Not in my Prime Ministership? Timing is everything in politics – so does that explain Peter Costello’s comments on nuclear power at his presser this morning. “What I’ve said over a consistent period of time is that as of today, nuclear power is more expensive than the power we’re currently using,” Cossie said. “And, that being the case, why would you set up generation of more expensive power? But I do believe, over time, the economics could change. And if you’re looking at 10 or 15 years in that kind of framework, maybe it would become commercial. But I don’t think it will be commercial in 10 or 15 months.”

Distancing himself? Ok, so we all know that the current lot of Liberals and Malcolm Fraser have issues, but doesn’t John Howard – or the AAP scribes reporting his comments – remember what party the PM belonged to between 1975 and 1983:

Mr Howard told the meeting there were four political fundamentals in the coalition’s favour.

“One, a strong economy; two, the government is regarded by the community as a competent government; three, we have a very good team with a breadth of life experiences; and four, we’re seen as a united government,” he said.

“These are the four pillars which can stand against all sorts of surges in electoral tide.”

Mr Howard said those four fundamentals were missing in the Keating, Fraser and Whitlam Labor governments when they lost power.

Power people. Ron Walker is the chairman of Fairfax and the former federal treasurer of the Liberal Party – and the perfect illustration of a backroom power broker. We’re chasing the names of the most powerful people in media and politics this election year. Who else should be on the list? Your suggestions, please, to [email protected].

No-one reads them, so this is how they react? A Crikey reader tells: “This morning I had 26 emails from New Matilda. I am not even a subscriber for crying out loud!”

The many lives of Kevin Rudd. Is Kevin Rudd all things to all people? It appears so. Spot the remarkable resemblance between the opposition leader and seventies singer-songwriter Paul Williams and Nicholas Bond-Owen, the child actor who played the bratty son of George and Mildred’s snotty-nosed neighbours.


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