The Commonwealth has been extremely cruel to Centrelink recipients but there’s no suggestion that those who designed and implemented Robodebt will face any punishment. Yet lawyers who unwittingly cause distress to public officials when defending clients could face criminal charges.
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Trump is adding to the US sanctions list at a rate never seen before, without Congressional oversight or the requirement to produce evidence. Sanctioning the International Criminal Court over its unanimous ruling to investigate US military personnel for alleged war crimes could see the names of victims of war crimes added to a list previously reserved for terrorists, war criminals, dictators and international drug lords.
If it’s good enough for tennis stars and entertainers, it’s good enough for multinational tax avoiders and consultants. Michael West addresses the Senate Inquiry into Finance and Public Administration today. This is an edited version of the opening statement to the Committee which oversees public accountability in which he calls for measures to protect Australian taxpayers from reckless spending and opaque disclosure.
Only one member of the Australian media questioned Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s narrative about the “innocent” failure of Kevin Rudd’s Closing the Gap scheme. This failure of accountability from all major Australian media outlets skirts over the $1 billion in funding cut from Indigenous services. Callum Foote lays down the real numbers in this investigation of yet another instance of media succumbing to Government public relations narratives.
The wife of former Chief of Army Peter Leahy is a director of a company that earned $2.2 million in revenue from federal government contracts before Leahy resigned as Chief.
Our QED database includes dozens of examples of dubious travel claims made by politicians. But what is more concerning than the apparent inappropriate use of public funds is the MPs’ lack of accountability and their arrogant treatment of the fourth estate – the journalists holding power to account. Elizabeth Minter reports.
Coalition pork-barrelling during the 2013 and 2016 election campaigns included awarding “zombie” grants that had no hope in Hades of getting off the ground. Yet those grant applications are still on the books just waiting to be revived. How many grants from the 2019 election await a similar fate? Jommy Tee investigates.
Is AI Group just a front for big business and foreign weapons manufacturers? Michael West reports on the rise of government and business propaganda outfits who are suddenly mute when the subject turns to the delicate matter of who funds them.
It is simply implausible that the Queen did not know that John Kerr was planning to sack Gough Whitlam, writes John Menadue. She may not have known the detail of the coup in progress, but she knew the substance.
ACT remote weapons systems manufacturer, Electro Optic Systems Holdings, which has hitched its wagon to countries known to be engaged in gross violations of human rights and likely war crimes, wins big from the Coalition’s weapons announcement on eve of by-election, writes Michelle Fahy.
Funded by the Department of Defence, the Australia Strategic Policy Institute collects millions more as it drives the “China threat” narrative. As Marcus Reubenstein reports, while ASPI is the media’s go-to experts for public comment, ASPI is remarkably coy about revealing all its funding sources.
Fears of China buying up the country run deep, with opportunistic politicians and commentators long showing a willingness to not let “facts” get in the way of the truth. And the facts are that: China’s land interests are predominantly leasehold, it owns just 2% of foreign investment stock and is subject to a much lower threshold test. With the Australia-China relationship at a low ebb, it is time to call out this destructive tactic, writes James Laurenceson.
Labour hire companies hit pay dirt in the commonwealth public service but workers pay a high price, with underpayment of wages just one. Promotions withheld unless staff sever ties with the public service or signing up to privatised contracts are just some of the other disturbing employment conditions. Michael West reports.
Concerns are being raised about the ‘boofhead diplomacy’ being conducted at the highest levels of China/Australia relations. But apart from the Murdoch tabloids urging all and sundry to call out China whatever the cost, who else is in their camp? Hamish McDonald finds out .
University of Wollongong ‘six weeks away’ from disaster unless staff accept large pay cuts, job losses
University of Wollongong scademics are arguing they shouldn’t have to bear the brunt of poor decisions by executives whose pay has risen by 50% in 10 years.
As part of her series of investigations into the close links between the military industry and politics, Michelle Fahy reports on former weapons chief executive for BAE, Jim McDowell, who is now at the centre of government in the Defence State, South Australia.
An obsession with “balancing the budget” has left Australia is under-funded despite its immense wealth. A dual citizen of Norway and Australia, Kim Wingerei laments the lost opportunity of a century, the failure of our political classes to establish a sovereign wealth fund. But it’s still not too late to stop the flood of our natural resources overseas.
Today’s GDP is a sideshow. The real game kicks off in the first week of September when the full devastation of the coronavirus will be revealed. That’s when JobKeeper comes off, when Sally McManus wraps up her negotiations with Christian Porter, when millions of Australians are likely to hit the JobSeeker queue. Michael West reports on the new buzzword “productivity”.
Jommy Tee uncovers the tale of a director of a Palantir, beloved by spooks and law enforcement agencies who at the same time also headed up Australian anti-corruption organisation, Transparency International Australia, and how possible conflicts of interest were managed.
The Morrison Government’s Community Development Grants rorts are 25 times bigger than #SportsRorts, reports Michael Pascoe. Why buy one election when you can buy three?
The blow-out in Government spending on Defence continues unchecked and unabated despite the coronavirus. The bulk of it goes to multinationals who pay little or no tax in this country. Is nobody watching? Callum Foote looks at the latest analysis of AusTender data by Greg Bean.
The corrupt “Injustice Department’s” move to drop the case against turncoat Russian agent, Michael Flynn, demonstrates Trump’s unfettered control. For a president with limited authority, this is a critical step to a de facto dictatorship. DCReport editor-in-chief, David Cay Johnston, reports.
Government spending on consultants EY, Deloitte, PwC and KPMG persists at nosebleed levels although millions of Australians have lost their jobs. New data shows a damaging blow-out in contracts.
The Coronavirus tracing app has been downloaded more than 5 million times, while privacy concerns remain. Independent Telecommunications expert, Gary McLaren, argues that although the privacy concerns are valid, the marketing of the app should focus on the positives and not coercion by a Government still struggling with trust.
The world is entitled to know the origins of COVID-19 and exactly how the outbreak began and how it was handled by every major nation, including China, given the pandemic alarm was raised back in September 2019
Parliamentary disclosure is a joke. The Register of Members’ Interests is routinely gamed and ignored by politicians. This is where MPs are supposed to declare their financial interests.