Topics

9. Nov, 2017

So Australia has lost it car industry… it never had one! What we had were international brands.

Holden, Ford, Mitsubishi, Toyota have never been ours. They were owned by International companies who decided to lodge here as a brand until it suited them not to. Australia has thrown Billions of dollars at this and in the past ten odd approximately $4B. By the time we count land grants, factory grants, and all funding the bill could be as high as $20B. Even that beloved lemon the Leyland P76 was really a British subsidiary. This phenomenon has happened in several countries. There are three example of this in Brazil, Argentina and India where the industry has nearly crippled the country.

Let us investigate other problems associated with the Australian car industry. Firstly is the problem of lack of market strategy to keep up with demand. Overseas producers such as Korea read the market very well and built smaller, less polluting and gas guzzling cars. While we went on with our love affair with large cars and lots of unnecessary power. We also missed the SUV market by a generation. The question needed to be asked, were they just catering to a few rather than the market to get funding?

Secondly is the question of pricing ourselves out of the market by way of union demands (this is happening in many Australian industries) in high wages and costs and not being able to substitute a worker in the manufacturing line. When in Thailand the basic wage is more than 20 times less than here. If you don’t turn up, do what you are told or strike…you don’t have a job. Now I am not condoning that but it makes an enormous difference to the bottom line.

Thirdly we talk about innovation but really we do nothing about it. We were more innovative in the 1950-60’s than we are now. We made aero planes during and after World War II. Our steel industry was the most advanced in the world but that technical skill is now all but lost. So is the ability to manufacture world class boats and ships for defence. After all you put weapons systems on a platform…not the other way around.

Let’s look at countries who have made it in manufacturing cars. Sweden who also manufactures aero planes has a thriving car industry of its own. India probably makes more cars than any other country but it has a two tiered industry. South Korea makes both ships and motor cars.

Who is responsible and who needs to address these problems…simple politicians. Yet again we can blame the 2 party system for its failures. We had a chance but let it go… because party politics make terrible decisions. There is no reason we can’t have a car industry. Along the way we have been swindled literally out of some $20B and what do we have to show for it.

The investment in the car industry could represent as many as 20000 jobs on the average wage over 30 years… The industry employed less than that and decreased over the last 10-15 years. Yes we didn’t just buy a lemon, we were sold the whole toxic farm! Moreover what are we left with now…a waste-land and an opportunity lost. While those international companies walked away with profits and our money… and have set up elsewhere to make more profits. Follow the money!

1. Nov, 2017

Next week I will start a series on chasing the money a look at the failures of Australian politics and policy. It will be 4-5 in the series looking at where money has gone and how it has impacted us as a nation.

To this topic… we are off and running in a Queensland State election. It will be intriguing to see what happens. As time passes more and more people are walking away from 2 party politics. Interestingly if you look at the failures they can be attributed to both sides of the 2 party system in both the federal and state parliaments.

I must vote as I am a Queenslander… but finding a leader, a party or a representative to vote for is difficult… there are none. As a Gold Coaster there are any number of issues at hand.

 

State Issues:

I am a firm believer that the Adani mine is nothing but a disaster in the waiting.

Fracking must be ceased.

Policing needs a complete review.

Infrastructure and spending loss is astounding.

Donations must be ceased.

Regional growth is the real means of growing our economy.

Debt.

 

Local issues:

Development is running rampant over our environment and public space.

Light Rail is a loss and there are far more important matters. The real rail issue and M1 are far more important both in financial impact and personal use factor just by sheer numbers alone.

M1 is a disaster and must be fixed from Robina to the border.

The airport has grown past its use and logistics applications, plus its toxicity is now a very damaging issue.

