John Richardson's blog
If you go to Tony Abbott’s facebook page, at time of writing, you will find six threads about the Martin Place siege and one about the slaughter of innocent children in Pakistan. Four days after its release, you will not find any comment about Hockey’s MYEFO. That in itself should be cause for concern.
In 1964, the Brazilian military, in a US-designed coup, overthrew a liberal (not more to the left than that) government and proceeded to rule with an iron fist for the next 21 years. In 1979 the military regime passed an amnesty law blocking the prosecution of its members for torture and other crimes. The amnesty still holds.
from Crikey ….
In the course of 2014, around 70 women and children will have died at the hands of a partner, ex-partner or father. We don’t know exactly how many, because governments across Australia don’t keep uniform sets of data, but we know roughly how many based on historical data.
Drone strikes and other "targeted killings" of terrorist and insurgent leaders favoured by the US and supported by Australia can strengthen extremist groups and be counterproductive, according to a secret CIA report published by WikiLeaks.
According to a leaked document by the CIA's Directorate of Intelligence, "high value targeting" (HVT) involving air strikes and special forces operations against insurgent leaders can be effective, but can also have negative effects including increasing violence and greater popular support for extremist groups.
Tony Abbott is at his best when he has something to fight. Ask Kevin Rudd. Or Julia Gillard. Or Malcolm Turnbull. Abbott vanquished them all with brutal efficiency, mainly because he had a devastatingly clear line of attack. "Great big toxic tax based on a lie," or something. Sure, that's more a mash-up than a quote, but with these eight words, Abbott destroyed three leaders. Even in power his best moments have come as he has seized upon an enemy, whether a Russian "bully" or an Islamist "death cult".
Tony Abbott’s claim that no one would get a better rate than defence workers appears to be disputed at Senate estimates hearing.
Some public servants are getting a bigger pay rise than defence personnel, despite Tony Abbott’s assurances to the contrary.
Who could have predicted what a hash a Coalition government would make of its first budget? If Joe Hockey wants to lift his game in 2015, as we must hope he will, there are lessons the government - and its bureaucratic advisers - need to learn.
If Denis Napthine had an extra $20 billion to spend he might have fared a little better over the weekend in the Victorian election. That's the size of the war-chest mooted by the NSW Liberal government as they head to the polls early next year, pledging to privatise the state's electricity networks.
"If you dress police officers up as soldiers and you put them in military vehicles and you give them military weapons, they adopt a warrior mentality. We fight wars against enemies, and the enemies are the people who live in our cities—particularly in communities of colour." —Thomas Nolan, criminology professor and former police officer