Where does the money go?
A topic that dominates “CityNews” columns and other media, is how the ACT’s Labor-Greens coalition government collects and spends your money.
A topic that dominates “CityNews” columns and other media, is how the ACT’s Labor-Greens coalition government collects and spends your money.
Previously I reported that there remains a looooong list of dubious matters involved with the proposed building of a Common Ground apartment complex on Section 72 Dickson. These date back to the infamous Dickson land swap.
This piece is based on the extraordinary goings-on of an Australian federal minister – and her use of alternate facts to pretend that there is nothing wrong when the Auditor General has reported otherwise.
The year begins with yet another event around Dickson section 72 (Dickson parklands) involving ACT Housing Minister Yvette Berry doing her best to upset and alienate the voters within the inner north, just in time for the 2020 elections.
Taking the time to observe the many birds in our garden provides a complete distraction from the more serious matters of life.
Well, at least this is what it should be.
When the ACT Legislative Assembly voted in October to establish a committee to examine the planning problems that plagued the development of the Molonglo suburbs of Wright and Coombs, it would follow that this signalled that someone may be paying attention to what residents have been saying for the last few years.
At least that is what we should be thinking.
First the good news. The ACT government is committed to adding overdue facilities to the Woden Valley Hospital.
Here’s an issue now being looked at in the inner north – and no-one has yet to work out what happened.
Next year on October 17, the date for the ACT government election, voters must choose a government for the following four years.
Given the views about current ACT politicians, the thought of being compelled to vote is a real dilemma. The leadership chair that trusted politicians should occupy is empty. Yet by this time next year, voters need to put someone in that empty chair.
Canberra, our bush capital, is a good place to live (no surprises there). Part of the credit for this goes to residents who have put in time and energy over decades to bring people together through neighbourhood groups and the larger combined community councils.
These community leaders encourage debates (usually friendly) and exchanges of information on a whole range of issues, with planning and development being the usual hot topics (thankfully, not always).
This opinion piece only scratches the surface of the enormous problems we have here in Canberra with planning and development. The whole of the planning system has been corrupted by decades of bad management and the development of a culture that has residents as the enemy to be tricked and out manoeuvred. Click here for my piece in City News.
Yvette Berry as ACT sports minister attended a recent Woden Valley meeting and totally trashed all the ideas that residents put forward for much needed and well-overdue sports, recreation and cultural facilities for Woden – where there are 20 plus towers of apartments about to appear. And as yet – no facilities are being planned for the area. WTF?? Click here for the opinion piece in CityNews.
Before the 2016 ACT Elections, the chief minister promised that there would be a panel formed to bring about master planning for the precinct around the Manuka Oval. That panel was to meet by the end of 2016. Did not happen! Instead there have been games, spin and alternative facts. The most recent insult being a meeting called that pretended to be about Manuka planning – but was simply a waste of people’s time. Another broken commitment by the ACT Chief Minster. Another insult to the intelligence of residents by Andrew Barr and his planning barbarians. click here for the opinion piece in City News.
When developers eye off ACT Government green spaces – the trend in Canberra is that those developers get to buy that land and the people lose yet another piece of precious community open space. This is happening with land behind the Kippax shops in west Belconnen in Canberra.The local Labor member is Yvette Berry and she loves to show up with a shovel to be photographed when community land and green spaces are being removed from the public ownership. Click here for the opinion piece in City News.
Chris Steel became an ACT Labor Minister about a year ago. Watching him recently at a Weston Creek Community Council meeting I became aware of how these Labor politicians have so easily accepted the arguments of the classic NeoLiberals. It is all about market forces. Click here for my opinion piece in City News.
