dramatically impacted in the most punitive Budget of all time. Guess Coal, Uranium and jetsetting on the International stage to India is a higher priority than our marginalised First Peoples.

    Commenter
    A country gal
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:30AM
    • The first people need independence to mange their land and resources not be constrained by Greens/ALP policy like the Wild Rivers Act. White middle class people should not impose their airy fairy policies on these original land managers.

      Commenter
      enough is enough
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:34AM
    • Did they exist before the first fleet?

      Commenter
      Pieron
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:41AM
    • EIE My grandson doesn't own any land, but he deserves Health and Education services that every other Australian has access to.
      His mother, my daughter is white and a middle class Australian.
      So by your implication she should not have any control over his future.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:52AM
    • eie - there are lots of white middle class pollies currently meddling in the afairs of world people who do not belong in that demographic . . . . . a few names come to mind

      Commenter
      MST
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:01AM
    • @ A country gal" I'm no fan of this government, but let's give them SOME credit where it is due. In Modi, India has a PM who is unreservedly pro deruglation and has effectively announced that India is "open for business".

      I'm quite happy that he is in India staking a claim for Australia rather than genuflecting at some meaningless corroboree somewhere.

      Commenter
      A bit of balance
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:23AM
  • 10:23am. Eric is just so finicky!

    Commenter
    Pluto
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:29AM
    • More like crazy!

      Commenter
      Daniel
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:31AM
  • @Piped Piper. You need to read the Constitution...

    Commenter
    Anna
    Location
    Melbourne | VICTORIA
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:26AM
  • The ABS claims: full-time adult average weekly total earnings of $1516.90. So, 9% superannuation contribution equals $136.53 per week. Whereas 12% super contribution equals $182.04 [per week, with a difference of $45.51. Over ten years at compound interest rate of 5% the superannuation increase in savings is $ 27,012.17 x the 9 million workforce that is according to Shorten = $243,109,530,000.00, yes that’s billions. Even with a 50% margin for error Abbott has conned working people out of $121,554,765,000 billion over the next ten years in favor of big business, miners, and conglomerates as if their tax scams were not enough cream off the top at our expense.

    How anyone in the right mind can support this blatant thievery by moving billions from the many to the few is beyond all understanding of fairness and integrity.

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:23AM
    • People can still increase their contributions. It's their money.

      By the way, the 12% rate wasn't to kick in for some years.

      In the meantime the money remains in control of the wage earner who can use it as they please.

      Commenter
      Puzzled
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:26AM
    • See Pen, you didn't need to to use your Olevetti adding machine.

      Commenter
      enough is enough
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:30AM
    • Go and read the Henry review Pen, it goes into great detail on this and will show how wrong Shorten is on this.
      Pure and false theatrics by Labor and the Union owned super funds.

      Commenter
      John P
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:30AM
    • @Puzzled - yes they can use is they please and then after they have spent it all they can go on the pension increasing the pension deficit we are told is all important, unless of course there is a short term political gain now. They can't have it both ways.

      Commenter
      Lance
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:31AM
    • Pen, you have fallen hook line and sinker for BS’s BS campaign that he in fact himself supported, you lot are like lemmings, you will follow BS Bill over a cliff if he led you there, when will Labor supporters develop a mind of their own, are they too thick to actually get this lie by labor, if you want more in your super, you can put it in and still pay the same amount of tax as you would had it gone in via a compulsory method, go and see you HR manager. Bill is full of BS.

      Commenter
      Peter G
      Location
      Drummoyne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:34AM
    • Puzzled

      I hate to mention the screaming obvious, but the 0.5% superannuation increase increments were increases which no longer apply, therefore, the average worker cannot spend or save what has been withdrawn by Abbottism.

      It is nothing but a massive transference of wealth from workers to employers, big business, miners, and conglomerates.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:39AM
    • Don't worry Pen, all that extra money will instead be paid to workers in wages. A flying pig told Tony Abbott this would happen. The flying pig said there was no chance whatsoever employers wouldn't pay this money in wages.

      Commenter
      The Fonz
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:41AM
    • Pen, all that has changed is the portion of super contributions that is compulsory. The total amount allowed as concessionaly taxed contributions remains the same @ $25K/year, $35K if you're over 50. BTW, the increases are in increments of 0.25%.

