MPs argue in Cabinet. HEADLINE NEWS

So… another big Laurie Oakes “scoop” that Gillard didn’t get everything she argued for in Cabinet before she was PM. And this is headline news?

Has Laurie broken any news this campaign that wasn’t an irrelevant distraction?

9 responses to “MPs argue in Cabinet. HEADLINE NEWS

  1. Blast Tyrant

    I did find Gillards defence of not approving of the raise in the aged pension interesting though.

    All that crap about whether Australia could afford it and she’s the type that will make the hard decisions even if they disappoint people before approving a spend.
    That would be great but I’m sure she doesn’t apply the same rules to multi billion dollar submarines etc that are much larger drain on Australia’s budget than paying pensioners an extra $30 a week or whatever it was.

  2. Laurie’s “big” enough to make up his own news…

    if Gillard approved of the spending, she authorised reckless Labor debt

    if Gillard questioned the spending, she hates pensioners

  3. baldrickjones

    You can’t stand on a platform as an achievement that you yourself argued against. And someone has really got a vendetta against her in the Labor party.

  4. jordanrastrick

    Ministers are allowed to change their minds in the course of cabinet discussions. That’s what cabinet is for.

    Oakes is just doing his job as a journalist; the person to blame is whoever violated cabinet confidentiality.

    Re submarines etc, we have an ageing population, which means pension increases are an indefinite commitment to give more money to a growing sector of the populace; its not really comparable to any one-off expenditure, no matter how distasteful.

    Having said that, I think the increases are not only justified, but inadequate; the solvency of federal support for retirees needs to be addressed in other ways (like raising the retirement age), not by allowing current pensioners to wallow in poverty.

    Gillard has publicly stated she accepts at least some responsibility for what she feels were mistakes made by cabinet under Rudd; as of course she should, since she was co-author of some of the decisions and by necessity had to acquiesce to the rest. Likewise, she gets to take credit for the “good” decisions, even if she may have confidentially expressed reservations about them.

    This is all inherent to the nature of cabinet as a decision making body.

  5. Splatterbottom

    The news is not that people argue in cabinet or even that Gillard was cynical about expenditure on people old enough and wise enough to despise Labor.

    On the other hand it is newsworthy that the government can’t maintain cabinet discipline. It reminds me of when Rudd put the US president on speakerphone so he could be mocked. No doubt Labor’s rat-infested ranks will bring that party of dregs unstuck.

  6. Blast Tyrant

    its not really comparable to any one-off expenditure, no matter how distasteful.

    But it’s not just a one off expenditure. Our “defense” budget continues to grow and continues to dwarf other more important things like health care, education as well as the old age and disability pensions.
    Sure we may stick with these crappy new subs for years but there’s also the JSF’s, the shitty fucking Abrams, the Sea Sprites and the bloody Collins class recently! – there is always something new that apparently needs to have billions wasted on in order to combat the “growing threat of global terror”, whilst life for people in the here and now gets crappier.

  7. jordanrastrick

    The fact that the defense budget consists of a series of one-off expenditures, and that individual governments keep choosing to make the new purchases bigger than the old ones, does make the individual purchases any less one-off.

    If a “Cut All Government Spending Drastically” party got into power tomorrow, they could make big savings in the Defence budget by stopping the requisition of any new equipment, leaving only maintenance of existing stuff.

    Whereas age pension expenditure would continue over time to grow even if the party made modest cuts in the actual amount of the pension, because the population is getting older.

    Regardless of what you think about the respective merits of underwater killing machines vs keeping the elderly out of poverty, the distinction between the two types of spending is an important one.

  8. baldrickjones

    “the shitty fucking Abrams” – call the navy and raaf aircraft what you like, but the Abrams was one of the best Defence deals australia ever got – and we got it cheap as chips too. My cousin is on the project team.

  9. baldrickjones

    Also BT – Defence is an insurance policy – you can never buy it at the time you need it. 4 million men with .303’s called up at 2 months notice just doesn’t cut it these days.

    No responsible government will allow Defence to wither away.

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