Health services

Radical overhaul of Medicare urgedMelbourne Age

Rudd’s ‘fix’ for health won’t be quick – writes Michelle Grattan in the Melbourne Age

Health reform allows choice of Medicare provider Adelaide Advertiser

Sick Victorians can wait no longer hospital treatment – Sick Victorians say they can’t wait any longer for the nation’s health system to be fixed. But all Kevin Rudd promised them yesterday was another six months of talk. And he failed to rule out new taxes to pay for any changes – Melbourne Herald Sun

Cost pain predicted as health heads for overhaul – The Australian

Taxpayers face $1000 bill for health reforms – Sue Dunlevy does the calculations for the Adelaide Advertiser and the other News Limited papers

090728sydneyteleKevin Rudd health system overhaul delayed until next yearSydney Daily Telegraph

Tax rise to bring a smile – Workers will pay for a proposed $3.6 billion scheme to provide basic dental services for all Australians through a 0.75percentage point rise in the Medicare levy – The Australian

Ageing population to add to pressure – The Australian

Healing a sick system – A new report paints a frightening picture of a broken healthcare structure made worse by an ageing population – The Australian

Rudd’s health revolution – Sydney Morning Herald


Turnbull’s popularity sliding – Dennis Shanahan in The Australian writes that Malcolm Turnbull’s support as preferred prime minister has slumped to a new low of 16 per cent – the same level as Brendan Nelson before he was dumped as Opposition leader in September.

Opposition takes risk on instincts – Dennis Shanahan reflects in The Australian on Newspoll and wonders if the the Opposition Leader decided to “go with the flow” on the issue of an emissions trading scheme just as the tide has changed?

Political money

Labor Party failed to declare $225,000 donation on time – Anna Bligh’s own party has been caught out failing to properly declare a significant donation under laws specifically set up to track billionaire Liberal National Party benefactor Clive Palmer – Brisbane Courier Mail

Industrial relations

Bid to ban Queensland teachers’ strike by State GovernmentBrisbane Courier Mail

Julia Gillard switched on to business concernsThe Australian reports that Julia Gillard has moved to allay employers’ concerns about changes to the building industry watchdog, warning that unions face penalties even if they take unlawful action when the body’s coercive powers have been switched off.

Chinese workers to fill job gaps – WA Premier Colin Barnett has raised the prospect of bringing Chinese workers to Western Australia to overcome labour shortages as the state contemplates an explosion of “amazing” resources projects – The Australian

Government moves to head off unions’ buy Australia campaignSydney Morning Herald on Labor plans for a procurement tsar

Union war hits Melbourne bridge upgradeMelbourne Age

Animal liberation

Mulesing deadline abandoned – Melbourne Age sdays the Australian wool industry has dumped a long-standing pledge to phase out mulesing by the end of 2010, a move that has outraged animal welfare groups and led to criticism by some farmers.


State’s savings fall short by $28m – SA Treasury fficial says savings from the Government’s shared services strategy have fallen short by $28 million a year – Adelaide Advertiser

Aboriginal affairs

Cabinet to talk or Alison walks – NT Indigenous Affairs Minister Alison Anderson is set to face her Labor colleagues for the first time since she publicly threatened to walk out on the party and bring down the NT Government – Northern Territory News

Law and order

More prison for sex fiends – Victoria’s worst sex offenders will be held in custody beyond their maximum jail terms under new laws being introduced this year – Melbourne Herald Sun

Parking officers seek capsicum spray, batons – Sydney Morning Herald

Elections and pre-selections

Holy warriors pitch for Liberal seats – A bitter split among conservative Liberals in NSW, complete with sectarian undercurrents, is driving mainstream conservatives to side with the moderates and oppose preselection bids by what they consider to be extreme elements of the party – Sydney Morning Herald

Conroy criticises handling of Theophanous case – Federal Communications Minister Stephen Conroy  has slammed the police investigation and public prosecutor’s failed rape case against state MP Theo Theophanous as the veteran Labor MP announced he would quit politics at the next election – Melbourne Age

Public service

Ministers want merger plan tweaked – Three State Government ministers have thrown a spanner in the works of plans by the Premier, Nathan Rees, to merge 160 agencies into 13 super ministries – Sydney Morning Herald


Rudd’s essay shows his tribal loyalty – Gerard Henderson in the Sydney Morning Herald is not among the critics who believe Kevin Rudd should not have spent time last week writing a 6100-word essay on the economic crisis, or that the Herald should not have carried the Prime Minister’s long missive on Saturday.

The problems in aspiring to better health – Editorial in the Adelaide Advertiser says Prime Minister Kevin Rudd says his goal is simple: “The best health system in the world – that is our objective.” Fair enough. Yet, after 16 months of study and thousands of submissions and 123 recommendations, his immediate plan is to undertake more consultation. This is somewhat disappointing.

