Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Media wrap - Rudd's broken hospital promise


POLITICS AND ECONOMICS

Health and hospitals

Patient turned away from pre-booked surgery at RPA and told to book room in hotelErin Crocker has been bleeding internally for 10 weeks. The 29-year-old has one-fifth of the normal amount of blood in her body. Yesterday, she was turned away from pre-booked surgery at a Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and told to book a room at a nearby hotel – Sydney Daily Telegraph

Queensland Health a bureaucratic mess: Sir Liam Donaldson – One of the world's top medical experts has delivered a damning assessment of Queensland Health five years after the Bundaberg Hospital scandal – Brisbane Courier Mail

Kevin Rudd under fire for 'broken' hospitals pledge – Kevin Rudd's election pledge to fix the nation's hospitals is under fresh attack after the Prime Minister said he wanted a "compromise" with states – Brisbane Courier Mail

Elections

South Australian Liberals ignite debate on drinking water – A divisive debate to mirror Toowoomba's recycled water woes is on the cards in South Australia after the Liberal opposition yesterday promised to inject treated stormwater into Adelaide's drinking supply if it wins power at the March 20 state election – The Australian

Policies

Coalition to offer six months off to parents – A six-month scheme of paid parental leave and plans to extend to nannies similar pay and conditions as childcare workers are at the heart of a Coalition policy being designed to woo family and female voters – Sydney Morning Herald

Abbott woos families with baby leaveThe West Australian

Political life

Keneally will do her best, let voters decide the rest - Faced with a Labor primary vote of just 29 per cent in the latest polls, Ms Keneally refused yesterday to say whether she thinks Labor can win the election, saying that whether or not she won was ''not the focus I have in this job''. ''As I say to my kids all of the time, winning and losing doesn't matter; what matters is that you can look yourself in the mirror and say, 'I did my absolute best'.”

Federal Labor MP Belinda Neal skips crucial debate in Canberra to plea to branch members in Woy Woy - As nominations officially opened for Robertson - the most marginal Labor seat in the country - Belinda Neal made an urgent plea to Labor members at a two-hour meeting at Woy Woy, to have them endorse her. However, it is now likely that a rank and file vote between Ms Neal and local teacher Deb O'Neill will be called when nominations close next Wednesday – Sydney Daily Telegraph

It's my turn now: Labor rival moves to put Neal in freezer – The woman aiming to replace Belinda Neal in the Central Coast seat of Robertson says Ms Neal's image has been tarnished and the Labor Party needs a fresh face in the area – Sydney Morning Herald

Elections

Baillieu in race attack on Brumby – Victoria has a serious and increasing problem with racist attacks on Indian students, but the state government is in denial and blaming the victims, Opposition Leader Ted Baillieu said last night – Melbourne Age


Labor launches personal attack on Redmond – Opposition Leader Isobel Redmond says she is ready to govern, but in a series of bitter attacks the Government has labelled her a risk, unable to be trusted and not fit to run the state – Adelaide Advertiser

Premier lashed over debate – David Bartlett has been described as "arrogant" and a "wuss" for attempting to organise a leader's debate on his own terms – Hobart Mercury

Napier set to quit politics – Senior Liberal Sue Napier is set to quit politics because of illness. The member for Bass, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in late 2008, has found that the cancer has returned – Hobart Mercury

Jobs for the boys

Conroy put former MP forward for key IT job – A former Labor politician caught up in electoral fraud allegations was appointed to a job with the new broadband network after a recommendation by the Communications Minister, Stephen Conroy – Sydney Morning Herald

Development

Councils angry over potential planning power abuse – In a move that has delighted developers, the Premier has indicated that she will extend and make permanent special planning arrangements introduced as part of the federal government's stimulus package – Sydney Morning Herald

Economic matters

Budget team hires consultants to target new savings – The SA Government razor gang - the Sustainable Budget Commission - has hired an outside consultant to examine all corporate services in the public sector in a bid to make millions of dollars in savings – Adelaide Advertiser

Immigration

The best and brightest to be given priority - Immigration Minister Chris Evans yesterday announced an overhaul of Australia's independent skilled migration system to break the link between studying a trade in short supply and remaining in the country afterwards – Melbourne Age

Changes to skilled migration program a 'threat to recovery' – The Rudd government's changes to Australia's skilled migration program could hold back economic recovery, a key business group has warned – The Australian

Migration changes to hit foreign students – Changes to migration rules will have an impact on foreign students amid concerns of further damage to Australia's reputation abroad, the Federal Government has acknowledged – Adelaide Advertiser

