Friday, May 11, 2018

Fri May 11th Todays News

Don't give up on hope. On this day in 2014, Miranda Devine wrote an article attacking the first Abbott/Hockey budget before it was handed down. The detail in the column suggests Devine was 'in' on the Turnbull broadside campaign which derailed Abbott in 2015, some eighteen months later. Nikki Savva was to pen an article saying 'it was impossible for a leader to come back after being smeared, but a great leader could.' At the time, Savva was referring to Turnbull and claiming that Abbott had mistreated Turnbull by being disloyal. Another SMH journalist claimed Abbott had 'absolutely stabbed Turnbull in the back' in 2009  and she remembered how, but the fact is on the day of the spill that Turnbull nominated in '09 , Hockey had been the sole opposition, but Hockey tanked on the issue of AGW, calling it a moral issue. Abbott stood up only after Hockey tanked after Turnbull declared a spill. So Abbott had taken the leadership legitimately in '09. Turnbull backstabbed Abbott continuously in opposition and government and the Devine article "Costello is a hard act to follow - but at least we could try" (posted 1:59 am, May 11 2014) uses the Turnbull chat points which steered away from clear defences supporting Abbott and Hockey. The 2014 budget was not a Costello one. It couldn't be. From within Cabinet, Turnbull and Bishop were counselling the need to be defensive regarding the recalcitrant senate. But at the same time Turnbull was telling the senate he would be more amenable than Abbott if he were leader. So the agreed direction of government was undermined. A competent government, without Bishop or Turnbull, would have prosecuted the case for debt reduction and freedom of speech. But Turnbull downplayed free speech as a lost cause in cabinet, and then made promises he would renege on when Abbott was rolled. As it was, the Hockey budget was responsible, ambitious and curtailed by a recalcitrant senate which fractured under the sustained pressure from being incompetent. In 2015, Abbott softened the senate more and was set to command it when Turnbull's campaign succeeded with bed wetters. 

Thing is, the party machinery still works for the Libs. Turnbull, Bishop and Pyne are awful, but the party can still govern responsibly when they are not hindered. Turnbull is still fighting other Libs, not prosecuting his office. But that is Turnbull's legacy. Turnbull is a terrible friend, but a weak opponent. 

Andrew Bolt is questioning the values of social conservatives who are joining Victorian Libs. An accusation some make is that "Mormons are taking over" and ridiculous stances are put forward on non economic matters. I was outraged when one member decried a children's picture story book about friendships. The book was worse from an adult viewpoint, but that is neither here nor there. It is ok to discuss these issues in public domain. It is ok to have a position one can argue. It is wrong that speech has been restricted in the past. With respect, Mr Bolt, we can discuss it. 

I am a decent man and don't care for the abuse given me. I created a video raising awareness of anti police feeling among western communities. I chose the senseless killing of Nicola Cotton, a Louisiana policewoman who joined post Katrina, to highlight the issue. I did this in order to get an income after having been illegally blacklisted from work in NSW for being a whistleblower. I have not done anything wrong. Local council appointees refused to endorse my work, so I did it for free. Youtube's Adsence refused to allow me to profit from their marketing it. Meanwhile, I am hostage to abysmal political leadership and hopeless journalists. My shopfront has opened on Facebook.

Here is a video I made My Country

"My Country" is an iconic patriotic poem about Australia, written by Dorothea Mackellar (1885-1968) at the age of 19 while homesick in England. After travelling through Europe extensively with her father during her teenage years she started writing the poem in London in 1904 and re-wrote it several times before her return to Sydney. The poem was first published in the London Spectator in 1908 under the title "Core of My Heart". It was reprinted in many Australian newspapers, quickly becoming well known and establishing Mackellar as a poet.

=== from 2017 ===
Peter Gregory from IPA has reminded of a BBC headline and a fact. The BBC had reported that vanishing arctic ice was causing smog in Beijing. However, Christopher Booker for the Sunday Telegraph pointed out that for April, Arctic Ice was as advancedas it had been for over thirteen years. 

Some things should not happen, but they do. 

An 8 million dollar tree preservation activity for a large mansion in Melbourne highlights how the ALP plan to disrupt peoples lives later this year and leading into the election. During construction of the mansion, an old growth tree was identified on site and preserved. It was moved to a nursery prior to construction, and given a $100k a year arborist for its welfare. A security guard and video camera were maintained during construction to make sure the tree was not harmed. Finally, the place was built, and the tree was to be returned a few metres from the original spot. A minister took three months to decide if the relocation was feasible, or if the engineers could be asked to cut a hole in the mansion for the tree in the original space. It was pointed out the minister and planning bodies had approved moving the tree initially, and the tree was successfully relocated to where it now thrives today. Melbourne values her trees. Activists will fly from far away if Melbourne trees are threatened. Unless the ALP are planning to knock over trees. 

The ALP are planning to spend some $9.5 billion dollars on remodelling Melbourne subways. For an extra $200 million they could build a new station. For an extra $500 million they could bore tunnels and not unduly affect Melbourne. But Dan Andrews doesn't want to waste money, and so the $9.5 billion dollar budget will mean an entire central Melbourne street is dug up so a tunnel can be fashioned. Surrounding trees will be cut down, many old growth, and never replaced. Trams will have to stop at the open sore for over a year, and buses will redirect commuters around the project. What is missing is plans to shut down a puppy farm and kill the puppies. It seems like a suicidal action by the Andrews government if in fact the story is true. I would appreciate feedback from blog readers who know of the truth of this story. I will link items in future issues. 
=== from 2016 ===
I have moved to a good home. I leave behind the ice house. Dan Andrews would rather I lived with an ice addict, and that you should too. 

For some, at the moment, the Sex Party has more credibility. 
=== from 2015 ===
A so called independent Senator in NSW has forced an inquiry into the rental of poles and wires policy of the NSW Government. Fred Nile is grandstanding on the issue so as to know if the policy is in NSW's interests. It is worth some $300 billion to the NSW economy. The authority tasked with examining the policy to begin with had produced a document which failed to include some benefits of the policy. The Premier's office was alerted to it and reminded the authority to show due diligence. Now Baird has been asked if he has leant on the authority to produce a document unfavourable to the ALP. But that is not what transpired, although it may well appear to be the affect. Naturally news reports are suggesting Mr Baird has been highlighted acting in an underhanded way.

For the second federal budget of Mr Hockey, due tomorrow, the media are spinning wildly to undermine it before it is seen. The opposition to it last year was successful due to a corrupt senate. Responsible decisions have still been made by the government, but irresponsible opposition has been successful too. A meme being put around by the media is that Mr Hockey is tired. No doubt he is. Not only is he delivering a budget, but he is also suing the SMH for bad journalism that was also defamatory. If Hockey is tired, it is because of unfair demands on him while he is saving the nation.

In 868, a copy of the Diamond Sutra was printed in China, making it the oldest known dated printed book. The book is about wisdom, and so may not seem exciting to those who have delved in the Sutra oeuvre. In 1310, in France, fifty-four members of the Knights Templar were burned at the stake as heretics. They were viewed as being wealthy by a poor king Philip IV of France who wanted their money and seized it. But they had lost all their real authority when they lost Jerusalem in 1187 to Saladin. In 1647, Peter Stuyvesant arrived in New Amsterdam to replace Willem Kieft as Director-General of New Netherland, the Dutch colonial settlement in present-day New York City. Peter literally made the world light up. In 1672, Louis XIV of France invaded the Netherlands. This provided a setting for the death of D'Artagnan, as he became Marshall of France, as he was hit by a cannon ball, in Alexander Dumas' Man in the Iron Mask. In 1792, Captain Robert Gray became the first documented white person to sail into the Columbia River. Not many white people need documents these days. In 1812, Prime Minister Spencer Perceval was assassinated by John Bellingham in the lobby of the House of Commons, London. Bellingham had felt unfairly represented when he had been arrested in Russia and detained for five years as part of a shakedown involving insurance. Bellingham shot the PM as a proxy for a Russian counterpart. Bellingham was hanged for being a killer. Bellingham's wife became rich from charity as a result, and so she remarried. In 1813, in Australia, William LawsonGregory Blaxlandand William Wentworth led an expedition to cross the Blue Mountains west of Sydney. Their route opened up inland Australia for continued expansion throughout the 19th century. About twenty years earlier some convicts had fled Sydney colony, moving north, hoping to walk to China. One lives in hope.

