Sunday, November 30, 2014

Sun Nov 30th Todays News

Victoria loses election
Victoria loses election, but it was part of the culture war where the LNP failed to engage. The LNP had balanced, but a left wing bias. The idea being a softly softly approach would not foment unrest. It was predicated on the belief that a centrist government could still be economically responsible. And the former LNP government did leave Victoria better off economically. Criticism of the government was overstated and orchestrated. But it is not the case that the ALP won (because the LNP lost), as the ALP are unreformed and still corrupt, with ties to the CFMEU which do not pass any simple scratch and sniff test. One positive is that the myth has been debunked that Kennett lost the election to Bracks because his ideas were too conservative and radical. Partisan press support for the ALP mean that all other things being equal, the ALP will win. Which means that for the LNP to win elections, it must be better than the ALP .. the LNP has to have ideas and drive and energy. The ALP can get by with running an economy well. They could hold government for a long time if they do that, but no ALP government has been responsible since the Hawke Keating years. And that only happened because the LNP used the senate to force responsibility. 

It is a positive vision, not a fear of unpopularity which will keep the LNP elected. A case in point is the Queensland LNP government of Campbell Newman which, because they made hard calls, is now polling well. Newman's seat had been threatened, but even that now seems secure. A failure of vision is exemplified by PUP. With Lambie gone, and the song playing "Who let the dogs out?" the party is imploding and failed to get a 2% result for Victoria's senate. Another blessing is the possibility of a forward movement on higher education reforms. Some sacrifices have to be made to the full reform to get the measures passed. 

PUP's irrational attack on Newman and their policy of matching ALP's voting record has constipated the budget reform initiatives. But now they are in play again. One important measure is the co-payment on medicare of $7. It is not a terrible measure to the poor. It is a responsible measure. But the senate battles leads one to wistfully consider the parliaments of NZ and Queensland. Only to consider them, because ALP style governments have been rapaciously bad for them in the recent past. If the LNP can hold on federally, compromise now on what it must, the benefit in the future will be an ALP shut out of the senate the following term. The ALP have broken every single one of their undertakings to the public in their opposition to every government budgetary reform. Mr Abbott, as opposition leader had passed many ALP bills. 
Culture wars
Union greed means Australia can't afford to build our own submarines. It is too expensive. Every dollar extra to build a submarine here is less submarine for the defence force. It is simply not responsible to try because the unions have pushed the price to over fifty percent of what can be achieved off shore. Meanwhile, the ABC is the kind of elitist organisation it derides, being expensive, contributing nothing but partisan politics which means that corruption is fostered by it, and communities hurt by it. The ABC will cut off a limb before trimming a nail for 5% cuts. Meanwhile, those angry feminists who derided a scientist for his t-shirt a few weeks ago have successfully made the t-shirt a hit sale item. Meanwhile Julie Bishop promotes a nuclear solution to energy concerns which addresses carbon dioxide issues. It would have to get past the anti nuclear scare campaign. Or fail because of the realisation that Carbon Dioxide is plant food. 
Historical perspectives on this day
In 3340 BC, Earliest believed record of an eclipse. In 1707, the second Siege of Pensacola came to end with the failure of the British to capture Pensacola, Florida. In 1718, King Charles XII of Sweden died during a siege of the fortress of Fredriksten in Norway. In 1782, American Revolutionary War: Treaty of Paris – In Paris, representatives from the United States and the Kingdom of Great Britain signed preliminary peace articles (later formalized as the 1783 Treaty of Paris). In 1786, the Grand Duchy of Tuscany, under Pietro Leopoldo I, became the first modern state to abolish the death penalty (later commemorated as Cities for Life Day). 

In 1803, in New Orleans, Spanish representatives officially transferred the Louisiana Territory to a French representative. Just 20 days later, France transferred the same land to the United States as the Louisiana Purchase. In 1804, the Democratic-Republican-controlled United States Senate began an impeachment trial of Federalist Supreme Court Justice Samuel Chase. In 1824, ground was broken at Allanburg, Ontario, for the building of the first Welland Canal. In 1829, First Welland Canal opened for a trial run, 5 years to the day from the ground breaking. In 1853, Crimean War: Battle of Sinop – The Imperial Russian Navy under Pavel Nakhimov destroyed the Ottoman fleet under Osman Pasha at Sinop, a sea port in northern Turkey. In 1864, American Civil War: Battle of Franklin – The Confederate Army of Tennessee led by General John Bell Hood mounted a dramatically unsuccessful frontal assault on Union positions commanded by John McAllister Schofield around Franklin, Tennessee, with Hood losing six generals and almost a third of his troops. In 1868, a statue of King Charles XII of Sweden was inaugurated in Stockholm's Kungsträdgården. In 1872, the first-ever international football match took place at Hamilton Crescent, Glasgow, between Scotland and England. In 1886, the Folies Bergère staged its first revue. 

