Safe rates may split National Party. After a long wait, the federal government will legislate a so-called “safe rates” scheme for truck drivers — as Crikey reported in July — to protect subcontractors from customers screwing down rates. Legislation will come before Parliament later this week, but Nationals leader Warren Truss has already ruled out opposition support. But does Truss speak for all his party? We’re told at least one Nats MP is in favour of the scheme, which will help small trucking operators particularly in the bush. Stay tuned.

Charity steps out of moustache war. The Fauxvember charity drive splintered from Movember because of that group’s links to beyondblue and homophobic comments from its leader Jeff Kennett. It was going to donate funds to the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia but they don’t want the cash, as this email to participants stated today:

Subject: Change in Fauxvember beneficiaries
Date: 22 November 2011 10:46:22 AM AEDT

Dear friends,

Thanks so much for the support you’ve provided to Fauxvember so far.

I have some unexpected news that I need to share with you.

Unfortunately, the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia has decided to refuse future donations from Fauxvember.

Accordingly, future donations via the Fauxvember donation web site will be split evenly between the two remaining causes:  The Black Dog Institute, and the National LGBTI Health Alliance.

This change does not effect past donations.  If the Prostate Cancer Foundation is mentioned on a donation receipt, they will retain their share of that donation.

The Foundation has not yet explained to me the reasons for their decision.  I am seeking further information, and will pass this on as it comes to hand.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding this, you can e-mail me at

Best Regards,

Adrian Hempel

We asked the Prostate Cancer Foundation why they wouldn’t accept the generous donation and was told by a spokesperson they have a long-standing relationship with Movember and wanted to respect that. The boss of the foundation was due to make a statement later today.

Playing outrage card on tabloid TV. The Herald Sun turned its outrage dial to 10 for this report today: “A Melbourne play that defends a Norwegian mass murderer as being ‘no madder than John Howard and Peter Costello’ has been slammed as ‘extraordinary’.” Today Tonight and A Current Affair apparently believe it’s extraordinary, too — we’re told both programs are working on a follow-up.