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NATION: Bronny ... the ‘bad’ system’s poor ‘victim’. PM Tony: Worst ever? Abetz ...

Urban Wronski* http://urbanwronski.com/ First published: August 3
05.08.15 9:00 am

Image for NATION: Bronny ... the ‘bad’ system’s poor ‘victim’. PM Tony: Worst ever? Abetz ...

The Week In Review ...  “I have not taken this decision lightly, however it is because of my love and respect for the institution of Parliament and the Australian people that I have resigned as Speaker.”

Bishop’s record suggests an exalted sense of entitlement if not pathological delusions of grandeur; an imperious disdain for the hoi-polloi and the petty rules lesser mortals are bound by.  No wonder that for so long her pal Abbott saw her as a poster girl for the Liberal party. And yet she’s a practical gal, even if her feet are seldom on the ground. Chauffeured BMWs are quicker than Comcars; in a chauffeured Beemer, one is allowed to use bus lanes. Bishop’s scandal is an irresistible spectacle, especially for a government pledged to eliminate waste, a government whose every plan is predicated on the ‘ending of the age of entitlement.’ At least that was Joe Hockey’s promise. Now Bronwyn’s travel diary tells a different story, a tantalising expose of wanton wanderlust and unrepentant fraudulence. And her comeuppance. There’s a mini-series in it, surely if not a whole soap opera.

Andrew Wilkie: Time for Finance Department to audit all pollies I have today written to the Secretary of the Department of Finance, Ms Jane Halton AO PSM, to request the Department conduct an audit of all travel claims by current and former Members of the House of Representatives and Senators during this and the previous Parliament. I have taken this step because in recent weeks it has become clear that a number of Members and Senators have been abusing their parliamentary travel entitlements. In particular there seems to be a widespread practice of parliamentarians travelling at the public expense, often with family members, even though any reasonable person would identify their journey as being principally for personal reasons. At best this is deeply unethical, at worst fraudulent. The accusations in the Australian newspaper today about Tony Burke taking his family to Uluru is a case in point because no reasonable member of the community would feel that the cost of such a journey should be borne by taxpayers.

• Kim Peart in Comments: Good point Chris Harries ~ And there can “be more of it”, immediately, if we find the gumption to insist that PM Abbott reveal if he still has a British passport. And if not, exactly when did he surrender it? The voting public have a right to know such details, as our constitution does not permit a dual citizen to occupy a seat in our Federal parliament. To hide such facts from the people is treating us like fools. And if PM Abbott has surrendered his British passport, when exactly did this happen? If he ran in one or two elections illegally, could he legitimately remain in parliament now? When he won a Rhodes scholarship at age 21, he was not an Australian citizen, as required and had to hurriedly be signed up to team Australia by his parents. Having demonstrated form in irresponsibility at such a basic level, we need to know the facts on his citzenship record.

Sally Young, The Age: Is Tony Abbott’s regime the worst federal government ever? Stopping the boats and repealing the carbon tax have not had a demonstrably big impact upon the lives of ordinary Australians … On this criterion, the Abbott government is the least efficient government of the past 44 years. Even William McMahon’s government of 1971-72 passed more legislation – and McMahon is often dubbed Australia’s worst prime minister.

• Simon Warriner in Comments: Andrew Wilkie could take Bronwyn Bishop’s tribulations a step further by pointing out that she has demonstrated a total and manifest failure to represent the values of the general community through her conduct. Her role, for which she has been very handsomely rewarded over many years is that of “elected representative”, is it not? Go for it Andrew, just to drive home the point that party politicians are not doing the job they claim to be doing.

• Kim Peart in Comments: We, the public, the press and the opposition should be asking pointed questions and be demanding the delivery of answers. Why has the PM’s chief of staff specifically blocked the revealing of when Abbott surrendered his British passport: if in fact he has. Until we know when this happened and have the facts clearly before us, we should be red with rage demanding the truth. If there is nothing to hide, why hide the facts on such a basic detail of the PM’s right to be an Australian politician and leader of Australia? Munching into Tasmanian raw onions is hardly the answer we need. I find it hard to accept that Australians are so gullible, they will simply accept silence and stone-walling, when we have a right to know the truth.

