back to article Australia's Senate demands access to NBN business case that doesn't exist

Australia's Senate has voted on an "order for the production of documents" demanding access to "a complete and unredacted copy of the NBN Corporate Plan 2015-18," plus "a complete and unredacted copy" of the 2014-2017 plan and an unredacted copy of the NBN Co Strategic Review. The motion (PDF) seeking the order was moved by …

  1. FozzyBear

    this whole situation is one gaint clustf**f

    Politicians are using the nbn to grnadstand and win some cheap political points. Whilst the public are holding a stripped copper wire wondering why they have no internet connection

    1. gerdesj Silver badge

      Re: this whole situation is one gaint clustf**f

      "Whilst the public are holding a stripped copper wire"

      At least you, personally, know how to terminate it effectively. Judging by your spelling you put a morse tapper thingie on it STOP

      Sorry, couldn't resist 8)

  2. gerdesj Silver badge


    Call me old fashioned but I like to see a few attempts in an article that explain things to the layman. I'm quite happy with long rambling sentences and obscure grammatical construction (use them myself) but this is a belter.

    What the hell is the state of being known as "doctrinaire"? OK, well we know already that -air(e) as a suffix means something like "of the" or "being an example of" and often seen in French borrow words. For example: debonair "of good (character)". A doctrine is a belief system or similar so doctrinaire must mean something like "believing" or "having a|the belief"

    Now let's dig out a search engine ....

    "seeking to impose a doctrine in all circumstances without regard to practical considerations"

    WTF: where did the overloaded meaning creep in and how the hell am I supposed to know _that_? Is this an Australian legal/political term or something I should know about?

    1. dan1980

      Re: Bingo!

      Seems like a justified use of an economical word to me and if we only ever read words we already knew then how would we expand our vocabulary?

      While I do admit that this particular word seems a bit overblown and ridiculous, that very quality lends depth to the meaning - a trumped-up word people can't relate to used to describe trumped up politicians people can't relate to.

      1. gerdesj Silver badge

        Re: Bingo!

        "Seems like a justified use of an economical word to me"

        Do you mean it is a term used in economics or it's a short word! I'm 40-something (hence spoken, read and listened quite a lot) and happy (bordering on ecstatic) with English being an extremely malleable language with many different flavours and nuances brought on by its ubiquitousness.

        When I encounter a strange word I normally manage to work out what it means by the context and that was missing here. That normally means that it's a word from a dialect remote from my own en_GB eg en_US and co. I'm not talking about pidgins here - that's a whole different mixed metaphor.

        This beast (doctrinaire) is alien to me and I'm intrigued as to where it came from and was ranting about why the article's author would think that it is in common parlance on a widely read website.



        PS I'll take your trumped up and add "charges". Then I'll add "literally" and "tap" as simple insanities of language. The first for a blatantly wrong modern meaning and the second for too many meanings.

        1. Simon Sharwood, Reg APAC Editor (Written by Reg staff)

          Re: Re: Bingo!

          Hi all. Author here.

          Granted, "doctrinaire" isn't the most common word out there.

          But I used it because it was one word that summed up what I was trying to say. Which wasn't quite "bias" and wasn't quite "for political reasons". So "doctrinaire" it was.

          A couple of weeks ago another reader took me to task for using "schlep".

          Long story short: taking a break next week, expect to come back with further reaches of vocabulary dulled by food and booze.

          1. gerdesj Silver badge

            Re: Bingo!

            Thanks for diving in - we probably ought to get around to discussing the subject at some stage.

            I'm personally happy with "schlep" - I see it as a word from en_US via Yiddish? - a burden or heavy thing, "a downer" maybe. However, we all have a good grasp of our own en_XX dialect and a tenuous grasp of most of the others. I shudder to think what the intersection of all that lot looks like nowadays.

            Although I personally love to use one word where many would do the job better to a wider audience, I am not a journo. The process that lead to "doctrinaire" might be better served with your original thoughts. "biased" and "political reasons" always look natural together in a sentence in any language.

            Thanks for the write up and enjoy your hols.

            1. dan1980

              Re: Bingo!

              I thought it was German - schleppen or some such. Doesn't matter - I like that etymology. (Regardless of accuracy.)

          2. dan1980

            Re: Bingo!

            "But I used it because it was one word that summed up what I was trying to say."

            This is what I meant by 'economical'.

            I.e. it would have taken many more words to say the same thing.

    2. LaeMing

      Re: Bingo!

