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ABC Midday Report -

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(generated from captions) This Program Is Captioned Live.

Live. On the welfare warpath,

the PM foreshadows a Budget

crackdown. For them there is a

lifetime of earnings and

the Government there's a

lifetime of tax-paying instead

of welfare payments. This is

a Government which sometimes

says the right thing but almost never does the right

thing. America's future shock

as Obama tries to rein in the

deficit. We have to live

within our means. We have to

reduce our deficit. Mubarak and sons detained for possible

crimes against Egypt. Maybe not as bad as some other

families in the kind of operate as a family

Mafia. And the local council where having a foreign policy

comes at a price. Hello and

welcome to ABC News across

Australia. I'm Nicole Chettle.

Weaker commodities prices are

weighing on the local share

market. The All Ordinaries is

down about 40 points, the

Nikkei is down, the Dow up and

the dollar's at More finance later in the

bulletin. Welfare groups say

athey're alarmed by a trend to

stereotype jobless people as lazy. again put the long-term lazy. The Prime Minister has

unemployed on notice. They're

going to be targeted in next

month's Budget to get back to

work. Tony Abbott supports the

direction but social service

political discussion is sending groups say the constant

the wrong message about the jobless. Here's political correspondent Greg Jennett.

Prime Minister has a plan for She's down to

thousands of others to do the

same. There is a lifetime of

earnings and for the Government there's a lifetime of tax-paying instead of welfare

payments so that's a great goal for the country. Workforce

participation is shaping as the

in Julia Gillard's Prime centrepiece of the first Budget

Ministership and the target is

what she calls hard cases who

haven't held down a job for

years. People who may have left school early,

have basic reading and writing skills, whose life has taken

them outside the economic

mainstream and for whom it can

be a long way back. In a be a long way back. In

priorities, the Prime lengthy speech on her

Minister's been light on detail but she does acknowledge

welfare to work policy does

want come cheap. When we put measures forward in the Budget,

they'll add up. Welfare groups

aren't opposed but are picking

up a tone in politics they find disturbing. I am concerned

that we may see the message that we

simply being - playing into the

stereotype that if you're not

currently in paid work, the

reason is you're lazy and not doing enough. The tone is

bipartisan. Tony Abbott covered

much the same ground in a

speech two weeks ago, calling

for changes to work it for the deal dOel and to move labour

from areas of high unemployment

to places where workers are in

short supply. The only

difference was it was entirely

devoid of serious content. The

centums were the same but there

was no hard policy at all in

the Prime Minister speech. The

mining boom and unemployment in

the 4% range is spurring Government action on workforce

participation, importing even

more workers is an option too

but one the Prime Minister says

should not be the Government's

first option.The final report

into the grounding of a Chinese

coal carrier on fatigue was a major contributor Barrier Reef has found officer

to the disaster. The 'Shen Neng

One' ran aground last April at

Queensland Douglas Shoal off the Central

Queensland coast. The carrier

damaged the reef and spilled

more than three tons of heavy

fuel on the water. The

Australian Transport Safety

Bureau's handed down its findings on the initial

made a handful of response to the incident. It's

recommendations to help prevent similar accidents from

occurring. There's always

plenty of politics in Local

council could be facing a steep bill if it goes ahead with its

own foreign policy on Israel. Marrickville council has drawn up a list of companies links to the Jewish Israel as