In 1857, Indian Rebellion of 1857: Indian rebels seized Delhi from the British. Less than a hundred years later, India was free. In 1880, Seven people were killed in the Mussel Slough Tragedy, a gun battle in California. It pitched railroads versus settlers. In 1891, the Ōtsu incidentTsarevich Nicholas Alexandrovich of Imperial Russia (later Nicholas II) suffered a critical head injury during a sword attack by Japanese policeman Tsuda Sanzō. He was rescued by Prince George of Greece and Denmark. The Policeman was not sentenced to death, but a patriotic seamstress cut her own throat as penance. The policeman died from a disease in prison later that year. Nicholas had the 9cm scar for the rest of his life. No motivation for the actions of the policeman are known. In 1927, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was founded. In 1942, William Faulkner's collections of short storiesGo Down, Moses, was published. In 1949, Siam officially changes its name to Thailand for the second time. The name had been in use since 1939 but was reverted in 1945

In 1960, in Buenos AiresArgentina, four Israeli Mossad agents captured fugitive Nazi Adolf Eichmann who was living under the alias of Ricardo Klement. 1963, racist bombings in BirminghamAlabama disrupted nonviolence in the Birmingham campaign and precipitated a crisis involving federal troops. 1967, Andreas Papandreou, Greek economist and socialist politician, was imprisoned in Athens by the Greek military junta. In 1973, citing government misconductDaniel Ellsberg had charges for his involvement in releasing the Pentagon Papers to The New York Times dismissed. 1985, Bradford City stadium fire: Fifty-six spectators died and more than 200 were injured in a flash fire at Valley Paradefootball ground during a match against Lincoln City in Bradford, England. 1987, Klaus Barbie went on trial in Lyon for war crimes committed during World War II. 1987, in Baltimore, Maryland, the first heart–lung transplant took place. The surgery was performed by Dr. Bruce Reitz of the Stanford University School of Medicine. In 2010,  David Cameron becomes Prime Minister of the United Kingdom following talks between the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats to form the UK's first coalition government since World War II after elections produced a hung parliament.
From 2014
It is Mother's day in Australia and time to reflect on what is older than any profession. Without Mum, we would not have language, as that comes from the need to communicate with the child who might not even be able to move on their own. Mum does not merely cook or clean, she dotes. Before one is able to say, or even know they are hungry, a mum is there in charge. A baby is helpless, demanding, manipulative and a package of love. Mum is there from the beginning for each step. 

I love the day and the dedication, but am ambivalent regarding my own mother who is damaged and beyond my ability to help. I don't hate her, I just can't help her. And it is a very poor return for one who deserves much. God has blessed me and I have much to offer  but she won't take it. She feels better being able to assert control, even if that means denying herself love that she deserves. But such is the world, bizarre, big, beautiful, bountiful and full of pain. I love J Michael Straczynski's Babylon 5 description of change .. G'Kar continues speaking. "G'Quon wrote, 'There is a greater darkness than the one we fight. It is the darkness of the soul that has lost its way. The war we fight is not against powers and principalities, it is against chaos and despair. Greater than the death of flesh is the death of hope, the death of dreams. Against this peril we can never surrender. The future is all around us, waiting, in moments of transition, to be born in moments of revelation. No one knows the shape of that future or where it will take us. We know only that it is always born in pain.'" I am caustically critical of those who argue from the basis of hate. Hate is a lousy task master. It might appear that it fits into Western Dialectic philosophy which works in terms of opposites, but hate is impotent as a tool of analysis. 

Today I met a baby, child of a former student. Talking to the dad, I remark how they aren't born with knowledge of rules, but need to discover them, night, day, being hungry or thirsty and not knowing how to ask for what is needed. In the womb, a person is asleep, and unable to assert themselves until they take a breath after being born. An EMT nurse overhears and challenges my assertion that a baby is asleep in the womb. They are active, their eyes open and close. But a person can sleep with their eyes open, can kick too. The umbilical cord does not carry sufficient oxygen to maintain consciousness. But the EMT nurse corrects me again, saying her observations are that it can. To clarify, a person can be semi conscious when oxygen deprived, but the ability to concentrate is not there. It is a small point, not worth getting worked up over. But regardless, worth honouring mum. 
Historical perspective on this day
In 330, Byzantium was renamed Nova Roma during a dedication ceremony, but it was more popularly referred to as Constantinople. 868, a copy of the Diamond Sutra was printed in China, making it the oldest known dated printed book. 912, Alexander became Emperor of the Byzantine Empire. 1310, in France, fifty-four members of the Knights Templar were burned at the stake as heretics. 1647, Peter Stuyvesantarrived in New Amsterdam to replace Willem Kieft as Director-General of New Netherland, the Dutch colonial settlement in present-day New York City. 1672, Franco-Dutch WarLouis XIV of France invaded the Netherlands. 1745, War of the Austrian SuccessionBattle of Fontenoy– French forces defeated an Anglo-Dutch-Hanoverian army. 1792, Captain Robert Gray became the first documented white personto sail into the Columbia River

In 1812, Prime Minister Spencer Perceval was assassinated by John Bellingham in the lobby of the House of Commons, London. 1813, in Australia, William LawsonGregory Blaxland and William Wentworth led an expedition to cross the Blue Mountains west of Sydney. Their route opened up inland Australia for continued expansion throughout the 19th century. 1820, HMS Beagle, the ship that would take Charles Darwin on his scientific voyage, was launched. 1846, President James K. Polk asked for and received a Declaration of War against Mexico, starting the Mexican–American War 1857, Indian Rebellion of 1857: Indian rebels seized Delhi from the British. 1858, Minnesota was admitted as the 32nd U.S. State. 1862, American Civil War: The ironclad CSS Virginia was scuttled in the James River northwest of Norfolk, Virginia. 1867, Luxembourg gained its independence. 1880, Seven people were killed in the Mussel Slough Tragedy, a gun battle in California. 1889, an attack upon a U.S. Army paymaster and escortresulted in the theft of over $28,000 and the award of two Medals of Honor. 1891, the Ōtsu incidentTsarevich Nicholas Alexandrovich of Imperial Russia (later Nicholas II) suffered a critical head injury during a sword attack by Japanese policeman Tsuda Sanzō. He was rescued by Prince George of Greece and Denmark. 1894, Pullman Strike: Four thousand Pullman Palace Car Company workers went on a wildcat strike in Illinois

In 1907,thirty-two Shriners were killed when their chartered train derailed at a switch near Surf Depot in Lompoc, California. 1910, an act of the U.S. Congress established Glacier National Park in Montana. 1918, the Mountainous Republic of the Northern Caucasus was officially established. 1927, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was founded. 1942, William Faulkner's collections of short storiesGo Down, Moses, was published. 1943, World War II: American troops invadeAttu Island in the Aleutian Islands in an attempt to expel occupying Japanese forces. 1944, World War II: The Allies began a major offensive against the Axis Powers on the Gustav Line. 1945, World War II: Off the coast of Okinawa, the aircraft carrier USS Bunker Hill was hit by two kamikazes, killing 346 of its crew. Although badly damaged, the ship was able to return to the U.S. under its own power. 1946, UMNO was created. 1949, Siam officially changes its name to Thailand for the second time. The name had been in use since 1939 but was reverted in 1945. Also 1949, Israel joined the United Nations. 1953, the 1953 Waco tornado outbreak: an F5 tornado hits downtown Waco, Texas, killing 114.

In 1960, in Buenos AiresArgentina, four Israeli Mossad agents captured fugitive Nazi Adolf Eichmann who was living under the alias of Ricardo Klement. 1963, racist bombings in BirminghamAlabamadisrupted nonviolence in the Birmingham campaign and precipitated a crisis involving federal troops. 1967, Andreas Papandreou, Greek economist and socialist politician, was imprisoned in Athens by the Greek military junta. 1968, the Toronto Transit Commission opened the largest expansion of its Bloor–Danforth line, going to Scarborough in the East, and Etobicoke in the West. 1970, the Lubbock Tornado, an F5tornado, hit Lubbock, Texas, killing 26 and causing $250 million in damage. 1973, citing government misconductDaniel Ellsberg had charges for his involvement in releasing the Pentagon Papers to The New York Times dismissed. 1985, Bradford City stadium fire: Fifty-six spectators died and more than 200 were injured in a flash fire at Valley Parade football ground during a match against Lincoln City in Bradford, England. 1987, Klaus Barbie went on trial in Lyon for war crimescommitted during World War II. 1987, in Baltimore, Maryland, the first heart–lung transplant took place. The surgery was performed by Dr. Bruce Reitz of the Stanford University School of Medicine.

