Sections

Services

Information

UK United Kingdom

Grattan on Friday: Labor shrapnel flies

No doubt the money helps create jobs and investment but Labor backbencher Ed Husic surely had a point when he said the government’s $21.6 million grant for the Disney film 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea…

Backbencher Ed Husic is in a stoush with Tanya Plibersek. AAP/Alan Porritt

No doubt the money helps create jobs and investment but Labor backbencher Ed Husic surely had a point when he said the government’s $21.6 million grant for the Disney film 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea raised his eyebrows.

With the budget strapped, it does seem a touch indulgent. Husic’s complaint was that the money would be better spent on an MRI at Sydney’s Mount Druitt Hospital.

Husic, a Rudd supporter from Chifley, one of the few (apparently) safe ALP seats in Western Sydney, has not been mollified by Health Minister Tanya Plibersek’s reply.

“Ed’s run a very good local campaign but I don’t hand out MRI machines on the basis of good local campaigning,” she said.

“We do a very strict independent arms-length process from me based on the biggest needs in the community. That’s not to say there will never be a machine in Mount Druitt - it’s just to say there has been a big need right across Australia.”

Husic, who is asking for a new round of funding to be opened, hit back, “I would hate for people to interpret Tanya’s comments as suggesting that there is little value in securing community support for obtaining health care resources for areas of high need”.

Quite apart from the pros and cons of the particular issues, Husic’s intervention was significant because it is symptomatic of the current climate, in which Labor MPs are increasingly willing to take on the government publicly over policy matters.

Although she is now secure in her position, having backbenchers so obviously off the leash presents new dangers for Julia Gillard.

After last month’s leadership fiasco, which landed several highly-regarded ministers on the backbench, Gillard said the government would go forward united. In fact, Labor is presenting a more divided face than at any time since 2007.

The caucus has been through phases since the ALP was elected. Initially it was near supine. Later, some MPs such as left senator Doug Cameron raised their voices on various issues.

But now, critics are more vocal, and have stronger firepower. They include people formerly in high places with behind-the-scenes knowledge, who carry greater cachet in the media than the “usual suspects”.

Former minister Simon Crean has the government on the spot over the highly sensitive issue of superannuation; outgoing whip Joel Fitzgibbon (who promised to be quieter) has spoken out on super in defence of his local coal miners' interests.

Former human services minister Kim Carr this week attacked the 2012 budget decision to push a group of previously grandfathered single mothers on to the dole.

Carr targeted fairness and process: the Human Services department “should be in the room when decisions are made… At the very least, it should be properly consulted…”.

Carr also argued that setting out to save $700 million just boosted the campaign to increase the dole, which would cost billions.

Gillard is experiencing the flip side of the leadership bid by the Rudd forces. In recent months tension built, which was destabilising. Then the situation came to a head, Rudd lacked the numbers and declined to enter the ballot, and Gillard triumphed without a vote.

Now Rudd supporters are in a new situation. Their mood is black. They actually have less reason to be disciplined. They are no longer restrained by tactical considerations. Crean and Carr are not locked in by frontbench jobs.

But not all the Ruddites want to see attacks on the government. There is a concern that if there is too much criticism in the run up to the election, a big defeat would be blamed on Rudd. Post-election, the Gillard supporters could say that his ambitions, and then the behaviour of his followers when those ambitions could not be realised, had destroyed Labor’s chances.

Some Ruddites advocate giving Gillard clear air, so she cops maximum blame for the electoral smash up they are convinced will come. It’s a comment on Labor’s situation that people are already preoccupied with how the bitterness will flow in opposition.

Gillard has little power, in practical terms, to deal with the dissent. Earlier this year she fulminated in caucus against those leaking. But after all that’s happened, such lectures are likely to have minimal effect.

The willingness of MPs to speak out is especially dangerous with the May 14 budget coming up. Governments don’t seem to get bounces from budgets but this one needs to go reasonably well if Labor is to have any chance of improving its stocks.

Doug Cameron is getting in early with crazy brave advice. He urges a ‘'modest increase’‘ in the Medicare levy to finance the Gonski education funding plan and the national disability insurance scheme. “If we want Scandinavian-type social support it has to be paid for”. He also says the mining tax should be widened and deepened, and calls for crackdown on family trusts which have grown into “super trusts” for tax avoidance.