part of a boycott. In December

the council backed an international boycott,

campaign over Israel's divestment and sanctions

treatment of the Palestinian

territories. Simon Palan is at

the Marrickville council

chambers in Sydney. This could

be a very Marrickville if it goes ahead? Yes, Marrickville council

business papers suggest the

planned boycott of Israel could

cost rate payers almost $4 cost rate payers

million. This is on the basis

that the boycott will mean the

Marrickville council won't be

able to do any business with or

have any contracts with at least 12 international

companies. Now Marrickville

council says that these companies are either supporting Israel's military

it. The council is nominating the companies Hewlett-Packard,

Holden, vonlo, Unilever and Motorola among others as being

included and the council papers show

show that if the Marrickville

boycott goes ahead it could

cost $3 million just to replace

Marrickville council's Hewlett-Packard's computer

systems so it could be a costly

exercise. On the streets of

Marrickville today there's been

say despite the costs they

support the boycott, others are

less keen. I think councils are doing not what

they're supposed to do. Their

job, from the way I reckon, is

to fix the potholes in the

road, the sidewalks, collect

the garbage and that there is

As a rate-payer, yes, it is a not to be

costly exercise but embargoes

or sanctions on, I guess, any support that's needed for the

issues surrounding Israel and

Gaza, I think it's probably a

step forward. I'm outraged by

the stupidity of these 2-faced

ninnies, in fact they should go

further and go back to the

breeding, we'll go back five generations and make sure

there's no Jews or anyone born

in Israel. Simon, is this

boycott a done deal? Nicole. The Marrickville mayor

Fiona Byrne wasn't available

for any on-camera comments

today but relysed a statement a short time ago and says, "As

mayor, I will not lend my

support to this full suite of

options proposed by the staff."

It's not clear exactly what

that means or to what extent it

could represent any backdown

but either way, the council

will be voting on this boycott

next Tuesday to determine if it

will go ahead and

what form it will take. In the

past, the Marrickville past, the Marrickville mayor

Fiona Byrne has been saying the

boycott represents the

interests of community and the

council is acting on those interests in implementing the boycott but it has certainly

attracted a fair bit of

criticism. Some say it was the

policy that cost the Marrickville mayor, Fiona

Byrne, and Greens candidate her

seat in

under fire from other groups,

Federal and State politicians,

Jewish groups and others who

say Marrickville council should

steer clear of foreign policy

and instead focus on rates and rubbish. Thank you.

Republicans and Democrats are

trading insults again in

Washington, this time over the

President's plan to try to fix

America's huge budget deficit.

Barack Obama wants to raise taxes on the wealthy and cut America's Defence spending but Republicans are accusing him of

launching a new class war. It

was billed as the President's vision for tackling out-of-control out-of-control Government

borrowing. $4 trillion in cuts

over 12 years. In Defence,

reining in health spending but not dismantling Medicare and

removing Bush era tax cuts for

the wealthy. We cannot afford

$1 trillion of tax cuts for every millionaire and billionaire in refuse to renew them

again. Barack Obama calls his again. Barack Obama calls his a balanced approach, accusing Republicans of forcing the

elderly and the poor to bear

all the pain in their deficit

reduction plan but for

Republicans it was a partisan

attack and class warfare. What

we heard today was not physical

leadership from our commander

in chief, what we heard today

was a political broadside from our campaigner-in-chief. The

President briefed Republican leaders ahead failed to budge them. We don't

believe a lack of revenue is

part of the problem and so we

will not be discussing raising

taxes. This argument comes less

than a week after Washington

nearly shut down nearly shut down over finalising this year's Budget.

That last-minute comp arumise

still has to be voted on in

Congress with politicians on

the left and right still

grumbling about the grumbling about the outcome. On

top of that, the US is about to hit its $14.3 debt limit. Republicans are

demanding big concessions from

Democrats before agreeinging to

raise it. The White House says

not raising it would lead to

Obama is calling for both sides

to work together. American s

deserve and will demand we all

make an effort to bridge our

differences and find common

ground. But America's partisan

divide seems as wide as

ever. An American couple has complained to authorities their 6-year-old daughter was frisked at a New Orleans

airport. Had father of the child videoed the incident as

the parents felt it was inappropriate. A female security officer patted down

6-year-old Anna Drexel but said

she'd used the back of her

hands for sensitive areas. The

parents said they objected but

were not given any answers when

they asked why the search was

necessary. The US transportation security administration says the officer

followed correct procedure but

it's reviewing its screening policies for low-risk

populations such The problems for Egypt's former President are becoming more

serious with the detention of

his sons over corruption and violence allegations. Hosni Mubarak remains

Mubarak remains in hospital in

Sharm El-Sheikh where he's

being detained for 15 days

while corruption claims are investigated. On Tuesday, Hosni

Mubarak came to his local

hospital for treatment. The

next day he was a prisoner

there. He's been questioned over allegations of corruption, abuse of power and the killing

of protesters while he was

President of Egypt. His sons

have also been detained for 15

days for questioning. They've

been taken to Cairo's prison. Many Egyptians believe the Mubarak family has stolen tens

of billions of dollars. News of

their arrests was celebrated in

the capital. The arrest of

President Mubarak and his sons

will calm the Egyptian people

and we will take steps in the

right direction. The arrest has defused what awas turning

into a dangerous situation in

Egypt. In recent days,

protesters have been back in Tahrir Square, fearing they'd simply replaced one authoritarian regime with

another. The jailing of an

Egyptian blogger for

criticising the army was

condemned by human rights

groups inside and outside the

country. Most of all, there was

growing anger in Egypt that the ruling military council was too

slow bringing in the forms and prosecuting the members of the former regime.