In 1995, more than 170 countries extended the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty indefinitely and without conditions. 1996, after the aircraft's departure from Miami, Florida, a fire started by improperly handled chemical oxygen generators in the cargo hold of Atlanta-bound ValuJet Flight 592 caused the Douglas DC-9 to crash in the Florida Evergladeskilling all 110 on board. Also 1996, the 1996 Mount Everest disaster: on a single day eight people died during summit attempts on Mount Everest. 1997, Deep Blue, a chess-playing supercomputer, defeated Garry Kasparov in the last game of the rematch, becoming the first computer to beat a world-champion chess player in a classic match format. 1998, India conducted three underground atomic tests in Pokhran to include a thermonuclear device. 2000, Second Chechen WarChechen separatists ambushed Russian paramilitary forces in the Republic of Ingushetia. 2010, David Cameron becomes Prime Minister of the United Kingdom following talks between the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats to form the UK's first coalition government since World War II after elections produced a hung parliament. 2013, at least 46 people were killed in a bombing in ReyhanlıTurkey. 2014, 15 people were killed and 46 injured in Kinshasa in a stampede caused by tear gas being thrown into the stand by police officers attempting
to defuse a hostile incident. 
=== Publishing News ===
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.
I am publishing a book called Bread of Life: January

Bread of Life is a daily bible quote with a layman's understanding of the meaning. I give one quote for each day, and also a series of personal stories illustrating key concepts eg Who is God? What is a miracle? Why is there tragedy?

January is the first of the anticipated year-long work of thirteen books. One for each month and the whole year. It costs to publish. It (Kindle version) should retail at about $2US online, but the paperback version would cost more, according to production cost.
If you have a heart for giving, I fundraise at
Editorials will appear in the "History in a Year by the Conservative Voice" series, starting with AugustSeptemberOctober, or at Amazon  The kindle version is cheaper, but the soft back version allows a free kindle version.

List of available items at Create Space
Happy birthday and many happy returns Haris CehicJason Phuong and Peter Sov. Born on the same day, across the years. Today is the anniversary of that day in 868 that the first known printed book to survive to today was made, called the Diamond Sutra. Not the same subject matter as that other Sutra .. Something to live up to
Spencer Perceval
I got you a book. Poor Tory. Put money on the railroad. Don't flash. Do the test. Let's party.
Tim Blair 2018

Andrew Bolt 2018



Tim Blair – Monday, May 11, 2015 (1:17pm)

Following last week’s terrorism raids, AFP deputy commissioner Mike Phelan claimed radicalism was a problem for all Australians.
“We’ve got to do something about this problem. All of us. All in the community. It’s got nothing to do with faith,” he said. “This is about all the community, all families getting together, having a greater understanding of what your children are doing.” 
Acting on the deputy commissioner’s instructions, I immediately launched a detailed alphabetical investigation that would expose radicalism wherever it lurked.
 Continue reading 'DETECTIVE TIM IS ON THE CASE'


Tim Blair – Monday, May 11, 2015 (12:43pm)

Many lessons emerge from Thursday’s UK election – the main one being to never, ever doubt the astonishing reverse-predictive abilities of Bob Ellis.
I actually thought Labour were in with a chance. Foolish me. I should have trusted that Labor speechwriter and groupie Ellis would get it wrong yet again and put my life savings on the Conservatives to win a majority.


Tim Blair – Monday, May 11, 2015 (11:44am)

remarkable record for the London Sun
Since 1979 the Sun has urged its readers to support every eventual election winner; this year it managed to do so not once but twice given its split support for the Conservatives in England and Wales and the SNP in Scotland. 
The Sun‘s winning streak is older than many Guardian journalists


Tim Blair – Monday, May 11, 2015 (11:36am)

Father Frank Brennan, a friend of Kevin Rudd, recently told Fairfax that the US-based ex-PM is maintaining his silence
“He has been very disciplined, friends like myself have been counselling him, no matter how you are taunted by people in Australia, say nothing,” he says.
“That has helped with the healing, and with reorienting himself to realise he can have a second major career.” 
But now it emerges that Rudd has been blabbing all over the place for an ABC series hosted by Sarah Ferguson, who also interviewed Julia Gillard: 
Ferguson told News Corp Australia both PMs were initially reluctant to participate, before agreeing to sit down for filming over two blocks of interviews – Rudd in October in New York and Washington; then for follow-up back in Australia in February …
“He is a very theatrical interview,” Ferguson said. “His language is rich and those words ‘tragedy’ and ‘betrayal’ ... they are repeatedly embedded in his answers. It was purely political ambition that drove Julia Gillard and Wayne Swan to remove him and that’s it.” 
Forgive him, Father, for he is Kevni.


Tim Blair – Monday, May 11, 2015 (11:07am)

According to the Union of Concerned Scientists
Hurricanes, typhoons, and cyclones have always bedeviled coasts, but global warming may be making matters worse.
Recent scientific evidence suggests a link between the destructive power (or intensity) of hurricanes and higher ocean temperatures, driven in large part by global warming. 
Maybe they should check that evidence one more time: 
The United States has not been struck by a major hurricane since 2005, marking the longest gap since records began and a situation described by some as a hurricane ‘drought’. 
Of course, it could be that global warming is responsible for the reduction in US hurricane strikes. There’s no rule that says climate change can’t be beneficial. And in much more tragic climate news: 
Two experienced Dutch researchers are missing, presumed drowned, in the Canadian Arctic, 200 kilometres south of Bathurst Island. Marc Cornelissen and Philip de Roo were collecting data on ice thinning …
They are presumed to have fallen through ice and drowned near Bathurst Island, about 200 kilometres north of Resolute, at the end of April. 
(Via Dan F.)
UPDATE. Meet a member of the Union of Concerned Scientists.
(Via Chad.)

Christian Porter - add him to a new Abbott team

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (10:51pm)

How good was Christian Porter on Q&A tonight? Fresh, plausible, straight-talking, pleasant.
Porter was Treasurer of Western Australia before switching to federal politics. High time he was shoved into the Government’s front lines. Look what a difference has already been made by the fresh faces in the Government’s economics and spending team - Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg.
Porter has been asked to help sell this Budget. You’ll see more of him. And a small reshuffle by the end of the year might be another step forward in the Government’s long march from the grave. 

Ricky Muir loses eight of his six staff

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (8:39pm)

Helping to decide the nation’s finances in the Senate:
Ricky Muir insists his future with the Motoring Enthusiast Party is solid despite party founder Keith Littler and his wife Sharyn quitting his office. 
Their departures mark more than a complete turnover of staff in the Victorian Senator’s office. He has lost eight people in less than 10 months and each senator is allocated six full-time staff.

Leyonhjelm: no to dividing us by race in the Constitution

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (2:02pm)

Liberal Democrat David Leyonhjelm on the racist push to change our Constitution:
Seven years ago, the Rudd government apologised to the Stolen Generations. As the recently released Closing the Gap report indicates, this achieved nothing for Aboriginal living standard… 
You’d think the politics of the empty gesture would have fallen out of fashion by now. But no; if anything, things are getting worse. They now include the ridiculous claim that recognising indigenous Australians in the Constitution will somehow improve their health and welfare…
The national fondness for political symbolism became evident with full force when I made a speech in the Senate opposing constitutional recognition. I argued that it would be conjectural, divisive and contrary to the rule of law.
It was the last point that generated the most vitriol. My argument was that we should all be equal before the law, while constitutional recognition is a campaign for the specific recognition of a specific people. Apparently a lot of people think otherwise… 
The Constitution may be an important document, but individuals needing special assistance should be treated equally before the law, whatever their race. Australia must be colour blind when it comes to reducing poverty and disadvantage.

