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Senate Inquiry, Hearing Program 4th Nov 2011

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Senate Inquiry, Hearing Program 4th Nov 2011

Old 5th Jun 2013, 06:03
  #2001 (permalink)  
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Gosh those CASA folks must be smart, brave and lucky. For years and years their nefarious activities have been publicly exposed by Mr Phelan’s articles and publicly criticised by the likes of Mr Entsch, yet….

Nothing changes.

It must be really, really frustrating for government after government to sit there, powerless to do anything in the face of CASA’s regulatory atrocities. If only governments had power to make or change laws, or close down agencies and create new ones, or appoint people to do jobs and sack people who can’t or won’t do jobs properly.

Yep. It must be really, really frustrating for governments to be unable to do anything other than wave a rhetorical fist in CASA’s direction. They’d love to help, but what else can they do?

Last edited by Creampuff; 8th Jun 2013 at 00:38. Reason: Inserted "by" before "Mr Phelan's"
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Old 5th Jun 2013, 06:22
  #2002 (permalink)  
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Go for it Leadie, good work!

Creampuff, indeed CAsA are unafraid of the 'fist' you mention, on several fronts

As for Phelans article mentioned by sarcs, well put. 13 years you say? Hmmm some members of the 'iron ring' have had much influence over that period of time! Oh management come and go, yet the 'iron ring' remain tighter than a star chamber.

Last edited by 004wercras; 5th Jun 2013 at 06:23.
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Old 5th Jun 2013, 12:30
  #2003 (permalink)  
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gaunty: A legend in your own lunchbox.

remind me again, where have you been part of the solution, and not part of the problem??
Careful nobody brings up "strict liability and disallowance motions mate. It may leave the gate open.
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Old 5th Jun 2013, 13:54
  #2004 (permalink)  

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Must be a full moon or one due, brings out the usual blowhards and lunartics.

Get your hands of it boys.
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Old 5th Jun 2013, 22:34
  #2005 (permalink)  
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Long Post and thread drift on the matter of Airports and Dept spin!

Yep, Mr. M did a great job in the public interest on airports, particularly the secondary airports --- that is why those of us who are left are so ecstatically happy about the airports and aerodromes in Australia, that's why we're all 100% in support of what Mr. M did in allowing local councils to abrogate their duties under the ALOP contracts.
Ever since Senator Fawcett first arrived on the scene at Senate Estimates in 2011 Mr Mrdak and co have been obfuscating the issue of Airports and controlled development…“oh the answers are all in the Great White Elephant Act and that is the script we are working off Senator!”

Meanwhile Senator Fawcett keeps highlighting deficiencies and safety issues in the apparently uncontrolled development around airports.

Maybe there is some truth in what Sunny says:
My guess is that the public service will be lobbying Liberal party powerbrokers and anyone else who will listen that anyone but Sen. Fawcett should be the Minister.
But if you read the following Q&A from Senate Estimates 08/11/2011 I don’t think the good Senator is going to leave the issue alone anytime soon…

Senator FAWCETT: Gentlemen, a number of individuals and aviation associations have criticised—in fact, some have condemned in quite strong words—both the minister and the department for their handling of the issues around commercial development on Bankstown and Archerfield airports. I would like to know if you would make an opening statement about how you see the department's role in interacting with airport operators, the minister and CASA in terms of that process.

Mr Mrdak: I would be interested in seeing what those comments are. I do not believe that those comments are in any way reflective of the regulatory arrangements and the actual situation at a number of airports, particularly those. I am aware of recent criticism of decisions, but I do not think that some of the media commentary reflects the facts.

In essence our role is set out in the act and also under the airport leases, which provide for the way in which we go about ensuring that the airport master plan provides for growth at the airports for aeronautical and non-aeronautical activity and to make sure that demand is being met. We also have a range of statutory requirements in relation to building control, environmental regimes and operations of the airport that we administer. The Civil Aviation Safety Authority obviously has responsibility for safety at the airports.

