How Peter Slipper killed pokie reforms. Rooster one day, feather duster the next. That’s the power game.

As soon as independent MP Andrew Wilkie lost the ability to bring down Julia Gillard’s minority government — when Peter Slipper slipped into the Speaker’s chair last November — it was odds-on that his pokie reforms would struggle to get up. And now that Gillard’s cabinet has pushed their introduction back until 2016 — when she almost certainly won’t be in office — Wilkie’s mandatory pre-commitment scheme may never make it into law at all. — Paul Barry (read the full story here)

Megaphones: Bolt’s back, Hadley v Wilkie, MTR. Ray Hadley slams Andrew Wilkie over his pokies backdown, Janet Albrechtsen’s favourite footballer, and Melinda Tankard-Reist fires up the feminists …

Here’s what Australia’s most powerful media megaphones have been up to over the past week. — Matthew Knott (read the full story here)

Art dealer Ronald Coles faces 10 years in jail. Ronald Coles was once one of Australia’s biggest and best-connected art dealers. He mixed with celebrities, spent big at the racetrack, drove a Bentley with the numberplate BUY ART, and boasted a turnover of $20 million a year.

But he’s now facing up to 10 years in jail over a major art fraud that has left dozens of people — who bought his paintings as investments — $8 million out of pocket. — Paul Barry (read the full story here)

Power Play #8: be merciful rather than vindictive. It was true in the New Testament and it’s true today. The powerful are merciful when most of us would choose to be vindictive.

Someone screws up and our first instinct is to stick their head on a piñata and kick the crap out of them. That’s taking the low road. — Rose Herceg (read the full story here)

Peter Fray

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