Saturday, December 06, 2008

Liberal Messages Saturday 6th December

People smugglers arrested: Will Kevin Rudd now admit to and urgently address the problem?
With almost daily revelations of Indonesian government interceptions of people smugglers heading for Australia, Prime Minster Rudd has to acknowledge he has a serious problem, and take action.

Many parents and industry still left in the dark
The statement today by the Receivers of ABC Learning has been welcomed by the Opposition but still leaves many questions unanswered.

Coalition Amends Digital-TV Bill
Despite Government opposition, the Senate last night insisted on inserting a provision into the legislation that requires the Government to publicly identify and report on efforts to rectify digital transmission blackspots. Today in the House, the Government backed down and accepted the Coalition’s sensible amendment.

Government shuts down greenhouse gas project on eve of climate talks
As the world goes to Poland for high level talks on climate change, the Rudd Government has shut down an Australian not-for-profit organisation working to reduce damaging greenhouse gas emissions... But Peter Garrett is refusing to answer questions on the issue – he’s hiding behind his department. Journalists calling his office are being diverted to public servants who are being left to explain the Government’s decision.

No show no pay - no way
Last night the Opposition and Senator Nick Xenophon combined to defeat Labor’s legislation... Under Labor’s defeated Bill, job seekers can miss up to 6 appointments in a 6 month period without reasonable excuse, before possibly incurring an 8 week non-payment period.

International Volunteer Day 2008
Over five million Australians undertake voluntary work each year, contributing an estimated $70 billion to the economy.

Safe Work Australia
The Deputy Prime Minister has walked away from safety consultation at the highest level by refusing to incorporate the Senate amendments in the Safe Work Australia Bill.

Carr did not use "the same form of words"
Minister Gillard has claimed in Question Time that today’s statement in the Senate by Minister Carr, the basis upon which the Coalition has supported the Schools Assistance Bill, is nothing new, and only reflects “the same form of words” she herself used in Hansard.

Carr must act on State Government discrimination against Australian-made cars
Today’s 22.2 percent decline in new car sales are further confirmation that Australian car and components manufacturers are under severe pressure.

Rudd's 'nothing' announcement will not stop people smugglers
Today’s National Security announcement is yet another example of Mr Rudd’s do-nothing strategy with the re-badging of Customs to the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service.

Senate calls for critical infrastructure transparency
Today the Senate has supported a number of measures to ensure transparency in regards to the Government’s Nation-building Funds Bill.

Rudd's security statement ignores the fundamentals
The National Security Statement contains some serious inconsistencies - the glaring one being Mr Rudd’s refusal to sell uranium to India subject to IAEA safeguards.

Conroy must commit to broadband due diligence
The Australian public must be given the opportunity to scrutinise and comment on critical regulatory advice and expert panel bid recommendations before the Rudd Labor Government makes any binding decision to pour $4.7 billion of taxpayers’ money into its troubled National Broadband Network (NBN).

National water reforms clouded by grubby north-south pipeline deal
Today’s unanimous passing of The Water Amendment Bill includes the Coalition’s Senate Declaration which demands the Rudd Government stops the North-South pipeline, honours the Living Murray environmental plans and helps the people of the Lower Lakes.

Statement to the Senate clarifies curriculum
The Government has compromised on the inflexibility of the National Curriculum. Kim Carr in the Senate today shifted the Government’s position through the mechanism of a Statement to the Senate.

Marginally better than a whiteboard - Sports funding under Labor
Any notion that the Labor Party doesn’t indulge in pork barrelling has been blown sky high today after revelations that over 91 per cent of funding promised by Labor to local sporting clubs at the last election went to Labor targeted marginal seats.

Peter Dutton Daily Telegraph Blog - Gillard's partner appointment part of wider spin cycle
Tim is the partner of Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard. Now Tim is probably a nice guy, but his appointment (without pay) sadly is more about helping Julia Gillard’s march to the Lodge. The appointment was made in the absence of Kevin Rudd (he was overseas again) and since then he has refused to back the appointment.

