Australia

Turnbull picks Julie Bishop to lead attack on Wayne Swan

Sep 22nd, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia, Lead Stories

Ms. Bishop exercised her right as deputy Liberal leader to claim the treasury prize, and becomes the first woman to hold the treasury portfolio on either side of politics. Meanwhile, the Opposition Leader has dumped Bronwyn Bishop, Jo Gash and Pat Farmer from the shadow ministry.



All in the timing for Turnbull

Sep 21st, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia

Kevin Rudd’s week-long visit to New York to address the UN General Assembly will mark his second visit to the US this year. Labor has been in office for about 300 days and the new Prime Minister has spent 50 of them overseas. Former prime minister John Howard spent 18 nights overseas in his first year.



Finance, climate change on PM’s agenda

Sep 21st, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia, Lead Stories

Kevin Rudd will use his visit to the United States to meet a variety of economic officials, which he believes will be crucial in helping Australia deal with the fallout from the US turmoil. The prime minister has come in for criticism for his decision to head off on the three-day visit when the Australian economy is on a rollercoaster of its own.



Doctors do not have monopoly on care: Roxon

Sep 20th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia

The federal Health Minister’s remarks indicate the Rudd Government is thinking of using financial disincentives to drive doctors to relinquish their monopoly on procedures which can be done safely by other professionals, such as delivering babies, issuing repeat prescriptions and wound management.



Visa ruling came after donation

Sep 20th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia

There is no evidence to show that the donations to the Liberal Party influenced any decision making by then-Immigration Minister Amanda Vanstone or encouraged any of the politicians to contact her about the case. But the revelations raise questions about the appropriateness of political parties accepting certain donations.



Rudd: Our future is in Asia

Sep 20th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said his Government’s mission was “for Australia to be the most Asian literate nation in the western world”. Mr. Rudd told the OzAsia symposium in Adelaide that the future of Australia was “tied to the most dynamic region in the world”.



‘Rich’ farmers opt for drought relief

Sep 20th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia

The Rudd Government is concerned that taxpayer-funded relief from the Exceptional Circumstances scheme is being collected by farmers who had saved money in Farm Management Deposit accounts. The accounts, introduced by the Howard government, give farmers tax breaks if they put money aside in good times ready for later use.



Four in 10 families pay no tax

Sep 20th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia

The income-tax-free club now covers 42.2 per cent of the nation’s 9.754 million families. But middle earners just outside the tax-free zone are caught in a new personal tax pincer, with 134,000 breadwinners being pushed up the scales from 30c to 40c despite Labor claiming it would “increase the take-home pay of all taxpayers”.



Joyce declines Turnbull cabinet spot

Sep 19th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia

Barnaby Joyce, the maverick elected leader of the Nationals in the upper house this week, says he is unable to provide Mr Turnbull with a commitment to hold the Coalition line on all issues. “At times there will be issues that there will, possibly, be a difference on, so on this occasion I humbly decline,” Senator Joyce said today.



Rudd to promote $100m carbon research institute at United Nations

Sep 19th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia

No industrial-scale integrated carbon capture projects yet exist, intensifying debate over whether it is too uncertain and far in the future to answer the immediate threat of climate change. But Mr Rudd said he saw opportunities in mining and energy areas from Queensland to Victoria to introduce the technology.