Already the positive spin has commenced in the media portraying how wonderful this dreadful government is. Click here for my piece on this election campaign for 2020
There’s misleading information being used to justify apartment developments on West Basin. It is overdue for all our local politicians to get involved. more on this from my opinion piece in City News – click here.
and for a later article on this — click here
How does a group of otherwise sort-of-reasonable people get convinced that they are doing humane and considerate things when they allow the development of the city to happen in such a barbaric manner. click here for more
ACT residents have become convinced that the ACT Government operates in a completely different universe. This separation is having a huge impact on people’s lives. click here.
During the last decade the ACT Labor Party has depended on the ACT Greens to form government. What has come of the ACT Greens? Click here
“Meet the Candidates” forums for the coming Federal election can be fun, can be interesting, can be boring and can sometimes change your mind on a candidate. Click here for my opinion on one such forum.
CANBERRA voters are about to elect Federal politicians to represent the people of the ACT. But do they? Click here for my piece on this in City News
I wrote a piece about the barbarians now running the ACT’s government – click here for the piece in CityNews.
The ACT Greens/Labor coalition government has a host of ministers who are making a mess of the planning and development of Canberra’s urban environments. The question asked by the community sectors is where do the ACT Liberals stand on these planning issues. Click here for my piece in City News on this topic.
With the Christmas release of the draft City and Gateway Urban Design Framework, the ACT Government’s City Renewal Authority undertook media advocacy during February for an apartment suburb on West Basin. The ACT Government continues with its proposal for West Basin against the opposition of the Canberra community – click here.
No surprise here! The ACT Government often plays with the truth.
Here’s my piece in City News on this.
The ACT Government has a sad history of very nasty behaviour by some bureaucrats towards the residents. This is not new and it continues today. Unfortunately when it occurs our elected politicians tend not to want to hear about it – they turn away.
This is the story of one such incident – it is bullying at its worst.
Here’s my opinion piece in City News.
Congratulations to all the residents who care and work hard on planning matters – endlessly. The shocking thing is that those in government, on all sides, now take it as normal that they are not trusted and respected. It is not something anyone should simply live with.
I wrote for City News on this topic – click here.
On December 5 our blessed planning minister, Mick Gentleman, ascended Mount Ainslie to hand down the 2018 ACT Planning Strategy. This was just another media performance to try to convince someone that this government takes planning serioulsy.
It does not.
Here’s my piece in City News on this silly performance.
We are still being governed by idiots – who will see the country suffer now and into the future to appease their own interests and their mates in the coal industry. The good news? They are guaranteed to be gone at the next federal elections.
Click here for the story.
This is a slightly revised version of a previous post of mine previously written as the government moved to close the public housing along Northbourne Avenue in Canberra as part of its Urban Clearances programs
Rebecca Solnit has written about regimes such as Trump’s do not last forever.
I have a new piece on City News that goes part of the way to addressing the sad state of heritage under this ACT Government.
George Monbiot writes about the signs for change. Please make it happen.
Once you realise how corrupted the ACT Government is – it would be so easy to get depressed and walk away.
Lorrie Graham has posted on her blog about a win within her area of Sydney.
Canberra once had a reputation as being a planned city. Not so any more.
Recommended reading for all of us as we try to work out what the hell happened with democracy and how our governments have ruined this country.
Observing the current government and its attitude towards the electorate, it does make you wonder about the 2016 election results and whether this will be repeated in 2020.
With Canberra having such an informed and aware community, one would have thought that a community-focused government planning minister would have surfaced by now – one being committed to development and the future growth of the city while simultaneously embracing the enhancement of (rather than reducing) the city’s amenities that are admired internationally.
In Australia we have a small band of conservatives who work tirelessly to have their brands of religion have a greater influence on government and the country’s laws.
Luckily till now they are more of less not so successful – well most of the time.
In their last round of attempts to achieve more religious freedoms (whatever that meant) – what would have been more applicable would have been to remove religion and the influence of such religious fundamentalists completely from the workings of government.
Meanwhile in a land not far away – things are going from bad to worse.
we are being Turnbulled – over and over again.
Welcome Bill Shorten, the next Prime Minister of Australia
The words populism and populist have no simple, coherent meaning.