      Commenter
      Lewis
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:54AM
    • Pen apparently it's for our own good.
      The LNP should know, being our betters and all.
      Workers should be happy to be ripped off like this, because it makes business, including Palmer ( he wont be paying the super increase or the mining tax - because he is so pro ordinary Australians) and the LNP happy.
      That's what really matters.

      Commenter
      Lyn
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:01AM
    • Lyn, OR the Price on Carbon.
      Clive is all about Clive.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:13AM
    • @Lewis.
      All proposed increases are in 0.50% increments, however these will now not commence until 2021/22, as opposed to the original Labor legislation which had them increasing annually from this year on-wards until a maximum 12% contribution rate was reached in 2019/20. You do the maths to work out your lost contributions under the amendment.

      Commenter
      Jezza
      Location
      Hobart
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:27AM
    • Jazza, I am not losing any at all as I contribute the maximum allowed, which is far more than 12% of my wages. If you think the SGC is coming out of employers' pockets you're dreamin.

      You're right about the increments, my mistake.

      Commenter
      Lewis
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:43AM
  • The DLP is irrelevant because Abbott has stolen their act.

    Commenter
    Lord Lucan
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:18AM
    • Tony Abbott defender of the faith, prothletiser to school children and blurrer of the distinction between church and state.

      Commenter
      RTP
      Location
      Sawtell
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:10AM
  • Caption for 9:51: "These sunglasses are abolutely useless."

    Commenter
    Gigondas
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:15AM
    • Gag of the day so far @Gig

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:34AM
    • More likely caption: " Yeah, but if this protection glasses stuff was say on your back, it wouldn't protect you against a Sussex Street knife attack, would it?"

      Commenter
      Moving Forward
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:27PM
  • Shame that Bishop and Abbott aren't around. Would love Mr Short on asking tough question to ask what we are doing getting involved in a confrontation between NATO and Russia? Investigate MH17 but stay out of the politics and focus on home Mr Abbott. Then again Mr Shorten won't ask a question without the normal stock standard "this is unfair on Australian families"

    Commenter
    Piped Piper
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:15AM
    • Oh - the LNP apparently don't believe in playing on the global stage . . .

      "It's all very good for Kevin Rudd to be solving the problems of the world. What about the problems of Australia?" Mr Abbott asked in 2009. Deputy Liberal leader Julie Bishop accused Mr Rudd of harbouring an "obsession with chasing the global limelight"

      Commenter
      MST
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:36AM
  • Caption for 9:22: "You put your right leg in, you put your right leg out..."

    Commenter
    Gigondas
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:11AM
    • Remember the. Hokey Pokey act in the Senate by the "Lifter".

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:46AM
  • 9.51 Shorten wonders were the DLP have gone? Hilarious, just ask your faceless man Farrell or Minister Andrews where they are.
    You don't need to be a rocket scientist to see where they moved when the Party was diminishing. Vic Labor is full of them.
    The PM's favourite TV show was BA's "Point of View".
    Bill, too funny!

    Commenter
    A country gal
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:09AM
  • Abbott's line to Bill yesterday on superannuation was smart - Bill, are you saying that Labor policy is to reinstate the changes ?

    In other words, what is the ALP policy on this one - cash now or saving later ?

    Commenter
    Hacka
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:06AM
    • The only one with any extra cash is the employer - I challenge the LNP to find any employer that is going to hand out extra money that would otherwise have gone in Super on July 1 - mine won't be. I also didn't get a pay rise when corporate tax rates fell July 2014 . . . .

      Commenter
      Really ?
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:12AM
    • Why should Bill have to provide Labor policy two years out from the next election? He is there to keep the government in check, not make policy. It's what Oppositions do. Ask Tone. He still thinks he's in Opposition

      We are not going to deflected from concentrating the mess the LNP is making of things

      Commenter
      stevek
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:12AM
    • Smart maybe, but there's no need for Labor to get railroaded into announcing anything that was triggered 5 minutes before in a secret deal with CP.

      Keeping the powder dry. I suspect there will be something announced by Labor closer to the election, can't imagine they would allow a pause of 7 years to stay. Looking like there will be some good platforms to run on - actually having an environmental policy being another.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:16AM
    • Since it was Labor policy it was a pretty stupid question wasn't it Hacka

      Commenter
      qlder
      Location
      Brisbane
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:19AM
    • So Really?
      If there was no change where do you think the money was going to come from? It would have been a deduction from the wages and a hit to the take-home pay of the employee. The employer was under no obligation to absorb the increase.

