Former Liberal prime minister John Howard used to be often contemptuously referred to as the deputy sheriff for the US in the Pacific region when George W. Bush was in power.
With the elections in Victoria just 44 days away, the media in the state are keen to step up to the plate and maximise their earnings. Ads roll in at election time, given that the parties in the fray have plenty of money to throw around.
Election campaigns, most people believe, tell the public about the people who are vying to become the next generation of politicians and occupy a nation's parliament.
The federal Labor Party has offered subsidies on electric vehicles, cutting import taxes and fringe-benefit taxes on all non-luxury vehicles that cost below $77,500. The Victorian Labor Party, meanwhile, has announced an annual tax of about $300 on EVs.
With the Democrat Joe Biden set to take over as the next US president on 20 January 2021, it is high time for Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison to make contact with him and discuss the matter of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange if Canberra is, as it claims, serious about providing assistance to the man and helping him go free.
What is the value of an Australian passport? I'm sure that this question would have passed through the mind of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, one of the best hackers this country has produced — and I mean that in the original sense, as someone who plays around with software — many times over the years he has spent trying to hide from the US and UK authorities.
While many people are rejoicing over the Coalition Government's backflip on its NBN policy and its announcement that it will spend to get fibre delivered to up to eight million subscribers in all, nobody should for a moment think that this is some Damascene conversion.
Australia's Defence Minister Linda Reynolds has been talking up what she sees as the country's independence – after obeying a summons from the US to visit Washington for talks.
The Australian Government is attempting to fix a manufactured problem — disinformation on social media — without properly assessing the source to see if vested interests are pushing a case for which there is no basis.
There was a time during John Howard's 11 years as prime minister when Australia was often contemptuously referred to as the deputy sheriff for the US in the Asia-Pacific region.
When John Howard came to power in 1996, there was no money in the government kitty to fund the strategy which he planned to follow: inducing people to vote for him thereafter by greasing their hip pockets. So he sold off the first tranche of Telstra. And there ended Australia's dreams of having a decent broadband network.
When anything bad happens, politicians always look for the first convenient scapegoat. And in the case of the massacre of Muslims in New Zealand, they have their bete noire right in front of them: social media.
Whenever a prime minister departs for good, there is talk of his or her legacy. And this time it is no different; in the case of Malcolm Turnbull, who was scythed down last week by right-wing ideologues in his own party, that talk has already begun. But Turnbull has little to show on the tech front, even though he has often been lauded as a politician who "gets tech".
Online retail behemoth Amazon has no problem dealing with the value-added tax in the UK and charging it correctly to those who should be slugged. Yet it claims to have issues with charging the GST to Australians who visit its US website.
What is the first thing a politician thinks about after he/she has won office? His/her thoughts will invariably turn to how he/she can get re-elected. And every move made thereafter will be in pursuit of that singular objective.
A lobby group for Australian IT workers says that any moves by the federal government to improve the way that skilled labour is imported into the country is a positive.
There is a notion in the minds of many who are in positions of power in this country that the Internet is a distraction, not something to be taken seriously. This is despite the fact that the very sign of network outage tends to get the blood pressure rising in boardrooms.
Ever since the Internet became the focus of business and the need for higher speeds arose, there has been one period in Australia when it was possible to build a fast broadband network without going into debt.
COMMENT When companies see taxpayers' money on offer, when they hear speeches liberally laced with words like "innovation", "agile", and "seamless", they do everything but burst into song in public.
Call me a cynic if you like, but is it a coincidence that the government — elected by the people, mind you — always releases material that could result in a backlash on the weekend or close to it?
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