Putin shows what the anti-West looks like

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (8:05am)

 What a telling collection of leaders helped Vladimir Putin bombastically celebrate VE day with lots of threatening military weapons.  Most Western leaders stayed away in protest at Russia’s attacks on Ukraine, but no end of dictators and authoritarians attended:
President Xi Jinping of China took pride of place next to Vladimir Putin of Russia on Saturday… Once again, the Russia-China axis is the main threat to the West’s vision of peaceful and prosperous international relations. 
The line-up of leaders alongside the two men was a walking representation of a new anti-American alliance that has formed bit by bit since the invasion of Iraq demonstrated the frightening ease with which Washington could destroy hostile leaders far away.Alongside Mr Xi were Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, Raúl Castro of Cuba, Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela: standouts against what Mr Putin called a unipolar world, his code phrase for the spread of western-style democracy.
Historian Anne Applebaum sums up brilliantly:

Banning Lomborg disgraces our universities

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (7:57am)

 THE banning of Bjorn Lomborg disgraces our universities. It is a warning to the world not to send us their students.
Don’t study here, where free thought is punished. Where Leftist groupthink is viciously enforced.
This scandal, so damaging to universities earning us $15 billion a year from foreign students, started when the University of Western Australia was offered a great deal.
The Abbott Government would give it $4 million to be the new home of the Copenhagen Consensus Centre run by Lomborg, a Danish political scientist and statistician.
No wonder vice-chancellor Paul Johnson agreed last month, little suspecting the hate and savagery to come. After all, Lomborg should be a poster boy for Leftist academics. He is gay, handsome, articulate and informal, often teaching in a T-shirt.
His views tend to be soft-Left, and he has a huge international profile.
(Read full column here.)
 Henry Ergas:
Aristotle opens the Metaphysics with one of his most striking phrases: “By their nature, all men desire to know.” Quite so. But not at the University of Western Australia. 
Nor is there any mystery as to why. According to a press release issued late Friday by the university’s vice-chancellor, Paul Johnson, the proposal to establish, with $4 million in federal government funding, an Australian Consensus Centre which would undertake “detailed economic cost-benefit analysis into many of Australia’s, and the world’s, biggest challenges”, had met “strong opposition” and hence could not proceed.
Since there was no consensus to seek consensus, it was better to let ignorance flourish than for the merest shard of knowledge to creep in.
Human Rights Commissioner Tim Wilson:
The University of Western Australia’s decision to reject Bjorn Lomborg’s Australian Consensus Centre is disturbing for its validation of a culture of soft censorship… 
It’s hard to think of a more anti-intellectual act to promote wilful ignorance about contemporary public policy challenges. A friend of mine recently joked: what’s the opposite of diversity? UWA just proved the answer: university.

Universities become retirement homes for Labor

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (7:51am)

OF course, universities lean to the Left. Less known is that they’ve become retirement homes for Labor.
So don’t be surprised that University of Western Australia academics forced out internationally renowned Bjorn Lomborg, the “sceptical environmentalist”, for questioning the warming faith.
After all, this university made former Labor premier Carmen Lawrence a professor. Also there is former Labor foreign affairs minister Stephen Smith, now professor of law.
I don’t say either professor wanted Lomborg blackballed, but they indicate UWA’s political culture, as do the many former Labor politicians in universities.
(Read full column here.)
If you really want an example of the Left’s grip on universities, check out the members of the Senate of Sydney University - and we’re not just talking Peter FitzSimons. Two Fairfax writers, a former Labor MP, an ABC presenter....
Meanwhile, here is my updated list of other university appointments and grants that raised no protests by academics:
- former Labor prime minister Julia Gillard appointed honorary professor at Adelaide University.
- former Labor foreign affairs minister Gareth Evansappointed professor and Chancellor of the Australian National University.
- former Labor Premier Michael Field appointed Chancellor of the University of Tasmania.
- former Labor foreign affairs minister Stephen Smithappointed Winthrop Professor of Law at the University of Western Australia.
- former Labor Premier Carmen Lawrence appointed professor of psychology at the University of Western Australia.
- former Labor Premier John Bannon appointed associate professor at Adelaide University.
- former Labor Premier Geoff Gallup appointed director of the Graduate School of Management at Sydney University.
- former Labor backbencher Maxine McKew appointed a Vice Chancellor’s Fellow at Melbourne University.
- former Labor NT Chief Minister Clare Martin appointed Professorial Fellow at Charles Darwin University.
- former Labor Deputy Premier John Thwaites appointed Professorial Fellow and head of the Monash Sustainability Institute at Monash Unviersity.
- former Labor science minister Barry Jones appointed honorary professor at Melbourne University.
- former Labor Premier John Brumby appointed Professorial Fellow at Monash University.
- former Labor ACT Chief Minister John Stanhope appointed Professorial Fellow at Canberra University.

- former Labor leader Simon Crean appointed to council of Monash University.
- the Grattan Institute, a Left-leaning think tank at Melbourne University, given $30 million by the Rudd and Brumby Labor governments.
- the Whitlam Institute, a shrine to Labor Prime Minister Gough Whitlam at the University of Western Sydney, created by Labor Governments and given $7 million by the Gillard Government for refurbishment.
- the Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre at the University of South Australia, created to ”honour the values of Bob Hawke”, former Labor Prime Minister.
- the Bob Hawke Institute, created at the University of South Australia to honor Labor Prime Minister Bob Hawke by “working towards social inclusion, equity and social sustainability”.
- Islamist apologist Waleed Aly appointed lecturer at Monash University’s Global Terrorism Research Centre despite not having a doctorate.
- former Age editor  Andrew Jaspan appointed head of The Conversation, a Leftist on-line news and views site funded by universities and the then Labor federal government.
- former Age editor-in-chief and Leftist Paul Ramage appointed Vice Chancellor Professorial Fellow at Monash University.
- warming alarmist Tim Flannery appointed professorial fellow at Melbourne University’s Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute to preach global warming.
- controversial Labor-appointed police Chief Commissioner Christine Nixon appointed to council of Monash University.
- former ACTU secretary Bill Kelty appointed to council of La Trobe University.
- Fairfax columnist and Leftist Peter FitzSimons appointed to Senate of Sydney University.
- Fairfax writer Kate McClymont appointed to Senate of Sydney University.
- ABC presenter Andrew West voted onto Senate of Sydney University.
Tom Calma, co-chariman of Reconciliation Australia and former Race Discrimination Commissioner, appointed Chancellor of Canberra University.
The Left’s capture of our universities is almost complete. 

Hockey can’t get sad. He must get going

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (7:19am)

I don’t know if Sharri Markson is right about this discussion, but as with Niki Savva’s story the basic reality cannot be challenged - that Joe Hockey is on his last chance, and Scott Morrison has proved he could be devastating in the role:
Scott Morrison has had a discussion with Tony Abbott about being given the treasury portfolio if his components of the budget measures are well received and if he is able to get them through the Senate. 
Diary understands the Prime Minister and Mr Morrison had the discussion last week, with Mr Morrison claiming he would be more successful as treasurer than Joe Hockey who colleagues say has no cut-through. While it was a private discussion, Mr Morrison has, understandably, told several of his closest political confidants and allies about the conversation, which took place after a meeting of cabinet’s expenditure review committee (ERC), and he claimed Mr Abbott was agreeable. A spokesman for Mr Abbott denied the discussion took place and Mr Morrison’s office did not respond to calls.
[UPDATE: I have also heard adamant denials that such a discussion took place.]
Even so, Hockey is not happy with this speculation, and or with what he believes is former Treasurer Peter Costello’s touting of Morrison (although Costello has in fact defended Hockey the last two times he’s been on my show). Nor is he happy with Morrison announcing key parts of the Budget to great applause. He is undoubtedly bruised by Abbott publicly reassuring voters that the Budget is not Hockey’s alone:
It’s a team effort. It’s my budget, it’s Joe’s budget, it’s Mathias Cormann the Finance Minister’s budget, it’s Scott Morrison the Social Services Minister’s budget, it’s Warren Truss the deputy prime minister’s budget, it’s Josh Frydenberg the Assistant Treasurer’s budget because we’re all on the ERC together and we all play an integral part in making the thing work. 
Can you imagine John Howard ever having to reassure voters than the Budget wasn’t Peter Costello’s alone?
This may explain Hockey’s dreadful body language at this pre-Budget press stunt - a performance so flat and sad that Abbott seemed driven to put a consoling hand on Hockey’s arm.
Hockey is unduly sensitive and a confidence player. He needs to toughen up, and show himself as undaunted as Abbott was when the world pronounced him dead in January.
He must also realise that when expectations are so low, a great performance is more likely to astound. And he must realise this Budget must be sold not in a week or even a month.
Don’t complain, just explain. Fight like stink, or sink. And smile.
PS: Morrison should be more discreet. He should not tell, but show.
That said:
Speaking to Chris Kenny on Sky News, Mr Morrison called the rumours ‘rubbish.’ 
‘Look all of this is just bunkum and rubbish, and what the government is doing is outlaying serious policies and serious changes that have been worked through with stakeholders and others to help Australia get to the next level.’ ‘If people want to scribble around about gossip and other nonsense, well maybe they should be writing for gossip magazines and not pretending to be interested in serious public affairs,’ the Social Services Minister said.
Unfair to Sharri. Let’s see what she says on my show next Sunday. 