      Commenter
      Puzzled
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:20AM
    • Well if its Labor policy then Shorten will have no problem putting it in place within the first three months of his Prime Minister-ship if Labor is elected.

      Commenter
      Sarah of Carnegie
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:21AM
    • I suppose it's in Abbott's interest to shift focus on the opposition rather than what the government's doing.
      His fanboys are doing the same.

      Commenter
      gobsmack
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:28AM
    • yes it is the usual twisting and turning to deflect from his own culpability in the matter.

      The reality is that why should he say what he is or isn't going to do in 2 years time? It may well be that the government gets some guts in the meantime and does a proper review of the superannuation system rather than this part solution that only targets the less well off rather than the big donor well offs.

      If there really a problem with the growth in age pensions the government has just trashed it. I suppose it makes good short term political spin as they can claim they have inc wages when the reality is that all they have done is keep wages where they are as there is no compulsion for employers to increase wages. So they take away something real and make it look like they are giving something but it is all an illusion. They are just playing a dice under the cups game and spinning so hard they hope no-one will see where the lie is.

      Commenter
      Lance
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:29AM
    • Hacka, I've assumed you mean "smart" as in a "smart" alec response one would expect from a politician and not as in "clever", "genius" or even "canny"? They all do it - look at your hero's record in parliament.
      Your comment, however, will leave your usual respondents smarting.

      Commenter
      MichaelP
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:41AM
    • Hacka,
      wanted to apologise for yesterday alleging you were a dual on line personality with Smack, after you signed Smack's name to your comment, in response to Smack's comment.
      Should have done it yesterday.
      For those who missed it and are interested, the Mod confirmed that Hacka and Smack are not one and the same.

      Commenter
      Lyn
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:49AM
    • Seems I owe an apology also Hacks, I did think you were doing a pretty tough act to be both.

      @Lyn, and re Tess and the three yold, I let snide comments like that be owned by the owner. cheers.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:00AM
    • Many economists are suggesting that to keep the super changes is actually regressive in nature. Many lower income people pay less than 15 cents in the dollar as a marginal rate, yet their super is taxed at 15% flat on the way in, meaning they're worse off.

      Additionally, by parking funds into long term super rather than having the funds available now for bills etc has net present value impacts. In other words, poorer people are worse off over the longer term.

      Come on Bill - give us the whole story.

      Lyn - no worries - if we stick with the issues rather than the commenters we'll all be better off for it.

      Commenter
      Hacka
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:03AM
  • pp and eie I cannot understand why you keep reading the SMH and making these comments when you are so DT and LNP fans.

    Commenter
    snowbunny
    Location
    snwymntns
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:04AM
    • It's called trolling. Although I suspect eie is a reverse troll (i.e. make statements puporting to support the other side that are so ridiculous that they reflect badly on the other side). Yes, eie is a closet Green!

      Commenter
      Gigondas
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:23AM
    • Now that is below the belt.

      Commenter
      enough is enough
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:31AM
    • Gotta love the luvies, it's always a conspiracy!!

      Commenter
      ADP
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:34AM
    • Gig LOL the sort of Green that grows on your bread.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:34AM
    • eie- you mean it’s not true? Pity. I was sure you were really Adam Bandt.
      ADP- yes, I agree, irony is a difficult concept to grasp.
      acg- true!

      Commenter
      Gigondas
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:42AM
    • All welcome here in my view - would be no fun if everyone agreed about everything.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:15AM
    • @Gig - so in the same vein as Stephen Colbert? Hmm, could be onto something....

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:17AM
  • Gee what a pity it wasn't Tony Three Words announcing his reignation

    Commenter
    srg
    Location
    nambucca heads
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:03AM
  • Joe Bullock might become the DLP Leader now.

    Commenter
    Jenny
    Location
    Perth
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 10:03AM
    • It won't matter. Clive and the PUPs are taking over all aspects of government. Where is Clive anyway? Probably still recovering from his major achievement on behalf of the Australian p... Oh, sorry, on behalf of Clive Palmer yesterday. He must be exhausted, but proud.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:15AM
    • Yes, has the right credentials, quite a few to choose from both in the duopoly.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:17AM
  • Why can't Labor instead of running a spoiling campaign actually rebuff the LNP with facts. i.e. Joe Hockey raises a number of facts that are misused, show that, but importantly give people policy to disprove rubbish such as the Superannuation changes and what that means for people's pockets.

