Greens will move to review flawed and dangerous Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP)
Australian Greens communications spokesperson – Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam. 8 October 2013.
Prime Minister Abbott should immediately stop the clock on negotiations over the secret text of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), which threatens to further extend the power of foreign multinational companies.
In the event that Parliament ever resumes, the Australian Greens will move for the Joint Standing Treaties Committee to urgently review what the Abbott Government is proposing to sign us up to.
“Most Australians would be horrified if they knew what Tony Abbott might be about to sign away: Australia’s health, environmental and consumer protection laws are on the chopping block,” said Senator Scott Ludlam.
“The transnational tobacco, pharmaceutical and media corporations want to grant themselves the power to sue governments for passing laws they don’t like. Draft copies of the secret trade agreement have been provided to corporate lobbyists but not ordinary citizens. The TPP is an example of massive corporate overreach, and Australians would do well to join with people in other countries objecting to this agreement.
“We understand there are still significant areas of disagreement between governments on the TPP, but that it could be signed as early as the first week of December.
“Last year the Australian Greens secured a recommendation in a Treaties Report that: “prior to commencing negotiations for a new agreement, the Government table in Parliament a document setting out its priorities and objectives including independent analysis of the anticipated costs and benefits of the agreement”.
“Making a statement setting out the costs and benefits of such a dangerous treaty instrument is the very least the Government should do. In the meantime the Greens will work to force disclosure of what this secretive Government is actually up to,” said Senator Ludlam.
Joint statement from Oz, NZ and Canadian Greens on TPPA issued August 2012 http://scott-ludlam.greensmps.org.au/content/news-stories/joint-statement-trans-pacific-partnership-agreement
Contact: Giovanni Torre – 0417 174 302
Antony Loewenstein @antloewenstein speaks with Tony Serve @perthtones about the giant Serco corporation and it’s failures on human rights and other key issues as part of discussion of his new book “Profits of Doom”
The nexus between huge corporations and our politcial leaders is at the heart of death, suffering and economic skullduggery here in West Australia, nationally and overseas.
Greens offer solutions for poverty in WA as the old parties go missing
Australian Greens senators for Western Australia – Scott Ludlam and Rachel Siewert. 5 September 2013.
The Australian Greens said today that they remain the only party with effective policies on the table to reduce the incidence of poverty in Western Australia.
The new WA Council of Social Service Cost Of Living Report released today shows that a lack of affordable housing, increased living costs and inadequate levels of income support are driving Western Australians below the poverty line, with job seekers, single parents and families on low or fixed incomes most at risk.
Greens Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam said the findings by WACOSS showed that providing more affordable housing was essential to ending poverty in Western Australia.
“The figures released today show Australia is experiencing rising rates of child poverty, with one in six children living in poverty – an increase of 15% since 2001, and that the cost of housing is the biggest single driver of financial hardship.
“In 2012-13, the biggest factor in the rising financial pressure on low income households was increasing rent – accounting for up to three quarters of the total rise in living costs.
“Workers on the minimum wage, part time workers and people on income support are struggling – the cost of living is rising faster than their incomes and unaffordable housing is the key driver. People are spending half of their income on keeping a roof over their heads – this can’t go on.
“The Greens have a series of initiatives to deliver more affordable housing: a plan for 85,000 new rental properties through the National Rental Affordability Scheme and a Convert To Rent program; a plan to double support services and build 7000 new homes for the homeless; and a plan to build 122,000 new social housing homes to get 225,000 families, couples and singles off the national waiting list – and to fund them with private investment through housing supply bonds.
“Only the Greens are standing up for Australians struggling to afford a place to live. Only the Greens have delivered serious, fully-costed initiatives that would take the pressure out of the housing market and help people make ends meet,” said Senator Ludlam.
Greens Senator Rachel Siewert spokesperson on families and community services said the WACOSS report highlighted the growing gap between low income households income and the cost of basic necessities.
"People on income support including single parent families are falling further behind every week as their income cannot meet the cost of living. People are being condemned to live in poverty,” said Senator Siewert.
“This reality shows the inherent cruelty in Labor’s decision to move single parents onto Newstart in January, with the full support of Tony Abbott. Running a negative household budget means people go without the essentials, miss bills and are forced to rely on credit, support from family or friends or turn to our community sector for assistance.
“In a wealthy country like Australia, it is not acceptable for more than 2.3 million people, nearly 600,000 of whom are children, to live below the poverty line.
"Income support needs to be increased. The Greens have clearly demonstrated that by fixing the mining tax we can provide a $50 per week increase for people on Newstart and Youth Allowance, as well as providing an additional supplement of $40 per week for all single parents on Newstart.
