Ukraine is big deterrent to China

In at least one respect, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has been helpful to western democracies.

This is because the top brass and the political class they advise in nearly all countries usually fight the current war based upon the experience of recent past wars – invariably with poor results.

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No rights for territories

Legally and constitutionally, the Federal Parliament has the power to overturn the ACT’s laws which provide that a person caught with illicit drugs within an allowable amount will either be given a $100 fine or be sent to a diversion program.

The question is should it, or should it respect the democratic will of the people of the ACT as expressed in the laws passed by the ACT Legislative Assembly?

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A sign of governmental failure

There it appeared on one of the many entrances to Port Douglas’s iconic Four Mile Beach – literally overnight – a shiny new, expensive metal sign extolling the virtues of fishing and advising people how to catch them.

Then there was the real catch. The sign told us that the money for the signage had been provided by the Federal Government. A bit of digging tells us that applications under the grants scheme closed in September 2021 and the grants were made in February 2022, just before the start of the caretaker period before the federal election.

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Ineptitude shows China threat exaggerated

We fret and worry about the Chinese threat, but events of the past week must make any observer question China’s diplomatic and economic competence. And further wonder whether “the rise of China” is a bit like “the Soviet menace” – a house of cards that can come tumbling down any minute. 

And make us further wonder whether a fearful Australia is squandering too much treasure on meeting an exaggerated threat.

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Super example of good public policy

The true prescience of one of Australia’s greatest public-policy successes was revealed in the sixth Inter-Generational Report published last week.

Thirty-one years ago, despite vehement opposition from the Liberal and National Parties and deep scepticism from business, Labor’s Superannuation Guarantee legislation passed the Parliament.

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Housing crisis demands ‘demand’ action

A lawyer friend of mine who has acted on and off for large developers once told me that the really big money is Australia is made from change of land use.

Imagine, then, the vast amounts of money that will slosh about with Labor’s new policy to build 1.2 million dwellings over five years.

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Climate’s vicious circle for insurers

The fires on the Hawaiian island of Maui have had fairly wide coverage in Australia, largely because we had similar fires here in 2019. The fires will obviously contribute to global heating and the upsetting of stable climate systems. But there is another human-made hitherto stable system under threat: insurance.

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A Voice plan & why we feel financially drained

Memo Prime Minister Anthony Albanese: Now you have committed to the referendum this year, you must to everything you can to get it across the line.

The No campaign has used every dirty trick of lies, exaggeration and fear campaigns. The Yes campaign does not have to join them in deceit, but it has to get a bit clever.

A big leg up for Yes would come if the Federal voting age were reduced to 16.

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