In relation to particular planning matters there are obviously differences of views at times between those of the airport operators in relation to development and those of some of the customers at that airport, particularly general aviation customers. I would characterise that at times as being robust, but I do not believe I would agree at any time that the act, the regs and the statutory requirements have not been met.

Senator FAWCETT: You mentioned that one of your requirements it to ensure the potential for growth. Are you referring there to growth in the aviation use of the airport or growth in the commercial use of the airport?

Mr Mrdak: Both. Our primary focus is to make sure the airports are available to provide facilities for aviation growth. That is the primary focus of the master planning process and the way in which we regulate the airports.

Senator FAWCETT: Perhaps if we go to a couple of examples that might help to unpack some of the concerns of industry. We will start with Archerfield and runway 28 right in particular. There have been some concerns in terms of the new corporate hangars and warbird hangars that have been built very close to runway 28 right and the impact that has in terms of instrument flight rules departures from that runway. One of the initial actions when that was raised was that the runway take-off distance available was shortened. If you look at the on-route supplement in the annexe at the rear, that restriction is still there. That starts to limit the type of aircraft that you can operate. If you are looking to operate a business jet or even something like a King Air or a 350, for example—which in Archerfield's case would need a weight exemption—that starts limiting rather than enhancing the growth of the airport. Can you explain that inconsistency for me?
Mr Mrdak: I am not sure there is. I will ask Mr Doherty to comment. I am certainly not aware that there has been any restriction on anyone's ability to operate from that field.

Senator FAWCETT: Shortening the runway is one heck of a restriction.

Mr Mrdak: I would be interested in seeing whether that has actually in practice impacted on any operation, but I will ask Mr Doherty to comment on the specifics.

Mr Doherty: Certainly the intention would not be to allow a development which was going to restrict the nature of the operation. I am aware that there has been controversy over a couple of buildings at Archerfield and I understand that there was basically disagreement between experts as to the extent to which that may or may not affect the operations of some aircraft at that airport. My understanding was that the most recent exercise on that was a study by the ATSB that indicated that those structures were, in fact, not an issue, so there was not an ongoing program. I am interested to hear you say that the restriction is still reflected in the documentation. The way the process should work would be that, if the airport lessee proposes a development, if would go through a building control process and would be referred to the expert agencies—in this case particularly, Air Services and CASA—for them to comment on any possible interference with aviation operations. As I understand in that case, it must have been around the interpretation at that stage. While it was given the clearance at the time, I think there are others who felt subsequently that it should not have been. But as I said, I thought the latest on that episode was that the ATSB had had a close look at it and advised that they did not see this as a problem.

Senator FAWCETT: You are correct that the ATSB did do an investigation and you are correct that there was a difference of opinion; but, interestingly, the ATSB investigation appears to have made the same error of interpretation of the Manual of Standards part 139, which looks at obstacle clearances, in that there are actually two tables in the back of that chapter which determine clearance gradients required. They took table 7.1, which applies to approach and landing clearances, and table 7.1-2 applies to the take-off requirement and expands the runway width requirement from 150 to 180 metres. With that, the splay that then goes out puts those two buildings well and truly in the zone where it impacts on the capability to use that for departures.

Mr Doherty: I am not able to comment that—that is not an area within my expertise—but it may be a matter that you can take up with ATSB.

CHAIR: Rather than spending the next 20 minutes inquiring, is this the place for Senator Fawcett to ask the questions about his concerns or is it ATSB?

Senator FAWCETT: If I can continue, all I am doing is highlighting an example. We have had the secretary tell us that everything is rosy. I have three or four examples where quite clearly the process of checking, verification and independent audit of the advice, whether it is given by the airport operator, by a consultant or by CASA in some cases has not been taken up and acted on appropriately by the department. That is the issue at hand, so all that detail was merely an example where due diligence has not been applied to a process and the end result is operational restrictions on people at the airport, which flies directly in the face of the stated intention of providing paths for growth for the airport.

CHAIR: Okay. This is fantastic. From a truckie to a test pilot, I do not mind what you do. What I am trying to say is we are not going to sit here all night if there is a quicker way of you getting answers. I am just going to put it to you that way. So I go back to my original question: are we in the right area?