Government just takes the money and runs, say 'betrayed' studentsCanada and and England could be two of the beneficiaries from the skilled migration reforms. Many students outside private colleges yesterday mulling over the policy changes that mean their courses will no longer guarantee them residency here have asked their education agents to enrol them there – Sydney Morning Herald

ASIO rushed Oceanic Viking asylum checks - ASIO fast-tracked security checks on 78 refugees being held in Indonesia following the Oceanic Viking standoff, allowing the Rudd government to meet the terms of a special deal to resettle them within four to 12 weeks – The Australian

Industrial relations

Retailers chief opposes increase in wages – Retailers have warned against a large increase in minimum wages, arguing it would add to inflation and threaten jobs in a difficult trading climate – Melbourne Age

Aboriginal affairs

Tony Abbott calls Kevin Rudd's bluff on wild rivers – Tony Abbott has challenged Kevin Rudd to use the promise he made in delivering the national apology to the Stolen Generations two years ago to overturn the Queensland government's Wild Rivers legislation – The Australian

Opinions

Camel gas and other warmist nonsense – Piers Akerman writes in the Sydney Daily Telegraph that the  insanity all of those who have been engaged in running the great global warming scam is summed up by the decision to recognise belches and farts from domestic camels, and not those emitted by the feral camel population, when calculating a nation’s carbon footprint.

Fair Work laws are not helping the young and other unemployed – Gerard Henderson makes the case in the Sydney Morning Herald

A dream Labor speech from the vanquished – was how David Marr in the Sydney Morning Herald saw Malcolm Turnbull’s words yesterday about an emissions trading scheme

Libs up the ante on race – Paul Austin in the Melbourne Age says Ted Baillieu's dramatic decision to up the ante in the violence-against-Indians debate means this year's state election will be a referendum on what sort of society Victoria has become - and, in particular, whether racists rule the streets.

Shutting migration's back door - A Howard-era initiative that sought to encourage highly skilled migrants needed to be reined in writes Tim Colebatch in the Melbourne Age

ALP the favourite as Rudd and Abbott enter the home straight - In terms of the horse racing analogy so beloved of political commentators, writes Mark Davis in the Melbourne Age, Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott have just rounded the final bend of this year's election contest. The latest Nielsen poll shows Rudd's ALP entered the home stretch a good length in front of the Coalition.

Courtiers still marvel at emperor's new clothes – Malcolm Colless writes in The Australian that Kevin Rudd's waffling and disjointed media performances in recent days reflect a lack of hard-headed, seasoned, strategic discipline in the Prime Minister's office. His appearances demonstrate his inability to work without a script.

Politicians lie because we can't handle the truth - writes Paul Williams in the Brisbane Courier Mail.  Honesty might be refreshing but, in politics, being wholly honest all the time would result only in chaos. For governments to function smoothly and, paradoxically, for voters to have faith in leaders, governments must speak with one voice. There's just no room for a host of honest opinions.

Scrap those speed fines – Susie O’Brien in the Melbourne Herald Sun asks why not remove fines for motorists doing less than 10km/h over the limit? Dock the points, but remove the fine.

BUSINESS

Drowning or waving? Reading the sharemarket turmoil – Even the experts cannot agree on whether the world's jittery sharemarkets are having a hiccup or a heart attack – Melbourne Age

Global law firm moves in and poaches top talent – The Australian market for legal services faces a major shake-up, with global firm Allen & Overy bursting on to the scene after a stunning raid on the top ranks at one of the nation's leading firm – The Australian

Brian Croser blames big business for wine industry problems – One of the country's leading winemakers has pointed the finger at Australia's big wine corporations, accusing them of being responsible for the industry's major problems. An oversupply of grapes and the decline of our international wine reputation had left the industry grappling with serious challenges, South Australian premium winemaker Brian Croser told a meeting of agricultural and resource economists at Adelaide Convention Centre yesterday – Adelaide Advertiser

ENVIRONMENT

Opposition Leader Tony Abbott continues savaging Kevin Rudd's emissions trading scheme – Opposition Leader Tony Abbott yesterday continued savage attacks on the cost to families of the Government's emissions trading scheme but conceded that he might introduce one himself if elected prime minister –Sydney Daily Telegraph


'Brave' Turnbull blasts Liberal plan to cut emissions – Malcolm Turnbull has warned that Tony Abbott's proposed emissions reduction fund is a recipe for fiscal recklessness and political pork barreling – Melbourne Age

