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Mark Stapleton

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  1. Question for Evan Burton

    I stand corrected, Evan. The 3% real term growth commitment comes from Howard's 2000 White Paper. However, others support the argument that if the real growth commitment is maintained, it will cause the GDP/Defence spending ratio to grow: http://www.lowyinterpreter.org/post/2009/0...e-spending.aspx Rudd's Garden Island speech still represents a major capability upgrade for defence, the largest ever undertaken: http://www.pm.gov.au/media/Speech/2009/speech_0956.cfm The White Paper assumes we face emerging threats, but it sounds like there's been input from right wing think tanks. Australia has no external miliary threat from SE Asia or its Pacific neighbours but the White Paper is assuming that will change. I hope their assumptions are wrong, but even if they are the defence contractors will still make big money at the expense of Aussie taxpayers, at a time we can least afford it.
  2. Question for Evan Burton

    They're not facts supporting your opinion, Evan. Those stats only prove that Australia has not yet had a military expansionist policy within Southeast Asia. Rudd said the military budget would grow by 3% in 'real terms' until 2016/17. Combined with the fact the GDP will contract in the next few years, those percentages will rocket.
  3. Question for Evan Burton

    For security I guess. Basically, countries don't trust each other.
  4. Question for Evan Burton

    I should correct myself here. The $20 billion savings drive covers a ten year period. According to a story in today's AFR, the Defence Secretary Nick Warner and the Defence Force chief Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston have issued an ultimatum to the senior management of Defence to co-operate with the savings drive or quit: http://www.afr.com/home/login.aspx?EDP://2...y-capital_goods Sorry, the full online article is only available to subscribers. According to the article, the hit list includes $4.4 billion in savings by more efficient management of fleets as well as squeezing industry profit margins on maintenance, parts and fuel. Other targeted areas include surplus inventory holdings ($700 million), administration, equipment purchasing and travel budgets ($4.4 billion) and reducing data centres and computer applications to save $1.9 billion. I haven't seen anything indicating a reduction in staffing, which would be a relief for Defence Force personnel. I guess we'll know the full details on Tuesday night.
  5. Question for Evan Burton

    That's what I think too, John. From what I read most of the big spending would kick in around 2015, so the Government is hoping the recession/depression will be a distant memory by then.
  6. Question for Evan Burton

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story...5013871,00.html The authors of this article claim the proposed naval buildup is in response to China's recent naval buildup. They claim China's current defence budget is over $70 billion, more than triple our current spending. Even if the Rudd Government achieves its white paper goals, our naval power will still be dwarfed by that of China, Japan and India. So what's the point of getting into an arms race we can't win? I think it's a reasonable question.
  7. Question for Evan Burton

    It means <expletive deleted> Andy, like you. It's little wonder so many here and elsewhere disrespect you, except for crawlers like that other galah. This is a discussion about Australia's military spending. You'll have to save your desperate jibes at Syd Walker for another time. Good luck with that as I believe he has earned far greater respect than you. Unlike yourself, Syd's not phony. Moderation in red by Evan Burton. Reason: offensive word.
  8. Question for Evan Burton

    Savings of $20 billion over the life of the project which covers till 2030. The details of the plan on Budget night will be interesting. There must be plenty of fat in Defence. Of course, it could all be a pea and thimble trick. The bitching about who's getting the fat contract for building the submarines has begun, with the ASC likely to miss the boat: http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story...8-31477,00.html
  9. Question for Evan Burton

    Exactly. Australia is way short of having the required revenue base to embark on such high minded military folly. The only winners will be the arms manufacturers and the defence establishment. Unless of course Australia can secure unlimited financial support from US taxpayers, as Israel does.
  10. Question for Evan Burton

    Memo to Andy Walker (and the other galah trying to pretend he's Confucius): Please read and understand, if possible.
  11. Question for Evan Burton

    Yes it is, John. Yes - if you scroll down his blog you will find a huge array of anti semitic links Not exactly on-topic but yes, he has quite a few links to sites highly critical of Israel and its all-powerful Lobby. You remember the Israel Lobby, Andy--it's the one that until recently you claimed didn't exist, it was all just rampant anti-Semitism or something. In fact, I remember that until recently even mentioning the menace of Zionism was enough to earn one that well worn and very tired epithet. How rapidly things have changed. Don't worry, when it comes to bowing and scraping to Zionist murderers and racists you're in good company--Tony Blair, Angela Merkel, Stephen Harper, the BBC, Washington Post etc etc. Zionists love slow learners.
  12. Question for Evan Burton

  13. Question for Evan Burton

    Yes it is, John.
  14. Question for Evan Burton

    http://sydwalker.info/blog/2009/05/02/kais...ink-submarines/ Not limited to just Evan Burton of course, but Evan is the only other Australian who regularly contributes here, to my knowledge. Well Evan, are we going the right way or has Rudd misread regional intentions and ambitions? I appreciate you can't be totally unbiased on an issue like this.
  15. Eugene Rostow

    Also Washington Post's Joe Alsop gave Moyers a call on the 25th and suggested the same thing. It's one I hadn't heard before and quite interesting, imo. http://www.history-matters.com/archive/jfk...op_11-25-63.htm
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