The Australian

says it has got hold of “explosive extracts” of the Palmer report,
which shows how the country failed Cornelia Rau who spent five weeks in
Baxter detention centre before being assessed by a psychiatrist. And
like the rest of the pack, The Oz also reports on “bitter” former Labor leader Mark Latham‘s
new book which describes Kim Beazley as a “stand-for-nothing type of
leader” and three of the successful Labor premiers as “A-grade
ars*holes.” The Oz also reports that raunchy episodes of Big Brother have sparked talk of launching a new family-friendly G-rated TV network.

The Age
leads with Mark Latham’s “savage attack on the Labor Party” in his
much-anticipated biography, launched five months after what Michelle
Grattan describes as a “shattering exit” from national politics. In her
analysis, Grattan
says Latham failed the ultimate test, but no-one rigged the rules
against him. Meanwhile, Carlton identity and “industrial negotiator” Mick Gatto
has received a number of requests to tell his story and he has decided
to auction the rights to the exclusive interview – with the money to be
donated to the Royal Children’s Hospital.

Like the others, the Herald Sun goes big on Latham’s book on page one, but also finds room for Warnie’s latest SMS sex scandal with a blonde sales manager before his wife came to join him in England. And the fate of Schapelle Corby
is again in the news after Indonesia’s President Susilo Bambang
Yudhoyono vowed never to pardon drug smugglers, saying there was no
point campaigning for the release of foreigners held in his country’s
jails.

The Sydney Morning Herald
leads with NSW plans to introduce online reports on public school exam
results, truancy levels and teacher drop-out rates, with the Teachers
Federation claiming the reports would lead to “league tables that serve
no educational purpose.” But there was still plenty of space devoted to
Mark Latham
with a large photo of the former Labor leader in his driveway under the
headline: “Nightmare on Beazley Street: Latham bites back.” Meanwhile,
workplace minister, Kevin Andrews,
has urged employers not to bow to unions’ demands for pay deals before
the government’s industrial relations changes become law.

The Daily Telegraph splashes with “SHANE’S WORST FIGURES” – and The Tele‘s editorial
attempts to justify its sensational treatment of the story by pointing
out that as a sporting phenomenon Warne is not a private person.
Anyway, says The Tele, “perhaps it really isn’t his fault,
Freud would probably admit the possibility that his problem is some
form of pathology – that he’s suffering an illness. If so, he should
seek treatment.” Thanks for that prognosis, Dr Freudograph.

The Courier-Mail
reveals that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has given a
University of Queensland researcher $10 million – one of the nation’s
largest private grants – to fund research into how to reduce the
lifespan of mosquitoes that carry the deadly dengue virus. The West
reveals that WA senator-elect Judith Adams – one of 14 new senators
from Friday – has said she’s yet to be convinced that the sale of
Telstra would benefit rural and regional Australians. In Adelaide, The Advertiser
reports that the Kapunda Road Royal Commissioner is almost certain to
recommend that lawyer Eugene McGee and his brother should face criminal
charges for hindering police on the night that cyclist Ian Humphrey was killed.
The Mercuryreveals that Peter Cundall, host of ABC TV’s Gardening Australia, says he’s unrepentant about his opposition to a pulp mill in the Tamar Valley – despite being gagged by the ABC.

Peter Fray

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