Tag Archives: Tony Abbott

John Menadue. MH17 – At last a thank-you to Malaysia may be on the cards.

In ten days’ time, Tony Abbott will be visiting Malaysia and India. The visit to Kuala Lumpur will at last be an opportunity for him to thank on our behalf the Malaysian Government’s significant contribution to ‘Operation Bring them Home’. … Continue reading

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Richard Woolcott. Indonesia under President Widodo.

Australia will be dealing with a new Indonesian government in just two months. This will involve challenges and opportunities for both countries. The Constitutional Court in Jakarta has now confirmed the election of Joko Widodo as President-elect with 53.15% of … Continue reading

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John Menadue. The Bishop and the Prime Minister

In August 1987 The Bulletin published an account by Tony Abbott of why he left the seminary. A link to Tony Abbott’s account is below.     Following Tony Abbott’s account, Fr Bill Wright on August 25, 1987, replied. He was a … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Missing in action when Kerry and Hagel come calling?

I can understand Tony Abbott’s wish to direct attention away from the budget by going off to The Hague and London. But are Australia’s national and policy interests being served by his absence when John Kerry and Chuck Hegel visit … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Diplomatic lessons for Canberra.

In my blog of July 31 ‘Overplaying one’s hand’ I said that there were clear lessons to be learned from the disasters of MH370 and MH17. The lessons are – don’t overplay your hand or overstate your case for domestic … Continue reading

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John Menadue–King Coal to be dethroned.

On May 1 last year I posted “A canary in the coal mine”. It focussed on the growing and wide concern about the damage to the climate caused by coal fired electricity generation. It also drew attention to the action … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Environment and climate, Politics | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Bugger the planet, ignore our children and trash our reputation.

The repeal of the carbon tax is a political victory for Tony Abbott but it is hard to imagine a worse combination of poor reasoning and bad policy making. It shows little appreciation of economics. It will increase the budget … Continue reading

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Bruce Duncan. The Coalition: how to lose friends and alienate people

Mr Abbott in his 2013 book, Battlelines, wrote that in government he would balance social values with pragmatic policy for the common good of the country. Yet one could be forgiven for thinking government policy is being driven by neoliberal … Continue reading

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Tony Abbott’s negotiating skills.

With the unpredictable and confusing state of the new Senate, Tony Abbott will have his negotiating skills tested. So far negotiating skills have not been part of his political success. Thanks to the Palmer United Party and five other  cross-benchers … Continue reading

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Geoff Hiscock. Onus on Abbott to forge closer ties with India

​As a young man, Tony Abbott backpacked across India in 1981, and spent six weeks at the Australian Jesuit mission in Bihar state. He was fascinated by the country’s many contrasts, from its bullock carts to its nuclear power stations. … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Tony Abbott in Japan

Tony Abbott has just completed his visit to Japan. The media has been full of  stories about the improvement particularly in agricultural exports from Australia to Japan. It should all be taken with a grain of salt. There have been … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Pity our diplomats.

It is not often that our diplomats in foreign posts receive or need our sympathy in the work they do. But just think of their present plight in defending the Australian Government’s behaviour in foreign policy. What we are seeing … Continue reading

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Rod Tiffen. Abbott contempt of court.

After the 2013 election, the ABC satirical program The Hamster Decides responded to an election night comment by the columnist for the Australian Chris Kenny that the ABC’s funding should be cut with an animated version of Kenny having intercourse … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Patriots and scoundrels.

Samuel Johnson in 1775 said that ‘patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel’. That brings to mind the “patriotic” politics that both PM Abbott and the PM of Japan, Shinzo Abe, are playing. In this Tony Abbott will find … Continue reading

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Cooking the books. John Menadue

Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey have decided that there wasn’t really a budget emergency or a debt crisis that they have warned us about for many years. Perhaps they may have also privately conceded, as they should, that the Australian … Continue reading

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A back-flip on the carbon tax. John Menadue

A number of my friends were impressed with the recent public debate between Bill Shorten and Anthony Albanese. They told me that they had expressed an interest online to join or rejoin the ALP after many years absence. Without exception … Continue reading

