John Hawkins, Chudleigh
23.02.15 1:30 am
This blog ( Super Trawler: Failing the Canberra Times test ... ) is now two years old ... It proves that Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture, Tasmanian Richard Colbeck, has learnt nothing from the Margiris saga. Seafish is still a player behind the scenes; the only thing that has changed is the power of the cast. Any public resource that comes free and that can be plundered is fair game to Liberals ... be it our forests or our seas. All that is required is a compliant Minister. Colbeck should re-read this post ... then think again.
23.02.15 1:15 am
Richard Anderson BBC
23.02.15 1:00 am
Imagine an industry that generates higher profit margins than any other and is no stranger to multi-billion dollar fines for malpractice.
Evan Whitton, @EvanWhitton1 http://netk.net.au/whittonhome.asp Pic*
23.02.15 12:45 am
In this piece (Justinian 23 June 2008), Evan Whitton notes a remarkable defence: the prosecution cannot prove BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT that a person who does not exist does not exist. Also, the second law of journalism?
23.02.15 12:45 am
Pete Hay: At noon today, the anniversary of the battalion’s capture, some of us will gather at the Black Buffalo in North Hobart to pay tribute to the few who remain. If you have a connection with the 2/40th you should come along. The men of the 2/40th may not live as prominently in the Tasmanian imagination as they deserve to be, but they merit homage, and they merit remembrance. Pete Hay, Mercury: And they kept silent on their return
EARLIER ... on Tasmanian Times ...
Sarawak Report. Pic: of Anwar Ibrahim
23.02.15 12:30 am
Sarawak Report has obtained exclusive access to a copy of the controversial 1MDB Joint Venture Agreement, completed on 28th September 2009 between Malaysia’s so-called development fund, 1MDB (One Malaysia Development Berhad) and the company PetroSaudi.
23.02.15 12:25 am
Andrew Everts, in Comments HERE: Gattys son (Ronald) died in December, after a colourful life, including an illustrious US academic career, he retired to Fiji and established a spice farm 15km west of Suva. In his Will he generously left the farm to his employees, who continue to produce and export spices, including Vanilla beans which are available in Tasmanian health food shops under the Gatty brand. Visitors are welcome at the farm. Ron Gatty railed against government corruption in Fiji, often in articles in The Fiji Times newspaper. After one of the recent coups the Junta attempted to deport him, on the grounds that he had contravened the terms of his residency visa by working for the Fiji Times newspaper. But when he pointed out that his work was voluntary, and not paid for, the prosecution case collapsed.
Rebecca Fitzgibbon | Events Media Manager | Mona |
23.02.15 12:17 am
Matthew Groom, Minister for Environment, Parks and Heritage Media Release Pic*
20.02.15 10:03 am
Today I have invited a further eight projects to proceed to the second stage of the Liberal Government’s Expressions of Interest process for sensitive and appropriate tourism offerings in our National Parks and the World Heritage Area.
• John Biggs, in Comments: “The Government is committed to being open and transparent as we progress through the EOI process.” Surely that means letting the public know the criteria for judging these projects and how each measured up.
Vanessa Goodwin, Minister for the Arts Media Release. Pic: of Sir Guy Green
20.02.15 9:00 am
Chair of the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery’s (TMAG) Board of Trustees, Sir Guy Green AC KBE CVO has today announced his retirement from the role.
• Greg James, in Comments HERE, where you can comment I wonder if Sir Guy needs a reality check or we do. No blame, no responsibility, no concept of fiduciary duty. Sir Guy fails to mention that he leaves TMAG almost bankrupt, on its knees and without a future. It was irresponsible of the government both Liberal and Labor to leave him in charge during and after Bleathman’s departure. It was irresponsible for the rest of the Trustees to stay on. It was irresponsible expenditure on the renovation and it was irresponsible to fire all those good staff and reduce its operating hours. Please correct me if I assert that in Sir Guy’s tenure as Chairman, TMAG has spent approximately the same amount of money as has MONA and look at the different results. This is what you get when you employ the cronies in Tasmania, this is what you get when you appoint these repeat offenders to important positions. Brenton Best would have achieved the same result as Sir Guy, at least Brenton had to put himself up every 4 years for re-appointment and take responsibility for his efforts. It is a very small gene pool they pull these highly paid jokers from and look at the results, lowest education standards, lowest health standards, under performing bureaucrats and absolutely no responsibility. Tasmania is a product of people like Sir Guy, he has been at the top of the tree since the 80’s, as Supreme Court Chief Justice, Governor etc. Without doubt the self deception in Vanessa Goodwin’s statement is an example of this irresponsible continuance. Wouldn’t it be more real to state, ‘We will be investigating, how a man of this calibre was allowed to continue on after the financial collapse of the Museum and we will also investigate all other roles he has had in this state to assess whether or not we should take his superannuation off him’. That would be the honest way of dealing with what is wrong in Tasmania, not thank him for his service. Why can’t these people take responsibility like everyone else? Did he ever apologise to all the staff who were laid off, did he ever make a statement saying I am sorry I buggered up because I wasn’t watching and I didn’t have the skills to do the job in the first place.
