The morning after the election here, President Joe Biden, in Seoul on the first leg of his first major trip to Asia to engage with the US’s principal allies in the Indo-Pacific, was on the phone to Anthony Albanese:
“President Biden spoke with Australian Prime Minister-Designate Anthony Albanese to congratulate him on his election as Australia’s 31st prime minister. President Biden reaffirmed the United States’ steadfast commitment to the U.S-Australia alliance and his intent to work closely with the new government to make it stronger still. President Biden expressed deep appreciation for the Prime Minister-Designate’s own early commitment to the alliance, reflected in his decision to travel almost immediately to Tokyo to attend the Quad Summit—a vital opportunity to exchange views and continue to drive practical cooperation in the Indo-Pacific. President Biden looks forward to a close partnership between our administrations that will benefit the American people, the Australian people, and the world, starting with consequential meetings in Japan this week.”
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The foundations of the alliance are exceptionally strong, capped last year with the announcement of the AUKUS strategic partnership.
At any summit meeting between leaders, or when they get on a video call, what becomes so important is the resonance, the chemistry between them.
That deeper personal chemistry has informed the quality of the ties between several prime ministers and presidents: Bob Hawke and George H W Bush in the first Gulf War to liberate Kuwait; Paul Keating and Bill Clinton to establish APEC; John Howard and George W Bush on 9/11, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the US-Australia free trade agreement; Kevin Rudd and Barack Obama to get Australia into the G20; Julia Gillard and Obama stationing Marines in Darwin and the pivot to Asia; Scott Morrison and Donald Trump in alliance against China and exempting Australia from Trump’s trade wars.
It has not been all sweetness and light: Tony Abbott and Barack Obama famously disagreed on global warming, especially on its endangerment of the Great Barrier Reef. Their discussions were chilly while the globe warmed.
The new PM’s relationship with Biden will have a special dimension.
In Anthony Albanese, Biden will see someone very close to his life experience and values
- They both come from poorer backgrounds, and they know what it means for families to pull themselves up.
- They are both Catholic.
- They both strongly support unions and good union jobs. Biden is pro-union, pro-worker and pro-manufacturing. So is Albanese.
- They are both huge on infrastructure. It is Biden’s strongest achievement in Congress so far, and Albanese served as Infrastructure Minister for 6 years. They can talk planes, trains and broadband.
- Albanese has taken a Biden-style agenda to his campaign. Biden won office with Build Back Better and Albanese’s hopes are with A Better Future.
- They both support policies that have at their core helping working families not only with higher wages and good jobs, but also helping them shoulder the cost of living for childcare, education, medicines, and care for seniors.
- Labor is simpatico with Biden on climate, electric vehicles and renewable energy. In fact, an Albanese government can get more enacted on climate than Biden can in this or the next Congress.
Joe and Anthony will find themselves talking the same language. They already do. When they shake hands, the Prime Minster will say, “Everyone calls me Albo.” And Joe will.
At the end of the Tokyo talks, we should expect Biden to invite Albo to Washington, and for the PM to invite the President to come to Australia. They will want to spend more time together.
Disney vs Netflix – who will win the streaming revenue raise?
Netflix and Disney shares fall as the streaming companies fight to stay on top of their game
Investors to evaluate Walt Disney’s shift from cable television to subscription service as the company’s shares fall by 31 percent.
This comes after Netflix announced its first ever decrease in subscribers last month. The company reported a loss of 200,000 subscribers in its first quarter while predicting more losses ahead.
Netflix’s decision to suspend its services in Russia also led to a loss of 700,000 subscribers. It’s shares have also fallen by a staggering 71 percent this year, a bigger loss than its competitor Disney.
While Netflix struggles with its subscriber count, FactSet Estimates predicts Disney+ to have attracted 5.3 million new subscribers through march leading to a total of about 135.1 million subscribers.
Disney also predicts it will have amassed more than 230 million subscribers by September 2024.
Netflix is reportedly considering adding an advertisement-based subscription option by the end of the year as the company looks at how to stay competitive in the increasingly saturated streaming market.
In a previous statement, Netflix’s chief executive said they were looking to introduce advertisements in a year or two but a leaked internal note to the employees has revealed the company is introducing it as early as October 2022.
The note also says Netflix will begin cracking down on password sharing by monetizing it.
All of this has resulted in Netflix being sued by shareholders who argue they have been mislead about the state of the company and future prospects.
Rijul Baath contributed to this report
Biden on his bike for 2024
Before President Joe Biden fell from his bike while dismounting in Rehoboth Delaware – at his summer home for his 45th anniversary celebrations with Dr Jill Biden and Fathers Day on Sunday – he had a lot on his mind
Bruce Wolpe joins ticker NEWS – Donald Trump teases 2024 presidential bid
When he spoke to the Associated Press late last week he was very candid.
