Tips and rumours

May 7, 2014

Tips and rumours

Reform is dead at COAG ... Labor Gazette rolls on ... Christopher Pyne takes charge ... Julie Bishop acts -- kind off -- on schoolgirls ...

From the Crikey grapevine, the latest tips and rumours … Reform is dead at COAG. So much for all that policy reform via the Council of Australian Governments: Crikey hears COAG's reform council secretariat will be among the cuts in next week's federal budget. Staff in the Sydney office were informed yesterday. Know more? You know who to call ... Labor Herald rolls on. That "Crikey-style" Labor Party propaganda sheet is halfway to securing its editor. In a letter to the faithful, ALP national secretary George Wright says 226 "founding subscribers" have raised more than half of the $95,000 goal to pay its hired hack:
Friend, Did you see how the conservatives on Twitter jumped up and down when they heard we were fundraising for an editor for our new online Labor Herald? Apparently they weren’t fans of the idea, but a bit of Twitter hyperactivity won’t stop us. We’ve got 226 new founding subscribers and we’re more than half way to our fundraising goal of $95,000 for the position of editor. Can you join our 226 new founding subscribers and help get our online news service up and running? You’ve already told us loud and clear that you want more factual information about what Tony Abbott and his Government are doing. The Labor Herald will play that role, but we need a content editor to make it all happen. An editor who will write useful, interesting articles for the site and pull together interesting content, including your own articles and comments. We only need 124 more people chipping in $22.60 a month to get the online Labor Herald off the ground. Click here and say you’ll be one of our foundation subscribers and help make history. And if you say you want to join the other 226 foundation subscribers, we’ll keep you up-to-date with progress on getting the project started and when the service starts you’ll get daily news bulletins. I believe it’s really important that we do this. We need our own news and we need a place where we can hear each other’s views. You and I can make that happen. Thanks, George Wright National Secretary
Pyne takes charge. Meanwhile, we understand Education Minister Christopher Pyne has been personally poring over lists of recent Australian Research Council grants, to help him figure out a fresh way of eliminating the type of grants that don’t fit his paradigm. Watch this space. Bishop acts -- kind of -- on schoolgirls. There's been a strong response to yesterday's Crikey story on what the Australian government had said and done -- i.e. almost nothing -- about the abduction of 250 Nigerian schoolgirls by a militant group that says it will sell them into slavery for trying to get an education. When the story was written there was no indication the Australian government had done or said anything much. Crikey put a media request to Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and DFAT asking what Australia had done, but got no response. We also called the Nigerian High Commission in Canberra, but they didn't respond to our query. What did emerge, three hours after the Crikey story was published, was this media release from Bishop. It's the first reference we've found from the Australian government to the kidnapping. The gist is that Bishop has:
" ... asked the head of Counter Terrorism in DFAT to contact the Nigerian High Commissioner in Canberra to raise our concerns and offer our support. I have also asked Australia’s High Commissioner in Abuja to remain in close contact with the Nigerian Government regarding the abduction of the girls."

This led to a bit of flak for Bishop on Twitter, with tweeters asking why it took three weeks for the Australian government to care. Bishop was narky in response, urging critics to "catch up" because Australia said something about it at the UN Security Council ...

Free Trial

Proudly annoying those in power since 2000.

Sign up for a FREE 21-day trial to keep reading and get the best of Crikey straight to your inbox

By starting a free trial, you agree to accept Crikey’s terms and conditions


Leave a comment

2 thoughts on “Tips and rumours

  1. paddy

    It’s a pretty sad state of affairs, when all we have to look forward to is the “Labor Herald” and no New Matilda.
    I know where *I* think the best value for money would be.

  2. CML

    Paddy – How about you wait until the Labor Herald is up and running before you start with the criticism.
    Ditto to you Ms Tips – you don’t have the right to call a non-existent publication ‘propaganda’ when you cannot possibly have any evidence of that.
    If someone is going to give us the Labor Party commentary on matters of policy, and explain what the LNP are up to, what is wrong with that? They certainly don’t get their views aired in the MSM.
    I will make my judgement after I read a few editions, which is what you all should be doing.

Share this article with a friend

Just fill out the fields below and we'll send your friend a link to this article along with a message from you.

Your details

Your friend's details