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February 2010
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Keep socialist blog En Passant going - donate now
If you want to keep a blog that makes the arguments every day against the ravages of capitalism going and keeps alive the flame of democracy and community, make a donation to help cover my costs. And of course keep reading the blog. To donate click here. Keep socialist blog En Passant going. More... (4)

Sprouting sh*t for almost nothing
You can prove my 2 ex-comrades wrong by donating to my blog En Passant at BSB: 062914 Account: 1067 5257, the Commonwealth Bank in Tuggeranong, ACT. More... (12)

My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. http://sharonfirebrace.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/18-2-14-john-passant-aust-national-university-g20-meeting-age-of-enttilement-engineers-attack-of-austerity-hardship-on-civilians.mp3 (0)

My interview Razor Sharp 11 February 2014
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp this morning. The Royal Commission, car industry and age of entitlement get a lot of the coverage. http://sharonfirebrace.com/2014/02/11/john-passant-aust-national-university-canberra-2/ (0)

Razor Sharp 4 February 2014
Me on 4 February 2014 on Razor Sharp with Sharon Firebrace. http://sharonfirebrace.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/4-2-14-john-passant-aust-national-university-canberra-end-of-the-age-of-entitlement-for-the-needy-but-pandering-to-the-lusts-of-the-greedy.mp3 (0)

Time for a House Un-Australian Activities Committee?
Tony Abbott thinks the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is Un-Australian. I am looking forward to his government setting up the House Un-Australian Activities Committee. (1)

Make Gina Rinehart work for her dole
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Sick kids and paying upfront

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Save Medicare

Demonstrate in defence of Medicare at Sydney Town Hall 1 pm Saturday 4 January (0)

Me on Razor Sharp this morning
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace this morning for Razor Sharp. It happens every Tuesday. http://sharonfirebrace.com/2013/12/03/john-passant-australian-national-university-8/ (0)

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Garrett’s gotta go

Peter Garrett and the Rudd Labor Government let the roof insulation free market rip.

4 people are dead; 89 fires have broken out; at least 1000 roofs are likely electrified.

Peter Garrett and the Rudd Labor Government knew, or ought to have known, that the scheme would attract cowboys; that training would be inadequate; that safety would be breached; that fires would break out; that people would die.

Law firm Minter Ellison told them that in April last year.  But Rudd Labor didn’t want to know.

It was more important to rush out  a half baked scheme without safety guarantees and rely on the market.  All to send a political message – we are doing something about climate change and about the global financial crisis.

To turn Marshall McLuhan on his head, the message is the medium – not lives, not safety, not the $2.5 bn in costs but spin,spin, spin.

‘Look how well we are doing’ the labor liars could proclaim until recently. Appearance and reality are not the same thing, Labor.

The insulation fiasco shows this is a  government not of substance but of hyperbole; not of action but of inaction; not of reform but of slavish adherence to conservatism and its agent of death, the market.

There is no substance in this Government, or rather the only substance they know is that the dear sweet market will look after everything.

The market doesn’t care about fires; it doesn’t care about climate change; it doesn’t care about lives. It only cares about profit.

That is the rottenness at the heart of this crisis and the Rudd Government more generally  – the market, and Labor’s blind faith in it.

The Prime Minister can’t sack Garrett because Rudd is the ring master of the circus. Garrett merely prances to Rudd’s whip.

But even the plastic fantastic Rudd must realise he can no longer protect Garrett.  Politically the environment minister is dead, and so may the Prime Minister be.

Former leftist Julia Gillard should be counting the numbers now to restore some order to this market addled Labor rabble.  She won’t, and the Government will continue to make Tony Abbott, the political love child of John Howard and Bronwyn Bishop,  look impressive.

Their inaction, their spin, their do-nothing but talk agenda, allows Abbott to parade himself as the workers’ friend. He will dupe some workers tired of this dull Labor congregation of reactionaries and white shoe worshippers.

Garrett entered parliament as a Labor member ‘ to make a difference’.  We are witnessing not just the dying moments of one politician , but of the idea that Labor politicians can make a difference.

Labor reformism died in the roofs of Queensland. The system ate Garrett up and now it will spit him out.

No doubt more will line up to join the queues of opportunism and the make a difference marketeers.

Like Garrett they won’t change anything – the system will infect them; it will eat their insides and destroy from within the principles that conservatives for many years could not corrupt.

If Peter Garrett had any principles left he would resign. If Kevin Rudd had any principles he would sack him.

Burn in the fires of the market you lit Minister Garrett.

 

 

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Comments

Comment from Arjay
Time February 23, 2010 at 7:55 pm

This is not the end of the cost for us.The Govt will now have to send thousands of inspectors into our roofs and write reports on their safety.Knowing how inefficient Govt is,this will cost almost as much as the insulation.

Now much of this insulation was imported form China.It has only an insulation rating 1/3 that of the local product.It is virtually useless.So the tax payer borrowed from China to buy an inferior product,and in reality paid a premium for no result.

Instead of making Peter Garrett the scapegoat, Kevin Rudd should resign.Kevin Rudd is the control freak who gagged Peter Garrett and many others.He trusted no one and did not listen to the wisdom from his own public service.

Comment from Andrew Gilbert
Time February 25, 2010 at 11:07 am

It will fill me with a great, sadistic satisfaction to see the original Mr. Clean, Peter Garrett crucified for this. We all said from the start that Garrett joining the ALP would come to nothing. We all knew that the great dirty machine would just chew him up and spit him out when it was done with him. It’s just a shame that lives have to be lost for the point to be proven.