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Missing ballots might lead to fresh WA Senate poll

By 1 November, 2013

By Michelle Grattan, University of Canberra

Clive Palmer has been a vocal cynic about the AEC. AAP/Paul Miller

The Australian Electoral Commission, which should be above controversy, finds itself at the centre of a perfect storm.
In recent weeks Clive Palmer, albeit without evidence, has blackened its name at every opportunity.
Now (on the day Palmer was finally elected [...]

Are we all dead yet? (Libs on tripling rates)

By 1 November, 2013

Jeremy Hanson and Brendan Smyth are teaming up to band the drum on rates again.
Andrew Barr has been forced to table documents in the Assembly that show the analysis and models for his tax reform program. Despite vehement claims to the contrary during the election campaign, the documents show there is no possible scenario for [...]

Electoral Commission facing an overhaul, once the inquiries are over.

By 31 October, 2013

WA Today has the sorry tale of the Australian Electoral Commission’s failures in Western Australia which are threatening to send that state back to the polls for the Senate.
At the centre of the storm is career Canberra mandarin Ed Killesteyn.
Elections are massive undertakings. But when you’ve got just one job…

New nature conservation act tabled

By 31 October, 2013

Simon Corbell today tabled a draft for the Nature Conservation Bill 2013 in the Legislative Assembly. Submissions will be accepted until the 13th of December.
Simon believes that this new act will be fundamental in allowing the government achieve it’s goal for a sustainable Canberra.
“This legislation follows an extensive review of the Nature Conservation Act 1980 [...]

Every child gets to be a minister!

By 31 October, 2013

Chief Minister Gallagher has sent forth alarming news that she’s expanding the ACT Ministry to 9.
Chief Minister, Katy Gallagher, today introduced a bill into the Legislative Assembly that will, if passed, allow for up to nine ministers to be appointed as part of the ACT executive.
“This legislation is designed to meet the needs of [...]

Bruce Hawker talking Rudd Rebellion at Paperchain Bookstore

By 31 October, 2013

[ 15 November, 2013; 5:45 pm; ]

Those of you with a perchant for politics may well be interested in this little event, or maybe this little book that the event is about.

One of Rudd’s mates, Bruce Hawker has written a book about that period of time when Rudd was not our prime minister. To promote it, he’s having an interview with [...]

Liberal staffers not being moved “to the real world”

By 30 October, 2013

The Australian has word of grumblings amongst the Liberal front bench that they can’t just give their mates staffing jobs and holders of said jobs will have to work in Canberra under Peta Credlin’s iron fist:
All senior staffers have to be based in Canberra. It’s causing quite a few grumbles,” said one.
“There is a very [...]

Jane Hiatt runs seven marathons, Zed jumps in at the end

By 25 October, 2013

Jane Hiatt is a Canberran taking part in the Bravehearts “777 Challenge”, which is where you run seven marathons in seven days across seven states.
Today was marathon #6 for Jane.
Zed Seselja has decided to support Jane and the Bravehearts by joining Ms. Hiatt as she crosses the finishing line… because why should the best bit [...]

Well that didn’t take long. Challenge to Gay Marriage kicks off tomorrow

By 24 October, 2013

The Christian Lobby is celebrating the swift turning wheels of reactionary justice as the High Court takes a directions hearing three days after the ACT Legislative Assembly passed Gay Marriage laws:
The High Court hearing into the ACT’s Marriage Equality Same-Sex Bill is expected to begin tomorrow after the Commonwealth lodged a writ of summons in [...]

Because, frankly, some of you aren’t deserving of respect

By 24 October, 2013

The Canberra Times has the welcome news that the Legislative Assembly code of conduct has been watered down to account for the significant percentage of the citizenry who are best ignored:
A requirement for ACT politicians to treat citizens with courtesy and respect has been stripped from a new code of conduct for the ACT Legislative [...]