“This should be part of a National Anti-Poverty Strategy, founded on the principle that tackling poverty means addressing the range of underlying factors that contribute to it.
"The Greens are the only party talking about poverty and offering strong, costed policies to address it. We can be trusted to stand up to the old parties and help Australia’s most vulnerable people," Senator Siewert concluded.
The Greens affordable housing plans in detail – http://greens.org.au/housing
Contact: Giovanni Torre – 0417 174 302
from our friends at GetUp…. this is rank bastardry by coporrate media that will continue unless we challenge it….
I’m just off the phone after dozens of radio interviews. Our member-funded ad calling out Murdoch’s bias is causing quite a fuss.
Already, 830,000 people have seen the ad on air or online — but now all three major TV networks are pulling it off air and refusing to run it.1. Some of the network representatives told us directly: they’re not running the ad because they don’t want to criticise Rupert Murdoch.
We’ve filed an official complaint with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, but we can’t wait for a ruling to take our next step. We have to get this message out, right now. So if the commercial channels are slamming the door we’ll just go around them — and go bigger.
If our proposed TV ads had gone through, we would have reached an additional 500,000 TV viewers by the election. But if each of us simply shares this video on Facebook, Twitter and over email we can shatter that number. Let’s work together to reach 750,000 views online before the election.
And then forward this email to everyone you know so they can do the same.
Why is this important? TV networks use a public good – the airwaves licensed to them by the Government. If networks decide who is allowed to advertise based on which messages they agree with, our democracy is seriously compromised. That’s precisely why laws prevent the networks from refusing reasonable attempts by political parties to run ads during election cycles. But since GetUp members aren’t a political party, the networks have decided that they can block our right to free speech — purely because they don’t like what we have to say.
They don’t want our money – but we don’t need them. We’re already moving our advertising online, reaching hundreds of thousands more Australians. And if we all share this far and wide, we can make our impact even bigger.
Let’s prove that in 2013 people power can beat the corporate blackout. Our democracy depends on it.
Sam, for the GetUp team.
PS. To see how the events of the last few days have unfolded, including the great media coverage we’ve received since the ad was banned, click here: http://www.getup.org.au/whywewerebanned
 “Anti-Murdoch article banned from Television”, The Age, September 3, 2013
please tweet or share a link to this post to every aussie news outlet you are connected to…
Aussie sons & daughters are already under US command in the Persian Gulf (see this article from 2009 for just part of our deployment story) and are likely to form at least a defensive posture in support of the US attack on Syria in other parts of the Middle east.
R.A.N. ships have had many encounters with elements of Iranian forces since major deployment in John Howard’s illegal support of the invasion of Iraq and are on Tehran’s radar without a doubt. I can’t speak to aussies deployed or embedded with US land, air, special ops or intel elements. That illustrates the problem.
Aussies will vote for a new Government next saturday but no-one is talking about or asking about the war elephant in the room. That is scary and echoes the deadly, dangerous silence before every disastrous military adventure where we rushed to support the US.
I may be wrong, but if so, let the PM and Opposition leader tell me and you that, and spell out what risk they are putting our defense personnel in the name of a discredited US administration.
The Government is about to enter caretaker mode so there will be none of the parliamentary scrutiny of our war effort, certainly no opportunity for the sound rejection of war that we saw in the UK Parliament. ( A vote that led corporate media to almost visceral condemnation of those who questioned war.)
Whether an attack on that butcher Assad is right or wrong is sadly irrelevant.
What matters is that our sons and daughters are in harms way without so much as a whats up? from any of us.
So, please dear former colleagues in mainstream media, do your job. Speak truth to power and question whomever’s in charge about what is going on and what danger they are putting our family members in to appease a Government that has admitted spying on all of us, including our Politicians.
Whomever forms Government will inherit a defense force already at war and out of direct australian control.
Thesedays we don’t expect fearless reporting from Murdoch media and precious little from the rest, so please, ask your favourite news outlet and MP, as well as Abbott and Rudd ( Khaki Kev was quoted in John Kerry’s war-drum speech last night as saying ‘we can’t turn a blind eye to Assad’s actions’) WTF is going on?
post script: “lest we forget” successive LNP & ALP Governments have been exposed as not looking after those who’ve returned from other bloody misadventures with Uncle Sam & their weasel words on “our troops” are tragically laughable.
Personal note: I send love and support for those who serve and their families, but I have nothing but contempt for the bastards who send them to foreign lands to kill and be killed for the US.
For live updated reports 24/7 on #syria war and other global news not covered in mainstream media, check my curated list of 500+ global news makers and reporters, bloggers and tweeters here