Coffee conversation

Talk the talk if you’re going to walk the walk. There are a few things girls should be well versed in, one of them is current affairs. Here is a quick snapshot of the world around you, so you can talk about something other than the weather when you pick up your morning coffee, here’s the top three in a nutshell.

  • Romania swearing ban: In the early 1980s Romania attempted to ban the word ‘suitcase’ so people wouldn’t think of travel and leave the country. Other words include Christmas angels, becoming known as “year-end winged creatures” and coffins were renamed “earth furniture”. Maipulating words and the oppression of language is a characteristic of totalitarian regimes, controlling how people write and speak, to control how they think. Last week, Vladimir Putin, Russia’s president since May 7, outlawed swearing. Films, television broadcasts, theatres, the media and on the streets. All Russian books containing obscenities will carry a warning. Violators will be fined up to $1500 for each offence and banned from performing for three months. This is viewed as another attempt at cultural conservatism backed by the Russian Orthodox Church. Russia is known for its profanity, so enthusiastically do they use this language that there are approximately  1596 ‘dirty’ verbs and crude derivations of traditional profanities. Swearing in public is punishable by 15 days in prison. Well F***.
  • Nigeria: #bringbackourgirls is still raising awareness for the kidnapping of over 200 School girls in Nigeria on April 14, an attack orchestrated by Boko Haram terrorist group. The United States, Britain, France and China have all offered support in trying to rescue the girls. Islamic extremist and terrorist group Boko Haram has threatened to sell the girls into slavery in the name of Allah. Africa, a nation of 170 million people, has almost equal numbers of Christians and Muslims, this attack has brought together the two religions congregating in church to pray for the girls. 
  • Australia: The Budget. What you need to know about Tuesdays budget (13-5 )
    • Deficit reduction levy imposing extra income tax on high-income earners, could raise between $5-$10 billion over four years
    • Restore twice-yearly indexation of petrol will add about 1c a litre to pump prices a year for four years and raise $2.4bn
    • Pension age to rise to 7- years from 2035 and changes to indexation and eligibility
    • co-payment introduced for visits to GP
    • Possible increase in co-payments for medicines
    • New paid parental leave scheme to pay yp to $50,000 but conditional on mutual obligation to return to work, costing around $5bn a year
    • Company tax cut of 1.5 per cent, costing $4bn a year
    • Company tax increase of 1.5 percent for top 3000 firms to funs PPL
    • Tightening of eligibility for family payments and welfare, new threshold for some payments set around $100,000
    • Public serve job cuts including 3000 from tax office
    • 200 spending programs will be slashed in areas including environment, transport, industry, agriculture and indigenous affairs
    • Overhaul of border production with customs to be replaced by new Australian Border Force
    • Close another six detention centres
    • No unemployment benefits for people aged under 25
    • New work-for-dole scheme aimed at people under 30
    • Tightening of disability support pension and an on recipients travelling overseas for more than four weeks
    • Jobs compact to encourage employers to hire people aged in their 50s d60s
    • Deregulation of university fees
    • $3.5bn emissions reduction fund as part of direct action policy
    • Sale of Medibank private to reap around $4bn Other asset sales possible
    • $11.5bn infrastructure package, including $3bn for Melbourne’s Ease West Link, $1bn for new Sydney airport roads, $110m concessional loan for Sydney’s West Connex and toll road for Perth
    • Bonus payments for states that privatise  assets and reinvest in new infrastructure projects
    • Build new Western Front visitors centre at Villers-Bretonneux and Pozieres on the Somme
    • $223m Australian Network overseas TV series to be cut
    • COAG Reform Council abolished, saving $8m
    • Tougher restrictions on Gold Pass for travel for retired MPs

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