    Commenter
    Lindsay
    Location
    Stamford
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:59AM
    • Because emotion, not facts is what the former Opposition did so well - ie fear-mongering.

      Remember that unchallenged "budget emergency" for, I dunno, over three years?

      It helps if you have News Corp on side.

      Commenter
      Team Australia's Publicist
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:13AM
    • Labor does not have to announce any policies until a week before the next Federal Election, the LNP waited until just a few days before the last election to announce their policies so what's "Good for the Goose is good for the Gander". I see Hacka is another LNP DT fan who can't keep away from this page.

      Commenter
      snowbunny
      Location
      snwymntns
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:28AM
    • I would't call anything Joe raises a "fact". More like a hypothesis or contention.

      Commenter
      tasch2
      Location
      Mornington Peninsula
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:43AM
  • Again the Greens carry the moral compass by demanding parliament approval before any ADF member is put in arms way before enacting an act of war overseas.

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:59AM
    • That compass only points to the Far East Comrade.

      Commenter
      enough is enough
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:27AM
  • Shouldn't Madigan resign from the senate seeing as though the people voted for the party not the individual?

    Commenter
    Piped Piper
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:56AM
    • I was just wondering the same question. When can a member resign and hold their seat and when do they have to relinquish their seat to the Party that supported them?

      Commenter
      Mark
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:08AM
    • I believe our electoral system works on the basis of an individual being elected, and that Party affiliation is immaterial, despite the fact that most wouldn't be elected without the Party name.

      There are many recent examples of individuals staying as active Members after leaving their Party - look at NSW.

      Commenter
      BC
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:18AM
    • That is not how the system works. Otherwise many Major party politicians would be gon.

      Commenter
      Daniel
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:19AM
    • Every member of parliament, whether Senate or House of Reps, is elected as an individual. We actually do not vote for any political party, although modern politics makes it feel as if we do. Examples of independents who have resigned from their party without giving up their seat in Parliament include Colston (LP), Kernot (Democrats) and Thompson (ALP).

      Commenter
      Constitution
      Location
      Lucinda
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:23AM
    • He is there to represent Victoria in the States House. He will continue to represent Victoria.

      Commenter
      tasch2
      Location
      Mornnington Peninsula
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:29AM
    • Thanks for clearing that up. Aware about HoR but wasn't sure what that meant for the senate.

      Commenter
      Piped Piper
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:33AM
    • PP, Madigan is from Ballarat and whilst representing the DLP his vote goes well beyond the DLP. Manufacturing being one of his chief platforms and is very much an issue affecting the region. The Ballarat Courier is linked to the Age, to which I often read. He has a big personal following, which he obviously realises.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:42AM
    • Aren't the "above the line" votes supposed to be for the party?

      Commenter
      gobsmack
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:07AM
    • I think you'll find that above-the-line only gives a pre-defined preference order. They still class the selection to be apportioned to the individual.

      Commenter
      BC
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:17AM
    • @gobsmack, BC is correct. 'Above the line' voting is a vote in accordance with an allocation that has already been lodged. It saves the time for both the voter and the electoral commission and reduces mistakes such as double-numbering. An 'above the line' vote does not need to be a vote for a particular party eg the 'preference swaps' by which Ricky Muir (AMEP) was elected in Victoria.

      Commenter
      Constitution
      Location
      Lucinda
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 12:03PM
  • The Indians and Welsh must wonder what they have done to deserve being the reciepients of such largess as a visit from Captain Truthless and Bishop the Younger. Obviously the Budget Emergency does not preclude sharing our wisdom on all foreign mattters on far shores. More OS jollies from the pair with the floowing views:

    "It's all very good for Kevin Rudd to be solving the problems of the world. What about the problems of Australia?" Mr Abbott asked in 2009. Deputy Liberal leader Julie Bishop accused Mr Rudd of harbouring an "obsession with chasing the global limelight".

    Commenter
    MST
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:54AM
  • Prayers? For this bunch? What they need is an overdose of miracles. They should understand the fundamental flaw of Abbottism: it forces Australians to compete for ever shrinking government funded programs. It does not share the wealth of the country with too much wealth going to the wealthy and big business, which much is owned by overseas conglomerates.