• Stan in Comments: Having a little dabble around the files again, looking at what the Gold Card members were spending, where they were travelling on the largesse of the taxpayer, I found the Gold Coast and surrounds were popular, and for some , the front of the plane works best for them too. Now I don’t want to be seen as picking on the Libs, as some of the other figures I saw from Labor and an Independent were quite startling too, and when you have a look at the lists in detail, despicable spring to your lips all to often, on all sides. Anyway, this little pearl caught my eye. Will someone tell me how on earth someone can spend $ 506,772.00 +$ 58,444.00 + another $14,261.00, gleaned from other expenditure documents, on fit out for their parliamentary office/offices!?

• Leo Schofield in Comments: The egregious Erica is quoted in a recent Mercury story as saying that Bronwyn Bishop’s resignation is “a testament to her commitment to the Australian people”. WTF

• John Hawkins in Comments: A challenge to anyone over dual nationality has to be made to the High Court sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns within 30 days of an election and after the person to be challenged has been elected. Abbott like Erich Abetz may have been sitting prior to the last election illegally in the parliament as a dual national. If Abbott will not, or cannot, produce a renunciation certificate over his British nationality as with Abetz, this is probably a similar case. I informed Erich that I would be taking him to the High Court over the non disclosure of his renunciation of German Citizenship documents as requested by me before the last Senate election. He had for many years prior to the last election lied when he stated that he was sitting legally in the Senate and could prove that he had renounced his German citizenship. Like Abbott he would and could never produce the required documents. On the steps of the High Court Abetz produced his Renunciation Certificate dated just prior to the last Senate election in 2010. You cannot renounce a citizenship you do not have. I had to withdraw my case as Erich could prove that he was now eligible by a matter of months to sit for election to the Senate of 2010. The Renunciation certificate produced by Erich proved that he had been sitting as a Barrister, knowingly and illegally in the parliament up to that time for some 15 years. The judge made Erich pay his own costs. The right to challenge Abbott is now lost until the next election. At that point any citizen can force Abbott to produce his Renunciation of British Citizenship documents by applying to the High Court sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns within 30 days of the next election. I would consider it lax of the Leader of the Opposition not to make this a major election issue.

• Stan in Comments: Seventy Six Million Dollars + another Fourteeen Million,in reserve to be doled out for the Plane search.The Malaysians have covered less than half of any costs. The Chinese, who lost 100+ souls in the disappearance, and don’t give a Rotund Rodents Rectum anyway, have paid bugger all. That anomaly must be part of a trade agreement or sumthin. Jeez this country’s politicians and this country’s priorities are really starting to shit me.

• Pete Godfrey in Comments: #25 Stan, I had a look at the document on Tony Pasin you put the link to. Since when does it cost over $1000 to fly from Canberra to Sydney. I have a friend who regularly drives that road and does it in around 2.5 hours. It is incredible that the not so honourable member can spend over half a million on an office fit out, especially when he may only be there for 3 years, but incredulous that he needs to spend a thousand regularly flying to Sydney from Canberra.
What do the airline do, provide lap dancers?

• Brian in Comments: Fairfax: Peter Abetz (brother of Eric) says Nazi war criminal Great Uncle Otto did some ‘positive things’

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Hodgman Liberals Back Football Over Public Services

Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens Leader Media Release. First published: August 1
05.08.15 8:00 am

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The Liberals in government are prioritising football over providing essential public services to Tasmanians.After crying poor as an excuse to slash funding to public health and education they are pouring almost $20 million taxpayer dollars into a wealthy football club (Hawthorn).