Here comes the Commission of Audit

By 22 October, 2013

The Australian has the word on Business Council of Australia chair Tony Shepherd being appointed to rip the guts out of the public service and sell the furniture to the vultures.
JOE Hockey has unveiled a surprise increase in the debt ceiling to $500 billion as he announced a Commission of Audit into government finances with [...]

Break out the rainbow bubbly, we’re the gay marriage Capital! (For now)

By 22 October, 2013

Shane Rattenbury has made it known that it’s gay marriage a go go in the ACT at least until the High Court weighs in:
Leader of the Australian Greens, Christine Milne joined ACT Greens Member for Molonglo, Shane Rattenbury at the ACT Legislative Assembly today to celebrate the ACT becoming the first jurisdiction to legislate for [...]

Giulia is the hero Narrabundah deserves

By 22 October, 2013

For the past 20 years the Narrabundah Slasher has run amuck on the terrified southern suburb, but he may have made a critical error in repeatedly slashing the tires of Lucia MacFarlane, Giulia’s sister.
Giulia has sworn that she will bring this menace to justice.
”It’s over a decade and the people of Narrabundah seem to have [...]

ACT blinking on Gay Marriage

By 21 October, 2013

The ABC reports that Simon Corbell’s legal advice on gay marriage is looking Notso Hotso and the Chief Minister is muttering about amendments:
Ms Gallagher has signalled the bill could be amended during tomorrow’s debate in the Legislative Assembly.
“We’re certainly looking at it and the Attorney-General and I have had some discussions over the weekend, [...]

What Katy’s been doing

By 21 October, 2013

Chief Minister Gallagher has announced a vast laundry list of “achievements” for her first year after winning an election.
A pedant might question some of these “achievements”. If I declare a resolution to lose weight I haven’t achieved much until the pounds come off have I?
Here they all are:
Creating opportunity and a more liveable city
– Increased [...]

Governor-General, please dissolve the ACT Government [With Poll]

By 21 October, 2013

Quite frankly, I’ve had enough of Katy, Barr, Corbell, and that court jester Rattenbury. They have surely got to be the most irresponsible, dangerous, and seemingly unaccountable excuse for a government within the Australian Federation.
They appear to have largely abandoned any attempt to effectively deliver the core governmental services for which they [...]

One job to go every hour to the end of the financial year?

By 21 October, 2013

Canberra’s Labor Representatives are voicing concerns about Coalition plans to lose 6,000 public servants by June 2014, or one every single hour.
The APS will be reduced by 6,000 staff in the nine months to June 2014. That’s one public service job lost every single hour until the end of the financial year. A further [...]

Gai Brodtman promoted with Andrew Leigh

By 18 October, 2013

The Shadow Ministry has been tweeted.
Member for Canberra Gai Brodtman has made it into the junior Shadow Ministry as Parl Sec for Defence.
Member for Fraser Andrew Leigh has made it to Shadow Assistant Treasurer, and Shadow Minister for Competition.
Senator Kate Lundy appears to be unloved.

Behold the updated sitting calendar

By 17 October, 2013

At long last the Parliamentary Sitting Calendar has been updated.
For all those who need to know there’s a week starting 12 November.
18 November is a week of the House and Senate Estimates, then two weeks from 2 December with Chrimbo speeches on 12 December and a godawlmighty boozeup at the Kennedy Room on 11 December [...]

ACT Legislative Assembly to debate Marriage Equality

By 16 October, 2013

Marriage Equality debate coming up.
ACT Attorney-General, Simon Corbell, has today confirmed the ACT will debate the issue of marriage equality during the next sitting period of the ACT Legislative Assembly.
“I am pleased to confirm today that the ACT will debate marriage equality on Tuesday 22 October at 10am,” Mr Corbell said.
“Members of the [...]

The Wharf Revue at the Canberra Theatre, Whoops! a review

By 16 October, 2013

Having been invited to opening night of the Wharf Revue at the Canberra Theatre Goosepig and I negotiated the obstacle course of the Spiegletent sprawling across Civic Square and took our seats in the Playhouse.
It’s a one act show running 90 minutes and I have to say it’s superb.
The comedy ranges from broad and childish [...]

