TAKE ME HOME, COUNTRY ROADS
The Morrison government will add another $1 billion to its $3.5 billion Roads of Strategic Importance program in tomorrow’s pre-election budget, in a ten-year pledge that coincides with an expected $1 billion injection into congested, marginal seats.
The Australian ($) reports that the now $4.5 billion fund will include a $510 million investment in road upgrades along a 1450 kilometre corridor between Queensland and Victoria, while The Age, Courier Mail ($), Advertiser ($) and Mercury ($) report a series of combined and separate funding announcements for local projects. The Sydney Morning Herald also reports that, with just $23 million left in the 2018 budget’s $1 billion Urban Congestion Fund, four in five existing projects lie in Liberal marginal seats.
LABOR REJECTS KYOTO
Bill Shorten will today end weeks of uncertainty and confirm that Labor will not use 2020 Kyoto “carry-over” emissions credits, which would drop Australia’s 2030 Paris Agreement emissions target from 26% to 16%.
According to The Sydney Morning Herald, Shorten will announce an electric vehicle target of 50% of all new car sales by 2030; a 2014-era emissions standard for light vehicle emissions; and an expansion of the government’s existing “safeguard mechanism” that would act as an emissions trading scheme for Australia’s 250 most polluting companies. The Courier Mail ($) also reports that Labor would extend Queensland’s land-clearing restrictions nationwide.
AFLW SMASHES RECORD
Adelaide have taken out their second AFLW win in front of a record 53,034 people, in a grand final that saw co-captain and best-on-ground Erin Phillips suffer an ACL injury.
The Age reports that Adelaide topped Carlton by a whopping 63-18 at Adelaide Oval yesterday, while the crowd smashed last year’s final in Perth by more than 11,000. It made for the highest-ever attendance of a standalone women’s sporting event in Australia. Phillips, an Olympic basketball player who has dominated the AFLW since its 2017 launch, received a standing ovation after being carried off in the third quarter.
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THEY REALLY SAID THAT?
We fully understand this decision might upset millions of people but boring seems to be what people want so we’re happy to accommodate the lust for boringness.
The NT News ($) editor announces the paper will stop doing front-page gags. And why yes it is April 1, why do you ask?
CRIKEY QUICKIE: THE BEST OF YESTERDAY
“It was the night of the Christchurch mosque attacks. Almost every news platform in the world was in frenzied overdrive to cover the story. But it was one news platform at the bottom of the world — The Project on the struggling Ten network — that grabbed global attention.”
“The politics of distraction are infuriating when the regular parties do it. When One Nation tries out the same technique, it’s like watching a car crash in stop motion made by the Wallace and Gromit team.”
“Immigrants and their offspring should not have to justify their existence in terms of the improvements they’ve brought to the host nation’s diet, but by God it’s true so far as the Anglosphere is concerned.”
READ ALL ABOUT IT
Cheap bribes won’t save Morrison ($) — Graham Richardson (The Australian): “When governments are trailing in the polls, there is always the temptation to do what never seems to work. Desperation causes politicians to forget history and throw money at the voters in a last-ditch attempt to ingratiate themselves.”
Chinese-Australians have had a gutful of politicians’ tokenism — Jieh-Yung Lo (The Sydney Morning Herald): “When it comes to engaging multicultural voters, Shorten has made the same mistake that most of our politicians make – seizing on multiculturalism and migration as if these are the only issues we ‘ethnics’ and ‘migrants’ care about. Shorten’s WeChat moment is political tokenism at best, a horrible insult to Chinese-Australian voters at worst.”
The book industry isn’t dead. That’s just an excuse to keep salaries low — Bethany Patch (The Guardian): “No matter how much we love our jobs, our working conditions have been lagging at the mercy of big business. They are not isolated to my publishing house, they are historical and ingrained throughout the industry. This is an industry that has relied on the insecurity of its employees.”
HOLD THE FRONT PAGE
PRACTICE BY GUY RUNDLE
Practice distils Guy Rundle’s best writing on politics, culture, class and more. In it, he roves the campaign trails of Obama and Trump, Rudd and Abbott; rides the Greyhound around a desolate America; bails up Bob Katter and Pauline Hanson; and excavates the deeper meanings of everything from Nirvana to Anzac Day.
WHAT’S ON TODAY
The Monash University Gender, Peace and Security Centre will launch the new Oxford Handbook on Women, Peace and Security with editors leading a panel discussion on “Implementing the UN women, peace and security agenda: Promises, possibilities and pitfalls”.
The Australian Youth Climate Coalition will hold a Melbourne Climate Election Kickstart event at St Kilda Town Hall.
The French-Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry will host forum event “Doing business in New Caledonia: post-referendum update” with keynotes from New Caledonia government representative in Australia Yves Lafoy and Australian Consul-General in New Caledonia Paul Wilson.
Charity Greyhound Rescue will launch “Adopt-a-Greyhound Month”.
Opening night of the four-day Transitions Film Festival.
The new system of private health insurance policies, categorised by four tiers (basic, bronze, silver and gold) will come into effect.
Environmental Justice Australia will release an analysis of toxic pollutants in Australia.