ABC: New $20 million deal locks Hawthorn into playing matches in Tasmania for another five years The Tasmanian Government has struck a new deal with the Hawthorn Football Club, locking state taxpayers into a five-year $20 million contract. Premier Will Hodgman is announcing the deal at a dinner in Hawthorn tonight. The deal secures four fixture matches and one pre-season game at York Park in Launceston each season, between 2017 and 2021. The Government has agreed to pay the team $3.8 million in 2017, and the amount will be adjusted in line with the Consumer Price Index each year until 2021. The Premier said it was a good deal for the state …

EDITOR: Of course ... Footy and Forestry ( Peter Gutwein: Forestry Tasmania and *New Matilda: Flying In The Face Of Scientific Advice, Tasmanian Government Abandons Swift Parrot ) are far more important than poncy Baroque Opera for which Liberal petty cash managed an offer of $300,000 this year ( Martyn Goddard: After a big win for Brisbane, Baroque looks at China ) ... Footy is a real man’s game, isn’t it Will? Thousands pour in every Saturday to watch Hawthorn, don’t they Will ... ? ( Tom Ellison, Hawthorn: It’s a con. A fraud )

• Karl Stevens in Comments: Hodgman is paying close to $1 million a game for a suburb of another state to play ‘footbrawl’ in his state? At least Little Willy has redefined ‘rational thought’ for the benefit of the rest of us.

• Ben Cannon, Melbourne, in Comments: Their home ground is in Melbourne, their new headquarters and training ground will be closer to St Kilda, and their main sponsor is Tasmania. What was their name again?

To concur with obvious points, an Australian football league without teams from Tasmania, the NT and the ACT is sort of a joke. Most other sports manage it. Surely a Tasmanian team would be an excellent opportunity for plastering all manner of gbe propaganda onto. They could be called the forestry Tasmania 1080 devils or the tas(mineral)water smoked salmons. Or the whatever the hell that new spirit of Tasmania is maybe it doubles as an international cargo trawling biomass powered submarine.

Will Hodgman: Tasmania, Hawks strike new five-year deal

• Gordon Bradbury in Comments: Bread and circuses for the masses. Worked in ancient Rome, and obviously works just as well in 21st century Tasmania.

Sarah Courtney: Dawkins must stand up to O’Connor on Hawks deal

Cassy O’Connor: Questions to Answer over AFL Sponsorship Deal The Premier needs to explain to Tasmanians whether he sought advice from the tourism industry on the best brand marketing spend to promote Tasmania in light of the $20 million Hawthorn sponsorship deal. It is now clear that almost half the $20million deal is the sponsorship component, which effectively pays to have the word ‘Tasmania’ printed on a footy jumper. Without question, the Tourism Industry Council and its statewide members could have come up with a more effective, creative way to promote the state for almost $10 million over five years. Did the Liberal Government ask Hawthorn negotiators whether the team would still play at Aurora stadium - generating economic activity in Launceston - without the hefty sponsorship fee? Or did it, in its cynical desire to shore up votes in Bass, simply roll over at the negotiating table and give Hawthorn everything they asked for? On behalf of Tasmanian taxpayers and those who’ve lost their jobs or been denied services under this government, we will be asking these questions when Parliament resumes later this month.

• Chris in Comments: Goal posts to be sauced from Forestry Tasmania (fair shake of the bottle) and paid for by Tasnetworks, in voices (pun intended) will be objected to by the pensioners who will wear extra pullover to keep warm and pull the wool within over their eyes.

Paul Harriss: Public submissions on PNFEP review

WEDNESDAY, August 5 ...

• Ben Cannon in Comments: Let’s do the math. Presently 5 Teams in the main season come to Tasmania for 4 matches. If we had a team it would be 12 Teams and 12 matches. Surely better for the so called Tourism draw. It would not only draw spectators from the visiting team but probably more from around the state. Also matches could be shared between the north and the south, as they’d need to be to stop any contention over who owns the state team. Any AFL team having national exposure would also be open to extra sponsors but I’m sure a few Tasmanian companies, government or private would at least be running for main sponsorship. And the government could waive the ground hire fees I’m sure as they obviously do now.

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Lapoinya Letter of Learning

John Powell, Myrtlebank. First published: August 4
05.08.15 6:00 am

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‘Listen, understand, deliver community outcomes’ The Minister for the Environment Greg Hunt MHR has had a few problems in his short term in office …

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Premier’s Literary Prizes longlist revealed

Will Hodgman, Premier Vanessa Goodwin, Minister for the Arts
05.08.15 3:41 am

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Read more, comment if you wish, here

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Booing Adam Goodes – racism is in the stitching of the AFL

Keith Parry Lecturer in Sport Management at University of Western Sydney, The Conversation. Pic* First pub: July 30
04.08.15 4:05 am

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Adam Goodes was again booed by Australian football fans at the weekend. While some misguided commentators have written this behaviour off as not being racially motivated, others are convinced that such abuse is a result of the Sydney Swans player’s outspoken views on Aboriginal issues.

