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Doctor Who and the Obnoxious MP

In a recent television interview government MP George Christensen claimed to be a lifelong Doctor Who fan. According to George his earliest memory of Doctor Who is watching 'The Brain of Morbius' on his grandparents' grainy black and white television.
Like George, I’m a YUGE Doctor Who fan. So much of a fan in fact that I can tell you that George would have watched that show in 1986.

Replacing the Police and Military

A confederation of national guards would not lead to civil war. That would only be the case if the national guards were not confederated. What I'm advocating is handing over the regular military to the national guard, and having more local control. Have cross-training and coordination between the various national guards in the confederation, and allow soldiers to transfer from one national guard to another. But, at the same time, have the national guard(s) independent of the centralized State or federal government, to keep politics out of the military.

Publicly Good Science

What is publicly good science? Publicly good science is value free science that is accessible to both government and the public. Over the past four decades we have seen the destruction of public science. All state governments and the Federal government have, in the rush to privatise and outsource every service they have traditionally provided, closed down and downsized a whole host of government instrumentalities that provided government with vital value free scientific advice.

Dennis Dreaming

Dennis Richardson has had a long and distinguished career as an Australian public servant – 48 years to be exact. He has given “free and frank” advice primarily about national security to a bevy of Ministers and Prime Ministers over five decades. A few days ago he addressed the National Press Club about his experiences. He seems to have a bee in his bonnet about Chinese spooks keeping tabs on Chinese students and business people in Australia. I can understand his concerns about a foreign power conducting espionage in a sovereign nation state.

Revenue Revelation

Budget time is always a revelation. Not the Treasurer’s theatrical performance but where’s the money coming from? Things have changed a little bit over the past decade. Projected revenue for 2017-2018 is estimated to be 444.4 billion dollars (a lovely round figure). It is estimated about 209.6 billion will be squeezed out of individual income tax (that’s approximately 45% of total revenue). Fringe benefits tax will raise about 4.4 billion (1%). Superannuation taxes about 8.5 billion (2%). Customs duty 14.7 billion (3.5% approx.). Fuel excise 18.78 billion (4.5% approx.).

Ellen Jose and Mabo Day

Since 2003 Ellen Jose, a Torres Strait Islander Elder who has lived in Melbourne for over 40 years and whose family comes from Mer, Darnley and Horn Island in the Torres Strait, has organised a yearly Mabo Commemoration in Melbourne at Federation Square to mark the end of the historical fiction this land was uninhabited before it was colonised by the British Crown in 1788 – Terra Nullius.

The Biggest Con

I'm pretty confident most Australians are unaware of the biggest privatisation CON that has occurred in the history of this country. I'm not talking about the privatisation of the Commonwealth Bank, Telecom, Medibank Private, Australia's airports and a host of other publicly owned assets over the past four decades. At least in these cases the revenue made from the sale of profit making publicly owned assets was absorbed back into consolidated revenue.

Can I Help You With Anything Else?

Public human interaction can be divided into two distinct components. The cyber age is increasingly allowing us to bypass the need for human interaction in an unnecessary complex commercial setting. The world wide web and automated phone bill paying has not only added a cost to the relatively simple process of buying, selling and paying a bill it has also removed the need for face to face contact with a human being.

Black and White Justice

On Thursday last week two men from the Northern Territory appeared in court.

In Darwin, a 58-year-old man who goes by the name of Joe pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography.

Over the border in Mount Isa, 48-year-old Marshall pleaded guilty to a driving offence.

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