    If they don't understand this they may indeed say prayers to the biblical God which they do not understand.

    Err, fancy saying prayers to long dead Sadducee high priests called gods?

    Commenter
    Pen of hrba
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:54AM
  • Hmmm...I wonder if the next new political party could be Xenophon and Madigan. The New Democrats perhaps? Better than being sold a PUP.

    Commenter
    stevek
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:52AM
  • I know hyperbole (or hyper-bowl, as Julia Gillard would have it) is stock in trade for our fearless leaders, but Christopher may be slightly over the top describing ‘over generous’ redundancy payments as a ‘moral hazard’. I think of moral hazards as more along the lines of children being locked up because the government doesn’t like their parents, or getting into politics to further your own business interests, or talking to Eddie Obeid.

    Commenter
    Gigondas
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:51AM
    • I'd say Milne is struggling for relevance. The really interesting thing will be the inevitable leadership battle in the Greens.

      Commenter
      Puzzled
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:11AM
  • Madigan says it has become "apparent" to him that the DLP's own worst enemies are "within it's own ranks". Sounds like the Labor Party!

    Commenter
    Catherine
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:49AM
    • and Looks like the LNP.

      Commenter
      tasch2
      Location
      Mornington Peninsula
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:53AM
    • As the only member, internal divisions sounds like the left side of his brain was fighting with his right side

      Commenter
      Oliver
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:05AM
  • "..address the "moral hazard" that "overly generous" redundancy payments create"

    How about the government deals with the overly generous payments toi directors which they don't deserve if the comapny is going down the gurgler. The priority should be that workers are properly paid for a scenario not of their making.
    While we are at it, why not tax the overly generous pensions and entitlements of MPs. I wonder how this would help the budget get back into the black.

    Commenter
    stevek
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:48AM
  • No doubt Abetz will be dutchessing Madigan, telling him that anti-abortionists are welcome in the Liberal Party if he wishes to join. They're even allowed to support the ridiculous theory that abortion causes breast cancer.

    Commenter
    rudy
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:46AM
    • Careful, "Labor For Life".

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:18AM
    • Labor for Life is a faction of Labor. you'd be surprised who belongs to it.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:48AM
  • Interesting breaking news story about the over 65's online shopping spree. Shorten and Keating would make you think anyone over 65 was destitute and living on bread and water. Now we find out they are splashing the cash on everything from groceries, grog and they love department stores. Doing it tough eh?

    Commenter
    enough is enough
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:44AM
    • They buy groceries? I used to dream of being able to buy groceries...

      Commenter
      Gigondas
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:53AM
    • Maybe they can't afford cars . . .

      Commenter
      MST
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:56AM
    • Again the voice of no reason, which belongs to a person who does not live on the OAP, because if Enough did live on the OAP we would not be reading such garbage.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:02AM
    • "Shorten and Keating would make you think anyone over 65 was destitute and living on bread and water." Hopefully, thanks, in part at least, to a reasonably generous welfare system, most are not.

      Commenter
      MichaelP
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:10AM
    • Well eie maybe the over 65's find that it is much cheaper to buy online then in local shops, especially when the LNP are cutting back on people's benefits and pension increases later on, trying to save some money this way for a rainy day, God knows they need all the help they can get under this shambles of a Govt. TA off overseas again and they complained about Kevin Rudd, if you Google he number of OS trips TA has done in the year since he became PM I am sure you will get a shock.

      Commenter
      snowbunny
      Location
      snwymntns
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:36AM
  • What is the DLP history? Does the Democratic in the name imply the Labor Party is undemocratic thus the differentiation?

    Commenter
    Piped Piper
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:42AM
    • Piped hacka enough centre is at it again. I suppose you didn't notice the different spelling of labor/labour. Same dribble new day.

      Commenter
      AdrianL
      Location
      Brisbane
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:58AM
    • No PP there's an A for Austraya in front of it.

      After the last 12 months of visonless govt maybe they should change to LLLP - Land of the Luddite Labor Party

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:01AM
    • The DLP resulted from the 1955 split in the ALP. The DLP essentially represented the Conservative Catholic wing of the party hence the "democratic" part is more akin to the Democratic Peoples Republic of North Korea. No wonder our Prime Minister was a member of the DLP for a time.

      Commenter
      tasch2
      Location
      Mornington Peninsula
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:54AM
  • Madigan was being White Anted!!!!