Mr Mrdak: I think there are a range of issues Mr Doherty has been discussing with the senator. I think we need to have a look at what the senator wishes to put forward.

Mr Wolfe: I may add something. With regard to those particular claims that you have indicated in relation to the ATSB advice, my understanding is that the ATSB has responded to those claims, so I would definitely suggest you take it up with the ATSB.

Senator FAWCETT: Okay, let us have a look at the runway and safety area at the end of runway 28 right. You talked about the fact that there is a building inspector who works for the federal government, who is supposed to be involved as part of that development process. In fact the Archerfield Airport Corporation on their website when they talk about developments, very clearly lay out the criteria that should trigger the involvement of a federal agency, and the auction site which has been built in that safety area—or just over the road but still in the area concerned—was not referred—and please correct me if I am wrong—to the building inspector. The airport made their own determination that the site, which was a hardstand for the purpose of auctioning and selling large trucks and machinery and those sorts of things, did not constitute something that they needed to actually involve the federal government in.

Speaking as a professional pilot—and, thankfully, most of my aviation experience in single-engine aircraft means that I have had an ejection seat—if I have a large obstacle in front of me and the engine fails, I can leave the aircraft. The people on the ground will suffer the consequences. In this case part of the requirement in place is that the Queensland government has identified public safety areas around the runway ends.

CHAIR: If there is a question, Senator Fawcett, I would urge you to get to it, please.

Senator FAWCETT: My question is: why are the checks and balances not in place to make sure that when things occur that impact operations on airports which still come under Commonwealth or, where by lease, Commonwealth control, that the airport operator does actually refer things? And, if the subsequent activities on that land break state regulations, why are the checks and balances not there to make sure that we are supporting safe operations at airports? The Commonwealth has said that it wants to work with the state, and the minister has said in his recent speeches that he wishes to integrate more with the state and make sure we work with them. Clearly, the system has broken down in this case.

Mr Doherty: We may need to look more closely at the particular case, but my understanding is that, yes, there is a Queensland policy relating to public safety zones, and certainly in the white paper and beyond we are keen to have that reflected in planning particularly on the airport but also off-airport to the extent that it can. Those policies operate in different ways to define an area within which activity should be restricted because of the risk of exposing either the aircraft or persons on the ground to the risk of damage and, while it might be slight, it becomes a problem.
It does not work as a complete prohibition, however. There may be a range of activities which are still permissible in that area if they do not involve bringing a large concentration of people. So while it might be inappropriate to have a large shopping centre or something like that which involves congregating large groups of people, it may be quite appropriate to have a longstay car park or something which does not involve having large groups of people there at one time.
My understanding of that case is that it has been looked at and that the nature of the activity conducted there does not infringe the public safety zone policy. But it is something that we can take further advice on.

Senator FAWCETT: I would ask you to, and to take that on notice. Certainly what is there, and there is photographic evidence of it being there—large pieces of plant as well as many members of the public attending auctions at that location—is problematical. As you read both the Queensland legislation and the federal, the obligation is a two-way street. One is to protect people on the ground—and there was an accident adjacent to that location a number of years ago when the pilot, and four people working in a factory, were killed when an aircraft crashed. There is also the obligation to the aircraft and its pilot and passengers to provide safety in a zone which is one of the most critical areas. US studies show that about 80 per cent of accidents occur in that area on takeoff, or landing when there is an undershoot, if you have an engine failure. The obligation is on your department to make sure that we provide a safe area around airports so that in the event of an emergency the pilots do have somewhere to land. It is not like military aircraft with ejection seats and the options to try and turn back. Civilians are constrained—

CHAIR: Senator Fawcett, I will remind you that if there is a question would you please come to it. The questions are very important, but I do not honestly believe we need all the preamble. You have the call and I urge you to get to the question.

Mr Wilson: We will take the issue with regard to the end zone at Archerfield on notice and provide the committee with a detailed response.

