Crikey Says

May 25, 2012

It’s just not worth it, Craig

Craig Thomson is right about one thing: A Current Affair's pursuit of a prostitute who claims she slept with the embattled MP seven years ago is most certainly "gutter journalism".

Craig Thomson is right about one thing: A Current Affair's pursuit of a prostitute who claims she slept with the embattled MP seven years ago is most certainly "gutter journalism". But there's plenty of others wallowing in the bottom of the barrel. Editors, journalists and MPs and their staffers. We don't necessarily exclude ourselves. It's ugly, putrid stuff. Should we keep following it? How can we not? The opposition has new-found concern for his welfare. He's a man under "enormous pressure", Tony Abbott now says, calling on Labor to put the needs of their MP and his family first:
"The Prime Minister is the one who is clinging to his vote and his Labor colleagues are the ones who are insisting that he should stay in the Parliament."
The whiff of political desperation almost overpowers the sordid saga itself, certainly. But it's Thomson standing defiant. And for what? To save a political career that only has 18 months to run regardless? To save a rotten government in the same position? It's just not worth it.

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65 thoughts on “It’s just not worth it, Craig

  1. drovers cat

    “To save a rotten government in the same position?”

    hmm, passing important but difficult and unpopular legislation on numerous occasions while
    maintaining the delicate balance of a hung parliament.

    I can only guess at what you’d call ‘good’ government.

  2. Gavin Moodie

    I agree with Drovers Cat

    How is the current Australian Government rotten? Even the worst allegation against Thomson isn’t about his behaviour in Government but about his behaviour years before.

    And were even that conceded, how does the misbehaviour of a single member make a whole government rotten?

  3. David Allen

    To stop Abbott getting in the lodge is worth anything – he deserves a full pardon. Oops, he hasn’t been found guilty of anything yet by the people who matter, the courts.

  4. Holden Back

    Lucky all Liberal MPs are pure as the driven slush, Imean snow, so this will never happen to them.

  5. Gavin Moodie

    It is also noteworthy that the Coalition has never relied on a ‘tainted’ vote such as Mal Colston’s.

  6. Bill Hilliger

    What about a reasonable government and a “rotten opposition” desperate to get into government at any cost.

  7. Tom McLoughlin

    Let me recall that chicken dinner in company with Graham Richardson in 1994.

    It was down at the take away tables in front of what is now the Swiss Grand Hotel. It was the end of a fundraising walk along the scenic eastern suburbs cliff line in aid of The Wilderness Society. The former federal MP, former environment minister, was in need of some pro bono PR kudos. He had fallen on hard times and needed the high profile non aligned cred of a high profile organisation that was busy ramping up tens of thousands of submissions in favour of environmental heritage in the lead up to the critical state election in March 1995.

    As NSW campaigns coordinator I chose to lead that walk to mix with the fallen fixer. You see he was implicated in a scandal involving … hookers. The tabloids were burning him alive in reputational terms. He needed some charity in his PR sails. I had no doubt he wanted to use us for his own ends.

    Ironic to read his pontificating in The Australian today to feed off the big media employment in light of the above.

    As the wikipedia entry notes:

    “Four weeks later, on 25 March 1994, Richardson resigned both positions and retired from parliament, citing ill-health. However, at the same time, allegations were mounting that Richardson was involved in acquiring prostitutes for his personal use, supplied by Robert Burgess and Nick Karlos. Karlos reportedly had been accused of having serious criminal connections; meanwhile Richardson had signed a letter of support on Ministerail letthead for Burgess which was then used to set up a meeting between Richardson and the senior executive of a US defence company, where Richardson discussed Burgess’ interests. Richardson denied the allegations.” [Refer “The fixer in a fix”. The Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax Media). 13 December 2003. Retrieved 30 December 2010.]

    Even more ironic to read Simon Benson reference another scandal involving the Touch of Class brothel … located opposite Forresters Hotel in Surry Hills Sydney about 200 metres from … News Ltd headquarters (innocently noticed from my bushwalking club meeting at Forresters Hotel the other day). A quick google indicates at least another ten in the Surry Hills area with News Ltd the biggest employer presence in the suburb. Coincidence? I wonder if the shareholders are briefed on News Ltd corporate credit card use at that and other close by brothels?

  8. spurdon

    Back up your blith mob mentality statements Crikey. Why is it a
    “To save a rotten government in the same position?”

  9. Rien Huizer

    Worthwhile to guess what could be his reasons to stay in this job. Probably, if and as soon as he steps down, no one will pay attention to him anymore. So, what is in it for him?

    Apart from this, it is ridiculous that the media do not put this whole thing into some proportional perspective:
    – he may have used a few thousand bucks on exotic entertainment (or, more likely, paid for someone else). How many people consider the consumption of alcohol and tobacco (after dinner cigars used to be a very common thing) scandalous? We are talking about the cost of 60-40 business dinners spread over a period of several years.
    – would be be less hated if he repaid whatever is alleged to HSU (not the electoral expenses of course and not the ATM withdrawals; those are rarely mentioned in the press and are probably the weakest part in the FWA case) p[lus some form of “penalty” -say 10K bucks?

    I do not get it. For a country where every third marriage at least ends in divorce, why this obsession with the use of prostitutes by someone working for an organization and with an expense account.

    And, of course as many commenters have said, what kind of a mug pays for that kind of services with a company card? Only when you book the service for someone who wants to be treated well..

  10. khtagh

    Believing the Mad Monk leader of the Lieberals he has any compassion for anyone other than himself. is like believing.
    Dracula standing in the blood bank screaming he was dying of thirst.

    Like his description of the Thomson defense, Totally unbelievable.

    He is a total disgrace, he just cant get over that he was unable to take government at the last election, how dare the people not choose him. Now he is rampaging through the sand pit kicking over every ones castle’s, like the 2yr throwing a tantrum that he is.

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