      That word, while not in common use, is considered pretty 'normal' here in Aus. Is the English Language's home slipping behind the colonies in linguistic complexity?

      Strewth, cobba! That takes the dingo's biscuits!

      1. gerdesj Silver badge

        Re: Bingo!

        Ahh an answer - cheers mate. I can get pretty pedantic at 0100 after hitting the plonk.

        Our common language diverged pretty smartly a few years back and both have borrow words and phrases, which is a good thing. That's part of the reason (in my opinion) why it has been so successful as a lingua franca (Frenchies' language!!) Add to that en_SA, en_NZ, en_CA int al and even the backwater represented by en_US and you get real hybrid vigor. Also, you should hear what the Eastern Europeans, Asians and others bring to the party - linguistically - here, it's fantastic. Obviously that is also happening down your way as well

        However, if you lot go around dropping a word like doctrinaire into conversation on a regular basis then colour me deeply concerned.

        I'll be sure to return the little doggies' biccies. Slipping? - you're having a laugh.

  3. aberglas

    Doctrinaire Secrecy

    Both parties are appalling. The costings and business case should have been open to public scrutiny from the beginning.

    Labor jumped on fibre to the home with absolutely no idea or analysis of what would work. Some sort of multi-technology mix is obviously the way to go, but what technologies needs to be determined carefully, and not just to be different to Labor. We want to neither waste money running fibre to the home when good HFC is available, nor waste money building fibre to nodes that have dieing phone wires coming out of them

    But most importantly, we need to target those most in need. Those that do not even have passable ADSL today.

    1. Jasonk

      Re: Doctrinaire Secrecy

      The problem with those dieing copper wires is NBN has to hit 25Mbps for 1 second every 24hrs.

      So when no on is using it hits 25Mbps when people on it watch is drop like a rock.

      Now let's look at the CBA with have ours with one member using his own report from 2011 claiming that plans would be upto $300 a month. On top of that -18b to the ecomony.

      Now look at NZ which already have FTTN and upgrading to FTTP has a CBA which says FTTP delivers $50b to the ecomony.

      Lobor developed a plan based off the expert panel which show it would be paid with 10 years of it being complete. Tutnbull has never release those figures for his MTM. Or that is claim of saving $30B is saved at all but added to OPEX as by 2027 from his own Stragic review give FTTP and MTM is just $1b difference in cost after that MTM cost more than FTTP.

    2. mathew42

      Re: Labor's failure

      It is very clear from the NBNCo Corporate Plan that beyond 'FTTP will save Labor from Telstra not co-operating', they had very little clue. As you have correctly suggested HFC is perfectly suitable for the majority. In fact if you use Labor's predictions (close to 50% on 12Mbps in 2026) and current fibre connection data (38% on 12Mbps with a further 38% at 25Mbps) FTTN is also adequate.

      Further evidence that Labor didn't have a clue comes from the fact that the first NBNCo Corporate Plan listed speed requirements (mostly above 100Mbps for optimal performance, yet they signed off on a plan where very few would see those speeds.

      1. Jasonk

        Re: Labor's failure

        And by Turnbull's own speech if the NBN doesnt hit its 75% take up it could add $B to the cost since he can't guarantee the high speeds to generate the money any more. Or if it does hit the revune target adds $B to the cost which it won't because it can't deliver the higher speeds. Or if it get delayed adds $B to the cost.

        You keep going on about her bottom 50% on the lower speed tries. When I time and again tell you the original plan only needed 20% on the highest tier that would pay for the network. And delivering 100Mbps to all reduces the cost of having to upgrade later as the average cost of FOD is high than deploying FTTP now.

        Since you have brought up HFC in its current stated it covers the current giv of delivering an upto 25Mbps so no upgrading required. Even the current ADSL network delivers and upto 24Mbps so it's in line with that plan so not upgrading to FAtTN is required. Or that you say people on FTTN sound pay for fiber while people on HFC are getting a free upgrade to dosis 3.1 why are they not paying for it the you say people on FTTN should when the NBN can deliver any speed better than what they have now.

        Or the fact the MTM cost the same as FTTP by 2027. Why would you want a rusted out combi when it's will cost you the same in the long run as a new Holden.

  4. david 12


    Have you been to Melton? "The Plain is characterised by vast open areas of fertile plain covered with grasslands and grassy woodlands,"

    Yes, costings based on Melton are non-representative. Because, (go and have a look), Melton is non-representative.

    Melton was (and is) a good place to do base-line costs. New. open, uniform: you can see what the costs are, and were the money is going. Not like real life, which is full of exceptions.

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