If, after the budget, backbench critics publicly diss measures they consider unpopular, this will just reinforce the impression the government is a shambles.

Distancing themselves from unpopular decisions must be a temptation for backbenchers in marginal seats. Some would feel this could increase their chances of survival. That isn’t necessarily so, but fear is a powerful motivation to take desperate actions.

Even if the superannuation changes are pre-announced to isolate this vexed issue, it is hard to see how the government can produce a budget which will do much for it. It needs big savings, presumably bringing some pain. There is not much room for fresh goodies, and Gonski and the NDIS may have already have yielded their political kudos. The budget’s fiscal bottom line is unlikely to be helpful.

If there are provocative decisions Gillard could be in the firing lines of both internal critics and difficult crossbenchers who need to make last stands before their own battles for survival.

The journey ahead could rival the trials Jules Verne imagined for his characters in 20,000 Leagues.

Join the conversation

56 Comments sorted by

  1. Stephen Ralph

    carer

    hi michelle

    could you please give the lnp as much "air" time as you give labor.

    can we have some seriously negative stuff on them for a change .

    it would be nice.....thanks in anticipation.

    report
    1. Ken Swanson

      Geologist

      In reply to Stephen Ralph

      Stephen
      You must have been under a rock for the past 5 years.
      The Conversation almost continuously is negative about the LNP, Rupert Murdoch (the great satan and the sole reason Julia is in trouble), Andrew Bolt (not a serious journalist), shock jocks (only the right wing ones, not Mike Carleton or Fran Kelly), Tony Abbott (who has single handedly brought the once formidable ALP to its knees) and the IPA (nasty right wing think tank that has almost single handedly won the battle of press freedom when all the usual left wing suspects remained complicit).
      Article after article has an anti LNP swipe in the narrative across most subject areas.
      Then along comes Grattan who has long been in the ALP tank and has belled the cat about Gillard.
      Better pull her into line with the rest of the Conversation contributors.

      report
    2. Greg North

      Retired Engineer

      In reply to Stephen Ralph

      Stephen, when you have a government full of negativities that is much more relevant as it is supposed to be the government that is governing and as much as the LNP can lead Labor back on to better paths that would only be because negativity is not necessarily going to be contagious from party to the other and certainly not the debt burden to be offloaded.

      report
  2. Geoffrey Payne

    retired

    Hello Michelle, I understand you are a Political reporter, could you do an article on the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) meeting last night with Rupert Murdoch. I have heard reports that all the Coalition including Tony Abbot were there, Andrew Bolt was the host, and I have heard that Cardinal George Pell was there but I cannot verify that.Were you there Michelle? Perhaps you could give a summary of what was discussed, I believe the IPA writes the Liberal party policies and they are available on their website, very interesting reading.
    It would be wonderful to read about all the luminaries at the IPA meeting and the interesting discussion.

    report
    1. Stephen Ralph

      carer

      In reply to Geoffrey Payne

      well said geoffrey....the age did say cardinal pell was there.......

      master of ceremonies was andrew bolt. i wonder if any women were there.

      what a quaint mixture - i bet there was an almost sexual charge in the air with TA and the lnp getting a gulp of victory that seems to be in the air.

      i wonder if pell had his red shoes on?

      report
    2. Geoffrey Payne

      retired

      In reply to Stephen Ralph

      Hello Stephen, I did see a short clip on the news and saw Bronwyn Bishop and Sophie Mirabella in the Queue, Television News seemed a bit secretive and the story was mainly about Victoria Police and a handful of protesters.

      report
    3. Ken Swanson

      Geologist

      In reply to Geoffrey Payne

      The IPA will open its doors when the Greens open the doors of its annual conference.
      My God what were they talking about?

      report
    4. Dianna Arthur
      Dianna Arthur is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Environmentalist

      In reply to Geoffrey Payne

      Reminds one of that Simpson's episode:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OExykL5QnXY

      Trying to find out who funds the IPA is like trying to get Andrew Bolt to admit, well, the truth of anything.

