Companies avoiding tax. Healthy Rivers.
TOO often I fall into the trap of not being grateful for all the amazing things which make up my life including family, friends and health.
To all the people who aren’t so blessed, I hope you can make 2019 your year. I’VE been pretty busy this year so the best Christmas present for me would be a larger share of the Australian economy, so I didn’t have to spend so many hours at my computer.
I’m not the only one with this problem, so when I read financial journo Michael West’s most recent report into corporate tax dodging, it set my blood boiling.
He sets it out pretty well, how despite the Australian Tax Office’s annual transparency data, while tax payable is disclosed there are no public records when it comes to tax refunds.
“In other words, corporations are showing how much they pay but not how much they get back,” Mr West wrote.
“While the Tax Office, now in the fourth year of its corporate data dump, reveals how much income Australia’s top companies made, and how much tax is payable by them, what it does not show is the billions handed back to them in rebates.”
Unbelievably, or not, corporate reporting is based on an honour TO finish the year off I thought I would re-visit a topic I have previously written about and has resurfaced.
Consider this chain of events for a moment.
The electorate of Wentworth has a large number of residents of Jewish background. The Liberal Party is struggling in the polls so Prime Minister Morrison announces his idea to move the Australian Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in order to get a boost in the polls. This was announced without consultation with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
The Prime Minister can’t give a reasoned, nuanced answer as to why the Embassy needs to be moved. Those who follow the news know the USA moved its embassy earlier in the year, and Morrison is just blindly following Trump.
The Liberals lose the Wentworth byelection but the idea of moving the Embassy is bubbling away in the background. Morrison, being an evangelical Christian of the vicarious redemption via human sacrifice type, with encouragement system.
As a nation we could do with the money these transnational corporations are ripping off us year after year, decade after decade.
As a nation, we’re a pretty poor excuse unless we’re marketing ourselves as a lobbyist’s paradise. MOST people know they want to get back to some simple pleasures in life but in this frantic world it’s often far more difficult to actually do it.
Now Healthy Rivers Dubbo has gone to the trouble of actually staging a laid back event where all you have to do is bring a chair, sit back and relax while the Macquarie ambles by.
Just chilling out with other people really is something we shouldn’t take for granted.
Bring a chair, a plate to share, drinks, any questions you may have about river health and be at Sandy Beach from 6 to 9pm on Thursday, January 17. WHEN the ALP was in power in NSW, the coalition appointed Nationals’ upper house politician Duncan Gay as the duty MLC for the Dubbo electorate.
Now the Coalition holds the reigns, the ALP has allocated that role to MLC Greg Donnelly and he’s been pretty active in the area in recent weeks.
He met with some affected landlords from the Victoria Street shops in the past few days to hear how Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) has a plan to take all their parking to allow giant B-triple trucks better access to the intersection once traffic lights are installed to replace the current roundabout. from others in his Party let theology overrule prudent national interest and continues to advocate for moving the Embassy.
Islamic leaders in the Middle East and Asia, including our major agricultural trading customers Indonesia and Malaysia, denounced the idea of moving the Embassy. They threaten sanctions against Australian exports. The sheep live export trade (long one of the National’s protected projects) could be affected.
Morrison pushed on. After six months of delay, the Religious Freedom Review was finally publicly released. Religious freedom and discrimination were in the news again. Morrison pushed on with his desire to have the Embassy moved.
In a foreign policy speech on December 15, Morrison announced Australia would recognise West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and move the Australian Embassy there when there was formal agreement to a two state solution between Israel and Palestine.
Following that announcement travel warnings were issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade for Australia travellers to Bali due to the chance of retaliation.
Don’t forget that when that roundabout was built to replace the traffic lights that used to be there, it cost a few hundred grand more than St Brigid’s Church, which itself went way, way over budget.
“I met with concerned landowners Terry and Cath Skinner at the Victoria Street shops,” Mr Donnelly said. They have been told by RMS that it’s likely they will lose all their parking spots as part of a proposal to put B Triples through the heart of Dubbo – this will have a devastating effect on what should be a growing neighbourhood precinct.
He also said he’d like to see the $140 million committed to the River Street bridge proposal diverted to starting a build for a freightway link road around the city.