The Abbott Government’s do-or-die battle

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (7:00am)

The Abbott Government is sharpening its difference with tax-tax-tax Labor by matching spending with savings. The key, though, is that it gets those savings through the Senate, or it could end up snookering itself:
The government’s new childcare package won’t go ahead unless the Senate passes cuts to family tax benefits, Tony Abbott says… 
“Unless we offset this new spending it cannot go ahead,” Mr Abbott told reporters in Sydney today…
The $3.5 billion Jobs for Families package will deliver a streamlined, single childcare payment paid directly to childcare centres to reduce parents’ upfront costs and will put $30 a week back into the pockets of families earning up to $165,000 a year. Mr Abbott said the government will discuss the package with Labor, but the opposition has already said it will not support cuts to the family tax benefit in last year’s budget to help pay for the reforms.
“Children don’t get cheaper when they turn six. We didn’t support it then, we won’t be supporting it now, we won’t be supporting these cuts in the future,” shadow treasurer Chris Bowen told ABC TV. 
This a critical difference in approach to the Budget, with one side denying there is a financial crisis and a limit to more welfare spending. Much depends on whether political journalists can overcome their antipathy to the Government enough to consider the national interest.
The Sydney Morning Herald, though, continues its declared campaignto nail the Treasurer to a cross:
The Age makes clear its own agenda:
To balance the spend, Hockey leaks this welcome news:
Iconic assets will be sold and government departments will be slashed in a new effort to reduce the size of the public sector and raise more than $4 billion, in contentious reforms to be revealed in tomorrow’s federal budget. 
The federal government will claim spending cuts worth $1.4bn on top of the cash raised from the new privatisations and the sale of landmark properties next door to Parliament House.
The health and education departments will be first in line for cuts that are aimed at eliminating waste and duplication, but a further eight departments will be named as the next targets for “functional reviews” to extract similar savings. The government will seek a sharemarket listing or trade sale for the Australian Rail Track Corporation — worth $4bn, according to industry estimates — while pursuing the sale of a valuable communications network and the corporate regulator’s information registry.
It is all too little, of course, and the deficit keeps growing. But until the Senate relents on cuts, I cannot see how much more the Government can attempt without killing itself.  

Labour loss too sad to mention

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (6:40am)

Predictions of a Labour win are more eagerly covered by the ABC than actual news of a Labour loss. Peter of Bellevue Hill monitors the ABC’s Insiders:
AB, curious that two weeks ago Insiders featured a special segment on the UK election, when a Labour minority government was tipped as the most likely outcome. 
Yesterday, no mention of the election result at all until Stutch raised it in Observations and Predictions at the 56:19 mark. 

Cameron unchained: now to axe spending, not least on global warming

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (6:19am)

Another lesson to conservatives here - that the Liberals must simply get re-elected until they finally get the numbers (in the Senate) to institute the changes they believe in:
David Cameron will use the Conservative Party’s first majority in the House of Commons for nearly 20 years to “deliver” on a radical agenda to cut welfare, shrink the size of the state and re-define Britain’s relationship with Europe. 
Conservative insiders said Mr Cameron would move to the right to consolidate support among his backbench MPs after five years of compromise with the Liberal Democrats.
Among Mr Cameron’s first legislative priorities will be to enshrine an EU referendum into law, bring in the so-called ‘snoopers charter’ to give police greater powers to monitor internet communications and give English MPs a veto over legislation only affecting England.  The Tories also intend to publish plans to scrap the Human Rights Act within their first 100 days. All proposals had been previously blocked by the Lib Dems…
But the first challenge for Mr Cameron and Mr Osborne will be to put together a comprehensive spending review in the next few months to meet the Tory pledge of eliminating the structural deficit by 2018. 
As well as deep welfare cuts The Independent understands that the Department of Business and the Department of Energy and Climate Change, previously run by the Lib Dems, will be among the biggest casualties in terms of spending reductions.
Sounds like a dream agenda for a re-elected Abbott Government, should it finally get lucky in the Senate and win enough seats and allies to overcome Labor and the Greens interference.
No greater goal now for the Liberals: just get re-elected. The deficit will have to wait.
(Thanks to reader Jamie S.) 

That’s members’ money

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (6:12am)

At least the TWU head office isn’t happy about this great generosity by the WA branch:
A WA union boss was handed more than half a million dollars when a “special projects” job he was given after he retired as an elected official was axed within a year. 
Veteran union official Jim McGiveron spent 18 years at the helm of the Transport Workers Union’s WA branch before stepping down as state secretary and taking up the newly created role as a “gas and mining officer” at the beginning of 2013.
The Sunday Times can reveal he did the new job for less than a year before the union dissolved the position and handed him a $567,703 redundancy, paid for by members’ fees.
A spokesman for the TWU national branch confirmed the redundancy payment was specifically for Mr McGiveron’s special projects role and not his 18 years as state secretary. 
The union boss, who was also the national TWU president at the time, also received a top-of-the-range F-350 ute valued at $150,000.
(Thanks to reader Jackpott.) 

Not every gay is in favour of gay parenting

Andrew Bolt May 11 2015 (5:48am)

British journalist and entrepreneur Milo Yiannopoulos says much I don’t agree with, but he raises questions I believe need frank discussion yet are too often not rebutted but shouted down:
Every child should have a gay uncle, to teach them how to dress, take them clubbing and give them their first line of coke, but gay parents? As a party-hard homosexual myself, I’m not so sure. 
We learned this morning of a mother whose child has been taken away from her, even though the baby was not at risk of any harm, and given to a gay couple with whom she had a surrogacy arrangement that seems to have broken down.
A woman and two gays in a legal agreement. What could go wrong? The mum in question was accused of using breastfeeding as a weapon against the gay wannabe dads, though it’s not clear from the reporting how this might have been the case.
Even worse, she has been gagged by the High Court, so she cannot tell her story…
Justice Alison Russell apparently objected to the mother’s claims that they gay relationship in question was “on-off” and that at least one of the partners was “promiscuous.” But the mother was almost certainly right.
The fact is, most gay relationships are not exclusive, whether by arrangement or cheating. A disproportionately high number involve domestic violence—a fact rarely reported on by the media, which prefers to depict gay relationships as glistening utopias full of rainbows, love, progressive politics and Britney Spears.
It’s bizarre to me that the legal system in this country seems to discriminate so blatantly against fathers… unless, of course, they’re gay, in which case there’s a presumption that they must be well-adjusted, groovy “community leaders” with alphabetised CD collections and perfectly coiffed hair…
I’m sure there are plenty of young people who had perfectly happy childhoods growing up with two mums or two dads. But there are many, too, who didn’t. And where we can avoid these odd and possibly harmful set-ups, I think we ought to.
All else being equal, there ought to be a presumption in favour not only of biological parents but of heterosexuals, and possibly even single parents… Call me old-fashioned, but I think babies need a mum and a dad. In this case, where there was, by the court’s own admission, no risk to the child, I find it appalling that a baby has been snatched from his mother’s loving care and thrown into what could be a deeply dysfunctional home life.
Needless to say, many children of gay couples grow up happy and loved. That is not at issue, at least not as far as I am concerned.
(Thanks to reader fulchrum.) 
Are you guilty?
Posted by Grammarly on Sunday, 10 May 2015
I shot so many images when I arrived, that I must share another.  I call this Mono Snow Storm.I still can't believe that we were the only ones at the south tufa reserves.
Posted by Matt Granz on Sunday, 10 May 2015
When a picture says a thousand words.  Treasurer Joe Hockey is preparing to deliver his second budget tomorrow night....
Posted by Latika M Bourke on Sunday, 10 May 2015

Lol, Latika .. can't criticise his work so you criticise his image.===
Happy Mother's Day!
Posted by Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing on Sunday, 10 May 2015
Launching a best seller takes more than just writing a good book. Here's some great advice:
Posted by Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing on Saturday, 9 May 2015