20. Oct, 2017

I have touched on this issue several times during the last 18 months. However I have been researching and building this topic for almost that amount of time also. Lobbyists have been around for a long time and can generally be seen in their $2-3000 suits swanning around the halls and offices of Parliament house. There is even a register for them… and registered parking spaces. They have the best seats at the best restaurants…stay in really swank hotels. My understanding is that the average daily expense account for a lobbyists is approx. $2-2500…of course that doesn’t include a wage or bonus and so on. Again I understand that an average Lobbyist from the Iron Ore industry is paid approximately $600 an hour as a consultant. That could account for $3-5000 a day, Based on an average sitting year of 70 day and a balance of an average working year being 200 days, they could be paid as much as $600000-$1m on top of the other benefits. On the contrary a waged group based consultant such as one from ACOSS gets approximately $96000 per annum.

Best described as a wolf in sheep’s clothing…There are hundreds of Lobbyists in Canberra and some even work at a state level although there are also hundreds at that level also. They work mainly in areas of large business and contracts. Areas include, Unions, Guns, Coal, Iron ore, Oil and Gas, Transport, Power, Education, Health, Tourism, Defence (especially contracts), Water, Agriculture, Human Rights, Immigration, Banking and Insurance, Pharmacy, Smoking. These can be broken down into sub sets also, an example of this is agricultural trade. There are several definitions or meanings but I believe this one brings it together: … is a form of advocacy with the intention of influencing decisions made by the government by individuals or more usually by lobby groups; it includes all attempts to influence legislators and officials, whether by other legislators, constituents, or organized groups.

Let’s look at an example of a consultant lobbyist working for coal. Coal has several of these lobbyists arguing along several specialty points: Economics, Unions & Jobs, Power costs, Science, Power suppliers, Power resellers. They will generally share the research they have which comes via the Coal companies. During the 1990 lobbyists acting as advisors spoke with both Federal and State legislators regarding deregulation of the power industry. Their presentations to cabinets, ministers and executive showed that there would be competition, more jobs and the ability to make power cleaner and cheaper. Especially given the development of solar energy …after all how was Government going to pay for this massive spending investment. The power groups were working on a rebate system that over all would save Government $100’s of million to spend more wisely on things like hospitals and transport. In fact the model was costed and implemented at a price twice as high as it should have been. This has in fact cost State government $B’s that could have been put into those hospitals and transport infrastructure.

Very few are actually privileged to the snake in the long grass, back handed, door closing deceit of this process. It’s a bit like three dimensional chequers… you have to look up, look down, look left, look right look ahead and back all at the same time. We all know the outcome of the 1990’s power lobbying. Power has increased exponentially nearly 3 times faster than inflation. You can read my topic on this from earlier in the year.

So what good for the public and the general tax payers is achieved by lobbyists? In more than 95% of matters nothing… in fact the usual case is that the public end up on the loss end of the equation. In my humble opinion lobbying is nearly as bad as the 2 party system…it uses that very system at its discretion and sometimes it even shapes election outcomes.

Here are just 5 more chronic disasters in my region caused by lobbyists; Water desalination, Light rail, M1 not upgraded, Train link to the GC airport & GC airport itself, daylight saving.

Like donations, lobbyists need to be banned. The simple reason for this is beneficial interest.

16. Oct, 2017

What has happened to the world and more over to Australia? I am not a person who see’s thing by a sexist model, never have been. However double standards have become a standard now… it all started to happen somewhere around the mid 1980’s… no longer does what is right stand for anything but it has become a flip of a coin.  This ties in nicely with the news which today is anything but!

The most appalling of these double standards appear in Justice… What Justice? DOD spends $1.5 plus ongoing costs for gender transfers but it can’t spend $1 on Benzene Poisoned ex-service personnel…on top of that it will spend $1.5B cleaning up the civilian fuel and foam mess and has admitted to it. But it won’t say a word about how it has possibly killed several thousand of its own and has many suffering now with cancer and autoimmune diseases.

This applies also to all first responders… Police, Firefighters, Ambulance, and alike … will it soon be the case that no one will want these very necessary jobs? It’s not like the pay is brilliant… I have not met a first responder yet who does the job for money! So what will the public do when there are no firefighters, no Ambulance or police when the you know what hits the fan… and please without a defence force Australia is a sitting target… but hey you lot are more than capable…look after yourselves! Things would quickly change if 500 died in fires next year or the number dying in the streets doubled and trebled!

