tip off

Constant over-reach on AWU is no accident

The constant over-reach that has characterised the AWU scandal reflects its lack of substance. And there was plenty else happening in Parliament this week that didn’t get a look-in.

Next time you find a press gallery journalist complaining about the dire quality of public debate in Australia, ask them what they did during the AWU saga.

In a week rich with policy issues of substance and import — the Murray-Darling Basin, a nationally important, years-long process over which many MPs have agonised, Australia’s UN vote on Palestine, the continuing controversy over offshore processing, the start of the government’s NDIS and education reforms — the focus of course was on what Julia Gillard did 20 years ago.

One of the problems with the analogy repeatedly used this week of the Godwin Grech matter is that in that instance, there were specific allegations of corrupt behaviour by the Prime Minister and Treasurer in the course of their roles as such, capable of being tested against specific evidence, evidence which turned out to have been fabricated by a Liberal Party mole.

It is only this week that we have arrived at an allegation about Julia Gillard doing something illegal over twenty years ago, and even that is problematic: it was advanced on Tuesday by Julie Bishop, retracted later that day by Bishop, advanced again by Tony Abbott yesterday, then retreated from yesterday (downgraded to “conduct unbecoming”) when he was put on the spot in Parliament, then advanced again after Parliament had risen.

This morning, George Brandis, continuing his self-conceived role as a sort of alternate High Court Chief Justice, laboriously tried to retool the allegations of criminality by shifting away from specifics about her letter to the Corporate Affairs Commission in favour of claiming, based on a reading of her 1995 exit interview, that Gillard always knew the Association was dodgy and therefore must have been acting illegally in advising on its registration.

But most significantly, Brandis declined to repeat his claim made yesterday under Parliamentary privilege that Gillard was a criminal.

There’s been a similar pattern in the media coverage: there have been four instances where media outlets have been forced to retract, apologise for or clarify claims they have made about what Julia Gillard did in the 1990s.

The most recent one was yesterday, by The Age in Mark Baker’s article, which had to be changed online because it claimed that Gillard has told the WA Corporate Affairs Commission that the AWU Workplace Reform Association had no trade union links. Remarkably, Baker today was trying to wish this away, claiming the only problem was “editing changes” at Fairfax, and that Gillard was “hairsplitting.”

If Gillard had told the Commission that the body had no trade union links, it would have been a blatant lie, and illegal. The claim was not merely wrong, but defamatory.

There’s a pattern in all this, in the constant overreach, amendment and overstatement by both the media and the opposition. It’s what happens when you have a smear campaign rather than specific, fact-based allegations of wrongdoing. If you don’t have a core of fact to rely on, you’re at constant risk of going too far.

The fact that both the opposition and many in the media have been guilty of this is perhaps the reason why Tony Abbott will walk away unscathed from this week. Abbott has made the most serious allegations possible against a Prime Minister, and one of his leadership group has demanded she step down, only to retreat from both of them when challenged in Parliament and fail to back up the claims.

Malcolm Turnbull must be wondering what he did wrong. When he made the same mistake, having been deliberately misled by Godwin Grech about the evidence, he was excoriated for it. No such fate for Abbott; indeed, his media cheerleaders want him to “stay the course”.

Unfortunately the only “staying of the course” that can be done will be through the media. The opposition and the media wasted four days of parliament on this issue this week. At some point, we might get to discussing issues of relevance to Australians in 2012.

130
  • 1
    Saugoof
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

    A lie is half-way around the world before the truth puts on its boots”. Over a century later that is still the case. It’s disheartening when that seems to be opposition strategy.

    The other thing that’s puzzling me somewhat in this saga is the amount of coverage this non-entity has been managing to generate. Even if the worst sorts of hush-hush allegations turned out to be true which I don’t believe for a second, this still all sounds barely more serious than a “got shouted lunch but declared it on expenses anyway” type indiscretion.

  • 2
    James Dean
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    What I wanted to hear the PM say, all week -

    Since you’re not interested in using this parliament to help me govern the nation, Further Questions Can Be Put On Notice.”

  • 3
    Jimmy
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    ”. At some point, we might get to discussing issues of relevance to Australians in 2012.” Judging by yhe medias coverage of this issue we should wait for 2032 to discuss things that are relevant today.

    Any idot can see these allegations have no substance but it tkes a very special idiot to see the lack of evidence as proof positive Gillard did something wrong, fortunately the conervatives have some very special idiots.