In 1902, American Old West: Kid Curry Logan, second-in-command of Butch Cassidy's Wild Bunch gang, was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment with hard labor. In 1908, a mine explosion in Marianna, Pennsylvania, killed 154. In 1916, Costa Rica signed the Buenos Aires Convention, a copyright treaty. In 1934, the LNER Class A3 4472 Flying Scotsman became the first steam locomotive to be authenticated as reaching 100 mph. In 1936, in London, the Crystal Palace was destroyed by fire. In 1939, Winter War: Soviet forces crossed the Finnish border in several places and bombed Helsinki and several other Finnish cities, starting the war. In 1940, Lucille Ball married Desi Arnaz in Greenwich, Connecticut. In 1942, World War II: Battle of Tassafaronga; A smaller squadron of Japanese destroyers led by Raizō Tanaka defeated a U.S. cruiser force under Carleton H. Wright. In 1947,  1947–48 Civil War in Mandatory Palestine began, leading up to the creation of the state of Israel

In 1953, Edward Mutesa II, the kabaka (king) of Buganda was deposed and exiled to London by Sir Andrew Cohen, Governor of Uganda. In 1954, in Sylacauga, Alabama, United States, the Hodges meteorite crashed through a roof and hit a woman taking an afternoon nap in the only documented case of a human being hit by a rock from space. In 1966, Barbados became independent from the United Kingdom. In 1967, the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen became independent from the United Kingdom. Also, the Pakistan Peoples Party was founded by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, who became its first chairman. In 1971, Iran seized the Greater and Lesser Tunbs from the United Arab Emirates. In 1972, Vietnam War: White House Press Secretary Ron Ziegler told the press that there would be no more public announcements concerning American troop withdrawals from Vietnam due to the fact that troop levels were then down to 27,000. In 1981, Cold War: In Geneva, representatives from the United States and the Soviet Union began to negotiate intermediate-range nuclear weapon reductions in Europe. (The meetings end inconclusively on December 17.) In 1982, Michael Jackson's second solo album, Thriller was released worldwide. It would become the best-selling record album in history. In 1989, Deutsche Bank board member Alfred Herrhausen was killed by a Red Army Faction terrorist bomb. 

In 1993, American National Football League awarded 30th franchise to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Also, U.S. President Bill Clinton signed the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act (the Brady Bill) into law. In 1994, MS Achille Lauro caught fire off the coast of Somalia. In 1995, Official end of Operation Desert Storm. Also, U.S. President Bill Clinton visited Northern Ireland and spoke in favour of the "Northern Ireland peace process" to a huge rally at Belfast City Hall. He called terrorists "yesterday's men". In 1998, Exxon and Mobil signed a US$73.7 billion agreement to merge, thus creating ExxonMobil, the world's largest company. In 1999, in Seattle, United States, demonstrations against a World Trade Organization meeting by anti-globalization protesters caught police unprepared and forced the cancellation of opening ceremonies. Also, British Aerospace and Marconi Electronic Systems merged to form BAE Systems, Europe's largest defense contractor and the fourth largest aerospace firm in the world. In 2001, in Renton, Washington, United States, Gary Ridgway (aka The Green River Killer) was arrested. In 2004, longtime Jeopardy! champion Ken Jennings of Salt Lake City, finally lost, leaving him with US$2,520,700, television's biggest game show winnings. Also, Lion Air Flight 538 crash landed in Surakarta, Central Java, Indonesia, killing 26. In 2005,  John Sentamu became the first black archbishop in the Church of England with his enthronement as the 97th Archbishop of York. In 2012, an Ilyushin Il-76 cargo plane belonging to Aéro-Service, crashed into houses near Maya-Maya Airport during a thunderstorm, killing at least 32 people.
2013
When they murdered Lee Rigby, two Islamo Fascists raised their bloody hands to cameras and one said in a UK accent that such things were seen by women and children in his nation every day. He also spoke of an eye for an eye. The UK does not have a death penalty, but it is inconceivable that the two killers will ever be free. Regardless of their defence of the atrocity. People would not feel safe if it was generally believed that fantasists could run people over and butcher them while they were immobile. So it is very disturbing when the press do not report on why a group of thugs pushed through a front door of a house in Sydney and cut to pieces a young man in front of his mother and family. It scares the public to think such an attack is random. They want to know if it was drug inspired, or Islamo Fascist, or Bikie Gang. Without the cohesion of a story explaining to the public why everyone is safe, people feel threatened.