    Commenter
    Daniel
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:40AM
    • No! By whom? Senator Madigan says, 9:am, "that it has become 'apparent' to him that the DLP's enemies are 'within its own ranks'." Perhaps in this government there are degrees of Catholicism, with some Catholics being more Catholic than others.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:02AM
    • So he was being lined up to be staked?

      Commenter
      Sarah of Carnegie
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:23AM
    • @Sarah of Carnegie. Then he is probably in line for a sainthood some time in the future. Coming to a stained glass window near you!

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:28AM
    • How about a knighthood, not so grizzly. Besides we haven't had one for 6 months or so.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:20AM
  • Madigan and Xenophon dont like how they are treated by the government? Are these guys serious? Last i checked Australia doesnt lock up opposition parties on trumped up charges.

    Commenter
    Piped Piper
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:36AM
    • Last time I checked amendments to Legislation were also presented to Members allowing sufficient time for review and debate.

      Commenter
      tasch2
      Location
      Mornington Peninsula
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:42AM
    • Look at Abetz track record....

      Commenter
      Daniel
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:44AM
    • Andrews>Haneef?

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 11:15AM
  • As the "Captain" is off playing Cowboy and Indians I hope Warren Truss can stay awake.

    Commenter
    Hiawatha
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:24AM
    • Odds on the Captain detouring at some point for a photo op loading a Hercules? 10-1 on.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:59AM
  • Looks like Groundhog Day all over again for Shorten and Milne. Unable to muster a coherent argument and no policies.

    Commenter
    enough is enough
    Location
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:23AM
    • Did you used to play Eeyore at the school fete?

      Commenter
      tasch2
      Location
      Mornington Peninsula
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:44AM
    • How about you focus on the performance of the LNP? After all, they're the ones charged to govern the country for the next 2 years.

      Commenter
      gobsmack
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:47AM
    • Started early today @EiE?

      Ironic you are talking about coherent arguments - you've raised none that I can ever remember, but just use this site to dump on people you don't like. How about trying to contribute?

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:57AM
    • Davemac, that's so cruel. Breathtakingly accurate, but cruel.

      Commenter
      BC
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:13AM
    • What polices are oppositions to come up with. Your one term tony showed us all oppositions need to do is come up with bogan slogans. Or is this a plea for help because the LNP is in tatters at the moment?

      Commenter
      Pieron
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:31AM
    • @davemac that's not in his Duty Statement.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:44PM
    • E=E, one Hacka is enough - we don't need Hacka-lite. Or are you doing this for the Terror cross-over audience?

      Commenter
      jofek
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 2:40PM
    • @gobsmack. Only two years to go. Before you know it, it will be one and a half, then one and then it will be on. But I'm already ready.

      Commenter
      Pluto
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 3:03PM
    • EIE, not as bad pathetic as Abbott and Hockey's budget emergency - repeal carbon and mining taxes, propose a $60 billion PPL scheme over ten years, spending $250 million on school chaplains, GP co payment that doesn't go to consollidated revenue .... now that's an olympic incoherent argument.

      But then there are goodies and badies, dames and knights, Sh@t happens, fireman the stupidity from Abbott goes on and on.

      Commenter
      fitzy of kogarah
      Location
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 5:15PM
  • Is it fair to expect that things won't be quite as lively as normal with Wazza Truss sitting in the PM's chair ?

    I'm a bit worried that he might take a nanna nap during Question Time, maybe Pyne can give him a prod if required.

    Commenter
    Hacka
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:21AM
    • Gotta agree with that @H. Wazza. Like it.

      Commenter
      davemac
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:58AM
    • Yes Wazza Truss is very plain but safe vanilla.....

      Commenter
      Smack
      Location
      City of the Fallen
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 10:36AM
    • Acting PM on 3% of the national vote. Less than Palmer and a third of the Greens vote. If Joyce gets to be the next National leader it won't be so funny.

      Commenter
      Dr Bombay
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 1:00PM
  • Morning all.

    Interesting comments on AM this morning from Nick X and John M over the way that the mining tax/super changes were handled through the senate re backroom deals with PUP and little notice of changes. I think there was a message of 'what goes around comes around' there. A supposed win for the Libs, but at what cost?

    Commenter
    davemac
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    September 04, 2014, 9:16AM
    • Morning : )

      Commenter
      Sharron
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 04, 2014, 9:55AM
Comments are now closed