Stan Grant, Guardian: Stan Grant: I can tell you how Adam Goodes feels. Every Indigenous person has felt it … Here’s what I can do. I can tell you what it is like for us. I can tell you what Adam must be feeling, because I’ve felt it. Because every Indigenous person I know has felt it. It may not be what you want to hear. Australians are proud of their tolerance yet can be perplexed when challenged on race, their response often defensive. I may be overly sensitive. I may see insult where none is intended. Maybe my position of relative success and privilege today should have healed deep scars of racism and the pain of growing up Indigenous in Australia. The same could be said of Adam. And perhaps that is right. But this is how Australia makes us feel. Estranged in the land of our ancestors, marooned by the tides of history on the fringes of one of the richest and demonstrably most peaceful, secure and cohesive nations on earth. The “wealth for toil” we praise in our anthem has remained out of our reach. Our position at the bottom of every socio-economic indicator tragically belies the Australian economic miracle …

• T Keane in Comments: Look we Australians like our blacks tame, so when somebody like Adam Goodes gets a bit uppity then, well, we need to put him back in his place don’t we? No matter how many contortions people try (‘I’m not racist but ...’) this is the underlying subtext.  The indefensible cannot be defended. It’s shameful. Shame on the AFL, shame on those white male media spokesmen, shame on Australia.

• Chris Harries in Comments: Very few people go around displaying overt racist or sexist or anti gay behaviours. Oppression of minorities and bigotry is more typically carried out subtly through language and attitude, by using stereotyped labels, by damaging self esteem, by putting down people in all manner of ways whilst pretending that it’s nothing to do with their race or gender or they way they choose to dress. That’s why it’s so hard to stamp out bigoted attitudes. It’s easy for any person to persuade themselves that they are not racist or sexist or anti cyclist…. or whatever…. whilst they’re being exactly that. People who take a stand against prejudice – like Rodney Croome, Michael Mansell, Germaine Greer, Adam Goodes – tend to annoy a lot of people at the time because their role is to put up a mirror to ourselves, and we may not like it, but in the long run those people end up being catalysts for changes that have to happen. Had they lived a century ago, those who oppose same-sex marriage today would have been the voices that tried to prevent women getting the vote. Maybe some are probably still annoyed about that!

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Xenophobia is killing our Planet

Gloria Keverne*
03.08.15 4:15 am

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Xenophobia (both human and ecological) is raging worldwide. Yet we are all Earthlings and life on Earth has always migrated. The Khoisan are the first known inhabitants of Africa, and African elephants and lions once roamed North America; America’s bison, bear and deer immigrated from Eurasia, while horses, which evolved in the States, radiated outwards, returning home to be shot as aliens.

New York Times: A renegade trawler, hunted for 10,000 miles by vigilantes

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How to save the Planet ... and Humankind

Robert Vincin, .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
03.08.15 4:00 am

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The world’s nations will meet at the UN in Paris on December to continue dialogue on “How to save the Planet and Mankind”. After 21 years of meetings no business plan has been tabled on where to start ... or what to do!

• Frank and Karin, Milano, in Comments: ”... to reverse deserts and grow soil” - Yes, these are very practical,important steps to restore the global carbon levels. Needless to say that such actions will also create positive community spirit, meaningful employment and financial returns. Having just visited the Ökoregion Kaindorf = Eco-Region Kaindorf in Austria and the well-managed diverse mountain forests of Slovenia (NO clearfelling since 1948) we have experienced again what is possible if, and when good people work together for a better future. It is up to the Tasmanian Community and Industries to come together to be creative and open for positive (carbon negative) change. Chiao! from Milano / Italy train station

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Obama’s flexible fix to climate change

Joe Nocera, Opinion, New York Times
03.08.15 3:50 am

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For many years I used to spend part of the summer in the gorgeous Laurentides region of Quebec, an hour west of Montreal ...

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Why has Scandinavia got it right and we haven’t?