People feel threatened and they are, daily, by mainstream press partisanly pursuing conservatives while promoting left wing values. Media lies and their cover stories are discordant with reality. Desperate to engineer a policy back flip, Pyne's words are dissected, misrepresented and re-packaged. The truth is the ALP promoted bad policy, called Gonski, which would take money from tax payers and school kids and give it to ALP mates. This is called reform by the mass media who speak for the ALP while they are incapable. The truth is the federal government have no need to give money to public schools, because the states do. The federal government responsibly gives some money to private schools, because it would cost Australia too much if private schools were not viable. Private schools in Australia are either systemic or independent. Systemic school parents are generally not wealthy and their contributions are important to the wellbeing of education in Australia. Private students do not get more than public students from the public purse, and never have. What has happened is that the ALP took money away from their Gonski reform, but are demanding the conservatives return it to the budget. Parents are confused. One hairdresser I met recently is the breadwinner for her family. Her husband lost his job to ALP policy and she has one school age son and one pre school daughter. The hair dresser is highly educated, with a degree in computer science from a Vietnamese university and work experience in the computer industry. She is told by her son's public high school principal that the changes mean the school will have to cut classes and won't be able to buy computers. Also, she has been told private schools will not lose funding. The lies apparently spread by Chester Hill HS' Principal are not isolated. Parents are meant to be angry. But the cuts, were Pyne to cut Gonski entirely, would not cut a single program at any school. The only change will be that teachers will do what they are paid to do. If one truly believed the talk about teacher standards, that would mean everything was good. But the press would have you believe that Australian Teachers cannot function if some left wing extremists aren't paid a lot more.

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This column welcomes feedback and criticism. The column is not made up but based on the days events and articles which are then placed in the feed. So they may not have an apparent cohesion they would have had were they made up.
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For twenty two years I have been responsibly addressing an issue, and I cannot carry on. I am petitioning the Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott to remedy my distress. I leave it up to him if he chooses to address the issue. Regardless of your opinion of conservative government, the issue is pressing. Please sign my petition at https://www.change.org/en-AU/petitions/tony-abbott-remedy-the-persecution-of-dd-ball

Or the US President at
https://www.change.org/p/barack-obama-change-this-injustice#
or
https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/change-injustice-faced-david-daniel-ball-after-he-reported-bungled-pedophile-investigation-and/b8mxPWtJ or http://wh.gov/ilXYR

Mr Ball, I will not sign your petition as it will do no good, but I will share your message and ask as many of friends who read it, to share it also. Let us see if we cannot use the power of the internet to spread the word of these infamous killings. As a father and a former soldier, I cannot, could not, justify ignoring this appalling action by the perpetrators, whoever they may; I thank you Douglas. You are wrong about the petition. Signing it is as worthless and meaningless an act as voting. A stand up guy would know that. - ed

Lorraine Allen Hider I signed the petition ages ago David, with pleasure, nobody knows what it's like until they've been there. Keep heart David take care.


I have begun a bulletin board (http://theconservativevoice.freeforums.netwhich will allow greater latitude for members to post and interact. It is not subject to FB policy and so greater range is allowed in posts. Also there are private members rooms in which nothing is censored, except abuse. All welcome, registration is free.
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Happy birthday and many happy returns Simon Robert Lane and Jean Omari. Born on the same day across the years, along with
Finnish machine gun group
We got the football. We are steaming for success. We are not finished yet. Exiled to London is not very bad. One left hand is as good as another. Let us party. 
Matches
Hatches
Despatches
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How union greed torpedoed our subs

Piers Akerman – Saturday, November 29, 2014 (11:21pm)

The much-needed and long-overdue debate about replacing the nation’s ageing submarine fleet is too important to be jettisoned because of a single misguided comment.

Icon Arrow Continue reading 'How union greed torpedoed our subs'
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Lessons from Queensland’s political courage

Miranda Devine – Saturday, November 29, 2014 (5:22pm)

Campbell Newman is one leader who has challenged the entitlement class - and won.
Queensland’s lastest financial report for 2013-14, tabled last week, shows the Newman government has halved its budget deficit and reversed the massive growth rate of spending for the first time since the 1990s.
Newman slashed spending by $198 million, by cutting 14,000 jobs from the bloated public service bureaucracy, and eliminating “nice to have” programs.
He boasts of ramping up frontline services while also implementing controversial new laws on bikies and drug dealers, which have helped drive down the crime rate by 10-30 percent.
Newman suffered politically for those tough decisions, with opinion polls slumping so low earlier this year that pundits tipped he would lose his seat at next year’s state election.
But polls in recent months shows Newman’s personal popularity soaring, and the LNP’s vote improving.
The political lesson is that short term pain early in the electoral cycle is preferable to slow death by a thousand cuts. As Shakespeare wrote in Julius Caesar: “Cowards die many times before their deaths;? The valiant never taste of death but once.” 
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Perks and featherbeds: Time to reload on the ABC

