Saturday, 17 May 2014

Integrity is Optional

Queensland's assistant health minister Chris Davis was sacked this week.

Given the recent history of the LNP government, this is unremarkable, except that Dr Davis was not sacked because he was corrupt.

He was sacked because he demonstrated integrity.

Straight up, that makes him persona non grata in the Newman government.

That little branch of Meercat Manor* can't abide anyone who puts public interest before self interest and vested interest.

Here are some extracts from last night's 7.30 Report -

But Dr Davis says he suspects a number of complaints were made about him.
He says revelations at a New South Wales corruption inquiry show powerful interests are involved in politics.
"You only need to look across the border to New South Wales to actually see under current arrangements how there are a number of very powerful interests in any political system," he said.
"We have at the moment on the table a great relaxation of caps and donations and so on, just at the same time the new Premier of New South Wales Mike Baird is actually saying that he needs to nail shut the back door to government because it is actually causing so much damage.
"You don't make an investment in business unless you make a return on it," he said.It was not just a technicality of the Cabinet solidarity message, I think I had trod on some very powerful toes.
"You'd be naive to think that the political gene pool changed when you crossed the border from New South Wales to Queensland."
Dr Davis says he was not offered the opportunity to hand in his resignation.
"We had a situation on Thursday [the previous week] where the Treasurer, Tim Nicholls, had made a media comment, as I recall it, that the LNP was a very broad church," he said.
"The scenario changed between then and when I was called in on Tuesday, and I suspect that, as I say, was a number of complaints to the Premier and he felt obliged to send a message.
"I think it was a signal on a number of fronts.
"I think it was not just a technicality of the Cabinet solidarity message, I think I had trod on some very powerful toes.

The whole interview is here.

* Meercat Manor because of Newman's uncanny resemblance to one of these critters

Sunday, 11 May 2014

An Economy of Social Inclusion.

Pic courtesy The Catholic Leader

Below is an extract from Today's Catholic Leader -

The article is called Putting People First: The call for an economy of social inclusion.

In co-operation with all sectors of business, unions, and the community, government has a responsibility to ensure workers and their families are put first in the nation’s economic system. It should take the lead in: 

1. Creating jobs for vulnerable workers which are secure, adequately paid and relevant to the needs of business and local communities 

2. Supporting industrial and infrastructure development that increases opportunities for local employment 

3. Increasing investment in research and development and lifting national training standards 

4. Assisting employers by reducing on-costs – for example through wage subsidies or tax rebates on employment-related costs 

5. Agreeing on a way of measuring poverty and social exclusion and applying it when setting minimum wages and social security payments. 

We need a competitive and productive national economy. But we cannot leave it to the market alone. There is a responsibility on government to ensure all people can make their contribution to the productivity of our nation and reap the benefits of growth.

It resonates with me, as I've always believed that after providing security, the first responsibility of any government is to create conditions so that everyone, irrespective of age, gender or disability, can find productive work.

This has apparently gone out of fashion, and as the statistics in the article demonstrate, people on the margins are suffering, and that suffering is spreading.

Read the whole thing.

A Pinch of Common Sense

Courtesy I found this posted in Facebook a few weeks ago, when the faux outrage about mandated vaccination first began to ...