• Philip Cocker, in Comments, TT Arts here, where you can comment I make no comment on Sir Guy Green but the question needs to be asked why old men at the end of their careers are deemed to be the best people to head organisations that clearly need energy and new thinking. Yet another form of the mediocrity that blue tape delivers?
Urban Wronski* http://urbanwronski.com/ Pub: Feb 20
20.02.15 6:15 am
‘I think the nation is ready for a conversation about our future.’ Joe Hockey, Australia’s hapless treasurer, fingered the ‘conversation’ trope reverently as if it were a worn rosary bead. Hockey exuded paternalistic concern and affable superiority. As ever, he knew what was best for us. It was as if Dad had noticed one of the kids needed a haircut or a clip over the ear for wasting grocery money on sweets. His actions, however, show rather less concern for future generations. By December the Abbott government will have doubled Labor’s debt.
20.02.15 5:00 am
Above is a screenshot from the TasPorts Bell Bay Shipping Schedule page along with a photo of the woodchip bulk carrier ‘Globulus’ currently berthed at Bell Bay wharf 6.
• Pete Godfrey, in Comments: #21 Jack I would have thought that the reason for this article was reasonably self explanatory. It appears that Forestry Tasmania are trying to take over from where Gunns left off. It is obvious that the higher paying customers (Japan) want nothing to do with our native forest woodchips so FT have gone to China to drum up business. China must be paying an absolute pittance for our woodchips if they are indeed using them as boiler fuel. So what it comes down to is that Australian Taxpayers are paying to have Tasmanian forests cut down and exported at what is probably a loss to FT. The fact that our forests are being cut down only to be burnt, and that all the so called residue on the forest floor is also burnt should actually be a crime in a world where carbon pollution needs to be curtailed.
19.02.15 6:00 am
As a result of the Tasmanian Times article on Mr Nikolic complaining to his employer of Dr Michael Powell’s* published views ( TT here: Dr Powell, The Examiner letter and Mr Nikolic MP ), the attack has been renewed with a flood of complaints sent to his employer.
Independent Member for Denison Andrew Wilkie Media Release. Pic: of Mersey Hospital
19.02.15 5:30 am
Tasmania’s health system suffers a chronic case of parochialism and political paralysis. The prescription for health has been dispensed in report after report, but governments have refused to administer the medicine. Part of the cure is clear - one of Tasmania’s three northern hospitals must close.
Greens’ spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson Media Release. Pic*
19.02.15 5:20 am
The Greens’ spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, says the Abbott Government’s radical free trade agenda risks impacting on day-to-day domestic policy issues including our ability to respond such crises as the frozen berry contamination scare of this week.
Rebecca Hubbard, Jon Bryan, Nobby Clark, John Edwards Media Release. Pic*
19.02.15 5:15 am
It’s astounding. The similarities are amazing.A huge freezer factory trawler is once again being encouraged to come all the way from Europe to fish in the Australian small pelagic fishery, despite ongoing public opposition to the industrialisation of our fisheries and the threats this poses to our protected marine life.
• Estelle Ross, in Comments: This is a statement from a concerned Fijian about the massive boats which are overfishing the Pacific: “Monster commercial fishing boats are trawling the Pacific, scooping up the last of our fish at rates far faster than nature can replace them. That’s why Greenpeace is making it our movement’s mission to change the way commercial fishing is done, starting here in the beautiful Pacific Island atolls of Kiribati. We have a plan. And with your help, we won’t stop until our oceans – and the people who depend on them – have a future again.