The success or failure of this country's transition to

democracy will be crucial to

the stability of the entire region where other rebellions

like those in Syria and Libya

are faltering. Libya are faltering. Libya is showing

no sign of moving beyond the

bloody stalemate it's stuck in.

On Wednesday, Western and Arab

leaders met in Doha to discuss

ways of ending the crisis. Some

were urging NATO to do more

from the air and for the US take back its leadership of the

military operation but for

those on the ground near the

fighting, the solution is simple.

TRANSLATION: From the meeting

we only need to give the rebels

guns and weapons. After you

give this to the rebels we can

defeat Gaddafi and his

mercenaries. But ramping up

this battle is a dangerous and extremely unattractive option

from the outside.The Japanese

earthquake and tsunami have forced Toyota to suspend car manufacturing in Europe. The March

March disaster wrecked Toyota

cars waiting to be exported

from the port of Sendai as well as destroying as destroying parts factories. The shortage of components has

now flowed on to Europe,

causing an 8-day suspension of

European operations. It follows

the suspension of manufacturing

in north America last week. In

Japan itself, only three Toyota

plants are operating at limited

capacity. ABC reporter Hayden

Cooper flew in yesterday when the airport

reopened. This is a small town

near Sendai and this a perfect example of the total destruction that destruction that this tsunami

wrought on this area and it

will give you an idea of the

cleanup job that's happening right at the moment. There are

hundreds of workers in

bulldozers cleaning up but

there are also in other parts

around here Japanese soldiers

still searching for bodies. The destruction is

around this tiny little hill

we're standing on but you can

see exactly the scale of the

work that still has to be done

in this clean-up job. The airport may

airport may have opened today

at Sendai ask that is a

positive development and an

important mile stope, I guess,

for this region, but when you

look at this and see just how

much damage there is all over

the place right around - 360 degrees from where we're

standing at the moment, it

really does hammer home exactly dealing with. It's going to

take a long time to clean this

up. It's going to take months

at least, probably years rbleingsz but

rbleingsz but this, once

just shows exactly how just shows exactly how strong that tsunami was and exactly

how much damage it did.

While the politicians in

Washington are trying to bring the Budget deficit down, many Americans concerns. There are fears the

beleaguered housing market is

yet to hit rock bottom with the

number of foreclosures expected

to peak this year. North America correspondent Jane

Cowan reports. This is Stockton

outside San Francisco, dubbed

the most miserable city in the

United States. And doesn't

teeno Blanko know it It was

on my birthday when they sold

my house. Unable

she got breast cancer, Tina

managed to keep her house by

modifying her loan but it added

almost a decade to her

mortgage, which is now close to double what the house is worth. I was a surgical

technology. I worked very hard

for what I had. It's a misery

being felt across the country.

More than a million American

homes are forecast to be

repossessed this year. At this

call centre outside Los

Angeles, the cries pour in. It's heart-breaking.

Obviously for a lot of people

to even pick up the phone and

make that call they're embarrassed. A glut of

foreclosures is now

complicating a housing market

that's already stretched. Still-falling house prices,

tighter standards for credit

and mose of all stubbornly high

unemployment mean for many

Americans things are likely to get worse before they get

better. They're going to be

laing off teachers, firefighters, police,

Those are people that are

paying their mortgages. They're

going to be impacted. But some

economists say the ever-rising

number of foreclosures is mainly due to a backlog. The

key here is that the number of

problem mortgages, mortgages

that are seriously delinquent

wnt, has peaked and is starting

to fall. We are grinding

through the inventory of

problem mortgages and Lowe and behold the mechanism's

working. A strategy that's starting to wear thin. There's more evidence of the Australian

economy's resilience. New car

sales rose 3.4% in March to

just over 87,000 in seasonally adjusted

adjusted terms, the biggest

increase in eight months. The

upturn was the strongest in

NSW, Queensland and the Northern Territory. The Reserve

Bank Governor's warned there's

too much dependence on US-China

bileteralism to solve global Stevens raised the issue during

a speech in New York on the shift of power towards Asia,

describing China's economic

emergence as extraordinary but suggests are too dominant on big

issues. In the isregard it

doesn't help in my opinion that

so much of the discussion takes

place through a bilateral prism, particularly the US-China current account prism.

