1) Howard’s housing takeover. Jim Belshaw will be worth reading if ever he comments on this…
STATE governments face being cut out of providing public housing under a radical Howard government move to invite the private sector to tender for commonwealth housing funds.
Federal Community Services Minister Mal Brough yesterday labelled the states, which have been given $10 billion in federal funds over the past decade, failures on the issue of public housing. “So let’s open it up to everyone,” Mr Brough said.
“Let’s open it up to innovation, let’s see over the next two months what industry can come up, what the NGOs (non-government organisations) can come up with, what councils and the states can come up with — not just leave it to the states, who have a proven record of failure in this area. The states have not delivered. Hence this major change of direction.”
The surprise policy shift overshadowed Kevin Rudd’s long-anticipated housing affordability summit in Canberra. The summit, featuring 130 government and private-sector participants, was long on talk but short on concrete outcomes beyond the promise that a Labor government would create a new committee to collect housing statistics…
2) Bracks has quit as premier of Victoria. What price depression?
And his deputy…
Many will jump to the obvious conclusions one way or the other, but I hold fire personally. It could prove to be that the doctor is guilty of having relatives, of being Indian, and of being a Muslim* — or he may be a knowing supporter of extremists and terrorists. It is going to be tough in the event of future court proceedings though, and I don’t think that is all that healthy for the rest of us.
That “what if?” looks much stronger now.
The final response of Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews will be the next matter of interest. It has been a most disquieting episode.