  • 4
    Julian Fitzgibbon
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    The difference with Godwin Grech and the AWU is fairly obvious. Real money disappeared into the AWU and no utes were misappropriated in utegate. Further, Turnball relied on a forged document.
    Bishop, I think, may have tried to introduce a forged document on Tuesday when she waved around something she said showed a link between a “Kew Renovators” and “Town Mode” (a recipient of 17500 dollars from slush accounts in 1994), but the media stayed strangely mum about it and we haven’t heard a peep about this since. Apart from that they have been careful only to use material of impeccable provenance. The absolute reliance on documents does tend to handicap what the Coalition can claim as I understand many files have gone missing, both in WA and at Slater and Gordon.
    It would seem to me quite acceptable, as an example, for the Coalition to say since the Prime Minister can not recall the sum of 5000 dollars an AWU employee said he placed in her account, we are unable to rule out that she benefited from AWU affair until her memory improves. But even that inductive leap is a bridge to far at the moment for a Coalition ultra-cautious after utegate.

    I would simply say if she wasn’t ethical enough for Slater and Gordon, she is not ethical enough to be Prime Minister.

  • 5
    BH
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

    Well puffy, Bernard. I dont count on the media ever looking at itself tho. Isn’t the agenda that the PM has to go down in a ballmof flame and the Sun God’s chosen one, the LOTO, has to emerge the victor?

    Writing about policy is too much like hard work. 2013 will be no different to this year. Abbott, while painting himself as gentle and polite, will still be fullmof smear. Woe beside Labor if they dare to challenge him omit. He knows the MSM will back him. Poor Australia

  • 6
    BH
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    Sorry Bernard - my first words were meant to be “well put, Bernard”

  • 7
    Lady White Peace
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    When will the Media be obliged to tell the truth just like the rest of us do??
    No wonder they are becoming irrelevant and losing readers. Spin, Distortion and Slander surely there is a law against this?? If not why not?

  • 8
    Julia
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    Depressing, isn’t it. I can’t help wondering whether the Lib’s strategy is premised on Abbott’s own behaviour in relation to setting up and actually administering a slush fund. He seems to be projecting his own experience onto the PM, for I cannot see any other reason as to why they all would seem so darned convinced of the BS they trot out day in and day out.

  • 9
    Lady White Peace
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

    Yes Julia very depressing and very telling - just think they have no policies , they have no new ideas with which to enchant the public; SO they sink to the bottom of their barrels and find slime and sadly assume that everyone must be like them …
    and thus project their SLIME onto someone/everyone else.

  • 10
    drmick
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    It appears the press gallery are aggressively stupid and ignorant.
    The rest of the world picked up on “the” speech, while “they” were talking about how well their plan was going; missed the point entirely. The rest of the world have seen again what the aggressively stupid have not. What is it with that mob? Any wonder their papers are going down the drain. Good riddance I say

  • 11
    Jimmy
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    DrMick - On “the speech” even while the evidence was mounting that it resonated with the voting public and the rest of the world were praising it, the Australian journalists were busy telling everyone they missed the point and couldn’t understand what the all too clever journalists were saying or why they were saying it. After all apparently the journalists role is to tell us what to think, not report the facts.

  • 12
    Jimmy
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

    Julian Fitzgibbon - “It would seem to me quite acceptable, as an example, for the Coalition to say since the Prime Minister can not recall the sum of 5000 dollars an AWU employee said he placed in her account, we are unable to rule out that she benefited from AWU affair until her memory improves.” I put $5k into your account 20 years ago, if you can’t remember it we can’t trust you on anything else because I did it.

    And was JWH ethical when he bailed out his brothers business? Or was Julie Bishop Ethical when she delayed payments of James hardie victims until after they had died? Or was Abbott ethical when he punched the wall?

    Or was Tony being ethical when he said this “‘Bad bosses, like bad fathers and husbands, should be tolerated because they do more good than harm’” or “The problem with the Australian practice of abortion is that an objectively grave matter has been reduced to a question of the mother’s convenience.’”

  • 13
    shepherdmarilyn
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    Baker did not declare his long friendship with Nick Styant whatever.

  • 14
    klewso
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    Bernard you make this smear campaign sound like a bull-shit auction….?

