Thursday, September 9, 2010

A smiling PM leads Labor government in name only

Ms Julia Gillard,
Prime Minister of Australia

Dear Prime Minister,

We refer to the reports below for your information.

Would you like to comment, please?

We look forward to hearing from you shortly,

Yours respectfully,

Eddie Hwang
Unity Party WA (Uploaded)
Phone/Fax: 61893681884
Date: 09-Sept-2010.
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A smiling PM leads Labor government in name only
September 8, 2010 - The Age
THE uncomfortable irony surely has not been lost on the Gillard government: the Labor Party, which is so weakened that large segments of its own electoral base are simply marching away, holds on to office only because four men who have never been part of the ALP have decided to give it a bare parliamentary majority.

Labor's own supporters across Australia couldn't do it. Not even the hundreds of thousands of disaffected Labor people who now back the Greens could help the ALP over the line through their preferences. In the end, two ex-Nationals in Tony Windsor and Rob Oakeshott, the ex-Liberal and ex-Green Andrew Wilkie, and the Marxist-turned-Green Adam Bandt have allowed the Gillard government to live again.

This is the foundation on which Australia's new national government is built. As Oakeshott said yesterday afternoon, the concept of a mandate is not operational in this parliamentary term. The voters made the judgment on August 21; the ongoing vote count between Labor and the Coalition is as close to 50-50 as you can get. Neither of the major parties could attract an endorsement from a majority of voters.

So the political system must now, in many important respects, rebuild itself. It will not be a wholesale rebirth. The viciousness, the personal attacks, the cheap shots, the hyperbole, the resentments, the glossing over of mistakes and uncomfortable facts - none of this will vanish. It will remain. Indeed, it's likely that the intensity of the 17 days between election day and yesterday's declaration of a result in Labor's favour will bring about even more heat in the contest between Labor and the Coalition.........

First cracks appear
Tom Arup, Katharine Murphy and Michelle Grattan
With NICK O'MALLEY - September 9, 2010 - Age

THE first cracks have appeared in the Gillard government's alliance with the crossbench MPs, with the Greens signalling they may side with the Coalition on some issues, and a country independent clashing with Treasurer Wayne Swan over the mining tax.
Less than 24 hours after Julia Gillard secured the last pledges of support needed to form government, Bob Brown raised the potentially destabilising prospect of the Greens working with the Coalition on legislation to boost mental health spending and to alter Labor's paid parental leave plan.

Senator Brown, whose party will have the balance of power in the Senate from July, also put the politically emotive issue of death duties on the agenda, suggesting next year's tax summit should consider the issue.

The spectre of a more assertive and powerful Greens came as the Prime Minister waited on Rob Oakeshott, one of two country independents propping up her government, to decide whether he will join her cabinet as a minister for regional Australia. He is seeking advice on whether the convention of cabinet solidarity can be changed so he could vote against a government bill outside his area.

As the difficulties became apparent, the opposition went on the attack. Shadow treasurer Joe Hockey said: ''If a newly married couple are arguing on day one, it doesn't augur too well for the rest of the marriage.''

Shadow attorney-general George Brandis said the government ''has as much legitimacy as the Pakistani cricket team''.

Amid the drama, Ms Gillard was preparing to reshape her ministry, which is now likely to include Kevin Rudd - whom she deposed earlier this year - as foreign minister. Mr Rudd's return to cabinet, which Ms Gillard has consistently promised, will further complicate her management challenge.

Senator Brown said the reality of the hung parliament was that the opposition could propose and pass legislation with the support of the Greens and independents, even if the government objected. ''This is part of the new paradigm,'' he said.

He nominated mental health and biosecurity as areas where the opposition and Greens shared similar policies.

Asked whether the Coalition and Greens could also combine to extend Labor's paid parental leave program, Senator Brown said the issue could be discussed with the government and opposition. ''There's good potential there for bipartite agreement for improving that legislation.''

Constitutional experts told The Age it was legally possible for the opposition to drive a legislative agenda, including bills that would require budget spending.

George Williams, of the University of New South Wales, said Tony Abbott's private member's bill to strike out Queensland's wild rivers laws was an example of legislation that, if passed, could be implemented without the support of the government.

The ability of the opposition to legislate will be enhanced by proposed rules allowing more private member's bills to be debated and voted on in the House of Representatives.

The opposition would need the support of WA National Tony Crook plus three independent or Greens MPs to pass legislation in the lower house.

Until July 1 next year the Coalition will only need the support of independent Nick Xenophon and Family First's Steve Fielding to pass bills in the Senate. After that it would need the support of the Greens.

Senator Xenophon said he was open to legislation from all sources, saying it should be judged on the quality of the idea, not its political shade.

The tax summit, part of the deal between Labor and two of the country independents, has given renewed impetus to criticism of the mining tax.

Yesterday morning Mr Swan signalled the mining tax would not be discussed at the summit, but later he said it might be. He said he was ''relaxed'' about this.

The switch came after Mr Oakeshott insisted the tax would be on the summit agenda, and Mr Windsor expressed surprise that Mr Swan thought otherwise.

After speaking with Mr Swan, Mr Windsor said the misunderstanding had been cleared up.

