Archive for the ‘Australia / Asia Pacific’ Category

The Leadership Vacuum and the human cost of Political rhetoric

July 23, 2012 Leave a comment

I have been observing the way the Australian Government has been “communicating” if that is the word for it … about how their policies are affecting Australians. I have come to the conclusion that they truly are Politicians, and they have zero idea of how to run the country now, or in fact how to prepare the country for the future … without a mining bubble … I am sure that the Politicians will not even comprehend how this change will affect us … their motivations are flawed, and had little to do with anything but my their own agenda’s

It would be nice for once to hear an objective truth come out of the mouths of a Government member … lets face it political parties are only about one thing, and that is about staying in power … normally this would infer that they would listen to what the vast majority of Australian are saying … they are not … instead we have a flawed leadership, including Gillard , who has no personal honour or ethics and Swan, well Swan … I don’t know how bright he is but he has no integrity … as every time I hear either of them talk, I just wonder why they bother, because like the majority of other Australians, we stopped listening and caring for what they think years ago now … especially after they lied bare face, and just expect we are going to accept it … how can we ?

Now I have voted for the Australian Labor party in the past, as any strong government for Australia needs to have a viable opposition, to keep them accountable … at the moment, there is little to differentiate the two sides of Government …. both of them seems to be on the side of money … and that seems to be the only thing that is important to them, well that’s not to bad, but it is in that thinking where Governments of all nations tend to miss the point of why they are actually there …

In my view, all the people within the country, the citizens are in fact shareholders … they should be there to share in the good times, and the not so good times, but it would be great if the political parties actually took any of this into account … except of course when it get’s closer to election time – but this time the Labor party has almost no chance at survival … with a current 28% approval rating … they may disappear from the political landscape as a viable opposition, which although this is tough, it is justifiable payback for their incompetence and irrelevance – however all countries actually need a viable opposition – sadly Australia won’t have one for perhaps 10 years, if at all.

Going on from where we are now, the Lucky country is going to run out of luck quite soon, with the inevitable economic slow down world wide that is even now obvious, the demand for our minerals will decrease markedly, and then what will we have ?  … aside from the mining sector, the Australian economy is in a mess …. it is a two speed economy … one speed, the mining sector seen as the saviour, but in essence it is anything but, what use will it be when there is no one to buy the product – because they have no one to sell their manufactured product to … of course long term, how are we going to transport the product … but let’s leave that for another time …

There is a huge loophole where much of the economy is driving through, where people are hired as contractors, for a fixed term, that way they treat them as a functionary, without having to pay them any of the normal employee benefits such as holiday pay or indeed Superannuation … this means because there is not certainty of a job next year leadership Vacuum and , none of these people can buy a house, indeed my son, said to me the other day, “Dad I’ll never be able to own my own home” – indeed a sad reflection of our times.

The true unemployment statistics are probably double what they show, because they don’t include the thousands who cannot get a job (and are not registered), those who have chosen to educated themselves, or of course those  who have just given up ..

We have all this talk, no action within a strategic plan to prepare us for our soon to be ever changing reality, as such Australia, has no idea where it is going, we are in fact in a leadership vacuum –  being “led” by flawed and failed personalities –  who do not learnt from the past, and have no empathy or understanding of what “life” is for the average Australian …

Let’s look at Prime Minister Gillard’s salary … from the attached link, you will see she is paid more money than President Obama of the United States, and Angela Merkel Chancellor of Germany and indeed twice as much as Prime Minister David Cameron of the United Kingdom … how can this be justified ? I mean if she and in fact most politicians were paid for results, she would, and in fact almost all politicians would owe us money … I guess that is what I find really difficult to understand is how these political animals who know nothing about actually living life, in fact have never lived a life in the real world, have a career as a politician, with no down side, they have little to no idea about the life the average citizen has to live, this makes them arrogant, out of touch statements about how wonderful the country is doing, what they are saying is how wonderful they are doing … but in essence if the attitude of politicians is altruistic and service driven then they should be paid no more than the average citizen of the country ? Now that would then weed out those who are driven to contribute to the country, rather than to their own kudos and bank accounts …

Before the end of the decade … we will not recognize the lucky country … the mining economy will no longer be the magic bullet, but by the then what will we have replaced it with, even if we can feed ourselves … which I doubt … this is what happens when you value money and not your most precious asset, the people you have within your country … what we would be focuses on is ways to fully utilize all our people … for the benefit of all our people … a paradigm shift, that may not be even contemplative now, but then once the change comes …. then it will be reality, and not just a possibility –  then we will have no choice …

The Australian Greens Party

November 29, 2010 Leave a comment

Firstly from the Paul Sheehan article here

The Greens names does not properly describe their brand. There are not enough letters of the alphabet to encompass the brand differences between the Green brand and the reality of what this party is perpetrating on the electorate. It is simply not a party preoccupied with the environment.

