Re: Not shocked
First, a little history:
The Howard Government had contracted a project to deliver broadband speeds to Australian communities that were too far off the main communications lines to get good Internet speeds. This is for places it would have cost tens of thousands to connect to each home. It was (from memory) around $4.5B and well targetted to those recipients that really needed it.
To win the 2007 election K.Rudd promised super high speed for every home, whether they wanted it or not. This was only going to cost a few billion more than the Howard Government was already committed to. When he won, he bought his way out of the existing contracts and started to build the biggest monopoly supplier in Australian history. We are now in 2007 and already over $40B, with hardly any fibre in the ground (compared to the amount that is still needed). Estimates put the final cost over $70B, but I think they're still too optimistic.
So the Abbot Government wantsto reduce the cost without abandonning the entire project. A simple way to do that is to deliver fiber to the node (FTTN) instead of fiber to the home (FTTH). It uses the existing copper for the last few hundred metres instead of replacing it with fibre. This will save tens of billions, provide high speed to everybody, while still allowing those very few people that want 100MB and are willing to pay for it to upgrade to FTTH. There is a big debate about the merits of FTTH over FTTN in the media, I think most of it was funded by the outgoing Government. Despite claims to the contrary, the copper network is still in good condition - it is what makes your home phone work after all.
Only a fool that wasn't paying for it would refuse to see the need to use those tens of billions for something useful, such as hospitals, roads, educating cyclists to follow the road rules, etc. On the other hand, we have the current Board seriously compromised by their public commitment to FTTN.
So for somebody to say "The new boss wants to implement a substandard project and add a billion dollars onto it for no good reason", isn't just pretending ignorance of what the Government is actually doing, they are lying about what is important to the people of Austalia.