Senator FAWCETT: About the process: there was a repcon in Flight Safety Australia recently, which looked at the issue of building approvals again, this time well away from the airport. But things that affect what are called the PANS-OPS clearance requirements for aircraft that are in IFR—so they cannot see. What became very clear in that repcon was that as the redacted report went to different agencies the airport operators said, 'It is up to CASA'. And CASA said, 'We can't, actually—it's up to the department'. The department came back and said, 'Look, processes are in place'. But we have seen over the years that rather than saying, 'No, you can't build a building, because that actually infringes the requirements,' the building has gone ahead and instead there has been a reactive approach where the gradients and flight settings increase.

Senator Carr: Be fair. The minister put out a white paper on these issues, the first that had ever actually been produced by the Commonwealth. It outlined the procedures with regard to planning for development around airports. You have raised some issues with regard to one site, which the department has undertaken to have a look at. But I do think we have to get this in context; none of this work was ever done before.

Senator FAWCETT: My point is that this is not just around Archerfield. It is also around the Sydney Basin, and this is a clear indication that what has been put in place in terms of a process is not being applied, monitored or audited. My question is: what checks and balances are in place from the department to make sure that the processes that are laid down are actually being followed and adhered to? What independent body audits or checks the application of these processes?

Mr Doherty: There is work on foot on this. We do take the protection of those services very seriously. There is the OLS relating to visual flight and the PANS-OPS relating to instrument flight. The PANS-OPS is seen as non-negotiable; there is no scope for an intrusion into the PANS-OPS for any particular time.
We have provisions in the Commonwealth legislation which are designed to provide notice of proposed buildings which would go close to the controlled surface, to allow those to be assessed and to make a judgement. We are currently working with a group of state officials to try to do a couple of things. One is to make sure that those sorts of controls are expanded properly into airports which are not controlled under the Commonwealth's Airports Act provisions. And secondly, to make sure that we have robust arrangements in place for how they are administered. So we are keen to work on making sure that we have the right arrangements in place to make sure those are given effect to. We agree with you: those are extremely important.

Senator FAWCETT: I think if you look into it—and again, I am happy to be corrected—I believe that there are at least two examples in Brisbane and Sydney where the PANS-OPS base has been increased as a result of buildings that have gone up and have not been blocked, even though under our ICAO obligations we are supposed to. I encourage you to look into that and, if I could put that on notice to come back to me—

Mr Wilson: If you could put those two examples on notice that would be helpful.

Senator FAWCETT: Certainly.

....It is a drift but the subject still revolves around the Senate and department spin doctors…..
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Old 6th Jun 2013, 00:08
  #2006 (permalink)  
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Mr Gaunt:

Mike was 100% supportive AND ensured, with his impramtur, we got access to the people we needed to get there.

Yes they were asleep at the wheel at the time. But awakened pretty quick. No consolation, but at least they didn't get bored to death or back to sleep as some are wont to achieve.

BTW I and most of us have achieved more by wearing my rose colored glasses than otherwise. It doesnt get you noticed and on soapboxes but it does get things done. Being part of the solution rather part of the problem is much more satisfying.

There you go, an opportunity to have a rant. Off you go then.
Yes Gaunty, it is much more satisfying - "being part of the solution" however that requires a unique ingredient to be added to the deliberations. More about that later.

WIthout that ingredeint "being part of the solution" wearing rose coloured glasses, is justpart of a dress up game designed to stroke egos and mollify critics while changing absolutely nothing. I think we have all seen the firebrands who come face to face with Government with real grievances who suddenly become good little puppies and start licking the hand of the one they were going to bite.

Its very easy to do, set up a Committee of Government and industry people chaired by someone like Mr. Mrdak to "work through the issues". Invite some industry "celebrities" to join the Committee as well. Hold committee meetings in Canberra, preferably in Parliament House. Organise some good lunches, Parliament and the National Press Club used to be good venues, the High Court Cafe was good too. Arrange for the Minister to attend a meeting and deliver a speech, or failing that a letter each member from the Minister thanking them for giving their time to this important venture, etc. Pay for a few airfares and voila! Susceptible committee members will start boasting to their friends about their new found importance and completely forget their prior anger and motivations.