Turnbull interview with Ray Hadley (Radio 2GB) - Interest rates, economy, Bill of Rights, Fair Work Bill, second Sydney Airport, Julia Gillard
Assuming growth is slowing and that’s what everyone expects it to be, that will mean less business activity, it will mean more unemployment. That is why we keep on saying the three top priorities of the Government should be jobs, jobs, jobs. They don’t talk about jobs very much, they particularly don’t talk about the 2.1 million jobs created during the 11 and a half years of the Coalition government.

Release of the September Quarter National Accounts
The Government has received warnings from the Reserve Bank and the OECD about the harm that low confidence will have on our economy’s ability to withstand the global economic downturn and continue to grow.

Kim Carr's one-year report card
In Opposition Senator Carr promised the world, in Government he did worse than deliver nothing – he actually took the sector backwards.

Bank Guarantee in effect while significant questions remain unanswered
The Government’s bungled bank guarantee has recently come into effect, yet the Government still has no answer to the market distortion it has caused.

Julie Bishop interview with Marius Benson (ABC News Radio) - Government sends mixed messages on interest rate cut, growth forecast, deficit....
The Opposition is of the view that the full rate cut must be passed on to mortgage holders, small businesses and credit card holders and this should be done immediately. The Government is sending mixed messages about passing on to consumers and families the benefit of the one per cent rate cut.

Labor Sells out Centrelink and staff
The minister for Human Services Senator Ludwig today attempted to brush aside the impacts of the arbitrary budget cut to Centrelink in the order of 3.25% that have resulted in a reduction of service and an increase in customer complaints by inferring that the staff of members of parliament should pick up the workload.

Minchin urges Government to embrace Coalition safeguards for Australian television viewers
The Government’s Bill, which will set a schedule for the phased switchover from analog television to digital by 31 December 2013, lacked appropriate safeguards to help ensure thousands-upon-thousands of Australians are not left without a television picture on switchover.

Oh no, Lindsay - Not again!
After yesterday criticising the voluntary use of superannuation funds in infrastructure, the Minister for Finance, Mr Tanner, today said it was already happening.

Mass exodus from aged care industry
The Rudd Government is failing to adequately fund the aged care sector, which has resulted in aged care providers refusing to apply for bed licences in this year’s round of licence allocations.

Leading economic body seriously questions Labor's troubled broadband approach
The Committee for Economic Development (CEDA) has today added its considerable voice to the groundswell of criticism of the Rudd Labor Government’s fundamentally flawed National Broadband Network (NBN) policy.

Ninth episode of people smuggling: Yes, we have a problem
The ninth boat carrying suspected asylum seekers being smuggled into Australia was intercepted late yesterday near Ashmore reef, off Western Australia. Thirty-five passengers and five crew are reported on board.

'Alcopops' - Another failed policy
The consumption of alcohol has incurred the largest growth of any household expenditure item in the last quarter of the National Accounts.

$500 million for shared equity mortgages to keep people in their homes
The Commonwealth Government should look to invest up to $500 million of funds allocated for residential mortgage backed securities to support shared equity loans to ensure mortgagees continue to have access to this viable option to reduce their mortgage burden, especially during the global financial crisis.

Border security - What is the government saying?
Today the Minister representing the Minister for Home Affairs, Senator Penny Wong, not only failed to reassure the public that our maritime border is not exposed by the naval personnel Christmas stand down, but also openly contradicted her colleague when claiming there would be no change in operational intensity in regard to border security.

Confusion and contradictions about disability funding indexation
Increased funding for disability services is always welcome, but the Rudd Government needs to spell out the detail around the National Disability Agreement.

More pressure on Rudd to act for Clyde farmers
The township of Bothwell and surrounding farm community is on its knees. The Prime Minister must consider this very legitimate request that he overturn the poor decision made by Minister Garrett which dismissed the emergency water release application.