John Biggs.
03.08.15 3:30 am

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Recently I spent some time in Denmark, Sweden and Norway. Apart from being mightily impressed by the scenery, natural and man-made, I was also impressed by the facts that …

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This week’s Feminist Roundup

Bronwyn Williams
03.08.15 3:20 am

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This fortnight’s feminist roundup features the campaign being conducted by Australian organisation, Collective Shout, to ban the entry of US rapper, Tyler the Creator (Tyler Okonma), into the country later this year for a concert tour.

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The Protest at Vedanta ...

Miriam Rose, Foil Vedanta http://www.foilvedanta.org
03.08.15 3:17 am

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Sixty people drummed and chanted at today’s protest in London, calling ‘Corporate Criminal, Shame on you!’ at executives entering the AGM and heckling two men dressed as Vedanta Chairman and 69.6% owner Anil Agarwal and CEO Tom Albanese who staged a boxing match.

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Racist booing of Adam Goodes: this is Abbott’s Australia

James McDonald. Southerly Currents
03.08.15 3:15 am

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Just ask when did this sustained booing against Sydney’s Adam Goodes begin? It was after his spear dance celebration during the AFL Indigines Round. It is racist. It is not the mere booing of a player who fouls an opponent although Goodes clearly plays an aggressive as well as skilful game. It is because the guy celebrated his heritage. This is the new Australia.

• TV Resident in Comments: Ever since Abbott became PM, he has done nothing but stir up trouble wherever he possibly can. He ‘fearmongers’ and he has to have his nose and our soldiers into all other countries business. He should be concentrating on what is going on here and deal with that fairly. But he bends over backwards to accommodate his mates in the fossil fuel industry, he refuses to have the wealthy pay more taxes because he would rather punish people who are not wealthy. Oh what it must be like to be born priveleged like Abbott and also his daughters who receive special attention for scholarships etc, when scholarships are supposed to be for the underpriveleged who prove they are worthy of further education but can’t afford it. The sooner this PM is gone for good the better, then the country may have an opportunity to get back on its feet again.

• Tim Upston in Comments: Don’t forget the media company News Limited which used the arrivals in Australia of desperate refugees by boats, (as they have been doing in Europe for many years) to bash up and finally see the dismissal of the then Labor government, which was virtually a bastion of compassion compared with this fascist Abbott government that apparently we had to have.

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Exclusive: Amnesty International UK’s stitch-up job?

Julie Bindel, Byline, via Isla MacGregor
03.08.15 2:50 am

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Julie Bindel obtains a summary of an Amnesty International UK meeting held in 2013, revealing the intention to support the decriminalisation of prostitution prior to a sham consultation process. Judge for yourself

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Writers | Isla MacGregor | Politics | International | National | Opinion | History | Society

Nordic Model Sex Work

Tom Kent*
03.08.15 2:46 am

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The recent article by Simone Watson of the Nordic Model Australia Coalition ( Tasmanian Times, 13 July 2015, Here and Here ), is one the most hypocritical and disgraceful articles that I have ever seen.

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Dear Amnesty International

Equality Now via Isla MacGregor
03.08.15 2:30 am

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The growing number of Human Rights groups who have written to Amensty Internatonal’s Secretary General Salil Shetty are sending a loud message, to what was once considered a global human rights leader that they are proposing policies that are at odds with best practise international human rights law.

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How Groningen invented a cycling template for cities all over the world

Renate van der Zee, Guardian
03.08.15 2:15 am

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Motorists woke up one mid-70s morning to find new one-way streets made direct crosstown journeys impossible by car. Forty years later Groningen boasts two-thirds of all trips made by bike … and the cleanest air of any big Dutch city

• Ben Cannon in Comments: … Cue the automobile lobby to tell us that the Dutch solution wouldn’t work here because of reasons like it being too hilly and mopeds being expensive or that the population is too spread out or that we don’t have rail to connect it to because they killed it, and that what we really need are more taxpayer subsidised roads for them to drive around on all alone in their passengerless and cargoless cars.

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Tasmanian Writers and Readers Festival 11 - 13 September 2015

Kate Harrison, Festival Marketing. First published: August 1
03.08.15 2:12 am

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Tickets on sale: Monday 3 August 2015 Early-bird sales have been tracking well and we are now ready to announce the rest of the program for the 2015 Tasmanian Writers and Readers Festival.