Six months to a year later, a vacuous report is presented to the Minister who thanks the Committee for their hard work and off they go..............and nothing changes except perhaps a few titles on the doors.

The missing ingredient, Gaunty, is Good Faith. According to PPRuNe and Phelan, nobody now believes that CASA, ATSB, and perhaps the Department, itself possess any good faith at all, and without that your proposed solution is worthless, even counter productive because it strings thing s out.

We are in a race against time. Not the one involving electoral politics, but the one involving a smoking hole in the ground with hundreds of body parts around it.

Last edited by Sunfish; 6th Jun 2013 at 00:11.
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Old 6th Jun 2013, 00:09
  #2007 (permalink)  
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Sarcs 'long' post goes to show; you can run, but you just can't hide. The DOiT and by extension Albanese are in some hot water over airports right now and would probably much prefer to let it all slide quietly by. Somehow though, I just can't see any of the 'big' issues going away; not this time - . There may not be a wind of change blowing through the corridors of power, but it's breezy by golly. What with Wazza huffing, Heffernan puffing and the other boys taking deep breathes; the house of straw may yet topple about the ears of the three little pigs. We shall see...

I believe there is a thread running which discusses airport issues – Here – and with the AAT hearing coming up on Archerfield, perhaps the airport debate could continue there. Just a thought.
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Old 6th Jun 2013, 00:19
  #2008 (permalink)  
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“Politics... is the art of devising temporary remedies for recurring evils. It is a series of expedients, not a project of salvation.”
-- John N Gray
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Old 6th Jun 2013, 15:58
  #2009 (permalink)  
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Must be a full moon or one due, brings out the usual blowhards and lunartics.
Get your hands of it boys.
So droll, so original, and it adds so much to the debate.
Just a quick question, what are "lunartics" --- is that something to do with the full moon you mentioned??
I will leave Frank A to expand on one of your efforts that he alluded to in his post.
Tootle pip!!

PS: Apropos Frank A's cryptic comment, maybe we should run a guessing competition as to what activity of Gaunty Frank was referring to??
First prize -- one choc. frog, past its use by date.

Last edited by LeadSled; 6th Jun 2013 at 16:03.
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Old 6th Jun 2013, 16:47
  #2010 (permalink)  
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Picking up from Sarcs post. Mr Mrdak promised a response by the end of the week. Perhaps a Friday 16.59 response?

Mr Mrdak: We already have officers in the department—and clearly me and senior officers—who have carefully read the report now. I have had discussions with my senior officers. We envisage being in a position to provide some initial advice to the minister, I expect, certainly within the next week to 10 days in relation to it. We have been through the process of the budget and now estimates. I envisage having conversations with the Civil Aviation Safety Authority CEO and the head of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau in the coming days to ascertain their views, to enable me to provide a comprehensive view to the minister, I would hope by the end of next week.
The pot plants have probably been privy to some delicate and some more robust conversation this week.
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Old 6th Jun 2013, 18:56
  #2011 (permalink)  
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What amazes me is that there are still supporters out there prostrating themselves before Sith Mrdak's illustrious throne and blowing so much air up his ass that he risks becoming a giant balloon and floating off into the horizon!
As a reminder to viewers, Mr Mrdak has for some time been for better of words, president over this mess. It is his two departments, CAsA and ATSBeaker that have, under his watch, become a case study for obsfucation, incompetence, lunacy, ineptitude and arrogance, to mention just a handful of things. In other words - pony pooh.

I so not see any level of government from the CEO and Commissioner's of the departments in question to officers, bureaucrats up to the Minister as currently doing a reasonable job. The final words of Senator Xenophon in the senate report succinctly sums up the current mess that all of the above individuals should be held accountable for. "With responsibility comes accountability". Or so it should in a normal world.
So how anybody would or could honestly say that he/she thinks the current departments are robust, adequate, safe, improving annually, compliant or even 'leaders in their field' is twisted. There are however a number of reasons one could speculate on as to why an individual would or could be so supportive of the current malaise, but that could potentially open up a litigators can of worms.
Nonetheless it would appear that those who robustly throw their weight behind this current shamozzle indeed 'have their hand on it'.