Jane Fonda has recently come out and said she had didn’t have the courage to speak up about Harvey Weinstein…however she certainly had the courage to speak up about the Vietnam war and disgraced the falling of over 58000 Veterans from her country. I am not a JF fan but I do not write this because of that. This is an appalling double standard.

On Hervey Weinstein and the casting couch, touchy feeling thing… again not my scene but it’s also not news….however go to a ‘Ladies’ stripper night and see the double standard in action! Yes I know it’s a strip show… however, most of the women are over 30, married and have children. I did a bit of security in my younger years … after 3 of these gigs I said no more. It was more a case of what didn’t happen than what did happen!

Recently and 8 month old baby girl was bashed by her mother… she got zero jail time. If it was a man he would have a min 24 months (again not enough) so what is going on here? Is a child’s safety worth more when a man is the abuser or a woman? It is only my opinion but any human being who does this deserves 20 years without down time.

There are so many other areas to this such as the climate debate… which by means of research appears to be nothing more than a business alternative run by those with capital looking for the next thing. Don’t get me wrong I am an advocate of a cleaner planet is a better planet, but the fact of this debate is that money matters more than reality. Methadone treatment is free but Cancer treatment is not! … I could raise more than 100 issues inside an hour but I think you get the point.

A friend of mine spoke with me last week on FB video and she was talking about a lot of this stuff and said, it was the lead from “the pink, pussy fart, left brigade” which amused me enormously. So I asked her to elaborate and what she said made sense. Alternatives are well funded, vigilant and determined. They make a lot of noise and shout down anyone else with an opinion. Why I asked…her answer was simple …there is more money and profit in alternatives than in everyday things. The rest of us are simply getting on with our lives and don’t have the time energy or money to get involved. So in essence we let this stuff flow along. Unless we start standing up as the majority then soon we will be silenced forever!

17. Sep, 2017

Is it ISIS and the belief that all Muslims are killers? Lest examine that… It is a well, established fact that more Muslims die at the hand of terrorists than anyone else. Yes we have all heard the saying that “not all Muslims are terrorists however all terrorists are Muslims.” Terrorists come in all forms and models from all ethnicities, religions and groups.

Is it that our government is insurmountably stupid? Well that is a big problem but it can be overcome by voting a government out, even a party government can be removed and replaced by Independents who serve their constituents, not themselves.   

Is it that our culture is being wiped from the face of the earth? Well that is another big problem, but it is also able to be reversed. Wiping out a culture is total and complete…somehow I don’t think the western life style, the Australian way of doing things is going away in quick time. But be alert!

This is what it really is…our (any individual) right to an opinion is being eroded completely. That erosion is not only coming in the way of legislation, interpretation of what should be law and our legislators listening to too many minorities and not looking after the mainstream public. It is coming from rent a crowd. Very aggressive and antagonistic rent a crowd. One of these is a group called ANTIFA who regularly can be found attacking (yes attacking) in groups the one or two people walking around wanting to show their opinion on a matter. These attacks can be extremely violent. They also attend Parades by groups wanting to have their opinion heard… usually violence erupts. More often than not any opinion in the alternative to theirs is drowned out.

Why is so bad for all of us… we don’t get to hear the alternative debates and points and like all thinking countries, people, we can make up our own minds. According to these groups we are not allowed to think, have an opinion, speak out or want to know anything other than their agenda. You would be interested to know who is behind these groups, who finances them, rents them? They are highly organised, well paid and covered for any and all situations with freedom rights lawyers and money to get out of jail. These people who own the rent a crowd would surprise you as to who they are… I suggest you google a few of these groups and do some reading.

Keep an open mind and secure your right to freedom of thought and speech.

Why ... because the link below is not us!

https://www.google.com.au/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiw6PimmazWAhWMjLwKHRbrD1sQjRwIBw&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.countercollective.news%2Fint%2Fjill-stein-leader-alt-left-endorses-communist-terrorism%2F&psig=AFQjCNFZplYDKJbjBUfMrToTZ3TTYyMhHg&ust=1505736902464033