My thought would be to re-brand their culture something along the lines of their points on their own statements about governance .  Perhaps a more appropriate name might be “Green Labor” or perhaps “Green dreams” or ?

Mind you they are politicians, all of them from all parties, and we all know we really cannot believe a word they say, as 5 minutes later they would have gone in a totally different direction and be equally vehement about their new position, also did I mention that they also have conveniently short memories.

Check out their website and their policies to see how far away they are from your thinking ….. their ranting’s  frankly scare me … but I am just one ……  see if I am still one after you have read them.

Australia – Telstra and the NBN plus 10-15 years

November 28, 2010 Leave a comment

Research , tells us that the sale of Telecom Australia which was established in 1975 (to eventually become Telstra) had been an issue of public policy debate for well over a decade. It was talked about in the late 1980s and early 1990s as the Hawke Labor Government implemented a micro-economic reform agenda that included the privatisation of a number of Commonwealth assets including AUSSAT, the Commonwealth Bank, Australian Airlines, the Commonwealth airports, the Commonwealth Serum Laboratories (CSL) and Qantas. Labor generally opposed any sell-off of Telstra, but did consider the splitting of Telstra on a number of occasions

From the attached link here we can see that the Australian Senate has just passed the legislation to split Telstra into a retail and wholesale (network assets) parts, Telstra, the monopolistic legacy provider of all Telecommunications infrastructure in Australia.

To me this whole situation is moot.

The Australian Government sold Telstra when it went private under a former Australian Government, and the government was paid for this assets and the remainder of this , though there is not that is left (approx 10%) is owned by the  Future Fund a government entity which was established in 2006, basically to meet the long term commitments of Public sector Superannuation payments…. see here.

My point is that we are using some of the same money that went into the coffers which we ere paid when Telstra went Private to exchange the Privately owned monopoly that was Telstra for another monopoly which is the National Broadband Network … the only difference being that this one is a government monopoly.

In a few years when the Government has spent tens of billions of our dollars on the NBN and its implementation, they will probably privatise it. Then essentially we will be back where we are now, with a Private enterprise monopoly –  funny does anyone else see something here that looks like Telstra, feels like Telstra and smells like Telstra  –  ah… then its Telstra by another name.

Surely it would have been cheaper just to buy back Telstra, just wait a while, until its shares lose more value they will be giving them away with your breakfast cereal.

Or perhaps they didn’t want the aggravation of trying to institute the massive structural and cultural changes that would be necessary for Telstra to change from a  former monopolistic anachronism with no customer focus into a relevant, sustainable, transparent, accountable customer focused organisation, in short a viable business model … Wow !! No wonder they are going for an alternative, actually I agree, it seems to be an almost impossible task.

For this to actually happen would perhaps require the board of Telstra instituting (and paying for) the changes, they would have to care and give a dam, a necessarily focused team would have to be imposed on Telstra –  independent of the operational structure, and finally the will and commitment to spend many billions of dollars over perhaps 7– 10+ years.  Then if successful, Telstra might have a possibility of resurrecting a worthwhile business model … this is part of what I do …. I am so aware of the enormity of the task. However there is no choice, Telstra has to be rebuilt from a organisational, structural and most important a cultural point of view, otherwise it will be as relevant to the future of communications technology as is the current manufacturer of buggy whips. Personally I see much of Telstra’s problem is a lack of a coherent vision, including the active involvement of all stakeholders, until this happens Telstra will not be relevant and competitive – long term.

Such transformations are possible, I once had hopes that the culture of the ANZ Bank which I considered such a success story, however my previous article about Green-washing here – has shown me, that the changes appear to be only skin deep, the culture has not appeared to change as I had hoped… greed is still greed – a sustainable accountable culture does not seem to have taken … very sad.

Well back to the article, I foresee a long term career here, as after working on Telstra for about 10 years a few short years later (or even sooner) we would have to do it all over again, to refocus and change the culture of the NBN after it goes back to private ownership …. so I could move from Telstra to the NBN … to institute similar organisational and culture changes …. then I could retire and write about the experience … but what an experience it would be.

Does anyone else see a cycle here…. ?  The real problem is that these decisions are not driven by anything other than incompetence, short term strategy, expedience, and ego –  after all,  they are politicians.  Could it be that the Labor Party is trying to correct the fact that Telstra was privatised in the first place ?