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Books | What's On

Silence Of The Churches

Percy From The Pews. Pic: Historic, of All Saints, South Hobart
03.08.15 2:00 am

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A simple question: who is heeding the calls to save Tasmania’s riches of built heritage? In particular, who will rescue our old churches?

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Bridgewater Bridge ...

George Burrows
03.08.15 1:30 am

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I endorse the sentiments of Lance Wiggins (RACT News 9/09/2014) that the Derwent River be accessible to all forms of boating and other recreational activities, while respecting the natural environment.

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STATE: The case for a tunnel under Davey Street, Hobart

Hans Willink* First published: July 20
03.08.15 1:25 am

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… Who can forget that only 5 years ago the Federal Government was prepared to spend a billion dollars on a new Royal Hobart Hospital, twice what might be needed for a tunnel. Current polls indicate that next year’s Federal election may again be close with the prospect of another hung parliament and with the seat of Denison again in a position to negotiate additional funding. Clearly, we need fully costed and shovel ready projects, if we are to take advantage of opportunity funding and the Ringini tunnel might just be the sort of project the Federal Government are looking for. When the funds are approved,  just one more thing … let’s get the Hydro to build it.

• Ben Cannon in Comments: Not realistic solutions? Look at a graph of public transport usage by state. You’ll notice that every other state has gone up since the 70’s, while Tasmania has gone down. Why? Because of that same mantra about how everyone should just get a car that lead to rails being ripped up. Public transport in Tasmania has received little more than lip service via a few buses which are often crowded beyond even standing capacity at peak hours. If most people have a choice they will pick an hour by car over 2 hours by bus. If most people have a choice they will pick 1/2 an hour by rail over 1 hour by car. How many people will pick a modest fare on reliable public transport over expensive inner city parking fees? That’s why rail elsewhere is struggling to fit enough trains on the tracks without building new lines …

• Ben, Melbourne, in Comments: Tony Abbott rejecting sustainable solutions such as rail is no surprise. The self proclaimed infrastructure pm has done little for such other than fund a few roads. Melbourne has a population of 4 million. It has 25 tram lines at an average distance of 10km and 16 train lines at an average of over 20km each and 9 arterial bus routes at an average of 40km each. There are also a lot of feeder bus services. Just based on the two forms of rail and arterial bus, this equates to roughly 1km of rail or arterial bus for every 4000 people Most train and tram routes are so packed at peak hour that even finding standing space can be difficult. Using this formula for Hobart we arrive at 50km of rail for 200,000 people. A Bridgewater to Kingston line would total about 30, Bridgewater to Lauderdale would be similar. Add on a little for rail across Tasman bridge. You’re left with a similar ratio to Melbourne. Current bus services along these routes suffer similar overcrowding.

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Hands in the Dirt for Space Food

Kim Peart. Image*
03.08.15 1:00 am

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Astronauts must eat and the better the food, the better their health.

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A renegade trawler, hunted for 10,000 miles by vigilantes

New York Times
03.08.15 12:15 am

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or 110 days and across two seas and three oceans, crews stalked a fugitive fishing ship considered the world’s most notorious poacher.

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Bronny: Worse than getting your wisdom teeth out ...

Andrew Wilkie, Independent Member for Denison Media Release Pic*
02.08.15 5:35 pm

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A Statement on Bronwyn Bishop’s resignation as Speaker Thank God for that. Watching this saga unfold was worse than getting your wisdom teeth out.

• Use the TT NEWS Dropdown Menu (top nav bar) for breaking news/comment from the range of MSM sources …

• Brian Kahn in Comments: Phillip Corey and Primrose Riordan list a summary of Bronwyn Bishop’s expenditure on entitlements { $ } November 2013 –present $846,299.27 In comparison to other speakers namely ... Anna Burke,October 2012 - August 2013,  $29,442.00, Peter Slipper, November 2011-October 2012, $48,492.00 …

• phill Parsons in Comments: B. Bishop is getting off lightly when compared to the treatment of Slipper over his cab charges. They were found not to be fraudulent because Parliamentary Business was not defined. $3.5million was spent proving nothing when Slipper could have been forced to pay the money back. There is little doubt that the campaign against Slipper was planned and orchestrated by Lieberals, with Pyne and Brough noted for their meetings with Ashby. Wilkie has generated a definition that should be written into the root and branch review if it ever concludes and changes made. What I cannot understand is why there is not a Federal ICAC.

