Any takers. Melbourne new media entrepreneur Cameron
Reilly of The Podcast Network is challenging
pollies – and Federal Foreign Minister Alexander Downer is his first target.
MPs will be invited to sit a policy-based lie detector test, conducted by Steve
Van Aperen, Australian’s leading polygraph expert. “Anyone who refuses to sit
the test will have a black mark entered against their name on the website,”
Reilly says. “However, anyone who agrees to sit the test will have the session
recorded on video. It will be available for download from the site with an
analysis of the results by Van Aperen, enabling the community to use this
information before they vote in the next election.” Nice stunt, but we doubt
he’ll have any takers.

Queer news sense. Why didn’t any of our journos think of it? The New
York Times
has combined two very different Australian celebrations into the one
– the PM’s tenth anniversary bash and Mardi Gras.

What’s wrong with Queensland conservatives? A Labor MP is forced to resign because he prefers Thailand to his electorate. Good news for
the opposition? Not when they’re the Queensland Nats and Liberals. They can
mess up anything, according to new polling at Online Opinion.

Bolt at the blue.Glenn Milne comments on
Andrew Bolt’s intervention in Liberal leadership manoeuvrings on the Downer
side in The Australian today – but fails to mention the conservative controversialist’s right jab at former
Oxford boxing blue Tony Abbott from his column last Friday:
from Howard’s list is his old protégé, Health Minister Tony Abbott, who seems
to have lost Howard’s faith the more he’s asserted his own.” Ouch!

Looking forward. A cautious tick for new Defence Minister Brendan
Nelson from the latest issue of the Australian Defence Association’s newsletter
Defence Brief.
“Brendan Nelson has the reputation of tackling decisions like a physician,”
director Neil James writes. “Make an initial diagnosis and then undertake tests
before carefully coming to a decision. This scientific and mensurate approach
will make an interesting comparison to the ‘mastering the brief’ method usually
taken by his predecessor… It will certainly make many Defence bureaucrats
uncomfortable, not least because they have grown so accustomed to writing a
brief being halfway to getting the decision they desire.”

Cocky poetry. Friday’s ode to HM the Queen (item 12)
isn’t new, we’re told, but comes from the late Denis Kevans.

Poetry corner. Ratbag South Australian MP Peter Lewis, who has
already told parliament how he had to execute a mate while on a secret
mission in South East Asia, is keen to get more practice in.
He’s called for the death penalty for a range of offences and chemical
castration for paedophiles, prompting these thoughts from Democrat
candidate David Winderlich:

In the fearful state that we’re in.
Castration and death are no sin.
Garrotte or injection?
We need more selection
Mike and Rob, let the bidding begin.

Recipe of the Day:
Here’s a taste of what the PM’s belly might be up for in Delhi. Curried lamb chops represent a nice cultural blend while Tandoori Mushroom Curry hints at the issue that’s clouding Howard’s visit. Whatever the case, there’s no doubt that the menu is spicy.

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