You know we are all making a couple of big assumptions here, given the Labor parties ( and governments is general) absolute failure to implement even the simplest of new strategies, for instance the roof insulation project or the huge cost overruns with little value delivered that was associated with the School hall projects, what makes us think this won’t end up as a huge white elephant … with huge cost and service delivery timing blow outs .. to provide us with a infrastructure that may indeed be obsolete before it is complete. ?

Essentially the problem is that nobody learns from the past, they always think this time it will be different …. without a underlying commitment to an ethical and sustainable culture as the basis for the paradigm, our egos, will screw it up … do you think it is possible for us to put aside our egos and actually work together  … pretty please ?

Australia: Politics

September 8, 2010 Leave a comment

Well it seems that we have a sort of new Government, well sort of, something like a Claytons drink –  the Government you have instead or having a Government.

Cannot see the reason for the swing –  but as I said yesterday, the reason for the swing to this sort of pretend Government is beyond me… they have an legal but unworkable majority of one seat… so out of 76 members … if one is away for what ever reason… or if one of them dies (God forbid) … the Government will fall…

Hardly a mandate from the people for change… or even anything that approaches effective rule.

It’s strange really… more Australians actually voted for the opposition –  well it means at least that they may, be able to deliver of promises they made to the new political so called independent (now aligned with Labor) member of Parliament, and of course any payoffs to those who were quiet during the election.

One thing that did come out of the election and the coup d’etat, I am speaking of the political assassination of Kevin Rudd is that loyalty and ethics of the Labor party to a duly elected and sitting Prime Minister  is zero… perhaps Julia Gillard should take notice of this, for her own future as well as the implications of this despicable act on the credibility of anything that comes out of the Labor party or its leadership –  they are there for themselves, end of story.

Never mind they will continue to self destruct.

The future of any Government is now under question, all of this lack of integrity, running the country on the outcome of poles, but instead of actual having an actual  leadership is not even the issue, if they were half way competent and knew what they are doing that I could live with… how about we, the Australian people bill the respective Governments who made the decision (the actual idiots who screw up and their political parties) for the costs of their screw ups… perhaps with the School building Program and the insulation fiascos now a well and truly documented financial disaster.. the Labor Party would be Bankrupt… great idea… great for the actual accountability to the Australian people.

Then we would be a new idea, everyone would be independents working for the betterment of their own constituents, not the corrupt system we have now… called Democracy, lets define Democracy… Princeton University say it can be defined it as “ the doctrine that the numerical majority of an organized group can make decisions binding on the whole group” –  well it seems in Australia the majority voted for the party that is not the Government.

Another thought, how about we have a referendum –  the topic… West Australia to cede from the Commonwealth… I’d move there tomorrow… the people in WA and the NT are a different breed as a whole… a likeable bunch…

Election Status

September 7, 2010 Leave a comment

Well its now two weeks on from the day of the election and we still do not have a government who has been elected by the people and declared by the AEC as having enough seats to form an Government (76 needed).

Even when there is a resolution to this impasse… whoever gets in power will NOT have a mandate to rule… it may get onto the business of government… but I doubt if anything even that is remotely controversial will get up… which is a good thing and a bad thing.

The outcome if neither side can form a government is we go back to a new election, to try again.

The day is gone of any party to have a clear mandate from the people… we have now joined the fate of all Westminster based governments, running minority governments… further proffering the minority agenda based members looking for results for their electors.. this is healthy.

I really don’t know why the Greens are so aligned with the Labor party, party, they should be there to do what is best for the environment… they should be independent of the government… not aligned with either party, obviously a deal has been struck, the strange things occurs to me, what makes them think a political party will keep their word, and secondly if Labor is not elected, their relevance in the House of Reps will be about as relevant and influential as the spotted anteaters society … ie none… talking about marginalizing yourself.

Mind you, I could never be a politician, I believe in truth, ethics and honour and a belief in helping all Australians and all members of the world where it is possible.  I am afraid I have none of the attributes of a politician, where many have nothing close to these personal values.

That is the result of the respective party machines, that control the agenda of the party, if I was ever elected, I think I would last one to two terms and it would be my intent to vote for what I believe in, regardless of the party. The outcome and the result for the betterment of Australia is how I would be the basis of my decision, not what a party thought I should do.

All members should be independent of any political party, this seems to be the only way to forge anything that approaches the ideal of freedom of thought in a real democracy, the only proviso here is that the politicians would have to have a real inbuilt value system, and a need to work for all Australians and to leave the world better off than they found it, now there’s an ask!  Within the current political environment (anywhere) that sounds an impossibility.

