1. Swear allegiance to clean coal
I got a heads-up from John D, Mark’s Facebook was onto it also. Prospective migrants would be asked questions about clean coal, according to RenewEconomy, who don’t normally do satire. They got it from The Australian, and the man from The Monthly on RN Drive says it was real, so was it?
The link was to this site, so was it real, or a spoof? Surely the latter!
So I Googled IELTS and found that Peter Dutton says the idea that an academic test is required for citizenship and migration is a load of cobblers. Continue reading Saturday salon 24/6
1. Towering inferno
A shocker this week was the fire that destroyed the Grenfell Tower in London, a 24-storey building with 120 apartments. The latest count is 30 dead, but the final toll could be much higher as people were incinerated, many difficult or impossible to identify.
Unfortunately people were told to stay in their units, until it became apparent that the fire was spreading up the cladding on the outside of the building – then it was too late for many. Continue reading Saturday salon 17/6
1. UK election- May kicks an own goal
The BBC has the results – it’s a hung parliament.
Theresa May did a Malcolm Turnbull, by calling an election to strengthen her position, and scraping back in by the barest of margins. Continue reading Saturday salon 10/6
1. Leadership traits
The major polls currently have Labor ahead 53-47 at both Newspoll and Essential Report on a Two-Party Preferred basis. Andrew Beaumont has commentary. Labor would have 82 seats to the LNP’s 63, with 5 Other.
Essentially Turnbull and the LNP are going nowhere. However, the leaders approval ratings are dreadful. In Essential Turnbull is net -11 and Shorten -14. In Newspoll Turnbull is -19, and Shorten -20, both up a bit, with Turnbull’s the best since September 2015.
Newspoll took a look at Leadership traits across the years since Rudd in September 2008 and Gillard in July-August 2010. Their ratings are simply stellar compared to what we think of our leaders now. Continue reading Saturday salon 3/6 (late edition)
1. Margaret Court pipes up
No doubt you remember this from Saturday salon 13/5:
Margaret Court, tennis legend, later Pentecostal Christian minister in 1991 and now a minister at Perth’s Victory Life Church, brought a storm upon her head when she said she would no longer fly Qantas because of Alan Joyce’s advocacy for same-sex marriage. Continue reading Saturday salon 27/5
That’s the story from David Graham at The Atlantic, who details fully the events over just 10 days, some of which haven’t been picked up by our media.
The bottom line is that Trump is not up to the job, his minions are not up to saving him, often mislead him or don’t tell him the truth, he doesn’t take much notice of them, and the place leaks like a sieve. This will play out over a long period, but there are serious questions about whether his presidency can achieve anything. Continue reading Saturday salon 20/5
1. Alan Joyce cops a pie in the face
It was impossible not to feel Schadenfreude when Qantas CEO Alan Joyce copped a pie in the face:
Continue reading Saturday salon 13/5
1. Free speech has its limits
Yassmin Abdel-Magied found out that speech in Australia is not free if the political right do not agree with what you say, or when you choose to say it. She does some part-time work for the ABC, so it was front page on the Daily Tele and:
Conservative commentators Andrew Bolt and Gerard Henderson have both questioned whether Abdel-Magied has the qualifications to hold her job at the ABC.
Acting PM Barnaby Joyce said the ABC should take “further action” against Abdel-Magied. The immigration minister, Peter Dutton, has labelled her a “disgrace”, Senator Eriz Abetz called her comments “reprehensible” while Liberal MP George Christensen called for her to be sacked, adding that “self-deportation should also be considered”.
What did she do to deserve this? Continue reading Saturday salon 29/4
1. Theresa May’s brave gambit
She didn’t need to, so why did she, especially after promising absolutely definitely that she wouldn’t?
Given a lead of about 20% in the polls, she possibly sees a chance of decimating Labour and governing virtually as a one-party state for the next five years.
However, Nate Silver at FiveThirtyEight warns that the British polls are basically not worth a cracker. Their abysmal performance translates into a margin of error of 13 to 15%. Continue reading Saturday salon 22/4
1. Older Coalition voters turning to One Nation
Newspoll finds that the demographic most supportive of One Nation is the 50-plus group and it appears that the LNP is the main loser in that sector.
Meanwhile, Pauline is calling for a boycott of easter eggs that are halal-certified, ie Cadbury, Matthias Cormann has stared down a demand that the ABC’s budget be cut by $600 million and the Young Nationals have supported carbon trading, having supported same-sex marriage in 2015. Continue reading Saturday salon 15/4
1. Trump’s Syria strike puts the world on notice
Trump’s launch of 59 Tomahawk missiles to smash a Syrian airfield has put the world on notice. As Trump enters talks with Chinese leader Xi Jinping, suddenly it is clear that Trump is not going to be isolationist, and no-one can be sure how far he will go, in Syria, the South China Sea, North Korea, or anywhere else..
The biggest question is what comes next? There are Russian troops on the ground. The Syrians and Russians have anti-aircraft weapons capable of bringing American planes down, which have been flying freely to strike ISIS targets. Continue reading Saturday salon 8/4
This is the story about an Indian couple in Melbourne, who desperately wanted to stay in Australia. They moved to Adelaide, where the wife was offered a three-year contract as a cook in an Indian restaurant for $52,500 pa under a 457 visa.
What happened is that she ended up working for years for nothing, and sums of $30,000 and then $20,000 were extorted on threat of ending 457 sponsorship. Then the authorities cancelled the company’s right to sponsor, so their visa was cancelled. Continue reading Saturday salon 1/4