Friday, April 27, 2007

When things just fall in your lap.

A great topic to put to the Federal Opposition Leader should he drop by for the Newswriting Press conference assignment in a couple of weeks time. Isn't it great when this sort of stuff, which is right up your alley, just pops up at the right time?

Via Joshua Gans' excellent Core Economics blog.

A great piece of investigative journalism by the Canberra Times' Peter Martin. On his blog no less.

"The Labor Party's boast that its national broadband network will expand the Australian economy by as much as $30 billion a year is based on an obscure and dated report that fails to substantiate the claim.

"The Department of Communications cited the Accenture study in its Broadband Blueprint prepared launched last year by its Minister Helen Coonan. The department, too, had been unable to locate a copy until late last week when, after repeated requests from The Canberra Times, it found one on a disc in a box that contained the records of its 2003 Broadband Advisory Group inquiry."

Sometimes I love the fact that the country is being run by people who are no smarter than I am. At other times it scares the shit out of me.

And the follow up piece in today's SMH where opposition communications spokeman Senator Conroy responds.

"Senator Conroy yesterday insisted the economic benefits remained 'in the billions of dollars'. He defended Labor's use of the $30 billion figure by pointing out the Government had used it first. 'The accuracy of this number has been good enough for the Government to frequently cite the number itself, most recently in its much hyped broadband blueprint,' he said.

The Minister for Communications, Helen Coonan, quoted the figure in a speech last August, but yesterday she said of Labor's broadband plan: 'Australians deserve better than a hastily cobbled together piece of flawed economics which delivers nothing more than an empty promise.'"

Scary. Both sides acting like children.

"He said it was worth lots of money and he was wrong."

"But she said it first!"

"I'm gonna tell mum on you."

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