Political SPIN at SPIN Fest

By 16 October, 2013

[ 20 October, 2013; 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm. ] SPIN Fest is about things that spin, and there’s no spin quite like political spin.

This Sunday Political SPIN will take place from 3 till 4 and may just include more political spin than this writer can actually stomach. If you think you can handle it, the event is “free” although you still have to pay [...]

Gazza to pimp out his mates

By 16 October, 2013

The Canberra Times has the happy news that knifed ACT Liberal Senator Gary Humphries has found gainful employment selling access to the Abbott Government to whomever can afford his fees:
His appointment to 1st State Government and Corporate Relations will be announced on Wednesday.
Mr Humphries will be able to draw on experience and contacts built up [...]

Public Forum: What’s Wrong with Abbott’s Refugee Policy?

By 14 October, 2013

[ 29 October, 2013; 6:30 pm; ] Event starts 6:30pm. Free refreshments from 6pm. Speakers including Senator Sarah Hanson-Young. All welcome.

Location: Haydon-Allen Lecture Theatre (The Tank), Australian National University.

A ‘three-star’ general appointed to use military force to stop asylum seekers. A ‘blackout’ on reporting the numbers of refugees arriving by boat. Sending vulnerable men, women and children seeking our assistance to remote [...]

So when is a social media sackable offence not a sackable offence??

By 12 October, 2013

Well, when the offender is a former politician.
A relatively junior public servant, Michaela Banerji, was sacked from the APS for expressing negative views about current policy on asylum seekers, yet public servant Jon Stanhope appears to be allowed complete freedom to express similar views (the journalist disguised the comments as referring to “ALP” policy, [...]

Return of Gifts Adventures

By 9 October, 2013

Just one new entry on the return of gifts roll this time, it’s Annette showing the Greens some love.

D’awwww.

Zed on the move

By 7 October, 2013

The Tennant and District Times has a piece on Senator Seselja’s plans to get his electorate office “out in the suburbs”, which one suspects is code for the bowels of Tuggeranong.
He will, however, see out Gary Humphries’ lease in Civic.

Smoke at the Legislative Assembly

By 4 October, 2013

ACT Fire & Rescue are currently on scene at the ACT Legislative Assembly, London Circuit, City investigating smoke on level two.
No sign of fire.
Crews are currently ventilating the area.
A small number of people on level two only have been evacuated as a precaution.
Smoke as a result of a stove top operational, which was left unattended.
Two [...]

Gary Kent leaves the Liberal Party

By 3 October, 2013

The ABC reports that the man who put Napoleon into “Napoleon Complex”, Gary Kent, has quit the Liberal Party because it’s just not fair:
He launched legal action in the ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal against his own party saying he was denied access to documents about the controversial preselection and the party’s financial situation.
In [...]

Crunching the numbers: Abbott’s public service cuts

By 2 October, 2013

Interesting article on the Drum by Greg Jericho on the realities of the LNP’s job cuts and the Parliamentary Budget Office’s upcoming costings report.
Have a read if you’ve got the time, and the interest.
The contested nature of the policy highlighted the lack of details provided by the Liberal Party to the public. The ALP claimed [...]

ACT Senate Count explained

By 2 October, 2013

With the AEC releasing the full distribution of preferences for the ACT Senate count, Antony Green has an article explaining how the count unfolded. In the end, Zed was elected to the second seat at Count 39 when the Palmer United Party was excluded, Antony explaining:
The Liberal Party had achieved the quota entirely on [...]

The thunder of the Annual Reports

By 27 September, 2013

This year the Annual Reports were unusually well synchronised.
We’re sure this has nothing to do with overwhelming the limited resources of Canberra newsrooms to investigate them.
Considering us thoroughly overwhelmed here’s the Ministerial media releases from which the mirror image of the greater atrocities can be made out:

1. Community Services Directorate
Joy Burch, Andrew Barr, and Shane [...]

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