A good article summing up the state of politics, where truth is an option to be discarded.
They marched to demand Congress DO THEIR JOB and remove the President from The White House. click here
Today Tony Abbott called for a moratorium on wind farms.
Share this if you think it’s time for a moratorium on Tony Abbott.
Yet again the media has misunderstood what Pauline Hanson said!
It is definitely time for all forms of peaceful and concerted actions to adjust our democratic structures to deal with the damage being done by forces that have resulted in Trump and his cronies being where they are.
the democracy experiment continues – but will it get beyond the influence of neoliberalism
oh how we wish we could believe the Minister and the building industry spokespersons – of course here in Canberra we have the laws in place! But – we all know better than that.
says it all.. the idiot of Australian politics
“This is one attempt to uncover how we got to this surreal political moment. It is also an attempt to predict how, under cover of shocks and crises, it could get a lot worse.
And it’s a plan for how, if we keep our heads, we might just be able to flip the script and arrive at a radically better future.” — From the Introduction
Once Australia was a leader in supporting equality and was generous in its assistance to other countries. Oh how things have changed. Here’s a post from Michael Moore on the greedy nature of the Turnbull government – click here.
The world leaders are stepping forward! – click here for the story
Very strange things happen in the urban design planning space in Canberra.
Hillary Clinton makes a fiery commencement speech at her alma mater – taking aim at Trump and his colleagues. She makes the speech nearly 50 years after graduating from Wellesley College in 1969
There’s definitely something evil being played out locally.
Very strange events have been unfolding since the local ACT elections in late 2016.
We expect a lot of our politicians. People rightly expect their elected representatives to do just that – be representatives of the people who elected them. That’s not always a success story.
A lot has been written about the ACT Government’s announcement to establish small government housing estates on community-zoned land in Weston Creek suburbs.
see message below – very appropriate for all those who bought the lies
I have already reviewed this book – click here.
However I cannot stop pondering the challenge this story throws up for anyone interested in equity, fairness, and the role of the media in so many aspects of our daily lives.
If we had a real media, this story would have been totally different. Instead what happened here was the total manipulation of the media and through them members of the public, by all forms of malicious groups of people and individuals.
About the architecture along Northbourne Avenue
It was on hearing certain phrases used over and over again on Australian TV programs talking about the 2016 US election campaign that I became suspicious that we were witnessing a lazy press.
Almost daily the media was taking the same phrases and words and using them over and over again – with no evidence that they could be accurate except that they were the words and phrases being used by most journalists and commentators at the time.
On the basis we were supposed to accept their words as fact.
Australians are again being subject to being Turnbulled. Yet Again.
A few stories on this topic – and the world needs more people to identify this and to lead the change away from this nasty ideology.
Sometimes you wonder just what is going on in the heads of our local government and its bureaucrats who make funding decisions.
From the publishers: Most Australians despise what Pauline Hanson stands for, yet politics in this country is now orbiting around One Nation. In this timely Quarterly Essay, David Marr looks at Australia’s politics of fear, resentment and race. Who votes One Nation, and why? How much of this is due to inequality? How much to racism? How should the major parties respond to anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim voices? What damage do Australia’s new entrepreneurs of hate inflict on the nation?
A group of Community Leaders met late last night to discuss the outcome from last week’s Weston Creek Community Council Meeting, which had to be postponed due to an overwhelming attendance.
Following the resignation of their highly paid CEO, it seems that our postal services need to recover some of the revenue it has been paying out in the last few years.
Oh how we wish for more voices to be critical of the current political class and their hangers-on – and I include many journalists as being hangers-on.
When a system is broken, how easily it is to point the figure at one person and say “It wasn’t me, it was that person over there.”
Author Clive Hamilton has been engaged in the climate debate for more than 20 years, with books selling worldwide.
Medicare was great. Having a universal health care system was the envy of many other countries.
Time for some fun – and a new song from Randy Newman…