• Studler van Surck, in Comments: Yes “Geelong Star” sounds very patriotic, almost as good as “Abel Tasman” but a giant fishing factory ship smells bad under any name and both the real “Dirk Dirk” and “Margiris” are now unwelcome almost anywhere in the world. Anyone here remember the trawlers that came from the Middle East in the nineties and fished for our jack mackerel out of Triabunna? A small spotter plane would pinpoint the schools, the trawlers would appear over the horizon and haul in the lot and within two years there was not enough fish to catch and the trawlers were left to rot. In the twenty years since that shameful exercise the huge schools that were so common on the East Coast are still not ever seen again.
Guardian. Pic: Wikipedia of David Hicks
19.02.15 5:00 am
Australian former Guantánamo Bay prisoner Hicks said to be ‘thrilled’ after US review court strikes down conviction
Rebecca White MP, Member for Lyons, Shadow Health Minister, Media Release. Paul Tapp picture
18.02.15 12:55 pm
The State Liberal Government is in damage control following the release of the Parliamentary report into the sale of the Triabunna export woodchip mill site.“The report clearly demonstrates the inquiry was a politically-motivated waste of time and taxpayers’ money,” Shadow Health Minister Rebecca White said. “It has achieved nothing and highlights the Liberals failure to support the Triabunna community. ”Guy Barnett has corrupted the political process and is working against the community he is supposed to represent.
• Rene Hidding, Minister for Infrastructure Media Release ...
• Dr John R. Wilson, in Comments: Rebecca, this was a nasty little witch-hunt from the start. A disgraceful waste of public money. Nothing was gained by it. Nonetheless, I am grateful to you and Cassie for your dissenting reports.
Download, Read for Yourself Cassy O’Connor’s Dissenting Report ...
Dr Michael Powell* Pic: of Andrew Nikolic MP. Pub: Feb 16
18.02.15 6:00 am
Letter to The Examiner (unpublished) I was recently informed that the local member for Bass, Mr Andrew Nicolic lodged a complaint with my employer about criticism I had made of him in the Examiner.
EARLIER on Tasmanian Times ...
• Luigi Brown, in Comments: The Federal LNP government needs strong men at the moment. Dissenters and outspoken troublemakers need to be whipped into line - both inside and outside government. The electorate of Bass is lucky to have such strength. This week alone in Launceston we have had a domestic violence siege, a kidnapping and a book launch. And now things have degenerated into a letter to the editor by an academic! Mr Nikolic is the right man for these troublesome times.
• Pete Godfrey, in Comments: Unfortunately Mr Nikolic seems to be stuck in the mindset of the military. Duntroon is well known for training bullies. He seems to have forgotten that he is now in Civvy Street. He also seems to forget who his employers are, I am sure there will be a sharp reminder in a year or so when he asks his employers to extend his contract.
• Michael Powell, in Comments: I feel strongly about the principles of democracy and urge my students whatever their persuasion to stand up for those ideals. To speak. To debate. This is the most radical government this country has seen whose agenda is to rend the fabric of our nation and the values that have founded it (less some of the ones we would rather forget like White Australia). Mr Nikolic is glued with barnacle adhesion to Mr Abbott’s authoritarianism and has been rewarded as Whip with a role he is qualified to administer, that of official School Bully. Like all bullies he does not have the courage to dialogue with those with whom he does not agree. He wants to fight terrorism but is unable to muster the courage to debate a harmless, unarmed, civilian constituent. Man of the moment indeed!
• Bazzabee, in Comments: I’m not exactly shocked the Libs have quite a lot of form in this area. In early 90’s I got a job with a Commonwealth Dept in Hobart. I got the job fairly and it was a job I was well qualified for the process followed public service guidelines. So imagine my surprise when after a couple of months my boss called me in to her office and told me that Senator Jocelyn Newman (Campbell’s dear old mum) had written to the Minister saying I was not fit to hold a position of responsibility in the Public Service? It was also said that I had got the job because I was a well known ALP figure her letter alleged cronyism.