Slash public service and make us all happy

Piers Akerman – Sunday, May 11, 2014 (10:16am)

FORGET the Fruit Fly Circus, Tuesday’s Budget will have to provide a true double whammy in the balancing department to please the punters.
Not that the Abbott government would expect them to be turning cartwheels at the prospect of paying more for petrol, more in income tax through the debt levy, and more for medical visits.
As one reader wrote to me: “I thought class warfare was the M (odus) O (perandi) of socialist parties like Labor and the Greens, but it looks like the Libs are getting in on the act and intend to punish those who help themselves and create wealth and contribute the greater share of tax revenue anyway.
“They would be betraying the very people who voted for them if this is introduced, and do so at their peril. The people they would be punishing, mostly their supporters, received no Kevin Rudd $900 cheques, unlike overseas backpackers, retirees who live overseas, dead people and pets. Also, they are the very people who receive no carbon tax benefit when they’re whacked with their whopping electricity bills. And to think I stood out in 39 degrees handing out how-to-vote cards for them. Even their very own Audit Commission report didn’t recommend it.”
The writer, a staunch worker for the Liberals for many years, vented the anger that many at the grassroots feel, and doubtless they were even more enraged when they read The Daily Telegraph’s Friday report on the 48 per cent of Australians who pay no tax at all.
Somehow, Tony Abbott’s team’s mantra of “equality of sacrifice” doesn’t douse the incandescent outrage, particularly when the numbers of people bludging on the dole or disability support pension is factored in. If Abbott wants to make a personal sacrifice he should dump or defer his paid parental leave scheme.
The leaks about the nasties in next week’s Budget have almost drowned the changes that might have helped placate to a degree those who will bear most of the burden.
Dumping the tainted Australia Network which the ABC runs, for example. That the members of the ABC board ever permitted CEO Mark Scott to embrace that operation after the flawed tender processes were tossed aside will remain an indelible reflection on their judgment. But that’s a small saving. The ABC’s operations should be run professionally as the Audit Commission suggested and should not enter the commercial arena.
Other areas of government spending — stuff the taxpayer picks up the bill for — will be cut and there will be all the usual squeals from the public sector unions.
As they are highly unionised and their unions throw money at the Labor Party, it is safe to suggest that the members largely vote Labor. Why wouldn’t they vote for the party which not only supports their jobs and their pay rises, but is also guaranteed to expand their organisations?
The cries from Canberra are already ringing out across the Monaro, but if the UK experience is anything to go by, cutting the public service can be of great benefit to the nation.
Faced with far greater debts than Australia (the business-as-usual projections in the Audit Commission report had the net debt rising to 17 per cent of GDP, in the UK its 80 per cent), the British Conservatives have ruled out any cuts to pensioner benefits, and no one has suggested a co-payment for the NHS, which means their cuts have had to fall on a far narrower base and also be deeper.
The important lesson that we should have learnt from the UK is that paring back spending and cutting into the public sector has not had the severe macro-economic consequences that the some predicted, and which Canberrans claimed would occur.
In the UK, growth has picked up quite strongly, and private-sector employment has grown, more than offsetting the fall in public-sector jobs.
As we know to our cost, the federal government is not equipped to do a lot of things. Not only does it have an education department but no schools and health department but no hospitals, its bureaucrats failed entirely when they were asked to take on tasks better left to the private sector.
If the lethal home insulation scheme is not a constant reminder of bureaucratic incompetence, the Green-tinged department of climate change, or the inadequate buildings constructed for the education revolution should be.
As sympathetic as I may be and as much as I might dislike paying more when the new measures start cutting in, I am unable to get into the spirit doom and gloom in this pre-Budget period.
My wrath is almost entirely focused on the Islamist terrorists Boko Haram, whose putrid ideology the ABC’s Muslim commentator Walid Aly refuses to acknowledge.
I would uncomplainingly scrimp to pay a levy or a tax if it would return these Nigerian girls to their families.

Costello is a hard act to follow - but at least we could try

Miranda Devine – Sunday, May 11, 2014 (1:59am)

ONE of the great tragedies of Australian political life is that Peter Costello never became Prime Minister. Whether it was through his own diffidence or through John Howard’s obstinance, Australia is the poorer for the Liberal Party’s failure to effect a proper succession plan.
The result was Kevin Rudd in a landslide, and we all know how that went.
Five budget deficits worth a combined $200billion, and close to $700 billion in debt over the next 10 years.  Servicing the interest alone costs $1 billion a month. Under Labor, the unemployment rate rose from 4.4% to 5.7%, and the number of long term unemployed almost doubled to 133,400. 
These figures are contained in a handy pre-budget pamphlet released by the Government, “Labor’s Mess”.
But on the eve of the 2014 budget which attempts to fix that mess, a better guide is Costello’s first budget. Rather than benchmarking against the aberration of six years of Labor train wrecks Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey should have copied Costello.
He had also inherited a Labor mess: a $10 billion deficit that year and $96billion in debt.
But under his economic management, interest rates dropped, unemployment fell to historic lows, Commonwealth net debt was wiped out, the tax system was reformed, industrial relations improved, the Future Fund established, and Australia enjoyed the longest period of uninterrupted growth in our history.
None of this was an accident. Costello methodically transformed Australia from the ‘sick man of Asia’ to a powerhouse which sailed through the Asian financial crisis of the late 1990s. 
For none of this has he been adequately thanked, by the public or by his colleagues, who scorned him for walking away from the leadership after the 2007 election.
Yet it was Costello who was primarily responsible for the excellent shape Australia was in when the global financial crisis hit in 2008. We likely would have sailed through again, without blowing the budget on Keynesian waste, thanks in no small part to the prudential regulation Costello instituted to ensure our banks were rock solid.
He achieved all this with great personal sacrifice, hard work and self-discipline, every year going through the budget line by line in a windowless Expenditure Review Committee room for 12 hours a day.
He internalised the stress to such an extent that he had to have a crown fitted on a tooth damaged by his constant grinding during GST debates. The dental technician, he recounts drily in his memoirs, drilled the letters GST on the inside of the crown, a permanent reminder of the cost of the job.
Before Costello handed down his first budget, the scare campaign ramped up to such an extent that union militants rioted at Parliament House, smashed through the front doors and rampaged though the building, dripping blood from broken glass. Costello was locked in his office by bodyguards for his own safety.
The next day he delivered the Budget, designed to achieve $8billion in cuts over two years. It was tough but well-received, and it set the stage for ten years of economic sunshine.
By the time Costello left office ten years later, Australia had the lowest unemployment since 1974, at 4.2 percent, down from 8.2 percent in March 1996, and consumer sentiment was the highest ever measured. GDP had grown by nearly 50 per cent since 1996.
Under his stewardship, real wages grew 20 per cent, and inflation dropped from 5.2 percent to 2.5 percent.
The number of Australians in the work force grew by 2 million, from 8.3 million in March 1996 to 10.5 million in September 2007.
Average mortgage rates fell from 12.75 percent to 7.25 percent, and average small business lending rates went from 14.25 percent to 8.9 percent.
He cut taxes every year from 2003. We got used to seeing our pay packets grow every July. We took it for granted.
When Costello came into office, you were taxed 20cents in every dollar you earned between $5,000 and $20,000, 34 cents between $20,000 and $38,000, 43 cents between $38,000 and $50,000 and 47 cents for every dollar over $50,000.
By the time he was finished, the bottom tax rate was 15cents. Between $20,000 and $80,000 you paid a flat rate of just 30cents, in cuts legislated for 2008.  The top rate of tax was 45 percent over $180,000.
At the same time, health spending more than doubled, from $19.5 billion to $51.8 billion, and federal investment in government schools rose from $1.4 billion to $3.5 billion.
It is extraordinary that, with all his expertise and achievements, Costello was barely consulted by Abbott and Hockey when they were drawing up their first crucial budget.
God knows why you would turn your back on your team’s proven success to recreate the wheel.
We’ll have to reserve judgement until Tuesday’s budget, but there is no excuse if it is not as effective as Costello’s. 
I agree with Devine on this, but .. there are questions which need to be asserted before I accept the thesis. I do not feel the situations are the same. Keating had left a mess that was all over the shop. Whereas the ALP under Rudd Gillard merely amped up spending and increased corruption by removing oversights. The difference means that spending, were it cut commensurately, would hit the poorest hardest .. and Abbott is scrupulously being fair .. it is a trap created by the ALP to cynically hurt the poorest. - ed

Rudd’s personal pink batt

Miranda Devine – Saturday, May 10, 2014 (8:00pm)

PETER Garrett should buy a lottery ticket.
How lucky is he that his appearance at the pink batts royal commission is on Tuesday, when the media is preoccupied with the federal budget.
His testimony will be well worth hearing, since he acted as Kevin Rudd’s personal pink batt, insulating him from the consequences of his incompetence, and then showed his disgust by quitting when Rudd returned as PM. 