      The Institute of Public Affairs is one of the few (may be the only) organisations to make it to a mention on the USA website Sourcewatch:

      http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Institute_of_Public_Affairs

      Last night's meeting should indicate just whom provide a significant proportion of monetary…

      Read more
    5. Ken Swanson

      Geologist

      In reply to Dianna Arthur

      An review of the bios and a quick google search on all authors and management of "Sourcewatch" reveals a group of left wing activists with political links to the Democratic Party in the USA. Wow, what a surprise that this group would hate the IPA. It does not make them a credible source though!

      Closed door meetings with politicians all of the same persuasion. Reminds me of ALP politicians including the PM sucking up to the militant union leaders and other faceless men of the Labour Movement at their annual conferences to ensure she keeps her job.

      ALP members having honest opinions. Kim Carr admits he disagreed with policies but went out in public with his hand on heart and "sold' them to us. Do not mention ALP politicians and honesty in the same sentence!

      report
    6. Dianna Arthur
      Dianna Arthur is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Environmentalist

      In reply to Ken Swanson

      Dunno what you were expecting Ken, the Tea Party?

      However, if you believe that the ALP is left of centre then you could do no worse than enrol in 21st Century politics 101.

      report
    7. Robert Tony Brklje
      Robert Tony Brklje is a Friend of The Conversation.

      retired

      In reply to Dianna Arthur

      This is especially important as the IPA as an organisation promotes the right of media to present lies as the news. Basically a defender of corporate propaganda, the rule of psychopaths, as having a right to a dominant space in for profit media.
      One of the most important pieces of media regulation is the right of government to defend the value of 'NEWS' as being truth so that all members of the public can rely upon.
      Allowing 'NEWS' to be sold on a for profit basis as nothing more than disingenuous advertising is to betray all Australians.

      report
    8. Stephen Ralph

      carer

      In reply to Robert Tony Brklje

      on the other hand i would imagine that a meeting of union leaders and bosses would be as far left as the ipa is right.

      perhaps these are the FACELSS MEN of the liberals.

      report
    9. Dianna Arthur
      Dianna Arthur is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Environmentalist

      In reply to Robert Tony Brklje

      Remember when the News Corp scandal was breaking out all over Britain? Many media commentators (the usual suspects) claimed we had nothing to worry about in Australia from the Murdochracy, "he wouldn't do do anything like that (tap phones) here", yeah I have full trust in the Australian to print the truth, the whole truth and noting but the truth.

      Oh look, flying elephants.

      report
    10. Stephen Ralph

      carer

      In reply to Dianna Arthur

      hi dianna

      i notice rm pontificating about something in the herald sun this morning......i couldnt bring myself to read it. but no doubt it was the opinion of a rich and messianic fat cat.

      report
    11. Ken Swanson

      Geologist

      In reply to Dianna Arthur

      Dianna

      The ALP used to be in the centre when Hawke and Keating were in.

      Gillard has sold her soul to the greens who have dragged her to the left with them.

      You have obviously missed the last 3 years dear. No papers down the end of the garden where the fairies live?

      report
    12. Dianna Arthur
      Dianna Arthur is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Environmentalist

      In reply to Stephen Ralph

      Stephen

      You should've kept reading. Maybe he was announcing a donation to upgrade all government school libraries.

      Or not.

      report
  3. Greg North

    Retired Engineer

    Julia often makes reference to John Howard, some of it even glowingly about what Howard would have done etc. in the Howard years so not only should she perhaps take more leaves from that book but turn back a few pages and she'll find another LNP PM with some great sage advice " Life was not meant to be easy "

    I doubt that he meant for it to be applied to his own backbenchers for in an election (and he did unceremoniously depose another Labor PM ) though Julia has her own twists and turns in interpretation…

    Read more
    1. Hardy Gosch
      Hardy Gosch is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Mr.

      In reply to Greg North

      Greggie,
      Stark choice for the somnambulist public : "Democracy" or "Murdochracy"
      Not for you apparently.It is clear Murdoch has made up your mind who to vote for.
      Checked the facts lately, try:
      http://www.independentaustralia.net/2013/politics/time-to-end-tony-abbotts-deceitful-debt-campaign/
      or
      http://newmatilda.com/2013/04/04/how-well-do-you-know-tony-abbott
      Keep up. The truth will set you free! Where have I herd that one before?

      report
    2. Hardy Gosch
      Hardy Gosch is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Mr.