However it does make for interesting thinking, or robust discussion with the BRB across the table while indulging in bottles of Jack Daniels and Cuban cigars in a modestly lit subterranean refuge with some Buble playing in the background and a smattering of pot plants decorating the surroundings.
Oh dear, I'm starting to sound like the GWM!

Leadie, if I may indulge on just this one occasion -
"Tootle pip"

Last edited by 004wercras; 6th Jun 2013 at 19:12.
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Old 6th Jun 2013, 19:50
  #2012 (permalink)  
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So how anybody would or could honestly say that he/she thinks the current departments are robust, adequate, safe, improving annually, compliant or even 'leaders in their field' is twisted. There are however a number of reasons one could speculate on as to why an individual would or could be so supportive of the current malaise, but that could potentially open up a litigators can of worms.
I can explain it for you. It is very simple. Mrdak and the entire public service are out of their depth when it comes to aviation because they have no technical experience of Aviation whatsoever.

I know what that feels like. I was once recruited as a General Manager, Systems Integration, for a reasonably sized IT company and I was completley, technically, out of my depth. You have no idea what that is like until you find yourself chairing a meeting of technical specialists charged with developing the technical strategy for a $40 million IT system.

CASA correctly calculates that no one in Government has the slightest idea about what they do and any criticism or unwelcome enquiry can be easily deflected by reference to impenetrable jargon: FAA, ICAO, Warsaw Convention, Adiabatic lapse rates, thronomisters, Bernoulli, etc. This is where the impenetrable and unnecessary complexifications of the Australian regulations also helps.

CASA owns the territory because it has created an impossibly impenetrable system that no one outside CASA can unravel. This will no doubt be backed up with the unspoken threat: "If you mess with it Minister, then you own it, and if anything goes wrong then its YOU who are to blame.".

As I said previously, the boyz and girlz in PM & C know how to deal with this and so do some Ppruners - break up CASA into separte regulator and enforcer, get in outside expertise and go through management ranks with an axe, however the current Minister has no stomach for that.

To put that another way, the public service wouldn't know the difference between a Notam and a Timtam, so they leave CASA to its own devices.

Last edited by Sunfish; 6th Jun 2013 at 19:53.
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Old 6th Jun 2013, 20:27
  #2013 (permalink)  
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I think your logic explains why so many questions in estimates are about pot plants, taxis, drones and noise. All issues around the edges and nice sound bites. (Although Senator Nash is entertaining and sure she will ask if you spend that on taxi's can I see the airfare and hotel costs next). Senators Fawcett and Xenophon had to fight for their limited time slot not being wasted.

Not having packet of TimTams in cockpit - 50 penalty points.
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Old 6th Jun 2013, 22:27
  #2014 (permalink)  
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Beaker: "No comment!"

Mr Mrdak promised a response by the end of the week. Perhaps a Friday 16.59 response?
Here's a thought... why not tw**t Albo and ask him what Kingcrat and the dept have come up with given the 'on the record' commitment the head crat made at Senate Estimates, here's his account....(fill in the blanks).. @AlboMP (ps heard he'll be spruiking roads, rail and everything but aviation down in Tassie-devil land so he might have a chance to respond in between stubbies of Cascade )

I so not see any level of government from the CEO and Commissioner's of the departments in question to officers, bureaucrats up to the Minister as currently doing a reasonable job. The final words of Senator Xenophon in the senate report succinctly sums up the current mess that all of the above individuals should be held accountable for. "With responsibility comes accountability". Or so it should in a normal world.
Top post 004! It is also interesting that as of last Friday it would appear that mi..mi..mi..Beaker is still in a state of denial (well according to the Beaker bl*g):
Mr Dolan, In one of your reply's you mention that the Minister has the power to direct you to investigate a particular matter. In your opinion should he now direct the ATSB to re-investigate the pel-air ditching and recover that particular westwinds data recorder?
May 30, 2013 09:30

Martin Dolan, Chief Commissioner (author) said...
A Senate committee has made a number of recommendations to the ATSB, including that we re-open the investigation and recover the recorders. The ATSB will carefully consider those recommendations - and others relevant to us - and respond to them. Until we have done that, we won’t be commenting on those recommendations.
May 31, 2013 09:56
What a WOFTAM...shift him back to COMCARE heard they're a little bit busy at the moment??

