DO AUSSIE TAXPAYERS DONATE TO ME?
... oh yes they do!
Four-time Walkley Award winning political commentator and Churchill Fellow, has returned to the fray over concern that the integrity of news dissemination is continually being threatened by a partisan media.
The Clinton Foundation agreed to notify the State Department of any foreign donations. This was to ensure there were no conflicts of interest with foreign governments seeking goodwill with the Secretary of State by donating money to what was then her husband’s foundation.
The FBI, the State Department and Congress are currently investigating why Mrs Clinton used a private email server for official communications during her term as Secretary of State, and what may have been in the 30,000 emails she and her staff deleted.
Some of her staff have taken the Fifth and have refused to testify. Take one guess why.
Julie Bishop’s DFAT could throw some serious light on these emails but the chances of that happening are zero.
She wisely brought AusAID, (the vehicle used for at least $75 million in Australian donations to the Clinton Foundation) under the auspices of DFAT for reasons of “security”.
(It’s more likely that she convinced Abbott it was a savings measure.)
Gillard didn’t give a stuff about security, she was too busy currying favour with US Democrats.
Bishop’s DFAT has 2,521 Australian staff (of whom 1875 are based in Australia), plus another 1771 locally engaged staff, a total of 4292. And she is determined to expand this number along with the aid budget that was slashed by Abbott and Hockey. She has never forgiven them for that.
The Boston Globe alleges Clinton failed to disclose all its foreign “donations” to the Department of State as agreed. It reported that foreign government “donations” had doubled from $US26m in 2010 to $US56m in 2013 with no corresponding reporting.
A Republican Party website identifies Australia and Saudi Arabia as the biggest foreign government source of funds for the Clinton Foundation.
Australian government figures show a steady flow of our money going to the foundation since 2008, amounting to over $75 million. The peak so far was in 2012, with $10.3m going to the foundation. Another parting gift from Gillard.
DFAT Department Secretary, Peter Varghese (above) said, “The AusAID integration with DFAT is not going well. We are operating in a budget environment which is only going to get more difficult, the Abbott Government announced before the election that it would cut $4.5 billion over four years from the projected budget.
“We (also) don’t know what our share of Abbott’s 12,000 Public Service reduction is going to be, but we know that we will definitely have to deal with a reduction in staff.”
Under Turnbull reductions are on hold, so is it any wonder that Julie Bishop wanted Abbott and Hockey out of there?
Julie Bishop is now determined to get the foreign aid budget up from $5 billion and back to the $8 billion it was under the free-wheeling Rudd/Gillard Governments and then link the amount to CPI.
Watch the stick insect fly into action as soon as Turnbull claims an election win.
So why was the “donating” body, AusAID, merged with DFAT? Well, that’s an easy one. You see DFAT is almost wholly exempt from FOI requests and refuses to answer any questions, even questions regarding its assistance in kidnapping four Italian girls from their father in Italy despite Australia being a signatory to the Hague Convention.
Bishop’s DFAT can, and does, engage in criminal activity such as funnelling funds to a foreign political party without any accountability.
The FOI disclosure log on the DFAT web page states requirements do not apply to:
- Personal information or information about the business, commercial, financial or professional affairs of any person if publication would be unreasonable;
- Information determined by the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) not to be disclosed;
- Information that cannot reasonably practicably be published because of required deletions to the document.
Hillary Clinton would do well to adopt Julie Bishop's FOI requirements when it comes to foreign affairs and trade.