The leaders of the world’s 20 largest economies will be meeting in a few weeks in Brisbane. As politicians, most of them will keep their eye on the domestic audience throughout, and none more so than our own Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who clearly isn’t expecting to be able to have any real influence on Russian President Vladimir Putin’s views on international affairs, any more than we would expect Putin to have any influence over an Australian Prime Minister’s view of the world. It of course does give other leaders who may have some influence on Putin a chance to be the more “reasonable” critics.

Education Minister Christopher Pyne was the main mover into the top ten as the National Curriculum Review was released, with the most focus on the history syllabus and perceived left-wing bias. Meanwhile Opposition Infrastructure spokesperson Anthony Albanese raised a number of civil liberties questions about the latest anti-terrorism laws which the opposition has fallen over itself to support. The “shirtfront” comment from Abbott was quick to drown out any serious debate. Not that I’m trying to suggest a motive, of course.

WA Premier Colin Barnett, who hasn’t been making much of a dent in this list this year, leaps into the top ten while his polling figures plummet and he lashes out at the mining giants, claiming they are flooding the iron ore market at exactly the wrong time, coming very close to stating he suspects them of anti-competitive practices. Other premiers were also well up the list as local issues started to cut through.

Crikey Political Index: October 9-15

Another pretty quiet week on talkback, apart from the “shirtfront”, with the imminent Victorian election pushing Premier Denis Napthine into the list.

Talkback Top Five

Less political chat on social media as well, the Abbott v Putin WWE encounter not bringing that particular crowd to its feet.

Social Media Top Five

While the rugby media focuses on the coach’s future, surely the real topic here is whether Kurtley Beale’s admittedly immediate and abject apology is enough to excuse the personal vilification of one of the few women in a management role in one of the many codes of football that has lengthy form when it comes to poor treatment of women.

Comparison of media mentions

Peter Fray

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