Opponents of the mining tax want to use the summit as a platform to reopen the debate.

Meanwhile, Heather Ridout of the Australian Industry Group said the business community did not want a hung parliament. ''We have a group of interests here that aren't necessarily always headed in the same direction,'' she said. But she said a more difficult reform process might actually improve any changes made.

She hoped the country independents would be a counterweight to the ''ambitious'' and less business-friendly ideas of the Greens.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Australia better be ready


Perth Channel 9

Dear Sir/Madam,

Re: Australia better be ready.

"I've just seen the 60 min. program last Sunday night (5, Sept. 2010 at 7.30p.m. on your station and the way it was presented is definitely quite provocative, especially for all those westerners who do not understand the derivatives of China's history and culture. The title itself is very provocative and this should be pointed out to the media - this reflects some negative view about China. Most of the Australian media had been irresponsible and very unethical in their reports on China in the past and even so today. What has China done to Australia or the world for that matter except helping it's economic?

The so-called exercise as reported claimed to be a joint one with participations from most of the Eastern countries, but no mention about which are these countries. I do not believe that Taiwan, Indonesia, S-E countries like Thailand, Malaysia and even Japan and Singapore are the participating countries.

If it is just a naval exercise, why broadcast it as a "Australia better be ready"? This is very unethical and irresponsible of Channel 9. Knowing more about the derivatives of China's history and culture (me being part of that and also a by-product of Western derivatives) where China has never been in its history initiated any proactive aggression against any country in the world, then why accuse it of being a potential 'threat' to Australia and the world?

The fact that China has increased its military strength is more believable to be based upon "defence" rather than 'offence' because of its history of having been a victim of some of the worse onslaught of aggressions from the West - eight Power Allied Forces on September 7, 1901. The 8 countries were Britain, the United States, France, Germany, Japan, Russia, Austria and Italy, and Japan again in the immediate past (the Rape of Nanking as examples).

The Rape of Nanking - Japanese Holocaust

Another vital point to look at is - what if China were to conduct such a similar exercise in the Pacific ocean, how would Australia and the US governments react to that? Understanding the derivatives of the Western culture, I am 100% sure that the US and Australia will put up a very strong protest and may even threaten reprisal actions against China.

We must stand up for any potential act of provocation of aggression of any country if we were to 'fight' for Peace in the World. If China were to conduct such an exercise and broadcast it as 'Preparing War against US or Australia or the World' I will definitely be the first to protest!

This is to adopt a universal and holistic position."

We look forward to hearing from you shortly.

Yours truly,

Eddie Hwang
Unity Party WA
Phone/Fax: 61893681884
Date: 07-Sept-2010.
Environmental friendly-save the trees-use Email
Can you afford to give Bigpond a try?

Friday, September 3, 2010

Troops withdrawal from Iraq

Dear President Obama,

You are to be congratulated for bringing those 100,000 US troops home where they belong. Former President Bush should not invade a sovereign country - with the hope of getting more oil for America and he failed badly.

As the Commander-in-Chief, we do not believe that you will make the same mistake.

Yours respectfully,

----- Original Message -----
From: Barack Obama
To: Eddie Hwang
Sent: Wednesday, September 01, 2010 10:34 AM
Subject: Iraq

Dear Eddie --

Tonight marks the end of the American combat mission in Iraq.

As a candidate for this office, I pledged to end this war responsibly. And, as President, that is what I am doing.

Since I became Commander-in-Chief, we've brought home nearly 100,000 U.S. troops. We've closed or turned over to Iraq hundreds of our bases.

As Operation Iraqi Freedom ends, our commitment to a sovereign, stable, and self-reliant Iraq continues. Under Operation New Dawn, a transitional force of U.S. troops will remain to advise and assist Iraqi forces, protect our civilians on the ground, and pursue targeted counterterrorism efforts.

By the end of next year, consistent with our agreement with the Iraqi government, these men and women, too, will come home.

Ending this war is not only in Iraq's interest -- it is in our own. Our nation has paid a huge price to put Iraq's future in the hands of its people. We have sent our men and women in uniform to make enormous sacrifices. We have spent vast resources abroad in the face of several years of recession at home.

We have met our responsibility through the courage and resolve of our women and men in uniform.

In seven years, they confronted a mission as challenging and as complex as any our military has ever been asked to face.

Nearly 1.5 million Americans put their lives on the line. Many returned for multiple tours of duty, far from their loved ones who bore a heroic burden of their own. And most painfully, more than 4,400 Americans have given their lives, fighting for people they never knew, for values that have defined our people for more than two centuries.

What their country asked of them was not small. And what they sacrificed was not easy.

For that, each and every American owes them our heartfelt thanks.

Our promise to them -- to each woman or man who has donned our colors -- is that our country will serve them as faithfully as they have served us. We have already made the largest increase in funding for veterans in decades. So long as I am President, I will do whatever it takes to fulfill that sacred trust.

Tonight, we mark a milestone in our nation's history. Even at a time of great uncertainty for so many Americans, this day and our brave troops remind us that our future is in our own hands and that our best days lie ahead.

Thank you,

President Barack Obama