  • 15
    (the other) HR Nicholls
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    Mark Baker’s pathetic abrogation of responsibility for what he wrote goes to the heart of what’s wrong with mainstream media. If it gets rid of pissweak arguments like that, I say bring on press regulation.

  • 16
    klewso
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    Wasn’t Turnbull’s fault that he was unpopular in all the Right places?

  • 17
    Vincent Matthews
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

    Bernard has exemplified journalism at its best. Years ago anyone starting work on a newspaper was told: The most important thing in journalism is accuracy.
    Now the philosophy is “Never let the facts spoil a good story.
    A former chief of publicity for a German government said :”If you repeat a lie often enough it becomes accepted as the truth.” This advice has been followed in Australia in recent months by journalists and politicians.
    (Logged in as Victor Terry)

  • 18
    drmick
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

    So, because the accusers cant produce a document that doesn’t exist, they don’t have to apologise for their lies?
    This is free speech Murdoch style.
    He does it in the States, he does it in England and he does it here.
    The press, the opposition and the animals that dug this skeleton up are a pathetic laughing stock and much the poorer for their effort. It would be nice if they were a few million dollars poorer as well. It would also be expensive as the victim in this can get bucket loads of compensation even if she cant get an apology or her reputation back.
    Bring on the bride of finklestein.

  • 19
    Frank Campbell
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

    There’s a pattern in all this”

    There sure is, and trust Bernard Keane to miss that it’s all about trust.

    Missing letters, missing files, files not kept, bank records unavailable, memory blanks…all wreathed in clouds of extreme insult and Hyper Bole by Gillard’s low-rent lawyer obfuscation…
    that’s the pattern.
    Wilson and Blewitt are moral landfill.
    The question remains- was Gillard the third member of a corrupt clique?
    What was she doing in Boulder, WA, assisting Wilson to siphon funds from a union fund into his own “vehicle”?

    The pattern points to a conclusion: Gillard dumped the boyfriend and bagman Blewitt when the AWU woke up to the ripoff. She was in effect sacked by Slater and Gordon.
    Gillard was desperate. Her ambitions were jeopardised.

    Was she in it up to her ankles, waist or neck?

    Judicial inquiry.

  • 20
    klewso
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

    As for “retooling”? Who’s more experienced than the supercilious fustian George Brandis - he seem’s to have one for every selectively conceivable occasion.

  • 21
    zut alors
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

    …George Brandis, continuing his self-conceived role as a sort of alternate High Court Chief Justice…’

    Well spotted, Bernard.

    Coalition leaders aren’t renowned for knowing when they’ve worn out their welcome: prime example, J W H0ward.

  • 22
    Julian Fitzgibbon
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

    @Jimmy: ” I put $5k into your account 20 years ago, if you can’t remember it we can’t trust you on anything else because I did it.”
    But I do remember it - it was for procuring for you that girl and those two goats! How could I possibly forget that?

    Actually my point is not that this convenient amnesia proves Gillard untrustworthy - far from it, I expect she was frequently getting $5,000 dropped into her bank account - just until someone can come up for a plausible explanation (even if the explanation is that the AWU employee was giving false evidence from malice), there seems a reasonable possibility that she did benefit financially from the AWU affair. Not proof certainly, but a reasonably possibility. And who knows, that possibility might be sufficient to jog Gillard’s memory?

  • 23
    JimmyF
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    @Frank Campbell, I can’t believe that you are suggesting that lack of evidence is evidence of guilt. Let’s apply that to all criminal investigations, shall we?

    And let’s look at the $5K allegation, since you refer to “missing bank records” and it is the perfect example of overreach. Firstly, there is no evidence that any money was ever deposited. Secondly, if in fact it was, there’s no evidence that it was improperly sourced. Finally, if it was deposited and it was improperly sourced, there’s no evidence that Julia knew that it was improperly sourced. Given all this, it’s hard to imagine an allegation less substantiated and yet it is repeated ad nauseum, in the hope that somehow it becomes true. To be part of this cycle of smear does no-one involved any credit.

  • 24
    Sharkie
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    George Brandis, continuing his self-conceived role as a sort of alternate High Court Chief Justice”
    I can’t wait for him to improve his legal argument by adding the words “…but mostly it’s the vibe”.

  • 25
    Jimmy
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    Julian Fitzgibbon - So are you admitting you are guilty of bea sti ali ty given you facilitated the act and profited from it, therefore given the logic used to find the PM guilty you committed the act?