International day of people with disability 2008
Throughout Australia events are being held to celebrate people with a disability and I encourage all Australians to get involved and support this great event.

Rudd government leaks but no answers
The Rudd Government has demonstrated its contempt for the Senate committee process by leaking answers to questions on notice to selected journalists, while still refusing to provide them directly to a committee.

Turnbull interview with Keith Conlon & Tony Pilkington (Radio 5AA) - Interest rates, Labor deficits, water, Julie Bishop...
Now the easiest thing is for a government to take no hard decisions and take the budget and of course the tax payers further and further into debt. So deficits should be a last resort, not an easy way out. And that’s why we’re not just going to give a leave pass to Labor to take our nation’s budget into the red.

Government fails to demand immediate and full interest rate cut for all
Today the Prime Minister has given Australian banks a leave pass to simply deliver today’s rate cut ‘as rapidly as possible’. The Treasurer and the Finance Minister have also indicated that Australian banks just need to pass on the cut in a ‘timely way’.

Rudd government fails to alleviate credit card pain
The Rudd Government has failed to put pressure on banks to pass on interest rate cuts to credit card holders.

Rudd Government divided on interest rate policy
Prime Minister Rudd and Finance Minister Tanner are at odds with Treasurer Swan on what the Government expects Australian banks to do when interest rates are cut.

What has Gillard got to hide on childcare data?
The Rudd Government has been slammed as “irresponsible” for not revealing important national data on childcare vacancy rates, as the industry struggles to deal with the current ABC Learning crisis.

Conroy deluded over broadband prices
Communications Minister Stephen Conroy was today unable to explain in Question Time how broadband prices could possibly be cheaper than they are now under the proposed funding model for his troubled National Broadband Network (NBN).

Gillard trips in Question Time
The Minister for Workplace Relations, Julia Gillard, did her best Comical Ali impersonation in question time today by denying that she had implemented Labor’s workplace relations policy as drafted.

Government in a state of confusion over infrastructure investment
This public contradiction is just the latest in the spat between Mr Tanner and Mr Albanese which was first revealed in October when Mr Tanner’s original legislation to establish the various infrastructure funds was pulled by Mr Albanese, minutes before it was to be introduced into Parliament.

Government concedes legislation was flawed on Schools Bill
Christopher Pyne, welcomed the Government’s backdown on two of the three key concerns the Opposition has had with the Schools Assistance Bill.

Julie Bishop Fairfax Blog - Mumbai attacks
While there has been an understandable outpouring of grief and frustration about these attacks, it is a sad fact that not all terrorist plots can be detected in advance and can be prevented.

Rudd and Swan must not mix messages on rate cuts
Kevin Rudd and Wayne Swan must stop mixing their messages when it comes to calling on banks to pass through interest rate cuts.

Labor shops around for a Coalition electorate for a second Sydney Airport
The merry-go-round of picking a site for Sydney’s second airport continues today, with the Federal Government again leaving open options which have been rejected by previous studies dating back to the 1940s.

Rudd must honour Senate declaration on the North-South Pipeline, the Murray and the Lower Lakes
The Senate tonight issued a formal Declaration on the future of the Murray as an amendment during concluding debate on the Water Amendment Bill.

Turnbull interview with Chris Uhlmann (AM programme) - Labor deficits, computers in schools cost blow-out, stimulus package, Julie Bishop, carbon...
The critical thing is the quality of the spending. You see what Kevin Rudd – having inherited probably the best public finances in the developed world from the outgoing Coalition government – what Kevin Rudd is seeking to get is a leave pass to have undisciplined and unbridled spending.

Michael Keenan speech - Fair Work Bill 2008 – Labor still stands for unemployment
Whilst the Parliament will spend the week debating workplace relations, it is only this side of the house that will actually address the central issue in this portfolio – that of job security.
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