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A Click of the Fingers. John Menadue

We badly need someone close to Tony Abbot to click their fingers and break him out of the hypnotic trance that he has been in for a long time. He has been hypnotised into campaigning mode and has yet to … Continue reading

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The Carbon Tax – Policy and Politics. John Menadue

There are good policy and political reasons why the ALP should oppose the repeal of the carbon tax. The carbon tax is designed to reduce carbon pollution. That fact is continually ignored by those who talk wildly about the tax … Continue reading

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Even-handed Tony Abbott. John Menadue

In his toxic language over asylum seekers in the last three years, Tony Abbott has been not only derogatory about vulnerable people fleeing persecution, he has also gone out of his way to insult our neighbours in their handling of … Continue reading

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A somersault – back to business as usual. Guest blogger: Arja Keski-Nummi

While in opposition Tony Abbot conducted a robust and aggressive policy on boats that effected Indonesia. But now he has done a somersault in order to put the Australian-Indonesian relationship back on a more even footing. As his speech at … Continue reading

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One-liners won’t work in Jakarta. John Menadue

In his meeting with President Yudohono tomorrow, Tony Abbott will find that his one-liners that have been so successful in Australian politics will not have traction in Jakarta. It will require a lot more subtlety than ‘stop the boats’ and … Continue reading

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Commodifying and dehumanising asylum seekers. Guest blogger Michael Kelly SJ

The rejection by the Indonesian foreign minister of Tony Abbott’s suggested ways of “stopping the boats” is only the latest assertion of how the Coalition’s policy on asylum seekers was never going to work. It might have made political sense … Continue reading

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Tony Abbott’s debt to Rupert Murdoch. John Menadue

  Media Watch of 9 September gave us a snap shot of what Rupert Murdoch did for Tony Abbott. It said “the final tally of (the Daily Telegraph’s) coverage in the election campaign stacks up like this.Out of a total … Continue reading

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Facing the future. Guest blogger: Prof. Stephen Leeder

Facing the future in a world where black swan events change everything. When considering what we may be facing with a new federal government in Australia, a wise starting point would be a conversation with Nassim Nicholas Taleb, he of … Continue reading

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Asylum seekers are blocking the M4 freeway and clogging up our hospitals! John Menadue

On Monday night on 4 Corners, the Liberal candidate for Lindsay, Fiona Scott, said that asylum seekers’ cars were blocking the M4 highway. For readers outside Sydney, the M4 is a 40 km expressway connecting Concord and Penrith. I don’t … Continue reading

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From one Catholic to another. Guest blogger: Bishop Hurley, Darwin.

​The Catholic Bishop of Darwin has expressed concern to Tony Abbott about the Coalition’s policies towards asylum-seekers and people in detention.  His letter to Tony Abbott follows:   Bishop Hurley letter to Tony Abbott The Leader of the Opposition The … Continue reading

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The phoney war over deficits and debt. John Menadue

For almost five years, Tony Abbott, Joe Hockey, Andrew Robb and Barnaby Joyce, have been giving us dire warnings about deficits and debt. You would think the Australian economy was a smoking ruin. But the politicking over deficits and debt … Continue reading

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Jesuit students rebuke Tony Abbott and other old boys. John Menadue

For many years, I have been concerned that the Jesuits at St Ignatius College Sydney seem to be producing mainly conservative politicians and merchant bankers. I don’t think St Ignatius would have expected that. My confidence in the Jesuits at … Continue reading

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Hitting rock-bottom! John Menadue

Today Tony Abbott and Scott Morrison have announced draconian measures that will inflict enormous punishment on over 30,000 asylum seekers who have arrived in Australia over recent years by boat.  These draconian policies will apply not just to future boat … Continue reading

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Tony Abbott – one-liners won’t work. John Menadue

Sorry if I keep repeating myself, but Tony Abbott keeps repeating his one-liners about stopping the boats. He provides little explanation about how or why his policies will work today. He tells us that John Howard’s policy stopped the boats … Continue reading

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