Miranda Devine – Saturday, November 29, 2014 (11:23pm)

THIS is a tale of two Australias. In one Australia you have the increasingly derided wealth creators. In the other, you have the burgeoning new entitlement class – “leaners” who rely on big government to protect them from the disciplines of the market.
On the one hand, you have 7000 workers beavering away on Gina Rinehart’s Roy Hill mine in the Pilbara, which will throw off an annual 55 million tonnes of premium iron ore, worth $5 billion, once it’s completed next September.
The $12 billion investment in the mine, including building a heavy rail line 344km to Port Hedland, was borne entirely by Rinehart and her 30 per cent Asian equity partners, until she achieved debt ­financing of $8 billion this year, in the largest new mining project ­finance deal in history.
On the other hand, you have the ABC, the taxpayer-funded media leviathan which costs $1.1 billion a year and is squealing over a 5 per cent haircut.
The government’s problem is that it will not challenge the entitlement class. 
And none is more entitled than the ABC, with its fat employment contracts, generous superannuation, curious business plan, and even more curious ­approach to wealth creation.
For instance, you will never hear about the Roy Hill triumph on ‘Our ABC’ — apart from criticism from that bastion of integrity, the Construction, Forestry, Mining and ­Energy Union.
Two examples illustrate the ABC’s surreal approach to other people’s money. 
Example one: the ABC enterprise agreement, 2013-16, which covers an 8 per cent annual growth of wages and perks, including superannuation contributions of 17-20 per cent, more than double the rate of the private sector. 
The employment contract guarantees minimum 2.5-2.6 per cent pay rises every year. If you work Saturdays, you are paid time-and-a-half, Sundays is double time and public holidays double time-and-a-half. 
Then there are various allowances, for meals or television clothing, or if you live in an “isolated locality” — like Darwin. If you work in Kununurra you get an extra seven days annual leave. Maternity leave is 14 weeks, adoption leave is six weeks and supporting partners’ leave is two weeks. You get paid leave to move house or for “special religious ceremonial or cultural obligations”.
There is study leave of up to five hours a week. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees get a day’s paid leave each year to participate in NAIDOC Week.
All this and salaries which now outstrip their equivalents in the private sector.
Example two: in 2006, when Mark Scott was hired as ABC managing director, the 2005-06 annual report shows the salary to be about $430,000, including perks, ­although a rival contender for the job remembers the base salary ­offered at the time was more like $300,000.
Early in Scott’s reign, rumours were printed that he was in line for the BBC’s top job. Afraid of losing him, the board, then chaired by banker Maurice Newman, decided to give him a lavish pay rise of more than $200,000. They did this by ­reclassifying his position, making it one of the highest paid public service jobs in the country. The 2013-14 annual report shows Scott’s salary now to be $805,392.
Whether there was any truth in the BBC rumour is unknown, but what is known is that Scott’s benefactor at his previous employer Fairfax Media, CEO Fred Hilmer, was on his way out of the ailing company. Scott had little journalism experience when he was elevated to be Fairfax editorial director, but Hilmer, a management theory academic, was impressed by his Masters in Public Administration from Harvard.
In other words, the ABC board’s largesse may not have been merited. But it is telling that a board appointed by John Howard chose and then richly rewarded a managing director who went on to fortify and expand the very worst ABC tendencies. 
Halfway through a second five-year term, Scott has created a ­Sydney-centric empire which has entrenched the ABC’s leftist bias while shirking the regional responsibilities of its charter and ­expanding digital strategy deliberately to annihilate commercial competitors.
The only real instrument of control over the ABC available to any government is funding, and the feral reaction to the modest 5 per cent cut over five years proposed by Malcolm Turnbull shows the political dangers. Scott’s response has been to damage the government at its electoral base, by slashing at ­regional and rural services, disproportionately disadvantaging Coalition voters while beefing up digital spending.
This is tantamount to a declaration of war. The only answer for the government is to return fire, with a really significant funding cut to the ABC’s $1.1 billion budget. The furore could hardly be more than it is for the piddling cut ­already planned. 
And part of the savings could be used to create a new regional-only independent public broadcaster, with a charter to provide the service Australians love and expect from ‘Our ABC’. Call it the Regional Australian Broadcasting Corporation, R - ABC. 
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SISTERHOOD SAVES THE DAY

