Murdoch and power. As in Britain, so too in Australia.
Lord Justice Leveson after saying there is no evidence the owner of The Times and The Sun did any explicit deals with prime ministers in return for support from his newspapers.
“Sometimes the very greatest power is exercised without having to ask, because to ask would be to state the blindingly obvious and thereby diminish the very power which is being displayed. Just as Mr Murdoch’s editors knew the basic ground-rules, so did politicians.
“The language of trades and deals is far too crude in this context. In their discussions with him, whether directly or by proxy, politicians knew that the prize was personal and political support in his mass circulation newspapers.”
Katter Party gets a boost. With or without Clive Palmer’s money, Bob Katter’s new political movement is getting a huge boost from the discontent within the Queensland Liberal National Party. A Senate seat next year will not be a surprise.
A pair of civil federal political opponents. What a refreshingly pleasant change from the parliamentary screaming to watch Lyndal Curtis on ABC News 24 early last evening chatting with the government and opposition whips Joel Fitzgibbon and Warren Entsch. A polite and unagressive host getting the views on the parliamentary year that was from two men largely responsible for making the minority House of Representatives chamber work. And the two men, avoiding the harsh and extravagant language of their leaders just hours before, were enough to restore my faith that there is still hope for the parliamentary system. The pair are my politicians of the year.
The predictive power of markets. A good result for the University of Iowa’s Electronic Market conducted on the presidential election. Participates were asked to venture a modest amount of their own money on the votes the two major candidates would receive and the wisdom of the crowd proved decidedly better than the average of the polls published by Real Clear Politics and more than held their own with the New York Times’ statistical guru Nate Silver.
S0 we ended the hospital blame game, did we? From Melbourne’s Herald Sun this morning:
When it comes to federal-state relations there is nothing new. Just more of the blame game.
The marriage cycle. Married at a median age of 31.4 for men and 29.3 for women. Men divorced at a median age of 44.5 and women at 41.7. That’s the story from the Australian Bureau of Statistics this morning.
Optimists needed. You need to be a real optimist, I wrote in these snippets on Tuesday, to think that the problem of Greece and the Euro has been anything other than postponed once again. A pessimist I might be but I did not imagine to be reading this come Friday: “The eurozone’s debt relief plan for Greece has hit serious trouble within days as banks and pension funds balk at fresh losses, raising fears that the package could unravel before a deadline in mid-December.”
Pussy Riot the early leader. In the Crikey version of Time’s Person of the Year ballot the early leader is Russian pop group Pussy Riot just ahead of the Mars Rover. Vote HERE.
News and views noted along the way.
America’s Political Recession — The odds are now about 36% that the US will be in a recession next year as partisan polarization reaches levels never before seen