Last edited by Sarcs; 6th Jun 2013 at 23:20.
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Old 7th Jun 2013, 00:27
  #2015 (permalink)  
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But, You had to be there.

Rather than be bored fartless wading through the howling of those that bay at the full moon dressed in rose coloured underwear; I dusted off the last estimates Hansard and compared some of the passages of play to the recorded version. Pages 107 to 110 inclusive were, to say the least, fascinating to an admitted political dunderhead.. Thought I might float them and see what some of the more astute learned colleagues made of them.
Senator XENOPHON: I have got two more questions. What prompted you to focus on the Bankstown office?
I wonder why Sen.X has his eagle eye on this particular office, out of the many?
Senator XENOPHON: Was there any material associated with the report, such as a covering note or notes attached to that report, that CASA did not provide to the committee? You may want to take that on notice. In other words, as part of the extensive process of obtaining documents as part of the preliminary enquiry, the many boxes of documents, we got the report—
Senator XENOPHON: I would urge you to take this on notice, in fairness to you.
Senator XENOPHON: Were there any covering notes or any associated materials with that report that were not provided to the committee?
Senator XENOPHON: My understanding is that there was not a covering note or any associated note with the report, but I would like to know whether there was one ?
If I were ever asked a series of questions like that by Sen.X I would be wondering, very hard, exactly what he had tucked away in his brief case, wouldn't you?? On notice now.

Then there is the intriguing bit where McComic doesn't feel able to 'honestly' answer 'background' questions on CAO 48 by Sen. Rhiannon because the document is not in front of him – despite it being offered. Then in steps the doughty Mrdak, once again pouring oil on the troubled waters. That must have been an interesting dinner break, Lasagne and a well thumbed CAO 48 for dessert. Humble pie is not served – ever.

Top of P 108, more questions to go on notice, then the loaded gun "will I hear from CASA afterwards"? – No says the Chair, but you will formally hear from Mrdak and the answers will be on record. So where are they???, these dinner break epiphanies. Seems all answers are now to come from the minister via Mrdak; which of it's self is strange seeing as the questions are legitimate for Estimates.

A little later, we have Heffernan, struggling to be heard over the 'noise complaints' lady, who stood up, parked right in front of the microphone and proceeded to kick up a hell of a racket. Meanwhile Heff is trying to raise concerns over some "pretty serious issues" raised by a letter from a solicitor in Cooma. All agreed that there was to be a 'conference' (off stage) with key people as "this is not an issue to muck about with". Having decided that a cosy chat was to eventuate (one hopes the minutes are available), they were off and racing the bloody clock again. Considering the amount of time everything else takes, I was curious as to why the demon "clock" ruled, perhaps everyone was just hungry.

Sen. Edwards wonders about meetings with the minister, McComic hasn't been invited and Mrdak, once more into the breach' covers the 20 accidents mentioned and the 26 recommendations as being a matter of urgency but it is, after all the ministers call. Not sure I like these "serious" issues being discussed behind closed doors, at all.
Mr Mrdak: I undertook that this morning and the government will respond in a very timely way, I believe.
Fascinating stuff, I guess M. Mrdak esq. has decided to stage manage the whole thing seeing as how his two Muppets now toddle about the place with "Kick me" signs stuck on the back of their shiny suits. Aye, passing strange are the ways of gummint.