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Tony Abbott, 2012: The Speaker is the guardian of parliamentary standards ...

Tony Abbott Archive. First published: July 31
02.08.15 5:10 am

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… The Speaker is the guardian of parliamentary standards. The Speakership is one of the most important offices in the Parliament. The Speaker is there to uphold the integrity of the Parliament and now we have very, very serious allegations against the incumbent Speaker, allegations of sexual harassment and allegations of potentially criminal misuse of entitlements. These are very serious allegations indeed. Yes, the Speaker is entitled to the presumption of innocence but he does have quite a lot of explaining to do.

It’s also very important that the Prime Minister act to ensure the integrity of the Parliament. The Speaker is only in that office because the Prime Minister used her numbers late last year to install him. The Prime Minister, to uphold the integrity of the Parliament, needs now to require the Speaker to step down until these matters are resolved.  It’s also incumbent upon the Australian Federal Police to swiftly investigate the potentially criminal allegations that have been made against the Speaker. 

I can’t underestimate the seriousness of this … Well this does go to the integrity not just of the Parliament but of the Prime Minister and of the Government …

Guardian: Bronwyn Bishop expenses row: historic claims reveal another 15 trips With the Speaker under increasing pressure to stand aside, further claims reveal that as a committee chair she claimed travel benefits even when the committee was not conducting hearings

• mr t in Comments: I realise our PM is assiduously avoiding the media in this week where a true leader would stand tall but refreshing to know a relevant media statement can be drawn from 2012. It must be another cost saving measure by the PM and his office.

Sunshine Coast Daily, 13th Aug 2006 8:00 AM: Politicians gather for Slipper wedding … A WHOS who of politicians attended Member for Fisher Peter Slippers wedding to his girlfriend of three years, Buderims Inge-Jane Hall in Brisbane yesterday. More than 200 guests, including federal treasurer Peter Costello, MP Bronwyn Bishop, MP Kevin Rudd and local councillor and liberal state candidate for Kawana Steve Dickson, attended the traditional Anglican wedding at All Saints Anglican Church. …

Laurie Oakes, Daily Telegraph: House must be in order

Andrew Wilkie: A statement on Bronwyn Bishop’s latest travel outrages The latest revelations about Bronwyn Bishop going to Nowra and Young are surely the final straw. Tripping all over Australia for political fundraisers and who knows what else at taxpayers’ expense is patently wrong. The Member for Mackellar is undoubtedly a serial abuser of parliamentary travel arrangements and entirely unfit to be the Speaker of the House of Representatives. She must step down immediately from the position and repay every cent. Just as quickly the investigation into Bronwyn Bishop’s travel claims must be taken up by the Australian Federal Police.

Alan Ramsey, SMH: In a week when Parliament’s Bronwyn Bishop is the only political idiocy going on in national political life, or so it seems, to re-visit “the Tony Joyce Incident” and its political bastardries all those years ago is more than worthwhile.

Mark in TT Satire here

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Vale Dr Louise Crossley

Christine Milne, Bob Brown Media Release First published: August 1
02.08.15 4:54 am

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Christine Milne and Bob Brown are saddened to announce the passing yesterday of Dr Louise Crossley. Christine Milne said, “Louise Crossley led a remarkable life full of high achievement driven by her curiosity, exploration and passion for the natural world and the people around her. “She was a leader, a great traveller, and a person who made things happen, from her days at the Powerhouse Museum to the Commission for the Future, to the Antarctic Division, and more recently her work to help establish the Australian and Global Greens. “She loved the Antarctic and was a pioneer as Station Leader at Mawson Base in 1991, only the second woman in Australia to lead a base.

