The claim in your latest Crikey that both senior ABC local radio jobs could have been located anywhere is not true. Here are the ads from the ABC’s “official bulletin” … actually the new director, Kate Dundas advertised both as Ultimo or Southbank in the first instance and then later sent an email saying that was an error, and that the regional job could be situated anywhere.

You have to question why the jobs have to be in Sydney or Melbourne … there will be fortnightly meetings in Sydney for the new division executive, so what’s the difference between flying from Brisbane, Canberra or Hobart?

The Melbourne Film Festival website was under attack yesterday. Below was the message on the Melbourne Film Festival homepage at 2.10pm yesterday afternoon.

This comes after Ben Eltham’s report in Crikey on 23 July:

The Melbourne International Film Festival is finding the politics of nationalism just a bit tricky right now. That’s a good thing.

It all started with the Festival’s decision to screen the documentary The 10 Conditions of Love, a film which profiles the Uighur separatist Rebiya Kadeer. The Chinese government was already highly sensitive about Kadeer and the World Uighur Congress. But matters took a serious turn after the recent violence in Urumqi, which Chinese media have claimed was “instigated and masterminded” by Kadeer.

Things are hotting up in Queensland Federal Labor politics — all conveniently happening on the day that a redistribution is handed down. First of all the Courier Mail led on Friday with a story that Arch Bevis is likely to be challenged by a star recruit, from outside his own faction and intimates that he is never likely to be a Minister in a Rudd Government. Everyone knows that Rudd (and his office loathe Bevis) for his lack of support during the Rudd/Beazley challenge.

Then surprise, surprise Saturday’s redistribution sees Bevis’s seat of Brisbane get completely turned around (a good excuse for a new high profile candidate?) but still is estimated to have a margin towards the ALP of 4%. Then to make matters murkier the seat of Dickson is now estimated to be a marginal seat to Labor of at least 1.3% (pity poor Peter Dutton) and already new candidates are testing the waters.

The previous Labor candidate, Fiona McNamara, doesn’t even live in the electorate. She is also an Asst Sec of the Teachers Union who took out full page ads in Saturday’s Courier Mail attacking the Bligh Government and she is generally perceived to be a weak candidate from the small Labor Unity faction. Last election McNamara got a free run from the left dominated Dickson branches because no-one thought that the seat was winnable (10% swing required) — then along came Kevin 07 and McNamara was one of the beneficiary’s of the Queensland Rudd landslide.

With every seat around her won by Labor from the Coalition (Longman and Petrie) many wonder what would have happened if a local high profile candidate had been endorsed? Suddenly Dickson is a prize and the left have the numbers and Teachers Union affiliated candidates are hardly toast of the month with the Rudd and Bligh governments.

Amazing what can happen in a few hours after some squiggly lines on an electoral map are changed. Gotta love it.

The “WA ALP insider” certainly hit the nail on the head when they commented on incompetence being rewarded. You need look no further than the Member for Cannington’s “rise” to a safe Labor seat as a shining example.

The “Carpenter Experiment” was a catastrophic failure, no doubt, but the point must be made that it was a result of WA ALP’s factional divisions. Even though backbenchers and staffers had no access, what was glaringly obvious was the faction’s inability to work effectively together to find a replacement to Geoff Gallop in 2007. A leader must have experience and knowledge of WA ALP’s history and that person must have factional ties.

At that time there was McGinty, MacTiernan and Ripper all of whom where factionally aligned and capable. The factional leaders went with Carpenter because he was non-aligned and someone they foolishly believed they could manipulate. It is fair to say that Carpenter’s self imposed isolation and political inexperience cost him, but it might have been avoided had the right decision been made in the first place.

This lack of interaction between factional leaders needs to be addressed by WA ALP if it is to go forward. The leaders need to develop a way to communicate and foster trust (of course I use this term with trepidation). This may help to avoid another Carpenter blunder. It might also be worthwhile to continue the Burke extinguishment program as his involvement, however indirect, has been a thorn in the WA ALP side for to long.

ALP WA has a proud history of robust and passionate debate from the Right, Left and Centre. It has helped mould WA into the strong State that it is today. But those past leaders had the capacity to communicate even if they didn’t see eye-to-eye. I think Catania may turn out to be a blessing in disguise for WA ALP. This saga has helped to off load some dead wood and gives WA ALP an opportunity to reinvigorate the factions and identify and develop new leaders.

If ALP WA misses this opportunity there will be a never ending “conga line of suckholes” arrogantly believing they have talent, when they are nothing more than lightweight party hacks.