    And there is one persons word one amount of $5k was deposited and no other evidence, plus given it was supposedly after a night at the casino there s the possibility that even if it did happen it was legitimate winning and nothing to do with the AWU money but form that you deduce she was in on the fraud and got multiple payments - give me a break!!

  • 26
    Julian Fitzgibbon
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

    @Jimmy, bestiality!??? I honestly had no idea that is what you wanted the goats for!
    I don’t deduce she was in on the fraud, I said it was a clear possibility, but this combination of aggression, stonewalling, fast talking and amnesia is exactly how I would expect someone who was profiting from the fraud to behave.
    The best way to clear Gillard would be if we could determine what happened to the money, but neither Wilson, Blewitt or Gillard seem to know. So we end up coming back to Mr Hem and his bundle of $5K.

  • 27
    shepherdmarilyn
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

    Why would anyone believe Brandis? He was the lead in the get Craig Thomson, get David Hicks, get Peter Slipper and has so far got nothing to show for it.

  • 28
    Daly
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Bernard.
    But all those misled Australians who get their ‘news’ from any mainstream sources know no better as they have no facts to base any judgement upon. Your second para is the point and the shame of what passes for journalism in Australia today.
    Not one mainstream news source questioned the Opposition’s position in Parliament yesterday. To their shame they all fell for the ‘game’ and didn’t take any responsibility for giving voters facts. Disgraceful.

  • 29
    drmick
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    Jimmy. I am from the Oz; for a fee I will swear that i saw that animal fitzgibbon mating with a gibbon. There is justice your style Julian. some people will say anything and do anything for money; and some run the country inspite of the dags and fleas.

  • 30
    Sharkie
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    So Julian Fitzgibbon is running the, “I don’t have any evidence to back up my accusation, but I demand you produce evidence to prove it never happened” line.
    Julian, I hear you stole some money 20 years ago. Now prove it never happened and then watch me shift the goalposts.
    It’s a poor argument for a internet punter, it’s pathetic for MPs and journos to be running with this type of cr&p.

  • 31
    michael r james
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

    I disagree with BK’s comment: “perhaps the reason why Tony Abbott will walk away unscathed from this week.” Although existing detractors of both Abbott and Gillard will have their blind prejudices confirmed (Frank Campbell, lookin’ at you), I believe more of the middle will have got a quite terrible image of Abbott — thru all the noise, his outsourcing of the sh!t-stirring to the hapless (and female) Julie Bishop looks terrible (his mention of gender in his 15 minutes merely reminded everyone of this), and at the same time the indomitability of Gillard also shone thru.

    In her analysis of the week, and of the year, I reckon at least one of the Canberra press gallery (in addition to BK), Laura Tingle, got it right: (this is open access):

    (afr.com/p/opinion/through_the_hurly_burly_to_last_DUVguZgSWOZj7BrfW8xIiN)
    Canberra observed: Through the hurly-burly to a last hurrah
    LAURA TINGLE Friday 30 Nov 2012.
    .
    The parliamentary year finishes with Labor recovered from oblivion in the polls but barely with its toes in the land of political contestability but Abbott a deeply unpopular Opposition Leader.
    .
    But the Prime Minister has led her government safely through a wild parliamentary year and finishes it with both Abbott and Rudd diminished threats. It has not always been pretty or smart but in the tradition of Fantastic Mr Fox and the wolf, we raise a silent paw to the Prime Minister in homage to her sheer resilience.

    I think Tingle also nailed the business about Gillard’s so-called defeat by caucus:

    …that cabinet government is not just a good thing, but what we are supposed to do here in Australia. …. However it got to its final position, the government had an argument about it and got to a much better, more considered position than the one the Prime Minister had originally put up, that everyone could live with. (Even though abstaining from a UN vote is still objectively a pretty pathetic position.)”

    And Tony Jones should get a nod for interviewing Tony Windsor and discussing some of those more important issues on Lateline.

  • 32
    Jimmy
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

    Julian - “@Jimmy, bestiality!??? I honestly had no idea that is what you wanted the goats for!” Doesn’t matter according to your logic (and that of all those who accuse Gillard) if I f..ked them so did you.
    And really on your willingness to accept flimsy evidence as proof all it would take is one person to accuse me of f..king them and you are automaticall y guilty.

    t this combination of aggression, stonewalling, fast talking and amnesia is exactly how I would expect someone who was profiting from the fraud to behave.” It is also how you would expect someone who has been falsely accused who can’t remember something that didn’t happen to behave.

