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Tuesday, 4 September 2012

A day in the life of the new NT Government

After the Country Liberal Party victory in last months Northern Territory election, the new government has got down to work. The Deputy Liberal Leader has been dumped, despite assurances and not been offered a Ministry, after four years of loyal service. Several senior Labor-appointed public servants have been sacked.
But today, their are two stories out of Darwin that deserve comment.
Firstly, the appointment of a smoker as Minister for Health is good news. The politcal correctness surrounding smoking and the draconian regulation and invasion of civil liberties warrant someone who will be sceptical of tough new laws. But, in not so good news, new Chief Minister Terry Mills, has declared he wants a memorial to Japanese soldiers who died during battle in Darwin during World War II. This is a slap in the face to all those Australians who died at the hands of the brutal Nazi's and their allies in Japan.

What next? A memorial where Hitler died, or perhaps as one Northern Territory News reader suggested, to the hijakers who died when they crashed a plane into the World Trade Centre?

Greens support drops - their rise has peaked

The Greens have dropped to their lowest level of support since March 2009, according to the latest Newspoll survey. The Greens are now recording only 8% support. This comes after the Greens suffered swings against them at both the Queensland and Northern Territory elections this year, despite big swings against Labor. This also follows their loss of the Melbourne state by-election a district within Adam Bandt's federal seat, even though no Liberal candidate contested, and the Heffron by-election, where again, despite the absence of a Liberal they lost with a mere 4% swing.

Support for the party has clearly peaked. Without Liberal preferences, the party is also likely to lose their sole House of Representatives seat at the next election. Good riddance.

Barnaby Joyce proves he's not fit for high office

Barnaby Joyce may be a Conservative. He may sound really good when he's yelling and screaming at anti-Carbon tax rallies. But he does not perform well as a team player, and can be an absolute boofhead.
For example on May 6 this year, Senator Joyce claimed that James Ashby, who has accused Speaker Peter Slipper of sexual harassment was 'only slightly less dodgy than Slipper'. This ill-advised comment resulted in a complaint of victimisation being made against the Senator.

Now, the man who is challenging respected Nationals MP Bruce Scott for preselection with the intention of becoming Nationals Leader and future Deputy Prime Minister, has contradicted Coalition policy, despite being a Shadow Minister.

Senator Joyce declared that the sale of a 93,000 hectare Queensland cotton farm to a Chinese consortium was a 'bloody disgrace'. His most astonishing claim was that the Gillard Government, which cannot install pink batts in roofs without killing people and burning down houses, should have nationalised the farm. Shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey criticised Senator Joyce for his out-of-line comments 'Frontbenchers have a responsibility to be part of the team. Backbenchers can freelance because they are on the back bench'.

Senator Joyce needs to start acting professional and like a team player, or he should be sacked.

Not the time, not the place: George Osborne booed at Paralympics

Whatever you think of British Conservative Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, it is unfair and petty to boo him when he is handing medals to heroic Paralympians. Mr Osborne, who has overseen tough budget cuts in the United Kingdom, and repeatedly backflipped on various policies from the pasty tax to fuel duty and many more is the most unpopular politician in the UK. He was also accused of hypocrisy after he cut taxes for the most wealthy, whilst increasing various other taxes, including on charities.

I am no fan of the Conservative Party - I favour the UK Independence Party (the low taxing, anti-carbon tax, Eurosceptic traditionalist party) - but the Paralympics should not be about politics, and those who booed Mr Osborne should be ashamed.