Enough talk on health, we need actionBrisbane Courier Mail editorial finds Kevin Rudd’s hand-picked reform commission is frank in both its assessment of the problems besetting our health and hospital systems and the prescriptions for dealing with those challenges… While there is a logic about the process Mr Rudd outlines – it is a big-spending agenda that will impact on everyone – he is stretching the patience of voters, who understood something would happen mid-term if there was no discernible progress on the part of the states. No one can credibly argue there has been improvement in health service delivery since the election, despite the overdue increase in funding for waiting lists.

Excusing cynicism over taxes Sydney Daily Telegraph editorial says Kevin Rudd at the next electioin will be asking voters to approve a tax rise to pay for a better health system

Kevin “The buck stops with me” Rudd – Dennis Atkins in the Brisbane Courier Mail outlines the journey the health buck still has to make

Climate changes as alarmists exposed – Piers Akderman in the Sydney Daily Telegraph finds an Australian scientist with impeccable credentials who has come forward to outline the problems with the case being stated by the politicians, who are in turn reliant on those model-addicted climate scientists.

No market reform on Rudd’s recovery road – Michael Stutchbury in The Australian picks some holes in a Prime Ministerial economics essay

Rudd fails economic history lessonThe Australian’s Christian Kerr finds some other economists to give the PM a bad mark for his recent economic essay

Clawback not quite what doctor ordered – George Megalogenis writes in The Australian says to take the tax cut Labor didn’t want to give you at the last election and subtract the cost of the health system it wants to give you in its next term. That will get you to the nub of Kevin Rudd’s dilemma.
He is carrying tax cuts skewed to higher income earners, but he can’t pay for his health reform agenda simply by soaking the rich.

Much more than bravery required – Adam Creswell in The Australian looks hard at the new health report and finds the plan for a federal takeover of hospitals is still there.

Beds not bureaucrats can ease health crisis – says Jeremy Sammut in The Australian

Iron fist weakens diplomatic body – Malcolm Colless in The Australian thinks the foreign affairs department is grinding to a halt as policy is run from the PM’s office.

A buck that has a lot of ground to cover – Annabel Crabb looks at the health debate in the Sydney Morning Herald


Indonesian Terrorism

090728jakartapostAnother bombing possible as coherent steps yet to be taken Jakarta Post

US and China

Barack Obama hails US-China ties – Barack Obama last night said US-China ties would shape the 21st Century as he inaugurated talks between the two super powers on which the economic fate of Australia and many other nations rests – The Australian


Obama needs to get his mojo working – Peter Hartcher in the Sydney Morning Herald writes that in the minds of Washington’s political establishment, a giant index hangs above the White House: a two-digit number that defines the President’s power to get anything done. It is so central to US politics that the veteran CNN commentator Bill Schneider calls it Washington’s equivalent of Wall Street’s Dow Jones share price index. It is the president’s approval rating.



New probe into Storm bosses – The liquidator to failed Storm Financial Ltd is to conduct a public examination of the company’s directors, Emmanuel and Julie Cassimatis, to identify possible breaches of duty and corporate offences – Townsville Bulletin



Kevin Rudd to offer $1.5bn to big carbon emitters to protect jobs threatened by ETSThe Australian

Embrace nuclear power, Coalition frontbencher urges – If the outlook from climate change is as bleak as predicted, Australia should consider nuclear power, says the Coalition’s federal spokesman on agriculture, John Cobb – Sydney Morning Herald


Dennis Cometti and Brain Taylor favourite commentators in survey – results are in from the Melbourne Herald Sun Herald’s annual footy fan survey.



Billionaire Chuck Feeney hands over fortune – American billionaire Chuck Feeney is donating a massive chunk of his fortune to ensure Queensland remains at the cutting edge of biomedical research – Brisbane Courier Mail



Julia & Judith – She’s about to publish a cookbook of her own, but Judith Jones, the editor who brought Julia Childs to the American public, has another hope on the horizon – she tells Sarah Hampson in The Interview that a new movie depicting her friend will rekindle love for food classics – Toronto Globe & Mail.

Cheong Liew given ‘lifetime’ honour – Adelaide’s most famous chef, Cheong Liew, has rebounded from a scalding national review by being honoured last night with one of the restaurant industry’s most prestigious awards – Adelaide Advertiser

I’m just a consultant, says The Grange chef Cheong LiewThe Australian

Over the Hilton – The review in the Weekend Australian awarding the Grange one star which started Adelaide’s gastronomic controversy

The drink

Brisbane’s ‘high risk’ venues, clubs targeted – More than 70 “high risk” licensed venues across Brisbane, including the Qantas Club, will be the first targeted in the State Government’s ban on glass – Brisbane Courier Mail

Peddling youth booze – Ross Fitzgerald writes in The Australian that alcohol advertising must not target young people


European Court rules fluoridated water is medicine – Fluoride opponents around Queensland have been handed a new weapon in their fight to reverse the Bligh Government’s mass medication program – Brisbane Courier Mail


Help wanted: Schools need principals – SA secondary schools are labouring under a shortage of suitably qualified principals, forcing some senior principals to delay or come out of retirement – Adelaide Advertiser