Tim Blair – Saturday, November 29, 2014 (11:42pm)

Thanks to an enormous publicity effort by feminists around the world, a hard-working female clothes designer in Oregon is now so overwhelmed with orders that she can barely keep up:

image

That’s around $28,000 worth of business, right there. Order your own shirt here.
(Via Mat)
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The Bolt Report today, November 30

Andrew Bolt November 30 2014 (5:56am)

On The Bolt Report at 10am and 4pm.
Editorial: Why do we pay the $27 million Human Rights Commission after its incredible bias?
Guests:  Immigration Minister Scott Morrison, former Labor advisor Cassandra Wilkinson, IPA boss John Roskam and Rowan Dean, Australian Spectator editor, Financial Review columnist and Sky News commentator.
We’ll discuss the Victorian election result, the message to Tony Abbott and more.
The videos of the shows appear here.
UPDATE
Scott Morrison defies Bill Shorten to try gloating in NSW or Queensland:
ANDREW BOLT:
... the Labor Party ran Tony Abbott’s pictures on all the advertising outside every polling booth in Victoria yesterday. You don’t think there’s a message that you should be getting?
SCOTT MORRISON:
Well, I think in every election, whether it’s State or Federal, every Government is going to look at what the issues were there, and what the messages are. And no sensible government would not do that. But at the same time, when you look around the country - I mean, in NSW, here, the Baird Government is 10 points ahead. The Newman Government’s eight points ahead. What I saw last night was a very cockish Bill Shorten, frankly overreaching last night, as he sought to make himself the centre of attention, which is Bill Shorten’s stock-in-trade. He always thinks it’s always about him. What the Victorian election was about yesterday was what was happening in Victoria, and to the extent that there are issues that the Federal Government has to look at in the context of that, then of course we will.
The transcript of my full interview with Morrison:


Icon Arrow Continue reading 'The Bolt Report today, November 30'
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Another costly barnacle being removed

Andrew Bolt November 30 2014 (5:50am)

Another barnacle being scraped, but at still more cost to the Budget:
STAY-AT-HOME mums and dads will secure a five-year freeze on their university loans under a breakthrough deal to deliver higher education reforms.
In an attempt to kill Labor’s ‘$100,000 degrees’ campaign, the Abbott Government will also dump plans to hike university loan interest rates.
Crucially, the reforms would however still allow universities to set their own fees and deregulate the system.
Education Minister Christopher Pyne has reached agreement to deliver the concessions in a last-ditch attempt to secure Senate support for university reform before Christmas…
The proposal will cost the government $7 million in cash over the next four years. However, in accrual terms the impact will be $270 million. This is because HECS debts are banked in the budget as an asset...<
The HECS pause for mums and dads is a measure designed to woo Victorian cross bencher Senator John Madigan… Mr Pyne now has three of the six Senate votes he required to introduce higher education reforms because Liberal Democrats Senator David Leyonhjelm and SA Senator Bob Day are open to the idea of university reform.
The Abbott Government also has a better prospect of securing Clive Palmer's support for the reforms now that Jacqui Lambie has left the party because WA Senator Dio Wang is sympathetic to university reform.  Senators believe that Mr Palmer will be keen to cut a deal on university reforms to reinforce his continued relevance despite Senator Lambie's decision to quit the party.
(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.)
But still a vote short. 
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Billions of reasons for Joe Hockey to defy Abbott on the co-payment

Andrew Bolt November 30 2014 (5:41am)