The thing is that these issues

are multilateral and not

this focus reduced the chance of solutions and that the G20

is a better forum. Kate

Middleton had better get used to life under the spotlight. She's become a

She's become a major player in

the fashion world. The dress

she wore at the announcement of her engagement to Prince

William sold out within 24

hours and hundreds of copies were soon being made. The

engagement of Prince William engagement of Prince William to Kate Middleton, the moment that

she became internationally

famous and so

demure designer number, a copy

of which quickly became a

high-street hit. Her taste is

clearly going to be

inflewential. She is probably

going to take more of a low-key

approach to start off in her

position which is a wise

decision. She doesn't really

need to do anything. All eyes

are going to be on her

anyway. They already are. The

front covers and column inches

devoted to Kate's

seem trivial to some but not to

the British fashion industry.

It thinks her choices will make

a big difference. Not just the

British fashion industry y think

think the world are going to be looking at Kate Middleton. I

don't think we've got anybody

else in the world that can

actually have that stature. Michelle Obama's

sartorial selections have given

a big boost to the brands she

chooses, as have Kate Middleton's. This dress selling at one per minute after

she wore it but her taste for

mainstream styles might have to

change. She will continue to

buy products off the rail, as we would say, just by walking

around stores, I'm not sure.

She may feel the need to work

independently and directly with

certain designers and certain

brands and the demands of her

wardrobe as she works around

the world will probably require

her to do that if nothing

else. Kate Middleton will need

to tread softly when to tread softly when making her

designer choices. As the British fashion industry has

spread their dreams under her

feet. Let's take a check of the

markets and here's Alicia Barry. There's been a

disappointing result from the

Bank of Queensland? The regional lender Bank of

Queensland has reported a 45%

slump in its first-half net

profit to 50.4 million dollars.

It says a significant increase

in bad debts was largely responsible for the slump. The

bank also is looking for a new Liddy said he won't extend Liddy said he won't extend his contract beyond the end of this year. Investors will receive an

interim dividend of 26 cents and that may help the share

price, up 1.5%. The major banks

are lower after a weak

performance from ja, P Morgan

on the US market. The

Commonwealth Bank is off by

0.8%, the ANZ is down a little

more than that. Half a per cent

has been wived off the value of

Westpac sar price and NAB is

off 0.4%. Shares in

Australia's biggest contractor Leighton Holdings have come off

a trading snolt Yes, shares in Leighton Holdings slumped Leighton Holdings slumped after resuming trade this morning.

It's the first chance investors

is have had to react to news

it's expecting a loss of $427

million after only recently

predicting a profit. The stock

is off 13%. We've heard from

miern Oz Mineral, reporting a 2% rise production but gold output has

fallen 23%. Shares in Oz

Mineral are off at 3.7%. How's

the broader market fairing?

Were wrr seeing broad-based losses midway through the

session with the major miners leading the declines. The All

Ordinaries shed 44 points or

nearly 1% and the ASX 200 is

off by 1%. There's news the

director of 10 network holdings will resign by the beginning of

May as director. Heels held

that position since 1998.

Shares in Ten are following the market lower. Taking a check of

the mark was - market's other big movers:

An upbeat Federal Reserve

assessment of the economy and

positive retail figures helped

Wall Street edge higher.

The consumer group 'Choice' is aware of doctors providing

unnecessary vaccinations. A

Choice report found some GPs

may be over-servicing and over-charging vulnerable people

about to go overseas. Joining

me now is Ingrid, surely doctors, as professionals, are

well-placeded to know what's

needed in terms of travel

vaccinations. They are but

there are doctors who specialise in travel

vaccinations and with 1 in 11

Australians travelling overseas

every year and many going places that are off the beaten

track, it really is important

that consumers go to doctors who

who have expertise in who have expertise in travel vaccinations otherwise they could be walking away with vaccinations they don't need