      In reply to Hardy Gosch

      Not "herd", heard!
      By the way Michelle is helping your cause admirably.Never the truth shall be revealed. There is too much fascinating Canberra personality gossip to cover. Right down your alley! Give my regards to Tony and his mates.

      report
    3. Greg North

      Retired Engineer

      In reply to Hardy Gosch

      Don't be too hard and down on yourself and comrades Hardy
      You could lighten up some with singing the Julia Ballad that Bill has posted, certainly golden worth for buttering you up.

      report
  4. Bill Butterworth

    Student

    The Ballad of Red Julia

    Everybody sing:

    The working class can kiss my arse
    I'm got my Union seat at last

    Thanks to my clever legal nous
    The workers paid for Bruce's house
    Now Bill and Paul have got my back
    It's great to be a Union's hack

    The atmosphere's not good inside
    The party room where Kevin hides
    But I don't lose my beauty sleep
    'Cos most of caucus are like sheep

    They run in circles, flock and bleat
    Scared to death of struggle street
    The ones who don't, like dogs I kick
    If they won't give my hand a lick

    Men can't tell me what to do
    I'll kick them with my Jimmy Choos
    The sisterhood is on my side
    They haven't seen the turning tide

    And when I lose the PM's chair
    I'll climb the concrete UN stairs
    Then I will be free at last
    To tell the Party "kiss my arse"

    report
  5. alfred venison

    records manager (public sector)

    "who carry greater cache in the media". i think you mean cachet. when you're checking over your english writing its best to watch out for untutored spell checkers from walla walla washington. -a.v.

    report
  6. alfred venison

    records manager (public sector)

    seriously though, i agree completely with ed husic. why the hell are we subsidising these assholes while screwing around single mothers? does australia corp get a cut of the profits commensurate to its contribution/subsidy? ed's right: privatise the profits & socialise the costs. no mri for mt druitt & a handsome return on investment for hollywood. same old, same old, same old. who says karl marx is dated for crissake? -a.v.

    report
  7. David Tuck

    Scientist

    There are surprisingly few anti labour posts where the author tries to make out that the Prime Minister is a communist/Muslim/the anti-Christ.

    report
    1. Hardy Gosch
      Hardy Gosch is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Mr.

      In reply to David Tuck

      True. Most TC contributors are much more subtle. There are so many more elegant ways to skin the ALP cat.

      report
  8. Tony Simons
    Tony Simons is a Friend of The Conversation.

    Dodgy Director

    Crean and Fitzgibbon are obviously destabilising Gillard. Most of Gillard's policies are just as regressive as Howard's. Now she is trying to scale back the terrible inequities in super, Crean and Fitzgibbon are on the same unfair wavelength as Abbott with his trademark fear mongering and exaggeration. The media has a lot to answer for in giving virtually no coverage to the very positive economic story of Rudd, Gillard and Swan.

    report
  9. George Harley
    George Harley is a Friend of The Conversation.

    Retired Dogsbody

    For the ALP to avoid getting rocked at the next election it is time for Kev and the Ruddites to roll up their sleeves, stop feelin' dem blues and get on the same song sheet.
    To stop the LNP from just waltzing into power at the ballad box, they need to drum up some discipline and say Gee, string some clear Air.
    Then they can orchestrate an attack on the cymbalism of the opposition and put them off their rhythm.
    If they act in a chord, they may fender off the siren song of Tony and the Grammies.

    report
  10. Dennis Alexander

    logged in via LinkedIn

    Ed Husic is doing his job as a local member. Tanya Plibersek is doing her job as a Minister of Health. This kind of disagreement is not and should not be seen as "internal party division". It should be seen as a good thing (two people doing their respective jobs) - on both sides of politics. That it is presented in this implicit football team metaphor (team divided) is indicative of the contribution to the decline in public debate -the dumbing down, if you want - promoted and perpetrated on the Australian people by the media, in this case by Michelle Grattan. If they (journalists) can't get past the "my team, for good or bad, no questions asked, no argument brooked" analytical framework, they do not deserve the time of day. Michelle is off my reading list as just another hack - one with good sources, maybe, but one providng little original analysis.

    report
    1. Hardy Gosch
      Hardy Gosch is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Mr.