No wonder Hockey is hanging on to his dead tax:
JOE Hockey is insisting that the $7 GP fee is not dead simply to ensure he can keep the billion dollar measure on his budget bottom line according to senior Liberals…
Mr Abbott’s supporters have again insisted that the policy “is dead’’ in the Senate but they do not want to formally scrap the measure.
The reason is that the Treasurer wants to keep the $3.6 billion raised through the GP tax on the budget books ahead of the Mid Year Economic Fiscal Outlook, according to senior Liberals. 
If the government was to formally abandon the policy, the Treasurer would blowout the growing budget deficit by another $3.6 billion ahead of MYEFO which will be released before Christmas…
Mr Abbott’s supporters have hit back at the Treasurer accusing him of being lazy and “bellowing’’ over the GP mess. One senior Liberal claimed Mr Hockey “went off his t**s’’ about the Prime Minister’s office briefing journalists that the policy was to be dumped.
In an extraordinary personal attack, one minister said Mr Hockey was a sook. Another senior Liberal said he was “erratic’’ because he’s either “full bottle or on holidays and there’s nothing in between.’’
Starting to sound terminal, this knifing.
Sam Maiden:
(T)he mystery of what Tony Abbott is going to do about the $7 GP tax has finally been solved…
It’s dead’’ according to senior Liberals. It simply has no prospect of getting through the Senate. The only problem is that if you tell the truth and actually announce that, you blow a $1 billion hole in Treasurer Joe Hockey’s costings for the end-of-year budget update. It’s already on the budget books.
This is why the Treasurer chucked a wobbly over the Prime Minister’s office stating the obvious to journalists — legislation to adopt the measure will not be introduced in the final fortnight of sittings…
The Treasurer was also entirely nonplussed by what he regarded as the Prime Minister’s office sloppily briefing this to journalists.
The Prime Minister’s Office was nonplussed with the Treasurer…
(T)here are signs that the Prime Minister is preparing to move on some other barnacles. >Early next week, the Abbott Government will write to the Defence Remuneration Tribunal seeking to overturn a decision to scrap entitlements for soldiers under a new 1.5 per cent pay deal.
(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.) 
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Clive Palmer crashes in Victoria

Andrew Bolt November 30 2014 (5:21am)

Clive Palmer had a disastrous result in Victoria - just 1.8 per cent of the Upper House votes.
And if voters had seen his juvenile clowning on the Channel 7 panel last night it would have been worse.
Victoria is not a natural hunting ground for Palmer, but this is pathetic after all his ads. 
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What good is the Senate again?

Andrew Bolt November 30 2014 (5:03am)

Australia’s Tony Abbott has a Senate, and it’s stopping him from making the spending cuts almost every economist agrees are critical to saving the economy.
New Zealand’s John Key does not have a Senate, and is free to make the spending cuts that have rescued New Zealand.
Result:

NEW Zealand wants to lure thousands of West Australians across the Tasman to fill a nationwide skills shortage. A delegation of 30 government officials and major employers will hold walk-in interviews and potentially make thousands of on-the-spot offers to suitable candidates at a two-day jobs expo in Perth…
They’re tasked with finding people to fill 2000 immediate vacancies and persuading thousands more to emigrate with the promise of better job prospects in a booming economy, a lower cost of living and shorter commutes to work.
More:
A recent World Economic Forum survey on global competitiveness showed New Zealand outranking Australia for the first time, while Australia fell from the top-20 due to tight labour laws, government red tape and high tax rates.
Notoriously rigid labour laws put Australia near bottom of the 148-country list for wage flexibility and hiring and firing, while New Zealand ranked 10th for wage flexibility.
This may prompt more firms to consider New Zealand, where unions relations are warmer and a right-of-centre government since 2008 has fostered a business-friendly environment.
“Australian companies complained of hiring and firing practices along with a highly regulated labour market and the cost of employing people, whereas in New Zealand that wasn’t an issue,” said Oliver Hartwich, executive director of the New Zealand Initiative think-tank, which contributed to the survey.
“As long as Australia doesn’t tackle these problems, New Zealand has a chance to outcompete,” he said.
(Thanks to reader Dave from WA.) 
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Blaming Abbott for losing Victoria ignores the facts

Andrew Bolt November 30 2014 (4:50am)

Fairfax’s Mark Kenny would like it to be so:
There will be no shortage of theories about what caused the Victorian result but you can safely bet federal Labor will target the toxic standing of the Abbott government as the key driver.
Normally such claims are transparently self-serving. Voters understand the delineation between state and federal governments and are loath to waste one trip to the ballot box pointlessly ventilating grievances about the other.
But this election has been different. Noticeably so. Without inspiring leaders, contrasting programs, or the presentation of a transformative vision, the local pre-election period has been vulnerable to national hijack.
Abbott was a factor, except for these points suggesting he wasn’t much at all:
- the Victorian Liberals were down in the polls even in 2012, which is one reason Premier Ted Baillieu quit.
- the Liberals were down all this year in the polls, even before Abbott’s unpopular Budget
- as Kenny admits, voters understand the difference between state and federal governments.
- senior Victorian Labor frontbencher Martin Pakula last night rejected the Abbott factor, saying the issues had been health, transport and education - the usual things.
- Daniel Andrews in his election speech pointedly failed to mention Abbott once, even though introduced by federal Labor leader Bill Shorten and giving him a shout-out.
- the failings of the Victorian Liberal Government are sufficient to explain its loss.
Yes, Abbott is unpopular. Yes, he must change. Yes, there are lessons to learn from the Liberals’ stupid loss of Victoria. 
But most of the lessons are the opposite of what many commentators and Abbott haters would like. Above all, the Victorian Liberals lost not because they were too radical or too Right wing, but because they were too timid and too bland.
Then there was the drama, of course. 
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Julie Bishop: nuclear “obvious” if we want to slash emissions