In discussing the mood of the country, the president said
People lost their jobs. People are out of their jobs. And then, were they going to get back to work? Schools were closed. Think of this. I think we vastly underestimate this.”
As a politician, Biden has always felt the people who he works for in his gut
The White House can be a bubble, but Biden’s was a pretty accurate take on how so many Americans are feeling right now. He went deeper:
“We have a little thing called climate change going on. And it’s having profound impacts. We got the tundra melting. We’ve got the North Pole, I mean, so people are looking and, and I think it’s totally understandable that they are worried because they look around and see,
“My God, everything is changing.” We have more hurricanes and tornadoes and flooding. People saw what — I took my kids years ago to Yellowstone Park. They call me, “Daddy did you see what happened at Yellowstone, right?” Well, it’s unthinkable. These are 1,000-year kinds of events.
I think, you know, I fully understand why the average voter out there is just confused and upset and worried. And they’re worried, for example, you know, can they send their kid back to, back to college? What’s going to happen? Are we going to take away the ability of people to borrow? So I think there’s a lot of reasons for people to want to know what comes next.”
Biden talked about his legislative program, and he thinks he can get the votes to lower the household costs of utility bills and prescription drugs, make investments in technology and broadband, and enact fairer taxes for the super-wealthy.
Biden knows he has to deliver the goods.
While the political chatter in Washington lurched into making his stumble off the bike a metaphor for his presidency right now, Biden immediately got back on it and pedaled ahead to his destination: re-election in 2024.
There is a lot of speculation on whether he will run again.
Here are the facts: Biden wants to run again. He especially wants to run again if Trump runs again. Biden entered the presidential campaign in 2020 because he felt he had to save the country by stopping Trump from destroying America’s democracy. And he did. Trump in 2024 only re-ignites the urgency of Biden’s mission.
There is no whispering from inside the White House undermining or contradicting the president’s intention. Among political professionals, there no material dissent from the judgment that Biden is the strongest Democratic candidate: there is no obvious alternative who commands anything near the support Biden has among Democrats.
Biden knows his approval rating. He knows the Republicans smell blood. He knows many Democrats who voted for him have doubts given his age and his current standing. But Biden knows that inflation will recede, the economy will recover, and the Republicans in 2023 will be the most extremist cohort of radical lawmakers the country has ever seen, and that the place to be is in the centre, where elections in the United States are won and lost.
Rep. Jim Clyburn, Democrat of South Carolina and the third ranking leader in the House, whose support for Biden effectively sealed Biden’s nomination in 2020, said over the weekend “My advice: be yourself, stay focused. Make the promises and keep them.”
That is exactly where Biden is. To Joe Biden that looks like the winning hand in ’24.
EXCLUSIVE: Ukraine’s Ambassador to Australia speaks out
Vasyl Myroshnychenko is seeking to engage private and public investment in Ukraine to help with its war recovery
Vasyl Myroshnychenko could not have possibly foreseen under what circumstances he would be accepting his ambassadorship.
The 41-year-old was fast-tracked into the important role of Ukraine’s Ambassador to Australia when Russia invaded his nation in late February.
Myroshnychenko is seeking to meet with Australia’s newly-elected government to discuss trade and aid opportunities after returning from the war-torn country.
During Myroshnychenko’s eight-day visit to Ukraine, he met with President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s most senior advisors, the prime minister, and other military officials.
Myroshnychenko spoke exclusively to TICKER NEWS, in which he says morale is at an all-time low in his home country.
Ukraine has been fighting Russian forces for nearly four months. Russia’s latest military offensive is seeing troops fighting in the east of Ukraine, where hundreds of civilians have lost their lives.
The ambassador is seeking to hold talks with Australian lawmakers on the current situation. He says more lethal aid and economic assistance is essential.
President Zelensky has invited Australia’s Prime Minister Anthony Albanese to Ukraine. Meanwhile, leaders from France, Germany and Italy travelled to the war-torn nation on Thursday, where they toured regions that have been decimated.
“I think that’s it’s very important that the world hears Ukraine, the world steps in, because that can solve energy issues that can solve the food crisis,” Myroshnychenko told TICKER NEWS.
Trade on the horizon
A bilateral trade deal between Australia and Ukraine could be on the horizon. The deal would reportedly be modelled on the U.K. free trade agreement.
“My role is to mobilise more support for Ukraine and Australia, I will soon be credited to New Zealand as well,” Myroshnychenko says.
Myroshnychenko studied international trade at the London School of Economics. He says additional military might is needed urgently.
“My job is to get more military assistance, more financial assistance for Ukraine. But every Ukrainian no matter what he or she is doing, is able to contribute either on social media, either fighting in the trenches, or doing the work they are doing to help Ukraine become stronger,” he says.
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