Its the Friday lay day blog. I was travelling back from the South coast of NSW one Sunday a few years ago after giving a talk to a workshop on regional development. We stopped for a break in South Sydney where there was a street fair going on – the normal run-of-the-mill affair. It was centred in the main street of the electorate where Scott Morrison was (and remains) the Member of the Federal House of Representatives. He had a stall at the fair, touting his policies – then as the Opposition spokesperson for immigration. His helpers were nasty types who were raving on about illegal boat people and what Morrison would do to them once they won the next election. They did win it, and he did do it to them. As he shifts his ministerial portfolio from immigration to become the Minister for Social Services, it is worth recalling what his record has been in his last job. Julian Burnside captures it beautifully in his article last Tuesday (December 23, 2014) – Morrison’s calculated cruelty is his legacy – although the sociopathy revealed is anything but beautiful. But there is worse to come.
As the current Federal government starts the first of its death rolls – the first reshuffling of its dysfunctional cabinet, Morrison has now been turned lose on income support recipients and the unemployed. They should be scared. The first victims after the reshuffle are the homeless although the cuts announced on Wednesday are the dirty work of another self-professed Christian Kevin Andrews.
As Julian Burnside concluded:
Morrison’s conduct as immigration minister is impossible to reconcile with his stated Christian beliefs … All things considered, the immigration portfolio will improve by losing Morrison, who has shown himself to be a hypocrite, willing to harm innocent people for political purposes.
Yes, I guess on Xmas day he was preaching holy holy holy with his family while the victims of his oppressive refugee policy were suffering distress in prisons on Manus Island and
The National Housing Council was charged with analysing the state of housing availability in Australia. It released a major report in June 2012 – Housing Supply and Affordability – Key Indicators, 2012 – which documented the worsening housing shortages in Australia.
For some reason the archive file is in .ashx format (a Microsoft format). Download the file and simply rename the extension pdf and you will be able to read it easily.
Under the guise of fiscal cutbacks, the Australian government scrapped the National Housing Council in November 2013.
Now as we going into the holiday season, Morrison’s Department is cutting housing assistance to the disadvantaged and homeless.
This ABC report (December 22, 2014) – Federal Government cuts funding for housing programs, shocking peak bodies – documents the latest dirty work from the Government.
These cuts are just the tip of the iceberg on highly targetted fiscal cuts where the targets are our most vulnerable citizens.
Morrison’s first statement as Minister for Social Services was to announce on Wednesday (December 24, 2014) that “welfare spending would have to be wound back to fund” improvements to the way we treat people with disabilities in Australia.
That treatment borders on deplorable. Once again the conservatives are playing the divide-and-rule tactic. Setting groups of disadvantaged citizens against each other as they propagate the myth that they have run out of money.
He was quoted by the Guardian (Source) as saying:
To relieve the burden on the system it is about getting people off welfare and into work, and to work as much as they are able. This is the goal we are working towards.
At a time that the unemployment and underemployment rates are rising fast and employment growth is flat.
Enjoy the holiday period.
Newcastle Save our Rail community group wins Supreme Court injunction against the sleazy NSW Government
A brief update on the local Newcastle citizen’s struggle to retain our train line and not allow the property developers to gain access to the corridor for their own greedy gain.
Late on Wednesday, the Supreme Court of NSW ruled against the government and imposed an injunction on them from ripping up the train line.
The sleazy strategies that the Government had deployed to dispose of the infrastructure to another government agency to avoid the requirements under the law were rejected by the judge. The matter now goes to appeal.
But it will probably be a Pyrrhic victory because the government has still (today) terminated the services some four stations out of the city centre even though they are not allowed to rip up the lines yet.
But that Pyrrhic victory is still something that gives hope to the local citizens.
The full story of the court decision was a feature article in the Fairfax press yesterday (December 25, 2014) – Newcastle rail line to stay – for now
Joe Cocker gone now
When I was young and just starting out playing in bands we played this version. The song was great but The Beatles was not our cup of tea. Our hair had pretensions to be longer and our parents probably liked the boys from Liverpool. Across the Pennines (to Sheffield) was more to our liking in this case.
The big Hammond sound was the thing.
And now he is gone. Times waits for no-one.
It has to be my song for this week, even though a lot of his later stuff didn’t do it. But that is all relative eh! Here he is at Woodstock.
As an aside, the great tenor sax player Bobby Keyes who we noted died a few weeks ago, played one of Joe Cocker’s great covers – the Box Top’s song The Letter on his 1979 Mad Dogs and Englishmen album. Bobby Keyes’ solo on that song was as funky as it was contained.
Ok, here it is.
We also tried to play this song in our early bands.
The Saturday Quiz will be back again tomorrow. It will be of an appropriate order of difficulty (-:
That is enough for today!
(c) Copyright 2014 William Mitchell. All Rights Reserved.