Monica helps out Hillary again

Miranda Devine – Saturday, May 10, 2014 (7:58pm)

Monica Lewinsky was a bright, 22-year-old White House intern when Bill Clinton laid eyes on her ample bosom in 1995 and commenced an “inappropriate relationship”.
Their sexual liaisons in the Oval Office, complete with cigars, altoids and a stained blue dress, blew up into a scandal which saw the president impeached for perjury.
Now, at 40, Lewinsky has written a tell-all for Vanity Fair. She’s never married or had a steady job, despite a master’s from the London School of Economics. Her reputation was trashed, and Clinton emerged unscathed.
“It’s time to burn the beret and bury the blue dress,” she writes. But maybe she wants to burn Hillary Clinton and bury her 2016 presidential bid.
It’s an understandable get-square. Hillary always badmouthed Lewinsky as a “narcissistic loony tune” and blamed her for the affair.
But people sympathised with the wronged wife and forgave her straying husband. Sadly for Lewinsky, she’s probably done the Clintons another favour. 

Politicians should fly like royalty

Miranda Devine – Saturday, May 10, 2014 (7:55pm)

If economy class is good enough for Prince William it should be good enough for our politicians and public servants. There is no good reason why the poor overburdened taxpayer should pay extra for them to sit in business class seats on domestic flights.
If politicians and public servants want to travel in more style, let them pay for the difference out of their own pockets. Frankly, it would do them good to share a cabin with the hard-working small business people and PAYG wage slaves who pay their salaries and perks and are sick of the wasteful spending of big government.
They shouldn’t be hobnobbing in the Qantas Chairman’s Lounge either. Let them sit out in the terminal with real people.
If the government is serious about tightening belts, they should remember that “equality of sacrifice” begins at home. 

The Bolt Report today

Andrew Bolt May 11 2014 (10:02am)

On the show – Network 10 at 10am and 4pm....

Our guest: Immigration Minister Scott Morrison.
Our panel: Janet Albrechtsen of The Australian and former Labor campaign guru Bruce Hawker.
On NewsWatch, Roger Scruton, the world’s leading conservative philosopher, analyses the socialist protesters who stopped Q&A.
And more, including a hypocrisy check on Chris Lilley’s new ABC comedy show.
The videos of the shows appear here.
11 MAY 2014
ANDREW BOLT, PRESENTER: Tuesday’s Budget seems almost certain to include new taxes, including a rise in the fuel excise. The Opposition is already calling it Liberals’ carbon tax. But there will be big savings too, including $2.5 billion the Government saved by stopping the boats. Joining me is Immigration Minister Scott Morrison. Thank you for your time.
SCOTT MORRISON, IMMIGRATION MINISTER: Good morning, Andrew, and happy Mother’s Day to all those mothers out there, particularly the mother of my wonderful kids, Jenny.
ANDREW BOLT: Terrific. You’ve done my duty for me. I want to get into the Immigration portfolio in a minute, but first, why are you thinking of breaking a tax promise when that’s exactly what you were criticising the Gillard Government for doing? Why throw away your reputation like that so early in the term?
SCOTT MORRISON: Well, the challenge here is big, the mess Labor has left behind is big, and the real question on this Budget - is this a responsible and fair response to the mess that Labor has left us? And that’s really the test of this Budget - is it a responsible and fair response and a way to address the terrible mess left behind to us by Labor? We knew it was a big mess, and the options are there in front of us, and the Treasurer and the Prime Minister have been outlining those. But at the end of the day that’ll be confirmed one way or another on Tuesday night.
ANDREW BOLT: Look, I accept that the reason is to fix the Budget, and your first big promise was to fix the Budget - accept that. But a lot of conservatives and even your own – you know, people on your own team, are upset. Why do you consider yourself not bound by your promise not to raise taxes?
SCOTT MORRISON: Well, look, I’ll leave others to go into the issues about what was said and when was said and these sorts of things. But the task is clear, the challenge, the way ahead. I mean, this is a Government that can’t duck away or try and avoid the consequences of the previous government’s overspending. And so we just have to get on with the job of fixing this Budget, and we always knew that would be tough. And there are some, I’m sure, difficult choices in this Budget and there’ll be consequences right across the board. But no-one else will do it for us. I mean, we didn’t create this mess but we do have the responsibility for fixing this mess. So the real test of this Budget is - is this a responsible and fair way to deal with the mess that Labor has left us?
ANDREW BOLT: But, obviously, raising taxes implies that you didn’t – you didn’t want to cut spending by the equivalent amount. Did you lack the courage?
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Showing concern saves no one

Andrew Bolt May 11 2014 (5:36am)

Mark Steyn on fighting Boko Haram with pictures of concern:
It is hard not to have total contempt for a political culture that thinks the picture [of Michelle Obama] is a useful contribution to rescuing 276 schoolgirls kidnapped by jihadist savages in Nigeria. Yet some pajama boy at the White House evidently felt getting the First Lady to pose with this week’s Hashtag of Western Impotence would reflect well upon the Administration. The horrible thing is they may be right: Michelle showed she cared - on social media! - and that’s all that matters, isn’t it? 
Just as the last floppo hashtag, #WeStandWithUkraine, didn’t actually involve standing with Ukraine, so #BringBackOurGirls doesn’t require bringing back our girls. There are only a half-dozen special forces around the planet capable of doing that without getting most or all of the hostages killed: the British, the French, the Americans, Israelis, Germans, Aussies, maybe a couple of others. So, unless something of that nature is being lined up, those schoolgirls are headed into slavery, and the wretched pleading passivity of Mrs Obama’s hashtag is just a form of moral preening. But then what isn’t? The blogger Daniel Payne wrote this week that “modern liberalism, at its core, is an ideology of talking, not doing”.
Lara Prendergast: 
Boko Haram – whose name means ‘western education is sinful’ – does not distinguish between the education of girls and boys. In February, the group attacked another school. After boarding up every exit, its men seized 59 boys and gunned them down or cut their throats with machetes. Some buildings were sealed up and set alight. The girls were ordered to go home, abandon their ‘wicked’ schooling and seek husbands. 
Where was the selfie protest then? Or does a savage affront to male education matter less than a savage affront to female education? The answer should clearly be no. For equality to count, both boys and girls need to feel safe in school. By focusing only on the girls – ‘Our Girls’ – we forget the boys who are also in danger.
The most astonishing example of the don’t-mention-Islam phenomenon - Nafeez Ahmed in The Guardian:
The kidnapping of over 200 Nigerian school girls, and the massacre of as many as 300 civilians in the town of Gamboru Ngala, by the militant al-Qaeda affiliated group, Boko Haram, has shocked the world. 
But while condemnations have rightly been forthcoming from a whole range of senior figures from celebrities to government officials, less attention has been paid to the roots of the crisis. Instability in Nigeria, however, has been growing steadily over the last decade - and one reason is climate change.  
No, don’t mention that Boko Haram is an Islamist group and don’t criticise those who refuse to. Otherwise some radio presenter will imply you’re just a you-know-what:
(Thanks to readers Peter of Bellevue Hill and Steve.)  

Pensions for millionaires

Andrew Bolt May 11 2014 (5:33am)

One day politicians will finally have to dare confront this:
Age pension payments to retirees with assets of more than $1 million cost about $2.5bn a year, according to independent public policy think tank the Grattan Institute… 
(T)he Coalition appears set to lift the eligibility age for the pension to 70 by 2035 ... (b)ut eligibility age is not the real problem, when one can drive a truck through the other criteria.
A couple with a $3m house and $100,000 in cash are eligible for the full age pension, while another couple with a $400,000 house and $750,000 in shares and term deposits will receive nothing...< 
The commission (of audit) recommended including from 2027 that portion of a principal residence worth more than $750,000 in the assets test. The Grattan Institute calculates that including the principal residence would save $5bn a year...