      In reply to Dennis Alexander

      You said:
      "Michelle is off my reading list as just another hack - one with good sources, maybe, but one providing little original analysis".

      In a weird and wonderful way however some articles obviously create a controversial "tabloid inspired" attraction. I understand TC uses "hits" or "log in's" to individual articles as a measure of an author's popularity. Quite misleading in many ways.
      What I always find interesting is the variety of comments even on these underwhelming exploits.. Some post's are pretty good and insightful indeed.

      report
    2. Greg North

      Retired Engineer

      In reply to Dennis Alexander

      What would definitely be seen as not internal party divisions is for members not to be rocking the boat in public and it would have been needed to come down from Julia to put across her reasoning and have it out in caucus for scrutiny, caucus the accepted Labor venue for difficulties to be aired.
      That it is not being done via caucus and there are public spats and missives or that they are coming despite caucus discussions is an ample example of unity not being so good.
      Seems as though Julia might need to deliver another of her pep talks!

      report
  11. Chris Birdsall-Jones

    logged in via Facebook

    Confusion and woe to Simon Crean and all who sail with him. I get the impression that he and his fellows actually want Labor to lose the election, presumably so that they can elect a new messiah, oh sorry, leader. Simon et al. have several times declared their love for their party. All one can say to that is that it's a very abusive relationship.

    report
    1. Stephen Ralph

      carer

      In reply to Chris Birdsall-Jones

      dunno - i get the impression simon fell on his sword.......could be wrong of course.

      he was always a supporter of JG and definitely not KR.

      have you noticed we've had KR free days since THAT day.....wonderful.

      and chris who would be the new labor messiah......?

      report
    2. Marilyn Shepherd

      pensioner

      In reply to Stephen Ralph

      The claim that Gillard triumphed without a vote is as ridiculous as the sound of one hand clapping.

      When will the media do their job and understand that Rudd was not going to run ever? He told Crean repeatedly but Crean ignored him.

      After the set up while Rudd was in the US last year and Crean abusing and embarrassing him at the G20 I wouldn''t have trusted Crean any further than I could throw him.

      But I agree that the rants about party and government disunity over every debate is insane.

      This is not a dictatorship, it is a democracy and all people are supposed to have a vote.

      I reckon the people in Husic's seat are peeved that the ultra rich Disney are being bribed to make a film here while the people in his seat can't get decent health care.

      report
    3. Stephen Ralph

      carer

      In reply to Marilyn Shepherd

      ah the old zen approach...............

      i would imagine that sc had some good inside info that despite kr saying he would NOT run, that if presented with a goodly number of votes kr would indeed put his hand up.

      i don't think it was a triumph for anyone in the labor party - winners or ,losers.

      the other thing to note is that when the credits run at the end of a movie, there are an awful lot of people involved in getting to the screen. i would guess that a viable movie industry would be a boon to jobs in australia.....might be wrong tho.

      report
    4. Marilyn Shepherd

      pensioner

      In reply to Stephen Ralph

      But do we have to bribe the very rich Disney? For heaven's sake, we have many decent actors and others here, let them make movies.

      report
    5. Stephen Ralph

      carer

      In reply to Marilyn Shepherd

      they have the money..........we dont have a great track record with the Yartz of late.

      the golden era has long passed.

      and many of our decent actors make a great living in the movies.......but not here.

      report
    6. Dianna Arthur
      Dianna Arthur is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Environmentalist

      In reply to Stephen Ralph

      Our production teams are among the most efficient in the world - they are highly sought after, I have only left one film set where I thought the production crew was anything less than professional. Nor have I given up on the Yartz - Cate Blanchett, Rachel Griffiths, Anthony Anthony LaPaglia, Hugo Weaving are all international stars who return regularly to participate in Australian productions from stage to film.

      Marilyn, Stephen art only goes undergound for a while. Art is the foundation of the human spirit. It cannot be harnessed indefinitely.

      report
  12. wilma western

    logged in via email @bigpond.com

    One day Michelle will notice a few of the gaffes that Tony Abbott has been getting away with.A recent goodie was his opposition to federal funds being allocated to rail projects - specifically the top rating given by Infrastructure Australia to the Melbourne metro project ,Tony said that federal funds hadn't been allocated to rail in the past and that the feds should "stick to our knitting"(i.e. only fund roads) Of course the actual government endorses Infrastructure Australia's recommendation which is why Abbott didn't bother with even rudimentary research that would have revealed several rail projects that received federal funds on Infrastructure Australia's recommendation .