Here is something for you to think about… George Bernard Shaw once said…

Democracy is a device that ensures we shall be governed no better than we deserve.

Election Outcome in Australia

August 23, 2010 Leave a comment

The Australian people have spoken… a truly great response…

The Federal election result may not be clear for another week or so. We are in a moment of hiatus… with the government of yesterday without a majority –  Labor cannot rule in their own right,… however if Labor can win 73 seats, the same number as the Coalition, Gillard (Labor) most likely would form a minority government –  however I am sure the coalition is working with the same action plan.

What is also very clear is that Australian people got it right: neither Labor nor the Coalition deserve to govern in their own right.

The real winners in the election are the Australian people, as with a minority government –  whoever gets in power as with the recent election in the UK… they have to share power and by this, they have to be accountable not only to the Australian people, but to other people who are not controlled by the respective party machines.

We need to bear in mind that the actuality of a minority government of either variety will be good for Australia or even operationally possible is another matter. In my view those who argue minority government will work well might be right, but personally I cannot see how such a fantasy can work in the real world, there will always come a time, when something important to one side will break or severely damage the relationship, and then we end up with no effective government… but whatever happens, whoever forms the next government, no one has a mandate to rule.

The problem, the campaign has been dominated by the lowest common denominator .. all negatives… we had no statesman like approach to this election or to governing the country.  Wouldn’t it be great if we could take a politician to the Federal Court and accuse them of fraud, when they say something before an election, and then do not go through with it… good thing actually it would make people face up to the truth, and hopefully act in an ethical and honourable manner… instead of lies, spin and expediency.

However one thing that has come out of this election is that the former Australian Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, this campaign’s tragic figure is now politically dead and buried. I wonder if he will have the good grace to remove himself… in my view, it maybe that the only reason he appeared to support Labor in the later period of the election campaign was that he had done a deal… his future is now less certain.

Strange we have had Latham (why was he even in the picture this time around).. then Rudd… on the conservatives side we have Abbott –  they have one thing in common – they are flawed… the quality of the leaders that we are generating within Australia –  needs intervention to try and foster real leadership, not spin.

The ethics of the Labour leadership, with the co-operation of Gillard to politically assassinate an elected Prime Minister removes any higher ground from the Labor leadership … it shows their true colours.. that they are not there for the Australian people but for their own agenda… and the Australian people have made them pay for it… especially in Queensland and New South Wales.

Are there any real people out there… who care about the Australian people… who are not flawed and corrupted … there is a large majority of people in Australia who are hurting and need help … what they don’t need are flawed policies and hidden agendas, but real social programs… to support all levels and ages within our society.. to live an equitable life.

My view of Politics is that it is the function of the Australian political system to do the best for the Australian people FIRST…. the policies and programs in Australia should be transparent and accountable to the Australian people,, on a day to day basis… for the Australian people…in the last 3 years the Labor party has wasted huge sums of our money on a farcical and flawed insulation program that was so badly managed as to be open to legal recourse, a building program for schools, that ended up on occasion as being so badly costed and with little or no Political and financial oversight… wasting billions… and then of course we have the RSPT.. where the sovereign name and reputation of Australia was brought into question… who are these people..?  Whatever the outcome the last 3 years have cost Australia … and will continue to cost whoever gets into power.

I am sure that the Coalition has its own stories they want to bury as well…

My message to the political parities (They are not our leaders after all) … Wake up… and act in your citizens interest instead of your own.. lets hope the future is better than the past…

Some areas that need to be focused on are programs to support Australia, the focus of defence should be brought into a reality… and cut, so should programs to support Papua New Guinea government, except for programs that support the people of foreign lands to help themselves, including education and specific targeted programs we need to nurture the future.  Stop writing blank cheques to the detriment of Australians.

Australian 2010 Federal Election

August 18, 2010 Leave a comment

I should sit down and write about this in depth.. but I am having a real job trying to get involved with the school yard fight that is going on at the lowest ethical and moral levels within our democracy. This is supposed to represent our nations highest leadership… sorry it just doesn’t gel…

They are not in it for the good of the country, they are there to impose their ego and ideology on the citizens of Australia… to our detriment..

I have always voted, as I feel it is my duty as a citizen.  Voting in Australia, is compulsory … we are obliged to go… but if I wasn’t I would probably not this time … as there is no dramatic choice to make here, both sides are the same…

Unfortunately there is no credible alternative to the middle right and further right… no one cares about the people in our society who actually need help.

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