Andrew Bolt November 30 2014 (4:43am)

She is absolutely right, of course, always a virtue when opening a controversial debate:
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop says nuclear energy remains an option for Australia, describing it as an “obvious direction” as it considers how to cut carbon dioxide emissions after 2020.
Ms Bishop called for a an open discussion about the feasibility of nuclear power, given Australia’s abundance of uranium, but accused Labor of resorting to a scare campaign when the issue was raised during the Howard government years.

“It’s an obvious conclusion that if you want to bring down your greenhouse gas emissions dramatically you have to embrace a form of low or zero-emissions energy and that’s nuclear, the only known 24/7 baseload power supply with zero emissions,” she told Fairfax Media when asked about Australia’s options for reaching future carbon-reduction targets.
A debate that’s good for Australia, good for Bishop. 
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=== Posts from last year ===
"The “Knockout Game” is played by predominantly black teens who punch unsuspecting victims, rendering them unconscious, severely injured, or in some cases dead.">
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http://www.news.com.au/travel/world-travel/two-german-students-have-vandalised-part-of-the-pyramid-of-khufu-to-help-prove-their-lost-civilisation-theory/story-e6frfqc0-1226771863820
Idiots bring to mind the second side of Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells. "Here we have an 18th century masterpiece, and if we scrape a little bit of it off (scraping noises) a 15th century under piece. Made entirely of egg shell. This Lurid work (stumbles a lot) has caused controversy in the area of embroidery." - ed
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http://www.ashbygate.com
ALP smears go to substantial depths. Ashby has done nothing wrong. LNP made adult decisions.- ed
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Palestinians burn Angola's flag in a protest amid reports that the country has banned Islam and destroyed mosques..... yep... Palestinians
www.theguardian.com
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/nov/28/angola-accused-banning-islam-mosques
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Why haven't we started impeachment proceedings for this miserable excuse for a president no less a human being.
He is worse than Clinton was. And Clinton was impeached. In ten years time, his successor of Democrat President .. will they be worse too? - ed===

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http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Articles/Article.aspx/14100#.Upj4oTKulzl.facebook
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http://www.therightperspective.org/2009/06/02/obama-iran-has-a-right-to-nuclear-power/#sthash.uxm3lJhO.dpbs
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Into the fray: Will the West withstand the Obama presidency? - JPost

“Obama has no interest in weakening our adversaries while he does seem to have an interest in weakening our allies”, warned Dinesh D’Souza, adding: “If you were trying to find a consistent way to predict what Obama is doing in the ME it is very simple. He has been undermining our allies and allowed our adversaries to remain in power.” - Martin Sherman 

Continue to the link, reading this and more articles at ...….http://paper.li/allysonchristy/1338794440
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http://www.debka.com/article/23480/First-Sinai-based-Al-Qaeda-cell-to-infiltrate-the-West-Bank-eliminated-in-Hebron-hills
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http://www.algemeiner.com/2013/11/29/mexican-billionaire-carlos-slim-we-will-continue-to-invest-in-israel/
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http://yidwithlid.blogspot.com.au/2013/11/the-real-chanukah-story-it-was-about.html
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http://www.idfblog.com/2013/11/27/idfwithoutborders-map-idf-aid-delegations-around-world/
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http://www.frontpagemag.com/2013/dgreenfield/manufacturing-intolerance/
Maybe it is my face .. but most women I meet tell me they are Lesbian. They must see something trustworthy. - ed
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http://unitedwithisrael.org/a-modern-day-judith/
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http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Articles/Article.aspx/14171#.Upi3r5uA1Vc
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Rocks are just as lethal as knives and guns. It's time to treat them the same way we treat other criminals.
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“Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good. His love endures forever. Give thanks to the God of heaven. His love endures forever.”Psalm 136:1,26 NIV
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Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon

Morning

"Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people ... Thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him."
Leviticus 19:16-17
Tale-bearing emits a threefold poison; for it injures the teller, the hearer, and the person concerning whom the tale is told. Whether the report be true or false, we are by this precept of God's Word forbidden to spread it. The reputations of the Lord's people should be very precious in our sight, and we should count it shame to help the devil to dishonour the Church and the name of the Lord. Some tongues need a bridle rather than a spur. Many glory in pulling down their brethren, as if thereby they raised themselves. Noah's wise sons cast a mantle over their father, and he who exposed him earned a fearful curse. We may ourselves one of these dark days need forbearance and silence from our brethren, let us render it cheerfully to those who require it now. Be this our family rule, and our personal bond--Speak evil of no man.
The Holy Spirit, however, permits us to censure sin, and prescribes the way in which we are to do it. It must be done by rebuking our brother to his face, not by railing behind his back. This course is manly, brotherly, Christlike, and under God's blessing will be useful. Does the flesh shrink from it? Then we must lay the greater stress upon our conscience, and keep ourselves to the work, lest by suffering sin upon our friend we become ourselves partakers of it. Hundreds have been saved from gross sins by the timely, wise, affectionate warnings of faithful ministers and brethren. Our Lord Jesus has set us a gracious example of how to deal with erring friends in his warning given to Peter, the prayer with which he preceded it, and the gentle way in which he bore with Peter's boastful denial that he needed such a caution.

Evening

"Spices for anointing oil."
Exodus 35:8
Much use was made of this anointing oil under the law, and that which it represents is of primary importance under the gospel. The Holy Spirit, who anoints us for all holy service, is indispensable to us if we would serve the Lord acceptably. Without his aid our religious services are but a vain oblation, and our inward experience is a dead thing. Whenever our ministry is without unction, what miserable stuff it becomes! nor are the prayers, praises, meditations, and efforts of private Christians one jot superior. A holy anointing is the soul and life of piety, its absence the most grievous of all calamities. To go before the Lord without anointing is as though some common Levite had thrust himself into the priest's office--his ministrations would rather have been sins than services. May we never venture upon hallowed exercises without sacred anointings. They drop upon us from our glorious Head; from his anointing we who are as the skirts of his garments partake of a plenteous unction. Choice spices were compounded with rarest art of the apothecary to form the anointing oil, to show forth to us how rich are all the influences of the Holy Spirit. All good things are found in the divine Comforter. Matchless consolation, infallible instruction, immortal quickening, spiritual energy, and divine sanctification all lie compounded with other excellencies in that sacred eye-salve, the heavenly anointing oil of the Holy Spirit. It imparts a delightful fragrance to the character and person of the man upon whom it is poured. Nothing like it can be found in all the treasuries of the rich, or the secrets of the wise. It is not to be imitated. It comes alone from God, and it is freely given, through Jesus Christ, to every waiting soul. Let us seek it, for we may have it, may have it this very evening. O Lord, anoint thy servants.
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Today's reading: Ezekiel 35-36, 2 Peter 1 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: Ezekiel 35-36

A Prophecy Against Edom
1 The word of the LORD came to me: 2 “Son of man, set your face against Mount Seir; prophesy against it 3 and say: ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: I am against you, Mount Seir, and I will stretch out my hand against you and make you a desolate waste. 4 I will turn your towns into ruins and you will be desolate. Then you will know that I am the LORD.
5 “‘Because you harbored an ancient hostility and delivered the Israelites over to the sword at the time of their calamity, the time their punishment reached its climax, 6 therefore as surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, I will give you over to bloodshed and it will pursue you. Since you did not hate bloodshed, bloodshed will pursue you. 7 I will make Mount Seir a desolate waste and cut off from it all who come and go. 8 I will fill your mountains with the slain; those killed by the sword will fall on your hills and in your valleys and in all your ravines.9 I will make you desolate forever; your towns will not be inhabited. Then you will know that I am the LORD....

Today's New Testament reading: 2 Peter 1

1 Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours:
2 Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
Confirming One’s Calling and Election
3 His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. 4 Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires....
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Micaiah, Michaiah [Mīcā'iah,Mī chā'iah]—who is like jehovah. Here is a name occurring many times in the Old Testament and used of women as well as men. It is spelled in different ways. See MICA andMICAH.
  1. A prophet, son of Imlah, who foretold the fall of Ahab at Ramoth-gilead ( 1 Kings 22:8,92 Chron. 18:8). There are no truer hearts to God than his. Carefully compare the three great prophets of 1 Kings—Ahijah, Elijah and Micaiah.
  2. The father of Achbor, a chief officer of King Josiah ( 2 Kings 22:1214).
  3. A prince of Judah ordered by Jehoshaphat to teach the people (2 Chron. 17:7).
  4. A priest of the family of Asaph who blew a trumpet at the dedication of the wall ( Neh. 12:3541).
  5. The son of Gemariah, a prince of Judah in Jehoiakim’s time (Jer. 36:1113).
Also the name of the daughter of Uriel of Gibeah. (See 1 Kings 15:22 Chron. 11:2013:2).
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