that can add up to hundreds of

dollars. Can you give us an example

example of the sort of extra

money people are paying for

unnecessary vaccination s? Vaccinations, single-dose

vaccinations, can cost $45 to

$85 but for a for example for rabies, you can

pay up to $360 for that program

so if you're going to a place and your doctor is

with that particular area and so just to be sure they're

prescribing you with vaccines

you may not necessarily need,

you could very well be spending

upwards of $1,000. It pays to

shop around, get the expert

advice from a doctor who

specialises in travel vaccinations. So Choice has evidence of this

practice occurring but wouldn't

some people think they'd rather be safe than sorry? Certainly

it's far better to be safe than

sorry but at the same time, you

don't want to be spending an

extra $500 on vaccinations that

you simply don't need. We have

admissions from the vice

president of the AMA and also specialists in the travel clin ic, medical travel clinic

industry, both saying that, there's strong evidence for doctors who are over-servicing,

in particular consumers are

vulnerable in the area of off

the beaten track type the beaten track type of travel. Ingrid from Choice,

thank you. In the last day or

so, Queensland police have

busted five illegal drug

laboratories manufacturing

substances including MDMA and

amphetamines. Two of the labs

were in Yeppoon and three on

the Sunshine Coast. The bust coincided

coincided with the launch of

national guidelines for

cleaning up illegal drug labs. dismantle and remove

potentially explosive amphetamine laboratories, a due process has to be

There is a comical residue left

on the affected areas and that's the reason we need to develop guidelines for how the

sites are properly cleaned. Those guidelines were launched by the Federal Government,

offering a step-by-step process for local authorities and land

owners who are responsible for

making the site

would worry in particular if

children were to wander on to a

site after a disruption and come across chemicals that

could potentially kill that child. Just three weeks ago,

five people were injured when a

drug lab exploded in Perth.

Last year, police discovered almost 300 clandestine drug

labs in Queensland, that's

almost double the year before

and the majority were found in residential areas. We're

dealing here with killer

We've got to get the drug labs

shut down and the perpetrators

behind bars. 600 drug labs were uncovered around the

increasing number of detections nation last year. There is an

nationally in every State and

the drug labs are becoming more

mobile and smaller. The Police

Minister wants people to report anything suspicious like

blacked-out windows, frequent visitors and evidence of chemical supplies being delivered or strong smells

coming from premises in neighbourhoods.The boxer coming from premises in their

Anthony Mundine has exacted revenge with the points decision win over Garth Wood in their middleweighting fight in

Brisbane overnight. Wood

knocked out Mundine last

rugby league star in trouble December and had the former

again in the sixth round. Mundine fought back strongly

and Wood looked groggy in the

ninth round. Mundine continued

to dominate in the 10th and was

awarded the fight by all three judges. If Wood in his style, his power,

his commitment and energy and

the style he brings to the ring

y can beat any fighter in the world at middleweight. Wood

wanted another fight with

Mundine but Mundine wants to

drop to the junior weight division. Michael Hussey's century helped Australia

complete a clean sweep of the

Bangladesh. Bangladesh finish 3-game series against

would 6/295. The 93. To the weather now and the

satellite picture shows some

cloud breaking up over Victoria

and Tasmania as a low edges

over the Tasman Sea. Ragged

cloud over SA is being generated by a trough, bringing

some patchy rain and

thunderstorms. Cloud in the far

northern tropics near a northern tropics near a weak

monsoon system is causing

stormy showers. The trough will

edge tomorrow easterly, causing

some patchy rain and

thunderstorms over the eastern

happening in Queensland and a

low in the Tasman will send

some showery winds into eastern

NSW and also into Victoria. A high pressure system will clear

SA and send some warm SA and send some warm easterly

winds into WA. The monsoon trough will maintain those

heavy showers across the

northern tropics. The forecast across

across the capital cities now, a possible thunderstorm in Brisbane.

A final check of the

That's the news for now on a

day when the Prime Minister

stepped up Budget warnings

about welfare payments and

authorities in Egypt detained

for a corruption probe. Hosni Mubarak and his two sons

for a corruption probe. There's continuous news on ABC News 24

and news online. I'm Nicole Chettle. For now, good-bye. Closed Captions by CSI Well, aren't you the country gent! Good shot, Colin. Who's next? All part of his camouflage. Still pulling, Carlo? Of course. Timmo. into the muscle. Ooh, it tickles! left-handed. One cartridge. In here, Take that in your right hand. I'm

I'm nipping to the pub, OK? Why? Don't excite him. He'll kill us all! No, I won't be a minute. Darling... Oh, don't worry. We forgot Carlo's Scotch. Take it out. Right. OK, Colin? Casserole, ten minutes. OK, stand back. Ready! And pull!

Good shot, Timmo!