    Face the facts there is no evidence of wrong doing and all this talk of “clear possibility” is just BS

  • 33
    michael r james
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

    Groan, in moderation again. Just recommending to Crikey readers Laura Tingle’s (open access) piece in today’s AFR (Through the hurly-burly to a last hurrah): ” ..a wild year ends with Tony Abbott a diminished threat.”

    Another point that hasn’t been quite nailed by BK or anyone and deserves to be: The Australian, via bloody Dennis Shananigans this morning on Fran Kelly/RN (along with Michelle (Gillard-should-resign) Grattan was the usual fair and balanced summation; not) more or less explicitly admitted that the months of unending accusations they have been printing (recycled from Michael Smith, Ralph Blewitt, Harry Nowicki) and briefing the Coalition on, has amounted to zilch, zip, nada, rien, nothing. He said it comes down to the “new” and serious revelations in yesterdays rag re the WA angle. The one that induced Abbott to go public with a defamation of the PM (and Brandis with his under senate privilege).

    Given their behaviour this week I seriously think the media should be asking for the resignations of Abbott, Bishop, Pyne and Brandis.

  • 34
    Julian Fitzgibbon
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

    Julian, I hear you stole some money 20 years ago. “
    It’s true, but I am not a fit person to be Prime Minister.

    Let me put it this way, I have formed a judgement based on what scant evidence has emerged and my understanding of human nature. My judgement is that I believe a fraudster is occupying the Lodge, I don’t suppose she is committing fraud at the moment and I don’t suppose she has become PM just to get free home renovations at her house at Lalor (although judging by her exit interview at Slater and Gorden I would suggest perimeter security at the Lodge should be stepped up as she seems to have problems with unrequested tradies breaking into her home and spontaneously commencing substandard renovations). Some of her performances this week have even been quite amusing, especially the crack about Humphrey B Bear. But you can’t disassociate the performance from the substance, where Bishop was being coy about having a 10 minute phone conversation, Gillard was being coy about the disappearance of large sums of cash.

    The problem with having (hypothetically) a fraudster as PM is she probably isn’t a strong or independent leader, rather some people are able to pull her strings. Now whether this is for things that are annoying but essentially harmless, such as having to make sure David Feeney gets a Victorian Federal seat, or more serious things like agreeing to have US troops on our soil or trying to obstruct Palestinian recognition, who can tell? But surely there must be someone in the parliamentary party who can string some words together and hasn’t such alarming skeletons rattling around in their closets? Wouldn’t it be nice to have a Labor party where the dirtiest politicians didn’t float to the top?

  • 35
    Jimmy
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 5:22 pm | Permalink

    Julian Fitzgibbon - “Let me put it this way, I have formed a judgement based on what scant evidence has emerged and my understanding of human nature.” So in other words I vote Liberal and think they should always be in power so if someone in a pub told me the PM murderd someone I take that as a fact.

  • 36
    Julia
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    Seriously, if you haven’t done so (and I can appreciate why you wouldn’t of) you should check out Pickering’s Post. It is all written like some terribly, cheap trashy novel; and the worst part is a lot of it is being regurgitated as factual information! The MSM should hang their heads in shame… they have let a delusional nut job, aided and abetted by the Opposition, lead them on a wild goose chase. Idiots.

  • 37
    Frank Campbell
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

    JimmyF: $5k then is about $10k now. Not small change for a salaried lawyer. Wilson says he might have deposited it in Gillard’s account. Gillard says she can’t remember, but “partners” might well put money in each other’s accounts. Indeed. The money was probably slush…

    The partisan bias in these posts is so very crikey: if it was Abbott, you’d all be saying “judicial inquiry”. So would I.

  • 38
    oldskool
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

    I agree Frank just like the judicial enquiry into Howard bailing out his brother, or raising excise to protect Manildra after telling parliament that he didn’t meet with Honan when he did, or the AWB enquiry that specifically excluded ministerial responsibility….

    If Liberal supporters were even remotely consistent I could handle your whinging.

    Oh, yeah- it is totally reasonable that Tony ‘can’t remember’ whether he punched a wall, intimidating a female political opponent…

    Hypocrite.