Abbott slashes politicians’ pay

Andrew Bolt May 11 2014 (5:25am)

Pre-empting the politics of envy:
PRIME Minister Tony Abbott has ordered a pay freeze for himself, federal politicians and the nation’s top public servants. 
The edict is understood to have the backing of the independent Remuneration Tribunal, which tomorrow is expected to announce it will agree to Mr Abbott’s request…
The pay freeze represents a double dose of pain for politicians, who will also be hit by the new deficit tax.
For the Prime Minister, who earns a salary of $500,000, the deficit tax charge will force him to pay $6400 in extra taxes. The pay freeze could cost the Prime Minister an estimated $10,000.,,
The average backbencher will miss out on an estimated $3900, based on a 2.4 per cent pay increase. But it follows big increases to politicians’ pay in the past two years, in which backbencher salaries leapt by $54,000 to $195,130… 
But the pain for top public servants could be higher, with the tribunal also asked to deny chiefs salary hikes of up to $40,000 a year… It follows the Remuneration Tribunal’s decision to grant the Commonwealth’s 18 top departmental bosses pay rises of more than 5 per cent.The government has asked for those pay rises to be deferred or scrapped.
(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.) 

Ratings smash fueled by allegedly hot money

Andrew Bolt May 11 2014 (5:14am)

Our times:
THE banker in the alleged $7 million insider trading scam, Lukas Kamay, was the successful bidder last month for the apartment designed by the twins in The Block. 
Several sources, including senior investigators, confirmed to the Sunday Herald Sun that Mr Kamay was the successful bidder for sassy sisters Alisa and Lysandra’s fully-furnished high end Albert Park loft apartment at the televised auction last month. He paid a whopping $2.375 million for the three bedroom unit - $616,000 above the reserve of $1.76 million.
May 11Mother's Day in several countries (2014); National Famine Commemoration Day in Ireland (2014)
Mosaic of Constantine the Great

“If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over.” - Matthew 18:15
Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon


"But now is Christ risen from the dead."
1 Corinthians 15:20
The whole system of Christianity rests upon the fact that "Christ is risen from the dead;" for, "If Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain: ye are yet in your sins." The divinity of Christ finds its surest proof in his resurrection, since he was "Declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead." It would not be unreasonable to doubt his deity if he had not risen. Moreover, Christ's sovereignty depends upon his resurrection, "For to this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived, that he might be Lord both of the dead and living." Again, our justification, that choice blessing of the covenant, is linked with Christ's triumphant victory over death and the grave; for "He was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification." Nay, more, our very regeneration is connected with his resurrection, for we are "Begotten again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead." And most certainly our ultimate resurrection rests here, for, "If the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you." If Christ be not risen, then shall we not rise; but if he be risen then they who are asleep in Christ have not perished, but in their flesh shall surely behold their God. Thus, the silver thread of resurrection runs through all the believer's blessings, from his regeneration onwards to his eternal glory, and binds them together. How important then will this glorious fact be in his estimation, and how will he rejoice that beyond a doubt it is established, that "now is Christ risen from the dead"!
"The promise is fulfill'd,
Redemption's work is done,
Justice with mercy's reconciled,

For God has raised his Son."


"The only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth."
John 1:14
Believer, you can bear your testimony that Christ is the only begotten of the Father, as well as the first begotten from the dead. You can say, "He is divine to me, if he be human to all the world beside. He has done that for me which none but a God could do. He has subdued my stubborn will, melted a heart of adamant, opened gates of brass, and snapped bars of iron. He hath turned for me my mourning into laughter, and my desolation into joy; he hath led my captivity captive, and made my heart rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory. Let others think as they will of him, to me he must be the only begotten of the Father: blessed be his name. And he is full of grace. Ah! had he not been, I should never have been saved. He drew me when I struggled to escape from his grace; and when at last I came all trembling like a condemned culprit to his mercy-seat, he said, Thy sins which are many are all forgiven thee: be of good cheer.' And he is full of truth. True have his promises been, not one has failed. I bear witness that never servant had such a master as I have; never brother such a kinsman as he has been to me; never spouse such a husband as Christ has been to my soul; never sinner a better Saviour; never mourner a better comforter than Christ hath been to my spirit. I want none beside him. In life he is my life, and in death he shall be the death of death; in poverty Christ is my riches; in sickness he makes my bed; in darkness he is my star, and in brightness he is my sun; he is the manna of the camp in the wilderness, and he shall be the new corn of the host when they come to Canaan. Jesus is to me all grace and no wrath, all truth and no falsehood: and of truth and grace he is full, infinitely full. My soul, this night, bless with all thy might the only Begotten.'"

[Jĕro bō'am] - enlarges, struggler for the people or the people have become numerous.
1. The son of Nebat from Zereda in Manasseh, who became the first king of the ten tribes of Israel. This Ephraimite, Jeroboam I, reigned for twenty-two years. His mother's name was Zeruah, who was widowed at the time of his birth. This is the Jeroboam who rebuked the unnamed prophet (1 Kings 11:26-40; 12-16).

The Man Who Made Israel Sin

The dreadful description of Jeroboam tied to his name like a label, is that "he made Israel to sin." His sin - the root and fruit of it - are the chief things the Bible records of this widow's son. We are familiar with the incident of Ahijah taking Jeroboam's new garment and tearing it into twelve pieces, giving Jeroboam ten pieces and prophesying the rending of Solomon's kingdom, and the government of ten tribes of that kingdom passing into Jeroboam's hands. No wonder Solomon sought to kill him. But after the king's death and the refusal of Rehoboam to follow good advice, the kingdom split and ten tribes went with Jeroboam.
Solomon had lost his kingdom by idolatry and Jeroboam proposed to keep his ten-tribe kingdom by idolatry. So, abandoning the commandment and promise of God, Jeroboam set up golden bulls, one in Bethel and the other in Dan. People must have religion of some sort, Jeroboam reasoned, as he made the worship of the calves a part of the constitution of his kingdom. How sad it is to read that the Lord gave Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam! The consequences of national idolatry continued, for eighteen kings sat upon the throne of Judah after his death, but not one of them gave up the golden calves. Of fifteen of them it is said that they departed not from the sin of Jeroboam. As with the kings, so with the people who continued to walk in all the sins of Jeroboam which he did (2 Kings 17:22, 23).
There is no need to linger over what befell Jeroboam himself. He was warned by the man of God from Judah, but without avail. His son fell sick and died, and Jeroboam shortly after was defeated by his enemies. Then the Lord struck him and he died. Yet his name lives on with the terrible mark against it. "He made Israel to sin."

2. A son of Joash or Jehoash the grandfather of Jehu, who succeeded Joash as king over the ten tribes, and who reigned for forty-one years ( 2 Kings 13:13; 14:16-29; 15:1, 8; 1 Chron. 5:17; Amos 1:1; 7:9-11). Both Hosea (Hos. 1:1 ) and Amos describe the temporary prosperity of Israel with the accompaniment of social and moral degeneracy during the reign of Jeroboam II. Under him, Israel regained the territory it lost to its hereditary enemy, Syria. The aspect of commanding interest in Jeroboam's age when materialism was in the saddle was the appearance of a man with a message. Amid the shallow optimism possessing king and people alike was the voice of Amos, the herdsman of Tekoa, saying in effect: "The grass withereth, the flower fadeth, but the word of our God shall stand forever."
Israel's prosperity ended with the death of this Jeroboam. A period of anarchy followed. Then he was succeeded by his son Zachariah, who after a reign of only six months, was murdered by Shallum who, in turn, was assassinated one month later. Think of it, three kings sat on Israel's throne in seven months! Four out of six kings succeeding Jeroboam died violent deaths. In less than fifteen years four of Israel's kings were murdered.

Today's reading: 2 Kings 10-12, John 1:29-51 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: 2 Kings 10-12

Ahab's Family Killed
1 Now there were in Samaria seventy sons of the house of Ahab. So Jehu wrote letters and sent them to Samaria: to the officials of Jezreel, to the elders and to the guardians of Ahab's children. He said, 2 "You have your master's sons with you and you have chariots and horses, a fortified city and weapons. Now as soon as this letter reaches you, 3 choose the best and most worthy of your master's sons and set him on his father's throne. Then fight for your master's house...."

Today's New Testament reading: John 1:29-51

John Testifies About Jesus
29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! 30 This is the one I meant when I said, 'A man who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.'31 I myself did not know him, but the reason I came baptizing with water was that he might be revealed to Israel...."

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