Will there be an investigation into why the ABC Japan News Bureau had to fork out for the lunch tab the other day? The lunch, instigated by ABC chairman Maurice Newman, left a local ABC journo having to pay on the ABC News credit card rather than from the good chairman’s travel allowance. It was doubly galling for the said foreign correspondent, after having been chewed out by the chairman for not having reported enough on Australian businessmen’s success in the land of the rising sun.

Interesting ALP preselection rumours. Macquarie electorate: Now that Louise Markus has bailed out of her sinking ship of Greenway, she is now the Liberal candidate for Macquarie. Former Liberal MP Kerry Bartlett has decided that he would rather run for the state seat of Blue Mountains. The ALP’s margin on Macquarie is now 0.1 after the redistribution. Labor is reaching out to two possible candidates: Former netballer Liz Ellis and current boss of the St Vincent DePaul Society John Falzon.

Falzon is a long time member of the Springwood Branch of the ALP and lives in the Blue Mountains. Falzon used to be a member of the Socialist Left faction which outgoing Bob Debus and current Blue Mountains state MP Phil Koperberg belong to. Blue Mountains Mayor Adam Searle is canvassing local support but does not have the support of NSW Left leader Luke Foley (despite being a member of the Left faction) nor does he have the backing of Rudd right-hand man Mark Arbib. John Falzon is seen to be the guy who will get the gong.

In Lindsay, current MP David Bradbury is seeking the numbers to make a move to neighbouring Chifley if government Whip Roger Price decides to retire. Bradbury is worried that ill-feeling towards Labor because of the state government may hamper his re-election chances. He has even canvassed the idea of a move to Greenway considering it is now a very safe prospect post-redistribution. He would join about two dozen wanna-be MPs who are vying to get the nod.

Will there be repercussions inside the ABC for the Hungry Beast/Levitt Institute hoax? Soon to be leaving ABC TV Executive Head of Content Creation, Courtney Gibson seems to think so. She’s holidaying in Europe before taking up her new position at Southern Star. Early this morning she tweeted from London: “A million miles from the Levitt Institute, drinking pear cider, looking at the view from the members’ room at the Tate Modern. Grand.”

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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