  • 39
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 6:47 pm | Permalink

    Michael Williamson, HSU, Bruce Wilson. Spot the theme running from then to now. There’s method in the mad (monk’s) smear.

  • 40
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    Oh add in ICAC hearing into NSW Labor MPs and the crushing defeat of the Keneally ALP Govt. There’s a theme, whether you agree with it or not.

  • 41
    Kate Ahearne
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

    This has been the most appalling, on-going beat-up. Lies and inuendo have been planted, nurtured, repeated and reaped. I don’t want to be governed by people who behave this way, so I’m begging the Labor Party to give me a decent, policy-driven alternative. If there is any actual evidence of criminality, where is it? When Parliament re-convenes in February, could we please get on with policy and legislation? In the meantime, I takes me hat off to Julia Gillard. I’m not her biggest fan, but I know I would never have been able to keep my chin up the way she has done, under the circs. So, let’s have policy about refugees that doesn’t shame us all, and let’s be glad that Palestine is one step closer to being a state - that is, a homeland. So please, whoever we are, let’s just behave decently and see what happens.

  • 42
    Frank Campbell
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

    You’re right Oldskool…Howard’s brother, Keating’s piggery, Kennett’s wife using comcars to flog clothing like some bejewelled baglady..why isn’t there a permanent anti-corruption body to deal with politicians’ sleaze?

  • 43
    shepherdmarilyn
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

    Iraq invasion, AWB - spot the link.

  • 44
    fiona
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

    Mr Keane,

    The 1995 interview between Mr Gordon and Ms Gillard was in no sense an exit interview. Ms Gillard left Slater & Gordon some time after that interview.

    I do wish that the media - especially the new and allegedly more accurate media - could fact check. Especially given that that’s one of the major complaints against Old Media.

  • 45
    AR
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

    As posted elsewhere,” what didn’t Gillard do, and when didn’t she do it?”.
    On tuther hand WTF are the tories playing at (I won’t call it ‘thinking’ - note MatBULL’s studied silence.

  • 46
    stanny
    Posted Friday, 30 November 2012 at 11:48 pm | Permalink

    Laura Smyth

  • 47
    Karen
    Posted Saturday, 1 December 2012 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    I have never seen a lazier, hypocritical and more hopelessly bereft )pposition who are seeking power on the back of personal attack and utter sh$t. In addition, not one question on policy in the last parliamentary sitting (except Turnbull on Palestine, rightly so), a sitting when the government introduced the NDIS. This is an outrage and a waste of tax-payers money.

    All we have from 20 years ago is Julia doing a freebie for her boyfriend (which lawyers do, so f — kin’ what) and getting absolutely shafted in the process by Wilson who feels, so guilty, that he’s come out and said Julia didn’t know anything. Even Blewitt has said it. Then, a letter to the WA commission which truthfully says Julia had incorporated an association and, big deal, if it happened to be for a trade union and slush fund. Where’s the crime? Given the l* e s and cr-okery in the Howard administration that Abbott, Bishop et al defended for all those years, as far as Im concerned all these hypocrites can go and get f — ked.

  • 48
    Karen
    Posted Saturday, 1 December 2012 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    Unfortunately, we have now have a fight to the death and a
    titanic struggle for power with Murdoch and his lieutenant editors and national correspondents marshalled on one hand and Julia and her party on the other hand. Ltd News hoping to kill two birds with one stone: an inquiry to kill Gillard over the slush fund and the union movement at the same time. How convenient. How about an inquiry into corporate malfeasance, which is huge, more costly and destructive, you cr — ps!

  • 49
    Karen
    Posted Saturday, 1 December 2012 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    Note to News Ltd and that d*ck Costa - there won’t be an inquiry because there aint no evidence against Julia. Choke on that as you would a cup of cold vomit and weep.

  • 50
    Person Ordinary
    Posted Saturday, 1 December 2012 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    @Julian Fitzgibbon, you wrote ” … I believe a fraudster is occupying the Lodge …”

    You do realise that belief is intellectual failure, don’t you? That is, a belief is a decision to stop exploring for objective fact and to start finding deluded justification for contentions you judge to serve your self interest.

    Is it the case that everyone to the left of you can see this flaw, but they just can’t make you see it?

Womens Agenda

loading...

Smart Company

loading...

StartupSmart

loading...

Property Observer

loading...