SENATE VOTING CHANGES
from the Greens, Malcolm has modified our senate voting
system. Previously a party could offer preferences for an "above
the line" vote which, if the nominated party candidate did not get a
"quota", would automatically transfer to the next candidate preferred
I always voted below the line. I preferred to allocate my
In future I may well vote
above the line. Because I am not limited to only placing one
number. I will be able to select my own preferences.
IT'S THE NARRATIVE
from 70% in October 2015 to 49% in mid April
that happen? Rupert Murdoch was/is extremely interested in
having the TPP come into existence. Since October Australia has
passed the TPP.
has not ratified the TPP, and unless it does so within 2 years, it
will not become law.) So Murdoch is now looking to whoever in
the USA will give him the TPP. (That will be hard to find.
There are quite a few swing states that will be disadvantaged by cheap
Asian labour. Still a new President might owe a few favours.
Unless his name is Trump).
not in Rupert's interest that any person (like Malcolm) become too
popular. Because then they might be less sensitive to what Rupert
example of Malcolm's technique, consider the recent strategy
employed by Malcolm to avoid having the Federal government pay for the
state's demands for the promised Gonski education money. He
offered them the right to collect the money themselves.
Presumably (details were not released) they could add in their own
income tax so that (say) Victorian citizens would each pay an extra
$1,000 p/a to implement Gonski.
of them accepted. In fact the Victorian Premier was effusive
when he was offered a bit more than he would previously (to Gonski)
our noble Media report the matter? "Turnbull backs down
on giving states right to taxation!"
a rather clever move into the image of defeat.
do think most of the chattering class realized the truth.
For a few days some of them were referring to Malcolm as the "cleverest
man in the room" without attributing a cause.
them didn't seem to get it. Nobody could really be that
stupid. Could they?
in the US with Trump probably has to do with the perennial
question about the TPP. First he sicced Megan Kelly onto
him. His newspaper attacks even stretched to Australia where "The
of 30th April reported violence at Trump's Californian
rallys, and appeared to place the blame on Trump with "Riot cops hold
20 for Trump rally violence".
If I hold a talk in a hired hall and people turn up and beat up on the
people who come to listen to me, does that make me the "at fault" Nazi?
Somehow Murdoch manages to do just that.
introduction of student loans to third party VET trainers the
education debt has ballooned.
The media have outlined the problem. Certain institutions are
offering (very expensive) courses and payment is a government loan
"upfront". Giveaway sales techniques are employed and in some
extreme cases people have ended up with enormous (in the tens of
thousands of dollars) debts with only a laptop to show. No
classes attended. No examinations sat. No qualifications
As a result the government TAFE system has been starved for
funds. Essential trade courses (e.g. Plumbing) have been
The solution is not difficult. One possibility: Instead of
lending the money "upfront", it must be doled out on performance
indicators. For example, attendance rolls must be kept, and each
student charged only for the classes attended. Third party
progressive qualifying examinations must be attempted, and the loan
repayment determined by performance.
least WWII King's Cross has been the "Nightclub" part of
Sydney. When I lived there in the sixties through eighties it was
rarely possible to walk the streets at any hour and find them deserted.
If I had wanted quiet nights to sleep, I would not have chosen King's
Cross to live.
Cafe Hernandez is now one of the few coffee shops that is open 24/7 in
King's Cross. Apparently it began as a coffee import business,
and branched out by offering samples of it's wares. It has a
strong Spanish/Latin America flavor. Mostly it's early morning
clientele is made up of "loners" working on laptops or reading the
morning paper, small groups cooling down from a night out, or groups of
Taxi Drivers or Police taking a break.
It is not an
upmarket establishment, with chrome and glass finish, or lush
recliners. It has almost spartan tables and chairs and dim
lights. It has been open for 40 years, and in that time it has
always had a couple of tables on the sidewalk. On hot
nights sitting outside is welcome.
I happened to turn up there recently. The City has had a war with
nightclubs and many of them are now closed. Much to my surprise,
the tables outside had been moved inside and stacked.
I asked the barista why the tables were inside. He told me that
the city council had ordered them inside.
I wrote a letter to the city council asking why this order had been
Apparently the 40 years of "existing practice" in having street tables
deployed had not been authorized. I was told by Sydney Council
that there had been three complaints this year about "noise and lack of
compliance". One of the customers told me that recently a
neighbour had "had a shouting match" with a couple of customers.
I do think that the neighbour might be guilty of harassment. He
chose to live in one of the busiest areas of Sydney, right across
from the William Street expressway and exit from the CCT (Cross
City tunnel that is busy 24/7). The noise from people talking
quietly on the street outside Cafe Hernandez should be considered in
I also think that the rangers could have been a bit more
understanding. And perhaps should have considered that the
considerable clientele who visit Hernandez had more right to talk on
the footpath at 2am than he had to "lose it".
road from the expressway.
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