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Costello, Ferguson responsible says Brown

Treasurer Peter Costello and Bass Member Michael Ferguson are directly responsible for the loss of 277 Telstra jobs in Tasmania, Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.
"The Howard government privatised Telstra against the wishes of the majority of Australians and the Greens and the ALP.  They promised that rural and regional interests would be looked after.  They cannot now wash their hands of the Telstra sackings and say this is a matter for Telstra". 

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Greens move law to shame governments over political advertising

Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown has announced legislation requiring the total amount of taxpayers' money spent on government advertising to be included in every advertisement.
"The aim of the bill is to name and shame governments who use taxpayers' money on blatantly political advertising. It will allow taxpayers to see exactly how much of their money is being spent by self-serving governments," Senator Brown said.

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Censorship shatters ABC's Glass House

The ABC's decision to axe popular Australian comedy series 'the Glass House' is censorship, Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.  
"The Glass House regularly out-rates commercial programs in the same timeslot and has a dedicated audience of over 700,000 fans. The decision to axe it is purely political - this is censorship."

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Brown agrees with loggers

Greens Leader Bob Brown says he thinks the National Association of Forest Industries is right to claim credit for moves to muzzle the ABC.
"The relegation of the recent rally of 8,000 Launcestonians against the Gunns' pulp mill to fourth item on ABC TV news in Tasmania, and zero coverage on the mainland, is evidence NAFI is right. The frequent absence of ABC TV from Greens press conferences on Tasmanian forest issues –when commercial outlets turn up – also points to editorial self-censorship," Senator Brown said.

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ABC bias test should go commercial – Greens

The new bias test on programming being invoked by the government-biased board of the ABC should equally apply to commercial broadcasting.  
"People pay for the ABC through their taxes. We pay for the commercials through the advertising costs loaded onto the goods we buy. So the rules on content should be across the board. I'd like to see a bias test on Alan Jones or John Laws," Senator Brown said.

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Media tragedy unfolds

 The impending trashing of safeguards against media aggregation is a tragedy for democracy in Australia, Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.
"The Nationals might think two out of three isn't bad, but I think people in regional Australia deserve protection for 100 per cent of their media diversity. Yet again the bush is being sold out for the big end of town," Senator Brown said.

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Campbell should heritage list Burrup today – Brown

Greens Leader Bob Brown today said Environment Minister Ian Campbell had no excuse not to place the exquisite rock art on the Burrup peninsula on the National Heritage List.
"The Minister should place the Burrup on the National Heritage list today," said Senator Brown.
"The National Heritage Council clearly stated that the Burrup is a site of 'outstanding national heritage values to the nation'. There is no reason to withhold protection for the ancient rock art any longer."

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Greens slam government over Telstra pay phone cut backs

The government is responsible for paving the way for Telstra to close a significant portion of its public phones services in Australia, Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.  
Telstra is aiming to remove 10,000 public phones by the end of next financial year. (See today's Sunday Age)
"The Howard government's universal service obligation allows for Telstra to cut the number of public phones down to 7500. While Telstra should maintain the public services, the real culprit if they don't is the Howard government," Senator Brown said.

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Pre-election: Government grabs extra printing funds

As the nation enters the pre-election year, the government is using its Senate dominance to give MPs an extra $25,000 printing allowance each (the allowance will rise from $125,000 to $150,000), Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.  
The 86 Coalition MPs will receive $12.9 million printing allowance for the year, and coalition Senators $780,000. Total: $13.68 million.
"It's a straight-out raid on taxpayers money to fund sitting members' election campaigns and to disadvantage everyone else," Senator Brown said.

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ABC board's process and decisions should be made public - Greens

Board appointments should be independently determined

The Greens say that the decisions of the board of the ABC should go on the public record.

"The idea of having ABC political content monitored by REHAME, at taxpayers' expense, should have automatically been on the public record," Greens Senator Bob Brown said today."The question raised by the resignation of ABC board member Maurice Newman is not whether the ABC's activities are too transparent but whether commercial media's activities are too closed-shop."

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