Lawyers for Heydon Findings of sexual harassment against former High Court judge Dyson Heydon have unleashed a much-needed wave through the legal profession. But a few archly conservative lawyers are digging their heels in.
Battling the woke mob is a brave anonymous barrister, who wrote in last week’s Spectator that the allegations against Heydon are “low-level sexual harassment,” and that “we are not dealing with an alleged crime”. (ACT police are investigating Heydon).
Our brave correspondent then suggests bias might have sullied the High Court’s independent investigation because Heydon was on bad terms with current chief justice Susan Kiefel.
He — because it almost certainly is a he — concludes that the “cancellation” of Heydon is seen by the law’s “Quiet Australians” as a “capitulation to the fashionable and illiberal #MeToo Movement”.
The Heydon affair has caused a fair few ripples on Phillip Street, where the judge’s offensive behaviour was apparently an open secret for years. A tipster sent through a criminal defence barrister’s posts in a private social media group, which defended Heydon as a “socially inept but brilliant lawyer.”
In a deeply conservative profession, support for Heydon seems alive and well. But like our brave anonymous barrister, most aren’t ripping the mask off just yet.
Dewey Beats Truman Labor’s Kristy McBain hung on to retain the marginal seat of Eden-Monaro on the weekend. But not if you read The Sunday Telegraph, which declared victory for the Liberals on its front page. “Scomo’s Scorcher,” the Tele roared (appropriate headline for a region still recovering from bushfires), claiming the prime minister had delivered Labor “a brutal byelection lesson”.
Even accounting for the Tele’s print deadlines, that headline was never true. As the votes came in on Saturday night, most pundits had the result too close to call. And despite a small swing against Labor, McBain was narrowly ahead most of the evening. Only state Nationals leader John Barilaro was calling the seat for Liberal candidate Fiona Kotvojs, despite no firm evidence. After midnight, the ABC’s election guru Antony Green called the seat for Labor, with McBain claiming victory the next morning.
Q Believers in Eden-Monaro Saturday’s byelection might also have seen one of the first believers in the QAnon conspiracy running for an Australian parliament. Independent Riccardo Bosi, a former special forces lieutenant colonel, regularly drops Twitter hashtags related to QAnon, an unhinged far-right conspiracy theory centred on the belief that US President Donald Trump is fighting to save the world from a Deep State cabal of paedophiles.
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Bosi, formerly of Cory Bernardi’s Australia Conservatives, only garnered 502 votes on Saturday. But QAnon believers are entering the political mainstream in the US, winning Republican primaries in safe congressional districts. And in Australia, one of the prime minister’s close friends is a Q believer. Watch this space.
Come on Pauline Breakfast TV’s favourite reactionary senator was back at it this morning, telling Nine’s Today Show that people in Melbourne’s locked-down public housing blocks were “drug addicts” who couldn’t speak English, and should be fine with a lockdown because they come from war-torn countries and are used to such things.
It comes days after Hanson’s billboard declaring “all lives matter or bugger off” was pulled down in Rockhampton.
The show must go on While Flemington was one of the Melbourne suburbs to lock down last week, that didn’t stop the races running over the weekend. The Victorian Racing Club says the new lockdown won’t affect racing and training at Flemington Racecourse, which is just a stone’s throw away from the public housing block forced into lockdown on Saturday.