Vica Bayley: Farewell Louise Crossley

Dr Kevin Bonham in Comments: As many will be aware I only very rarely post here any more, but various factual errors in #1 must be corrected.  There was no Senate election in 1991.  Dr Crossley was actually the Greens’ lead Senate candidate for Tasmania in 1998, which wasn’t the Black River bomb year.  Although the Greens’ electoral stocks in the state were at a very low ebb at that time making her task extremely difficult, a totally baffling decision by One Nation to preference the Greens resulted in a close contest with Crossley eventually missing out to Harradine and Labor by just a few thousand votes; the outcome was unclear for many days. The Black River bomb hoax actually happened in 1993 …

• Chris Harries in Comments: Kevin, here’s a little bit of inside information that may take some of the bafflement out of your clarifying post. In the 1998 election (if that date is correct) I was charged by the Greens with undertaking preference negotiations – a task that I absolutely abhorred, being fundamentally opposed to the above-the-line system. In that capacity I had gone in to witness the electoral commission’s draw on the Senate ballot slip composition.  … A little bit of add-on to Louise Crossley’s candidature. Subsequent to her election campaign she had a community leadership profile on a number of issues but for some unknown reason the Mercury seemed to have it in for her, pejoratively labelling her – during the subsequent three years – simply as a ‘failed’ candidate. Owing to Louise’s legendary good nature and political awareness she took this without bitterness. She was not only an incredibly mature and thoughtful person, she had a thick skin to boot.

• Peta Colebatch, Languedoc, France in Comments: Louise was also a great navigator and clear thinker.  Having brought her to Tasmania as the inaugural Director of the late lamented International Antarctic Centre, I then grew to marvel at Louise’s wide-ranging abilities in recruiting and inspiring staff, her ability to write concisely yet eloquently, her artistic sense, and her organising ability - all of this pre-dating her time as Station Leader for the Antarctic Division. She subsequently went on to many more public activities with the Greens and others, as well as book writing.  In 2006 she joined me in the Languedoc, taking great delight in navigating the tiny car through haphazard villages and ever rougher and narrower roads, with hardly room for a goat let alone a petite car, while she marvelled at the wildness of this part of France.  She was a great writer, traveller, adventurer, organiser, inspirer, mentor, community activist, and a friend. She will be missed, deeply.

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WIN, WIN, WIN. WON!X

Editor
02.08.15 12:13 am

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The Publisher has given Tassietimes two books by Tasmanian Writers and Readers Festival guest Posie Graeme-Evans to GIVE AWAYYYYYYYYYY. Simply write to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) with your addy and they’re yours. First in, best dressed!x

• Snapped up immediatement by Estelle ‘n’ Pat!x

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Books

First Day of the Month Salute ...

Isla MacGregor
01.08.15 5:00 am

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Arthur River coast

Eroded coastal siltstone at Arthur River

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Writers | Isla MacGregor | Society

No better time than now for Robb to walk away from secret TPP deal

Greens spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson Media Release. PicL of Andrew Robb
01.08.15 4:00 am

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The Greens spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson provides the following comments on the failure of Trade Minister Andrew Robb to reach an agreement on the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP).

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Mt Lyell: At last ... the charges ...

Isla MacGregor
31.07.15 6:26 am

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It has taken four months for the DPP to finally lay charges against Mt Lyell mine owner Vedanta (Vedanta’s Copper Mines of Tasmania) over the tragic deaths of two workers Alistair Lucas and Craig Gleeson who died in December 2013.

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Neighbours of Fish Farming group forms to take community concerns to industry

De Arne Webb – Convenor, Neighbours of Fish Farming Media Release
31.07.15 5:00 am

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Seventy members of the Huon, Channel and Bruny Island community attended a meeting in Cygnet tonight (Thursday). The meeting formed a group, Neighbours of Fish Farming, to promote and protect the interests of the Huon catchment, Channel and Bruny Island communities affected by fish farming.

• Wild River Enthusiast in Comments: Talk to any local with half an interest in fishing and they will tell you of the decline of the Huon. Blackfish stocks used to be abundant, and there were loads more trout. When a few thousand large salmon escape they swim far up the river and eat everything, before dying from starvation, leaving nothing. They have been caught as far up as the Weld River. Down in the estuary the wild fish have to deal with the sea lice from the salmon pens. The Huon should be an asset for all, not just for a couple of fish farm companies …

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