    The almost universal media assumption that Abbott is home and hosed for a huge majority in September should motivate the press gallery to begin examining the Opposition's policies in detail . No - so much easier to mount the band-wagon ,giving it a good kick along in the process.

    report
    1. Dianna Arthur
      Dianna Arthur is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Environmentalist

      In reply to wilma western

      Wilma

      "The almost universal media assumption that Abbott is home and hosed for a huge majority in September should motivate the press gallery to begin examining the Opposition's policies in detail "

      Any reasonable person would think so, however I think any reasonable people have long since disembarked the MSM gravy train.

      report
  13. Lee Emmett

    Guest House Manager

    I'm okay about disgruntled former ministers and Ruddites contributing towards debate on policies. It means democracy is alive and well, and that it's more likely that outcomes will be of a higher quality, consensual, representative and hopefully inclusive.

    In any budget there is the income side (taxes) and the expenditure side. And just like household budgets, sometimes decisions are made to go into the 'red' if the benefits outweigh the disadvantages. When we are talking of the nation's finances…

    Read more
  14. Peter Ormonde

    Farmer

    It's a sad thing to see the NSW ALP degenerating into a mob of parochial pork-barrellers.

    Big differences between Cameron's philosophical and policy criticisms and proposals and the self-serving sham of the Fitzgibbons and Husics.

    But heck it's all criticism - all signs of decay and collapseinnit?

    Well no - the ALP has always been a broad church - has always had and tolerated policy argument and ideas. Always had it's Camerons. Even thrived on them.

    But the wiggling rump of the NSW ALP is not about ideas at all - it's about self interest and keeping their jobs. And they will attack their own government and sensible resoucing policies like MRI gadgets if they think there's a vote in it for them.

    Disgusting and shameful.

    The ALP cannot and will not recover while it pretends anything can be achieved without sorting out the rancid mess of NSW. The Richo party must be demolished and the ALP must be rebuilt... a party where Fitzgibbons and Husics have no place.

    report
    1. Stephen Ralph

      carer

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      hi peter

      but nsw has always been a bastion of the corrupt pollies - they made nepotism and trough snuffling an art form. the 50s & 60s were the halcyon days of graft, with criminals in bed with pollies and officials.

      report
    2. Peter Ormonde

      Farmer

      In reply to Stephen Ralph

      Oh yes ... no shortage of grafters and dregs Stephen but there was a discipline - a code - where you did not rat, did not put yourself and your own political interests above the interests of the government or the party. Indeed there could be no personal interests above the party - they put you there and would remove you if necessary. Not just a code - it was a cultural, innate principle.

      Not any more. The deforming weakness of the NSW ALP - its disintegration into a pile of personal fiefdoms and sinecures - is new. It is the product of patronage.

      report
    3. Dianna Arthur
      Dianna Arthur is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Environmentalist

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      We already had a party of self-interest - ironically known as the Liberal party, their code of (snorkle) behaviour appears to be contagious.

      report
  15. Peter Donnan

    Retired academic

    Give the LNP some air!

    You write, Michelle, that “He (Cameron) also says the mining tax should be widened and deepened, and calls for crackdown on family trusts which have grown into “super trusts” for tax avoidance.”

    Most Australians now accept that Labor, without little LNP assistance, has almost assured its defeat in September. SMH’s Mike Carlton’s view is that the ALP continually shoots itself in the foot and that Tony Abbot will have one of the easiest rides into the Lodge for many decades…

    Read more
  16. George Harley
    George Harley is a Friend of The Conversation.

    Retired Dogsbody

    A minor point, but when the Aussie dollar was 60-70 cents US, good old Oz was a bonzer spot to make fillums. With our dollar at its current level, the producers might need some "incentives". Insert synonym of choice.

    report
    1. alfred venison

      records manager (public sector)

      In reply to George Harley

      not a minor point about the exchange rate, George Harley, more like a pertinent point. -a.v.

      report