Last edited by Kharon; 7th Jun 2013 at 00:32. Reason: Bloody spacing -
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Old 7th Jun 2013, 04:52
  #2016 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2011
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I think Sith Mrdak has decided to shelve Beaker and ESSO for now because ESSO cannot utter a sentence without using anger or insulting people and Beaker is only capable of mi mi mi mi. Safer to park them on a shelf (like a CAsA procedures manual or other associated shelfware) rather than have both of them shooting off multiple feet.
At least Mrdak can articulate, even if it is all a load of spin coated buggerised folly.

Kharon, Sen X certainly had a robust thread running on Bankstown. I guess we can only speculate about the message he was sending through his line of inquiry, but perhaps in laymans terms it was something like this -
'I have some documents in front of me boys, but some of it is missing and, well, you tried to sneak the incomplete document through without attaching all of it, and that is naughty, you see I have the entire document, warts and all, and if you bullshit me I am going to crucify you for lying under oath. So either come clean and submit the missing bits, at least that way you haven't lied but of course you look like you have been covering up, or you can lie, i release the missing page(s) and you become instantly unemployed, and you get to speak with the Feds too'.

Last edited by 004wercras; 7th Jun 2013 at 09:44.
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Old 7th Jun 2013, 06:58
  #2017 (permalink)  
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Or words to that effect!

A very nice 'potted version' of the message that the Senator was conveying - well done!

Last edited by SIUYA; 7th Jun 2013 at 08:54.
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Old 7th Jun 2013, 14:39
  #2018 (permalink)  
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Thumbs down The way forward

Rumour has it that Dom James and Co have defamation lawyers lined up with CASA and the ATSB in their sites. It will be interesting to watch Mrdak represent his clowns in court. Once all the evidence is public, and away from privilege, its a field day for the lawyers! Maybe the pain will be a lesson to public servants in the future. Skull, Dolan, Mrdak - SHAME SHAME SHAME..
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Old 7th Jun 2013, 15:35
  #2019 (permalink)  
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Senator Xenophon talks of many others that made submissions in confidence fearing retribution. They may also soon be in a position to take action too. I wonder if the lawyers can take some multiple action for a number of people?
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Old 7th Jun 2013, 22:09
  #2020 (permalink)  
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Jingle # 2029 – "Rumour has it that Dom James and Co have defamation lawyers lined up with CASA and the ATSB in their sites." etc.
I had it from a fairly reliable refuelling source that "Defo" is a very hard argument to win, particularly when qualified privilege* is dragged into the mix. It was mentioned that a 'defective administration' beef may be an easier row to hoe. Looking back over some of Wodgers cases it is fairly easy to define where due process was not correctly followed and where 'bluff' and administrative liberties where taken. (Famous foot shots of the nasty, nameless and faceless).

Mr ENTSCH (Leichhardt—Chief Opposition Whip)(21:30
This industry urgently needs an independent body and rights mechanisms to hold CASA Cairns accountable for their own inadequacies and conduct. After 14 September, I will be calling for a full inquiry. I will not let Barrier be destroyed without holding those individuals who are directly responsible for this sordid business accountable for their actions. {my bold}.
It seems Mr. Entsch has picked up the same vibe in Cairns as Sen. X has from Bankstown. The question is, I suppose, will that inquiry be opened up to include the 'industry' or simply restricted to Cairns?. Seems to me a shame to get all the tools out and then only do half the job. The momentum from the Senate has kick started the process, it would be a pity to loose that. Is it worth sending email or letters to Entsch requesting the proposed inquiry be opened up to let all the kids and the "minority" ills of society mob have a whack at the piñata ??

It would be worth the expense just to watch Mrdak wielding a razor sharp knife on behalf of a minister (or junior minister) who wanted to know the answers, wasn't remotely interested in covering up the mistakes of the present incumbent and had half an idea where the skeletons are buried. Now that, I would buy a ticket for.

PS. Nice catch 004; Gobbles sends a Choccy frog and says that he will be home from the fleshpots of Montreal in time for the elections and the BRB Inquiry ball (fancy dress this year – his favourite)........

Creamy - fixed it. Glad you knew what I was banging on about.

Last edited by Kharon; 8th Jun 2013 at 00:31. Reason: * Thanks Creamy - whatever it is, they say it's a bugger to beat.
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