Put food bowl aside and take care of drinking water, says taskforce – Safe drinking water should be secured for people across northern Australia before the nation tries to turn the Top End into the food bowl of Asia, a taskforce has told the Federal Government – Sydney Morning Herald

Dams not an option in Labor food plan – A research report that found there was insufficient water to make northern Australia a food bowl for the nation did not consider building dams because it was against Labor policy – The Australian

Pollies express dismay and defiance at taskforce conclusions on Top End food bowl – Politicians reacted angrily to yesterday's taskforce report rejecting major agricultural development of Australia's north, labelling the committee lightweight and ineffective – The Australian

Idea to beef up billion-dollar Top End cattle industry – They won't be growing wheat in the tropics, but that doesn't mean Australia's vast and under-developed north can't be tapped to feed the nation on the hoof – The Australian

Top End food bowl 'dream' killed by reality check – The Top End will not be turned into a food bowl for the rest of the country and South-East Asia. A Federal Government think tank yesterday declared that northern Australia did not have enough water for a massive expansion of irrigation – Northern Territory News

MEDIA

Nine's ratings also hit for six – Empty seats at the nation's cricket grounds are fast becoming blood on the carpet at the Nine Network with cricket's long-term broadcast partner hit by a major fall in television audiences for the sport – Melbourne Age

Uighur film 'shelved' in ABC China push – A controversial film about Uighur leader Rebiya Kadeer may have been pulled by the ABC to promote managing director Mark Scott's vision of a "soft diplomacy" role for the public broadcaster – The Australian

ABC keen to push global expansion – The ABC wants more money from Australian taxpayers to broadcast to viewers overseas, taking on CNN and the BBC as global media players – Melbourne Herald Sun

Celebrating 20 years of the`best gig in TV' - ABC heavyweights Kerry O'Brien and Tony Jones may not agree on the finer details of what makes Lateline great, but they do agree that hosting it is the toughest and most satisfying gig in television – The Australian

Naomi Robson sex show snore – Former Today Tonight host Naomi Robson's Love Life launched with a whimper rather than a bang yesterday.  Robson's internet venture, The Naomi Show Love Life, kicked off with Robson probing a celebrity panel consisting of Peter Lazer, Nick Giannopoulos and Dion Taylor about what not to say after sex – Melbourne Herald Sun

LIFE

Law and order

$10m of taxpayers money to try terrorists – Taxpayers paid out more than $10 million on legal aid for a group of nine Sydney terrorists, the Government revealed yesterday – Sydney Daily Telegraph


The drink

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd wants legal drinking age raised to 21 – Prime Minister Kevin Rudd says he'd personally like to see the legal drinking age lifted to 21 years. But there would have to be rigorous debate and evidence that the policy could reduce binge drinking before the government would consider it, he says – Sydney Daily Telegraph

The fags

Smoking outdoors to be outlawed on three busy Frankston streets – Smoking outdoors will be outlawed along entire streets in a Victorian-first trial. Frankston City Council is preparing to impose blanket bans along three busy open-air shopping strips, including opposite the train station. Lighting up in the designated exclusion zones during the planned six-month trial could cost defiant smokers fines up to $110 – Melbourne Herald Sun

The pokies

Pokies suck in billions in Victoria – Punters have splurged almost $32 billion on poker machines in Victoria since their introduction in 1992 – Melbourne Herald Sun

Education


Independent, private school fees increase 6.3 per cent - Most parents will have to find an extra $272 on average to send their child to a private school in South Australia this year – Adelaide Advertiser

CSC cards kids who can't pay – Poor students are being segregated by the use of special coloured cards at a Territory high school. Casuarina Senior College is issuing special white ID cards to students whose parents can't or won't pay a $250 fee for its "resource hire scheme" – Northern Territory News

High life

Treat for elite as Reserve Bank celebrates – Central bankers are an unobtrusive breed by nature and necessity. So it might have escaped the attention of many that Sydney is playing host to a meeting of some of the world's top money men and women to celebrate the 50th birthday of the Reserve Bank of Australia. However, a secretive gala dinner at the Art Gallery of NSW to mark the event last night attracted a who's who of Australia's political and business world – Sydney Morning Herald

Motoring

Hybrid Camry rolls in the green revolution – The green motoring revolution rolled onward in Australia yesterday as Toyota's Hybrid Camry hit the road – Adelaide Advertiser
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