• Michael Powell, in Comments: I am really shocked by #20 Bazzabee. The then Senator Newman was notorious and often said as Minister for Social Security that she was there to give a ‘hand up not a hand out’. When she left the Senate she took her own Ministerial pension AND her husband’s Ministerial pension (Kevin) AND his military pension. So much for a hand out - at that time >$200,000 a year. I would also point out Mr Nicolic also has a military pension along with his parliamentary salary fully indexed while approving the reduction in pension increments to CPI rather than AVE. In the 1980s Labor fought hard to bring pensions up to 25% of AVE (average weekly earnings) after years of Liberal neglect - now that standard has been trashed and in time will hurt pensioner’s purchasing power greatly.
• Michael Powell, in Comments: Stop Press: According to my sources in the corridors of power School Bully is mightily miffed. He has denied he ever intended to ‘intimidate’. He does not deny that he called my employer to complain - just that he did not intend to ‘intimidate’. Well why do you complain to an employer - to praise their courage or recommend a promotion??? I think not. He then tried to assert I was a Green candidate for Bass! This is after he has accused me of being a Labor candidate. What next Palmer United? What the deluded Andy cannot understand is that you don’t have to be a ‘candidate’ to speak out about the government’s polices and his grotesque behaviour. What these people do not understood is that there has been a groundswell of ordinary people who who have turned against policies and behaviour that are abhorrent. Simple as that.
• Dirk Flinthart, in Comments: I know Dr Powell. I’ve met Mr Nikolic on a few occasions (hey, it’s Tasmania. It’s hard not to meet people, you know?). Anyway, so much for disclosure. Folks, look at the written words. Nikolic has acted in an intimidating and offensive manner. As a public figure (an elected official) he has reacted to public criticism by moving privately to the employer of the critic. If that doesn’t make you nervous about Nickel-dick (jeez, where did that come from?) and the government that he flogs, what will it take? On one hand we have a person who has used proper public channels to raise an issue of public interest, and has suggested—without visible rancour or ad hominem nonsense—that the member for Bass needs to lift his game in representing his constituents. And on the other hand we have someone who will not engage in public debate, but attempts to move behind the scenes to censor genuine public debate. It’s a no-brainer. And the outcome? Pick somebody else to vote for next time. Andrew Nikolic, like so many other Abbott appointees, is an incompetent bully.
Eva Ruzicka, http://evaruzicka.blogspot.com.au/ Pic: of Eva Ruzicka
18.02.15 5:45 am
Leadership as a vocation in government and government reform agendas The current round of calls for local government amalgamations raises a number of questions about what leadership means in government today.
Lindsay Tuffin. Andrew Wilkie MP
17.02.15 4:20 am
It was 30 years ago and I was not long back from five years or so in Pomland. I was working part-time as “Southern Features Editor” of the now-defunct Tasmanian Mail with the illustrious Jan Haswell commanding the ship from Launi; and the ex-London Sun, now-long-dead Tony Adams as Chief-Sub.
• Andrew Wilkie: Integrity of greyhound industry gone to the dogs ...
John Lawrence, Tasfintalk: http://www.tasfintalk.blogspot.com.au/ Pub: Feb 16. Pic*
17.02.15 4:15 am
Forestry Tasmania’s (FT) controversial small native forest coupe in the Flowerdale river catchment area at Lapoinya in NW Tasmania is one of its better coupes. FT is adamant clearfelling will be a profitable exercise.
Matthew Groom, Minister for Environment, Parks and Heritage Media Release Pic: Port Davey. Pub: Feb 14
17.02.15 4:00 am
Today I have approved five projects to proceed to the second stage of the Liberal Government’s Expressions of Interest process for sensitive and appropriate tourism offerings in our National Parks and the World Heritage Area.
John Powell, Myrtlebank. Pub: Feb 16
17.02.15 3:44 am
I never imagined that a poem created in the 1920’s would be relevant today. Even less did I imagine that it might be relevant to an iconic Tasmanian GBE also created in the 1920’s.The poem aptly describes the innate culture of Forestry Tasmania during the entirety of the succeeding 90 years and is even more pertinent today.
• John Powell, in Comments: In the article I quote The Examiner viz:- “A Forestry Tasmania spokeswoman said 35.7 hectares of the forest would be ‘‘harvested’’, despite the meeting”. In today’s edition the Examiner indicates, inter alia, that “no decision has been made”. I understand this has occurred as a result of direct contact by a FT Senior Manager to the “Chief of Staff” of the paper. Note it is NOT a retraction of the statement published on Friday 13th. May I also note that the Forestry Practices Plan (which is available and was promised to be provided at the meeting) for the new coupe layout has NOT YET been received by the FLAG personnel. Interesting way to conduct consultation.