And he’s also concerned that if a highway bypass in built that completely avoids Dubbo, the city could lose its highway status and the funding that goes with that. DUBBO will be home to a trial for the world’s first autonomous ute and people will be able to book this driverless vehicle via an app to travel between the zoo, airport and CBD.
I’m sceptical when it comes to driverless cars at this stage so it’s good to see a live person will be there to take the wheel in case something happens.
The announcement was made by roads minister Melinda Pavey and what struck me as odd is that the ute will carry equipment to collect data on the erratic movement of kangaroos, yet will only be travelling by daylight and only in pretty urban areas where I can’t remember the last time I saw a kangaroo.
You’ve gotta love the way bureaucracy sets up these things and The Malaysian Prime Minister directly rebuked Morrison and declared the announcement humiliating and premature.
There are two things to acknowledge at this point.
Firstly, there will never be a twostate solution. Both parties believe they have a divine warrant to possession of the territory and actively work to undermine achieving the two-state solution. It could not be plainer that this impasse will never be resolved.
Secondly, an incredible amount of political energy has been expended on an issue that a minuscule number of Australians care about.
And we have good reason to ask why? And how did we go from a byelection, to international trade issues, to travellers being threatened, to a foreign policy debacle? What political benefit did all this expenditure of energy and timeline achieve for the government? Exactly nil.
What this timeline and consequent fiasco confirms is Morrison is a man of conviction. Unfortunately for secular Australians his conviction is religious fundamentalism. Twelve months ago, he openly declared he was not going then sells them to the pollies.
Next we’ll be hearing the government has bought London Bridge to span the Macquarie at River Street, so I hope that whacky proposal falls down just like the original London Bridge did. NOT so whacky is the funding for Narromine’s flood-proofing, the Floodplain Grants Scheme is backed by both the Commonwealth Government and the NSW Office of Emergency Management.
Member for Parkes Mark Coulton said despite the big dry, communities have to plan ahead for to put up with the ‘mockery and discrimination of Christianity’, and would spend 2018 consciously working towards enshrining religious protections into law.
“We will just call it out and we will demand the same respect that people should provide to all religions,” he declared.
Putting aside the idea that respect should be earned rather than demanded, this is evidence of both his demand for the predilection of faith to be respected by the secular, and his desire for secular law to respond accordingly.
Twelve months on from this statement, following the release of the Religious Freedom Review report, Morrison intends to push ahead with legislation which will put religious discrimination on the same level as discrimination against race, gender and sexual orientation.
In other words, he wants to elevate a belief system to the level of intrinsic human characteristics. Or, devalue intrinsic human characteristics to the level of wishful thinking.
As a secular humanist, I think this is outrageous. Morrison thinks the ‘walls are closing in on Australians of faith’ and he intends to variable seasonal conditions.
“Contending with drought is number one at the moment, but it’s crucial we are prepared for all manner of natural disasters that are part and parcel of life in Australia, and that includes floods,” Mr Coulton said.
Narromine Shire Council received $92,571 for the project.
z Send your news tips to [email protected] or 0429 452 245 txt is best
z Additional reporting by
News staff. Note: John Ryan is also a councillor on Dubbo Regional Council, and is also employed part-time by Landcare. He writes here in his capacity as a journalist. make religious freedom an election issue in 2019.
The walls are not closing in. It is just impossible to take seriously the intervention of God in the leadership spill, and the ‘darkness’ that will descend on Australia if Morrison doesn’t win the next election, as claimed by pastor Adam F Thompson from Voice of Fire Ministries. “I really see that the body of Christ is going to have influence in the arena of – the political arena of this nation.” This is Morrison’s ‘flock’.
How is this a position from which to demand respect? As I’ve written before, religion is a private matter and shouldn’t be in the public square dictating government policy and claiming privilege.
Australians have an inherent freedom to practice whatever religion they like. The freedom to mock institutions is also an intrinsic Australian value.
The discrimination and hostility occur in the perpetual interfaith battle over whose is the one true religion, and no legislation championed by Morrison will ever end that. z Greg Smart lives and works in Dubbo, and is keen observer of current affairs.
Shopping can be an exhausting pastime so it’s great to see some shops providing informal resting places so consumers can have a quick restful break. Tanika Andrews (pictured) couldn’t resist taking five in a giant camping chair which was set up along Macquarie Street. Braxton the dog was happy to have a break alongside his owner.
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