• John Hawkins, in Comments: MJF. I have been in business for nearly 50 years with a modicum of success. I like many others only remain in business because I make a profit. If : ” ....too much is going out in terms of wages, salaries, bonuses, redundancies, rent , leasing, debt servicing…..” I am forced to cut my cloth. I suggest that FT as it has been run in Tasmania is a bad business, run badly, by bad people. It survives as a result of political largesse only gifted to the industry in an effort to buy votes. I cannot make it much plainer.
John Biggs. Pub: Feb 16
17.02.15 3:30 am
… The TFA itself ceased to matter when the Hodgman Government came to power in 2013. They ripped up the TFA in a display of the very culture Beresford has brought to light: “the measures announced by the Hodgman government highlight the continuing absence of innovative thinking about the state’s future or the need to address its dysfunctional political culture.” (p. 376). This is the political culture that has steered the disastrous economics of the past 50 years.
In Beresford’s closing words: “The alternative to genuine reform is a grim prospect: new rounds of politically inspired environmental conflict, further resort to draconian curbs to civil liberties, and the perpetuation of failed economic strategies – all while the state falls back into its long-held record as a perennial economic basket case.” (p. 397). The Hodgman government has already started reversing its log truck down that corrugated road. …
Editor. Pub: Feb 16
17.02.15 3:25 am
A note from Dr Dale Kerwin School of Education MT Gravatt Campus Grifffith University Dear all: The email was just a chain mail sent to me and I sent it on to a couple of friends who have posted it out to others and it has gone viral. I forgot to delete my signature block from the bottom and this has given it some authority as being credible. However I have no idea about the research and its veracity. If you post it on please delete my name from it - Dale
Australian Bar Association, Philip Selth, Alicia Patterson, Duncan McConnel. Pic: of Piers Akerman
17.02.15 3:20 am
The attacks on Professor Gillian Triggs and the Australian Human Rights Commission following the release of the Report “The Forgotten Children”, are alarming, according to Fiona McLeod SC, President of the Australian Bar Association and Duncan McConnel, President of the Law Council of Australia
• What Piers Akerman said about Gillian Triggs ...
• Julian Burnside and others ... Letter to the Editor ...
Hilary Burden, https://hilaryburden.wordpress.com/ Pic: of Hilary Burden
17.02.15 3:00 am
My twin brother who works for a major engineering firm in London and helped design fashion designer Victoria Beckham’s new Dover Street store says his office is now into “agile working” ...
17.02.15 2:50 am
SWS CEO Christine Bell
17.02.15 2:45 am
Southern Waste Solutions (SWS) is calling on members of the community with an interest in sustainable waste management and solutions to join its Community Reference Group (CRG).
• Shane Humphreys, in Comments: It would be of interest to anyone reading this media release by SWS to note that a current member of the CRG and former President of local community group, Southern Beaches Conservation Society (SBCS) is currently facing a SLAPP suit in the Supreme Court brought on by SWS in response to that person raising community concerns. The statement contained within the above Media Release, ’ SWS CEO Christine Bell said the organisation was dedicated to maintaining regular communication with the community and values the ongoing support and feedback provided by all members of the public’, should be seen for what it is- a shameless PR stunt. Actions speak loader than words!
• Angela Marsh, in Comments: As a current member of the Community Reference (CRG) Group, who has not attended the last two meetings because there is currently a writ against me and my community group for daring to voice concerns to hazardous waste producers, regarding a proposed hazardous waste cell for the Copping refuse site,I whole-heartedly endorse the concept of the CRG. However, I believe there is some more work required to make this group truly representational of community without bias, to permit open discussion, particularly regarding current and future management of hazardous materials. My concern is that Southern Waste Solutions is a very small entity that is trying to grow exponentially. This Authority, owned by four Councils, is not equipped to handle the logistics of accepting all hazardous waste from Tasmania, and from Antarctica,neither should it be. The Tasmanian government must intervene and provide a waste management strategy that encourages minimisation of landfill, similar to that which is currently in use in other states and overseas. If landfill is to dominate all other methods of dealing with waste in Tasmania this state will once again be the backward state. Definitely sullying our clean, green image.